ZAM
Zanele Muholi and Mario Macilau spoke to photographers, journalists and activists in Amsterdam The first ZAM Newsroom (held on 5 September in Amsterdam, the Netherlands) featured visual activist Zanele Muholi, who has won multiple awards for her intimate portraits of the black lesbian and gay community in South Africa. Another celebrity presenting his work was Mozambican photographer Mario Macilau. The event was attended by a number of Amsterdam-based photographers and authors — notably renowned... Zanele Muholi and Mario Macilau spoke to photographers, journalists and activists in Amsterdam The first ZAM Newsroom (held on 5 September in Amsterdam,...
Lara Bourdin
Snapping back at stereotypes In the catalogue for his 2006 exhibition “Snap Judgments: New Positions in Contemporary African Photography”, renowned Nigerian curator Okwui Enwezor noted the troubled connection between the medium of photography and Africa. He drew attention to the ‘stock images’ that have endured as the “iconography of the ‘abandoned’ continent” and the need to move beyond them. Al Jazeera’s “The New African photography” Over six weeks in April and May 2013, Al Jazeera took up... Snapping back at stereotypes In the catalogue for his 2006 exhibition “Snap Judgments: New Positions in Contemporary African Photography”, renowned...
Theophilus Abbah
Nigeria | Boko Haram reaps what state abuse and neglect have sown The deafening explosion shook our office, and our walls and ceiling trembled. Looking out of a now precariously loose window, I saw smoke oozing out of a high-rise building, located about two hundred metres away. The ‘This Day’ newspaper office had caught fire. There was tumultuous noise and people from the nearby market and bus terminal were running helter-skelter. One tweet at a time, we gradually understood that a Jeep left... Nigeria | Boko Haram reaps what state abuse and neglect have sown The deafening explosion shook our office, and our walls and ceiling trembled. Looking...
Benon Herbert Oluka
How a community campaign in Uganda did what 'Stop Kony 2012' and US$ 2 billion aid money could not do. Janet Akello was forced to kill a small boy who had tried to escape from the Lord's Resistance Army camp where she, too, was held captive. Phoebe * had a gun to her head when Joseph Kony raped her for the first time, when she was 14. Victoria * remembers fighting three armies handling a machine gun; abducting, burning, looting and serving as a wife to four commanders. They are now back home and,... How a community campaign in Uganda did what 'Stop Kony 2012' and US$ 2 billion aid money could not do. Janet Akello was forced to kill a small boy who...
ZAM Reporter
Exhibit B: Racism tours Europe South African playwright and artistic director of the group Third World Bun Fight Brett Bailey's EXHIBIT B was recently presented at the Holland Festival. The production draws together several threads concerning European racism towards Africans from the mid-19th century to the present. It looks at ethnographic exhibitions, social Darwinism and today’s increasingly xenophobic policies of the EU. As it was made for festivals in Austria and Germany, it also focuses on... Exhibit B: Racism tours Europe South African playwright and artistic director of the group Third World Bun Fight Brett Bailey's EXHIBIT B was recently...
Sean Jacobs
Not all protests are 'Arab Springs', and not 'authentic voices' are always right. In analyzing the relationship between a “global public sphere” and social media on the African continent, the generalizations hide a far more interesting set of observations. Debates and discussions about what passes for a global public sphere often overlook and obscure dynamics of power or take themselves too seriously. What is defined as the global public sphere by most observers and scholars is still very much... Not all protests are 'Arab Springs', and not 'authentic voices' are always right. In analyzing the relationship between a “global public sphere” and...
Kassim Mohamed
The Kafka-esque world of Somali refugees in Europe Finally, after decades of war, peace seems to be coming to Somalia and more than a million refugees are told to return home. So why do so many Somalis continue to live in abandoned buildings, churches, parks and railway stations in Europe? “I don’t mind going to Mogadishu, but they insist on sending me to Somaliland, where they will think I am a terrorist.” Kassim Mohamed unearthed a maze of bureaucratic misunderstandings, dangerous errors and... The Kafka-esque world of Somali refugees in Europe Finally, after decades of war, peace seems to be coming to Somalia and more than a million refugees...
