The African National Congress (ANC) is saddened by the untimely passing of one of South Africa’s music legend Mr. Johnny Clegg.
Mr. Clegg, 66, has not been well for sometime as he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in 2015.
Mr. Clegg was known as the voice of transition in South Africa. He was one of the most brave musicians who confronted apartheid regime using art. He co-founded the first multiracial band, Juluka, in 1979 which led him to have bad blood with the authorities of that time.
Mr. Clegg had paired Zulu rhythms and vocals with succinct pop melodies of social consciousness that echoed American and British folk music. He suffered harassment and arrest by the apartheid regime for his action and working with with Africans in his band Juluka and later Savuka.
He was among the most loved musician in the country as he defied apartheid regime. He toured many countries with musicians like Paul Simon, Steve Winwood among among many artists and expose brutality of apartheid in South Africa..
Mr. Clegg use his music to unify people of different race. He released 13 albums in his 40 years of music and dance.Mr. Clegg will be remembered for his popular song, woza Friday, ubuhle bemvelo, and impi the song where he gave a tale of the military victory of Zulu warriors over the British army.
In 2012, Mr. Clegg was awarded the Order of Ikhamanga as part of the national orders reconginising his role he played in our country. His passing is a huge loss to the South Africans, particularly the music fraternity.
The ANC join many South Africans in paying tribute to this music icon who became a beacon of hope and inspired many artists and individuals in our country and abroad. He left an indelible mark in the country and his inspirational music will continue to reverberate in our ears for many years to come. He used his talent to inspire social, economic, cultural and political change in the country.
At this hour of great loss, our thoughts are with his family, friends and fellow musicians.
May his soul rest in peace.
ISSUED BY AFRICAN NATIONAL CONGRESS
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