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Fees bar poor artistes from joining TaSUBa

Opening doors to anyone who can afford its fees has resulted in the Bagamoyo Institute of Arts and Culture (TaSUBa) shifting from the original purpose of its establishment.

Such action, according to local singer, songwriter and guitarist Vitali Maembe, has resulted in large numbers of those with in-born artistic talents, ending up outside its doors. Maembe told the ‘Daily News’ that not being able to secure the required funds has put the institution out-of-reach for talented artistes, while their less naturally-able counterparts fill the space.

To support his argument, he refers to the Father of the Nation, Mwalimu Julius Nyerere’s reasons for having the higher learning institute established.

He claims that the shift of purpose started in 1990 when TaSUBa, located in Coast Region, moved away from its mandate geared towards “enriching Art and Culture” in the country and the entire African continent at large.

“What has come instead is business. Added to this, is the situation where many people, on the fringes of the establishment, want bigger salaries,” Maembe said. “It is important to remember that the system of management also changed and now the institute no longer receives funds directly from the government and is expected to be selfreliant.”


The changes have put the institute’s leaders into a position where they are forced to look for ways of making money to survive. Maembe fully understands and sympathises with the dilemma but he feels something should be done to redress the situation whereby many born with artistic incline have to look for other ways of making a living.

From his experience in Bagamoyo District, Maembe has noticed that the youngsters often wind-up helping fishermen, riding motorbike taxi services, popularly called “Bodaboda” or any other kind of petty trade. Their possible artistic contribution is never given the chance to blossom.

By IMAN MANI, Tanzania Daily News

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