Department corrects misleading comments 
by comedian Maanda Mungulwa

November 10, 2017 at 09:37 a.m

We have noted the unfortunate and untruthful online posts by comedian, Maanda Mungulwa, published between November 8 and 9 wherein he made several damning allegations about the upcoming Mpumalanga Cultural Xperience.

The department has long commenced with the advertising campaign for the Cultural Xperience and in the coming days, we will be releasing the lineup of artists who will be performing at all the activities. The lineup features artists from the province both renowned and emerging as we are committed to supporting and promoting our own talent, including the likes of Mungulwa. We have supported him and utilized his services when our programmes required his expertise. We will never cancel a programme of the department based on views that he may hold as he stated. We would like to put it on record that the allegations made by Mungulwa are unfounded, baseless and are causing unnecessary damage to the reputation of the department and the brand of the Mpumalanga Cultural Xperience.

The Comedy Xperience was removed from this year's programme not to spite Mungulwa, but to allow the different facets of the entertainment industry to be part of the Xperience. This year, the department has introduced a Prayer and Gospel Xperience as well as Soulful Xperience. This was done in order to find a winning formula of hosting the Mpumalanga Cultural Xperience and to bring diversity to the Cultural Xperience. We understand that the comedy-loving community, including Mungulwa, is unhappy about the decision. The department requests that stakeholders who have an interest on the Cultural Xperience engage with us in a dignified manner and not emulate the unfortunate conduct of Mungulwa of casting aspersions through untruths and innuendos. The Department of Culture, Sport and Recreation is organizing the Mpumalanga Cultural Xperience 2017 in partnership with the private sector, other government departments and entities which will accordingly fund some of the activities. The budget of the festival is far less than the R42 million that Mr Mungulwa is preoccupied with in his quest of misleading his friends and followers.

The Russian Orchestra will be performing at the Mpumalanga Cultural Xperience as a reciprocal gesture to the province as part of the South Africa/Russia Season. Earlier in the year, Culture, Sport and Recreation MEC, Norah Mahlangu, led a delegation to Russia to showcase our diverse culture. The delegation included two traditional groups Inkwazi (Siswati) and Angie-M (Ndebele).
The department is not incurring any costs for the orchestra performance. The programme is funded by the National Department of Arts and Culture. The department is only providing a platform for the orchestra to perform. The South Africa/Russia Season gave an opportunity to 30 members of Inkwazi and Angie-M to perform at an international stage.

Last year, Mungulwa emceed at the Comedy Xperience and he was paid for his services. This was also the only Mpumalanga Cultural Xperience event he attended. He was neither at the Street Carnival nor at the other events. He has never recorded any form of unhappiness for his contribution to the last year's edition of the Xperience. It is unfair for Mungulwa to scream corruption when he does not benefit from this year's Cultural Xperience as we have different genres that we support for different programmes as the department is committed to support all artists in the province. We urge people in the province, including Mungulwa, that if they have any information on corruption, they should not hesitate to report such matters to relevant law enforcing authorities so that they could be thoroughly investigated as we are committed to clean governance.


One more thing, the hashtag for the Xperience is #Xmarksthefun.