I knew Jacques Murigande (The Mighty Popo) from his teen years when he emigrated to Ottawa, Canada and played open mic nights to showcase his “blues” guitar skills. I saw him begin to bring back his roots music.
I met his sister. I saw him become a married family man. I heard of his success on stage for a repeat performance of a musical play.
I was invited by him to come to his home in Rwanda to volunteer at the first KigaliUp concert, but was, and I still am, unable to attend, though I hope to one day, or at least visit. He is a humble man, multi-talented and still down to earth, loving people and spreading that love to as many people as he can.
I respect him for all this – he’s a performer, a family man, a survivor of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi, a voice for Rwandans and a messenger of worldwide audience where we hear great African music in a beautiful live setting.
I wish the journalist had asked him some questions, but it is enough that the event is becoming more well known.
Laura Clarke Malcolm, Canada
Reaction to the story, “Behind the scenes at KigaliUp Festival press conference”, (Sunday Times, July 14)