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Pambazuka News Pambazuka News is produced by a pan-African community of some 2,600 citizens and organisations - academics, policy makers, social activists, women's organisations, civil society organisations, writers, artists, poets, bloggers, and commentators who together produce insightful, sharp and thoughtful analyses and make it one of the largest and most innovative and influential web forums for social justice in Africa.

Latest titles from Pambazuka Press

African Sexualities

Earth Grab A Reader
Sylvia Tamale
A groundbreaking book, accessible but scholarly, by African activists. It uses research, life stories and artistic expression to examine dominant and deviant sexualities, and investigate the intersections between sex, power, masculinities and femininities
Buy now

Global NATO and the Catastrophic Failure in Libya

From Citizen to Refugee Horace Campbell
In this elegantly written and incisive account, scholar Horace Campbell investigates the political and economic crises of the early twenty-first century through the prism of NATO's intervention in Libya.
Buy now

Queer African Reader

Demystifying Aid Edited by Sokari Ekine, Hakima Abbas
A diverse collection of writing from across the continent exploring African LGBTI liberation: identity, tactics for activism, international solidarity, homophobia and global politics, religion and culture, and intersections with social justice movements. A richness of voices, a multiplicity of discourses, a quiverful of arguments. African queers writing for each other, theorising ourselves, making our ...more
Buy now

China and Angola

African Awakening A Marriage of Convenience?
Edited by Marcus Power, Ana Alves
This book focuses on the increased co-operation between Angola and China and shows that although relations with China might have bolstered regime stability and boosted the international standing of the Angolan government, China is not regarded as a long term strategic partner.
Buy now

How Europe Underdeveloped Africa

To Cook a ContinentWalter Rodney
Rodney shows how the imperial countries of Europe, and subsequently the US, bear major responsibility for impoverishing Africa. They have been joined in this exploitation by agents or unwitting accomplices both in the North and in Africa.
Buy now

Pambazuka News Broadcasts

Pambazuka broadcasts feature audio and video content with cutting edge commentary and debate from social justice movements across the continent.

    See the list of episodes.

    AU MONITOR

    This site has been established by Fahamu to provide regular feedback to African civil society organisations on what is happening with the African Union.

    Perspectives on Emerging Powers in Africa: December 2011 newsletter

    Deborah Brautigam provides an overview and description of China's development finance to Africa. "Looking at the nature of Chinese development aid - and non-aid - to Africa provides insights into China's strategic approach to outward investment and economic diplomacy, even if exact figures and strategies are not easily ascertained", she states as she describes China's provision of grants, zero-interest loans and concessional loans. Pambazuka Press recently released a publication titled India in Africa: Changing Geographies of Power, and Oliver Stuenkel provides his review of the book.
    The December edition available here.

    The 2010 issues: September, October, November, December, and the 2011 issues: January, February, March , April, May , June , July , August , September, October and November issues are all available for download.

    Creative Commons License
    This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.

    ethnicity

    Uganda: The state and the nation

    Annelieke van de Wiel

    2011-07-26, Issue 541


    cc US Army
    Uganda has had a turbulent history of nation-building, with identity often rooted in ethnicity rather than notions of citizenship, notes Annelieke van de Wiel. This year’s International Association for the Study of Forced Migration (IASFM) conference gave rise to numerous discussions on the need for the country to face up to its past and develop an inclusive Ugandan identity, van de Wiel writes.

    Genocidal actions by government of Sudan must be stopped

    Explo N. Nani-Kofi

    2011-07-13, Issue 539


    © AFP/UNMIS/S.Price
    The situation in Sudan ‘demands solidarity and action from all peace-loving people and human right activists,’ writes Explo Nani-Kofi, in a call for readers everywhere to take whatever action they can to stop the government’s genocidal actions.

    Sudan: The ‘conflict is inflaming every hour’

    Sokari Ekine

    2011-06-09, Issue 534


    cc E P
    Sudan’s invasion of the town Abeyi; sexual harassment in Egypt; the impact of Egypt’s uprising on migrants; the detention of Syrian blogger Amina Arraf; Western Sahara; and the opening of the a centre for women in Eastern Congo, the City of Joy, are among the topics featured in this week’s review of African blogs, by Sokari Ekine.

    The Igbo genocide and 5 June 1969

    Herbert Ekwe-Ekwe

    2011-05-25, Issue 531


    cc Wikimedia
    Reflecting on the availability of documentary sources, Herbert Ekwe-Ekwe discusses the history of the Igbo genocide.

    The most tragic day of Igbo history: 29 May 1966

    Herbert Ekwe-Ekwe

    2011-05-19, Issue 530


    cc Wikimedia
    29 May 1966, the Igbo Day of Affirmation, marks both the start of the 1966 genocide against the Igbo people and the day they decided to survive the violence unleashed against them, writes Herbert Ekwe-Ekwe.

