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MBABANE – The upcoming Ntjilo Ntjlo Choral Music Festival has received sponsorship from Conco Limited Eswatini to the tune of E100 000.

This sponsorship has doubled from the previous sponsorship in 2022, which was to the tune of E50 000. The announcement was made yesterday during the launch of the competition, which was held at Mountain View in Mbabane.However,it is worth noting that there were no Conco Limited representatives during the launch, but the news was confirmed by festival director Mathokoza Sibiya. Present at the launch were Minister of Sports, Culture and Youth Affairs Harries ‘Madze’ Bulunga, Eswatini National Council of Arts and Culture CEO Stanley Dlamini, Choral Music Association President Sihle Gumbi, Ntjilo Ntjilo Director Mathokoza Sibiya, and various choristers and choirs from across the land.


First to take the stand was the festival director, who was excited to announce the partnership between Ntjilo Ntjilo and the Choral Music Association, and he mentioned this meant nothing but growth in the music space. He also highlighted that because the competition also looks at talent from the tender age of eight, it is important for talent to be given a platform during a child’s tender age. The honourable minister also had a moment to speak, where he highlighted the importance of the festival. “This festival has to attain or surpass the standard of the Standard Bank Choral Music Competition. Music is the key component in a human’s life and in our culture, and choral music recognises cultural importance and is aligned with the mandate of the ministry,” said the minister.It is worth noting that the competition started in 2016 with 30 children and three choirs participating, but the numbers have skyrocketed exponentially, including choirs from different genres. Sibiya, during his unpacking of the festival at the launch, said the purpose of the competition was to help young people deal with socio-economic issues and also create a podium for them to showcase their talent.


“Most young people are full of anger and have low self-esteem as a result of various social ills such as lack of education, poor academic performance, physical and emotional abuse, poverty and loneliness, among others.“The main mandate of the competition is to help eradicate those issues, unearth new talent, and create a platform for brands to interact with current or future artists. We want to restore hope and encourage livelihoods during the pandemic,” he said.It was also announced that the festival will be broken down into four days, and the festivities will begin from August 18 to August 20, which is the main day (extravaganza) of the competition. There will also be regional eliminations where all four regions of the kingdom will be visited, and the winners there will be announced and move forward in the competition.