Emmanuel Macron pays tribute to Fela Kuti, a Nigerian musician


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THE old Afrika Shrine, a music venue in Lagos, the commercial capital of Nigeria, was burned down by soldiers in 1977. Its founder, the late Fela Kuti, a musical megastar, had called them “zombies” in a song. The soldiers beat Kuti badly and threw his mother from a first-floor window. But Kuti’s children, Yeni and Femi, rebuilt a nearby venue in 2000. Ever since, the New Afrika Shrine has attracted hip Nigerians and expats, including a young Emmanuel Macron, who once worked as an intern in the French embassy in Abuja.

Mr Macron, now president of France, seems to have developed an attachment. When visiting Nigeria on July 3rd he went out of his way to visit the nightclub, known for its gyrating dancers and counterculture vibe. “What happens in the Shrine remains in the Shrine,” Mr Macron told the unusual crowd. Musicians, artists and stars from the Nollywood film industry drank champagne with government dignitaries, few of whom had ever visited the…

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