Greenpeace: International Musicians give Congolese Youth a voice to protect the rainforest

Press release - October 8, 2012
This morning Greenpeace Africa released a brand new song entitled ““Voix de la Forêt” (The Voices of the Forest), which is performed by 11 internationally acclaimed singers from the Congo Basin countries; in a bid to highlight the importance of the world’s second largest rain forest, which is under increasing threat from foreign exploitation.

The lyrics are drawn from over 2600 poems submitted by young boys and girls from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) as part of Greenpeace Africa’s “the future of forests poetry” contest[i].

For Greenpeace, the fit was irresistible, young people are the voice of the future and the world needs to hear their voices on the future of their forest to the world”, says Irene Wabiwa, Forest Campaigner for Greenpeace Africa.

The lyrics show exactly that.

"Veritable hymn to the forest, this song is a wake up call to save the forests for our climate and the livelihood of forest communities, continues Irene Wabiwa.

Borrowing in style from several collaborations across the world, “the Voice of the forest” is a blend of hip pop, salsa and folk styles, showing in that instance the global impact of the deforestation crisis.

“I agreed to add my voice to that of all the young Congolese, because I couldn’t accept seeing the Congo basin forests sacrificed for shareholders’ greed,” says Lokwa Kanza one of the singers who is popular in Central Africa and acclaimed for hits such as “Shadow dancer”.

The Congo Basin rainforest; the world’s second largest rainforest after the Amazon and critical for the people and the climate is increasingly under threats from logging, agribusiness, oil and mining.

Congolese Government should consider the interest of its own people first, focusing on sustainable development rather than the short-term profit of foreign investment leading to forest destruction and disruption of people’s livelihood, continues Wabiwa.

Through the “voix de la foret” song, youths share their anxiety over their beloved forest and alert the world of danger of deforestation.

The more voices that sing this song, the louder it reverberates into every corner of the world, until no one will be able to say they never knew what was at stake when the last tree is finally chopped down”, concludes Wabiwa.

Greenpeace calls upon the DRC government to cancel illegally awarded permits, enforce the moratorium on the allocation of new industrial logging concession and extended the control and monitoring of artisanal logging.

 

Contact:

  1. Augustine Kasambule, Media Officer (Forests), Greenpeace Africa, +243998230896
  2. Irene Wabiwa, Forest Campaigner, Greenpeace Africa +243997853171

Notes to the Editor

  1. Greenpeace Africa organised a poetry contest “the Future of the Forest in Poems” for young aged from 12 to 21, in DRC. Over 2600 submissions were received.
  2. To download the song, visit http://www.greenpeace.org/africa/en/News/Blog/congo-forest-song/blog/42472/