Wednesday, 27 March 2013

It’s time for gender to be integrated into every level of the development process – By Thembi Mutch | African Arguments

It’s time for gender to be integrated into every level of the development process – By Thembi Mutch | African Arguments

Without a mainstreaming of women in the development process, we’ll just go round in circles. It’s getting boring now: the endless TV footage of men in suits making decisions about women in Africa. We need a change.

In the immigration office in Tanzania, Lydia, a mid level civil servant says, “Look around us: I can say there are no female managers here. The problem is not just gender discrimination, it is favouritism. You get a management job here if you are friend or family of the president. Merit and brains are not rewarded, especially not if you are female, in` fact they are regarded as problems – you’re less easy to manipulate.”

TV linked to risk of antisocial behaviour | Irish Examiner

TV linked to risk of antisocial behaviour | Irish Examiner

The 15% of the age group who watch television for more than three hours a day are at an increased risk of developing antisocial behaviours, such as fighting, stealing, or disobedience.

The research, published in Archives of Disease in Childhood, examined more than 11,000 children in Britain aged five and seven.

The children’s parents were asked to complete a “strengths and difficulties questionnaire” to describe how well adjusted their children were. They were also asked to report how much time their children spent watching television and playing computer games at the age of five.

The researchers found almost two-thirds of five- year-olds watched television between one and three hours a day, 15% watched more than three hours, and less than 2% watched no television at all.

After taking into account variables including parenting and family dynamics, the researchers found watching television for three or more hours a day led to a small but significant increased risk of antisocial behaviours...

Monday, 25 March 2013

SING A TEH to perform in Barcelona tonight -As his 2013 Europe tour begins - Daily Observer

SING A TEH to perform in Barcelona tonight -As his 2013 Europe tour begins - Daily Observer

In what appears to be an annual affair, the Gambia’s international reggae dancehall star is again on the trail this time on the 2013 leg of his Europe tour, with a mega concert slated for today March 22nd 2013, in the Spanish city of Barcelona!!!

Thursday, 21 March 2013

Blinded by science: the problems of sorting out identity in Africa – By Keith Somerville | African Arguments

Blinded by science: the problems of sorting out identity in Africa – By Keith Somerville | African Arguments

The concept of autochthony – that one is entitled to ‘belong’ because of ancestral rights or “this is ours because we were here first” (p. 1) – is in many ways an attractive one when looking at political, economic and military conflict in Africa.  Land is and always has been a key factor on a continent where agriculture is still at the heart of most economies and non-urban communities.  Bøås and Dunn have chosen it as their focus for looking at issues of identity in Africa and use it to examine conflicts in Liberia, Kenya, the DRC and Ivory Coast.  In so doing they appear to consciously reject economic factors other than land in explaining motives for competition and violence and also suggest autochthony is more appealing and applicable than ethnicity because it implies a sense of belonging and of being somewhere first...

Formula 1

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Formula 1, a group on Flickr.

Monday, 18 March 2013

iPad use in schools 'worsens bullying problem' - Independent.ie

iPad use in schools 'worsens bullying problem' - Independent.ie

While the digital revolution is being welcomed in schools, it will "put weapons in the hands of pupils", an Oireachtas committee was told.
Cyber security expert Paul C Dwyer said such technology could be used for the wrong reasons, such as taking pictures and using them inappropriately.
"This is like a viral epidemic; you think you have a problem now," he told the committee on transport and communications.
Mr Dwyer was among representatives from the National Anti-Bullying Coalition addressing the latest in a series of committee hearings on the challenges arising from irresponsible use of social media.
He said there was a need for a holistic approach to dealing with the range of online threats, including cyber predators...

Friday, 15 March 2013

Children ‘collateral’ victims of drink sector sport sponsorship | Irish Examiner

Children ‘collateral’ victims of drink sector sport sponsorship | Irish Examiner

Children are the “unfortunate collateral damage” of sports sponsorship by the drink industry, a seminar on alcohol has heard...

Ms Ryan said alcohol sponsorship was “not altruistic”, but a calculated trade off: “You give us access to the young male markets and in return we give you money. Are we willing to accept this trade off? The unfortunate collateral damage are children.”

She said alcohol had become so normalised in shopping that it was pushed as “just another grocery”.

Prof Barry of Trinity College Dublin said there was a growing view in society that something had to be done, but he added: “There is no evidence to show that is shared by the Government. That’s the worrying matter. Politicians have done very little; they have done a disservice to the State.”

Wednesday, 13 March 2013

Richard Attias: Africa and the Six 'I's: Independence, Investment, Infrastructure, Innovation, Incubation, Inspiration

Richard Attias: Africa and the Six 'I's: Independence, Investment, Infrastructure, Innovation, Incubation, Inspiration

It's no secret that Africa has become a major success story. In 2012, six of the world's 10 fastest-growing economies were in sub-Saharan Africa, and this trend shows no signs of slowing. In 2012, growth hit 5.3 percent and it is predicted to increase this year. Meanwhile technology is transforming the continent. With 650 million subscribers, Africa's mobile phone market now exceeds that of the U.S. or EU -- a development that is changing lives. In addition to these startling figures, there is Africa's young population, which, according to projections, will double over the next four decades.
These findings are a source of enormous excitement but they also require thoughtful consideration. I suggest that in looking to Africa's future, six principles should govern decision-making in business and policy: independence, investment, incubation, innovation, infrastructure and inspiration -- the six 'I's...

