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A Kenyan commuter is tested for the coronavirus while waiting in the queue.

Kenyan Embassy Moves to Evacuate Citizens from China Amid Escalating Xenophobia

However, many Kenyans have criticised the Kenyan embassy for requiring that citizens be able to foot their own bill during the evacuation.

The Kenyan Embassy in Beijing, China, has recently announced that it will be evacuating Kenyan citizens from the Asian country. The move comes in the wake of escalating racism and xenophobia towards Africans from Chinese citizens and establishments who fear a second wave of coronavirus.


There has been public outcry among Kenyan citizens who want the government to intervene on the maltreatment of Africans living in China. Reports of Africans being forced out of their homes in Guangzhou, China, have caused fear amongst its African community and backlash across social media.

Foreign Affairs Principal Secretary, Macharia Kamau, initially responded to the public outcry saying, "This situation has been extremely worrisome to all of us. The reality is that this has been a very unfortunate outcome." Kamua added that, "Africans, Kenyans included, have been discriminated against in the process of [Guangdong provincial] government's response to mop up the situation that they are facing there, post-crisis."

Shortly after Kamau's statement, the embassy announced that it was making plans to evacuate Kenyan citizens from China. However, the embassy has since been criticised for requiring that citizens be able to not only foot their own bill but prove that they are coronavirus-free—the latter further requiring certification from Chinese medical authorities.

Understandably, Kenyans in China have criticised the embassy for making the conditions under which they are prepared to evacuate citizens difficult to meet. One Kenyan reportedly spoke to Sunday Standard saying, "They are asking for things that they know we can't get easily," going on to add that, "They know people can't get those health certificates right now."

Questions around the status of visas has been an additional anxiety.

Those on social media have also called on the embassy and broader government to do more to help those abroad.






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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