Let's be Tribe-All, not tribal
The report that Kenyan rapper Eko Dydda has decided to change his name after a gang stopped him and asked him to speak to prove he was from their tribe ("I tell my fans 'let's not be tribal, but let's be Tribe-All'") reminds me of my own similar attempt to limit the importance of tribal affiliation.
As editor of The People newspaper in Uganda in the 1960s I decided to stop the practice, begun in colonial times, of reporting people's tribal affilation. A court or news report would say, for example, "Mwai Kibaki, a Kikuyu, yesterday...."
It was, of course, pointless since the name automatically revealed a person's tribe.
I shudder to think what other well-meaning, meaningless gestures I made in those heady days.
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