Tuesday, 1 December 2009


The search is now on are you capable of representing young Africans in Yorkshire. Make a point and log on from the Miss Africa Yorkshire website for registration.


Tuesday, 20 October 2009

What is freedom?

By Nqobile Mafu

This poem its an extract taken from "Born 2 Speak" it talks about the corruption and empty promises which were made by the government. Long back ago people where taken by force matter to go and fight for their beloved country. They were promised honey and milk but all the promises where in vain.

We live in a country where we can’t afford to buy a sweet,
not to mention a toilet roll paper.
We live in fear of persecution, we are forced to choose
what we don’t like.
We are forced to say yes when we want to say no.
We are beaten and tortured, for exercising our rights.
Reporters are arrested or even killed for telling the truth
some disappear without a trace.

Is this the meaning of freedom? Is this the meaning of freedom?
What is freedom? Kuyini inkululeko?
Or cry beloved country or cry beloved country.
This government of ours has totally destroyed,
Our beloved country.
It has totally destroyed the atmosphere,
The doctors are the dealers.
Lawyers are liars.

Yikho mina ngithi,
What is freedom?
What is the meaning of freedom?
Is freedom a play station?
Is freedom a puzzle?
What is freedom?
What is the meaning of freedom?

A Dream

A dream written by Edwin the Prince Mathe for Iqhawe Enkundleni Arts Management an PEAEP Production (2005)

A dream, a dream is a vision I saw
A dream is a thought sometimes
A dream is what you make out of life
Last night I fell asleep all because in my sleep I was thinking
So it reflected when I was sleeping what I was thinking in my sleep
This is a dream sometimes it reflects joy sometimes it reflects sadness
This is a dream sometimes it reflects strength and sometimes it reflects fear
I hoped for a better life but thought it was good for my friend
Yesterday I thought of myself rich having large sums of money
This is what reflected on my sleep that’s what I dreamt of
This is my dream

A dream is a reflection of memory when memory is lost there is no dream
A dream is sleep when sleep is disturbed there is no dream
A dream can become reality if you pursue it
It was a romantic thought I had all afternoon and when I slept love was in the air in my
Sleep so sweet was my sleep turning my thought into reality in my sleep
Sometimes dreams can be interpreted and who can interpret this one for me
I had a big dream oh the dream was big I dreamt sleeping on a very comfortable bed
Because while lying rough I thought what if I slept comfortable that is my dream

She was such a wonderful lady I thought but she’s gone she passed away
She died all day I have been thinking of all the great things she used to do
My mother was a good woman that is what I was thinking she used to correct me
Now in my thought as I sleep the thought of my sleep reflected and began
To talk to my mother who is long gone talk to her mysteries and love
She was correcting me as in real life and I marvelled at her way of taking
She did not sound any different all because I thought of her
This is my dream and this will not come true sadly

Thursday, 9 July 2009

Marsden walk in African walk

On the 7th of June Marsden Community took an entertaining walk with Simbarts Arts in conjunction with The National Trust. This walk was encouraged by how Great Zimbabwe was built; people carry stones from one village to another. Marsden walk its aim was to bring people together. Alison Mills the community warden said “this walk is to engage African nature with our nature.” The residents of Marsden were supplied with African attires which made the field look in different colourful.

 Simbarts is a group which is led by Simba Mugadza kept the walk so easy by singing and dance. “It was like a miracle l couldn't believe what happened. These guys they sang for the rain, and the rain came down” said Jules a volunteer of The National Trust.

4 Yo Adverts Click the image 4 enlargement

They leave me

This poem is taken from “Born 2 Speak” a 40th
coming attraction African anthology book by Nqobile Mafu

By Nqobile Mafu

In the life that I live,
I love so many.
Once in a while I lose someone,
they leave me here.
I carry on, it’s my life.
I move on, beyond emotions
I seek reason and all I get is sadness.
It is not acceptable, I'll never understand it.
I can never approve it.
I wonder if they imagine it
as they depart, do they ever reconcile with it?
What kind of life is it?
Life is everything, I know
that now, and loss or being dumped is part of life.
I know too, that a life without
Love is a terrible thing.
People will talk about you,
no one will recognize you,
no one will listen to you,
because you don’t have any girl friend.
but for me, they will leave me.

