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No. 26. 15th - 21st November 2011 I Tel. 020 7300 7320; 020 7300 7321; 07846062331 I Email: afronews@myownmedia.co.uk

Victim of domestic violence? Don’t suffer in silence

Join campaign to support people living with HIV, UK Africans asked

page 3

THE GUIDE Successful business people How to choose a honoured at good claims Black Business solicitor Awards page 5

Interview with Kim Bacchus, an overcomer of domestic violence and Stress Management Specialist

Met officers recognized for promoting diversity

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Cloud Tissa releases three music videos

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UKBA returns spouse visa age requirement to 18 Get your latest immigration news on

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No. 26. 15th - 21st November 2011 www.theafronews.eu

WHERE ACTION IS

London Remixed Festival at Rich Mix All day and night extravaganza of killer live festival bands remixing global London This will be a City Festival complete with indoor camping areas, disco lifts, musical portaloos, workshops, walkabout and winter fair! Closing the UK’s festival season, London Remixed is the after party of all after parties bringing to the Capital the best global remix talent, hot from the dusty/ muddy fields of 2011’s coolest festivals. This new city festival will bring all the creativity, fun and madness of the summer to you in the form of a final festival party complete with killer live bands and daytime frolics but without the mud or hassle of camping. London Remixed Festival isn’t just about rockin’ live festival bands. It will

also offer you a chance to reminisce about all those crazy summer experiences with the indoor camping areas complete with astro turf for chillin’, festival food and drinks’ stalls from well known festival favourites. You’ll also experience the disco lift complete with DJ and perhaps try your hand at burlesque Morris dancing or just party with the musical portaloos. The festival will have highlight performances from: Los Chinches – Cumbia playing a version of Pschedelic Cumbia that really rocks from 1960’s Peru, 5 star reviewed and jumping; Aj Holmes and The Hackney Empire African Remix - the new electric hi-life – Holmes’s unique blend of African music, poly-rhythms and electronic pop; Polina Skovoroda & Fanfara -

Henry Threadgill: Zooid + John Escreet at Southbank Centre

A key figure in contemporary jazz since the 70s, multi-instrumentalist Henry Threadgill’s longstanding group Zooid creates sounds that draw on funk-inspired backbeats, Javanese Gamelan and AfroCuban rhythms alongside blues and jazz. His group, featuring cellist Christopher Hoffman and tuba/ trombonist Jose Davila, perform

Threadgill’s original ideas with wit and energy. John Escreet is emerging as one of the most creative pianists on the scene. Performing solo this time, Escreet combines impeccable technique with the eccentricities of contemporary composition, offering a scintillating take on modern progressive jazz.

HENRY THREADGILL 19th November 2011 7:30pm Southbank Centre / Queen Elizabeth Hall Belvedere Road London SE1 8 XX Tickets: £25, £20, £10 + bkg Tel: 0844 875 0073

Storming 11 piece Balkan/ Yiddish Brass Special; Mavrika Ancient Greek Rembetika Remix - the first London/ Greek band to tackle the 1930’s revolutionary music Rembetika, a music that was banned by Greece’s past Governments and was fostered inside jails; Urusen - 21st Century Folk remix Freshly signed to Real World Records; Sheelanagig - Jumping Gypsy and Hoedown band; Romani Rad 17 amazing Roma Gypsy Dancers; Last Mango In Paris - a bizarre remix of Asian and Global Sounds with poetry and beats; Franky and The Jacks - Brave folk reworker; Scarlet and Wilderness; Loose Moose String Band - Jumping hoedown Appalachian retake; Stompin Dave - Solo guitar hero from Devon; Perhaps Contraption - This year’s favourite walk-

about Brass spectacular and cross between Tiger Lillys and the Destroyers; DJ’s Tofu - Buirski - Cal Jader - Bobby Gandalf and many more.

LONDON REMIXED FESTIVAL 26th November 2011 From 1pm to 1am Tickets: £7 adv before 6pm/£11 door after 6pm Rich Mix 35 - 47 Bethnal Green Road, London, E1 6LA Box Office: 020 7613 7498

Ernest Ranglin to thrill fans at Jazz Café

Plus The Sidewalk Doctors and DJ support from Count Skylarkin Ernest Ranglin will stage a thrilling show at Jazz Café on 23rd November 2011. A pioneering force behind the rise of Caribbean music, guitar virtuoso Ranglin was born in Manchester, Jamaica, in 1932. A legendary Jamaican guitarist and composer, best known for his session work at the famed Studio One, Ranglin helped give birth to the ska genre in the late 1950s. Some credit Ranglin with the invention of the core style of guitar play (sometimes known as “scratching”) found in nearly all ska. He attracted international notice in 1964 when he travelled to London to perform at Ronnie Scott’s jazz club, so impressing its owner that he remained on as

the venue’s resident guitarist for the next nine months. There he made a number of solo records for the fledgling Island label, and also collaborated with Prince Buster; additionally, Ranglin teamed with Jamaican singer Millie Small to cut the international smash “My Boy Lollipop.” He soon returned to session work, arranging classics including the Melodians’ majestic “Rivers of Babylon”; with his guitar leads on the Wailers’ “It Hurts to Be Alone”. He also laid the foundation for the rise of rockers reggae. Ranglin played on many other classic Jamaican recordings, and he performed with artists such as Jimmy Cliff, Monty Alexander, Prince Buster, The Skatalites and the Eric Deans Orchestra. He has also explored

other styles of music, notably blending jazz and reggae. In 1973 he was awarded the Order of Distinction from the Jamaican Government for his contributions to music, and continued touring and recording regularly throughout the decades to follow.

ERNEST RANGLIN 23rd November 2011 7:00 pm Tickets £18.50 in advance hmvtickets: 0843 221 0100 Ticketmaster: 0844 847 2514 Jazz Cafe, 5 Parkway, Camden Town, London, NW1 7PG

AFRONEWS | My Own Media Ltd. The Old Fire Station, 140 Tabernacle Street, London, EC2A 4SD, United Kingdom | EDITOR-IN-CHIEF: Stephen Ogongo Ongong'a | TEL: +44 (0)20 7300 7320 or +39 06 94354517 |Fax: 0207 253 23 06 | Email: afronews@myownmedia.co.uk | CONTRIBUTORS: Chinwe Ojielo, Amanda Hall-Davis, Joseph Spencer, Pauline Long & Frances Mensah Williams | ADVERTISING: TEL: 020 7300 7320; 07846062331 | Email: sales@myownmedia.co.uk | DISTRIBUTION: Citipost Direct Distribution Ltd, London | Email: info@myownmedia.co.uk | PRINTING PRESS: Newsfax Ltd, London. | Advertiser and advertising agency assume liability for all content (including text representation, illustrations, and photographs) of advertisements printed or posted, and also assume responsibility for any claims arising there from made against the publisher | Supplement of Africa News, Registered at the Tribunal of Rome. Registration No. 22/2003 - 21-01-2003


No. 26. 15th - 21st November 2011 www.theafronews.eu

COMMUNITY

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Join campaign to support people living with HIV, UK Africans asked Terrence Higgins Trust launches World AIDS Day campaign, Stand Up, Stand Out HIV and sexual health charity Terrence Higgins Trust (THT) is urging UK Africans to take part in its new World AIDS Day campaign, Stand Up, Stand Out, to support people living with HIV. Almost 20 people are still being diagnosed with HIV every day in the UK and it is an incurable and life threatening condition. With close to 100,000 people now living with the infection and numbers increasing every year, Terrence Higgins Trust is asking African communities across the UK to Stand Up, Stand Out to raise greater awareness of HIV and vital funds for HIV prevention services and support for people living with the virus. The latest HIV figures show that around 63% of heterosexual people newly diagnosed with HIV in the UK were from African communities. Almost 22,000 African people accessed HIV care, representing around 36% of all people accessing care in the UK. It’s easy to get involved with Terrence Higgins Trust’s Stand Up, Stand Out campaign and UK Africans can take part in a variety of different ways. One of the ways is to wear the red ribbon with pride. You are encouraged to wear the red ribbon in the lead up to December to remember those who have died with AIDS. You can also sell them to friends, family and colleagues to raise funds to support Terrence Higgins Trust and people living with HIV. Phone 020 7812 1671 to order your free box of red

“I’m backing THT’s Stand Up, Stand Out this December and there are lots of great, easy ways to get involved! I’m asking all my friends to join me in livening up my winter wardrobe with some red undies and donating to THT, as well as sending out the charity’s safer sex messages further afield online. After a friend of mine was diagnosed with HIV I saw first-hand just how crucial the support is that THT offers, and, with your help, they can do even more wonderful work” T4’s Jameela Jamil ribbons. Another way of taking part in the campaign is to hold a commemorative service. Remind your local community about HIV and raise awareness of how people can protect themselves and their partners. Terrence Higgins Trust’s Stand Up, Stand Out HIV Fastfacts are available on www. tht.org.uk/fastfacts. It is also possible to participate in the

campaign by holding a collection to raise vital funds to help Terrence Higgins Trust continue to support people living with HIV. Even a small donation from individuals makes a huge difference. Find out more about how to hold a collection on http://www.tht.org.uk/howyoucanhelpus/worldaidsday. You can also participate in the campaign by writing to your local MP encouraging him/her to support HIV prevention and keep HIV on the local and national agenda. To write to your local MP, please go to www.tht.org. uk/mp. THT’s Health

Improvement Specialist for African Communities, Marcy Madzikanda, said: “This World AIDS Day we want to remind people that HIV is still on the increase and something we need to talk about, not brush under the carpet, if we’re to save lives. Terrence Higgins Trust supports people at risk of, and living with HIV from every community but we need your help this World AIDS Day to reach even more people. Please Stand Up and Stand Out with us to raise awareness about HIV and generate vital funds for Terrence Higgins Trust’s prevention services and support for people living with the virus.”

