Sisonke Msimang
*Dutch translation here. I am South African but I live in Australia, which is one of the richest countries in the world. Like many people who live in rich countries, I began my year concerned about first world problems. I was preoccupied with getting a new school uniform for my eldest child and irritated by a neighbour whose building work was too noisy. I spent hours contemplating whether to take on an assignment that would take me away from home for too long. I did not imagine that within a few... *Dutch translation here. I am South African but I live in Australia, which is one of the richest countries in the world. Like many people who live in...
Job Angula
Mr. President, I hope this letter finds you and your family well. I would like to write this letter to express my opinion on the current state of affairs in Namibia. I would like to start by telling you a little bit about myself. I was born in Oneumba, a village in Oshikoto region. My father was a clerk at the Nampost branch in Ondangwa (now a farmer) and my mother is a school principal. I grew up in a government house in Ondangwa and I was fortunate enough to attend a private school. I completed a... Mr. President, I hope this letter finds you and your family well. I would like to write this letter to express my opinion on the current state of affairs...
ZAM Reporter
Great news!!! Hajooj Kuka and the other four artists have just been released from prison after their appeal!!!! The global solidarity really made a difference. Thank you to everyone for your solidarity. There are the remaining six artists from the group who are still in prison, they were imprisoned one week after the group of five, they have also appealed. We need to keep up the pressure for them to be released and the many others who have been jailed for arbitrary and discriminatory reasons in... Great news!!! Hajooj Kuka and the other four artists have just been released from prison after their appeal!!!! The global solidarity really made a...
ZAM Reporter
What does a world without racism looks like? And how do we get there? Inspired by an Afrofuturistic graphic novel, filmmakers Ikenna Azuike, Soraya Pol and Mette te Velde explore a world beyond them and us. This episode of Dutch VPRO tv's Tegenlicht shows Azuike's personal journey. While reading to his children from the fictional 'De Post-Racistische Planeet', a different world comes to life, a world drawn by artist Brian Elstak and inspired by Afrofuturism. The expert interviewees in the... What does a world without racism looks like? And how do we get there? Inspired by an Afrofuturistic graphic novel, filmmakers Ikenna Azuike, Soraya Pol...
Lisa Ossenbrink and Urooba Jamal
Fire flickered from the matches in the crowd, jostling alongside the young men that had gathered below the steps of one of Benin’s most recognisable landmarks, the Martyrs Square monument, which commemorates victims of a French coup d'état attempt in 1977. 40 years after that attempt, the crowd of young Beninese men had congregated in the West African capital of Cotonou in August 2017 to rid the region of a symbol of its French colonial era: by burning banknotes of the CFA franc, the France-backed... Fire flickered from the matches in the crowd, jostling alongside the young men that had gathered below the steps of one of Benin’s most recognisable...
ZAM Reporter
The Mnangagwa regime responds to protests with violence and the arrests of activists and journalists. A call for solidarity with those fighting for social justice has gained the support of many. With hyperinflation, mass unemployment and increasing violence under the guise of corona lockdown policies, many Zimbabweans now say: enough is enough. The Mnangagwa government, welcomed after the fall of Robert Mugabe in November 2017 as a new promise for the country, has now lost its credibility. Emmerson... The Mnangagwa regime responds to protests with violence and the arrests of activists and journalists. A call for solidarity with those fighting for...
Bart Luirink
Amid the furore about #cancelculture it may be appropriate to commemorate the outrage that targeted Achille Mbembe, Cameroonian historian and social scientist, and a profound thinker and visionary, earlier this year. People who equate Mbembe's stance against the occupation of Palestine territories and his support for a boycot of Israel with anti-semitism then campaigned to withdraw his invitation to speak at a cultural festival in Germany. Fortunately, scholars worldwide, among whom, many in... Amid the furore about #cancelculture it may be appropriate to commemorate the outrage that targeted Achille Mbembe, Cameroonian historian and social...
