Creative Spaces Plagued by Substance Abuse: Masisi Raises Concern


President Mokgweetsi Masisi has expressed concern over the increasing reports of substance abuse among creatives. Speaking at the DBS Road Show awards recently in Gaborone, the President acknowledged the tragic tales of talented artists who have succumbed to addiction.

In his speech, President Masisi highlighted the pressures that come with fame, which may be too strong to resist for some creatives. He urged them to resist engaging in drug and substance abuse, as they become role models and influencers in the industry.


Substance Abuse and the Pressures of the Industry
An anonymous creative shared their experience, revealing that the pressures of the industry can majorly impact one’s mental, physical, and emotional health. The need to be the best artist with the most accolades and the constant pressure of unnecessary scandals adds to the stress.

The creative industry is not alone in this normalization of drug use, which invariably becomes a coping mechanism for the emotional highs and lows of life. Stressors such as work insecurity, financial pressures, creative self-doubt, and other issues can lead to drug abuse.


Growing Problem of Substance Abuse
Phemelo Lesokwane, President of the Botswana Musicians Union (BOMU), acknowledged the growing problem of substance abuse in creative spaces. While the causes of drug abuse might stem from different reasons, the increasing drug use in entertainment spaces is a cause for concern.

Lesokwane also pointed out that drug users usually end up with nothing because they use all their resources for a drug fix. They even resort to selling personal belongings or harassing people to source money for drugs. BOMU is currently partnering with relevant organizations to embark on a project that will sensitize creatives about the dangers of drug use through a nationwide campaign.

In conclusion, the creative industry has been plagued by substance abuse, and the President’s call to resist engaging in such vices is timely. It is essential to address the growing problem of drug abuse in creative spaces, and BOMU’s awareness campaign is a step in the right direction.