Popular
Photo by Ryad Kramdi/AFP via Getty Images

Anti-Government Protests Intensify Among Algerian Students

Thousands of Algerian students are protesting against a presidential election scheduled for December 12th.

Thousands of students in Algeria have again taken to the streets of the capital city Algiers to protest the presidential election set to take place tomorrow.

Aljazeera reports that weeks of protests have seen students, now joined by workers, demanding political reforms and a removal of the political elite from the Algerian government.


Earlier this year in February, anti-government protests broke out after then President Abdelaziz Bouteflika announced that he was extending his two-decade rule by running for a fifth term. However, after consecutive weeks of massive rallies and marches, Bouteflika officially stepped down as president. The 82-year-old was quoted as saying in a statement at the time, "There will be no fifth term," He added that, "There was never any question of it for me. Given my state of health and age, my last duty towards the Algerian people was always contributing to the foundation of a new Republic."

After Bouteflika's resignation, General Ahmed Gaid Salah emerged as the key figure within Algeria's political landscape. He proposed that a presidential election would be the "surest way to break the country's political deadlock".

However, many Algerian feel that the five presidential candidates, all of who are senior Bouteflika-era officials, will only serve to "regenerate the system" and result in "cosmetic changes" in the governance of the country. Additionally, they also want the interim President Abdelkader Bensalah and Prime Minister Noureddine Bedoui to be removed from government as well.

"Algerians want radical change. They are fed up," says 25-year-old protesting student Ahmed Kamili to Reuters.

Music

6 Samples From 'Éthiopiques' in Hip-Hop

A brief history of Ethio-jazz cultural exchange featuring songs by Nas & Damian Marley, K'naan, Madlib and more.

This article was originally published on OkayAfrica in March, 2017. We're republishing it here for our Crossroads series.

It's 2000 something. I'm holed up in my bedroom searching for samples to chop up on Fruity Loops. While deep into the free-market jungle of Amazon's suggested music section, I stumble across a compilation of Ethiopian music with faded pictures of nine guys jamming in white suit jackets. I press play on the 30 second sample.

My mind races with the opportunities these breakbeats offered a budding beat maker. Catchy organs, swinging horns, funky guitar riffs, soulful melodies and grainy and pained vocalists swoon over love lost and gained. Sung in my mother tongue—Amharic—this was a far cry from the corny synthesizer music of the 1990s that my parents played on Saturday mornings. I could actually sample this shit.

The next day, I burn a CD and pop it into my dad's car. His eyes light up when the first notes ooze out of the speakers. “Where did you get this?" He asks puzzlingly. “The internet," I respond smiling.

In the 1970s my dad was one of thousands of high school students in Addis Ababa protesting the monarchy. The protests eventually created instability which lead to a coup d'état. The monarchy was overthrown and a Marxist styled military junta composed of low ranking officers called the Derg came to power. The new regime subsequently banned music they deemed to be counter revolutionary. When the Derg came into power, Amha Eshete, a pioneering record producer and founder of Ahma Records, fled to the US and the master recordings of his label's tracks somehow ended up in a warehouse in Greece.

Keep reading... Show less

get okayafrica in your inbox

popular.

How Nigerian Streetwear Brand, Daltimore, is Rising To Celebrity Status

We spoke with founder and creative director David Omigie about expression through clothing and that #BBNaija pic.