5 African Artists We Would Nominate for an Ubuntu Award

The Ubuntu Award shortlist goes up July 18th. Make sure and go vote for the person who best exemplifies the values of ubuntu.

Sponsored post from The Africa Channel

The Ubuntu Award shortlist goes up today, July 18th. Make sure to go vote for the person who best exemplifies the values of ubuntu.

The Ubuntu Awards, presented by The Africa Channel, celebrates everyday people who are living the legacy of Nelson Mandela.

Ubuntu, a word that spans several southern African languages, represents the philosophy of “human kindness” or “I am because we are.” The Ubuntu Award for Arts & Entertainment is “awarded to an individual or organization using their influence or talents to enrich the lives of others.” During the nomination period, The Africa Channel asked you to nominate artists and entertainers working toward in the spirit of ubuntu. A panel of experts will narrow down the nominees and voting will begin July 18th.

Okayafrica has put together a list of 5 artists, athletes and entertainers who we feel are worthy of a 2016 ubuntu award.

Gigi LaMayne

This sharp-tongued South African rapper became one the leading voices of the #FeesMustFall movement at the end of last year. Her anthem, “Fees Will Fall,” was about defending the right to an education for South African youth. While busy releasing some of South Africa’s freshest hip-hop, the 21-year-old also managed to graduate from Wits University, earning four distinctions in addition to a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Media and Anthropology. Check out "Fees Will Fall" below:

Serge Ibaka

The Congolese NBA star has come a long way from his Brazzaville roots but has never failed to give back both to his home country and the place he’s called home for the last 7 years, Oklahoma City. His Serge Ibaka Foundation has worked to improve the lives of kids from Oklahoma to Kinshasa. His 2016 gala at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum featured a visit from the inspirational figure of Uganda’s Sister Rosemary Nyirumbe. He’s sure to bring the same spirit of ubuntu to his new team, The Orlando Magic.


The Nigerian pop star with the tremendous vocal range is also working on a broad range of projects that channel the ubuntu spirit. Not only is she the face of the “Poverty is Sexist Campaign” and a UN Ambassador for Peace, but her organization Waje’s Safe House works with youth in the Lagos neighborhood of Makoko to help them continue their education. Her “I Support The African Woman” initiative which began in November hopes to empower women through education. She’s also playing a Mandela Day tribute concert in Johannesburg later this month.

Check out her video “Left for Good” featuring Patoranking

David Oyelowo

The British Nigerian star promises to be one of the most talented actors of his generation. But alongside his screen work he has also founded a group awarding scholarships for victims of gender based violence. The David Oyelowo Leadership Scholarship for Girls was founded in response to the abduction of the Chibok schoolgirls and others who have been kidnapped, raped and terrorized in Nigeria. The survivors often face ostracism from their communities resulting in fewer educational opportunities.


Takun J

This Liberian HipCo star is at the forefront of almost every positive social movement in his home country, releasing number one songs about corruption, sexism and the Ebola response. An official Liberian anti-rape ambassador, Takun J has worked tirelessly campaigning against sexual violence, communicating his message through music in Liberian vernacular. Last year he told Okayafrica

“Because my fans look up to me, I have to set the example for them, to treat our women better, to protect our kids, to hold our government accountable and I want to make sure the voices of the suffering are heard.”

Check out this video of him performing They Lie to Us live during the Ebola apidemic


The Five Must-Have Apps for Diaspora Africans in 2020

These mobile apps and digital platforms are making it easier for Africans across the world to find jobs and scholarships, get new citizenship and send money overseas.

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Mobile apps and digital platforms have fundamentally transformed nearly every aspect of our lives. Whether it's ordering food, keeping track of our work or life goals to sending money to our loved ones, these apps and digital platforms have made lives easier, efficient and more productive.

As the brand new year begins, we have compiled a list of five must-have apps and digital platforms that we believe will help Africans in the diaspora, especially in the U.S. make the most of the year.

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Interview: Dimpie Dimpopo on Channeling Online Clout into a Lucrative Career

We chat to Internet sensation Dimpie Dimpopo about his moves and music.

This interview is part of a series of interviews and profiles on amapiano artists and personalities sponsored by Corona. You can follow the rest of the series here.

Dimpie Dimpopo (real name Nadiem Poen) is an all-round entertainer. He became popular in South Africa after a series of gig guide videos he was consistently sharing on his Instagram account since 2018. His favorite catch phrase "Oh Nkosi Yami!" is now used by many South Africans, especially in the party scene. Dimpie is a staple in the country's dance scene which is dominated by the house subgenre amapiano at the moment.

This Internet fame has enabled the 23-year-old to share his other gifts with his growing fanbase. When he sits down for an interview with OkayAfrica, he is preparing for his first stand-up comedy show, and has just returned from a meeting to seal a partnership with an automobile brand that's collaborating with him for a campaign.

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Davido's Fiancé, Chioma Rowland, Tests Positive For Coronavirus

The Nigerian musician made the announcement via a heartfelt Instagram post on Friday.

Chioma Rowland, the fiancé of star Nigerian musician Davido, has tested positive for the coronavirus.

The artist shared the news via Instagram on Friday, writing that he and 31 people on his team decided to get tested after returning back to Lagos from abroad. While he and the rest of his team received negative results, Rowland's test came back positive.

"Unfortunately, my fiancé's results came back positive while all 31 others tested have come back negative including our baby," wrote Davido. He added that they both showed no systems, but would be self-isolating as a safety measure.

"We are however doing perfectly fine and she is even still yet to show any symptoms whatsoever. She is now being quarantined and I have also gone into full self isolation for the minimum 14 days," he added. "I want to use this opportunity to thank you all for your endless love and prayers in advance and to urge everyone to please stay at home as we control the spread of this virus! Together we can beat this!"

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Juls Drops New Music Video for 'Soweto Blues' Featuring Busiswa and Jaz Karis

The Ghanaian-British producer heads to South Africa for the music video for the amapiano-inspired track.

Heavyweight Ghanaian-British producer Juls shares his first offering of 2020, and it does not disappoint.

The producer enlists South African music star Busiswa and London's Jaz Karis for the jazz-inflected "Soweto Blues," which also boasts elements of South Africa's dominant electronic sound, Amapiano. The slow-burner features airy vocals from Karis who features prominently on the 3-minute track, while Busiswa delivers a standout bridge in her signature high-energy tone.

"The song dubbed "Soweto Blues" is a song depicting the love, sadness and fun times that Soweto tends to offer its people," read the song's YouTube description. The video premiered earlier today on The Fader. "The energy is amazing, the people are lovely and I've found a second home — especially the vibrancy of Soweto," the producer told The Fader about his trip to Soweto for the making of the video "Jaz Karis is singing a love song, which is symbolic of my new love of Soweto and I'm honoured to have worked with Busiswa whom I have been a fan of for a long time."

Fittingly, the music video sees Juls traveling through the township, taking in its sights and energy. The video, directed by Nigel Stöckl, features striking shots of the popular area and its skilled pantsula dancers.

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