UB40 Leaving Namibian Orphans in the Cold?

In 2005, I spent a semester studying abroad in Namibia and from time to time I like to check out the online newspaper The Namibian to keep myself up to date on what’s going on in the country. The headline today criticized the band UB40 (anyone remember Red, Red Wine or Can’t Help falling in Love) for canceling a concert last minute.

 According to The Namibian, Hope Village orphanage spent nearly $3 million Namibian dollars in preparations for the event.  The orphanage had expected to regain costs from the 6,000 tickets sold for the event.  Although UB40 is supposed to reschedule, skeptics fear that they won’t  and Hope Village will be forced to close its doors.  

UB40 canceled the show because its percussionist was given instructions by his doctor to rest due to a medical condition.  Before the concert was even canceled, Namibians were feeling discouraged with the band when UB40 announced that their lead singer had left the band and his brother “who sounds just like him” would be singing instead.  

Sure medical problems come up and unfortunately concerts need to be canceled, but where does the responsibility of the band come in? Should they ensure that this orphanage doesn’t close? For all of the stars out there who want to “help” Africa, maybe now is their chance.  Let’s recruit the entertainers who were a part of the digital death campaign to donate some money to this cause. And while they’re at it, maybe they can get a better band to perform too.

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