13 August 2013 - Issue 135

Nyansapo - Equal but not free

Greetings Family,

Happy African Remembrance Month.

Please accept our apologies for this newsletter being late we hadn't intended to publsih at all during the summer holidays but some appeals and notices were too urgent not to share. Fortunately there are still many great events to look forward to. Please take the opportunity to attend as many educational, uplifting and healing spaces that you can.  


If you would like to support the work of Ligali you can do so by making a donation via our website.

Remember, if you enjoy the contents of this newsletter then please feel free to share this newsletter amongst family and friends who you know will benefit from it. You can click here to subscribe for your own copy. Also, if you appreciate our work then please write or talk about us on community radio, blogs, internet forums and social media like Facebook and Twitter - remember awareness of our work only grows through word of mouth.

Don't forget to regularly check out the Ligali website for articles not included in this newsletter. You can also listen to archived podcasts of our Pan African Drum radio programmes at http://www.ligali.org/nyansapo/drum.php

Peace, Love & Justice

Ligali Editor

Whilst every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of event details provided, please check as there may be some errors or changes made since publication.

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Reader Comments

Thank you for this informative newsletter which I have shared with my networks. I wanted to ask for your permission to share your poem, ‘Silence’ which I found very poignant. Lately, I have been trying to raise awareness about gender-based violence and discrimination especially in the Somali community. It has been such a struggle! It is one huge taboo but we have to keep at it because our women AND children are suffering. I would have liked to post your poem on our blog and facebook page.

After 20 years of civil war, violence against Somali women and children has reached alarming levels and in February this year, the conviction of a 27-year old Somali mother of five who alleged gang-rape by Somali security forces upset us so much that few sisters and I started a collective we called Hawa's Haven. We wanted to start an honest dialogue within the Somali community and challenge the culture of silence and 'shame' that victimises and punishes the survivors of sexual abuse and the lack of justice and respect for their rights as human beings. We wish to help create a society where women and children are protected, valued and able to fulfil their full potential.

I would be very grateful if you could share this information in your newsletter so that more brothers and sisters can support our cause and sign our petition - http://www.change.org/petitions/end-violence-against-women-and-children-and-ensure-freedom-of-press

If anyone needs any further information, they can get in touch with via the contact details below:

Email: hawashaven@gmail.com

Join us on facebook:

Check out our blog:

Follow us on Twitter @HawasHaven

Thank you for you support!

Peace and blessings.

Saynab Mahamud

Ed - Thank you for your continued encouragement and the excellent work you do in our community. This project deserves maximum support and we wish you every success in achieving your goals.

Please send any thoughts or comments about this edition of the Ligali newsletter to mail@ligali.org and include the word 'comments' in the subject topic.

The Pan African Drum

"If you bend forward to look at somebody from beneath, someone else is also looking at you from beneath”
African Proverb, Ewe

Toyin AgbetuGreetings, a few days ago I found myself in a peculiar place both personally and politically. Up until now I had never viewed myself as overly sensitive but perhaps as I have got older things have changed. Let me explain.

I had just finished a meeting at a well known cultural venue and walked into the office of a friend of mine. Inside the room were two people, a European male and a dual heritage African woman. As a courtesy I extended my hand. My friend who was just leaving the room greeted me as I entered, the European who had seen me earlier that day smiled, now the African who had already spoken with me once before - chose to totally ignore me. It was not until I was left with my hand hanging that the rudeness became apparent to all and vague apologies were mumbled.  As you can imagine, I do not intend to put myself in that situation again.

However as I made my way home it really made me question the nature of racism. I know many people like to conflate the issue with theories about class but I’ve never been convinced. The recent story about Oprah Winfrey adds to my suspicions.

In case you hadn’t heard, our billionaire sista was shopping in Switzerland for a new bag. She entered a store seeking to buy one for a wedding she was attending. Yet despite repeatedly asking to see a particular item which she wanted to consider purchasing, the assistant denied her wishes claiming the item was not for her, apparently it was too expensive for Oprah. 

This story is a perfect example of how racism is of a different nature than class based elitism. The benefactors and enablers of racism include those in the upper echelons of society down to the people classed as belonging on the most ignoble rung.

A shop assistant with substantially lower social and economic capital than an African billionaire was able to exercise real-world political power enabling her to legally deny Oprah Winfrey adequate service. Oprah’s ‘rights’ as a customer were ignored not only without valid reason but also based on ignorant discrimination.  This is despite living in a capitalist based society where those with the most wealth are assumed to be at the top of the social ladder. As far as I read it, one Truth became self evident.

Racism trumps class, or money.

This was not the first time that had happened to Oprah or other African celebrities, sadly I doubt it will be the last.

However back to my opening story, I may be no Oprah Winfrey but I have a reasonable amount of cultural and political (despite choosing not to wield it) capital but low social and economic wealth.

As such I really felt the need for introspection. I left the place feeling annoyed at the unresolved disrespect festering within me and wanted to examine what had happened, why I chose to walk away instead of challenging it?

It had been a sunny Friday afternoon and I decided to wear a long flowing African robe to match my mood. I had already experienced a pretty busy day filled with work ranging from academic research to extensive film editing and by now I was pretty tired.

On my way to the meeting I had already been stopped on the streets several times by people who knew of me, so I was running a little late. By the time my first meeting started I was not in the mood for the combative tone it took. I suspect the brother I was there to talk with was a little annoyed by our delayed start but seeing he wasn’t engaged in any substantive work by the time of my arrival I assumed he would be cool. I was there to help him and the venue, not fight.

Thankfully after a while we were able to find a path towards collaborative working, I left feeling hopeful of progress.

Within minutes, the disrespect from the sista I spoke of earlier took away that hope.

Her aloof dismissiveness was a simple failing, there was no argument, no belligerent tone, she even offered a half baked apology. Yet, I think it was the indifference that irritated me most, in her eyes, without even knowing me she had decided that I was a worthless human being. And yet, I really had to question whether it was just my ego that was bruised. Why did I remain polite and courteous before leaving the centre?

I know I did not want to waste any more of my time there but for a fleeting moment it did cross my mind to challenge her so why didn’t I?

In Oprah’s case the ‘boutique’ apologised referring to the incident as an unfortunate “misunderstanding” but we totally understand what took place.  Oprah did good not to cuss her right there and then.

But then even when I’m championing those that are vulnerable in our community, it’s no longer in my nature to scream and shout when people spout hatred or demonstrate ignorance in my face.

It took my several decades to learn how to control the fire that is my temper. Right now I actually love the place I am at where I remain cool under pressure in situations that would cause others to erupt. My ability to think and write what I like often tends to bring about swift justice.

So back to the sista, was it really all about the fact that she didn’t bother to greet me?

As a rule and where practical, I try my best to make an effort to engage with everyone, including those working at reception, security and cleaners. When I’m working with any group I strive to see the entire team as a family.

The problem with what happened to me at the centre was that it made me realise that I have little desire working with people that do not have the civility to extend even this most basic courtesy of respect to others around them.

I find such behaviour even uglier when it comes from one African to another, sister to brother and vice versa.

Now it is possible that I’ve overreacted and will regret my decision, I may even regret typing this article as I greatly value the relationship I have with my friend if not his colleagues. I suppose that’s why I haven’t named names, centre, etc.

But when I reflect on the other organisations I have been working with recently the nature of our interactions have been nothing short of exemplary. Irrespective of whether they have been African led or European led, the level of courtesy and respect offered to me and all involved in our respective projects has been helpful and as a result successfully productive.

It makes me think of the words recently uttered by the activist Jesse Jackson over the tragic Trayvon Martin case and the acquittal of his killer.

He said we “[African Americans] are free but not equal”.

I totally disagree.

I think he’s got it back to front. We are different but equal, equal but not free.

I see no other person or ethnic group as our better or inferior.
I am not a supremacist, racist or ethnicity terrorist
We are equal
Yet, I see freedom not as a gift from one people to another,
A campaign moving the other to sister, brother, lover
Nor is it a law proclaiming emancipation from physical chains into economic ones
Where prisons become defined by our position on capital based societal rungs
Freedom is about opportunity, self determination and action
Freedom is about spiritual and physical justice and not fearful populist reaction
No one can make us free, if we don’t believe it to be
No one can truly be free, whilst others exist living in misery
We are equal but not free
To be free requires dignity
We are equal yet all beautifully unique
And we’ll be free when basic respect is something no-one need longer seek

Opps, sorry. I hadn’t intended to write a poem, it just came out. It’s funny I actually feel better now.

Writing this newsletter really can be therapeutic.

The scenario reminds me of the experience shared by one of my role models, Omowale Malcolm X. After speaking at a New England college a blond European girl who was energised by his teachings challenged him with the question “Don't you believe there are any good white people?” Malcolm turned to her and responded; “People's deeds I believe in, Miss, not their words.”

