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Make efforts to halt spread of HIV, Africans in UK advised

©Calvin Evans Photography

Kim Elba: I’m not a celebrity make-up artist

page 19

AFRUCA publishes manual on child protection for African parents in UK

Interview with a professional make-up artist pages 10-11

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THE GUIDE Working with African parents in the UK page 12

Terrorism charges against me based on mistranslation – Ofehe

Elaka releases debut single “My Africa”

page 15

page 17

Family migration rules tightened page 8

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WHERE ACTION IS

“Meet The Adebanjos” live on stage at Catford Broadway Theatre “Meet The Adebanjos”, the popular black British sitcom which chronicles the escapades of a modern BritishAfrican family living in London, is set to hit the stage this Summer.

anticipated debut on the London theatre scene. Debra Odutuyo, the show’s creator and

Thousands of viewers emailed the show’s producers, demanding a live theatre production in celebration of the show’s one year anniversary. On Saturday 14th July 2012, the Catford Broadway Theatre will play host to two hotly anticipated live showings of the hilarious independently-produced and -created show which has captured the imaginations and tickled the bellies of viewers around the world since it began in June 2011. The story behind how “Meet The Adebanjos” got to be where it is now in just one year is an incredible tale of the power of technology and new media tools coupled with a visionary team who were passionate about bringing British viewers a slice of their own experience of life, as firstgeneration born British children of African immigrants. “Meet The Adebanjos” has gone from being an online phenomenon which now has over 750,000 views, to a TV hit seen by millions of people on several SKY TV channels, a winner of three TV awards, international acclaim and is now making a highly-

executive producer, and banker-turnedTV-producer-and-financier Andrew Osayemi, had high hopes for the show but they didn’t expect it to resonate so deeply with black Brits. Ignored by the mainstream channels, many black Brits have been hungry for something that speaks to their own experience. People of all ages and entire families have tuned in to watch “Meet The Adebanjos” on various multi-media platforms. The live experience will also be a multigenerational family affair to be enjoyed by all people of all ages. “Our plan for the live show is to take the same comedic fun that our viewers have enjoyed in their living rooms to the live stage. All the actors will be there and fans of the show will be able to get to see and meet their favourite stars in the flesh,” says an excited Odutuyo who is currently in rehearsals with the cast. Many have already

come to know and love the show’s characters: the hapless Dad (who starred in the movie “Johnny English” and is now playing the lead role in new movie “Phone Swap”) who tries to instil his traditional African values into his children; the romance-wanting Mum; cheeky brother Tobi; sassy sister Sade; the troublesome Aunty Funke and mischievous next door neighbour Kevin. For them and for those who are just getting to know the show, “Meet The Adebanjos” promises its audience a great time watching the family and their friends play out their antics on stage. You can watch “Meet The Adebanjos” on The Africa Channel (SKY 268) on Friday nights at 9pm.

“MEET THE ADEBANJOS” LIVE IN THEATRE Date: Saturday 14th July 2012 3:00pm and 8:00pm. Venue: Catford Broadway Theatre Tickets are available to buy now from Catford Broadway Theatre. Box office: 0208 690 0002. Afternoon show (3pm) tickets are priced at £10 for children, £17.50 for adults. Evening show (8pm) tickets are available for £15 and £20.

Prepare to party at BT River of Music - the Africa Stage Some of the greatest stars of tage in collaboration with singers from African music will join emerging across Southern Africa. Veteran singer new voices to create an incredible Angelique Kidjo from Benin will be weekend of live music that will keep you up and dancing each day from midday into the evening at the BT River of Music - the Africa Stage.

©Afropop.org

The music festival will take place on 21st and 22nd July 2012 at London Pleasure Gardens in Docklands, near London City Airport. That’s the place to bring your dancing shoes and party. Super band Staff Benda Bilili will collaborate with Zao bridging a gap much bigger than the few miles of Congo River that separates their respective hometowns of Kinshasa and Brazzaville. Guitar maestro and international phenomenon King Sunny Ade will take to the stage in a project produced by the British Council. Indie-rock band The Noisettes will be heard as never before, with Shingai Shoniwa exploring her Zimbabwean heri-

backed by the Manchester World Voices Choir. Ace guitarist Justin Adams (Robert P l a n t , Tinariwen) will bring The Invisible Republic of JuJu with guest artists from across North Africa while the Senegalese m a s t e r Baaba Maal, who is hosting the A f r i c a Utopia festival at the Southbank Centre, will close the stage on Sunny Ade will be on stage Saturday

Guitar maestro King

night. Many more artists will be announced soon. Doors will open at 11:00 am, and the party will kick off each day from midday until dusk. The Africa Stage at BT River of Music is produced by Serious in partnership with the Southbank Centre. Suzi Williams, director, BT Group Marketing and Brand, said: “As a Premier Partner of the London 2012 Festival, we understand that London 2012 is about more than sport – it’s about people experiencing the amazing atmosphere the Games will bring to the capital and creating their personal Olympic and Paralympic memories. Through BT River of Music we’ll be giving people a fantastic and free London 2012 experience.” Tickets for BT River of Music are free, but there will be a small fee of £3 per ticket towards ticketing and administration costs. Tickets are available at www.ticketmaster.co.uk. For further information, please visit www.btriverofmusic.com.

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 | ADVERTISING: TEL: 020 7300 7320; 07846062331 | Email: sales@myownmedia. co.uk | DISTRIBUTION: Tojake Uk-Wade | 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 therefrom made against the publisher | Supplement of Africa News, Registered at the Tribunal of Rome. Registration No. 22/2003 - 21-01-2003


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AFRUCA publishes manual on child protection for African parents in UK AFRUCA (Africans United Against Child Abuse) charity has produced a new manual on child protection for African parents in the UK.

“Manual on Child Protection for African Parents in the UK” is a step by step guide meant to support parents in improving their knowledge and skills of

child protection and child safeguarding. “We have produced this document to help stem the tide of African children being removed from parents because of child abuse,” AFRUCA said. AFRUCA is a charity promoting the rights and welfare of African children in the UK. Modupe Debbie Ariyo, OBE, Founder and Executive Director of AFRUCA, told The AfroNews that “many parents have no idea about what to do or not

to do, there really is nowhere to go for help and information about many issues.” The publication provides a step-bystep guide on many relevant issues like: leaving children alone at home, discipline, children and the internet, the laws about child protection in the UK, etc. “This booklet aims to give African parents a greater understanding of the various issues around child upbringing in the UK and to suggest ways of dealing with those issues within the confines of UK laws in order to ensure that a child grows up in an environment that helps to maximise his/her life chances,” Ms. Debbie writes in the introduction to the

MANUAL ON CHILD PROTECTION FOR AFRICAN PARENTS IN THE UK

A step-by-step guide to help prevent abuse towards children

“This booklet aims to give African parents a greater understanding of the various issues around child upbringing in the UK and to suggest ways of dealing with those issues within the confines of UK laws in order to ensure that a child grows up in an environment that helps to maximise his/her life chances” Modupe Debbie Ariyo, OBE, Founder and Executive Director of AFRUCA

guide. AFRUCA has printed a limited number of copies of this guide which can also be downloaded from the charity’s website, and from our website. The AfroNews will serialise the “Manual on Child Protection for African Parents in the UK”, publishing a chapter in each edition. Please see the first chapter on page 12.

London’s Africa Centre hosts ‘African Spring’ political protests debate Media coverage of ‘Arab Spring’ protests has exposed government corruption in North Africa, but has overshadowed news of political unrest across the rest of the continent, an African politics expert at Queen Mary, University of London has said.

To analyse the rash of antigovernment and anti-capitalist protests which have exploded

across Africa in the wake of the global financial crisis, Dr. Clive Gabay, from the School of Politics and International Relations at Queen Mary has organised a free panel event this month. Yash Tandon, former Ugandan minister, who opposed the 1970’s dictatorship of Idi Amin, will join other African activists, commentators and scholars to debate the rise of political protests from Malawi to Ethiopia. The event ‘African Awakenings? Interpreting con-

temporary African protest’ will be hosted at the Africa Centre, Britain’s leading African cultural centre, in Covent Garden. Other panellists include: Bayo Oyenuga (organiser of Lagos’ ‘Rapewalk’, which campaigns on behalf of child victims of sexual assault, and the anti-capitalist ‘Occupy Lagos’ movement); Ayanda Kota (head of Unemployed People’s Movement, South Africa); Firoze Manji (Editor-inChief of African newswire, Pambazuka Press); and Patricia

Daley (expert on African protest the protest movements that have movements at University of emerged in the recent years “canOxford). not be reduced to a simple victory “Africa tends to be a continent for the development industry’s viewed through a prism of starva- efforts to mainstream Western valtion, disease and violence. But if ues like liberal democracy in the under-reported uprisings African states.” across Africa have told us anyIn response, he said, “African thing however, it is that politics on protestors have demanded homethe continent does not always take grown solutions to their predicaplace at the point of a gun,” Dr. ments, for example, greater govGabay said. “Western media ste- ernment oversight on transnationreotypes over-simplify political al corporations seeking to make a issues affecting African nations, fast buck out of African natural and fail to provide a platform for resources.” the citizens of African states to articulate their political demands and mesAFRICAN AWAKENINGS? sages.” Dr. Gabay also INTERPRETING criticised Western CONTEMPORARY AFRICAN development efforts PROTEST to bring governance and democracy to Africa, which he said Date: Thursday 19th July 2012 “have shrunk state Time: 6.30pm-8.30pm control, creating the Venue: Africa Centre, 38 King ‘perfect storm’ of cor- Street, Covent Garden, London, ruption, rising energy WC2E 8JT prices and growing To book places, please log on to: inequality across the http://www.eventbrite.com/ continent.” event/3449426327 He observed that


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African Women in Business Conference takes place in London

The 2nd Annual African Women in Business Conference will be held in London on 13th July 2012.

