It was one of the great voices of the struggle against apartheid. Government officials, musicians and other south african artists have said farewell to singer Johnny Clegg at a public ceremony Friday in Johannesburg, ten days after his death. The singer, who mixed with african rhythms and pop western, died July 16 at his home in Johannesburg to a cancer of the pancreas. He was 66 years of age. His funeral was celebrated last week in the privacy.

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musicians of all genres have paid tribute by interpreting some of his arias, the most famous of which have earned him international fame. The actor is south african John Kani ( Captain America ) has pronounced a funeral oration moving to the deceased, remained famous for having defied the laws of apartheid. “It was very easy for Johnny to choose to enjoy the privilege of being white and rock star, but he also had a heart that was telling him not to ignore the fate of others,” said Kani.

Of courage “in a night of despair”

Born in Britain, Johnny Clegg had followed his mother to Johannesburg when he was only six years old. His contact with the zulu migrant workers during adolescence had initiated to this culture and its music. He was often arrested under the regime segregated, which was completed in 1994 for his commitment to the side of black musicians.

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“Our country and culture workers are in mourning,” said in a speech Nathi Mthethwa, minister of Arts and Culture. “Through his music, he inspired us courage as we struggle to emerge from a long night of despair,” said Mthethwa, adding that the work of Clegg “would be part of our national memory”.

His son Jesse on stage

in Front of a thousand fans of Johnny Clegg, his son Jesse went on stage with the Soweto Gospel Choir to perform a song written with his father, I’ve Been Looking. “in Spite of his success, he believed that being a father was his most important duty,” said Jesse.

Adding a personal touch, Sipho Mchunu, music partner and long-time mentor of the deceased, recalled how Clegg had written a love letter in his name to a woman who was to become one of his six wives. The tribute ended with more than 30 south-african musicians singing on stage, to sing his success, The Crossing.