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Spain’s postal service has been rebuked by anti-racism campaigners after it launched a limited-edition run of skin-toned stamps in which the dark skin tones have a lower monetary value than the light ones.


The Equality Stamps range was launched to coincide with the anniversary of the murder of George Floyd by a US police officer. The Correos postal service said the concept of having to pay more for the white skin stamp and progressively less for darker ones was “a protest against a painful reality”. “The darker the stamp, the less value it will have, therefore, when making a shipment it will be necessary to use more black stamps than white,” Correos announced, explaining that the idea is to make people “reflect on the inequality created by racism”.




“The message is an absolute disaster. It’s racist,” said Moha Gerehou, a journalist and anti-racism activist in Spain. Correos said it had collaborated with the country’s leading anti-racism NGO, SOS Racismo, on the project, but the organisation denied having any involvement in the campaign.




SOS Racismo said in a statement that the “unfortunate” Correos campaign “underlines the need to create greater anti-racist consciousness in Spain”.“Racism is not just about skin colour, but a systemic and historical problem constructed to give ascendancy to some sectors of society and downgrade others,” the statement continued, accusing Correos’ campaign of perpetuating the idea of a hierarchy of races according to skin colour and exhibiting “negrophobia”.





A spokesperson for Correos told The Telegraph that stocks of the stamps have been exhausted due to high demand, and that the “campaign is now over”.A promotional video for the Spanish Tourism Ministry’s recent relaunch of the country as a tourism destination aimed especially at British and other European markets called “You deserve Spain” failed to include any Black or Asian individuals or families. “Maybe they don’t deserve Spain,” one journalist wryly commented at the launch.

 

To Protect Me From America, My Parents Changed My Name Without Telling Me

When I was 18, my parents legally changed my name without my permission. In one split second, I went from Leslie Okwu to Leslie Nguyn-Okwu. There was no discussion, no vetoes, nothing. "Looks better this way," they said, "end of story." But not for me. With a crisp, new birth certificate in hand, I suddenly had to bear the weight of my full and fraught heritage as a Vietnamese Nigerian American. I was torn.


A decade later, I still struggle to balance on that hyphen—teetering on a tightrope between Asian America and Black America. My mother is from Bà Ra. My father is from Umuhu. I am from Dallas. I am living proof of the countrys fast-changing face and a counterweight to white supremacy. As racial violence embroils the country once again, I finally understand the power of what my parents did—to not only honor the nuance of who I am, but also to hedge against the color of my dark skin.


Adding those six letters allows me to take up more space in a country that suffocates, spits on, and shoots people like me. My name is a new patch on the fabric of my family’s larger story, as we navigate the twisted strands of acceptance and assimilation amid the broader backdrop of Asian anger and Black hate. Nguyn was tacked on so that hiring managers wouldnt throw my résumé in the trash, my mother told me. "Though they probably still will," she added. Or if Im ever pulled over by the cops, "Just point to the Nguyn," my father taught me. "Hide behind your model minority-ness. Omit the Okwu."


My identity, like my name, is staked on shallow soil. For us, our place in America is precarious. My parents, in their lives uprooted, witnessed civil wars that destroyed their respective countries and their childhoods deferred inside refugee camps and orphanages. By the time they landed in New York, it felt like a long, long exhalation. But peace doesn’t always come after war. The realities of racism, discrimination, and xenophobia trailed closely behind them. Growing up, my family lived as if we were still on borrowed time.


I tried to make music out of my family’s disharmony, but I remained out of tune. I absorbed my parents’ languages—Vietnamese and Igbo—but awkwardly stumbled between them, and then rushed to catch up in remedial English classes. At home, we were hermits. My father taught me to angle the blinds so that no one could see inside. I was not allowed to leave. "It’s dangerous out there," my mother said. But I desperately wanted to escape and explore. Later as an adult, I decided to quietly visit Vietnam and trace my roots, despite her warnings that her country was still rife with violence. I found only rubble in place of her childhood home, long destroyed by the war. I haven’t been back since. Now I see, changing my name was just another way to protect me from further pain.


