Culture

Costa Rica Just Elected Its First Black Female Vice President

Epsy Campbell Barr is the first black, female vice president in Latin American history.

Epsy Campbell Barr has just made history.

The Costa Rican economist, politician and author is the first black person and the first woman ever to become vice president in her country, and the first black woman to do so in Latin American history.

Campbell Barr, who is one of the founders of the ruling party Citizen Action Party (PAC) will be second in command to president-elect Carlos Alvarado Quesada won the election in a landslide victory on Monday. She previously ran for the position back in 2006, and she served in the legislature from 2002-2006, reports TeleSur.

"It would not be the first only in Costa Rica, but in Latin America," Campbell Barr proclaimed to CRHoy on Sunday. "It will be a responsibility not only to represent people of African descent but to represent all women and men in the country, a country that gives us all the same opportunities," she added.


Born in San Jose, Campbell Barr is a third generation Costa Rican of Jamaican descent, she is named in honor of her paternal grandmother who emigrated to Costa Rica from Jamaica.

Campbell Barr follows in the footsteps of Costa Rica's former high-standing political officials including Thelma Curling, the first Afro-Costa Rican legislator, Victoria Garron the first vice-president and Laura Chinchilla the country's first female president.

The vice president-elect has made it a point to highlight the role of women in fostering growth Costa Rica. Ahead of her win, Campbell Barr gave an address, urging her fellow citizens to support equality and inclusion. "I want to invite you to vote on April 1 to build an inclusive, transparent Costa Rica, a Costa Rica for all people, it is for us, it is for Costa Rica."

Listen to Gigi Lamayne and King Monada’s New Gqom Banger ‘Fufa’

Listen to Gigi Lamayne and King Monada's collaborative single 'Fufa.'

Gigi Lamayne's raps and melodies find a new home over a high-tempo gqom beat on her latest single "Fufa." The song features house sensation King Monada, who usually owns the summer in South Africa with his infectious hits. Last year, his hit "Malwedhe" had the whole continent doing the hilarious idibala dance.

Keep reading... Show less
Photo courtesy of Doble Seis Entertainment

Burna Boy, Teni, AKA, Sho Madjozi, Mr Eazi & More Earn 2019 BET Award Nominations

This year's "Best International Act" categories are stacked with some of the biggest names in African pop.

The nominees for this year's BET Awards have been announced, and one again, some of the biggest names in African pop have been named in the " International Act" categories.

This year, Nigerian acts Burna Boy, Mr Eazi have been nominated in the "Best International Act" category. They've each had standout years, with both artists performing at the Coachella Music Festival this year.

They're nominated alongside South African star rapper AKA, who won a Kids' Choice Award earlier this year for "Favorite South African Star," and the French-Malian pop singer and one of OkayAfrica's 100 Women Aya Nakamura. French-Cameroonian and Togolese rapper Dosseh and UK rappers Dave, and Giggs round out the heavily-stacked category.

Keep reading... Show less
Photo still courtesy of Chika Okoli.

This New Documentary Sheds Light On the History of a Beloved Nigerian Staple—Agege Bread

'Fresh Agege Bread' by Chika Okoli's FABA gives us a much-needed insight into the popularity of Nigeria's coveted Agege Bread.

This new documentary following Nigeria's own Agege Bread contributes to the need of preserving and documenting food culture on the continent.

In Fresh Agege Bread, directed and produced by filmmaker Chika Okoli of FABA (For Africans By Africans), we follow food researcher Ozoz Sokoh as she traces the history and popularity of Agege Bread featuring its pioneering bakers, community figureheads and locals. The documentary touches on the rise of the booming product as well as addresses some of the controversies around the health and safety measures applied in the production of this staple.

For Okoli, the inability to find such insights about this significant food in Nigerian culture is what inspired her to develop this documentary.

"Agege Bread is so popular in Lagos but shockingly, there is very little information about it online and the same can be said about other cultural elements that are significant to our way of life," she shares with us.

Keep reading... Show less

get okayafrica in your inbox

news.