Driving Nigeria’s Blood Donation Awareness
Ochu-Baiye, 34 used her radio show on Abuja’s WE FM to advocate for blood donation — which is still viewed with suspicion by many Nigerians. Now she has launched an innovative artificial-intelligence-driven platform connecting would-be blood donors with recipients. A platform called J Blood Match on Facebook and the instant messaging app Telegram allows people to register either as donors or advocates, indicating their location, nearest hospital, gender, age, and blood type. In the event that someone on the platform needs blood, the system identifies donors based on location and blood type and notifies available matches via Telegram and Facebook, asking whether they agree or decline to give. Within a week of its November launch, it had registered 106 donors nationwide, though it has not yet made a donation match because no one has requested blood.
Ahmed’s Acceptance Speech for Peace Prize
Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, who won the Nobel Peace
Prize for forging an end to almost two decades of conflict with neighboring
Eritrea, described how his personal exposure to the horrors it wrought drove
him to seek a rapprochement. “War is the epitome of hell for all involved,”
Abiy, who served as a radio operator in the Ethiopian army and was the only
survivor of an artillery attack on his unit during the war, said in his Nobel
lecture in Oslo on Tuesday. “I know because I have been there and back.” Abiy
described Isaias as his partner and said his goodwill and commitment played a
vital role in bringing about the deal that persuaded the United Nations to lift
decade-old sanctions on Eritrea.
How a Broken Nation Came Back from the Brink
The social work profession in Rwanda was formed following the 1994 genocide, after the slaughter of more than 800,000 people, Rwanda’s social fabric was in tatters. Economic institutions collapsed, there was widespread displacement and many women were pregnant as a result of rape. Social work has been a key factor in making progress, through homegrown solutions or indigenous models of development that address the many layers of social wounds. Among other approaches, social workers have been deeply involved with programs such as umuganda (community work), ubudehe (local collective action) and girinka (one cow per poor family).
SOURCE: THE GUARDIAN
South Africa’s Blackouts on Key Industries
Mines across South Africa are shutting down after
flash flooding set off the largest power blackouts in more than a decade,
threatening a key export sector in a further blow to the country’s already
slowing economy. Heavy rains across parts of the country have submerged
whole neighbourhoods, leading to mass evacuations and aggravating problems at
state-owned utility Eskom, which has been struggling to keep the
lights on since 2008. Energy minister Gwede Mantashe is considering short
and medium-term interventions, such as pushing forward approval for new
power-generation projects, to tackle the energy and electricity challenges, the
ministry said in a statement.
SOURCE: AL JAZEERA
An Inspiring Friendship at an African Animal Orphanage
A baby giraffe that was befriended by a dog after he was abandoned in the wild has died, a South African animal orphanage said. The giraffe, named Jazz, collapsed after suffering a brain hemorrhage when the giraffe became ill, Hunter seemed to realize something was wrong and did not leave the baby giraffe’s side, the orphanage said. The dog was there when the giraffe died, and sat in front of the empty room for hours before going to its carers for comfort.
SOURCE: THE NEW YORK TIMES
The African Diaspora: Beyond Remittance
According to the World Bank, Nigerians contribute a total of US $11 billion annually, while collectively, the African diaspora sends more than US $40 billion. Sending funds home is not cheap, especially in the region, with costs nearly 30 percent higher than the global average—another reason why it’s near impossible to give an accurate figure on exactly how much money flows into the continent, as it is cheaper to transfer through informal undocumented channels.
Counterfeit Goods Harm Intra-Africa Trade
The longstanding issue of fake goods across eastern Africa is
threatening trade relations between Kenya and South Sudan with genuine
manufacturers at risk of having their products banned in Juba. Reports
show that the counterfeits are either smuggled to South Sudan through the
Ugandan border or made in Juba’s black market. According to Chris Mburu,
Kenyan ambassador to South Sudan, there has been a backlash from consumers over
low-standard goods, forcing the Embassy to seize possession of some fake
products pulled out from shelves.
SOURCE: VENTURES AFRICA
Mauritanians Look a Gift Horse in the Mouth
The EU has given Mauritania 250 camels as part of its
efforts to combat the threat of jihadists and boost border security in the
Sahel country, according to the Sahara Media news agency. The arrival of
the animals in the town of Achemim in an eastern region bordering Mali was met
with amusement by local people, who thought the gift was surprising given that
their country is known for having a large camel population. Others
questioned the importance of camel cavalry units in modern times and suggested
that a high-tech gift would be more beneficial, like vehicles for desert
navigation or advanced systems for surveillance and communications.
How Climate Change Affects a Fishing Village in Mali
Africa’s Sahel region emits considerably fewer greenhouse gasses than the U.S. and China, but with temperatures in the area rising 1.5 times faster than the global average, the region is still especially vulnerable to climate change. Mali’s Lake Wegnia, which provides food & water to thousands of residents, is shrinking due to rising heat and unpredictable rains. The lake is rich in fish, water, and biodiversity, but it has shrunk in size by 20 percent since 2017.
What to Do on a Mighty River and One of the Longest Coastlines in Africa
Egypt is blessed with a liquid bounty. Ancients called it
the gift of the Nile. But it’s much more than just that mighty river. Flanked
by the Mediterranean on the north and the Red Sea in the east, Egypt also
boasts one of the longest coastlines in Africa and the Middle
East. Together the river and seas provide almost unlimited scope for
things to do on the water, outdoor recreation that stretches all the way from
sailing on the Nile and taking a dip in a cool oasis pool to adrenalin-packed
aquatic sports and marine wildlife safaris.