Posted by: Dr. Y. | December 14, 2018

Why the Warthog goes about on his knees

Jackal

Jackal

Oh, Gogo,” little Sipho asked one evening, “could you tell us the story of clever Jackal again?” Sipho, whose nickname was Mpungushe “jackal,” never tired of hearing tales of his beloved namesake.
Hawu, Sipho,” moaned several of his siblings, “Not again, little Jackal! You will wear out our ears with stories of Mpungushe!

Gogo laughed her deep, round laugh. Soon each of her grandchildren were laughing along with her.

I, too, love the stories of the Jackal!” Gogo looked at Sipho. “But we do not want to cause your brothers and sisters to become deaf. I think there is another tale that I can tell you of an animal who tried to be as clever as Jackal!

Kwasuka sukela …

Warthog_1

Warthog

WartHog had made himself a lovely, spacious home in an old termite mound that an aardvark had cleared out. He had built it up and made a wide entrance. He thought it was the most magnificent home in Africa and would often stand at the entrance of his dwelling with his snout in the air as the giraffe, wildebeest and zebra passed on their way to the watering hole. “Hah,” he thought to himself, “no one has such a fine home!

One day as he looked out from the entrance of his cave he was horrified to see a huge lion stealthily stalking toward him. He started to back away, but because he had made the entrance to his place so grand, the lion would have no difficulty in following WartHog right in. “Ahhhh,” panicked WartHog, “Bhubesi will eat me in my own lounge! What will I do?

WartHog decided to use an old trick he’d heard Jackal bragging about. WartHog pretended to be supporting the roof of his hole with his strong back, pushing up with his tusks. “Help!” he cried to the lion, “I am going to be crushed! The roof is caving in! Flee, oh, mighty Bhubesi, before you are crushed along with me!

Now Lion is no fool. He recognized Jackal’s old ploy straight away (“Do you remember that story, children?”), and he wasn’t going to be caught out again. He roared so fiercely that WartHog dropped to his knees, trembling. WartHog begged for mercy. Luckily for him, Lion was not too hungry. So he pardoned WartHog and left, saying,

Lion

Lion

Stay on your knees, you foolish beast!

Lion laughed to himself and shook his shaggy head as he walked away. Imagine, slow-witted WartHog trying to copy Jackal’s trick! WartHog took Lion’s order to heart. That is why, to this day, you will see Wart Hog feeding on his knees, in a very undignified position, with his bottom up in the air and his snout snuffling in the dust.

A Traditional Zulu Story

Posted by: Dr. Y. | December 10, 2018

Being Black in the Work Place

being-black-in-the-work-place

Here is an anonymous poem I thought of sharing with all; it reflects the life of so many in the workplace in the West. Enjoy!

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Being Black in the Work Place

They take my kindness for weakness. They take my silence for speechless. They consider my uniqueness strange. They call my language slang. They see my confidence as conceit. They see my mistakes as defeat. They consider my success accidental. They minimize my intelligence to “potential”. My questions mean I’m unaware. My advancement is somehow unfair. Any praise is preferential treatment. To voice concern is discontentment. If I stand up for myself, I’m too defensive. If I don’t trust them, I am too apprehensive. I’m defiant if I separate. Yet, I am fake if I assimilate. So, constantly I am faced with work place hate. My character is constantly under attack. Pride for my race makes me “TOO BLACK”.  Yet, I can only be me.  And who am I you might ask? I am that Strong Black Person… Who stands on the backs of my ancestors. Achievements, with an erect spine pointing to the stars with pride, Dignity and respect which lets the work place in America know, that I not only possess the ability to play by the rules, but I can make them as Well!

Black History 365

Good, Better, Best, Never rest until YOUR Good is Better and YOUR Better is Best!

Pendant Ivory mask representing Queen Idia, Iyoba of Benin City (16th Century)

Pendant Ivory mask representing Queen Idia, Iyoba of Benin City (16th Century) – exposed at the MET

France, like so many European countries, is being urged to return looted art to Africa. Below is the article. For the full article, go to the Guardian.

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A report commissioned by Emmanuel Macron will call for thousands of African artworks in French museums taken without consent during the colonial period to be returned to the continent.

Unless it could be proven that objects were obtained legitimately, they should be returned to Africa permanently, not on long-term loan, said the authors of the report, the Senegalese writer and economist Felwine Sarr and the French historian Bénédicte Savoy.

They have recommended changing French law to allow the restitution of cultural works to Africa, after Macron announced that he wanted it to begin within five years.

… “I cannot accept that a large part of the cultural heritage of several African countries is in France,” the French president said last year in Ouagadougou, the capital of Burkina Faso. “There are historical explanations for this but there is no valid, lasting and unconditional justification. African heritage cannot be only in private collections and European museums – it must be showcased in Paris but also in Dakar, Lagos and Cotonou. This will be one of my priorities.” [Politicians always make promises, but never deliver. Let’s wait and see if Macron can do anything. In 2015, Francois Hollande, then French President Acknowledged French Genocide in Cameroon while in visit in Cameroon, without ever apologizing!]

