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African Culture and International Understanding

Vol 2. No. 1

Volume 2 No. 1 January-March, 2013

African Culture and International Understanding is a quarterly publication of the Institute for African Culture and International Understanding, a UNESCO Category 2 Institute at the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library, Abeokuta, Nigeria. The journal aims to provide insightful commentaries and position statements on all matters relating to the promotion of diverse African cultures and how these impact on international understanding.

Regional themes
2 Surmounting the Challenge of Job and Wealth Creation in Africa Olusegun Obasanjo 5 Promoting Cultural Expressions In Africa through Education Juma Shabani 5 International Understanding, Cooperative Networks and the African University: Perils and Promises Alain Cyr Pangop Kameni

Focus on East Africa


11 Promoting and Protecting the Diversity of Cultural Expressions in Africa: The Nigerian Example Edem Duke

Focus on the Youth


13 Deepening Africas Democracy and Unity through Peaceful Elections: Role of Students and the Youth Fred Awaah

Country Experiences in Promoting and Protecting the Diversity of Cultural Expressions


17 Promoting and Protecting the Chitonga Dance in Mozambique Lupwishi Mbuyamba, Ofelia Silva, Alberto Folowara and Killian Dzinduwa 18 Mapping, promoting and Protecting the Changana Language in Mozambique Lupwishi Mbuyamba and Ofelia Silva 19 Promoting and Protecting Isukuti Dance in Kenya Sylverse L. Anami 23 Keeping the Pien Nyadiel Dress Evergreen in Kenya Sylverse L. Anami 25 The Lisabi Forest: Ecosystem Protected and Promoted by African Cultural Practices Ayo Tella 26 Thumbs up for Indigenous Bone-setting in Nigeria Ayo Tella 29 About the Institute

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African Culture and International Understanding

Surmounting the Challenge of Job and Wealth Creation in Africa


Olusegun Obasanjo His Excellency, Olusegun Obasanjo was President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (1999-2007) and Military Head of State (1976-1979). He was Co-Chairman of the Commonwealth Eminent Persons Group on South Africa; Chairperson-in-Office, Commonwealth of Nations, 2003-2005; Chairperson, African Union, 2004-2006; and joint promoter of the New Partnership for Africas Development. Email: obasanjonig@yahoo.com

It seems that the richer our countries become in GDP terms, the more our people get enmeshed in poverty. It is clear that in addition to GDP as a factor of measure of growth, we need another factor of measurement of the well-being and improved living standard of our people.
The need to assess the challenges and highlight the opportunities for sustainable wealth and job creation in Africa cannot be over-emphasized. This is because it remains by far the most worrisome challenge of most African countries at the moment. Everywhere we turn in Africa, the story is the same. Unemployed young people are in huge numbers. The lack of opportunities for them to unleash their creative energies positively has turned them into desperate young men and women, unfortunately becoming ready-made tools for unwholesome activities. The memory of the Arab spring is still fresh in our minds and it tells an apt story of what our continued foot-dragging on lifting the critical mass of people above poverty levels can unleash suddenly and destructively. That Africa generally is experiencing positive growth within its economic frontiers today is no more news. That we survived the global financial crisis with very little effect is also not in doubt. What is, however, worrisome is the fact that substantial gains achieved on the economic front and the high economic growth rates in GDP terms have not been matched by corresponding improvement in the living standards of our people. It seems that the richer our countries become in GDP terms, the more our people get enmeshed in poverty. It is clear that in addition to GDP as a factor of measure of growth, we need another factor of measurement of the well-being and improved living standard of our people. This was noted in the recently launched 2012 Annual Report of the Africa Progress Panel of which I am a member. The report stated that countries across Africa are becoming richer but whole sections of society are being left behind. After a decade of buoyant growth, almost half of Africans still live on less than $1.25 a day. Wealth disparities are increasingly visible. The current pattern of trickle-down growth is leaving too many people in poverty, too many children hungry and too many people especially young people without jobs. Governments are failing to convert the rising tide of wealth into opportunities for their most marginalised citizens. Unequal access to

Preamble

was privileged, as the Patron of the Africa Governance, Leadership and Management Convention jointly organised by Kenya Institute of Management (KIM) and Africa Leadership Forum (ALF) and strongly supported by the UNDP, to preside and deliver an Opening Remark recently in Mombasa, Kenya. It is a delight to share the views I expressed at that Convention and the conclusion of the Convention with the readers of African Culture and International Understanding. The views are captured in the rest of this paper.

Poverty and Joblessness in the Face of Economic Growth


We have gathered this year to follow up our previous engagements in the last three years on the need to match growth with development and improved standard of living in Africa. Last year, at this same venue, myself and other leaders of the public and private sector in Africa spent an interesting and quite engaging two days on the issues of leadership development in Africa. One of the major outcomes of that engagement was the reiteration of the fact that in spite of the good news in terms of economic growth, the challenges confronting Africa remain daunting. This is because the acclaimed growth has been accompanied by increased poverty and more joblessness. For us to address this concern more appropriately there is a need for a resurgence of dialogue on African Renaissance in content and context, anchored on the principle of publicprivate partnership and driven by the spirit of enterprise and entrepreneurship. It is, therefore, in this light, that the Secretariat of this Convention has brought us together to take a more critical look at our economic growth indices and its impact on the life of African citizens.

African Culture and International Understanding


health, education, adequate food and nutrition, water and sanitation is reinforcing wider inequalities. Smallholder agriculture has not been part of the growth surge, leaving rural populations trapped in poverty and vulnerability. Although the report pointed out that Africa has seven of the worlds fastest-growing economies, with 70 per cent of Africas population living in countries that have averaged economic growth rates in excess of four per cent over the past decade, it was quick to observe that many countries are not on track to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) by 2015, flagging slow progress in areas such as child nutrition, child survival, maternal health, and education.

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Needed: Equitable Growth


The need for equitable growth is all the more critical, because of Africas profound demographic shift, which will see the continents population double in three decades, and continue to rise into the second half of the 21st century. The report highlighted that, today, there are 70 million more Africans aged under 14 than there were a decade ago. Over the next decade, that number will rise by another 76 million. The demography bulge, as it exists, is a time bomb if adequate and right investments are not made in education, skill acquisition and job creation for the youth. Young peoples vibrant and energetic abilities must be capacitated, maximised and channelled into positive and productive activities. Our inability to provide for this demography is like waiting for a disaster to happen. This portends great danger for the socio-political cohesion with attendant human security risk for African countries. In fact, it is capable of reversing the successes recorded in the areas of entrenching democracy in Africa. But Africas instability with insecurity has implications for the rest of the world as well. We need to take a closer look at the synergies between our micro- and macro-economic policies so as to translate the robust economic growth into strong, sustained, and shared growth that will lead to substantial improvement in the living conditions and standard of our African brothers and sisters. There is a need to mobilise and attract private investments within Africa and beyond on a sustainable basis and this cannot be achieved by public sector efforts alone. Engaging the responsible private sector in development solutions and investment in Africa can have a fundamental, long term impact on wealth creation and social development and also on increasing national competitiveness. The achievements we have made in terms of economic growth have been largely due to the increasing partnership with the private sector to achieve

sustained efficiency in management and to minimize fiscal financing requirements for various developmental projects which the States cannot afford. It is pertinent to mention here that the growth of recent times in Africa relied, in no small measure, on commodity requirements of the thriving economies of emerging nations. There is a need to employ various strategies in addressing Africas challenge of wealth generation and job creation. We should introspect and find out what exactly we are doing wrong and what we are doing right and how best we can make progress that will lead to quantum jump to the next higher level. However, I believe the starting point is for us to cast a positive spin on the challenges. Optimistically, let us see the glass as half full as we focus on the issue of wealth generation and employment creation. We have had more universities in Africa. For instance, in my own country, Nigeria, we have moved from one university at independence in 1960 to 124 Universities today. But the relevance of the fields of study, the curricula, and the effectiveness of pedagogy for the development needs of African countries as well as the general quality of programmes and graduates, remains a big challenge. The issue of unemployable educated as brought out clearly by Dr. Kaberuka is a very serious one which must not be ignored.

Taking advantage of education, agriculture and science and technology


For Africa to realise its full potentials and take advantage of its human and natural resource base for its development, we must continue to invest massively in education at all levels but particularly in tertiary education to produce men and women who will lead and direct our development programme and progress. They must form the thinktank and the do-tank for our development. Our hope and aspiration as a continent for our development must be in tandem with the content, quality, value and adequacy of our education. In the same vein, our education must also be designed to drive entrepreneurial development and instil entrepreneurial spirit, desire and aspiration. Our educational system should produce job creators and not just job seekers. A situation where graduates cannot begin to see our challenges as opportunities that should be grabbed and utilised for wealth generation and job creation leaves much to be desired. Ours is a continent of opportunities with unequalled growth potentials for businesses in various sectors of the economy. Agriculture, manufacturing, mining, tourism, hospitality and entertainment, education, health, energy, ICT and creative arts, all hold limitless investment

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important for engaging the critical mass of unemployed African youth in productive enterprises. Let me dwell a little bit on agriculture, my special interest and passion. To ensure food security and sufficiency while also encouraging increased food exports in Africa, agriculture must be made attractive for our young people. We must encourage commercial- and technologydriven farming by providing the enabling environment and support required to drive the development of our agricultural sector. Necessary inputs in land preparation, improved seeds, chemicals, fertilisers and finance must be adequately and timely provided with infrastructure for transportation, storage, processing and marketing. Agriculture and agribusiness must be given support unstintingly. It holds the key for great progress in our wealth-generation and job-creation efforts. That is mainly where the hope lies for success in Africa

returns for entrepreneurs. With increasing investments in infrastructure and the improvement in business regulations and conducive environment for business across African countries, our focus should be geared towards ensuring that our young people are primary recipients and beneficiaries of the dividends of the opportunities that our continent offers. One other related area is in the encouragement of science and technology development. More African young people should be encouraged to take up professions that can provide the scientific discoveries and technological innovations required to drive massive exploration of our potentials in agriculture, mining and manufacturing. Those in the informal sector must, alongside their counterparts in the formal sector, be equipped with the education, the skills, technical and managerial know-how required to service the expanding and ever-busy construction industry in Africa. Here, I am talking of roadside furniture makers and household utensils makers, welders, vehicle mechanics and fabricators that are dotted all over our cities in Africa.

