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Artists Vow to Lobby Parliament on NAHEC Bill, Council

Stakeholders in the art sector have vowed to continue lobbying Parliament to ensure the drafting of the National Arts and Heritage Council (NAHEC) Bill at the Ministry of Justice is completed for tabling in the next sitting in February 2023.

NAHEC Taskforce Chairperson at the National Theatre Association of Malawi (NTAM), Maxwell Chiphinga also known as Max DC, told Zodiak Online on Wednesday that the Bill will facilitate the establishment of the arts Council which is key for the artists' welfare.

Chiphinga believes once the Council is established, it will help in implementing arts and culture policies, initiatives and improve welfare of artists in the country.

On Wednesday, Chiphinga and Chairperson of the Legal Affairs Committee of Parliament, Peter Dimba, confirmed to have together met Social and Community Affairs Committee of Parliament on the lobbying drive.

"Right now, we are lobbying Parliamentarians and one of the issues is for that process at the Ministry of Justice to be expedited so that the Bill should be able to make it to the next sitting of Parliament in February. We are still pushing on that with parliamentary committees so that they should engage and hear the Ministry's side on why there is that delay," Chiphinga said.

Meanwhile, Ministry of Justice spokesperson, Pirirani Masanjala, has told Zodiak that the Bill is amongst the legislations being drafted.

"There is no set timeline currently on when it will be completed but it is amongst the Bills that are being drafted," Masanjala said.

For so long, there has been an outcry over the neglected welfare of the renowned artists who have contributed greatly to the development of the country.

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