Death mocks love; your life,
will be covered by a shadow that,
dissolves a perfect day into a puddle of tears.
Death can step on your heart and
tear your soul, leaving you empty.

To be a broken heart is like death
I will avoid death, stress, and depression
by allowing them to leave me
they leave me I don’t care life goes on.


First published in Sunlight and Shadows poetry anthology 1995 as Denise Howson

Water flows,
Humans grow, work and die.
Nuclear War.

Oil flows,
Birds sing, take flight,
Never to return,
Wings covered.

Pus flows,
Trees scream, their skin peels,
Silver hands hang from their arms
They weep.

Earth lies dying.

How unfair trade deals harm the poorest in the world

By Susanne Schuster

1st Part of the story

In this article I am going to discuss free trade agreements and their consequences for the poorest communities in the world. International trade deals and the institutions that were set up to govern them can be quite a boring and dry subject and there are lots of three letter abbreviations that pop up, so I am trying to be as brief and non-technical as possible. I think it is an important topic which affects us all and that there is an urgent need for more public debate.

Global resistance North and South

My interest in this subject stems directly from campaigning against unfair trade deals. I joined the World Development Movement, which is part of a broad coalition which calls itself the global justice movement, and have been an active member of the local WDM group in Brighton & Hove for just over a year now. Founded in 1970, the WDM is a campaigning organisation which tackles the underlying causes of poverty by challenging the powerful and lobbying decision makers in government and industry to change the policies that keep people poor. The WDM is a democratic movement of individual supporters, local groups and campaigners, it is funded mostly by its supporters and some grant making bodies and trusts and therefore it is a truly independent and radical organisation, and UK politicians do take note of its campaigns. Its campaigning work is backed and informed by evidence based research - the WDM website provides really good resources in the form of briefings and reports. One of the things I like about the WDM is that it works in solidarity with campaigners and activists from the global south, it doesn't set up offices there and directs what should be done, rather it targets politicians and corporations at home. Another campaigning organisation in a similar vein is War on Want.

In the past the WDM has campaigned successfully against disastrous water privatisation in Tanzania and against open-cast mining in Bangladesh that would have forced thousands of people off their land and threaten the water supplies of many more.

Current campaigns include the prevention of the construction of new coal-fired power stations, which would seriously undermine the UK government's carbon emissions targets and cause thousands more climate refugees among the poorest in the world, and instead getting the government to invest into renewable energy generation, thus creating thousands of sustainable jobs. And, as I mentioned already, there is the campaign against unfair trade deals.

The kinds of trade agreements that the WDM is campaigning against have to be seen in the context of the three bodies governing international trade and lending of funds, so I will briefly discuss them here.
WTO, IMF and World Bank

The origins of these institutions go back to a conference at Bretton Woods, on the East coast of the US, in 1944. Some eminent British and US economists and politicians at the time set up the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank (its formal name is International Bank for Reconstruction and Development) with a post-war and post-colonial world in mind. The purpose of the World Bank was to loan money to put war-torn Europe back on its feet as fast as possible, but later it also loaned money to the developing economies. The IMF was supposed to make loans to countries with temporary balance of payment problems. Both were in fact progressive institutions for the time, the money came from contributions made almost entirely by rich countries and until the 1960s they were fairly unremarkable institutions. Then things changed. Under a new leadership the World Bank began pushing credits on developing countries much more aggressively, the oil price quadrupled and interest rates shot up.
Developing countries got caught up in a debt trap and the IMF and the World Bank began prescribing the Structural Adjustment Programmes (or austerity programmes) which forced these heavily indebted countries to open their markets to foreign imports and ownership and make harsh cuts in public and social spending. Their populations paid a heavy price for this as local industries collapsed leading to massive job losses, labour standards were lowered, inequality and insecurity increased, the health and well-being of people suffered, in short, many of the gains made since the end of colonialism were practically wiped out

2 B Cont-----

Gold Fish took London by storm

It was a great Friday on the 26th of June, when I spent my day with the Gold Fish band. The group is made up of Dominic Peters, David Poole and Sakhile Moleshe. Gold Fish is one of the hottest and highly recommended bands in their mother land, Cape Town in South Africa. The group came together while they were doing their music studies at University of Cape Town.
Some people take the arts for granted but if you follow the Gold Fish story you will realize that art is the most powerful tool for education.

