On 30th November 2012 London Electro-pop band ooberfuse, featuring Wizard MC, will be in Toronto, Canada to add their voices to the growing outcry at the treatment of Pakistan's minority groups, including Christians. They will headline the event, The James 2-8 Benefit, organized by Love Thy Neighbor International is hosted by Candaian tv personality Michael Coran.
With Wizard MC, the President of the British Pakistani Christian Association (BPCA), the band will perform 3 songs, including Blood Cries Out (in memory of assassinated Minister of Minorities, Shahbaz Bhatti) and Free Asia Bibi (a song protesting the wrongful imprisonment-until-execution of Christian mother of five Asia Bibi) in front of an illustrious gathering of Canadian dignitaries and politicians. The aim of the event is to make audible the otherwise silenced voices of Pakistan's persecuted minorities and to raise funds for development projects in Pakistan.
Cherrie front-woman for the band says : "it is a great honour and a grave responsibility to enkindle in the hearts of the movers and shakers of Canadian society anxious concern for the plight of non-Muslim groups in the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. Music has the unique power to arouse deep feelings of solidarity, in this case with those suffering groups in Pakistan. Canada leads the way among other nations in terms of deploying its constitutional powers if not to topple a deeply intolerant regime in Pakistan then at least to provide sanctuary to those fleeing violence and aggressive persecution. I think this has something to do with the exemplary way Canada has treated its own marginalised groups like the indigenous First Nation peoples."
Wilson says : "while the affluent societies of the Western world go about their daily business blissfully unaware for the most part of the plight of their fellow human beings around the world, Christians and other minority groups are being violently persecuted in countries like Pakistan. The trip to Canada is a unique opportunity to build bridges with fellow Pakistani's who have fled persecution so that united with them, we can together sound a wake-up call to the powerful nations of the world to eradicate once and for all the disease of religious persecution that infects so many societies to their shame and detriment.'
Nico adds : "it is a great honour for us not just to perform our songs before Canadian dignitaries, but to hold hands with Shahbaz's surviving family many of whom have found a safe refuge in Canada. Shahbaz's bother and his niece will be present at the event."
Hal from ooberfuse adds : "Wilson from the BPCA invited us earlier this year in March to write some music to commemorate the first anniversary of the brutal assassination of Shahbaz Bhatti. As we opened ourselves to the full horror of Shahbaz's story, trying all the time to reconcile the natural feelings of outrage at cold-blooded murder with the Christian exhortation to love our enemies, the song Blood Cries Out emerged. Following our debut performance of the song at a peace rally in Trafalgar Square Wilson invited us to reflect on the plight of Christian mother of five Asia Bibi, unlawfully condemned to death-by-hanging under Pakistan's blasphemy law. After translating her autobiography into English to better understand the emotional turmoil faced by Asia the song Free Asia Bibi, protesting her imprisonment and appealing for her release, was born."