HOW TO GET INVOLVED WITH STAND UP, STAND OUT Log on to: http://www.tht.org.uk/ howyoucanhelpus/worldaidsday Contacts Becky Harris: becky.harris@tht.org.uk Tel: 020 7812 1671 Amelia Woods: amelia.woods@tht.org.uk Tel: 020 7812 1665

Richmond girl dances her way to Disneyland Most young girls can only dream of achieving the opportunity to dance in a Disney Summer Parade but for Ashleigh Chambers, aged 10, her hard work has earned her a place. Ashleigh from Richmond in Surrey, began dancing at the age of four with ballet classes before moving into street dancing. Presently, she dances twice a week for Scariofunk Dance, a dance troupe in Battersea, London. Commenting on her dancing, Ashleigh said: “For me dancing is like a way to let yourself go and depending on how you feel, there is different types of dancing you can do and I love dancing because it frees time for me, it sums up all my emotions for the whole of the day.”

Ashleigh Chambers has been chosen to perform at the Disneyland Summer Parade in Paris

She has been chosen along with the 20-strong Scariofunk Dance troupe to perform at the Disneyland Summer Parade, Paris as the opening act in August 2012. Ashleigh, however, has her feet firmly on the ground and sees her dancing achievements as a sideline. “I wouldn’t do dancing as a career, but I would like to continue dancing for as long as possible,” she said. An achievement any mum would be proud of.

Get latest news

about and from the Black Community in the UK on

By Amanda Hall-Davis http://www.theafronews.eu/black-community/blog


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No. 26. 15th - 21st November 2011 www.theafronews.eu

COMMUNITY

MADE in Europe and Oxfam launch Muslim campaign toolkit Charities MADE in Europe and Oxfam recently launched the first ever Muslim campaign toolkit in the House of Commons. Available online, the toolkit will help and support young Muslims in the UK to get involved in global poverty campaigns. The launch, which took place at the House of Commons, was attended by representatives from leading Muslim community and youth organisations such as the Muslim Council of Britain and Federation of Student Islamic Societies (FOSIS) as well as UK Government representatives from the Department for International Development and the Foreign & Commonwealth Office. Baroness Dean of Thornton-le-Flyde who hosted the event, congratulated the initiative and said: “I wish both MADE in Europe and Oxfam great success, it is so encouraging to see two organisations coming together.” Paul Hilder, Director of Campaigns at Oxfam said: “We are looking forward to developing our work with MADE in Europe. The joint challenge of making issues such as maternal mortality relevant to communities offering those pathways for empowerment and change in the service of social justice is our shared challenge and responsibility.” Khalid Sofi, Chair of MADE in Europe said of the toolkit: “We have seen the generosity of Muslim communities when it comes to fundraising helping those in need. Asking communities to campaign on issues and be a voice can also bring change. Campaigning works. Petitions and signatures have cancelled Haiti’s debt after the earthquake of 2010 and have brought free healthcare to Sierra Leone. It’s not just money that can make significant differences. My hope now with the toolkit is to see a surge of campaigners coming forward to alleviate poverty and bring the lasting change that is desperately needed.”

“The campaign was something that I really wanted to get involved in but I never knew how to get involved. You don’t see many maternal health campaigns especially within our community. I want to raise awareness about the risk of one in 14 women dying during childbirth in Somalia. It is crucial to campaign and raise awareness on these issues and I want to help every mother who is at risk as though they were my own” Ms. Hanna Abdi from South London Over the summer a group of young people used the campaign toolkit to take part in a campaigning programme with MADE in Europe. They tackled issues including global food insecurity and maternal health. The 18-year-old Hanna Abdi from South London used the toolkit to run a campaign to raise awareness among UK Somali women, about the number of women who die in Somalia during childbirth. “The campaign was something that I really wanted to get involved in but I never knew how to get involved. You don’t see many maternal health campaigns especial-

The AfroNews talked with Dave Pearce, Operation

on how to solve problems that you may encounter during your campaign,” she said. Asked what she’s going to do with the acquired knowledge now that she has finished her campaign, Hanna said: “I’m hoping to be trained by MADE in Europe so that I can train other people how to use the toolkit and how to start their own campaigns.” To find out more about the toolkit and how to access it, please log on to the MADE in Europe’s website: www. madeineurope.org.uk. By Chinwe Ojielo

Operation WellFound to raise money for wells in Africa

©Gill Shaw

Through links with Evangelical churches, Operation WellFound is able to provide clean fresh water and sanitation to communities. The Christian charity has been working in Guinea Bissau, Kenya and Senegal.

ly within our community,” said Hanna. “I want to raise awareness about the risk of one in 14 women dying during childbirth in Somalia. It is crucial to campaign and raise awareness on these issues and I want to help every mother who is at risk as though they were my own.” Hanna said that the toolkit is a booklet that’s easy to read. “It’s not something that’s just full of information. It’s really quite helpful; it tells you how to actually run your campaign, how to write letters to your MP, how to even do stunts, like campaign stunts and how to get people’s attention. There are examples and inspirational quotes from the Qur’an, and it’s got advice

WellFound’s Chief Operating Officer to find out more about their work.

ing that they were really suffering; that they were in desperate need because of climate change. The water that they had access to from the hills and from the river was drying up and they didn’t know what to do. We went to Kenya to have a look at the area, and what they were saying was true; the people were suffering really badly, so we knew that if we didn’t do something they would be in serious difficulties.

How do you decide on where you should focus your resources?

So what did you achieve for the community there?

We go where we feel the need is greatest. In Kenya we were approached by the people in Kyangala. They came to us say-

We built three wells that supported 15,000 people in the Kyangala area. We were able to put in the water wells and the

drains so that when the drought hit them, they could access the water. They could grow plants, their livestock were healthy and they were healthy. The community is now getting on with their lives and is not affected by the drought and never will be again. How much of the charity donations go to the communities? If you donated 10 pence to me today or £100, that 10 pence and that £100 will go direct to the project, nothing will be spent on administration; every single penny will go to the project. What you donate goes to the people in Africa. It doesn’t go to

pay any body’s wages, it goes to build wells. On Friday 25th November, Operation WellFound volunteers will be holding a band night to raise money to build wells in Guinea Bissau and Senegal. To support Operation WellFound, please log on to: www.operationwellfound.org To buy tickets to the fundraising event at London’s Bush Hall, please log on to http://www.bushhallmusic.co.uk/live-music/ whats-on/eventdetails/25-nov-11clean-water-for-africa-rock-androll-night-with-bush-hall/ By Chinwe Ojielo


COMMUNITY

No. 26. 15th - 21st November 2011 www.theafronews.eu

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Met officers recognized for promoting diversity

Acting Inspector Sean McDermid of the Safer Transport Command won the Diversity Leadership Award for his partnership work delivering a programme of targeted engagement activity for vulnerable transport users including those at risk of homophobic abuse and disabled people. The Safe Travel for All Campaign is estimated to have reached at least 15,000 people across London. The Fair and Responsive Services

Award went to Bromley Borough officers who helped introduce the ‘Buddi Tag’ system enabling police to track and swiftly locate forensic mental health patients breaching leave. This is the first system of its kind in the UK. The team also introduced a mobile custody unit in hospital grounds reducing the time patients accused of crime were away from their safe environment. A team from SCD8 Trident won the Community Engagement Award for their high impact ‘U Decide’ and ‘Decisions and Consequences’ preventative educational programmes for school pupils and young people at risk of becoming victims

Successful business people honoured at Black Business Awards in London Successful black business peo- mance of cool soul, jazz and lovers’ rock ple were recently honoured at the by the delectable singers Diva-Sophia and Black Business Awards (BBA) in Paulette Tajah. Anika Wilson took the guests to the London. The Awards organised by the Black Business Initiative (BBI), promote, sustain and reward entrepreneurship. The distinguished guests at the event included: Cllr. Lorraine Lauder MBE, Mayor of Southwark; Kriss Akabusi, British Olympics Medallist; Rt. Honourable Simon Hughes MP, Deputy Leader of Liberal Democrat Party and one of BBI’s Patrons; Cllr. Anood Al-Samerai, Shadow Leader of Southwark Council; Mr. Sola Enikanoraiye, representing the Nigerian High Commissioner; Mrs. Elizabeth Nicols, representing the Ghanaian High Commissioner; and Mr. Richard Taylor OBE. The event held at the Hilton London Tower Bridge, was hosted by the wonderful duo Robbie Gee and Eddie Nestor. Guests were treated to a live perfor-

historical journey of ‘Windrush’ with her theatrical displays while music from DJ Big Mike kept the evening in full swing. Highlights of the event included the elegant and sophisticated fashion show by Set Fashion Free led by Erel Onojobi and the raffle which kept everyone guessing who would take home some classic memorabilia. Twelve renewed and revamped Award Categories were available this year, including the Entrepreneur of the Year Award, which was won by Mr. John Charles of Catering to Order and presented by Prem Goyal of Global Markets Consultants who also bagged a Community Honorary Award. Mr. Tony Benn (a BBI Patron and former Labour Minister) won the Community Honorary Award. Mr. Tony Wade, author

his work in providing assistive technology for the Met’s disabled staff. The team responsible for recruiting volunteers and Metropolitan Special Constables were also highly commended for their impact in the Workforce and Working Culture category. Their work has seen the number of applications to the Met from black and minority ethnic people and females rise to 36% and 24% respectively. Speakers at the ceremony included Paul Anderson Walsh from the Stephen Lawrence Trust and Cindy Butts from the Metropolitan Police Authority. Ms. Butts said: “All too often the good work that takes place every day across the Met goes unrecognised and these Awards provide one way in which we can celebrate some of the great things you all do. For too long there has been a tendency to see diversity as an add-on - either something that is done by specialists hidden away from the reality of policing or something that we will get around to when the day job is done. These Awards are a tangible demonstration of how that attitude has changed within the Met.” Mr. Walsh welcomed Met’s initiative to celebrate diversity. He said: “there is a desire in the Met to work with organisations such as ours to be partners for good. The police service has an incredible role to play in society and the organisation needs good leaders to manage diversity.” Denise Milani, Director of Diversity and Citizen Focus said it was a pleasure to see the hard work and dedication of those driving forward diversity and equality in Met being recognised. “These Awards recognise those who have made a positive difference to the organisation and to the communities we serve,” Ms. Milani said.

©BBI

Police officers and staff across London have been recognised for their work to improve diversity and equality at the MPS Diversity Excellence Awards 2011.

or participants in serious violence. The programme reached 21,000 young people in the 12 months to June 2011 and has helped support a 21% decrease in murders and shootings across London. The Workforce and Culture Award went to the Met’s Leadership and L e a r n i n g Directorate for developing a training exercise for police officer recruits dealing with disability related incidents. The training has been cited as good practice in the Equality and Human Rights Commission’s report on Disability Related Harassment. Brent Borough won the Performance Award for their work to improve equality and diversity through the Equality Standard for the Police Service, contributing to a marked improvement in public confidence. Highly commended certificates for community engagement work were awarded to officers from CO19 Specialist Firearms Command and Lambeth Borough. Dave Haynes from the Directorate of Information was highly commended for

and co-founder of Dyke and Lovely bagged the Diaspora Honorary Award while Lorna Stewart walked away with the Special Honorary Award for her support and commitment to BBI’s mission. The Enterprise Life Achievement went to Faye Ferguson; Cllr. Tim McNally; Cllr. Anood Al-Samerai, Regional Business Award went to Pat Shadow Southwark Council Leader; Simon Edwards; International Hughes MP; Cllr. Eliza Mann, Former Mayor Business Award went of Southwark; Kriss Akabusi, British Olympics to Clifford Hinkson; Medallist; Richard Taylor OBE, and other National Business guests at the BBA in London Award went to Femi Okutubo; New Business Award (YEGA) was won by a partnership Award went to Carissa Abrahams while the of three young women: Ella Danso, Young Entrepreneur Award went to Florence Ponle and Simonette Sesay with Blessing Maregere. their Flosiel Creation and Personal Styling The annual Young Entrepreneur Game business idea.


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No. 26. 15th - 21st November 2011 www.theafronews.eu

COMMUNITY

100 Black Men of London holds 10th Anniversary Fundraising Gala 100 Black Men of London, the charitable organisation dedicated to the education, development and mentoring of London youth will hold its 10th Anniversary Fundraising Gala on Saturday 19th November 2011. The fundraising gala evening will be held to celebrate the 100 Black Men of London’s 10 years of service to the community. Founded in April 2001 by Ken Barnes, the 100 Black Men of London originally existed as a small group of professional Black men, who made the decision to devote their time to promote positive changes they felt were needed for the benefit of the London’s Black community. With strong backing from its members, the organisation grew to deliver education and mentoring programmes throughout the North and South of London. Programmes which are delivered by the organisation include mentoring community programmes to guide young people

through goal setting, black history, a wide ranging set of life skills, personal finance, health, etc to help the young people develop into ‘leaders of the future’. 100 Black Men of London also hold monthly film screenings around London

venues on black history, culture and icons. There is the 100 book club which encourages reading and discussions on culture alongside black authors. They also hold an interschool’s black history programme called the ‘Black H i s t o r y Challenge’ which is a knockout competition where schools compete against each other in answering questions on aspects of black history. Trips are organised to a theme park for men and their children to engage with each other in a day out for the family. The organisation offers a ‘Family Fun Day’ which is a day of fun, sports, entertainment and activities for the family.

Charity worker who quelled gang warfare in Jamaica on UK tour A woman who gave up a lucrative career in America as a Legal Assistant and owner of a public relations firm to establish a charity in the heart of Trench Town, one of the poorest and most violent areas in the Jamaican capital of Kingston, is in the UK throughout November to talk about her work. Lorna Stanley has been dubbed the Queen of Trench Town by a popular Jamaican radio talk show host. She has been featured on Oprah Winfrey’s

world renowned daytime chat show for the life enhancing work she has carried out through her charity Operation Restoration Centre, founded in 1994, and the school she runs, Operation Restoration Christian School (ORCS) which provides remedial education for the children from Trench Town’s poorest families. Of the more than 1,200 pupils who were unable to read and write when they first enrolled in the school, scores are now attending some of the most prestigious high schools in Jamaica as a result of the training they received at ORCS. Mrs. Stanley has been invited

Send The AfroNews your stories and pictures Have you got a story to share with our readers? We'd love to hear about it, so please send it to us. You may also send photos together with your stories. Kindly include a contact phone number in case we have any questions or need more information. Please send your stories and pictures to:

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to share her experiences to British audiences by Rev Les Isaac, founder of Street Pastors. He has been to Jamaica and seen firsthand the impact of her work on the people of Trench Town. “Mrs. Stanley is widely respected for the work that she does. Not only does she provide education for the unschooled, she runs projects where people learn skills which enable them to make a living,” Rev Isaac said. “She has also played a part in helping to stop the gang warfare that sometimes characterizes life in Trench Town. It’s my prayer that the church and the wider community learn from Mrs. Stanley’s experiences, and maybe get an insight into new ways of combating the gang problem we are currently experiencing in Britain’s inner cities.” Mrs. Stanley serves as a Justice of the Peace for the parish of Kingston. In 2004, she was honoured by the Jamaican government and received a National Honour – the Badge of Honour for Meritorious Service for her work in Trench Town.

Some honorary members of the 100 Black Men of London include ex-heavyweight boxing champion Lennox Lewis, Professor Gus John and actor/playwright Kwame Kwei Armah. Among supporters of the organisation are Diane Abbott MP, The Bernie Grant Trust and Accenture (African Caribbean Network). Activities of the 100 Black Men of London focus on four key areas which are known as the ‘Four for the Future’. These are mentoring, education, economic development and health & wellbeing alongside the principles of good leadership. The 10th Anniversary Fundraising Gala will include entertainment, awards and a ‘Salute to the Youth’ performance by Diamonds. A three-course dinner will be served, and guests can enter a fundraising raffle on the night. The event to be held at The Cumberland Hotel, Great Cumberland Place Marble Arch, WC1 1LZ, will start at 6:30pm until 1:30am and is priced at £65 per person. You can book tickets at www.eventbrite.com/event/2139330796 . By Amanda Hall-Davis

Four women who helped murderers flee UK jailed Four women who helped the murderers of a 22-year-old Abbey Wood man flee to Kenya, have been sentenced to a total of six years’ imprisonment for perverting the course of justice. Moses Nteyoho of Abbey Wood, London SE2 was stabbed to death near to the Tilehurst Point flats, Tavy Bridge on 30th October 2009. Moses and his friend had been on their way to a local youth project, when they saw a group of young men running towards them. His friend managed to get away but the group caught up with Moses and attacked him leaving him with stab wounds. Moses did not know his attackers and was simply in the wrong place at the wrong time when Ahmed Ghele, Osman Amin, Liban Ali and Burhan Yusuf travelled to the estate in a hired taxi with the sole intention of attacking or ‘chasing’ some boys. A week after the murder and with the help of female relatives, the defendants fled to Kenya with the sole intention of evading justice. However all were promptly arrested when they separately returned to the UK during late 2009 and mid

2010. On 30th July 2010 at the Old Bailey, Ghele, Amin, Ali and Yusuf, were sentenced to a total of 54 years’ imprisonment for the murder of Moses Nteyoho. On 7th November 2011, at Woolwich Crown Court, Maria Abdullali Mohamed, Fardowsa Adam, Suleqo al Mohamed and Khadra Mohamed Abdi were sentenced to 18 months’ imprisonment each for helping to arrange cash, flights, travel and tickets so that Moses’ murders could flee the UK. Detective Inspector Cliff Haines from Homicide and Serious Crime Command said: “The investigation into the murder of Moses Nteyoho was long, complicated and extremely traumatic for his family who acted with dignity throughout, even though they had been devastated by Moses’ brutal and pointless death. “This process was made even longer by the fact that these women perverted the course of the investigation by helping the murderers to leave the UK. I hope their sentences send a message to anyone who thinks they are not committing a crime by helping a suspect to evade justice - you are and the Metropolitan Police Service will identify and arrest you.”


CURRENT AFFAIRS

No. 26. 15th - 21st November 2011 www.theafronews.eu

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©Tomas Del Amo

UKBA returns spouse visa age requirement to 18

The UK Border Agency (UKBA) has issued new policy guidance indicating that the minimum age for a UK spouse visa is now 18. The new policy guidance reinstates a minimum age of 18 for a spouse, civil partner, fiancé(e), proposed civil partner, unmarried partner or same-sex partner and for their sponsor in order to qualify for entry clearance, leave to enter, leave to remain or a variation of leave on that basis. These rules will come into effect on 28th November 2011. The UK Border Agency issued the new policy guidance following the judgment of

the Supreme Court in the case of Quila and Bibi v Secretary of State for the Home Department. The case challenged the requirement under paragraph 277 of the Immigration Rules for both foreign spouses and their sponsors in the UK to meet a minimum age of 21 before the foreign spouse could be granted a visa to enter or remain as a spouse or partner. Paragraph 277 (along with other paragraphs of the Immigration Rules) was amended on 27th November 2008 to raise the minimum age from 18 to 21. The Supreme Court ruled that, whilst they recognised that the Secretary of State

was pursuing a legitimate and rational aim of seeking to address forced marriage, the change to the rule (increasing the minimum marriage visa age from 18 to 21) disproportionately interfered with the Article 8 rights of those who were in genuine marriages. The guidance primarily affects applicants whose applications for entry clearance or leave as a fiancé(e), proposed civil partner, spouse, civil partner, unmarried partner or same-sex partner were refused under paragraphs 277, 289AA, or 295AA of the Immigration Rules solely because they or their sponsor were aged between 18 and 20 and whose application was refused on that basis between 27th November 2008 and October 2011. This applies to applications made within or outside the UK. The guidance sets out how such applicants can apply for a review of the original decision to refuse a visa which might now result in a visa being issued. The new policy guidance explains how applicants affected by the judgment can request a review of an earlier refusal due to the age requirement by 31st May 2012. Further information on how to request a review can be found under the partners and families section, “Husband, wife or civil partner”, “Unmarried or same-sex partner”, and “Fiancé(e) or proposed civil

Changes to the Immigration Rules “reinstate a minimum age of 18 for a spouse, civil partner, fiancé(e), proposed civil partner, unmarried partner or same-sex partner and for their sponsor in order to qualify for entry clearance, leave to enter, leave to remain or a variation of leave on that basis. These rules will come into effect on 28 November 2011” The UK Border Agency partner” categories on UKBA’s website. “We welcome this move from the Government to treat all spouses and partners equally,” said Habib Rahman, Chief Executive of the Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants (JCWI). “We are happy to see that the common sense prevails, and hope that the Government will put in place appropriate arrangements to deal swiftly and fairly with those individuals who were refused visas/leave on account of this unjust and discriminatory rule.”

