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Patrick Tataw Obenson, alias Ako-Aya, the rabid critic, social crusader and witty journalist, all rolled up in one, was indeed a popular and widely admired pioneer in daring journalism and social commentary in Cameroon. Little wonder that when he died, he left behind countless painful hearts and many questions on the lips of his admirers. As a man of the people, the fallen hero of Cameroon's Fleet Street shared his experiences, be they good or bad, with his readers. He was a virile critic even of the sordid things in which he himself secretly indulged. Obenson's mind was open, and through his popular newspaper column - Ako-Aya - he exposed society and social action in all their dimensions. He had an axe to grind with all perpetrators of social vices, especially those of them that infringed on the rights of the common man. He gave them a good fight, using his newspaper as his only weapon - a weapon which could not be neutralized even by the most affluent nor the most coercive leadership. And he did so with nerve and valour and venom. Only Tataw Obenson could spit out really scathing pieces of satire, aimed directly at the highest governing authorities of his society. Only Obenson could make allusions even to his own apparently ugly self. Only he could be liberal and honest enough to confess how he boarded a taxi and later bolted without paying the driver. Only Obenson was able to foresee his imminent demise from the face of the earth and literarily wrote his own epitaphÖ
Faced with debts at home and threatened by poverty, Akroma a brilliant and well-educated Ghanaian, using unorthodox means, successfully gets into Cameroon. He is bent on making a fortune. Drawing on his tremendous presence of mind and, capitalising on the early discovery that in Cameroon there is no conscience that money cannot buy, this illegal alien, travelling under three criminal identities, builds up a great amount of wealth. But he cannot buy the entire police force. One police man, Inspector Kum Dangobert, will get even with him, even if it means death. The rest of this very readable novel is about what happens when the Ghanaian evil genius is pitted against the best Cameroonian police superintendent. It is the clash of giants that ends in a cataclysm.
De l'…cole Regionale de Diourbel a líUniversite de Paris (1945-1960
The struggle for independence and the unity of African countries was at its peak during the period between 1945 and 1960. These testing times turned out to be the formative years of the young Amady Aly Dieng, and set the stage for an eventful life of commitment and challenges of all sorts for someone who ñ along with other young African students, many of whom later became leaders of their respective countries ñ integrated the leadership of student organizations in France, honing his militant skills at the forefront of the intellectual and political struggle for independence and the unity of the nascent sovereign nations. Amady Aly Diengís memoirs are primarily meant to inspire young Africans toward taking action towards true independence and development. These memoirs reflect the historic evolution of youth militancy in Africa and are to serve as an inspiration to leaders of Africa today and tomorrow.
De líUniversite de Paris a mon retour au Senegal (1960-1967)
The advent of formal independence in former French colonies in Black Africa meant the dawn of a new era: the struggle against neocolonialism. African students rallying around this struggle became new strangers and targets for expulsion out of France. The French government of the time resorted, therefore, to massive expulsions against their labour and political organizations. The implementation in 1956 of the Loi-cadre Gaston Defferre ñ meant to divide up Black Africa under French dominion ñ and the ensuing explosion of the two great AOF and AEF federations along with the cancellation of scholarship federal commissions will considerably weaken the FÈdÈration des Ètudiants díAfrique noire en France (FEANF) [African Student Federation in France] in favour of territorial sections. This meant that African governments were to take charge of their own students. In turn, the former used their embassies and scholarship territorial commissions to squelch those student organizations that were hostile to their collaboration with the French authorities. Among the repressive strategies were the cancellation of scholarships and grants to hotels and residences that were reserved for their students (La Maison de la CÙte díIvoire, du Gabon, de la Haute Volta, du Congo, díAOF), the creation of pro-government associations such as that of the Senegalese Progressive Union (UPS), the Student Movement for the African and Malagasy Organization (MEOCAM), and the National Union for Students of CÙte díIvoire (UNECI). This marked the beginning of the decline of the FÈdÈration des Ètudiants díAfrique noire en France (FEANF). The worm had entered the fruit of unity with the implementation of the Loi-cadre.
This study explores the predicament of Anglophone Cameroon ñ from the experiment in federation from 1961 to the political liberalisation struggles of the 1990s ñ to challenge claims of a successful post-independence Cameroonian integration process. Focusing on the perceptions and actions of people in the Anglophone region, Atanga argues that what has come to be called the ìAnglophone Problemî constitutes one of the severest threats to the post-colonial nation-state project in Cameroon. As a linguistic and cultural minority, Anglophone Cameroonians realised that the Francophone-led state and government were keener in assimilation than in implementing the federal and bilingual nation agreed upon at reunification in 1960. Calls for national integration became simply a subterfuge for the assimilation of Anglophones by Francophones who dominated the state and government. The book details the various measures undertaken to exploit the Anglophone regionís economy and marginalise its people. Principally the economic structures meant to facilitate self-reliant development were undermined and destroyed. Institutionalised discrimination took the form of the exclusion of Anglophones from positions of real authority, and depriving the region of any meaningful development. With the advent of multi-party politics, most Anglophone Cameroonians increasingly have made vocal demands for a return to a federation, in order to adequately guarantee their rights and recognition for them as a political and cultural minority. Actively encouraged by France, the Francophone-led regime in Cameroon has refused to yield to such demands, despite the grave danger of violent conflict and possible secession.