Upset but still wanting to help the cause she then asked “What can I do?”

Malcolm responded with one word “Nothing.”  

The girl then broke into tears and ran out the venue without Malcolm ever getting her name. Years later as Malcolm grew more powerful as a man, he would frequently admit how much he regretted his behaviour on that day. In his autobiography he wrote “I regret that I told her she could do ‘nothing’. I wish now that I knew her name, or where I could telephone her, and tell her what I tell white people now when they present themselves as being sincere”

He would also later say during an interview with photography and humanitarian Gordon Parkes “Well, I've lived to regret that incident. In many parts of the African continent I saw white students helping black people. Something like this kills a lot of argument. I did many things as a [NOI] Muslim that I'm sorry for now. I was a zombie then - like all [NOI] Muslims - I was hypnotized, pointed in a certain direction and told to march. Well, I guess a man's entitled to make a fool of himself if he's ready to pay the cost. It cost me twelve years.”

As a fellow Pan Africanist, educator and human rights activist I’ve always sought to learn from the mistakes of our Ancestors, when I started writing this article it was from anger and I had planned to explore how we can inhibit our own progress not only with blind discrimination against others but even worse, prejudice against ourselves when we should be uniting to work for a common purpose.

It’s the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King’s ‘I have a Dream speech’ and the decision to allow our sista Doreen Lawrence into the House of Lords has divided our community. Whilst some see her ‘elevation’ as a mark of progress, there are others who rightly feel the Stephen Lawrence Agenda and the morality lessons from Dr Kings historic ‘Vietnam speech’ amongst others should also be promoted with similar prominence.

Instead of takling the real issues we face, too many of us divert energy by engaging in intra-racism and by this I mean - light skin v dark skin, African v Caribbean,  man v woman,  city folk v village/towners, Africentric v eurocentric, ‘mixed’ race v ‘full’ race, Christians v Muslims, born again v traditional spiritualists, the list goes on.

When we do this we defer our progress, we postpone our opportunity for greater success. We already face enough challenges outside the front door, do we really need to bring such foolishness inside our homes too?

I’m currently reading Harriet Ann Jacobs: Incidents in the life of a slavegirl and let me tell you, when I come across racist or petty bourgeoisie behaviour, narratives such as this remind me why we must continue to fight for our rights and not be distracted by those that would seek to maintain their place in this rotten system. 

My advice to those of you holding onto that pain of disrespect which burns when it comes from our own is to find a way to release it back into the ether. Challenge it authoritatively where necessary and use pity to dismiss it as small minded stupidity in other cases. Don’t hold onto it and allow it to damage you inside, life is too precious to waste tears on those that show us disrespect. Let’s work together to make more reasons for tears of joy instead.

The great Harry Belafonte has just written a powerful piece on Martin Luther King and said;

“[We] have to stop this deification of Dr King and look at him as an ordinary man who empowered himself and others through politics and activism. Look at the details of his struggle: the strategy, the speeches, the mind, the intellect. Then you can begin to understand how an ordinary man is empowered to find himself.”


I’m not saying to love our enemy, that for me is a step too much. But I am saying we all have the potential to evoke positive change, let’s begin by showing love to those respectful people around us working with little reward, let’s make our diversity a peaceful learning opportunity on a shared path towards true freedom and lasting unity.

May the Ancestors guide and protect us.


Toyin Agbetu is a writer and philosopher, a film director, poet, and founder of Ligali, the pan African human rights based organisation.

Supporting Ligali

The Ligali organisation survives solely through charitable donations, we are NOT government funded. If you appreciate the work we do then please contribute by making a contribution for some of our resources or donating to support our core services.

Books: Ukweli, Revoetry & The Manual (The Rules for Men*)

Ukweli and Revoetry

The Manual: The Rules for Men* is available for young men over the age of twenty. It contains Adult Themes about Sex, Relationships and Manhood

DVD: Films and Documentaries

Ligali DVD

Our films cover the topics of Maafa from slavery and colonialism to Pan Africanism and community empowerment.

You can support us by making a single or regular donation online or volunteering to help at http://www.ligali.org/support.html.

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Remember, we can’t continue to be successful without your ongoing support.

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Racist care home boss banned for a year after refusing to employ black people

Racist: Helene Coetzee

A care home boss who refused to employ black nurses and made frequent racist remarks has been banned from nursing for a year. Helene Coetzee stunned colleagues by making a string of “deplorable” comments about skin colour and nationality, a hearing was told.

In one instance Mrs Coetzee was heard saying: “I pride myself on not having many foreigners here.”

On another occasion she said: “I don’t want any more black nurses, there are already enough in the home.”

The South African-born nurse was also heard voicing her disgust at elderly residents being helped to use the toilet by black carers. A Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) disciplinary hearing was told how Coetzee became “distressed and unhappy” when colleagues employed a Jamaican nurse while she was on leave.

When the manager returned to work she was adamant the centre would only employ British staff. An investigating committee branded her views “deplorable” and she was suspended from working in the profession for a year.

Chairman of the committee Stuart Turnock said: “The panel was of the view that a period of suspension would provide Mrs Coetzee with time to reflect upon her failings and to demonstrate greater insight.

“A suspension order would, in the panel’s view, send a clear signal to Mrs Coetzee, to the profession and to the public that her behaviour was unacceptable.”

He added: “The panel noted that Mrs Coetzee’s comments clearly suggested she might act in a discriminatory manner in relation to recruitment.

“It is not alleged that she acted in a discriminatory manner towards patients or that there was any actual or potential harm to patients as a result of her attitude.”

The South African-born nurse made the comments during her time as manager of Bupa’s £7million flagship dementia care home Warren Lodge, in Ashford, Kent.

Many of Mrs Coetzee’s colleagues felt “shocked” and “taken aback” by her behaviour, the hearing, which took place last Friday, was told.

Giving evidence to the panel, sitting in Aldwych, London, care home administrator Gabriella Perrer said there had been photographs attached to some job applications.

When she took one file to Mrs Coetzee displayed a black applicant on the front.

Mrs Perrer said: “I took the file to her in the evening just before I was due to go home.

“Moments later Helene came out of the office and into the reception area where I was with the paperwork in her hand while some people were around us.

“Helene stated to me: ‘I don’t want any more black nurses, there are already enough in the home.’


Related Article

Brazil youths protest in Rio, Sao Paulo over missing citizen

“Hundreds of youths marched in Rio and Sao Paulo yesterday to protest the disappearance of a construction worker who was detained by police two weeks ago and hasn’t been seen since.
The demonstrators demanded information about the fate of 42-year-old Amarildo de Souza, who was last seen on July 14 when he was picked up by officers in Rio’s Rocinha shantytown.
“Where is Amarildo?,” chanted 600 youths in the Rocinha favela while 300 others did the same in central Sao Paulo as police kept a close watch.”


Saudi princess accused of human trafficking

Woman living in California kept Kenyan maid confined to house and took passport, say prosecutors in human trafficking case

Thursday 11 July 2013

Prosecutors in southern California have charged a Saudi Arabian princess with human trafficking and accused her of bringing a Kenyan woman to the United States and holding her against her will as a servant.

The accused woman, Meshael Alayban, 42, brought the Kenyan to the US in May and paid her $220 a month while holding her passport and keeping her confined to an apartment complex in Irvine, California, where Alayban lived, Orange county prosecutors said.

The servant, whose name was not released, had to wash dishes, cook, clean, do laundry and iron without a day off, prosecutors said.

The only occasion when the Kenyan woman was allowed to leave the Irvine apartment complex was when she carried the bags of Alayban's family during an outing, prosecutors said. The Kenyan also attended to other people linked to Alayban who lived in the same complex, according to the statement.

Alayban had first hired the Kenyan woman as a domestic servant in March 2012 in Saudi Arabia in her family's palace, prosecutors said. She is accused of holding the woman's passport then as well and forcing her to work every day for 16 hours.

Orange county prosecutors said the Kenyan woman originally came to work for Alayban by signing a two-year contract with an employment agency that promised her $1,600 a month to labour for eight hours a day, five days a week.

Alayban is a wife of Saudi Arabian Prince Abdulrahman bin Nasser bin Abdulaziz al Saud, according to the Orange county prosecutors.


Employee wins £27,000 after hearing colleague referred to as 'golliwog Brian'

The owner of a multi-million pound firm failed to stop her staff calling another employee 'golliwog Brian' because she did not think there was anything wrong with the nickname.

Amanda Miles, 40, 'tolerated a culture of racism' at her fruit and vegetable wholesaler, an employment tribunal found.

Brian Ennis was given the nickname and also called 'black Brian' to distinguish him from a white worker with the same first name, the wholesaler admitted.