Ours is a continent of opportunities with unequalled growth potentials for businesses in various sectors of the economy. Agriculture, manufacturing, mining, tourism, hospitality and entertainment, education, health, energy, ICT and creative arts, all hold limitless investment returns for entrepreneurs.
We must also take advantage of the various information technology incubation hubs springing up across African cities. These incubation hubs are meant to serve as nurseries for technology-based entrepreneurs or technoprenuers as they are sometimes referred to, who are in their early stages of their business idea development. The technology business incubator and similar initiatives are the latest in the evolutionary line to provide advisory training and information services, management and marketing support, linkages to research faculty and facilities, access to capital, thereby greatly enhancing the chances of success of the early stage technopreneur. Let me emphasise that entrepreneurship must go with availability of funds to turn ideas into reality. In essence, holistic approaches would have to be taken to harness the power of science and technology across Africa in ways that will boost the development of various sectors of the economy,

Once again, I will reiterate the critical nature of infrastructure in wealth generation and job creation. This is the way the BRIC countries have rescued a significant number of their population from the throes of poverty. If they can do it, we can also do it and indeed we must do it. We have no alternative.
Our population, share of the worlds arable lands and the favourable climatic conditions, is a perfect combination for success in the agricultural sector and agribusiness. These natural gifts must be exploited with the use of cutting-edge technologies, research and development breakthroughs in terms of improved agricultural inputs and most importantly the creative energies and abilities of our youths. With about 60% of Africas population in the rural areas, who are the ones most affected by poverty and are the ones most engaged in smallholder agriculture, it is only logical that reducing poverty in Africa must focus substantially on this group of the population. Agro-allied processing should be encouraged to stem the tide of exporting raw materials in exchange for import of finished goods. We should be able to add value to our raw materials locally for our consumption and for export. We must pursue the value chain, that is agribusiness. Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and agribusiness are the sure ways of wealth generation and employment creation for

African Culture and International Understanding


most of our people in Africa. Once again, I will reiterate the critical nature of infrastructure in wealth generation and job creation. This is the way the BRIC countries have rescued a significant number of their population from the throes of poverty. If they can do it, we can also do it and indeed we must do it. We have no alternative.

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Role of Government
In addressing these challenges, the buck stops at the table of African governments. The responsibility for improving the living conditions of our people rests largely on the governments. The mix of growth, human development and accountable governance holds immense potential. Governments initiate and execute policies that can make the difference between where we are and where we should be. That Africa is poor is the choice of governments and not the fault of the people or the act of God. The need to further deepen democracy in Africa is also evident. With most of our countries now under democratic rule, we have made more progress economically than we did thirty years ago. We need to strengthen the political liberalisation processes and continue to ensure that the various principles of good governance like popular participation, fight against corruption, strategic vision and direction, responsiveness, transparency and accountability, equity and rule of law are entrenched and sustained with easy and conducive atmosphere and terms and conditions for business to thrive. As women form about 50% of our population, to leave them out in education and development planning is to under-develop the nations and the continent. The issue of leadership cannot be overemphasised. It is critical. Now is the time to improve leadership in Africa generally but particularly Africas political leadership quality. It is the crux of the whole matter. Here, let me digress a little and turn the searchlight on our region of West Africa pass mark in governance can only be claimed by less than 50% of members of ECOWAS.

sector. It is the new challenge for Africa. Nevertheless, like other challenges of the past, this too shall pass. We need a third liberation to make it happen fast. It is a liberation of heart, head, hand and mind to unleash the power that God has given Africa to be good and great. I have confidence that this will happen as I see the anger, dynamism, commitment and restiveness of up-and-coming leaders in Africa as epitomised by a group I mentor Africa 2.0 which I met at this venue last year and in Nigeria this year. I have great hope in the future, and that is near future of Africa. We must strategise and execute our strategy for change and progress.

In conclusion, any growth that does not adequately create jobs and generate wealth to eliminate poverty is hollow. Such growth can neither be said to be sustainable nor enduring.

Promoting Cultural Expressions in Africa through Education


Juma Shabani Professor Juma Shabani is the Director, UNESCO Bamako Cluster Office. He is also the Vice-President of the African Academy of Science and the Executive Secretary of the Global University Network for Innovation (GUNI) Africa. Email: j.shabani@unesco.org

That Africa is poor is the choice of governments and not the fault of the people or the act of God.
Concluding remarks
In conclusion, any growth that does not adequately create jobs and generate wealth to eliminate poverty is hollow. Such growth can neither be said to be sustainable nor enduring. The current situation calls for worry and concern of all well-meaning Africans, be it in the public or private

ne of the major challenges facing any society in the area of culture relates to the preservation, promotion and management of positive aspects of its cultural heritage. Indeed, it is agreed that cultural heritage may help current and future generations to draw on positive cultural values in order to reflect local and national perspectives in the various processes and programmes aimed at poverty reduction and sustainable development. Today, there is a renewed interest in culture. This situation may be partly explained by recent statements made during global events regarding the role of culture in development. Indeed, Resolution A/RES/65/166 of the United Nations Security Council recognised that culture plays an important role in the implementation of the Millennium Development Goals. This assertion is partly supported by indicators developed by the UNESCO Institute for Statistics to measure the contribution of cultural goods and services to growth and well-being of communities and countries. The outcome document of the UNs Rio +20

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two Protocols (1954 and 1999). Six other conventions on the protection, promotion and management of cultural heritage were adopted by the UNESCO General Conference between 1970 and 2005. These are Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Cultural Property (1970); Convention concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage (1972); Convention on the Protection of the Underwater Cultural Heritage (2001); Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage (2003); and Convention for the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions (2005). All the cultural Conventions are intended to preserve and promote some aspect of culture and creativity, from tangible and intangible heritage, the diversity of cultural expressions and creative industries, to the fight against the illicit trafficking of cultural goods.

Conference also states that culture is an important factor in creating appropriate, and therefore effective, development programmes. At the African regional level, the role of culture in development was already acknowledged through the Nairobi Plan of Action for Cultural Industries in Africa adopted by the first session of the African Union Conference of Ministers of Culture held in December 2005 in Nairobi, Kenya. It is necessary to identify the strategies needed in order to help African countries to promote development through investments in culture. One of these strategies could be provided by capacity building and training activities in the areas of preservation, promotion and management of cultural heritage. In the remaining sections of this paper, we shall provide the list of UNESCO cultural conventions; review the UNESCO priorities in culture at the global and Africa regional levels for the period 2012 to 2013; and provide a brief report on ongoing activities in relation to the implementation of the 1972 and 2005 Conventions. We shall also briefly discuss challenges and opportunities especially those relating to capacity building and training initiatives.

UNESCOs Programmes on Culture, 2012-2013


The UNESCO General Conference held in 2012 authorised the Director-General to implement the programmes in culture along two global priorities. The first priority protecting and promoting heritage and cultural expressions focuses on the implementation of the seven UNESCO cultural Conventions. This priority also covers the development of cultural and creative industries and the pedagogical use of the General History of Africa published by UNESCO. The second priority promoting the diversity of cultural expressions and the dialogue of cultures with a view to fostering a culture of peace, focuses on the implementation of the 2005 Convention and integration of intercultural dialogue and cultural diversity into national policies.

It is necessary to identify the strategies needed in order to help African countries to promote development through investments in culture. One of these strategies could be provided by capacity building and training activities in the areas of preservation, promotion and management of cultural heritage.

Preservation, Promotion, and Management of Cultural Heritage and UNESCO Cultural Conventions
UNESCO, the UN agency with specialisation in sectors including culture, has been supporting the efforts of Member States in the preservation and promotion of their cultural heritage. In Africa, the first UNESCOs assistance in this area goes back to the Nubia Campaign, launched in 1960 for the purpose of moving the Great Temple of Abu Simbel to keep it from being swamped by the Nile following the construction of the Aswan Dam in Egypt. In 1954, UNESCO adopted the Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict and Its

The Africa Global Priority


Africa and gender are the two global priorities for UNESCO. The Africa priority is implemented through (a) the alignment of UNESCOs programmes to the needs and priorities of the African Union and (b) the strengthening of capacities of African Member States to enable them implement effectively their culture programmes. With respect to the first UNESCO priority, emphasis will be given to capacity building in African Member States in order to improve implementation of the 1972 and 2003 Conventions; develop cultural and creative industries; promote languages and multilingualism and ensure effective pedagogical use of the General History of Africa published by UNESCO.. The second priority for UNESCO in Africa will focus on the implementation of the 2005 Convention.

African Culture and International Understanding Capacity Building and Training


African Member States have established several UNESCO Category 2 Centres and Institutes and other training institutions in order to strengthen the capacity needed for effective implementation of the 1972, 2003 and 2005 Conventions and to promote African languages and multilingualism and the use of the General History of Africa. UNESCO category 2 Centres and Institutes are institutions created by Member States under the auspices of UNESCO to implement activities related to the five areas of competence of the organisation. These institutions may have a national, regional or continental coverage. Between 2003 and 2012, nine UNESCO category 2 centres were established to build capacity needed to enable Member States to contribute to the implementation of the 1972 Convention on the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage. One of these centres is located in Johannesburg, South Africa. This is the African World Heritage Fund. Two other UNESCO category 2 Centres were established in sub-Saharan Africa in 2008 and 2010 respectively in order to contribute to the implementation of the 2005 Convention for the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions. These are the Institute for African Culture and International Understanding of the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library in Abeokuta, Nigeria and the Regional Centre for the Living Arts in Africa, in BoboDioulasso, Burkina Faso. In addition, as part of its strategy for implementation of its programmes, the African Union established several specialised institutions. Two of these institutions play a role in the implementation of the UNESCO Cultural Conventions. These are the African Academy of Languages in Bamako, Mali in order to promote African languages and the Language Learning Centre by Oral Tradition (CELTHO in its French acronym), established in Niamey, Niger partly in order to promote the use of the eight volumes on the General History of Africa published by UNESCO. For the past few years, the Academy of African languages has been focusing its programmes on building capacity for harmonisation and promotion of trans border languages. In collaboration with the Danfodiyo University in Sokoto, Nigeria, the Language Learning Centre by Oral Tradition has translated the General History of Africa into Hausa.

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in Tanzania and the Gaoua School for Wildlife Management in Cameroon. The African World Heritage Fund (AWHF): The African World Heritage Fund (AWHF) is a UNESCO Category 2 Centre located in Johannesburg, South Africa. It was created in 2006 to support African states that have ratified the 1972 Convention in their efforts to preserve and promote their cultural and natural heritage. Training programmes of the (AWHF) include nominated training courses; planning workshops on tourism and sustainable development; training and research projects on African World Heritage Conservation and management. The AWHF is funded through voluntary contributions from African countries and State Parties worldwide. An Endowment Fund is being set up in order to sustain its funding. The Mweka College of African Wildlife Management: This was established by the African Wildlife Foundation (AWF) in 1963 in Mweka, Tanzania, for the training of African wildlife managers. To date, the College has trained more than 5,000 graduates from 28 African countries and 24 non-African countries. The majority of these graduates work in protected areas in sub-Saharan Africa. The quality of the training programmes of the College has been recognised globally through the distinctions awarded to the College, including the Sasakawa Prize by the United Nations Environment Programme. The College has also been elevated to the status of centre of excellence in training on wildlife by the East African Community. Currently, the College has the status of a parastatal organisation placed under the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism of Tanzania. The College is registered with and accredited by the National Council for Technical Education (NACTE) in Tanzania and recognised as a centre of excellence by the East African Community (EAC) and the Southern African Development Community (SADC). In 1970 the AWF established a similar school in Garoua, Cameroon, giving instruction in French.

