Legendary Somali Singer Fatuma Ali “Nakruma” Dies In Mogadishu From Covid Related Complications

On Sunday 21st February, Fatuma Ali “Nakruma”, a member of the historic Waaberi musical troupe, passed away in the Martini Hospital in Mogadishu, Somalia.

The legendary singer was said to have been hospitalized several days ago due to contracting Covid-19.

Fatuma Ali “Nakruma” was born in Mogadishu in 1957. As a member of the National Army Orchestra, she was known to boost national morale with her singing. She later on joined the Waaberi musical troupe along with some of the best musicians of that same orchestra. In 1977, the group travelled to Nigeria to perform Somali jazz songs during a major festival in which artists such as Stevie Wonder, Fela Kuti and Osibisa were performing at.

It is said that a Ghanaian army corporal gave the late singer her famous nickname. The story goes that the army corporal exclaimed that she was as intellectual as Ghana’s famous pan-Africanist, President Kwame Nkrumah. From that time onwards, she became known by Somalis everywhere as Faduma “Nakruma”.

The late Nakruma was known to sing patriotic songs and participate in plays that gave commentary on societal issues concerning Somali people across the world. Even when she fled Somalia during the outbreak of the civil war in 1991 to settle in Canada, she continued to play a significant role in the world of Somali arts. In 2018, she moved back to Somalia where she stayed until her death.

[Photo courtesy of Twitter]

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