The City of Cape Town to honour Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrika composer

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The City of Cape Town will on Tuesday honour the celebrated South African composer Enoch Sontonga in form of a temporary exhibition.

Sontonga composed the country’s national anthem Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrika.

He was born in the Eastern Cape in 1873 and earned his place in history with the song which in English means ”God Bless Africa”.

The exhibition opening will take place at the Cape Town City Hall on the eve of Freedom Day.

Versions of the song were adopted as the national anthems of five countries in Africa including Zambia, Tanzania, Namibia and Zimbabwe after independence, and South Africa after the end of apartheid.

The song’s melody is still used as the national anthem of Tanzania and Zambia. Zimbabwe and Namibia have since changed to new anthems with original melody compositions.

Last year, Political Analyst Siphamandla Zondi said, “ Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrika is a wonderful story, which is the evidence of the shared history and aspirations of the people of Southern Africa. To this day it continues to be a good reminder that we have shared stories, now it’s a reminder.”

VIDEO: Enoch Sontonga’s “Nkosi Sikelela iAfrica” a symbol of African Unity: