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Unmarried Couples In Burundi Are Being Ordered to Wed Before the End of The Year

The Burundian government claims that the policy will help protect women and children. But many are giving them the side-eye.

The Burundian government strikes again.

Unmarried couples in the country are being required to legalize their unions through church or state institutions by the end of 2017, repots Al Jazeera.


President Pierre Nkurunziza signed the order back in May, claiming that this measure would help protect women and children, specifically when it comes to possessing the legal documents for inheritance, and promote good morals. Many doubt that the government's actions are genuine, and have pointed out that the policy infringes upon people's religious and sexual freedoms.

This isn't the firs time the government of Burundi has made an odd decision concerning the rights of its citizens. Last week, women were banned from taking part in Burundi's famous drumming ritual.

For more on the subject, check out the video below, via Al Jazeera.

Music
Photo by Don Paulsen/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Hugh Masekela's New York City Legacy

A look back at the South African legend's time in New York City and his enduring presence in the Big Apple.

In Questlove's magnificent documentary, Summer of Soul, he captures a forgotten part of Black American music history. But in telling the tale of the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival, the longtime musician and first-time filmmaker also captures a part of lost South African music history too.

Among the line-up of blossoming all-stars who played the Harlem festival, from a 19-year-old Stevie Wonder to a transcendent Mavis Staples, was a young Hugh Masekela. 30 years old at the time, he was riding the wave of success that came from releasing Grazing in the Grass the year before. To watch Masekela in that moment on that stage is to see him at the height of his time in New York City — a firecracker musician who entertained his audiences as much as he educated them about the political situation in his home country of South Africa.

The legacy Masekela sowed in New York City during the 1960s remains in the walls of the venues where he played, and in the dust of those that are no longer standing. It's in the records he made in studios and jazz clubs, and on the Manhattan streets where he once posed with a giant stuffed zebra for an album cover. It's a legacy that still lives on in tangible form, too, in the Hugh Masekela Heritage Scholarship at the Manhattan School of Music.

The school is the place where Masekela received his education and met some of the people that would go on to be life-long bandmates and friends, from Larry Willis (who, as the story goes, Masekela convinced to give up opera for piano) to Morris Goldberg, Herbie Hancock and Stewart Levine, "his brother and musical compadre," as Mabusha Masekela, Bra Hugh's nephew says.

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