The conference to be addressed by influential African women has been orga-

nized by the Association for African Owned Enterprises (AAOE UK). It will take place at the University of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), Thornhaugh Street, Russell Square, London, WC1H 0XG, 11:00am to 9:00pm. Wa s h i n g t o n Kapapiro, Chairman AAOE UK said: “This year our conference will focus on ‘Women of Influence’. We will be looking to encourage women who have achieved success and hold senior leadership positions to be bold and confident in these positions and use them as platforms to wield their influence as women rather than take up these positions as “token” leaders in place just to fulfil gender equality policies.” The conference has been endorsed by Lynne Featherstone MP - Under-Secretary of State for Equalities. “I am happy to be extending my support for the African

Women in Business Conference for the second year,” Ms. Featherstone said. “The objectives of this Conference reflect those of the Government: to get more women into business and into senior leadership positions. It is essential that we get more businesses and charities to realise the benefits of having more women in their leadership teams. When the key decisions makers better reflect our society, we maximize our chances for future growth, wellbeing and prosperity.” The Conference will celebrate African female entrepreneurs and professionals in the Diaspora. With a line-up of speakers and special guests who in their own right wield considerable influence in the fields of Business, Politics, Lifestyle, Fashion and more, this event is set to dispel the many myths surrounding African women and inspire those coming up the ranks to pursue their dreams. Confirmed speakers include Baroness Oona King, Labour MP and former Diversity Officer for Channel 4; Elsie Owusu OBE, partner in the firm Feilden+Mawson, principal of her own

AFRICAN WOMEN IN BUSINESS CONFERENCE School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), Thornhaugh Street, Russell Square, London, WC1H 0XG. Friday 13th July 2012. 11:00am to 9:00pm. Registration & Tickets: http:// aaoeafricanwomenconference. eventbrite.com/

firm of architects and founder member of the Society of Black Architects; Em Ekong, Director of Urban Inclusion and the African & Caribbean Business Experience; Kubi Springer, Branding Strategist; Eryca Freemantle, International Celebrity MakeUp Artist; Carol Nyazika, Personal Branding Strategist; Nyasha Gwatidzo, Founder & Director of Vana Trust; and Justina Mutale, the African Woman of the Year, who is also the Founder and CEO of POSITIVE RUNWAY: Global Catwalk to Stop the Spread of HIV/AIDS. “The 21st century presents incredible opportunities for women to reassert their position in the gender dynamics and to hold legitimate positions of authority to influence others and to influence the direction of the global agenda,” said Ms. Mutale.

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Diabetes Community Champions raise awareness of diabetes in Newham The newly trained Diabetes Community Champions in Newham are now raising awareness of diabetes in ethnic minority communities in the local area.

People of an African Caribbean background are up to three times more likely to develop Type 2 diabetes, and South Asian people are up to six times more likely. Type 2 diabetes can go undetected for up to ten years, so 50 per cent of people already show signs of complications by the time they are diagnosed. Some of the complications include heart disease, stroke, kidney failure, blindness and amputation if the condition is not managed properly. Diabetes UK has trained community leaders from ethnic minority backgrounds in Newham to learn about Type 2 diabetes. Diabetes Champions learn about the risk factors, symptoms, myths and misconceptions that are prevalent in some cultures. After their training they go out into their communities to raise local awareness by holding events, giving talks and encourag-

ing people at high risk to visit their local GP or community pharmacist for a diabetes test. This activity has been sponsored by MSD. In Newham, more than 18,600 people have been diagnosed with diabetes, and it’s estimated that around 1,200 people in the borough are undiagnosed with Type 2 diabetes. Diabetes UK North London Diverse Communities Officer, Juliet O’Brien, said: “Diabetes Community Champions regularly get out to minority ethnic communities, improving the understanding and awareness of diabetes and helping to identify people at risk of developing Type 2 diabetes. Diabetes is a serious condition that has potentially devastating complications if not diagnosed early enough or if it is not managed effectively.”

Diabetes Community Champions at their training on 12th-13th June. Back row: Shaleen Sandhu (DoH Diverse Communities Officer), Abdul Shakoor, Pamela Hillyer, Paul Campbell, Messoud Said Front row: G. Sureshkumar, John Clarke, John Boakye, Rajeswari Sadasivan, Juliet O’Brien (Diabetes UK North London Diverse Communities Officer)


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Patrick Vernon dedicates OBE to Windrush generation parents “There is still more to do particularly Patrick Vernon, the Chief Executive of The Afiya Trust, has around the new changing structure of the been awarded an OBE in the NHS and the role of local government in Queen’s Birthday Honours List. leading on public health,” Mr. Vernon said. The award is for his commitment to working to combat health inequalities for black and minority ethnic communities. Mr. Vernon, who is a Councillor in Hackney, plans to dedicate his OBE to his parents, Norris and Avis Vernon. “I am dedicating this honour to my parents who were part of the Windrush Generation, they made a lot of personal sacrifices coming to Britain and raising my four sisters and I,” Mr. Vernon said. “It is also great to receive this award which also coincides with the 50th anniversary of the Independence of Jamaica.” For more than 20 years Mr. Vernon’s career in health and social care has taken various paths, in particular it has been dedicated to campaigning to address health inequality for all minority groups. Mr. Vernon was the former NonExecutive Director for East London and the City Health Authority and Chair of City and Hackney Drugs Action Team. He has held various roles such as Regional Director for London and South East England for Mind, NHS Director of Brent Health Action Zone) and a Non-Executive Director for City and East London Health Authority - Trustee for Social Action for Health.

“The work of The Afiya Trust and other organisations will be important to make the business case on how equalities and health inequalities should be combined around service development and commissioning. I hope that I will be in the position to use my OBE to further advance these issues and promote my experiences as a leader to support others wishing to develop their career in the health and social care sector.” Sola Afuape, Chair of The Afiya Trust, said it was a great pleasure to welcome the news of Mr. Vernon’s receipt of the OBE. “This is apt recognition of his tireless work advocating for the rights, health and wellbeing of BME communities across the country,” Ms. Afuape said. “As CEO of The Afiya Trust he has been unstinting in pressing for major reforms to health and social care and challenging the barriers to equality of access and provision for all. As a close family at The Afiya Trust we would like to congratulate Patrick on receiving this honour and will support his continued efforts on behalf of BME communities.” The OBE is expected to be awarded to Mr. Vernon by the Queen at Buckingham Palace in December. Cllr Sandra Samuels, Cabinet Member for Health and Well Being in

Patrick Vernon, the Chief Executive of The Afiya Trust Wolverhampton said: “This honour for Patrick is a long time coming. It is absolutely fantastic news. Patrick has worked tirelessly for The Afiya Trust and for communities across the country. The more Patricks we have in this world the better our communities will benefit from it. “The work that The Afiya Trust is doing is benefiting communities up and down the country. Patrick’s knowledge base in health is fantastic and it translates

from the work Afiya is doing in London to how these experiences can be beneficial to communities in places like Wolverhampton.” In 2010 the Chalkhill Health Living Centre in Brent, a multimillion GP and community health centre near Wembley Stadium, named their main community hall ‘The Vernon Hall’ in recognition of Mr. Vernon’s work with local residents.

Street Pastors founder awarded OBE for fostering community cohesion Rev Les Isaac has described as “a great honour” the Queen’s decision to award him an OBE for his work fostering community cohesion in his role as Head of the Ascension Trust. The Ascension Trust is an umbrella organisation that oversees the work of Street Pastors. Commenting on his award Rev Isaac said: “This is a great honour and is really recognition of the work that our amazing team of volunteer pastors carry out every weekend providing a much needed listening ear for people on our streets, as well as for school pupils and college students across the country during the week. I am particularly thankful for people who have worked alongside me in a joint effort to build peaceful and strong communities.” Street Pastors was launched in 2003 as a response to gun and knife crime in Britain’s urban areas. The concept of sending trained pastors to the streets between 10pm and 4pm every Friday and Saturday caught the attention of Christians across the country, who saw it as an effective to engage with their local communities. There are now 250 street pastors’ teams across the UK, overseeing 10,000 trained individuals who provide over 600,000 volunteer patrol hours every year.

