Musings on Africa, Politics, Technology, Love, Life and Trifles...

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mardi, novembre 06, 2012

Four More Years :)

President Obama has won re-election to a second term according the all major new networks projections that are calling it in on the air.

We can safely say at this time, that President Obama would have the majority of electoral votes, more than the 270 required. The incumbent President Barack Obama has such an edge that would be nearly impossible for candidate Mitt Romney to recover.

On his official twitter account, one can read : “This happened because of you. Thank you.
Thank you Mr President and best of luck to implement your policies and put the US back on the track of economic recovery.

picture source:

vendredi, août 17, 2012

No violence, no matter how sad can darken the heart or tear it apart

Hold my hand
I am afraid
Please pray for me
When I am away

Comfort the girl
Help her understand
No memory
No matter how sad
And no violence
No matter how bad
Can darken the heart
Or tear it apart

Take my hand
When you are scared
And I will pray
If you go back out there
Comfort the man
Help him understand
That no floating sheet
No matter how haunting
And no secret
No matter how nasty
Can poison your voice
Or keep you from joy

Normal Song by Perfume Genius

jeudi, août 02, 2012

TS Elliot Quote - In a minute there is time

In a minute there is time

For decisions and revisions which a minute will reverse. 
For I have known them all already, known them all:—

Have known the evenings, mornings, afternoons,

I have measured out my life with coffee spoons;
T.S Elliott

Image Created by Dabnotu

samedi, juillet 28, 2012

Relationships' Bill of Rights

What should we expect in a normal relationship where love is the thread? What are the rights of each partner? 

Evans (1992) suggests the following as basic rights in a relationship for you and your partner:

  • The right to good will from the other.
  • The right to emotional support.
  • The right to be heard by the other and to be responded to with courtesy.
  • The right to have your own view, even if your partner has a different view.
  • The right to have your feelings and experience acknowledged as real.
  • The right to receive a sincere apology for any jokes you may find offensive.
  • The right to clear and informative answers to questions that concern what is legitimately your business.
  • The right to live free from accusation and blame.
  • The right to live free from criticism and judgment.
  • The right to have your work and your interests spoken of with respect.
  • The right to encouragement.
  • The right to live free from emotional and physical threat.
  • The right to live free from angry outbursts and rage.
  • The right to be called by no name that devalues you.
  • The right to be respectfully asked rather than ordered.

Dear readers, I wish to each one of you to find a partner that will respect these simple but forceful rights that should serve as good bases but also reminders for an healthy relationship that everyone of us is deserve.

samedi, juin 16, 2012

Save your "sorry. I don't need are anymore apologies

Last night, I watched for the second time the Tyler Perry movie "For colored girls" starring some of my favorite African-American actresses : Kimberly Elise, Kerry Washington, Phylicia Rashad, Anika Noni Rose etc...

The quote I love the most, is the one from Jo (Joanne Bradmore) played by an astonishing Janet Jackson.

Save your "sorry.

" One thing I don't need are anymore apologies.
 I got sorry greeting me at the front door. 
You can keep yours. 
I don't know what to do with them... 
I can't even... 
I have to throw some away. 
I can't even get to the clothes in my closet for all the sorries. I
'm not even sorry about you being sorry. 

Here is an extract from: for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf, the original play from which the movie was adapted,  

“one thing I don’t need

is any more apologies
i got sorry greetin me at my front door
you can keep yrs
i don’t know what to do wit em
they don’t open doors
or bring the sun back
they don’t make me happy
or get a mornin paper
didn’t nobody stop usin my tears to wash cars
cuz a sorry.” 

Ntozake Shange

La Donna in Viola

Listen to the drama of the movie "For Colored Girls" unfolds with great perfection at the rhythm of La Donna in Viola opera. 

To me, this is one of the best soundtrack of the movie directed by Tyler Perry and adapted from the play of Ntozake Shange And this is for Colored girls who have considered suicide, but are moving to the ends of their own rainbows. 

This modern opera really gives me chills. 

Performers: Karen Slack, Andrea Jones-Sojola & The Hollywood Studio Symphony Orchestra

mercredi, avril 04, 2012

Internet in Africa : Key Insights on habits and usage

GOOGLE has interviewed over 13,000 people in urban centers of 6 key African countries - Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, Senegal, South Africa and Uganda - to understand their habits, the usage they make of the internet and the barriers to a bigger penetration in the continent.

