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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

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.

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    Why we must unveil the queen

    Mwangi Kibathi

    2008-09-17, Issue 397

    In the ancient Spartan democracy, the all the citizens were directly involved in major decision-making processes. As populations and perhaps egos grew, it became impossible to involve everyone in the day to day running of state affairs. A class of fulltime governors who made decisions for the rest of the society evolved. Thus representative democracy was born. This brought about a class of people who by the virtue of their leadership positions acquired (and controlled) more information than the rest of the society....

    A big devil in the shacks

    The politics of fire

    Matt Birkinshaw

    2008-09-17, Issue 396

    On average in South Africa over the last five years there are ten shack fires a day with someone dying in a shack fire every other day. Shack fires are not acts of God. They are the result of political choices, often at municipal level....

    Aid effectiveness: the question of mutual accountability

    Charles Mutasa

    2008-09-03, Issue 394

    The issue of development cooperation especially aid can be traced back to the United Nations resolution 2626 of 1970 on the international development strategy for the second United Nations development decade where rich countries pledged to give 0.7% ...

    Freedom in a fortnight: A view from the trenches

    Jenni Williams

    2008-07-23, Issue 390

    This view represents a consulted way forward recommended by Women and Men of Zimbabwe Arise (WOZA/MOZA). We are an organisation owned by its 60,000 members who hold qualifications in daily survival and degrees in nonviolence despite the deeply polarised political environment in Zimbabwe since 2000. WOZA was born in the community and seeks to draw the attention of preoccupied politicians to people?s needs, namely bread and butter issues; or as WOZA likes to put it, bread and roses issues - bread representing food and roses representing the need for lasting dignity.

    Transitional justice in sexual and gender-based violence

    Makau Mutua

    2008-07-14, Issue 388

    It is now fashionable in academic and activist circles to speak of transitional justice in normative, inflexible terms that suggest a utopian certainty, writes Makau Mutua. Nothing could be further from the truth. At the outset, we need to understand that transitional justice concepts are experimental – good experiments to be sure – but that they do not offer us tested panacea because they are essentially works in progress. This is not meant to diminish the utility of the concepts or to throw cold water on them as a beachhead for recovering societies with a legacy of traumatic conflict. Rather, it is to recognize their limitation so that we do not stampede to the temple only to find it empty of the goddess of truth.

    Kenya and Zimbabwe: Challenges and opportunities

    Briggs Bomba

    2008-07-09, Issue 387

    The world’s attention has been riveted in 2008, by election crises in Africa, first Kenya, and now Zimbabwe. In both cases, challenges remain in converting electoral victory to political power. Can a victorious opposition come to power in the face of an obstinate incumbent? This question is particularly relevant when the incumbent regime controls the coercive apparatus of the state and the opposition only has the ballot in its corner. In the battle of the ballot vs. the bullet, can there ever be a fair match, asks Briggs Bomba.

    Zimbabwe - The mark of Cain

    Henning Melber

    2008-07-03, Issue 385

    The struggle was not only against unjust minority rule. It was also about the struggle for democracy, human rights, civil liberties and, most importantly, the necessary material redistribution of wealth to allow all these other values to become social and political reality for the broad majority. Once these goals were betrayed by a new post-colonial elite, solidarity by activists internationally needs to be re-positioned. We now have a responsibility to protect and support those were cheated and denied the fruits of freedom. We have a responsibility to support those who now continue to seek emancipation from new forms of oppression and totalitarian rule, writes Henning Melber.

    The bear and the dragon

    Stephen Marks

    2008-06-17, Issue 381

    In Africa the "Russian state seems far more ‘upfront’ about pursuing its grand geopolitical projects than the more cautious and patient Chinese. Russia’s private sector too is prepared on occasion to operate with an unashamed directness where others might be more diplomatic." While all eyes are on China's growing influence in Africa, Stephen Marks argues that Russia's bear is quitely intensifying its hug.

    China’s ‘openness’ has African echoes

    Stephen Marks

    2008-05-29, Issue 376

    China’s media and official reaction to the devastating Sichuan earthquake has been given generally positive coverage by Western media and governments, writes Stephen Marks. It may be a coincidence, but the earthquake and the allegedly more open reaction happen to follow soon after the coming into force of sweeping new Chinese government regulations on transparency - which could be a useful lever for activists seeking greater transparency in tracking the impact of China’s African footprint.

    Xenophobia and the South African working class

    Thandokuhle Manzi and Patrick Bond

    2008-05-27, Issue 375

    To convey the reasons and effects of xenophobia in South Africa and its effect on the working class, Thandokuhle Manzi and Patrick Bond take a microscopic look at Cato Manor Township, one of the sites where the attacks took place.

    Condemn the violence!

    Abdon Yezi

    2008-05-22, Issue 373

    Southern African film makers implore Southern Africa "governments, politicians and citizens to rise and send an unequivocal message to South Africa condemning these acts of violence."

    Namibia and Zimbabwe - the second liberation

    Henning Melber

    2008-05-13, Issue 371

    Henning Melber looks at the possibilities for a people-centred opposition and ultimately a true liberation in Namibia and Zimbabwe, after years of misrule by the liberation movements-turned-ruling parties.

    Stop supplying weapons to Zimbabwe

    Desmond Tutu

    2008-04-24, Issue 365

    “Zimbabwe is staring into the abyss. Violence is growing and the people are suffering greatly as a result. It is now vital that we all do what we can to calm the situation.

    Zimbabwe – who can halt the slide to inevitable violence?

    Sam Kebele

    2008-04-15, Issue 362

    Sam Kabele looks at the fault lines along which violence in Zimbabwe is traveling and calls for solidarity the Zimbabwean people

    COSATU and ZCTU: Election results must be announced

    Congress of South African Trade Union

    2008-04-08, Issue 360

    The Congress of South African Trade Unions and the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions held a meeting this morning, Tuesday 8 April 2008, to receive a report from the ZCTU on the current political crisis in Zimbabwe.

    Urgent petition to SADC heads of state - Zimbabwe

    Zimbabwe Civil Society Organizations

    2008-04-03, Issue 359

    Inordinate delay in announcing results is of grave concern to civil society: We the undersigned Civil Society groups whose names are listed below have found it necessary to send this urgent petition to your Excellences in order to save our country from potentially sinking into complete anarchy if election results are manipulated.

    MISA-Zimbabwe on SADC observers


    2008-04-01, Issue 358

    The SADC Observer Mission to the 2008 elections noted several anomalies that run against the grain of the principles of democratic elections within the southern African region but still endorsed the process leading to the 29 March elections as free and fair....

    Fighting repression with love

    WOZA launch report

    Women of Zimbabwe Arise (WOZA)


    2008-03-24, Issue 356

    A Women of Zimbabwe Arise (WOZA) summary of a report that looks at the suppression of women's political voices

    Prospects from a flawed election

    New report on Zimbabwe

    International Crisis Group

    2008-03-20, Issue 356

    ICG warns that the international community needs to have contingency plans ready in anticipation of rigged elections in Zimbabwe on 29 March that could precipitate a potentially violent crisis

    Beyond the Politics of Polarization in Kenya

    Tim Murithi

    2008-02-12, Issue 344

    Through an unexpected confluence of events Kenyans currently find themselves faced with a political conundrum. The spectacular abdication of responsibility by the Chairman of the Electoral Commission of Kenya (ECK), Mr. Samuel Kiviutu, has perpetuate...

    ISSN 1753-6839 Pambazuka News English Edition

    ISSN 1753-6847 Pambazuka News en Français

    ISSN 1757-6504 Pambazuka News em Português

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