African Press International (API)

"Daily Online News Channel".

  • African Press International Daily Online News Channel

  • * * API on Facebook

  • January 2011
    M T W T F S S
    « Dec   Feb »
  • Total Visitors

    • 5,357,545 HITS
  • Flag tracker

    web counter
  • RSS BBC News – Africa

  • RSS BBC News – Home

    • Many missing as S Korea ferry sinks April 16, 2014
      Almost 300 people remain unaccounted for after a ferry carrying 459 people capsized and sank off South Korea, officials say.
    • Average wages overtake inflation April 16, 2014
      After nearly six years of falling living standards, weekly earnings have finally edged above inflation, according to the Office for National Statistics.
    • UK unemployment rate falls to 6.9% April 16, 2014
      The number of people out of work in the UK has fallen by 77,000 to a five year low of 2.24 million in the three months to February, official figures indicate.
    • Ukraine troops enter eastern town April 16, 2014
      Ukrainian troops entering Kramatorsk have been blocked by pro-Russia locals, as tension escalates across the region.
    • Former Co-op boss faces drug charges April 16, 2014
      Paul Flowers, the former chairman of the Co-operative Bank, is charged with three counts of drug possession, the Crown Prosecution Service says.
    • Parents find out primary places April 16, 2014
      Parents across England are going to find whether they have their preferred choice of primary school place.
    • Coulson 'shocked' at Blunkett story April 16, 2014
      Andy Coulson says he was "shocked" and "angry" when a reporter told him he had heard voicemails suggesting MP David Blunkett was having an affair.
    • 'Shocking' rise in use of food banks April 16, 2014
      Hundreds of thousands more people are turning to food banks to stop themselves from going hungry, says charity the Trussell Trust.
    • Forensics examined in Pistorius case April 16, 2014
      A forensics expert continues to testify at Oscar Pistorius' murder trial in South Africa a day after the athlete finished his seven days of testimony.
    • Starbucks to move European HQ to UK April 16, 2014
      Starbucks is to move its European head office to London by the end of the year, meaning it will pay more tax in the UK, the company says.
    • Police probe Ed Balls car prang April 16, 2014
      Senior Labour politician Ed Balls is being investigated by police after his car hit a parked vehicle.
    • Paul Weller wins damages from Mail April 16, 2014
      Rock musician Paul Weller wins £10,000 damages after the Mail Online published pictures of his children.
    • William praises Australia on visit April 16, 2014
      The Duke of Cambridge brands Australia a "beacon of confidence" as he and his family begin the next leg of their Antipodean tour.
    • Poverty 'scandal' and benefits 'outrage' - front pages April 16, 2014
      A charity's report that it handed out almost one million food parcels in the last year makes headlines, while the Daily Express questions one mother's use of the benefit system.
    • Dead man fulfils comedy club wish April 16, 2014
      A man's dying wish to appear on a comedy stage is fulfilled when one of his friends performs at a club accompanied by his ashes.
    • Man City players 'best paid in sport' April 16, 2014
      Premier League players at Manchester City are the best paid in global sport, according to a recently published report.
    • I will not quit - Sunderland boss Poyet April 16, 2014
      Sunderland manager Gus Poyet dismisses rumours he is about to quit the Premier League strugglers.
    • Arsenal 3-1 West Ham United April 15, 2014
      Arsenal come from behind to beat West Ham and move back above Everton into the top four of the Premier League.
    • Khan signs with Mayweather advisor April 16, 2014
      Amir Khan improves his chances of landing a lucrative showdown with Floyd Mayweather by teaming up with Al Haymon.
    • 'Losing the England captaincy was devastating' April 16, 2014
      In her latest column, Casey Stoney discusses England, Arsenal's hopes for the season and the WSL's debt to Liverpool
  • RSS Reuters: Politics

