Africa Writes 2017

Friday, 30 June 2017 - 8:00am to Sunday, 2 July 2017 - 11:00pm

Brought to you by The Royal African Society

Join us for an exciting summer weekend at the British Library celebrating the best of contemporary literature from Africa and the diaspora.

Last year we were joined by 67 guest contributors and writers from 18 different countries, and a London audience of nearly 2000 – African literature fans and newcomers alike. This year we have much more in store…check out the Africa Writes website for the full programme and to book your tickets here

We are expanding the festival, with Africa Writes pop-up events taking place in England, Scotland and Wales, and exciting collaborations in Rwanda and Tanzania with the Jalada Mobile Literary & Arts Festival.

We’re kicking off with the R.A.P. (Rhythm And Poetry) party on the evening of Friday 30th June. This evening of hip-hop inspired poems and songs hosted by Inua Ellams and Theresa Lola will feature some remarkable poetic talents, including Malika BookerKei Miller, Amaal SaidYomi Sode and more. Dj Sid Mercutio will be on the decks spinning a mix of afrobeat, funk and afro-house tunes.

On Saturday evening Mara Menzies and Maimouna Jallow will delight us with a story- telling night of dreams and deception through performance adaptations of the written word. And on Sunday our headliner will be the prolific Congolese writer and academic Alain Mabanckou.

The literary ambassador of Congolese sapologieAlain Mabanckou captivates readers and critics with his rhythmic prose exploring the streets of Congo-Brazaville and the boulevards of Paris. His latest novel, Black Moses, was shortlisted for the Prix Goncourt and long-listed for this year’s Man Booker International Prize. Mabanckou will reflect on his journey as a writer and the politics of language and style.  Tickets for these events are already selling fast so make sure to book early!
Weekend events

Panel discussions
We look at how publishers in Africa are reaching communities of readers, how writers are making living literary connections across different African languages with Jalada Africa,  and how hidden histories in the museums and libraries of London can be uncovered by writers.

Moments of celebration and African literary joy are to be found throughout the festival:  we will delve into the archives of the renowned Nigerian writer Buchi Emecheta, discovering photographs, manuscripts and a remarkable personal history of a beloved literary icon, and will come together to discuss her work in the session: African Books to Inspire: Buchi Emecheta Book Club.

Following the annual tradition, you’ll have the chance to meet the shortlisted writers for this year’s Caine Prize for African WritingLesley Nneka Arimah (Nigeria), Chikodili Emelumadu (Nigeria), Bushra al-Fadil (Sudan), Arinze Ifeakandu (Nigeria) and Magogodi oaMphela Makhene (South Africa).

Alex Reads, Reckless Rai and Derek W from Mostly Lit – the popular podcast at the intersection of literature, millennial wellness and black pop-culture – will be hosting a live show on ‘Writing Blackness’. The trio will reflect on their own personal experiences and responses to reading black characters as depicted in African and Black British fiction.

Workshops and Roundtables
We uncover the history of the East African kanga textile with an exhibition and sharing session; hear stories about Krio heritage and culture of Sierra Leone, and explore the photographic archive in Black Chronicles: The Missing ChapterWe’ll be discussing the  politics of translation, and looking at the profusion of literary events and festivals taking place across the continent.

Budding writers are invited to pitch their work to the industry experts in our lively Meet the Publishers event, and places are also open for a special self-editing masterclass with Ellah Allfrey. On Saturday 1 July, all the family are invited for the free and fun Magic of Storytelling workshops with Mara Menzies.

Launch events
Africa Writes 2017 book and poetry collection launches include the new non-fiction work by Helon Habila – The Chibok Girls; two exciting debut novels – When We Speak of Nothing by Olumide PopoolaNo Place to Call Home by JJ Bola; and two poetry collections – Kumukunda by Kayo Chingonyi and Kingdom of Gravity by Nick Makoha. Also launching at Africa Writes will be transatlantic journal collaboration Jalada Africa 05 / Transition 123, and The Ultimate Tragedy by Abdulai Silá which is the first novel to be translated into English from Guinea-Bissau.

Tickets

Day TicketsWeekend Passes and tickets for headline events are available to book on the British Library website or over the phone on +44 (0)1937 546546. More information here.

 

 

Excited…?

