New African

Articles from No. 492, February

A Bewildering Country! the Long Absence of President Umaru Yar'adua from His Duties in Abuja, Following His Prolonged Stay in a Saudi Arabian Hospital, and His Refusal to Invoke Laid-Down Constitutional Provisions to Allow Vice-President Jonathan Goodluck to Take over, Albeit Temporarily, Has Angered Nigerians and Threatens the Country's Nascent Democracy. Osasu Obayiuwana Reports from Lagos
WHEN PRESIDENT UMARU MUSA Yar'Adua left Abuja on 23 November for yet another bout of medical treatment abroad, this time in Saudi Arabia, he was supposed to be going for "a check-up", his third such trip since last August (our cover story in March...
Africa's 'New Flower': It Is Africa's Most Important Diplomatic Centre and One of the Continent's Newest Capitals. Stephen Williams Provides a Visitor's Guide to Ethiopia's Capital, Addis Ababa, a Unique City That Lies at the Centre of One of the World's Oldest Empires
Today, Addis Ababa is not simply Ethiopia's capital but Africa's diplomatic hub, where the African Union (AU) is based and the UN's Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) headquartered. More than 70 embassies and consular representatives are located...
Albinos Demand Respect and Dignity: Femi Akomolafe Interviewed John David Tuu Yawanah, President of the Society of Albinos-Ghana, about the Organisation's Work and the Challenges Albinos Face. Here Are Excerpts
Q: what motivated you to set up the society? A: I was a lecturer in the political science department of the University of Ghana, Legon, before I decided to take up the cause of the people with albinism. Our daily lives are suffocated with unbridled...
A Mountain to Climb; the Below-Par Performance of DRCongo's TP Mazembe at the 2009 FIFA Club World Cup in the UAE Is Indicative of the Steep Curve That African Clubs Must Ascend, in Order to Compete against the Best from Europe and South America, Writes Michael Oti Adjei
Not unlike previous editions, the 2009 Club World Cup in the United Arab Emirates failed to grasp the attention of a significant number of football fans around the world, more concerned with the fortunes of their clubs in the English Premiership, Spain's...
An Economy Growing by Leaps and Bounds: President Faure Ggnassingbe's Government Has Made Tremendous Progress in Renewing Its Links with Donors, Consolidating Its Finances and Initiating Reforms. These Are All Beginning to Bear Fruit
Since April 2008, Togo has implemented a three-year economic programme, with funding of $108.4m from the International Monetary Fund (IMF). An evaluation of the programme takes place twice a year and in September 2009, the IMF reported a strengthening...
A Needless Tragedy
There are really no words strong enough to succinctly convey the depth of sorrow and searing fury that I (and other indignant members of the African football family) feel over the murder of three members of Togo's national team delegation travelling...
An Indomitable Lion
When the 38-year-old Roger Albert Milla made the Cameroon team for the 1990 World Cup finals in Italy, many thought his inclusion--on the direct orders of President Paul Biya--was a monumental mistake. The game's fraternity did not expect the Central...
Anti-Gay Bill on Course; David Bahati, the Author of Uganda's Anti-Gay Bill Aiming to Criminalise Homosexuality in the Country, Says the Bill Is Still on Course despite a Thunderous International Outcry against It. Agnes Asiimwe Reports from Kampala
Uganda's new controversial anti-gay bill proposes a seven-year jail term for homosexuals and a death penalty for those convicted of aggravated homosexuality, which is defined as sex with a minor or a disabled person where the offender is HIV-positive....
A Rising Giant: Outsiders May Have Their Own Perceptions, Sustained by Media Images of Hunger and Poverty. but Investors Are Focusing on Ethiopia's Size and Record of Rapid and Sustained Growth. the Country Has Africa's Second Biggest Population (Estimated at 81 Million) and Five Times the Land Area of UK, Including Extensive Water, Hydroelectric and Arable Land Resources. Tom Minney Reports
Each month the skyline of Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa changes as cranes add new height to scores of office blocks, and hotels and apartments sprout all over town. Two-lane streets mushroom into six lanes and fill with traffic. Scarcely a month passes...
British MP Condemns Uganda's Anti-Gay Bill
The British Labour MP, Harry Cohen, tabled an Early Day Motion (EDM 575) on 14 January condemning Uganda's Anti-Homosexuality Bill, which proposes the death penalty for certain categories of same-sex acts including for repeat offenders, and life imprisonment...