©Paha

Use minimum pay to determine workers’ right to settlement - MAC

The Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) has recommended that minimum annual pay should be used to determine right to settlement for highly skilled workers.

The MAC was commissioned by the government in June to identify the most suitable economic criteria for determining which Tier 2 migrant workers could settle permanently in the UK and what the economic effects of restricting or removing settlement rights would be. The MAC recommended that a simple pay threshold should be used to decide eligibility for automatic settlement among Tier 2 (general) migrants. It recommended that migrants entering through the Tier 1 (exceptional talent) route should proceed to settlement after five years subject to continuing to meet the criteria for that route. The MAC also recommended a pay

“After extensive consultation the MAC has recommended a pay threshold as the best way to decide if a worker can stay in the UK. This is based on sound economic theory. Imposing greater controls on settlement may mean that the annual limit on entry into Tier 1 and Tier 2 would not need to be reduced as much as it would otherwise to meet the government’s objective of reduced net migration” Professor David Metcalf CBE, Chairman of the MAC

threshold between £31,000 and £49,000 for Tier 2 (general), set at the time of entry and adjusted for inflation or changes to average pay. Sportspeople, the MAC said, should also be subject to the same pay criteria as other migrants under Tier 2 (general). Professor David Metcalf CBE, Chairman of the MAC said: “After extensive consultation the MAC has recommended a pay threshold as the best way to decide if a worker can stay in the UK. This is based on sound economic theory. “Imposing greater controls on settlement may mean that the annual limit on entry into Tier 1 and Tier 2 would not need to be reduced as much as it would otherwise to meet the government’s objective of reduced net migration.”


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No. 26. 15th - 21st November 2011 www.theafronews.eu

CURRENT AFFAIRS

Be aware of your overseas shopping limit this Christmas Quantity of alcohol and tobacco you can bring to UK without paying customs duty or VAT Don’t get hit by unexpected charges when you are shopping for Christmas bargains this year, HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) Head of Customs Policy, Angela Shephard has advised. If you are going abroad to do Christmas shopping, or buying goods online from non-EU countries, you need to know how much you can buy before you have to pay import duty or VAT. Shephard said: “We know many people like to go abroad at this time to buy their Christmas gifts, or buy online from non-EU countries, and think that the ‘cheaper’ price they see is always the price they finally pay. HMRC is keen to remind the general public how much they can actually bring back from abroad or buy from an online overseas seller without having to pay import duty or VAT. “You don’t want to be faced with unexpected extra charges, when you thought you had found a bargain.” If you are arriving in the UK by commercial sea or air transport from a non-EU country, you can bring in up to £390 worth of goods for personal use without paying customs duty or VAT (excluding tobacco and alcohol, which have separate allowances,

and fuel). If you are arriving by other means, including by private plane or boat for pleasure purposes, you can bring in goods up to the value of £270. Above these allowances and up to £630, there is a duty flat rate of 2.5 per cent.

Detailed information on the non-EU limits for alcohol and tobacco products can be found on HMRC’s website at http://www. hmrc.gov.uk/customs/arriving/ arrivingnoneu.htm Should you buy goods over the internet or by mail order from outside the EU, you will have to pay VAT if the value of the package is over £15. If the goods are over £135 in

value, customs duty may also be due, although this will depend on what they are and where they have been sent from. Where, however, the actual amount of duty due is less than £9, this will not be charged. If someone sends you a gift from outside the EU, import VAT will only be due if the package is valued at over £40. To qualify as a gift, the item must be sent from one private individual to another, with no money changing hands. Please note that excise duty is always due on all alcohol and tobacco products purchased online or by mail order. If you are thinking of going across the Channel to replenish beers, wines, spirits or tobacco products, there are no limits on the amounts of duty and tax paid goods you can bring back personally from another EU country, as long as they are for your own use. You may, however, be asked questions at the UK border if you have more than: 110 litres of beer; 90 litres of wine; 10 litres of spirits; 20 litres of forti-

fied wines; 800 cigarettes; 200 cigars; 400 cigarillos or 1kg of tobacco to establish these quantities are genuinely for your own use.

Duty-free limits for imports of alcohol and tobacco products from outside the EU

Alcohol allowances You can bring in either, but not both, of the following: * 1 litre of spirits or strong liqueurs over 22 per cent volume * 2 litres of fortified wine (such as port or sherry), sparkling wine or any other alcoholic drink that is less than 22 per cent volume Or you can combine these allowances. For example, if you bring in one litre of fortified wine (half your full allowance) you can also bring in half a litre of spirits (half your full allowance). This would make up your full allowance and you can’t go over your total alcohol allowance. In addition you may also bring back both of the following: * 16 litres of beer * 4 litres of still wine

Tobacco allowances You can bring in one from the following list: * 200 cigarettes

* 100 cigarillos * 50 cigars * 250g of tobacco Or you can combine these allowances. For example, if you bring in 100 cigarettes (half your full allowance) you can also bring in 25 cigars (half your full allowance). This would make up your full tobacco allowance. You can’t go over your total tobacco allowance. You cannot combine alcohol and tobacco allowances. When travelling to the UK from outside the EU, if you bring in any single item worth more than the £390 goods allowance (£270 if arriving by other means, including private plane or boat for pleasure purposes) , you must pay duty and/or tax on the full item value, not just the value above the allowance. You also cannot group individual allowances together to bring in an item worth more than the limit. HM Treasury announced that, from 1st November 2011, the low value consignment relief limit (for goods bought over the internet or by mail order from outside the EU) has been reduced to £15. Further information on postal imports and travellers allowances can be found at: http://www.hmrc. gov.uk/customs/index.htm Individuals under the age of 17 are not entitled to any alcohol or tobacco allowances.

UK Border Agency officer faces jail for falsely issuing visas On behalf of the prosecution, Lucy ing Shoyeju got payments of tens of thouAn immigration officer has remain to non-EU residents. Judge Christopher Mitchell at Basildon Kennedy said that Shoyeju, of Namur sands of pounds over the same period. owned up misconduct after falseThe development is significant as ly issuing visas to foreign nation- Crown Court remanded Shoyeju in custo- Road, Canvey Island, Essex, had issued dy. “You face a substantial period in cusscores of visas to Africans, who would not Rashidat Ana-Obe, 36, from Dagenham, als not entitled to stay in the UK. Working for the border agency at the time of the offences in 2008, immigration officer Samuel Shoyeju, 53, acknowledged the count of “misconduct in public office” by falsely handing out indefinite leave to

tody and you must be remanded,” the judge said. Shoyeju committed the offence while he was deployed as an immigration officer in Croydon. He had also worked as an entry clearance officer in Nigeria.

otherwise have succeeded in pleas to stay in the UK. Even though the prosecution could not establish he did so in exchange for money, bank documents have been procured show-

has already admitted fraudulently receiving indefinite leave to remain in a related case. Another woman faces a connected charge of misconduct in public office. She is due to face trial this week.


CURRENT AFFAIRS

No. 26. 15th - 21st November 2011 www.theafronews.eu

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Youth unemployment in the UK has increased in 97 per cent of local authority areas in the last 12 months, a new TUC analysis shows.

©TUC

TUC: Youth unemployment rises in almost all areas of UK The number of young people aged between 18 and 24 unable to find work in the UK has increased in 196 of 202 local authorities since September 2010. The TUC believes this illustrates that the government’s current approach to youth joblessness and the economy is not working. The only six UK local authorities where youth unemployment has stalled in the last year are Hillingdon, Kensington and Chelsea, Kingston upon Thames, Richmond upon Thames, Reading and - the only authority not in the south east - Warwickshire. Everywhere else has witnessed an increase, by an average of 1.2 percentage points. The local authority areas with the biggest rises in the number of young people claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance between September 2010 and September 2011 include Hartlepool (3.5 percentage point increase), Darlington (3.2), Waltham Forest (3.0), Sandwell (2.9), and Doncaster, Torbay and Blackpool (all 2.7 per cent). The TUC analysis also reveals the extent to which youth unemployment worsened during the recession. From September 2007 to September 2011, the number of young

people unable to find work at least doubled in a third of local authorities (32 per cent). The worse hit authorities over the last three years are Clackmannanshire (7.5 percentage point increase since September 2007), Doncaster (7.4), Hartlepool (7.1),

to be with us for some considerable time “We’re facing the biggest youth to come, unless unemployment crisis in a genera- the government tion with close to one million of changes course and brings our young people unable to find now in immediate work. With the economic outlook measures to the gloomiest it’s been since the support jobs and growth.” end of the recession the bleak Mr. Barber prospects facing young jobseekers said there was look set to be with us for some need of helping people to considerable time to come, unless young make sure they the government changes course don’t spend periods out now and brings in immediate mea- long of employment sures to support jobs and growth” or education. “We need a proper replaceMr. Brendan Barber, ment for the TUC General Secretary Future Jobs Fund, new measures to Rotherham (6.9), Rochdale support the creation of more apprenticeand Redcar and Cleveland ships and a government commitment that (both 6.8). no unemployed young person will spend TUC General Secretary more than six months out of employment or Brendan Barber said: “We’re high quality training,” Mr. Barber said. facing the biggest youth “The Chancellor’s plan A has already sent unemployment crisis in a unemployment to a 17-year high. Our generation with close to one million of our young people, and our whole country, young people unable to find work. With the urgently need a plan B to get people back economic outlook the gloomiest it’s been into work and the economy back on its since the end of the recession the bleak feet.” prospects facing young jobseekers look set

