“A little over a decade ago, it was diamonds that played a serious role in the eleven year long civil war which devastated Sierra Leone’s environment as rebels exploited this valuable mineral to fund their campaign. Now even in peacetime, a possible new agent of war is emerging and this time it is buried deep in the bush and it’s known to the locals as “gbenie” a unique type of wood that is secondly only to ebony.”
Interestingly people are dying in Africa because of the forests.
In Uganda Museveni (president) who jointly owns a sugar company planned on cutting down a third of the forest is behind, in my opinion, the loss of a great forest.
At least three people were killed during a demonstration of about 1,000 for the protection of the Mabira Forest. There were also riots against Asians, since the Mehta Group is Indian-owned. SCOUL plantations were set on fire, and e-mails and SMS calling for the boycott of SCOUL’sLugazi sugar circulated.”(Wikipedia)
But the problem is not just Chinese/or other foreign groups and ”investors” .
“ With electricity now not only not regularly available but also expensive, and set to cost more if government makes good of their intention to remove power subsidies, most of Ugandas households use charcoal and firewood to heat water and cook meals, contributing to the rapid deforestation seen across the country.
National water towers, like the Mabira Forest, are now in danger of being progressively eroded, and a report last week right here showed that clearing activities in Mabira apparently enjoy senior protection with armed guards keeping prying eyes and forest wardens away from the scene of the crime”
The important thing here is to see that the corrupt governments of in Africa really do have only their self interests in mind. Further more, they are almost impossible to stop. Basically in Uganda there are armed men surrounding the forest if ever someone tries to report on this issue.In Uganda it’s a fact that your life/ health/ overall safety are at risk if you dare protest about anything.
Here is a quote from a leaked letter from someone acting on behalf of the government calling for media blockage during the walk to work riots.
“ to eliminate the connection and sharing of information that incites the public.”(http://cpj.org/blog/2011/04/ugandan-media-censored-over-walk-to-work-protests.php)
So in summary:
African forests are in danger because of foreign investors working with corrupt governments. Corrupt governments are known for media censorship, and acting harshly against protests.Africa is particularly vulnerable as there will be an increase in disease and the loss of many habitats for animals, in Mabira a loss of a source of sustainable water. loss of eco tourism. Outside of the big forests most land will probably be used for farming which would not necessarily be good and smaller forests could be destroyed to use as firewood.Population increase has lead to farming that my grandmother said was never allowed in her times because of how dangerous it was. For example the landslide that killed hundreds in Bududa. It is my opinion that growing cultivation and the construction of houses along slopes creates weak soil that is more susceptible to land slides. This is a report about farmers knowledge on landslides.They aksed various tribes about living on the slopes.
“Terraces are most popular in Bukigai,Bududa and Bushika. The main reasons why they are unpopular in Bulucheke and Bubita are fear of landslides”
Really environmental issues are put to the side in Africa because we have bigger things to worry about. However the degradation of the environment will have many bad consequences for Africans, and everybody in the world.In addition issues like these are to a large extent solvable by the government. Yet we see what contributions the government makes to these problems.Like lack of healthcare services, armed disputes and general failing public services all these problems are interconnected and stem from the same place these environmental issues. The best we can do now is educate ourselves and other every time we get the chance and hope for the best.
Derreck Kayongo, a Ugandan Native, receiving his CNN Hero award.
His Atlanta-based Global Soap Project collect used hotel soap from across the United States. Instead of ending up in landfills, the soaps are cleaned and reprocessed for shipment to impoverished nations such as Haiti, Uganda, Kenya and Swaziland.
“I was shocked just to know how much (soap) at the end of the day was thrown away,” Kayongo said. Each year, hundreds of millions of soap bars are discarded in North America alone. “Are we really throwing away that much soap at the expense of other people who don’t have anything? It just doesn’t sound right.”Kayongo, a Uganda native, thought of the idea in the early 1990s, when he first arrived to the U.S. and stayed at a hotel in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
He noticed that his bathroom was replenished with new soap bars every day, even though they were only slightly used. “I tried to return the new soap to the concierge since I thought they were charging me for it,” Kayongo said. “When I was told it was just hotel policy to provide new soap every day, I couldn’t believe it.” Kayongo called his father — a former soap maker in Uganda — and shared the experience.
“My dad said people in America can afford to throw it away. But I just started to think, ‘What if we took some of this soap and recycled it, made brand new soap from it and then sent it home to people who couldn’t afford soap?’ ” For Kayongo, collecting soap is “a first line of defense” mission to combat child-mortality around the world. Each year, more than 2 million children die from diarrheal illness — the approximate population of San Antonio, Texas. According to the World Health Organization, these deaths occur almost exclusively among toddlers living in low-income countries. “The issue is not the availability of soap. The issue is cost,” Kayongo said. “Make $1 a day, and soap costs 25 cents. I’m not a good mathematician, but I’m telling you I’m not going to spend that 25 cents on a bar of soap. I’m going to buy sugar. I’m going to buy medicine. I’m going to do all the things I think are keeping me alive. http://edition.cnn.com/2011/US/06/16/cnnheroes.kayongo.hotel.soap/index.html read more
I cried my way through this movie/documentary. “We are Acholi.”