ZAM
The myth and the heritage When talking of Nelson Mandela, many focus on his niceness and his propensity to forgive those who jailed him for 27 years. Fears for the future usually follow. Mandela stood for reconciliation, rainbow nation, togetherness, (and sugar, spice and all things nice.) If there was no white genocide in South Africa, that was Madiba’s work. What will happen when he goes? His critics have taken him on precisely because of all that niceness. The black majority is still penniless.... The myth and the heritage When talking of Nelson Mandela, many focus on his niceness and his propensity to forgive those who jailed him for 27 years....
ZAM
It’s always nice when a new initiative is warmly greeted, but the way our focus group (of publishers, photographers, journalists, fellow media and general acquaintances) responded to the trial issue of ZAM Chronicle was beyond expectation. Meant as no more than a first taste of our plans, and sent to only 150 close individual partners and friends, articles from The ZAM Chronicle 0 were positively reviewed and even reproduced by such diverse entities as an agricultural institute, a corruption... It’s always nice when a new initiative is warmly greeted, but the way our focus group (of publishers, photographers, journalists, fellow media and...
Benon Herbert Oluka
There is an unwritten rule in the Ugandan media. It is that the media can't report extensively on President Museveni's personal conduct, his family or the army. Every time someone writes about these things, Museveni gets jittery. On 7 May, Uganda’s leading independent newspaper, Daily Monitor , did not just write about one of these taboo subjects, but about all three. It quoted a confidential memo written by General David Sejusa, the Coordinator of National Intelligence Services, in which he... There is an unwritten rule in the Ugandan media. It is that the media can't report extensively on President Museveni's personal conduct, his family or...
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Mohamed Kadir, Christophe Assogba, Theophilus Abbah and Charles Rukuni
Pirates, oil smugglers and thieving local tycoons create employment, stimulates trade opportunities and provide services - with the moneys they obtain through robbery, theft and fraud. Pirates are much loved in Eyl, Somalia, where many businesses are booming thanks to their financial injections and needs. Beninese oil smugglers provide employment for hundreds of people in coastal towns, and help subsidize transport and other small businesses. Nigerian politician James Ibori, currently serving a 13... Pirates, oil smugglers and thieving local tycoons create employment, stimulates trade opportunities and provide services - with the moneys they obtain...
Pieter van der Houwen
African traders in Ghuangzou. Is Europe really yesterday's news? A gripping documentary by photographer and film director Pieter van der Houwen for Dutch VPRO television explores the universe of around 100.000 African traders who live and prosper in Guangzhou, China. It sheds a different light on what is often stereotyped as 'Chinese resource exploitation in Africa' and begs the question if Europe really is yesterdays news. More information:... African traders in Ghuangzou. Is Europe really yesterday's news? A gripping documentary by photographer and film director Pieter van der Houwen for Dutch...
Evelyn Groenink
South Africa | Down with donors, up with taxpaying citizens Africa's pavements are awash with money. After decades of neglect of the informal trading sector and 'citizen value' in general, thirty-five countries on the continent have joined a tax crusade. "It's good for democracy too. Because a paying people is a questioning people." A day in the life of the South African Revenue Service. 'A people that pays its own government is a people that will ask questions of that government' The boss of the... South Africa | Down with donors, up with taxpaying citizens Africa's pavements are awash with money. After decades of neglect of the informal trading...
Benon Herbert Oluka
Janet Akello was forced to kill a small boy who had tried to escape from the Lord's Resistance Army camp where she, too, was held captive. Phoebe * had a gun to her head when Joseph Kony raped her for the first time, when she was 14. Victoria * remembers fighting three armies handling a machine gun; abducting, burning, looting and serving as a wife to four commanders. They are now back home and, unlike most other former child soldiers, doing rather well. How a community campaign did what 'Stop Kony... Janet Akello was forced to kill a small boy who had tried to escape from the Lord's Resistance Army camp where she, too, was held captive. Phoebe * had a...
Evelyn Groenink
Dulcie September and Anton Lubowski In April 2013, it has been 25 years since the murder of South African ANC representative Dulcie September and 20 years since ANC's guerrilla leader Chris Hani's death. The truth about their murders will have remained buried for just as long, at least internationally. An in-depth investigation revealing arms trade links to both murders was published only in the Netherlands, in a language largely foreign to the international community. The history of a story that... Dulcie September and Anton Lubowski In April 2013, it has been 25 years since the murder of South African ANC representative Dulcie September and 20...