    Make a difference: Say something

    International Day Against Homophobia

    Esther Adhiambo

    2011-05-19, Issue 530


    cc N J
    ‘I challenge every one of us to at least talk to one person you know about homosexuality. I’m not asking you to come
out, just yet, even I am struggling with that. But just try and
 communicate our fears and insecurities as a minority group,’ writes Kenyan sister Esther Adhiambo, in a piece marking International Day Against Homophobia on 17 May.

    ANC Youth League and economic transformation of South Africa

    Sehlare Makgetlaneng

    2011-05-19, Issue 530


    cc A S
    South Africa continues to be the most unequal social formation in the world. Sehlare Makgetlaneng reviews proposals by the African National Congress Youth League to radically overhaul the economic structure of the country.

    Justice for the people of Kenya

    Zahid Rajan and Zarina Patel

    2011-05-10, Issue 528


    © S 1
    This special issue of Pambazuka News, published in association with AwaaZ, chronicles ‘justice’ as its main theme. This is particularly in the context of the enactment of the new constitution and by extension to seek justice for the people of Kenya. The issue covers a range of articles related to the struggle for justice in the overall context today: In the judiciary, in the courts of the people under public litigation cases and the eviction of the poor from their homes; in the environment – in this case Lamu; for sexual minorities – in this case the LGBTI (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual and intersex) movement in Kenya today; the relationship between the Kenyan Somali and the Kenyan state; the rights of women; and in the press. We have also examined the constitutional community justice systems in Kenya in comparison to the formal legal systems today. In addition there is an article on the historical perspective on the Politics of Law in Kenya. We have also chronicled the life of the late Chief Justice of Kenya Hon, Mr Justice C B Madan. We hope that this story will have an impact on the current process of appointing a new Chief Justice in Kenya under the new constitution. The late Justice Madan was a ‘Champion for the supremacy of the rule of Law’, which we so badly lack today in Kenya.

    Intergenerational change, the Kenyan Somali and the Kenyan state

    Abdinasir Amin

    2011-05-10, Issue 528


    cc N B P
    The relationship between Kenyan Somalis and the Kenyan state is ‘tumultuous at the best of times, and indifferent at the worst of times’, writes Abdinasir Amin. Although little has changed for the better since Amin’s grandfather’s time, Kenya’s new constitution brings hope for genuine acceptance in the future.

    Sudan: The price of separation

    Nisrin Elamin

    2011-01-13, Issue 512


    cc Wikipedia
    This week, the people of Southern Sudan will cast their votes in a historic referendum to determine whether to secede from the North, likely becoming Africa’s newest independent nation, writes Nisrin Elamin. The referendum represents not only a failure by the Sudanese government ‘to make unity a viable option’, but also the complicity and silence of the people of northern Sudan ‘around policies that, if left unchallenged, could ultimately lead to the further fracturing' of the nation, argues Elamin.

    Of great expectations and frustrated men

    H. Nanjala Nyabola

    2011-01-12, Issue 512


    © IRIN
    As South Sudan votes for its right to exist, H. Nanjala Nyabola draws on the 2007 Kenyan elections for comparison and calls for expectations to be moderated.

    The invention of the indigène

    Mahmood Mamdani

    2011-01-13, Issue 512


    cc J H
    ‘The violence in Congo may seem unintelligible but its roots lie in institutional practices introduced under colonialism, which 50 years of independence have only exacerbated,' writes Mahmood Mamdani.

    Ethiopia: The Anuaks’ forgotten genocide

    A conversation with Obang Metho

    Alemayehu G. Mariam

    2010-12-16, Issue 510


    cc Turkairo
    In conversation with Obang Metho, executive director of the Anuak Justice Council and the Solidarity Movement for a New Ethiopia, Alemayehu G. Mariam discusses the forgotten genocide of the Anuak, ‘in solemn anticipation of the seventh anniversary’ of the massacres over the period 13–16 December.

    A critical look at the Ivorian post-election crisis

    Kwadwo Appiagyei-Atua

    2010-12-08, Issue 509


    cc Wikimedia
    The African Union and the Economic Community Of West African States should move swiftly to condemn the election hijack in Cote d’Ivoire and make sure they offer no legitimacy to Laurent Gbagbo, writes Kwadwo Appiagyei-Atua.

    Cote d’Ivoire: Laurent Gbagbo must respect voters’ wishes

    Cameron Duodu

    2010-12-09, Issue 509


    cc Wikimedia
    As tensions persist in Cote d’Ivoire following the contested presidential election result of 28 November, Cameron Duodu calls on incumbent Laurent Gbagbo to accept defeat and respect the victory of opposition leader Alassane Ouattara.

    Which way Sudan?