Carving Up Africa ... 125 Years of the Berlin Conference
2010 is a special year for Africa, not only in terms of the Fifa World Cup finals causing all the excitement in South Africa, but because the year also marks two significant events in the annals of the continent: (1) the 125th anniversary of the Berlin...
Confronting Homophobia: People of African Descent Worldwide Have Suffered under the Tyranny of Racism, Oppression, and Discrimination for Centuries. We Fought Courageously to End Slavery, Colonialism, and Segregation. Yet, Even as We Continue the Battle against the Myriad Forms of Inequality That Still Plague Our Communities, Some among Us Seem Perfectly Willing to Mete out the Same Horrific Treatment to the Gay Community
While discrimination based on race, class, religion, gender, and disability is widely condemned by those committed to justice and equality for all, in too many places unjust treatment based on sexual orientation is still rife. In some areas, perhaps...
Dancing with the Brits; "No Poor Dumb Bastard Ever Won a War by Dying for His Country-He Won It by Making the Poor Dumb Bastard on the Other Side Die for His Country"
Ah, in the bleak mid-winter, frosty winds brought snow, earth stood hard as iron, water like a stone. Well, those of us unfortunate enough not to have a place in the sun, have gone through a terribly bleak winter these past few weeks, making the more...
Dealing with the Skeptics: The Attack on the Togolese Team Bus at the African Cup of Nations Finals in Angola Will Increase, Unfairly, Questions about South Africa's Suitability for Hosting the World Cup. Writes Piers Edwards
Had local organisers known what they were getting themselves into, South Africa might have thought twice about bidding to host the 2010 World Cup. [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] As officials here are quickly learning, they constantly have to tackle a...
Faure Gnassingbe a Champion of Change: President Faure Essozimna Gnassingbe, the Candidate of the Togolese Ruling Party, Rassemblement Du Peuple Togolais (RPT) Is Seeking Re-Election in February. in the Five Years of His Presidency, He Has Defied Expectations and Made His Mark by His Dedication to Modernise the Country
When President Faure Essozimna Gnassingbe came to power in 2005, he took stock of the nation's social and political situation and defined his strategy for democratising the country by breaking with the past and instituting democratic norms, such as...
Football Must Reform Itself: The Distasteful Manner in Which Thierry Henry, and France, Earned Their Passage to the World Cup Finals Should Trigger the Game's Guardians to Change Its Rules and Accept the Help of Technological Aids
I honestly thought that FIFA, in this New Year, was going to cross the threshold of stifling conservatism and introduce the use of desperately needed technology into the rules of our sport. Or, at the very least, ensure the addition of extra match...
Include Me Out: The New, Subtle Face of Discrimination in Britain Means That Africans Born in Britain Have to Constantly Decode "Unspoken Codes" to Get on in Life Writes Vanessa Baffoe. "While Our Parents Have Done an Immeasurable Job in Paving the Way for Us to Be Seen and Heard, It Is Up to Us, the Younger Diasporans, to Stand Up and Be Counted."
In today's Britain, nobody is immune from the emphasis that is put on equality and diversity. In fact there is no escaping it--from our schools to the workplace--messages trying to promote the celebration of what has been described as a "multicultural...
Lessons from Cabinda: Angola Could Have Done a Lot More to Save Africa the Disgrace of Seeing Rebels Attack the Togolese Team Bus at the African Cup of Nations. and What about the Empty Stadium during the Second Match between Malawi and Algeria? I Hope South Africa Is Taking Note
As Malawi and Algeria took the field on Monday, 11 January, in the second match of the 2010 African Cup of Nations tournament, the stadium in Luanda was almost completely empty, except for officials and security men. why was no attempt made to entice...
Licence to Colonise
26 February 2010 marks exactly 125 V years from the end of the infamous M Berlin Conference that led to the "Scramble for Africa" by European powers. Apart from slaver-both transatlantic and Arab-there is no single event in modern African history whose...
Malawians Reject Gay Marriages: Recent Resentment towards Gays Who Dared to Wed in Public Has Clearly Shown That Malawians Are Not Ready to Accept Same-Sex Marriages despite Their Existence Elsewhere in Southern Africa, Reports Lameck Masina
ON 28 December 2009, THE Malawian daily, The Nation, carried a lead story about the first gay couple in Malawi that wanted to publicly tie the knot in a symbolic traditional engagement ceremony. The picture that accompanied the story showed Tiwonge...
Marrying Within
There is much talk about black people marrying those of other races and the challenges faced by such couples, but what about black people marrying within the black diaspora? Being married to a Ghanaian herself, for six years, Tahira Muhammad, an African-American...
