Thursday, October 30, 2008

Artist on the Rise...

D’Amadeus will be having a series of radio and television interviews in London and some major cities in Nigeria including Lagos and Abuja through the month of November and December. This publicity campaign is geared towards raising awareness of his forthcoming album scheduled to be released in December.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Global Financial crisis hits Goat Sales in Africa

ol no easy O! Christmas is around the corner, no christmas is complete without the maluu and goat meat but the ongoing financial crisis fit affect that one

No Kenyan Christmas would be complete without a roasted goat to feed the family, but the global credit crunch means some look set to miss out this festive season.
Orders for "Mbuzi ya Jamii" (goat for the family) are down sharply at Mama Mikes, an online store that allows Kenyans living abroad to pay for a range of products and services which are then delivered to their families back home.

These include goats, medical check-ups, supermarket shopping vouchers, school fees and others gifts.
"We have customers who are cancelling [orders] and most of them are saying that times are hard so they can't do it anymore," says Muthoni Machanga, the firm's finance and accounting manager.
The firm's customers typically spent between $60 and $100 per order three months ago, but this has now dropped to $45-60. Revenue has dropped by 30%.

Even the firm's loyal customers, who maintain monthly accounts for shopping vouchers and school fees payments have started cancelling or reducing their orders.
Ms Machanga says they are getting at least two cancellations a month and this is worrying for them, and also for the families in Kenya who rely on the remittances.

"It's putting families back home in Kenya under pressure at a time when they're already under pressure from very, very high inflation. One can sense these pressures occurring in the economy," says financial analyst Aly Khan Satchu.


This is just one of the ways that the global financial crisis has started to affect Kenya's economy.
While analysts say Africa will be relatively cushioned from the worst effects of the global crisis, Kenyans are definitely starting to feel the squeeze.

Kenya relies heavily on the American, European and Asian economies for remittances, tourism and development aid and the sale of tea, coffee and horticulture exports.
A steep decline in these sectors could seriously affect the rest of the economy.

Mr Satchu says remittances have been a powerful anchor for the Kenyan economy.
In 2007, Kenya received $1.3 billion in remittances.
But the flow is starting to slow.
The Central Bank of Kenya says Kenyans abroad sent $36.5 million in August compared to $44 million in July - 38% less than they sent during the same period last year.


The drop in remittances and dollar inflow has affected the shilling, which is now trading at a three year low.
This has placed yet another burden on Kenya's import-dependent economy, which is still recovering from the effects of the post-election crisis earlier this year, runaway inflation and rising food prices.
The prices of imported goods such as cars and electronic goods are up, and despite a significant drop in the global oil prices, Kenyans are still paying high fuel prices.

The Central Bank has maintained that Kenya's economy will not be directly hit by the global crisis, but the Nairobi Stock Exchange tells a different tale.
The stock market has suffered a downward spiral for the last three months, and fingers have been pointed at the global crisis.

Prime Minister Raila Odinga has already sounded the alarm, saying the global financial crisis will hit Kenya's economy badly.
This week, President Mwai Kibaki set up a team of experts to develop a plan to shield the country's economy from the "inevitable" effects of the crisis.

Mr Satchu says the president is right to be worried and it is time for the government to get on top of the situation.
"If our policy-makers step up to the plate and actually start looking at the situation and dealing with it, I see a bright future and I see us getting back to six or seven per cent growth, notwithstanding what's happening outside."

No free lunch

For Mama Mikes, a local start up which is only five years old, the developments in the global financial markets are worrying.

Ms Machanga says the company is not getting new customers, and this has forced them to start cutting down on their operating costs.

The company's 18 members of staff are no longer provided with a free lunch, and are not allowed to use taxis to get around.

"We're trying to cut down on costs as much as we can, because in some areas you can't do very much. We can't tell people to get salary cuts with the current inflation," she says.

Nevertheless, the company is optimistic about the future and doesn't think it will to have to sack any of its staff.

With analysts saying that Africa could fare better than the rest of the world, Mama Mikes is hoping their orders for mbuzi will pick in time for the next festive season.

Goats, on the other hand, may be hoping for a continued slump so they can escape the Christmas pot.


Friday, October 24, 2008

why doesn't hip hop come Africa

A while ago we had an article on American Hip Hop and Africa in the magazine. Tosin sent this to me, and I thought it was interesting.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

News blogger detained in Nigeria

Na wa O!!! naija get secret God dey save person O! "cough" "cough" bloggers beware, that includes yours truly.

