News Brief

This Kenyan MP Was Kicked Out of Parliament for Bringing Her Baby

According to the house rules, "strangers" including children, are not allowed to enter the chamber.

Kenyan Member of Parliament, Zulekha Hassan, was kicked out of parliament in Nairobi today, after she entered the chamber while carrying her baby, according to the BBC. Hassan, who reports that she had no other viable alternative than to bring her child along to the parliamentary proceedings, was ordered to leave by the deputy speaker amidst commotion from other MPs, during a live broadcast on KBC.


After the incident, Hassan told reporters that, "I have tried really hard not to come with the baby, but today I had an emergency; what was I supposed to do? If parliament had a nursery or a creche I would be able to put my baby there." She went on to add that, "Now as we ask for more women to come into parliament, you need to provide a family friendly atmosphere."

This has sparked debate on social media and understandably so. Many have spoken out and condemned the gross unfairness with which Hassan was treated, citing instances where MPs in other countries have even engaged in parliamentary debates whilst breastfeeding.




In what appears to be an effort to escape accountability for what transpired today, the house has referred to the incident as an "unprecedented move" on Hassan's part and went on to say that the house rules clearly stipulate that "strangers", children included, are not permitted to enter the chamber.

Last year, the Prime Minister of New Zealand, Jacinda Ardern, made "history" when she brought her baby to the UN General Assembly. The fact that even constituted a historical moment in what is very much the 21st century, speaks volumes about the strides society still needs to make when it comes to how it treats women, especially those in positions of power, and makes navigating their respective lives much more difficult than those of their male counterparts.


(YouTube)

The 10 Best Ghanaian Songs of the Month (July)

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Follow our GHANA WAVE playlist on Spotify here and Apple Music here.

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(YouTube)

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July featured an array of incredible releases from East Africa's pop royalty as well as promising newbies.

Follow our East African Grooves playlist on Spotify and Apple Music.

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A Candid Conversation With Olamide & Fireboy DML

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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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