Rev Les Isaac, founder of Street Pastors

Street Pastors has also been established overseas in various countries including Trinidad, Antigua and Northern Ireland with enquiries being received all the time from individuals in the UK and abroad who are interested in setting up their own teams. Street Pastors has inspired the launch of School Pastors and College Pastors initiatives where trained volunteers provide support for students in educational establishments. There are currently 10 School and College Pastors teams across the UK, with teams due to launch in Tavistock, Isle of Wight, Ilfracombe, Northern Ireland, Torbay, Cheshire West and Ellesmere Port. The Ascension Trust is also the umbrella organisation of Word for Weapons, which provides specially made bins where people can leave their knives and weapons. Since it was

launched in 2007, over 4,000 weapons have been collected and destroyed. When Rev Isaac was growing up, he never envisaged that he would become a church leader, let alone be the recipient of an OBE. Born in Antigua, Rev Isaac came to the UK as a young child to join his parents who lived in north London. He was thrown into London life, less experienced gangs and street violence during his teens. In his search for hope he became a Rastafarian. Rev Isaac converted to Christianity in his late teens. As a result of experiencing a radical life change, and being inspired by his new found faith, Rev Isaac became committed to make people aware of the spiritual and practical relevance of the Gospel message, and sharing it with everyone – both within the black community and beyond. The story of Rev Isaac’s early life is told in his debut book “Dreadlocks”, and continued in “Relevant Church”. The inspirational growth of Street Pastors is told in the best seller “Street Pastors”. Not one to rest on his laurels, Rev Isaac will ensure that his OBE spurs him on in his work to positively impact communities across Britain and make the world a safer place, and encourage his team of volunteers to do the same.


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Soul II Soul honoured with PRS for Music Heritage Award Soul II Soul, one of the UK’s most successful and iconic R’n’B groups has been honoured with a plaque in London.

The Heritage Award (a black and red plaque) was mounted on the front façade of the Electric in Brixton on 21st June 2012. Electric which used to be known as The Fridge in the early ‘90s, is the venue where the group played their first full live gig in 1991. The plaque was unveiled by members of Soul II Soul including Jazzie B, vocalist Caron Wheeler, Aitch and Q, PRS for Music Deputy Chair Paulette Long and Shadow Business Secretary Chuka Umunna MP for Streatham, in front of a crowd of fans and media. The unveiling was followed by an exclusive live set of the hits, “Keep On Movin”, “Love Enuff” and “Get A Life” at the venue. “We are really overwhelmed by this award and appreciate

Chuka Umunna MP for Streatham (left) and Jazzie B, founder of Soul II Soul (with microphone) during the plaque unveiling ceremony everyone’s support over the years,” Jazzie B said. “It is ironic that it’s the Jubilee year and that’s when Soul II Soul started and

flourished.. during a time of recession. That’s what the kids need to do today. We went from Hackney to New York and around

the world. Brixton has such a special place in our story and this venue is where things really took off.”

Mr. Umunna described Soul II Soul’s impact on British music as “astounding”. “The first ever gig I went to was seeing them at Brixton Academy in the early 90’s. For such a legendary band, Soul II Soul haven’t always had the recognition they deserve. It is fantastic that we can honour a homegrown London band in this way and celebrate the fantastic local music venues and thriving scene that make our live gigs and contribution to music the envy of the rest of the UK,” Mr. Umunna said. Ms. Long said it was “an absolute privilege” to present the Heritage Award to Soul II Soul and to the Electric. “Having grown up in the Brixton area, and born just a stone’s throw away from the Electric, it’s fantastic to recognise one of the area’s leading musical talents who have inspired many musicians the world over, and I know that Brixton will continue to produce more artists of this calibre for us to celebrate,” she said.


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CURRENT AFFAIRS

Home Office has changed Immigration Rules for non-European Economic Area (non-EEA) nationals applying to enter or remain in the UK on the family migration route. From this month, only those earning at least £18,600 will be able to bring in a nonEEA spouse or partner, fiancé(e) or proposed civil partner. Those with children will need to earn £22,400 for one child and an additional £2,400 for each additional child. The Home Office has also extended the minimum probationary period for settlement for non-EEA spouses and partners from two years to five years. This is being done, according to the Home Office, to test the genuineness of the relationship and to deter sham marriages. Immediate settlement for migrant spouses and partners where a couple have been living together overseas for at least four years has also been abolished. From October 2013, all applicants for settlement will be required to pass the Life in the UK Test and present an English lan-

States should pay close attention to early signs of racism that may eventually lead to conflicts and grave human rights violations, Mutuma Ruteere, UN Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance has said.

From 1st October 2012 if you have overstayed your leave by more than 28 days, the UK Border Agency will reject your application for further leave. The change in the Immigration Rules will affect applicants applying for further leave under: the points-based system; all working and student routes; visiting routes; long residency routes; discharged HM Forces; or UK ancestry routes. This change is in line with the new immigration rules which will come into effect for the family migration route from 9th July 2012. If you have limited leave to remain you must ensure you apply to extend your leave, if needed, in time. If you wish to remain in the UK after the 28 day period you should leave the UK and reapply for a visa.

our way of life can use weak human rights claims to dodge deportation,” Ms. May said. “We want these new rules to make it clear when the rights of the law abiding majority will outweigh a foreign criminal’s right to family and private life. By voting on this in the House of Commons, Parliament will define for the first time where the balance should lie.”

The Home Secretary has also announced what the Home Office described as “decisive action to protect the public from foreign offenders who try to abuse human rights legislation to prevent their removal from the UK.” “It is unacceptable that foreign nationals whose criminal behaviour undermines

Tackle racist attacks by extremist groups, States urged ©Dreamtime.com

UKBA changes rules for overstayers

guage speaking and listening qualification at B1 level or above of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages unless they are exempt. Under the new rules, adult and elderly dependants will be allowed to settle in the UK only where they can demonstrate that, as a result of age, illness or disability, they require a level of long-term personal care that can only be provided by a relative in the UK. They’ll also be required to apply from overseas rather than switch in the UK from another category, for example as a visitor. The Home Secretary Theresa May said: “To play a full part in British life, family migrants must be able to integrate – that means they must speak our language and pay their way. This is fair to applicants, but also fair to the public.” Family visit visa appeals have been restricted, initially by narrowing the current definitions of family and sponsor for appeal purposes. Should the Parliament approve the Crime and Courts Bill which was published on 11th May 2012, the full right of appeal against refusal of a family visit visa will be removed.

©Evelyn Parham

Family migration rules tightened

“The presence of extremist groups, including neo-Nazi and skinhead groups, in sporting events is a matter of serious concern,” Mr. Ruteere said. “Neo-Nazi symbols, slogans and banners displayed during football matches and racist chants against players or supporters of African origin should not be tolerated. I call upon States to intensify the fight against racism in sport and to strengthen the role of sports in promoting cultural diversity.” “In particular, in light of the upcoming Olympics it is crucial that further preventive measures be taken to avoid racist incidents during this event which is going to reach out to all regions of the world,” he added. The Special Rapporteur also warned that impunity for crimes motivated by racism, xenophobia and intolerance encourages recurrence of such acts. He called on States to ensure that thorough and impartial investigations into such crimes are promptly carried out, those responsible are prosecuted, and victims have effective access to remedies.

Mr. Ruteere cited in particular the rise in extremist political parties, movements and groups, and the serious problem of racism in sport, such as in the context of the UEFA Football Championship. “The rise in extremist political parties, movements and groups continues to pose major challenges, particularly in the context of the current economic and financial crisis,” Mr. superiority or hatred and incite racial discrimiRuteere told the Human Rights Council in nation and xenophobia.” Geneva. “In this context, vulnerable groups He added that recent incidents of violence have been made the scapegoats for the rise in and racism in the context of the UEFA Football unemployment and State debt, and labelled a Championships show that racism in sport is a threat to the standard of living of the general 021211_150.8x69_TTX_Afro_0037_en.ai 1 02/12/2011 11:21:52 serious problem. population by extremist political parties.” The Special Rapporteur said racist, xenophobic and intolerant T-TALK acts were continuing to be perpeInternational Calls from your mobile trated against people of African descent and members of minorities such as the Roma, foreign students, Jews, Muslims and migrants. “I am particularly concerned Same rates 24/7 ! that some traditional political parUse your existing pay ties have also embraced the openly monthly or PAYG SIM. racist, xenophobic and nationalistic For more details visit rhetoric of extremist political parties,” he said. “Due to the audience www.auracall.com/afro they reach and their moral authority, political party leaders should refrain from such discourses and strongly Helpline: 020 8497 4622 condemn all political messages that disseminate ideas based on racial

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Stand up for migrants, Amnesty urges European Parliament European Union governments and EU institutions must stop exposing people to danger on Europe’s borders, Amnesty International has said.