Dave graduated with a master’s degree and Dominic holds a bachelor’s degree while young Sakhile has a bachelor in music. “Its good to be educated so that you can enjoy the fruits” said Dave

The group has some shows lined up for the coming months. Most of their shows are now fully booked.” My dream has come true; I can’t imagine that I am recognized throughout the world. We are hard workers and now we are getting ready to tour the US, Brazil and then a four month stint in Ibiza and Europe. It’s going to be awesome,” said Sakhile.
Combining live instruments like Double bass, Saxophones, Keyboards, Flute, and Vocals with Samplers, Effects, Synthesis and a healthy dollop of freeform improvisation, Gold Fish have hit a nerve on dance floors across the world.

Tour dates:

GOLDFISH @ RAMA BEACH Rama Beach Saturday, July 4 at 1:00am
GOLDFISH @ PACHA MOSCOW Pacha Moscow Saturday, July 25 at 11:00am
GOLDFISH LIVE @ PACHA IBIZA WI... Pacha Ibiza Wednesday, August 5 at 2:30am
GOLDFISH @PACHA SHARM EL SHEIKH Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt Thursday, August 6 at 11:50pm
GOLDFISH @ LOADED IN THE PARK Clapham Common Sunday, August 30 at 10:00am

From the land of oppression & black mail 2 a land of democracy

By Zewdu Mengiste

When I came to the UK I assumed that life would be very simple. But that is not true! There are big challenges. My first problem was the weather. Back home there is no snow, only a little rain and cold weather. The second was the food problem.  In Ethiopia the male does not make food, he is not allowed to do that in our culture. I'm also the victim of this bad culture so for over one month I had a big problem making my food. The third problem was the language. Most British people speak fast so I couldn’t understand them and they couldn’t understand me

But now most of these problems are more or less solved. Now I am a good cook! And the weather is warm. I like the British people, because most of them are willing to help any person and they are always cheerful. So I like this good culture. In Leeds there is an Ethiopian community and an Ethiopian Orthodox church, so I'm very happy.

I was alone in Leeds. Now, I have been re-united with my wife and children from Ethiopia and we are building a new life in Leeds with the support of friends here. I am now used to British culture, and I'm supporting other asylum seekers and refugees, especially other Ethiopians because I'm also from Ethiopia

I was volunteering at Oxfam and BBC. I am adopting the culture of British people. doing some research with Leeds University about how English language skills impacts on the lives of refugees and asylum seekers. We enjoyed a wonderful meeting with Ethiopian cross country runners at Leeds Met University. I am volunteering in the Ethiopian community, refugee council, RETAS and I am working with an Ethiopian radio station in London.

 My children have adopted English culture very well, better than me! They're all doing well at school. Life's good for us here and we have many English friends. We are able to keep some of our Ethiopian culture here, eating traditional foods and helping our children to remember our home language and culture. Like people from all over the world we value our culture, and don't want our children to struggle if we go back to Ethiopia. Until then we will learn all we can about Britain.

Zewdu Mengiste is an investigative journalist from Ethiopia. He is working with Ethiopian Consensus Radio in London and volunteering in Leeds with the Refugee Council, RETAS (Refugee Education and Training Advisory Service), the Ethiopian Community and now he learning journalism in Leeds collage of Technology

Thursday, 16 April 2009

"Let the world have a say"

By Patson Muzuwa

This is the appalling situation that we want the world to condemn to its utmost. If the state agrees that they is a problem and announcing at the state radios and television why don't they just release political and long serving minor offenders. It’s evident that they cannot feed, accommodate and cater for the needs of these people. This again is evident that so many people have been taken, abducted by the Zanu-pf and unprofessional officers. Does anyone on earth dare to think all those announced on Wednesday were stateless and of no fixed aboard. If they were convicted by the court for them to end up in the Maximum prisons the rightful procedure is for the matter to be dealt with from the records they hold at the courts to trace the places where they came from. This is a clear picture of what the media was saying of people abducted from their homes by the militias and sent directly to jail without going into the courts. Clear violations of the law as these abductors were over and above the law. They are so many people who are in those wrong places for just supporting the MDC and those are the people who do not have international publicity. Let’s stand up for those people and be their voices as no-one can speak on their behalf. As a former prisoner and a political detainee in Zimbabwe and the UK, I am urging the Western world and the African leaders to voice their concern before many more lives are lost.

