28th May 2023
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Poets urge govt to support art industry

Author: Emmanuel J. Akile | Published: Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Tata Diko, a poetess and Co-founder of Heroines and Spoken Tales, and Mabior Cirilo, a writer, journalist and poet speak on Eye Radio's Dawn Show on Tuesday, March 21, 2023. (Photo: Awan Moses/Eye Radio).

Some South Sudanese poets are calling on the government to support arts activities in the country to inspire the young generation.

The writers said on World Poetry Day, that the ministries of Youth and Sports, and that of Culture and Heritage should designate a budget to fund art works in the country.

Tata Diko, a poetess and Co-founder of Heroines and Spoken Tales said supporting poets and writers will help promote their engagements and interactions with the outside world.

Speaking on the Eye Radio’s Dawn Show, Tata called on the government to launch an annual national art celebration in the country.

“Through our ministry of culture, youth, and sports. These are the ministries that should have incentives to promote upcoming artists, they should have national art celebrations to engage the people,” she said.

“They should also use content from our own artists to amplify to the world and also to create an environment that is safe for people to attend events, to gather and share their art pieces.”

Tata also called for respect to freedom of expression for artists to exercise their talents freely.

“Allow someone to express themselves and exercise their talents, just give them the space, and once you give them the space, encourage them and be part of them,” she said.

“If you hear their shows, show up and if you hear that they are doing any fundraising, be part of that fundraising.”

On his part, Mabior Cirilo a writer, journalist and a poet, encouraged aspiring young people to join the art profession.

“Through following the poetry arts, many people can be interested to be poets, but you should do your best and don’t give up. There are so many challenges, but you should not stop perusing your dream.”

“Secondly, to become a poet you have to improve your language, it doesn’t matter which language it can be a local language, English, Arabic, or any language, you just have to improve on it.”

“This will allow you to gain more experience in terms of vocabulary. Thirdly, your poem or message should be on something specific, you should be meaning something in your poem, it should address something not just poem for the sake of the poem.”

World Poetry Day, held every year on March 21st, celebrates one of humanity’s most treasured forms of cultural and linguistic expression and identity.

UNESCO first adopted 21 March as World Poetry Day during its 30th General Conference in Paris in 1999.

It aims at supporting linguistic diversity through poetic expression and increasing the opportunity for endangered languages to be heard.

World Poetry Day is the occasion to honor poets, revive oral traditions of poetry concerts, and promote the reading, writing, and teaching of poetry.

Also, to foster the convergence between poetry and other arts such as theatre, dance, music, and painting, and raise the visibility of poetry in the media.

The global theme for this year’s World Poetry Day is “Always be a poet, even in prose.”




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