News

Deeper Than The Headlines: Oxfam's Africa, Drone Surveillance + More Drone Surveillance

Check out the latest news on Africa with in-depth African news featuring opinion pieces from global sources.


This week we continue to bring you the latest news on Africa with selections from different media outlets around the globe. Be sure to check back each Thursday for pieces that dig deeper than the headlines on the latest news on Africa!

1. Talking Around the DRC

By: Gado

Most of the selections this week have to do with drone surveillance in the DRC. The cartoon above frames the conversation pretty well. "Gado, full name Godfrey Mwampembwa, is one of Africa's most influential cartoonists. He draws a daily cartoon for Kenyan newspaper The Nation, and his work has appeared in various other publications, such as Le Monde, The Washington Times and The Japan Times."

2. Congo-Kinshasa: Does DRC Need Surveillance Drones?

By: The New Times Team

An article from Rwanda's The New Times spells out the Rwandan government's response to the UN's efforts to institute a drone surveillance program in the neighboring DRC. "Olivier Nduhungirehe, Rwanda’s Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN, told The New Times vial e-mail yesterday that whereas Rwanda welcomes the Secretary-General’s intention to reconfigure MONUSCO [UN mission in Congo] by strengthening its capabilities and enhancing its operational mobility in order to implement its mandate, it is reserved on the use of a technology, whose implications are still being assessed. Nduhungirehe said, “We recognise that the use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) in peacekeeping operations has far-reaching implications on national sovereignty and territorial integrity and thus believe that, as suggested by the UN Special Committee on Peacekeeping (C-34), a clear legal, financial, and technical assessment is needed before any endorsement of such technology is put forth”.

3. Excerpt from the United States Department of State Daily Press Briefing

Continuing with the conversation surrounding intentions to institute drone surveillance in 35 African countries over the next year, All Africa shares an excerpt form the US Department of State Daily Press Briefing where Victoria Nuland, Spokewoman for the Dept. of State answers questions regarding the United States' position on the UN peacekeeping envoy in the DRC and their intention to use surveillance drones. A necessary read if you're looking for contextual information on what the drone program will constitute and there's even a quick mention of Joseph Kony.

4. Oxfam's New Africa campaign reveals a misguided messiah complex

By: Tolu Ogunlesi

Just a few weeks ago, Oxfam launched a new campaign, which attempts to dispel negative stereotypes of Africa that the West has consumed through charity and non-profit campaigns. "The British arm of Oxfam International called images of starving babies and other familiar depictions of Africa over the last quarter-century "manipulative and hopeless," desensitizing potential donors and leading them to the conclusion that conditions in the developing world can never improve." In this piece for the Guardian, Nigerian writer Tolu Ogunlesi poses a plethora of valid questions and hesitation towards the new campaign. Ogunlesi states, "That's, in a nutshell, the story. It left me a tad puzzled. A w-t-f puzzlement. As in: is Oxfam for real? Let's even forget, for a moment, that Oxfam has probably done far more than any other organisation in propagating these images. Let's focus on something else that struck me about the story: the way blame is being placed squarely on the shoulders of the images."

5. Oxfam: African advertising campaign is helping to dispel negative stereotypes

By: Nick Futcher

In response to Tolu Ogunlesi's opinion piece, Nick Futcher (Oxfam's acting Communications Director) penned a piece  for The Guardian as well as defending the context of the campaign, and the intentions of Oxfam to challenge the way people in the UK think about 'Africa'. "The aim of the adverts is not to give a complete and holistic picture of the continent – that would be impossible. We hoped the viewer would question what they thought they knew about Africa and find out more. We are challenging leaders at the G8 to step up the fight against hunger and invest in the progress already achieved."

Check back next Thursday!

>>>Check last week's Headlines here.

Interview

A Candid Conversation With Olamide & Fireboy DML

We talk to the Nigerian stars about the hardest lessons they've learned, best advice they've ever been given and what Nigeria means to them.

Olamide and Fireboy DML have been working together for three years, but the first time they sit down to do an interview together is hours after they arrive in New York City on a promo tour.

It's Fireboy's first time in the Big Apple — and in the US — and the rain that's pouring outside his hotel doesn't hinder his gratitude. "It's such a relief to be here, it's long overdue," he tells OkayAfrica. "I was supposed to be here last year, but Covid stopped that. This is a time to reflect and refresh. It's a reset button for me."

Olamide looks on, smiling assuredly. Since signing Fireboy to his YBNL Nation label in 2018, he's watched the soulful young singer rise to become one of Nigeria's most talked-about artists — from his breakout single, "Jealous," to his debut album Laughter, Tears & Goosebumps, hit collabs with D.Smoke and Cuppy, and his sophomore release, Apollo, last year.

Even while he shares his own latest record, UY Scuti, with the world, Olamide nurtures Fireboy's career with as much care and attention as he does his own, oscillating between his two roles of artist and label exec seamlessly. His 2020 album Carpe Diem is the most streamed album ever by an African rap artist, according to Audiomack, hitting over 140 million streams. When Olamide signed a joint venture with US-based record label and distribution company, Empire, in February last year he did so through his label, bringing Fireboy and any other artist he decides to sign along for the ride, and establishing one of the most noteworthy deals on the continent.

Below, Olamide & Fireboy DML speak to OkayAfrica about their mutual admiration for each other, what makes them get up in the morning and how they switch off.

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