Partners
 

Africa Writes 2017 in brought to you by the Royal African Society in partnership with the British Library. The festival is made possible through the financial support of Arts Council England, and partnership of the British Council, the Sigrid Rausing Trust, Miles Morland Foundation, and Centre of African Studies, University of London. See all festival partners here.

Brought to you by The Royal African Society

Join us for an exciting summer weekend at the British Library celebrating the best of contemporary literature from Africa and the diaspora.

Last year we were joined by 67 guest contributors and writers from 18 different countries, and a London audience of nearly 2000 – African literature fans and newcomers alike. This year we have much more in store…

We are expanding the festival, with Africa Writes pop-up events taking place in England, Scotland and Wales, and exciting collaborations in Rwanda and Tanzania with the Jalada Mobile Literary & Arts Festival.

In London we will be kicking off the festival with a special Late at the Library – to which you are all invited! More details coming soon… in the meantime save the dates in your diaries for a rich and vibrant programme of book launches, panel discussions, performances, workshops, an international book fair and a delicious street food market.

Excited…?

Partners

 

 

The festival is supported by and hosted at The British Library – the national library of the United Kingdom and one of the world’s greatest research libraries. It provides world class information services to the academic, business, research and scientific communities and offers unparalleled access to the world’s largest and most comprehensive research collection. Their collection has developed over 250 years and exceeds 150 million separate items representing every age of written civilisation and includes books, journals, manuscripts, maps, stamps, music, patents, photographs, newspapers and sound recordings in all written and spoken languages. Up to 10 million people visit www.bl.uk – every year where they can view up to 4 million digitised collection items and over 40 million pages.

 

 

 

 

This event is supported by a strategic partnership between the British Council and the Royal African Society, aimed at increasing networks, sharing knowledge and expertise and making connections between the UK and Africa. The partnership supports four major events in in the Royal African Society’s 2017 programme – Africa in 2017: Prospects and ForecastsAfrica Writes,  Film Africa, and The Arts Forum, taking place in April 2017.

 

Britain must seize the chance for more trade with Africa

Wednesday, 25 January 2017
Author: 
Richard Dowden

In the debate about future trade deals post Brexit one destination has been almost completed ignored: Africa. China and India are the targets for future UK trade but why is Africa off the list? Too poor? Too strange? Too corrupt or violent?

Mainstream media content reflect images of poverty, disease and war and Africa sometimes throws up some real horrors. That reflects a reality but it is not the whole story of Africa. It is the most diverse continent on the planet. Snow on the equator, dense jungle and huge deserts all in the same country? There is wealth and success as well as poverty and failure. The Africa picture is complex but simplified and distorted by much media coverage.

Most of Africa is not at all dramatic or daunting. Today it is increasingly peaceful and prosperous. The rate of infant mortality – a good indicator of general well-being and access to health care – has fallen from around 1200 per thousand in 1990 to 60 per thousand this year. As general health improves, Africa’s population will double from a billion today to over 2 billion by 2050 and the median age will be about 25. That is 10 years younger than the next lowest continent, South America.

Africa’s economic growth rate dropped slightly to about 3.7% last year but is predicted to rise to 4.5% next year, the second highest in the world after East Asia. Listen to Japanese companies that do business in Africa. A recent survey showed more than half would expand their businesses in Africa in the next two years. 71% said increased sales was the driver. Despite a dip in Africa’s growth this year, more than half the companies expect profits to grow next year. McKinsey&Company’s latest report predicts a possible $1 trillion market by 2025 with 400 African companies bringing in an annual revenue of $1 billion.

Africa’s biggest problem has been governance but now only three countries on the continent do not hold regular elections. The process maybe flawed or in some cases, fixed, but fewer and fewer presidents sleep easily on the eve of an election.

English is now the official language in 19 countries including the giants and, despite the colonial past, Brits tend to be given a special welcome. The combined population including South Africa and Nigeria is well over 500 million people. If President Trump allows Power Africa, Barack Obama’s $9.7 billion project to electrify Africa, to continue, it will transform energy throughout the continent. Even if he pulls the plug on it Africa will still be the fastest urbanising continent in the world. The opportunities for Britain in Africa are immense.

