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  • December 2012
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  • RSS BBC News – Africa

    • Nigeria schoolgirls 'still missing' April 18, 2014
      Nigeria's military rows back on an earlier statement that most of the teenage girls abducted by suspected Islamist militants had been freed.
    • ICC calls Kenya Ruto trial witnesses April 18, 2014
      The International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague summons reluctant witnesses to testify at the trial of Kenya's Vice-President William Ruto.
    • French troops free Mali aid workers April 17, 2014
      French troops in Mali free five aid workers who were kidnapped in the north of the country by suspected Islamist militants in February.
    • Deadly attack on South Sudan UN base April 17, 2014
      Dozens of civilians sheltering in a UN base in the South Sudan city of Bor have been killed in an attack by armed youths, the UN says.
    • Pistorius forensic tests challenged April 17, 2014
      The tests carried out by a forensic expert for Oscar Pistorius' murder trial are rigorously challenged by the state prosecutor in South Africa.
    • Algeria votes on Bouteflika's future April 18, 2014
      Algerians have voted in elections in which incumbent President Abdelaziz Bouteflika, who suffered a stroke last year, is seeking a fourth term.
    • Senegal's Karim Wade 'to face trial' April 17, 2014
      A Senegalese court rules that Karim Wade, the ex-president's son, should stand trial on corruption charges over his wealth, an official says.
    • Guinea-Bissau run-off to pick leader April 17, 2014
      Officials in Guinea-Bissau say a run-off vote will be held next month after no candidate won an outright victory in Sunday's presidential election.
    • Remittance fees 'hurt Africans' April 16, 2014
      Communities in sub-Saharan Africa are being "hurt" by high fees charged by money transfer operators, charity Comic Relief says.
    • UN mulls medal for peacekeepers April 16, 2014
      The UN Security Council hears a proposal to create a medal for bravery in UN peacekeeping, to be named after a Senegalese soldier who saved lives during the Rwandan genocide.
    • Head of oldest African park shot April 16, 2014
      The Belgian director of Africa's oldest national park - Virunga in the Democratic Republic of Congo - is shot and wounded in an ambush.
    • 'Last' Chadian soldier leaves CAR April 16, 2014
      Chad has withdrawn all its peacekeepers from the Central African Republic, an official confirms, after accusations they sided with Muslim rebels.
    • VIDEO: Hunt for 100 abducted girls in Nigeria April 16, 2014
      Security forces in Borno State in Nigeria are searching for dozens of teenage girls abducted by suspected members of the Islamist militant group Boko Haram.
    • AUDIO: 'Killing books' in Libya April 15, 2014
      Libyan author Mansour Bushnaf says Libya does not have much of reading culture because under Col Muammar Gaddafi, people were afraid of books.
    • VIDEO: At site of Nigeria bus station blast April 14, 2014
      A powerful bomb blast has ripped through a crowded bus station on the outskirts of Nigeria's capital, Abuja, killing at least 71 people.
    • VIDEO: Cleaning up Cairo's waste system April 14, 2014
      The Egyptian government is turning to its traditional rubbish collectors - the Zabaleen - to revolutionise Cario's waste disposal industry.
    • VIDEO: Pistorius trial day 23 - in 60 secs April 16, 2014
      The girlfriend of Oscar Pistorius was shot in quick succession as she fell down, a forensics expert has told the South African athlete's murder trial.
    • VIDEO: Pistorius trial day 21 - in 60 secs April 14, 2014
      The prosecutor at the Oscar Pistorius murder trial suggests the South African athlete is using his emotions "as an escape".
    • VIDEO: Pistorius trial shown prosthetic leg April 17, 2014
      The prosthetic leg belonging to Oscar Pistorius has been shown to the court during his murder trial. He denies murder, claiming he mistook Reeva Steenkamp for a burglar.
    • VIDEO: Ghana's 'waste to wealth' initiative April 12, 2014
      Suzanne Vanhooymissen reports on the large and smaller-scale enterprises set up to segregate waste and encourage recycling in Ghana.
  • RSS BBC News – Home