©Amnesty I

‘people on the move’. “For the EU, reinforcing Europe’s borders clearly trumps saving lives,” said Nicolas Beger, Director of Amnesty International’s European Institutions Office. “By attempting to The call accompanies the launch of an curb ‘irregular migration’, European online public petition to Members of the countries have bolstered border conEuropean Parliament, urging them to fulfil trol measures beyond European frontheir ‘watchdog’ role and hold governments tiers without regard to the human cost. and institutions accountable for how they Far from public view, these measures treat migrants, refugees and asylum-seekput people at risk of serious abuse.” ers along Europe’s borders. Last year, at least 1,500 men, Amnesty International has also women and children drowned in the launched “When you don’t exist” camMediterranean struggling to reach paign, which will target the plight of these Europe. Some of these deaths were avoidable. Delayed rescue costs lives, “For the EU, reinforcing Europe’s bor- A m n e s t y ders clearly trumps saving lives. By International said. In recent years, attempting to curb ‘irregular migration’, some survivors have European countries have bolstered bor- been forced back to der control measures beyond European countries where they frontiers without regard to the human faced abuse and ill-treatcost. Far from public view, these mea- ment. On several occasions Italy pushed back sures put people at risk of serious people to Libya where abuse” they were detained and mistreated. In an environment where there is little Nicolas Beger, transparency or oversight, Director of Amnesty International’s human rights abuses often European Institutions Office go unpunished along Europe’s coasts and bor-

ders. Amnesty International’s campaign seeks to hold to account any European country which violates human rights in enforcing migration controls. “When you don’t exist” aims to defend the rights of migrants, refugees and asylum-seekers in Europe and around its borders. People move to Europe for different reasons. Some flee persecution or war. Others try to abandon a life of chronic poverty. They hope to find a better, safer future

here. All too often the reality is different. Amnesty International said Europe is failing to promote and respect the rights of migrants, asylum-seekers and refugees. Hostility is widespread and mistreatment often goes unreported. As long as people on the move are invisible, they are vulnerable to abuse. For more information about “When you don’t exist” campaign, visit www.whenyoudontexist.eu.

End detention of irregular migrants, says UN expert François Crépeau, United Nations Special Rapporteur on the human rights of migrants, has urged states to avoid administrative detention of irregular migrants. “Liberty is the rule, detention is the exception,” he said in his annual report to the UN Human Rights Council. “The issue of migration detention is of paramount concern, given the growing tendency of states to detain migrants in an irregular situation, and in light of the wide range of human rights issues that such detention potentially has on those per-

sons,’’ Mr. Crépeau said. He discouraged states from resorting to immigration detention as the first option. “Immigration detention should never be mandatory or automatic. It should be a measure of last resort, only permissible for the shortest period of time and when no less restrictive measure is available,” he stressed. “Governments have an obligation to establish a presumption in favour of liberty in domestic law, and should consider progressively abolishing the administrative detention of migrants.” The Special Rapporteur drew special

attention to the fact that the right to liberty and security of a person, the protection against arbitrary detention, and all other human rights guarantees are applicable to all detained persons, regardless of their migration status. “Any detention of migrants must be prescribed by law and must be necessary, reasonable and proportional to the objectives to be achieved,” he said. The UN expert also focused on the importance of providing special protection for certain categories of migrants in detention and specific measures that should be taken for their protection.

In his report, Mr. Crepeau shares a range of successful non-custodial alternatives to detention, which are also considerably less expensive than detention measures. He however, warned that the success of those alternatives depends on the adoption of a human rights approach. “All persons subject to non-custodial measures should receive clear and concise information about their rights and duties in relation to the measures in place, on the consequences of non-compliance, and treated with dignity, humanity and respect for their human rights,” Mr. Crépeau said.


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COVER

Kim Elba: I’m not a celebrity make-up artist Interview with a professional make-up artist Doing the telephone interview with Kim Elba was like having a conversation with an old friend but the most difficult part was getting hold of the elegant star. With a busy lifestyle juggling motherhood, showbiz and running a major store, it was an honour to interview Kim for The AfroNews. A self-confessed globetrotter Kim shares with us her journey from modelling to becoming a professional make-up artist, the challenges of having the surname Elba, and a store she jointly runs with a friend in New Jersey. Kim, it is such an honour to take time out off your busy schedule to talk to me. I realise I have just interrupted your photo shoot. Thank you, Pauline. It is not a problem. I’m happy to be interviewed by you. Looking at your pictures, you are extremely beautiful. Your

skin is always glowing. What is your background? It is not all down to good make-up (laughs). My mother is from South Korea and my father is African American. I grew up in three places, South Korea, England and USA.

I graduated with 1st honours at International Artist Make Up Academy in London and within the first week I got a job with the BBC. Even though I studied make-up in UK I came back to US to refresh as both countries have different ways of make-up artistry.

When did you come to England?

What is your speciality in make-up?

As a teenager I packed my bags and went to London on adventure on my own. I always liked new places; I was always thirsty for new environments so London gave me an opportunity to model.

Special effects make up was and is my speciality. It is still my favourite even though I have never used the skill.

Do you still model? No, my modelling days are long gone. How long did you model for? Not long enough but I wanted to change career and find something more solid to do. My parents are big on education so they said I should study make-up and that way I would still stay in the beauty and fashion industry, so I went for an interview and got in.

What has been the most special moment in your career as a make-up artist? Most fulfilling time working in my career was working for Columbia Tristar in Hollywood. How long have you been a make-up artist? I have been a make-up artist for 20 years and it has been fantastic, I’m still thoroughly enjoying it. Well, I’m sure you have mastered the art extremely well and it is no wonder you are now teaching it. Do you enjoy teaching? Yes I do, I get inspired by young make-up artists who are just starting out, so teaching still brings out the best in me. Is attending make-up master classes a quick fix for learners or do they have to go to university to get degrees? As a makeup artist you do not have to go to make-up school or university. You can learn make-up on a one to one basis from someone with experience, depending on

how long you want to learn. What are you doing in preparation for your UK make-up master classes? There is no specific preparation for the UK make-up master classes. I think the British audience are thirsty for it and those are exactly the kind of students we want. UK looks up to US for make-up and US looks up to UK for fashion. British fashion trends are awesome. I love them. You are both a hair and make-up professional but why do you only do make-up? I trained in both hair and make-up but hair has never been my passion. I don’t want to go to work feeling I’m dragged into it. I want to enjoy my work. I have turned major jobs down that required hair and make-up but sometimes I would say yes if it wasn’t too complicated. Makeup is my first love. Even if the money was right would you still turn it down? Well to be honest with you when you do both hair and makeup, they tend to package it so the pay is actually much less than expected. You have now ventured into a new market with a store, tell me more about it? Yes, it is something I’m very excited about. The store is in New Jersey, it is called “All About The Accessories”. My friend came up with the idea of running an accessories shop but he knew nothing about jewellery and fashion accessories. I love fashion so he gave me a good offer that I could not refuse. We are partners in the business. The name is interesting... It is and it is rather long but it has a meaning. It is simply all about the accessories that I pick. Do you personally pick or rather buy everything for the shop? Yes, I pick everything in the store. I know the quality of each and every piece. I’m very thorough on quality; it has to be the best quality. The store is something that I always wanted. I’m


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COVER hands on, I like talking to clients, get the feel, cater for them. I get involved in the store from logistics right down to security and accounts. So you are the boss lady, but it must be a task running it in New Jersey when you are based in Atlanta. Yes you could say that (laughs), but I am the nice boss. I can’t be there all the time but I can log on remotely to keep updated on what is going on. How do people refer to you when they see you out and about? When they see me out they are like that is Kim Elba not Kim the professional make-up artist. What does that make you feel? It is not easy carrying the sir name Elba, obviously people think of Idris first then me. I

in fact we are similar when it comes to achievements but both are humble. He has achieved a lot that people don’t know. I don’t think people like listening to others bragging about achievements. With all that talent he only made his name big in the US, why? I think the UK take time to embrace talent, which is such a shame. I hope that one day UK will embrace talent and not wait for one to make it in the USA first. What is your beautiful daughter Isan getting up to? Isan is only 10 but already an aspiring actress. Initially Idris and I were not pushing her at all to take up acting but we realised she loved acting especially after visiting her dad on set. So we let her start at the age of four. But we wanted her to learn acting from the craft bot-

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interview we almost had a row about me calling you a celebrity make-up artist, why? Because I am not a celebrity make-up artist as people refer to me, I am a professional make-up artist. Why is it a big deal to you? I cringe when people are like ‘who are the most famous clients you have had?’ Even though I have done some of the most famous faces, I never name drop because no one is more important than the next client. Every person has a greatness. I understand people can be curious but I do not really want to call myself celebrity make-up artist. From promotional angle it works otherwise it is really not for me. But you are a famous makeup artist? Yes but with fame there is a hefty price to pay which I’m not interested in. Such as?

“I think the UK take time to embrace talent, which is such a shame. I hope that one day UK will embrace talent and not wait for one to make it in the USA first”

The price of being with Idris Elba. In the beginning and even now people would make stuff up, yet they don’t know me personally. I did not understand it at all, before I would take it to heart but now I ignore it as I know it is just jealousy.

Ms. Kim Elba

Ahhhh, I can’t resist going back to the topic Idris Elba. The guy is hot, with many female fans. How do you deal with it? Do you get any comments from women about your relationship with Idris?

really want to get my credit as Kim the make-up artist. I don’t think I could shake it off, sometimes I would like to, sometimes I think may be changing my name would be best and just be Kim but then I think why should I? This is me; I’m Kim Elba, the professional make-up artist.