HARARE – At least 14 bodies of prisoners who have died of various ailments at three of the state-run prisons have been not collected for burial with some of the corpses lying at the jails since the start of the month, prisons sources have said. According to official announcements on Wednesday there are seven uncollected bodies at Khami Prison, one at Marondera Prison and six at Chikurubi Maximum Security Prison in the capital, Harare.The announcement to collect the bodies, which was made on state-run Radio-Zambabwe indicates the crisis which most of the country's prisons are facing, officials said.


Tuesday, 31 March 2009

Why we choose this time to say "let asylum seekers work"

In hard times, society expects everyone to pull their weight where they can. Yet asylum seekers are forced to live on handouts or sometimes nothing at all. So why do we deny them the chance to work – then force them to bear the brunt of public hostility?

The 'Let Them Work' campaign goal is to give asylum seekers permission to work if their cases have not been resolved within six months – including everyone who has had their claim refused but can’t go home.

There are now some new campaigning initiatives which we ask all supporters to help to promote this goal – this will cost you nothing and only takes a few minutes online:

1. Visit www.refugeecouncil.org.uk/letthemwork to sign the campaign pledge online – then send it to your friends and networks.

2. The campaign is looking for organisations to sign up, so please also download the organisation support page here:


Sunday, 22 February 2009

Cara & Liezel done it again

“I’m proud to be African –American” said Liezel talking with Ngiyesabanews after their first title for this year’s Paris Open title in France. Liezel Huber was born in Durban on August 21, 1976; a tennis player from South Africa now resides in the United States. Huber has won the women's doubles title in Wimbledon in 2005, the Australian Open in 2007 and the latest Paris Open 2009 with partner Cara Black. As of November 12, 2007, she is the co-World No. 1 in Doubles with Cara Black.
Cara Black, born February 17, 1979 in Harare, Zimbabwe is a professional most recognised female tennis player both in the country and outside Zimbabwe. She is the current World No.1 in Doubles.” This is a good start for the year with Liezel hope we will prosper it” said Miss Zimbabwean tennis in a polite way.

Tuesday, 3 February 2009

So Hard 2 Cope

There are a number of foreign students who find studying in Britain difficult. I have a lot of knowledge about this situation; one of the biggest issues is the weather. It is very difficult to adapt to the United Kingdom weather especially when you are from hot countries.

Ngiyesabanews talked to a number of students who are studying in the UK, and we get different views about United Kingdom weather.
Babiegal,a student from Zimbabwe said “I chose to come and study in the United Kingdom because the quality of education is high and the qualifications received is recognized all over the world. I always wished to come and learn different beliefs and the culture of people living her.” Babiegal she’s current studying Health and social care at Leeds College of Technology. “The only problem with UK its the weather. You cant concentrate with your studies while your body is feeling cold” Said Miss Hlongwane in a polite voice.“My sister, who is a nurse, invited me to visit her.

I was so happy I could not wait to come here. The first thing I noticed when I got off the plane was the weather; it was very cold and windy. I remember buying a jumper at airport because I could not stand for the weather. I found it very difficult to cope with the climate but I got used to it after a while’ said Faith Moyo.

Another student from Nigeria talked to Ngiyesabanews about his experiences, and she said “I came here in mid December and the first thing I noticed when I got here was the weather, it was very dark. I remember asking my friends, who came to pick me up in Manchester airport, I thought it was seven in the evening. But I was surprised when I realized that, the time was 4pm. The atmosphere was filled with mist and it was cold as well. I wondered how people survived in this type of weather.

Some other student have been here for a while but when it comes to winter they think of going back home, the problem is that if you run away for winter which means you are also running away for your education. I have been here for two and a half years, but I can’t cope with this weather. One minute it will be sunny, within seconds, it will be raining. You never know when it is the best time to go out. I have always carried an umbrella whenever I go out in case it rains’.

