Page 1


Editor Nafi Ndiaye Diouf

Writers Patricia Yumba Alexandre Titiba Nafi Diouf Oluoch Ogallo

Creative Director Pierre Sauvalle

Advertising Patricia Yumba Khoudia Diop

Translation Transtrep Madior Diallo Michael Delrieu

Photos Africa Rice : R. RAMAN

ALMAMI Contacts Nafi.diouf Patricia.yumba

A renowned singer once said : “I work better when I am in pain and turmoil.” This is certainly a feature I share with him. Indeed, the recent political events in Tunisia and Egypt have enabled me to turn the pain that I most certainly share with many fellow Africans, into an opportunity. An opportunity for us, advocates for a more positive and balance image of Africa, to continue to concentrate all our energy on exposing the positive developments on the continent. We cannot obliterate the fact that the world will continue to focus its attention on Egypt and Libya where young innocent citizens yearning for freedom have decided to bring down Africa’s long-running regimes. What we can do, however, is to try and shift the attention of that global audience towards some uplifting stories. This is exactly what we have set out to do in this

Nafi Ndiaye Diouf

edition of Exodus Magazine, where amazing scientists rival with top-notch financial analysts in talent and expertise. In this edition of the magazine we speak at length with Dr. Pape Seck, Director General of the AfricaRice Center, one of the 15 international agricultural research centers and the only one headed by an African. We celebrate this year’s International Women’s day in style with 8 beautiful African women. We will also be sharing some extraordinary profiles with you. Some will make you want to stand up and shout our pride of being African. Enjoy!



“This month we strongly recommend two books that have stayed on the Best-selling books list for several months in many countries. The first one, “Dead Aid” by Dambisa Moyo re-evaluates the impact of foreign aid to African countries; the second is the second memoire of our African icon, Nelson Mandela”.

ZOOM International Women’s Day 8 beautiful women to celebrate March 8th 2011


NEWS The Africa Rice Center: a genuine partner for poverty alleviation and food security in Africa


INTERVIEW Dr. Pape Seck, DG Africa Rice Center


FOCUS - Shabani Juma, a prominent mathematician from Burundi - Acha Leke, Business consultant extraordinaire from

Dead Aid

by Dambisa


ew-York Times Best-Selling Author Dambisa Moyo is an economist from Zambia. In this book published in 2009, Moyo who holds a Doctorate in Economics from Oxford University argues that

Moyo traditional foreign aid to Africa is ineffective. Instead she proposes new ways for African countries that will promote economic growth for poor nations without relying on external aid.

Cameroon - Tsega Gebreyes,

The astonishing Nubian investment banker 14

THEY BELIEVE IN AFRICA Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation


CULTURAL MOSAIC Gerewol Festival in Niger: a beauty contest man-style OUT OF AFRICA


- Innovation: out of Kenya - Did you know?

Conversations with Myself

by Nelson


- They conquered Hollywood? 22

TRAVEL Cape Verde Island


ollowing his autobiography published in 1995, Mandela opens up to the public again in this memoire ‘Conversations with Myself’ . With a Foreword by President Obama, this book focused on Mandela the private man behind the public figure. ‘Conversations with Myself’ relates his intimate journey from the beginning of his po-

litical struggle to his days as an international icon. This is an opportunity to discover the real man in his own voice. The book was released worldwide in October 2010 in 20 editions and 22 languages and was the Best-selling books list for weeks in several countries. A must read!


International Women’s Day

8 beautiful women to celebrate March 8th 2011


1st from left to right : Alia Ghussein d’Erneville - Yasmine Warseme - Noella COURSARIS - Miriam SHEMMOS 2nd from left to right : Flavania matata - Sandra nyanchoka - Hawa ahmed - Sara Nuru




The Africa Rice Center

A genuine partner for poverty alleviation and food security in Africa.

blast and Bacterial leaf blight (BLB). Other remarkable achievements include riceadapted management options, knowledge dissemination (cascade training, video, radio scripts) and the adoption of field participatory research (participatory training in action research for the integrated management of rice). AfricaRice has also encouraged light mechanisation with the local production of ASI thresher-cleaners, now widely used in Senegal, Mauritania and Mali, which have significantly boosted post harvest rice profitability. New research today points to the creation of new varieties adapted to climate change, the strengthening of agronomy and crop techniques, technology transfers, innovation systems and a better understanding of the rice value chain, along with the development of mechanisation and faster access for farmers to research results.