©Calvin Evans Photography

When doing interviews do you get asked a lot about Idris, well like I’m asking you now? (Laughs) Yes, I do but we try not to touch on him too much because he is who he is and I am who I am. It really doesn’t matter anymore what the correct answer is in an interview. I’m extremely proud of him for paving ways for himself. We are all proud. What do you think of him as an actor? Although music is his first love, he has done well in acting. He is a star! What is one thing you like about him, sorry this interview is turning to be about Idris..... (We both laugh) It is OK Pauline, I don’t mind because it’s you. Idris is very humble and

tom instead of going straight to Hollywood and getting roles because she is Isan Elba. So she started to go to acting school which she still goes to and she enjoys it. Idris wants her to learn the right way as opposed to being handed over opportunities for having a famous dad, that way she will get roles suitable for her talent. And how is she getting on with it? It is going great, she has had a few roles. She is also going to star in a movie with Idris where he is going to play Nelson Mandela. Isan is very intelligent and loving. She told me recently: “Mummy you don’t ever have to be away from me. You will always do my make-up”. She is a great child. It looks like you are going to be a make-up artist for life whether you like it or not... (Laughing) I have no say in the matter as Isan has booked me for life. We are very proud of her. We have tried to raise her in the most normal way possible, she is very humble. In the beginning of this

Yes, for some women it is like he is supposed to be with them. Why me, Kim. What people don’t know is I knew him way before he became famous. We were both teenagers when we met in London. We are teenage sweethearts. What is next for Kim Elba? Well I’m planning to introduce my make-up line sometimes in the near future, it is one of my top priorities. For those who will not be able to attend any of your master classes, how can they benefit? I will be streaming the classes live where you can interact with me and the entire class. You can join us from anywhere in the world. All you need to do is register online. To register for Kim Elba’s make-up classes, please log on to www.makeupyourmindinc. com. By Pauline Long


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THE GUIDE

MANUAL ON CHILD PROTECTION FOR AFRICAN PARENTS IN THE UK

Working with African parents in the UK Without any doubt, there have been significant growths in the number of people from different parts of Africa coming to live in the UK. Africans are coming to the UK for a variety of reasons. Some are here to escape the conflict and war situations in their own countries. Others are here to study. Some are here to escape the harsh economic conditions in their countries and wish to settle down and make the UK their permanent home. Many others are here as victims of human trafficking, brought to the UK to be abused and exploited. Under the government’s dispersal programme, many Africans are living across the UK, outside the major conurbations like London and Manchester in isolation, away from friends and family. Coming to a new country with a different culture, value and belief systems brings correlating social problems with significant implications for the children and communities. As with most migrant groups, social exclusion and poverty are rife among newly arrived African communities. There is a high level of unemployment and underemployment, despite the fact that Africans as an ethnic group have one of the highest levels of educational qualifications. Also, many new migrants lack access to decent housing and a high proportion of Africans live in the poorest urban areas on neglected, deprived council estates in Britain’s largest cities. The combinations of all these issues often result in an increase in health and mental health problems. With the current economic situation, local authorities across the countries are witnessing unprecedented numbers of referrals of children into the child protection system. Certainly across London, the figures are getting higher. In particular, our research shows that children of African origin are also becoming over represented in the child protection system especially under the categories of “Physical Abuse” and “Neglect”.

Raising Children in the UK: What Do Parents Tell Us? AFRUCA has been conducting self-certified Child Protection Training Courses for African Parents across London, Greater Manchester and in other parts of England since 2007. We have worked with almost 3,000 African parents since that time to help raise the-

ir knowledge and skills around child upbringing and develop further knowledge of what constitutes “significant harm” in the context of UK law so children can be protected. Here are some of the key comments made by many of our training participants as issues facing African families in raising children in

renting. The methods used are obedience led, expecting all their commands to be obeyed without explanation, without question. We also think that this is the norm among many Africans although, as with every behavior, this varies from parent to parent. However, many parents still rely on corporal punishment

the UK: 1. Threat and or/use of force or “discipline” within African families is “normal” and “right”. 2. Very high expectations by parents of their children in educational achievement and imposing choices on children is “good”. 3. State intervention in the family on how children have to be raised and removal of a child for protection is a phenomenon many parents do not agree with. 4. Lack of social support system from extended families and the communities in general unlike back home in Africa (it takes a whole village to raise a child) is a problem. 5. Limited understanding of the various stages of child development and corresponding challenges and how to meet them can affect parenting methods. 6. Poverty, unemployment, poor housing, immigration status can lead to stress and affect how parents relate to their children. 7. Culture and Religion are important to African parents who feel it is essential that these are also passed on to their children.

to ensure compliance with their instructions or wishes. In the UK today, based on our research at AFRUCA, African children are over-represented in many local authorities’ Child Protection referral figures or on child protection registers/plans under the category of “Physical Abuse.” An extract from “Manual On Many African parents tell us they Child Protection For African Parents are keen for their children to attain eduin the UK” by Africans Unite against cational success. Formal education is Child Abuse (AFRUCA). considered to be the key to success in life and many parents hardly tolerate To be continued in next edition. a child who is underachieving. Children can therefore end up being abused in the process of being compelled to “do well” and • Lack of knowledge of child developexcel at school. Many newly arrived pa- ment processes or the symptoms of disrents in the UK are not abilities can lead to some parents abusfamiliar with the notion of government interven- ing their children tion, through Children’s • Many parents breach UK laws on Services who are seen as Child Protection out of ignorance and intruding into people’s lineed help and support to improve ves by removing children at will. State intervention knowledge and understanding in this manner is seen as • Intervention in a home could be done harsh, cruel and uncalled “in the best interests” of the child for. Many parents do not see or understand that in- • African Children are over-representtervention in a home could ed in Local Authorities’ Child be done “in the best intere- Protection referral figures under the sts of the child”. category of “Physical Abuse”

©AFRUCA

SPECIAL UK LEGAL GUIDE

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Most of the parents, when first attending our training programme, claim to practice an authoritarian style of pa-

The lack of understanding of child development processes, breaches of which can lead to learning difficulties or even disability among children can make some parents believe their child is a victim of malevolent beings. Some parents have been known to abuse their children in the false belief that they are possessed by evil spirits and without accessing the right support and advice may resort to “spiritual healers”. Families may not even be aware that some of their child’s behaviours are really symptoms of certain forms of learning difficulties or disabilities or may realise that too late. Child-raising is also seen by many as a community affair- it takes a village to raise a child. However, in the UK, the state takes over the community’s role in helping parents to raise their children. State protection of the child in the UK is done through a wide array of laws that are complex, sometimes difficult to understand for newly arrived communities, and not widely known or accessed by families. Many African parents, mainly out of ignorance, breach these laws, and put children at risk of harm. The consequences of breaching these laws can be quite bad for many parents such having a child removed and placed into the care of the local authority. The following sections cover a range of useful topics that will help to provide information to parents on how to act to protect their children and to keep them safe.

Key Points to Remember


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CARIBBEAN NEWS

Jamaica launches HIV workplace education campaign Jamaica’s Ministry of Labour and Social Security (MLSS) has launched an HIV in the Workplace Public Education campaign, aimed at sensitising employers of the need to adopt policies on HIV and AIDS.

costs on companies through decline in productivity, increased labour costs and expenses, costly treatments and loss of skills and experience. He pointed out that the most critical segment of the workforce (15-49 years) is most at risk for contracting HIV, and with a prev-

Jamaica earns US$1.12 billion from tourism Minister of Tourism and Entertainment, Hon. Wykeham McNeill, has reported US$1.12 billion in gross foreign exchange earnings from tourism for the first six months of the year. The Minister, who made the disclosure during his Sectoral Debate presentation in the House of Representatives on 3rd July 2012, noted that the figure represents a 4.2 per cent increase over the same period in 2011. He stated that despite the many challenges, the sector continues to flourish. “Though the figures are provisional, this is a clear indication that we are off to an excellent start,” he said. “We anticipate the upward trend will be maintained as the ‘Jamaica 50’ activities continue, attracting members of the Diaspora coming home to enjoy the Jubilee celebrations, while the London Olympics promotions are expected to boost our visitor arrivals in the future,” he stated. The Minister said provisional estimates indicate that for the period January to June, stopover arrivals increased by 3.4 per cent to 1,081,480 and cruise passengers arrivals reflect a phenomenal 39.9 per cent

increase at 775,312. “Together, this means that the total visitor arrivals to Jamaica for the first half of the year have increased by 16 per cent,” he said. Dr. McNeill said the country performed better than expected in May and June with respect to stopover arrivals, with the numbers increasing by eight and nine per cent, respectively, over the same period last year. The Minister stated that tourism is the catalyst that will provide the impetus to drive the economy to growth and development. “We will be leading the charge to strengthen the linkages between tourism and other sectors, encouraging every Jamaican to play their role in improving our tourism product, sustaining investment, and modernizing and diversifying the sector, to foster growth and job creation for our fellow Jamaicans,” he said. This approach, he said, is critical to Jamaica’s survival and success and will require a collaborative and committed partnership between the public and private sectors. By Andrea Braham, JIS Reporter

alence rate of 1.7 per cent, with two of every 100 persons infected, it is important for the country to respond seriously and urgently to the epidemic. “It is necessary for all sectors to respond appropriately to HIV and AIDS in the workplace, and put policies and programmes in

In her address, Mission Director, USAID, Denise Herbol said stigma and discrimination continues to drive the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Jamaica, and that the partnership between the USAID and Jamaica, along with other donors, multilateral organizations, non-profit groups, and people living with HIV, work to make positive resource and programmatic investments to save lives, which otherwise may be lost to the disease. “Through PEPFAR, we are working with Jamaica to address the negative impacts of stigma and discrimination, creating equal access of quality care and services for those living with HIV. A partnership with the Ministry of Labour in addressing and combating stigma is critical,” she stated, noting that activities include strengthening the voluntary compliance programme in the private sector. By Alphea Saunders, JIS Senior Reporter

Jamaica committed to regional integration - PM Jamaica’s Prime Minister the Most Hon. Portia Simpson Miller, has assured Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Heads of Government of Jamaica’s commitment to regional integration.