  • RSS – Africa

    • Luxury shoes made in Ghana April 15, 2014
      Fred Deegbe was standing outside a shop window five years ago, marveling at the shiny pair of wing-tip Oxfords he'd just bought, when he started wondering whether such beautiful designer shoes could ever be produced in his country, Ghana.
    • Meet Nigeria's 'Mark Zuckerberg' April 3, 2014
      At 23, many people around the world are still at university -- at that age, Gossy Ukanwoke had already started one.
    • Why we need more geek girls April 3, 2014
      "It was like taking a big leap of faith."
    • 'Uncle Ebo' revives Ghanaian theater April 15, 2014
      African Voices meets James Ebo Whyte a passionate storyteller with a series of successful plays to his credit.
    • How medics saved lives at Westgate April 9, 2014
      When gunmen stormed into Nairobi's Westgate shopping mall, Abbas Gullet was one of the first emergency responders on the scene. As head of Kenya's Red Cross, he was in charge of coordinating services for people in need.
    • Embracing Ghana's natural beauty April 1, 2014
      She started her business with just £100, lugging her beauty bag from door to door, but some 25 years later Grace Amey-Obeng has built a multi-million dollar cosmetics empire that's helping change the perception of beauty for many.
    • Secrets of 'gorilla whisperer' March 25, 2014
      Zain Verjee visits Uganda's Bwindi Impenetrable National Park -- the home of half of the world's endangered mountain gorilla population.
    • Savannah from the sky March 13, 2014
      It's almost impossible for a photographer to find fresh visual perspectives these days. Brooklyn-based Zack Seckler had to travel to a different continent and strap into an ultra-light aircraft to find one. His Botswana series presents the country from between 50 and 500 feet, providing a unique and captivating view of the savannah.
    • Holy water at baptism festival March 25, 2014
      France has Lourdes, but Ethiopia has Gondar -- with thousands of pilgrims swimming in its holy waters to celebrate the baptism of Jesus.
    • Africa's most endangered April 16, 2014
      Africa is home to much unique wildlife, but many of its iconic species are threatened. Find out more about its most endangered animals.
    • Ebola: A swift and bloody killer April 16, 2014
      It took only moments to feel the impact of what was happening here.
    • 'I lost my fingers, made new ones' April 14, 2014
      A South African carpenter lost his fingers in an accident -- now he's making mechanical fingers and hands for others.
    • Kenya double in London Marathon April 13, 2014
      World record-holder Wilson Kipsang completed a Kenyan double at the London Marathon Sunday as home hope Mo Farah disappointed on his debut over the 42km distance.
    • Pistorius at mercy of 'bull dog?' April 11, 2014
      He's known as the "bull dog" in South Africa's legal circles, and just two days in to Gerrie Nel's merciless cross-examination of Oscar Pistorius, it's easy to see why.
    • 'Now is the time for Afro-realism' April 11, 2014
      Over the last 20 years, the narrative on the African continent has shifted from Afro-pessimism to Afro-optimism. The truth lies somewhere in between. Now is the time for Afro-realism: for sound policies based on honest data, aimed at delivering results.
    • Africa's tastiest street food April 11, 2014
      Here are your photos of the tastiest -- and most unusual -- African street food.
    • Most stylish tribe in Africa? April 10, 2014
      A South African designer is making sure that when Xhosa boys come of age, they're dressed to the nines.
    • Egypt's sex pest epidemic? April 9, 2014
      A university student cowers in a pharmacy as a mob outside threatens her with sexual violence. A law student is groped by her classmates, the dean cites her "inappropriate attire." Frightening allegations but advocates say this is an everyday reality for women in Cairo.
    • Day that changed Kenya forever April 9, 2014
      When gunmen stormed into Nairobi's Westgate shopping mall, Abbas Gullet was one of the first emergency responders on the scene. As head of Kenya's Red Cross, he was in charge of coordinating services for people in need.
    • Pistorius: Murder or mistake? April 10, 2014
      As the Paralympian takes the stand in the Reeva Steenkamp murder trial, CNN's Richard Greene looks back at the key points made by the prosecution.
  • Country Stats

    free counters

Archive for January 1st, 2011

Kenya Gay-talk: The courage to ask

Posted by African Press International on January 1, 2011

KENYA: Grace*, “I finally found the courage to ask, ‘Are you gay’?”’

Photo: lst1984/Flickr
“We clicked immediately”

NAIROBI, 30 December 2010 (PlusNews) – Grace is an attractive brunette working in Nairobi. Until recently, she was dating Will, a stylish 20-something Kenyan. She told IRIN/PlusNews how the relationship broke down, leaving her with fears about HIV.