AfricaRice, created in 2009 on the foundations laid by WARDA, aims to become the regional benchmark for agricultural research in general and rice in particular.


more than 700.000 hectares of lowland (basfond) and upland rice fields in subsaharan Africa, and Sahel varieties represent over 80% of rice production in the Senegal valley.

Created in 1971 with 11 members, AfricaRice now covers West, Central, East and North Africa.

In Subsaharan Africa, the lowlands provide considerable expanses of land ripe for irrigation, an estimated 190 million hectares of fallow land with great opportunities for the sustainable expansion and intensification of rice production.

Results include 200 recognised varieties of rice created over 25 years, including the NERICA and Sahel varieties. NERICA covers

AfricaRice’s work includes the identification of the genes protecting rice against diseases such as the rice yellow mottle virus (RYMV),

ased for the moment in Cotonou, Bénin, AfricaRice is one of 15 centres of the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR). AfricaRice also has agents in four regional stations : Bouaké, Côte d’Ivoire ; Ibadan, Nigeria ; Dar es Salaam, Tanzanie ; et Saint-Louis, Sénégal.

Breaking the rice import dependency Techniques developed by AfricaRice and its partners have led to important increases in production in Senegal and Mali, where yields have grown from 2 to around 6 tonnes per hectare in the twenty years to 2008. African researchers have crossbred two varieties of rice to combine the adaptability to local conditions of O. Glaberrima with the high yield of O. sativa, which led to the crea-

tion of NERICA (New Rice for Africa), of which 80 varieties exist today. AfricaRice’s efforts have led to significant increases in African rice production, which jumped 18% on average in the year to 2008 according to the FAO Rice Monitor. Double digit growth was recorded in Benin, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Guinea, Nigeria and Uganda. Burkina Faso stands out with a 241% increase from 2007 to 2008, whilst growth stood at 44% in West Africa’s Sahel region as a whole for the same period. Rice is by far the fastest expanding subsistence crop in Africa. The gap between demand and production in Subsaharan Africa, where rice is grown and eaten in over 38 countries, reached 10 millions milled tons, leading to import costs of USD 3.6 billion. AfricaRice partners are primarily national agricultural research and extension institutions, academic research institutes, farmers’ organisations, nongovernmental organisations and donors.


Dr. Pape Seck,

Director General of the Africa Rice Center Africa must participate in a «sustainable and continuous effort in scientific excellence,» said Dr. Pape Seck


frica must participate in a «sustainable and continuous effort in scientific excellence,» said Dr. Pape Seck.

covers all the continent and the priorities as defined by feedback from the main actors in the African rice sector.

The Africa Rice Center is one of 15 centers of the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research, and the only one led by an African. This status stimulates the continent’s researchers. Dr. Papa Seck, Director General of the Africa Rice Center, speaks with passion of this centerand its ambitions.

Instead of being marginalized, we must opt for a wide opening through a standardized and mutually beneficial scientific cooperation.

1. The Africa Rice Center is one of 15 centres of the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research, and the only one led by an African. What comment does this status inspire in you? The Africa Rice Center (AfricaRice) is indeed one of fifteen international agricultural research centers in the world and is led by an African. This should prompt us to confirm clearly that no one has a monopoly on science. To this end, sustainable and continuous effort in scientific excellence is necessary. We believe many Africans before us have proven themselves in international academia. 2. Does Africa today have the human resources to assert itself as a centerof excellence in agricultural research? Although there are only 70 researchers per million inhabitants in Africa against 4380 researchers per million in Japan, results have shown that Africa can provide world class agricultural research. More and more centres of excellence include scientists from several continents. The real question is what can be done to ensure African presence in high level research and that African needs are taken into account. Here in AfricaRice, top notch African researchers collaborate efficiently with European, Asian and North American colleagues. The scope of work

