The death of former Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe has elicited mixed reactions. Some remember Mugabe as a nationalist, Pan-Africanist, brave revolutionary, but for others Mugabe’s long hold on power, and autocracy will remain a stain on his contested legacy. Various political groups in Zimbabwe and across the continent have sent out their condolence messages on the passing on of President Mugabe.
26 year-old Thebe Magugu is the first African to win the prestigious LVMH prize. The fashion talent prize comes with a €300,000 cash award, and includes a year of “technical and financial support” from the luxury giant. The South African designer was part of 1,700 applicants from 100 countries who applied for the LVMH prize.
Nigerians took to the streets of Lagos, and other parts of the country, destroying and looting what they suspected to be South African owned shops, businesses and properties in retaliatory attacks. The retaliatory attacks in Lagos have shown that tension between South Africa and Nigeria is likely to continue until the deep underlying causes of self-hatred and hatred against fellow Africans are addressed.
Nigerians are disappointed with the slow reaction of their government to the xenophobic attacks in South Africa. Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari has only addressed the country via tweets, and no specific nor substantial actions have been discussed to address the crisis. In a message President Buhari said he is “sending a Special Envoy to President Ramaphosa to share our deep concern about the security of Nigerian lives and property in South Africa”.
Xenophobic attacks against African immigrants, specifically targeting Nigerian and Zimbabwean nationals in South Africa have hit the country. Shops belonging to African immigrants were looted and burnt in the latest brutal attacks. There has been an uproar on social media following the latest Afrophobic attacks, with calls for stronger and decisive intervention by the government.
Churches in Africa have accommodated corrupt activities, exacerbated by the prosperity gospel. Beyond the prosperity preaching, what the continent needs are churches that encourage members to stand against oppression and corruption.
In 1992, the Free Ethiopian Church of South Africa had their centenary celebration. Nelson Mandela gave a speech that outlined eight tasks for the church. The tasks included, national reconciliation, supporting democracy, and the war on violence, in addition to acting as “the conscience of the present and future society”. Are churches across Africa drawing any lessons from Mandela’s counsel?
The Ubuntu Series is aimed at sensitising people of African descent about behaviours that disrupt the development of our countries.
Ethiopian writer Maaza Mengiste has signed three forklifts of her latest book The Shadow King. The Shadow King is her second book, and it took her nearly four hours and three pens to sign the books.