“I met Will about a year ago through a friend of mine. We clicked immediately and became friends. One thing led to another and we ended up dating.

“Things were going on smoothly between us; we had a great sex life and loved spending time together, but I somehow felt there was something odd in our relationship. I couldn’t fully read through Will.

“One evening we were having drinks, discussing sex work in Kenya and men who deny that they fuel the trade. All of a sudden, Will looked at me and asked, ‘What would you say if your man told you he’s been cheating on you with another man?’

“The issue of homosexuality has never been taboo to me, so I simply told Will that cheating on me with a man would be the same to me as with another woman.

“I never confronted Will about the strange question, and we broke up soon after that.

“Weeks later we met at a concert and ended up chatting. He was about to leave, when I finally found the courage to ask, ‘Are you gay?’

“That night we talked for hours – that’s how long it took him to admit he is gay. I felt fooled and manipulated.

“Will and I don’t see each other any more. He was too tangled in his own string of lies and guilt. I had no choice than walking away from him for my own sanity.

“This revelation forced me to go back to our sexual life and I could finally understand why he was obsessed with the use of condoms, which I never really experienced before with a man. I had always been the one pushing them to put the rubber on. With Will it was never the case.

“Sure, I also fear HIV but we were dating for a while now and I thought our relationship was now an exclusive one and we could do without one.

“I remember one night a condom broke and he became livid. I was much more casual about it and couldn’t quite understand why he overreacted. I assured him that these things happen.

“But now I became worried about why he was so religious with condoms and why he went mad when the condom broke. Luckily, my HIV status is still negative, though I could not convince him to come and get tested with me.

“Apparently Will has known he is gay for years but can’t come to terms with it. To his family and friends he’s a ladies’ man – it’s all about his macho image. He told me if he disclosed his sexual orientation, his whole family would turn their back on him.

“In a way, I understand his conflict between the possible benefits and drawbacks of disclosing his sexual orientation. But if on the one side there is the negative stigma of homophobia, on the other, coming out as openly gay would make him feel better with himself and stop him from living a lie.

“My fear is for the women he goes with; they should be aware of the risks they are taking, despite him being cautious. A condom can break and you need to know who you are with and that you are actually part of a more vulnerable group. His lies are dangerous lies.”

*not her real name



About these ads

Posted in AA > News and News analysis | Leave a Comment »

Madagascar continued to be in the spotlight

Posted by African Press International on January 1, 2011

SOUTHERN AFRICA: Pick of the year 2010

Madagascar continued to be in the spotlight

JOHANNESBURG, 31 December 2010 (IRIN) – The crises in Zimbabwe and Madagascar were a major focus of IRIN’s Southern Africa coverage, though riots over food and fuel prices in early September 2010 in Mozambique managed to grab the headlines for a while.

Civil rights activists warned of a possible surge of violence if elections – hinted at by President Robert Mugabe – go ahead in 2011. Major donors have said that if elections are not free and fair the level of their engagement and support will be affected.

Donor support to get essential services up and running after the devastating cholera outbreak of 2008/2009 is paying off. IRIN reported health services had improved but poor salaries have kept staff morale low.

With a poorly paid civil service, allegations of corruption are commonplace. IRIN took a closer look at the ability of ordinary Zimbabweans to access identity documents and found that a passport could cost up to US$300.

Zimbabwean migrants in neighbouring South Africa were desperate to get hold of passports as the government announced it would resume deportation of undocumented Zimbabweans from 1 January 2011. At least a million Zimbabweans are estimated to be living in South Africa and were victims of xenophobic attacks.


The prospects for the Indian Ocean island state of Madagascar – now run by former radio DJ Andry Rajoelina who seized power from President Marc Ravalomanana in 2009 with the backing of the army – worsened when some soldiers attempted to seize control in November 2010.  The coup attempt coincided with a referendum on constitutional reforms which made Rajoelina eligible to stand for election.

Donors suspended all but emergency assistance to the financially dependent country of 20 million people after Rajoelina took office, and the USA ended the preferential access enjoyed by Madagascar’s textile industry to its markets under the African Growth and Opportunities Act. This has had a devastating impact on livelihoods.

IRIN also wrote about how Madagascar’s transitional government was beginning to export illegally harvested precious hardwoods to generate revenue.

