Bob Geldof and the Band Aid team’s latest humanitarian effort, the re-recorded version of Geldof and Midge Ure’s 1984 hit Do They Know It’s Christmas, maybe storming the internet and fast selling online but the intended target of Geldof’s good intentions, “Africa” has voiced different reactions.
Geldof, who appeared on last night’s (Nov 16) X Factor show to promote the single, which is released today, said he had been inspired to re-record the track because of the “phenomenal bravery of the NHS doctors and nurses who volunteered” to help the fight against the virus.
While a great initiative uniting some of the legendary and up and coming names in music from Angelique Kidjo to One Direction, from Bono to Rita Ora who joined forces to raise resources to fight the deadly virus in parts of West Africa, the initiative has also attracted major criticism from those who slammed the lyrics as offensive and ignorant.
One of the critics is Ghanaian singer Fuse ODG who confirmed on Twitter he had turned down Sir Geldof’s invitation to take part on the track.
“Big up Sir Bob Gekdof & his heart. He approached me about about being on the Band Aid song, however upon receiving the proposed lyrics, I felt the message of the Band Aid 30 song was not in line with the message of The New Africa movement (TINA),” he wrote on Twitter.
He added: “After some consideration, I spoke with Geldof and informed him I would be unable to attend the studio session. Sir Bob Geldof respectfully acknowledged my decision. #ThisIsNewAfrica #TINA.”
Renowned African technology entrepreneur Rebecca Enonchong voiced her concerns with the following tweet:
Good intentions are not enough. Bob Geldof is literally taking Africa back 30 years.. #BandAid30
— Rebecca Enonchong (@africatechie) November 17, 2014
Social Affairs and Education Editor on Sky News, Afua Hirch sent a much-needed reminder about the line “Do they know it’s Christmas?”:
“Do they know it’s Christmas?” Half of them are Muslim, for starters #BandAid30 — Afua Hirsch (@afuahirsch) November 17, 2014
Black Beauty Pulse shared the lyrics they described as perpetuating “stale stereotypes of Africa”:
@[email protected]#bandaid30 has no place in 2014 These lyrics perpetuate stale sterotypes of Africa http://t.co/xAzCDlYgzb — beautypulselondon (@beautypulse_ldn) November 17, 2014
Producer and host of Voice Of America Jackson M’vunganyi was blunt in his criticism:
Dear #BandAid30 check your saviour complex at the door!
— Jackson M’vunganyi (@UpfrontAfrica) November 17, 2014
Ghanaian writer Abena Serwaa possibly voiced thousands’ views with a single tweet:
Kind of sad that 30 years on, we still have western celebrities having to ‘save’ us in ‘Africa’. Something has to give. #BandAid30
— Abena Serwaa (@abena_serwaa) November 15, 2014
BBC’s Alexis Akwagyiram tweeted:
“Saving Africa”: Why does #BandAid30 feel so patronising and uncomfortable?http://t.co/Ga5eATDPT1pic.twitter.com/Z1VHlVNyG3
— Alexis Akwagyiram (@alexisak) November 12, 2014
Check out the controversial Band Aid 30 video below and let us know what you think.