Earlier this year, Djiboutians marched the streets of their capital (where more than half of all Djiboutian citizens live), rallying against their sitting president who changed the constitution in 2010 allowing him to run for another term. It didn’t pan out as planned, with the president (who replaced his uncle as leader of the ruling party in 1999) securing a third term in April. “I regret having no opponent,” he said. “I accuse the opposition of not having the courage to give voters the right to choose between several candidates.” But that doesn’t change the fact today is still Djibouti’s Independence Day.

Awelah Adan is the country’s latest star, singing in Somali. This video dates from a while back, but it is a classic:

Abayzid Ali, on the other hand, sings in Afar. His lyrics have a more poetic touch:

Writer Abdourahman Waberi put us on to this song by Mohammed Ali aka ‘Fourchette’ about whom he says: “It may sound weird, but it is more than that. Inspiring, poetic. He’s singing in Somali. Popular among the youth as well. His son has remixed some of his old songs”:

And finally, this song. Not quite from Djibouti, but the video was recorded there. Why? We have no idea. Neither are we sure they’re showing this on Djibouti TV. Lumidee ft. Chase Manhattan:

You’ll find more on the DjibTube video channels.

Further Reading

Beyond the headlines

Recent violence across the Eritrean diaspora is being instrumentalized by populists. But the violence is a desperate cry for attention and requires the Eritrean opposition to seize the moment for regime change.

Action required

Held in Nairobi this month, the inaugural Africa Climate Summit is an important step for the continent’s response to climate change. Still, the disasters in Libya and Morocco underscore that rhetoric and declarations are not enough.

The strange non-death of Bantustans

That South African political parties across the spectrum were quick to venerate the politician and Zulu prince Mangosutho Buthelezi, who died last week, demonstrates that the country is still attached to Bantustan ideology.

Shifting the guilt

Even though Israeli novelist Agur Schiff’s latest book is meant to be a satirical reflection on the legacy of slavery and stereotypes about Africa, it ends up reinforcing them.

Banana Republics

Western leftists are arguing among themselves about whether there will be bananas under socialism. In Africa, however, bananas do not necessarily represent the vagaries of capitalism.