If you haven’t discovered it already, The Guardian has started a Cities site, thanks to funding from the Rockefeller Foundation. Here are some fantastic reasons why you should be following this initiative:Continue Reading
As March 6th approaches, in schools all over the country, teachers and students prepare for the infamous Independence Day parades. A celebrated ritual of patriotism on national days, children file along roads, marching in line to music in synchronized steps.
Here’s a short video of students in a school in Ghana’s Central Region preparing for tomorrow’s parade – a great mix of Azonto dance style with traditional marching:
So one of many things I have in common with Ghanaians is my love for bread.
After a meeting at the East Akim Municipal Assembly in Kibi today, a colleague led me to a totally hidden gem behind the Assembly’s office.
Up a small hill, and following a sort of winding, man-made path, I found my first experience with a Ghanaian bakery specializing in bread: We’re talking butter bread, sugar bread, tea bred, buns, the whole thing. As we approached, my first sight was a taxi with the entire backseat FULL of butter breads and sugar breads.Continue Reading
When it comes to sustainable improvements in community water and sanitation access, the “hardware” (physical facility) is just the beginning — it’s the “software” (changing attitudes, behaviors, mindsets) that makes the difference. Equally important is addressing the economic dynamics that govern people’s water vending and purchasing behavior.
In the peri-urban community of Manhean, in Ghana’s Greater Accra Region, there’s a WaterHealth Center, a surface water kiosk that uses UV and other technologies to treat raw water sourced from the nearby Densu River. The center treats the raw water, making it clean and potable for drinking and household uses. In terms of operations, the water kiosk is pretty top notch: the facility managers keep the center running during regular hours of operation, they track sales on a daily basis and the residents patronizing the facility are happy with the water quality. Community residents can fetch water from the kiosk at a cost of 25 pesewas (about 10 cents) per 20 liters, and the water from the kiosk is available in both rainy and dry seasons.Continue Reading
When we talk about African urbanism, we often forget (or neglect) the inextricable linkages between Africa’s towns and cities and the (still very prominent) rural areas. That aluguntugui (sour sap) that we buy in the market, the yam, the cassava, the plantain, where does it come from?
Amidst the hustle and bustle of Saturday morning commerce at Kwame Nkrumah Circle, a group of activists assemble. They start out at the city’s largest roundabout – Kwame Nkrumah Circle — where passerbys, vendors and traffic come together. This group of activists, brandishing their placards, have come together to protest against the multinational company Monsanto. To make their point, today they are marching in the direction of Agbogbloshie Market, looking to connect with the market women there in a symbolic action of solidarity. Some 30 individuals are gathered, proceeded by a truck, its speakers blasting Bob Marley’s reggae; at the head, a young man, megaphone in hand, addresses the masses.
“We say no to Monsanto! We say no to Syngenta! We say no to GMOs [genetically modified organisms]!” announces Duke Tagoe, Food Sovereignty Ghana spokesperson, in a strong, clear voice. Passerbys, pedestrians and bicyclists who file past stop and look, reading the messages on the placards. Others ask about the cause of the commotion, and still others stop only briefly before continuing toward their tasks ahead.
Tagoe and the other marchers protest for two reasons. The first is against Monsanto, the biotechnology and agrochemical firm that produces genetically modified seeds. The second is against the Ghanaian government itself, for supporting Monsanto and other such companies.Continue Reading