Archive for the ‘Africa’ Category Africa Blog | African youth hold keys to continent’s future – Youssou N’Dour   Leave a comment

The solution to Africa lies squarely on its youth. This is according to world renown and music legend Youssou N’Dour. The Senegalese artiste, one of the greatest in the world, advises that African leaders must engage the youth if the continent is to grow.”

via Africa Blog | African youth hold keys to continent’s future – Youssou N’Dour.

The Senegalese Grammy award-winning artiste was in Kenya last week visiting the refugee camps in Daadab in the North-Eastern Province where he called for “inadvertible and undivided focus” on the plight of children affected by the hunger crisis in the Horn of Africa. More than 12 million people are in desperate need of food, water and basic sanitation.

He at the same time lauded charity organisations on the ground helping the needy starting with UNICEF.

“I am confident that humanitarian agencies are doing everything they can to reach those who need their help,” he said. “We have a responsibility to do all that we can so that every child can be reached, their immediate needs met, their health is safeguarded and that they are protected from all harm.”

He also called on African leaders to end the annual cycle of drought and disease in the region. “African nations, African figureheads and African communities, alongside other world leaders, need to prioritise lasting solutions by strengthening governance so the right investments are made in basic services, championing peace so that people are no longer forced to flee their homes and livelihoods and empowering local communities from where the process of change will emerge,” he said.”

Posted September 13, 2011 by arnoneumann in Africa

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John Kufuor helps transform Ghana into a model for African agriculture –   Leave a comment

Agriculture as a catalyst for health and social change in Ghana. An excellent prescriptive model.

“Ghana’s transformation over the past decade has made it one of the more politically stable countries in Africa, and, as President Kufuor writes, Ghana has “made some of the greatest progress in reducing hunger, poverty, and malnutrition.”

Kufuor, a recently announced recipient of the 2011 World Food Prize, served as Ghana’s democratically elected president from 2001-2009. In the opening of the report, titled “Ghana’s Transformation,” he writes, “When I became Ghana’s President in 2000, my country needed solutions for hunger, malnutrition, and a host of other problems.”

Kufuor found agriculture to be a catalyst for these solutions. Agriculture is critical to Ghana’s economy, as some 60 percent of the country’s population depends directly on rural agriculture. Kufuor’s administration worked to harness an agriculture transformation to strengthen the nation’s economy.”

via John Kufuor helps transform Ghana into a model for African agriculture –

Posted August 3, 2011 by arnoneumann in Africa, agriculture

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IRIN Africa | GUINEA: Nutrition finds a place in agriculture plan | Guinea | Children | Food Security | Health & Nutrition   Leave a comment

A multifaceted approach to food production , health and nutrition  is especially critical in the early  growing stadges of a child. It is a welcome foresight to view that not just quantity but also nutritional quality of food is being considered.

“Gaps remain in research and data on how agriculture can help boost people’s nutritional status. A 2007 report by the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) and World Bank said: “Malnutrition remains an urgent global public health concern. Yet the question of how agriculture can most effectively contribute to improved nutrition outcomes remains essentially unanswered.”

One of the paper’s authors, Marie Ruel, director of IFPRI’s poverty, health and nutrition division, says this question is still largely unanswered, partly because any initiatives over the years have not been well documented.

What has changed in the past few years, however, is that many more policymakers, donors and researchers are talking about it, she said. “A lot more people are recognizing that we really don’t have the choice; we have to bring the sectors together, we have to make agriculture recognize better its role in providing not just enough food to feed people but also enough of the quality, nutritious foods, and that these are made more accessible to the poor.”

Agriculture could boost nutrition either by increasing income so a family can purchase more and higher quality food, or by helping farmers produce more nutrient-rich foods. The merits and effectiveness of both are still under study but, IFPRI’s Ruel said, neither approach can be standalone.

Food knowledge

“Having the right foods at the household level, either because you produce them or because you buy them in the market, is not enough; people need to know how to use the food and how to use it for the age groups that are most vulnerable to malnutrition – that is, of course, young children and women of child-bearing age.