// when the girl falls on the grave of her father and bursts out in tears “I wann lie with daddy.” I lost it completely. Wonders if anyone has seen it.
I was touched greatly by this too. I have been avoiding facing the facts about northern Uganda as it’s my country and the feeling of guilt is overwhelming.I was also very very sad when Dominic who kept talking about his brother got smartly dressed and walked to the army barracks to inquire from a recently captured rebel if his brother was still alive. The rebel just told him that no he is dead we had orders to kill him. The little boy asks him why do rebels kidnap young children when they know it’s bad.I cried through the whole film. Must watch. If your in Ugandan, or your a Ugandan, or an African. I think this is one of the best films ever!
Sometimes, I miss America.
(Which, interestingly enough, is totally how a cross-dressing Ugandan would admit to his secret delight.)
I just got this.
Sometimes I miss uganda…
which is how an ill humored, tricky Ugandan would convince people to buy here drinks at the bar. ;)
“The Next Big Thing” is Tshila Namboozo
The BBC World Service had a talent search called “The Next Big Thing” in which they named Tshila as one of the 20 best unsigned artists in the world. Her music was complimented by one of the judges as being “a perfect soundtrack to nice summer day” and “delightful”. A judge reviewed her song “Namboozo” and said “the mix of traditional African sounds with poetry and hip-hop works perfectly for Tshila” and “overall a conscious, upbeat vibe and the most original song in this competition”.
Tshila was born in Kampala, Uganda. She truly developed her musical talent after she finished her university education in the United States. She received a bachelor’s degree in software engineering in 2005. As a college student in America, she frequently spoke for African causes. Through the subtle and indirect influence of music, she wants to be a force of change in Africa.
Four months after graduating university in 2005, she returned to Uganda with the hope of developing her music and fusing it with rich traditions to create a sound that transcends cultural boundaries with enchanting rhythms and conscious lyrics. Her mother used to sing folk songs for her when she was young, which caused her to be keenly interested in her mother’s ethnic culture and music from the Gisu people of eastern Uganda. She picked up a guitar and began to sing and perform in different venues in Kampala, the capital of Uganda.
I have met her before. We had a big Buddhist meeting while I still lived in Uganda at a one of our members lake side getaways.So one of our members is friends with her and it was meeting for the members families and friends. So in the night she sang for us by the fire on the beach. :) I recognize so many people that pop up on my dash board.
This video is really great for educating people about the situation of child soldiers.The situation has improved greatly in Northern Uganda. This summer I was with The Trans-cultural Psycho-social Organization (TPO)They try their best to help those recovering from the war. Many ex-soldiers are left with severe PTSD. In addition it’s hard for the government(the goverment almost always sends not enough drugs or too many of one kind and not another or one that are just about to expire) and the remaining NGO’S to provide aid regarding mental health to those recovering especially in rural areas. Most of the people have left life on the refugee camps which they perceived as safe to back to their villages. Some find it hard to go back as they live deep in the village and where most probably abducted or attacked from where they have to return. People are not only scared physically and mentally.You can imagine from the images displayed in the video.
I know about TPO’s work first hand.
CARE Has a variety of projects as well
Also the Italian corporation but I have yet to find a link for them.
Feel free to do more research on the subject and remember that you are more able than many others to make this change. So don’t just sit there feeling sad.
LRA Crisis Tracker Logo
I don’t edit or make pictures very often, this is the queer pride flag (obviously) with the bird symbol from Uganda’s flag in the middle. I feel like queers have it bad in America, but in Uganda it’s even worse, so I put a quote by Ellen DeGeneres stating that “Sometimes you can’t see yourself clearly until you see yourself through the eyes of others.” Queers in Uganda probably think I’m the luckiest person in the world because of how I live in America as a queer. The bird, I’ve read, is a symbol for moving foreword.
Rush Limbaugh claims that the Lord’s Resistance Army are a group of Christians fighting islam in Sudan.He is the most stupid man I have ever heard speak in MY LIFE! EVER!!!
E.V.E.R I don’t understand how any human being with any understand of ANYTHING can listen to him, why does this man’s voice deserve to heard and yet so many lend a deaf ear to those who are suffering?
"Who ever suggested that rats become chiefs?"
— Ugandan proverb (via imnotbitching)
Happy Independence Day! 49 years of Uganda, oye!