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Book Reviews History and Culture Politics

Book Review: ‘Dinner With Mugabe’ by Heidi Holland

A family holiday in December 1996 took us to Kariba the Zimbabwean tourist town located a few kilometres from the border with Zambia. It is home to Lake Kariba, a vast and impressive dam teeming with animal and plant life, favoured by tourists and vital for the supply of hydroelectricity. We stayed at a small […]

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Business and Economics

Modernising Africa and its inequality blindspot

When spoken about in Western media particularly, Africa has often been presented as a continent ravaged by wars and blessed with vast natural resources yet barely able to feed its people and compete with the rest of the world economically. To present the African continent in this way is not entirely untrue though in the […]

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Business and Economics Politics

BRICS Development Bank: More about political posturing than anything?

“The BRICS development bank will take shape at the fifth BRICS summit to be held in the eastern port city of Durban, South Africa, next month. The governments of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa will each make an initial capital injection of $10 billion to fund the bank, which will not only symbolize the unity […]

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Book Reviews History and Culture Politics

‘It’s Our Turn To Eat’: final excerpt

In the final chapter of the book, author Michela Wrong laments the prevailing attitude amongst Western donors who have, by and large, been more interested in disbursing ever-larger sums of money to recipient nations than in ensuring accountability frameworks are adhered to. She suggests that Western qualms and sensitivities are in fact encouraging political elites to become more brazen in their […]

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Book Reviews History and Culture Politics

‘It’s Our Turn To Eat’: insightful and easy-to-read

I’ve just finished reading Michela Wrong’s ‘It’s Our Turn To Eat’, an insightful and easy-to-read book on state corruption in Kenya. I like her style. One interesting thought from the book … state corruption as a threat to national security. I’d never really given much thought to that. She writes: “Corruption can reach a point […]

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Book Reviews Musings Politics

Rich and poor, side by side

An excerpt from ‘It’s Our Turn To Eat’ (p148), a book by Michela Wrong: Among the most squalid the continent has to offer, these settlements nuzzle against well-heeled residential areas in provocative intimacy. ‘What’s striking about Nairobi is that each wealthy neighbourhood lies cheek by jowl with a slum,’ remarks former MP Paul Muite. ‘It’s […]