I’ve seen the strain on my dad’s relationship with his family who reject his marriage to an outsider and his daughter who doesn’t quite look like them. I’ve never met my Nigerian cousins, all 50 and counting. Likewise, my mom was reluctant to reunite with her family after decades apart, even after 30 years of navigating America’s Byzantine immigration system on their behalf. To me, my grandparents are still strangers; they feel my aloofness when I hug them.



It would be easy to point to me—a Vietnamese Nigerian American—as a paragon of the American Dream, but the story of upward mobility is more complex than that. Stereotypes paint me and my people in broad strokes, but I am more than the sum of Black failure and Asian success. As Black and Asian communities grow in size and stature, our risk of being attacked also rises, from the strip malls of Atlanta and the protests in the streets to the safety of one’s own bed and the hallowed halls of Capitol Hill. Hypervisibility, I’ve learned, is just as lethal as our invisibility.


While my parents were forced to shrink for their survival, I now have the choice to take up space. My space comes from my Blackness and my Asianess—it comes from within, the core of who I am, the hyphen in my name. My name is both singular and plural, carrying the heritage of those who came before me and those who will come after me. As I rise to mighty positions, I must remember whose shoulders I stand on, my father told me. As I climb toward new heights, I must lift the rest of us up, too, my mother told me. In the storm of straddling different worlds, there’s a clarity of who we are and a calmness that grounds us when we finally find that airy, weightless space in between.


Although I sit uneasily at the corner of two colliding cultures, my name represents the complexity and contradiction of America, both the proud and prickly parts of who we are and who we hope to be. Today, every article I publish and every award I receive bears my name, Leslie Nguyn-Okwu. It is my parents gift to me. Their sacrifices are the scaffolds to my successes. And even as Black and Asian communities stare down the barrel of a gun, their hope is etched into the hyphen that bridges my familys different histories and hardships, and it is the name I will carry with me wherever I go.

 

 

For centuries, the Southeastern region of Nigeria has practiced what is known today as stakeholder capitalism — a construct that businesses must elevate the interests of communities, workers, consumers, and the environment alongside those of shareholders. The Igbos, the predominant ethnic group in the region, are known for the Igbo apprenticeship system (IAS), a communal enterprising framework where successful businesses develop others, and over time provide capital and give away their customers to the new businesses. The implication is that few businesses grow to become very dominant, since they keep relinquishing market share, and in doing so, they accomplish one thing: a largely equal community where everyone has opportunities, no matter how small.

 

 

The IAS has been recognized as the largest business incubator in the world as thousands of ventures are developed and established yearly through it. Innocent Chukwuma, the founder of Innoson Motors, the largest indigenous automobile manufacturing company by sales in Africa, is a product of IAS. So is Ifeanyi Ubah, the owner of one of the largest private fuel depots in Africa, Capital Oil & Gas, which has the biggest private oil jetty in Nigeria, an 18-ARM loading gantry, ocean-going vessels, a storage facility of over 200 million liters, and hundreds of distribution tankers. Cosmas Maduka, who controls Coscharis Group, a conglomerate with diverse interest in manufacturing, automobiles, and petrochemicals, also passed through the system. Unlike Ubah and Chukwuma, who finished primary education but dropped out at the secondary level, Maduka did not finish primary school. Until recently, that was typical; education has instead been the apprenticeship model, where an individual learns the mechanics of markets and business secrets under a master.

 

Click Below to continue:

A Nigerian Model for Stakeholder Capitalism


Nigeria has received 4.2 million pounds ($5.9 million) looted by a former governor, who was jailed in Britain for money laundering and fraud, the justice minister said Tuesday. The money was stolen by James Ibori, the flamboyant governor of the southern oil-rich Delta state between 1999 and 2007. A landmark corruption case led to a deal in March signed by Nigeria and Britain on repatriating the money.




The deal stipulates that Nigeria will use the funds to finance vital infrastructure projects. A spokesperson for Justice Minister Abubakar Malami said "the Federal Government of Nigeria has received GBP 4,214,017.66." "The amount has been credited into the designated Federal Government account with naira equivalent value of the amount as of 10th May, 2021," the spokersperson, Umar Jibrilu Gwandu, said in a statement.

