Tag Archives: Africa

Buggery Is Buggery Say Malawi Ministers!

Hundreds of years ago, missionaries from western nations forced their way into Africa in order to spread the word of Jesus Christ about love and peace in the world. Somewhere along the path of love, Protestant churches in east Africa got sidetracked into believing Christianity meant hating those who differ. The Council of Churches in Malawi expressed their anger toward western nations which threaten to withhold aid to their impoverished nation because of its anti-gay laws. A recent case involving two gay men might result in prison sentences of up to 14 years for the men. Bishop Joseph ”Burumbwe said ministers unanimously agreed that homosexuality was a sin that should be punished.

Chief Justice Lovemore Manlo supported church leaders and emphasized the law was clear about the offence of buggery and indecent sexual practices. One would expect that an individual with the name of “Lovemore” might have some love in his heart for those who differ with him.

Good Bye Mr. Zenawi, A Chip Off The Old Block!

Among the tragedies of twentieth century Africa is a reluctance on the part of leaders to leave office and allow others to assume leadership of the nation. Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi is determined to offer a new approach to power –voluntarily surrender power in order to demonstrate that democracy means power changes and life goes on. Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe has refused to surrender power even though he lost the last presidential election and the result is three million have left the nation and unemployment has now reached a level of 90%. Zenawi will not stand for election again. He comes from the Tigray group which only constitutes six percent of the population and his decision is a message to fellow members of the group that they must expand their scope and join in coalitions if their nation is to prosper and become a democracy.

Now, if Zimbabweans could just get their president for life, Robert Mugabe, to head into the setting sun, the nation might be saved from disaster.

Pope Warns Of Evils Impacting Africa

Pope Benedict XVI on his trip to Africa warned the people of Angola the African continent faced the “clouds of evil” which he termed to be war, greed, and tribalism. He made a powerful statement about the clouds of evil which he noted are, “the evil of war, the murderous fruits of tribalism and ethnic rivalry, the greed which corrupts men’s hearts, enslaves the poor and robs future generations of the resources they need to create a more equitable and just society.” His words were powerful, but missing from the “clouds of evil” was any mention of the most powerful force playing upon the African continent — the could of AIDS which has caused the death of millions.

Pope Benedict has an opportunity to assist the people of Africa to confront disease, but to do so, he must shift his ideas concerning sexual behavior and support the need for condoms and extensive sex education. Can he be a Pope who cares even if the price is abandoning set beliefs?

Condoms Or Disease–Choose Disease?

Pope Benedict XVI is undoubtedly a good man, a good leader of his church, but on occasion he appears to suffer from an inability to grasp the dynamics of modern life. He is currently on a tour of Africa, a continent which is being ravaged by AIDS and in which the infection rate in many nations has reached over 10% of the population. The Pope made clear to Catholics his firm opposition to the use of condoms during sexual encounters. He said, “AIDS is a tragedy that cannot be overcome by money since that cannot be overcome through the distribution of condoms, which even aggravates the problems.” The solution according to the Pope is a “spiritual and human awakening” and “friendship for those who suffer.”

People are dying. Thousands enjoy lives filled with pain and quick death. To ask these individuals to consider having a “spiritual awakening” will not end their suffering. It is time for the Pope to recognize a modern disease and offer assistance in preventing its occurrence. The use of condoms has only one benefit– it helps prevent disease.

Riots In Greece As Immigrants Clash With Police

Greece has become a port of entry to migrants from Africa and the Middle East who seek to become part of the European Union success story. Yesterday, Greek police clashed with immigrants in the port of Patras after an immigrant was struck by a truck driver. The immigrants apparently thought it was a deliberate action and they poured into the streets in search of revenge. Patras has become a gathering point for immigrants from Africa, the Middle East and Asian immigrants who seek to hop across the Adriatic and find work in Italy. Last month there were demonstrations by truck drives who complained immigrants constantly sought to hitch rides and this frequently resulted in violence.

Perhaps, it is time for the African Union to sit down with the European Union in an effort to organize the process of immigration. This is not an issue that will disappear. In fact, as the economic crisis deepens we can expect even more violent demonstrations and anger on the part of all involved in the immigrant problem.

African Migrants Head North To Italy

The exodus from Africa to Europe continues to accelerate as thousands of Africans are crossing the Mediterranean in order to reach Italy and the prospect of work. The number of migrants hitting Italy’s southern shores has soared by more than 50% this years and at 33,000 is already 13,000 more than arrived in 2007. At least 500 people never reached Italy because they drowned at sea. Since December 24, at least 2,400 additional people reached the Pelagic islands between Libya and Sicily. Experts on migration believe the large number coming during the midst of winter suggests they are being driven by economic factors which allows smugglers to pile them into aged vessels for the perilous voyage. Italy’s Interior Minister, Roberto Maroni, threatened to fly the migrants back to their homelands, but this seems doubtful in terms of the sheer number arriving and seeking asylum.