She was addressing the opening ceremony of the 33rd Regular Meeting of the Conference of Heads of Government held at the Sandals Grande St. Lucian Spa and Beach Resort in Gros-Islet, St Lucia, on 4th July 2012. She noted that: “In some circles, CARICOM is viewed with cynicism and its relevance is continuously questioned; I do not subscribe to that. In fact, I want to underscore Jamaica’s commitment to regionalism as a core principle of our foreign policy and external trade policy”. She stated that Jamaica will continue to publicly reiterate the importance of the regional integration movement “to the attainment of our national development goals and for the advancement of our region as a whole.” The staging of the regional conference at the Sandals Grande St. Lucian Spa and Beach Resort, which is Jamaican owned, she

©JIS

The initiative being undertaken by the Occupational HIV Unit in the Ministry’s Safety and Health Department, falls under the United States President’s Emergency Plan For AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), being implemented by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). In his address at the launch held on 3rd July 2012 at the Mona Visitor’s Lodge and Conference Centre in St. Andrew, portfolio Minister, Hon. Derrick Kellier said HIV/AIDS is an important workplace issue and impacts significantly on production and national development. He said there are increased

place,” he stated. He said the MLSS is leading the national response through a rights-based approach aimed at reducing HIV-related stigma and discrimination. He informed that the national HIV/AIDS Workplace Policy, which was developed in 2007, will inform regulations to be appended to the proposed Occupational Safety and Health Act, which is being implemented to address health and safety concerns in the workplace. The Minister said the country should have an Occupational Safety and Health Act by the end of the current financial year. Meanwhile, he said the Ministry continues to be proactive with its voluntary compliance programme, encouraging employers to provide safe work environments in order to reduce stigma and discrimination. “Companies are also being urged to implement educational and training programmes that can contribute to behaviour change,” he said.

Jamaica’s Prime Minister Most Hon. Portia Simpson Miller said, showcases “Caribbean innovation and entrepreneurship, and the strength and potential of intraCaribbean investment.” Mrs. Simpson Miller expressed her gratitude to the incoming Chairman of CARICOM, Hon. Kenny D. Anthony, and the Government and people of St. Lucia, for the

warm and generous hospitality extended to her and her delegation. She said she is confident that, given the experience of Dr. Anthony, CARICOM will become a stronger institution. By George Jude, JIS Reporter


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AFRICAN NEWS

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Terrorism charges against me based on mistranslation - Ofehe Mistranslation of a single word seemingly led to accusations of terrorism against Comrade Sunny Ofehe, a Nigerian activist living in the Netherlands.

Early last year, Comrade Ofehe, who is the Founder and President of Hope for Niger Delta Campaign, was charged in the Netherlands with planning to blow up oil pipelines and thus of conspiring to commit terrorist acts in Nigeria’s oil-producing region, the Niger Delta. In February 2011, almost 30 Dutch police officers stormed Comrade Ofehe’s house and arrested him. “I was locked up for 14 days in solitary confinement and eventually accused of human trafficking, fraud and falsification of documents,” Comrade Ofehe said. “When the State could not establish reasonable proof on these indictments, they came up with terrorism charge in September 2011.” He said that the charge was brought up to justify the 18 months of wired taps (internet, mobile and landlines), and a surveillance vehicle with hidden cameras in front of his office for six weeks. Comrade Ofehe said the officers sneaked into his office to install listening devices and even broke into his car to install hidden tracking and listening devices. “Almost 30 police officers worked on my case, 17 legal folders containing almost 10,000 pages of documents was received by my lawyers from the office of the Public Prosecutor,” he said. “More than a year now, we have only had two pre-trial hearings and are still waiting for the main trial to begin.” Comrade Ofehe and his lawyers, Ed Manders and Michiel Pennings, asked the court to order the Public Prosecutor Mr. G.R.C. Veurink to send them a full translation of the wired tap conversations upon which his terrorism charge was based. The translations reveal that Comrade Ofehe was simply talking with a contact in Nigeria to prepare a Dutch journalist’s trip to the Niger Delta in order to witness acts of oil theft. The journalist, Mark Schenkel, has since been asked to testify before an investigative judge. Asked whether he intended to document acts of terrorism, he told

RNW: “No, no I never asked for that. The trip never materialised. It was to get behind the whole illegal oil bunkering story, to witness them in the act of stealing oil.” Mr. Schenkel said he intended to write an article and perhaps take photos for the newspaper he worked for at that time. Comrade Ofehe said an inaccurate summary of a tapped telephone call in Pidgin English led to wrongful accusations of terrorism against him. The incriminating piece reads as follows: “NN will commission his boys to prepare for the sabotage of oil pipelines near Ekpoma…. Ofehe will make recordings of the whole operation.” After listening to the recordings in which Comrade Ofehe and his lawyers say there was no mention of sabotage, they requested a new translation from the prosecutor’s office. It reads as follows: “We will go there to inventorise [the place]…. You understand. You will inventorise. You will take all your pictures. … I will mobilise my boys.” “The evidence is simply not in there,” Mr. Manders told RNW after listening to the recordings. “What first read as a commission to prepare acts of sabotage of oil pipelines near Ekpoma, now reads as they would go to ‘inventorise those places,’” he added. The term ‘sabotage’ is used consistently in reports on oil theft by Royal Dutch Shell, the main oil operator in Nigeria, when presumed oil thieves are, for example, suspected of drilling holes or inflicting hacksaw cuts in its pipelines to siphon oil. On 18th June 2012, Comrade Ofehe officially lodged charges against the Public Prosecutor for “falsification of evidence” against him. “I have always maintained from the first day, that my arrest and indictments are politically motivated,” he said. Some Nigerian government officials consider his activities a threat to national security, a reason why his name is in the database of the Nigerian national security agency. Nigerian authorities have said that they’ll remove his name from the database but they’ve not done so. “I don’t know why it is still there,” Comrade Ofehe said.

Comrade Sunny Ofehe, Founder and President of Hope for Niger Delta Campaign “If they have a question, they should contact me, they have my contacts.” Since his name is in the Nigerian security watch list, he doesn’t feel safe in Nigeria. In fact he can never make announced visits to Nigeria fearing for his security. Comrade Ofehe suspects that some Nigerian government officials and Shell officers could be behind attempts to discredit his struggle to liberate the impoverished and marginalized people of the oil rich Niger Delta region. He, however, made it clear that he’ll not let them discourage him from raising awareness about the situation in the Niger Delta. “I’m not going to relent when my rights, when my people’s rights are violated,” Comrade Ofehe said. “I’m confident, they can’t stop me from my campaign. I’m focused.” Comrade Ofehe said he wasn’t aware that the police were tracking his movements and listening to all his telephone conversations. “I had no reason to suspect they were doing that. You can only anticipate that if you are into criminal activities,” he said.

The human rights activist only discovered he was being tracked after his arrest. “That’s when I discovered that my privacy had been invaded for almost two years,” he said. “I still feel disappointed.” Comrade Ofehe felt sorry that Dutch taxpayers’ money was wasted on tracking an innocent person. He is now organising a conference in September to promote trade relations between Nigerian and Dutch investors. Comrade Ofehe said he would like to encourage Dutch investors to invest in the Niger Delta and create employment opportunities there. “I’d like them to see Niger Delta as a safe, potential investment region,” he said. Oil companies and some foreign embassies have been discouraging foreigners from investing in the Niger Delta claiming that it is an insecure area. “Niger Delta is a safe region,” Comrade Ofehe said. He sees his arrest as a blessing in disguise, for it has made his campaign get the publicity he never imagined of. By Stephen Ogongo Ongong’a

Ban: Prevent and end conflicts that produce refugees UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has called for increased efforts to prevent and solve conflicts that force people to become refugees.

