Black Coffee asks Ramaphosa to intervene as artists get arrested for Covid-19 protest shutdown
DJ Black Coffee has lent his voice to protests by musicians in KZN this week, slamming the government for the “vile treatment” given to those in the arts industry.
According to Sowetan, several artists were arrested after conducting an illegal strike on the N3 near Durban on Wednesday. They were protesting about Covid-19 regulations related to hosting events and demanded that the government open up the entertainment industry.
Popular musicians DJ Merlon, Mshunqisi Dladla and Zodwa Wabantu were among those spotted in the crowd with placards calling for events to be open with at least 70% attendance.
Videos and pictures of protesters being chased and arrested went viral on social media under the hashtag #VulaPresident.
DJ Black Coffee weighed in on the arrests, slamming the government for the manner in which police responded to the protest. He also pleaded with president Ramaphosa to intervene.
“What has our industry done to receive such vile treatment, we need your intervention Mr President,” Black Coffee said.
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Author Jackie Phamotse added her voice to comments on the protest, slamming the president for responding to artists' cries with “guns and teargas”.
“Dear Mr Cyril Ramaphosa you seem not to care about the arts industry! We have not been catered for during this lockdown! If guns and teargas is the only way you handle our hunger then so be it! We are tired of being ostracised. Please open the country!”
Dear Mr @CyrilRamaphosa you seem not to care about the arts 🎭 industry! We have not been catered for during this lockdown! If guns and teargas is the only way you handle our hunger than so be it! We are tired of being ostracized. Please open the country! #VulaPresident pic.twitter.com/95XQDUAGnk— Jackie Phamotse (@JackiePhamotse) September 2, 2020
Rapper Cassper Nyovest added: “The entertainment industry doesn't feed artists only. There are cleaners, security guards, caterers, sound technicians, Pr, engineers, tent owners, barricade fence owners, light technicians who have lost their livelihoods since March. Think about them if not us.”
Here are some of the artists who made their voices heard.