Benin_Fon statue symbolizing Behanzin Man shark

Fon statue symbolizing King Behanzin, the Man-Shark by Sossa Dede (c. 1890) – currently exposed at the Musee du quai Branly in Paris

The extent to which France, Britain and Germany looted Africa of its artefacts during colonialism is not known, but according to the report, which will be released this Friday, about 90% of Africa’s cultural heritage currently lies outside the continent.

The report’s authors travelled to Mali, Senegal, Cameroon and Benin and looked through the works held by the Musée du quai Branly, a museum focused on non-European cultures in Paris, and found that about 46,000 of its 90,000 African works were “acquired” between 1885 and 1960 and may have to be returned.

… To start with, they [the researchers] have recommended that palace doors, thrones and statues stolen from Abomey be returned – something the modern-day country of Benin has long requested [especially given that Béhanzin, the King of Dahomey, was one of the last African Resistant to French Colonization, and had been deported to Martinique and then Algeria – Deportation of African Heads of States]….

Posted by: Dr. Y. | December 5, 2018

Connect Intelligence with Compassion

Angelique Kidjo2“Your brain is your greatest weapon. Connect it to your heart, and you can go anywhere.” Angélique Kidjo

Queen from Benin kingdom

Cast Bronze figurine from Benin City at the MET museum

Unbelievable! I had to share this article about European museums loaning looted African artifacts back to Africans. It sounds so mind-boggling! How can someone steal from you, steal your cultural work, the work of your ancestors, your sweat, and then several years later loan it back to you, not even return it? and they call that progress! For the entire article, go to  Europe’s Largest Museums Will Loan Looted Benin Bronzes to Nigeria and What do you know about Africa’s looted art treasures.

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Major museums across Europe have agreed to loan important artifacts back to Nigeria for a new museum the country plans to open in 2021. The African nation’s Royal Museum will house a rotating display of artifacts, including the Benin bronzes that were looted during the Benin Expedition of 1897. The agreement marks a significant step after years of negotiations among European institutions and Nigerian authorities.

Art from Benin kingdom (18th century)

Benin City art exposed at the MET Museum, NYC

… Together, museum leaders from Austria, Germany, the Netherlands, Sweden, and Britain agreed to facilitate a display at the planned institution within three years. Further specifics—including which objects will be loaned over what period of time—have yet to be confirmed.

… The objects in question were looted by the British army during a so-called “punitive expedition” in 1897. The army took around 4,000 intricate sculptures, including bronze works now known as the Benin bronzes, from the king’s palace in the former Kingdom of Benin.

A century later, the vast majority of these bronzes have ended up in some of the world’s most important museums, including the British Museum in London and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. …

Benin City-Cast_brass_plaques_from_Benin_City_at_British_Museum-1024x721

Cast brass plaques from Benin City at the British Museum. Photo: Andreas Praefcke

Posted by: Dr. Y. | November 27, 2018

Proverbe sur l’avarice / Proverb on Stinginess

house1

Maison / House

Si rien ne sort de ta maison, rien n’entrera (Proverbe Kirundi – Burundi) – Avarice.

If nothing leaves your house, then nothing will get in (Kirundi proverb – Burundi). – Stinginess.

Posted by: Dr. Y. | November 21, 2018

African Joke: Stop Dozing in Church!

Dozing off_4

Dozing off

A lady dozed off during the pastor’s preaching… Suddenly, she wakes up and hears the pastor say “Stand up.”

 

She gets up and sees the entire assembly turn toward her. Everyone is in shock, including her husband who is sitting next to her. She looks around and realizes that she is the only one standing. The pastor looks at her and tells her, “Thank you Madam, please remain standing, we will pray for you … We already have one person standing. She is courageous… Anyone else? Nobody? Let me repeat myself, in case you did not hear me well. I asked you to stand if you are unfaithful, if you are committing adultery; if you cannot stop cheating on your partner at each of his missions… Stand up so that we can pray for you.

fainting_3

The lady fainted!

The lady standing fainted.

 

Those of you sleeping in church… watch out!

The original in French is found on Nouchi.com . Translated to English by Dr. Y. Afrolegends.com

Posted by: Dr. Y. | November 19, 2018

Why Monkey Looks Like Man

Monkey1In the old days, monkey went to see God and asked him to be like man. God asked him:

  • Awô, but can you stay locked 100 days in a cage?
  • Awô answered monkey, I can, I swear !

God locked him up in a box as agreed.
On the morning of the 99th day, monkey looked through a small hole and saw wonders: flowers, ripe mangoes, bananas, a blue sky, expanse of water, a golden light, branches swinging.
Then, with all his strength, monkey broke the door and said:

  • The world gets beautiful while I am locked up! No way, all these movements outside invite me to the party, I go, I go !!!
Régime de banane plantain

Régime de banane plantain

He does not finish his monologue and he jumps outside in the open air to live freely like everyone.

That’s why he stayed half-way between man and animal.