Another black worker, a delivery driver who was so upset by the racist behaviour that he quit, has been awarded £27,000 in compensation after a panel ruled that having to listen to racist nicknames had 'violated his dignity'.

Roy Morgan told Bristol Employment Tribunal that a colleague ordered him to 'stop speaking that jungle talk' as he chatted to another driver in patois.

And bosses at the firm did not discipline a white driver who said that 'black people should be burnt at the stake like Jews', despite a complaint from an employee with Jewish heritage.

The tribunal awarded Mr Morgan £13,427 in 2011 for racial harassment and recently ruled he should receive a further £14,286 for lost earnings from constructive dismissal.

Ms Miles was 'entirely unreceptive' to the idea that the name-calling might offend black staff, it ruled.

But Mr Morgan is unlikely to see a penny of his award because the firm has recently gone into administration.


Disruption in Nigeria causes Shell’s profits to plummet

01 August 2013

Shares in Shell tumbled by 5% today as the FTSE 100 company announced a “clearly disappointing” 60% dive in its profits for the second quarter.

Shell reported a $2.4 billion (£1.6 billion) profit for the three months to the end of June, down from $6 billion the year before, as the group reeled from a $2.1 billion impairment charge, mostly relating to its US shale oil and gas operations, as well as costs relating to disruptions in Nigeria.

To make matters worse, the oil price traded about 5% below its level in the year-earlier period, while a weakening Australian dollar hit profits further.

Peter Voser, who unexpectedly announced in May that he would be retiring as chief executive next year, said: “Higher costs, exploration charges, adverse currency exchange rate effects and challenges in Nigeria have hit our bottom line.

“These results were undermined by a number of factors – but they were clearly disappointing for Shell.”

Shell said that the impairment charge “predominantly related to liquids-rich shales [that contain oil and/or gas] properties in North America, reflecting the latest insights from exploration and appraisal drilling results and production information”.

Voser said Shell would pick up the pace of asset sales, which have already seen the company divesting $21 billion worth of businesses in the past three years. 

Shell is also conducting a strategic review in Nigeria, where “the deteriorating security situation onshore Nigeria and blockage of Nigeria LNG [the liquefied natural gas plant]” in the form of oil theft and sabotage knocked about $250 million off the group’s bottom line in the second quarter. The review could lead to Shell divesting up to 100,000 barrels a day of production in the eastern part of the Niger Delta.

Stripping out the impairment charge, Shell’s profits fell by 20% to $4.6 billion. Its shares fell by 111.50p to 2126.0p.


Ngugi Wa Thiong'o: English is not an African language

22 July 2013

Kenyan author, Ngugi Wa Thiong'o explains that language plays an important role in hierarchies and systems of oppression.

He says that African authors should be clear about the fact that when they write in English they are contributing to the expansion of, and dependence on, the English language. He argues that translation plays an important role in allowing cultures to communicate but thinks it is "crazy" that a prize for African literature only considers books written in English.

Watch Hard Talk Interview

18 year-old becomes youngest ever barrister after passing BPTC

Gabrielle Turnquest, 18, will become the youngest person in the history of the English and Welsh legal system to become a barrister — in name at least — when she is called to the Bar at Lincoln's Inn today.

Turnquest (pictured below), who is from Florida, completed the Bar Professional Training Course (BPTC) at the University of Law, having done the Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL) when she was just 17 years old.

Prior to that she had finished her undergraduate degree in psychology at Liberty University in Virginia aged just 16.


British university holds onto Bunyoro cultural artifacts

Jul 28, 2013

The University of Oxford in UK has confirmed it is keeping 279 cultural artifacts that were taken from Bunyoro during the colonial period. The university, however, says it has no plans to send back the items since nobody has asked for them officially.

The curator and joint head of collections at Pitt Rivers Museum at the university, Jeremy Coote, confirmed in an email that they were keeping 279 items from Bunyoro. They include: Omukama Kabalega’s throne, vessels, ornaments, medical equipment and baskets. These items are in the “most important” category of collections at the museum.

“One of the most important areas of the museum’s collections from Uganda are materials from the kingdom of Bunyoro-Kitara, numbering 279 objects. The museum holds an eight-legged wooden stool (throne) that is said to have been used by Omukama Kabalega,” Coote said.

The university says 30 of the artifacts from Bunyoro were donated to the university by Dr. Akiki Kanyarusoke Nyabongo, a prince from the breakaway kingdom of Toro, who wrote his doctorate on Ugandan religion at the University in the 1930s. Others were collected by the Rev. John Roscoe between 1919 and 1920 in collaboration with the then king and donated to the institution in 1922. Roscoe reportedly worked in the king’s court.


Open season on black boys after a verdict like this

By Gary Younge, Sunday 14 July 2013

Let it be noted that on this day, Saturday 13 July 2013, it was still deemed legal in the US to chase and then shoot dead an unarmed young black man on his way home from the store because you didn't like the look of him.

The killing of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin last year was tragic. But in the age of Obama the acquittal of George Zimmerman offers at least that clarity. For the salient facts in this case were not in dispute. On 26 February 2012 Martin was on his way home, minding his own business armed only with a can of iced tea and a bag of Skittles. Zimmerman pursued him, armed with a 9mm handgun, believing him to be a criminal. Martin resisted. They fought. Zimmerman shot him dead.

Who screamed. Who was stronger. Who called whom what and when and why are all details to warm the heart of a cable news producer with 24 hours to fill. Strip them all away and the truth remains that Martin's heart would still be beating if Zimmerman had not chased him down and shot him.

Full Article


Horace Campbell on Trayvon

bell hooks on Trayvon

Akala: "Hip-hop is a modern day minstrel show"

Akala’s "Hip-Hop History Live": an exploration of black history like no other I've seen before.

By Joe Collin, 06 August 2013 10:00

Its 6.45 on a Friday evening at the Southbank Centre. The race for a chair is on. As the Clore Ballroom fills up, I set off, searching every room, every corner to retrieve a seat. Every nook and cranny of the Southbank has been stripped of furniture. I managed to unearth a stool. The fact that I was accompanied by hundreds of others only goes to show rapper Akala’s growing popularity.

The setting was a strange one. Following the farcical dash for seats, a remarkably mixed audience sat down in the ballroom for this free event. A corporate, sharp, yet colourful space, the Southbank had the feel of a university open day, as every fan politely sat down in front of a makeshift stage. Hardly the typical hip-hop venue.

Yet what followed was far from typical. Opening with a passionate volley of the sort of conscious rap he has become renowned for, Akala embarked on an ambitious history of hip-hop. Presented with both spoken word and rap, each as absorbing as the other, the MOBO award-winning rapper began with ancient African history, and finished with modern day hip-hop. By far the coolest lecture I’ve ever been to.

In his “intellectual beat-down” of accepted opinion, Akala launched a tirade against commonly held misconceptions. First, Chapter 1, “Africa in History” bemoaned the omission of ancient Egyptian history from ‘black history’, quoting the likes of Herodotus to explain that the ancient Egyptians were of course, black. He goes on to explain the technology that Africa possessed, how it had “Swahili houses built in Elizabethan times”, how three quarters of a million books survive from Timbuktu. It was clear from the start that Akala has done his research as he urges us to respect ancient black history.

The lecture-cum-performance then became darker, more poignant. Chapter 2 tackled the “Maagamizi”, the title of a track in Akala’s new album, meaning “human-caused disaster”. Colonialism was such a Maagamizi, “the African holocaust because we paid one hell of a cost” as the track explains. Disturbing too were parts of Chapter 3, “African survival in the New World”. Akala warned parents of the young children in the room (of which there were a surprising amount) that his material would be disturbing, as the Jim Crow laws and lynching were explained.

Read Full Article >>

Twin sisters achieve exceedingly rare feat

May 14, 2012

NEW ORLEANS After graduating from Xavier University with a 4.0 average in both chemistry and pre-med, Asia Matthew went looking to beat the odds. She wanted to enroll at the prestigious University of Massachusetts Medical School in a selective, eight-year program where you concurrently earn a PHD and MD.

It's a rigorous program where you earn the doctor’s degree simultaneously with a PHD in biomedical research.

However, only the best get in. Hundreds apply and the school annually interviews only 40. From that group, between seven and ten are chosen. I was nervous, she admitted. It's hard not to be. This is the one thing that I’ve wanted for a long time and when you see it almost at your fingertips, you don’t want to do anything to let it slip. Asia beat the odds and got accepted, a great coup for her and Xavier. But Asia isn’t making the journey on her own. Her twin sister Ashley is going too. They're identical twins and were dealing with the idea that they’d be separated for the first time in their lives. I was ecstatic, said Ashley. “My sister and I were jumping up and down and we fell over and ended up tripping each other because we were so happy. We didn’t think it would happen and it did.

