Sizzla will go ahead with two shows in Zimbabwe next month despite disparaging comments reportedly made by that country’s president about Jamaican men.
The shows, scheduled for the capital Harare, kick off the ‘Jah Put a Hand on Africa’ tour which is headlined by Sizzla.
Sound system owner and producer Everton ‘Caveman’ Moore, is part of the tour. He will be making his third visit to Zimbabwe in as many years. He sees nothing wrong with Mugabe’s reported remarks that Jamaica is run by women because its men are always ‘sloshed’, due to heavy drinking and marijuana use.
“If he really said so, it’s not inaccurate. Look how much youth pon the corners a rub out dem han’ middle,” said Caveman.
He added: “Again, if he said so, we should see it as a wake-up call. It’s something we need to address.”
Mugabe reportedly made the remarks two weeks ago at an official function in Harare.
Caveman accompanied Sizzla when the roots artiste visited Zimbabwe in January, 2010 for shows in the city of Bulawayo and Harare. He said they were hosted by Mugabe at an official reception in Bulawayo. They returned in February when Sizzla performed as part of Mugabe’s 86th birthday celebrations.
In 2011, Caveman returned to Harare where he helped produce local reggae artistes. He said Mugabe seemed to have great admiration for Jamaica when he met him two years ago.
“He said he has always loved Jamaica because there is so much similarity with his country,” Caveman said.
Mugabe has been president of Zimbabwe since 1980. For many years, the country was known as Rhodesia, a renegade state run by the racist Ian Smith. In the years leading to independence, Mugabe led freedom fighters in a bloody bush war against white rule. One of their biggest heroes was reggae superstar Bob Marley.
Marley performed at independence celebrations in Harare in April, 1980.
In addition to Sizzla, other artistes on the Jah Put a Hand on Africa tour are Fred Locks, Wildlife and Fabian Marley from Jamaica, and Trinidadians Orlando Octave, Khari Kill and Singing Carlene. They will be backed by the High Cymbal Band.