Zambia’s New Leadership: Edgar Lungu and Inonge Wina

Zambia’s newly elected leader Edgar Lungu has appointed Inonge Wina as the first female Vice President. Inonge was married to the late Arthur Nutuluti Lubinda Wina with whom she had two sons and one daughter. More »

Alexandre Dumas & The Three Musketeers

Alexandre Dumas, famous for the novel, The Three Musketeers was a black French writer. He was born, Dumas Davy de la Pailleterie on 24 July 1802 in Villers-Cotterêts, Aisne, France. More »

Agribusiness Growth in Kyenjojo, Uganda

A quiet revolution is sweeping across Africa. A group of young people are changing the African narrative and one such young person is Eric Kaduru who started an organization to empower young people to engage in agribusiness by providing loan and technical assistance to farmer of passion fruit. More »

The Legend Lives on: Oliver Mtukudzi

Zimbabwe’s own music legend, Oliver Mtukudzi continues to wow the world with his ‘Tuku Music’ as he tours the United States and Canada over the next few months. Tuku and the Black Spirits are scheduled to be in several North American cities this year. More »

A Taste of Harare in 2015

Zimbabwe’s capital city is Harare. Harare is Zimbabwe’s leading financial, commercial, and communications center, and a trade center. More »

 

Agribusiness Growth in Kyenjojo, Uganda

A quiet revolution is sweeping across Africa as young people are desiring to take control of their destinies and improve their lives in spite of their circumstances.  A group of young people are changing the African narrative and one such young person is Eric Kaduru who started an organization to empower young people to engage in agribusiness by providing loan and technical assistance to farmer of passion fruit.

In some of the rural areas in Uganda young girls still do not finish high school which give them limited choices but Kaduru’s KadAfrica has a program that allocates program participate a small track of land to grow passion fruit and sell the produce on the open agribusiness  market. Kaduru believes that by empowering young women farmers to create sources of income gives them better choices than early marriage or felonious behavior just to survive.

The young women are given curriculum based training on financial literacy, empowerment and entrepreneurship in addition to the plot of land. They generally generate about 100-150kg of yield on a monthly basis which translate to $20- $40 monthly before the program they earned on average $3 a month.

The program encourages women to diversify their business portfolio and since they have savings many have branched out to start other businesses as well that include nursery schools and shoe and clothing stores. The success of the program participants has led many women in Kyenjojo Uganda to enroll in the program which currently has a waiting list of 1200 women.

KADAFRICA

Uses an integrative approach that combines hands-on and curriculum based learning and recognizes the relationship between economic security and poor choices or risky behaviors among young women in rural Western Uganda. Girls aged 14-20 are provided with the resources—access to land, quality grafted seedling, and inputs—as well as skills necessary to begin their own passion fruit farms. This vertically growing vine is ideal as it affords smallholder farmers space to grow ground dwelling crops for consumption while generating income through passion fruit. More information can be found at http://www.kadafrica.org/

Alexandre Dumas & The Three Musketeers

Alexandre Dumas

Alexandre Dumas

Alexandre Dumas, famous for the novel, The Three Musketeers was a black French writer. He was born, Dumas Davy de la Pailleterie on 24 July 1802 in Villers-Cotterêts, Aisne, France. His father, Thomas-Alexandre Davy de la Pailleterie was born to a French father and an enslaved African woman, Marie-Cessette Dumas on the Island of present day Haiti.

The celebrated and accomplished General, Thomas-Alexandre, his father died of cancer in 1806 when Alexandre was only four. His widowed mother Marie-Louise could not provide her son with much of an education, but Dumas read everything he could. His mother’s stories of Thomas-Alexandre’s bravery during the campaigns of the Revolutionary Wars inspired his imagination. Although poor, the family had their father’s distinguished reputation and aristocratic rank to aid the children’s advancement. In 1822, after the restoration of the monarchy, the 20-year-old Alexandre Dumas moved to Paris. He acquired a position at the Palais Royal in the office of Louis-Philippe, Duke of Orléans.

Dumas had a son, also named Alexandre, with Marie Laure Catherine Labay. His son followed in his literary footsteps. In 1840, Dumas married actress Ida Ferrier, but continued his affairs with other women. He had at least one daughter, Marie Alexandrine, out of wedlock. He died on December 5, 1870, in Puys, France.

