Three prominent African musical outfits – Congolese rhumba giant Koffi Olomide (pictured), Ladysmith Black Mambazo from South Africa and Zambia’s Amayenge – are expected to serenade fans at President Mugabe’s inauguration at the National Sports Stadium today.The three will be joined by a yet unnamed Jamaican musician and a coterie of local artistes among them Alick Macheso and Suluman Chimbetu who will entertain the capacity crowd expected to throng the gigantic stadium, to witness President Mugabe’s inauguration.
President Mugabe was elected the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe in the just ended harmonised elections, winning 61,09 percent of the presidential vote and has had this victory endorsed by the Constitutional Court.
Acting Harare Metropolitan Provincial Governor Alfred Tome confirmed the entertainment programme adding that a Jamaican artiste will also be part of the proceedings, although he was not at liberty to divulge his name.
“There will certainly be a Jamaican artiste sharing the stage with Koffi Olomide. We also have a Zambian and a South African group that have volunteered to perform,” he said.
He urged Zimbabweans to come in numbers to witness President Mugabe’s inauguration.
“We have got a great event and the whole world will stand still today,” he said.
“The Head of State will be inaugurated and I am appealing to all people to come in their large numbers.
“We have been allocated 30 buses for Harare and we are appealing to private transporters to also help.
The crowd will certainly be entertained when Olomide takes to the stage. He has performed in Zimbabwe before, but today’s performance will be special for every artiste billed to perform.
Koffi is probably one of Africa’s biggest artistes.
For his effort “Effrakata”, Koffi received four Kora Awards on a single night at the 2002/2003 Kora Awards in South Africa, including the award for Best African Artiste, which he had earlier won in 1998.
More recently, he won the Kora Award for “Best African Artiste of the Decade”. This led to the conferment of one of his many aliases as the “Quadra Kora Man’’.
On the other hand, Ladysmith Black Mambazo is a male choral group that sings in the vocal styles of isicathamiya and mbube. They rose to worldwide prominence singing with Paul Simon on his album, “Graceland”, and have won multiple awards, including three Grammy Awards.
They were formed by Joseph Shabalala in 1960 and later became one of South Africa’s most prolific recording artistes, with their releases receiving gold and platinum disc honours.
The group has now become a mobile academy, teaching people about South Africa and its culture and their participation will add glamour.
Amayenge is a popular Zambian music group started by a well-known Zambian Kris Chali in 1978 in Choma. Originally called Crossbones, it later changed its name to Amayenge and plays kalindula, a distinctive Zambian popular style with traditional African roots. Amayenge has received worldwide attention.
This will also be an opportunity for the local artistes to showcase their talent to the outside world as the event is likely to be beamed around the world on television.
Problem Masau Arts Correspondent: The Herald