UPDATE: Rapper Nay wa Mitego to be released after arrest over anti-magufuli song
Tanzania’s Minister for Information Harrison Mwakyembe has ordered the release of rapper Ney wa Mitego who was arrested over for releasing a song deemed to be critical of the government.
Mr Mwakyembe also told the musician to improve on the song, some that many interpreted as a jibe at the underground artiste.
Waziri wa Habari Dkt Harrison Mwakyembe ameagiza msanii Nay wa Mitego aachiwe huru ila auboreshe zaidi wimbo wake.
— Msemaji Mkuu wa Serikali (@TZMsemajiMkuu) March 27, 2017
The song, released last week, speaks of government officials who cannot tolerate criticism and quoted a recent warning to the media by President John Magufuli.
“Hivi uhuru wa kuongea kwenye nchi bado upo? Sije kuongea vitu kesho kajikuta seli,” raps Nay in the beginning of the song.
The rapper goes on to claim that there are bhang smokers in government and leaders are just fighting for headlines.
“Kiongozi mwenye busara anapokea ushauri, anapokea mawazo haweki mbele kiburi, aya samahani muheshimiwa hivi unamjua Bashite hili ni jipu mpya toka Kolomije limeshaiba na usaha limeshadunga nakukabidhi sindano ya kulidunga,” sings Nay.
The lyric is addressed to someone he calls “a doctor specialising in lancing boils.”
The phrase “lancing boils” has been used repeatedly by Mr Magufuli to refer to people he deems obstructive.
The Bashite mentioned in the song is said to be an alias name of Dar es Salaam Regional Commissioner, Paul Makonda, who is currently under investigations for abuse of power.
President Magufuli formed a committee led by minister Nape Nnauye to investigate and present a report over the commissioner’s conduct as he is accused of raiding Clouds Media offices and threatening journalists.