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Nigerians are Skeptical About Emmanuel Macron's Recent Visit

The French president's recent trip to the country has been met with mixed reactions.

France's President Macron recently wrapped a highly-publicized visit to Nigeria, where he met with President Buhari to discuss Franco-African relations, and a range of economic and diplomatic matters. During his two day trip, the leader also held meetings with young African tech entrepreneurs.

The president gave a speech upon his arrival, describing what it was like coming back to Nigeria, where he lived briefly, 17 years ago.

He was also surrounded by notable African figures such as Wole Soyinka and Senegal's Youssou N'Dour at the inauguration of the Alliance Francaise in Lagos on Wednesday.


His trip wasn't all strict politics though, the French president made an attempt to appeal to Nigerians in more informal ways as well. His trip was marked by an appearance at the famous Kuti family-owned New Afrika Shrine, where he was welcomed by Femi Kuti. Macron referred to the Shrine as "an iconic cultural hub."

While there, he was seen enjoyed performances from some of the country's biggest musical talents and was presented with a portrait from 11-year-old artist Kareem Olamilekan. He became the first foreign leader to visit the iconic venue.

A video of Macron saying some phrases in Pidgin has also surfaced online.

There have been mixed reactions to Macron's visit from Nigerians online, but it seems that some remain skeptical. Many believe that the reason for Macron's visit was to curb Nigerian migration into Europe, others are poking fun at the Nigerian government's reported attempt to keep up appearances by paving roads upon Macron's visit.

Read some reactions below:










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Photo by Daniel Beloumou Olomo / AFP

AFCON 2021: Ranking the Best Jerseys at the Tournament

Despite skepticism on the fate of Africa’s biggest football competition, the African Cup of Nations returned with great fanfare on Sunday, January 9. All eyes are on host country Cameroon, who started their campaign to win the tournament for the sixth time by beating Burkina Faso.

Elsewhere, Nigeria’s Super Eagles triumphed over Egypt with a solitary goal from Kelechi Iheanacho. A total of 24 countries are competing in Cameroon, incentivized by a prize money that’s been bumped up $500,000 since the last edition in 2019.

But AFCON isn’t just about cash payouts, dribbles and goals. Once again, it’s time to look at which African country is parading the best kits. Football and fashion are two worlds that have always collided. Over the years kits have been updated or revised to look modern. What makes a good kit? This is a complex question, and interwoven in the answer are simplicity, clever design, style, or just elements of nostalgia. As superficial as this exercise is, its implication is sweetly in the bragging rights.

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Music
Photo: Janto Djassi.

The Acoustic Cabo Verdean Sounds of The Ano Nobo Quartet

The Strings of São Domingos offers a a global story with Cabo Verde at its center—a creole melting pot in the middle of the Atlantic attracting the best from four continents.

Vik Sohonie, founder of Ostinato Records, gives us some background on his upcoming release 'The Strings of São Domingos' by The Ano Nobo Quartet.

In 1989, as the Berlin Wall collapsed in front of the world’s eyes, a burly soldier from Cabo Verde stood on the East German side. Nicknamed “El Bruto” or “The Brute” because of his “brutally” good prowess on the guitar, Pascoal watched the end of an era in full uniform, the ever dutiful soldier. As a member of the FARP, the armed wing of Cabo Verde’s independence struggle, which was backed by the Soviet Union, Pascoal was dispatched the world over—from Cuba to Crimea to East Berlin.

Being stationed in Cuba gave him access to a world of guitar music. His stints in the Caribbean and the Crimean Peninsula were alongside soldiers from elsewhere in Lusophone Africa and the former colonized world. Not required on the battlefield, these military postings became cultural gatherings and, quite simply, jam sessions, where sounds and techniques were exchanged.

Today, along with fellow guitar maestros, Fany, Nono, and Afrikanu, Pascoal leads The Ano Nobo Quartet, named after Cabo Verde’s most legendary composer, Ano Nobo, Pascoal’s mentor and father to the rest of the group. Until today, Ano Nobo’s face graces murals across the archipelago.

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Photo: Elizabeth Okwach

The Art Clubs Helping to Uplift Nairobi's Informal Settlements

Over the past few years, a number of art centers have sprung up in Mukuru, Nairobi, to help budding artists hone their skills and earn a living from their creations too.

Living in an informal settlement is reality for more than 1.5 million people in Nairobi, according to a recent census, and that figure is set to rise, owing to the brunt of the COVID-19 pandemic that continues to ravage Kenya. Despite the poverty, pollution and insecurity, creativity continues to thrive, as people defy struggles and bust stereotypes of being poor and powerless. And it’s in the urban slums nestled deep in the heart of Nairobi’s industrial area where Kenya’s renowned artists and art centers, including Mukuru Art Club, Wajukuu Art Center and Art Boyz, among others, can be found.

Adam Masava, a prolific and self-taught artist, born and raised in the heart of Mukuru Fuata Nyayo, has built a career around improving the living conditions of his fellow slum-dwellers with a state-of-the-art center, popularly known as Mukuru Art Club. It was established in 2008 as a way of giving back to the community, a place where kids as young as eight are enrolled to learn art, and older ones are mentored.

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It's Official: British Vogue Has Made 2022 The Year of the African Model

The major fashion magazine's February 2022 issue features 9 gloriously Black and African models - and we can't get enough.