The results are publicly available on InsightsAfrica ( for free and give us a pretty good insights regarding what's driving (or slowing) the advance of internet in our continent. Their credo is simple : "Explore the media habits of consumers in Sub-Saharan Africa".

On the site, one may find information regarding online penetration rates, usage patterns amongst the online population etc... A real wealth of information to understand where Africa does stand on the digital divide equation.

For example, I've learned that when it comes to emailing or using social networks and searching, people in Ghana, Kenya or Nigeria use more their mobile than their computer. The two devices like elsewhere in the world on tihtgly knit when it comes to the internet access/usage's question.

Unsurprisingly, the drivers for an increase usage of the internet are : lower costs, faster access added to a perception of the internet being more reliable and having a more relevant content.

Non-User Barriers to Internet Usage

Drivers for Increased Usage

I will let you play with the data-sets, but this is good step in the right direction. My main criticism is that, the study is geared toward English speaking countries, despite their 
 attempts to include Senegal in. It's strong start, but many improvements are to be made to make a full restitution an even complete picture of the Internet in Africa today.

Thumbs up to the fellow behind this initiative, great work and keep it coming :)

 Source pictures: Insight Africa


Technology at rescue to fight anaemia

image source: BBC
 I have read in the news today about a breakthrough in India that could benefit Africa  and people with sickle cell (via BBC News.) The device " is a pulse oximeter, a non-invasive method of monitoring the oxygenation of haemoglobin using light. The patient is attached to the machine via a finger clip." You can measure a patient's level of haemeoglobin without requiring a needle. The costs of a machine should be between $200 and $300 for a hospital. This breakthrough should also greatly benefit Africa where sicke-cell anemia is the most widespread genetic disease, the difference between this device and the others that came before it, it that it caters to local needs and just because of that, it's a major plus.

Affaire a suivre...

dimanche, mars 11, 2012

How to save a life - The Fray

I can't stop listening to this.
I picked it up on Grey's Anatomy show.
Enjoy ;)

Death is Nothing at All

Death is nothing at all.
I have only slipped away to the next room.
I am I and you are you.
Whatever we were to each other, 
That, we still are.

Call me by my old familiar name.
Speak to me in the easy way
which you always used.
Put no difference into your tone.
Wear no forced air of solemnity or sorrow.

Laugh as we always laughed
at the little jokes we enjoyed together.
Play, smile, think of me. Pray for me.
Let my name be ever the household word
that it always was.
Let it be spoken without effect.
Without the trace of a shadow on it.

Life means all that it ever meant.
It is the same that it ever was.
There is absolute unbroken continuity.
Why should I be out of mind
because I am out of sight? 

I am but waiting for you.
For an interval.
Somewhere. Very near.
Just around the corner.

All is well

Henry Scott Holland (27 January 1847 – 17 March 1918)

mardi, février 21, 2012

We must disenthrall ourselves - Abraham Lincoln

We can succeed only by concert. 
It is not "can any of us imagine better?" but, "can we all do better?" 
The dogmas of the quiet past, are inadequate to the stormy present. 
The occasion is piled high with difficulty, and we must rise -- with the occasion. 
As our case is new, so we must think anew, and act anew. 
We must disenthrall ourselves, and then we shall save our country."

Abraham Lincolnaddress to Congress, December 1862

Abraham Lincoln, 1863
I couldn't find a better quote for my new team. 
These words are from one of Abraham Lincoln's famous statements. 

Leadership is hard, the task ahead of us is humongous, succeeding in such hazy times is even more arduous... 

The key word for all of us (executives, managers, individual contributors etc...) is to DISENTHRALL because success is a recipe that combines genius,  luck, hard work and open mind.

lundi, février 20, 2012

Readings 20-02-2012: A Katumba, N Ribadu, Napoleon

  • The Congolese Kingmaker is dead. The Economist's blog Baobab features an article regarding the sudden death of Augustin Katumba, a trusted advisor to Congolese President Joseph Kabila who was widely perceived as the "brain" behind the presidency.
  • The return of Nuhu Ribaduthe pioneer Executive Chairman of Nigeria's Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC)who has been recently appointed Chair of the Task force for petroleum revenue. According to African Arguments, this move signals a will for Nigerian president to fight corruption not only in the oil sector but elsewhere. According to Jeremy Weate, the petro state - largely under the presidential and state governors discretion -  is the "engine-room of corruption" that prevents any form of good governance by killing any good will at its roots.
"the underlying cause of corruption  is the structure of Nigeria’s quintessential “petro” state.  There are a number of characteristics of the petro-state we can point to.  Firstly, it features a broken social contract in the form of a rupture in the relationship between taxation and accountability. Royalties and taxes paid by international oil companies are direct contributions to the federal coffers, by-passing the citizenry. As the government has no need to rely on internally generated revenue, it has no incentive to engage with accountability actors such as civil society organisations.  It is therefore close to impossible to apply accountability pressure into the system of governance. In Nigeria ministers never resign."

