Tuesday, March 31, 2015

AFRICAN RENAISSANCE: West Africa Sees Highest Reported 2014 Profit Margins - The Centre Of The Global Economy Has Been Shifting From The Developed To The Developing World!

March 31, 2015 - WEST AFRICA
- The region with the highest reported 2014 profit margins was West Africa, according to an Economist Corporate Network survey.

The 2015 African Business Outlook Survey – Africa is the horizon – sheds light on sub-Saharan Africa’s growth prospects going forward as well as on its key regions.

“Over 60 per cent of respondents reported an operating profit of 10 per cent or more [in West Africa], and 26 per cent of respondents reported an operating profit margin higher than 20 per cent,” the survey said.

“The next most profitable region is Southern Africa, where 57 per cent of respondents reported an operating profit margin above 10 per cent.”

It added that executives reported East African operations as having the highest percentage of losses, at 15 per cent.

Executives also named Nigeria, South Africa, Kenya and Angola as their top markets in 2014.

According to survey, the centre of the global economy has been shifting from the developed to the developing world over the past twenty years.

“In 2015, sub-Saharan Africa’s GDP is expected to grow at 4.5 per cent, making it the fastest-growing economic zone in the world, outpacing Asia’s regional average of 4.3 per cent annual growth,” it said.

“Obviously, in terms of overall market size, sub-Saharan Africa is still quite a bit smaller than Asia, but, when considering the longer term, continued steady growth in Africa will result in an economic bloc with global impact over the next two decades.”

The region’s two largest economies—Nigeria and South Africa—together compose over 63 per cent of sub-Saharan Africa’s total GDP.

However, the survey showed that their prospects vary considerably.

“The Nigerian economy is expected to grow over five per cent this year, while the South African economy is forecast to grow by 1.6 per cent,” it added.

“These growth-rate differences reflect, in part, the current state of infrastructure in each country, as well as the breadth, depth and stage of development of the formal economy in each country.”

Despite the fact that West Africa faces many challenges, including Islamist terrorist movement, Boko Haram and the Ebola virus, which infected over 20,000 people across at least five West African nations, the region is still poised to see growth.

“Executives by and large expect revenue in West Africa to grow in line with corporate forecasts or to perform better than initially anticipated,” said the survey.

“This suggests that executives may have already factored these risks into their forecasts and feel confident in their firms abilities to overcome them.” - CNBC.

AFRICAN START-UPS: Assessing Africa's Tech Boom - Out Of The 20 Fastest Growing Economies In The World Right Now, 11 Are In Africa!

March 31, 2015 - AFRICA
-  The western media may not always focus on the positive news emanating from Africa, however, those on the ground know that Africa’s tech sector is booming. Last year, Africa saw the fastest uptake of mobiles in the world and mobile subscribers are set to hit half a billion by 2020, according to the GSMA. Furthermore, the World Bank says that out of the 20 fastest growing economies in the world right now, 11 are in Africa.

From the rise of smartphone use across the continent, to fintech innovations and the increase of early stage investment funds, a number of key tech trends are exerting a positive influence on the continent. The strength of the technology and startup sector across Africa is also reflected in the startling fact that Africans are dumping promising careers to start venture into entrepreneurship.

The declining cost of high-speed internet across the continent is ensuring that more businesses and individuals than ever before are connected. Although infrastructure costs are yet to reach the competitive levels of the West, the next five years will see prices drop further, resulting in millions of individuals coming online.

One company taking advantage of the smartphone boom is Nigerian based Pass.ng— an online tool for Nigerian students preparing for one of Nigeria’s toughest college admissions exams. Founded by Samson Abioye, Adebagbo Joshua, Akanji Abayomi, and Oluyemi Oluseun, the firm provides millions of individuals with test simulations and a learning platform to study and track their performance. The company’s growing success is both contributing to and benefiting from the mobile explosion, while helping more Nigerians gain access to new services and information remotely from their mobile devices.

Across the border is TanzICT’s Innovation Space. The Dar es Salaam hub opened in 2011 and was co-funded by Finland to kick-start tech in Tanzania.
(Copyright: Jonathan Kalan)

The proliferation of this hardware is not only leading an information revolution, but disrupting financial and retail sectors too. Innovations in mobile banking and transfers are giving people the tools they need to safely manage their money, while opening up a whole new digitised marketplace for businesses to target.

Kenya’s online transfer tool M-PESA alone has over 18 million active users, while Nigeria’s Paga is similarly popular. The rise of mobile payments is not only providing smaller businesses with stable platforms to conduct financial deals but is also leading to the growth of mobile commerce across the continent.

M-commerce, driven by technological advancement, is set to have a big impact on the development of Africa. As summarised in a recent CNN article, the development is helping African retailers leapfrog the need for capital-intensive mall infrastructure and quickening the establishment of robust logistic networks.

Further examples of services enabling businesses to reach new customers include mobile ad network Twinpine and content discovery platform 8bit. These both bring down the cost and time required to bring a product to market.

Demand for new products is also high, driven by a growing and youthful middle-class and this isn’t set to slow anytime soon. In 14 years alone, Nigeria’s middle class has made a six-fold increase to 23 million people. It is these expanding middle classes that are going to fuel the economies of African countries for future decades. The youthful populations of countries such as Kenya and Nigeria are also key users of new mobile services and products.

For the countless African startups benefiting from these technological developments, growth isn’t simply hinged on a burgeoning smartphone-carrying middle class. Many of the small startups and businesses which are driving Africa’s technological revolution are heavily reliant on capital investment. Thankfully, early stage funds headed up by plucky investors are growing fast.

In the last year alone the number of early stage funds operating in Nigeria has jumped from zero to seven. In 2015, these funds will distribute financing to over 100 startups. They aren’t unique to hotspots such as Nigeria, Kenya or South Africa. Uganda, Ghana and Senegal all have their own tech communities.

While the African growth story is far from homogeneous and some serious socio-political challenges need to be overcome before talk of economic success is possible, positive signs from the technology sector are giving hope. With the West facing continued economic uncertainty and stagnation, the next five years are set to be an instrumental period in the development of Africa’s economy. - Ventures Africa.

MARKETPLACE AFRICA: Ethiopia Cut Flower Industry Blooms Wider - Exports Are Expected To Reach $500 MILLION By The End Of 2016!

March 31, 2015 - ETHIOPIA
- The Ethiopian flower industry emerged in the late 1990s, and despite being a late-comer, Ethiopia has become the second largest flower exporter in Africa (after Kenya). Projections are for even further future growth.

Exports are expected to reach $550 million by the end of 2016.

The Ethiopian flower industry represents an extraordinarily fast and successful diversification into a non-traditional export product.

Climate conditions have made Ethiopia a favourable cultivation site for such products as it is situated in the tropics, with its diverse range of altitudes. Additionally, the Federal Government, the Ethiopian Horticulture Producers and Exporters Association (EHPEA), and international investment played key roles in Ethiopia's floriculture industry development.

