Rap-orters; A New Spin on News Delivery

Haven’t you always wanted to see Kochie or Karl Stefanovic don their chains and leather jeans and launch into a rap delivery of the day’s headlines? I hope it’s not just me, and I know it would make watching Sunrise and Today just a little more bearable. A Ugandan television network, featuring a unique group of “rap-orters” have taken it upon themselves to tackle the issues of the day, evade government censorship and ignite interest amongst a younger audience.

NewzBeat is a direct challenge to the issues that the media faces in Uganda. Airing before the traditional news bulletins, the program aims to draw attention to the stories of the day via a more accessible means; spitting some hot bars. In a country that experiences heavy censorship across all forms of the media, it is vital that new ideas such as this are adopted to avoid these hurdles, and capture the minds of a new generation of Ugandan youth. In response to a controversial legislative decision to ban homosexuality by Ugandan president Yoweri Museveni, these self proclaimed “rap-orters” offered their own interpretation:

“Uganda’s anti-gay law is making news/Some countries have found it befitting to accuse/Uganda of treating gays as German Jews/Nothing to gain from this and more to lose”

There is no novelty here. The messages delivered in these bulletins are serious in nature, and depict that struggle Uganda as a nation is currently facing. Hosted by Ugandan rap royalty, the “queen of hip-hop” Lady Slyke, Daniel Kisekka, and young up and comer MC Loy, these individuals are braving political condemnation in order to serve the greater good, and deliver the news as it should be heard. Sure, the means of delivery is abstract, but it is necessary in the current social and political climate, and for that I applaud them.

You can check out one of the bulletins here: