Politics

Africa, it is ours!

African Union Commission Chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat delivers his remarks at the Heads of State and Government summit in Kigali. (Courtesy) It is 17:14PM local time in Cape Town, South Africa on February 11 1990.  Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela has just been released from prison; he walks. With one clenched fist in the air as a sign of ‘Amandla’ – ‘Power ...

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‘Olympic games’ of governance – a case study

Seating in an African Development Bank’s conference in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, bringing together civil society, think tanks and the Bank on the subject of Africa’s industrialisation, I have a feeling of a déjà-vu. I feel, I have heard the questions being raised by CSOs and seen the answers being given by the bank. I wonder then, where we go from ...

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Abidjan est doux

I am leaving Abidjan with deep humility, having learned one important lesson; ‘There are more things in heaven and earth, than are dreamt of in my philosophy’. Or in prose: books can be deceiving, if one doesn’t get to travel on site and see for oneself. Here, I was exposed to another facet of the complexities around the France-Afrique, and ...

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The African century

We’ve all heard stories of ‘Africa rising’ at times, and ‘afro-pessimism’ at other times, without grasping exactly what all that means. To be clear, corruption and bad leadership won’t feature in my story because they are permanent features in all five continents. But here is an attempt to put the latest figures onto those utopian and dystopian novellas by recounting ...

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Disrupting the Africa narrative

(14) ‘a man going on a long trip called together his servants and entrusted his money to them while he was gone…(19) “After a long time he called them to give an account of how they had used his money (20)…you gave me five bags of silver to invest, and I have earned five more’ – Parable of the Three ...

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Francopholie Rwandaise?

‘La guerre est la continuation de la politique par d’autres moyens’, disait Carl Von Clausewitz, officier prussien qui a combattu Napoléon au XIXème siècle. Beaucoup ont dû être surprit, à juste titre, par l’annonce de la candidature de Mme Louise Mushikiwabo, ministre rwandaise des Affaires étrangères, à la tête de l’Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie (OIF). Depuis presque trois décennies, le Rwanda ...

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My mother was arrested in ‘Ibyitso’.

My mother was arrested in ‘Ibyitso’ (spies) After I was born, she stopped studying and came to look for work in Rwanda. She opened a hair saloon for women in Kigali, she seemed to do well, or at least in my baby opinion, because she came to see me in Goma every month with bags full of gifts for me, ...

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The real ‘dream from my father’

Qatari Royals were constantly frustrated that in spite of the money they splashed at the chain of haute boutiques in the famous 8th District of Paris (8e Arrondissement), Parisians seemed clueless on where the hell little Qatar was; worse yet, they mistook the men in immaculate DJellabas and women in elegant dark robes to come from their archrival, middle-eastern giant ...

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Mo Ibrahim was here!

IN Rwandan culture, nothing is more precious than a visitor; the ‘milk for visitors’ is set apart and handled with special care. An evening chat with visiting colleagues last week however, revealed that the culture is shared across the continent; a Senegalese insisting that ‘Teranga’ (hospitality) is even a national slogan. So too will I not diverge from the culture ...

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End of Democratisation

‘You can fool some people sometime, but you can’t fool all the people all the time’ –Bob Marley, Get up, stand up! In the early 1950s, following the wave of independence in Africa and South America, former colonial powers wanted to ensure that their multinationals would continue exploiting independent Africa and South America’s natural resources and keep the monopoly on ...

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