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Beauty salons and the beast
February 7, 2013
There is a new kind of man on the streets of Tanzania’s biggest cities. In Dar es Salaam, Arusha and Mwanza, these men wear designer clothes, shoes, belts, bracelets, rings and chains. They talk about their new Calvin Klein jeans ... Continue Reading →
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Digital revolution lights up Africa February 7, 2013

As a teenager Noé Diakubama made a sketch map of Mbandaka, on the Congo river, so as not to get lost in the forest while picking a vegetable called fumbwa. “I remember never having seen a map of the city,” he says. Thirty years later, maps of the city in the Democratic Republic of the …

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Flying Air Zimbabwe February 7, 2013

They filed in, summoned by the booming voice of the announcer: “Ladies and gentlemen, this is a call for passengers travelling on Air Zimbabwe flight UM700 to Harare. Please report to your boarding gate as your flight is ready for departure.” Little did these passengers know in September 2011 that they were among the last …

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Chama: The economic model that’s all the rage in Kenya February 6, 2013

The greying man in his early 50s wore an expensive brown leather jacket and a cream cowboy hat that slouched on his head. He looked at me sideways and asked: “Why are you so keen on hanging out with us?” Everyone at the table sat up, and five pairs of probing eyes turned in my …

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Boda-boda boys in Juba. (Pic: Richard Poplak)
Juba: An old Jo’burg January 8, 2013

Juba, on a Monday morning, spews diesel from thousands of Toyota Land Cruisers, their logos testimony to the baffling phalanx of aid organisations nudging the world’s newest nation into being. Flying over the city brings to mind images of Johannesburg in 1890 – a flung-together, hodge-podge camp made almost entirely of canvas, corrugated iron and …

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Ebola: Getting to zero cases
Ebola: Getting to zero cases June 2, 2015

The Ebola outbreak has slowed across West Africa but every new infection continues to threaten millions of lives. This fatal disease claimed 7 000 lives by the end of 2014 in just Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Lione. Overcoming this complex emergency challenged governments and international aid organisations and brought fear to the rest of the …

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Vanessa Mdee, Victoria Kimani, Waje and Judith Sephuma sing their hearts out in a song that addresses gender inequality and poverty. (Pic: Supplied)
Poverty is sexist, sing seven African performers in protest May 19, 2015

Singers Victoria Kimani from Kenya, South African Judith Sephuma, Waje from Nigeria, Vanessa Mdee from Tanzania, Arielle T from Gabon, Gabriela from Mozambique and Selomor Mtukudzi from Zimbabwe have now recorded Strong Girl to address the gender inequality that they believe goes hand-in-hand with poverty. The song is inspired by a recently released report by …

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