‘Vula president’ – KZN artists demand 70% capacity at events [video]
Avuya Walters

Clad in all black, artists from Kwa-Zulu Natal have staged a protest on the N3 highway in Durban, blocking all traffic movement with one call to Cyril Ramaphosa, “vula president!”

Events, live performances under Lockdown Level 2

At Lockdown Level 2, the arts and culture industry is one of the few sectors that remains closed since the National Disaster Management Act regulations were set in place, in March.

Much of this has to do with the fact that, in music and events, it is practically impossible to control the movement of people which, unfortunately, is how the coronavirus (Covid-19) is transited.

To accommodate the industry, the Level 2 regulations, published by the government on Monday 17 August 2020, stipulated that theatres, concerts and live performances are permitted, so long as they are limited to 50 attendees or less.

Moreover, the nationwide curfew is still in place. People are not allowed to be outside between 22:00 and 04:00.

‘Vula president’ – KZN artists protest against economic exclusion

This makes it practically impossible for promoters to plan and execute profitable events.

This is, in summation, the reason why DJ Tira, Tipcee and other KZN artists have taken their frustrations out on the streets.

Placards held by economically ostracised workers read, “we don’t have money,” and, “vula president,” a demand for Ramaphosa to reconsider his harshness towards the arts and culture sector.

Their proposal? Well, the ‘vula president’ protesters are willing to meet the government halfway by accepting an adjusted rule to the section of the Level 2 regulations that deal with concerts and live performances.

From what we understand, they are calling for the audience limit to be adjusted to 70% maximum capacity in event venues.

“We just want the entertainment economy to open. It’s about time. The artists are suffering. We are not being taken seriously and no one has said anything to us. We don’t even see where we are in the Levels.

“So, we hope this message will reach the president so that we can be allowed to continue working,” one protester said.

At the time of publishing this article, there were reports of traffic congestion on Durban’s N3 highway. Motorists are advised to avoid the area and make use of alternative routes where possible.