While 360 deals are an ongoing pain point for American artists they do not have it as bad as their peers in North Africa. A performer was recently jailed for speaking up about the local criminal system.
As spotted on Billboard a Moroccan rapper by the name Gnawi found out the hard way that there is no such thing as free speech in his homeland. On Monday, November 25 he was sentenced to a year behind bars for a video he released in where he spoke rather candidly about the local police. In the original clip the man born Mohamed Mounir is seeing angrily venting about the countries ongoing economic issues and the territory’s growing drug problem.
While his heroism should be applauded he knew he was putting himself at legal risk as it is illegal to speak poorly about law enforcement. According to Hassan Abyaba, a spokesperson for the government, the song does not properly reflect the country’s current state. “Songs of all kinds must respect the citizens, the constancy of the nation and the principles and values that are part of the Moroccans’ education,” he said during a formal press conference.
You can see the video for “3acha cha3b” (“Long Live the People”) below.