18 November 2011 — Pambazuka News (English edition): ISSN 1753-6839
The authoritative electronic weekly newsletter and platform for social justice in Africa
1. Features, 2. Announcements, 3. Comment & analysis, 4. Advocacy & campaigns, 5. Pan-African Postcard, 6. Letters & Opinions, 7. African Writers’ Corner, 8. Highlights French edition
CRIMINAL COMPLAINT LODGED AGAINST ANGOLAN GENERALS
Rafael Marques de Morais
Angolan journalist Rafael Marques de Morais has filed a complaint (
http://bit.ly/angolacriminalcomplaint ) [PDF] against the shareholders
of three private companies involved with diamond mining, including
some of the country’s most influential generals, for alleged crimes
against humanity. Marques de Morais shares the background to the story
with Pambazuka News.
CAPITALISM VS. THE CLIMATE
The ‘real solutions to the climate crisis are also our best hope of
building a much more enlightened economic system ”one that closes
deep inequalities, strengthens and transforms the public sphere,
generates plentiful, dignified work and radically reins in corporate
power,’ writes Naomi Klein.
TRANS-AFRICAN CLIMATE CARAVAN HITS NAIROBI
Onyango Oloo reports that when the Trans-African Caravan of Hope
reached Nairobi, there was song and dance, poetry and speeches on the
theme of climate change and the need for African governments and the
people to take appropriate action.
DRC: DEMOCRACY AT A CROSSROADS
One election, two sources of legitimacy of power
As DRC prepares for its third presidential election on 28 November,
Antoine Roger Lokongo cautions that external interests in the
country’s vast mineral wealth mean that a genuine democracy owned by
the Congolese people is likely to remain elusive.
TUNISIA: IN THE NAME OF DEMOCRACY
What secularists and women have to lose in the elections
Marieme Helie Lucas
In an article written on the eve of the country’s elections last
month, Marieme Helie Lucas explores ‘what women have to lose, should
fundamentalists come to power in Tunisia.’
TO GRASP THINGS BY THE ROOT: ON JULIUS MALEMA
Richard Pithouse reflects on the recent five-year suspension of the
outspoken South African president of the African National Congress
Youth League, Julius Malema, and sees in the disciplinary action
traces of the powerful ANC’s hostility to popular organisation outside
of its control.
A HISTORY OF US-SPONSORED VIOLENCE IN HAITI
How US has used military and money to destabilise nation
The US has once again succeeded in imposing an illegal and repressive
puppet government in Haiti in blatant disregard of the will of the
people, writes Nia Imara. But there is still hope that, with
collective struggle and a vision, change can occur.
HOW USAID UNDERMINES DEMOCRACY IN HAITI
Cash for dictators, sabotaged food production and enforced trade
liberalisation: Leslie Mullin explains how USAID has undermined
GADDAFI’S ASSASSINATION: BOMBING AFRICA INTO ‘CIVILISATION’
Nana Akyea Mensah
‘Despite the neocolonialist excuses of humanitarian motives, the real
motivations’ for Gaddafi’s assassination ‘keep popping up’, writes
Nana Akyea Mensah. But ‘where is the international outrage and
POLITICAL ASSASSIN ROBOTS FLYING IN AFRICAN SKIES
There is no longer any doubt that targeted killing of ‘terrorists’ has
become official US policy, writes Crossed Crocodiles. ‘Terrorist’ is
evolving to mean anyone who questions the US quest to control oil and
other natural resources or who opposes global capitalism.
CHINA’S MEDDLING EXACERBATES SOMALI ANARCHY
Ismail A Mohamed
China generally opposes international interventions in sovereign
states, yet the Asian power has no problem meddling in Somalia. Ismail
A Mohamed sees this as a selfish attempt to take advantage of the Horn
of Africa nation’s protracted political crisis.
US AFRICA COMMAND A TOOL TO RECOLONISE CONTINENT
Africa does not need an American military base on its soil. Would
Americans welcome such a foreign base in their land’ Motsoko Pheko
urges African countries to resist this imperialist move, which is
intended to facilitate plunder of their resources.
HORACE CAMPBELL: NANKING AND THE LESSONS OF GENOCIDE
Visiting a memorial to the Nanking massacre in China, Horace Campbell
reflects on the lessons that Africa and the rest of the world can
learn, both from the 1937 genocide and from the city’s response to it.
ETHIOPIANS: NOVEMBER IS TO REMEMBER!
Honouring martyrs for freedom felled by Zenawi regime
Alemayehu G Mariam
Following the Ethiopian elections of 2005, scores of unarmed men,
women and children were massacred by state security personnel.
Alemayehu G Mariam pays tribute to these martyrs for freedom and calls
on all Ethiopians to reflect on their sacrifice.
SAHARAWI POLITICAL PRISONERS ON HUNGER STRIKE
The prisoners were taken from a group of more than 200 activists
arrested by Moroccan authorities a year ago. And as Malainin Lakhal
reports, Morocco has over 60 Saharawi prisoners of conscience,
including eminent human rights defender Naama Asfari.
