An Open Letter to Amnesia Ibiza, Ricardo Villalobos & Musiq Records
For months now, we’ve documented the so-called plague raves. We’ve referred to virologists and epidemiologists in our articles, explaining to people why such events are counterproductive in this pandemic. One issue that has been especially concerning for quite a while is that of wealthy European DJs like Denis Sulta, Dixon, Sven Väth, Claptone or Solomun travelling to countries with less strict rules to keep their business running. A few weeks ago, we shared a post which showed German DJ Dirty Doering playing in Zanzibar (Tanzania). Days after it went live, someone sent us an interview with him published in “Der Tagesspiegel”, which is likely one of the worst interviews we’ve ever read.
The views that Dirty Doering expresses in this interview are by no means rare but held by many of his peers. The interview clearly reveals what a group of privileged DJs’ attitude towards plague raves is. They prioritise business and their own well-being at the expense of others. Tanzania is a country whose leadership denies the existence of COVID-19 and refuses COVID-19 vaccines, and in this context, plague raves make the African country once more a land of economic exploitation. The cooperation of the Tanzanian leadership does not make this any different.
Tanzania has not updated its Covid-19 data since late April 2020, leaving the last number of reported confirmed cases at 509 and the death toll at 21. Experts have repeatedly warned that the lack of testing and the difficulty in obtaining reliable data from many African countries probably means that the number of cases and the death toll are much higher. In response, the Tanganyika Law Society (TLS) has publicly called on the government to acknowledge the presence of COVID-19 and the Tanzania Episcopal Conference (TEC) has started to limit the number of people who are allowed to attend services. The open letter by TLS declares that there is evidence of a rapid surge in deaths in Tanzania and that already 25 members of their association have died. Moreover, many Tanzanians also take matters in their own hands and share all available information with their nationals on social media.
Media reports across the board suggest that Tanzania is struggling heavily with the consequences of the pandemic. Given the way the vaccines have been sold, African countries that want to roll out vaccination to their population won’t be able to keep up in a bidding war with the EU and other wealthy countries. South African President Cyril Ramaphosa slammed “vaccine nationalism,” accusing rich countries of bulk-buying vaccines and hoarding them to the detriment of others.
We’ve seen events from Katermukke & Hive Club with the DJs Dirty Doering, Animal Trainer, Nicone, Anthik, DJ Gogo, Ante Perry, Luciano and many more. On March 5th 2021, Amnesia Ibiza & Musiq Records will host a 2 week event in Zanzibar headlined by Ricardo Villalobos. This left us baffled. The same Ricardo Villalobos who has been known as a “leftwing idealist” for years will be at the forefront of these raves in Africa. We urge them to act responsibly and postpone the event to a safer date or just cancel it altogether. We ask you to share this open letter and help raise awareness for the Black lives at risk.