Richard Dowden is Director of the Royal African Society

Africa's Most Repressive State? Politics, Rights and Leadership in Eritrea

Wednesday, 25 January 2017 - 7:00pm to 8:30pm

Date & Time: Wednesday 25th January, 19:00 - 20:30
Venue: Khalili Lecture Theatre, SOAS, Thornhaugh Street, WC1H 0XG
Speakers: Martin Plaut, Institute of Commonwealth Studies & Vanessa Berhe, One Day Seyoum

"The most secretive, repressive state in Africa is haemorrhaging its citizens. In some months as many Eritreans as Syrians arrive on European shores, yet the country is not convulsed by civil war. Young men and women risk all to escape. Many do not survive, still they flee, to avoid permanent military service and a future without hope. As the United Nations reported: ‘Thousands of conscripts are subjected to forced labour that effectively abuses, exploits and enslaves them for years.’ Eritreans fought for their freedom from Ethiopia for thirty years, only to have their revered leader turn on his own people. Independent since 1993, the country has no constitution and no parliament. No budget has ever been published. Elections have never been held and opponents languish in jail. International organisations find it next to impossible to work in the country. Nor is it just a domestic issue. By supporting armed insurrection in neighbouring states it has destabilised the Horn of Africa. Eritrea is involved in the Yemeni civil war, while the regime backs rebel movements in Somalia, Ethiopia and Djibouti. This book tells the untold story of how this tiny nation became a world pariah." 

Martin Plaut, the BBC World Service’s former Africa Editor, has published extensively on African affairs. An adviser to the Foreign Office and the US State Department, he is Senior Researcher at the Institute of Commonwealth Studies. @martinplaut

Vanessa Berhe is a human right's activist and founder One Day Seyoum - a campaign launched to raise awareness about the lack of press freedom in Eritrea and put pressure on the Eritrean government to release all the unjustly imprisoned journalists in the country. The organization carries the name of her uncle journalist Seyoum Tsehaye, who was imprisoned in 2001 without a proper trial. She also founded the Free Eritrea Campaign that works to lift up some of the most pressing issues affecting the Eritrean people right now. Migration, intersectional feminism and global development are subjects she is passionate about. @VanessaBerhe

Chair: Dr Idil Osman holds a PhD from Cardiff University’s School of Journalism, Media and Cultural Studies and her thesis examined the role of diasporic media in conflict zones. She has worked for over a decade as a national and international journalist for the BBC, the Guardian and the Voice of America and is the co-author of ‘Somalia to Europe; Stories of the Somali Diaspora, a book that chronicles the civil war experiences of Somali Europeans and their subsequent migration to the UK. Previously a Teaching Fellow in Media and Communication at University of Leicester's Department of Media and Communication, she's now a Research Associate and Senior Teaching Fellow in the Department of Development Studies at SOAS. @idil_osman

Copies of Understanding Eritrea Inside Africa’s Most Repressive State by Martin Plaut & published by Hurst, will be on sale at the event.

This event is free and open to all but registration is required via Eventbrite.

 

 

 

 

Date & Time: Wednesday 25th January, 19:00 - 20:30
Venue: Khalili Lecture Theatre, SOAS, Thornhaugh Street, WC1H 0XG
Speakers: Martin Plaut, Institute of Commonwealth Studies & Vanessa Berhe, One Day Seyoum

"The most secretive, repressive state in Africa is haemorrhaging its citizens. In some months as many Eritreans as Syrians arrive on European shores, yet the country is not convulsed by civil war. Young men and women risk all to escape. Many do not survive, still they flee, to avoid permanent military service and a future without hope. As the United Nations reported: ‘Thousands of conscripts are subjected to forced labour that effectively abuses, exploits and enslaves them for years.’ Eritreans fought for their freedom from Ethiopia for thirty years, only to have their revered leader turn on his own people. Independent since 1993, the country has no constitution and no parliament. No budget has ever been published. Elections have never been held and opponents languish in jail. International organisations find it next to impossible to work in the country. Nor is it just a domestic issue. By supporting armed insurrection in neighbouring states it has destabilised the Horn of Africa. Eritrea is involved in the Yemeni civil war, while the regime backs rebel movements in Somalia, Ethiopia and Djibouti. This book tells the untold story of how this tiny nation became a world pariah." 

