Posts tagged as: people

Namibia:International White Cane Day Commemorated

By Adam Hartman

For government to help make life better for people living with disabilities, this group of people should engage government institutions to make their needs and challenges known.

This was said by deputy finance minister Natangwe Ithete at the International White Cane Day commemoration held at Swakopmund yesterday and organised by the Erongo governor’s office.

The mission of White Cane Day is to educate the world about blindness, and how the visually impaired can live and work independently while giving back to their communities; to celebrate the abilities and successes achieved by blind people in a world of the sighted; and to honour the many contributions being made by the visually impaired.

The event at Swakopmund was poorly attended.

“I am disappointed that people do not attend and engage themselves in events such as these. People living with disabilities should be acknowledged as equal members of our nation,” Ithete stressed.

He said government took the plight of disabled Namibians seriously, which can be seen with the creation of the department of disability affairs in the Office of the Vice President, under deputy minister Alexia Manombe-Ncube.

“The able and disabled should not be divided. We should see the disabled not as unable, but differently-abled,” Ithete noted. “Disabled people should not be excluded, and should be bold enough to engage in society because they are equal citizens with equal rights.”

He thus encouraged disabled people to engage in economic opportunities, and to develop themselves through vocational training and higher education. Disabled people likewise have the right to become Namibia’s next president or prime minister.

“We can have leaders with disabilities. They must just make use of the opportunities, and government will be ready to support them. Engage government so that we can know how to help you so that you can become prosperous,” he said. According to the latest information from the Namibian Federation for the Visually Impaired, there are about 15 000 visually impaired citizens (registered with the federation).

Amongst the greatest challenges faced by this group are access to information and economic empowerment.

There is also a great need for quality Braille textbooks and government documents which would promote the education and training of the visually impaired, as well as open opportunities to be involved in economic projects that could enhance their lives.

Namibia

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Is Uganda Still Africa’s Bread-Basket?

By Sella Oneko

Uganda has always been known as the bread basket of Africa and for the most part that’s still true. But both the lack of rainfall in the northeast and the large number of refugees have posed a challenge to the country.

Driving up to Arua district in northern Uganda, there’s green everywhere. It’s been raining intermittently since June. From the looks of it, one would not guess that this region is experiencing a strain on it resources and that it hosts the world’s largest refugee settlement.

Every day 300 to 500 new arrivals cross the border, mainly from South Sudan, where ongoing fighting has driven the people away. Uganda currently hosts over 1.3 million refugees. Unlike most countries, Uganda hasn’t built camps. Instead it has given each family a piece of land to build a home and farm on. The idea is to help refugees to become self-reliant.

“I think the government is making a big effort and they have a national plan in which they also put the issue of food security high on their agenda,” explained Andrea Padberg from the German NGO Welthungerhilfe. “Due to a lot of things, like, the large influx of refugees, their resources are very strained.”

The sheer number of new arrivals is overwhelming. In June this year, Uganda held a solidarity summit, where the EU and other members pledged their support. The UN’s World Food Program (WFP) still has a funding gap of 62 million euros ($75 million). There’s enough money to supply food until the end of November. After that, says Uganda’s WFP country director, El-Khidir Daloum, it’s back to begging for funds. “We would like to have flexibility. We would like to have funding ahead of time to enable us to make financial plans and have the rations ready for distribution,” Daloum explained.

A growing market

If we look past the refugee situation, Uganda is usually able to feed itself. Especially in the southwest of the country, the staples of maize, cassava and plantain grow well. And cash crops like coffee, of which Uganda is the second biggest exporter in Africa, also strengthen Uganda’s export market.

More recently Uganda’s dairy sector has seen a fair amount of growth. In this sector, Uganda competes with and exports to Kenya, which has a strong dairy industry of its own. “In the southwest, which is the main driver for growth, dairy farming requires extensive grazing,” explains Rinus van Klinken, a project manager with the Dutch NGO SNV. “There are farms of 80 acres, 200 acres, with large landholdings, there is good rainfall, there are good breeds and therefore, with fairly limited input, you get a fairly high output.”

