Posted by: Dr. Y. | January 10, 2019

Proverbe Douala sur la sagesse / Duala Proverb on Wisdom

Knife2On lâche vite un couteau qu’on a pris par la lame (Proverbe Douala – Cameroun). – Ne vous mesurez pas à de plus forts que vous.

One quickly releases a knife taken by the blade (Duala proverb – Cameroon). – Do not measure yourself to stronger ones than you.

Posted by: Dr. Y. | January 8, 2019

Turning Air into Drinking Water: An African Invention

kenya_majik water inventor beth koigi

Beth Koigi plans to use her Majik Water innovation to increase access to drinking water among low-income households. Photograph: Brett Eloff/Royal Academy of Engineering

I had to share this beautiful invention coming out of Africa, helping thousands get clean water, and water in times of drought. The article can be found on The Guardian‘s website.

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When Beth Koigi moved into her university dormitory in eastern Kenya, she was horrified that the water coming out of the tap was filthy and laden with bacteria. Within months, she had built her first filter and was soon selling filters to others. When drought hit in 2016 and water restrictions saw Koigi’s water supply turned off entirely, she began thinking about water scarcity and its relation to climate change.

Going for months without any tap water became a very bad situation,” she says. “Where I used to live, we didn’t get any tap water at all, so even doing simple things like going to the toilet – I would go to the mall instead. Having no water at all is worse than just having unpurified water, so I started thinking about a way to not have to rely on the council.”

While on a four-month programme at the Silicon Valley-based thinktank Singularity University, Koigi, 27, joined up with two other women – American environmental scientist Anastasia Kaschenko and British economist Clare Sewell – to create Majik Water, which captures water from the air and converts it into drinking water using solar technology.

The device – which won first prize this year at the EDF Africa awards – could provide a solution for the 1.8 billion people predicted to have a shortage of water by 2025, according to the UN, says Kaschenko.

kenya_majik water system

The Majik Water system, which can generate up to 10 litres of filtered water a day. Photograph: Brett Eloff/Royal Academy of Engineering

There’s an interesting relationship between climate change and the water in the atmosphere,” she says.

There’s six times more water in the air than in all the rivers in the world. With every 1F increase in temperature, water begins to evaporate on the ground but increases by about 4% in the atmosphere, and that’s water that’s not being tapped.”

Majik Water – from the Swahili maji for water and “k” for kuna (harvest) – uses desiccants such as silica gels to draw water from the air. The gels are then heated up with solar power to release the water. The current system can generate up to 10 litres of filtered water per day, with the team looking to scale up to 100-litre systems at a cost of only £0.08 per 10 litres.

The solar panels used for the prototype are the most expensive input on the device, says Koigi, who is looking for ways to drive those costs down.

pouleUn grain de maïs a toujours tord devant une poule (Proverbe Mina – Togo, Benin).

A grain of corn is always wrong in front of a hen (Mina proverb – Togo, Benin).

Posted by: Dr. Y. | January 2, 2019

Happy 2019!

Fireworks

Fireworks

Fellow readers, we wish you all an AMAZING new year. May the year 2019 mark the beginning of new chapters, the fulfillment of some, and also the closure of old ones. May this new year bring you a lot of joy, may your dreams be fulfilled, and last a lifetime. We would like to express our profound gratitude for your constant support, as your readership has carried us forward. Thank you to all those who visited the blog, reblogged articles, commented, corrected us, and to all future visitors. 2018 was a beautiful year: Afrolegends.com had lots of views, subscribers, contributors, and many articles reblogged on multiple sites.

Fleur6

Happy 2019!

The top 6 posts of 2018 are listed below. For this new year, 2019, we will bring you even more amazing, fun, and rich articles. Keep trusting, reading, sharing, reblogging, and liking. We wish you all a beautiful, full, and amazing new year, rich in blessings, and rich in greatness. May 2019 be the year of greatness! Keep your heads up, and may your year be as bright and plentiful as the petals of this flower! As always, like Agostinho Neto said, “A luta continua … a vitória é certa!

  1. Scarification: an ‘Ancient’ African Tattoo Culture

2. The 11 Components of the French Colonial Tax in Africa

3. Adinkra Symbols and the Rich Akan Culture

4. Sarah Baartman: The Black Venus

5. 

6. La Charte du Mandé: Première déclaration de droits de l’Homme au Monde?

Posted by: Dr. Y. | December 31, 2018

Who/What did we Celebrate in Africa in 2018

Who or what did we celebrate in 2018 in Africa. Here are 10 people, events and things, which marked the year 2018 (if there are some other you would like to share, please send them in):

Zewde_Ahmed

Sahle-Work Zewde, Ethiopia’s first female president, with the Prime minister Abiy Ahmed, on the day she was elected

1. Abiy Ahmed Ali became prime minister of Ethiopia this year, and brought in a wave of new measures. He is particularly noted for ending decades of border disputes between Eritrea and Ethiopia, bringing in the 2 sisters back together, releasing thousands of political prisoners and for having half of his government made up of women, some in key positions including the ministry of defense.

