News Brief

The Stories You Need To Know: UK PR Firm Apologizes For Controversial Campaign, Niger Army Accidentally Kills Civilians, And More

Key stories from South Africa, Malawi and Niger.

SOUTH AFRICA–UK-based PR firm Bell Pottinger has apologized for the work they did for Oakbay Investments, a firm owned by the controversial family that is involved in corruption allegations for capturing the state. Read the full story here.


South African Twitter was vicious with their responses (you can read some below):

 

NIGER-The Niger army has killed 14 civilians which were mistook for members of Boko Haram. The civilians were unarmed farmers in a restricted zone around the village of Abadam, next to the Nigerian border. Read the full story here.

MALAWI–Eight people, seven of them children, were killed in a stampede before a football match in Lilongwe, the capital of Malawi. Read the full story here.

Art
Image courtesy of Peintre Obou.

Ivorian Artist Peintre Obou Speaks on Expression Through His Masked Characters

Peintre Obou talks about how he came to be an artist, his fervour for the mask, and his uplifting project, 'Abobo E Zo'.

Gbais Obou Yves Fredy better known as Peintre Obou is an Ivorian artist whose work is centered around the political-military crisis in his home. To date, his career has been an exploration of his passion for the human condition and the traumas he has experienced as a result of human-orchestrated disasters. He goes as far as highlighting life in the slums and the individuals who opened their arms to him in the lowly communes of Abidjan. He distinctively distorts the faces of his subjects with masks and places vibrant colors upon their bodies as he weaves tales of war, trauma, suffering, and oppression.

Last summer, the Ivorian commune of Abobo underwent renovation in a project titled, Abobo E Zo commissioned by the Minister Hamed Bakayoko. Not only were downtrodden areas within the community rehabilitated and sanitized but multiple buildings around the populous commune were painted to the delight of residents. It was street art set on enlightening a disadvantaged community piloted by Obou with help from hundreds of crafty volunteers.

This interview was conducted in French and has been translated and edited for length and clarity.

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