A US-based Nigerian news blogger is being held without charge by Nigeria's secret service.
Jonathan Elendu was taken into custody on Saturday when he arrived in the capital, Abuja, on a family visit.
The State Security Service (SSS) has refused to allow his lawyers access to him and denied him a medical visit. is one of a number of diaspora-run "citizen reporting" websites about Nigeria and is known for publishing controversial stories.
According to Nigerian law anyone arrested must be charged in court within 48 hours, but correspondents say the rule is frequently broken.
The SSS told Mr Elendu's lawyer that Mr Elendu had not been "arrested", but "invited" for talks at their headquarters.
An SSS spokesman said he was being investigated for "acts of sedition", but refused to give details.
Spokesman Kene Chukwu also told the BBC that Mr Elendu's detention had followed legal rules.
"I am telling you all the legal rules were followed, and you have to accept it," Mr Chukwu said.
Mr Elendu's lawyer says he has not spoken to his client since his arrest.
"They have not pressed any charges and have not allowed anyone to see him," said Ugo Muoma.
He said he was filing papers in court to force the SSS to charge or release Mr Elendu. operates from Lansing in Michigan and publishes often controversial stories about Nigerian politicians, accusing some of them of corruption and other crimes.
Their stories are often based on anonymous sources.

President's son
Another US-based Nigerian news website,, quotes anonymous sources as saying Mr Elendu may have been arrested because of photographs it published a few months ago showing President Umaru Yar'Adua's son.
The pictures, which caused a stir in the local media at the time, showed 13-year-old Musa Yar'Adua waving wads of money around and holding a policeman's gun.
But says Mr Elendu is not a member of their staff and has nothing to do with the photographs.
International media rights groups Reporters Without Borders has called for Mr Elendu's release.
"There haven't been many really controversial stories about the president on in the last few months," said Mr Muoma.
During the election campaign in 2007, claimed that Mr Yar'Adua had died during a medical trip to Germany.
Two foreign journalists have been detained and deported by the SSS for reporting in the politically sensitive oil-rich Niger Delta region over the last few months.
In September, six local reporters and media executives were detained and questioned after a television channel reported, after receiving a hoax e-mail, that the president planned to resign.


Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Good African Men are Hard to Find or are they?

One of Cosmopolitan Magazine hottest Rhode Island Bachelors pick..

Rhode Island Bachelor 2008
Name: Feyisayo Oshinkanlu
Age: 25
Hometown: West Warwick
Cosmo Username: RHODEISLAND08
Occupation: Pharmaceutical-Sales Representative
In his own words: "I want the people in my life to be happy."
Chick trait he craves: "Being able to hold a conversation about anything — from the Muppets to Tchaikovsky."
Ideal first date: "I don't care, as long as it ends with a kiss."
Make-him-melt move: "Touch my back. I love that!"
Dating deal breaker: "If she puts herself down or disrespects others"
Sex on a first date? "Skanky"
Should women play hard to get? "Yes, but don't spend the whole relationship playing games."
Makeup or natural? "Natural. Women look their most beautiful when they haven't put on any makeup yet."

SOURCE: Cosmopolitan

Kanye's New Video - taking it back to the MothaLand

Monday, October 20, 2008

$200,000/yr for the rest of his life - Botswana's former President

Here is an African leader that we should celebrate. See story below

Botswana's Mogae wins $5m prize

Botswana's former President Festus Mogae has won a $5m (£2.8m) prize to encourage good governance in Africa.
He stepped down in April after serving two terms in office.
Botswana is one of Africa's most stable countries - it has never had a coup and has had regular multi-party elections since independence in 1966.

Announcing the prize, ex-UN Secretary General Kofi Annnan also commended Mr Mogae for his action to tackle the Aids pandemic which has ravaged the country.
The Ibrahim Prize - the most valuable individual annual prize in the world - was set up by Sudan-born telecoms entrepreneur Mo Ibrahim.
As well as the $5m prize, Mr Mogae, 69, gets $200,000 a year for the rest of his life.

Alcohol ban

Mr Mogae pointed out that Botswana was already doing well before he became president in 1998.
"I did not create the democracy in my country, I consolidated it and deepened it by practiced, accountable governance, respect of the rule of law, independence of the courts, respect for human rights, including women's rights," he told the BBC.
But Mr Mogae also inherited a country with one of the world's highest rates of HIV/Aids and he took strong action to tackle it, making Botswana the first sub-Saharan African country where anti-retroviral drugs were widely available for free. The drugs are known locally as "Mogae's tablets", reports the AP news agency.

"President Mogae's outstanding leadership has ensured Botswana's continued stability and prosperity in the face of an HIV/Aids pandemic which threatened the future of his country and people," Mr Annan said.