    A Pan-African reflection

    Horace Campbell

    2010-11-25, Issue 507


    cc UN Photo
    Is North and South Sudan’s recent agreement to establish a ‘soft border’ between the two areas ahead of a referendum on southern independence ‘another recipe for war’, asks Horace Campbell.

    Denying Rwanda: A response to Herman and Peterson

    Adam Jones

    2010-11-18, Issue 505


    cc hoteldephil
    Following concerted efforts to deny the Rwandan genocide from Edward Herman & David Peterson, Adam Jones urges Pambazuka readers to ‘do what they can to spread word of Herman & Peterson's denialist enterprise’.

    Peace more in Kenyan hands than the ICC’s

    Leigh Brownhill and Kiama Kaara

    2010-11-10, Issue 504


    cc Demosh
    While the ICC (International Criminal Court) may do its part in ending an entrenched culture of impunity in Kenya, write Leigh Brownhill and Kiama Kaara, it is the Kenyan people, not the ICC, that will play the bigger part in achieving the noble but elusive goal of peace.

    When do ‘settlers’ or ‘natives’ become ‘citizens’?

    Chambi Chachage

    2009-07-02, Issue 440


    cc Chadica
    Chambi Chachage explores when and how ‘settlers’ or ‘natives’ become ‘citizens’, in the first of a series of three articles exploring the idea of dual citizenship with reference to Tanzania. Definitions of citizenship in modern nation-states in ‘societies other than Euro-American ones’ were influenced by how the notion developed in Euro-America and how it was ‘selectively applied in the Africa, Asia, Australia and Latin America in the context(s) of colonialism, imperialism and developmentalism,’ Chachage argues. ‘It is this colouring that we need to unpack as we trace the historical and political trajectories and implications of the idea and praxis/practice of citizenship in Africa,’ says Chacage.

    Hypocrisy and internal contradictions threatening to tear Kenya apart

    Antony Otieno Ong’ayo

    2009-07-02, Issue 440


    cc computerwhiz417
    With Kenya's exploitative elites continuing to monopolise the country's resources, Antony Otieno Ong’ayo argues that profound change is needed to halt a debilitating 46-year status quo of marginalisation and impoverishment for much of the Kenyan populace. While change will ultimately need to come from below, Otieno Ong’ayo contends, Kenya's leadership will need to moderate its relentless appetite for wealth if 'business-as-usual' is to be prevented.

    Nkrumah: Model challenge for Ghana’s rulers

    Yao Graham

    2009-06-18, Issue 438


    cc wikimedia.org
    Kwame Nkrumah brought the Convention People's Party into power within two years of its formation, creating independent Ghana, writes Yao Graham. An overwhelming electoral victory gave Nkrumah a platform for mass anti-colonial mobilisation around Africa. Accra became a staging point for the African anti-colonial movement with the All-African People's Conference, drawing delegates from 62 nationalist organisations, including future ruling parties and post-colonial leaders, who were urged to 'fight for independence now'. Post-colonial construction, however, was different from bringing down colonialism and Nkrumah struggled to generate resources for steady improvement in the living standards of people with expectations fuelled by independence and his own visionary pronouncements. Today Ghana is seen as a development icon, but the challenges Nkrumah grappled with have not been overcome, argues Graham. Reliant on a few commodities for export earnings and aid for public investment, it is far from the independent structurally transformed model Nkrumah wanted to establish as a ‘black star’ for Africa.

    Sierra Leone: Wave of violence or wake-up call?

    Lisa Denney

    2009-06-18, Issue 438


    cc Radio Nederland Wereldomroep
    Recent rioting and violence in Freetown and the east of Sierra Leone has brought into focus the fragility of the post-conflict peace, held in place since 2002, writes Lisa Denney. At first glance, says Denney, it points to a new breed of trouble in the West African nation, a harbinger of the party political and ethnic violence that some predict will be the next great challenge faced by the country. Not just the work of criminal elements, the riots belie the potential for a new wave of violence that requires serious prevention efforts, Denney cautions. But events since the violence have taken a surprising turn, with inter-party tensions prompting youth cooperation, rather than escalating conflict. Thus a seemingly low-point in party politics may prove to be a necessary wake up call that quells rising tensions, rather than fuelling them, Denney suggests.

    Calling on the Kenyan leadership to be counted

    Wangari Maathai

    2009-06-04, Issue 436


    cc Amber B C
    Reflecting on Kenyan society's unquestioning acceptance of the police's right to intimidate and even kill those labelled as 'Mungiki', Wangari Maathai considers the dubious culture of impunity around harassing those supposedly in league with the Mungiki sect. With the pervasive demonisation of the Mungiki militia group providing an effective cover for the killing of members of the Kikuyu community – Mungiki and non-Mungiki alike – ordinary citizens are reluctant to speak out, both for fear of being accused of supporting the sect and of the reactions of Mungiki militia to criticism. Calling on the political and religious leadership of the Kikuyu community to face up to the challenge in its midst, Maathai urges the country to heal the growing rift between the community and other Kenyans.

