BY Meghan Reid, 10:29pm March 25, 2014,

Ugandan TV Show Shares News Through Rap


Photo: Hilary Heuler/VOA

Uganda has found a creative way to engage their youth in current events affecting their communities. Thanks to an innovative TV News program that features young rappers presenting verses on controversial topics and everyday news with social commentary.

13-year-old Zoe Kabuye a.k.a. MC Loy is one of the young rappers who’s very in touch with the current state of her country. She uses journalism and rap to share the news with fellow students who aren’t interested in the watching the news, but enjoy the art form of rap.

In an interview with Voice of America, she explained “It shows what takes place in the country, and we talk about it. Mostly the youth don’t like to watch news, but a couple of them like rap. So the form of what we do, it will attract them to listen to the news and to know what’s taking place in their country.”

The news program consists of three rap journalists who work hard to share news responsibly through research and objectivity. News presenter Daniel Kisekka, a.k.a. Survivor who’s been in the music industry many years explained that journalism is very different from other work he’s done.

“It involves a lot of research. You have to dig deep so that you don’t give wrong information, and you have to be critical of both sides. You have to be objective, so that you represent everybody in fairness.”

They aren’t afraid to touch on controversial topics such as Uganda’s anti-pornography act and new anti-homosexuality law. They provide a narrative on news, politics and entertainment with plenty of social commentary mixed in through strong lyrics. The honesty they provide has been seen as pushing the envelope, considering last year two newspapers were shutdown and searched by the Ugandan government.

While they are fully aware of their limitations they won’t be slowing down:

“This is now journalism and there’s a thin line between what you can say and what you can’t say, so we have to be careful. I’ve met journalists that give you that kind of caution, that hey, what you’re doing is nice, but you have to be careful otherwise they will shut you down before you continue. There’s a threat, but we will try our best,” said Survivor.

Young people are listening to the messages of their peers and are becoming better informed about their communities. The show has truly provided a platform that has the potential to empower a new generation in Uganda because they relate to the art form.

Last Edited by:Meghan Reid Updated: June 19, 2018


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