Not as surprised was Dr. Terry Watt their professor and mentor who saw their skills, work habit and motivation first hand. It's exceedingly difficult to get into an MD/PHD program and the odds that both of them would get in anywhere were extremely low,” he said. “We’re all very proud of them for the effort they put in to do it. It’s well-deserved.

Two sisters from the same school getting two of the handful of spots that were open, and, to top it off, they both are going on full scholarship. Their plans for the long run, are to give back with their patients and their research.
I want to be able to see my patients, said Ashely. But, I also want to be able to go into the lab and make influential progress that’s going to help my patients in the long run.

Someday they also hope to open a hospital for the less fortunate. Just to open up a hospital that would be dedicated towards that that should be anybody's goal, said Asia.

Not enough positive e-mails about us, like this one, are passed around.


Community Noticeboard

Annual Essay Contest for Children and Young People of African Descent 2014

Dear Parents, Teachers and Group Leaders,

I write to invite you to enter the children you work with, who are of African descent, to participate in the Annual Essay Contest for Children and Young People of African Descent 2014.

For the last eight years, the Annual Essay Contest for Children and Young People of African Descent has encouraged and supported our young aged between 7 and 16 years in their educational development wherever they are in Africa and the African diaspora.  To date, 964 children and young people have participated in this contest.  Feedback received from parents, teachers and head teachers have all indicated positive impacts on children who have participated in this contest in terms of their school work, personal growth and development.

Participating in this contest is a great way for our children to practice their reading, researching, critical thinking and writing skills by expressing themselves on historic and contemporary issues that affect them and the wider African communities across the globe.  

All participating essayists will receive constructive feedback on their essay from Judges who are all of African descent and located throughout the world.  The winning essays across each of the three age groups (7-10 years, 11-13 years and 14-16 years) will be awarded a certificate and a prize.  There are also other opportunities for prizes.
For more information, please download the brochure from the website:

For a YouTube video with the winners of the 2011 summer contest:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZXSbKwjSdq0  (This was exceptional as it was in additional to the world-wide contest and was held on one day to support our children in the UK).

One of our Judges sponsored the contest in 2013 and I would like to promote her excellent children's books!  Please support her as she has very kindly supported our children over many years as an excellent Judge.  http://www.goldendestiny.co.uk/index.php# (UK)
http://www.halaqah.com/shop/product_info.php?products_id=93 (US distributor)

To participate in the contest, please download and complete the Registration Form on the website.  On receipt of the completed Registration form, the Guidelines and Research Area Topics and all reading material will be emailed to  registered schools and groups on or after 28 September 2013.

Important Dates

Research Area Topics released                       from 28 September 2013 on completion of Registration
Actual Essay Topics emailed                          25 January 2014
Essays written                                                             25 January 2014
Essays due                                                                  25 January 2014
Winners Announced                                       29 March 2014

I do hope you will see the value of this contest and choose to encourage your children or any children of African descent you are in contact with to enjoy the challenge of participating in the Essay Contest for Children and Young People of African Descent 2014.

I look forward to receiving your completed Registration form. 

Please forward this invitation to your contacts/churches/schools who work with people of African descent who might have children and ask them to contact me should they have any questions. 

I am also looking for Judges (who speak colonial languages and/or traditional African languages) who would be willing to read no more than 10 essays and provide positive and uplifting feedback as well as areas in need of attention.  All Judges must be of African descent and have email as the essays will be emailed to Judges.

With kind regards,

Lorna Jones
Essay Contest for Children and Young People of African Descent

African Sons and Daughters (ASD) - New Member Meetings

Edmonton, North London and Forest Gate, East London

We are African Sons and Daughters (ASD). Our mission is to promote and encourage to social, economical and physical well-being of the African community in the U.K and Worldwide.  

Get the chance to hear more about African Sons and Daughters and learn how YOU can make a difference in YOUR community !!

To arrange group or home presentation please contact us.

Tel : 07538 024 039
Email : contact@africansonsanddaughters.com

African Scientific Institute (ASI)

The following scientists and technologists of the African Diaspora and Africa have recently become Fellows of the African Scientific Institute (ASI)

New ASI Fellows in July 2013 include:

* Bashiru Ademola Raji, Ph.D. (Nigeria): University Vice Chancellor; Soil Science

* Foluso O. Agunbiade, Ph.D. (Nigeria): Industrial Chemistry

* N.R. Isu, Ph.D. (Nigeria): University Dean, Faculty of Science; Industrial Microbiology; Industrial Microbiology


New ASI Fellows in June 2013 include:

* Onaje Jackson (US Virgin Is.): Architecture and Applied Science and City Planning

* Odipo Osano, Ph.D. (Kenya): Environmental toxicology and Veterinary Public Health

* Erica L. McJimpsey, Ph.D. (USA): Analytical Chemistry

* Bhekie Mamba, Ph.D. (South Africa): University Executive Dean: Faculty of Science; Organometallic Chemistry/Homogeneous Catalysis

* Christine Ikpeme, Ph.D. (Nigeria): Food Technology

* Arthur Burson, (USA): Corp. Vice President, Central Engineering; Mechanical Engineering

* WIlliam P. Gipson (USA): Corp. Sr. Vice Pres., Chief Diversity Officer, R&D, Global Hair Care and Color; Chemical Engineering

* Larry Robinson, Ph.D. (USA): University Interim President; Environmental Chemistry

* Wesley Mitchell (USA): Engineering

* Tiffany E. Grant (USA): Education Consultant; Mechanical Engineer

We now have 683 ASI Fellows from 47 countries (Algeria, Angola, Barbados, Benin, Brazil, Burundi, Cameroon, Colombia, Congo-Brazzaville, Congo-Kinshasa, Cote d'Ivoire, Cuba, Egypt, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gambia, Ghana, Grenada, Haiti, Jamaica, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Reunion, Sao Tome, Sierra Leone, Senegal, South Africa, Sudan, Suriname, Swaziland, Tanzania, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Uganda, United States, Zambia, Zimbabwe). 

More information about ASI Fellows can be found at the location on our website:


Black History Studies: Young and Gifted Season


I hope this email finds you in the best of health and spirits. 
Black History Studies would like to thank those who share our passion and who continue to support Black History Studies.

In the spirit of Kujichagulia (Self Determination), we have organised some amazing educational presentations and a  film screenings in August 2013:

  • Monday 12th August 2013 -  Young Gifted & Black Presentation with Young Entrepreneurs Showcase
  • Wednesday 14th August 2013 - Exploring the Notions of Fatherhood & Black Masculinity in the UK 
  • Tuesday 27th August 2013 - WEB DuBois: A Biography in Four Voices

This presentation will be held at the PCS Headquarters (CLAPHAM JUNCTION), 160 Falcon Road, Clapham Junction, London SW11 2LN, (3 minutes walk from Clapham Junction mainline station.

Doors open at 6.30pm. The presentation will start at 7pm sharp! Hot food will be on sale.

Admission is £5 per person. Children under 16 year olds are FREE.

Email  info@blackhistorystudies.com to confirm your attendance.    

Opening: Afrikan Community House    

The Afrikan Market invites all friends and family to join us in the celebration of Marcus Garvey Earthday and the opening of the new Afrikan Community House on Saturday 17 August 2013  2pm - 2am

114 Swiftden Way, Bromley BR1 4NT (off   Bromley Hill and opposite Bromley Court Hotel.)
Admission: in kind/ £8 towards the Afrikan Market development

Musical entertainment will be provided - 
for further information: 07424 735 603.

A natural face lift!

Greetings Shanti-Chi Website has had a facelift, boob job, lipo and bottock using all natural materials. Join in the fun and check it out! Get out of the box and into the vision! 

Book you place on The Griot Training Now! Places are going! - http://www.shanti-chi.com 
More events and sponsorship packages to choose from, take this opportunity to become a Free Spirit Crusader 

Divine Chi Energy

Founder of Sesa Wo Suban the 1st Afrakan Storytelling Festival in Britain

Four Corners - an interview with Sindiso Nyoni, AKA R!OT

Mon, 5 Aug 2013 | By Jon Daniel

Every man gotta right to decide his own destiny…’ This opening line to Bob Marley and The Wailers classic track, ‘Zimbabwe’ (from the album ‘Survival, 1979) aptly sets the scene for this month’s destination and profiled graphic artist.

Born in 1984, he is a product of his country’s Independence, which was realized in 1980. In his own words he was ‘born free from the segregation and colonial repression’ that blighted Zimbabwe’s past, but still ‘grew up in turbulent times characterized by the internal conflicts of the Shona and Ndebele factions’.

