The Botswana Musicians Union (BOMU) has called on promoters to try and secure operating permits in time to avoid having their shows flop.
BOMU Secretary General, Pagson Ntsie said this in view of a series of music shows expected to take place during the festive season, saying it was important for promoters to do everything in time to avoid disappointments which can have an adverse effect on the growth of the music industry in the country. “We want for our shows and musicians to be big enough to attract people from beyond the borders of Botswana just to see our artists play, and the only way that dream can ever be realized is when we learn to do things properly and abide by the rules,” he said.
He further encouraged promoters to secure working permits for the artists they will be bringing from outside the country, as well as the Noise And Nuisance Permit, “Before you begin to sell tickets and promote your show, be sure to have secured the Noise and Nuisance permit that is usually requested from the council, if you will be bringing in artists from neighboring countries, ensure that you have secured work permits for them from the Arts and Culture Department, and of course license for you to do a show from COSBOTS for them to collect royalties for the performing artists,” he advised.
In the past, promoters have complained that COSBOTS permit rules seem to apply only to shows in Gaborone and not the rest of the country, an issue which BOMU says it is aware of; “We have been led to believe that the reason for that is that COSBOTS does not have capacity in other parts of Botswana. However, we really can’t speak for COSBOTS, but all we can say is that these are some of the issues that we as a union are still fighting; this act should apply everywhere and not only in certain areas of the country. That said, it is important for promoters to follow the law rather than risk a show being shut down,” said Ntsie who also encouraged promoters to balance the number of local and foreign artists, instead of bringing more foreign acts, side lining local artists.