Raissa Malu

Girl yesterday, woman today

International Women's Day 2021 theme. Credit: UN Women/Yihui Yuan

A song that makes one think about the conditions of girls in the DRC.

When and how did I discover her? I can't remember. Maybe last year on TV5 or in the series "Makutano New Generation" produced by the Sultani Makutano. But it was a revelation for me. Who am I talking about? The young Congolese singer Céline Banza!

I loved her song "Tere Mbi" so much that I wanted to have her latest album "Praefatio" released last January. I listen to it in my car on the way home. Ideal after a tiring day.

Exploring a new world

The first listening was for me like the exploration of a new world. The tracks followed one another until this song in French. Beautiful melody, magnificent voice, and a story.

This story so rightly told by Céline Banza haunts me since. Contradictory feelings overwhelm me. The melody and Celine's voice are so beautiful, but the story is so sad, revolting. It depresses me.

Little girls and boys

There are evenings when I do not have the heart to listen to it, I would like to skip it. Yet, this song is so beautiful. In the car, I look out the window at these little girls (and boys) who walk the streets of Kinshasa. And I think: have they been also victims? Will they ever be?

I am working in education, so my horizon is far away. I know that my actions today will have an impact on society in 6, 12 or 17 years.

Loss of references

These little girls abandoned in the streets of Kinshasa and other cities of the DRC, what kind of women will they be tomorrow? Is it only the responsibility of their families?

There are dedicated women and men who take care of these children on the streets every day, but society has a responsibility in the face of the loss of references. These girls (and boys) in our streets will be the lifeblood of tomorrow's society. Are we even aware of this?

International Women's Rights Day

Next March 8 is the International Women's Rights Day. Girls have their own day, it is October 11, International Day of the Girl.

The theme for March 8, 2021 is "Women's Leadership Excellence, Egalitarian and Digital Society in the Age of Covid-19". Nothing to do with the history of the song.

To listen to

But the women of today are the girls of yesterday, some of whom may have been victims like the 8-year-old girl in Celine Banza's song. Imagine the wounds and the suffering they must bear... Is this the world we want?

Here is the song. Its title: "Sur le pavé". I let you listen to it. (As for me, I'm going to eat some chocolate as a remedy to my depression. Sigh).


Thank you Céline Banza!

This article has first been published on LinkedIn.

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