Experiences like this must surely go some way to explain how his tender age belies the depth and range of his work. And the impact he has made not just continentally, beyond the land-locked borders of his homeland, but also internationally in North & South America, Europe and the Far East is equally impressive.

Sindiso Nyoni aka R!OT, over to you.

Click here to read interview

Urgent Appeal: AlkebuLan Revivalist Movement

AlkebuLan Revivalist Movement
Freedom Begins with the Freeing of the Mind and Soul
c/o 282 High Road, Leyton, London E10 5PW
Tel: 020 8539 2154, 07908 814 152

URGENT APPEAL: Help Us to Continue to Serve You!


We are very pleased to report that since issuing our appeal a few days ago we’ve raised £1,540 of the £2,900 required. Tatenda (thank you) to all brothers and sisters and organisations for your healthy contributions thus far.

We now need to raise another £1,360. This in fact needs to be raised by 5:00pm, Monday, 12/08/6253 and not Tuesday, 13/08/6253, as previously stated and as clarified by the lenders. 13/08/6253 is when they intend to execute the repossession order. Immediate contributions can be made via the bank account details below and/or contacting Bro Omowale Kwaw, as per details below. NB. DIRECT CASH PAYMENTS ARE CRUCIAL AT THIS STAGE.

To those who have made pledges but are yet to fulfil them, your prompt action in doing so (where possible) is needed and would be deeply appreciated.

Ownership and control of property is disproportionately low in the Afrikan community and almost non-existent in the Pan-Afrikan community. Your help will ensure that we retain this community space and all the excellent, cultural regenerative work undertaken therein.



Bank Transfer – A/C No: 23503351; Sort Code: 56:0017 – A/C Name: Mama Afrika; Bank: Nat West
Contact: Omowale Kwaw – 07939 292 720, 0208 539 2154; omowale_kwaw@yahoo.co.uk

Open Study: Consciencism + Marcus Garvey Afrikan Family Day

When: Every Thursday at 7pm to 9pm
Where: The West Indian Association of Service Personnel (WASP), 163 Clapham Manor Street, London SW4 6DB
Adm: Free

Nkrumah’s philosophical conscience was awakened during his time in US Satan and that event/process ignited his massive contribution to defeating colonialism and advancing Afrika’s liberation. In writing Consciencism he set out the key to igniting each of our philosophical consciences and releasing our contributions towards defeating neo-colonialism. He made the key accessible in book form so that we too can learn it and master it. By systematically studying it we are supporting and continuing the process he started.

Trains: Clapham Common, Clapham North (Northern Line)& Clapham High Street (BR)
Buses: 35, 37, 50, 88, 137, 155, 322, 345, 349 & 417

For further information: +44 (0) 7914 750 753; pascfevents1@gmail.com; www.pascf.org.uk

Marcus Garvey Afrikan Family Day Saturday 17th August 2013

Pan-Afrikan People’s Phone-in

Sunday 12th August 2013 at 7pm UK time
Radio broadcast: www.pascf.org.uk  and click on link
Tune in to hear Conscious Broadcasting on the Pan-Afrikan People’s Phone-in

On air lines: (Phone) – + 44 (0) 208 144 4547;
(Skype) - panafrikanpeoplesphonein

11 August 1921: Roots author Alex Haley was born

Alex Haley, the author of American history classics like Roots and the autobiography of Malcolm X, was born on Aug. 11, 1921, in New York.

Haley graduated from high school at the early age of 15. In 1939, at the age of 17, Haley quit school and enlisted in the Coast Guard where he later served as chief journalist for 20 years.

While at sea, Haley wrote short stories and sent them to magazine publishers. Although most rejected his submissions, the few stories and articles that were published inspired Haley to keep writing.

A few years after Haley retired from the Coast Guard in 1959, he got his big break as a journalist for Playboy magazine. The magazine had contracted Haley to do a series of interviews with important African-Americans. Through the series called "The Playboy Interviews," Haley spotlighted figures such as Martin Luther King Jr., Sammy Davis Jr., Quincy Jones and Malcolm X.

Haley later wrote The Autobiography of Malcolm X: As Told to Alex Haley, which was hailed by Time Magazine as one of the 10 most important nonfiction books of the 20th century.

Haley’s most comprehensive work however came after a decade of research. He spent time examining slavery in the U.S., England and West Africa. The outcome was the historical fiction novel, Roots, published in 1976. 

"No other novelist or historian has provided such a shattering, human view of slavery," the New York Times review of the novel stated. The book went on to win a Pulitzer Prize.

On Feb. 10, 1992, at 70 years old, Haley passed away from a heart attack.


BBMM Radio On BrentCommunityRadio.org

Wednesdays 12noon-2pm

Join me Kwaku, if you can on our mid-week lunch time BBMM2013 radio show dedicated to British black music, irrespective of genre, or vintage, though I must admit most tracks are old school. I'm kept company by singer-songwriter Kasiri and other volunteers. We also talk about music industry and community matters. I'm sure before I finish, the online and phone lines would be sorted in order to have some interactivity with the listeners. Click to listen to BrentCommunityRadio.org

Africa Live Festival

Hello all,

There are just over a 100 days left until The Africa Live festival!

It’s going to be a delightful day with an eclectic mix of fashion, bespoke handmade jewellery, arts and crafts all set against the backdrop of amazing food and flamboyant music from across the Diaspora.

Trading and catering opportunities are going fast so don’t miss your chance to be part of this wonderful festival sign up today to participate as a trader or caterer.

Volunteers are the life force of our events so if you want to help please apply to part of our amazing team.

See you all  Saturday 17th August 2013!!!!!!

Kind Regards,

The Africa Live Festival  Team


Tel: 0203 397 1583

The Africa Live Festival  17th August, Goose Green Park, Dulwich

The Africa Live Festival 2013 & The African Market Day is a subsidiary of AMDNetworks

Family day out: Bournemouth

Greetings to all!

Join us for a family day out in Bournemouth!


We’re taking four coaches to Bournemouth for a proper family day and cook out!

Old school style … sack races, tug-of-war, jerk pan, drinks on ice, softball, the whole nine yards!
PLUS:  A funfair and Sea World!!!

Please pass this on to your friends and family to help make it a FAMILY DAY TO REMEMBER!

Call: 07809888120

FOR INFO & BOOKINGS:http://www.newmindschool.org/bournemouth.php



4-7PM FRIDAY 16th August 2013

Supporting Groups: Caribbean Labour Solidarity; PASCF, The Pan-Afrikan Voice, All Afrikan Peoples
Revolutionary Party, London Miners Support Network, Pan-Afrikan Reparations Coalition in Europe
(PARCOE), Global Justice Forum (GJF), Colombia Solidarity Campaign, Algeria Solidarity Campaign,

Employment Opportunities

London Ambulance Service (LAS) are currently recruiting for Trainee A&E support staff and there is concern that there are a  lack of applicants from ethnic minority backgrounds.
Do you know anyone who might be interested? 

Link to job ad below.


Community Events

Mashufaa Classes


Spirit Of A Warrior

Date: Every Week
Adm: 1st lesson is free.  Thereafter, £4.50 per lesson.  Members £2.00 per lesson

Mashufaa is a martial are created for the mental, physical and spiritual upliftment of a generation of people who have become detached from themselves! Mashufaa is about living a life with light through the sweat of training.  Sweat lets you know you are alive.

Remember Mind, Body and Spirit are one.  Train to live and live to train. Mashufaa Classes will take place from at The Albany Theatre (Plum Room) nearest Rail: Deptford or DLR Deptford Bridge.

Monday and Fridays*
Time: 7 - 9:30pm
Venue: Lord Morrison Hall, Chestnut Grove (off Scales Rd), Tottenham, London N17 9ET
Travel: Tube: Seven Sisters (Victoria Line), Tottenham Hale / Rail: Bruce Grove
/ Buses: 243, 341, 149, 259,279

*Adults and Children
with the children's classes, We encourage learning through positive encouragement and use games and skills to reinforce the martial arts techniques that they learn.

Time: 7 - 9 pm
Venue: The Plum Room, The Albany Theatre/Centre, Douglas Way, Deptford, London SE8 4AG
Tube: New Cross
/ Rail: Deptford Station / Buses: 53, 453, 177

Time: 2pm - 4pm 
Venue: The DANCE STUDIO, Bridge Park Community Leisure Centre, Harrow Road, London NW10 0RG
Tube: Stonebridge Park (Bakerloo line and London Overground)  / Bus: 18

Website: http://www.mashufaa.co.uk

For further details please contact us on: 020 8808 7547 / 07956 337 391 or, via email on: info@mashufaa.co.uk


Making Freedom Exhibition

When: From July 31, 2013 - 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM (BST)
Where: Marcus Garvey Library, Philip Lane, London N15 4JA
Adm: Free

Come along to the Marcus Garvey Library, see and be inspired by an exhibition that shows how Africans hastened full emancipation in the Caribbean.