In neighboring Kenya, he says, you have the opposite: the milk is produced by small holders who sell to the dairy companies. They have small pieces of land and zero grazing. They have to grow the feed and they need a shed and much more intensive care for the livestock.” So the comparative advantage for Uganda is the low production cost and therefore it can compete.”

Additionally, he says, Uganda’s climate and soils are favorable for farming and that while the government has had a few short-falls, for instance, in farmer education or promoting the growth of cooperatives, it has done a relatively good job in regulating and managing the agricultural sector.

Regional differences

But according to van Klinken, the dairy sector also shows the large discrepancies in the country. “Karamoja (in the northeast) is a unique case because of the pastoralist dynamic. There is not much trading. The pastoralist society mainly produces milk for household consumption,” he says.

In general the Karamoja region has largely had to depend on food aid, cash benefts or other means support from the Ugandan government and international organizations. In 2016 and early 2017 Karamoja was also the only region in Uganda that was badly hit by the regional drought.

The problems that have affected over 34 percent of people across the country, such as Uganda’s high malnutrition and stunting rates, are particularly accentuated in Karamoja.

“We see that Uganda has made improvements in the last ten years in many parts. But we also still see high levels of children showing signs of chronic malnutrition. the fact that they chronically do not have enough food is still very alarming,” says Padberg from Welthungerhilfe. “We have different areas where this is particularly evident, like in Karamoja and the refugee settlements,” she adds.

In general the issue of malnutrition and food security in Uganda is largely connected to the fact that around 70 percent of the population depends on subsistence farming and are therefore still very dependent on rainfall and climatic conditions. If these fail, or if communities only grow certain crops, many people then simply lack the means to buy the food, even if it is available on the market.

The reliance on rainfall, both for the small-holder farmers and the pastoralists is unlikely to change in the near future, says Padberg. That, she says, will remain a challenge for Uganda. “We will surely see a situation where drought prone phases will occur more and more often and that does pose general questions in regard to the livelhoods of the pastoralists,” she explains. “We need to work with them and to give them more drought resistant alternatives to cope with these changing climate issues.”

Stop Attacks on IEBC Ahead of Repeat Poll – Kenyatta

By Silas Apollo and Kennedy Kimanthi

Stop attacks on the electoral commission and its staff as they prepare for repeat presidential election, President Kenyatta has said.

The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC), Mr Kenyatta said on Friday, should be allowed to carry out its constitutional mandate.

POLICE

Addressing the nation during Mashujaa Day celebrations at Uhuru Park in Nairobi, Mr Kenyatta said attacks, as witnessed in parts of Nyanza and western Kenya, were a threat to democracy.

He assured Kenyans willing to vote in the repeat election next week of adequate security.

He said his government is ready to counter any threats to national security during and after Thursday’s poll.

The opposition has announced plans to hold countrywide demonstrations on election day.

DEMOS

The president noted that whereas the Constitution allows demos and picketing, security personnel will not take lightly attempts to disrupt the right of those willing to participate in voting.

“For those not willing to vote we will also respect their rights. But no right supersedes the other,” he said.

He issued a stern to the opposition, stating: “No freedoms will be abused to persuade impunity and create anarchy.”

Deputy President William Ruto said Kenyans amust vote next week to defend the country’s democracy and the Constitution.

The DP reiterated that they would respect decisions by constitutional institutions, including IEBC and the judiciary, they favour Jubilee Party or not.

Kenya

4 Killed, 7 Arrested in Post-Polls Protest – Police

Four people died, 10 police officers were injured and seven others were arrested in demonstrations called by opposition… Read more »

Moi Girls Fire Victim, 600 Others Named National Heroes

President Kenyatta has ordered the setting up of a national heroes’ council.

The Head of State said the council would take care of the welfare of people who have made immense contribution to Kenya and the lives.

Speaking during Mashujaa Day celebrations at Uhuru Park in Nairobi on Friday, Mr Kenyatta recognised over 600 Kenyans as heroes and heroines.