The third student I interviewed was from Botswana, a small country in Southern Africa. He said, “I came in United Kingdom in April 2004. It was summer but to me it was the same as my country in winter, because it was very cold. The first week I arrived here, I spent the whole week in doors it was so painful that I felt like I was going to die.

The weather here is very different, back home there are four seasonal changes which are; from May to July it’s winter, from August to October it’s Spring, from November to January it’s Summer and from February to April it’s Autumn. In summer it is very hot, the temperature usually reaches up to 40 degrees Celsius. It is very difficult to adapt to the United Kingdom weather when you are from a very hot country like Botswana.

A Polish student, who came to the UK on January 2005, unlike other students her story it’s totally different. She said she like the weather here and wishes Poland’s weather was the same as United Kingdom. ‘I like the weather here because people can go out any day, anytime they want and enjoy themselves. They are not forced to wear their jumpers or jerseys. She continued saying when it is winter in Poland; snow will fall for the whole season. People would not go to work; schools will be closed because of the weather. The atmosphere will become extremely cold and there will be ice and snow everywhere.

I think the United Kingdom weather is good, ever since I came here, I have been coping well and I can just wake up in the morning without forcing myself unlike in Poland. Therefore, overall, I think I have adapted to this country and I actually like the four seasons here.

Wednesday, 14 January 2009

The Final Destination

Since its formation On October 2001 till today The Zimbabwean Association has played a key role by supporting failed Zimbabwean asylum seekers who find it so hard to deal with the UK immigration system. “Our aim is to promote the fundamental freedoms, human rights and welfare of all Zimbabweans regardless of political opinion, race, and tribe just to mention a few” said Thabani Sibanda An active member of the association in Rotherham branch. The association is looking forward to open a sub office in Sheffield at Vasty Hall for Zimbabwean community who can’t manage to travel all the way to London. “This will be a good advantage of opening an office here people like us who need a kind of assistance will be helpful and our dreams may come true” said Owen Ncube

Zim- Association has done a lot of campaigns throughout the country in supportive of asylum seekers their current problem taken from their website is since November 2004 the association have been faced with a huge increase in numbers of Zimbabwean detainees. Their focus has returned to seeking competent legal representation for those facing removal. Monitoring the situation and collecting evidence concerning returnees is now our priority. Everyone is welcomed to be the member of the association as long you come from Zimbabwe you have the right to fight for your country with the same goal.


By Simon Zonenblick

They must be liberated, those animals
maimed, molested, murdered, mutilated
to satisfy greed of bottomless bellies.

May we undermine and shatter
this multi-million pound cartel,
bung butchers on the scrapheap,
tear down and decimate
this violent “industry”
where nothing is produced, only slaughtered, destroyed,
and divert the funds bestowed
on bloodthirsty, blue-blooded hunters
to the protection of these creatures
whose planet we share.

For how long

By Nqobile Mafu

For how long shall we remain silence?
For how long shall they kill our prophets?
How long! How long
For how long shall we be still sitting?
Whilst others are demonstrating

For how long shall we kill each other?
Our brothers are still detained
Houses are burned, shops are closed
People run up and down in the streets of kwaBulawayo.

When will we stop crying, suffering and struggling?
Kuzekubenini (for how long)
Yes for how long! How long

What is our sin???

By Limukani Nyoni

We are tortured beaten raped and starved to death
We are driven out of our homes like cattle by the situation
We are forced to choose between life, death and political party
What is our sin? What is our sin?

We have been called names in different places,
In Botswana and South Africa we have been called Makwerekwere
In Europe we asylum seekers
But why? Why?
Why Zimbabweans
What is our sin?

We ran away from our government and the country’s situation
Hoping to get mercy from our neighbours
But all we get are names, labels, machetes and guns to kill us
We ran to our former colonialists who have made billions from our country
They put us in diplomatic prisons where we are not allowed to work
We are checked weekly or sometimes monthly
We are imprisoned with no release date
We are forced to abandon our responsibilities,
We are made to survive on £35 food voucher per week
What is our sin? But why?

We have tried to voice against our government but nothing’s changed
We were beaten, tortured and intimidated
We went to South Africa asking for asylum we were beaten tortured and set alight
We came to England and we were thrown into detention centres
Kulicala na ukuzilwela wena inkululeko yakho
We can’t take this anymore...........