Here is a shocking truth – One metric tonne of urea costs about US$ 90 in Europe, US$ 500 in Western Kenya and US$ 700 in Malawi. These are not my words. They are on page 260 of the first ever report on the status of the World’s Soil Resources.
Maria Mutola’s short ponytail was still, her head bent low as she waited for the big race to commence. It was in the finals of the 800 metres at the Barcelona ’92 Olympics Games. Although she was only nineteen years old, Mozambique’s Olympic hopes rested on her young shoulders.
‘The history of the world is but a biography of great men.’ These words were uttered by Thomas Carlyle, the nineteenth century Scottish historian. Going by these words, the history of East Africa in particular and Africa as a whole is, to a huge extent, a biography of great leaders like Mwalimu Julius Nyerere, Tanzania’s first president.
Imagine if you had no name that was unique to you. How would your friends and family refer to you? What if all of us had no names? Life would definitely be complicated and chaotic! Nature has spared dolphins from such chaos by giving each dolphin a unique whistle that it can be identified by.
Marianne’s home in Odense was the scene of nostalgic chatter and banter from a group of ten friends. Five of them had participated in a Kenya work camp only two months earlier: Marianne, Karsten, Helga, Ingrid and Annika. The other five were listening open-mouthed as intriguing tales from Africa flowed forth.
Life. What makes it great and what makes it suck? Why do we do so much to keep it and equally much to lose it? We spend a fortune to remain alive through a cocktail of curative and preventive measures and spend a fortune to chase away that very health through our lifestyles.
Tete Mozambique – Pedro’s tiny boat dugout looks like a brown ant against the expansive blue backdrop of the lower Zambezi River. He is twenty years old and although his hair is black, fluffy and plenty, the weary lines around his brown eyes make him look like he was born in 1976 and not 1996.
Tears flowed freely when then South Sudan leader John Garang’s plane crashed on July 30th 2005 and killed him together with several others on board. Many knew him as the father of South Sudan, as a rebel leader turned statesman who waged both war and peace.
Kalene hills, Zambia - Thunder and beauty. These are the two words that come to mind when the Zambezi River begins its epic journey in the bosoms of Zambia’s Kalene hills. Although the thunder of Victoria Falls is still silent at the source of the river, the beauty is just as loud.
At that early morning hour before the cock’s crow rents the air, Xana cries. No one sees his tears but when the sun rises, everyone sees the resigned look in his brown eyes. Since the late 90s, he lives in a government resettlement camp on the edge of Botswana’s Central Kalahari Game Reserve.
Mabelé was tired. His 6,2 frame was soaked in so much sweat that the sleeveless black top he was wearing was completely wet. The huge log that he was sitting on was rugged and hard but it felt like a soft sofa beneath him. He kept yawning every few minutes both hungry and tired.