©View7

Over 100,000 signatures against immigration An online petition initiated by MigrationWatch urging ministers to curb immigration managed to gain more than 100,000 signatures in a week. The e-petition “No to 70 Million” - but more accurately described as “Zero Net Migration” - was posted on directgov.uk on 1st November 2011. It is calling on the government to take drastic measures against immigration in order to keep UK population below 70 million. The Home Office is told by signatories that: “Over the past ten years the government has permitted mass immigration despite very strong public opposition reflected in numerous opinion polls. We

express our deep concern that, according to official figures, the population of the UK is expected to reach 70 million within 20 years with two thirds of the increase due to immigration. “While we recognise the benefits that properly controlled immigration could bring to our economy and society, this population increase, which is the equivalent of building seven cities the size of Birmingham, will have a huge impact both on our quality of life and on our public services yet the public has never been consulted. So we call on the government to take all necessary steps to get immigration down to a level that will stabilise our population as close to the present level as possible and, certainly, well below 70 million.” The major tabloids, first and foremost Daily Mail and The Sun, supported the petition, as well as anti-immigration parties UKIP and BNP. The achievement of the 100,000 signatures makes the petition eligible for a Commons debate. Two MPs, Frank Field and Nicholas

Soames, who are co-chairs of the crossparty group on balanced migration, said they would now push for the matter to be discussed in parliament given the “remarkable response”. “It underlines what our group has been saying for three years: namely that there is pent up frustration at the failure of the political class to get a grip of mass immigration,” they said in a joint statement. Mr. Field proposed the debate on immigration should take place in early 2012. However, the committee made clear it currently had no available backbench time to allocate to any debates. Natascha Engel, who chairs the committee, has warned that it isn’t feasible to give a debate “priority just because something has 100,000 signatures on a petition”. “The House of Commons is not obliged to debate the petition but it would be amazing if they tried to brush aside such a powerful expression of public opinion on an issue crucial to the future of our society,” commented Sir Andrew Green, MigrationWatch chairman. Immigration Minister Damian Green said: “Immigration to the UK has been too

high, which is why we are making sweeping changes to reduce net migration from hundreds of thousands to tens of thousands. We have already introduced a limit on non-EU workers coming to the UK and radically overhauled the student visa system to cut abuse.”

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No. 26. 15th - 21st November 2011 www.theafronews.eu

COVER

Victim of domestic violence? Don’t suffer in silence Interview with Kim Bacchus, an overcomer of domestic violence and Stress Management Specialist Domestic violence is a widespread problem in the UK which is hardly talked about. According to Women’s Aid, “domestic violence is physical, sexual, psychological or financial violence that takes place within an intimate or family-type relationship” and “forms a pattern of coercive and controlling behaviour.” It has been estimated that over two women per week are killed by current or ex-partners, and one in four women in the UK will experience domestic violence in their lifetime. Between one in eight and one in 10 women experience domestic violence annually, says Women’s Aid. Unfortunately less than half of all incidents are reported to the police, but they still receive one domestic violence call every minute in the UK. Ms. Kim Bacchus is an overcomer of domestic violence who is now helping those still trapped in abusive relationships. In this exclusive interview with The AfroNews, Kim reveals her sad experience as a victim of domestic violence, how she got the courage to overcome it, and the signs that a partner is becoming violent.

She also gives advice on what victims of domestic violence should do to find help. Kim is a Stress Management Specialist, motivational speaker and a Life Transformation Coach. She is determined to transform people’s lives by helping them “go beyond their self-conceived limitations and reach for their highest potential.” Kim says that nothing pleases her “more than seeing people develop the emotional and spiritual muscles to deal with whatever challenges show up.” She is the founder and President of Kim Bacchus Solutions Ltd (KBS), an organization supporting executives, managers, team leaders and individuals in the prevention of stress, to identify and find a solution to improve the quality of working life. Kim, as an overcomer of domestic violence, please share with us how you got the courage to overcome it. My son and the Grace of God gave me the courage to leave my abusive relationship. The choice was do I want to live or do want to die? I chose to live, not only for myself but for my son. My son had witnessed the beatings and verbal abuse many

times, and I would always comfort him and say that I loved him very much and everything will be ok. One day I took a beating, I remember being dragged across the floor, my knees red raw. I ended up curled up in the corner, my son crawled up next to me and put his arms around me and said that he loved me and everything was going to be ok. I was no longer protecting him, he was protecting me!!! I had to leave. I then started to read motivational and personal development books and my mindset began to change slowly, this reinforced my belief system and values. But my ultimate healing came from the Word of God. What are the signs that a partner is becoming violent? From my own experience, I remembered feeling afraid, and feeling that I may do something wrong to upset him. Being made to feel humiliated and embarrassed in front of people, acting violent and aggressive to me, I would be walking on egg shells around him; he had a very bad temper and very controlling. Why do you think domestic violence is increasing in our communities? Certainly, the conditions for families in the last couple of years with the economic downturn


No. 26. 15th - 21st November 2011 www.theafronews.eu

COVER

11

“My son and the Grace of God gave me the courage to leave my abusive relationship. The choice was do I want to live or do want to die? I chose to live, not only for me but for my son. My son had witnessed the beatings and verbal abuse many times, and I would always comfort him and say that I loved him very much and everything will be ok. One day I took a beating, I remember being dragged across the floor, my knees red raw. I ended up curled up in the corner, my son crawled up next to me and put his arms around me and said that he loved me and everything was going to be ok. I was no longer protecting him, he was protecting me!!! I had to leave” Ms. Kim Bacchus and the recession have put additional pressures on families. I think you look at the media landscape — the news, the violence, the objectifying of people — violence almost becomes a consequence. I believe all those things come into it, but fundamentally, it’s a power issue. It’s a cycle of violence. Intervention is needed in order to break that cycle.

you if you are experiencing domestic violence and your immigration status is insecure: http:// www.womensaid.org.uk/domestic-violence-survivors-handbook. asp?section=0001000100080001 00350002

What prevents the victims from seeking help?

For me it was believing that I could change my partner, that I knew him better than anyone else and it was only a matter of time. He would say he was sorry and he didn’t mean it, I just made him mad, I believed that it was my fault and forgave him.

Many irregular immigrants who are victims of domestic violence suffer in silence because they fear going to the police. Are there legal protections for illegal immigrants who are victims of domestic violence? If yes, where should they go to for help? I believe that all victims of domestic violence are entitled to the financial support and safe accommodation they require to leave an abusive relationship irrespective of their immigration status. The following link will help

Have you thought about how your actions truly affect your partner? Even when you stop the abuse, the pain continues because you have damaged your loved one’s heart and spirit. You are abusing instead of being constructive. If you want to recover — for yourself and your partner — you need to tell yourself: “I’m not going to take this from me anymore.” And seek professional help immediately. Please share with us the activities of Kim Bacchus Solutions (KBS) Ltd. KBS is launching a Domestic Violence Awareness Program (DVAP) to Churches throughout the UK to educate Pastors, Leaders and members of Church Committees. The aim of this program is to enable Churches to address the issue of domestic violence and to equip its Ministers and Leaders to deal with victims and perpetrators of domestic violence effectively. The Church needs to be an informed and lib-

Kim is also an author of three bestselling books “Stress Who Me!!!”, “Stop Hurting Me – Time

RESPECT is a helpline that offers information and advice to help domestic violence perpetrators stop their violence and to change their abusive behaviours. They can be contacted on 0800 802 4040.

NT

Seek advice and help. Call the National Domestic Violence Helpline. There is no pressure, they will give you options and you’ll choose when you are ready to leave. One option maybe a plan that safely removes you and your children from the home; a safe place to stay; referral to a lawyer or legal advocate to obtain a personal protection order, temporary child custody order, etc.

What’s your message to perpetrators of domestic violence?

FR CH EE EV E

What should a victim of domestic violence do?

What are some of the common mistakes victims of domestic violence do?

LA UN

Feeling isolated, afraid, angry and upset that someone who you think you love can treat you this way, confused, powerless, tired and depressed, ashamed and guilty. Lack of resources, being financially dependent on the abusive partner. Staying for the children’s sake, not wanting to uproot them from school and home, religious beliefs and values or simply bound by fear.

erating refuge for both its own To Get Out” and “Desperate members and members of the Parents - Help I’ve Got A community. Teenager”. All Kim’s books can By adopting this Program, be purchased at www.kimbacChurches will be committing chus.com and Amazon. themselves to taking positive steps towards providing informaBy Stephen Ogongo tion, support and care to victims Ongong’a of domestic vioUSEFUL CONTACTS AND lence. LINKS FOR VICTIMS OF The launch is a free event, taking DOMESTIC VIOLENCE place on Saturday 19th November The Freephone 24 Hour National Domes2011, at ican Studios, tic Violence Helpline, run in partnership be35 Monier Road, tween Women’s Aid and Refuge, is a national London E3 2PR, service for women experiencing domestic viofrom 9:30AM to lence. You can call 0808 2000 247. 5:00PM. Everyone is welcome to attend. This DVAP will Both men and women can be victims and start in January 2012 we know that men feel immense pressure to as well as other keep up the pretence that everything is OK. courses throughout Mankind Initiative offer support for men who next year. Please go have been victims of domestic violence. If you to my website www. are a man and suffering from abuse, call this kimbacchus.com and number 01823 334244. register on-line.

WHAT EVERY PASTOR AND LEADER NEEDS TO KNOW ABOUT DOMESTIC VIOLENCE

´-XVWGR620(7+,1*WRKHOSPHµ THAT IS AN OUTCRY of many hearts that are wounded because of the domestic abuse they are silently suffering from within their homes. They reach out for help … or for varying reasons they don’t (because they don’t think anyone can help them), and no one is there to give a supportive and empowering hand.

The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me; because the LORD hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound; Isaiah 61:1-3

Launch meeting:

Sat. 19th November ‘11 9:30am - 4:30pm (8.30am registration.)

at ican Studios 35 Monier Road London E3 2PR Sponsors:

?DG:9D

KIM BACCHUS: A survivor of domestic violence herself, Kim is a Domestic Violence prevention advocate. KBS offers the Domestic Violence Awareness Program to Churches throughout the UK to educate Pastors, Leaders and members of Church Committees.

