Entertainment
US musician under fire for singing to Swazi king
Publish Date: Apr 30, 2014
US musician under fire for singing to Swazi king
The hip-hop and soul singer has been condemned as a hypocrite for singing "Happy Birthday" to Swazilands King Mswati III. CREDIT/AFP
  • mail
  • img
newvision

MBABANE - US singer Erykah Badu has been condemned as a hypocrite for singing "Happy Birthday" to Swaziland's King Mswati III, described by a rights group as a "corrupt tyrant".

The hip-hop and soul singer performed for the king at his official 46th birthday celebrations during a visit to the southern African country last Thursday, leaving the US-based Human Rights Foundation (HRF) fuming.

"She owes us all an explanation. The king is a kleptocrat who lives in the lap of obscene luxury while most of his countrymen toil in abject poverty for less than $2 a day," HRF's Alex Gladstein said in a statement.

American jeweller Jacob Arabo brought the Grammy award-winner to Swaziland as a birthday gift for Mswati, considered Africa's last "absolute monarch", according to state-run Observer newspaper.

"This is my second time in Swaziland and the last time I was here there were a lot of women dancing in a forest," the newspaper quoted her as saying before dedicating her first song to "sons of kings".

She gave Mswati a $100-bill as a birthday present, as well as "a special stone which she said would uplift His Majesty's spirits when he was feeling down," according to the newspaper.

Two years ago, Mswati celebrated his birthday by ordering his subjects to give him cows.

Badu's support of the king goes in the face of her self-professed concern for human rights, according to HRF.

"She claims to want to improve the lives of the disenfranchised and impoverished, but unapologetically does favours for a corrupt tyrant who jails those who challenge his ill-gotten wealth and power," said Gladstein.

Two journalists are on trial in Swaziland for writing articles critical of Mswati's government.

Africa's last absolute monarch holds a tight grip on dissent in his tiny mountain kingdom, where criticism of the king is illegal.

AFP

The statements, comments, or opinions expressed through the use of New Vision Online are those of their respective authors, who are solely responsible for them, and do not necessarily represent the views held by the staff and management of New Vision Online.

New Vision Online reserves the right to moderate, publish or delete a post without warning or consultation with the author.Find out why we moderate comments. For any questions please contact digital@newvision.co.ug

  • mail
  • img
blog comments powered by Disqus
Also In This Section
Gospel icon Joy Tendo thrills fans in glamorous concert
She is an artiste whose music has changed lots of lives and is continuing to earn her the hearts of lots of gospel music lovers in and around the country....
Mendo Museveni tickles Mbale comedy lovers
At this moment of time, whoever manages to crack jokes on the current political atmosphere and leaves their audience rolling down the pews, without really dividing them, wins great marks from comedy lovers as witnessed last Thursday at Club Eltanja in Mbale...
Mayinja serves the best to his fans
Ronald Mayinja of the New Eagles on Friday evening treated his fans - who were excited by how far he had come - to an Ala Carte of his best music at Labonita Theatre...
New gospel awards unveiled
Fresh faces seemed to highlight last night’s celebrations as a new gospel outfit was unveiled at the Serena Hotel in Kampala....
Coca-Cola Rated Next: Elijah might have a new song out soon
He might have been evicted only a week into the competition, but Coca-Cola rated next sing it contestant, Elijah Kisakye is not giving up....
I hate dishonest men - Musayimuto
Sarah Namakula Musayimuto is a musician born in Bunamwaya and an aspiring singer and fashion ....
Should faith based organisations be registered as Non-government organisations?
Yes
No
Can't Say
follow us
subscribe to our news letter