It was on 1 August 1838 that nearly a million enslaved men and women in British colonies won their liberty. That day also saw the rebirth of the African family, which had been undermined by planters and overseers in the previous 200 years.

This exhibition commemorates the 175th anniversary of Emancipation Day and tells fascinating stories of the fight for freedom of Africans in the Caribbean and the lobbying by abolitionists in Britain for their liberty.

The exhibition is presented by Windrush Foundation, with the support of Heritage Lottery Fund.

  • Monday to Friday - 9am to 7pm
  • Saturdays 9am to 5pm
  • Sundays 12noon to 4pm

For further information contact Marcus Garvey Library on 020 8489 5350

2-Day Master Class “For Those Who Want To Self Publish & Create The Demand For Their Book Successfully”

When: Friday 9th and Saturday 10th August 2013
Where: tbc
Adm: http://www.bispublishingcourses.co.uk/

1. Have you got a story to tell?
2. Would you like to tell it in a book?
3. Then why not tell it, what is holding you back?

Everyday we are contacted at our company by people who would like to purchase a book on so and so, but we don’t have that book and they can't get it from anywhere else. The reason for this is that the book does not exist yet. It might be that you are the one who is destined to write that story, but if the story is only in your head and not on paper you may be cheating others from the chance to read it.

With that in mind let us help you communicate that story to the world by joining us on our LAST2-Day Master Class “For Those Who Want To Self Publish & Create The Demand For Their Book Successfully”for 2013 taking place on Friday 9th and Saturday 10th August 2013. Yes the last one, so take advantage of our help by registering at: http://www.bispublishingcourses.co.uk/

Workshop: Walk, Draw, Explore

When: Every Saturday from 10th August 2013
Where: Kofiarts Studio, 115 Melfort Rd, Thornton Heath, CR7 7RX
Adm: From £35 a session

Just 8 days to go before Alvin Kofi's first Walk, Draw, Explore workshop focusing on the figure.  The first workshop takes place  on the 10th August 2013 from 1pm at Kofiarts Studio in Thornton Heath.

Join Alvin Kofi for an afternoon of inspiration, creativity and participation.  A rare opportunity to gain the experience, skills and motivation to help you further develop your creative skills and practises.

Book for one or all three of the Walk, Draw, Explore Workshops.  The workshop programme has been designed to help artists and creative individuals gain the confidence and skills to draw and present the human form confidently.

Please feel free to call Alvin Kofi on 07943 437 619 for further informaiton.

Share this event on Facebook and Twitter

We hope you can make it!

Kofi Arts

Nubia Pamper Day 

When: Saturday 10th August 2013, 2.00 - 7.00pm
Where: Johmard Community Centre, 65‐67 High Street Collier's Wood, SW19 2JF
(3 minutes walk from Collier’s Wood Tube on Northern Line)
Adm: Special Price £35 per person

Nubia pamper day celebrating 8 years please click, play and share

Nubia pamper day's been going for 8 years - so we're celebrating and inviting you to joing us. Sisters put down the shopping, leave the children with a trusted someone, leave the burdens anywhere that can consume them - and come come and be inspired.

You will LOVE your day with us.

Your holistic day with us includes:
·         Meditation and self-centering
·         Sumptuous  vegan lunch and refreshments (TO CELEBRATE WE'RE BRINGING BACK THE RAW CHEESECAKE WITH MANGO COULIS!)
·         Sampling nubia pamper’s natural body care products
·         Advice on skin care, healthy eating and holistic living
·         choice of two mini-pamper treats
·         FREE raffle to win a sample body care product

Choice of mini-pamper treats*
·        dreamy mini facial
·        pretty fingers manicure
·        soothing hand massage
     ***NEW: nubian head massage
·        hand help massagers
·        adorning the empress head wrap
·        self-pampering feet soda soak
·        Nubian radiance make up
·         If you would like extras these include:

  • Release and let go neck, back and shoulder massage: £15
  • Pampered feet pedicure £15
  • Reflexology £15
  • Re-energising foot massage -£8
  • Use of Power massagers -£5

*All treats are on first come basis and subject to availability of therapist
For advance bookings contact Yaa 07950 308 033 / email: nubiapamper@yahoo.co.uk
(spaces limited book early to avoid disappointment)

Like our facebook page here: www.facebook.com/nubiapamperday
“Where the love’s at see you there”

African Odysseys: 'We Love Carnival Screenings 2013!'

When: Saturday 10th August 2013, 11am to 5pm 
Where: BFI Southbank, Belvedere Road, South Bank, London, SE1 8XT. 
Adm: Tickets for these screenings is just £7,50!!

Explore the art, history, culture and politics of the Caribbean Carnival in
London and Trinidad

Screenings and previews of new work, live performance and discussions exploring the art, history, culture and politics of the Caribbean Carnival in London and Trinidad.  

The day will be hosted by Michael La Rose of Savannah View and chair of the George Padmore Institute with special guest, director Horace Ové.

Films include King Carnival (UK-USA-W Ger 1973. Dir Horace Ové. 50min); King Carnival (Trinidad 1994. Dir Dalton Narine. 61min); and Sequins, Soca and Sweat (UK 2006. Dir Stephen Rudder. 49min). 

Tickets for these screenings are going fast so BOOK NOW! Advanced booking is advised.

To book the tickets, please call the BFI Southbank Box Office on  
020 7928 3232 (11:30 - 20.30 daily) to book tickets or book  online.        

Screening - 'Passing the Comb' & 'Fade' (both PG rated)

When: Saturday 10th August 2013, Starting at 1pm (doors open 12:45pm) 
Where: Barnfield West Academy, Leagrave High street, Lewsey Farm, Luton, LU4 0NE.
Adm: (with a meal and a drink): Children (17 and under) - FREE, Adults 1 person £4.99, 2 people £7.99, 3 people £9.99

The theme for this event is Health, Hair and body
We will have local Black Barbers / Hairstylists / Health products specialists taking part. 

Special offer – Limited number of tickets available (25), Early bird – Limited period of time (until Sun 28th July): 4 people £11.99 – only available online (not available on the day) 
Open to the whole African / Caribbean family. Men, Women boys and girls.
Come along and watch a film or documentary followed with a discussion about the issues & any other issues affecting our community. You will also have the opportunity to mingle / network afterwards.
Please come with your wallet / purse because conscious Black vendors with products from Hair & Health products, Kwanzaa equipment, Posters, Cards and many more will be displaying and selling at this event.

Please register your attendance by registering at eventbrite: www.fade130810.eventbrite.co.uk

The screening will take place at Barnfield West Academy (which is between Tomlinson avenue and Hereford road) on Leagrave High Street which is 1.5 miles from the Leagrave train station and M1 Junction 11.

By car: exit the M1 motorway at junction 11. Exit towards Dunstable along the Dunstable road on the roundabout under the motorway. Turn right at the traffic lights by the Luton & Dunstable Hospital onto the Lewsey road. Turn left at the bottom of the road at the junction with traffic lights onto Leagrave high street. The Barnfield West Academy is on the left, which is just after Emerald road (2 left turns after the traffic lights). Please let us know of any organisations or individuals that would like to have a table to promote their organisation at this event.

Thank you to all that have previously attended our previous events and please pass this information on to others. 

Please visit these websites below for more information.


Screening: One Mile Away

When: Sat 10 August Doors 6pm @ Rich Mix
Where: 35 - 47 Bethnal Green Road, London, E1 6LA
Adm: http://www.richmix.org.uk/whats-on/event/one-mile-away/

One Mile Away follows the struggles of two warring gangs in inner city Birmingham, the Burger Bar Boys (B21) and the Johnson Crew (B6), to bring peace to their neighbourhoods. Directed by award-winning filmmaker Penny Woolcock, One Mile Away won the prize for best film at Edinburgh Film Festival in 2012.

"A riveting portrait of the complex, contentious reality of the streets, and the courage it takes to make a difference, it could well be this year’s most important British film." - Time Out

One Mile Away follows Penny Woolcock’s Hip Hop musical 1 Day which depicted these postcode wars. One Mile Away was initiated by Shabba, a young man affiliated to the Johnson side who met Penny during her research for 1 Day. He saw her as neutral and as someone who had built trust on both sides. Penny agreed to get involved and introduced Shabba to Dylan Duffus – the lead actor in 1 Day and affiliated to the Burger side. The film follows their painstaking journey over two years to recruit more supporters from both sides. Along the way, they get advice from Jonathan Powell, who oversaw the Good Friday Agreement, and the riots erupt in Birmingham, with surprising consequences.

The screening will be followed by a Q&A with director Penny Woolcock and contributors.