Friday, October 17, 2008

African Soccer Stars in the US

I watched the DC United team beat New England Revolution 2 - 0. Both goals were scored by an African star Francis Doe from Liberia.

There are quite a few African players in the Major League Soccer.

Here are a few

DC United goalkeeper save many goals. Louis Crayton (Liberia - DC United)

A couple of 19 year olds straight out of Gambia: Kenny Mansally and Sainey Nyassi. The play for the New England Revolution

Patrick Nyarko (Ghana - Chicago Fire)

Emmanuel Ekpo (Nigeria - Columbus Crew)

Stanley Nyazamba (Zimbabwe - Columbus Crew)

Kheli Dube (Zimbabwe - New England Revolution)

Bakary Soumare (Mali - Chicago Fire)

Macoumba Kandji (Senegal - New York Red Bulls)

and there are a many more...

Will soccer ever become a hip sport here in yankee?

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Colin Powell bigs up Africa show

Colin Powell danced and sang to the Olu Maintain hit Yahooze

America's former top diplomat took centre stage along with Nigerian group Olu Maintain at the Africa Rising Festival in the Royal Albert Hall.

More seriously, he said his own black identity mattered as much as ever.

He told the audience that Africa, with hard work and foreign investment, could prosper like Asia and Eastern Europe.

US pop singer Christina Aguilera and UK-born soul singer Seal also performed at the event which saw fashion collections by Ozwald Boateng and Deola Sagoe.

'Africa's turn'

"I stand before you tonight as an African-American," Mr Powell said.

"Many people have said to me you became secretary of state of the USA, is it still necessary to say that you are an African-American or that you are black, and I say, yes, so that we can remind our children.

"It took a lot of people struggling to bring me to this point in history. I didn't just drop out of the sky, people came from my continent in chains."

A lot of wrongs had been done to Africa by Western powers faced with "an iron curtain and a bamboo curtain", he said in an apparent reference to the USSR and communist China.

But these barriers had fallen, he argued.

"Asia is expanding, it created jobs for people, and Eastern Europeans are doing the same... it's now Africa's turn."

Colin Powell, a distinguished former military commander, served as US secretary of state during the first term of the Bush administration, from 2001 to 2005.


Monday, October 13, 2008

When Your African Daughter Turns 16

Beware of Area Boys O!

Ashley Judd rocking African wear :-)

Ashley Judd at the YouthAIDS gala in Washington, D.C.,

Picture was from MSN...they said her dressing was "questionable." What do you think?

Friday, October 10, 2008

last night at the CASRAM? event...

This year's CASRAM event has been nothing short of amazing. we'll have a full post, with more pictures sometimes next week. If you're in the DC area, come out tonight and tomorrow's grand finale. you won't be disappointed.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Korto Makes it to Bryant Park

...some representation for the continent at Bryant Park

Korto is going to Bryant Park! Korto is originally from Liberia

Let's keep our fingers crossed and hope she wins it all.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Talk bad about Obama in Kenya...

Interesting switch...getting deported from Kenya, that just sounds so ______ awon boys get kicked out of jans and yankee on a daily

Immigration authorities in Kenya say they will deport the American author of a highly critical book about US presidential candidate Barack Obama.

The author, Jerome Corsi, was in Kenya to launch his book which accuses Mr Obama of supporting an alleged plot to turn Kenya into an Islamic state.

Officials said that Mr Corsi did not have the right visa.

Mr Obama's father was from Kenya, where the US Democratic contender is a highly popular figure.

Mr Corsi - author of The Obama Nation: Leftist Politics and the Cult of Personality - has been accused of a smear campaign against Mr Obama.

In a recent press release, Mr Corsi said he would "expose deep secret ties between US Democratic presidential candidate Sen Barack Obama and a section of the Kenyan government leaders".

Carlos Maluta, a senior Kenyan immigration official, told the AP news agency that authorities had picked Mr Corsi up from his hotel on Tuesday because he did not have the necessary work permit.

Briefly detained

Joseph Mumira, head of criminal investigations at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, said that Mr Corsi was briefly detained at immigration headquarters before being brought to the airport for deportation.

The Obama campaign says on the "Fight the Smears" web site that Mr Corsi listed a number of false claims in relation to Kenya in his book - including that Mr Obama contributed $1m (£570,000) to Kenyan Prime Minister Raila Odinga during Mr Odinga's presidential campaign.

Mr Odinga is from the same Luo community as Mr Obama's father.

The book also repeats false rumours, including that Mr Obama, a Christian, was raised as a Muslim.

