Sunday Times, 24 November 2002, Alicia Keys: Get Real About Aids

RAP and R&B stars P Diddy and Alicia Keys have come out fighting in the campaign against HIV/Aids in Africa.

Speaking at a news briefing ahead of their concert in Cape Town's Green Point Stadium yesterday, the two preached Black Consciousness and self-respect as a way of fighting the scourge.

"Throughout the world there's a blackout about this epidemic," said P Diddy, whose real name is Sean Combs.

"We don't hear enough stories about people dying because of Aids in Africa, but if an Indian country has an earthquake or fish are dying somewhere, we hear about it in the news every two minutes.

"We as African-Americans, people like myself and Alicia Keys, are blessed to be in a position where we can do something about this," he said, to loud applause.

Keys said: "I think it's important that we get real about what is going on, especially about Aids. It's important to respect yourself and to protect yourself."

Earlier in the week, Keys took her message about HIV/Aids to Cape Town's Langa township, where she met Aids sufferers and handed out 1 000 tickets at local schools for her concert.

"It's my first trip to Africa, I am very excited to be here and I am also excited to be a part of something that's so important," she said.