    DRC: The future has come and gone

    Lansana Gberie

    2009-06-04, Issue 436


    cc Julien Harneis
    Returning to DRC for the first time since 1996, Lansana Gberie finds that a little cash comes in handy for dealing with bureaucracy and that it is impossible to get anything done without a ‘fixer’. Considering the conflicts in the country’s history, Gberie notes that in Congo ‘money is always at the centre of the bigger drama of suffering’ and that justice – or the interests of victims of mass atrocities – has had to be subordinated to wider geopolitical interests. Leaving Kinshasa after just over a week, Gberie finds himself feeling that he is ‘in a place whose future has come and gone’.

    Forcible repatriation threat for Burundian refugees

    Leave or 'be beaten and forced to run empty-handed to Burundi'

    Zachary Lomo

    2009-05-21, Issue 433


    cc Anduze
    Around 40,000 Burundian refugees face involuntary repatriation when Tanzania’s Mtabila refugee camp is closed at the end of June, writes Zachary Lomo. Officials have told refugees that ‘if they are still in the camp after 30 June, they will be beaten and forced to run empty-handed to Burundi’. Although the camp schools have been closed and the markets destroyed, very few refugees have registered to return home. There is no longer fighting in Burundi but many refugees fear the reprisal killing of anyone suspected of supporting opposition groups, as well as disputes over property. Tanzanian field officers claim they have no plans to force the refugees to return to Burundi and will negotiate the integration and naturalisation of those unwilling or unable to go back with the Tanzanian government.

    The messiah within: Redeeming the soul of the Kenyan nation

    Njonjo Mue

    2009-05-14, Issue 432


    cc D B King
    As Kenyans struggle to find meaning in the protracted troubles surrounding their body politic, Njonjo Mue challenges the nation’s youth to join an army of ordinary people to fight the good fight and to defend Kenyans’ freedom, dignity, heritage and their children’s future by engaging in brutal self-appraisal and refusing to permit decay. Mue’s article is a call to arms, for men to leave the bars long enough to know what their children will eat for supper, for women to cease their escapism and confront the problems facing Kenya’s communities, and for all Kenyans to individually take responsibility for the future of their country.

    Kenyan maize scandal causes ODM rift

    Joachim Omolo Ouko

    2009-05-07, Issue 431


    cc E Pence
    Following the Kenyan Orange Democratic Movement's (ODM) allegations of Agricultural Minister William Ruto's role in a maize scandal, Joachim Omolo Ouko discusses the internal mudslinging and internecine feuding within Prime Minister Raila Odinga's party. Ruto's problems with the party stem from his criticisms of Raila last year, Ouko notes, compelling the prime minister to seek a means of fixing the rift developing with the ODM, particularly as his own son is instead now alleged to be involved in the scandal.

    Who dropped the baton?

    Njonjo Mue

    2009-05-07, Issue 431


    cc Wikimedia
    Kenya is a country of runners, writes Njonjo Mue, but for all its athletic prowess the country has yet to prove medal-worthy in the relay race of building true nationhood. With the baton passed from race leg to race leg, the Kenyan people have seen participation in the race restricted to a select, exclusivist and often brutal few, with many who have sought to champion the right of others to be involved being severely crushed. The finishing line of true nationhood remains a distant dream, with the runners even having dropped the right baton altogether, and if Kenya is not to perish entirely, the race's next leg can only be run by all Kenyans together.

    Is Judgment Day near for Omar al-Bashir?

    Kwesi Kwaa Prah

    2009-04-30, Issue 430


    cc Andrew Heavens
    In response to Mahmood Mamdani's article 'Beware of human rights fundamentalism', Kwesi Kwaa Prah questions Mamdani's grasp of history. Taking issue with Mamdani's contention that 'Arabs never constituted a single racial group' in Sudan, Prah argues for the people of Southern Sudan's self-rule and a halt to the 'Arabisation' of Africans.

    How the Kenyan Left pulled Kenya back from the brink

    Internal energy and external fire

    Shailja Patel

    2009-01-29, Issue 417

    On the strength of her ‘Kenya Bulletin’ delivered at South Africa’s ‘Time of the Writer Festival’in March 2008, Shailja Patel discusses the pivotal influence of the Kenyan Left in pulling Kenya back from the brink. Patel stresses the necessity of telling, recording and perpetuating this narrative as a tale of seemingly insurmountable odds, the triumph of civil society organisation, and the instrumental role of Kenyans for Peace, Truth and Justice (KPTJ).

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