Why we use artists, entertainers for Global Citizen campaign, by Maibe
The Country Director, Global Citizen, an international advocacy group, Maimuna Maibe, speaks with GREGORY AUSTIN NWAKUNOR on how the humanitarian organisation is using various means including arts, culture, entertainment, among others, to unite the world and tackle poverty, climate change and diseases.
Of late, Maimuna Maibe has become conspicuous with the Global Citizen, a humanitarian organisation. But we will be pretending to say who she is and what she is doing. Who is Maimuna?
I am Maimuna Maibe, the Country Director for Global Citizen, responsible for the organisation’s advocacy and campaign in Nigeria. I am an environmentalist with triple-bottom-line operations experience — specialising in waste management, environmental strategy and work experience spanning the private and public sectors.
What’s the Global Citizen all about? What are the core objectives of the organisation?
It is a movement of citizens using their collective voice to end extreme poverty by 2030. The organisation calls to inspire those who can make things happen to act together to improve lives. It reaches out to government leaders, businesses, philanthropists, artists, and citizens.
Can you give us an insight into ‘Recovery Plan for the World’?
The Global Citizen’s Recovery Plan For the World is a two-prong campaign to end COVID-19 for All and Kickstart the Global Recovery in 2021 in the light of the devastating global pandemic. It is a roadmap that outlines the most critical actions that the world must take now and throughout 2021 to end the COVID-19 pandemic.
We realise that as the world works to address the health impacts of the pandemic for everyone, we must also address the social, economic, and environmental hardships that have been brought on by or exacerbated by COVID-19.
This is articulated in Global Citizen’s five pillars: End the COVID-19 pandemic, Stop the hunger crisis, Resume learning for all children, Protect the planet and Promote equity and justice for all.
Music and entertainment have been a key part of your advocacy programmes. What informed this model and how effective has it been?
Great social change depends ultimately on society itself. There is a lot we can achieve if we can come together. And, as we saw with the hugely publicised Live Aid in the 80s and other global benefit concerts that followed, music does have the power to unite people and change our world through mass action. Global Citizen’s Pop meets Policy model derives from this. It is more than just a fancy slogan; it’s an established and highly effective way to mobilise large-scale support for an end to extreme poverty, a fairer distribution of wealth across the globe, and the protection of our planet. It’s also a great opportunity for people—particularly the younger generation—to learn more about these issues and take action to secure their future.
Lagos is one of several cities around the globe earmarked to host the Global Citizen LIVE event. Please, tell us about the initiative and what you hope to achieve?
Global Citizen Live is a 24-hour global event showing on September 25. Taking place across six continents, Global Citizen Live will see artists helping rally citizens in demanding that governments, major corporations, and philanthropists work together and focus on the most urgent, interrelated threats hitting those in poverty the hardest — climate change, vaccine equity and famine.
We will be calling on world leaders to deliver 1 billion trees planted and preserved to help prevent global temperatures from rising beyond 1.5ºC above pre-industrial levels by curbing emissions and supporting 1t; 1 billion vaccines to the poorest countries; and Meals for the 41 million people on the brink of famine.
An array of notable artists are donating their time and talent to make this happen. Some of the confirmed stars include Angélique Kidjo, Burna Boy, Davido, Femi Kuti, Made Kuti and Tiwa Savage, alongside Adam Lambert, Alessia Cara, Andrea Bocelli, Billie Eilish, Black Eyed Peas, BTS, Camila Cabello, Christine and the Queens and Coldplay among many others from locations in Lagos, Rio de Janeiro, New York City, Paris, London, Seoul, Los Angeles, and Sydney. Global Citizen Live is an integral part of Global Citizen’s overarching 2021 campaign, Recovery Plan for the World.
Who are the artists billed to perform at the concert? What safety measures are in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19?
For our Lagos event, renowned Afrobeat singer-songwriter and activist Femi Kuti will perform alongside his hugely talented son Made Kuti, as well as superstar acts Davido and Tiwa Savage along with our hosts Ebuka Obi-Uchendu and Nancy Isime.
The health and safety of our audience are a top priority. We’re taking into account all local protocols for COVID-19, including requiring proof of vaccination for attendees, performers, and workers. We have worked with the Lagos State government to create a limited-capacity event in celebration of Nigerians working on the frontline in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
Given that admission to the concert is limited to mostly frontline health workers, how can other interested members of the public get to be a part of Global Citizen LIVE?
The concert will be broadcast on Saturday, September 26, 2021 on Multichoice, other local broadcasters will be announced in the coming week.
Who are the major partners and sponsors?
Global Citizen Live is supported by a corporate coalition, including Access Bank in Nigeria, The Nigeria Solidarity Support Fund alongside global partners, Accenture, Cisco, Citi, The Coca-Cola Company, Delta Air Lines, Google, Live Nation, P&G, Salesforce, Verizon, and campaign partners WW International, and Worldwide Technology who will engage support from the private sector in driving new commitments toward the campaign’s policy objectives. We are also very proud to have the support of Mrs Zainab Shamsuna Ahmed, Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mr Geoffrey Onyeama, Foreign Minister of Nigeria and The Lagos State Governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu.
We are also very delighted to work with our campaign partner Access Bank and our regional response partners, Slum2School Africa, Women at Risk International Foundation (WARIF), The Nigeria Solidarity Support Fund, Shining Hope for Communities (SHOFCO) and South African Education Project (SAEP).
You can join by downloading the Global Citizen app or by visiting our website and registering to be a Global Citizen. Once you join Global Citizen, you can take actions such as signing petitions, sharing messages on social media, writing letters to politicians, and much more. With every action you take, you’ll earn points that you can redeem for Rewards, such as digital content and experiences, beauty products, merchandise, tickets, and more.