Rene Aguigah
A German conservative politician has accused the Cameroonian historian and social scientist of antisemitism and demanded that an invitation for him to speak at a cultural festival in Germany be withdrawn. This is an edited excerpt of an interview with Achille Mbembe conducted by culture journalist René Aguigah for Deutschlandradio Kultur. René Aguigah: How would you describe your relationship with the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement? Achille Mbembe: I bet those who accuse me are... A German conservative politician has accused the Cameroonian historian and social scientist of antisemitism and demanded that an invitation for him to...
ZAM Reporter
Zindzi Mandela, the 59-year-old daughter of Nelson and Winnie Mandela, has died. She was born in the year of the Sharpeville massacre, when South African police shot 69 peaceful demonstrators protesting against the Apartheid pass laws. Her father was already in prison for six years. As a teenager, Zindzi joined the struggle against white minority rule, often at her mother's side. In 1985, she made a momentous speech at the Jabulani stadium near Soweto. In that speech Zindzi read a letter from her... Zindzi Mandela, the 59-year-old daughter of Nelson and Winnie Mandela, has died. She was born in the year of the Sharpeville massacre, when South African...
Olivia Ndubuisi
‘Sandwich’ helps tech giants avoid tax in Africa via the Netherlands and Ireland. Google's office at the airport residential area in Accra, Ghana, sits inside a plain white and blue two-storey building that could do with a coat of paint. Google, which made more than US$ 160 billion in global revenue in 2019, of which an estimated US$ eighteen billion in ‘Africa and the Middle East’, pays no tax in Ghana, nor does it do so in most of the countries on the African continent. Google Street View of the... ‘Sandwich’ helps tech giants avoid tax in Africa via the Netherlands and Ireland. Google's office at the airport residential area in Accra, Ghana, sits...
Emiel Martens & Wouter Oomen
Hungry children and white saviours are still very much present in campaigns by Dutch aid organizations. But also, many of the new aid campaign genres are problematic, observe media scholars Emiel Martens and Wouter Oomen. Every year they present the Fly in the Eye Award for the worst campaign on behalf of IDleaks, a Dutch non-profit organization committed to better humanitarian communication. What is going wrong, and how can it be done better? This week, Save the Children UK, the oldest... Hungry children and white saviours are still very much present in campaigns by Dutch aid organizations. But also, many of the new aid campaign genres are...
Marlene le Roux
What a sad week it has been, as we have witnessed acts of femicide, genocide and senseless killings. It seems unconscionable that a 14-year old girl could stab a 28-year old man to death. Kirvan Fortuin was a respected dancer, choreographer, and LGBTIQ+ activist, who ploughed his artistic talents back into the community of Macassar, the community from which he hailed. The arts is a powerful tool through which to engage communities, empowering them and giving a voice to the voiceless. The arts... What a sad week it has been, as we have witnessed acts of femicide, genocide and senseless killings. It seems unconscionable that a 14-year old girl...
ZAM Reporter
On 24 April, 2020, the al-Naba newsletter reported a massacre by a local affiliate of the transnational jihadist IS killing 52 villagers in Cabo Delgado, a province in the northern part of Mozambique. António Guterres, the United Nation Secretary-General warned that extremist groups are taking advantage of Covid-19 lockdowns to spread hatred and intensify the recruitment of young people. Tibor Nagy, the Assistant Secretary for the US State's Bureau of African Affairs, compares the IS operations in... On 24 April, 2020, the al-Naba newsletter reported a massacre by a local affiliate of the transnational jihadist IS killing 52 villagers in Cabo Delgado,...
Richard de Nooy
Amsterdam based South African writer Richard de Nooy envies his daughter's insistence to march. ‘Things are easier to judge from the helicopter’, I tweeted to a friend yesterday, when she expressed concern about the Black Lives Matter demo on the Dam, to which I’d been invited by my youngest daughter. She’s 19, but has been doing her own thing in Amsterdam for quite a while. I see her less often than I’d like, but when we do meet we talk about music, ambition, love, relationships, politics and... Amsterdam based South African writer Richard de Nooy envies his daughter's insistence to march. ‘Things are easier to judge from the helicopter’, I...