Implementation of the 2005 Convention


The Institute for African Culture and International Understanding: The Institute was established in 2008 in order to preserve Africas cultural heritage, promote and strengthen renaissance in African cultures both at the regional and international levels. Its aims include raising awareness among stakeholders about the role of cultural diversity and intercultural dialogue, for social cohesion in pluralistic societies; facilitating the network of sister institutions working in these fields and inducing relevant

Implementation of the 1972 Convention


Capacity building for the implementation of the 1972 Convention is mainly carried out by the African World Heritage Fund (AWHF), a UNESCO category 2 Centre and two institutions established by an international Foundation, namely the Mweka College of African Wildlife Management

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Other Initiatives- Capacity Building of Cultural Actors in Niger: There are several other initiatives that contribute to the implementation of the 2005 Convention through capacity building. An example of these initiatives is provided by a project on Capacity Building of Cultural Actors in Niger. This project is funded by the Japanese Government and implemented by UNESCO Bamako Cluster Office. Recently the Government of Niger adopted a national cultural policy and a 10- year Development Plan (2010-2019) for the implementation of the policy. Both documents recognised the potential of cultural and creative industries to contribute to poverty reduction and sustainable development and identified the lack of capacity of the main actors as being the major challenge for integrating culture into the national development strategies. In order to take up these challenges, UNESCO Bamako Cluster office is implementing in Niger, with financial support from the Japanese Government, a capacity building project for cultural actors. The project will train 125 trainers in cultural entrepreneurship in the areas of music, choreography, scenario writing and theatrical arts and 25 senior managers in the Ministry of Culture on monitoring implementation of the 10-Year Cultural Development Plan.

academic and scientific studies; and providing capacitybuilding through the promotion of knowledge-sharing about spiritual and other religious traditions and their underlying values in order to strengthen harmonious coexistence. The Institute plays a major role in the implementation of the 2005 Convention in Africa through capacity building and networking of African experts. Indeed, every year the Institute organises in Abeokuta, Nigeria an international conference on one of the major themes of the Convention. These conferences help to strengthen the capacity of participants through the presentation of research results and case studies and exchange of best practices on the various sub-themes of the conference. At the end of each conference, a mailing list is created to facilitate the follow up of the conference through virtual discussion fora. The Regional Centre for the Living Arts in Africa: The Centre was established in 2010 in order to promote African living arts and their diversity in the African countries. The programmes of the Centre include data collection and exchange of information, expertise, training and good practices. According to the last progress report, the Centre is still not operational. The 2005 Convention Capacity-Building Programme in Africa: In 2012, UNESCO launched a capacity building programme on the 2005 Convention in order to help Member States to effectively implement the convention. The programme is organised along four main lines of action, namely: training key stakeholders; developing local expertise; knowledge exchange, analysis and informationsharing platform; and targeted needs-based interventions. Activities implemented so far include (a) a specialised capacity-building workshop held on 9th June 2012 in Abidjan, Cte dIvoire for 28 National Commissions for UNESCO, (b) two pilot capacity-building workshops, (c) launch in June 2012 of the African regional entry page for the website of the 2005 Convention to Cultural Expressions in Africa. The two pilot workshops for capacity building for English and French experts were organised in collaboration with NGOs in October 2012 in Cape Town, South Africa for Anglophone countries and in November 2012 in Dakar, Senegal for Francophones. This programme is supported by the Emergency Fund set up by the UNESCO Director General. The workshops will train 32 African experts on relevant issues of the 2005 Convention. The experts will be encouraged to form a network that will contribute to strengthening the capacity needed to promote implementation of the 2005 Convention in Africa.

Challenges and Opportunities Activities earmarked for capacity building and training on the preservation, promotion and management of cultural heritage in Africa are still limited to enable the continent to meaningfully promote the role of culture in development. It is necessary to expand these activities in order to develop a critical mass of trainers in each sub-region and/or African country. However, such a development is possible only if the institutions involved in these training engage in intensive use of information and communication technologies (ICTs) and in order to reach more learners. Hopefully, the knowledge economy society is providing African

countries a better access to ICTs and their applications including virtual institutes for delivery of online distance learning, virtual libraries and electronic networks. These opportunities should be fully explored in order to expand the scope of the various training programmes on the preservation and promotion of cultural heritage and therefore for African culture to play a greater role in development.

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Activities earmarked for capacity building and training on the preservation, promotion and management of cultural heritage in Africa are still limited to enable the continent to meaningfully promote the role of culture in development. It is necessary to expand these activities in order to develop a critical mass of trainers in each sub-region and/or African country
Conclusion
It is now recognised that culture can play an important role in poverty reduction and development in Africa through education. However this would require that national capacities are strengthened in the area of preservation, promotion and management of cultural and natural heritage. Several initiatives have been undertaken by Members States and UNESCO to strengthen the capacity of African countries especially in the implementation of the 1972 and 2005 Conventions. A number of positive results have been obtained but these are still limited compared to actual needs. In order to take up this challenge, it is proposed that full use be made of information and communication technology in order to widen access to the training programmes and improve quality and relevance. Use should be made of virtual institutes for delivery of high quality online distance education programmes, access to updated online resources through virtual libraries and involvement of experts in regional electronic networks to promote exchange of information and best practices.

International Cooperation Networks and the African University: Perils and Promises
Alain Cyr Pangop Kameni Alain Cyr Pangop Kameni is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of African Studies, Faculty of Letters and Human Sciences, University of Dschang, Cameroun. Email: pangopalain@yahoo.fr

ne of the key challenges in the relationship between African universities and the international networking culture is that the power of higher education in fostering international understanding has been underestimated for several decades. Higher education institutions especially the universities have been considered extremely costly and an adventure limited to a minority. This becomes a challenge in the face of the huge demand for higher education by the masses. Besides, there is a persisting notion that higher education rather than basic education, has limited impact on economic growth. Consequently, over the last twenty years and until recently, governments and donor institutions have neglected higher education in favour of basic education as a driver for the improvement of economic growth and the fight against poverty. Thus, the avant-garde role of higher education in both economic growth and the fight against poverty has not been fully explored. Following such considerations, the World Bank and UNESCO advised the international community in 2000 to speed up support to higher education, in order to promote the dissemination of knowledge. The focus of this recommendation was Sub-Saharan Africa whose higher education oscillated between peril and promises (World Bank, 2000).

Consequently, over the last twenty years and until recently, governments and donor institutions have neglected higher education in favour of basic education as a driver for the improvement of economic growth and the fight against poverty.
It is becoming a priority to encourage the African higher education system to be part of the crusade for the improvement of economic growth and the fight against poverty. Within the framework of this perspective, some pertinent questions have arisen: How can higher education be developed in Africa such that it becomes profitable to

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that only scientific knowledge and its application can help to control the negative impacts of globalisation.

the African community as a whole? How can universities respond to the challenges of global competition which prevails in the higher education sector? How is it possible to get teaching and research to synergise across borders, in order to solve Africa-specific problems within an intraAfrican perspective? How can scholars help to establish interreligious dialogue? How do we contribute in building peace, reconciliation and integration? In most Sub-Saharan countries, the first universities were established between 1950 and 1960; and most often, this was a central university based in the capital city. At the same time, institutes and university centres were opened in other cities of these States, with specific focus on the humanities, agriculture and technology. The first step towards the expansion of the university after a decade was to transform these institutes into university centres. This was the case with the 1993 reform in Cameroon, or that of Ethiopia in 2004. Prospects for providing answers to the above-mentioned questions are organised around cultural, philosophic and religious aspects of the development of African States. Thus, France and Germanys role concerning cooperation for development in Africa, notably with respect to the higher education expansion programme, emphasises the role of science and technology in socio-economic transformation. Concerning support for research, a KAAD report on the contribution to the development of higher education and research in Africa unveiled the marginal position of Africa in relation to globalisation. This organisation, with its approximately 7700 Fellows from all academic fields based in 120 countries, is the most important catholic institution operating in this sector, and integrating intercultural dialogue as a basic principle for a common future. About 550 degree holders from higher education institutions in sub-Saharan Africa have benefited from this support in the last decade. Similarly, the key role played by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation in fostering excellent scholarship in all fields of study and from all nations can also be highlighted here. This Foundation has established a high-level global intercultural dialogue and scientific network. Its targets are scholars from developing and emerging countries. These scholars can freely undertake their research in the countries of their choice. The flexibility provided by the scholarship programmes is virtually a lifetime opportunity for the Humboldtians and a veritable pathway for promoting international cooperation. Another promise arising from international cooperation and networking through the African higher education system is technology transfer. Technology transfer in developing countries can become sustainable only if the capacity building of local researchers is carried out. Adapting the scientific knowledge to local needs remains a challenge for the international scientific cooperation, given

The African dream of peace and prosperity


Tackling Africas basic problems and the issue of cooperation in the field of research is at the heart of concerns of African universities. It starts with the notion of ethnicity and the burden of the colonial history to make it clear that ethnic divides characterise the diversity of inter-ethnic coexistence in formerly colonised States. Colonisation however helped in bringing together and unifying several groups on the same territory, groups which shared no sociocultural relationships and whose pre-colonial life was only defined by power struggle. Several contemporary issues are then examined, namely the uncontrolled demographic growth, persisting poverty, illiteracy, the rapid expansion of diseases, armed conflicts, corruption, rapid urbanisation, the abusive exploitation of natural resources with subSaharan Africa being the most affected region. Following such an observation, it can be noted that once these nation-states are left by the colonial masters, ethnic grievances related to their pre-colonial relationships re-emerge and justify the political instability, chaos and bloodshed seen across the continent over the years. The role of education and the universities in the current knowledge society, should be stressed as a way forward that matches the African dream of peace and prosperity. The concern remains for the laying of the groundwork of cooperation in higher education, science and technology in Africa under the aegis of the African Union. Lastly, the interreligious dialogue and intercultural perspectives for the prevention of conflicts and the construction of peace are the new issues and challenges that are relevant to cooperation networks within the African University system.

it can be noted that once these nation-states are left by the colonial masters, ethnic grievances related to their pre-colonial relationships re-emerge and justify the political instability, chaos and bloodshed seen across the continent over the years.
Reference
World Bank (2000). Higher education in developing countries: Peril and promise. Washington: The World Bank

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Promoting and Protecting the Diversity of Cultural Expressions in Africa: The Nigerian Example
Edem Duke Chief Edem Duke is Nigerias Honourable Minister of Tourism, Culture and National Orientation. Email: edemduke@yahoo.com

Symbols and avenues of Nigerias cultural expressions


We consider culture to be the defining element of the totality of a peoples existence. This makes culture a badge of identity and a distinguishing factor in all areas of human relations. In fact, culture is the foundation of global socio-political engagements and developments. Culture determines, to a large extent, the colouration of a peoples economy, politics, international relations and other forms of human engagement. By this we mean that culture is the foundation of all human activities since the instruments of human existence and survival are subsumed in it. Culture can also be seen as the totality of the way of life evolved by a people in the attempt to meet the challenge of living. This gives order and meaning to the social, political, economic, aesthetic and religious norms and modes of organisation, thus distinguishing a people from their neighbours. A common approach to identifying and analysing cultural manifestations has, for long, been limited to languages, dances, and even tradition. We posit that while these are important instruments of culture, there are indeed other avenues of cultural expressions. Though, our present concern is not to discuss the difference between culture and tradition or how both are intertwined, it is however important to stimulate debates on this in order to appreciate the dynamism of culture and the place of tradition in the scheme of this dynamism. We proceed to highlight some of the symbols and avenues of cultural expressions in Nigeria. Agricultural Base: Amoah (1988) reasons that not only does food provide humans with energy, it also symbolises certain of the emotions and psychic feelings; hence food may be regarded as an important aspect of culture. We reason that food is not just an important aspect of culture, it is indeed the first cultural expression of humans. This is because the first preoccupation of humans is survival. Consequently it became possible to identify a people through the type of crop that is grown in a particular region. Thus, some people are culturally linked to the production of yam while cassava, for instance, is where another region and its people have comparative advantage. In line with this position, Amoah (1988) asserts that it would seem then that some historical, cultural and economic factors have been partly responsible for the present day pattern of crop dominance. The Nigerian people thus express their distinctive cultures through the crops they grow and their cuisines. As a result, some foods are culturally linked to a people. While this may be a subtle avenue of cultural expression, it is by no means less popular or effective as a means of cultural identification.