    • S Korea ferry captain arrest sought April 18, 2014
      Prosecutors in South Korea ask for an arrest warrant for the captain of the ferry that capsized on Wednesday killing 28, with 268 missing.
    • Eastern Ukraine militants snub deal April 18, 2014
      Pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine refuse to leave official buildings, just hours after an international deal was reached to defuse the crisis.
    • British teenager killed in Syria April 18, 2014
      An 18-year-old British man who was killed in Syria "died in battle" and was not a terrorist, his father tells the BBC.
    • Boy in hospital with severe burns April 18, 2014
      A seven-year-old boy is taken to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary after an incident involving petrol left him with severe burns.
    • Everest avalanche kills 12 guides April 18, 2014
      At least 12 local guides have been killed after an avalanche on the slopes of Mount Everest, officials in Nepal say.
    • One person killed as boat capsizes April 18, 2014
      One person dies and another is in hospital after a boat capsizes in a river estuary in Devon.
    • Tributes for Gabriel Garcia Marquez April 18, 2014
      Presidents and fellow writers pay tribute to Nobel prize-winning Colombian author Gabriel Garcia Marquez ,who has died in Mexico aged 87.
    • Sacked doctor was unfairly dismissed April 18, 2014
      A sacked heart specialist was unfairly dismissed after raising concerns about patient safety, an employment tribunal rules.
    • Channel Tunnel trains back to normal April 18, 2014
      Channel Tunnel rail services have returned to normal on Good Friday morning after being hit by severe disruption.
    • Foreign doctors 'need tougher tests' April 18, 2014
      Tests taken by foreign doctors who want to work in the NHS should be made harder to pass to bring them in line with UK standards, a study says.
    • Teachers to debate summer strike April 18, 2014
      The NUT conference is to hear calls for a one-day strike on 23 June and a campaign of industrial action over pay and workload.
    • Easter funeral for Peaches Geldof April 18, 2014
      Peaches Geldof's funeral is to be held on Easter Monday at the church where she was married and her mother's funeral held, her family says.
    • A fifth of gardeners 'throw snails' April 18, 2014
      A survey finds one-fifth of gardeners admit to throwing snails over their neighbour's fence, with Londoners the worst culprits.
    • Larrazabal stung by hornets in Malaysia April 18, 2014
      Pablo Larrazabal is repeatedly stung by a swarm of hornets at the Malaysian Open, where Lee Westwood leads by four shots.
    • Man Utd have failed - coach Neville April 18, 2014
      Manchester United have not lived up to expectations this season, coach and former player Phil Neville tells the BBC.
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      Lewis Hamilton heads Ferrari's Fernando Alonso as the Mercedes driver sets the pace in Friday practice at the Chinese GP.
    • Liverpool trio on PFA award list April 18, 2014
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      St Helens' 100% start to the season is ended as reigning Super League champions Wigan win a ferocious derby.
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      England batsman Jonathan Trott is to take a second break from cricket because of a recurrence of his anxiety issues.
    • Ex-BP worker fined over shares trade April 18, 2014
      A BP employee who oversaw the cleanup of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010 agrees to settle a charge of insider trading.
  • RSS Reuters: Politics

  • RSS CNN.com – 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.
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      At 23, many people around the world are still at university -- at that age, Gossy Ukanwoke had already started one.
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      "It was like taking a big leap of faith."
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      African Voices meets James Ebo Whyte a passionate storyteller with a series of successful plays to his credit.
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      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.
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      Zain Verjee visits Uganda's Bwindi Impenetrable National Park -- the home of half of the world's endangered mountain gorilla population.
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      The Center for African Family Studies in Nairobi has teamed up with Kenyan artist Michael Soi to create eye-catching condom wrappers to promote safe sex and raise awareness about HIV/AIDS among young people.
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    • 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
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    • Africa's tastiest street food April 11, 2014
      Here are your photos of the tastiest -- and most unusual -- African street food.
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The female condom showdown

Posted by African Press International on December 10, 2012

JOHANNESBURG,  - Introduced more than 15 years ago, the female condom has gotten a bad rap, with some comparing it to having sex with a plastic bag, while many others still don’t know about the only female-controlled HIV prevention method available.Its uptake and distribution have been outpaced by traditional male condoms: according to a recent UNAIDS report, only one donor-funded female condom was available for every 10 women of reproductive age in sub-Saharan Africa last year. Even male condom distribution stood at a paltry nine per every man of the same age in the region.

