On this day in 1997: The African continent’s most creative Afrobeat superstar, anti-military dictatorship activist, social maverick and pan-Africanist Olufela Olusegun Oludotun Ransome-Kuti, died of AIDS.
He was a saxophone player who fused rock with African rhythms into a blend known as “Afrobeat.” His albums included: “Zombie,” “Army Arrangement.” And “Vagabond in Power.” He recorded more than 50 albums in the 1970s and 1980s and had 27 wives to mourn his death.
Fela Kuti was born on October 15, 1938, in Abeokuta. Musician and activist Fela pioneered Afrobeat music and was repeatedly arrested and beaten for writing lyrics that questioned Nigerian government.
A defiance campaign by the Mass Democratic Movement against apartheid laws started by challenging the segregation of hospitals and leads to the admission of more than 200 Blacks to former hospitals for Whites.