The EHPEA, which included private sector entrepreneurs, has been instrumental in gaining government support in the sector. The organisation's aim was to promote the sector.

Following recent ethnic violence and reduced labour force in Kenya, Africa's number one global flower exporter, investors and producers needed to diversify and invest in other countries.

With good climate conditions and cheap transportation costs, Ethiopia was a favourable choice, especially for the cultivation of roses. State-owned land was made available for flower farms at affordable prices, especially near the airport. This reduced transportation cost facilitated market entry. The government also offered attractive incentives for investors.

For example, a five-year corporate tax exemption for inputs, import duties were scrapped and investors were also given access to financing from banks. It became obvious that Ethiopia had a comparative advantage in the production of roses, especially with vast amount of labour. As the industry expanded, the unit cost of production decreased.

The sequence of entry of firms in the Ethiopian flower industry shows that domestic entrepreneurs played a major role in the initial stages. With the exception of Golden Rose and Ethio Dream, the first movers and early imitators were domestic owned firms. Foreign firms (in the form of joint-venture or full ownership) started to enter mostly after 2003.

A significant number of the foreign firms came from other African countries, including Kenya (for example Linsen, Abyssinia, Maranque, Karuturi, and Sher-Ethiopia), Uganda and Zimbabwe.

The better investment climate in Ethiopia compared to these countries may have contributed to the increasing shift of foreign investment to Ethiopia.

Through international investment, knowledge transfers and technological innovations can be introduced into the domestic market; for example, through improved agricultural methods. International investment is beneficial for the recipient country as it also promotes economic activity, therefore increasing employment.

In the case of Ethiopia, the cut flower industry has experienced investment from a range of geographical and industrial backgrounds, from the Netherlands, United Kingdom and India, to more regional markets such as Nigeria, Sudan and Oman, thereby also encouraging South-South integration. Nevertheless, the biggest market for the Ethiopian rose is the Netherlands, as around 90% of rose exports go to Holland. Evidently, Ethiopia has emerged as a strong global cut flower market competitor.

The floriculture industry has had a huge impact on Ethiopia's economy and society; most significantly on job creation, which is said to amount to over 100,000 new jobs in the last five years.

Locals are being trained in business and management skills and most donors are giving back to society in one way or another

The industry has also had a major influence on gender perspectives, as more than 75% of workers are female. Through production diversification, Ethiopia can depend more on trade and less on aid. Although floriculture is a fairly new industry in Ethiopia, sales records of flower exports have shown how profitable diversification can be achieved through trade. - Busiweek.

ANCESTRAL LEGACY: Ancient Advanced Black Civilizations - Archaeologists Discover Mysterious Mayan Citadel With Structure Unlike Any Other!

March 31, 2015 - BELIZE
- Archaeologists have been exploring the ancient Mayan city of El Pilar in Belize for years, but only recently did they discover an unusual addition to the city: a citadel with a structure unlike that of other Mayan sites.

The researchers used light detection and ranging (LiDAR) laser technology to locate the citadel in El Pilar, which had about 20,000 residents. The city's construction began around 800 B.C.E.

The citadel is different than previous discoveries at El Pilar, though. Anabel Ford, the lead archaeologist on the discovery, told Popular Archaeology that the citadel "does not meet with any traditional expectations."

The site doesn't include a "clear open plaza" or a "cardinal structure orientation," Ford noted, which would have been typical of Mayan centers. Ford also found it odd that the citadel features "no evident relationship" to other structures at the El Pilar site.

The citadel does feature four temple-like buildings and terraces that are arranged in a way suggesting they are "defensive fortifications," Ancient Origins notes.

The archaeologists plan to continue excavating the citadel site and performing carbon dating of nearby organic materials.

The researchers don't yet know whether the citadel dates to the pre-classical period, before 250 B.C.E., or if it was built long after the other buildings at El Pilar.

Dating the citadel could also help the archaeologists understand what it was used for and why it was isolated from the rest of the city. - The Week.

AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT: Lights, Roads, Water, ICT - Africa's Development Priority Is All About Huge Financial Investments!

High level panel discussion on capacity imperatives for AU's Agenda 2063 gets underway. Photo: Boakai Fofana/allAfrica

March 31, 2015 - ADDIS ABABA, ETHIOPIA
- Africa needs huge financial investments to achieve its development goals, UN Under Secretary General Carlos Lopes told delegates at a finance conference in Addis Ababa.

“We have major deficits in infrastructure as you know - massive investment in transport, energy, ICT and water could strengthen the platform for development”, said Lopes, who heads the UN Economic Commission for Africa.

Lopes spoke at a session on financing for sustainable development at the eighth annual conference of the Africa Union and the ECA taking place in the Ethiopian capital. The week-long conference has brought together various stakeholders, including former heads of state, finance and planning ministers and governors of central banks.

“Infrastructure requirement has been projected at about U.S.$ 1 billion per year”, Lopes explained, saying that a priority action plan adopted by African heads of state requires 68 billion to implement in the next five years. He said although the continent is endowed, “transformation of these resources in other parts of the world, instead of Africa, continues to leave millions of Africans scrambling for low value-addition jobs”.

Prodded by the session’s moderator, AllAfrica Executive Chair Amadou Mahtar Ba, on how the continent’s resources could be used without compromising the future, another speaker, Achim Steiner of the UN Environment Program said risks that the continent faces today are not abstract. “Carbon dioxide may seem a long away from an African farmer’s next harvest" he said. "If you start recognizing the risks, you certainly start creating sets of policy settings”. He said that way, Africa will be able to turn risks into opportunities.

Steiner reminded stakeholders that while energy planners in previous years had discredited renewable energy as irrelevant for developing economies, that has now changed. He said the Global Trends in Renewable Energy Report reveals that 2014 saw a big investment in infrastructure related to naturally replenishable energy sources. This, Steiner said, excludes hydro.

“We take the strictest definition in technological terms of solar, geothermal and wind”. He urged emerging economies to play their part in what might be “an unfolding disaster in emission terms”.

Several environmentally friendly low-cost energy projects are currently under way on the continent, including in South Africa, which currently derives majority of its energy needs from coal.

South African Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene announced that the country hopes to be able to generate 10,000 megawatts to its main grid, using renewable energy initiatives. “Investing in green economies is not just good investments, it’s investing in the future”, he said.

Nene said his country’s current challenge of slow economy growth has necessitated the need to relook its investment strategy.

Other speakers highlighted the role of domestic financing as a potential driver of future investment. “There should be universal access to banking as there are to education and health care”, the representative of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization, Ludovico Acorta, urged. He added that there also be a focus on Small and Medium Enterprises as that will be the “backbone of growth in the next 20 or 30 years”.

Ghana’s Finance Minister, Seth Terkpeh, cautioned the group that while domestic resource mobilization is the primary focus, "this must leverage continental institutions as well as the capital market". Tarkpeh said his country is good example of rapid growth, but that it has recently “taken a hit” due to a shortfall of the prices of three of its major commodities: gold, cocoa and now crude oil.