igeria, the largest black nation in the world, is also a culturally heterogeneous country. While, as expected, there is no scholastic agreement on the number of ethnic and tribal groups in the country, the figure could be conservatively put at over 400. This presents a country with a multiplicity of cultures, values and traditions which, though modified, have endured for centuries. These cultural expressions have strong philosophical and structural foundations as they have not withered, even after their contact with colonialism and other forms of modern and post-modern influences. As Ajayi (1988) puts it, pre-colonial African cultures have responded to the impact of colonialism not through extinction, but through adaptation and continuities with remarkable resilience. This assertion also applies to the various cultural expressions in Nigeria. Nigerias population is estimated at 158 millionthe largest in Africa and accounting for 47% of West Africas population. It is made up of 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja., and is unofficially divided into six geopolitical zones. It is in these states and zones that the various cultural expressions can be found. For instance, the south-west geopolitical zone is predominantly Yoruba, the north, where can be found zones such as the north-central, north-east and the north-west, is predominantly Hausa-Fulani. The south-east is mainly Igbo while the south-south geopolitical zone consists of people and cultures from Edo, Delta, Rivers, Bayelsa, Cross River and Akwa Ibom states. The size and diversity of Nigeria are also found in the various cultural expressions of communities across the country.

This presents a country with a multiplicity of cultures, values and traditions which, though modified, have endured for centuries. These cultural expressions have strong philosophical and structural foundations as they have not withered, even after their contact with colonialism and other forms of modern and post-modern influences.

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African Culture and International Understanding between the modern state and the masses of the people. Witness also the current revival of traditional religions and cultural values throughout Africa. The import of the foregoing assertion is that African traditions and cultures have an intrinsic preservative value which have contributed to their survival for centuries. Conscious efforts should be aimed at protecting these cultural expressions. To be built into this protection mechanism is a platform for the promotion of these cultures. To achieve this, we propose the following:

Language and Folktales: The language spoken by a group of people is a strong and unmistakable avenue of cultural expression. Nigeria is blessed with an array of these languages, dialects and folktales, and these are as diverse as the number of ethnic and tribal groups spread across the country. People are generally and usually passionate about their language and any attempt, in whatever form, to make a language superior to others is always met with stiff, and sometimes, violent resistance. Music and Dance: Just like language, music and dance remain enduring avenues of cultural expressions among the people of Nigeria, and they serve specific social functions. Ujo (1989) posits that songs occupy a central place in African culture. This is also true of Nigerian cultures. Dress and Fashion: Peculiar attires and fashion styles are also avenues for the expression of the diversity of cultures in Nigeria. It is the view of Aradeon (1988) that despite long exposure to western culture and dress, virtually all West Africans continue to wear traditional and modified traditional dress for some special occasions and many West Africans wear indigenous dress for all occasions. Thus, in Nigeria, as in other parts of Africa, it is possible to use the agbada to identify a Yorubaman or the babariga to differentiate Hausamen and the unmistakable top and hat of the Niger Delta man. Festivals, Arts and Craft: Cultural values and norms also find expression in peoples festivals, arts and craft. Traditional festivals, such as the New Yam Festival, mostly celebrated in the South-East, the Durbar, peculiar to the north and the Osun Osogbo and Eyo festivals found in the south-west, and the Boat Regatta celebrated in the riverine areas of the outh-South, are all avenues of cultural expressions. Traditional Institutions: Nigerians also express their cultures through traditional institutions. These refer to traditional structures such as kingship, trade patterns and traditional political institutions.

Traditional festivals, such as the New Yam Festival, mostly celebrated in the South-East, the Durbar, peculiar to the north and the Osun Osogbo and Eyo festivals found in the south-west, and the Boat Regatta celebrated in the riverine areas of the SouthSouth, are all avenues of cultural expressions.
Regular Documentation: Identification and detailed documentation of these cultural expressions are necessary. Documentation will not only enhance the preservation and protection of these cultural expressions it will also help in promoting them. Policy Implementation: It is also important to implement sound policies and suggestions aimed at protecting and promoting Nigerias cultural expressions. To this end, the Nigerian Government has put a mechanism in place for the implementation of the countrys cultural policy. Institutional Framework: The protection and promotion of Nigerias cultural expressions require strong institutional framework. This is why government agencies such as the Centre for Black and African Arts and Civilisation (CBAAC), the National Council for Arts and Culture (NCAC) and the National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO) should be strengthened. Cultural education and orientation: We propose two ways of achieving cultural education. One is the inclusion of cultural studies at all levels of Nigerias education system.

Protection and Promotion of Nigerias Cultural Expressions: Some Suggestions


On the resilience of African traditional institutions and cultures, Ajayi (1988) wrote:

Witness yourself the continued vitality of the socalled traditional institutions and how often we have recourse to them in our search for identity and legitimacy, and channels of communication

African Culture and International Understanding


The second is general cultural orientation for Nigerian citizens. The National Institute for Cultural Orientation, with similar structures at the state and local government levels and the Nigerian media have a key role to play in this orientation drive for citizens. Promotion of festivals and other cultural events: This is another avenue of protecting and promoting Nigerias diverse cultural expressions. Beyond the promotion, these festivals have immense economic value that could be of great benefit to the owners of the cultures.

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Ujo, A.A (1989). The role of myths and songs in the Benue area of Nigeria. In Ayoade, J. et al (eds) African traditional political thought and institutions. Lagos: Centre for Black and African Arts and Civilization (CBAAC).

Deepening Africas Democracy and Unity through Peaceful Elections: Role of Students and the Youth
Fred Awaah Fred Awaah is the Secretary-General of the All-Africa Students Union (AASU) with headquarters in Accra, Ghana. Email: akaphari@yahoo.com

We propose two ways of achieving cultural education. One is the inclusion of cultural studies at all levels of Nigerias education system. The second is general cultural orientation for Nigerian citizens.
Conclusion
In this paper, we reviewed different forms of cultural expressions in Nigeria and proposed strategies for their promotion and protection. Nigerias diverse cultural expressions constitute a source of strength for the country. The protection and promotion of these expressions will put the country on a strong pedestal among the comity of nations, as culture is a primal instrument of international diplomacy, it will also help internal cohesion and unity. Concerted efforts should therefore be made to preserve, protect and promote Nigerias cultural expressions.

References
Ajayi, Ade J. F. (1988). Resilience of African traditional institutions and cultures. In Asiwaju, A.I et al (eds) African unity: The cultural foundation. Lagos: Centre for Black and African Arts and Civilization (CBAAC). Amoah, K. (1988). Neolithic ecology, staple food plants and cultural interaction in West Africa. In Asiwaju, A.I et al (eds) African unity: The cultural foundation. Lagos: Centre for Black and African Arts and Civilization (CBAAC). Aradeon, S. B. (1988). The enduring vitality of West African dress. In Asiwaju, A.I et al (eds) African unity: The cultural foundation. Lagos: Centre for Black and African Arts and Civilization (CBAAC).

he youth constitutes the most potent force in any demographic region. As a consequence, positively harnessing the energies of the youth has become a subject of great concern in African countries especially since perpetrators of electoral violence have been found to be mostly persons between ages 18 35 years. In Africa, it is not uncommon to hear that election after election has ended in violence. Generally, the perpetrators of election violence are political parties and their members, who use violence as a means of influencing the electoral process to their advantage or reversing an electoral outcome that may not favour them. However it has been recorded that political parties will usually engage the youth for such malicious and devilish agenda. As the journalist William Shawcross recounted, in February 1996 hundreds of Sierra Leoneans had their fingers, hands, noses, or lips chopped off with machetes in the cause of democracy. They were punished for voting for opposition candidates. Election violence can also escalate into larger scale, protracted conflicts. In Rwanda, Burundi and Cte dIvoire, widespread conflicts were preceded by disputes over the electoral process and election results, among other factors. Indeed, the regularity with which electoral violence occurs in many such African countries is frightening and therefore suggests that concerted effort should be made to salvage the situation lest we lose an entire generation. About 12 years ago, the International Foundation of Electoral Systems (IFES) defined electoral violence as any random or organised act or threat to intimidate, physically harm, blackmail or abuse a political stakeholder in seeking to determine, delay or otherwise influence an electoral process. This general definition encompasses several forms of electoral violence. The United Nations Development

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have hitherto enjoyed. Unless we stop playing the ostrich and work at addressing the issue of electoral violence and conflict, the road towards the integration of the African continent would be severely compromised. As examples will show, the key actors in election-related violence are mostly young people and quite often it happens that most of them turn out to be university graduates.

Programme (UNDP), defines electoral violence as acts or threats of coercion, intimidation or physical harm perpetrated to affect an electoral process or that arises in the context of electoral competition. Violence may be employed to influence the electoral process such to delay, disrupt, or derail a poll and to influence the outcomes.

electoral violence as any random or organised act or threat to intimidate, physically harm, blackmail or abuse a political stakeholder in seeking to determine, delay or otherwise influence an electoral process.
This paper examines election-related violence and its implications for deepening democracy and development in Africa, and recommends a path for dealing with electoral violence from the student and youth perspective. First, we will take a look at the motivation for the youth to engage in electoral violence, Second, we will discuss the effects of electoral violence on young people and the African continent as a whole, and third, highlight what we have to do as young people to ensure that peace prevails in Africa. Students and the Peace Process
The role of students in the peace process in Africa has been disappointing. It is often wondered that in spite of their education, students cannot positively impact their societies. The All-Africa Students Union (AASU) holds the view that, the role of the student becomes even more crucial during election periods. Students have the widest intellectual base to critically assess government policies. They have the capacity to broaden the debate on policy issues, but sadly remain silent while the politicos insult and assault one another an unfortunate development which is gradually tearing the African continent apart. We have moved into a state of unconsciousness, hoping that all the unpleasantness will vanish into thin air when we wake up. Unfortunately, that is not going to happen. It is getting worse by the day we continually witness snapshots of it across the continent. Electoral violence has been a major problem in Africa over the years, but in the last few years the cankerworm has become fully developed and the rate at which it is rearing its head in various parts of the continent accentuates the need for young people to take centre stage in the efforts to preserve the stability and peace we