2. Ethiopia welcomed its first female president in the person of Sahle-Work Zewde. Mrs. Zewde was unanimously elected president by members of the Federal Parliamentary Assembly on 25 October 2018. Sahle-Work’s appointment makes her the first female Ethiopian head of state since Empress Zewditu.

3. Peace between Eritrea and Ethiopia. Peace at last with the end of the border dispute in June and July of this year, marking the end to decades of tension between the 2 sisters.

4. The release from jail of Simone Gbagbo. The former first lady of Côte d’Ivoire was released on 8 August 2018, after 7 years in prison. We are so grateful; it took us 7 years, but Simone is free at last. Free at Last: Simone Gbagbo Liberated.

Mukwege

Denis Mukwege, 2018 Nobel Peace Prize winner

5. First person of Somali descent elected in American congress, Ilhan Omar.On November 6, 2018, Omar became the first Somali American elected to the United States Congress, representing Minnesota’s 5th congressional district

6. The Nobel peace was attributed to the Congolese doctor Denis Mukwege, for saving women victims of war in the Great Lakes region in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.  Mukwege is a Congolese gynecologist and Pentecostal pastor, who founded and works in Panzi Hospital in Bukavu, where he specializes in the treatment of women who have been raped by armed rebels. His work was recognized with the 2018 Nobel Peace Prize.

7.  Jean-Pierre Bemba, Congolese politician who had even won the presidential elections, has been released from jail at the International Criminal Court, after almost 10 years at the Hague. Many believe he was released because he was better contender for the presidency of the Democratic Republic of the Congo against Joseph Kabila or anybody chosen by  Kabila.

8. The new Secretary General of Organisation internationale de la Francophonie (OIF) is a lady from Rwanda,  Louise Mushikiwabo; she comes after the Haitian-Canadian Michaëlle Jean. Mrs. Mushikiwabo becomes the first African woman to serve as president of the francophonie.

MCN_2

Musee des Civilisations Noires (MCN) in Dakar, Senegal

9. Senegal inaugurated its Museum of Black Civilizations (Musée des Civilisations noires (MCN)) in Dakar: Senegal unveils Museum of Black Civilizations, and Sprawling Museum of Black Civilizations Opens in Senegal. Senegal, like many other African countries, would like the restitution of all the looted African arts taken by Europeans and still hosted in European museums.

10. Not sure whether to applaud this or not: Major museums across Europe have agreed to loan important artifacts back to Nigeria for a new museum the country plans to open in 2021 (Europe’s Largest Museums to “Loan” Looted Benin (Nigerian) Artifacts back to Nigeria). How someone can loan you something they stole from you is beyond me! They should just return it!

Posted by: Dr. Y. | December 28, 2018

Who/What did We Say Goodbye to in Africa in 2018?

In the year 2018, we said goodbye to some people, some events, and some things.  Here are 10 of those:

  1. Winnie Mandela_5

    Winnie Madikizela Mandela

    Winnie Madikizela-Mandela the Great: the Mother of the Nation, and a Warrior like No Other! Everyone celebrates Nelson Mandela, but everybody forgets that without Winnie Mandela, there would have been no Nelson. While he was in jail, she carried on the battle, carried his name high, and carried the nation: Strong African Women and History Amnesia, Patriarchy, Sexism, and Racism: the Case of Winnie Mandela. Below is the strong and powerful eulogy given by Julius Malema,  for an exceptional woman.

  2. The trumpetist Hugh Masekela… no more “Strawberries” for me… but I still love dancing to the sound of the “The Boy is doing it!“. His genius, spirit and music remain with us. So Long to Africa’s Jazz Maestro: Hugh Masekela
  3. Hugh Masekela4

    Hugh Masekela

    Kofi Annan , the previous UN Secretary-General passed away, and was buried in Ghana.

  4.  We said bye-bye to division between Eritrea and Ethiopia, as peace treaties were signed:  Peace at last between the 2 sisters Eritrea and Ethiopia.
  5.  We said goodbye to the name ‘Swaziland‘ for the country Swaziland, and welcomed Eswatini, officially known as the Kingdom of Eswatini.
  6. The world said goodbye to Aretha Franklin, the African American singer, who reveled us with ‘I say a little prayer for you‘, ‘Respect‘, and so many other hit tubes.
  7. Aretha Franklin

    Aretha Franklin

    We also said goodbye to Joseph Kadji Defosso, the great Cameroonian business magnate head of a conglomerate of companies, creator of the Kadji Sport Academy from which world-renowned football player Samuel Eto’o, and others like Idriss Carlos KameniNicolas Nkoulou and Benjamin Moukandjo came out of. Kadji was 95 years old.

