Music promotes tourism, tackles pandemic in Zimbabwe


Zimbabwe kwaito youthful musicians promote tourism through music

from DANIEL JONES in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
VICTORIA FALLS, (CAJ News) BROUGHT together by a common passion, amid these uncertain times exacerbated by the pandemic, some enterprising Zimbabwean youths have killed two birds with one stone!

They are making the most of the power of music to remind the people of the dangers of the coronavirus (COVID-19) and to promote the county’s prime tourism resort, Victoria Falls.

So far, two projects have been completed.

“We decided to come together with a message to encourage people not to lose hope in the wake of COVID-19,” Obvious Nyoni, popularly known as Obviedoh in the music circles, said.

Singing the kwaito genre largely patronised by the youth and the young at heart, he is based in Victoria Falls and has been a musician since 2010.

“We want to revive tourism by encouraging people to start travelling again. At the same time, reminding them to continue adhering to COVID-19 health protocols such as wearing masks, social distancing and washing hands regularly,” Nyoni explained.

He has teamed up with nine other local artists to produce a single titled “Kubuhlungu”, loosely translating to “It’s painful.”

A video complements the song.

The other piece is “Welcome to Victoria Falls.”

Both were done separately in five local languages, including English, to appeal to a larger audience.

Charity “Cherry Berry” Ramlet, who penned “Welcome to Victoria Falls” explained the inspiration behind the project.

“Our tourism has been on its knees for more than a year as people were locked indoors by the pandemic, hence we are saying now that our city has been vaccinated, let’s start travelling and enjoy what Victoria Falls has to offer,” Ramlet said.

Victoria Falls is the first Southern African city to reach herd immunity and accordingly one of the safest destinations in the world.

Indicating a change of fortunes, Victoria Falls was the first city in the country to record a COVID-19 last year.

More than 20 000 people- about half the population- have been vaccinated.

“We are encouraging tourists to visit the Falls, view wildlife and enjoy the beauty of the destination,” Ramlet said.

The initiative has inspired a national project.

The Zimbabwe Hip Hop National Society, an initiative of a leading local accounting services company has produced a ten-track national album with songs from each of the country’s ten provinces focusing on the COVID-19.

Zimbabwe has imposed new lockdown measures as the country experienced a surge in new cases in the past week.

As of Wednesday, Zimbabwe had confirmed 40 318 cases, among them 1 637 deaths.

It is the 20th worst outbreak, according to cases, in the continent.

– CAJ News





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