‘Senzeni Na?’ – Treasury staff sing as Pravin Gordhan arrive for final meeting

What have we done?”– Treasury staff burst into song as Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan and his deputy arrived for their final meeting after the Cabinet reshuffle.

“Senzeni Na?” (also spelled Senzenina, English: What Have We Done?) is a South African anti‐apartheid folk song. The Xhosa/Zulu language song is commonly sung at funerals, demonstrations and in churches. Activist Duma Ndlovu compared the influence of “Senzeni Na?” to that of the American protest song, “We Shall Overcome.”

The song has been around at least since the 1950s, and it reached the height of its popularity during the 1980s. The origins of the song are unclear. Zimbabwean poet Albert Nyathi claims to have written “Senzeni Na?” on the day that activist Chris Hani died. However, Nyathi’s “Senzeni Na?” uses a different melody and altered lyrics. Either way, Hani was assassinated on April 10, 1993, by which time the song had already been sung for decades.

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