dimanche, février 19, 2012

"Chaque jour est une vie" Thanh Nghiem

Ci jointe la video d'une amie Thanh Nghiem au TEDx, une histoire inspirationnelle qui demontre son concept de la pollinisation ou le partage des savoirs qui s'articule autour de notions simples mais complexes:

  • le souci permanent de l'autre, 
  • la main sur le coeur qui veut que l'on partage tout et en premier lieu le savoir, 
  • le courage de remettre en cause les ordres etablis dont les plus durs que sont nos vies confortables.

Des ors de McKinsey ou elle fut la premiere femme Partner a l'age de 30 ans, Thanh nous relate son changement de vie, son appel a aller au dela du pouvoir et du nomadisme vain, pour fonder une ONG, Angenius, dans une quete de sens qui replace l'etre humain au centre de la reflexion et de la demarche.

A sa suite, ecoutons la nous narrer cette energie qui est la sienne au service de la connaissance. La mise en oeuvre positive des atavismes familiaux qui vous predisposent a la reussite. Une histoire familiale riche qui montre un combat sans fin pour le savoir et que Thanh reprend avec succes. Gageons que par cette pollinisation du savoir, elle transmet le flambeau recu de sa famille et passe la ligne avec brio.

Truculent, ironique et profondement emouvant ce voyage a l'interieur d'une trajectoire reajustee pour le bien des hommes. "Chaque jour est une vie" lui disait sa mere dans son combat pour le "jour de plus". Apre est le chemin, mais beau est le terme et chaque jour comme la vie se vaut d'etre embrassee avec passion et devouement.

Thanh, Kudos et courage pour ce combat digne que tu menes avec ce sourire espiegle et cet a propos subtil qui sont autant de signes chez les gens dont l'intelligence est un plaisir a voir mais surtout a emuler....

The Joy of Quiet

All men’s miseries derive from not being able to sit in a quiet room alone.’ ~Blaise Pascal

Leo Babauta makes in a recent post a praise for the "joy of quiet" as an enabler for meditation and soul-searching.

"Being alone is another pleasure we too often neglect. 
When we are alone, we go on the Internet or TV to see what else is going on, what others are doing or saying, instead of just being alone. 
This isolation is a necessary thing, that allows us to find ourselves, to learn to be content with little instead of always wanting more.
Can you practice being alone, being still, being quiet? 
Just a little at first, then perhaps a bit more. 
Listen, watch, learn about yourself. 
Find contentment. 
Need nothing more".

Our inner self has so much to tell us, if only we could let it talk to us and enjoy the quiet like we enjoy the gatherings with people we've been out of touch for a while. We owe it to ourselves as to others. A simple Joy, a Quiet one...

dimanche, janvier 15, 2012

In 2012, Work To Your Strenghts !

Ca fait long !!! Happy New Year to my beloved readers and followers.  Let's jump start this New Year with our good resolutions and my warmest wishes. I wish you to be endeared by your entourage, success in all your endeavors through sheer luck and hard-work. Last but not least, may you become even better at what you do best.

 That brings me directly to the topic of my post.

What's the best way to develop your work life effectiveness? An open question for all of us. While browsing the web trying to look for some self-help books, I found on the Happy-Manager this quote from the Panasonic founder, Konosuke Matsushita:

“Be yourself. 

Once you know what you like to do, 

what you are good at, 

then all you have to do is work hard at it.”

Female seabee in Guantanamo -c  

The site even proposes 15 questions/suggestions to help you think about how to improve your work life effectiveness. It's worth the read, especially if you're trying to discover your true self, which can't be done overnight and remains an evolving process that lasts until our last day. (Pure guess regarding the last sentence).

Again, Excellente et Tres Heureuse Annee 2012.


Photo source: Guantanamo seabee, Steel Worker 2nd Class Rejuny Caswell By Kelly Gary, via Wikimedia Commons