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Pambazuka News Pambazuka News is produced by a pan-African community of some 2,600 citizens and organisations - academics, policy makers, social activists, women's organisations, civil society organisations, writers, artists, poets, bloggers, and commentators who together produce insightful, sharp and thoughtful analyses and make it one of the largest and most innovative and influential web forums for social justice in Africa.

Latest titles from Pambazuka Press

African Sexualities

Earth Grab A Reader
Sylvia Tamale
A groundbreaking book, accessible but scholarly, by African activists. It uses research, life stories and artistic expression to examine dominant and deviant sexualities, and investigate the intersections between sex, power, masculinities and femininities
Buy now

Global NATO and the Catastrophic Failure in Libya

From Citizen to Refugee Horace Campbell
In this elegantly written and incisive account, scholar Horace Campbell investigates the political and economic crises of the early twenty-first century through the prism of NATO's intervention in Libya.
Buy now

Queer African Reader

Demystifying Aid Edited by Sokari Ekine, Hakima Abbas
A diverse collection of writing from across the continent exploring African LGBTI liberation: identity, tactics for activism, international solidarity, homophobia and global politics, religion and culture, and intersections with social justice movements. A richness of voices, a multiplicity of discourses, a quiverful of arguments. African queers writing for each other, theorising ourselves, making our ...more
Buy now

China and Angola

African Awakening A Marriage of Convenience?
Edited by Marcus Power, Ana Alves
This book focuses on the increased co-operation between Angola and China and shows that although relations with China might have bolstered regime stability and boosted the international standing of the Angolan government, China is not regarded as a long term strategic partner.
Buy now

How Europe Underdeveloped Africa

To Cook a ContinentWalter Rodney
Rodney shows how the imperial countries of Europe, and subsequently the US, bear major responsibility for impoverishing Africa. They have been joined in this exploitation by agents or unwitting accomplices both in the North and in Africa.
Buy now

Emerging Powers Digest: 14th Edition, 5 December 2014

In today’s newsletter the Emerging Powers project announces a call for grant applications; gives a summary of Zuma's travels to China and the signing of the 5-10 Year Framework on Cooperation between the two countries; highlights Ethiopia's budding textile industry and relations with China; India's growing investment presence in Africa; militarization of the continent by the emerging actors. The news digest also provides analyses and news reports on China's evolving foreign policy and diplomatic relations. Read these and other news items in this week's edition of the Emerging Powers in Africa news digest.

Call for Grant Proposals

The Emerging Powers in Africa Project is issuing a call for grant proposals. The grants are aimed at examining the political, economic, social and cultural impact of the emerging powers footprint in Africa. The grant is specifically related to empowering civil society actors in gaining the appropriate knowledge and developing the necessary tools to articulate an informed perspective on the emerging powers in Africa and the corresponding impact.


+ Read the Emerging Powers Digest

+ The Emerging Powers Project Homepage

Pambazuka News Broadcasts

Pambazuka broadcasts feature audio and video content with cutting edge commentary and debate from social justice movements across the continent.

See the list of episodes.


This site has been established by Fahamu to provide regular feedback to African civil society organisations on what is happening with the African Union.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.

Comment & analysis

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The need for Electoral Complaints Authority in Zambia

Henry Kyambalesa

2015-01-29, Issue 711

The two leading candidates in Zambia’s presidential by-election last week were in fact unfit to vie, given their record of activities that constitute elections offenses in the Zambian law. A complaints authority should be set up to investigate the claims.

Fidel Castro: I do not trust the US

Fidel Castro Cruz

2015-01-29, Issue 711

The 88-year-old revolutionary former President of Cuba does not “trust the US, nor have I exchanged any words with them,” he says in a letter addressed to the student federation at the University of Havana. This is the first time Castro has spoken publicly since the 17 December US push for a historic reconciliation between the two nations.

Is development becoming a toxic term?

2015-01-27, Issue 711

Development used to be a battle against deprivation and dependence. Nowadays it’s more about supporting the liberalisation of markets.

A season of disclaimers

Abdulrazaq Magaji

2015-01-29, Issue 711

Nigeria’s president Goodluck Jonathan is surrounded by discredited men who are doing his re-election campaign more harm than good.