Nigerian scammer may have to return £117,000,000 taken from world's poorest  | Metro News


Ibori was jailed in April 2012 for fraud amounting to nearly 50 million pounds (at the time $78.6 million or 62 million euros). The one-time cashier at a chain of British DIY stores used public funds to buy luxury homes, top-of-the-range cars and a private jet. He fled to Dubai in 2010 but was extradited to Britain, where he was sentenced and served four years of a 13-year jail term. He was released in December 2016.



Scotland Yard said that during his two terms as governor, Ibori "systematically stole funds from the public purse, secreting them in bank accounts across the world."
Anti-corruption campaigners hailed his sentence as a rare victory in the fight against international graft. Millions of dollars stolen by former military ruler Sani Abacha have also been repatriated to Nigeria from Switzerland and other countries. Abacha died in June 1998 after reputedly looting some five billion dollars.

 

 

Grammy award winning Nigerian singer Damini Ebunoluwa Ogulum popularly know as Burna Boy has made history as the first African artist to achieve over 100 million streams on Spotify, - a Swedish audio streaming and media services provider.



Burna Boy's last three albums; 'African Giant,' 'Outside' and 'Twice As Tall' had each hit 100 million on the said platform according to local reports.
“@burnaboy is the first African artist to have three albums with at least 100 million streams each on Spotify (African Giant, Outside & Twice As Tall),” @chartdata tweeted.


The news got the attention of Burnaboy's fans and was greeted with excitement. In a reply tweet, one fan had spoken of the importance of the feat for representation and other African artists.

Music WeekBurna Boy with his mother Bose Ogulu

This comes barely a day after Burna Boy’s mother and manager, Bose Ogulu, was named as one of the 2021 International Power Players by Billboard. Ogulu co-executive-produced, released and promoted the “Twice As Tall” album by her son Burna Boy.



Twice As Tall won best global music album at this year’s Grammy Awards. Bose has set up a publishing company through Spaceship Collective to enable Africans to own their own catalogs so that the authenticity of our stories, our glory, our culture is sustained, and we are empowered,” Billboard said of Bose.

AfricanNEWS

The Ohanaeze Ndigbo has asked Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, to ignore the claim that members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) are plotting to attack the state.

It noted that such rumour was a ploy to distract the governor and his administration from providing good governance for all residents of the state. President-General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide, Ambassador George Obiozor, stated this on Thursday during a courtesy visit to Governor Sanwo-Olu at the Lagos House in Marina.
He said, “The dangerous rumour or statement is aimed to cause division, crises and conflict amongst us. Violence in any part of Lagos State is violence on all of us.

L-R: President-General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide, Ambassador George Obiozor; Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, and Dr Pascal Dozie at the Lagos House in Marina on May 13, 2021.

“The constant and periodic dangerous insinuations, rumour, gossips and callous statements that Ndigbo in Lagos or any part of Yoruba land contemplate or instigate violence in Lagos or any part of Yoruba land; we wish to state clearly that anywhere this dangerous rumour or statement is emanating from is aimed to cause division, crises and conflict amongst us.


Obiozor stressed that the Igbo people cannot indulge in any act that would harm the harmonious peace and cordial relationship between them and their Yoruba counterparts, especially in Lagos. Describing the state as the second home of several people in the South East, he stated that the Igbo people were renowned for being agents of development and not destruction.



“We further reassure you that Ndigbo are not violent in nature, neither are we known for acts of violence anywhere we live.
“We think that this rumour is intended to distract the Lagos State government from its efforts to provide good governance for all and cause disaffection between Ndigbo who live in Lagos and their host community which is the second home of several Ndigbo,” the ambassador told the governor.



He added, “The quick denial of this rumour by members of IPOB and Yoruba groups in Lagos and across the South West was a source of relief.” Obiozor also reiterated Ohanaeze Ndigbo’s total support for the state government and the security agencies’ patriotic efforts to keep everyone safe.



He commended Governor Sanwo-Olu for the leadership he exhibited at the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic that ravaged Nigeria, adding that the governor deserved commendation for controlling and restricting the speed of coronavirus spread with his quick response. In his response, the governor assured the Ohanaeze Ndigbo leadership of continuous good governance, security of lives and properties of all residents in Lagos. He said he had no doubt that the Igbo people were great, noting that his administration would continue to foster harmonious relationships with all the different tribes and ethnic nationalities in the state.