Martin Plaut, the BBC World Service’s former Africa Editor, has published extensively on African affairs. An adviser to the Foreign Office and the US State Department, he is Senior Researcher at the Institute of Commonwealth Studies. @martinplaut

Vanessa Berhe is a human right's activist and founder One Day Seyoum - a campaign launched to raise awareness about the lack of press freedom in Eritrea and put pressure on the Eritrean government to release all the unjustly imprisoned journalists in the country. The organization carries the name of her uncle journalist Seyoum Tsehaye, who was imprisoned in 2001 without a proper trial. She also founded the Free Eritrea Campaign that works to lift up some of the most pressing issues affecting the Eritrean people right now. Migration, intersectional feminism and global development are subjects she is passionate about. @VanessaBerhe

Chair: Dr Idil Osman holds a PhD from Cardiff University’s School of Journalism, Media and Cultural Studies and her thesis examined the role of diasporic media in conflict zones. She has worked for over a decade as a national and international journalist for the BBC, the Guardian and the Voice of America and is the co-author of ‘Somalia to Europe; Stories of the Somali Diaspora, a book that chronicles the civil war experiences of Somali Europeans and their subsequent migration to the UK. Previously a Teaching Fellow in Media and Communication at University of Leicester's Department of Media and Communication, she's now a Research Associate and Senior Teaching Fellow in the Department of Development Studies at SOAS. @idil_osman

Copies of Understanding Eritrea Inside Africa’s Most Repressive State by Martin Plaut & published by Hurst, will be on sale at the event.

This event is free and open to all but registration is required via Eventbrite.

 

 

 

Africa in 2017: Prospects and Forecasts

Tuesday, 10 January 2017 - 6:30pm to Monday, 16 January 2017 - 6:30pm

Edinburgh: Tuesday 10th January, 18:30 - 20:30 

London: Wednesday 11th January, 18:30 - 20:30 - LIVE STREAM / Listen to podcast

Birmingham: Monday 16th January, 18:30 - 20:30. Listen to podcast

 

Join Us! The Royal African Society and the British Council present Africa in 2017: Prospects & Forecasts– a three city tour of panellists discussing what 2017 has in store for Africa.

Following a year that’s delivered major surprises in Africa and globally, what does 2017 hold for the African continent? Will it be a year of crises or triumphs?

In terms of elections, 2016 witnessed several major votes on the continent that mostly returned incumbent leaders to power; Ghana, which saw another transition of power, proved to be one of very few exceptions in a pattern that saw sitting presidents in the Republic of Congo, Uganda, Gabon, Zambia, Niger and more all re-elected.

Beyond Africa, the UK’s vote to leave the European Union and the US election delivered further political shocks. What impact will these landmark events and uncertainty in the global system mean for Africa? What can we expect from elections scheduled for 2017 in the likes of Angola, Rwanda, Liberia and Kenya?

Economically, the fall in commodity prices continued to hit major economies, in particular Nigeria, while South Africa, again the continent’s largest economy, remains mired in political turmoil and seems unable to tackle declining economic output and rising unemployment. What impact will commodity prices, an uncertain global economic outlook, and China's continued slowdown have on Africa?

Across the continent, vibrant political and social movements emerged, largely driven by Africa’s rising young populations. This demographic also makes up the majority of migrants leaving the continent as well as much of the force behind Africa’s rising prominence in global cultural production in fields as diverse as film, art and music. How are these creative sectors growing and innovating? What impact will these social, cultural and political movements have in 2017?

Speakers on the tour include Njoki Ngumi (The Nest Collective, Kenya); Razia Khan, (Standard Chartered); Patrick Smith, (The Africa Report, Africa Confidential); Zeinab Bedawi (Chair, RAS); Nic Cheeseman (University of Birmingham) and Franklyn Lisk (University of Warwick). Others to be announced.

Each event will be followed by a networking reception.

Edinburgh - Tuesday 10th January 2017, 18:30 - 20:30
Presented in partnership with the International Office and the Centre of African Studies, University of Edinburgh, and SBI, University of Edinburgh Business School
Register

London - Wednesday 11th January 2017, 18:30 - 20:30
Presented in partnership with the Centre of African Studies, University of London
Register - £5/ £8 / Free for RAS members

Birmingham - Monday 16th January, 18:30 - 20:30
Presented in partnership with the Department of African Studies and Anthropology and the International Development Department at the University of Birmingham
Register

 

How to Fix Nigeria: Tackling Corruption

Friday, 9 December 2016 - 7:00pm to 9:00pm

Date & Time: Friday 9th December, 19:00 - 21:00
Venue: B5 Auditorium, Ground Floor, Franklin-Wilkins Building, King’s College London, 150 Stamford Street, London SE1 9NH

Speakers:

Charles Abiodun Alao, Professor of African Studies at King’s College London
Kayode Ogundamisi, UK-based Nigerian activist and anti corruption campaigner
Maggie Murphy, Transparency International's Senior Global Advocacy Manager
Ayo Sogunro, Writer, Teacher, Columnist, Lawyer

The office of Lai Mohammed, Minister of Information and Culture, Federal Republic of Nigeria regrets that he will no longer be able to attend this event. 