Sierra Leone: The wrong way to campaign

Sankara Kamara

2015-01-29, Issue 711

Sierra Leone’s elections are still two years away, but with the country rocked by the recent Ebola crisis, campaigning is already underway. Sankara Kamara looks closer at one presidential candidate, and what lies behind his predominantly online campaign.

On not reducing racism to Apartheid

Richard Pithouse

2015-01-29, Issue 711

When white South Africans see themselves as having a special connection to global whiteness they often succumb to the narcissistic fantasy that their presence in this society, in Africa, constitutes a unique and precious gift.

Charlie Hebdo: How fair is the media?

Arshad M Khan

2015-01-29, Issue 711

The cartoon series on prophet Mohammed, insulting to Muslims, was clearly intended to provoke. While expression of opinion is part of democracy, the French government, on the one hand, ignored this conscious bigotry; on the other, it shut up a popular French comedian, Dieudonne, for what it construed as anti-Semitic jokes.

African security quagmire beyond the Caliphate

Narcisse Jean Alcide Nana

2015-01-27, Issue 711

Africa and the world have entered a century of global low intensity warfare, marked by the devolution of military power away from the modern state to the entrenched landscape of private armies, mercenaries and militia groups.

Rethinking gender sensitivity in governance for equality in Uganda

Otim Denis Barnabas

2015-01-29, Issue 711

Although the numbers of women and men in Uganda are comparable, there exists a great gap in access to resources and to positions of power between the sexes. This inequity affects the structure of the country as a whole and must be corrected.

Achieving the African renaissance

Osita Ebiem

2015-01-27, Issue 711

To achieve the seemingly elusive African renaissance, the leaders have to steer the societies and the peoples away from the current practice of reliance and expectation from the outside, to a firmly rooted belief in self and local solutions.

Why I quit as President Kagame’s economic advisor: His tyranny and lies

David Himbara

2015-01-20, Issue 710

The failure of Rwanda’s Faustian bargain — trading democracy for development and ending up with neither — should come as no surprise to students of history and human nature.

2015 elections: It is an easy choice before Nigerians

Chido Onumah

2015-01-22, Issue 710

It matters pretty little who wins the elections next month. Years of political brinkmanship, reprehensible military dictatorship, corruption and irresponsible leadership have served to make nonsense of the true meaning of nationhood in Nigeria. The struggle for fundamental change must continue.

Five years after the earthquake in Haiti

The sad state of democracy and human rights

Beverly Bell

2015-01-14, Issue 710

In this interview, human rights organizer Jackson Doliscar details increasing violations of human rights by the Martelly dictatorship, with the active support of the United States.

The cult of the Big Leader

Jane Duncan

2015-01-14, Issue 710

Big leader cults have a long history in South African politics. So to argue that South Africa needs new leaders is to misread the key political task on the leadership question. What the country really needs are new models of leadership that break fundamentally from the cult of the big leader, and organisational forms that create the basis for more sustainable leaderships to emerge.

Baga & Paris: Two massacres, contrasting responses and consequences

Herbert Ekwe-Ekwe

2015-01-22, Issue 710

Given Nigeria’s past and recurring history, does one realistically expect this state to defend Baga from Boko Haram, comment or mourn the murder of the 2000 from Baga – almost 49 years to the day after it embarked on the murder of 3.1 million of its Igbo population in a studiously-organised genocide that is still ongoing?

The politics of public health in Africa: A (very) brief history

Simukai Chigudu

2015-01-19, Issue 710

Simukai traces back some of the historical roots of the Ebola outbreak and other public health crises. Without understanding the political history of public health, he argues, we are not able to understand the current crises or successfully tackle health challenges in the future.

The question of ‘internal colonialism’

Hanno Brankamp

2015-01-13, Issue 710

Internal colonies – that is, spaces governed by ‘the rule of difference’ – persist today but the politicisation of the term ‘colonialism’ has impeded a sober discussion of the subject in many cases.

My African Union: Be the voice for Africa!

