Byo artistes scared to name mafia stifling their careers
EARLIER in the week, it was revealed that there was a gang of eight people who were responsible for the demise and stunted growth of the entertainment industry in Bulawayo.
The cabal was alleged to be holding the keys to success for artistes in the city and had the corporates in their pockets. To break into the entertainment industry in Bulawayo, it was alleged that young artistes and those from outside needed these faceless eight’s stamp of approval as they are strategically positioned in the industry.
This was revealed in a discussion that came out this week after comedian Carl Joshua Ncube acknowledged the existence of this mafia in Bulawayo.
For some time now, a debate has been raging on public spheres, among young artistes who have had encounters with these people who are being blamed for throwing spanners in their efforts.
An up-and-coming artiste claimed the mafia were the same people who are the faces behind major arts festivals and shows in the city. The artiste said these people were exploiters of the highest order as one has to approach them to seek approval if they want any project their working on to become a success.
Others believe that these people have been failures in their careers and are doing as much as they can to destroy and discourage the youth who have fledging and promising careers from overtaking them.
Apparently, the mafia’s trump card is marginalisation as they use it to unlock donor funding to fatten their pockets every year, while exploiting the young artistes for their cause.
“Because there’s no money in the entertainment industry in Bulawayo, these eight exploit artistes in the city by telling them to perform for free at shows and festivals that they organise. Their shows are held, tickets are sold, but artistes are made to sign contracts where they agree to perform for free because these people claim to be doing them a favour and giving them a platform,” said one artiste who requested anonymity.
These shows apparently draw huge crowds and the mafia pay themselves handsomely for their services from the donor or corporate funds.
Some of the artistes revealed that when they start demanding to be paid, they are all of a sudden blacklisted for voicing out.
Female artistes have not been spared as they have alleged that this cabal has asked them for sexual favours in exchange for a break in the industry. Others have alleged that some of the ladies that are now prominent in the industry yielded to the pressure for a slice of fame that they have been longing for.
This sounds a lot like the infamous Illuminati, a mysterious group that conspiracy theorists believe is seeking a “New World Order” that would impose a totalitarian world government. Among the alleged members of the secret society are not just politicians and religious leaders, but actors and pop stars.
According to these conspiracy theorists, you cannot break into the entertainment industry without their approval or sanction. This is the same with our very own mysterious eight member mafia.
What is sad though is that people do not want to name and shame these people.
As it stands, the Bulawayo arts mafia of eight is just one for the rumour mill and unless someone with concrete evidence of their identity comes forward, such discussions will remain futile.
However, the continued sprouting of these allegations means there is some element of truth. The tentacles of this mafia might not be as far reaching or their roots that deep and established, but there are some people benefitting from the continued struggle and poverty of artistes from the City of Kings.