Chair: Funmi Iyanda

In May 2016, ahead of the London Anti-Corruption Summit, then PM David Cameron was caught on camera calling Nigeria ‘fantastically corrupt’. In response to this diplomatic gaffe, President Muhammadu Buhari granted that Cameron was ‘telling the truth’ based on a perception of Nigeria, but that his interest lay more in the return of stolen assets held in British banks.

From a domestic angle, there have been various major scandals in which several billions of dollars have been stolen at the highest levels. Buhari has embarked on an energetic anti-corruption campaign (some claim selectively) since coming to power in 2015 on a platform of promising to tackle graft.

But as the Panama papers leak highlighted, corruption of this scale has only been made possible by a network of offshore secrecy jurisdictions and tax havens – many of which are overseen by the UK and directly benefit certain British interests. Thanks to this system, Africa is a net creditor to the rest of the world, and Nigeria is no exception.

Who is really ‘fantastically corrupt’? What is being done to tackle corruption both in Nigeria and internationally? Is this era of economic recession and ongoing security challenges the right one for Nigeria to definitively tackle corruption?

Join us for the next edition of the How to Fix Nigeria series, hosted by Funmi Iyanda, Oya Media and the Royal African Society in partnership with Shell and the Africa Research Group at King’s College London.

 

This event is open to the public, with a suggested donation of £10.
Please register your place via Eventbrite

 

 

 

 

 

 

Date & Time: Friday 9th December, 19:00 - 21:00
Venue: B5 Auditorium, Ground Floor, Franklin-Wilkins Building, King’s College London, 150 Stamford Street, London SE1 9NH

Speakers:

Charles Abiodun Alao, Professor of African Studies at King’s College London
Kayode Ogundamisi, UK-based Nigerian activist and anti corruption campaigner
Maggie Murphy, Transparency International's Senior Global Advocacy Manager
Ayo Sogunro, Writer, Teacher, Columnist, Lawyer

The office of Lai Mohammed, Minister of Information and Culture, Federal Republic of Nigeria regrets that he will no longer be able to attend this event. 

Chair: Funmi Iyanda

In May 2016, ahead of the London Anti-Corruption Summit, then PM David Cameron was caught on camera calling Nigeria ‘fantastically corrupt’. In response to this diplomatic gaffe, President Muhammadu Buhari granted that Cameron was ‘telling the truth’ based on a perception of Nigeria, but that his interest lay more in the return of stolen assets held in British banks.

From a domestic angle, there have been various major scandals in which several billions of dollars have been stolen at the highest levels. Buhari has embarked on an energetic anti-corruption campaign (some claim selectively) since coming to power in 2015 on a platform of promising to tackle graft.

But as the Panama papers leak highlighted, corruption of this scale has only been made possible by a network of offshore secrecy jurisdictions and tax havens – many of which are overseen by the UK and directly benefit certain British interests. Thanks to this system, Africa is a net creditor to the rest of the world, and Nigeria is no exception.

Who is really ‘fantastically corrupt’? What is being done to tackle corruption both in Nigeria and internationally? Is this era of economic recession and ongoing security challenges the right one for Nigeria to definitively tackle corruption?

Join us for the next edition of the How to Fix Nigeria series, hosted by Funmi Iyanda, Oya Media and the Royal African Society in partnership with Shell and the Africa Research Group at King’s College London.

 

This event is open to the public, with a suggested donation of £10.
Please register your place via Eventbrite

 

 

 

 

 

 

How Castro changed Southern Africa

Monday, 28 November 2016
Author: 
Richard Dowden

In Cuba it seems there will forever be two histories of Fidel Castro. One is the revolutionary who succeeded and became the guiding star for all who saw the world through the lens of Marxist Leninism. The other is the brutal dictator who suppressed democracy and kept his country poor.

