In Turkey, rapper Şehinşah was recently detained by local authorities for allegedly insulting the president in two of his songs. Şehinşah wrote on his Twitter account: “On my way home, I was detained at the airport for insulting the President. I am in detention again.”
In another tweet Şehinşah describes his frustration over these continuous detentions and promises to soon release a protest song.
According to the State of Artistic Freedom 2021, published by Freemuse, several artists have been oppressed and attacked by Turkish authorities and “experienced legal prosecution under Article 299 of the Turkish Penal Code (Insulting the President of the Republic) and also the 1991 Anti-Terror Law (no. 3713/TMK). Both laws have been used to legitimise state repression against opposing ideas and individuals.”
As per usual, when a song is banned or when an artist is oppressed by a tyrannical government or authority, we at Shouts do our best to show that work of art and free artistic expression to the world.
This time we present the song Mama by Tanzanian rapper Nay Wa Mitego. After Nay sent in the song to the Tanzanian government for review (as government’s rules dictate) the officials deemed this song unfit for the public for its alleged provocative content. This kind of oppression can understandably take a toll on a creative mind.
“I sometimes think of quitting doing music because of these kinds of struggles, this system will make some of the artists to not do their work. You cannot edit songs penned down by artists in the name of review, when that happens, the song automatically is disclaimed by artists,”