Waiting to be local

Image via UK Telegraph

November 17, 2015

By Bwesigye Bwa Mwesigire

Republished from Africa is a Country

The predicted El Niño rains start in September. Kampala is wet in the afternoons and sometimes in the nights too. The traffic jams are jarring. It is wise to stay home. It is wise to stay home because you resigned from your three part-time university teaching jobs in Kampala to move to London for a fellowship at the African Leadership Centre. Does it matter to the British visa and immigration official who will allow or deny you entrance?

It is wise to stay home because you do not want to explain the shame and embarrassment of having to wait for three weeks to be judged fit to live in London, to friends who are demanding on social media for a photo of you in Trafalgar Square. You are stuck here waiting, for your passport to be returned to Kampala from Pretoria where UK visa and immigration decisions are made, so you can fly into the term that is already two weeks underway.

This election is about prejudice against certain social classes

November 16, 2015

By Bwesigye Bwa Mwesigire

Republished from Daily Monitor

In Summary

Some of you arguing that Shs1 m monthly pay is unrealistic actually wouldn’t survive on the same. Do you think you are more human, have more needs?

The campaigns for the 2016 presidential election are now in high gear and candidates’ propaganda machines are taking positions. It is not an easy task, to find honest and genuine conversations amid the propaganda noise, especially on social media. Most of the propaganda is coming from the moneyed camps in the race, but once in a while, it is possible to tell what informs the positions and responses given to issues being raised by the candidates.
One of the many issues that led to heated conversations online is the promise to primary school teachers by Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) candidate Mr Warren Kizza Besigye that in his government, he will pay them a monthly salary of Sh1 million. To understand the responses to the promise, we must go personal, because the personal is always political, just as the political is always personal, and as this election shows us, partisan as well.

Politics Trumps Economics in Africa’s Regional Integration

ECOWAS representatives meet to discuss a proposal for a shared currency among the group's member states. Dakar, Senegal, September 4, 2015. (Cemil Oksuz/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

November 6, 2015

by Moses Onyango & Jean-Marc Trouille

Republished from The Global Observatory

Africa, traditionally the world’s poorest continent, is undergoing profound changes. It has experienced higher than normal economic growth rates for over a decade, bringing benefits such as new infrastructure and improved standards of living. Hoping to sustain this growth, African policymakers have looked to trade liberalization and more integrated markets, with regional bodies at the forefront. While the regional response has considerable promise, member states need to commit to genuine reform to achieve long-term results.

Arming Community Vigilantes in the Niger Delta: Implications for Peacebuilding

October 26, 2015

by Kialee Nyiayaana

Republished from Ashgate

ALC Alumnus Kialee Nyiayaana has a chapter: Arming Community Vigilantes in the Niger Delta: Implications for Peacebuilding in the Book "African Frontiers - Insurgency, Governance and Peacebuilding in Postcolonial States," Edited by John Idriss Lahau and Tanya Lyons.

his chapter explores the complexity and dimensions of arming vigilante groups in Nigeria's oil-rich Niger Delta, which has been confronted with conflicts and insurgencies since the 1990s. It argues that contrary to common assumptions that local communities arm vigilante groups primarily for protection purposes, state governments, local political elites and Multinational Oil Companies with different motives are also involved in arming vigilante groups in the region. The key argument is that since arms availability in villages act as incentives for local hostilities in Nigeria, local communities in the Niger Delta face greater difficulties in sustaining post-conflict intercommunity reconciliation and peace. Accordingly, the continuing availability of weapons in villages in the region problematizes the distinction drawn between conflict zones and post conflict settings.

Download the chapter here


African feminists reclaim twitter with #FeministWhilstAfrican

October 22, 2015

By Njoki Wamai

Republished from thisisafrica

The internet is increasingly a space for intellectual debates; with the ability to connect with like-minded people with similar interests, one can find people who enjoy discussing literature, scientific advancements or even the lastest piece of fluff holiday reading. Increased internet and mobile penetration in Africa has provided Africans a space to challenge dominant narratives about the continent often advanced by western media, and African feminists recently had their day when #FeministWhileAfrican was trending.

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie delivers a TEDx presentation entitled, "We Should All Be Feminists." It generated more than two million views from shares on social media platforms like Twitter. Photo: TEDxTalks/YouTube

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