Alex Dumas Quote 2

His most famous works include:

  • The Three Musketeers (Les Trois Mousquetaires, 1844)
  • Georges (1843): The protagonist of this novel is a man of mixed race, a rare allusion to Dumas’ own African ancestry.
  • Louis XIV and His Century (Louis XIV et son siècle, 1844)
  • The Nutcracker (Histoire d’un casse-noisette, 1844): a revision of Hoffmann’s story The Nutcracker and the Mouse King, later set by composer Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky to music for a ballet
  • The Count of Monte Cristo (Le Comte de Monte-Cristo, 1845–1846)
  • Twenty Years After (Vingt ans après, 1845)
  • The Vicomte de Bragelonne, sometimes called “Ten Years Later”, (Le Vicomte de Bragelonne, ou Dix ans plus tard, 1847): When published in English, it was usually split into three parts: The Vicomte de Bragelonne, Louise de la Valliere, and The Man in the Iron Mask,(A third sequel, The Son of Porthos, 1883 (a.k.a. The Death of Aramis)

The unfinished manuscript of his long-lost novel, Le Chevalier de Sainte-Hermine (The Last Cavalier), was discovered in the Bibliothèque Nationale in Paris in the late 1980s and published in 2005.

 

A Taste of Harare in 2015

Zimbabwe’s capital city is Harare. Harare is Zimbabwe’s leading financial, commercial, and communications center, and a trade center. The city was founded in 1890 by a Pioneer Column, which was a military volunteer force organized by Cecil Rhodes. Harare was given the status of a fort at that time. It was then known by the name of ‘Fort Salisbury’. The city was the capital of the Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland from 1953 to 1963, and from then was the capital of Southern Rhodesia. The name of the city was changed to Harare on 18 April 1982, the second anniversary of Zimbabwean independence, taking its name from the village near Harare Kopje of the Shona chief Neharawa, whose nickname was “he who does not sleep.

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Brief Overview:

  • The City, now called Harare began as a settlement in 1890;
  • Proclaimed a municipality in 1897 and a City in 1935;
  • Cleveland Dam, constructed upstream supplied the City up to 1923; outgrew the dam capacity;
  • First municipal houses were occupied in 1952 in Mabvuku, Mufakose 1959, Dzivarasekwa and Tafara 1961 and Marimba – high income 1961.

Geographical and Topographical:

  • Coverage Area of Greater Harare – 872km2;
  • Height above sea level – 1 500m;
  • Total Population for Greater Harare – 2.1million;

Road Traffic:

  • Traffic population – 160 000 enter CBD per day during business hours;
  • Registered vehicles – 800 000 all classes;
  • Parking bays in CBD – 7 000 bays;
  • Licensed vehicles – 16 000 average per year.

Road Network:

  • Length of road – 4 000kms;
  • Controlled intersections – 185 with traffic lights.

Infrastructure:

  • Length of water pipes – 4 000kms (primary and secondary);
  • Length of sewer pipes – 3 000kms;
  • Number of water reservoirs – 5 namely: Cleveland Dam – 1923, Seke dam – 1929, Lake Chivero – 1952, Harava dam – 1972 and Lake Chivero – 1976;

Total Capacity – 752 900.

 

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As the capital City of Zimbabwe, Harare is the hub of the country’s activities.  Most visitors to the country’s major tourist attractions arrive in Harare and spend some time in the capital before traveling to Victoria Falls, Lake Kariba, the Eastern highlands or the Great Zimbabwe historical monument which is in Masvingo and from which the country takes its name.

Greater Harare or Harare Province includes Harare Urban (1.5 million), Harare Rural, Chitungwiza and Epworth which has a population of about 2.1 million. The current Mayor is Bernard Gabriel Manyenyeni. 

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City Statistics Courtesy of City of Harare

The Legend Lives on: Oliver Mtukudzi

Zimbabwe’s own music legend, Oliver Mtukudzi continues to wow the world with his ‘Tuku Music’ as he tours the United States and Canada over the next few months. Tuku and the Black Spirits are scheduled to be in several North American cities this year. Their recent performance at Longwood Gardens in Pennsylvania gives fans something to look forward to.

Fun Facts about Oliver ‘Tuku’ Mtukudzi

  • Grew up in Harare’s Highfield suburb
  • Taught himself how to play the three string guitar
  • Has released 63 albums to date
  • He received an honorary degree from the University of Zimbabwe in 2003
  • Received the M-Net Best Soundtrack Award in 1992, for Neria
  • His concert playlist is based on the mood of the day
  • Before his current wife Daisy, he was married to Melody (divorced 1986)

 

FUTURE NORTH AMERICAN TOUR DATES

February 7- Peters Player: Gravenhurst, Canada

February 12- Eastman School of Music: Rochester, NY

April 12- Fur Peace Station: Pomeroy, OH

April 16- Beachland Ballroom, Cleveland, OH

April 17- Power Center: Ann Arbor, MI

April 18- The Royal Conservatory: Toronto, Canada

He is also a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador for Southern Africa Region.