Nosy Be, an island off the northwest coast of Madagascar, was the focus of an IRIN report on community efforts to combat sex tourism.

Angola grabbed the spotlight when it continued to violently expel Democratic Republic of Congo nationals from its territory.  The Cabindan separatist movement in Angola denied that the conflict had ended (interview with IRIN).

Women’s rights in Swaziland received a setback when its highest court reversed a ruling which allowed married women to register property in their own name.

Other IRIN reports covered the increasing strains on a century-old, five-nation Southern African Customs Union funded largely by 1.15 percent of South Africa’s gross domestic product; social transfer programmes which help to reduce poverty in Africa; and World Bank cash transfers in Malawi indicating that unconditional transfers can have the same effect as conditional transfers.



Posted in AA > News and News analysis | Leave a Comment »

Remittances are lifelines for residents in Myanmar

Posted by African Press International on January 1, 2011

MYANMAR: Remittances support survival

Remittances are lifelines for residents in Myanmar, where foreign direct investment is weak and international markets are almost non-existent

DALA THAYA, 31 December 2010 (IRIN) – Remittances to Myanmar continue to be a lifeline for communities strapped for cash and short of food throughout the country, according to researchers and migration experts.

While officially recorded remittances to Myanmar accounted for only 0.4 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) in 2009, a 2008 university study calculated remittances were at least four times higher than the official figures.

Australia-based Macquarie University estimated average annual remittances to Myanmar from Thailand alone – US$300 million – amounted to five times the level of overall foreign direct investment in Myanmar.

“Some 96 percent of respondents [Burmese workers in Thailand] nominated [their family’s] survival as their first order priority,” said Claudia Natali, labour migration programme manager for the International Organization for Migration in Thailand, referring to the university survey.

According to the World Bank, $150 million in remittances was sent to Myanmar in 2008 through formal channels – the most recorded in over a decade.

But most migrants use an informal system called `hondi’ to transfer remittances to Myanmar, bypassing official recordkeeping.

“Persons moving irregularly across the border are entrusted to deliver agreed amounts of money from migrants in Thailand to family members in the migrants’ source community,” said Natali.


The number of Burmese migrants who entered Thailand “regularly” – with legal permission – between July 2010 and November 2010 was 702, according to the Thai government. But most Burmese migrants working in Malaysia or Thailand enter without documentation.

A memorandum of understanding between Thailand and Myanmar, which foresees mechanisms for migrants to enter and stay legally in Thailand for employment, was only implemented in July 2010.

In the Thai border town of Mae Sot, many Burmese migrants work in garment factories, while in southern Thailand they work on palm oil plantations or as fishermen.

“Those seeking work in Malaysia are usually village residents or lower middle class young men recruited formally by overseas employment agencies in Myanmar,” said Natali.

“It cost $1,300 to send my son to Malaysia,” said U Kyaw, a retired army sergeant in Myanmar’s capital, Yangon, whose pension, equivalent to 40 US cents a day, is barely enough to cover his expenses.

“I borrowed $600 from a rich relative, the agent gave us a loan of $400 and the family put the rest up,” said the 63-year-old father of three.

His youngest son Mya, who left for Malaysia to work as a day labourer in March 2010, now sends back $150-$200 a month. By contrast Thein, the eldest son, earns some $80 a month driving a bus in Yangon.

Poverty line

Once known as the “rice bowl of Asia”, Myanmar’s per capita GDP in 2009 was just over $1 a day.

Maung, the youngest of three brothers, exchanges the highly volatile Burmese currency into US dollars on the black market, where 10,000 Burmese kyats equalled $10 in December, versus the official bank exchange rate of $1,560. Over the course of a year, each brother earns on average $5 a day. “Luckily, my sister works in Malaysia. Last year she sent back $2,000,” said the 16-year-old.

After nearly 20 years of various trade and aid sanctions, the vast majority of people in Myanmar survive thanks to small-scale local businesses, according to US-based research group Asia Society.

The average citizen spends more than 70 percent of his or her income on food, according to a March 2010 Asia Society report.

The researchers calculated this was the highest proportion in Southeast Asia.



Posted in AA > News and News analysis | Leave a Comment »


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,224 other followers

%d bloggers like this: