Ugandan singing MP Robert Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine has resolved to take the red ribbon freedom campaign to South Africa-that popularly known motherland of Shaka King of the Zulu people.
Its cry for freedom rang across the ages as indigenous Africans protested against fascist British apartheid policy from 1948 to 1994.
The Ugandan singer and Member of Parliament for Kyadondo East Constituency shares similar sentiments with anti-apartheid musicians who resorted to songs to fight against a brutal discriminative system that dehumanised Africans.
On Wednesday, Bobi Wine released his latest song titled “Freedom” in which he equates President Museveni’s regime to apartheid era citing injustices, discrimination, corruption, police brutality and greed for power.
On Thursday, the singer flew out to Durban, the coastal city in eastern South Africa’s KwaZulu-Natal province, is known for its African, Indian and colonial influences. This is the ancestral land of Zulu kings and the greatest kingdom in Africa.
Bobi Wine met with the Ugandan community in Durban South Africa and discussed the state of affairs in Uganda. Later in the evening, they danced to the songs of Freedom by legendary anti-apartheid South African musicians.
They are; Hugh Masekela, Ladysmith Black Mambazo, and Miriam Makeba who used their music to campaign against the profound injustice of Apartheid.
Others are; Yvonne Chaka Chaka, Vuyisile Mini, Mbongeni Ngema, Abdullah Ibrahim, Jonas Gwangwa, Chris McGregor, Kippie Moeketsie, Brenda Fassie, Lucky Dube and P.J Powers, among others.
After asking Durban to “put on your dancing shoes”, Bobi Wine took them to Club 101 for a night of thrill and entertainment with his group donning red ribbons used in Uganda to protest the lifting of age limit clause that would make Museveni a life president.
On Friday, Bobi Wine hit East London, a city on the Indian Ocean, in South Africa’s Eastern Cape Town, the Buffalos, fossilised human and animal footprints, plus artefacts from the Xhosa-speaking people.
Bobi Wine entertained his fans at Viking Sandblasting.
“East London was great, we are now heading to Pretoria,” Bobi announced as he took to the road for the South African administrative capital earlier called (Tshwane), in Gauteng Province.
Known as “Jacaranda City” for its thousands of jacaranda trees, it’s also home to universities and government buildings. The semi-circular Union Buildings encompass the president’s offices and hosted Nelson Mandela’s inauguration. Nearby is the Voortrekker Monument, honouring 19th-century Afrikaans settlers from the Cape Colony.
“We are inviting all of you friends tonight to Sidiba Conference Cnr Madiba and Bossman Street. Yambala [wear] #Red oba wesibe [or tie around your head] #RedRibbon,” he advised his fans.
The apartheid regime in South Africa began in 1948 and lasted until 1994. It involved a harsh system of racial segregation, and placed all political power in the hands of a white minority.
Opposition to apartheid manifested in a variety of ways, including boycotts, non-violent protests, and armed resistance. Music played a large role in the movement against apartheid within South Africa, as well as in international opposition to apartheid.
The impacts of songs opposing apartheid included raising awareness, generating support for the movement against apartheid, building unity within this movement, and “presenting an alternative vision of culture in a future democratic South Africa.”
Former coordinator of intelligence services in the Uganda People’s Defence Forces [UPDF] had earlier praised Bobi Wine for using music to fight dictatorship just like South Africans artistes used songs to fight against the apartheid regime.