Why Youth Engage in Election Violence


There are several reasons why the youth engage in election violence. We present a few in this section. In this paper, we shall focus on god-fatherism, financial inducement, ethnicity and religion as well as illiteracy. God-fatherism: Young people mostly look up to key political figures for mentorship and advisory support in their quest to follow the footprints of such notable figures into building a chosen career. As they do this, they subject themselves to the tutorship of these political figures and therefore hold as sacred the directions and advice that come from such figures. Because every politician acts like a rational economic being, who will maximise his or her self-worth and value, the politician ends up exploiting the mentee in most cases. The point here is not to condemn the concept of having a politician as a god-father. To the extent that it leads to the better development of the young person, it should be pursued rigorously. On the other hand where the concept of god-fatherism becomes exploitative then it ought to be condemned. The mentee appears motivated and perhaps better poised to initiate electoral violence at the bidding of the god-father. Financial Inducement: In the context of heightened concerns about electoral violence, the chief motivation for the youth engaging in violence has been linked to financial inducement. In most instances, politicians exploit the youth through financial rewards for undertaking violent activities. In the 2008 elections in Ghana, some young people were noted to have set some police vehicles on fire, and also initiated clashes between armed supporters of political rivals. With the resulting displacements, the politicians benefitted enormously, whereas the larger society suffered various forms of atrocities. Ethnic and Religious Concerns: Since the views of religious, tribal and community leaders carry enormous weight, politicians try to use the medium of religion and ethnicity to influence young people. The chieftaincy dispute between the Kusasis and Mamprusis in Ghanas northern region, which predates Ghanas independence,

African Culture and International Understanding


serves as an example. In the past, the National Democratic Congress and its political tradition were seen to side with the Kusasis claims to chieftaincy and the traditional area, while the Mamprusis were validated by the New Patriotic Party and its political tradition. Thus, violence between the two groups occurs with each political cycle as each tries to undermine the others political aims by using violence to put their preferred political parties on top. Some religious, tribal and community leaders also use the youth to serve their parochial interests by making them believe they are either fighting a religious cause or fighting to put their tribe in a respectable political pedetal. Clashes of this nature are the most catastrophic, lasting longer than any other and are the most difficult to resolve as well.

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the chief motivation for the youth engaging in violence has been linked to financial inducement. In most instances, politicians exploit the youth through financial rewards for undertaking violent activities.
Illiteracy: Illiteracy serves as one of the major reasons for young people engaging in electoral violence. Closer examination of most electoral violence cases across the African continent suggests that regions with a high illiteracy rate had higher tendencies of electoral violence. The democratic process in itself requires a literate society to function effectively. You need a society that is literate to understand bills, laws, amendments, and contribute effectively to the decision-making process. Effects of Electoral Violence on Young People and the African Continent The implications of electoral violence for young people and the African continent are enormous. Electoral violence can escalate to major conflicts. When there is conflict, the education of students is truncated, women are raped indiscriminately, there is political instability all leading to depression in development. As at 2011, 11.1 million persons constituted Africas internally displaced population. Elections have been cited as the greatest contributor to this displacement.
In Cte dIvoire, up to a million people were

displaced by fighting which followed the presidential elections of late 2010. Some 350,000 people were displaced by inter-communal violence in South Sudan, and at least 168,000 by the ongoing conflict and violence in eastern areas of Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). More than 100,000 people had to flee their homes in DRC, Somalia and Sudan. In West Africa, disputed elections occasioned massive displacement in 2011. In Cte dIvoire, after both Alessane Ouattara and Laurent Gbagbo claimed victory in December 2010, a battle for national control between their respective supporters caused a four-month wave of new displacement. In Nigeria, violence which broke out after the results of the presidential elections were released in 2011, led to the displacement of some 65,000 people across the northern states. In both countries, internal displacement also followed inter-communal disputes over land and access to economic and political power, and attacks by non-state armed groups.

Some religious, tribal and community leaders also use the youth to serve their parochial interests by making them believe they are either fighting a religious cause or fighting to put their tribe in a respectable political pedetal. Clashes of this nature are the most catastrophic, lasting longer than any other and are the most difficult to resolve as well.
The future of young people in Africa remains in doubt if the business climate in the continent remains unstable as proximal or distal consequence of electoral violence. Indeed, the continued out-break of electoral violence across the continent casts doubt on the commitment of young people towards building a peaceful Africa region.

Recommendations
Impact public policy positively: The paramount issue for us as students should not be which party wins an election. It should not matter if power shifts from one party to the other. Our major concern should be how policy will be formulated, and what impact it will have on us. As students, our key role should be to shape government policy. We have to contribute to public discussions, publish articles,

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after elections. Recently, AASU organised some peace rallies in some regions in Ghana ahead of its December 7 elections.

undertake campaigns to support positive policies and kick against obnoxious ones. Abstain from violence and destructive tendencies: The catastrophic proportions of casualties inflicted on the African continent have been perpetrated by politicians, using students (particularly tertiary students) as conduit. The case where young people are used as pawns in the hands of politicians should be a thing of the past. What we need to be doing as students, is harnessing and investing our energies into productive ventures. Abstaining from extreme partisan politics: We need at all times to commit ourselves to democratic principles and ideals such as those against corruption, poverty, hunger, tribalism and illiteracy. We need to eschew the tendency of becoming extremely partisan. The advice is that we do not lose our individuality in the crowd. Devoting much time to academic excellence and fleeing from the exigency for money: Our generation is one that loves materialism. However placing the cart before the horse is dangerous. The best we can do for the African continent is to avail ourselves the pursuit of academic excellence. We live in the age of the paper and pen, ipods, ipads and cloud computing and only the prepared mind will prevail. We must learn to make the most out of the present, for the future awaits the student who can match his/her competencies with the opportunities in the corporate world. Discard all forms of ethnic and tribal sentiments: Dr. K. B. Asante of Ghana wrote in his article Tribalism in Strange Places published in the countrys Daily Graphic on 4th April 2005 petty tribalism would destroy many institutions and eventually the fabric of democracy itself. While the primary focus should be on building effective institutions devoid of ethnicity and tribalism, young people should join hands and oppose anybody who attempts to invoke ethnic and tribal cards to incite them to act in an offensive manner against other tribes. To remain viable, a free society requires not uniformity of belief, but countervailing groups and institutions that are able to check each other and prevent anyone or any single entity from acquiring a monopoly of power over the nations institutions and ideas.

Concluding Remarks
In this paper, AASU cautions young people and students across the continent to lead the way in ensuring peace in their respective countries. We call on civil society organisations and the independent media to play a crucial role in deepening Africas democracy at all levels. This should serve as a clarion call to all students to wake up and take responsibility for the peace of the African continent at all times - especially during electioneering periods.

AASU is promoting peace throughout the African continent via workshops and radio programmes which encourage peaceful elections. We also organise educational campaigns to promote peace and non-violence, before, during and after elections.
We condemn all destructive political activities, irrespective of which party perpetrates it. We should be the ones who separate the wheat from the chaff and the propaganda from the truth. Above and beyond what is convenient for this generation of students, there is a moral obligation to confront all vile activities head-on, to stand for the truth even if the heavens will fall and have the courage to call sin by its right name. As was aptly captured by the former UN Secretary General, Kofi Annan at the World Conference of Ministers Responsible for Youth in Lisbon, August 1998, No one is born a good citizen, no nation is born democratic. Rather, both are processes that continue to evolve over a lifetime. A society that cuts itself from its youth severs its lifeline; and is condemned to bleed to death Let me conclude on the note of a simple advice to the continents young men and women. Before you think of allowing yourself to be used as a conduit for electoral violence, make sure that the politicians wife and children are leading in the exercise. Do not put your life at risk for a politician. It is simply not worth it! Most importantly too, we wish to call on governments and organisations to support the activities of AASU as we continue to champion the cause of students in Africa and contribute effectively to solving global problems.

What Is All-Africa Students Union (AASU) Doing?


AASU is promoting peace throughout the African continent via workshops and radio programmes which encourage peaceful elections. We also organise educational campaigns to promote peace and non-violence, before, during and

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Before you think of allowing yourself to be used as a conduit for electoral violence, make sure that the politicians wife and children are leading in the exercise. Do not put your life at risk for a politician. It is simply not worth it!

The dance was restricted only for marriage ceremonies and initiation rites but now it is manifested in any celebration such as commemorative dates, political meetings and cultural festivals.

Promoting and Protecting the Chitonga Dance in Mozambique


Lupwishi Mbuyamba, Ofelia Silva, Alberto Folowara and Killian Dzinduwa Lupwishi Mbuyamba is a UNESCO expert on culture. Email: mbuyamba_lupwishi@yahoo.fr

hitonga is a dance practised in Dombe in Sussundenga and Machaze Districts of Mozambique. It symbolises female initiation rites, marriage or ancestral worship of tongas. For the worship of ancestors and marriage, the dance is preceded by preparation of a traditional drink called pombe. During marriage initiation rites, the occasion is taken to check the virginity of girls, with the dance performed at the residence of the parents of the initiated girl. Only elderly and married ladies are allowed to attend the ceremony. During the ceremony during which the Chitonga dance is practised, initiated girls are counselled for marriage such as respect of parents of the future husband and how to sexually excite the husband.

The chitonga dance performed in VII Chitonga National Culture Festival in Nampula

Significance of the Dance


The dance has a social symbolism mainly in the area of women education, rites of initiation, marriage and services of tongas ancestors. Culturally, the dance shows the tradition and identity of Manica people. Economically, the group is paid a fee for performing, which contributes to poverty eradication for the dance practitioners. The group plays in different places in the community, entertaining and educating through the chitonga dance.

Dance steps
The dance is done in a circle with the person to be initiated in the centre. As the dance progresses, those present make offers to the girl, dancing without restrictions with the rhythm of the drums. The content of the songs indicate that the ritual is addressed to effect a marriage contract. In terms of costume, men are usually dressed with white pants and shirts and women wear capulanas and headscarves, with whistles tied to their legs, and michindu tied to their hips. The songs are accompanied with the rhythm of drums. The dance was restricted only for marriage ceremonies and initiation rites but now it is manifested in any celebration such as commemorative dates, political meetings and cultural festivals.

Current Safeguard Measures


Several measures are in place to protect and safeguard the chitonga dance. These include the integration of young girls in the dance so that such girls will continue in the tradition of the dance in the coming years and decades. Secondly, ARPAC - Research Institute of Socio-cultural Heritage, Manica Delegation is actively propagating the dance through discussions. Thirdly, a virile cultural groupNyamizare, District Sussundenga exists which acts as a stimulus for the transmission of chitonga and other values to new generations of persons, since the group is composed of members of different age groups.

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Current Promotion Measures


The chitonga dance is actively promoted in Mozambique. For instance it is a regular feature of national festivals. It featured prominently during the 2008 National Festival of Culture 2008; the 2010 Gaza Province Festival and the 2012 Nampula Province Festival. Also, the chitonga dance troupes participate in several local events especially during commemorative dates and political rallies.

