Archive for the ‘African emancipation’ Category

Cash for Coverage

Posted: January 18, 2016 in African emancipation, Media, The press

Revolution will not be televised.jpg

In developing countries, more people trust the media than their governments; this is from a past report based on a ten-country opinion poll for the BBC, Reuters, and The Media Center. For instance, people in the US have a 67% trust on their governance against the media, unlike developing countries like Nigeria where they trust the media 88% versus 34% on the government.

Which got me contemplative, just how innocent is the media in the face of its public? How much should we discern what we read and see? The hard reality is that there are more than a few cases of journalists accepting money from people or agencies which they’ve interviewed, or are doing stories about. An extreme issue for the profession and quite a raw deal for the unsuspecting public. Ethics versus survival, it seems difficult for many to take the high road, especially when, “everybody else does it….”

Indeed, it is a single problem with many faces that would need a communal approach: How do we collectively salvage ourselves from this deep rooted culture of corruption (that is not just unique to Africa)? What can we do better or more assertively to address this dark side of journalism?

…. Cash For Coverage discusses: Enjoy Your Read!


Nelson Mandela has been accused by his former wife of betraying South Africa’s black population.

In a savage attack, Winnie Mandela said he had done nothing for the poor and should not have accepted the Nobel peace prize with the man who jailed him, FW de Klerk.

The 73-year-old said her ex-husband had become a ‘corporate foundation’ who was ‘wheeled out’ only to raise money for the ANC party he once led.

Terrence Howard as Nelson Mandela in 'Winnie Mandela' (2013)

Terrence Howard as Nelson Mandela in ‘Winnie Mandela’ (2013)

Winnie and Nelson Mandela, hand in hand after Nelson is released from prison after 27 years.

Winnie and Nelson Mandela, hand in hand after Nelson is released from prison after 27 years.

She said Archbishop Desmond Tutu was a cretin and claimed the sacrifices of Steve Biko and others in the fight against apartheid were being overlooked.
The comments were made in an interview yesterday with Nadira Naipaul, the wife of novelist V S Naipaul.

Mrs Mandela became notorious in 1991 when she was jailed for six years for the kidnap of Stompie Moeketsi – a sentence later cut to a fine.

Stompie, had been murdered three years earlier by members of Mrs Mandela’s bodyguard, the Mandela United Football Club.

She also caused outrage by endorsing the punishment of apartheid collaborators with ‘ necklacing’ – putting burning tyres around their necks.

Yesterday she said: ‘This name Mandela is an albatross around the necks of my family.

‘You all must realise that Mandela was not the only man who suffered. There were many others, hundreds who languished in prison and died.

‘Mandela did go to prison and he went in there as a young revolutionary but look what came out. ‘Mandela let us down. He agreed to a bad deal for the blacks. Economically we are still on the outside. The economy is very much “white”. He prefers to sip tea with the queen the biggest oppressor of black people and have dinner with the Clintons.

Let the world know that Winnie Mandela will die for her people to ensure a free Africa for the Africans.

‘I cannot forgive him for going to receive the Nobel with his jailer de Klerk. Hand in hand they went. Do you  think de Klerk released him from the goodness of his heart?  ‘He had to. The times dictated it, the world had changed.’

The Mandelas, who divorced in 1996, were married for 38 years – although together for only five.

Mrs Mandela criticised her country’s Truth and Reconciliation Committee – which she appeared before in 1997 and which implicated her in gross violations of human rights.

She said: ‘What good does the truth do? How does it help to anyone to know where and how their loved ones are killed or buried?  Africa must be free.

‘That Bishop Tutu who turned it all into a religious circus came here. He had a cheek to tell me to appear.

‘I told him that he and his other like-minded cretins were only sitting there because of our struggle and me.
Look what they make him do. The great Mandela. He has no control or say any more but has transformed into a stool pigeon for the white people.

‘They put that huge statue of him right in the middle of the most affluent white area of Johannesburg.

‘Mandela is now like a corporate foundation. He is wheeled out globally to collect the money.’

She said her daughters, Zenani, 51, and Zindzi, 50, had to struggle through red tape to speak to their 91-year-old father, who led South Africa from 1994 to 1999.

Published on THURSDAY MARCH 2010 by Zimdiaspora

This was a first among a couple trips I would make to Jo’burg. It was a rousing 4 hour flight from JKIA heading to the legendary- South Africa, to the cradle-land of the Zulu – Kwa Zulu Natal. As I checked in O.R. Tambo International Airport, it was all smiles and Unjani all the way to Kwa Zulu Natal, also known as Durban. That was back in 2010, good times to remember, the outwardly peaceable place, incapable of this lunacy we now call Xenophobia.

Coating the thought away, was the nostalgia of Mombasa in the 1990s – fresh and exotic. Somehow Durban gave me the same feeling. What could possibly loom beneath this serenity? What was the beginning of this epidemic hate?