3. What about the material and financial resources necessary to provide the continent its rightful place on the international scene, especially in agricultural research? We believe Africa needs strong agricultural research to produce technologies adapted to African conditions. Increased investment in agricultural research is necessary because Africa contributes only 0.3% of the world’s scientific results. Each country’s rice industry must be made competitive by improving the capacity and efficiency of operators in the sectors of research, information dissemination, production, processing and marketing. We would like to congratulate African countries on the brave steps taken. In line with the Maputo resolution, several of them have increased their agriculture budgets since 2003 and we expect greater increases in the wake of the 2008 food crisis. Following the food crisis, several AfricaRice member states have adopted the key policy measures we recommended in 2007 to support the rice sector. This governmental support contributed, according to FAO data, to an 18% increase in African rice production in 2008 over 2007 levels. This is a step in the right direction but governments must do more to reduce high dependency on rice imports in order to achieve national food security.

5 FOCUS 13

12 INTERVIEW OF THE MONTH 4. High yield NERICA varieties were developed by African researchers to contribute to poverty and hunger reduction on the continent. What impact have these innovations had so far on the scourge of hunger and poverty in Africa? According to FAO, NERICAs contributed up to 6% of the increase in African rice production in 2007. Guinea had a record harvest of 1.4 million tonnes in 2007, 5% more than in 2006 and the largest crop in its history, largely due to massive government support for the dissemination of NERICA. Ugandan authorities have reported that the country has reduced its imports of rice from 60,000 tons in 2005 to 35 000 tonnes in 2007, reducing imports value by $30 million. Today, NERICA is grown on over 700,000 hectares, including 244,000 ha in Nigeria, 143.000 ha in Guinea, 54,000 in Uganda and 46,000 ha in Mali. A $35 million project financed by the African Development Bank (ADB) supports the dissemination of NERICA varieties in seven West African countries - Benin, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Mali, Nigeria and Sierra Leone. Impact studies in these pilot countries have shown positive results on the livelihood of farmers who have adopted NERICA. Better crops with higher yields have allowed NERICA farmers to earn more money for school fees, medical care and better nutrition. These impacts, although modest in some ways, make a massive difference in the lives of the poor who represent about 80% of beneficiaries of the ADB project. The project has developed NERICA-based products that add value to the rice produced and can offer significant market opportunities for rural women. These examples show that NERICA varieties are a huge success - but AfricaRice Research never stops! AfricaRice has new products in the pipeline, such as a new generation of varieties for rice African producers adapted to climate change. 5. AfricaRice recently won two prestigious international scientific awards, one for Outstanding Communication and the other for Outstanding Young Researcher. What do you attribute this performance to? The Centre, its Director General and its resear-

chers have won several awards, including the prize of Heads of State of Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire and Senegal, the Order of Agricultural Merit of France, the King Baudouin’s Prize (Belgium), the United Nations Prize for SouthSouth Cooperation and the World Food Prize, the Koshihikari International Prize (Japan), the Japanese International Award for young researchers, the CGIAR partnership for communication and for young researchers, the West and Central African Council Medal of Honour for Agricultural Research and Development (ECARD), the Certificate of Recognition of the Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA), the 2010 UNDP South-South Cooperation Excellence Award, and many other testimonials and certificates of recognition. All these performances, we attribute to our vision, the relevance and quality of our research and the commitment of our center and the multifaceted support of our partners. 6. How do you see the future of rice consumption in Africa in terms of balance between locally produced and imported rice? Africa is the world’s future through one sector, agriculture. Africa has much underused water, land, human capital and a large agro-ecological diversity. And of course, one cannot forget the massive opportunities for productivity increase. AfricaRice studies have showed that a 15% increase in cultivated area, without deforestation, and with the introduction of appropriate, adapted technological packages, Africa as a continent would become a net exporter of rice, providing more than 5 million tonnes to international market (the equivalent of Vietnam’s current exports) while ensuring cost and quality competitiveness. Our strong belief is that Africa will export rice in the near future. We remain convinced that Africa must ensure a supply of rice in sufficient quantity, of satisfactory quality, which is profitable for producers , at cost that even the poorest consumers can afford. As I like to say, a competitive and sustainable agriculture will only be build through an intelligent combination of 3 factors: efficient technology, basic infrastructure and a cleaner environment. Africa will then be able to position itself as the longterm future of world rice production.

