News Brief
Photo by Simon MAINA / AFP) (Photo by SIMON MAINA/AFP via Getty Images

Kenya's Speaker of the National Assembly Justine Muturi (L) looks on as Tanzanian President Samia Suluhu Hassan (R) addresses a joint Parliament session of Members of Parliament and Senators in Nairobi on May 5, 2021.

Tanzanian President Samia Suluhu Hassan Makes Amends With Kenya

President Samia Suluhu Hassan has visited Kenya to mend relations which were severed during the late John Magufuli's mishandling of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Tanzania's first female head of state President Samia Suluhu Hassan has reportedly made amends with Kenya. This, after Kenya had closed its entry point to the neighbouring country during the late President John Magufuli's mishandling of the COVID-19 pandemic. Hassan visited Kenya earlier in the week where she presented her address in Kenya's parliament and followed mask-wearing protocol throughout her entire two-day visit. President Hassan's move marks a political breakthrough for the two countries after Magufuli's persistent COVID-19 denialism.


Read: Tanzanian President Announces New COVID-19 Task Force

According to the BBC, Hassan's Presidential address in Kenya was in Swahili, a native language in both countries. The Tanzanian President eloquently made cultural analogies to drive home a point about the effectiveness of adhering to mask protocol.

"We're here everybody with masks on our faces - and when I see people with masks on faces it reminds me in our village, when we go and do the herding with the goats, we protect them [with a muzzle] from eating the crops on the way… so we cover them the same way we are doing today… we have to do it."

Hassan's first initiative as President was to implement a special COVID-19 task force following the government's lack of initiative under Magufuli. Magufuli's denial and lack of proactivity against COVID-19 led to Kenya closing entry points between the two countries. Hassan continued to reemphasise East Africa's strong regional trade influence, and strength, by alluding to one of the world's greatest spectacle of the wildebeest migrating across the two countries seasonally. Her approach to mending and strengthening relations, between the two countries, came with some comical charm as Hassan played with her last name Suluhu and Kenya's president's name Uhuru Kenyatta. Suluhu meaning solution and Uhuru meaning freedom.

Hassan's address also touched on celebrating Kenya's cultural uniqueness. She commended the Kenyan parliament's milestone decision to have its proceedings in Swahili from November 2020 — despite widespread criticism that Kenya's Swahili is a diluted version of Tanzania's Swahili. The two-day trip was admittedly a success for reconciling Presidential relations.

Magufuli died on March 18, aged 61, following a two-week mysterious sickness. He had been re-elected for his second five-year Presidential term a few months before his death. Hassan, the former vice-president, was inaugurated on March 23 and took over the remainder of Magufuli's second five-year term.

Music
(YouTube)

The 6 Best East African Songs of the Month (September)

Featuring Harmonize, Spice Diana, Maandy and more.

The month of September noteworthy releases from some of the most exciting rising stars of the region including Spice Diana, Rickman Manrick, Big Yasa and more.

Check out more of our Best Songs of the Month lists from Nigeria, Ghana, South Africa and East Africa. You can also follow our weeklySongs You Need to Hear roundup for the best new music.

Keep reading...Show less
Music
(YouTube)

The 5 Best East African Songs of the Month (August)

Featuring Nandy x Oxlade, Karun. DJ Xpect, Harmonize, Marioo x Platform and more.

These are the top tracks out of East Africa in the month of August in no particular.

Check out more of our Best Songs of the Month lists from Nigeria, Ghana, South African and East Africa. You can also follow our weeklySongs You Need to Hear roundup for the best new music.

Keep reading...Show less
Photo by: Yuri Kriventsoff

Moroccan Government Issues First Permits For Legal Cannabis Production

This marks the first time the Arab country is issuing these permits.

The Moroccan government recently gave 10 farmers permission to grow cannabis legally. This marks the first time the country will issue permits following the legalization of cannabis production last year.

According to the Institute of Security Studies, Morocco is part of a growing group of African countries who would like to position itself as a booming international legal market for cannabis. This new legal development will allow farmers in the northern mountain regions of Taounat, Al Houceima, and Chefchaouen to grow cannabis that will meet the legal market's demand. Before now, cannabis had been widely cultivated in Morocco illegally; however, the law passed by the Moroccan parliament last year does not permit the use of cannabis for recreation. The national agency, which regulates cannabis activity in Morocco, issued the permits and said that farmers would be encouraged to increase legal cannabis production to meet the demands of the market.

According to the Morocco World News, the Moroccan government is optimistic that this new development will help to improve the lifestyles of farmers, and increase their livelihoods amid a growing legal global market for the element. The global cannabis demand is growing and is projected to reach over US$ 100 billion in the next five years. If more African countries legalize legal cannabis, the industry could be worth more than $7 billion by 2023.

Because of Morocco's close proximity to Europe, it could potentially become a leading legitimate cannabis exporter. In 2020, Moroccan farmers collectively experienced a drastic income dip that fell from approximately $497 million a year in the early 2000s to less than $321 million dollars in 2020, according to an interior ministry study last year.

Before the legalization was implemented, Moroccan farmers indicated that they wanted the implementation to be sped up. In an earlier statement, Mohamed Abbout, head of the Rif Mountains Association said that the legalization would be a step in the right direction for the country

"Farmers are desperate when it comes to the drug trade,’ said Abbout. ‘That's why they're waiting for the legalization, so we can create a medicinal market."

Music

'Skhanda Republic 3' Is Testament to K.O’s Relentless Staying Power

After 16 years, the legendary South African MC’s pen and musicianship remain sharp-as-ever on his fourth album, SR3.

Never knew, 2022, ngizobe ngisathel’ induku,” veteran South African lyricist and musician K.O raps on “THE CALLING”, from his newly released fourth studio album SR3 (Skhanda Republic 3). While it’s a simple line for an MC with revered penmanship like him, the bar is packed and provides a sneak peek into the rapper’s current state of mind. With more than 16 years in the game, the artist born Ntokozo Mdluli has been through and seen it all.

Really made it back, when these niggas thought it was over. Heart of a soldier, nobody can hold us. Asisenabangani kule game cause a lot of them bogus,” he expresses in the first verse of the song.

Keep reading...Show less

get okayafrica in your inbox

news.

South African Artist Simnikiwe Buhlungu on Creating the Sound of Dreams

The internationally-acclaimed multidisciplinary artist is the youngest participant at this year's Venice Biennale, where she is showing her latest work. But, as she tells OkayAfrica, she wants her art to be viewed beyond the parameters of age.

Meet the Ghanaian Biker Community Led by Women

From riding motorcycles as a hobby to pushing charitable causes, Biker Girls Gh are always in motion.

Idahams Wants to Soundtrack Life's Beauty & Battles

From the Island of Bonny to Lagos and now, the world, Idahams has a lot of stories to tell. We speak to him about his immersive and tender debut album, Truth, Love & Confessions.

popular.