Some argued that companies would give out their jobs, to cheap labor from illegal Zimz, Malawian’s or Mozambican immigrants to evade the complexities of affirmative action. On the other divide, the foreigners – they just thought of the black South African as unschooled, lazy criminals. Well, I am not sure of whichever divide, all I know is that I met some really cool and some pretty normal people in South Africa.


I remember the positivity we read over tête-à-têtes during my stay. We talked of the new age South Africa, post-apartheid through the wilderness on toward the Promised Land. The progressiveness of the new South African. Their inspirations drawn from Rastafari, made on show by dreadlocks and reggae songs. We spoke of legends that once were – Lucky Dube, (then still were – Mandiba). We gossiped of the bitterness of the old racist Boers, and how they now have to deal with it. What optimisms we had, they had, the new South Africa, just through rose colored glasses.


#StopXenophobia #SaveSouthAfrica #AfricaCries

Indeed, its hurts, but in poetry it tingles just as sweet.
I feel it today.

My spirit flags up,

In pride and admiration for this movement,
Not against any race but for a race that has transcended
A race that has had the guts to dream,
Through snuffles and tears,
And the patience to dare imagine that one day… just one day
We held up high, with pride some deemed we shouldn’t posses, 
And even with the intimidating chains and wires
Assassinations and brutality,
History of slavery,
Ripples of poverty and disease
We were maimed and troubled.
Today is, Yesterday Was, Tomorrow Will Be
And just … just one day
“One day, when the glory comes
It will be ours, it will be ours
Oh, one day, when the war is one
We will be sure, we will be here sure
Oh, glory, glory
Oh, glory, glory glory…”

Interesting read for #MyDressMyChoice #NudityIsNotMyChoice folk….


By Mohadesa Najumi

When I think about what modesty means in today’s political, cultural and religious environment, I am inclined to believe that the concept itself does not involve choice, or any dimension of freedom or independent thought.  Rather, modesty constitutes a dictatorial concept forced upon women whether they agree with it or not.  For me, modesty is patriarchy.

When I speak about modesty in this context, I speaking specifically about it in relation to clothing, mannerisms and behaviour. Throughout history, women have been judged on how “modest” they are or not.  And this has determined how much of a “lady” they presumably are or not. In a patriarchal society, to be modest is to dress and speak ”appropriately,” and to maintain a “ladylike” image. If you fail to do this, you are not only not modest, but God forbid you choose to wear a low-cut top, then you are simply a whore!

In this way, modesty, to me, means subservience. It means acquiesce. How you dress suddenly becomes someone else’s business, and how “ladylike” you are is determined by a standard you never gave your consent to in the first place. Let’s face it, men are not subject to these kinds of standards.  I mean, have you ever heard someone describe a man as “immodest”?  The dictate and quest for modesty is reserved almost exclusively for women.  And if modesty is simply about avoidance of dressing in a “revealing” manner, why is it predominantly directed at women? Why is a woman’s dress choice suddenly everybody’s business, and why is a woman’s choice to reveal what is her’s, considered “indecent” and “immoral”?

Also, how about this idea that the level of “respect” you should receive is inextricably linked with how “modest” you are. Shouldn’t “respect” be linked with intellect, intelligence, ability to hold an intriguing conversation?  What does respect have to do with the tightness of your dress or the shortness of your skirt?  Too often, we measure respect for women on the basis of how well they fit our standard of “modesty” and “decency.”  This is oppressive.  How about this?  A woman doesn’t leave her house everyday desperate to receive your stamp of approval and rating of modesty? Maybe it’s just her choice to wear what she wants and act the way she desires. It’s a ludicrous idea I know, but just consider it for a moment.

I’ve heard countless men and women use words like “impure” and “unclean” as synonyms for “immodesty.”  Modesty is a way to oppress women and to pressure them into giving into a system of patriarchy that dictates what they wear, how much skin they reveal, and how “sexual” they are.

As a way to attack, marginalize, and oppress women, it is effective. There is nothing innocent about throwing around the term modesty and there are no excuses for the ignorance about what it really implies. I for one have no interest in being “modest.”  Why?  Because who I am and whether or not I deserve respect, should have nothing to do with how I dress, how I express myself, or my gender.  And nobody should be able to dictate this for me–or you.  I refuse to vilify women who do not fit into an illusionary, irrelevant, inaccurate and un-useful standard of “modesty.”  It is a concept that truly disgusts me, and not merely because of its essential meaning, but because of the importance we have given to it.

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On March 16, she lost her husband. Then she lost everything. The deceased family shaved her off her husband’s house and 2-acre piece of land. The recent spates of events that followed 23-year old Lucy Nyambura after the mysterious death of 30-year old Gabriel Ng’ang’a arouses the debate of property inheritance. (Read full story)

The story of Nyamabura’s predicament, published by The Standard Media 25 March 2014 is not a uniquely Kenyan case. Women’s right to inherit land and other property is brutally limited in many parts of Africa. At a man’s death, his property is either inherited by his adult sons or reclaimed by his family.

