Johannesburg, Wednesday, 30 September 2020
Show Me Your Number (SMYN) handed over 4 paintings by Jakes Mbele to the SANAC Trust’s Acting CEO, Ms. Coiceka Nogoduka. The creative master pieces are a contribution by Show Me Your Number in its capacity as SANAC Civil Society Forum (CSF) Sports, Art and Culture Sector participant organisation and national secretariat. The art works will be placed in 4 boardrooms at SANAC head offices in Hatfield in response to HIV, Aids and TB aligned to the 90-90-90 strategy and the NSP 2017 to 2022.
The 4 portraits are that of Nelson Mandela, Gugu Dlamini, Prudence Mabele and Nkosi Johnson with each boardroom named after these icons. These South African iconic figures have played a significant role globally by raising awareness on HIV at the height of stigma and discrimination against People Living with HIV. They challenged the status quo and changed health national policies. These works of art also represent the different boardroom in the SANAC office and which embodies the personalities of the icons.
Ms. Coceka Noguduka in receiving the portraits narrated the contribution these icons. She also shared fond memories captured Prudence Mabele’s feisty spirit. Ms Noguduka said of Prudence that “She was well known by all Ministers of Health in South Africa. She addressed access to health care as well as stigma and discrimination issues in boardrooms and at internal HIV and AIDS conferences on behalf of women living with HIV”. These images are a constant reminder to all to hold in high regard the principles and level of integrity of these icons in their conversation in response to HIV, TB and STI burden in South Africa.
Creative Director and artist responsible for painting the drawings, Mr. Jake Mbele, is no stranger to the HIV response. As a part of the World AIDS Day in 2019 hosted in North West in Dr. Kenneth Kaunda District under the theme “Communities make the Difference” Jakes worked in collaboration with Artron Moabi created the #PaintingCommunitiesRED wall art mural in Jouberton. The mural is now a local attraction with messages about HIV, TB and roles of communities and different sectors. Jake loves all the artworks however it was rather difficult to work on the Gugu Dlamini portrait which according to him “Once research was done on her story and from start to finish, I found it challenging to comprehend how violent our society could be towards a woman just because she had HIV. She was killed because people stigmatized her HIV status. Those were the dark days and I realise that stigma and discrimination continue to hamper progress in responding to HIV even today. Completion of these artwork reflects my commitment to eradicate stigma and discrimination one brush stroke at a time.”
Mr Mabalane Mfundisi, Show Me Your Number (SMYN) Executive Director and SANAC Civil Society Forum (CSF) Sports, Arts Culture sector leader mentioned that “more needs to be done to bring the sport, arts & culture to reduce stigma and discrimination and contribute to social cohesion at local levels. We believe that incorporating sport, arts and culture is critical to drive important conversations and transcend over diverse groups in South Africa in advocating for the access to health care rights for key and vulnerable people”.
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