Anxiety In Mosaic is a sum up of a manís fears and hopes into a volume of poetry; anxieties that span a cross section of the human phenomena of greed (in ramifications) and the resultant socio-political, economic and environmental consequences; the repercussions of worsted governance, feminist, ecological, emigrational and imperialist concerns, presented from the perspective of a philosophical questioning. The charm of these thoroughly vocal, finely-crafted poems not only lie in the quasi-compendious multiplicity of subject matter but also in their creative and innovative re-chartings.
Scholar, Activist and Thinker
Archie Mafeje was an independent Pan-Africanist and cosmopolitan individual who sought to understand the world at a global level in order to locate Africa within that tapestry. In many ways, Archie Mafeje was one of the African intellectual pathfi nders. He contributed immensely to the African people's search for self-understanding, self-determination and political emancipation as they struggled against alienation and misrepresentation. In recognising the academic and intellectual contribution of Archie Mafeje, this monograph also refl ects on the African people's journey for emancipation in the search for African identity, self-control and self-understanding.
Niger's political history has lacked a synthesis on the army's involvement in politics since independence. The country is a fertile ground for such analysis. Between 1964 and 1999, the country witnessed three successful military coups during the democratisation process (April 1974, January 1996, and April 1999) and at least four military coup attempts (1964, 1975, 1976, 1983). In its forty years of independence, Niger has been under military rule for twenty-one years. It has also experienced seven different institutional regimes while four out of the six presidents who headed the country were soldiers. Niger evolved from the Second to the Fifth Republic in less than ten years - from the national conference (November 1991) to the last military coup (April 1999). In statistical terms, Niger has been witnessing a military coup or a military coup attempt every five-years since 1974. In addition to that, the country recorded seven mutinies and various other forms of troop rebellion between December 1963 and August 2000. In terms of institutional instability, Niger's record is unparalleled in Africa. A study on the army is therefore more needed than ever before. The recurrence with which the military appears on the political scene imposes another way of looking at Niger's army. A critical analysis of the military phenomenon, if not an assessment, would help envisage new prospects for Niger's future. This work, which was undertaken by a multi disciplinary team, suggests an analysis, from a historical and sociological perspective, of the long-standing involvement of the army in politics (the apparition of war leaders in the 19th century, the transition from colonial army to national army, the politicisation of the army and the emergence of 'military-politicians', the army sociology.). It aims at providing an answer to a key question: Why is the army so deeply involved in politics in Niger? It reveals how a significant military component has been gradually built up in Niger's political arena to become a highly dynamic political entrepreneur, able to compete with civilian politicians. The work shows, on the one hand, the significance of socio-political and economic contexts that promote the propensity for military interventionism, and on the other hand the transformations within the army that explain its propensity to intervene. It relates two decades of 'military rule', analyses their modes of legitimating, organising and managing power, gives an assessment of their economic policies and sheds light on women's role in that institution, which was thus far a men's business.
Perspectives on Globalization and Class Struggles
Globalization is a term that describes the contradictory economic, political, and cultural processes of world capitalist integration. Although capitalism has been of a global character since the 1400s, the current phase of globalization is manifest by emergent transnational institutions, changing relations between multinational corporations and assaulted paradise of sovereign nation-states and the development of a global monoculture of consumption among feuding class divides. This book examines the relationship between globalization and nation states, the dynamics, contradictions, and crisis of global capitalism, and the developing and maturing class struggles and the prospects for social change and transformation of global capitalism. It examines these class struggles within the context of the globalization of capital and draws out the political implications of this process for the future course of capitalist development on a world scale. In this book Tatah Mentan drives home the point that contemporary neoliberal globalization is in fact an advanced stage of capitalist hegemonism and that the contradictions of 21st century globalization are thus a projection of the contradictions of capitalism on a global scale, with all its inherent exploitative characteristics and militarized class conflicts that will lead to the revolutionary transformation of vulture capitalist society. He argues that dominant global processes are not an immutable feature of capitalism, but are contested by social class actors across these three dimensions.
Donato Francesco Mattera has been celebrated as a journalist, editor, writer and poet. He is also acknowledged as one of the foremost activists in the struggle for a democratic South Africa, and helped to found both the Union of Black Journalists, the African Writer's Association and the Congress of South African Writers. Born in 1935 in Western Native Township (now Westbury) across the road from Sophiatown, Mattera can lay claim to an intriguingly diverse lineage: his paternal grandfather was Italian, and he has Tswana, Khoi-Khoi and Xhosa blood in his veins.