Discriminatory customary laws and cultural attitudes and practices are used to justify the disinheritance of widows and beseeched to outweigh constitutional provisions to inherit.

Inheritance in Kenya is guided by the Law of Succession Act Cap 160 of the Laws of Kenya.

Under this Act, a person may either die testate or intestate. “A person dies testate when he has made a valid will on how his property should be distributed on his death. A person dies intestate when he has not made a will on how his property will be distributed on his death or his will has been invalidated,” explains John Chigiti, Senior partner in the firm of Chigiti & Chigiti Advocates.

In the case of intestacy (when no will is stated), the Law of Succession Act sets out how the deceased´s property should devolve. A surviving spouse is entitled to the personal and household effects of the deceased, and a life interest in the whole residue of the net intestate estate; however, if the surviving spouse is a widow, and she re-marries, then her life interest is terminated. The surviving spouse has power to give all or any part of the capital of the net intestate estate to any surviving children of the deceased.

Realizing Women’s Right to Land, a new publication by UNWOMEN warns that denial of inheritance rights to women is detrimental in the long run. Denial of inheritance rights to women results descent of millions of women and their families into extreme poverty and is a major cause and consequence of violence against women in Africa.

After reading the book Revolution in Zanzibar as told by John Okello, a propagator of the Zanzibar revolution, I was left eager wanting more of this intrigue. I asked around, inquisitive of this man born in Uganda in 1937, orphaned at 11 years old and left to fend for his siblings at the age of 15. He moved across the border to Kenya where he worked for a couple years before relocating to Zanzibar in 1963. He worked as a manservant, gardener, bricklayer, painter (some say he even worked as a police officer in Pemba Island) and later became actively involved in Zanzibar politics. Noticeably, wherever he worked he instigated workers’ upheavals demanding for their rights. He was illiterate with only a modest understanding of English and Kiswahili; highly spiritual claiming that God had sent him to deliver the African man from oppression. It was speculated that Okello was trained as a communist in Cuba under Fidel Castro, a suspicion which he repeatedly denies in his book. Okello

This was also the same period when various African countries had their own crosses to bear – the emancipation from the White man rule -Kenya with the Mau Mau Uprising and previously Uganda which had just secured independence around the same time.

Okello says that the then East African Presidents, Milton Obote of Uganda, Jomo Kenyatta of Kenya and Julius Nyerere of Tanganyika (now known as Tanzania) locked him out of East Africa, he was arrested in Nairobi Kenya and was detained. He wrote his book from prison and believed to have died in his home country Uganda.

In Zanzibar, Okello landed himself of a job as a house painter, and became a member of the Painters Union. He had his devotees whom he met apparently met in secret; he stipulated austere rules: sexual abstinence, no raw meat and alcohol. He had several references from the bible, mostly alluding to the Old Testament.

He was later invited to join Afro-Shirazi Party which opposed minority Arab dominance in Zanzibar and Pemba islands. In early 1964, Okello ordered his men to kill all Arabs between 18 and 25 years of age, to spare pregnant and elderly women, and not to rape virgins. By this time Okello had gained a lot of popularity in both Pemba and Zanzibar Isalnds. With this support, Okello and his troop fought their way to the capital of Zanzibar, Stone Town, where the sultan lived intimidating even the police force. He took over the national radio, made a live speech demanding the Sultan, Jamshid bin Abdullah to kill his family, then kill himself afterwards;

“….I am thinking of going to Mtendeni (village) to destroy it if the people there do not obey orders. After 40 minutes I am coming to finish you off, especially the Comorians”. And “To all Arab youths living in Malindi; I will pass through Malindi armed with weapons of which I alone know. I want to see everyone stripped to his underpants and laying down. I want to hear them singing…father of Africans. God bless him in his task and that of the Field Marshall.”

Committe of 14

The self –proclaimed Field Marshal, led a coup that saw about 20,000 Arabs killed, and whose families had resided in Zanzibar for centuries. However, the sultan, prime minister and other ministers had already managed to escape. During this time, Afro-Shirazi Party leader, Abeid Karume leader of the (Arabic) Umma-(Massa) Party, sheikh Abdulrahman Muhammad Babu as prime minister (later: vice-president) had not been informed of the coup.

In his book, Okello relents on how he was disowned by Karume and Babu. He alludes to his Ugandan descents, unpopular Christian ideologies, amidst an Islamic dominated culture; communist suspicions that led to the sideline and later his rejection.

I’m curious as to why there is little mention of a man who was a key player on Zanzibar’s revolution. No East African media has a mention of this man. A massacre that saw 20, 000 killed and others forced to flee Zanzibar with a poorly armed army led by ‘field marshal’, John Okello. A man behind a powerful insurrection story of Zanzibar, I want to know why this story didn’t have a chapter in my history book. I want to understand why his death is hardly thought of let alone mentioned. Or are we scared of scuffling dust that settled more than 45 years, scared of that which we do fail to identify with?