So that the Changana Language may Endure


Lupwishi Mbuyamba and Ofelia Silva Lupwishi Mbuyamba is a UNESCO expert on culture. Email: mbuyamba_lupwishi@yahoo.fr

Suggestions for Safeguard


The following measures are proposed to further safeguard the chitonga dance:

Register the dance in the national list of intangible heritage; increase investigations and research on the dance; integrate the dance into the school curriculum; and institute national competitions on the dance to promote chitonga dance skills acquisition especially by the youth and to entrench its cultural values. Suggestions for Promotion Production of educational materials such as manuals for formal education on the chitonga dance; Production of promotional material such as brochures, flyers and posters on the chitonga dance; Massive production and wide distribution of CDs and DVDs including launching on the internet and in the National Geographic Programme; Organise shows on the dance for tourist in the Chimanimani trans-border, local schools and communities. Concluding Remarks
Considering the high level of cases of domestic violence, it would be important that the dance and traditions around it be used to encourage more community activities and programme to contribute to the education of all girls, even those that are not integrated members of the chitonga dance troupe.

n the eighteenth century, the Nguni (Bantu group) led by Sochangana migrated to southern Mozambique and formed a great state, stretching from Maputo to the Zambezi River, which was called the state of Gaza. The Gaza Empire, of Changana-speakers, had its base in Manjacaze, considered the capital of Gaza. Manjacaze was strategically important for the expansion of the Changana language, as well as for the domination in the regions extending from the Limpopo River valley to the southern part of Save River. Changana is a native language, alive and picturesque. It is an oral literature, spontaneously born and faithfully safeguarded. Changana is characterised by its ease of pronunciation, flexibility and softness. The phonetics of Changana is more pronounced and tonic is higher. The tonic intones the words when spoken. Socially, Changana is used in traditional education and daily communication. It is used to tell stories about legends, and render traditional tales and fables. It is used during cultural practices like dances, theatre, songs, corals, and for passing educational messages that contribute to community development. Changana has a fundamental impact on society as the language is used in religious services, where services are conducted in Portuguese and translated into Changana. Also, the language contributes to socialisation and enculturation processes. Politicians use Changana to disseminate their political manifestos and messages to rural communities and towns especially in the peripheries of Maputo and Matola.

Changes with Time


Over time, Changana has undergone changes, transformations and influences with the convergence of the Portuguese language as the most-spoken language, providing a different dialectic in language. The links and prepositions, in Portuguese, are widely used by Changana speakers at the time of formulating sentences and even the speech. Proverbs are, perhaps, the most authentic product of the Changana language. In tales, there are, always, new proverbs that replace the old ones. Also, proverbs are modernised and each one increases the number of words in order to change, sometimes, its primitive structure.

African Culture and International Understanding Current Status of the Language


Changana is current and popular in the southern region of Mozambique. It is practised, mostly, by all ages, mainly in periphery areas of Maputo and Matola cities as well as in rural areas of Maputo Province. It is a language that serves as a connector with languages of other countries of southern Africa notably Swaziland and South Africa. Changana is spoken by about 1,660,319 people, or approximately 10. 8% of the Mozambican population. It is spoken in Maputo, Gaza, Inhambane and Niassa. Niassa is a northern region of the country, bordering with Malawi and Tanzania. In this context, the speakers of Changana in that region, belongs to a group of people who were moved from Maputo as part of a government policy designed to get unemployed people from capital city streets of Mozambique to Niassa, with the objective, for them, to develop that region.

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Current Safeguarding Measures Teaching of Changana at the Eduardo Mondlane University. Teaching Changana in some primary private schools. Recording of music in CDs and DVDs in Changana. Production of grammatical materials, tales, stories written in Changana. Practice of the language by communities, mainly those in rural areas and around the periphery of Maputo and Matola cities. Current Promotion Measures Dissemination of classic, popular and traditional music in radio and television as well as in many YouTube websites. Teaching Changana language at Eduardo Mondlane University Teaching Changana in some primary private schools Radiophone programmes in Maputo and Gaza, existing for more than 20 years. Extensive literature in the Changana language. Suggestions for Safeguarding Introduction of bilingual education, in Changana, especially in Maputo Province. Encouraging young writers to write more books in Changana.

Reinforcing teaching in Changana at Eduardo Mondlane University and encouraging new universities to adopt same model. Encouraging teaching of Changana in all private schools Increasing the number of recording CDs, DVDs music, in Changana Encouraging radiophonic and television programmes in Changana Encouraging research in Changana Suggestions for Promotion Introduction of Changana in radio and television programmes and newspapers Introduction of advertisements of domestic stock in Changana Promoting Mozambican culture using Changana as means of communication Promoting oral and popular literature including short stories, poetry, theatre and singing. Encouraging awareness campaigns in Changana. Concluding Remarks
Although there are written materials in Changana language such as the Bible, literature, books and stories, the greatest promotion of Changana is through music as there are plenty of traditional popular musicians who recorded their songs in CDs or DVD in Changana. Regretful, Changana is not used in important institutional context such as courts during judgment sessions or in centres of power and state institutions. The country has not yet established a language policy to give directives on using national languages with Changana included.

Promoting and Protecting Isukuti Dance in Kenya


Silverse Lisamula Anami

Silverse Anami is a culture and development Consultant in Kenya. Email: anamisilverse@


yahoo.com.

ymbolically, the term `isukuti which literally means conical drum is viewed as `the drum or voice of the people as it was originally used for therapy and rituals of sustenance and entertainment. The term isukuti is also

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has sustained its relevance in this respect. An Isukha elder, Mzee Clement Akhura, a renowned practitioner and traditional leader, says whenever one refers to his land or his wife or his son or his friend or his leader as `his isukuti he implies that the subject was his source of fortitude. The isukuti ensemble signifies interdependence between the young and the elderly. It is the source of wisdom, for code of conduct and as the mouth piece of society. The set of four drums that forms the isukuti ensemble are viewed as a family. The largest of the drums with a rounded belly is the mother drum while the second largest which is used most is the father drum. The two small isukuti drums (mitiiti) are symbolically viewed as son and daughter of the family. The resultant call and response interface of rhythmic motifs between the son and daughter drums are perfectly synonymous to the harmonious dialogue between the male and female quails of the Kakamega rain forest. It is no wonder, therefore, that the meal of ugali and quails is much appraised as a delicacy in traditional food festivals of the Isukha and Idakho communities.

used to explain astounding situations thus giving it deeper significance in the experiences and expressions of society. Isukuti dances are a living heritage. They are created and recreated on the basis of significant occurrences or prevailing noteworthy circumstances. Isukuti dance is a consortium of traditional dance movements compressed in a series of vibrations closely linked to the rites, customs, traditions and practices of the Isukha and Idakho communities of western Kenya. The dance is executed to the response of creative and sometimes very dramatic rhythmic throbs derived from a four-member set of Isukuti drums and accompanying metallic and wooden percussions. The dance is performed in community celebrations and special public functions or occasions involving rites of passage, traditional games, sports, and public entertainment. The largest and most authentic repertoire of the Isukuti dance is concentrated within the precincts of the Isukha and Idakho communities in the Kakamega county of western Kenya. Over the years, however, this art form has spread across the Kenyan landscape and social networks to the extent that contemporary society tends to have a justifiable claim on some aspects of the dance. Most of the fundamental creative activities associated with the Isukuti dance originated from long-term interaction with nature, especially the expansive rain forests of Kakamega. The construction of Isukuti drum sets and the related percussive accompaniments remain the preserve of the traditional cultural practitioners and heritage bearers of the Isukha and Idakho communities. They continue to utilise locally generated materials and procedures only tenable within the habitat of the Isukha and Idakho communities; the most significant being the Kakamega rain forest, the Yala, Lunyu and Isiukhu rivers among others.

Imachina Isukuti Dancers and Practitioners From time memorial, the traditional chiefs of Isukha and Idakho communities were obligated to maintain a dance troop for the entertainment of the chiefs guests and propagation of the chiefs policies and pronouncements. Such dance groups would engage in competitive dance festivals during sporting events. It was during these competitions that creative Isukuti dance movements were launched basing on phenomenal message-oriented songs and rituals.

The Dance Movement


Each of the dance movements is connected with a historical occurrence or associated with the conduct of a renowned personality. For example, `Lipala dance movement is associated with the conduct of a renowned gambler of the 1970s, the late Shisilivoti, who often made quick backward movements that would be punctuated with hand clapping to signify a score against his opponents, while `anzika movement is a reflection of an epidemic that inflicted the Isukha people during the 1st World War, thus depicting the predicaments of a victim of skin disease. The Isukuti drums especially the smaller size known as mutiiti were originally used to announce special messages to the community. For example, the initiation of young people and the commencement of planting season

Social and Cultural Import


In the traditional Isukha and Idakho, the isukuti drums are used for communication of important messages such as the announcement of occurrence such as birth, death, coronation, start of season, war and weddings. Indeed,

African Culture and International Understanding


the glossary of Isukuti songs and dance movements has a way of speaking to the society on many sensitive and topical issues. The composers, choreographers and other practitioners design and highlight the code of ethics for the community and the larger society. They address the aspirations of the individual and the society thus promoting cohesiveness and social integration. As a living heritage of humanity, Isukuti dance connects the society to the invisible world of ancestors thus providing them with the sense of identity and continuity while promoting respect for human creativity and cultural diversity. The Isukuti dance is constructed on the principle of social integration thus possessing the fundamentals for entertainment and promotion of domestic and international tourism.

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In the traditional Isukha and Idakho, the isukuti drums are used for communication of important messages such as the announcement of occurrence such as birth, death, coronation, start of season, war and weddings. Indeed, the glossary of Isukuti songs and dance movements has a way of speaking to the society on many sensitive and topical issues.
The construction of isukuti drums and composition of the accompanying songs is an exclusive undertaking which complements the prospects of creative cultural industries without compromising the essence and creative dynamics of the art form. The Mutiiti component of the isukuti ensemble was and continues to be used for the cleansing of initiates on their passing out parade. According to Mzee Mukalani Musiomi, a renowned drummer, composer, dancer and healer, `the medical practitioners deploy coded rhythmic motifs to declare and announce the status of the initiates upon the completion of the teachings conducted in the seclusion. Indeed, the families of the initiates depend on the guidance of the healer/drummer to accomplish the initiation of their youth. The traditional Isukuti dance involves both men and women doing a diversity of dance movements, all of which are a reflection of the living values of the peoples of Isukha and Idakho communities. The style and mode of performance of isukuti dance movements is based on thematic issues drawn from the function at hand. For example, the isukuti wedding dance movements are

essentially different from the isukuti coronation dance movements. The drum setting is based on the principles of a typical human family with the mother drum playing the quiet rhythmic throbs thus providing the soothing sound that ignites the emotions of the dancer. The father drum is more agile and plays the role of a fulcrum hence forms the centre of action. The drum is used to provide the dynamics of the exposition hence thrills the dancer with the choice of the defining throbs that form the backbone of the entire dance activity. The lead dancer plays the role of choreographer as he determines and sets the momentum and the dance formations at the spur of the moment. He may stay in the formations or pull out as and when the situation demands. Isukuti being a peoples dance, the public are free to step into the dance formations and to participate in the dance activity.

