African Immigrants Join Fight for Social Justice in America

The plight of black people in the United States is well documented. In fact, it started with slavery, centuries before the country was founded. Slavery ended in the United States following the Civil War. But that would no be the end of the suffering of African Americans. Jim Crow laws were enacted in the southern states, which had fought against the abolition of slavery and lost. The era of segregation and systemic racist violence and lynchings of black people lasted from 1877 to 1960. Segregation should have ended with the President Lyndon B. Johnson’s signing or the Civil Rights Act in 1964.

Continue reading “African Immigrants Join Fight for Social Justice in America”

Episode 26: Examining International Response to George Floyd’s Death and Systemic Racism in America

Our guests, Nigerian-American Dr. Amanda Felix, and Ghanaian-born Prof. Kwesi Wilson spare no one in their critique of the world’s response to George Floyd’s death in the hands of Minneapolis Police. Africans, Europeans, Asians — everyone gets a fair share of the venom.

A man in a Maasai shirt protests the killing of George Floyd, whose death in the hands of Minneapolis police has sparked protests worldwide. Photo: Fibonacci Blue.

Episode 25: African Immigrants Increasingly Protesting Against Racism in the United States

Protests continue in the Unites States over the murder of George Floyd, another unarmed black man killed in police custody. Our guest Tom Gitaa, president and publisher of Minneapolis-based African community newspaper, Mshale, about why African immigrants are increasingly rising to protest racism in America.

Protesters take to the streets in Washington, DC. Photo: Cool Revolution
As more and more Africans chose to stay and raise families in the United States, many of them are realizing that the fight for civil rights is our fight too.

Episode 23 — Has Africa Dodged the Coronavirus Bullet?

A UN peacekeeper in North Kivu, Democratic Republic of Congo, washes hands at a station set up to combat the spread of coronavirus. Photo: MONUSCO via Creative Commons.

As the world watched the coronavirus overwhelm health systems in well-developed countries, many warned that there would be millions infected and hundreds of thousands dead in Africa. In this episode, we try to make sense of why it hasn’t quite turned out that way.

Episode 22: Revisiting the Dream of a United Africa

South African poet, Teboho, (L) and Ethiopian-born pan-African activist, Amira Ali are among the co-founders of Afrika Moja. Photo: Khaboshi Imbukwa.

In a series to celebrate women’s month, we speak with Amira Ali, and Teboho, two Bay Area-based African women activists from Ethiopia and S. Africa, respectively. They have teamed up with others to launch Afrika Moja, a collective that hosts salon-style discussions to explore various ways to unite Africans at home and abroad for the sake of the continent’s future.

Continue reading “Episode 22: Revisiting the Dream of a United Africa”

Episode 21: Is the Eco, West Africa’s Proposed Regional Currency, Dead Before Arrival?

The proposed Eco would replace the CFA, pictured here. Photo: Edwin Okong’o.

In this episode, our guest, Kwesi Wilson, a Ghanaian-born commentator and professor of communication, joins us to discuss the viability of a regional African currency. Following the announcement in late 2019 that former French colonies were going to finally going to get rid of the CFA, there was excitement that those countries would finally achieve economic independence from the European power.

Continue reading “Episode 21: Is the Eco, West Africa’s Proposed Regional Currency, Dead Before Arrival?”

Episode 20: Can Africa Recover From a Colonized Mind, Or Are We Doomed?

Click on the player above to listen to the episode. Downloads for this and all episodes are available on Apple Podcasts, SoundCloud, Spotify, and Google Podcasts. Please join efforts to build our own African media by sharing this episode with your family, friends and people in your social networks. Thank you for listening!
Togolese civil rights activist and educator, Yawo Akpawu. Photo: Khaboshi Imbukwa.

In our last episode, we spoke with Yawo Akpawu, an exiled educator and human rights activist from Togo, about the west African country’s 2020 presidential election, which, as he predicted, didn’t end the rule of Faure Gnassingbe. This week, we extend the conversation beyond Togo to talk about the future of Africa, and what he thinks is a difficult (but possible) task to bring good governance to the continent.

Episode 19: Fighting the Politics of Nepotism in Togo

Click on the player above to listen to the episode. Downloads for this and all episodes are available on Apple Podcasts, SoundCloud, Spotify, and Google Podcasts. Please join efforts to build our own African media by sharing this episode with your family, friends and people in your social networks. Thank you for listening!

In this episode, Africa Straight Talk speaks with Yawo Akpawu, an exiled educator and human rights activist from Togo, about his life, his work, his cautious optimism, and his take on the west African country’s upcoming presidential election, which is scheduled for Feb. 20, 2020.

Togolese human rights activist, Yawo Akpawu. Photo: Khaboshi Imbukwa.

Akpawu, a former high school principal, was at the forefront of a movement to prevent Faure Gnassingbé from succeeding his father, Gnassingbé Eyadéma, who died in Tunisia in 2005, having ruled Togo since 1967. The movement failed and Akpawu found himself in the cross hairs of the new dictator’s government. He fled the country and eventually ended up in the United States. To learn more about Yawo Akpawu’s work, visit the Togolese Civil League, an organization he co-founded.

Episode 18: A Ghanaian’s Perspective on “The Year of Return”

Click on the player above to listen to the episode. Downloads for this and all episodes are available on iTunes, Spotify, and Google Podcasts. Help us build our own African media. Share this episode with family, friends and people in your social networks. Thank you for listening!

In this episode, we speak to Kwesi Wilson, a San Francisco Bay Area-based Ghanaian-born professor, who took his American students to Ghana in 2019 as part of “the Year of Return”, a Ghanaian government campaign to attract descendants of African slaves to their ancestral land. The ambitious project challenges black citizens of European, American, and Caribbean nations to go beyond visiting as tourists to become investors, and even offered them citizenship and land. What grade does our professor give the project?

Back to the Roots: Visitors at the entrance to Assin Manso Slave River, where slaves took their last baths before embarking on a 31-mile trek to slave castles in Cape Coast. Photo: Kwesi Wilson.