By George Bamu on January 27, 2016
Attendees visit at various booths during an NGO symposium at the University of Denver International House, January 20
Within the many cities that make up the Denver metro area, it is common to find nonprofit organizations aka non-governmental organizations or NGO’s dotted all over the map.
These organizations traverse the vast international development landscape of Colorado. They are involved in activities in sometimes very remote and dangerous places in Asia, the African continent and Latin America.
For good or for bad–they are called NGO’s for a reason. They provide a special service to the communities in which they operate. …
By Alicia Houser on July 27, 2015
A map showing the countries where gay marriage is allowed or outlawed in Africa
A few weeks ago, as the result of a 5-4 ruling handed down by the Supreme Court, the United States legalized gay marriage.
As couples across America rushed to get married, African leaders carried about their days without comment on how this ruling might impact legislation within their own countries.
Across a continent where two countries enforce the death penalty for homosexual activity (Sudan and Mauritania), an expansion of homosexual rights still seems far off.
However, times are changing.
Even Uganda, whose boastful anti-gay laws led a cross-continent movement to penalize homosexuality, struck down their anti-gay laws last August based on the fact that the original law was passed without quorum.…
By Muthi Nhlema on February 2, 2015
Today we are taking a moment to report about the recent floods which hit the African nation of Malawi. So, bear with us for just a moment. This is important.
As Malawi is passing through what many believe is but the eye of the storm, the worst in a generation, the country is quickly coming to terms with the mammoth scale of the human and material loss of the recent flash floods.
Over 200,000 people displaced and rendered homeless! Close to 200 confirmed dead! And hundreds more missing and yet to be found! And the counting is not yet over.…
By Muthi Nhlema on June 1, 2014
Peter Mutharika was declared the winner of Malawi’s disputed presidential election
After the recent general elections, the results of the 50-50 campaign, designed to advocate for equal representation between men and women in elected positions in Malawi, are disappointing.
The seemingly elusive goal has been fraught with all kinds of challenges. My ‘un-womanly’ take on the matter is that its major problem has more to do with strategy than material challenges.
With a few years of experience working alongside many gender activists, there is one issue I have with the women’s empowerment movement in Malawi.
The movement was more concerned with quantity, and less on quality, in the hope that the numbers would somehow magically translate into actual policy gains without really clarifying how that would happen.…
By Muthi Nhlema on May 26, 2014
Supporters of Malawi’s incumbent President cheer during her final campaign rally at Songani village on the outskirts of the city of Zomba, the former capital of Malawi, May 17, 2014
If the past two years have achieved anything, besides everything–between nothing and mediocrity–it is that very little has been done to convince Malawians of the value ‘some’ women can create if given the reins of power.
The nation and the world saw Joyce Banda, current president of Malawi, as a beacon of hope and a great possibility for all women in Africa. Some even called her a ‘game-changer.’
But Joyce Banda, almost single-handedly, managed to turn this national goodwill and positive energy, which characterized her ascension to leadership, into a national joke – a joke which even had its own sickening catchphrase: “Is it because I’m a woman?”
Banda’s two years at the stirring wheel of this crazy little southern African country will raise all kinds of questions about whether her leadership has hurt or bolstered the factoids that have placed women as better caretakers of homes and communities–and therefore countries–than their male counterparts.…
By Muthi Nhlema on March 8, 2014
Ugandan President-Yuweri Museveni
Recent news of Uganda’s bold and controversial move to sign into law various new anti-gay legislations, which will make life even harder for homosexuals living in that country, has been welcomed with open arms across Africa, including my own country, Malawi. That was expected. But this is not ‘good news’ at all. Instead, it is really bad news.
As this intriguing drama is quickly taking shape under the watchful eyes of a spellbound global community, the next episode in this tragicomedy of sorts has to be the recent publishing of Uganda’s Top 200 Homosexuals in the Red Pepper tabloid newspaper.…
By Africa Agenda on January 31, 2014
African men and women working in the fields
Africa Agenda is excited to be the fiscal sponsor of the recently launched international development organization, Africa Development Promise, as it seeks nonprofit status.
Founded in 2013, the organization facilitates the growth and development of agricultural cooperatives that leads to sustainable livelihoods and wealth creation.
With seven out of 10 of the world’s fastest growing economies coming from Africa, the region is not only dynamic, but one that holds a lot of economic potential for the world. Urbanization, increased demand for raw materials, commodity prices, foreign investment and rising incomes have fueled faster growth in domestic demand.…
By Muthi Nhlema on January 29, 2014
The African Americans: Many Rivers To Cross
I will remember the many Africans in the diaspora that I met on my recent trip to America. I listened to their stories of struggles, nostalgia and hope.
I met a proud and talkative Nigerian taxi driver who still referred to some parts of Nigeria as Biafra, who didn’t see himself, or his family, going back home to Biafra anytime soon.
But mostly I will remember Fatima, an Ethiopian beauty, who was working two jobs – as a translator for resettled Ethiopian refugees on Thursdays and as a hotel shuttle driver on other weekdays – to save up for her college degree.…
By Muthi Nhlema on November 19, 2013
- A view of the 16th Street Mall in Denver, Colorado.
One would have expected the recent U.S. government shutdown to have shaped this piece, but surprisingly it didn’t.
I initially thought I would write about how lopsided the news media in America is and how I now strongly believe that it is the media that has shaped Africa’s “single story” as a sort of impoverished version of the Flintstones.
It would have been easy to use this as an anecdote for how isolated America, and its Americans, is from the real Africa. It would have been a great blog to write – “Blame it on the media for the ‘single story!’”
But haven’t we heard it all before?…
By Muthi Nhlema on November 13, 2013
I wrote this blog post while sitting at my laptop during the unholy wee hours of an American morning. I was waiting for an early-morning flight home. Although I do realize now that the whole idea of an African chronicling his journey and experience of an entire country is probably as cliché as the missionaries writing their 18th century journals of the supposedly “dark” continent of Africa.
And like the so-called dark continent, it is so easy to fall into the trap of telling what my favorite Nigerian author, Chimamanda Adichie, terms the “single story.”
I can only imagine how much of a bane it must be for many an African living in the diaspora to constantly face the single solitary narrative of their motherland, a narrative of famine, war, corruption and AIDS, essentially a narrative of hopelessness.…