New Year, New Wife ... Another One in Waiting; President Jacob Zuma Heralded the Coming of the New Year in Grand Style When He Tied the Knot with a Long-Known Fiancee. She Became the Fifth Wife, "Third Lady" and Newest "First Lady". Pusch Commey Reports
The 37-year-old Tobeka Madiba-Zuma, the fifth wife in President Jacob Zuma's life, is described as beautiful, glamorous and ambitious. She has a Bachelor of Commerce degree, and has worked for various blue chip companies in South Africa. She is said...
Nigeria's Mister Dependable
Osaze Peter Odemwingie is a player who has grown in stature and earned the admiration of Nigeria's discerning fans over the last 12 months. While the questionable commitment of his colleagues to the country's cause continues to attract the fury of...
Nothing African about Homosexuality: African Culture Has No Place for Homosexuality as a Way of Life Because It Does Not Fit with the View That Humans Should Reproduce in Order to Be Remembered for Eternity. It Is Time African Governments Told the NGOs and Their European and American Government Sponsors Promoting Homosexuality in Africa to Take a Hike; Let Them Stick to Their Cultural Traditions and Respect Ours! Argues Ifa Kamau Cush
THE LATE SOUTH AFRICAN SCHOLAR, C. Tsehloane Keto, observed in his book, The Africa-Centered Perspective of History and Social Sciences in the Twenty-First Century, that "the major part of the problem in language use, for history and the social sciences,...
Remembering the Dismembered Continent; on the 125th Anniversary of the Berlin Conference of 1884-85 That Fragmented Africa, Ayi Kwei Armah Looks at Where African Society Is Today and Where We Could Take It Tomorrow
THe ACCIDENTS OF HISTORY MAKE US WHAT WE ARE TODAY; we can work to shape the course of our future if we give ourselves the trouble to know what it takes. The argument of this article is that in our historical behaviour, we, the people of Africa, have...
The Sad Plight of African Albinos: Why, in This Day and Age, Do Some Africans Treat Albinos with Disdain and Sometimes Even Kill Them? Why Do Some Africans Still Believe That Spilling the Blood of Albinos Will Yield Better Crops, Help in Passing Examinations, Guarantee Business Success, Help in Winning Elections, Drive off Evil Spirits and Facilitate Financial Success? Femi Akomolafe Went to Find out and Was Shocked beyond Measure
NO ONE CAN ACCUSE AFRICANS of not being very funny creatures. Travel the length and breadth of this fantastically beautiful and hugely blessed continent and you will notice how "people of European stock" continue to be treated with huge respect. In...
The Spoils of Berlin: Osei Boateng Reports on the Give-and-Take Diplomacy That Finally Led to the Partition of Africa. by 1902, All of Africa, except Ethiopia and Liberia, Were Firmly under European Colonial Control
When the Berlin Conference opened on 15 November 1884, Portugal, one of the chief protagonists at the conference, presented what became known as the "Pink Map" (or the "Rose-Coloured Map"), on which its colonies of Angola and Mozambique were united...
Violent Warnings: Before New Kinds of Wickedness Overwhelm Our Continent, There Is an Important Need to Revisit the Limits of Violence and the Norms Governing Its Use
Last month's column looking ahead to 2010 and the next decade, stressed the importance of the Cup of Nations brand to Africa, and also pleaded for Africans to resolve our differences without violence, since writing that column in mid-December, two...
What Are We Really Celebrating? This Year, as Many as 17 African Countries Will Celebrate the Golden Jubilee of Independence with a Huge Fanfare. but What Is the Point in Celebrating Independence When We Can't Run Our Economies without Running to the Colonial Masters?
Independence Day celebrations. African Liberation Day celebrations. Emancipation Day celebrations. Black History Month celebrations. Founding Fathers Day celebrations. 2010 is really the year of celebrations! In fact, 17 African countries will celebrate...
Why Haiti Is Poor: Since the Devastating Earthquake Hit Haiti on 12 January 2010, the World Media Have Been Repeating Ad Nauseam That the Country Is "The Poorest in the Western Hemisphere". but It Was Not Always like That. the "Sugar Island", the "Pearl of the Antilles", Was Once the Richest in the Caribbean Region. Clayton Goodwin Traces How It Became the "Poorest in the Western Hemisphere"
HAITI HAS SUFFERED THE DEVAS-tation of being hit by the worst earthquake in the Caribbean for some 200 years. The UN secretary general, Ban Ki-moon, has described the catastrophe as being "one of the worst humanitarian crises in decades ... The damage,...