Tag Archives: Climate change

For future disaster preparedness, Sierra Leone could look to Cuba

On August 14th, Mudslides in Freetown, Sierra Leone killed 1,000 people, mostly inhabitants of the urban slums in the hills above the capital. Despite its portrayal as a natural disaster caused by days of heavy rain, “the tragedy was entirely man-made,” as writer Lansana Gberie states bluntly. The result of environmental degradation, lack of disaster preparedness and substandard housing for the poor, these deaths could have been avoided.

Much like the Ebola epidemic that killed 4,000 Sierra Leoneans in 2014, the deep roots of this disaster are the neocolonial structures and neoliberal policies that govern Sierra Leone. They assure, as Joshua Lew McDermott, the President of the African Socialist Movement International Support Committee, argues in Jacobin: that “… the levers of the Sierra Leonean state that could have checked the wealth extraction and bolstered domestic industries and social services were done away with in the name of fiscal austerity, debt repayment, and incentivizing foreign investment.”

While poverty constrains the resources available for disaster response, not all governments in poor countries are equally ineffective. The difference in government response is highlighted every time there is a major hurricane in the Caribbean, and many more die in Haiti than in Cuba. For example, Hurricane Matthew killed 546 in Haiti and only four in Cuba despite being of similar intensity in both locations (it also killed 47 Americans).

The government of Cuba, unlike Haiti’s, invests in meteorology, with dozens of weather stations to monitor, predict and track incoming storms. The victims in Sierra Leone sadly had no similar warning system. In Cuba, there are annual preparations and drills in May at the beginning of hurricane season. The military and police make plans for evacuations. In “areas identified as vulnerable,” authorities provide “electrical generators, drinking water and additional medical personnel in advance of the storm’s approach, as members of the community are bestowed with the responsibility of providing such essential services.”

Furthermore, the Cuban government provides its citizens with health care and education. “Compared to their Caribbean neighbors, Cubans are far better prepared for emergencies. Not only do they benefit from better infrastructure and housing, as well as a highly effective risk communication system, but more importantly, Cuba is populated by the most educated population in the developing world.” A more educated population better understands the risks posed by hurricanes and how to respond to them.

Although many dismiss Cuba’s success at minimizing the number of deaths due to hurricanes and other natural disasters as possible only in one-party state, “there’s little about its hurricane program that rests on authoritarianism.” While, “the hurricane response may be directed from the top down… it’s carried out by ordinary Cubans in their local communities, building on the regular training they receive.” There is no technical reason why Sierra Leone could not follow such a model of “total mobilization.” The problem is political will.

The real impediment is that neocolonialism and neoliberalism deprive the Sierra Leonean government of the fiscal capacity and policy space to solve the problems of substandard housing and lack of disaster preparedness. Many NGOs are doing an admirable job of replying to the crisis, but disaster relief is a core government function and the Sierra Leonean government is simply too small and disorganized to handle such crises.

Continue reading on Africa is a country

By Francisco Perez

For future disaster preparedness, Sierra Leone could look to Cuba

On August 14th, Mudslides in Freetown, Sierra Leone killed 1,000 people, mostly inhabitants of the urban slums in the hills above the capital. Despite its portrayal as a natural disaster caused by days of heavy rain, “the tragedy was entirely man-made,” as writer Lansana Gberie states bluntly. The result of environmental degradation, lack of disaster preparedness and substandard housing for the poor, these deaths could have been avoided.

Much like the Ebola epidemic that killed 4,000 Sierra Leoneans in 2014, the deep roots of this disaster are the neocolonial structures and neoliberal policies that govern Sierra Leone. They assure, as Joshua Lew McDermott, the President of the African Socialist Movement International Support Committee, argues in Jacobin: that “… the levers of the Sierra Leonean state that could have checked the wealth extraction and bolstered domestic industries and social services were done away with in the name of fiscal austerity, debt repayment, and incentivizing foreign investment.”

While poverty constrains the resources available for disaster response, not all governments in poor countries are equally ineffective. The difference in government response is highlighted every time there is a major hurricane in the Caribbean, and many more die in Haiti than in Cuba. For example, Hurricane Matthew killed 546 in Haiti and only four in Cuba despite being of similar intensity in both locations (it also killed 47 Americans).

