Africa's Lessons for Trump's America (New African Magazine)

Random Acts of Activism [a column]

Compared to Liberia, which emerged from a civil war and elected a woman as president, the US’s skewed democracy, with its bizarre electoral college and its recent penchant for electing the least qualified, has a lot to learn.

During the African Studies Association annual meeting held in Washington, DC in December 2016, Ghanaian scholar Dr. Takyiwaa Manuh wittily encouraged Americans to “consult Africa on how to trump your Trump.”  

Africas Lessons for Trumps America-RNP Jan. 2017 NA Column.jpg

A Clinton or Trump Presidency Will Be More of the Same for Africa (Al Jazeera English)

Robtel Neajai Pailey is a Liberian academic, activist and author of the anti-corruption children's book, Gbagba.

As the two most unlikeable presidential candidates in US history go head-to-head in this week's elections, it is clear that a Clinton or Trump presidency will result in few changes, if any, for the continent of Africa.

Leaders Must Recognise Migrants as Human Not Hapless (International Migration Institute blog)

This week in New York, the United Nations General Assembly and US President Barack Obama host back-to-back high-level summits to address large movements of refugees and migrants. On the surface, the meetings appear laudable, but goodwill postures by people in positions of power are simply not enough.

Where Is the ‘African’ in African Studies? (African Arguments)

Last week, I was invited by Eritrean-Ethiopian masters student Miriam Siun of Leiden University’s African Studies Centre to give one of two keynote lectures on the topic, “Where Is the African in ‘African’ Studies?” I took a long-range view, declaring that Africans have always produced knowledge about Africa, even though their contributions have been “preferably unheard” in some cases and "deliberately silenced" in others.

Poverty in the Midst of Plenty in Liberia (Diplomatic Courier)

In front of a collection of sticks, torn plastic sheeting, and broken pieces of harvester zinc held together by taut rope and shiny nails, 63-year-old Francis Selee stands stoic like a statue.

When Ebola charged through Liberia, leaving behind more than 4000 dead and nearly 10,000 infected as of 22 March, Selee and his family survived unscathed. Yet, they have had to deal with more pressing existential threats to their livelihoods—before the outbreak, now, and undoubtedly after Liberia is officially declared Ebola-free.

Treating Africans with an Untested Ebola Drug (Al Jazeera English)

It was reported in the Guardian last week that Emergency, an Italian NGO, administered an untested heart drug known as Amiodarone, to patients at an Ebola treatment centre in Lakka, Sierra Leone. The British medics sent to work at the centre raised alarm as early as November about Emergency's approaches to palliative care.

Charles Taylor and the Rubber Company (New African Magazine)

Despite being released to great fanfare in the US on 18 November, the investigative documentary Firestone and the Warlord is disappointing. As someone who has extensively studied and written about Firestone, a tyre and rubber company founded in Ohio in the US, which has operated in Liberia since 1926, I believe the film’s producers simply did not dig deep enough.

Fatalistic Forecasts Aren’t Helping Ebola Efforts—Greater Positivity Is Needed (The Guardian, UK)

During a recent telephone conversation with my aunt, who lives in Liberia, I could hear trepidation in her voice for the first time. At the same time, though, she remained typically stoic, her faith in God unshakable after surviving two armed insurgencies. “They are saying on the radio that before January [2015] thousands of us will die,” said Auntie Arinah. “This thing is getting very scary. We rebuke those numbers!”

In Life and Death, Thomas Eric Duncan Exposed Severe Gaps in Anti-Ebola Efforts on Both Sides of the Atlantic (Huffington Post)

How can you prosecute a man hanging onto a lifeline from an infectious disease? According to news reports published last week, that’s precisely what Liberia vowed to do to Thomas Eric Duncan — the first patient diagnosed with Ebola while on US soil — if he ever made it back to the country. Duncan died on Wednesday from Ebola related complications.