Local musicians, who have been complaining of not have enough airtime on local radio stations, can now afford a smile after Parliament passed a motion aimed to promote and empower the country’s music industry.
Ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) law maker for Thyolo Thava Mary Thom Navicha moved the motion in the House on Thursday, saying artists in the country were being denied a platform to display their talents amid an influx of foreign content.
“I noted that some Malawians who dedicated their lives to promote our country through music and other artistic initiatives, ended up being so poor and reduced to nothing while others rip from their sweat.
“Think of how Stonard Lunga died? Likewise, Saleta Phiri, Geoffrey Zigoma and Daniel Kachamba were great musicians, but left nothing behind to support their dependents yet we cherished them, danced and loved their music but with all the efforts, they went to their resting place while poor and yet we continue enjoying their products,” said Navicha.
Among other, the adopted motion calls the Malawi Communications Regulatory Authority (MACRA)to ensure that local media houses play 70 percent of local songs and 30 percent for foreign songs.
This, according to Navicha, will enable local musicians to earn more in proceeds from the Copyright Society of Malawi (Cosoma) and promote and advance Malawi’s musical identity.
“It is my wish that one day, Malawians will be better known with their own musical identity just as South Africa, Zambia, Nigeria and Zimbabwe but for this to come true, our artists needs to be protected so that some other people should not use their talents to make riches while they remain poor,” asserted Navicha.
Parliamentarian for Blantyre City South Constituency, Allan Ngumuya, who largely supported the motion, described the motion as a timely intervention saying if more artists will be given more airtime they benefit from the Cosoma money.
“We need to start promoting local talent and Malawians should be taking pleasure in local music. Foreign songs should be more attractive and important than our content,” said Ngumuya, who has 15 gospel albums to his credit.
This article was last modified on December 2, 2016, 10:10 am