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These African Countries Have Changed Their National Anthems

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African countries that have changed their national anthem | Fab.ng

Nigeria recently switched back to its original national anthem, “Nigeria, We Hail Thee,” ditching the one used since 1978, “Arise, O Compatriots.” This change has caused a stir, especially among younger Nigerians who grew up with “Arise.”

President Bola Tinubu signed the bill on May 29th, 2024, sparking public debate. Many young people are questioning why the switch happened in the first place. Some prominent figures, like former Education Minister Oby Ezekwesili, have even said they’ll keep singing “Arise” despite the change.

While this is a controversial move, it’s not uncommon for countries to update their national anthems. Throughout history, many African nations have done the same. These changes often reflect shifts in a country’s politics, culture, or society.

The overall goal usually remains the same: to create a sense of unity, independence, and national pride. Let’s look at other of African countries that have changed their national anthems.

1. South Africa (1997)

The dismantling of apartheid in South Africa marked a new era for the nation. To reflect this spirit of unity and reconciliation, South Africa adopted a unique national anthem in 1997.

This new anthem cleverly combined elements from two existing anthems: “Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrika,” a hymn with roots in the anti-apartheid movement, and “Die Stem van Suid-Afrika,” the anthem previously used by the white minority government.

By blending these contrasting melodies, the new anthem became a powerful symbol of healing and the forging of a new national identity that embraced all South Africans.

2. Rwanda (2001)

The 1994 Rwandan genocide left deep scars on the nation. In the aftermath of this horrific tragedy, the country’s previous anthem was deemed too divisive, as it was associated with the pre-genocide regime.

In 2001, a new anthem, “Rwanda Nziza,” was introduced. This anthem specifically emphasises themes of national unity, reconciliation, and hope for a brighter future. The lyrics speak of Rwandans working together to rebuild their nation and ensure such a tragedy never happens again.

“Rwanda Nziza” serves as a constant reminder of the healing process and the country’s commitment to a more peaceful future.

3. Zimbabwe (1994)

Many African countries gained independence in the mid-20th century and adopted pan-Africanist anthems that celebrated the continent’s shared struggle for liberation. Zimbabwe was no exception, with “Ishe Komborera Africa” serving as their national anthem for a period.

However, in 1994, the country felt the need to establish a more distinct national identity. They replaced “Ishe Komborera Africa” with “Simudzai Mureza wedu WeZimbabwe,” an anthem that specifically celebrates Zimbabwe’s unique cultural heritage and its journey as an independent nation.

4. Democratic Republic of Congo (1960 & 1997)

The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has a complex history reflected in its changes to the national anthem. Upon gaining independence from Belgium in 1960, the DRC adopted “Arise Congolese” as its anthem.

However, in 1971, the country’s leader, Mobutu Sese Seko, renamed the nation Zaire and introduced a new anthem, “La Zaïroise.” This anthem served as a symbol of Mobutu’s regime. After Mobutu’s overthrow in 1997, the country reverted to its original name and national anthem, “Arise Congolese.”

This shift back to the original anthem symbolised a rejection of Mobutu’s dictatorship and a return to a sense of national identity rooted in the country’s independence.

5. Ghana (1957 & 1960)

Ghana’s path to independence mirrored its changing anthems. During British colonial rule, Ghana used the anthem “God Bless Our Homeland.” This anthem reflected the nation’s colonial status and its yearning for self-determination.

In 1957, Ghana finally achieved independence, and a new anthem, “Lift High the Flag of Ghana,” was composed by a Ghanaian musician. This new anthem celebrates Ghana’s freedom and national pride.

6. Namibia (1990)

For many years, Namibia was under South African rule. During this period, Namibia was forced to use South Africa’s national anthem, “Die Stem van Suid-Afrika.”

However, Namibia gained independence in 1990 and cast off the vestiges of colonial rule. To mark this momentous occasion, Namibia adopted a new anthem, “Namibia, Land of the Brave.”

This anthem celebrates the nation’s hard-won freedom and the bravery of those who fought for independence. The lyrics speak of Namibia’s vast landscapes, its rich cultural heritage, and its unwavering spirit.

7. Libya (1969 & 2011)

In 1969, Muammar Gaddafi rose to power in Libya. Gaddafi aimed to unite Arab nations across Africa and Asia, and in this pursuit, he replaced Libya’s existing anthem, “Libya, Libya, Libya,” with the pan-Arab anthem “Allahu Akbar” (God is Great).

However, Gaddafi’s regime was overthrown in a 2011 civil war, and the country descended into a period of instability.

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AFRICAN

Guguru Studios Awarded ₦135m Grant To Co-Produce Musical On Illegal Mining In Ghana

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A Dream To Die For: Guguru Studios to co-produce musical | fab.ng

Nigerian film production company Guguru Studios has joined forces with three other African studios. They will create a new musical drama film titled “A Dream To Die For.” This exciting collaboration was made possible with a grant of €80,000 (approximately ₦135 million) awarded by the European Union.