CASH-CROP COLONIALISM AND THE ATTACK ON AFRICAN AGRICULTURE
Evaggelos Vallianatos shows how cash-crop colonialism has undermined
African agriculture. Now is the time for a return to indigenous food
CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS: THE CONTEMPORARY RELEVANCE OF STEVE BIKO
Steve Biko Foundation
Opportunity Closing Date: Monday, November 28, 2011
Opportunity Type: Call for Submissions
December 18, 2011 marks Bantu Stephen Biko’s 65th birthday. In
celebration, the Steve Biko Foundation is calling for reflections on
the legacy of this South African freedom fighter. The topic is The
Contemporary Relevance of Steve Biko. Submissions may focus on any
field that was impacted by Biko, but of particular interest are: The
Arts, Culture, Education, Economic Development, Identity and Health
Submissions will be published in the December issue of the Steve Biko
Foundation’s FrankTalk Journal as well as on the FrankTalk Blog. The
length of the submission should be between 800 and 1500 words in MS
Papers should be submitted to Dibuseng Kolisang at
dibuseng[AT]sbf.org.za – email@example.com
Alternatively, papers may be faxed to + (27.11) 403. 8835.
For more information email Dibuseng or call + (27.11) 403. 0310.
FAHAMU PAN-AFRICAN FELLOWS GRADUATE
The first cohort of 10 fellows of the Fahamu Pan-African Fellowship (
http://fahamu.org/fellowship ) programme will be graduating at an
event to be held on November 18, 2011 between 6.30-8.00pm at Southern
Sun Mayfair in Parklands, Nairobi.
This occasion is organised to mark the end of a year-long programme
that supported and nurtured a cadre of visionary, innovative and
energetic activism and leadership among Kenya’s community organisers.
This graduation ceremony will bring together all those involved in the
programme since its inception in a collective celebration of the
achievements of the fellows.
For more details about the Fellowship, please contact George Mwai –
3 Comment & analysis
RUSSIA’S SLOW ENGAGEMENT HINDERS MARRIAGE
Kester Kenn Klomegah
Africa has 36 embassies in Moscow but, despite long relations with
Russia, economic cooperation remains weak, writes Kester Kenn
Klomegah. African countries and Russia need to do more to exploit the
huge potential the relationship holds.
4 Advocacy & campaigns
ENI MISLED SHAREHOLDERS OVER GAS FLARING IN NIGERIA
A new report ( http://bankwatch.org/sites/default/files/energy-security-nigeria.pdf
) [PDF] by CRBM, Corner House and FoE Nigeria and others condemns oil
majors Eni, Total and Shell for their record of environmental and
social devastation in Nigeria. It also dissects EU ‘energy security’,
arguing that a policy that locks the EU into dependence on fossil
fuels leads to increased conflict and climate chaos.
THE CASE FOR THE RETURN OF THE LUZIRA 7
The Kenyans detained in Uganda on terrorism charges
Muslim Human Rights Forum
The Muslim Human Rights Forum has issued a memorandum calling on the
Kenya government to petition the government of Uganda to return to
Kenya the seven Kenyans held at the Luzira Upper Prison. Arrested in
connection with the July 2010 suicide bombings in Kampala, six of the
seven men were illegally rendered from Kenya to Uganda with no
RUSSELL TRIBUNAL ON PALESTINE CALLS FOR PRESSURE ON ISRAELI GOVERNMENT
Annette Groth, spokeswoman on human rights for the Left Party in
Germany, relates her experience of the Russell Tribunal on Palestine,
which took place from 5 to 7 November in Cape Town, South Africa.
INTERNATIONAL AWARD FOR GUINEA-BISSAU ENVIRONMENTALIST
Guinea-Bissau conservationist Ms Augusta Henriques has won a Ramsar
Wetland Conservation Award for Management, for her central role in the
foundation of NGO Tiniguena (‘This land is ours’) and her long-term
leadership and work with communities towards the creation of a
Community Marine Protected Area at Urok Islands ‘ the first marine
protected area recognised by the Government of Guinea-Bissau.
SWAZI STUDENT LEADER NOMINATED FOR STUDENT PEACE PRIZE
Maxwell Dlamini, President of the Swaziland National Union of Students
(SNUS), has been nominated for the 2013 Student Peace Prize, an award
given every other year on behalf of Norwegian students to fellow
students around the world who have ‘done important work to promote
peace, democracy or human rights.’
5 Pan-African Postcard
WHY GHANA MUSN’T GIVE IN TO SUPERSTITION
Disturbed by two incidents involving elderly women suspected of
witchcraft ‘ one of whom was burnt alive, while the other was denied
medical treatment ‘ Cameron Duodu calls for Ghana to value the lives
of all its citizens.
6 Letters & Opinions
THOUGHTS ON ALGERIA AND THE ARAB AUTUMN
A response to David Porter
Marieme Helie Lucas
Marieme Helie Lucas critiques an article by David Porter (
http://www.pambazuka.org/en/category/features/77825 ) appearing in
Issue 557 of Pambazuka News. She praises the author’s analysis but
also points out that some important happenings are missing and some
erroneous statements and assumptions were made.
7 African Writers’ Corner
SONG OF THE WRETCHED
Mphutlane wa Bofelo
We have no stereos
Droning love ballads
To lull us from our reality
The only music we
Know is the wordless symphony
Of the buzzing stars
The bright eye of the night
Candles our hope
We don’t know
Of lamps and globes but
We know the colour
Of the moon
The only show
Our eyes can
Afford us is
Of the rising sun &
Of the falling night…
8 Highlights French edition
PAMBAZUKA NEWS 213: DURBAN CLIMATE CHANGE CONFERENCE: AFRICA DEMANDS EQUITY AND JUSTICE
This week’s French edition is a translation of the special issue on
COP17, available in English here (
http://www.pambazuka.org/en/issue/555 ) .
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