Tribalism In Africa: Treat Me Good, I’ll Treat You Better; Treat Me Bad And I’ll Treat You Worse

Standard

I write for infoboxx which is an informational portal that attempts to enhance and empower the lives of our audience by delivering topical, educational, entertaining, and useful information.

Below is my first article submission to publication.

Ethnicity, tribalism and xenophobia all stem from an irrational fear of people based on their ethnic and tribal background, or country of origin. The notion of tribe and ethnicity is still a contentious subject in Sub-Saharan Africa. Some tribal nuances continue to reinforce our suspicions about other tribes. On my maternal side, I am an Assin from Nyakumasi Ahenkro in the Central Region of Ghana.

On my paternal side, I am an Akyem from Oda in Ghana’s Eastern Region. I was informed that my maternal great-great grandmother was married to a man from the Northern part of Ghana, and that my paternal great-great grandmother was Ewe. In South Africa, where I spent my childhood and early adulthood, I was very aware of the tribal tensions between Zulu’s and Xhosa’s, and Xhosa’s and Tswana’s. I have heard Tswana and Sotho women chastise Xhosa women in Johannesburg.

Some have gone as far as to tell them to stop speaking Xhosa in Johannesburg or else return to the Eastern Cape, a mainly Xhosas province. The Vendas and Tshonga who lived in the Northern part of South Africa, were seen by all the other tribes in South Africa as the lesser tribe and were often ridiculed for their dark skins and accents when they spoke English. As a foreigner in South Africa, I was called all sorts of names growing up. “Ama Ghana”; “Qwereqwere” (a derogatory name for foreigner) were a few.

I remember being chased down the road by children in my neighbourhood in the Ciskei. “Ama Ghana Hamba kuye khaya” (Ama Ghana Go Home) they would shout. I must have been 5 years old. This was my first xenophobic experience. I am not too sure how I internalized this experience as a child, but it left an indelible mark on my future interactions with black South Africans.

Click to Continue Reading

Advertisements

South Africa’s Education Crisis

Video

 

On my last day at Queenstown Girls High School we sang the School  Hymn with the following lyrics:

Youth walked in at the big school door and life was there to greet her,

with eager eyes she scanned the child and spread our gifts to greet her,

laughter and friendship work and play,

Choices and chances all the way and the scarlet aloe, standing in the sun…

The last verse of the song ends…

Youth walked out of the big school door and tears began to blind her

but life beckoned on with a smiling face as she called to her friends behind her

yes I remember never fear who could forget a school so dear and the scarlet aloe standing in the sun.

 

Eleven years ago I walked out of the big school doors. Part of my life and values  were shaped by the experiences and exposure I had in a little town called Queenstown nestled in one of the poorest province in South Africa and even more so from the school I attended from grade one to twelve. Despite how poor our province is, Queenstown Girls’ High School is ranked in the top 100 schools in South Africa. South Africa has 26, 000 schools.  I am proud of the school I attended, the values and the traditions it instilled in me.  Without  the solid educational and social foundation of good values and moral teachings I received I’m not sure what I’d be doing with my life.

South Africa, like many other African countries is facing an education crisis, it’s clear we can no longer leave our education system solely in the hands of Government. 80%  of the 26, 000 schools in South Africa are  under performing . Our private sector, individuals and institutions all need to contribute in helping to shape the next generation of leaders and citizens. If you’re an old girl or boy of these schools and have the influence or means to help I urge you to do so. If you can’t provide monetary help, please help by sharing this documentary.

Our world is large and filled with people with the resources to ensure that schools like  Queenstown Girls’ High School and Queens College remain centres of excellence.  If you know anyone who can help or would be interested in assisting please share the video link and pass on this documentary.

If the video doesn’t play on my page kindly following this link https://vimeo.com/63893563

 

EDuQ8 – South Africa’s Education Crisis from EDuQ8 on Vimeo.

 

Kantamanto is on Fire

Standard

Kantamanto is the largest second hand market in Ghana. In the west you’d compare Kantamanto to one gigantic thrift store with second hand wares from all over the world.

During my university days I recall galavanting along the streets of melville and greenside (South Africa) in search of great vintage clothing. The only reason I’ve only been to this market twice during my two and a half years in Ghana is the very reason you’re watching this video. The place is congested  very difficult to walk through and its even more of a nightmare to maneuver  through when it rains, there  are no safety exits and it’s very crowded.

Continue reading

An Interview with a Player

Standard

This past week I read countless articles about the high rate of AIDS infection in Sub Saharan Africa and the increase in orphans due to the aids pandemic. What I find astounding is that out of the 22 million people living with AIDS and HIV, 12 million of those infected are women and 1.8 million are children (statistics taken from 2007 data). It has forced me to think about relations between men and women, whether the path we are travelling as society is sustainable, productive and beneficial to the progress and prosperity of our continent.  It has also prompted me to ask how we as men and women have contributed to the degradation of our society, which is evident in the high number of people that are HIV positive. For those who are thinking that this will be a male bashing article I assure you that I will be objective  about this topic.

Continue reading

Divorced Before 30

Standard

According to an article written in the New York Times  more marriages dissolve before the age of thirty. This trend is growing in Africa. How many young people in their twenties do you know who are going through separation or divorce after less than 5 years of marriage? What are some of the underlying factors contributing to such a growing trend? Feint & Margin had the opportunity to speak to a young twenty something year old about her marriage and divorce. Kate Nkansa talks to Miss T*  a twenty seven year old woman from South Africa who is divorced and under thirty.

Below is our conversation.https://i1.wp.com/feintandmargin.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/Miss-T.jpg

Continue reading