Mr Corsi co-authored "Unfit for Command", a book that maligned the Democratic Party's 2004 candidate John Kerry, and is believed to have contributed to his defeat by President George W Bush.


Goat Condoms - Nothing but the best...

Goat 'condoms' save Kenyan herds

Maasai herdsmen in Kenya have turned to an age-old contraceptive device, the "olor", to protect their precious goat herds from an ongoing drought.

The olor is made from cowhide or a square piece of plastic, and is tied around the belly of the male goat.

It prevents the bucks from mating with the female goats.

The herdsmen are using the device to limit the goat population and ensure there are not too many animals grazing on sparse vegetation.

"We don't want them to breed in this drought," says Mr Ole Ngoshoi Kipameto, a goat owner in Kajiado district.

Vital assets

The area, which is 80km (50 miles) from the capital, Nairobi, has received insufficient rainfall, making the landscape barren and forcing residents to move from place to place in search of pasture and water.

In the Maasai community, livestock are often people's only assets and sole means of survival.

"We tie this hide under the belly of the buck for three months. After that we remove it and then they can breed by November when the short rains come," Mr Kipameto says.

The rectangular piece of cowhide is passed over the buck's head and front legs and secured under the belly in front of the hind legs with a rope or elastic strap.

"It looks like an apron," Mr Kipameto says.

Peter Ndirangu, the area livestock officer, says the olor is very effective.

"In the modern method, we advocate keeping the bucks separate from the breeding goats. But that is an added cost as you require two herdsmen - one for the bucks and one for the goats," he says.

"This [device] will play the part of a herdsman."

He says the device is very useful in keeping the herd numbers down and controlling when the goats give birth.

"If they give birth during harsh conditions like now, the mothers - the does - are going to be very weak, they're not going to feed their young ones properly," he says.

The device helps the herdsmen to restrict kidding to the period during and after the rains.

If the rains fall in October and November, the dry landscape will turn green again and the herdsmen will be able to settle with their livestock.

Until then, the herdsmen will have to employ the olor to protect their livestock and livelihood safe.

Those who do not use it could face a hefty fine if their bucks are found guilty of impregnating another herder's doe.


Sunday, October 05, 2008

Junya Watanabe Goes Back To Africa

(swiped from Fader Magazine)
Junya Watanbe's latest designs are uprooted from Africa. Interesting.

South African company unveils electric car

A South African company, Optimal Energy, is unveiling Africa's first locally developed electric car.

The company says the car, expected on the market in 2010, will help reduce urban emissions and noise pollution.

The head of the firm denied that unreliable African power supplies would make it difficult to recharge the car.

Kobus Meiring told the BBC that users could recharge the lithium battery that powers the car overnight, when there is often excess energy supply.

An energy shortage in South Africa has caused power cuts, including one in January that shut down mines for five days.

"Consistency of electricity supply is an important thing," Mr Meiring told the BBC's Network Africa programme.

"But even in the current situation when it hasn't kept up properly, between 11 o'clock at night and six o'clock the next morning there are vast amounts of excess generated capacity available."

Solar panels

The car, called the Joule, can be recharged at home using a standard 220-volt home outlet and an on-board charger, according to Optimal Energy's website.

It can then drive for 400km (249 miles).

Mr Meiring said the car also had solar panels on its roof "which in a sunny place like South Africa would give you an boost of about 15km-20km after being in the sun all day".

The car has been designed in South Africa and more than 50% of it is expected to be manufactured in South Africa, he said.

Optimal Energy is unveiling the Joule at the Paris Motor Show.

The car is expected to be on the market in South Africa towards the end of 2010, and to be sold for export after that.

Friday, October 03, 2008

U.S Financial Bailout as compared to the Naija Bank Collapse

If you're like me and millions of "average joe six pack" your head is probably spinning like crazy about the ongoing U.S. financial crisis. Some of you might know the Naija banks faced a bank crisis some years back as well. Awa area boys, all of our savings just evaporated and the banks basically said "no time keep your money for mattras"

Well, me I no sabi this one O! so I reached out to an up and coming Financial guru to break it down in afriko terms. What the hell is going on with yankee and banks closing left and right? how is this similar to Naija's version? what does the future hold?

Here's his insight

The U.S. Financial Crisis/credit crunch

For many years, financial institutions have found many ways to make money. The rise of derivative trading and securitization has lead to this financial mess. Basically, financial institutions bought or acquired millions or even billions of dollars worth of loans which were known as mortgage backed securities.