As new versions of the female condom, or femidom, continue to be developed, IRIN/PlusNews asked one couple to test the newer FC2 female condom, which is said to be quieter and less expensive to produce than the original FC1 female condom, and its newer rival, the Chinese-produced Cupid. The two products are the only female condoms that have been prequalified by the World Health Organization. Prequalification is a service provided by the global health body to test the safety, quality and efficacy of medicinal products before they are released to the public.

She said

“I’d only ever used a female condom once. I remember application being tricky, awkward and involving something akin to the one-legged perching stance you assume when you first start using tampons as a girl – when the idea of having to stick your fingers up ‘there’ is simultaneously weird, gross and frightening. You imagine trips to the emergency room in some horribly embarrassing scene and having to admit to a nurse that you got it all wrong and need help to correct ‘the situation’.

“This time, I was pleasantly surprised. Application times for both the FC2 and the Cupid were roughly the same, and nearly equal to the time it takes to put on a male condom, but not without some serious preparation.

“The FC2 has six, relatively easy steps. The best part: there are pictures, which makes everything easier… But packed onto half of the Cupid’s purple, hulking pack are no fewer than 10 steps. Each step is explained in anywhere from two to four lines, accompanied by an itsy-bitsy picture, which in some cases also contains text you’d need a magnifying glass to read. Before using the Cupid, I took about five minutes to study the packet – after literally having to find my glasses. I put them on the bedside table by the Cupid in case I needed a quick refresher before use.

“Actually inserting the Cupid was intimidating. This new version features a new circular sponge at the end, about the size of the top of a cool drink can. Intimidating doesn’t cover it. Actually, when we pulled it out, my partner actually said, ‘Whoa, that is not attractive,’ which is always what a girl wants to hear in compromising positions… I felt like my face was frozen in a really attractive ‘am I doing this right?’ look.

“I took a brief second to wonder how you’d pack more than one Cupid into your handbag – the thing is huge. I actually laughed out loud upon its removal because it looked like a really tiny flotation device.

“To be honest though, once the Cupid was where it was supposed to be, it was leagues above the FC2 in feeling. But I couldn’t help focusing on making sure either femidom was where it should be during sex. I figure this is something you’d get over with practice, but it didn’t inspire a lot of position changes. And neither is it especially pretty – there’s still the outer ring hanging about – but it was still a far cry from a plastic shopping bag. There, I said it.

“My verdict: I still prefer traditional condoms, but then again, I don’t have to argue about condom use with my partner. Lucky girl.”

He said

“I was initially excited by trying out a new form of contraception, but with some heavy scepticism. The original was awkward to put on, and it’s a bit anxiety provoking because you don’t have the control you have with a male condom, which fits better to the body. Actually, it’s kind of scary in that way, even though you know they’re effective.

“With both condoms, it felt like there was more room for error than with male condoms. We read with the Cupid that you have to be careful about the penis going between the condom and the vagina. It makes me wonder if you could also have that problem with the original.

“Although the FC2 looks a lot better than the Cupid, it feels like FC2 skimps on lube. It’s really dry and because of that, it sticks to you the whole time. It kind feels like you’re having sex with a glove – not that I know what that feels like.

“With the Cupid, in some ways you feel freer as a guy, without having something strapped to your penis. You might have a bit more freedom – being a man – with the feeling of the female condom, but you have more freedom to do stuff like change positions when wearing the male condom.”

“I couldn’t feel the sponge [of the Cupid]. I know people have said it’s supposed to add something in terms of feeling, but I’m not 100 percent convinced.

The verdict

“We’d pick the Cupid over the FC2 any day, but won’t be moving to female condoms any time soon. Well, if we could even find them.”

llg/kn/rz

source http://www.irinnews.org


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