Preto & Branco

Recalling Stélio Craveirinha

The voice that bothered the managers, directors and sports makers, who, accustomed to patting themselves on the back and pretending that everything is fine, were indignant with the straightforwardness, frankness, fidelity to Stélio’s truth and verticality, was silent. Many did not swallow it, because I told them the truths right away! Stélio did not tolerate falsehood, unmasked without intrusion any intruders and sports-lesbians that swarm around. Today the headlines of newspapers and television and radio news programs praise Stélio’s achievements and the ‘great lack and emptiness’ that he leaves in the national athletics family! Honestly, what hypocrisy! We are ALL hypocrites.

It was thinking about Stélio Craveirinha that I decided to briefly remind readers about the path of athletics in Mozambique. Indeed, the practice of athletics in Mozambique began to register some development in the 1950s, being practiced mostly in the missions and in rudimentary schools. During this phase, the main stage of the competitions was Parque José Cabral, the current Parque dos Continuadores. It was also during the colonial period that some of the greatest national references of the sport emerged, such as António Repinga, half marathon record holder and Victor Magalhães, 200 meter record holder. However, since the 1960s there has been a weakening of this modality due to the advancement of the National Liberation Struggle.

With the conquest of National Independence, the practice of this sport gained a new impetus and given the importance that the sport was acquiring, in 1978 the Mozambican Athletics Federation was created which in the same year joined the IAAF (International Athletics Federation). At the provincial level, the Mozambican Athletics Federation is represented by the Provincial Associations that organize the events at the local level and qualify the provincial representatives for the national championships that are organized by the Federation.

In individual terms, during the first half of the 1980s, some athletes, who came from the period before independence, stood out in this modality with national records, as mentioned above. António Repinga (national record of 10,000 meters), José Magalhães (record of 200 and 400 meters) and Cândido Coelho (record of decathlon), Constantino Reis and Pedro Mulomo, Ludovina Oliveira, Stélio Craveirinha are the athletes that stood out in Mozambique.

The first international competition in which Mozambique took part as an independent country, was the 1979 Moscow Spartacias, in which two athletes from the club Ferroviário and the National Team, Pedro Mulomo and Constantino Reis, participated.

In 1980, Mozambique participated for the first time in the XXII Olympic Games held in Moscow. At the event, the country was represented by fourteen athletes, twelve men and two women. No athlete made it to the semi-finals. The following table shows the times and classifications obtained:

Men

Eduardo Costa (100 meters): 11.02 in the Heat

Constantino Reis (200 meters) – Disqualified

Vicente Santos (1,500 meters): 3.58.07 in the Heat

Pedro Mulomo (5,000 meters): 15.11.9 in the Round

Dias Lettuce (10,000 meters) – Gone

Abdul Ismail (110 meters hurdles): 15.18 in the Heat

Stélio Craveirinha (Long Jump): 6.94 in the Elimination

 

Women

Acácia Mate (800 meters): 2.19.07 in the Heat

Ludovina Oliveira (Disco) – Disqualified.

 

Today is done!

 

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“We are original in singing and dancing” – Says Julinho, lead singer of Djaaka The band os Djaaka, which is a reference in the music scene, especially in the rescue of traditional rhythms, is going through a challenging phase, especially with the death of its main singer, Walter. However, the new vocal, Júlio Chissico or, simply, Julinho, believes in more lustrous appearances, rescuing the established themes and new proposals, credulous that his band has privileged space in the Mozambican cultural and musical panorama due to his originality in singing and dancing traditional. It was all on a rainy Wednesday afternoon, jumping puddles of stagnant water from the rain that was felt in the Palmeiras II neighborhood, in the city of Beira, when we came across the renowned musician, Júlio Sebastião Chissico, better known as Julinho, who is the vocalist of the famous band Djaaka. Invited for two fingers of conversation with the newspaper Preto & Branco, he promptly agreed. We questioned the band’s disappearance in the square, which Julinho preferred to make a historic aftermath: The Djaaka band was formed in August 2000 in Maputo, with ten elements of which nine are active in Beira and one in Maputo. In the midst of many difficulties we have been working hard although the market is conditioned, when it recovered from the economic and financial crisis, the humanitarian crisis caused by Covid-19 came. ” Still in the aftermath of the Djaaka walk, he signaled a difficult and irreparable moment: ‘It was known to all that we lost Walter [in memory] who was the main vocalist of the band since the founding of the band, a situation that posed a great challenge although we both worked at the provincial House of Culture in Beira where we practiced singing and dancing, it was a challenge for me to become the main vocalist and we lost some time to get back to normal ”, stressed our interviewee. Another obstacle that is an obstacle to the vitality of the band is the fact that “we are out of the capital, it is difficult to find support to carry out our activities, to have sponsorship to record a sigle or an album at the provincial level has not been easy, in many cases we have to cross Save to the capital to have any support, however, here and there a good-hearted businessman has supported ”, he considered. Asked if the band was part of the Mozambican Association of Musicians, he responded positively, but complained about the lack of seriousness at the level of the delegation in Beira. “Yes, we are affiliated, but we are not well integrated, I remember that when we wrote to have a membership card it was in Maputo and when we returned home, in Beira, we found out that the association’s delegation was not serious. I ask, how can an institution function inside someone’s home if there is room in the culture house to exercise this activity? ”, Asks Julinho. We asked about possible solutions to the problems that afflict the artistic class in Mozambique, to which our interlocutor explained: “The Government has always regretted the lack of money to leverage national culture, but there are many potential partners in mind that I think the government could sponsor culture makers and producers with mega projects, as they have a part of social responsibility. Between us, what would a country be without culture? Faizal António set a great example in Maputo, when he brought together all the musicians [through the Golden Generation initiative], but this luck did not fit for the other provinces ”, he lamented. Asked about the option of singing locals, namely Sena and Ndau and not in Portuguese as young musicians usually choose, the Djaaka singer replied: “This is a legacy of the older local artists (Jorge Mamade, Madala, David Mazembe and others) , when we were going to watch the shows we were asked a question, why follow Rapper? Our elders are original and when we started to visit the Casa da Cultura Provincial, most of the themes were interpreted in the local language and the dance was traditional, when we formed the band we chose to follow the same style of music and dance ”, he justified . To stress the value of originality, he told us that “in one of the performances in Denmark we were surprised by a researcher of Mozambican rhythms in local languages, from north to south, when he gave a comment about our originality and identity (songs and dances), we were impressed with this type of comment outside the home, ”he said, and then stressed that“ we are original in traditional singing and dancing ”. Invited to give some references of the band in terms of awards, he pointed out national and international records. “We have already won some awards in Mozambique and some abroad. Within the scope of Ngoma Mozambique we won the Revelation, Popular Music and Best Music of the Year award. Across borders we won the Best Band, Best Behavior award at EXPO-2008 in Spain and we also won a prize in the Netherlands, save for an error, we have already won six (6) awards, “he said. As a message to lovers of culture and the arts, in particular and to society in general, the lead singer of Djaaka leaves the following: “There is a lot of hope despite the humanitarian crisis, Covid-19. Please, follow the authorities’ recommendations to prevent this evil, alive and healthy, there will be room for nostalgia and maybe presenting new works ”.
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