South African stars Nomzamo Mbatha & Anathi Mnyango aka ANATII have been announced as ambassadors for UNHCR (United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees). Among other projects they are involved in, it is good to see them using their public profiles and lending their voices as they join global and African public figures to educate and influence on the cause of tolerance, acceptance and unity.
Nomzamo, is not only just an actress, spokesmodel and philanthropist, she is adding humanitarian to her many accolades as she joins a host of global personalities to in “being celebrated with a purpose”. While South African Hip hop maestro and gentle giant, ANATII is paying it forward and showing that his brand of artistry can also be conscious and do good.
“Growing up with little comforts, instilled a charitable in me, to sensitively give towards increasing the wellbeing of others. On my recent trip to the UN Assembly in New York, I was exposed to women from different backgrounds, whose sole purpose is for the advancement of others. It was therefore an easy decision for me when UNHCR invited me to be one of its ambassadors in Africa. The call came at a time when my mind was already wrapped in making a difference through promotion of human welfare and social reform – speaking to the issues of tolerance of our different backgrounds and lending a helping hand in overcoming our various challenges. I was drawn to the cause mostly by seeing, daily, how African foreigners are received in our communities. Being a full time student at UCT, interacting with other students on campus has sensitized me to their struggles, even with the freedom of movement they have in South Africa, the experience is not of enjoyment as they are still living in fear, isolation and ridicule. That narrative needs to change to #ONEAFRICA.” – Nomzamo Mbatha
As part of a delegation of ambassadors, the duo are set to join other ambassadors to visit the Dzaleka encampment, near Lilongwe, Malawi, from 12-14 November 2017, originally built to house 900, but has now tripled in size housing about 28 000. Nomzamo will be running her youth dialogues, with focus on young girls, whilst ANATII will be running music workshops.
“The cause has a personal effect on me, as I recall stories my grandmother still shares with us of her time in exile for over 20 years. Even in the comradeship of the African National Congress, they too lived in camps, and lived in fear of if and when their host nation would close its doors to them. Being displaced with nothing and no idea of you’ll ever set foot in your home country, is unsettling even to the toughest mind. The spirit of tolerance, caring and sharing advocated by the #OneAfrica movement comes in at a time when we as Africans, especially as the youth of South Africa need to educate ourselves on those very values and to practice compassion towards one another and to use our power constructively.” Said ANATII.
Known and celebrated not just as a performing artist, ANATII is also known for producing heat songs for big artists and it is for that reason that he has been commissioned by UNHCR to produce a song, using some of the continent’s celebrated musicians to spread the message of tolerance, acceptance, sharing and caring.
On the inspiration of the song, ANATII says: “It is a great honor as a producer to be entrusted to bring this issue to the forefront via artistic expression and engage the public on a grassroots level is one that I could not turn down and the best way is to start with music, a unifying and universal language. The song is not your typical call to action song or a recreation of any of those. It is fresh and speaks to the cause in the most current and trendiest way.”
UNHCR will be launching the #LUQULUQU initiative on 29 November – for more information follow the movement on social media #ONEAFRICA #DOITLUQULUQU