SOUTH AFRICA-BASED Zimbabwean award-winning musician Louis Mhlanga (pictured) has joined forces with a global team of artistes to produce a music video as a tribute to missing people and their families.
The musicians, who span five continents, came together with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and Playing for Change, a movement created to inspire and connect the world through music, to produce the video, which was released on International Day of the Disappeared last Wednesday.
The campaign aims to highlight the importance of supporting search efforts and ensuring that families looking for their loved ones get the answers that they need.
Sosha Choir from South Africa is also part of the 15 musicians whose video among others, seeks to draw attention to the fact that thousands of people across the world are missing and their families are desperate for answers.
“Together, through music, we wanted to express our solidarity with those who are going through the deep, universal tragedy of not knowing what has happened to a loved one,” said ICRC field officer, Temptations Gatsi.
“The families of missing people never give up, even in the face of a global pandemic and other adversity. And we won't stop helping them either.”
Resolving a case of a missing person is often a complex and lengthy process and families' efforts to search often continue for years and decades.
Throughout this difficult time, families of the missing are in constant motion - searching, looking, wondering, remembering and missing their loved ones.
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It might seem like impossible work, but it’s not: every hour, the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement is able to inform a family about a missing relative, and we bring together about 12 families a day.
“While the family is the smallest unit of society, it is the most vital to the individual for psycho-social and economic support,” said Zimbabwe Red Cross Society (ZRCS) secretary-general Elias Hwenga.
“Having a missing relative brings terrible suffering to affected families as they are deprived of this support.
“This is why the Zimbabwe Red Cross Society, together with the International Committee of the Red Cross and other national Red Cross societies work tirelessly to draw attention to the human stories behind the overlooked humanitarian tragedies of those who go missing.”
Hwenga said there was need for continuous efforts by all stakeholders to prevent people from going missing, search for those who are missing and provide information on their fate and whereabouts to their families, and this includes preventing the disruption of family links, restoring and maintaining contact.
The music video is a cover to the U2 song titled I Still Haven’t Found What I am Looking For and includes the following artists: Paulo Heman and Marfa Kurakina from Brazil; Dan Lanois from Canada; RoopakNaigoakar and TusharLall from India; Roberto Luti from Italy; Sherieta Lewis and Roselyn Williams from Jamaica; the Amaan choir from Jordan; Kátsica Mayoral from Mexico;Sosha Choir from South Africa, John Cruz, Olivia Ruff, Michael Ruff, Glen David Andrews Band, and Chris Pierce from the United States and Louis Mhlanga from Zimbabwe.