 

 

Rwanda is in negotiations with Covid-19 vaccine manufacturers to see how the jab can be produced locally, officials have said.The World Health Organization (WHO) is currently seeking to establish permanent vaccine production capacity in regions where this is currently mostly absent. Under the initiative targeting low and middle income countries, WHO plans to expand capacity to produce Covid-19 vaccines and scale up manufacturing to increase global access using mRNA-vaccine technology.




President Paul Kagame this week told the Independent Panel on Pandemic Preparedness and Response, co-chaired by Helen Clark and Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, that the only way to ensure vaccine equity is to produce more vaccines where they are needed. "Rwanda is working with partners to bring the first mRNA manufacturing facility to Africa. So long as Africa remains dependent on other regions for vaccines, we will always be at the back of the queue, whenever there is scarcity," President Kagame said.




Dr Tharcisse Mpunga, Rwanda's Minister of State in Charge of Primary Healthcare, said, "The government is looking for a way to produce the vaccine from Rwanda. It is one way to acquire the vaccine for Rwanda but also for Africa. There is hope. Rwanda is negotiating with partners who are willing to manufacture the vaccines from Rwanda. I cannot say exactly when but there is hope that the negotiations will be fruitful." Dr Mpunga spoke on Thursday during an interview on the national broadcaster.



Rwanda needs at least 13 million doses of Covid-19 vaccine to inoculate 60 percent of the population, about 7.5 million people, by June 2022. So far, only 4 percent have received the first dose of the vaccine. Currently, delivery of the second doses of AstraZeneca vaccines to Kigali is experiencing delays after India suspended vaccine exports due to an upsurge in domestic Covid-19 cases.



Rwanda was to receive Covid-19 vaccines in early April from Serum Institute of India via Covax Facility. In March, Rwanda vaccinated 350,465 people, with the AstraZeneca and Pfizer vaccines. Rwanda Biomedical Center announced in April that people who received the first dose of AstraZeneca would have to wait for over two months before receiving the second dose.






According to WHO, currently, South Africa, Egypt, Morocco, Tunisia and Senegal have the capacity to produce Covid-19 vaccines but restrictions on intellectual property (IP) rights for Covid-19 vaccines has made it impossible. As of May 7, some 25,486 people in Rwanda have contracted the virus and 93 percent of them have recovered. The positivity rate stands at 2 percent and 338 people have succumbed to the virus.




On Wednesday, the government eased some Covid-19 restrictions with curfew hours set for 10pm-4am instead of the previous 9pm-4am. However, some parts of the country have been put under lockdown due to high numbers of infections. These include the Rwamiko sector in Gicumbi district and Bwishyura sector in Karongi district in Western and Northern Provinces. Districts of Nyanza, Huye, Gisagara, Nyaruguru and Nyamagabe in Southern Province are also under stringent measures to reduce Covid-19 infections.


credit : The East African

 


Precious Craig is graduating magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Science in public health, with an emphasis in health promotion, and a minor in biochemistry. At the age of 3 she migrated from Lagos, Nigeria, to Phoenix. As a first-generation Nigerian immigrant, Craig has always valued the importance of education and is dedicated to serving others and giving back to her community.





During her time at UArizona, Craig served as a desk assistant at THINK TANK and as vice president of the Pre-Pharmacy Club. Additionally, she completed over 1,200 hours of community service as a youth academic specialist for Goodwill Metro. She worked closely with the METRO Goodwill Youth Program, which serves youth and young adults between the ages of 16 and 24 who are not in school or working.





She also acted as a youth liaison for an applied practice research study called Project Slate. The aim of the study was to create stable lines of communication between youth and adults. Her undergraduate honors thesis is on opportunity youth and the influence of socioeconomic status.





Craig served as a preceptor in the Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health  and has worked at the UArizona COVID-19 vaccine point of distribution as a pharmacy technician and dispensing runner, assisting in the preparation and distribution of vaccine. Additionally, she is a member of the United Way of Southern Arizona Youth Leadership Council, where she works on youth advocacy projects.




