Arndt R. Brodkorb
Expert in sustainable development in Suisse
The first time I heard the song "Charlie" of Miriam Makeba was after midnight at a private party early in my twenties. I was fascinated by her voice and the tragic style of her singing. Early the next day, I went to the record store of my choice looking for more stuff. Mama Afrika wasn’t my first love but she was definitely one of my favourite artists in African music since then. 20 years later, during a regional workshop about “non-formal education” organized by a German development organization in the hilly landscape of the Fouta Djallon, I visited in company of her former guard, Mister Diallo, her domestic (exile) refuge in Dalaba. She wasn’t only a prominent opponent of apartheid since the South African authorities revoked her passport in 1960 but also a fantastic spearhead of the (world) music scene for more than 40 years. Like many other African people I crossed the path in the last decade, she was a true wanderer between the numerous worlds one can find on the continent.