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South Africa’s Darling Athlete Dealt a Heavy Blow

Caster Semenya

South African 800m Olympic champion Caster Semenya has lost her landmark legal case against athletics’ governing body, the IAAF, in a decision that will send shockwaves through sport. It means Semenya will have to take medication to reduce her testosterone if she wants to run internationally at events between 400m and a mile. Semenya, who has long argued that her unique genetic gifts should be celebrated not regulated, confirmed that she was considering an appeal and insisted that she believed the DSD regulations would be one day overturned. “I know that the IAAF’s regulations have always targeted me specifically,” she added. “For a decade the IAAF has tried to slow me down, but this has actually made me stronger. The decision of the Cas will not hold me back. I will once again rise above and continue to inspire young women and athletes in South Africa and around the world.”


Future of Cancer Treatment in Africa

Cancer Treatment in Africa

Preliminary research from around the world indicates that immunotherapies for cancer are less toxic than conventional therapies like chemotherapy and radiation. They also have the potential for fewer and less severe side effects. This means that immunotherapies could improve patients’ quality of life. For developing countries like South Africa, finding immunotherapy solutions is particularly important given the country’s weak health system and the high cost of cancer drugs. The University of Cape Town has set up the country’s first medical biotechnology-based immunotherapy laboratory. The lab is strongly committed to the development of novel therapeutic and diagnostic tools for cancer. Most cancer research has been done on populations of European descent. This means that there’s minimal data on African populations. The lab aims to fill this knowledge gap by diagnosing and treating patients of African descent. The aim is to identify immunotherapy targets in this underrepresented population.


Church becomes Home for those Waiting Out the Aftermath of Mozambique’s Latest Cyclone

Mozambique's Latest Cyclone

Situated in the heart of this predominantly Muslim but diverse city ravaged by Cyclone Kenneth, the Maria Auxiliadora parish houses those displaced by the storm in Cabo Delgado, Mozambique’s northernmost province. The government has said 41 people have died after the cyclone made landfall on Thursday, and the humanitarian situation in Pemba and other areas is dire. More than 55 centimetres of rain have fallen in Pemba since Kenneth arrived just six weeks after Cyclone Idai tore into central Mozambique. This is the first time two cyclones have struck the country in a single season, and Kenneth was the first cyclone recorded so far north in Mozambique in the era of satellite imaging.


South Africa’s Missing Middle Feels Neglected

SAs black middle class

The country’s black middle class is growing numerically – and growing politically restive.  But sluggish economic performance, coupled with a decade of state capture and the scorn former President Jacob Zuma felt towards “clever blacks”, has left the black middle class angry and wary. While 67% of black middle class voters do intend to vote, a third will stay at home on 8 May, cursing all political parties for failing to represent their interests, according to the survey. Chunks of the black middle class may vote, but far from enthusiastically. And a great many will not vote. Research says the ruling African National Congress has never been able to sustain a strong appeal to higher educated or higher income voters. The main opposition Democratic Alliance has now fallen back dramatically in these areas – the party is viewed as a “white” party, or a party in hock to white interests – and calculations makes it clear that the new firebrand Economic Freedom Fighters hold more appeal to black middle class voters. 


An African Boy’s Odyssey to the Snow

Tété-Michel Kpomassie

Tété-Michel Kpomassie, grew up in West Africa but he was obsessed with the Arctic after discovering a book about Greenland. When he was 16 years old he ran away from his village in Togo determined to reach Greenland. It took him eight years but in 1965, he finally arrived. He then went north to fulfil his dream of living among the indigenous people. Years later, he wrote an award-winning account of his odyssey, An African in Greenland, which has been translated into eight languages. The autobiography that chronicles his journey, was awarded the Prix Littéraire Francophone International in 1981, and its English translation was one of The New York Times’ Notable Books of the Year in 1983. 


Renovations at West Africa’s Oldest University

Fourah Bay College

Fourah Bay College, founded as far back as 1827, is the oldest university in West Africa and the first western-style university in the region. For years now, students have been yearning for hostels which have not been in operation due to rehabilitation works. The situation has since then left many students arriving on campus late for academic work. Others coming from provinces across the country find it very difficult to get residences in order to ease their lives. Fast forward to 2019, the prayers of students at Fourah Bay College are close to being answered as the hostel facilities are almost at their completion stage. With the rehabilitation of the hostels, many students who couldn’t find fixed settlements in the urban area, will find it easy to make it for classes and will reduce the cost used by many students on transportation. However, some students have called on the college administration to make ways for disabled students to have easy access to the buildings.


Is Business Sabotaging Zimbabwe’s Economic Ambitions?

Zimbabwe's Economic Ambitions

President Emmerson Mnangagwa accused “unpatriotic” members of the business community of thwarting the government’s economic program, saying recent price increases are unjustifiable. The southern African nation has been struggling with shortages of bread, fuel and foreign currency, with inflation accelerating to almost 67 percent in March. “My government will not stand by and leave workers and the generality of our people at the mercy of a small group with rent-seeking profiteering tendencies,” he said. The annual inflation rate is at its highest since a peak of 500 billion percent in 2008, which prompted the government to abandon the Zimbabwe dollar a year later. Bond notes that aren’t accepted outside the country were introduced in 2016 at par value with the U.S. dollar. In February they were converted into what is effectively a new currency known as RTGS$ and have been allowed to gradually devalue on an interbank market.


If things don’t Change the African Giraffe could be Endangered

African Giraffe

Federal wildlife officials said that they would officially consider listing the giraffe as an endangered species, a move long sought by conservationists alarmed by the African mammal’s precipitous decline and a growing domestic market for giraffe products. Designating giraffes as endangered or threatened would place restrictions on their import into the United States and make federal funding available for conservation efforts. The market for products derived from giraffes has also increased in the United States. According to a report released last year by the Humane Society of the United States, more than 40,000 giraffe parts were imported from 2006 to 2015 to be made into expensive pillows, boots, knife handles, Bible covers and other trinkets.


Meet the Woman Telling African Stories in Film

Kenim Obaigbena

Kenim Obaigbena is a Nigerian-British-American filmmaker and entrepreneur. With a background in fine art painting, creative writing, photography and photoshop editing, Kenim began her film career in 2007, now she’s focused on her production vehicle OVG Media where she produces and directs films, documentaries, drama series and other scripted content for broadcast TV and digital media. She was raised in the United Kingdom, Nigeria, Togo, and the USA. She has lived in many cities around the world, making her both a true global citizen and a versatile filmmaker. At the age of 15, Kenim founded Scoop Magazine with her two sisters, the teen publication was distributed across Lagos, Nigeria.


Undiscovered Canvas, Mekanova Gallery Cannes Launch African Art Residency In The French Riviera

Mekanova Gallery Cannes

Mekanova Gallery in partnership with Undiscovered Canvas today announced the first visual arts residency program for talented South African artist, Giggs Kgole. The residency program is aimed at inspiring young African artists through learning about the French culture and living experiences in France, and to enable productive collaborations between French artists and the young African artists. During the residency, Mr. Giggs Kgole will be living and working in Vallauris for six months, affording him the opportunity to collaborate with numerous artists from the French Riviera, and have two solo exhibitions in Cannes, one solo exhibition in London and participate in one group exhibition in Paris later in the year.


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