There is one place where Castro undoubtedly made a difference: Angola. In 1975 a military coup in Portugal overthrew the dictatorship of Antonio d’Oliveira Salazar. The country was tired of fighting wars in its colonies in Africa, long after Britain and France had pulled out of their African empires.

Angola’s three liberation movements had been fighting the Portuguese but they were at odds with each other and soon civil war broke out. The Movement for the Liberation of Angola, backed by the Soviet Union, was largely coastal and urban. Of the other two, Jonas Savimbi’s (National Union for the Total Independence of Angola (UNITA) was supported by apartheid South Africa and Western countries, and the National Front for the Liberation of Angola ( FNLA), was backed by Angola’s northern neighbour Congo.

The Vietnam war was just drawing to an end but here, on the West Coast of Africa, a new war began which threatened to become a proxy war for the communist and capitalist superpowers. The Americans, whose long and bloody war in Vietnam had scarred the country’s conscience, were not ready for another intervention. From a distance they backed the FNLA and then worked with the South Africans to support UNITA. The Russians and Fidel Castro in Cuba supported the MPLA. But while the big players sought a power-sharing agreement, Castro decided to act. The Russians sent about 1000 advisers, money and prayers but no combat troops. East Germany also sent military assistance. But for Castro this was not just an adventure or purely ideological. Many Cubans are of African origin and come from the Angolan coast. Castro saw an opportunity to exert his brand of international solidarity and make a difference on a global scale.  He sent 3,000 combat troops, 300 military advisers as well as tanks and fighter aircraft.

The battleground was Cuito Cuanavale, a small town in the south on the river Lomba and the gateway to south eastern Angola where South Africa was training, supplying and directing Unita forces. The first attacks were in 1983 and a full-scale battle took place in 1986, the biggest battle in Africa since El Alamein in Libya in 1942. The largely white South African army took heavy casualties but held the town and stopped the Angolan offensive, preventing it from advancing south and capturing Savimbi’s headquarters at Jamba. Stalemate but not a situation that South Africa could maintain for long.

Shortly afterwards Mikhail Gorbachev came to power in the Soviet Union and began to make overtures to the US. I was in Washington at that time and managed to get a briefing on Angola at the Pentagon. I was shown a satellite photograph of that showed Cuban and East German airforce bases in southern Angola, some south of Cuito Cuanavale. I asked if the South Africans had seen them yet. “They will find out soon enough”, came the reply.

At that extraordinary moment I realised that the world had changed. The Americans had decided that since the Soviet Union was no longer the big threat in the region, the real enemy of peace in southern Africa was the racism of South Africa. The man whose decision to go to war in Angola had triggered this moment was Fidel Castro. 

Richard Dowden is Director of the Royal African Society, and author of Africa: Altered States, Ordinary Miracles. 

Scaling Social Innovation in Africa

Thursday, 17 November 2016 - 4:00pm to 5:30pm

Date & Time: Thursday, 17 November, 16:00-17:30
Venue: CLM 4.02, Clement House, LSE, Aldwych
Speaker: Ndidi Nwuneli
Chair: Professor Harry Barkema

Social entrepreneur Ndidi Nwuneli will share some insights from her new book, Scaling Social Innovation in Africa. Encouraged by the emergence and early impact of social innovators on the African Continent, but frustrated by the slow pace of large scale change, this book is focused on filling the knowledge gap among aspiring and emerging social innovators. It lays out the required building blocks for achieving scale at impact. It also explores the steps for attracting and retaining talent and financing and forming strategic partnerships with the private, public, and non-profit sectors to foster scaling.

Ndidi Okonkwo Nwuneli (@ndidinwuneli) is a serial social entrepreneur based in Nigeria. She is the founder of LEAP Africa, co-founder of AACE Foods, director at Sahel Capital and the African Philanthropy Forum.

Professor Harry Barkema joined the Department of Management at the LSE in 2007. He is the founding Director of the Innovation Co-Creation Lab (ICCL), and is also on the Board of Governors of the Academy of Management (AoM).
 

Twitter Hashtag for this event: #LSEInnovation.
This is a Firoz Lalji Centre for Africa at LSE and Royal African Society event

This event is free and open to all, but pre-registration required via Eventbrite
 

 

 

 

 

Africa APPG- How can the UK support the participation of women and Rule of Law in the DRC?