This is with additional support from the Organisation of African, Caribbean and Pacific States (ACP), the International Organisation of La Francophonie (OIF), Creation Africa Ghana (an initiative of the French embassy in Ghana), and others.

The four co-producing studios include Driving Park Limited and AdomiBridge Studios from Ghana, Togo Films from Togo, and Guguru Studios from Nigeria.

This pan-African partnership shows a step forward for the film industry on the continent, as Juliet Yaa Asantewa Asante, the executive secretary of Ghana’s National Film Authority highlighted. Ms. Asantewa Asante emphasizes the importance of co-productions between African filmmakers. It fosters growth and collaboration within the industry.

“A Dream To Die For,” will tackle the complex issue of illegal small-scale gold mining in Ghana.

This act is known locally as “galamsey” which translates to “gather them and sell.” David Masterwille wrote the film.

The story follows a group of young musicians who become entangled in the dangerous world of galamsey. This collaboration between studios from diverse African nations brings a wealth of experience and perspectives. Also, it offers the potential for a powerful and nuanced exploration of this critical social and environmental issue.

This isn’t the first example of successful African film collaboration. Play Network Studios from Nigeria and Mondjila Studios from Namibia previously teamed up to produce the thriller “The Skeleton Coast.” This demonstrated the growing trend and potential of such partnerships within the African film scene.

The Guguru Studios-led project with “A Dream To Die For” promises to be another exciting addition to this movement. Furthermore, it brings together creative minds from across the continent to tell a story that resonates on a global scale.

The financial backing from the European Union and other organizations paves the way for this ambitious project. It demonstrates a recognition of the burgeoning talent and potential of African filmmakers.

With a strong creative team, a relevant social theme, and the support of international collaboration, “A Dream To Die For” is poised to impact the African and international film landscape significantly.

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AFRICAN

Burna Boy Is Producing His First Film “3 Cold Dishes” Which Tackles Sex Trafficking

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Burna Boy Is Producing His First Film "3 Cold Dishes" | Fab.ng

Nigerian singer Damini Ebunoluwa Ogulu, popularly known as Burna Boy, has taken on a new role in the film industry as an executive producer. He will co-produce the upcoming thriller “3 Cold Dishes” with Ifind, Alma Productions, Asurf Films, Martian Network, and Black Mic Mac. Black Mic Mac is a production company showcasing African and Middle Eastern talents.

“3 Cold Dishes” follows the story of Esosa, Fatouma, and Giselle. They are three former victims of sex trafficking who have become powerful figures in the underground world of prostitution. Despite their success, they cannot escape the trauma of their pasts. The men who sold them into slavery hunt them, vowing to make them pay.

Burna Boy will produce the film through Spaceship Films, the production company he started in 2015 with his mother, Bose Ogulu.

Asurf Oluseyi, who won the 2016 AMVCA for Best Short Film for “A Day with Death“, directed the movie.

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AFRICAN

See Trailer For “Dilli Dark”, An Indian-Nigerian Comedy

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"Dilli Dark": See Trailer For An Indian-Nigerian Comedy | Fab.ng

There’s a new comedy movie coming out called “Dilli Dark.” Dibakar Das Roy directed this funny movie. It’s an Indian-Nigerian comedy that tells the story of Michael Okeke, a Nigerian student living in Delhi.

Michael wants to get his MBA and stay in India, but life there isn’t easy for outsiders, especially since he’s black. The trailer shows that Michael has a strange side job too. The movie seems to make fun of the racism that Michael faces in India.

The actor playing Michael, Samuel Abiola Robinson, was really happy about the movie being announced last year in October.

I am back!!! And happy to be Announcing my Next film DILLI DARK; A film about racial discrimination and what life is like for people with darker skin in Delhi and India as a whole,” he said.

Abiola mentioned in a post that this is the first time he’s had such a big role in a movie.

The movie also stars Shantanu Anam as Debu and Geetika Vidya Ohlyan as Maa.

At the 2023 Mumbai Academy of the Moving Image (MAMI) Festival, Filmy interviewed director Dibakar Das Roy about how he cast Samuel Abiola Robinson in the lead role.

He replied, saying,

“We wanted someone who could look like a very regular chap. Rather than a hero. So at the same time, I saw an article that Samuel had moved to Delhi, and I reached out to him, and we connected.”

The “Dilli Dark” trailer looks like a funny movie that will also make you think. It deals with racism and what it’s like to move to a new country. If you like comedies that make you ponder as well as laugh, then keep an eye out for “Dilli Dark.” But remember, this is just a trailer, so the movie itself might be different.

Watch the trailer below:

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Dibakar Das Roy (@dibakardasroy)

Get more movie updates here.

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