Shabani Juma

A prominent mathematician from Burundi This outstanding mathematician studied Mathematics at the State University of Kharkov in the former Soviet Union; he then graduated with a M.Sc. in Physics at the Université Catholique de Louvain in Belgium.


e obtained his PHD in Sciences at Université de Louvain (Belgium). Professor Shabani Juma who speaks five languages (Swahili, Kirundi, French, English, and Russian) is a member of more than 10 scientific societies, and has been widely published in specialized journals in the United States and Europe. He was Vice-Rector of the University of Burundi until 1992, and was recently named new Deputy Secretary-General of the Association of African Universities. He also currently holds the position of Visiting Professor at the National University of Benin and the University of Burundi. Dr. Shabani has held a position at the Institut de Physique Théorique Université Catholique de Louvain, Louvain-la-Neuve BELGIUM. He has also taught in the Department of Mathematics at the University of Burundi in Bujumbura. He is currently Director UNESCO Representative of the Bamako Cluster Office.

A few Reseach papers

1. Shabani, J.; Vyabandi, A. A note on a se-

ries of papers on relativistic delta-sphere interactions in quantum mechanics published by M. N. Hounkonnou and G. Y. H. Avossevou in the Journal of Mathematical Physics. J. Math. Phys. 43 (2002), no. 12, 6380--6384.

2. Shabani, J.; Vyabandi, A. Exactly solvable models of relativistic delta-sphere interactions in quantum mechanics. J. Math. Phys. 43 (2002), no. 12, 6064--6084. 3.

Hounkonnou, M. N.; Hounkpe, M.; Shabani, J. Exactly solvable models of delta-sphere interactions in nonrelativistic quantum mechanics. J. Math. Phys. 40 (1999), no. 9, 4255--4273.

4. Hounkonnou, M. N.; Hounkpe, M.; Shaba-

ni, J. Scattering theory for finitely many sphere interactions supported by concentric spheres. J. Math. Phys. 38 (1997), no. 6, 2832--2850.

13 5 15


Acha Leke

Business consultant extraordinaire from Cameroon Acha, a native of Cameroon and partner of McKinsey & Company, has a true passion for Africa. He is in charge of the group’s development in Sub-saharan Africa. This afro-optimist has opted to return to the continent and offer his expertise for the advancement of our motherland.

Tsega Gebreyes

The astonishing Nubian investment banker Ms. Tsega Gebreyes is a Founding Partner and Chief Executive Officer of Satya Capital Limited. After working for Citibank and McKinsey Associates, she joined Celtel International as a Director in 1999.Subsequently.

executive management team, assumed res-


t McKinsey, Acha has served a broad range of clients across Africa in fields including telecom, health care, oil & gas, and banking, and he was the first black Partner elected by McKinsey’s Johannesburg office. His client projects have included strategic investment decisions, business building, growth strategy, and turnarounds. He started his career with McKinsey in the USA and transferred to the Johannesburg office in 2002 to drive the firm’s expansion across Sub-Saharan Africa. This work has taken Acha to countries across the continent, including South Africa, Nigeria, Kenya, Uganda, Cote d’Ivoire, Senegal, and Botswana. Prior to joining McKinsey, Acha worked for three years as a part-time consultant to electronics and telecommunications companies in Silicon Valley, California, USA. Acha is a cofounder of the African Leadership Academy, Johannesburg, South Africa. Acha has a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering and an M.S. in Industrial Engineering and Engineering Management from Stanford University. He also holds a B.S in Electrical Engineering summa cum laude from the Georgia Institute of Technology. At Georgia Tech, Acha graduated as the first black Valedictorian in the university’s history. He is fluent in English and French. He was born

ponsibility for driving the group’s acquisition and expansion into new markets and business segments. Ms Gebreyes was responsible for key acquisitions made by Celtel. She also served as a Chief Business Development Officer and Strategy Officer at Celtel International B.V and was responsible for Business Development. In 2005, Ms Gebreyes led the competitive M&A process that resulted in acceptance of Mobile Telecommunications Company’s $3.4 billion offer to Celtel’s shareholders to acquire Celtel .Prior to Celtel, she was a Founding Partner of NAOF. Ms Gebreyes was responsible for the fundraising and closing of the Fund. She is a Member of Investment Committee at Investment Fund for Health in Africa. Ms Gebreyes began her career in 1996 after graduating with an on November 30, 1972. He was named a young global leader by the World Economic Forum in 2007.

