Arts for Socio-Political Activism

Mike Van Graan:


Calling on Cape Town’s arts and culture sector: There will be a picket outside parliament between 12:00 and 14:00 on Friday 7 August to coincide with the tabling/debating of the “Nhleko Report” on Nkandla. There will be a theatre performance as part of the picket, as well as other creative interventions. We aim to have at least 25 arts and culture people to be part of the 500-strong picket.

The ad hoc arts and culture UAC committee meets at 12:00 on Monday 3 August at the District 6 Homecoming Centre, 15 Buitenkant Street for anyone interested in assisting with the planning and coordinating of creative activities that would be part of the Unite Against Corruption Campaign.


In the six weeks since Unite against Corruption announced the planned marches to the Union Buildings and Parliament, we have been overwhelmed by the public response. A growing number of organisations together with thousands of individuals have endorsed the marches and indicated their determination to become part of a wave to end corruption in South Africa. Notably, more than 600 of South Africa’s most prominent artists have signed on. Individuals such as Rev. Mpho Tutu, Jay Naidoo, Francois Pienaar, Prof. Adam Habib, Anglican Bishop of Pretoria Joe Seoka and Zelda la Grange have added their weight to the call.

The unprecedented level of support has necessitated a wider process of consultation, mass education and mobilisation. Partly at the request of various key partners, the decision was taken to extend our mobilization period by a month. As a result, the original date of 19 August has been changed to Wednesday 23 September. The decision to postpone was taken only after careful consultation with all our stakeholders.

We believe that it is important to capitalize on this support and extend our reach to every corner of society.

We want the marches on 23 September 2015 to truly reflect the voice of all people around corruption. Over the next month, we will build a mass movement around this vital issue in South Africa, which even after the mass marches, will continue to take to task those who engage in corrupt activities and educate the public at large.

Build-up activities will continue, and will include community meetings, workplace consultations, and meetings in churches, mosques, union locals, train stations and taxi ranks. The awareness campaign will continue to profile the website as a portal for information and feedback, and the social media campaign will ramp up to hear the demands and stories of people from across the nation.

The first of these activities is a picket outside parliament in Cape Town on Friday 7 August. On the same day we will surround the Constitutional Court in Johannesburg with a human chain to symbolize our intention to protect the Constitution and Chapter 9 institutions, particularly the Public Protector.

Town Hall meetings are planned to take place in several major cities on 19 August for community members to engage on the demands that will be made to government and other sectors of society on 23rd September. The outcomes of the consultative process will be consolidated by the leadership and will constitute the final demands that are presented at the time of the march, reflecting that all the people living in South Africa have spoken.

We urge everyone to follow the campaign online and pledge their support at:
• Web: uniteagainstcorruption.co.za
• Email: media@uniteagainstcorruption.co.za
• Facebook: facebook.com/uacnow
• Twitter: @UAC_Now
• Instagram: uac_now


Oya Hazel Gumede M: 083.412.9315 E: oyahazelgumede@gmail.com
Mark Heywood M: 083.634.8806 E: heywood@section27.org.za
Butho Mpofu M: 074.616.6937 E: mpofu@section27.org.za
Miles Giljam M: 079.574.2926 E: milesgiljam@mac.com
Ashley Fataar M: 076.647.6101 E: ash.fataar@gmail.com

Unite against Corruption is a broad consortium of organisations and individuals from academia, civil society, faith-based organisations, the private sector and trade unions. The consortium presents an opportunity to bring together, in a spirit of unity, all those people who view corruption as an assault on our Constitution’s promise of equality and dignity. It is an initiative free of association with particular individuals or political parties.

Previously published:

The Unite Against Corruption Campaign is inviting all sectors – including the arts and culture sector – to make known its demands with regard to the challenges they face regarding corruption. The next step is to articulate what we would like to have done about it, to include these in the list of demands of the Campaign, and then to join with other sectors in campaigning for our respective sectoral and collective interests.

Those who do not wish to be part of this Campaign, absolutely do not need to be; that’s how democracy works. Those who would like to be involved, and have already endorsed the campaign, let us keep focused on what needs to be done in the next three weeks of the Campaign.

For those really interested in the Unite Against Corruption Campaign, what it is about, how it understands corruption, what it is fighting for and against – rather than using the rapid support for the Campaign generated within the arts and culture sector to fight their real and imaginary battles – see www.facebook.com/UACnow (and like the page to continue to be informed), Twitter @UAC_Now; Instagram @uac_now, and http://uniteagainstcorruption.co.za.