Now, many of these loans that make up these packages were known as sub-prime loans. The rise of sub-prime loans (lenders provide loans to individuals of firms deemed as “sub-prime” and have a higher rate of risk) lead to the rise of riskier packages. The rise in defaults or foreclosures lead to the rise in riskier packages. As people began to default on these loans, the loans became a burden to the balance sheets of many institutions. Look at it this way: you lend someone, who you know MAY not pay you back, money and then they indeed default on the loan. The loan that you now have is worthless or toxic as you may never get your money back. Now, multiply this by billions of dollars and thus, you have institutions that owned toxic assets that are currently very illiquid. As a result, banks are strapped for cash and are unable to raise any either. The key issue here is that banks do not have capital, or can not raise capital to meet their obligations and run their businesses.

Hence, the credit crunch of 2008!

The trickle down effect is also another issue because with a “credit freeze” or restrictive credit practices, many Americans, ordinary Americans will be affected. Small business may not be able to meet payroll, you may not be able to buy a car or get a student loan.

But you knew that and I now sound like a politician!

So, in summary: the mortgage back securities, owned by many wall-street banks, that were tied to sub-prime loans have caused a liquidity contraction, which, restricts the free flow of credit that serves as the cog in the engine of the American economy.

It is important to note that there are other “bad” or “toxic” assets out there as well. For example, credit-card debt.

The U.S. Bailout

This is a bill, that if passed, will assist various Wall Street banks and institutions by buying toxic assets known as mortgage-backed securities that are tied to sub-prime loans from them and freeing up their balance sheets.

What does this mean?

The core of the bill provides that the government will acquire, in stages, over $1 trillion worth of these mortgage-backed securities for $700 billion. Hence a “discount.” The idea is that the government, through its proxy, the FED, will be able to give the banks more room to operate and start releasing credit which stimulates the economy. The FED also hopes to be able to sell these securities at some point in the future, hopefully for a profit.

Key Provisions:

The bill includes a stipulation that the Treasury set up an insurance program - to be funded with risk-based premiums paid by the industry - to guarantee companies' troubled assets, including mortgage-backed securities, purchased before March 14, 2008.

The bill also provides that the FDIC will temporarily increase the insurance on individual bank accounts from $100,000 to $250,000.

Another provision of the bill is to provide tax payers, ostensibly through the FED, to acquire equity in any of these financial institutions that participates in the bailout plan.

The establishment of two oversight committees.

The Nigerian Finance House Crisis in the 1990s

This crisis was actually quite comical when I think about it, especially since I now have a Smith MBA. Anyway, it was one precipitated by greed and ignorance. My understanding of what happened was that you had institutions, in a heavy deregulated industry, springing up all over the place. Unqualified individuals began to open these "Finance Houses" which differ from conventional banks and can be described as investment vehicles. Outlandish promises on returns were made through conniving and criminal individuals whose sole purpose of these schemes was to get investor money and scram. People lined up to invest their life savings on promises that they would receive astronomical returns.

News Flash people- If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is! Even during the recent glory days of the Nigerian Stock Exchange, these types of returns were unheard of.

It is important to stress that this crisis was one which was "man-made" and not one caused by free-markets. People simply invested money with incompetent individuals or criminals. To come full circle, this was a crisis of the greedy and the ignorant.

Thandi MBA, Future Commodities Trader Millionaire (in naira)

A vilf side note

Salute to a Couple of "Lucky" African Men

Pictures are worth...

Can A Sista Rock A Mic? Festival (CASRAM 08) begins WEDNESDAY!

(click on image for a larger view)
4th Annual Can A Sista Rock A Mic? Festival(CASRAM 08)
Wednesday Oct 8 thru Saturday Oct 11

African Woman Fit Win Project Runway?

It was close, but Korto of Project Runway lives to sew another day. Do you think she has a chance of winning it all?

Originally from Liberia


Canada to attend fashion school. After school, she moved outside of Little Rock, Arkansas, where she now resides with her husband and daughter. Drawing from her African roots, Korto infuses tribal details into her classic designs. She is inspired by rich fabrics and textures and says her designs are intended for real, full-figured women. In her spare time, Korto works as a freelance fashion photographer, dances in an African dance troupe and does African hair braiding and makeup. She says her family considers her to be fun and easygoing.

SOURCE: Project Runway

One of her designs

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Don't Vote - Na Reverse Psychology O!

Love is Wicked

Sexy? Party? the meantime

Happy Birthday Naija

Waka waka...everyday na waka waka

Laiye green white green

Naija you are not getting any younger O! you are 48 very soon, you go dey push 50. A fool at 40 na one thing, but a fool at 50. It's time to get your [explicative] together. Baba Yar'Dua, it get as it be O! I beg represent.

There are however, some bright spots to Nigeria today...will post as soon as I find them.