The conference which ends this week has focused on the implementation of Agenda 2063 - the African Union’s development strategy adopted at its 50th anniversary. - All Africa.

BLACK BEAUTY: Ng’endo Mukii's "Yellow Fever" - Powerful Short Film Challenges Beauty Ideals That Govern Skin Color!

March 31, 2015 - KENYA
- In discussions of mainstream beauty ideals, it's not uncommon to hear media outlets discuss the prominence of certain body types, addressing disorders like anorexia and bulimia in the process. However, for many women, particularly women of color, these are far from the only harmful ways myths and norms shape perceptions of beauty, and shape perceptions of ourselves.

In her powerful short film "Yellow Fever," Kenyan artist and filmmaker Ng’endo Mukii explores the relationship between a woman and her skin color, and the hierarchy of globalized beauty imposed on impressionable minds and bodies. "While growing up, I would come across women who practiced skin bleaching (‘lightening’, ‘brightening’), and often had a condescending internal reaction to them," Mukii explained in an email to The Huffington Post.


"Now, I realize they are only products of our society, as are we all. Since our media perpetuates Western ideals to our girls and women, and we consume this information continuously from a young age, how can we fault anyone who is susceptible to these ideals (men included), without challenging the people that are creating them?"

Mukii explores these concepts and beyond in her enrapturing seven-minute short, which combines layered ethnographic visuals with emotive dance sequences and textural animated interviews with family members including her mother and young niece. "If I were American, I would be white, white, white, white and I'd love being white," Mukii's five-year-old niece says, sitting before a white pop star on the television screen. As she innocently proclaims that magic could potentially turn her skin another color, the scene becomes both jarring and heartbreaking.


Mukii comes from a background of painting and drawing, yet became fascinated with film and animation during her time at the Royal College of Art in London. When embarking on her graduation film, which eventually became "Yellow Fever," Mukii was comparing the processes of taxidermy and early ethnographic filmmaking -- namely the editing and deletion involved in reducing a subject into a flattened "other." Determined to change the stakes, Mukii placed herself in the role of both subject and artist, allowing her complexity to take its full, textured shape.

"Essentially playing both the role of the ethnographer and the ethnographic, forced me to confront an internalized friction within myself," she explained, "the conflict between seeing, being seen, and seeing what other people see in you."


To visually express her encounter with her full and fluid self, Mukii employed a multidisciplinary film practice to embody what she calls her "almost schizophrenic self-visualization." Each moment is pulsing with conflict and desire, concretizing the intense role beauty norms play on women's self love. "I found the pixilation body-landscape sequences the most exciting in terms of technique," she said.

"I had not worked with breathing bodies before in this way, and the effect of the staccato movement created from photographing individual frames was very satisfying. I was trying to create a sense of being uncomfortable in one’s own skin, and had been reading Frantz Fanon’s work at the time... I don’t know, it was the body as a breathing landscape, and the eruption of emotion. It just fit."


Mukii named her film after Fela Kuti's 1970s song of the same title. However, while Kuti's lyrics lash out at the women who choose to use skin bleaching products, Mukii wants to challenge those who create the ideals. In her words, "rather than alienating or attacking people who are victims of them, we should actively address the lack of celebration of women of all appearances."

"Why is there no acknowledgement of the pressure that exists to push Kenyan (and other) women to willingly poison their skin and bodies with various chemicals (mercury included) in an attempt to have a paler complexion? Why is this not some form of body dysmorphia related to the skin? Why should any normal girl feel that she will be more beautiful and lead a happier life if she loses weight? Why should any normal Kenyan girl feel the same, but in relation to being paler? Why do we live in societies that agree to either of these ideas?"

To begin to grapple with these questions and more, watch "Yellow Fever" below.

WATCH: Yellow Fever.


- Huffington Post.

BLACK ENTREPRENEURS: It's Official - Jay Z's Historic Tidal Music Streaming Service Launches With 16 Artist Stakeholders!

  Usher, Rihanna, Nicki Minaj, Madonna, Dead Mouse, Kanye West, Jay Z, Jason Aldean, Jack White, Daft Punk, Beyonce and Win Butler attend the Tidal
launch event #TIDALforALL at Skylight at Moynihan Station on March 30, 2015 in New York City.  Kevin Mazur/Getty Images For Roc Nation

March 31, 2015 - UNITED STATES
- Jay Z's ambitious entrance into the streaming music business, which came as a surprise to industry observers, debuted Monday (March 30) at an event at New York's James A. Farley Post Office in Herald Square with more than a few aces up its sleeves. About 16 of them, to be exact.

Tidal and WiMP, the two services under Swedish umbrella Aspiro, which he acquired earlier this month, will be the streaming home for artists like Shawn Carter himself, Beyonce, Rihanna, Kanye West, Jack White, Arcade Fire, Usher, Nicki Minaj, Coldplay, Alicia Keys, Calvin Harris, Daft Punk, deadmau5, Jason Aldean, J. Cole and Madonna. (In case you didn't notice, the group features a golden god from each of the most-liked music genres.) The general public first got wind of the launch just after midnight EST when artists began changing their Twitter avatars cyan-blue in support of the #TIDALforall hashtag. Additionally, Sprint was announced as Tidal's first mobile carrier partner.

"People are not respecting the music, and devaluing what it really means," Jay Z told Billboard. "People really feel like music is free, but will pay $6 for water. You can drink water free out of the tap and it's good water. But they're okay paying for it. It's just the mindset right now."

Jay Z's courting of Aspiro's all-star team began just ahead of the Grammys in a top-secret meeting in Pasadena which brought West, Daft Punk, Minaj, Coldplay's Chris Martin, Jack White and Madonna together. Billboard has learned that each artist was offered a 3 percent stake in the company in order to secure exclusives that, Roc Nation is hoping, will drive consumers to subscribe at $19.99 per month for high-def audio, or $9.99 for a standard-definition tier (Tidal offers superior audio quality, which accounts for the higher price point, and no freemium option). The artists' total equity in the company comes to just under a majority stake, at around 48 percent.

Significant questions remain about the structure of the company as it relates to its "executive artists," foremost among them how their deals with Shawn Carter will affect their pre-existing record contracts. As well, the service has an uphill battle; Spotify has 15 million subscribers globally and second-place Deezer has 6 million. The most recent numbers for Tidal are at 540,000, according to the company.

That said, no other company is guaranteed to offer its customers a first listen of Rihanna's new record, or Beyonce's new video, or Calvin Harris' new remix. Beyonce alone created a new paradigm for releases less than a year-and-a-half ago; Jay Z did the same with Magna Carta, Holy Grail the summer before . As well, Jay Z has never had an outright failure in his business dealings -- though he is in the rare position of being an underdog.

"I feel like [an underdog] all the time," Jay Z said. "I feel like I'm always pushing envelopes. I feel like I couldn't get a record deal, I feel like, you know, when Hot 97 was the big station I was the first one on Power 105. When The Source was the biggest magazine I was first one on the cover of XXL." - Billboard.

AFRICAN VOICES: Meet Trevor Noah - The South African Comedian Replacing Jon Stewart On The Daily Show!

