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Move over Bob Geldof, Africa already recorded an awareness raising pop song (and it’s awesome!)
By: Ernest Danjuma Enebi
Nov 10, 2014

While Bob Geldof and other Western musicians are busy organizing a a holiday ebola concert, it is important to note that African musicians already beat them to the punch with the above catchy, educational, and agency-affirming tune “Africa Stop Ebola.”

A collective of African musicians have come together to record a song to help raise awareness about Ebola in Africa. The song, entitled “Africa Stop Ebola”, features the singers Tiken Jah Fakoly, Amadou & Mariam, Salif Keita, Oumou Sangare, Kandia Kora, Mory Kante, Sia Tolno, Barbara Kanam and rappers Didier Awadi, Marcus (from the band Banlieuz’Arts) and Mokobe, and also includes the musicians Sékou Kouyaté (electric guitar, bass, electric kora) et Ludovic N’Holle (drums).

The song is a message to citizens about what they can do to help stop the spread of Ebola in Africa. The song is performed in French and vernacular languages widely spoken across the region to ensure that the message is understood regardless of the level of literacy and education of the population.

The video, posted on Youtube at the end of October has nearly 100,000 views. It is our hope that African initiatives like this one continue to be highlighted and promoted, even though their global spotlight might temporarily be overshadowed by Geldof and his well-meaning entourage. Africa’s ability to respond isn’t invisible, and this video, along with other African and Diaspora initiatives to curb the spread of this virus, clearly show that Bono and Geldof’s interventionist populist bandwagoning is no longer needed.

If you must feel compelled by Sir Bob Geldof to “do something,” click our donate link below and send us a “quid.” We guarantee its entirety will end up in the hands of 4 Liberian organizations who are already on the ground beating back ebola.

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Comments

Kobi Mwenge

Date: 10 Nov, 2014

WHY, WHY, WHY, WHY can we not simply do what we want to do without pointing the finger at other people who are trying to help?? Yes, the media should report what Africans are doing and we should show them but if other people want to respond to this crisis why beat up on them? What is the point o ruining something nice that you are doing by hating on others? How would you feel if you organized a response to a flood in the Philippines and have people started saying that they don't want any black people or outsiders getting involved and stealing the limelight? From Jamie's jollof rice to well meaning white volunteers who choose to do work outside their country, I am sick of Africans misusing the voice that we have by hating on others. We complain the western response was slow on the one hand and then other hand complain when they come. LEAVE PEOPLE TO HELP WHEN THEY FEEL LIKE HELPING. THEY ARE HUMAN. Why is it so hard to understand that people want to help?

AR_Staff

Date: 10 Nov, 2014

Kobi, if you are OK with international organizations being responsible for our rescue, by all means, let's all shut down our efforts to increase our agency and solve our own problems and let everyone else do things for us. Ebola outbreak isn't a crisis we can't solve on our own. We might need assistance and some of the countries, especially Liberia specifically requested help. This is advisable for a country that didn't have the infrastructure to do this on its own. What isn't OK is international organizations taking it upon themselves to assert themselves as the only solution in town. It is important also to fight against the narrative that Africa and Africans can't ever be agents of their own rescue. When Japan was hit with that huge tsunami, they said thanks for the help, we'll take it from here. Essentially, this is what Africa is trying to do and say. Establishing one's agency in an environment where everyone treats you like a child is hard and sometimes it comes off as ungrateful, but that force back is necessary if we are ever going to be an autonomous continent.

Kobi Mwenge

Date: 10 Nov, 2014

You will not find a stronger supporter of your efforts and for the principle that Africans can solve their own problems. 10 years ago, the work you all are doing here would not have been visible. I am thankful to be able to show this and many others to remind people that there are experts from Nigeria, from Kenya and from Uganda helping out. However, we are seriously running the risk of defining our value only in terms of the other. We run the risk of looking at others not as people but as a skin color or from the West. There were concerts held for Tsunamis and earthquakes and concerned citizens contributed because they cared about their fellow man. We have to be careful not to demonize those who care and use their means to act on their compassion. Liberia is not Japan. We as Africans are supremely capable but in short term response, we are handicapped by governments that we know are useless. Working around a corrupt, weak and clueless government when you have a crisis that requires massive coordination, infrastructure and policy (and security) and when you need to work at speed is impossible to do without governments and large sums of money. We can do this on our own. But we can go so much faster with others. Just consider that Geldof is very much like you. He has seen a problem and has decided he cannot sit by while it happens. The last time they did something, the collateral damage (image) was huge but they saved lives. They will do so again this time but hopefully without collateral damage. I am sure there will be far more consultation with Africans this time and you will likely see many African musicians join. These guys are not bad guys. Congratulations on your work. Geldof and co will not diminish it.

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Musikk mot ebola | Lola Trolle

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[…] prøvde å finne så mange jeg kunne, men fikk allikevel ikke kreditert alle artistene. Bloggen Africa Responds har flere navn enn dem jeg fant: Tiken Jah Fakoly, Amadou & Mariam, Salif Keita, Oumou Sangare, […]

dee

Date: 10 Nov, 2014

Thank you Kobi for seeing as flawed as it may be ....we just want to help. Geldof helps as he can ,we buy to help as we can. No one wants Africa's states and countries to stand independently more than we do....no one! Peace, Prosperity and long life be with you!

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