TO REGISTER ONLINE GO TO:

kimbacchus.com

ALTERNATIVELY CONTACT KIM BACCHUS:

07961 500 625

KIM BACCHUS


13

How to choose a good claims solicitor With nearly 10,000 legal firms to choose from in England and Wales, and a further 3,000 claims management companies, just where do you start if you’ve had an accident or employment dispute or any other situation requiring professional legal representation? If you see a firm advertised on the internet does it mean they are ‘good’ – or just that they have thought to have a website built?

jury and employment claims, it makes little difference whether the solicitor is talking to you in person or over the telephone. The latter is obviously more convenient for you and the solicitor. Medical examinations are required to support personal injury claims, but here also the location of the solicitor does not matter as most have access to one of several national networks of medical report providers.

Is your case better off in the hands of a large firm or a In this article we look at how you small one?

might go about choosing a firm to start your legal claim. We will be recommending ourselves of course – if we didn’t think we were good at what we do, we wouldn’t be here. But on a more serious note, we will underline some common sense principles and then you are free to apply them as you will. First, let’s start with some of the ones you should avoid.

Have you ever received a text or call from a company asking if you have had an accident that you should claim for? No matter how persuasive their argument, you should not use them. If you have a valid claim, of course you should pursue it – but certainly not with a firm that contacts you first without your prior permission. ‘Cold calling’ is strictly prohibited by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA), and quite obviously if a firm breaches this fundamental rule, then their conduct elsewhere is likely to be less than professional.

All solicitors must be registered with the SRA, and carry professional insurance A lack of either indicates you should look elsewhere - but that still leaves nearly 10,000 to choose from.

Does location matter? Undoubtedly it can be reassuring to be able to meet your solicitor face to face. Some types of cases, such as family and criminal, benefit especially from this. For others, including personal in-

Although the largest law firms have thousands of employees each, these are in the minority - 85% of all legal firms have four or less partners (IRN Research, 2010). The larger the firm, the greater the combined experience across its solicitors and, usually, business processes are more refined. On the other hand smaller firms are often felt to offer a more personal touch to their customer service and you are more likely to have your case dealt with by a senior member of the firm. When it comes to what really mat-

ters though, the skill and experience of the solicitor representing you is more important than the size of the firm they work for. So how do you find that skill? We asked Anna Theo, Head of the Injury Claims team at Tollers Solicitors, how he would look for a solicitor if he were a client himself: “It is difficult to know who will do a good job for you. If you do not have a solicitor who you have used before and are happy to use again, then it is best to rely on personal recommendation. People rely on the opinion of someone they trust - a friend or a relative. We find a lot of our work comes to us this way. It is a reflection

of the service that we have provided to customers. “Beyond personal recommendation, I would advise looking carefully at websites - see how much expertise they seem to have in dealing with your issue. If English is not your first language then it would be comforting to know that your solicitor or someone in their firm can speak your native language. We have found that our Polish clients have greatly appreciated being able to speak in Polish to someone in our firm.” Tollers Solicitors are based in the East Midlands and advise clients nationally. They are a respected member of the Hamilton Brady panel with a long standing reputation for legal as well as customer service excellence – qualities that led to us partnering with them. This brings us to the subject of legal claims management companies such as Hamilton Brady that work in partnership with a number of solicitors.

Why would you use an intermediary rather than go direct to the solicitor? Iwona Palkiewicz, Senior Customer Service Advisor, explains some of the advantages: “We have already done the groundwork for you in interviewing and selecting the most effective solicitors we can find. Our reputation rides on the service you receive from our solicitors so we take this very seriously. When you contact us for the first time one of our customer service advisors will take the details of your case. It is then assessed by a senior management team who refer it to the solicitor we believe is best placed to handle it. “Throughout the duration of your case, our team are available to help with any queries – we can provide free translation services if needed through a telephone conference call between the solicitor, you and one of our staff. We are paid by the solicitors for facilitating your case acceptance so there is no charge from us to you. If your case is being run on a CFA (Conditional Free

Agreement) basis then you are not paying the solicitor either.” The CFA’s are far preferable to paying a fee to the solicitor but depend on the solicitor accepting your case as such. Lawyers will carry out a ‘risk analysis’ of your case before offering to take it on a CFA basis. They look at the circumstances of the claim, the likelihood of winning, an estimate of costs and also how likely it is they will be able to recover both their costs and a ‘success fee’ from the other side. If the resulting risk is too high, then unfortunately they will inform you they can only take the case on a fee paying basis. This should not be taken personally – it is no more than their professional assessment of these various factors. Different solicitors have different criteria by which they will accept a case on a CFA basis. If your case is not accepted by the first solicitor we refer it to, then we will try again with another firm of the same quality, but without any further effort required on your part. If you were to shop around yourself, you would have to explain your case again to each one. One of the most common reasons for a solicitor not being able to take your case on a CFA basis is that CFA’s are not allowed for claims worth less than £5,000. Although this is considered to be a ‘small claim’ by the English legal system, £4,999 (and even less) is still worth a considerable amount to most people. By HAMILTON BRADY LTD, www.hamiltonbrady.co.uk Tel: 0844 873 6081 E-mail: info@hamiltonbrady.co.uk Address: Springfield House Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5BG Disclaimer: The above article is meant to be relied upon as an informative article and in no way constitutes legal advice. Information is offered for general information purposes only, based on the current law when the information was published in this newspaper. You should always seek advice from an appropriately qualified solicitor on any specific legal enquiry. For legal advice regarding your case, please contact Hamilton Brady for a Consultation with a Solicitor on 0844 873 608.

Get your latest immigration news on Your news, your guides, your concerns, your beauty, your recipes, your people. This one is all about you! www.foreignersinuk.co.uk

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No. 26. 15th - 21st November 2011 www.theafronews.eu

AFRICAN NEWS

UN calls for investigation into South Sudan camp bombing The UN human rights chief has called for an investigation into the recent aerial bombing of a refugee camp in Unity State in South Sudan. UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay said that the information available so far suggested that the bombing may amount to an international crime or serious human rights violation. “The camp at Yida, which is close to the border with Sudan, is housing thousands of civilians, including women and children,” said Ms. Pillay. “While the number of casualties is not yet clear, I understand that five or six bombs were dropped on the camp, and that at least one fell close to a school.” She said there was need of “an independent, thorough and credible investigation to establish the precise circumstances of this aerial bombing,” adding that “if indeed it is established that an international crime or serious human rights violation has been committed, then those responsible should be brought to justice.” Ms. Pillay expressed alarm about the

fighting and indiscriminate attacks that are continuing to take place just across the border in Sudan’s Southern Kordofan State, and which have spilled over into neighbouring states. “This latest attack risks aggravating what is already an extremely tense and dangerous situation,”

©UN

“If indeed it is established that an international crime or serious human rights violation has been committed, then those responsible should be brought to justice” UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay she said. The High Commissioner urged the parties involved in the fighting to immediately cease all attacks on civilians.

The International Criminal Court (ICC) Prosecutor Luis MorenoOcampo has said he is monitoring “with the utmost vigilance” the electoral process in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, where investigations have been ongoing since June 2003. “The use of violence will not be tolerated,” he said. “My Office is gathering and carefully reviewing converging reports of both verbal and physical violence arising out of the electoral campaign for the presidential and parliamentary elections on 28 November.” The Prosecutor called upon all parties involved in the electoral process not to resort to violence, noting that the ICC has jurisdiction to investigate and prosecute the perpetrators of serious crimes committed either in the Democratic Republic of the Congo or by Congolese nationals since 1st July 2002. “We are keeping watch to

ensure that the process does not lead to acts of violence or attacks against the civilian population. We are paying particular attention to reports of inciting hatred, exclusion and physical violence by various political figures in Kinshasa and across the entire country,” Mr. Moreno-Ocampo said. “Electoral violence can result in the commission of crimes falling within our jurisdiction. No one should doubt our resolve to prevent crimes or, if need be, prosecute individuals, as we are doing in Kenya and Côte d’Ivoire.” The Prosecutor reiterated that persons alleged to have committed serious crimes, such as Bosco Ntaganda, for whom the Court has issued an arrest warrant, must be arrested and put on trial. “The electoral process should not feed a sense of impunity on the part of those responsible for such crimes. On the contrary, it should strengthen the rule of law and the fight against impunity,” Mr. MorenoOcampo said.

UK urged to support Darfur peace process The head of the African Union-United Nations Mission in Darfur, Ibrahim Gambari, has sought British support for the peace process in Darfur which the envoy said was on the cusp of making real progress. In recent meetings with senior UK officials, Joint Special Representative (JSR) Gambari outlined the progress on the implementation and dissemination of the Doha Darfur Peace Document (DDPD), the result of two years of negotiations among the parties to the Darfur conflict. “The United Kingdom, as an important member of the international community, has a key role in moving forward the peace process in Darfur, especially in building support for the full and timely implementation of the Doha Document, while also persuading the hold out movements to join the peace process, making it both comprehensive and inclusive,” he said. JSR Gambari, who is also the interim Joint Chief Mediator for the Darfur peace process, met the Parliamentary Under-Secretary

and development, with the Government of Sudan and the United Nations Country Team in the lead, so as to bring the dividends of peace to the people of Darfur who have suffered for too long and too deeply,” JSR Gambari said. The Doha Darfur Peace Document was agreed to by the Government of Sudan and the and Mr. Ibrahim Gambari, Head of the Liberation Justice Movement African Union-United Nations in July, and impleMission in Darfur mentation began of State for International shortly thereafter. Development, Stephen O’Brien, JSR Gambari has been activeand the Director for Africa of the ly engaging the non-signatory Department for International movements such as the Justice Development, as well as the UK and Equality Movement and the Special Envoy for Sudan, Michael Minni Minawi faction, to get Ryder and Foreign and them to commit to the DDPD. He Commonwealth Office Director has also been pressing key interfor Africa, Tim Hitchens. national partners to lend concrete He also stressed to them the support to the current peace proimportance of early recovery and cess as well as lend their weight development activities to a sus- to convincing the hold-out movetainable peace in Darfur: “There ments to get on board. is the need to concretely address the challenges of early recovery

©UN

ICC closely monitoring situation in Democratic Republic of the Congo


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No. 26. 15th - 21st November 2011 www.theafronews.eu

CARIBBEAN NEWS

Sex offences burdening Jamaican health system Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture, Hon Olivia “Babsy” Grange, revealed the figures while addressing Parliamentarians from across the Caribbean, Academics and United Nations representatives at the Caribbean Regional Consultation of Parliamentarians on gender-based violence prevention on 9th November 2011 at the Terra Nova Hotel in Kingston. The two-day meeting, spearheaded by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) Caribbean office, in collaboration with UN partners, is one of a number of regional and national events resulting from the official launch of the UNITE to End Violence Against Women Campaign in October 2010. In 2008, the UN Secretary-General launched the Campaign with the overall objective of raising public awareness and increasing political will and resources for preventing and responding to violence against women and girls. “The unreported cases would surely increase the figures, dramatically. These cases and the unreported ones have placed an added burden on a health care system that is already struggling to deal with unpreventable health issues,” Miss Grange said. She pointed to a number of national laws that address the issue of gender-based violence, such as the Domestic Violence Act, the Trafficking in Persons Act and the Sexual Offences Act, and said that several

“The unreported cases would surely increase the figures, dramatically. These cases and the unreported ones have placed an added burden on a health care system that is already struggling to deal with unpreventable health issues”

©JIS

Reports have indicated that 668 women were raped and 531 suffered from carnal abuse in Jamaica, in 2010.