DORM FIRE

They included Mary Mokaya, a student of Moi Girls High School Nairobi, who died in a dorm fire as she rescued her colleagues.
Also recognised is Joseph Karisa, who gave up his land for the construction of a water pan.

More Kenyans, Mr Kenyatta said, will be honoured in December.

Mary bravely fought to rescue tens of her colleagues from a deadly fire that broke out at the school and tragically paid for it with her own life.

She took it upon herself to awaken her colleagues as the raging flames spread through the dormitory known as Purple at 2am on last month, killing 10 girls.

BURNS

Mary, who sustained 66 per cent burns during the tragedy, succumbed to her injuries.

Accounts by her colleagues revealed that when Mary woke up and saw one of the beds on fire, she took her own blanket and moved to the decker that was at the middle of the cubicle and tried putting out the fire while screaming orders to her sleeping classmates to wake up and escape.

When Mary, popularly known by her friends as ‘Meg’, realised her efforts were no match to the furious flames that were quickly spreading to the other beds, she quickly changed tack, choosing to concentrate on forcing the other girls out of the dormitory.

Kenya

4 Killed, 7 Arrested in Post-Polls Protest – Police

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Hillcrest School Headmistress Gabrielle Maina Shot Dead in Karen

The woman who was shot dead on Miotoni Road, Nairobi, on Thursday morning has been identified as Gabrielle Maina.

Maina is a headmistress of Hillcrest School in Karen.

POLICE

The school’s Chairman Board of Governors Bob Kikuyu said she was killed as she returned to her home after dropping her son at a friend’s house.

“It is with great sadness and shock that we are writing to let you know that Gabrielle Maina has been tragically killed whilst out walking this morning,” Mr Kikuyu said in a message to parents.

“We cannot give more details at this time as police are investigating this criminal act.”

Karen police commander Cunningham Suiyanka said Maina was shot on the neck.

The incident happened 10am Thursday, according to the police chief.

PHONE

“We suspect the killers were on a motorbike because people heard the sound of a motorbike immediately after the shooting,” Mr Suiyanka told the Nation.

The people who reported the shooting, he said, heard two gunshots.

According to him, detectives are yet to know if anything was snatched from the headmistress.

“She had a wrist watch and a wedding ring which is quite expensive,” said Mr Suiyanka.

“We didn’t find a mobile phone on her but we don’t know if she was carrying one in the first place.”

The school is set to re-open on Monday.

Kenya

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Here’s Proof Chipukeezy Actually Lied On Meeting Kevin Hart

By Hilary Kimuyu

Kenyan comedian Chipukeezy real name Vincent Muasya actually lied about how he met his American idol comedian Kevin Hart during his trip to the US in June this year, Nairobi News can exclusively reveal.

Speaking exclusively to Nairobi News, Christine Wawira, a Hollywood actor, narrated how the Kenyan comedian never even got to get into the BET Awards ceremony.

“So you know how Chipukeezy met Kevin hart and went to the BET Awards? Well, I’m the one who got him connected with meeting Kevin and in his interviews he lied and said a white woman saw his stand up and hooked him up with Kevin Hart,” said Wawira.

Hanging out with @chipukeezy today! Meeting @kevinhart4real in a few hours! . . . . . #dream #dreambig #lawofattraction #nevergiveup #dontquit #keeprunning #workhard #playhard #beauty #beautiful #actorslife #254 #kenyan #african

A post shared by Christine Wawira (@christinewawira) on Jun 12, 2017 at 1:33pm PDT

She also shared a conversation between her and Chipukeezy in which she questioned the Kenyan comedian why he never credited his meeting with Hart to her during an interview on NTV’s Better Living show.

In the text conversation, Chipukeezy actually admits that he lied on national TV to protect his brand and that Ms Wawira is the white woman in the script. He even offers an apology to Ms Wawira.

“Kenyan media was trying to tell my story of why and how I met Kevin. Everyone was saying that I flew all the way to come and take a picture to be a groupie etc etc it was looking bad for me. So I decided to change the story and told it my way. Am sorry for disappointing you but I had to protect my brand girl. Am sorry.” part of Chipukeezy’s explanation reads.

