Posts in category interviews


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“People outside any particular community cannot really solve the community’s public health problems. They have to solve these by themselves”: in conversation with Professor Tomohiko Sugishita

Professor Tomohiko Sugishita doesn’t believe in drive-by kindness. Starting from when he was a newly-minted medical doctor taking care of the medical needs of 2 million Malawians at the height of the HIV epidemic in 1995, Professor Sugishita has always believed in sinking deep roots into a community and helping it help itself. He recently sat down for an interview with veteran Kenyan journalist Wycliffe Muga and opened up about what lit his fire for medicine, his long years of medical practice in Africa and why he has come to believe in the “unlearning process”.

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A window into democracy in Africa and the world: In conversation with Prof Staffan Lindberg

The year 2016 was full of surprises. The biggest ones (Brexit, Trump’s election, Jammeh’s exit) were delivered via the ballot box.  Democracy may yet have more surprises in store for us in 2017. As the Director of the Varieties of Democracy (V-Dem) Institute at the University of Gothenburg, few people on the planet study democracy and its effect more closely than Professor Staffan I. Lindberg. He spoke to Wycliffe Muga, a Kenyan journalist and political commentator, on what V-Dem’s work reveals about democracy in Africa, why people are now more open to “I can fix this” politicians and much more.

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“Women need options when a man says no to a condom”: An interview with Kenyan HIV activist Jacque Wambui

In much of Africa, HIV is no longer the medieval plague it used to be. Which is not to say the virus still doesn’t pose a significant threat to the continent’s future. HIV is a wily fiend and our hard-earned gains can be quickly eroded if complacency slips in. Thankfully, as Kenyan HIV activist Jacqueline Wambui explains to Dr. Diana Wangari in this interview, science is helping keep the virus at bay by giving women greater control in the bedroom than they’ve traditionally had.

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‘There is no such thing as a revolution starting and ending in a couple of months’: an interview with Egyptian activist, Yara Sallam

Egyptian human rights advocate, Yara Sallam, stood up to be counted when Egypt’s revolution was in full tilt and paid the price for it: fifteen months in prison. The prison spell did nothing to diminish her resolve and since her release last year, the outspoken activist has shown no signs of backing down from the fight to ensure that the powers that be uphold the human rights of every Egyptian. This Is Africa’s Nancy Onyango caught up with Sallam on the sidelines of the recently concluded Association for Women’s Rights in Development (AWID) forum in Brazil. She opened up about why some North Africans don’t feel “African,” her experience behind bars and why she thinks Egypt’s revolution is far from over.