Hon Olivia Grange, Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture public education sessions have been conducted to enhance public awareness of these laws. Additionally, Miss Grange said the Bureau of Women’s Affairs (BWA), a department of her Ministry, has been utilizing various mechanisms, including public education and awareness-building to gender equality, including the elimination of gender-based violence. In this regard, Minister Grange said the BWA is currently finalizing a draft National Strategic Plan to eliminate gender based violence in Jamaica. The plan was developed under the implementation of the Strengthening State Accountability Project,

which was funded by UNWomen, formerly known as the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM). She stated that other Caribbean countries, including Antigua, Belize and St Kitts, are part of the project, which seeks to highlight six priority areas to address the problem. “The plan is intended, in a practical way, to raise awareness concerning gender-based violence and provide guidance to develop and implement programmes and strategies to tackle this problem in a coordinated holistic fashion,” she added. According to the Minister, the main objectives are: to illuminate and bring to the attention of the public the extent of the

problem of gender-based violence in Jamaica; and to prevent and protect victims of gender-based violence and identify ways to aid those who have become victims. Discussions on day one of the meeting focused on various aspects of genderbased violence in the Caribbean, and capacity building among the judiciary and other outcomes of the UNITE Campaign launch. The second day highlighted ways in which parliamentarians can help mobilize political will to end gender-based violence. By E. Hartman Reckord, JIS

Parents should become more involved in the education of their children, Senior Advisor to Jamaica’s Minister of Education, Dr. Rebecca Tortello, has said. She said that the Ministry recognises that parents are the first, and in many cases, the most important teachers, and “in order for children to achieve success at school and success in life, we need to have more sustained involvement from our parents and the involvement needs to be both positive and effective.” Dr. Tortello was speaking at a recent JIS Think Tank held at the agency’s HalfWay-Tree Road offices in Kingston, where she disclosed a number of activities and events to observe Parents’ Month in November. The activities, she said, which are supported by government ministries and agencies, non-governmental organisations and faith-based institutions, will seek to promote positive family bonding as well as celebrate and educate parents. Under the theme: ‘Parent the Right Way…Take Responsibility Today,’ the

©JIS

Parents must become more involved in children’s education - Tortello

Senior Advisor to the Minister of Education, Dr. Rebecca Tortello (right), listens as Chairman of the Early Childhood Commission (ECC) Professor Maureen Samms-Vaughn addresses a recent Think Tank at the Jamaica Information Service’s Half-WayTree Road headquarters

month got underway with a national church service on 13th November at the Bethel United Church in Highgate, St. Mary. Several parenting workshops, seminars and expositions are scheduled to be held across the island. One highlight of Parent Months’ is the launch of the United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) Directory of Services for Children,

Adults and Families, which provides a list of social services in each parish, where families can access a range of programmes to help them cope with everyday issues and problems. It will be made available to all schools and all entities included in the directory. The parenting support strategy, centred on the establishment of Parents’ Place centres, will also be officially launched. The centres, seven of which are already in operation, provide a child-friendly meeting space and resources, including reading materials to support parenting. They are being operated in partnership with civic and community-based organisations and the resources are available to parents free of charge. Dr. Tortello said the plan is to expand the concept to all parishes. The month of activities culminates with a parenting awards presentation on Friday, 2nd December at the RIU Hotel in Ocho Rios, St. Ann starting at 10:00 am. By Judith Hunter, JIS PRO


ENTERTAINMENT

No. 26. 15th - 21st November 2011 www.theafronews.eu

17

Cloud Tissa releases three music videos Musician Cloud Tissa Cloud Tissa has released three music videos featuring songs from his “Physically Fit” LP. The 16 track album is a blend of different musical styles including Reggae, Afro Beat and Mainstream R&B/Hip-Hop. “Burn It” video showcases a different approach mainly behind the scenes, different from what one would expect from a typical club video look. Rather “Burn It” video showcases the work and input before the final product is bumped in clubs or screens. The video is made of scenes in the studio recording, photo session, contract deals and more. The lyrics of the song define the haters and those guys that backbite you and are

happy to see you fail but amazingly you just keep rising up and lighting it up. In “My Girl” video clip, Cloud takes you to a fantasy world of graphics and love. The video is inspired by the series “Desperate House Wives” staging a relationship scene inspired by Eva Longoria. “My Girl” is a smash disco dance track. It blends electro sounds taking you back in the 80’s disco classics merged with today’s urban club electro sound with the mellow dancehall rap vocals by Cloud. “Shakatak” is another smash hit track for all the club scene lovers and even for those who at times love to wind down and kick back and let their spontaneous sides take over. “Your ex girlfriend left you, you been calling she isn’t picking, she been harsh and telling you to leave her alone?

Now you just walked in the club, she see’s you and all over a sudden wants you back and can’t stand to see you with another girl?” that’s what “Shakatak” lyrics and video is all about. “My Girl” and “Burn It” were recorded, mixed and produced by R Kay at Mingi Love Studio, Nairobi, Kenya and mastered at Goldchamber Studio in Austria, while “Shakatak” was recorded, mixed and produced by Julian Hruza and mastered at Goldchamber Studio in Austria. Cloud developed a passion for music at the age of 13. In 1998 he released his first single “Laumu” meaning blame in Swahili when he was only 15 years old. His involvement in a Kenyan television program dubbed “Mizizi” propelled his single to number 1 for two months on the Kenyan charts. Cloud later teamed up with Rufftone and Eddy to release another successful track called “Its Up 2 U”. He has toured with one of Africa’s brightest female stars, Sali Oyugi, performing with the Hot Road Band which was made of top musicians like Kidum among others. Cloud has appeared in different major shows and shared stage with internationally renowned artistes like The Wailers, Third World, Patrice, Alpha Blondy, the late Lucky Dube and many more.

After conquering the East African charts, the Kenyan raised Rwandese musician set his sights on other markets and released his first album called “1st Chapter” featuring songs like “Sunshine Lady”. The video of this song was featured in several TV programmes throughout Africa and became one of the very few Swahili songs to be aired on radio and television stations in Europe. Cloud’s other successful tracks include “Ngoma”, “Dusk till Dawn” and “Light it up”. He is indeed expanding the boundaries of music with his unique artistic style and has extended his creative skills in directing and editing music videos for himself and other artists such as 3gga feat, Million Stylez, Coolio, SteLa feat. Warren G., Hoerspiel Crew and many others. “Physically Fit” was released by Maisha Records. Cloud’s songs are available on Amazon, iTunes, CD Baby and Rhapsody.

CLOUD TISSA’S LINK AND CONTACTS

Email: office@cloudtissa.net Tel: +43 699 10 84 18 97 Website: www.cloudtissa.net

Macka Diamond does her thing in “Don’t Disturb Mi” The latest R e g g a e / Dancehall album to hit the streets is “Don’t Disturb Mi” by International female Rapper and DJ of the year 2011, M a c k a Diamond. The album has been released on VP Records/ Money Ooh Productions Label. “Don’t Disturb Mi” is a 15 track compilation of Reggae/Dancehall and Reggae/ Dancehall/Soca fused rhythms lyri-

cally attired in true Macka Diamond style. The album features the popular “Cow Foot” track which went viral and became the hottest dance song throughout summer. The song is inspired by Dancer Shelly Belly. It also features “Too Much Bull”, the anthem of the female dancers in the dance hall. In this album, Macka Diamond has collaborated with Reggae artistes Taurus Riley and Duane Stephenson, veteran female Dancehall artiste Lady G, New York based Dancehall Diva Barbee, long time hit partner Dancehall artiste Unicorn, new promising artistes Devina Burn, Jahmoun and ZJ Sparks. The album “Don’t Disturb Mi” replicates today’s Reggae/Dancehall culture. All the 15 tracks have been carefully selected to appeal to a diverse audience. Fans should enjoy listening to the songs while driving, going about their daily activities, hanging out with friends or on the dance floor of any party. Asked what fans can expect from her in this album, Macka Diamond said:

“Basically there is a little of everything for everyone, all the fans.” “Don’t Disturb Mi” which was released on 8th November 2011, is available on iTunes, Amazon, Emusic, Napster, Juno, Spotify and all retailers worldwide.