The French original can be found on Ouologuem Blog. Translated to English by Dr. Y., Afrolegends.com

Last week I published a poem by  Sarah Anyang Agbor about the Anglophone plight in Cameroon, and the fact that Anglophones as any other children of Cameroon are treasured children of the nation and also ‘sing Cameroon’. Given that the history of Cameroon is so intertwined with that of the European colonizer: first becoming a German colony, then after Germany lost World War I, being divided into 2 and shared between France and Great Britain (the spoils of war, I guess), I have decided to publish here a few notes on German protectorates on the West Coast of Africa from 1884 to 1890. Note below that Cameroons, in the Ambas Bay section, refers to Cameroons Town which was the name for present-day Douala, Criby refers to the city of Kribi, while Victoria refers to present-day Limbe in the country CameroonPorto Seguro is now Agbodrafo and Little Popo is now known as Aného in Togo. South-Western Africa refers to present-day Namibia.

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NOTES on German Protectorates on the West Coast of Africa 1884—1890, Map of Africa by Treaty vol 2, P. 694.

Togoland_1908

Togoland in 1908 (R. Hellgrewe)

Togoland.

On the 5th July, 1884, an Agreement was signed between Germany and Togo, by which the territory of the King of Togo, situated on the West Coast of Africa, from the Eastern frontier of Porto Seguro to the Western frontier of Lome or Bay Beach was placed under the Protectorate of Germany.

Cameroons. Togoland. Slave Coast, &c.

On the 12th July, 1884, a German Protectorate was proclaimed over the whole of the Cameroons District, and on the 15th October of the same year†, the following official communication was made by the German Government to the principal Powers of Europe and to the United States Government, notifying the exact extent of territory on the West and South-West Coasts of Africa which had been placed under the protection of the German Empire :—

Baron von Plessen to Earl Granville.

(Translation.)                                                                       German Embassy, 15th October, 1884.

Nachtigal

Gustav Nachtigal

“The Government of His Majesty the Emperor, with a view to insure more effectually German commercial interests on the West Coast of Africa, has taken certain districts of this coast under its protection. This has been effected in virtue of Treaties which have been in part concluded by Dr. Nachtigal, the Consul-General dispatched to West Africa, with independent Chiefs, and partly in virtue of applications for protection made by Imperial subjects, who have acquired certain tracts by covenants with independent Chiefs.

“Accordingly, the Togo tract, with the harbours of Lome and Bageida, the districts of Bimbia, with the Isle of Nicol, Cameroons, Malimba, to its northern extremity, Little Batanga, Plantation, and Criby, on the Slave Coast, and the tract of coastland between Cape Frio and the Orange River, with the exception of Valvisch (Walfish) Bay, in South-Western Africa, have been placed under the protection of His Majesty the Emperor. This has been notified by hoisting the Imperial military standard and planting frontier poles, and the engagement at the same time announced that all demonstrable existing rights of third parties are to be respected.”

Ambas Bay, Victoria.

cameroon_kamerun-12-juillet-1884

German flag on the Joss plateau in Cameroons Town (Douala) on 14 July 1884

On the 19th July, 1884, a British Notification was issued announcing the assumption of British sovereignty over Ambas Bay,* but this territory was transferred to Germany on the 28th March, 1887, since which date it has formed part of the German Protectorate over the Cameroons. 

Mahin and Mahin Beach.

On the 29th January, 1885, Mahin was sold by the King of Mahin to a German subject, Herr G. L. Gaiser ; and on the 11th March, 1885, a Treaty was signed by the King of Mahin with the German Commissioner and Consul-General for the West Coast of Africa, Dr. Nachtigal, for extending a German Protectorate over Mahin and Mahin Beach, but it was not ratified by the German Emperor ; and on the 24th October following, both Mahin and Mahin Beach were ceded to Great Britain. 

Bight of Biafra, Slave Coast (Togoland, Little Popo, and Porto Seguro), Senegambia, and Southern Rivers Districts.

On the 24th December, 1885, a Protocol was signed between France and Germany, for defining their respective rights of Sovereignty or Protectorate in the Bight of Biafra, on the Slave Coast (Togoland, Little Popo, and Porto Seguro), on the Coast of Senegambia, and in the Southern Rivers Districts. 

British and German Limits.

On the 1st July, 1890, an Agreement was entered into between the British and German Governments defining their respective spheres of influence in East, West, and South-West Africa. With respect to the West Coast, the line of boundary was marked between the British Gold Coast Colony and the German Protectorate of Togo, the Volta Districts, and the Rio del Rey

† “ National Zeitung,” 15th February, 1885. S.P., vol. lxxvi, p. 756,

*H.T., vol. xvii, p. 57.

path_cheminLe paresseux est toujours sur la route de la chefferie pour aller quémander auprès du chef (et rapporter) (Proverbe Bamiléké – Cameroun)!

The lazy one is always on the road to the palace to go beg in front of the king (and tattle) (Bamileke proverb – Cameroon)!

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