Views and news on peace,
justice and reconciliation
in Africa

December 1997



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Africanews staff wish to thank the hundreds of readers who have sent their condolences following the death of Andrew Awour, our editor in November in a car accident. Andrew who was only 26 years old, was gifted with many talents. He was especially committed to the ideals of justice and peace. He spent most of his time in defence of the outcast and marginalised. You would meet him not only working for long hours at the computer, but also organising the foot-ball club of the neighbourhood, advising and medicating a street child, caring for the refugees. It will be difficult for us to overcome such a loss, but we will do our best to continue his work, and to make it develop along the line he had in mind.

In the memory of our first editor we are starting an annual Andrew Awour Prize of US$ 300, to be awarded to the best article on justice and peace published by Africanews. This prize will be given in addition to the already existing prize of US$ 200. From now on the US$ 200 prize will be called Clement Mwale Prize, and given to the best article on economics and politics published by Africanews.
Clement Mwale was an upcoming Zambian journalist, who shared with Andrew the dream of Africanews but who also died in a car accident in December 1994, before the dream came true. The Prizes will be awarded every year in January, for the two best articles of the previous year.

The difficult task of carrying on with Andrew's job now rests on the shoulders of Clement Njoroge. Clement is a graduate in philosophy with a post graduate diploma in Planning and Management of Development Projects. He has assisted Andrew in the previous two years, and is a contributor to Catholic International in the USA and of Internazionale in Italy.

There are changes in our communication system. We have a new line, so while the number +254.2.560385 will be only for voice communication, the number +254.2.576175 will be dedicated to fax communication. It will be easier for our correspondents to reach us, though the occasional power failure cannot be ruled out. The e-mail address remains the safest and cheapest way of contacting us.

In this issue our lead article is from Mozambique, a former Portuguese colony. Bonaventura Lemana, like many other Mozambicans wonders if the second scramble for Africa is already at hand. His story,Up for grabs dwells on the sensitive issue of land rights. Malawi, one of the continent's poorest countries has an expanding economy and an increased productivity simply because of the privately-owned tea tobacco and, more recently, sugar estates that together account for over 80 per cent of Malawi's export earnings. Despite this, tobacco growers are swimming in a pool of dire exploitation. A case of human rights violation. Patrick Mawaya has more details.

Rwanda, a country which has been in turmoil in the recent past is now trying to come to terms with its bloody past. A comprehensive interview with Archbishop Christian Cardinal Tumi of Douala by Martin Jumbam, a Catholic journalist, reveals alot about the church's deep concern for this Great Lakes country.

The Church has, as its first priority to safeguard human dignity in all aspects. Sierra Leone, according to Chris Samai, the Editor of an independent newspaper, The Democrat, is now a country unsafe even for its own inhabitants. The seven year-old armed conflict has left millions of people homeless.

Who is responsibe for Africa's plight? The war ravaged countries, the poor malnourished refugees, stagnating economies, debt problems and the perrenial corruption among others? Keith Richburg, a Black American puts the blame squrely on Africans themselves. Most African politicians have blamed all of this on external factors. Richburg thinks otherwise, he analyses,. Fr. Joseph Caramazza reviews his controversial book Out of America.

We wish you all the best during Christmas and the New Year.

Africanews staff

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AFRICANEWS - Koinonia Media Centre, P.O. Box 8034, Nairobi, Kenya
tel/fax: 254.2.560385 - e-mail: KOINONIA@MAF.Org
AFRICANEWS on line is by Enrico Marcandalli

PeaceLink 1997