March 31, 2015 - UNITED STATES
- South Africans are overjoyed at the news that Trevor Noah will replace John Stewart on the Daily Show.

The 31-year-old comedian comes from the country's biggest township of Soweto. He is the son of a black South African woman of Xhosa background and a white Swiss man.

In a place polarised by race, his great sense of humour cuts across the racial divide.

He started his career on a local soap opera and progressed to host a celebrity gossip show. He also had a stint as a DJ on a popular show at a youth station.

His self-deprecating humour has gained him a legion of fans. He previously described himself as a "bag of weed", because his mother used to drop him as soon she saw the apartheid police in the 80s.

Under South African law at the time, multiracial romantic relationships were prohibited.

His mixed-race heritage, experiences of growing up in Soweto and observations about race are the leading themes in his comedy.

In 2013 he became the first African comedian to perform on Jay Leno's Tonight Show in the United States.

Last December, he made his debut as an international correspondent on the Daily Show, offering an outsider's perspective on life in America. After only three appearances, he has been offered the top slot taking over from Jon Stewart.

WATCH: Meet Trevor Noah.

Stewart announced he would be stepping down earlier this year after 16 years at the helm.

Noah's catalogue of witty anecdotes includes a story about an encounter with an American of Mexican decent on the streets of Los Angeles.

The man approached Noah and began speaking to him in Spanish. When the comedian tried to explain that he did not speak the language and was in fact from South Africa, not South America, the man reacted in anger.

"You must be ashamed of yourself," he said. "Now that you have made here it in America, you no longer speak your mother tongue."


Noah, is however, a multi-linguist. He speaks six South African languages and is conversant in German and French.

On another occasion he regaled fans with a tale about an incident in a German supermarket. He had gone into the store to buy a cold drink. The lady behind the counter was wide-eyed and surprised at how he spoke German. She was apparently shocked at Noah's "Hitler-ish accent".

It turns out Noah picked up some of his German by watching a lot of Hitler's tapes.

He is also hugely talented when it comes to mimicking politicians.

President Jacob Zuma has on many occasions delivered a whole show of material for him. He once impersonated Mr Zuma's slow reading when he delivers speeches from prepared text.

He would start by saying "we are going to party" and the audience would celebrate in anticipation of a party. The president would continue to say... "icipate" to his audience's disappointment.

WATCH: Noah fills Jon Stewart in on what Boko Haram was doing in Nigeria while the world was focusing on the Charlie Hebdo attack in Paris.

Part of his popularity here in South Africa is because his jokes are not full of foul language. Whole families can watch his material without skipping a generation.

Like many comedians around the world, Noah hasn't shied away from controversial issues. He once told a joke about the Paralympian Oscar Pistorius during the athlete's trial which didn't go down well with some of his thousands of followers on Twitter. The reaction made the news on local media.

He also told a joke about Nelson Mandela when the old statesman was ill and frail. Although some people were offended by his remarks, his appeal continued to grow.

Noah's appointment at the head of one of the most successful shows in the US is proof that Africa is not just about Boko Haram, Ebola, death and destruction.

It is about many other things, such as first-grade comedy. - BBC.

INSIDE AFRICA: Nigerian Election - Opposition Candidate Muhammadu Buhari On Path To Historic Victory!

Muhammadu Buhari, APC presidential candidate

March 31, 2015 - NIGERIA
-  With partial results reported in the Nigerian presidential election, it appears opposition candidate Muhammadu Buhari is leading incumbent President Goodluck Jonathan.

Reuters, which has collated results from three-quarters of Nigeria's states as they're broadcast live on state TV, reported that Buhari has so far obtained 11.5 million votes, Jonathan 9.5 million.

Electoral officers from each of the 36 states are taking turns declaring results from their respective states at the Independent National Electoral Commission.

The vote count was stopped Monday night and will resume at 10 a.m. Tuesday (5 a.m. ET), according to a tweet from Attahiru Jega, the chairman of the electoral commission. Jega will be the one to announce final results.

Violent protests after Nigeria's presidential elections Saturday sparked calls for calm from the two main candidates and a warning by the United States and Britain against political interference.

Protesters fired gunshots and torched a local electoral office in Nigeria's oil-rich Rivers state on Sunday as they marched to protest the elections, amid claims of vote-rigging and voter intimidation.

Heavy rain eventually forced the protesters to leave, but there are fears it will take more than rain to stop further protests and violence. More than 800 people were killed in post-election violence across Nigeria's north in 2011 after charges that those elections were illegitimate.
Goodluck Jonathan, left, and Mohammadu Buhari renewed
pledges for peaceful elections on March 26.
Now Nigeria has just held what are thought to be the closest elections since a return to democracy in 1999 after decades of military rule. The two main candidates are incumbent Jonathan of the Peoples Democratic Party and retired Buhari of All Progressives Congress.

Jonathan and Buhari last week issued a pledge reaffirming their commitment to "free, fair and credible elections" after their signing of the Abuja Accord in January.

After the protests in Rivers, Buhari's All Progressives Congress demanded the elections there be canceled.

"There's been so much violence in Rivers state that it's just not tenable," party spokesman Lai Mohammed said.

But the Peoples Democratic Party disputed the accusation, saying the election was "credible and the result reflects the overwhelming wish of the people of Rivers state to support President Goodluck Jonathan."

Concerns over count

"We are concerned by what seems to be happening," said Jega, the election chairman, about events in Rivers. Voting ended after problems with ballot papers and digital voting cards saw it extended to Sunday in some areas.

Britain and the United States entered the fray Monday with their top diplomats issuing a statement welcoming a "largely peaceful vote" but warning any political interference would contravene Jonathan and Buhari's peace pact.

"So far, we have seen no evidence of systemic manipulation of the process. But there are disturbing indications that the collation process -- where the votes are finally counted -- may be subject to deliberate political interference. This would contravene the letter and spirit of the Abuja Accord, to which both major parties committed themselves," U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and UK Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond said.

Responding to their joint statement, electoral commission spokesman Kayode Idowu said: "For all that I know there is no sign of political interference in the collation procedure." Idowu said the collation procedure "cannot be subject to interference as long as our representative is present."

Peaceful conduct

The fear is that the results may not be accepted by the loser. If the opposition believes it has been rigged out of victory by the ruling party, then the protests in Rivers could spread to northern Nigeria.

Both candidates have taken to social media to call for calm.

"I want to urge all Nigerians to also wait patiently for the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to collate and announce results," Jonathan said on his Facebook account.

"Fellow Nigerians, I urge you to exercise patience and vigilance as we wait for all results to be announced," said Buhari on Twitter.

Boko Haram

Nigeria's vote had been scheduled for February 14, but on February 7, Nigeria's election commission announced it would be postponed for six weeks because of security concerns, with the military needing more time to secure areas controlled by extremist group Boko Haram. The controversial decision was unpopular among many Nigerians and led to widespread protests.

