Mauritius Kaya is a musician who lived between August 10, 1960 and February 21, 1999. He created the ‘seggae’, a combination of reggae and sega, which are the most popular genres on the island. Mauritius Kaya complete name is Kaya Joseph Reginald Topize and was born in a Roche-Bois ghetto, having four brothers.
He was supervised by an uncle because his father couldn’t afford his education and his childhood was not happy. Being Indian and mulatto, Mauritius Kaya was the target of racists’ attacks and having to get any kind of jobs even as a boy. He learned to play guitar at 16 years and went to weddings with his own band called ‘Wind and Fire’. As Bob Marley became his idol, he adopted the singer’s nickname as homage to the homonym album.
Mauritius Kaya starts to sing Bob Marley’s songs and becomes member of the Lelou Menwar group with which he has his first concert and an album called Letan Lenfer. After the tour Mauritius Kaya created the Racinetatan group with which he sings Marley’s hits and his own songs. In 1986 he starts to mix Sega with reggae and campaigned for the Mauritian Creole People’s rights. In 1999 he is arrested and sent to Alcatraz prison for drugs consuming at a political concert where 2000 people attended.
At two days after this concert, the police arrested and questioned 5 people they identified as smoking and inducing the gandia consume at the concert. Mauritius Kaya was among these arrested people and he admitted that he smoked at that concert. Just as soon after his admittance, he was arrested and sent to Alcatraz, a prison for criminals and for big drugs dealers. There was a huge amount of money asked in the exchange of the Mauritius Kaya releasing: 10.000 rupees.
As his wife didn’t have all that money she started to raise the money helped by MR members and by musicians. In the end she gathered the amount of money and hoped to end this discriminatory and ridiculous story in a happy way. Although there were diverse lawyers’ blunders and a lot of MR lack political support to release the singer quickly, Mauritius Kaya was not released from prison on February 20, as it was established and he had to wait one more day before being released.
But in the end, Mauritius Kaya was never set free, his wife never saw him alive because he was found in his cell, dead, in the morning of February 21. There is the official version according to which Mauritius Kaya, suffering from weed lack, broke his skull and thrown himself against the cell’s walls.
But few people believe in this official version. Ramstein, who conducted the research, contradicted the initially theory and concluded that the singer was beaten. After the news of the Mauritius Kaya’ death, riots of the people happened on the island.