According to Wawira, Chipukeezy never got to go into the BET Awards.

“I invited him to come with me but he decided to trust someone else who ended up disappointing him and he couldn’t get access to the show.”

She claims Chipukeezy asked her to text him videos which she had taken at the awards from the third row at the show and he posted them saying he was there.

“He has lied to millions of people and it makes me sad,” lamented Ms Wawira.

Kenya

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Drawing Lessons From Nyerere On Leadership

editorial

Tanzania today commemorates 18 years since the death of the Founding Father of the Nation, Julius Nyerere. There is pretty much to talk about and learn from Mwalimu, who was not only a political leader, but also a philosopher, theorist, activist, translator and writer.

Mwalimu Nyerere, who was born on April 13, 1922 and died on October 14, 1999, was the first president of Tanganyika and later Tanzania. His decision in 1985 to step down from power, did set the pattern of transition of power from one leader to the next. Since then Tanzania has had four other presidents after him.

As one of the pioneer leaders of an independent Africa, Nyerere stood for total liberation of people from colonialism and any sort of oppression. It was based on this conviction that Tanzania sacrificed immensely towards the liberation struggles of Mozambique, Zimbabwe (Southern Rhodesia), Namibia and South Africa.

It was not surprising that Tanzania was the most important base for all liberation fighters from southern Africa. This is proof that Nyerere was a true believer of freedom of the people. This conviction was deeply rooted in his socialism and self-reliance policy that viewed all human beings as equal.

On the economic front, the Founding Father pushed for self-reliance. He wanted Tanzania, and Africa in general, to try and become as much as self-reliant as they could be. This was particularly in the fight against the archenemies: poverty, disease and illiteracy. For him, it was through self-reliance that a nation could be truly free, particularly when it comes to self-determination.

Freedom, development and discipline connected

It was during Nyerere’s era that Tanzania set up its development road map. The economy was to be based on both manufacturing and agriculture. Much as the economy was young, the first president of Tanzania made every effort to try and establish key primary industries in most parts of the country. Therefore, both agricultural and industrial developments were crucial to his leadership. His main objective was to build a modern society where science and technology play the crucial role of liberating man from the archenemies: poverty, disease and illiteracy.

“Mwalimu (Teacher), as he was affectionately known, spoke strongly about the connection between freedom, development and discipline in building socialism, whose basis was a belief in the oneness of man and the common historical destiny of mankind. It was under his leadership that education was provided for free from primary through university. He was convinced that with a sizeable skilled manpower, the country could unlock much of the economic potentials it has been endowed with.

And, even after stepping down from power, he never hesitated to advice the sitting presidents to work harder in collecting tax. He argued that there will be no development if people and legal entities did not pay their due taxes.

Mwalimu Nyerere was a firm believer of the government being accountable to the people. He argued that since the people paid their due taxes, then they had the right to know what was happening within the government and that it truly served them.

Today’s and future leaders need to emulate Mwalimu Nyerere leadership style that put man at the centre of all development initiatives. They should not seek self-glory but the development of human beings.

Nigeria:Pandemonium in Maiduguri As ‘Killer Monkeypox Vaccine’ Rumour Spreads

By Abdulkareem Haruna

Public schools in Maiduguri, the Borno state capital, were thrown into chaos, Wednesday when rumours filtered in that monkeypox vaccines were being forcefully administered on pupils by unknown persons.

The rumour, which had caused confusion in a few other states in recent days, has been debunked by the army authorities several times.

The federal ministry of health had also on Wednesday issued a rebuttal denying the availability of such a vaccine.

The defence headquarters specifically denied the allegation in a statement signed by its spokesman, John Enenche.

But these denials appeared to have been dismissed by residents in Maiduguri as hundreds of school children bolted out of their classes on Wednesday.

Some parents equally forced their way into school premises to pick their children and wards.

However, none of the children or parents interviewed by PREMIUM TIMES said they saw the people administering the vaccines. Despite this, the rumour quickly spread to many parts of the city.