Jonathan has been criticized for not doing enough to combat Boko Haram, which is waging a campaign of terror aimed at instituting a stricter version of Sharia law in Nigeria.

On Saturday, residents in the northeastern state of Gombe said at least 11 people were killed and two more injured in attacks at polling stations, apparently by Boko Haram extremists.

In other attacks not believed to be related to voting, suspected Boko Haram militants decapitated 23 people in a raid Saturday night on Buratai village in northeast Nigeria's Borno state, according to residents and Ibrahim Adamu, a local politician in the village.

Meanwhile on Monday, Nigeria's police force issued a statement saying police and a "local vigilante group" had foiled an attack by unknown gunmen on the town of Tafawa Balewa in northeastern Bauchi state.

The assailants had "stormed Tafawa Balewa town in a convoy of 18 Hilux vehicles and started firing sporadically," the statement said. After being forced to retreat and abandon four vehicles equipped with anti-aircraft machine guns, the attackers went to Jitar village, where they killed three "male vigilante members," police said. Security forces had cordoned off the surrounding area, they said. - CNN.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

AFRICAN RENAISSANCE: How Ethiopia Is Shaking Off Its Famine-Stricken Image - Over The Last Decade The Economy Has Grown At An Average Of 11 PERCENT!

A man walks past a portion of the Addis Ababa light railway under construction in Addis Ababa on January 15, 2014. The Addis Ababa
Light Railway system contracted by the China Railway Group Limited will have a total of 41 stations. AFP PHOTO/Carl de Souza
(Photo credit should read CARL DE SOUZA/AFP/Getty Images) | CARL DE SOUZA via Getty Images

March 29, 2015 - ADDIS ABABA, ETHIOPIA
-  Ethiopia's planned new airport on the outskirts of the capital is still years from becoming a reality but Tewodros Dawit can already envision how grand it will look.
"The airport we are planning to build is going to be huge. Very huge," Tewodros said one recent afternoon as he examined project plans in his office in Addis Ababa. "It will be one of the biggest airports in the world. I don't know what other countries are planning in this regard for the future but no country has created this much capacity so far in Africa."

Ethiopia, once known for epic famines that sparked global appeals for help, has a booming economy and big plans these days. The planned airport is one of several muscular, forward-looking infrastructure projects undertaken by the government that have fueled talk of this East African country as a rising African giant.

Addis Ababa increasingly looks like an enormous construction site, with cranes and building blocks springing up in many corners of the city. Britain, long a source of charitable aid for Ethiopia, announced last month that Ethiopia's growing economy means the time has come for "transitioning support toward economic development to help generate jobs, income and growth."

Over the last decade Ethiopia's economy has grown at an average of 11 percent, more than double the rate for sub-Saharan Africa, according to U.N. figures. The growth is fueled in part by huge public expenditure on energy and infrastructure projects that make the country attractive to long-term private investment. The projects are being funded mostly through loans obtained from partners such as China, India and the World Bank.

Tewodros, the chief executive of the Ethiopian Airports Enterprise, said the planned new airport would have the capacity to handle up to 100 million travelers per year, a figure that he said dovetails with the ambitious plans of national carrier Ethiopian Airlines. He said the new airport would relieve Addis Ababa's Bole International Airport, whose passenger terminal is undergoing a $250 million expansion amid growth in passenger numbers from 900,000 in 2000 to more than 7 million in 2014. The old airport has been engulfed by residential areas — a major reason behind the decision to build a new airport on the capital's outskirts.

Ethiopian Airlines, Africa's largest based on fleet size and its most profitable, has been rapidly expanding over the years as it focuses mostly on the booming Africa-Asia market, according to the aerospace consulting firm CAPA Aviation Centre.

"Ethiopian's expansion in Asia has been much faster and its pursuit of Asia-Africa transit passengers is much more aggressive" than its big rival Kenya Airways, the firm said. Ethiopian Airlines now has daily non-stop flights to the Chinese cities of Beijing, Guangzhou and Shanghai. China has become Africa's biggest trading partner.

Tewodros said the planned new airport, expected to be complete within a decade, would cost several billion dollars but offered no specific figure. The government is still assessing potential financiers, with a loan from Export-Import Bank of China a strong possibility. The government is expected to announce in the coming weeks which of three locations under consideration has been picked as the site, he said.

"It is only natural that Ethiopia plans on having a mega airport not only to host Ethiopian Airlines but also to host a lot of transit traffic that passes through Addis," said Zemedeneh Nigatu, a managing partner in Ethiopia with accounting firm Ernst & Young who is also a consultant for Ethiopian Airlines.

This country of nearly 90 million people earned about $3.2 billion from aviation-related services last year, four times more than the traditional coffee exports, according to Zemedeneh.

"Already aviation is a major part of the Ethiopian economy and this is a financially feasible project," he said of the new airport plans. "The country should keep its eye now on Gulf airports and carriers that are its competitors."

Other projects recently completed or under construction include the $475 million Addis Ababa Light Rail Transit project aimed at eliminating the lack of public transportation options.

Behailu Sintayehu, who led the railway project, said the 34 kilometer (21 mile)-long system would have lines going under and above ground with the capacity to transport 15,000 people per hour in each direction. It becomes operational in less than two months, he said.

Road construction is also underway in many parts of the capital.

"The country was preoccupied with fulfilling its basic needs in the past. Now it has become ambitious and is undertaking massive infrastructure projects by itself," said Abel Abate Demissie, a researcher with the think tank Ethiopian International Institute for Peace and Development.

Abate said the projects underscore what he called Ethiopia's "I can do it attitude" amid the African stereotypes of poverty and scarcity. Ethiopia's famine in the 1980s was so severe it spawned the 1985 Live Aid concert to raise funds to combat it. Today, the country has increased capacity to feed itself.

Ethiopia's government has injected an average of 14.7 percent of government spending on the agriculture sector since 2003, according to Ethiopia's Agricultural Transformation Agency. Agricultural production of cereals has increased by 45 percent between 2006 and 2014, it said.

Abate singled out the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam on the Nile River as the crown jewel. The $4.2 billion dam is expected to produce 6,000 megawatts, making it Africa's largest hydroelectric power plant and giving Ethiopia the capacity to be a major exporter of electricity to neighboring countries. - Huffington Post.

AFRICAN RENAISSANCE: Africa And Global Power - On The Rise, But At The Margins!

March 29, 2015 - AFRICA - As pressure mounts for Africa to take greater responsibility for development, peace and security on the continent, the question of regional leadership becomes pressing.

A recent African Futures paper
explores the changing power capabilities of Algeria, Egypt, Ethiopia, Nigeria and South Africa (the so-called 'Big Five') over the next 25 years. These countries are all leaders in their respective regions and hold some of the greatest power potential in Africa.

Collectively, they represent 60% of the African economy, 40% of Africa's population and 58% of the continent's military spending. This is expected to remain the same over the next 25 years. The future of these countries will provide a fairly straightforward answer to the often-evoked question of whether or not Africa is rising. Indeed if these states fall or fail, Africa will not be able to rise.
The authors of the paper, published by the Institute for Security Studies and the Frederick S. Pardee Center for International Futures, use the International Futures forecasting system to forecast future power trajectories. In an increasingly flat world where institutions matter, states that don't network will have little influence on issues of regional and global governance.

