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Makambo
Geoffrey Oryema Lyrics


Ngibathe Ngicelu Xolo
Ngatholi nzondo
Ngibathe Ngecelu thando ma, ah oh
Yiningathi yini ngomhlaba
Yini Singa Funu Zwano? ah oh
Ngibathe Ngicelu Xolo
Ngatholi nzondo, ah oh

Washu mathambo espoki wathi
Africa, Umhlaba ubolile
Abantu bane nkohla kalo
Umhlaba ubolile
Umhlaba unengozi
Sudan, Rwanda, Angola, Malawi, Liberia, Zaire
Stop the killing
Phansingo dlame
South Africa: war is never good
Phansingo dlame

So why?
So why?
So why?
Africa, Africa will sing - so why?
The sun in your heart is your smile - so why?
Wozani bizanu tula - So why?

Contributed by Charlotte Y. Suggest a correction in the comments below.
To comment on specific lyrics, highlight them
Most interesting comments from YouTube:

This West African-American Life

Here's a rough translation I found in case anyone besides me was looking:

I've been asking for Peace
But all I got was war
I've been looking for love
But I didn't find togetherness
What is wrong with the world?
What is wrong with the people?
Why don't we want peace? ...



Matthew

I believe this is a rough translation of Geoffrey's song, written as he escaped war in Uganda:

"I've been asking for Peace
But all I got was war
I've been looking for love
But I didn't find togetherness
What is wrong with the world?
What is wrong with the people?
Why don't we want peace?"



All comments from YouTube:

Murielle Mobengo - Poet

Makambo is taken from lingala, a language spoken in Congo-Brazza and Kinshasa by Bantu people and that has strange common resonance with Zulu sometimes. Lingala is very emotional, a very poetic language where few words say it all and this is exactly what Geoffrey Oryema does, here. Hardly translatable. That said, the song is a lament from someone who is sad because people are gossiping about him and badmouthing him (a common human, destructive exercize). He feels heaviness in his heart: he has a lot of problems (makambo), he is all his problems. So for the lingala part, here are the lyrics:

Oh ngai na makambo eh
Ngai na makambo eh
Likambo na motema
Songui-Songui bandeko

RIP Geoffrey Oryema and thank you for this beautiful piece. Kende malamu.

Dickens Awiti

The fact that Lingala and Zulu are both Bantu languages means that the common resonance cannot be termed as strange!

Bob Craen

Merci mingi na yo mpo na explication ya solo penza! Kenda malamu!

Niki IGN

Thank you, Murielle! Best regards from Bulgaria!

Ssekyanzi Arthur

@Junior Ocira Ocira, you're still in exile 😂😂😂😂🤗

Alexander KPM

Awesome

52 More Replies...

Eddie Cramer

Its like the Earth is singing to you at night when gazing at the stars and the Moon!

the sirrah

I couldn't describe it more clearly. I'm right now walking around in the middle of the night listening to this song. Thank you. I'm feeling not alone

L Thompson

Perfect description

MrAlex1036

"Its like the earth is singing to you"....... that phrase changed the way this song effects me emotionally and i have no idea why

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