Tuesday, 1 November 2016 - 4:00pm to 5:30pm

                                                  

 

The UK spends £1m a day, or $500m a year in the D.R.Congo, in order to support the development of the D.R.Congo, to support democracy and the rule of law, demonstrating the depth of the UK-D.R.Congo relationship. In June 2016, the UK was ready to spend £17m to help fund free and fair elections in the D.R. Congo, however the incumbent D.R.Congo Government and other political actors have demonstrated that they seek to prolong the rule of Joseph Kabila into a third term, which is barred under the D.R, Congo constitution. With the recent launch of a political dialogue that started on the 1st September 2016, it is now clear that it will be impossible to hold presidential elections as planned in November 2016.

Congolese Women based in the UK and the D.R. Congo are united in their concern about the ongoing political crisis and the current situation of instability in the D.R. Congo and are calling for effective security sector reforms, the strengthening of political institutions and the respect of the D.R. Congo constitution.

The speaker panel and Q&A will explore how the UK Government and private sector through implementing OECD guidelines can best support security sector reforms and political institutions to make room for Congolese women’s voices and the implementation of the Congolese constitution as well as National Action Plan on UNSC RES 1325 on Women, Peace and Security.

 

Chair: Anne McLaughlin MP, Vice Chair of the Africa APPG@AnneMcLaughlin

Speakers:

1. Kongosi Mussanzi and Furaha Mussanzi - Human Rights Activists representing COMMON CAUSE UK, Centre Résolution Conflits (CRC), Bradford Congo Campaign and UKWILPF @FarayMarie @UKWILPF

2. Sophia Pickles, Campaign Lead on Conflict Minerals at Global Witness UK @SophiaPickles

3. Eve Bazaiba MP, Member of the D.R.Congo Parliament and General Secretary of the Mouvement de La liberation du Congo (MLC) @Evebazaiba

4. Catherine Pluyger, Chair of the London United Nation Association and SE Region

The panel will be followed by an audience Q&A.

Active tweeting of the event is encouraged- please use hashtags: #UNSCR1325 and #DRCongo

 

The meeting is hosted by the Africa APPG (@AfricaAPPG) together with the Royal African Society (@RoyAfriSoc) and Voices of African Women Campaign of the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (@UKWILPF &@Peace_Women). 

 

To register for the event please, register via Eventbrite here.

Ghana: Where to now? Election Panel Discussion and launch of 'Positioning Ghana'

Friday, 11 November 2016 - 6:30pm to 8:00pm

Date & Time: Friday 11th November 2016, 18.30-20.00

Venue: Alumni Lecture Theatre, Paul Webley Wing, Senate House, SOAS, Thornhaugh Street, London WC1H 0XG

Speakers: Nana Ampofo, Partner & Co-Founder, Songhai Advisory; Michael Ansah, Chairman, New Patriotic Party (NPP) UK; Gideon Okai, Communications Team, National Democratic Congress (NDC) UK; Jeff Turner, Visiting Lecturer, Institute for Transport Studies, University of Leeds & Positioning Ghana contributor.
Chair: Richard Tandoh (Star 100)

We will begin with a statement by Prof. Nana Araba Apt (Emerita Dean of Academic Affairs, Ashesi University College, Ghana, & Editor of Positioning Ghana) who is unfortuantely no longer able to join us in person.

Over the past 20 years, governing parties have made tremendous efforts to achieve economic development, reduce poverty and boost living standards in Ghana, with varied results.  As the country heads to the polls this December, it is a good time to consider what the priorities should be for her next government.

This event brings together representatives of Ghana’s two main political parties, the National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the New Patriotic Party (NPP), alongside academics and analysts to discuss key issues such as democracy and governance, infrastructure, education, health and technology.   

These themes are explored in depth in a newly published book, Positioning Ghana: Challenges and Innovations, which will also be launched at the event.  This collection, edited by Professor Nana Araba Apt, who will be speaking on the day, brings together 18 academics, public officers and human development activists to present their ideas about strategies needed to advance Ghana’s development.  The focus is very much on solutions.

Light refreshments will be served.  Signed copies of the book will be on sale at £20.

Presented in partnership with Star 100 - The Professional Ghanaian Network
 

 £5. Please register on Eventbrite
Free for RAS Members - email ras_events@soas.ac.uk for info
 

 

 

 

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