The projections explored in the paper are based on a new index to measure national power, which includes diplomatic engagements in addition to traditional measures such as demographics, economics and technology.

WATCH: Power & influence in Africa.

If the world were a democracy, Africans would certainly have a bigger say

Today, the combined power of Africa's 55 countries accounts for close to 9% of global power. This is more than that of Japan, Russia or India, but less than the United States (US) or China, which represent about 18% and 13% of global power, respectively.

By 2040, Africa's total relative power is forecast to surpass that of the declining European Union (EU) and US - although only adding up to around 11% of global power. This is at odds with the world's demographic evolution. By 2050, one in four people will be African. If the world were a democracy, Africans would certainly have a bigger say.

In the next couple of decades, Africa is set to remain at the margins of global power. And this is an understatement, as Africa is clearly neither a country nor a union of states with any kind of supranational provisions. Even with significant advances in regional and continental integration, it is highly unlikely that Africa will speak with one voice in foreign policy matters, or be able to act in unison.

Only Nigeria has the potential to become a player with global significance. But this would require far-reaching changes in its current domestic stability, governance capacity and political leadership, which is an unlikely scenario. All other African countries are expected to remain so-called 'minor powers,' which affects Africa's influence in issues of global governance.

For the Big Five, the data tells a story of two emerging powers and three whose potential is waning. The capabilities of Nigeria and Ethiopia are expected to grow considerably in the next 25 years. Those of Egypt, South Africa and Algeria, on the other hand, are forecast to remain stagnant or experience a slight decline.
Nigeria's economy, already the largest in Africa, is expected to represent almost 3% of the global economy by 2040. Its military spending is set to increase significantly over the next 25 years, ready to overtake Africa's current military heavyweight, Algeria, in more or less 10 years. By 2040, Nigeria is forecast to account for nearly a fifth of Africa's total power capabilities.

By 2040, Nigeria is forecast to account for nearly a fifth of Africa's total power

Ethiopia, the other rising power, is coming from a low base and the country will remain the poorest among the Big Five. Nevertheless, by 2040 it is expected to be the sixth largest African economy due to high average economic growth rates.

Algeria, Egypt and South Africa are likely to grow below the African average growth rate of 6.3% per annum. The size of their populations will also stagnate - although this is due to higher general levels of development, which are associated with lower fertility rates.

Among the Big Five, Egypt has traditionally dominated the category of global diplomatic engagement. This can be gauged according to the number of embassies abroad, the number of memberships to international organisations and the number of international treaties ratified by a country.

Egypt's strategic location, and its important role in both Arab and African nationalism, ensures that it is deeply connected internationally. Egypt is closely followed by South Africa, Nigeria and Algeria, while Ethiopia lags behind. Not surprisingly, South Africa made big strides after the end of apartheid in 1994 when the country reintegrated into the international community.

The way the Big Five project power is not necessarily in line with their capabilities. After all, power is as much about potential as it is about concrete projection. Some countries are able to influence international actors, institutions or regimes than would be expected based on their capabilities, while others don't live up to their potential.

It is questionable whether South Africa will continue punching above its weight

This is the case for Nigeria, which has been punching below its weight despite a strong set of capabilities. High levels of internal instability and corruption along with a political economy of violence compromise the country's prospects. There is also a lack of strategic vision in the foreign-policy domain, which has recently been aggravated by the growing threat of Boko Haram.

Algeria's role in Africa is also at odds with its relatively robust albeit declining capabilities. Faced with significant domestic and regional threats, Algeria remains focused on the need to maintain a large military capacity for internal purposes.

Egypt punches above its weight internationally, but below its weight in the African context. The country is struggling to cope with the aftermath of the Arab Spring as well as spill-over effects of the conflict in neighbouring Libya. Domestic challenges seem to detract from projecting power outside of the country, with external priorities evolving around the conflict in the Middle East and efforts to contain terrorism.

In contrast, both South Africa and Ethiopia have largely punched above their weight. Despite its limited capabilities, Ethiopia is Africa's largest contributor to United Nations peacekeeping missions and plays an important role in peace and security matters in the Horn of Africa. Indeed, regional security is a domestic priority for Ethiopia.

South Africa, for its part, has capitalised on the miracle of the transition to democracy; Nelson Mandela's legacy; the international activism of his successor, Thabo Mbeki, as well as several years of healthy economic growth and a benign global environment.

Yet it is questionable whether the current context of stagnant or even declining capabilities and a lack of credible leadership will allow South Africa to continue punching above its weight in the medium-term future.
What seems certain is that the distribution of relative power in Africa will remain multipolar, with various countries fulfilling the role of regional leaders. - ISS Africa.

EUROPEAN RACISM: The Mainstream Media's War On Black People - CBS' "60 Minutes" Blasted For "Anachronistic Style" Of Africa Coverage!

March 29, 2015 - UNITED STATES
-  A group of academics and journalists is accusing 60 Minutes of turning black Africans into background extras in its recent segments from the continent.

60 Minutes has managed, quite extraordinarily, to render people of black African ancestry voiceless and all but invisible” in a series of recent segments, says a letter penned by Howard W. French and signed by more than 150 people that was emailed to 60 Minutes exec producer Jeff Fager and posted on the blog A Glimpse of the World. French, who spent most of his 23-year career at The New York Times as a foreign correspondent, now is an associate professor at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, where he has taught journalism and photography since 2008.

WATCH: 60 Minutes - The Hot Zone.

In the letter, the signers most notably dinged the CBS newsmagazine for a segment in which Lara Logan went to Liberia last year to cover the ebola epidemic in that country. “In that broadcast, Africans were reduced to the role of silent victims. They constituted what might be called a scenery of misery: people whose thoughts, experiences and actions were treated as if totally without interest,” the letter scolds. “Liberians were shown within easy speaking range of Logan, including some Liberians whom she spoke about, and yet not a single Liberian was quoted in any capacity” though Liberians not only died of ebola, many of them contributed to the fight against the disease, including doctors, nurses and other caregivers, some of whom died in the effort. “Despite this, the only people heard from on the air were white foreigners who had come to Liberia to contribute to the fight against the disease.”

Back when that report aired in November, French tweeted: “Not a single African voice in @60Minutes piece from Liberia on ebola. Not remotely acceptable? We see a father whose son is dying. No quote.”

Today, in his letter to Fager, he complained:

“Taken together, this anachronistic style of coverage reproduces, in condensed form, many of the worst habits of modern American journalism on the subject of Africa. To be clear, this means that Africa only warrants the public’s attention when there is a disaster or human tragedy on an immense scale, when Westerners can be elevated to the role of central characters, or when it is a matter of that perennial favorite, wildlife.”

