Pambazuka News 604: Speaking the truth to abusers of power

A recent military curfew imposed on the violence-wracked north-eastern Nigerian town of Potiskum has not only made life unbearable for residents, but it has also reduced their chances of survival. Hundreds of civilians are living in fear in the town in Yobe State after the Islamist extremist group Boko Haram, a sect that wants to impose Sharia law on the country, waged an assault there on 18 October, resulting in the death of more than 30 people. Dr. Bawa Abdullahi Wase, a senior research more

Kenya’s Ogiek community, the indigenous group of hunter-gatherers who were evicted from the Mau Forest three years ago, say they will no longer sit by and watch logging companies profit from the resources of their traditional home while they live in poverty in tented camps around the forest without even the most basic of services, like sanitation. Currently 100 saw millers are licensed to log 50,000 hectares of mature exotic and indigenous trees in the forest reserve – the largest in the more

Pansy Tlakula, the African Union’s Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Expression and Access to Information, has done her best to address the continued harassment of journalists in the Gambia. In her role as commissioner of the African Commission on Human Peoples’ Rights, she has appealed many times to the government of the West African nation to respect people’s right to freedom of expression. But it has not been enough to prevent the Gambian government’s crackdown on the media.

A significant increase in salaries for Ghana's president, ministers and other top officials has been criticised by anti-corruption campaigners. Parliament agreed to the pay rise earlier this week in a session that was not televised. Last month President John Dramani Mahama authorised an increase in MPs' pay.

Somalia is to get its first female foreign minister in a cabinet formed by new Prime Minister Abdi Farah Shirdon. Fauzia Yusuf Haji Adan is among 10 politicians joining a cabinet that has been significantly reduced in size. She described her inclusion as 'historic' for both the country and Somali women in particular.