In a message to mark World Refugee Day, he said: “We must work together to mobilize the political will and leadership to prevent and end the conflicts that trigger refugee flows. Where security is restored, we must address the underlying causes of conflict, allowing sustainable refugee return through access to livelihoods, services and the rule of law.” He noted that more than 42 million

people have been forcibly displaced from their homes and communities. In the past 18 months, conflicts in Côte d’Ivoire, Libya, Mali, Somalia, Sudan and Syria, forced more than a million to flee their countries. “These numbers represent far more than statistics; they are individuals and families whose lives have been upended, whose communities have been destroyed, and whose future remains uncertain,” Mr. Ban said. He described World Refugee Day as “a moment to remember all those affected, and a time to intensify our support.”

Mr. Ban praised developing countries for hosting most of the world’s refugees. “Four out of five refugees are in developing countries, and have benefitted from the remarkable generosity of host countries that themselves face serious deprivations,” Mr. Ban said. Pakistan and Iran host the largest number of refugees. The two countries alone host over two and half million refugees. “Tunisia and Liberia are also among countries that, despite their own national challenges, maintained open borders and shared scarce water, land and other resources for those suffering the impact of

armed violence,” Mr. Ban said. “Kenya’s third biggest city is a refugee camp and hosts over half a million Somalis, many in their third decade of exile. Niger, Mauritania, and Burkina Faso — suffering famine and drought — now host some 175,000 refugees fleeing conflict in Mali. These countries cannot be left to shoulder this burden alone.” He appealed to all countries to support refugees. “Despite budget constraints everywhere, we must not turn away from those in need. Refugees leave because they have no choice. We must choose to help,” Mr. Ban said.


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Cie back with new Gospel EP “My Prayer” Award winning UK Gospel artist Cie is back with a new look and new EP “My Prayer”.

The four-track EP showcases the return of one of the UK’s most popular and exciting female vocalists who never fails to set the stage alight when she performs. “My Prayer” also signals the fact that Britain’s female Gospel vocalists are stepping up to the plate, and not allowing their urban Gospel counterparts to leave them behind. Released on Goldmind Records and produced by Dennis Jarrett, “My Prayer” is a memorable musical offering. The title track, “My Prayer” is a heartfelt Gospel number where Cie gives thanks to God and gives her four-octave voice for his glory. “He’s Coming Back” is a retro up tempo Gospel and celebrates Christ’s return, whilst “They Call Him Jesus” has a Latin American feel, coupled with a catchy hook line. “He Did It”, is a wholehearted Gospel track reminding listeners of God’s faithfulness to His children. This EP leaves people in no doubt that Cie is one of the UK’s

most gifted and most inspiring Gospel vocalists. “It’s good to be back with some new songs, which I hope people will enjoy,” Cie said. “These are heartfelt songs that I wrote whilst out of the spotlight recovering from debilitating illnesses. Thank God I’m back and my experience has given me a lot to sing about and give God thanks for.” “My Prayer” serves as a prelude to Cie’s debut album that will be out at the end of the year. The Birmingham based musician is a recipient of BBC WM Award for Best Gospel Female artist and an Oasis Gospel Music Award. In 2006 Cie founded The Woman To Woman Foundation that empowers women to overcome a range of life issues. She regularly performs in women’s prisons and youth offender units, to share a message of hope and encouragement to inmates. For further information about Cie, please visit her Facebook page at http:// www.facebook.com/CieTheSinger

ENTERTAINMENT

“It’s good to be back with some new songs, which I hope people will enjoy. These are heartfelt songs that I wrote whilst out of the spotlight recovering from debilitating illnesses. Thank God I’m back and my experience has given me a lot to sing about and give God thanks for” Gospel artist Cie

Last Flight to Abuja

New Nollywood movie released in UK “Last Flight to Abuja” is now showing in the UK. This new Nollywood movie is based on true events. A set of everyday Nigerian travellers board the last Flamingo Airways flight scheduled to fly from Lagos to Abuja on a fateful Friday night in 2006.

The plane cruises at 30,000 feet, tranquil and on schedule. But like a bolt out of the blue, through a mixture of human error, technical failure and sheer bad luck, the plane rapidly develops major difficulties that send

it teetering on the brink of disaster. As the pilots fight with the controls of the stricken aero plane, a series of flashbacks unravel the twists, turns and leaps of fate that put each passenger on the fateful flight. Young lovers, an elderly couple, a corporate party, a sportsman on the threshold of greatness; all the passengers are caught up in the nightmare scenario and sense the final moments of their lives approach. All... except one! What does he know? Will they survive...The last flight to Abuja? “Last Flight to Abuja” directed by Obi Emelonye, is likely to be vying for multiple African Academy Movie Awards next year. It features several famous Nollywood stars including Omotola Jalade-Ekeinde, Hakeem Kae-Kazim, Jim Iyke, Ali Nuhu, Jide Kosoko, Uche Odoputa, Jennifer Oguzie, Uru Eke, Anthony Monjaro and Olumide Bakare.

“Last Flight to Abuja” has been produced by the Nollywood Factory and Screen Nation.

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Elaka releases debut single “My Africa” Ethel Elaka Gondwe, the UK, Zambia and South Africa. She has performed on the same stage UK based Zambian artist has with some of UK’s and Zambia’s top artjust released a new single ists including Sway, Devlin, Fumin, titled “My Africa”.

The singe was inspired and sam- Chipmunk, Bashy, Omar, Shola Ama, pled from the Drop Leaf Rhythm. The Ghetts, Tinchy Stryder, Mozegeta, lyrics pay homage not only to Africa K’Million, Petersen, Danny, Angela but to all who have lived far from Nyirenda, MC Wabwino, and the Late home to pursue their dreams or make a Lilly T. Elaka, who is also an events promoter, living to help their family. has just received UKZAMBIANS “My Africa” was produced by DR. Excellence Award as promoter of the year Gary Hutchins, a music industry vet2012. eran who has worked with the great “My Africa” is available on all major artists such as Bob Marley, Liza digital downloads. Minnelli, Shirley Bassey, Frank Sinatra, and Etta James. The new song has already ETHEL ELAKA GONDWE’S received positive reviews LINKS AND CONTACTS from music critics in some parts of Europe. A music video of “My Africa” is being produced Email: info@effycomproductions.co.uk and directed by the award Tel. +44 (0)7597208710 winning team of Star Movies Twitter @elaka Productions. Elaka is currently work- Facebook: officialelaka ing on her debut album titled www.elaka.co.uk “My Words” in collaboration with some artists in the www.effycomproductions.co.uk

Slim Burna releases new single “Oya Na” Slim Burna, a Nigerian rapper, Hiphop and dance hall artist has released a new song “Oya Na” from his forthcoming album “Dirty Dancehall”.

Jackson and Keith Sweat, but those songs didn’t really interest him until he listened to 2pac, Bone Thugs n Harmony, Dmx, Obie Trice, Eminem, Cypress Hill, Wu-Tang Clan, and Ruff Ryders. That’s when Slim Burna whose real name he fell in love with Hiphop is Gabriel Halliday, was born in and decided to start writing his Essex, UK, and returned to songs. Nigeria when he was two years During his early years in old. the music industry, Gabriel’s Growing up in a family com- childhood friends gave him posed mainly of girls, Slim Burna the name “Slim Burna” meansaid he was forced to listen to ing “the slim bone that burns”. songs from artists like, Tracy His previous releases Chapman, Boyz 2 Men, Michael include “Whatz ur name”, “Is 4 u”, “I like to move it”, SLIM BURNA’S LINKS “Kpasima” a n d “Highness http://twitter.com/slimburna1 Madness”. http://www.facebook.com/pages/Slim- S l i m Burna rose to Burna/146085325444284

fame in 2009 when he released a re-make of “Oyoyo” (a track originally recorded by Jay Martins) which was featured in several mixtapes put together by Naija DJs Coalition. The single became an instant hit. “Oyoyo” is a childhood slang in Nigeria used when the child’s mum has returned home (mummy oyoyo). Slim Burna said he decided to do the re-make of “Oyoyo” because he felt the song wasn’t complete. “I love my European fans,” Slim Burna said. “Thanks guys for being very supportive, you guys should continue to keep that love going for me and I promise to bring nothing but good African music to your ears.” By Stephen Ogongo Ongong’a

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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COMMENTARY-OP-ED

Careers

The Trouble with Internships When did this once well-structured work experience turn into such blatant unpaid labour, asks Frances Mensah Williams.

There’s been a lot of talk in the news about internships lately; provoking much debate and occasional condemnation of those who have the temerity to use the services of the legions of unemployed youth without paying a red cent for their free labour. It may be a sign of age, but I remember when internships were universally regarded as a good thing, at least for those who didn’t have to be responsible for them. I can still recall the varying looks of irritation, frustration, resignation and downright horror on the faces of department heads when, in my days as an HR Director, I would inform them that interns were on the way. Internships can offer many advantages to employers and employees alike. But, judging from some of the reports that have been coming out lately, it

seems that this once well-regarded and well-structured work experience is in danger of losing credibility.

