News Brief

Tanzeela Qambrani is Pakistan's First Lawmaker of African Descent

The politician is bringing hope to the country's marginalized Sidi community.

The Sidi community, is a small ethnic group of African descent concentrated in the mountainous regions of Pakistan. The group has been largely overlooked in social, political and economic life in the country. There are, however, small advancements being made towards representation, and 39-year-old Sidi politicial Tanzeela Qambrani is at the forefront of these changes.

Qambrani, whose ancestors came from Tanzania, has been nominated by the Pakistan People's Party (PPP) to a women's reserved seat in the regional parliament of southern Sindh province, reports BBC Africa, making her the first person of African descent to hold a seat in Pakistan's parliament.


Sidi people also live in the areas of Karnataka, Gujarat and Andhra Pradesh and have been in the country for centuries. They are thought to be the descendants of slaves that were brought to the region by the Portuguese.

"As a tiny minority lost in the midst of local populations, we have struggled to preserve our African roots and cultural expression, but I look forward to the day when the name Sidi will evoke respect, not contempt," she told the BBC.

Qambrani, a computer science postgraduate with three children, is dedicated to preserving the African roots of the Sidi community, which has a population in the tens of thousands in Pakistan.

Though she's held local office in the past, Qambrani is readying herself for the responsibilities that will come with representing her people on a larger political arena.

"I can already feel the weight," she said. "I'm a Sidi, and all these middle class, lower-middle class and working class Sidis know that I'm one of them.

With this post, Qambrani is bringing hope to a community that has dealt with widespread marginalization in Pakistan for centuries. Check out the video below to hear her speak on what this historic role means for her and the Sidi community.

Photo: Courtesy of Amazon Prime

The ‘Coming 2 America’ Original Motion Picture Soundtrack & ‘The Rhythm Of Zamunda’ Are Out Now

Featuring Tiwa Savage, Tekno, Larry Gaaga, Alpha P, Davido and many more.

It has been more than 30 years since the premiere of the beloved classic comedy Coming to America. Its highly anticipated sequel promises to be greater than its predecessor. The film will be accompanied with two albums—Coming 2 America original motion picture soundtrack and Rhythms of Zamunda, whose tracklist is inspired by the movie. Both albums, which are currently available on all major streaming platforms, feature African music royalty Tiwa Savage, Tekno, Larry Gaaga and Alpha P, who joined a select group of artists from around the continent to produce these tracklists.

Still blazing charts after the success of his debut album Old Romance, Tekno has a growing list of impressive collaborations with artists like Davido, Drake, Beyonce, to name a few. The singer does not have not one, but two of his hit songs featured; "Waka Waka" is featured on the official soundtrack and "Skeletun" on Rhythms of Zamunda.

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Photo by THOMAS SAMSON/AFP via Getty Images

Thebe Magugu's AW21 Collection 'Alchemy' Is An Exploration of African Spirituality

Magugu collaborated with Kristin-Lee Moolman to create a '70s-style B movie called Banyoloyi A Bosigo

South African fashion designer Thebe Magugu has released his AW21 collection, Alchemy, and it is beautiful. For his latest collection, the 2019 LVMP prize winner introduced a redefinition of his previous work, Counter Intelligent, featuring embroidered chiffon dresses, pink blazers and cinched waist belts.

For the new collection, Thebe Magugu collaborated with the photographer Kristin-Lee Moolman to create a 1970s-style B movie called Banyoloyi A Bosigo. The short film, which is written, directed and photographed by Moolman, shows the power play between two rival girl gangs named the "ultimate midnite angels" who speak Zulu and Setswana.

The short film begins at the river with an initiation rite, then the sending out of the initiated woman to become a spy. There's also a love affair between two women of rival tribes that warrants a capture. Each scene of the movie introduces the fits to the collection as well as exhibiting the fluidity of the outfits.

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News Brief
Photo: WH Moustapha

Mdou Moctar Announces Debut Album 'Afrique Victime'

The album is a collaboration between Mdou, his band members and his rhythm guitarist Ahmoudou Madassane.

Matador Records has announced that the eagerly anticipated album Afrique Victime by Mdou Moctar will be released on May 21.

Afrique Victime is an unprecedented collaboration between Mdou, his band members, and Ahmoudou Madassane, who's been his rhythm guitarist since 2008. The album will present an effortless fusion of Saharan and rock music; melding guitar pyrotechnics, full-blast noise, and field recordings with poetic meditations.

You might have come across Mdou on Off White's "Imaginary TV" channel, who designer Virgil Abloh called, "one of my favorite musicians Rn."

Mdou's desert village Agadez, in rural Niger, is his source of inspiration. He attributes his artistic style to traditional Tuareg melodies and YouTube videos of Eddie Van Halen's six string techniques. Mdou has also worked on film projects. He wrote, produced, and starred in the first Tuareg language film: a remake of Purple Rain called Akounak Tedalat Taha Tazoughai– which translates to "Rain The Color Of Blue With A Little Red In It." This earned him approval from his community and popularity across West Africa. This soon led to world tours and albums on the independent US label Sahel Sounds, including 2019's landmark Ilana: The Creator, which earned Mdou an international audience.

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