Ms. Tsega Gebreyes is a Founding Partner tal Limited. After working for Citibank and

Satya Capital is currently engaged in explo-

Acha is passionate about Africa. According to him, “You need to find the thing you’re passionate about but also the people who share your passion. Find the people who support you. Then go after it.”

McKinsey Associates, she joined Celtel Inter-

ring investment opportunities in Ethiopia

national as a Director in 1999.

across a number of areas as part of its broa-

M.B.A. from Harvard University.

and Chief Executive Officer of Satya Capi-

der strategy to extract superior returns for its Subsequently; she served as member of the

investors from opportunities in Africa.

5 17


BILL AND MELINDA GATES FOUNDATION All lives have equal value

Bill and Melinda Gates started the foundation because they believe every person should have the chance to live a healthy, productive life. All of the foundation’s grantmaking and advocacy efforts support this mission.

The principle focus of the foundation is on health. The Gates couple believe that if children are healthy, they can learn, become educated, start businesses, improve their farms and help their families prosper. In the area of vaccines -- the biggest financial commitment of the foundation -- there have been some striking successes. From 1980 to 2008, vaccines drove diphtheria cases down

An opportunity to rid the world of the crippling disease of Polio


n a recent post on the foundation website, Bill Gates, explains that in 1993, him and Melinda took their first trip to Africa. He was working with Microsoft at the time and was convinced that the power of technology could change the world. But during their visit, he saw that many of the world’s life-saving, life-enhancing discoveries were not available in Africa. That was deeply upsetting to him and didn’t fit his belief that innovation is for everyone. Since their first visit many African countries have made striking advances, driven by wise government investments in health, education and agriculture. Incomes have risen. Poverty has fallen. Trade and investment have doubled. Childhood deaths are down. Africa is on the rise, he says.

by 93 percent, tetanus cases down by 85 percent and measles cases down by 93 percent. 2010 was a particularly remarkable year for vaccine and polio. A new bivalent polio vaccine has contributed to a significant drop in polio cases this year. The foundation is confident that the world is closer to eradication than ever before.

mies. It causes nearly 1 million deaths per year, and 85 percent of those who die are children under 5 years of age. Ninety percent of malaria deaths occur in Africa, where the financial cost of malaria is crippling economic development due to the high cost of medicines and reduced productivity.

Nigeria revitalized its polio program involving traditional, religious and government leaders at all levels. This effective collaboration has helped the country achieve a 96 percent reduction in polio cases in 2010 compared to 2009

Safe, effective, and affordable tools to prevent and treat malaria The foundation is very active in the fight against malaria. Malaria kills millions of poor people in developing countries and cripples their econo-

The foundation works with various local and international development partners to introduce safe, effective, and affordable tools to prevent and treat malaria. Between 2000 and 2006, several countries in Africa saw a 50 percent decrease in malaria by using a combined set of effective interventions, including insecticide-treated bed nets and indoor spraying of homes with insecticides to control mosquitoes, and drug treatments to prevent and cure malaria.

Africa—the greatest risk One in five of all childhood deaths in Africa are due to malaria. It is estimated that an African child has on average between one and five episodes of malaria fever each year. Every 30 seconds a child dies from malaria in Africa. As Bill Gates rightly states on the foundation blog, Africa’s future is in the hands of its people and its leaders. The foundation is however ready to work with the continent and help fund innovations that can help every person live a life of health and opportunity.


Gerowal Festival in Niger A genuine beauty contest man-style Mirror on the wall, who is the fairest amongst us?

