The Zambian chapter of the Pan African Network for Artistic Freedom (PANAF) is all set to host a group discussion on The Welfare of Artists Speaking Truth to Power in Zambia.
This discussion will be led by PANAF’s partner in Zambia, People’s Action for Accountability and Good Governance in Zambia (PAAGZ), and is scheduled for October 19. The event will take place in the Chatroom section of the PANAF website and is slated to kick off at 1 pm (GMT+2).
The chatroom section was designed to provide a platform for engaging discussions on the well-being of artists in Zambia and their crucial role in advocating for accountability, transparency, and social change. “In any democratic society, the freedom of expression is a fundamental right,”PAAGZ said.
“Artists, as conveyors of ideas and creativity, are at the forefront of exercising this vital right. Their ability to convey important messages, critique societal issues, and challenge those in positions of authority is essential for upholding a vibrant democracy.”
Adding that: “The welfare of artists goes beyond their creative work; it encompasses their livelihoods. The arts sector significantly contributes to the Zambian economy through entertainment, tourism, and job creation. Ensuring the well-being of artists is pivotal for sustaining this economic contribution and nurturing a thriving creative industry.”
According to PAAGZ, the welfare of artists in Zambia and their ability to speak truth to power play a pivotal role in preserving democratic values, driving social change, boosting the economy, enhancing Zambia’s international image, and advocating for social justice. These reasons collectively underscore the importance of addressing the challenges artists face and ensuring they receive the necessary support and freedom to fulfill their vital role in society.
About PANAF (The Pan African Network for Artistic Freedom)
PANAF is a three-year initiative launched in November 2021 by Selam with support from the Swedish Arts Council. This initiative was established in response to the need for an active and inclusive regional voice in the creative sector that could raise awareness of incidents involving violations of artistic freedom and collaborate with advocates for artistic rights at both regional and national levels. The project is being implemented with the support of partner organizations operating in the culture and civil society domains across various countries, including Nigeria, Gambia, Mozambique, Kenya, Zambia, Rwanda, Uganda, and Ethiopia, with plans for expansion into more countries and regions in the future.
The Chatroom section of the PANAF website is intended to be a safe space for creatives to engage in discussions about artistic rights, good governance, and various socio-political issues without the fear of being profiled.