Friday, 8 March 2013

Guinea-Bissau, Guinea and Sierra Leone: Tired of war | The Economist

Guinea-Bissau, Guinea and Sierra Leone: Tired of war | The Economist

"What has changed to make Africa less violent? Three factors have played a part. First, after the end of the cold war two decades ago, America and Russia stopped propping up violent dictators simply to keep them out of each other’s clutches. At first this brought more conflict as strongmen like Congo’s Mobutu Sese Seko, an American protégé, fought for their lives, some with weapons from privatised Soviet armouries supplied by Viktor Bout, a Russian arms smuggler. But in the longer run lack of superpower support has deprived armies as well as rebels of the means to keep going.
Second, Western attitudes have changed. Europeans in particular no longer turn a blind eye to gross human-rights violations in Africa. The creation of the ICC in 2002 marked a shift toward liberal interventionism, both the legal and the armed kind. Norwegian officials played a key role in negotiating peace in Sudan. British troops shut down Sierra Leone’s war. Peacekeeping evolved into conflict prevention. The UN got better at intervening and at cleaning up afterwards. Disarmament campaigns, like the one in Sierra Leone, proved useful. A combined UN and African Union mission in Somalia started in 2007 made more progress than an American expeditionary force in 1993.

Third, some of Africa’s wars burned themselves out. Most are conducted within countries, since ethnic rivalry has been the most common cause of conflict. Civil wars usually end when one or both sides become exhausted, often after many years. Radicalised during the 1960s, even the hardiest rebels were tired by the turn of the century. When Jonas Savimbi, an Angolan guerrilla leader, was killed in 2002 after fighting for almost three decades, his men gave up. Political wounds have not necessarily healed but they are covered in scar tissue. Fighters as well as citizens grudgingly accept the status quo because they are sick of war; some of the time that is good enough..."

Wednesday, 6 March 2013

Congo plane crash kills 'at least 30' in Goma | GlobalPost

Congo plane crash kills 'at least 30' in Goma | GlobalPost

Congolese officials on Monday told the Associated Press at least 36 people were killed when a plane crashed in the eastern city of Goma.
The death toll could climb, however. "We estimate there could be between 30 and 50 deaths," local governor Julien Paluku told Agence-France Press, according to BBC News.
The plane was coming in from the central mining town of Lodja when it crashed during landing in Goma in bad weather..

Researchers show 'cautious optimism' on baby's HIV cure

Researchers show 'cautious optimism' on baby's HIV cure

The girl, who has not been identified and is from rural Mississippi, was born HIV positive in 2010 to a mother who herself was not diagnosed as HIV positive until she was in labour. Mothers are typically treated in advance to prevent the virus being transmitted to the baby.
The baby was treated aggressively with antiretroviral drugs at the University of Mississippi Medical Centre from about 30 hours after her birth.
Dr Hannah Gay, an associate professor of paediatrics, used drugs aimed at treating the virus in the baby, as opposed to prophylactic measures, which seek to prevent the disease infecting the baby.
No virus detected
Over the following months the virus levels in the baby rapidly declined and the virus could not be detected at all when she stopped being treated with antiviral drugs at the age of 18 months.
This is the second person to be cured after Timothy Brown, a middle-aged American living in Germany, underwent a bone marrow transplant that cured him of both leukaemia and HIV. The scientific data behind the case of the Mississippi child, now two years old, has yet to be verified by other researchers...

Monday, 4 March 2013

IPS – Two Million People Hold their Breath Over Lake Malawi Mediation | Inter Press Service

IPS – Two Million People Hold their Breath Over Lake Malawi Mediation | Inter Press Service

LILONGWE, Mar 3 2013 (IPS) - Over two million families who solely depend on Lake Malawi for their livelihoods are anxiously putting their hopes into an upcoming mediation between Malawi and Tanzania intended to put an end to a longstanding ownership dispute.
The mediation will start this month after both parties agreed in December to engage the assistance of the Forum for Former African Heads of State and Government, which is chaired by Mozambique’s former President Joachim Chissano.
“After several attempts to settle the dispute, we came to the realisation that we have failed and we needed a third party to help us,” principal secretary in Malawi’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Patrick Kambabe, told IPS...

The world’s fastest-growing continent: Aspiring Africa | The Economist

The world’s fastest-growing continent: Aspiring Africa | The Economist

CELEBRATIONS are in order on the poorest continent. Never in the half-century since it won independence from the colonial powers has Africa been in such good shape. Its economy is flourishing. Most countries are at peace. Ever fewer children bear arms and record numbers go to school. Mobile phones are as ubiquitous as they are in India and, in the worst-affected countries, HIV infections have fallen by up to three-quarters. Life expectancy rose by a tenth in the past decade and foreign direct investment has tripled. Consumer spending will almost double in the next ten years; the number of countries with average incomes above $1,000 per person a year will grow from less than half of Africa’s 55 states to three-quarters.
Africans deserve the credit. Western aid agencies, Chinese mining companies and UN peacekeepers have done their bit, but the continent’s main saviours are its own people...

Africa Is More Stable than You've Been Led to Think - Jonathan Berman - Harvard Business Review

Africa Is More Stable than You've Been Led to Think - Jonathan Berman - Harvard Business Review

The recent political instability in Mali has cast a cloud of poor publicity over the economic and commercial rise of Africa, one of the few bright spots in the global economy. Press analysis has speculated whether political instability is endemic to Africa and likely to expand in the future. It's an important point for the many companies, from GE to Unilever, that are turning to Africa for their next wave of growth....