This is the envious title that a number of men in the Sahel desert of Niger, a landlocked country in West Africa, will be scrambling to attain at an extra-ordinary beauty contest called the GuĂŠrewol cultural festival.


xtra-ordinary because it is the men who parade themselves, wearing make up and dancing - before The women - not only to win the title but also

their hearts as well. Being singled out as the most good-looking and attractive man by a bevy of beauties is a

18 20 CULTURAL MOSAIC crown every man from the nomadic Wodaabe Fula community in the West African country will always want to carry home. The men from the community believe they are very attractive and as such, beauty is very important to them. According to their traditions, in some cases, a man who is not so ‘pretty’ has to share his wife with another more ‘beautiful’ man, so that the probability of having a ‘pretty’ child is higher. This therefore explains why they will leave nothing to chance not only to make themselves beautiful, but also to impress the ladies. It is at the Guérewol festival that this ‘beauty’ is showcased.

5 OUT OF AFRICA 21 The men, now gathered in rows, put their best foot forward, wobbling, rolling eyes and showing the teeth in a bid to impress the women. This can sometimes happen repeatedly over a seven day period, and for hours on end in the desert sun. The music and line dancing is typical of Fula traditions, which however is unfortunately disappearing among their vast diaspora, many of whom are now educated, Muslim, urbanites. Before the dance the men usually take a stimulant drink, so they can dance for hours. The concoction it is said, has a hallucinogenic effect. It is therefore not rare to see men dancing the whole night.

The Guérewol is therefore an annual courtship ritual competition among the nomadic Wodaabe Fula people. The festival occurs mostly during September. At the end of the rainy season in September, the Wodaabe Fula people travel to In-Gall in northwest Niger to gather salt and participate at the Cure Salée festival, a meeting of several nomadic groups.

Men beauty is scored according to their dance. While all this is happening, the women watching carefully and quietly select their husbands. The male beauty ideal of the Wodaabe stresses tallness, white eyes and teeth. During the dance, the men will often roll their eyes and show their teeth to emphasize these characteristics.

It is actually here that the festival to woo the women happens.

If the marry offer is accepted by man, he has to give a calabash of milk to her parents. If they accept it, he has to pay with three cows for the wedding celebration.

The actual dance event is called the Yaake. Men dance to show their beauty, charisma, elegance and charm. But before the dance, the preparation for the event is tough. The men decorate themselves in front of a small mirror for long hours. Their face make-up must be elaborate and perfect. They carefully select their bracelets and necklaces. And when they are ready, the dance can start. This is characterized by group singing, accompanied by clapping, stomping and bells.

Innovation out of Africa

The Guérewol ritual has become a foreign tourist attraction since western films, and magazines such as National Geographic, have prominently featured images of the stylized performance. The Guérewol is found wherever Wodaabe gather: from Niamey, to other places they travel, as far afield as northern Cameroon and Nigeria.

Dubbed the Intelligent ATM, it comes fully loaded with a camera that recognises the customer’s face and sends details of the facial dimensions to a database for verification. Its security features prevents hijackers or cyber criminals to use stolen PIN codes and cards to access money directly. Banking sector in Kenya is set for yet another revolution that could enable account holders to withdraw money from the Automated Teller Machines without a debit or credit card.


t is known as the Basic Intelligent Automated Teller Machine, whose brainchild is Dr Waweru Mwangi the director of the Institute of Computer Science and Information Technology at Jomo Kenyatta University. In the near future, all one will require to get money from the ATM’s is to stand in front of the machines, show his face, answer a few questions and voila!

A camera recognizes the customer’s face using 3D biometrics sending details to a database and once verified, the customer is advised to enter the PIN number and ask a very personal question before using the ATM as usual. The correct PIN or answer would then allow the person to use the ATM in the normal way. It also impossible to use a life-size photograph of the account holder as the machine uses three dimensions, length, width and depth, to recognise the image.

Dubbed the smart ATM, it removes the need to carry cards every time one wishes to access the bank account.

Its use could also reduce the now common incidents where carjackers force their victims to empty their accounts at gunpoint, often taking the card and the personal identification number (PIN).

“We realised that many people feel uncomfortable with the card, which in some cases is retained by the machine,” Dr Mwangi was quoted recently.