Kiza Magenda & Yannicke Goris
With more than 22 percent of its residents coming from over 220 foreign countries , the Netherlands is one of the most diverse nations in the world. As a result, the country is home to a variety of diaspora communities and organisations that represent them. It has been argued that these diaspora organisations could play a crucial role in making Dutch development policies and programmes more effective . At present, however, both the Dutch development sector and the Dutch government seem to struggle... With more than 22 percent of its residents coming from over 220 foreign countries , the Netherlands is one of the most diverse nations in the world. As a...
Benon Herbert Oluka
The death of George Floyd under the knee of now former Minnesota Police Officer Derek Chauvin shook me to the core, as it has a lot of people around the world. And yet I did not even watch the video of the heartbreaking incident. Just like I did not watch the video of the point-blank shooting of a boda boda rider by a Local Defence Unit (LDU) militia-man in Masaka district in central Uganda. And just like I have not watched videos of other violent or gruesome murders that seem to litter social... The death of George Floyd under the knee of now former Minnesota Police Officer Derek Chauvin shook me to the core, as it has a lot of people around the...
Mpanzu Bamenga
George Floyd is not dead He lifts his fist with us Who shout repeatedly, 'I can't breathe'. George Floyd is not dead not in Denver not in Atlanta not in New York not in Los Angeles not on the paved streets of Minneapolis where he died breathless while a police officer held a knee to his neck George Floyd is not dead he is present at all assemblies and law-givings he peers through the windows and into the hearts of people George Floyd who only wanted to live with dignity in the Minneapolis sunshine... George Floyd is not dead He lifts his fist with us Who shout repeatedly, 'I can't breathe'. George Floyd is not dead not in Denver not in Atlanta not in...
ZAM Reporter
In this piece on The Elephant , John-Allan Namu revisits a gruesome chapter in East-African history, the 1994 genocide in Rwanda. On 16 May, 2020, exactly 26 years later, one of the prime instigators of this mass murder, Felicien Kabuga, was arrested in Paris, France. The arrest could have happened 17 years ago if Kenyan journalist William Munuhu, who was set to lead Kenyan and US authorities to Kabuga, was not murdered. "Kenyan police first claimed that he had killed himself by lighting a charcoal... In this piece on The Elephant , John-Allan Namu revisits a gruesome chapter in East-African history, the 1994 genocide in Rwanda. On 16 May, 2020,...
Hassan Ghedi Santur
I’m a sick man. My liver hurts. Maybe it’s my kidneys. I’m not really sure. I’ll be dead soon. We’re all dying here. The whole city is dying. We are stardust. We are stardust. We are star … dust. I miss my garden. I need to get back to my garden. This is no longer the city I used to love. The stench of death is all around us. It hangs in the air like diseased molecules. Mass graves are being dug in the outskirts of the city, the radio said. Every night, I stand on my balcony and watch my curfewed... I’m a sick man. My liver hurts. Maybe it’s my kidneys. I’m not really sure. I’ll be dead soon. We’re all dying here. The whole city is dying. We are...
Vanessa Offiong
Nigeria had been waiting for it, expecting it, anticipating it. But no one knew exactly as it came in. Only in hindsight would the country piece together the story of an Italian man who arrived by air in Lagos on March 24, infected with SARS-CoV-2. By four weeks later, 1,337 people had been infected, among whom 40 people had died, and 255 people had been discharged from hospital. The number of people released from hospital is encouraging but questions swirling about the virus are prompting concerns... Nigeria had been waiting for it, expecting it, anticipating it. But no one knew exactly as it came in. Only in hindsight would the country piece together...
ZAM Reporter
'People need help to comply with rules', say ex SA Revenue Service employees. Collecting tax and organising a COVID 19 lockdown have more in common than you’d think. In both cases, people have to be convinced to do something that is considered unpleasant, but that nevertheless needs to be done. In an op-ed published in South Africa , former South African Revenue Services (SARS) officials Ivan Pillay, Sridharan Kesavan* and Yolisa Pikie draw on their experience in getting people to pay their taxes... 'People need help to comply with rules', say ex SA Revenue Service employees. Collecting tax and organising a COVID 19 lockdown have more in common than...