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18

No. 26. 15th - 21st November 2011 www.theafronews.eu

COMMENTARY-OP-ED

Christopher Alder’s case shows injustice continues even in death News that Christopher Alder’s body still is still in the mortuary 11 years after his family thought they had buried him has shocked the community. It shows that even in death, racism and injustice continue to haunt our people. Christopher, a black man and former paratrooper died in a Hull police station in 1998 surrounding by mocking police officers. He died tragically in what can only be described as the most degrading and disgusting of circumstances. Christopher’s family, who had suffered grievously during a long struggle for justice, thought they had laid Christopher to rest. On Sunday 6th November they were faced with the terrible news that Christopher’s body has been found lying in a Hull mortuary 11 years after they thought they had buried him. One can only imagine the pain and anguish they must now be going through. To have endured a long and bitter fight for the truth to uncover exactly what happened to Christopher and believing that they had laid him to rest with dignity and compassion: something he never received from the Hull police officers that stood idly by and watched him die. Racism and or incompetence have con-

spired to deny the Alder family that most basic of human needs when faced with tragic death: to lay our loved ones to rest. They have been robbed of that most fundamental of human decencies, a dignified funeral surrounded by the family friends and people who loved Christopher. There will be bitter and angry words spoken in many households throughout the country. In the light of a huge increase in the number of black people who have died in police custody, this news will devastate all those concerned with justice. For the Alder family to have suffered so grievously once is a tragedy. That they have now to face the painful reality that their loved one has not been laid to rest is simply beyond belief. In the wider context of this issue, all over the country black communities are becoming increasingly angry at the huge increases in the number of black men dying in police custody. Smiley Culture, Kingsley Burrell, Demetre Fraser, Mark Duggan are all now familiar names. The failure of the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) to satisfy the search for the truth in all these cases and that of Christopher Adler is perceived to be a double injustice. The recent heavy handed policing by

the Metropolitan Police Service of the annual march by the families of those who have died in custody was a further calculated insult to all those families in attendance. What this demonstrates is that racism and injustice are capable of haunting families beyond even death itself. The Alders will always have lived with the legacy of his death but now have their final dignity ripped away from them. They now have to live with the knowledge that they stood at the grave and shed their tears of grief whilst burying a complete stranger and that must be painful beyond words. This is a tragedy for two families both of whom are now plunged into anger and despair. To have the unique spiritual comfort of knowing that Christopher lies in peace, desecrated, to have their process of grieving violently disturbed amounts to heinous injustices of the vilest kind. Hull City Council has launched an investigation and let’s hope that the Alder family receive some answers this time. The Council should also face legal action for costs and compensations. Let us be clear: no amount of compensation can take away the pain felt by the Adler family and no amount of apologising can numb the sense of shock and outrage.

Having been robbed of justice once, Hull City Council have conspired to rob the family of their final moments and precious final farewells and having done so, forced them to relive once again, the awful circumstances surrounding his death and preparing to say their final farewells 10 years on.

RECIPE Injera is a flatbread eaten in Ethiopia and neighbouring countries. It is made with teff flour. Teff is a tiny round grain that is grown in Ethiopia. While teff is very nutritious, pure teff flour contains no gluten, and little else in the way of binding proteins. This makes teff ill-suited for making raised bread, however injera still takes advantage of the special properties of fermentation. A period of fermentation gives it an airy, bubbly texture, and also a sour taste. Ingredients • 1 cup teff flour • 1½ cups water (warm - but not hot) • a pinch of salt • oil for frying • Optional: fermentation starter (see notes). Note that fermentation starter may contain gluten. Directions 1. Mix the flour with the water, and the salt. Add your fermentation starter if using one (see notes). 2. Set aside to ferment overnight, or at least for 12 hours. There should be bubbles on the surface from fermenting, before you use it. 3. Heat a large, flat pan until it is hot enough to make a droplet of water sizzle. Oil it very lightly, just enough to make the pan shine. 4. Pour or ladle some batter onto the pan, spiralling outwards

By Lee Jasper

Injera from the centre. Only a thin cover is required, a little thicker than a crêpe but not by much. 5. As it cooks, the surface of the injera will become covered in holes or pits. When the entire injera has changed colour and the edges start to lift from the pan, remove it and set aside, then pour the next injera and repeat until finished. Notes, tips and variations • If you cannot get it to ferment by itself, try a good fermentation starter like a teaspoonful of kefir. Baker’s yeast alone will not make for good flavour, as bacteria are needed also, but a teaspoonful of yoghurt plus a pinch of yeast might do the trick if you cannot get kefir. • Traditional injera is made with teff, however if this is difficult to get, it can be made with sorghum or wheat flour. • Since teff is often quite expensive outside of Africa, it is often mixed with wheat flour to give the injera some of the teff flavour but for less expense. Mix ¼ cup of teff flour with ¾ cup of sorghum or wheat flour, for the recipe above. Servings: 6 - 8 Time: ferment: 12-24 hours Cook: 5 minutes per injera By Recipe Safari, http://recipesafari.blogspot. com/


LIFESTYLE & RELIGION

No. 26. 15th - 21st November 2011 www.theafronews.eu

19

Go for flu jab now before it’s late, at risk groups reminded Contrary to what majority of people think, flu jab doesn’t give you flu People in an at risk group are reminded to make an appointment with their GP to have a flu jab if they haven’t already done so.

©NHS

People aged 65 years or over, pregnant women in any stage of pregnancy, people living in a residential or nursing home, or the main carer for an older or disabled person are advised to have the flu vaccine. People with the following conditions are also advised to have the flu vaccine: a heart problem, a chest complaint or breathing difficulties including, bronchitis, emphysema, a kidney disease, lowered immunity due to disease or treatment (such as steroid medication or cancer treatment), a liver disease, had a stroke or a transient ischaemic attack (TIA), diabetes, a neurological condition e.g. multiple sclerosis (MS) or cerebral palsy; and a problem with, or removal of, your spleen e.g. sick-

le cell disease. Latest figures show that: 55 percent (5.1 million) of people aged 65 or over; 32 percent (1.8

million) of people under the age of 65 in at risk groups; and 14 percent (51,000) of pregnant women have had the vaccine this

HPA: Drugs users at increased risk of bacterial infections People who inject drugs (PWID) are at an increased risk of developing bacterial infections such as wound botulism and tetanus, the Health Protection Agency (HPA) has warned in a new report. Prior to 2000, no cases of wound botulism had been associated with PWID in the UK, but in the past decade 163 suspected cases have been reported to the HPA. Tetanus infections show a similar trend, very rarely reported among PWID before 2003, with 34 cases having been reported since. These types of bacteria can cause wound infections that produce very severe wound infections. Wound botulism can lead to paralysis, and tetanus can cause ‘Lockjaw’ and painful spasms. Both of these infections can result in serious problems with breathing, which on rare occasions can be fatal. The bacteria that cause these

infections can end up in drugs like heroin through environmental contamination. Batches of drugs can become contaminated during production or transit. This can result in clusters of cases along the distribution networks. Infection may also result from injecting equipment becoming contaminated when an injection is being prepared in a place where bacterial spores are present in the soil. The annual report “Shooting Up” also found that a range of other bacterial infections, including MRSA, and viral infections, such as HIV and Hepatitis C, are continuing to occur among people who inject drugs. Dr. Fortune Ncube, a consultant epidemiologist at the HPA and one of the report’s authors, said: “This latest report shows that people who use drugs face an ever increasing range of potential risks if they continue to inject. These bacterial infections can cause serious illness and even death in some circumstances. “The best advice is to avoid

injecting drugs and for users to seek treatment for their drug use. If people choose to continue to use drugs, then they should have access to healthcare services that will help them avoid potential infections, and support them in accessing suitable treatments options for their drug use.” Dr. Ncube encouraged people who use drugs to go for regular testing, saying that it is helpful in the early identification of viral infections, such as HIV and Hepatitis C. “It is also important for PWID to seek prompt medical advice for symptoms of a possible bacterial infection in order to avoid developing severe complications,” Dr. Ncube said. “The majority of these infections among people who inject drugs are preventable. Vaccines are available against tetanus and Hepatitis B, and clean syringes, sterile swabs and good hygiene can help prevent bacterial infections and blood borne viruses like Hepatitis C and HIV.”

To encourage take up of the vaccine, Sally has made it “I can categorically state Dame clear that the vaccine that the flu jab does not does not give people give you flu. The vaccine the flu. This follows a poll for the does not include the live recent Department of Health, virus. It can save your life which showed that 58 though. Flu can kill – and percent of people believe that it can be particularly dan- wrongly the flu jab actually gerous for people in at risk gives people the flu. can categorically groups. They are on aver- state“I that the flu jab age 11 times more likely to does not give you flu. die from flu than a healthy The vaccine does not include the live virus,” person is” Dame Sally said. “It can save your life though. Flu can kill – Professor Dame Sally and it can be particuDavies, larly dangerous for The Chief Medical Officer people in at risk groups. They are on average 11 times more likely year. to die from flu than a The Chief Medical Officer, healthy person is.” Professor Dame Sally Davies, Dame Sally encouraged those said that she wants to see 75 per- in an at risk group who have not cent of the 65 years and older yet been called for a flu jab to group and 60 percent of under contact their GP. “It’s free on the 65s in at risk groups get vacci- NHS,” she said. nated this year.

New edition of “A Gift of Christmas” published The Methodist Church is asking people to share the spirit of Christmas in their communities by giving away “A Gift of Christmas”, the latest booklet in their popular series. For the first time ever the Church has also made available a free ebook for people to preview the printed version, or just to use themselves. The 2011 edition of “A Gift of Christmas” is the third with a festive theme, following “Christmas In Your Pocket” in 2009 and the first” A Gift of Christmas” in 2010. The new “A Gift of Christmas” celebrates the nativity story with verses from the new Methodist hymn collection, “Singing The Faith”, along with Bible passages and stunning images. People will find quotes from the likes of Edward Caswall and John Bell in this new version of the booklet. Ruth Pickles, Vice President of the Methodist Conference, said: “A Gift of Christmas is an exceptional gift. This pocketsized booklet contains enough good news to bring joy to any-

one who receives it. Slip one into any other gift you may be giving, or through your neighbour’s door. In beautiful illustrations and familiar words, it tells the story of a baby born in Bethlehem – born to be our saviour.” The ebook edition is available in the epub format that can be used on many ebook readers. Dave Webster, Internet Communications Coordinator, said: “Ebooks have really taken off this year. We hope that the “A Gift of Christmas” ebook will show people how stunning the printed copy is and help them in their personal devotion at this special time of year. The booklet is a great way to share the meaning of the Christmas story with friends and neighbours, and the ebook version offers another way to do this.” “A Gift of Christmas” is designed for churches and individuals to give away and is also ideal for small-group and personal reflection. It can be purchased from www.methodistpublishing.org.uk at the price of £5 for 50 copies plus postage and packaging.


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The AfroNews No. 26. 15th - 21st November 2011