The government of Cuba, unlike Haiti’s, invests in meteorology, with dozens of weather stations to monitor, predict and track incoming storms. The victims in Sierra Leone sadly had no similar warning system. In Cuba, there are annual preparations and drills in May at the beginning of hurricane season. The military and police make plans for evacuations. In “areas identified as vulnerable,” authorities provide “electrical generators, drinking water and additional medical personnel in advance of the storm’s approach, as members of the community are bestowed with the responsibility of providing such essential services.”

Furthermore, the Cuban government provides its citizens with health care and education. “Compared to their Caribbean neighbors, Cubans are far better prepared for emergencies. Not only do they benefit from better infrastructure and housing, as well as a highly effective risk communication system, but more importantly, Cuba is populated by the most educated population in the developing world.” A more educated population better understands the risks posed by hurricanes and how to respond to them.

Although many dismiss Cuba’s success at minimizing the number of deaths due to hurricanes and other natural disasters as possible only in one-party state, “there’s little about its hurricane program that rests on authoritarianism.” While, “the hurricane response may be directed from the top down… it’s carried out by ordinary Cubans in their local communities, building on the regular training they receive.” There is no technical reason why Sierra Leone could not follow such a model of “total mobilization.” The problem is political will.

The real impediment is that neocolonialism and neoliberalism deprive the Sierra Leonean government of the fiscal capacity and policy space to solve the problems of substandard housing and lack of disaster preparedness. Many NGOs are doing an admirable job of replying to the crisis, but disaster relief is a core government function and the Sierra Leonean government is simply too small and disorganized to handle such crises.

Continue reading on Africa is a country

By Francisco Perez

Floods, Hurricanes, Droughts… When Climate Sets the Agenda

Rome – When officials and experts from all over the world started the first-ever environmental summit hosted by China, they were already aware that climate and weather-related disasters were already seriously beginning to set the international agenda – unprecedented floods in South Asia, strongest ever hurricanes Harvey and Irma, and catastrophic droughts striking the Horn of Africa, among the most impacting recent events.

In fact, Ordos, China has been the venue of the 13th summit of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), which has been focusing over the period 6-16 September on ways to further mitigate and prevent the steadily advancing desertification and land degradation worldwide.

Officials and experts from 196 countries attending the UNCCD 13th session –known as COP 13- are now expected to agree on a 12-year Strategy to contain runaway land degradation that is threatening global food and water security.

Countries are also expected to announce their targets for land restoration, to agree on measures to address the related emerging threats of forced migration, sand and dust storms, and to agree on actions to strengthen the resilience of communities to droughts.

Desertification Everywhere

No wonder—globally, as many as 169 countries are affected by desertification, with China accounting for the largest population and area impacted, UNCCD warns.

Desertification is not just photogenic images of oceans of sand and dunes – it is a silent, invisible crisis that is destabilising communities on a global scale, according to UNCCD.

“As the effects of climate change undermine livelihoods, inter-ethnic clashes are breaking out within and across states and fragile states are turning to militarisation to control the situation.”

“If we are to restore peace, security and international stability in a context where changing weather events are threatening the livelihoods of more and more people, survival options are declining and state capacities are overburdened, then more should be done to combat desertification, reverse land degradation and mitigate the effects of drought. Otherwise, many small-scale farmers and poor, land-dependent communities face two choices: fight or flight.“

Famine in Africa, Again

Meanwhile, the most impacted continent by climate change and weather induced disasters – Africa, which contributes only 4 per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions – is now experiencing a scenario in its Eastern region of consecutive climate shocks causing back-to-back droughts that have left at least 8.5 million people in Ethiopia in dire need of food aid.

At the same time, severe drought has deepened in Somalia with the risk of famine looming on about half the population.

The death of livestock in the impacted areas has caused a breakdown in pastoral livelihoods, contributing to soaring hunger levels and alarming increases in malnutrition rates.

This is just a quick summary of the dramatic situation facing these two East African countries, which are home to a combined population of 113 million people (101,5 million in Ethiopia and 11,5 million in Somalia), and which are in need of additional urgent resources to prevent any further deterioration.

The situation has rapidly deteriorated, and the heads of the three Rome-based United Nations food agencies, at the conclusion of a four-day visit to the affected areas, called for greater investment in long-term activities that strengthen people’s resilience to drought and the impacts of climate shocks.