‘An Unpaid Labor Racket’ Writing in The New York Times recently, Ross Perlin, the author of “Intern Nation: How to Earn Nothing and Learn Little in the Brave New Economy” pointed out that with youth unemployment at a record high, “the labor of unpaid interns has quietly replaced or displaced untold thousands of workers.” But without an internship to your name, he says, getting a job in certain sectors is increasingly unlikely. “Lucrative and influential professions — politics, media and entertainment, to name a few — now virtually require a period of unpaid work, effectively barring young people from less privileged backgrounds.” What was once a well-intended programme of paid training experience, Perlin says, has degenerated into “an unpaid

labour racket.” Even more seriously, he notes, through these unpaid stints, “a fundamental ethic is under threat: the idea that a hard day’s work demands a fair wage.” But, done right, internships can be a great investment of time and effort, giving a new entrant to the workplace the chance to see the real life application of their potential career choice and to be able to answer the question ‘is this career what I thought it would be?’

Acquiring Skills or Wasting Time? A well planned internship will lead to the acquisition of new skills and insights and allow the intern to gain greater confidence as they learn how things work. A good internship adds value to a CV and, particularly for highly competitive career routes, is evidence to potential employers of a candidate’s commitment and interest in their sector. For employers, internships offer the chance to see potential

recruits in action and to give leadership opportunities to those responsible for supervising them. Even companies and organisations with limited recruitment intentions can, through internships, play the role of good corporate citizens through helping to build skills and capacity for young people, thereby increasing their ability to progress into good jobs elsewhere. Done wrong, though, internships can be everyone’s worst nightmare. The poorly served intern ends up developing expertise in making tea, photocopying documents, entering data and a host of other menial activities. Developing a knowledge of the nearest drycleaners for their boss’s suits adds little value to an intern’s ability to progress (unless, of course, dry cleaning is their career of choice).

Brand Management Used poorly, an internship that represents only a free subsidy to a company’s bottom line is not only a waste of everyone’s time, but also very bad publicity. In these days of viral messaging when the young, especially, can get their opinions around the world within a matter of hours, any company that cares about its reputation and its brand should think carefully about how it treats its staff – whether paid or unpaid. Former UK Minister Alan Milburn has been vocal on the subject of interns, pointing out that connections, not ability, are still key to getting these placements. “The evidence that I have seen shows that, despite some examples to the contrary, connection rather than ability continues to be the key to getting an internship. This is both unfair and bad for business.” His recommendations are that internship programmes provide meaningful experience and not merely cheap labour, are accessible to all through transparent recruitment, and that interns are paid enough to be viable for those without private means of support.

Making It Work Employers who favour the use of interns should ensure that they follow the applicable labour laws, even for interns. A structured internship that is set up for a specific and limited period, offers a rotation across different parts of the business or organisation, provides evaluation of the process by both sides and includes close supervision of the intern can turn a useful idea into a valuable process for everyone. In his book, Perlin notes that fulfilling internships do still exist and good companies are offering paid positions that are advertised and filled in a fair and transparent manner and which offer invaluable experience to help the intern find full-time paid employment. But he says “the rash of illegal, exploitative situations has destroyed any notion that internships are inherently “winwin”.” The bleakness of the current job market notwithstanding, those seeking internships would be advised to look hard at what is on offer and to be clear about how it will add to their skills and experience and aid in their longterm job search. Employers who care about their reputations and who are consciously seeking the future talent needed to grow their organisations will need to better demonstrate the value of their internship programmes so that these experiences can move away from being seen as the equivalent of sending our kids up chimneys or down coalmines, and truly become a win-win for all involved. By Frances Mensah Williams The author is the CEO of Interims for Development Ltd. and Editor of ReConnect Africa (www.reconnectafrica.com). She is the author of ‘Everyday Heroes – Learning from the Careers of Successful Black Professionals’, available online from www.everyday-heroes.co. uk and on order through booksellers.

SEND US YOUR LETTERS We welcome letters on topical issues, your experiences, and or any article you have read in The AfroNews. Letters, not exceeding 600 words, must include your full name (not necessarily for publication), address and telephone numbers for verification. Letters may be edited for publication. E-mail: afronews@myownmedia.co.uk


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LIFESTYLE & RELIGION

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©Terrence Higgins Trust

Make efforts to halt spread of HIV, Africans in UK advised

African communities can play a vital role in the effort to slash HIV rates within a decade, HIV and sexual health charity Terrence Higgins Trust (THT) has said.

Thirty years have now passed since the death of Terry Higgins (4th July 1982), the first person in the UK to be publicly identified as dying with AIDS. In the UK, African communities are one of the groups most at risk of HIV

infection. More than 30 per cent of all HIV “HIV infections are still on the rise among infections in the last ten years have been African communities. However, in 2012, among Africans. In 2010 alone, 2,050 Africans really do have the power to help Africans were newly diagnosed with HIV stop HIV in the UK in its tracks. By placin the UK. While 80 per cent had been ing renewed emphasis on testing for STIs, infected abroad, the number of new infec- using condoms and accessing treatment, tions in the UK is also on the rise. we can slash infections over the next Terrence Higgins Trust is calling on decade. But it is also vital that we work to African communities to make a concerted tackle stigma that still exists today and all effort to halt the spread of HIV. In the UK too often acts as a barrier to stop people treatment and support is free and widely going for a test.” available and, if diagnosed early, a person Terrence Higgins Trust’s online healthwith HIV can live a long and healthy life. ier lifestyle magazine for Africans, Mambo The charity estimates infection rates (www.mambo.org.uk) offers advice for could be slashed within a decade with the African communities about managing their help of African communities, if sexually sexual health. active Africans: have an HIV test at least once a year and more often if they expose THE UK EPIDEMIC IN NUMBERS themselves to risks such as unprotected sex; use condoms with every new part- • 100,000 people living with HIV, one in ner; ensure, if they have HIV, four of whom are undiagnosed. they are on timely treatment; • 6,000 – 7,000 new infections each year and make a concerted effort to reduce stigma around HIV. • 500 – 600 people still die with HIV each Taku Mukiwa, Health year Promotion Specialist for • 20,000 people have died with AIDS African communities at since 1982 Terrence Higgins Trust, said:

Methodist Church to build Gum disease linked schools in deprived areas to cancer – Study

Currently, 22,000 children attend the 65 state-funded and 14 independent Methodist schools in England and Wales. All the schools have a Christian foundation, serve their local community and are fully inclusive, welcoming pupils of all faiths and none. The Methodist Conference agreed on 2nd July 2012 to reinvigorate the Church’s engagement with education and has asked Methodist Districts across Great Britain to identify local communities that need new schools, especially in areas of socio-economic deprivation. The Conference is the body that agrees policy for the Methodist Church. “Everyone matters to God and no one should be deprived of the opportunity to develop to their full potential,” said Dr. John Barrett, Chair of the Education Commission. “The Methodist approach to education has always been about the development of

cultural needs.” The Conference also agreed a range of other proposals to expand the Church’s involvement. These include offering greater support to Methodists who work in the education sector and aiming to increase the number of chaplains to further education intuitions and Methodist schools. In late June, two Methodist schools received recognition in the annual Church School Awards. Kent C o l l e g e Canterbury was awarded the London and South East region prize and Dr. John Barrett, Chair of the St Andrew’s Education Commission Church of England and ment to creating an ethos in Methodist Voluntary Aided which every person is valued. Primary School in Derbyshire They seek to fully address chil- also won a special commendadren’s spiritual, moral, social and tion.

©Methodist Media Service

The Methodist Church has reaffirmed its commitment to the education sector by pledging to increase the number of state-funded Methodist schools over the next ten years.

the whole person – not just reading, writing and arithmetic. We believe that all human beings are made in the image of God and our schools have a strong commit-

Scientists have discovered that severe gum disease could be linked to an increased risk of head and neck cancer cases caused by the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV). The study found patients with HPV-positive tumours had significantly higher bone loss, a key factor in the development of severe gum disease, compared with patients with HPVnegative tumours. Latest figures suggest more than 6,000 people in the UK suffer from oral cancer, while almost 2,000 lives are lost to the disease. HPV is a growing cause of the disease, with experts suggesting it may rival tobacco use as the main cause of oral cancer within 10 years. Other risk factors for developing the disease include tobacco use, drinking to excess and poor diet. The significance of the research is compounded by the fact more teeth are lost through periodontal (gum) disease than through tooth decay. “A greater understanding of how we can tackle this potentially life-threatening disease could lead to many lives being saved,” Chief Executive of the

British Dental Health Foundation, Dr. Nigel Carter OBE said. “Most of us suffer from gum disease at some point in our lives, yet it is entirely preventable. By developing and keeping a good oral health routine it lowers the risk of gum disease and any possible links to more serious diseases. We should all take time to reflect on how we can make that a reality. Brushing your teeth for two minutes twice a day using a fluoride toothpaste, cleaning in between teeth daily with interdental brushes or floss, cutting down on how often you have sugary foods and drinks and visiting the dentist regularly, as often as they recommend will be a great starting point.” Dr. Carter outlined some of the common signs of the gum disease. “If you have swollen gums that bleed regularly when brushing, bad breath, loose teeth or regular mouth infections appear, it is likely you have gum disease,” he said. “It is also vital to check regularly for early warning signs of mouth cancer. These include ulcers which do not heal within three weeks, red and white patches in the mouth and unusual lumps or swellings in the mouth. If you are in any doubt, please get checked out.”


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