By Abimbola Akosile (February 24, 2010)

Nigeria: Beijing Declaration - Re-Double Implementation Efforts, Women Urged

Lagos — Women all over Nigeria have been called upon to redouble their efforts to ensure that the Beijing Declaration, which stipulates that 30 per cent of all elective posts be reserved for women, are achieved within the shortest time possible. The call was made by former chieftain of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Chief Mrs. Priscilla Kuye, while speaking at a one-day interactive forum in Lagos.

By Damola Awoyokun

IT was distressing that the Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab botched Christmas day bombing incident has put Nigeria too on the global terror map. But the chilling news is that to Al-Qaeda, it has spotlighted the country as a place to invest. I explain. Osama Bin Laden and Ayman al-Zawahiri in May 1996 did not just headquarter their sinister organisation in Afghanistan; geographically, religiously and ideologically, the land was theirs before they were the land's. Insistently wild mountains, virulent man-dug caves of Tora Bora with five-star accommodations; these were geographic correlations of the Taliban's brand of Islam.

In the time of the Old Testament African rooted nations were undoubtedly among the most influential and revered in the entire world, and although biblical Africans are responsible for many of the earliest and greatest civilizations, their influence by no means end there. The story of the empires of Africa south of the Sahara extends almost 3,000 years, beginning with the establishment of the empire of Kush. Other empires later developed in Ethiopia and West Africa.

The South African President is on record as having said the Zimbabwe problem is a distraction to development and should be resolved sooner rather than later for the benefit of Zimbabweans and the region in general. It is true that the change of leadership in South Africa which resulted in the widely expected election of Jacob Zuma as new president was greeted with song and dance. This was so especially in the ranks of the former opposition MDC party, the politically disenfranchised and the poor in both Harare and Pretoria.

By Crisford Chogugudza

Mass media reform is a crucial aspect of democratic transition in a post dictatorship era and accomplishing this task is not only a Herculean task but a difficult process that can make or break individual political careers. In Zimbabwe, a country characterised by a monolithic media dispensation for many decades, the partisan media has enjoyed an unlimited propensity of carefully orchestrated character assassinations and unduly personality cult that has made Zimbabwe one of the most hated places on earth.

By Herbert Ekwe-Ekwe

Despite the unprecedented overdrive of its diplomatic pressure on African heads of regime during the recent African Union assembly in Egypt, Britain failed abysmally to persuade the summit to condemn Zimbabwe’s June 2008 rigged elections. For the Brown administration, this failure was a disappointing anticlimax in a season of sustained publicity blitz across Britain in which the state and media found a rare common purpose and a convergence of opinion on the subject of the demonisation of Robert Mugabe. The typecasting was unmistakeably swift and assured: Mugabe became the purveyor or indeed inventor of election rigging in Africa, the grotesque human rights violator, the quintessential, fiendishly-sutured African dictator. Even provincial newspaper editors and commentators as well as their radio and television counterparts, usually concerned with more mundane local issues, became instant experts on Mugabe and Mugabeism – such was the frenzy of the times! Thanks to this bizarre British offering of “African history” of the past 50 years, the plaque of shame that lists the cabal of Africa’s notorious heads of regime and genocidist personages of the age appear casually erased for the occasion: Muhammed, Gowon, Danjuma, al-Bashir, Idi Amin, Mengistu, Bokassa, Awolowo, Buhari, Compaoré, Aminu, Eyadema, Haruna, Mobutu, Toure, Enaharo, Abubakar, Akinrinade, Patassé, Obasanjo, Are, King, Habré, Adekunle, Ayida, Ali, Babangida …

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