“This drought has been going on for a long time and we have lost much of our livestock… If we didn’t get food assistance, we would be in big trouble – but this is still not enough to feed us all,” Hajiji Abdi, a community elder, last week said to José Graziano da Silva, director general of the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), Gilbert F. Houngbo, president of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), and David Beasley, executive director of the World Food Programme (WFP).

Continue reading on IPS

By Baher Kamal

Floods, Hurricanes, Droughts… When Climate Sets the Agenda

Rome – When officials and experts from all over the world started the first-ever environmental summit hosted by China, they were already aware that climate and weather-related disasters were already seriously beginning to set the international agenda – unprecedented floods in South Asia, strongest ever hurricanes Harvey and Irma, and catastrophic droughts striking the Horn of Africa, among the most impacting recent events.

In fact, Ordos, China has been the venue of the 13th summit of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), which has been focusing over the period 6-16 September on ways to further mitigate and prevent the steadily advancing desertification and land degradation worldwide.

Officials and experts from 196 countries attending the UNCCD 13th session –known as COP 13- are now expected to agree on a 12-year Strategy to contain runaway land degradation that is threatening global food and water security.

Countries are also expected to announce their targets for land restoration, to agree on measures to address the related emerging threats of forced migration, sand and dust storms, and to agree on actions to strengthen the resilience of communities to droughts.

Desertification Everywhere

No wonder—globally, as many as 169 countries are affected by desertification, with China accounting for the largest population and area impacted, UNCCD warns.

Desertification is not just photogenic images of oceans of sand and dunes – it is a silent, invisible crisis that is destabilising communities on a global scale, according to UNCCD.

“As the effects of climate change undermine livelihoods, inter-ethnic clashes are breaking out within and across states and fragile states are turning to militarisation to control the situation.”

“If we are to restore peace, security and international stability in a context where changing weather events are threatening the livelihoods of more and more people, survival options are declining and state capacities are overburdened, then more should be done to combat desertification, reverse land degradation and mitigate the effects of drought. Otherwise, many small-scale farmers and poor, land-dependent communities face two choices: fight or flight.“

Famine in Africa, Again

Meanwhile, the most impacted continent by climate change and weather induced disasters – Africa, which contributes only 4 per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions – is now experiencing a scenario in its Eastern region of consecutive climate shocks causing back-to-back droughts that have left at least 8.5 million people in Ethiopia in dire need of food aid.

At the same time, severe drought has deepened in Somalia with the risk of famine looming on about half the population.

The death of livestock in the impacted areas has caused a breakdown in pastoral livelihoods, contributing to soaring hunger levels and alarming increases in malnutrition rates.

This is just a quick summary of the dramatic situation facing these two East African countries, which are home to a combined population of 113 million people (101,5 million in Ethiopia and 11,5 million in Somalia), and which are in need of additional urgent resources to prevent any further deterioration.

The situation has rapidly deteriorated, and the heads of the three Rome-based United Nations food agencies, at the conclusion of a four-day visit to the affected areas, called for greater investment in long-term activities that strengthen people’s resilience to drought and the impacts of climate shocks.

“This drought has been going on for a long time and we have lost much of our livestock… If we didn’t get food assistance, we would be in big trouble – but this is still not enough to feed us all,” Hajiji Abdi, a community elder, last week said to José Graziano da Silva, director general of the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), Gilbert F. Houngbo, president of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), and David Beasley, executive director of the World Food Programme (WFP).

Continue reading on IPS

By Baher Kamal

With or Without The US, Africa Must Push Ahead With Paris Climate Pledges

The decision by President Trump to withdraw the United States from the Paris Agreement on climate change will be greeted with anger, dismay and incomprehension across the African continent. It comes as hunger on a massive scale is unfolding across East Africa, with drought and conflict leaving a record 26.5 million people in urgent need of food, water and medical treatment.

In South Sudan and Somalia, they are already dying. In Kenya, our government has declared a national emergency and Ethiopia is battling a new wave of drought following the strongest El Nino on record.

Climate change is a reality for us and we are already living with its impacts.  A recent study of 30 African countries by the Washington DC-based think tank, the Brookings Institution, showed two-thirds are warming faster than the world as a whole. Science tells us that extreme weather events affecting the continent are only set to worsen.