Book tickets / Box Office
020 7613 7498

Debate: Safe Communities and Crime Prevention through Stop & Search? 

When:  Monday 12 August from 5pm - 7pm
Where:  Goldsmiths London University, New Academic Building, LG 01,  Lewisham Way, New Cross, London SE14 6NW
Adm: Free

Tampering with evidence from the Hillsborough football stadium disaster, attempts to discredit the family after the murder of Stephen Lawrence and official figures showing that Black youth are 7 times more likely to be stopped and searched are recent examples that have undermined public confidence in the police. In an attempt to tackle what is seen as a growing problem, by 13th August 2013 Theresa May the Home Secretary, will complete a public consultation on how to make things better in the future.

The debate is for anyone who wants to know the facts, have been affected or feel as though they have something to say.

A panel of experts will give insights to how Stop and Search works on the streets, why it is important in preventing crime and for community safety across London, why it is has special relevance to Black youth in some parts of London, the practical demands on policing and what young people say. The Panel includes:

Ian Joseph
    Independent research consultant
Ron Belgrave
 Former head of crime and policing for the Mayor of London 

Prof. Les Back     
Researcher at Goldsmiths London University

Janet Hills
Chair of the Metropolitan Black Police Association

Dr Anthony Gunter
Senior Lecturer at East London University
This is a free event but as places are limited 
please reserve your place at: 

African Sons and Daughters (ASD) - New Member Meetings

When : Tuesday, August 13, 2013 at 6:30pm - 8.30pm
Where : Forest Methodist Church, Woodgrange Rd, Forest Gate, London, E7 0QH

We are African Sons and Daughters (ASD). Our mission is to promote and encourage to social, economical and physical well-being of the African community in the U.K and Worldwide.  

Get the chance to hear more about African Sons and Daughters and learn how YOU can make a difference in YOUR community !!

To arrange group or home presentation please contact us.

Tel : 07538 024 039
Email : contact@africansonsanddaughters.com.

Canary Wharf Jazz Festival

When: Friday, August 16, 2013 - Sunday, August 18, 2013
Where: Canada Square Park
Adm: Free

London’s largest and most respected free jazz festival returns to Canada Square Park this summer, with live jazz in one beautiful setting across three days. Soweto Kinch, Omar Puente and Carleen Anderson are just some of those taking to the stage, as world-class artists and rising stars appear in back-to-back performances. So whether you are completely new to jazz, a committed aficionado or just love a free outdoor concert don’t miss this summer’s festival as we present a programme of new and nostalgic jazz from every genre.


7-8pm Roller Trio

8.30-10pm Soweto Kinch

Don’t miss Saturday and Sunday’s line up as the Canary Wharf Jazz Festival continues.


1.30-2.45pm Nathaniel Facey Quartet

3.15-4.30pm Troyka

5-6.15pm Soothsayers

6.45-8pm YolanDa Brown

8.30-10pm Omar Puente Raices Cubanas


1.30-2.45pm Zoe Rahman Quartet

3.15-4.30pm Jason Rebello

5-6.15pm Ian Shaw

6.45-8.15pm Carleen Anderson Soul Trio

For all the latest news from Canary Wharf you can now follow us on Twitter @yourcanarywharf

Children’s Cultural Film Club (NABSS School Week)

When: Saturday 17 August 2013, 12noon ~ 4pm
Where: Birkbeck, University of London, Malet Street, Bloomsbury, London WC1E 7HX
Adm: Free

Gold Onyx will run an extended Children’s Cultural Film Club session.  Tashuan will screen Gifted Hands~ The epic story of Ben Carson, a renowned brain surgeon.  Carson overcame obstacles that changed the course of medicine forever.  Growing up in poverty and prejudice, his grades suffered, his temper getting out of control and mother never lost her faith in him.  She helped to grow his imagination, intelligence and, most importantly, his belief in himself. That faith would be his gift - the thing that would drive him to follow his dream of becoming one of the world's leading neurosurgeons.

Followed by a film based discussion and other activities organised by the Gold Onyx Team.

Busses ~ 7, 10, 14, 24, 29, 59, 68, 73, 91, 134, 168, 188, 390
Tube ~ Goodge Street, Russell Square

For more details of events and activities of the National Association Of Black Supplementary Schools Week 2013, view the link

Stay Blessed

Jan Edwards

Projects Manager
Gold Onyx
07946 670 949
Facebook ~ GoldOnyx Rntf

Gold Onyx & National Association Of Black Supplementary Schools
Look Forward To Your Company

The National Black Supplementary Schools Week 2013

When: Friday 16th to Friday 23rd August 2013
Where: Birkbeck University in central London and the Role Models & Mentor Centre in Willesden, North West London
Adm: All events are FREE but donations are very welcome.

The theme this year is Business and Science. This event  is open to all cultures  and all ages with interact seminars, music, poetry, films, prizes and special book launches.

SODIQ (Guilty by Association)

When: Saturday 17 August 2013
Where: New Testament Assembly, Akwaaba Community Centre, Grinling Place, Deptford, London SE8 5HG
Adm: Free

Sodiq’s childhood dreams to be a doctor were about to be realised with offers
from universities including King’s College. Charged in 2012 with a gang-related
shooting of an equally gifted teenager, two promising futures were shattered.
Adeyemi Michael-Director/Producer

Did you know that if someone dies in a fight and you are involved in any
way whatsoever, even a phone call, you could find yourself charged with murder.
Guilty by Association.

Please note: This is a FREE EVENT. NO ENTRANCE without flyer SEATS ARE LIMITED

Screening commences at 6.30pm Prompt

for further information: Reach Dem - 07587 756739

Reach Dem is a not for profit organisation who is determined to tell the stories of those persons who for whatever reason have no voice.

Reparations Demo

When: Thursday 22nd August 2013, 1830 – 1930hrs
10 Downing Street

British Prime Minster David Cameron and his ancestors have profited In 1833 when the House of Commons voted that those who had enslaved Afrikan people should be paid £20 million (£20 Billion at today) in order for Britain to claim it had ended its shameful past. We say criminals should not be allowed to keep the loot.

If you agree, you know what to do.

Reparations Conference 2013

When: Friday: 23rd August 2013, 1100 – 2100hrs
: Bernie Grant Centre, Tottenham London N15 4RX

Nearest Tube Seven Sisters

KEYNOTE SPEAKER: Arnold Tjihuiko of Namibia

South West Africa, as Namibia was once known, was the testing ground for Nazi Germany first Concentration camp where millions were murdered. We say ... Reparations Now!

International Slavery Remembrance Day

When: 23 August 2013, 11 - 17:00
Where: National Maritime, Museum, Romney Rd, Greenwich SE10 9NF
Adm: Free

Join us for a day of FREE talks, walks, craft workshops, gallery sessions and music for all age groups.

On 23 August 1791, the first successful slave uprising in the western hemisphere took place in Haiti. This event led to the island’s independence and was a major step towards the abolition of the transatlantic slave trade.

The National Maritime Museum has marked the 23 August for over a decade and invites you to join in the commemorations.

This year the museum’s collections and Greenwich’s links to the slave trade and its abolition will inform the proceedings.

The National Maritime Museum marks International Slavery Remembrance Day 2013 with a series of free events. Taking place from 11am to 5pm on Friday 23 August, the programme includes Caribbean folk songs, workshops for young adults, lectures,family activities and digital gallery tours. The day culminates in a unique commemorative ceremony by the River Thames.

Contributors include Ethnovox, Kyron Akal, Dr Temi Odumosu, S.I. Martin and Dominique Le Gendre. Burt Caesar will be the Master of Ceremonies. As ever, a commemorative riverside ceremony closes the proceedings


The Epic Adventure of Nhamo the Manyika Warrior and His Sexy Wife Chipo

When: 1 - 24 August 2013
Where: Tricycle Theatre, 269 Kilburn High Road, London NW6 7JR
Adm: From £14

By Denton Chikura

With just 24 hours to create the ultimate African fable, the superstar cast is missing a hero. Suddenly, a dashing goatherd appears on the horizon… Nhamo. Is he The One?

Tiata Fahodzi has become one of the leading British-African theatre companies through successes such as Belong, part of the Olivier Award-winning season at the Royal Court, and Iya-Ile: The First wife (Soho). The Epic Adventure of Nhamo... is the first production to be directed by Tiata Fahodzi's Artistic Director, Lucian Msamati (The Nr 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, Game of Thrones).


Women and Revolutionary Change (Bringing Awareness and Empowerment )

When: 24th August 2013, 3 - 6:30pm
Where: Johmard Community Centre 67 High Street Colliers Wood, London, SW19 2JF
Adm: £3


- Lola Gani-Yusu from Africans United against Child Abuse (AFRUCA)
             Speaking on Human Trafficking Awarness

Host by:
- Yaa Asantewaa and Leah Gordon - All African Women Revolutionary Union-  
             What is Pan-African Women's Day and why we celebrate it?