Dr Mwangi says the only requirement would be for the software to be working properly and then it would be linked to the current system of machines in use.

5 23


Did you know? Egypt’s capital city, Cairo, is the largest city in Africa with an estimated 9.2 million population Lake Malawi contains the largest number of fish species of any lake in the world, probably over 500 from ten families. Particularly noteworthy are the Cichlidae, of which all but five of over 400 species are endemic to Lake Malawi. The lake contains 30% of all known cichlid species. Of particular interest is the ‘mbuna’ rock fish. The world’s biggest frog is found in Cameroon. Named the goliath frog, their body can be one-foot long. The world’s biggest hospital is Baragwanath Hospital in Soweto, South Africa.

African Proverbs Rising early makes the road short. When your mouth stumbles, it’s worse than feet.

Hold a true friend with both hands. Instruction in youth is like engraving in stones.

The Conquered Hollywood Ejiofor

Profession : Actor Origin : Nigeria Born : 10 July 1977


jiofor was born in London to Nigerian parents in 1977. Unfortunately, at 11, his family was struck by tragedy when his father got killed in a car accident during a family trip in Lagos, Nigeria. Ejiofor survived despite being badly injured. Ejiofor begins his acting career early by taking part in school plays at the tender age of 13 and by joining the National Youth theatre. In 1996 he played Othello at the Theatre Royal in Glascow. He launched his movie career in a television movie called Deadly Voyage in 1996. In 1997, he got a support role opposite Djimon Hounsou in Steven Spielberg’s internationally acclaimed movie, ‘Amistad’. Around this time, he became a prominent stage actor in London, starring in various high profile stage productions such as Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliette. His stage performances won him prestigious local theatre awards. In 2002, Ejiofor got his first leading role in the movie Dirty Pretty Things for which he won a British Independent Film Award (BAFAT). In 2004, he starred opposite Hillary Swank in Red dust, portraying a politician of post-apartheid’s South Africa. In 2007, he won a Golden Globe Award for Best Actor in a miniseries or film made for TV for his role in Tsunami: The Aftermath. Ejiofor starred in a leading role in the Blockbuster 2012, opposite John Cusack and Thandie Newton.

Sophie Okinedo

Profession : Actress Origin : Nigeria / England Born : 1968


orn in London to a Nigerian father and a Jewish mother, Sophie was trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts. She has worked across different media including film, television and theatre and animation. Sophie made her acting debut in 1991, in the British movie Young Soul Rebels which got good critics reviews. She starred in numerous British TV series and stage productions but Sophie is probably best known for her role as Tatiana Rusesabagina, in the internationally-acclaimed Hotel Rwanda (2004). In this movie, based on a true story, she plays the wife of Paul Rusesabagina, a Rwandan Hotel Manager, who has saved the lives of more than a thousand of people, by allowing them to hide in the Luxurious Milles Collines Hotel during the 1994 genocide. She plays opposite the American actor, Don Cheadle and her performance earned her an Academy Awards nomination for Best Actress in a supporting role. Another of her remarkable acting was in 2006, in the miniseries Tsunami: The Aftermath and she were nominated for Best Supporting Actress. In 2010, she portrayed Winnie Mandela in the BBC Drama Mrs Mandela; she won a BAFTA TV Award in the category Best Leading Actress for this role.

5 25


Cape Verde Island, an exquisite taste of Paradise Cape Verde is an island archipelago that was uninhabited until the Portuguese arrived in 1462. The sailors brought with them African slaves, and the islands’ population became mixed with elements of both races


he Cape Verde Islands are located in the mid-Atlantic Ocean some 450 kilometers (about 300 mi.) off the west coast of Africa. The archipelago includes 10 islands and 5 islets, divided into the windward (Barlavento) and leeward (Sotavento) groups. The main islands in the Barlavento group are Santo Antao, Sao Vicente, Santa Luzia, Sao Nicolau, Sal, and Boa Vista; those of the Sotavento group include Maio, Santiago, Fogo, and Brava. All islands but Santa Luzia are inhabited.