That the world’s biggest polluter is turning its back on those affected by its actions is shocking.  But it is also symptomatic of the greatest challenge of our time – that is, how to tackle 21st century global threats that know no borders.  Climate change is perhaps the most graphic example of what are now termed “global catastrophic risks”, risks that could affect more than ten percent of the world’s population.  They spring both from our technological advancement and our inter-connectedness.

A recent global survey of eight countries (including South Africa) conducted by ComRes found that more than eight in ten people now see climate change as a global catastrophic risk, placing it alongside war and weapons of mass destruction as a serious threat to humanity.

So where do we go from here?  On the Paris Agreement, the rest of the world is defiant: with or without the US, countries will push ahead with their own pledges to bring down carbon emissions and pursue alternative sources of energy. Major powers like China, the world’s second biggest polluter, have thrown their weight behind the deal that seeks to keep global warming under the threshold of 2˚C above pre-industrial levels.

This is all well and good. Except that on the basis of current pledges, the world is headed for a global temperature rise of 3.6˚C, which would be truly catastrophic. The fact is, the sweeping promises contained in global governance frameworks such as the Paris Agreement or the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), also agreed in 2015, must be matched by effective local action if they are to succeed, in Africa as elsewhere.

Continue reading on AllAfrica.com

By Wanjira Mathai (Senior Advisor, Global Advocacy & Strategy, WPOWER and Chair of the Wangari Maathai Foundation).

Climate change: The fate of Lake Tanganyika hangs in the balance

Standing on the steep rocky shores of Lake Tanganyika at sunset, looking out at fishermen heading out for their nightly lamp-boat fishing trips, it’s easy to imagine this immense 32,900 square kilometres of water as serene and unchanging.

Located in the western branch of the great African Rift Valley, the lake divided among four countries: Tanzania, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Burundi, and Zambia. It is one of the oldest lakes in the world, probably dating back about 10 million years.

That expanse of geological time has permitted literally hundreds of unusual species of fish and invertebrates to evolve in isolation — organisms that are unique among the world’s lakes. Every day millions of people rely on the lake’s riches.

But despite being a world class reservoir of biodiversity, food and economic activity, the lake is changing rapidly and may be facing a turbulent future.

Threatened lake of 2017

Lake Tanganyika was recently declared the “Threatened Lake of 2017” — adversely affected by human activity in the form of climate change, deforestation, overfishing and hydrocarbon exploitation.

Beginning in the late 1980s, scientists studying the lake began to notice significant and concerning changes caused by human activity.

But at the time, worldwide attention was focused on their other African Great Lakes, particularly Lake Victoria, where evidence was beginning to emerge of the enormous impact the Nile Perch — an introduced species — was having.

The problems in Tanganyika were somewhat different.

Fortunately, no major exotic species introductions have occurred up to now. Instead, evidence shows that underwater habitat degradation is taking place adjacent to hill slopes. They are being rapidly deforested – converted to agricultural lands or for urban expansion — in the fast growing population centres around the lake. This activity has led to a rapid increase in the amount of loose sand and mud being washed into the water, is smothering the lake floor.

The biodiversity of Lake Tanganyika can be imagined like a thin bathtub ring. It hugs the shallow zones around a deep and steep bottomed lake, up to 1,470 metres in its deepest parts. The hundreds of species that inhabit the sunlit shallows give way to a dark expanse of water lacking oxygen and, so, animal life.

This narrow strip of extraordinary biodiversity is on the frontline. Eroded sediments are being carried into the lake, affecting this strip.

Unsustainable growth

Researchers have begun to document where the impact is being felt. They are also looking back in time by collecting sediment cores with fossils of the many endemic animals to see when the impact was first felt.

They have found that some heavily populated regions lost much of their diversity more than 150 years ago. Other regions, particularly in the more southerly past of the lake, are seeing these effects unfold only in recent decades.

Continue reading on The East African

By Andrew Cohen

“The Ocean Is Not a Dumping Ground”

An internationally renowned scientist, Ameenah Gurib-Fakim became Mauritius’s sixth president on June 5, 2015 – and one of the few Muslim women heads of state in the world. Her nomination constituted a major event in the island’s quest for greater gender parity and women’s empowerment, giving a higher profile to women in the public and democratic sphere of Mauritius.