"The Naked Option: A last resort" This documentary is "an INSPIRING and REVEALING film about everyday women taking on powerful multinational corporation" Teresa Odendahi

"is a parable for our times, EXPOSING the absolute INJUSTICES wrought by global corporate capitalism" Dr Imogen Tyler


Workshops on:

- The role of African women on revolutionary change

- Reform vs Revolution

- Tradition and Culture as a weapon for advancement and liberation


- Food and refreshments on sale on the day

The African woman is the backbone of society and the spark and fuel of any revolution and social change. African women throughtout the continent and the diaspora are resisting stereotypes and oppression. Despite triple oppression (race, class and gender) the African woman continues to fight back and inspire others both men and women in their families and communities to struggle for a more egalitarian society and create real change.


Please bring books and stationary to send to the KILOMBO PROJECT in Ghana.

"Pan Africanism" is Power

Contact Info: aaprp-britain@hotmail.co.uk / 07914 348 259

Tunde Jegede's The Griot's Tale

When: 27 August - 2 September 2013
: The Africa Centre, 38 King Street, Covent Garden, WC23 8JT
Adm: £15 Earlybird, £20 On the Door - book tickets at www.africacentre.org.uk

Twitter: @theafricacentre, #Africaevents
Facebook: Africa Centre
View our programme at www.africacentre.org.uk/events

The Africa Centre is pleased to announce there will be a run of live performances of The Griot’s Tale
from 27 August until 2 September. The Griot’s Tale is a classic story of a young man’s search for
truth and how this is revealed through his journey into the unexpected and unknown. Written and
conceived by the composer, Tunde Jegede, this piece represents a meeting point between music,
poetry, dance and the visual image to encourage new forms of storytelling. Drawing from sacred and
ritualistic aspects of African mysticism, The Griot’s Tale features some of UK’s leading practitioners
of African culture, including the choreographer Bode Lawal, actor and director Patrice Naiambana,
the visual artist and poet Taiwo Emmanuel Jegede, and the filmmaker, Sunara Begum. The Griot’s
Tale embraces the worlds of Yoruba chant and movement with cinematic visual imagery, African and
Western classical music re-imagined through ancient and contemporary tales of Love, Wisdom,
Kinship, Sacrifice and Immortality.


Children’s Cultural Film Club

When: 8 September 2013, 2pm-4pm
Where: The Edge Hall, 117 Bruce Grove, Tottenham, London N17 6UR

Stay Blessed
Jan Edwards

Projects Manager
Gold Onyx
07946 670 949
Facebook ~ GoldOnyx Rntf

Literary Bites with Courttia Newland & Alex Wheatle MBE

When: 11 September 2013, 19:00 to 21:30 (BST)
Where: Yum Yum, 187 Stoke Newington High Street, London N16
Adm: £25.00 (Early Bird £19.99 before 14 August) + Booking Fee

Literary Bites is a new initiative by Words of Colour Productions, connecting aspiring scribes with published writers over great food. At each event, an established author will read from and discuss their work over a carefully sourced and quality menu that is affordably priced. Guests will also be able to network with other budding writers, win signed copies of books as well as be part of a memorable literary experience.

After our successful launch in December with the award-winning crime writer Dreda Say Mitchell we are thrilled to present a double-hander with Courttia Newland (The Scholar, A Book of Blues, The Gospel According to Cane) and Alex Wheatle MBE (Brixton Rock, East of Acre Lane, Brenton Brown). The event will take place in the lovely Orchid Lounge at Yum Yum, an award-winning Thai restaurant in Stoke Newington, London.

About our guest authors

Courttia Newland is the author of seven novels. Born and bred in west London, his first novel, The Scholar, was published in 1997 and was an instant success. Newland was shortlisted for the CWA Dagger in the Library Award 2007, the Alfred Fagon Award 2010 and was longlisted for the Frank O’Connor Award 2011 for A Book of Blues. His latest well received book, The Gospel According to Cane, was published in February 2013.

Alex Wheatle MBE published his first novel, Brixton Rock, to critical acclaim in 1999. Six more novels followed. His second book, East of Acre Lane, won the London Arts Board New Writers Award. In 2008, he was awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list for services to literature. Wheatle’s debut novel, Brixton Rock, was adapted for the stage and performed at the Young Vic in 2010. His latest novel, Brenton Brown, was published in 2011.

Menu selection

Cut and paste this link to download the menu: http://bit.ly/13My1ZP

Once you have purchased your ticket you will need to email us your menu choices (starter, main course and drink), along with your full name and contact details, to info@wordsofcolour.co.uk by 5pm on Tuesday 10 September 2013. This will help us ensure that you receive a smooth service on the night.

To find out more about the night read more at the link below:


'For Colored Girls'

When: Friday 13th of September 7.30pm
Where: Canada Water, Culture Space; 21 Surrey Quays Road, London, SE16 7AR
Adm: Tickets are £15 and currently on sale here

In London For One Day Only: For Colored Girls.

The Obie-Award winning 'For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow is Enuf' is a choreopoem originally written by poet and playwright Ntozake Shange. Since its first stage in 1975, 'For Colored Girls' has been adapted as a book and a film by Tyler Perry, featuring a cast including Whoopi Goldberg, Phylicia Rashad, Thandie Newton and Kerry Washington.

A landmark piece in African-American literature and black feminism, 'For Colored Girls' depicts the interconnected lives of nine women and their struggles as women of colour.

'For Colored Girls' produced by Justina Kehinde and Ifeyinwa Frederick made history in Cambridge University's 800 years history with its all-female, all-black cast.

The production was a success, resulting in a sell-out performance, standing ovation and five- star reviews.

'For Colored Girls' is coming to London for one day only. With its rave reviews and history making, this play is not to be missed!

Source: http://modernemeid.blogspot.co.uk/2013/08/in-london-for-one-day-only-for-colored.html

The London African Music Festival

When: Friday 13th September - Sunday 22 September 2013
Where: 11 Venues
Adm: Various

For Info

Joyful Noise Productions
55 Priory Park Road, London, NW6 7UR
Email: joyfulnoise@talk21.com
Tel/fax: (+ 44) 0207 328 9613

AACDD Bargehouse 2013 Festival & The Mosaic Shopping Gallery & Fashion Showcase

When: 17th - 23rd September 2013, 10am – 8pm daily
Where: Bargehouse, Oxo Tower Wharf, London SE1 9PH
Adm: Free

This year Mosaic has partnered with the AACDD 2013 Bargehouse Festival, part of the London Design Festival. Together Mosaic and the African & African-Caribbean Design Diaspora will fill all
five floors of the listed Bargehouse building at OXO Tower Wharf with black creative of all disciplines including fine art, sculpture, graphic design, photography, multimedia and music, architecture, furniture, lighting, textiles,ceramics, fashion and fashion accessories, as well as live music and other performances.

This year’s event will showcase exceptional works of creatives from the UK, Europe, Africa and the Caribbean. With the Mosaic shopping gallery housing a mix of diverse exhibitors offering unique products, three exhibition floors, live catwalks and the AACDD special feature exhibition ‘Iconic Highlights – Black Creativity At Its Best’ awards celebrating the best of the outstanding creative talent of the 2010, 2011 and 2012 AACDD exhibitions, the event is the perfect opportunity to experience and discover first-hand the originality and creativity with which the very best African descent businesses, artist and designers enrich global culture.

If you are interested in exhibiting please request the exhibitor pack and return it to us by yhe 31st July.

Find out about more events during the London Design Festival


Screening: The Great Debate (followed by the Mandela students debate)

When: 26th October 2013, 12pm – 3pm
Where: The CarAf Centre 
Adm: Free

Our annual International Black Day is part of the Black History Month events. This event is suitable for the whole family. Entrance is free with a cultural refreshments provided.

Please book to confirm your place on: 020 7284 0030 ext: 221 

About Ligali

Revolutionary Pan Africanism Working

Nyansapo - In service to our family, with the spirit of our Ancestors

LIGALI is a Pan African, human rights organisation. It is maintained and funded entirely by friends and family of the Ligali organisation, donations are welcome as we need your help to keep it running.


Nyansapo logo

NYANSAPO is the name of one of the many Adinkra symbols in Akan culture, it is a knot that is so intricately tied it is said that, “only the wise can untie the wisdom knot”. This ebe (proverb) points to the fact that only wisdom affords one the ability to see parts in relation to the whole within which they belong. Wisdom breeds patience, and the insight needed to untangle complex issues and arrive at just solutions grounded in divine order without profaning Ancestral culture in the process.

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