Up and coming rapper from Burundi, Olegue Baraka, has been arrested after publishing a video promoting an upcoming concert of his. The charges are “public contempt of good morals”.
The video depicts Olegue dressed as a Catholic prelate and a young woman dressed as a nun, shaking her behind, as one does when having fun.
This did not sit well with the Catholic organisation in the country, of which the President is a devout member.
Burundi is a landlocked, extremely poor country in East Africa and it’s not exactly famous for nurturing free speech. But whether it is in poor Burundi or wealthy Spain, rappers face the same hardships: say the ‘wrong thing’, upset the crown or cross and you get arrested.
After traveling frequently to Ethiopia, New Zealand-born, New York-based artist Kimbra, didn’t think twice about working with humanitarian organisation So They Can. The organisation empowers children and helps them receive much needed education in poor parts of the African continent.
“Across sub-Saharan Africa, as many as 40% of girls married before the age of 18, and the COVID-19 pandemic is putting millions more at risk. Education can make all the difference –– each additional year of secondary school significantly reduces a girl’s risk for child marriage.”
Kimbra wrote Leave No Girl Behind exclusively in support of the organisation and young girls in East Africa. The artist hopes that the song can motivate people around the world to participate and be part of helping girls get life-changing education.
“Music has this power to create a feeling of a transcendent moment in us. When we feel transcendent, we often go, ‘Oh, I want to do more. I want to give more. I can love more.’ If music can make you feel that, then you’re driven to be like, ‘Let me buy the song, engage with this organization, and maybe sponsor a young girl or give directly to the campaign.’ If I could shift people’s perception of what they can do, that would be wonderful.” – Kimbra