Gurib-Fakim started her career in 1987 as a lecturer at the Faculty of Agriculture, University of Mauritius. She was one of the leading figures in local academia with a reputation far beyond the Indian Ocean before she accepted the post of president.

She has also served in different capacities in numerous local, regional and international organizations. Gurib-Fakim has lectured extensively and authored or co-edited 26 books and numerous academic articles on biodiversity conservation and sustainable development.

In this exclusive interview with IPS, President Gurib-Fakim urged world leaders to save our oceans, noting that this critical ecosystem impacts millions of livelihoods, particularly for small island-states and coastal communities.

This June, the United Nations will convene a high-level Conference to Support the Implementation of Sustainable Development Goal 14: Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development at U.N. Headquarters in New York.

Human activity has already left a huge footprint on the world’s oceans, Gurib-Fakim notes. “We have always assumed that the ocean is a dumping ground – which it is not.”

Excerpts from the interview follow.

Q: How would you rate the oceans in terms of importance in the context of sustainable development?

A: The ocean space occupies 70 percent of the world’s surface and it still remains unknown. There is no doubt that ocean space impacts livelihood, especially for islands and coastal communities. Several countries in the South-West Indian Ocean, for example, rely heavily on fishing to sustain livelihoods. In 2013, fish accounted for 17 percent of the world population’s intake of animal protein and 6.7 percent of all protein consumed. Coral-reef fish species also represent an important source of protein.

With more than 60 percent of the world’s economic output taking place near coastlines and in some African countries, the ocean economy contributes 25 percent of the revenues and over 30 percent of export revenues. It is becoming increasingly clear the enormous potential of our oceans.

Q: Do you think that the objectives of the World Ocean Summit can still reverse the decline in the health of our ocean for people, planet and prosperity?

A:  This Summit brings on board all the stakeholders involved with ocean issues. This summit is also a pledging conference as funding always remains a thorny issue and yet there is urgency in data collection on several areas of the ocean ecosystems. It provides the policymaker and the researcher a holistic picture of what the ocean stands for and will hopefully change the narrative on the need to reverse the decline of the health of our ocean space.

Climate change remains a big component as acidification of the waters as well as rise in temperatures will affect both the flora and fauna.

We must always be mindful to the fact that humans have had a huge footprint in the health of our oceans as we have always assumed that the ocean is dumping ground. It is NOT. There are within the ocean space, very fragile ecosystems that can be destroyed by small increases in acidity or temperatures.

Q: As an Ocean State, Mauritius does not seem to have given due consideration to the importance of our oceans in terms of an environmental asset. How would this Ocean Summit help to change our mindset?

A: Mauritius has a very small landmass, we have a very huge space of 2.2 million km and I think what the ocean summit helps us to do is to bring back to the fore these multiple challenges or opportunities that the ocean as an entity presents to the economy of Mauritius. As I said, one of the areas will be sustainable fishery, which can be flagged into the economy. Mauritius and in the South West Indian Ocean fisheries are threatened, with up to 30 percent of the fish stock over-exploited or depleted and 40 percent fully exploited. The poor management of this sector has amounted to an annual loss of about USD 225 million.

However, the ocean is not only fish, it is also sustainable tourism as well as renewable energy, including wave energy, amongst others.

Continue reading on Ips Africa

By Nasseem Ackbarally

A general view during an aerial photoshoot of The Caves Course at Pinnacle Point Beach and Golf Resort in Mossel Bay, South Africa. Picture Credit: Andrew Redington/Getty Images.

Climate change: The School of the Americas is long dead

An article appeared last week in the Guardian newspaper penned by Arctic researcher Victoria Herrman. It is mild in tone, maybe because academics are generally encouraged to present a calm and authoritative demeanour to the public. The subject matter, however, is rather wild.

It appears that, under the Trump administration, US government data that may support climate change arguments is being disappeared.

Evidence is being quietly abducted from its various abodes in the Internet and disposed of who knows where, in the hopes that it won’t be readily available to mobilise people around environmental action.

Ms Herrman’s request is a simple one: That her president stop deleting her citations.

All because President Trump is a global warming denier.

