Haitian American musical artist, Sophis, gives us some straight-talk insights into the historical context mainstream media often avoid when talking about his country of birth.
Haiti is a country with a rich history. It was the first Black nation to liberate itself from European rule, way back in 1804, when a slave revolt defeated Napoleon’s mighty French army and declared independence. That’s right — 80 years before the 1884 Berlin Conference, when European empires sat down and agreed to divide the African continent amongst themselves, Haiti had fought and defeated one of he greatest of them to become independent.
The population of white people is declining, according to 2020 U.S. Census data released recently. We offer some straight-talking survival advice to any white people who might be angry that they’re going to lose their majority and the privileges that come with it.
Whenever African leaders are asked why the continent lags behind in terms of development, they blame braid drain — the exodus of its most intelligent people. But are they right, or are they to blame for frustrating young people so much that they have to go looking of a dignified life elsewhere?
Our guest is Joseph Makokha, an engineer who studies and conducts research on engineering design with the goal of understanding how to design Artificial Intelligence to augments humans on thinking tasks. He is currently helping the Turkish Ministry of Education develop an Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning curriculum for its schools.
We speak with Salani Wamkanganise naGaadza, and Kelly Takunda Orphan, a husband and wife who are ambassadors of African music and culture. Salani, a Zimbabwean-born virtuoso, doesn’t just make music and teach people how to play mbira; he makes the instruments himself in the San Francisco Bay Area, where he lives.
Since 2017, Salani has performed and recorded with various mbira ensembles and bands. In 2020, UNESCO inscribed the mbira to be on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity, and Salani was one of two featured cultural ambassadors during the filming of the project in Zimbabwe.
On July 23, Sierra Leone’s Parliament voted unanimously to make the west African country the 23rd on the continent to abolish the death penalty. That’s a laudable. But is it enough, given the sorry state of the continent’s criminal justice systems — most of which are carryovers from the colonial days?
In this episode, we look at how the politics of ethnicity holds Africa back. Why are poor Africans willing to kill or die for wealthy corrupt goons like former S. African President Jacob Zuma, whose jailing for contempt of court has led to riots that have killed 276 people? Can we simultaneously fight corruption and support tribal kingpins like Zuma?
We speak with the Addison sisters, Kimberly and Priscilla, who set out to challenge the stereotypical belief that premium chocolate can only be made in Europe. Five years ago, they founded ’57 Chocolate, a pioneer bean-to-bar chocolate company that uses beans grown within Ghana to create delicious treats.
We look at how Robin Reecht, a white Frenchman –who after being in Kenya for only three days–managed to come up with a start-up idea that raised $1 million to improve Kenya’s “not-so-good quality” food. Why is it so easy for white people who know nothing about Africa to raise millions in capital to start businesses in the continent?
In this episode, we also honor one of the most iconic patriarchs of post-colonial Africa, Kenneth Kaunda, the first president of Zambia, who died on June 17 at the age of 97.
For Father’s Day, Emmanuel Nado and Edwin Okong’o, the hosts of Africa Straight Talk, travel back in time to their African childhoods to compare their parenting skills and responsibilities to those of the powerful African fathers who raised them.
Of the 1.3 billion people in Africa, only about 7 million have been fully vaccinated against Covid-19. Mo Ibrahim, the Sudanese-born billionaire, blames rich countries for hoarding vaccines. What if instead he redirected that $5 million prize he gives annually to African presidents for leaving office to areas like healthcare, where it’s desperately needed?
In this episode we also look at what happened to Konza, a smart city Kenya was supposed to begin building 13 years ago but is nowhere to bee seen.