Craig found her passion through forming mentorships and serving as a role model to fellow students pursuing higher education. She has been honored with several awards, including the Wildcat Excellence Award, a NAACP Tucson Scholarship, Dean's List, Laura and Arch Brown Scholarship, Richard Garcia Memorial Scholarship, and Victoria Foundation/George Dean Scholarship.
After graduation, Craig will pursue a doctorate in pharmacy at UArizona.



credit - University of Arizona

 


Burna Boy,the Grammy award-winning singer has his single ‘Ye’ disc, been certified Gold by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).


His Mother and Manager, Mrs Bose Ogulu disclose this on her IG handle @thenamix.
With this new feat added to his outstanding international achievement, ‘Ye’ becomes the fastest Nigerian song to be certified ‘Gold’ by RIAA.


The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Burnaboy’s song joins the growing list of Nigerian records to be Gold certified in the U.S.


The list includes ‘If’, and ‘Fall’, by Davido as well as ‘Come Closer’ by Wizkid have all previously achieved the massive feat. In the US, the RIAA awards certification is based on the number of albums and singles sold through retail and other ancillary markets. A Gold record is a single or album that sells 500,000 units (records, tapes or compact discs).

Burna Boy | Booking Agent | Live Roster | MN2S


NAN reports that “Ye” was released on August 6, 2018, as the sixth single from his third studio album “Outside.” The song was produced by Nigerian record producer Phantom.
It peaked at number 26 and 31 on Billboard’s BillboardMainstream R&B/Hip-Hop and R&B/Hip-hop Airplay charts, respectively.



“Ye” won Song of the Year and Listener’s Choice at the 2019Soundcity MVP Awards Festival.
It also won Song of the Year and was nominated for Best Pop Single and Best Recording of the Year at The Headies 2019. (NAN)



 

 

 

 

 

 

German officials say they have reached an agreement with Nigeria to return a share of plundered artifacts known as Benin Bronzes. Thousands of plaques and sculptures were looted from the ancient Kingdom of Benin — now southern Nigeria, not the modern nation of Benin — by British soldiers in an 1897 raid, and were ultimately acquired by museums largely in Europe and the United States





For the last decade, a consortium known as the Benin Dialogue Group has been working to repatriate these works and establish a permanent display in Benin City, in partnership with museums in Germany and other European nations. German officials announced on Thursday that they will work with Nigeria on plans to return some of its Benin Bronzes in the year ahead.




"The participants are in agreement that addressing Germany's colonial past is an important issue for the whole of society and a core task for cultural policy," they wrote in a joint release. The German officials aim to return the first of their Benin Bronzes next year, and will release more specific plans and timetables by this summer. They said they "reaffirm their willingness in principle to make substantial returns" of the artifacts, but left the door open to keeping some of them.

Credit  NPR


"Discussions with the Nigerian partners are to cover not only returns to and cooperation projects in Nigeria, but also whether and how Benin Bronzes, as part of humanity's cultural heritage, can in future be shown in Germany as well," they said. Numerous German museums are in possession of Benin Bronzes, the officials said. They invited the ones who are not part of the Benin Dialogue Group to join in their efforts. There are far more of these historical objects scattered across the globe than in their native country, according to author Dan Hicks. He told Art News that 45 institutions in the United Kingdom and 38 in the U.S. hold Benin Bronzes, compared to just nine in Nigeria. Berlin's Ethnological Museum is home to one of the world's largest collections of artifacts from the ancient kingdom, as The Associated Press reports. Its inventory is estimated to include some 530 items, including 440 bronzes. And roughly 900 such artifacts are housed in the British Museum alone.


Activists are increasingly calling for cultural institutions to repatriate their Benin Bronzes — widely seen as a symbol of colonial conquest — to Nigeria, though few have actually done so. The French state promised two years ago to repatriate 26 such artifacts by 2021, but, as Art News reported this month, none has permanently left the country yet. And while the British government has said institutions should "retain and explain" controversial artifacts, some regional U.K. museums appear to disagree, as the Guardian reports. Scotland's University of Aberdeen announced last month that it would imminently return a bust it had acquired in the 1950s, citing ethical concerns. "Our panel concluded that this was acquired as loot and therefore, we didn't feel we had moral title," said Neil Curtis, head of museums and special collections at the University of Aberdeen.



The next meeting of the Benin Dialogue Group is set for May 27.




Credit NPR

 

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