It would be so much fun to believe this is part of his rather irregular “thinking” patterns but something tells me that he is not yet that far gone into the wilderness of geriatric malfunction.

This is strategic: Acknowledging global warming has all kinds of consequences and there is a certain brand of business that doesn’t like the implications for its bottom line. Solution? Just pretend it doesn’t exist. Just like cigarettes “didn’t cause cancer” and obesity is a character defect rather than the fast food-processed food-highfructose cornsyrup industry’s fault, and the war on drugs definitely “isn’t” fuelling an exceedingly lucrative black market.

What a moment in history to be alive. To belabour the point, of course from an African perspective, there is nothing about the Trump presidency that is unfamiliar.

The novelty comes from observing with some disbelief how a nation that has enjoyed an untoward level of adulation for at least a decade has revealed itself to be just as prone to dysfunction as we the “poor” and “developing” countries are.

There is a certain warmth of fellow feeling here. We can sympathise with the struggles visited upon them by a ridiculous head of state while thoroughly enjoying their discomfiture. It’s not called an African sense of humour for no reason.

So this thing that Trump is doing about deleting climate change information isn’t new and it’s not even particular to his regime and frankly it won’t work, because… technology.

But this is a level of bad news that should be causing us proper anxiety even all the way here. If climate is changing due to global warming (and it is) we “developing” nations are smack dab in the pathway of the greatest harm that will result from it.

I can’t help but think of the invasive army worm currently chewing through food supplies in the region as an analogy, Uganda being the latest casualty of this horrendous, and ironically American, invasion. How exhausting.

Uganda happens to border Kagera Region in northern Tanzania. Yes, that one sitting smack in the Great East African Rift Valley where a recent earthquake wrecked lives and the United Republic of Tanzania’s government responded to the crisis in a less than satisfactory manner.

Continue reading on The East African

By Elsie Eyakuze

Climate change: The School of the Americas is long dead

An article appeared last week in the Guardian newspaper penned by Arctic researcher Victoria Herrman. It is mild in tone, maybe because academics are generally encouraged to present a calm and authoritative demeanour to the public. The subject matter, however, is rather wild.

It appears that, under the Trump administration, US government data that may support climate change arguments is being disappeared.

Evidence is being quietly abducted from its various abodes in the Internet and disposed of who knows where, in the hopes that it won’t be readily available to mobilise people around environmental action.

Ms Herrman’s request is a simple one: That her president stop deleting her citations.

All because President Trump is a global warming denier.

It would be so much fun to believe this is part of his rather irregular “thinking” patterns but something tells me that he is not yet that far gone into the wilderness of geriatric malfunction.

This is strategic: Acknowledging global warming has all kinds of consequences and there is a certain brand of business that doesn’t like the implications for its bottom line. Solution? Just pretend it doesn’t exist. Just like cigarettes “didn’t cause cancer” and obesity is a character defect rather than the fast food-processed food-highfructose cornsyrup industry’s fault, and the war on drugs definitely “isn’t” fuelling an exceedingly lucrative black market.

What a moment in history to be alive. To belabour the point, of course from an African perspective, there is nothing about the Trump presidency that is unfamiliar.

The novelty comes from observing with some disbelief how a nation that has enjoyed an untoward level of adulation for at least a decade has revealed itself to be just as prone to dysfunction as we the “poor” and “developing” countries are.

There is a certain warmth of fellow feeling here. We can sympathise with the struggles visited upon them by a ridiculous head of state while thoroughly enjoying their discomfiture. It’s not called an African sense of humour for no reason.

So this thing that Trump is doing about deleting climate change information isn’t new and it’s not even particular to his regime and frankly it won’t work, because… technology.

But this is a level of bad news that should be causing us proper anxiety even all the way here. If climate is changing due to global warming (and it is) we “developing” nations are smack dab in the pathway of the greatest harm that will result from it.

I can’t help but think of the invasive army worm currently chewing through food supplies in the region as an analogy, Uganda being the latest casualty of this horrendous, and ironically American, invasion. How exhausting.

Uganda happens to border Kagera Region in northern Tanzania. Yes, that one sitting smack in the Great East African Rift Valley where a recent earthquake wrecked lives and the United Republic of Tanzania’s government responded to the crisis in a less than satisfactory manner.

Continue reading on The East African

By Elsie Eyakuze