“The key to success [in countries that have made progress] has been to press all the buttons at the same time, that is, address the problems in the society that contribute to poor nutrition, while also targeting vulnerable groups with specific nutrition interventions, for example, micronutrient supplementation and promotion of optimal breastfeeding and complementary feeding practices.”

She said the 2007-2008 food price crisis had been a wake-up call about the need to incorporate nutrition into other social sectors. “I think the fact that nutrition was always the orphan and always falling between the cracks is maybe less of an issue now because other sectors are… interested in finding ways to incorporate nutrition in social protection, in agriculture, in education.”

via IRIN Africa | GUINEA: Nutrition finds a place in agriculture plan | Guinea | Children | Food Security | Health & Nutrition.

Posted July 17, 2011 by arnoneumann in Africa, agriculture

Tagged with , , Africa: Continent Endorses Talks On Grand Free Trade Area   Leave a comment

This is a significant step for Africa  with implications on other trading nations. A market of about $1 trillion and 600 million people is huge . Reducing and removing trade restriction will bring greater efficiencies and help alleviate poverty.

“The leaders adopted a developmental approach to the Tripartite Integration process that will be anchored on three pillars namely; the market integration based on the Tripartite Free Trade Area, infrastructure development to enhance connectivity and reduce costs of doing business as well as Industrial development to address the productive capacity constraints.

The proposed Grand Free Trade Area would merge three existing blocs including the Southern African Development Community (Sadc), the East African Community (EAC) and Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (Comesa).

Luba Freeport

Dock workers handle containers at an African port.

The bloc would include 26 countries, stretching from Cape Town in South Africa to Cairo in Egypt. The integration is expected to help African countries improve their capacity to trade, increase investments on the continent and unleash the enormous economic growth and development potential of Africa.”

via Africa: Continent Endorses Talks On Grand Free Trade Area.

Posted July 8, 2011 by arnoneumann in Africa

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Countries – African Economic Outlook   Leave a comment

Excellent resouce for background profile of countries in Africa.

“Welcome to the heart of Here you gain access to profiles of 51 of the 53 countries in Africa (countries not included are: Eritrea and Somalia).

Each profile includes synopses of the overall state of the country, recent economic developments, macroeconomic policy, structural issues, the political and social context, human development, one sector relevant to development and vital country statistics. Profiles are available in a printer-friendly format.”

via Countries – African Economic Outlook.

Posted June 26, 2011 by arnoneumann in Africa, Economic

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Four hours to save four million children – Opinion – Al Jazeera English   Leave a comment

World leaders have four hours to save four million children’s lives at the Global Vaccinations Summit in London on June 13. No child should die from a preventable disease. Read more :






via Four hours to save four million children – Opinion – Al Jazeera English.

Posted June 12, 2011 by arnoneumann in Africa

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Biofuels boom in Africa as British firms lead rush on land for plantations | Environment | The Guardian   Leave a comment

“The revelation of the central role of UK companies in biofuels coincides with a report from Oxfam forecasting that the price of staple foods will more than double in the next 20 years. The report identifies biofuels as a factor and demands that western governments end biofuel policies that divert food to fuel for cars. “We are sleepwalking towards an age of avoidable crisis,” said Oxfams chief executive, Barbara Stocking. “One in seven people on the planet go hungry every day despite the fact that the world is capable of feeding everyone. The food system must be overhauled.” ”

via Biofuels boom in Africa as British firms lead rush on land for plantations | Environment | The Guardian.

“Liquid fuels made from plants – such as bioethanol – are hailed by some as environmentally-friendly replacements for fossil fuels. Because they compete for land with crop plants, biofuels have also been linked torecord food prices and rising hunger. There are also fears they can increase greenhouse gas emissions.

A market has been created by British and EU laws requiring the blending of rising amounts of biofuels into petrol and diesel, but the rules werecondemned as unethical and “backfiring badly” in April by a Nuffield Council on Bioethics commission. In the UK, only 31% of biofuels used meet voluntary environmental standards intended to protect water supplies, soil quality and carbon stocks in the source country. “

Posted May 31, 2011 by arnoneumann in Africa, agriculture, UK

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