Speaking of wildlife, the letter also smacked the newsmag for two segments it said were “remarkably similar…featuring white people who have made it their mission to rescue African wildlife. In one case, these were lions, and in other, apes. People of black African descent make no substantial appearances in either of these reports, and no sense whatsoever is given of the countries visited, South Africa and Gabon.”

In all these segments, the letter said, “Africans themselves are typically limited to the role of passive victims, or occasional brutal or corrupt villains and incompetents; they are not otherwise shown to have any agency or even the normal range of human thoughts and emotions. Such a skewed perspective not only disserves Africa, it also badly disserves the news viewing and news reading public.”

In the letter, the group says American views of Africa, a continent of 1.1 billion people, “are badly misinformed” and blamed “the mainstream media.”

A 60 Minutes rep sent Deadline a statement, saying, “60 Minutes is proud of its coverage of Africa and has received considerable recognition for it. We have reached out to Mr. French to invite him to discuss this further and we look forward to meeting with him.”

The statement did not specify which of its reports about Africa it was referencing, but a Bob Simon report titled “Joy In The Congo,” about the only all-black orchestra in Central Africa, won a Peabody Award and two Emmys in 2013, and Scott Pelley’s “Africa Mercy,” about a hospital ship that repaired Africans’ cleft palates and other problems relating to the jaw or face, won a News Emmy.