  8. The statue of ‘racist’ Gandhi was removed from the University of Ghana campus. It is important to have our own African heroes represented on our campuses and  textbooks.
  9. Over 200 people lost their lives when a ferry capsized on Lake Victoria, in Tanzania. This marked the second-most deadliest ferry disaster in Tanzania.
  10. This was the last world cup for the Egyptian Goalkeeper Essam El-Hadary, who at 45 was the oldest player at the World cup. And lastly, the African Teams at the 2018 FIFA World Cup performed poorly. We wish for a better one next time.

Cafard

Cafard / Cockroach

On écrase une punaise contre le mur (proverbe Basuto – Lesotho, Afrique du Sud). – Battre l’ennemi là où il est le plus vulnerable.

We crush a bug against the wall (Sotho proverb – Lesotho, South Africa). – Defeat the enemy where he is the most vulnerable

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

Why the Name: Johannesburg ?

Johannesburg_South_Africa_in_1896

Johannesburg in 1896

If you are like me, you have probably thought that the city of Johannesburg, the largest city of South Africa, was named after some dude named Johannes, and that Johannesburg translates to something like “the town or city of Johannes.” How far are we from the truth?

 

Johannesburg-c1910 Pritchard St

Pritchard St in Johannesburg, ca 1910

Not too far actually! There are some controversies around the naming, i.e. whose name it was. After all, the name Johannes was quite common in the Dutch community in the 19th century, and simply translates to ‘John’ in English; in this day and age, think of how many Johns there are…, then think about 19th century: numerous, not to say ubiquitous!  To get back to Johannesburg, there were quite a few people with the name ‘Johannes‘ involved in the early history of the city. Among them was Christiaan Johannes Joubert who was a member of the Volksraad and was Republic’s chief of mining. Another was Stephanus Johannes Paulus Kruger (better known as Paul Kruger), president of the South African Republic (ZAR) from 18831900. Johannes Meyer, the first government official in the area is another possibility. Precise records for the choice of the name for the city have been ‘conveniently’ lost. Most likely it came from Johannes Rissik and Christiaan Johannes Joubert who were members of a delegation sent to England to obtain mining rights for the area. Joubert had a park in the city named after him and Rissik had his name on one of the main streets in the city. So it was probably a joint appeal between these 2 Johanneses, Joubert and Rissik, that gave rise to the name of the city of Johannesburg.

 

San (Basarwa/Bushmen) hunters

San (Basarwa/Bushmen) hunters

The region surrounding Johannesburg was originally inhabited by San people. By the 13th century, groups of Bantu-speaking people started moving southwards from central Africa and encroached on the indigenous San population. By the mid-18th century, the broader region was largely settled by various Sotho–Tswana communities, whose villages, towns and kingdoms stretched from what is now Botswana in the west, to present day Lesotho in the south, to the present day Pedi areas of the Northern Province. More specifically, the stone-walled ruins of Sotho–Tswana towns and villages are scattered around the parts of the former Transvaal province in which Johannesburg is situated.

Johannesburg 1911

Aerial view of Johannesburg in 1911

The Witwatersrand Gold Rush triggered the founding of Johannesburg in 1886. As everywhere in the world, the discovery of gold rapidly attracted people to the area. Within ten years, the city of Johannesburg included 100,000 people; in that sense, it is quite similar to the California gold rush which saw the boom of the city of San Francisco. In 1917, Johannesburg became the headquarters of the Anglo-American Corporation, which ultimately became one of the world’s largest corporations, dominating both gold-mining and diamond-mining in South Africa. Major building developments took place in the 1930s, after South Africa went off the gold standard. In the 1950s and early 1960s, the apartheid government constructed the massive agglomeration of townships that became known as Soweto to house their cheap black labor.

 

Johannesburg 2008

Aerial view of Johannesburg in 2008

Locals have several names for their city: Jozi, Joburg, and eGoli (“the city of gold” in Zulu). Located in the Witwatersrand (“white waters ridge” in Afrikaans) hills at the center of the large-scale gold and diamond trade, Johannesburg is the largest city in South Africa and one of the 50 largest urban areas in the world. It is the capital city of South Africa’s wealthiest province, Gauteng. So as you visit Johannesburg, and enjoy its popular museums, theme parks, and rich history. Enjoy the gold hills, or rather those mounds covered with gold dusts scattered around the city. Enjoy eGoli!

 

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!

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