Ironically, the Berlusconi government rode to power on the promise of being tough toward migrants and now faces the prospect of dealing with thousands of additional migrants. Many are coming from Libya despite promises by its dictator Gaddafi’s promises to crack down on the smugglers. In the meantime while Berlusconi’s followers denounce newly arrived immigrants, thousands sit in camps or wherever space can be found awaiting news of their futures.

China Interferes To Support Mugabe In Zimbabwe

It is generally agreed by any sane person that President Robert Mugabe is a mentally unbalanced individual who must step down in order to save the people of Zimbabwe from a complete disaster. Both the United States and Great Britain now openly say the power-sharing agreement that Mugabe agreed to last September is dead and there is no hope of implementing it without the end of Mugabe’s power. There are reports that China has been violating UN sanctions against arms to Zimbabwe by secretly sending in military supplies. Boeing 707 planes brought in several loads of arms and ammunition to Zimbabwe from the Democratic Republic of Congo. Several months ago a ship load of arms from China encountered a boycott by South African workers who refused to unload it for shipment to Zimbabwe. No one knows what happened to the military arms but they may have been sent to the DRC.

It is no longer a question when Zimbabwe will collapse, it HAS collapsed and millions face starvation unless the mad man and his thugs who run the nation are forced from power. The real question is why has Africa failed to save fellow Africans?

Immigrant Children To Finland Need More Assistance

Finland increasingly has become the destination of thousands of immigrants. During the past four decades the new Finnish immigration has come from the Middle East and Africa which is a revolutionary change for the Finnish education system. A recent study in Finland suggests a growing gap between what immigrant children need and what is being delivered by the school system. A child from an African or Arab background undoubtedly will encounter school bullying or discover few teachers in the school have the language skills needed to work with these new immigrants. The report notes, “Finnish language and remedial teaching” must be vastly improved.

Finland, like so many European nations is experiencing a new diversity arriving and they are discovering a lack of trained educators, reading materials, and sensitivity toward their needs within existing school systems. Educators have to learn more about the cultures of the new immigrants as well as how there is need to adjust teaching materials and methods.

Don’t Be Gay In Africa These Days!

Pape Mbaye was a famous entertainer in Senegal, he was enjoying a good life and was highly respected and admired for his singing, dancing, and storytelling, but one day he committed an unpardonable sin in the eyes of many of his countrymen, he helped stage a gay wedding. It also became apparent he might even be a gay person. In February of this year, the media reported stories about a gay wedding and Mbaye’s name was mentioned as the person who organized the affair. In the subsequent weeks, Mbaye was harassed by police, attacked by mobs, driven from his home, ripped to pieces by the media, and forced to live on the run. In July, the United States offered him refugee status which was unusual since most people who are persecuted for sexual orientation ordinarily obtain this status.

Mbaye is now in the Bronx living in semi-poverty and making it a point to avoid having much contact with the American community of Senegalese. He was stopped one day by a m an from Senegal who told him: “If you were in Senegal, I would kill you.” There is little doubt in poverty stricken Africa it is easier for governments to go after gays in order to distract people from poverty and war. Anti-gay hysteria is now sweeping large sections of the continent.

Mbaye is content to be in America. “There’s security, there’s independence, there’s peace” he says.

Africa Is Being Exploited By Industrial Powers

Industralized nations are engaged in massive efforts to use biofuels in their battle against powerful oil rich societies. As the need for land to produce crops that will create energy grows more intense, their eyes increasingly are gazing toward Africa. Tanzania is inviting many nations to buy up its lands to plant crops. A German company recently purchased an area of land equal to the nation of Luxembourg while British, US, Swedish, Canadian and others are buying up farm land. Malawi and Zambia are also targets of companies seeking land. Of course, these companies will be creating huge farms run by a staff hired by companies. What happens to farmers who live in these regions? Will they and their families share in the wealth that is being produced? Local interests are rarely considered by African governments in making these decisions.

In fairness, most companies coming into these African nations are promising to build roads and schools and hospitals, but for local residents, land and jobs are dominant concerns. Of course, a company farm can out produce local farmers and make it difficult to compete in an international arena of biofuels. Frequently lost in agreements is the issue of water. Company farms need extensive supplies of water and in many African areas, water means life. To what extent are water needs factored into these agreements?