International Recognition
The isukuti dance movements have attracted the attention of the international community in many ways. Many cultural exchange programmes that are initiated across the globe have embraced the cream of isukuti throbs. Isukuti dance troops established within cultural centres are often involved in cultural exchange programmes as part of the bilateral and multilateral cultural relations entered by the government. Isukuti enjoys priority consideration whenever the opportunity to participate in the cultural exchange programmes arises. At the moment, there are several isukuti dance troops based in the diaspora. The renowned Jabali Africa Cultural Group based in the United States of America is a renowned isukuti proponent like the multicultural Adzidos Dance Troop in the United Kingdom, are examples of the many Isukuti dance troops in the diaspora. There are other dance troops based in Kenya and engaged in many cultural exchange travels across the world. According to David Andole, the charismatic leader of the renowned Imachina Dancers of Kakamega, their troop has over the years established partnership with the Mediterranean fraternity through their perennial participation in cultural festivals in Algeria and the wider Mediterranean region. The hosts appreciate the cultural, social and aesthetic values enshrined in the isukuti dance form. The dancers cooperation with the Mediterranean has earned isukuti dance movements greater visibility and admiration abroad, and has given the practitioners some sustenance in terms of income. At the moment the Isukuti dance form has been nominated by the Government of Kenya for inscription

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contend that they love their dance but it is not paying. Yet there are some successful dance groups, for example the renowned Waza Africa Dance Troop has made isukuti their main business and is overly committed to marketing and improvement of the dance. The UNESCO fraternity, within the context of the international conventions for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage and the Convention for the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions, has made provision for international assistance to help member states in the protection and promotion of their heritage. The revival of the UNESCOs International Fund for Promotion of Culture offers a further opportunity for developing countries to safeguard their heritage and package the same through such opportunities as the creative cultural industries.

on the Urgent Safeguarding List of the 2003 UNESCO Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of humanity with the view of augmenting the safeguarding of the art form. When this inscription happens, there would be guaranteed a renewed impetus for the promotion of isukutis viability and onward visibility and mutual respect at the local, national and international arena. The indulgence of local troops, such as, Waza Africa dancers, Imachina Isukuti dancers, the Bomas of Kenya and Musembe dancers, in international events, is an indicator for greater opportunities and viability for the art form and arts practitioners.

Recommendations for Promotion


The viability and visibility of isukuti dance is, no doubt, a guaranteed phenomenon going by the spread of the dance form. Nevertheless, as a cultural expression happening at the advent of globalisation and massive social transformation, isukuti needs very innovative interventions to ensure its protection and ultimate promotion. Members of Imachina Dance Troop agree with the proposal that an Isukuti Dance and Research Centre be established within the Kakamega region to facilitate the collection and documentation of both the intrinsic and extrinsic applications of the dance form. Such institution could provide for continuous inventorying of the dance form while articulating the significance of the element in the contemporary society. The Bomas of Kenya propose that frequent community-based cultural festivals could be the best strategy for the transmission of the dance form to the younger generations and maintenance of its authenticity while at the same time giving the dance form enhanced visibility at the local, national and international levels. According to the Society of Performing Artists of Kenya (SPAK), the isukuti dance form, being a crowd puller, should best be promoted through the recording of its works and strategic packaging to guarantee improved income generation to support the practitioners. SPAK also proposes improvement of legislation in order to guarantee adequate compensation to the communities and the cultural practitioners.

Recommendations for Preservation


The isukuti dance genre is based on the traditional background of the Isukha and Idakho communities. In this respect, it would be prudent to undertake a comprehensive baseline survey to establish the essence and sociocultural significance of the dance form and the most sustainable means of safeguarding it. The preservation of the designated trees for making the instruments is critical. This can be done through planting of many of such trees and nurturing them for utilisation and conservation. A tree planting programme could be incorporated in the proposed community festivals to guarantee consistent revitalisation of the forest cover. The dance element can also be revitalised through enhancement of formal and non-formal education on the construction of the instruments.

Concluding Remarks
While the Isukuti dance movements are exploited by the tourism and entertainment industries, its hoped that the same can be packaged to form the basis of dialogue amongst cultures at the local, national and international levels. This can be undertaken through massive awarenessraising programmes and other interventions conducted within the framework of the international programme on creative cultural industries. The indulgence of development agencies and the international community would guarantee sustenance of this art form as a tool for sustainable human development.

Challenges and Opportunities


Many isukuti practitioners practice it as an extra-curricular activity. They do not engage in fulltime dance programmes or activities as professional or occupational undertaking for which they can depend to improve their daily livelihood. Sometimes the dancers abandon the dance to look for opportunities in other fields. The bulk of these practitioners

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Keeping the Pien Nyadiel Dress Evergreen in Kenya


Silverse Lisamula Anami Silverse Anami is a culture and development Consultant in Kenya. Email: anamisilverse@yahoo.com

he pien nyadiel dress is a traditional cultural masterpiece of the Luo ethnic community of Nyanza Province in western Kenya. It is made of kid goat skin and finished with bead decorations. The dress is made for and worn by renowned celebrities. The additional ornamentations and beadwork are a common practice propagated by celebrities to signify their achievements and status in the society.

functions which sustain the community. In this sense, the bearers have the ultimate obligation to pass the cultural practice on to younger generations. It is specially decorated by beads which are sewn onto the skin by specialised craftsmen. The beadwork has significance to the wearer of the dress and could be interpreted to determine his status. The decorations are highlighted by sensational traditional African motifs mostly dominated by triangular, semi-circle, diamond and linear shapes. The choice of the decorations is based on the historical background and contemporary responsibilities of the wearer. They used animal bones for protection of the wider society. Indeed some of the ornaments were essentially charms that provided the wearers with utmost security. These responsibilities are mostly passed on to the younger generation to guarantee their continuity.

It is specially decorated by beads which are sewn onto the skin by specialised craftsmen. The beadwork has significance to the wearer of the dress and could be interpreted to determine his status. The decorations are highlighted by sensational traditional African motifs mostly dominated by triangular, semicircle, diamond and linear shapes.
In pastoralist life, well-to-do persons wore well-decorated goat skin blended with a calabash monkey head gear. This signified the wearers expediency in the management of public matters. The dress code therefore was a source of identity to the wearer. It was presumed that wealthy pastoralists could afford to extract, from their livestock, the skin of a kid goat for the processing of their prestigious pien nyadiel. The dress was then tailored by specialists to suit the social status that the wearer deserved. The kind of decorations on pien nyadiel symbolised the status of the wearer in society hence it was every mans wish to adorn the symbolic dress for identity and prosperity. As a heritage, the bearer would then be obligated to pass on these achievements to the younger generations as an honour to that lineage.

The late Paramount Chief Ogada of Nyahera, Kisumu District The Luo community has a history of immigration from the Sudan having travelled down south to settle with their livestock along the shores of Lake Victoria. They maintained an elaborate governance system which provided for a visible hierarchy within their social and political spheres. They lived as pastoralists but have over a period of time turned to become agriculturalists and fishermen. Though agriculturalists, members of the Luo community have continued to embrace the use of goat skin, beads and other animal-based ornaments for their adornment, mostly because these designs may have deeper meanings which go beyond the physical world. The dress forms are mostly symbolic artefacts with both intrinsic and extrinsic

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should formulate policy frameworks that should focus on safeguarding and preserving such cultural heritage as pien nyadiel. In the policy frameworks, government should foresee programmes and create institutions that would, on day-to-day basis, explore different ways of preserving the practice. Such programmes would be tailored to offer opportunities for developing cultural industries based on the artefact. Government, having ratified the 2003 UNESCO Convention for Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of humanity, could apply the provisions of the Convention to guarantee safeguarding of the practice at the local, national and international levels.

Suggestions for Promotion


Many traditional practitioners and proponents of the pien nyadiel dress bemoan the disappearance of the dress code, not only for its physical and aesthetic prominence but also for its intrinsic significance in the society. In this regard, it would be essential to connect with the communities concerned in order to elaborate the necessary safeguarding measures that would best be deployed to safeguard, protect and promote the practice. This can be achieved through formal and informal expositions. In safeguarding and promoting the traditional artefacts of communities, therefore, it should be prudent to embrace both the expression and the intrinsic content of the artefact in order to meet the fundamental significance of that cultural practice. According to Mama Grace Onyango (88), the first female Member of Parliament and highly respected for her enormous contribution towards the promotion of the indigenous communities, African governments, in liaison with the communities, cultural practitioners and the civil society, should endeavour to develop an affirmative programme to guarantee wide sensitisation of the people on the essence of their cultural heritage as a strategy to safeguarding, protecting and promoting the richness of the African culture. The cultural practice could also be promoted through cultural exchange programmes which would be useful in raising awareness on the essence, the history and the socio-cultural significance of the practice. This can be achieved through well-coordinated interventions that are aimed at, not only attaining viability but, giving the element visibility beyond the local and national levels.

The promotion of the traditional dress is perennially curtailed by the influx of cheap costumes from developed countries amongst other factors. With the dumping of cheap and easy-to-access fabrics, unfair competition is created to undermine the place of the traditional dress.
Concluding Remarks
A huge proportion of the traditional artefacts in the African continent have suffered great destruction owing to the historical episodes that have riddled the continent in the form of slave trade, colonialism, missionary interventions, political strive, radical social transformation, and disease. The reverse of the circumstances that have been created by these occurrences has been an illusion to many African communities thus calling for an urgent and affirmative action by African governments to restore the African aspirations in the fast changing global society.

Challenges and Opportunities


The promotion of the traditional dress is perennially curtailed by the influx of cheap costumes from developed countries amongst other factors. With the dumping of cheap and easy-to-access fabrics, unfair competition is created to undermine the place of the traditional dress. The competition created by imported fabrics is obviously skewed in favour of the modern dress code as the same does not serve the intrinsic applications of the traditional outfit. In this respect, the designers of modern fabrics could be called upon to incorporate aspects of the pien nyadiel in the modern dress thus satisfying the traditional aspirations engrained in the creation of the said dress.

Suggested Ways of Preservation


Many cultural practitioners feel that there is lacking appropriate legislation that would inspire the preservation of traditional artefacts. They propose that governments

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The Lisabi Forest: Ecosystem Protected and Promoted by African Cultural Practices
Ayo Tella Ayo Tella is a globally-acclaimed environmentalist and Promoter of Initiative for Nature and Human Development (INHD). Email: ay_tella@yahoo.com

attention is needed to repel the attack of foreign invaders, the chain should be pulled and he would reappear. After his transition, Lisabi has enjoyed honour and is celebrated as a cultural icon. The forest becomes a cultural relic where burning, farming and hunting are banned.

isabi forest, an uncultivated, biodiversity rich forest is located in Degesin village close to Oba-Eerin village, along Abeokuta-Oba road under Obafemi/Owode local government in Ogun State, southwest Nigeria. It is protected and promoted by cultural practices. It is about 15 kilometres from Moshood Abiola Polytechnic located at Ojere. The forest covers a large expanse of land with a section of Ogun River running through it. It has various indigenous species of timber and shrubs which serve as carbon sink. The forest also has various species of animals including grass cutter, antelope and snakes especially python, cobra and black mamba. These animals enjoy full freedom due to lack of poaching. With its lushness, the forest is a sight to behold with no sign or sound of tree felling except movements of animal species or choruses of birds. The forest is named after a great warrior called Lisabi.

