Mutare-based controversial Sungura artist Hosiah Chipanga has hit out at local radio stations for “banning” his hard-hitting latest album titled Gamba which some have described as his most politically-charged album to date.
The talented singer and songwriter told the Daily News on Sunday that he personally took copies of Gamba to both State-owned and privately-owned radio stations to no avail.
“I have distributed copies of Gamba to radio stations including all ZBC radio stations, Star FM as well as ZiFM among others but no one is playing it.
“Even our very own Diamond FM based here in Mutare is refusing to play my music for reasons that I do not understand. It is now a month since I released the album so handichazivawo ini, pamwe ndakarima nechisi (I don’t know the reason behind the ban),” the Kwachu-Kwachu singer said.
The CD, which is emblazoned with late liberation war hero Solomon Mujuru’s face, is a special dedication to the respected freedom fighter.
The four-track Gamba has cemented Chipanga’s reputation as a fearless government critic. All the four songs — Gamba, KwaMarange, Vendor and Baba Abram boldly tackle challenges Zimbabwe is grappling with.
On the title track, Chipanga questions how Mujuru could be killed by a mysterious fire at his Beatrice farm in 2011 yet he had survived helicopter gunships, landmines and grenades during the liberation war.
KwaMarange attacks the State for mismanaging Marange diamonds and claims that people living near the diamond fields are poorer than they were before the diamonds were discovered.
On Vendor the controversial wordsmith says Zimbabwe has been reduced to a nation of vendors while the police have abandoned their constitutional duty of fighting crime and are now focusing on “fundraising” efforts.
Though the Mutare-based musician is disappointed by the attempts by local radio stations to muzzle his inconvenient voice, he told the Daily News on Sunday that the only consolation for him was that he sold the first copies of Gamba to Members of Parliament.
“Early this month, I travelled all the way from Mutare to give Christopher Mutsvangwa (ex-War Veterans minister) a copy of Gamba because I wanted war veterans to hear my message.
“Parliamentarians went on to grab seven copies of the album and this was a dream come true for me. At least I know they heard the message,” said Chipanga.
Recently, Chipanga told the Daily News that he was yearning for a chance to meet President Robert Mugabe to discuss the country’s continued socio-political and economic decay.
“The way Mugabe and his government are governing this country always give me sleepless nights. I’m yearning to meet him (Mugabe) as he is lost.
“I have spiritual solutions for this country but it’s a pity that his aides always block me from seeing him.
“They (aides) think I am mad but actually I am not. I just want Mugabe to give an ear to a “madman” like me since he once entertained a lunatic who claimed to have discovered diesel in Chinhoyi,” said Chipanga.
Chipanga said he was prepared to be handcuffed and leg-ironed if that would help convince Mugabe to meet him.
“Let them handcuff and leg iron me if they think I can be harmful to Mugabe. What I only want is to discuss challenges facing the country with him,” he said then.
Chipanga began his musical journey in late 1970s and his first song Dai Ndakaziva was banned by the Rhodesian government because it was perceived to be anti-government.