breeze blows constantly from the ocean at a relatively low average humidity of 40% to 60%. Instead of the classic four seasons, the Cape Verde Islands only have two: The Tempo das Brisas (time of the winds) from October to mid-July and the Tempo das chuvas (rainy season) from August to September, when there may be heavy tropical rainfall. The coolest months are January and February (average temperature of 21°C), where temperatures can drop down to a chilly 16°C ; the warmest is the month of September (up to 36°C) with an average temperature of a pleasant 27°C. The nights can also cool down by about 3ºC - 5°C. The water temperature ranges between 22°C and 27°C throughout the year; the north-east passat, which is active during the tempo das brisas, is especially popular with the surfers. Otherwise, the islands of Barlavento (Santo Antão, São Vicente, São Nicolao, Boa Vista, Sal, Santa Luzia, Branco and Razo) are always somewhat cooler than those of the Sotavento (Maio, Santiago, Fogo and Brava), where summers can be quite hot.

Three islands--Sal, Boa Vista, and Maio-generally are level and very dry. Mountains higher than 1,280 meters (4,200 ft.) are found on Santiago, Fogo, Santo Antao, and Sao Nicolau. Sand carried by high winds has created spectacular rock formations on all islands, especially the windward ones.

Sun, Sand and Cesaria The barefoot Diva, this name should definitely ring a bell for lovers of Morna music. Cesaria Evora, nicknamed the barefoot, diva is undoubtedly the best performers of Morna.

The people It is believed that of the more than 1 million individuals of Cape Verdean ancestry, fewer than half actually live on the islands. Some 500,000 people of Cape Verdean ancestry live in the United States, mainly in New England. Portugal, Netherlands, Italy, France, Senegal, and Sao Tome and Principe also have large communities.

The official language is Portuguese, but Cape Verdeans also speak Cape Verdean Creolewhich is based on archaic Portuguese but influenced by African and European languages. Cape Verde has a rich tradition of Cape Verdean Creole literature and music.

Islands of the eternal summer! The sun shines 350 days a year and temperatures range between 21°C and 29°C. The

The cape Verdean singer and Grammy Award-winning recording artist, is known for her rich, haunting voice. Morna is considered the major indigenous form of music on the Cape Verde islands, but, like the American Blues, is really a relatively new form of music, deeply rooted in tradition. The music is heavily rhythmic, but deeply plaintive and sad. Evora’s voice is sultry with a touch of roughness.



adi Al-Hitan, Whale Valley, in the Western Desert of Egypt, contains invaluable fossil remains of the earliest, and now extinct, suborder of whales, Archaeoceti. These fossils represent one of the major stories of evolution: the emergence of the whale as an ocean-going mammal from a previous life as a land-based animal. This is the most important site in the world for the demonstration of this stage of evolution. It portrays vividly the form and life of these whales during their transition. The number, concentration and quality of such fossils here is unique, as is their accessibility and setting in an attractive and protected landscape. The fossils of Al-Hitan show the youngest archaeocetes, in the last stages of losing their hind limbs. Other fossil material in the site makes it possible to reconstruct the surrounding environmental and ecological conditions of the time.

Wadi Al-Hitan (Whale Valley)

adi Al-Hitan, la vallée des baleines, dans le désert occidental de l’Égypte, contient des restes fossiles inestimables du plus ancien, et maintenant éteint, ordre des baleines archaeoceti. Ces fossiles représentent l’une des étapes les importantes de l’évolution: les débuts de la baleine en tant que mammifère marin après avoir été mammifère terrestre. C’est le plus grand site au monde témoignant de cette époque de l’évolution. Il montre très clairement l’aspect et la vie de ces baleines pendant leur transition. Le nombre, la concentration et la qualité de ces fossiles sont uniques, tout comme leur accessibilité et leur présence dans un paysage attrayant et protégé. Les fossiles d’Al-Hitan montrent de jeunes archéocètes dans les dernières étapes de la perte de leurs membres postérieurs. D’autres fossiles présents sur le site permettent la reconstruction de l’environnement et des conditions écologiques de cette époque.


Wadi Al-Hitan (la vallée des baleines)


Exodus issue 5  

Cover page Papa Abdoulaye Seck, Director General AfricaRice Center

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you