S. Africa to stage benefit concert for Cyclone Idai survivors

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South Africa will hold a benefit concert in May aimed at assisting cyclone Idai survivors in the three Southern African nations, Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa said on Tuesday.

Mthethwa said despite aid that has been provided to Mozambique, Zimbabwe and Malawi, many people still require assistance.

"The three countries' embassies will be visited and it will be followed by an aid tour with artists where those who are involved in the project will get to lend a hand on the ground," the minister said.

He said countries in the region have often shown commitment in assisting others in times of need and this should continue.

"In the last two decades, we have stood together particularly during the devastating floods of 2000 in Mozambique. The department joins its sister department in mobilizing donations for the affected people of our region," he said.

A recent World Bank report estimated that 2 billion U.S. dollars is required to assist the three nations to recover from cyclone Idai.

Over 1000 people with majority of them in Mozambique lost their lives when the cyclone hit their countries. Thousands of have homes were destroyed, leaving many homeless.

Mthethwa said while more aid must be organized for the affected countries, the benefit concert is a short-term aid plan.

"We have discussed short, mid and long term goals of what this solidarity with the victims entails, ours is not a once off plan in the form of a concert," he added.

Some of the artists to take in the concert include Hip Hop star Cassper Nyovest, Yvonne Chaka Chaka and legendary Jazz musician Caiphus Semenya. Chaka Chaka said that she had already donated 20,000 mosquito nets to Mozambique.

The concert is set for May 18 in East Johannesburg. 

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