Africans/People of African descent/Blacks on the continent and in the diaspora, I believe, can maintain (or regain) our collective self-confidence is when we constantly see wholistic representations of our lives ( negative and positive). Mainstream media feeds the world mostly with negative images of Africans, so I think its necessary to provide more positive depictions of Black life. We need to see Africans achieving, contributing to our communities and the world. Currently it seems as if the only time you see Africans depicted in a positive light is when white people are giving us handouts and promoting their “charity” work. This imagery stamps in the psyche of Africans/black people, especially our youth, that white benevolence and charity equals Black salvation.
On a personal journey to increase my “knowledge-of-self” and to embrace my African-ness, I immerse myself, on regular basis, reading alternative media outlets such as Sahara Reporters, The Herald Zimbabwe, Black Agenda Report,New Africa, Aspire, Democracy Now, TVONE, Al jazeera, Black Star News etc. My goal with this series of posts is to share some of my findings. It is my libation (prayer) that we all find strength and courage in the struggles and accomplishments of our beautiful people. For this first installment, I have selected President Joyce Banda of Malawi, not because she is perfect or that I agree with everything she does ( I disagree with most of her foreign politics esp with aid donors ), but, rather, because I think she is making an important contribution in Malawi and African progress:
1.Banda has made an earnest attempt to prioritize the voice of the underserved, especially those in rural communities as they are the backbone of Malwawian indigenous cultures and food production. Quoting Banda:
“In this modern 21st century, an ideal village should have good access to quality housing, roads, water, food security through subsidized farm inputs and where there are no subsidies people should have access to farm input loans to enable them to grow cash crops , own cattle which transforms the social and economic status of our citizens.”
2. She has made impressive reductions on government spending.
3. She is participating in building Pan-African bridges with other African leaders.
1. Follow her on facebook “Her Excellency Dr Joyce Banda” :www.facebook.com/pages/Her-Excellency-Dr-Joyce-Banda/325799237543309
2. Listen to her wonderful interview on Aljazeera :http://www.aljazeera.com/programmes/south2north/2013/05/20135171428575590.html