“We were told that some pupils slumped and died after they injected them with the vaccine in Gwange area,” a 12-year-old schoolgirl, Lam said.

At Sanda Kyarimi primary school, parents reportedly engaged in fisticuffs with staff unwilling to release the kids.

“They (parents) had to break the gate and force the kids out”, a member of Civilian-JTF told PREMIUM TIMES.

“It was really chaotic there as the parents began to break doors and throw stones at the teachers whom they accused of plotting to inject their kids with monkeypox causing vaccines.”

The Borno state government has not officially responded to the development.

But the executive chairman of the State Universal Basic Education Board, SUBEB, Shettima Kullima, told journalists in an interview that about 37 public schools closed before official closing hours due to the rumour.

He said the board is monitoring the situation and would speak later on development.

The minister of health, Isaac Adewole said 74 cases have been recorded in 11 states.

Nigeria

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Somalia:Kuwait Provides Medical Aid to Somalia

Photo: Voice of America

Somalian took to the street to protest against Al-Shabaab attack

Kuwait Red Crescent Society (KRCS), in coordination with the Direct Aid Society, announced Wednesday a new batch of medical assistance to treat victims in Somalia following the recent terrorist bombings in Mogadishu.

In a statement to KUNA, Chairman of KRCS Dr. Hilal Al-Sayer said that aid would be provided to hospitals in Somalia to treat the wounds of the recent bombings.

KRCS is urgently following the repercussions of the humanitarian situation there through its permanent contact with the humanitarian organizations in Somalia, and will continue to support Somali people in order to live in safety and peace, Al-Sayer said.

He also called on people in Kuwait to support the charity projects carried out by the association with its partners in Somalia, which lives one of the most crises.

For his part, Chairman of the Board of Direct Aid Association, Dr. Abdulrahman Al-Muhailan praised cooperation with KRCS to help Somali people, adding that there will be quick response by providing medical medicines to hospitals in Somalia following the terrorist attack that killed hundreds of innocent citizens.

There are four hospitals in Mogadishu in need of medicines and antibiotics to treat the wounded, he said. And stressed Kuwait role in providing aid to help the affected people everywhere and has played a prominent role in the relief efforts in Somalia in the last period.

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90% of Mbeya Residents Tested With Sight Problems

By Godfrey Kahango

Mbeya — At least 90 per cent of people, who went for sight test during an ongoing ‘free health test’ campaign at Ruanda Nzovwe grounds in the region have been diagnosed with sight problems as most of them need to undergo minor and major operation.

The campaign, which was launched on October 14, this year, is coordinated by Mbeya Regional Hospital in cooperation with various stakeholders. It was launched by Mbeya Regional Commissioner Amos Makalla as part of the commemoration of the 18th anniversary of Mwalimu Julius Nyerere. Speaking to The Citizen on Monday, Mbeya regional coordinator for sight services, Dr Fariji Killewa, said the majority of people, who went for test, were diagnosed with sight problems, but failed to go to hospital due to various reasons, including lack of money for treatment.

He said they targeted to provide sight services to between 60 and 90 people per day, but attended to 195 people and the following day to 182 people, which made them work until 15.30pm.

“At least 90 per cent of people have been diagnosed with sight problems. For only two days we have learned that 154 people with sight problems need operation. So, we have advised them to go to hospital. I would say this campaign has been of great help for people to know their health status,” said Dr Killewa.

Earlier, launching the campaign, Mr Makalla said the commemoration reflected Mwalimu Nyerere’s commitment to fighting against three enemies of the nation – diseases, poverty and ignorance – during his leadership.

The doctor in-charge of Mbeya Regional Hospital, Dr Seif Mhina, said the campaign was sustainable and would be carried out every year during the commemoration of Mwalimu Nyerere’s anniversary, while urging those, who were diagnosed with sight problems to go to hospital.

Tanzania

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There are reports that two South Africans are among 12 men arrested on charges of homosexuality in Tanzania. Read more »

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