Mwangi Maina

2015-01-22, Issue 710

A new campaign will be carried out this year in Kenya to promote active citizenship, effective national governance and the realization of the fundamental freedoms and human rights contained in various key AU policy standards and legal instruments.

Why Dr. Denis Mukwege should not join the DRC politics

Patrick Litanga

2015-01-22, Issue 710

On 26 November 2014 the celebrated Congolese medic received yet another international accolade. Following this prestigious recognition, Congolese intellectuals and political observers are wondering whether Dr. Mukwege should join politics. Instead, he should contribute to strengthening the Congolese civil society.

Tragedy of Somali’s unity, nationalism and sovereignty

Mohamud M Uluso

2015-01-22, Issue 710

The Federal Government of Somalis as constituted today does not represent the populations under the authorities of Somaliland, Puntland, Jubbaland and Southwest regions. The Provisional Constitution designed to shackle the arbitrary and capricious behavior of rulers has become a worthless piece of paper for lack of compliance and respect.

Anti-racist movement must intensify in the U.S. during 2015

50 years after the Selma to Montgomery March the struggle continues

Abayomi Azikiwe

2015-01-07, Issue 708

The political superstructure of the U.S. is dominated by right-wing ideology that completely ignores the growing demands for decent wages, adequate housing, quality education, an end to law-enforcement abuses and the cessation of military hostilities abroad. African American masses who are most affected by these injustices need new alliances to fight this system.

Thy kingdom come

The political philosophy of Jesus of Nazareth and its relevance for the contemporary world

Odomaro Mubangizi

2015-01-07, Issue 708

Although the mission of Jesus on earth has always been understood as being spiritual, a closer look at his life and work exposes a social and political philosophy geared to building a better world for all people.

Victims’ voices silenced by ICC sideshows

Simiyu Barasa

2015-01-07, Issue 708

The politically insitaged violence that rocked Kenya seven years ago is slowly being dumped in the dustbins of history for political expediency. Alleged villains have since paraded themselves around the world as the victims – and won more than sympathy at home and abroad. But the real victims still cry for justice.

Dec. 20, 1989: The day Black lives did not matter in Panama

Ajamu Baraka

2015-01-07, Issue 708

The black lives taken by the murderous assault on Panama 25 years ago should be a sober reminder that U.S. state violence is not confined to ghettos and barrios of the U.S., but is a central component of a racist, colonial, capitalist project.

Who should be the next Zambian president?

Henry Kyambalesa

2015-01-08, Issue 708

With Zambia’s presidential by-election set for 20 January, voters must carefully consider which candidate will be able to increase peace, democracy, equality and prosperity by implementing good government practices and encouraging national unity.

2014, The Year of The Con

Vanessa Burger

2015-01-08, Issue 708

2014 in South Africa was marked by a number of large-scale national scandals. Far more insidious, however, are the small, subtle, everyday distortions or omissions of truth which have become pervasive in our political discourse. These distortions, championed by politicians, characterize the public, the media, NGOs and academia.

Will Zambia become a mature demoracy?

Charles Mwewa

2015-01-08, Issue 708

Is 2015 the year of change in Zambia? With the 20 January presidential by-election fast approaching will there be a shift from a growing democracy to a mature democracy? Can the nationa finally shed the coat of corruption and become a truly democratic society that can trust and rely on its elected officials?

‘Public security’ means the president’s misuse of power to violate rights and entrench sectarian rule

Cyprian O Nyamwamu

2014-12-18, Issue 707

There is no doubt in Kenya that the Jubilee Administration is hell-bent on eroding the democratic gains achieved in the country through many years of blood and tears. Uhuru Kenyatta must not be allowed to establish a new dictatorship.

Security laws (Amendment) Bill 2014

The Devolution Forum

2014-12-18, Issue 707

The proposed Security Laws (Amendment) Bill 2014 offends the constitution of Kenya 2010 by undermining the sovereignty of the people, the supremacy of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

Salt imports from Western Sahara rejected due to human rights violations

Peter Kenworthy

2014-12-18, Issue 707

A Norwegian state owned engineering company earlier this year chose to reject a deal for salt from Moroccan-occupied Western Sahara because they found that it would be in violation of their human rights standards. But a Danish company is doing the opposite.

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