Singing Truth to Power

Lapiro de Mbanga
Sub-Saharan Africa
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Cameroonian musician Lapiro de Mbanga shares his experience challenging his country’s dictator, Paul Biya, through the power of song. After releasing his song “Constipated Constitution,” Lapiro was imprisoned for his critical lyrics, becoming a victim of what he calls Biya’s”lethal weapon”: the justice system. Lapiro describes how Biya manipulates the country’s legal system to jail anyone who threatens his power in overcrowded prisons that fail to provide inmates with the most basic necessities such as food, clean water, and medical treatment.

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