News / Latest / Ernest Kanjo / Thursday, 08 August 2013 13:10

Mabel-GoVote-Highlights1

It is a little rare for young English-speaking Cameroon musicians to get so deep into painting their country’s political landscape. Most of them would rather duel on softer themes and even if they go the politicking way, it is fashioned in a very subtle manner. This however has not been the case with Mabel Chah aka MabSTAR this time. MabSTAR needs no further introduction – the Afro Hip-Hop/RAP singer is a household name and fast becoming internationally recognized. In a straight-talk-like piece titled Go Vote, MabSTAR has urged young Cameroonians to rise, use the ballot box and turn the tables in her country.

In the now viral single officially released in the past couple of days, MabSTAR, who is coming out stronger, not just as a ‘Preacher Woman’, but as the mouth piece of a seemingly oppressed youth, calls on her generational mates to vote a ‘No’ to the current order. To the singer, her country is on amoving on a wrong foot. “Mon pays vas mal,” MabSTARS states in the 3.23 minutes-long single. The artist who was tenderly two years-old in 1982 laments that a clinching system has been in place since then and there isn’t any reason why a change shouldn’t be necessary.

This system has not changed the situation of her country’s city and village roads, for instance, which the author of Go Vote sarcastically describes as ‘great’. Yet, the power brokers of the said system find pleasure in dancing to all the music and refusing to leave the dancing stage. “We are ready for a change,” the artist declares.

According to MabSTAR (Mabel Fuam), Go Vote is aimed at encouraging civic responsibility especially as Cameroonians brace for twin elections (legislative and municipal) coming up on September 30, 2013. Cameroonians have generally resorted to voter apathy for within the past decade following endless claims that elections are usually flawed by irregularities including disenfranchisement.

Meantime, MabSTAR rose to stardom in 2007 when BAAM, a popular Buea-based band which won the maiden edition of the Nestle national music competition, then emerged first at All-African contest in Cote d’Ivoire. This fetched the band a Paris recording of Stand Up a single produced by English producer and artist Wayne Beckford and valorized on the inter-continental entertainment TV channel TRACE. Apart from being instrumental in the unforgettable “Stand Up for Haiti” fund raiser in honour of victims of the Haiti earthquake in 2010, MabSTAR has toured with her country’s Minister of Culture on behalf of women empowerment initiatives. She is widely traveled - to Morocco, Algeria, Ghana, Niger, Mali, Senegal, Burkina Faso and Togo.



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