Here is the full list of signatories to the letter:
Howard W. French, Associate Professor, Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism; author of China’s Second Continent and A Continent for the Taking: The Tragedy and Hope of Africa
Fatin Abbas, Manhattanville College
Akin Adesokan, Novelist and Associate Professor, Comparative Literature and Cinema and Film Studies, Indiana University Bloomington
Anthony Arnove, Producer, Dirty Wars
Adam Ashforth, Department of Afroamerican and African Studies, University of Michigan
Sean Jacobs, Faculty, International Affairs, Milano, The New School and Africa is a Country.
Teju Cole, Distinguished Writer in Residence, Bard College/Photography Critic, The New York Times Magazine
Richard Joseph, John Evans Professor of International History and Politics, Northwestern University
Leon Dash, Swanlund Chair Professor in Journalism, Professor, Center for Advanced Study, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Michael C. Vazquez, Senior Editor, Bidoun: Art and Culture from the Middle East
Achille Mbembe, Professor, Wits University and Visiting Professor of Romance Studies and Franklin Humanities Institute Research Scholar, Duke University
M. Neelika Jayawardane, Associate Professor of English Literature at State University of New York-Oswego, and Senior Editor of Africa Is a Country
Adam Hochschild, author
Eileen Julien, Professor, Comparative Literature, French & Italian, African Studies, Indiana University Bloomington
Mohamed Keita, freelance journalist in NYC, former Africa Advocacy Coordinator of the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ)
Aaron Leaf, Producer, Feet in 2 Worlds, The New School
Dan Magaziner, Assistant Professor, History, Yale University
Marissa Moorman, Associate Professor, Department of History, Indiana University
Sisonke Msimang, Research Fellow, University of Kwazulu-Natal.
Achal Prabhala, Writer and Researcher, Bangalore, India.
Janet Roitman, Associate Professor of Anthropology, The New School
Lily Saint, Assistant Professor of English, Wesleyan University.
Abdourahman A. Waberi, writer and Professor of French and Francophone Studies George Washington University
Binyavanga Wainaina, Writer
Chika Unigwe, Writer
James C. McCann, Chair, Department of Archaeology, Professor of History, Boston University
Susan Shepler, Associate Professor, International Peace and Conflict Resolution, School of International Service, American University
Peter Uvin, Provost, Amherst College
G. Pascal Zachary, professor of practice, Arizona State University
Cara E Jones, PhD, Assistant Professor of Political Science, Mary Baldwin College
James T. Campbell, Edgar E. Robinson Professor of History/Stanford University
Nii Akuetteh, Independent International Affairs Analyst, Former Executive Director of OSIWA, the Soros Foundation in West Africa
Mary Ratcliff, editor, San Francisco Bay View National Black Newspaper
James Ferguson, Susan S. and William H. Hindle Professor, Stanford University
Alice Gatebuke, Rwandan Genocide and War survivor. Communications Director, African Great Lakes Action Network (AGLAN)
Max Bankole Jarrett, Deputy Director, Africa Progress Panel Secretariat
Mohamed Dicko, retired Computer Applications Analyst in St Louis, Missouri
Mojúbàolú Olufúnké Okome, Ph.D., Professor of Political Science, African & Women’s Studies, Brooklyn College, CUNY
Adam Ouologuem
John Edwin Mason, Department of History, University of Virginia
Dele Olojede, newspaperman
Dr. Jonathan T. Reynolds, Professor of History, Northern Kentucky University
Daniel J. Sharfstein, Professor of Law, Vanderbilt University
Claire L. Adida, Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of California San Diego
Lisa Lindsay, University of North Carolina
Anne-Maria B. Makhulu, Assistant Prof. of Cultural Anthropology and African and African American Studies, Duke University
Karin Shapiro, Associate Professor of the Practice African and African American Studies, Duke University
Garry Pierre Pierre, Executive director of the Community Reporting Alliance, New York City
Lynn M. Thomas, Professor and Chair, Department of History, University of Washington
Martha Saavedra, Associate Director, Center for African Studies, University of California, Berkeley
Kathryn Mathers, Visiting Assistant Professor, International Comparative Studies, Duke University
Siddhartha Mitter, freelance journalist
Alexis Okeowo, Contributor, The New Yorker and The New York Times Magazine
Susan Thomson, Assistant Professor of Peace and Conflict Studies, Colgate University
Nicolas van de Walle, Maxwell M. Upson Professor of Government, Cornell University
David Newbury, Gwendolen Carter professor of African studies, Smith College
Charles Piot, Professor, Department of Cultural Anthropology & Department of African and African American Studies Co-Convener Africa Initiative, Duke University
Adia Benton, Assistant Professor of Anthropology, Brown University
Gregory Mann, historian of francophone Africa, Columbia University
Anne Pitcher, University of Michigan
Howard Stein, University of Michigan
Adam Shatz, London Review of Books
Peter Rosenblum, professor of international law and human rights, Bard College
Timothy Longman, African Studies Center Director, Chair of Committee of Directors, Pardee School of Global Studies, Associate Professor of Political Science, Boston University
Laura E. Seay, Assistant Professor, Department of Government, Colby College
Robert Grossman, Producer
Daniel Fahey, Visiting Scholar at UC Berkeley, and served on the UN Group of Experts on DRC from 2013-2015
Jennie E. Burnet, Associate Professor of Anthropology, University of Louisville
Kim Yi Dionne, Assistant Professor, Smith College
Lonnie Isabel, Journalist
Karen L. Murphy
Ann Garrison, Pacifica Radio reporter/producer and contributor to SF Bay View, Black Agenda Report, Black Star News, Counterpunch, Global Research
Ryan Briggs, Assistant Professor, Department of Political Science, Virginia Tech
Yolande Bouka, PhD, Researcher, Institute for Security Studies
Elliot Fratkin PhD, Gwendolen M. Carter Professor of African Studies, Department of Anthropology, Smith College
Gretchen Bauer, Professor and Chair, Department of Political Science and International Relations, University of Delaware
John Woodford, journalist
Frank Holmquist, Professor of Politics, Emeritus, School of Critical Social Inquiry, Hampshire College
Alice Kang, Assistant Professor, Department of Political Science, Institute for Ethnic Studies – African and African American Studies, University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Michel Marriott, journalist, author
Jennifer N. Brass, PhD, Assistant Professor, School of Public & Environmental Affairs, Indiana University
Séverine Autesserre, Department of Political Science, Barnard College, Columbia University
Jill E. Kelly, Assistant Professor, Clements Department of History, Southern Methodist University
Dr. Meghan Healy-Clancy, Lecturer on Social Studies and on Women, Gender, and Sexuality, Harvard University
Dayo Olopade, journalist, author
Mary Moran, Colgate University
Sharon Abramowitz, UFL
Rebecca Shereikis, Interim Director, Institute for the Study of Islamic Thought in Africa, Northwestern University
Barbara B. Brown, Ph.D., Director of the Outreach Program, African Studies Center, Boston University
Jeffrey Stringer
David Alain Wohl, MD, Associate Professor, The Division of Infectious Diseases, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Andy Sechler, MD, Instructor in Medicine, Harvard Medical School
John Kraemer, Assistant Professor, Dept of Health Systems Admin. & African Studies Program, Georgetown University
Barbara Shaw Anderson, Associate Director, African Studies Center, Lecturer, Department of African, African American, and Diaspora Studies, African Studies Center, University of North Carolina
Adrienne LeBas, Assistant Professor of Government, American University, DC
Catharine Newbury, Professor Emerita of Government, Smith College
Ana M. Ayuso Alvarez, Epidemiology Programme applied to the Field, M. Art (Anthropologist)
Cynthia Haq MD, Professor of Family Medicine and Population Health Sciences, University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health
Aili Tripp, Professor of Political Science & Gender and Women’s Studies, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Gloria Ladson-Billings, Professor, Department of Curriculum & Instruction, Kellner Family Professor in Urban Education, University of Wisconsin
Anne Jebet Waliaula, PhD, Outreach Coordinator, African Studies Program, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Judith Oki, Salt Lake City, UT, former Capacity Building Advisor for Rebuilding Basic Health Services, Monrovia, Liberia
Sandra Schmidt, PhD, Assistant Professor of Social Studies and Education, Teachers College, Columbia University
Emily Callaci, Assistant Professor, Department of History, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Louise Meintjes, Assoc Prof, Departments of Music and Cultural Anthropology, Duke University
May Rihani, Former Co-Chair of the United Nations Girls’ Education Initiative (UNGEI), Author of Cultures Without Borders
Tejumola Olaniyan, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Selah Agaba, Doctoral Student, Anthropology & Education Policy Studies, University of Wisconsin
Casey Chapman, Wisconsin
Ted Hochstadt, Returned Peace Corps Volunteer (Lesotho)
Kah Walla, CEO – STRATEGIES!, Cameroon
Kofi Ogbujiagba, journalist, Madison, Wisconsin
Matthew Francis Rarey, Visiting Assistant Professor of Art History, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
David B. Levine, consultant in international development, Washington, DC
Claire Wendland, Medical Anthropologist, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Frederic C. Schaffer, Professor of Political Science, University of Massachusetts Amherst
Joye Bowman, Professor and Chair, Department of History, University of Massachusetts Amherst
Cody S. Perkins, Ph.D. Candidate, Corcoran Department of History, University of Virginia
Eric Gottesman, Colby College Department of Art
Lynda Pickbourn, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Economics, School of Critical Social Inquiry, Hampshire College
Kate Heuisler, Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Henry John Drewal, Evjue-Bascom Professor of African and African Diaspora Arts, Departments of Art History and Afro-American Studies, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Sarah Forzley, lecturer in the English department at the University of Paris 10- Nanterre (France)
Laura Doyle, Professor of English,University of Massachusetts-Amherst
Ralph Faulkingham, PhD
Emeritus Professor of Anthropology (and former Editor, The African Studies Review), University of Massachusetts Amherst
Dr. Jessica Johnson, University of Massachusetts Amherst History Department
Joseph C. Miller, University of Virginia ret.
Sean Hanretta, Associate Professor, Department of History, Northwestern University
Iris Berger, Vincent O’Leary Professor of History, University at Albany
Jackson Musuuza, MBChB, MPH, MS, PhD student in Clinical Epidemiology, University of Wisconsin Madison
Dr. Anita Schroven, Researcher, Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology, Halle/Saale, Germany
Prof. Dr. Baz Lecocq, Chair of African History, Humboldt University of Berlin, Germany
Monica H. Green, Professor of History, Arizona State University
Sandra Adell, Professor, Department of Afro-American Studies, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Pamela Feldman-Savelsberg, Broom Professor of Social Demography and Anthropology Director, African and African American Studies Program, Acting Chair, Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Carleton College
Michael Herce, MD, MPH, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Centre for Infectious Disease Research in Zambia (CIDRZ)
Satish Gopal MD MPH, UNC Project-Malawi (Director, Cancer Program), UNC Institute for Global Health & Infectious Diseases
Mina C. Hosseinipour, MD, MPH, Scientific Director, UNC Project, Lilongwe Malawi
Cliff Missen, M.A.
Director, WiderNet@UNC and The WiderNet Project, Clinical Associate Professor
School of Information and Library Science, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
Groesbeck Parham, Professor, UNC (working in Zambia)
Norma Callender, San Jose
Harry McKinley Williams, Jr., Laird Bell Professor of History, Carleton College
Robtel Neajai Pailey, Liberian academic, London
Rose Brewer, professor, University of Minnesota
Fodei J. Batty, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Political Science, Quinnipiac University
Graham Wells, MS. PE, (Professor, Retired), Dept of Mechanical Engineering, Mississippi State University
CHOUKI EL HAMEL, Ph.D., Professor of History, School of Historical, Philosophical and Religious Studies Arizona State University
Obioma Ohia, Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Maryland Department of Physics
Paschal Kyoore, Professor of French, Francophone African/Caribbean Literatures & Cultures
Director, African Studies Program, Gustavus Adolphus College, Saint Peter, Minnesota
Preston Smith, Chair of Africana Studies. Professor of Politics, Mount Holyoke College
Catherine E. Bolten. Assistant Professor of Anthropology and Peace Studies. The Joan B. Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies, University of Notre Dame
Michael Leslie, associate professor of telecommunication, College of Journalism and Communications, University of Florida
Agnes Ngoma Leslie, Senior Lecturer and Outreach Director, Center for African Studies, University of Florida
Martin Murray, Urban Planning and African Studies, University of Michigan
Laura Fair, Associate Professor of African History, Michigan State University
Noel Twagiramungu, Post-doctoral Research Fellow, World Peace Foundation, The Fletcher School, Tufts University

- Deadline.

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