Lisabi and his warriors The forest suffers no degradation. No single item in the ecosystem is tampered with during the period of worship. Rather, items such as goat, kolanut, bitter kola, palm oil, snail, wild guinea fowl and gin are brought in and used for worship. Eulogies, encomiums and praises are showered to honour the great Lisabi. A high chief called Apena (messenger of peace) provides detailed information on Lisabi, and the forest ecosystem. His depth of knowledge enables tourists to appreciate the role Lisabi played in the history of the Egbas and how the cultural practice encourages humans to respect and appreciate nature. In honour of Lisabi, all Egbas including those in the diaspora, come together to honour their hero. Tourists worldwide pay homage to him. They also see and enjoy the richness of Lisabi forest biodiversity. The forest which suffers no pollution with ambience that has therapeutic effect has today become a tourist destination of reckoning. Annually, a day (called Lisabi Day) is set aside in the month of February to honour and celebrate Lisabi. All markets are closed and all roads lead to Lisabi forest in a carnival. The carnival atmosphere engenders unity among the Egbas. This celebration further confirms Lisabi as an object of veneration. The forest resources are protected with the added advantage of its canopy serving as carbon sink which helps in curbing global warming or a steady rise in the temperature of the earth. The king and the chiefs of the village where Lisabi forest is located confirmed that three communities in Egba (namely Igbeyin, Itoku and Agooba) play unique roles in worshipping and honouring Lisabi during celebration. It is indeed an abomination to degrade the forest. The villagers take pride in protecting the ecosystem.

Lisabi Forest A cultural icon and an object of veneration, Lisabi stood by and defended his tribe, called the Egbas (in southwest Nigeria), against the incursion of Alaafin (the king of Oyo empire) and his Ilaris (the kings representatives). According to history, Lisabi with his tribesmen waged war against the Alaafin and emerged victorious. Although, this victory earned him great honour, respect and love, yet he became a subject of envy. His detractors planned for his demise but he mysteriously vanished into the bowels of the earth at a place known today as Lisabi forest. For ease of locating him and heed the call of his people (the Egbas) during transition, he left behind a chain with the instruction that anytime his

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Local and international print and electronic media should give more coverage to the annual celebration of Lisabi Day. This will promote the culture of environmental protection and place Lisabi forest as a tourist destination of reckoning worldwide. The current practice of delivering public lectures on the Lisabi forest and on Lisabi Day as well as providing scholarship to deserving indigenes should be sustained.

Till date, the biodiversity in Lisabi forest is preserved, protected and admired. Visit to the forest, which boasts of abundant species of flora and fauna, encourages humans to appreciate conservation and the need to live in harmony with nature. The inclusion of activities such as promotion of scholarship and annual pounded yam festival add a lot of glamour to Lisabi Day celebration.

Current Safeguard Measures


The ban on burning, farming and hunting in Lisabi forest protects its biodiversity. All the species of organisms enjoy full freedom. A tour of the forest can be done but with the permission of the king or Oba, his Balogun (war chief) and other chiefs. Forest guards take tourists round showing various species of medicinal plants and their level of potency in curing ailments. Tourists are made to understand that severe penalties await anybody that degrades or violates the rule of no burning, farming or hunting in the forest. Such offenders will not escape being punished by the gods.

Thumbs up for Indigenous Bone-setting in Nigeria


Ayo Tella Ayo Tella is a globally-acclaimed environmentalist and Promoter of Initiative for Nature and Human Development (INHD). Email: ay_tella@yahoo.com

Till date, the biodiversity in Lisabi forest is preserved, protected and admired. Visit to the forest, which boasts of abundant species of flora and fauna, encourages humans to appreciate conservation and the need to live in harmony with nature.
Current Promotion Measures
The annual celebration of Lisabi Day has gained popularity. A big communication company in Africa, GLOBACOM (popularly called Glo), provides huge resources to support, promote and elevate the celebration so that it could gain more international recognition. The Ogun State Ministry of Culture and Tourism and the local government that habours the forest provide information to tourists and the general public especially during the annual celebration.

Suggestions for Continued Safeguard


The ban on burning, farming and hunting should be sustained so that the forest biodiversity should enjoy continuous protection. Since poaching is banned, people living in the village close to Lisabi forest should engage in artisanal farming outside the forest. Rearing of games like grass cutter, rabbits and so on should be encouraged. This will provide them an alternative source of bush meat (games) for animal protein.

raditional bone setters are often patronised by those who have bone fractures. Such patients are driven to the bone clinic either because of cost or, in particular, the efficacy of the practice as they are not left with serious complications after treatment. Patients once recommended for amputation by modern orthopaedic hospitals/doctors are often treated and redeemed by traditional bone setters. To study the practice in greater detail, the S. A. Okuntimehin Bone Clinic was selected as a case. The clinic is located at 5/6, Akintan Close, near Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) Satellite Depot, Ejigbo, Lagos, southwest Nigeria. The medical director of the clinic is S. A. Okuntimehin. Solomon Akin Okuntimeyin, inherited the practice from his late mother, Mrs. Fibian Olooreomayo who died at the age of 102 after a successful practice. The practice runs in the family. The legacy (over 100 years) in the science of traditional bone setting is transferred from his grandfather, Meshach Akinte (native doctor) to his mother, Mrs. Fibian Olooreomayo (nee Akinte). In his practice, S. A. Okuntimehin also involves his children making it a practice transferred from one generation to another. Today, the name of Okuntimehin family in traditional bone setting is well revered in Nigeria. Cases of bone setting that cannot be treated by modern orthopaedic hospitals are referred to S. A. Okuntimehin Bone Clinic. Hence, the medical director, S. A. Okuntimehin (native doctor) is popularly known as Dr. Bone (Baba bone).

African Culture and International Understanding The Bone-Setting Process


The clinic has registration desk and separate wards for male and female patients. Depending on the degree of damage to the bone, various items are used for treatment. They include wooden planks, bamboo, matted props (made of bamboo and/or raffia stem cuttings), twine, shea butter, medicinal plants, cotton wool, and crepe bandage. Clinical equipment include bowls, scissors and forceps. In most cases, patients are brought to the clinic on emergency. After registration, the points of injury are properly cleansed. Cases with very deep cut are stitched before bone setting begins. The composition of materials used for bone setting depends on the level of damage (fracture) to the bone. Minor fracture requires the use of matted props (with bamboo and/or raffia cuttings) while multiple fracture could involve using planks to properly reposition the bone. In line with the practice of traditional bone setting, no Plaster of Paris (POP) is used. Yet, the healing process has always been complete with no complication. The practice has undergone some evolution. Modernisation has encouraged the introduction of modern equipment and drugs. For instance, in order to observe good hygiene and prevent infection, todays traditional bone setters use protective gadgets such as hand gloves and nose guards, modern clinical materials and even encourage their patients to take analgesics to ease pain. In-patients are kept in clean wards with modern amenities.

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discredit this practice. The Medical Director of the clinic affirmed that complicated cases from modern orthopaedic hospitals far and near are referred to his clinic including those with little or no hope. Such cases have been treated with commendation from patients so affected. Comments from the patients confirmed the competence of the clinic especially in treating serious cases. Some even claim that if not for the efficacy of the materials used in treating their cases, they would have been amputated.

Current Status of Practice


Several decades ago, fractured parts of the body were bound with peels from banana trunk or sticks and rope. Today, crepe bandage and other items are used. Some members of the elite class patronise traditional bone setters due to the potency of the materials (especially herbs) used for treatment and patients are discharged with no serious complications. The practice of traditional bone setting is fast gaining popularity. As a fact, some modern doctors do not hesitate to refer cases beyond their control to traditional bone setters.

Current Safeguard Measures


Practitioners ensure that the medicinal plants and other local materials like bamboo and/or raffia stem cuttings used for treatment are not endangered. The Association of Trado-Medical Bonesetters adheres to the code of conduct that guides the practice and violators do not go unpunished. The composition of herbs used in the healing process remains the intellectual property of the practitioners.

Current Promotion Measures


The association seeks support of the media in creating awareness on the efficacy of their treatment/services. They also extend their hands of fellowship to government for support and recognition to further promote the practice. Government should continue to encourage both traditional bone setters and modern orthopaedic doctors to frequently organise workshop and brainstorm on ways to promote the practice. Without compromising its mode of practice, the more literate new practitioners are involved, the more it is promoted with the added advantage of gaining international recognition.

A patient in the clinic


The practice has become very relevant in todays world. The use of highly potent medicinal plants and healing balms not only make healing process fast but also leaves no serious complications. For instance there are cases, albeit, written off by modern orthopaedic hospitals but redeemed by traditional bone clinics. Despite the non-inclusion of Plaster of Paris (POP), the use of crepe bandage and matted props (made of bamboo and/or raffia stem cuttings) do not

Suggestions for Safeguard


In order to protect, preserve and sustain the practice of bone setting, its practitioners should keep records of success stories especially those of patients once sentenced for amputation by modern orthopaedic hospitals but

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The media is expected to give more attention to the promotion of traditional medicine. Botanical gardens and large scale cultivation of local herbs used in treatment should be encouraged. This will guarantee a continuous source of raw material for the practice. Government should encourage traditional bonesetters to organise annual exhibition showcasing the efficacy of their practice. Awards should be given to those who make new discoveries and excel in the practice.

treated and redeemed by traditional bone setters. The association should establish good standard and prevent the entry of quacks that will discredit the practice. Transfer of bone setting technology from parents to children should be sustained. Government should accord this practice more recognition and encourage both traditional and modern orthopaedic doctors to be partners in progress.

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About the Institute


The Institute for African Culture and International Understanding, a UNESCO Category 2 Institute of the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library (OOPL), Abeokuta, Ogun State was approved by the Executive Board of UNESCO in October 2008 and formally commissioned at its OOPL site on January 9, 2009 by Koichiro Matsuura, the immediate-past Director-General of UNESCO. The Governing Board of the Centre chaired by HE Dr. Christopher Kolade, was inaugurated on March 4, 2009.

Vision
The vision of the Institute is to increase inter-cultural dialogue and international understanding between Africa and other civilisations.

Mission
The mission of the institute is to preserve Africas cultural heritage, promote and strengthen renaissance in African cultures both at the regional and international levels.

Aims of the Institute


The institute aims at: raising awareness among stakeholders at the national, regional and international levels about the important role played by cultural diversity and its corollary, intercultural dialogue, for social cohesion in pluralistic societies; facilitating the network of sister institutions working in these fields and inducing relevant academic and scientific studies; providing a platform of genuine cooperation for specialists in African culture; providing capacity-building through the promotion of knowledge-sharing about spiritual and other religious traditions and their underlying values in order to strengthen harmonious coexistence; and highlighting the values of diversity and dialogue by studying tangible and intangible heritage as well as contemporary cultural expressions in the African region and the Diaspora (through inventories and catalogues, including in digitised form, disseminating and exhibiting collections and other relevant materials).

Governing Board
Dr. Christopher Kolade (Chairman). Members: Ambassador Dr. Mary M. Khimulu, Ambassador Denise Houphouet-Boigny, Ambassador Mohamed Sameh Amr, Ambassador Dolana Msimang, Dr. Joseph Ngu Country Rep. UNESCO; Mr. George Ufot (Representative of the Permanent Secretary Federal Ministry of Culture, Tourism and National Orientation), Professor Peter Okebukola; Sultan of Sokoto Muhammad Saad Abubakar III, Prof. Oye Ibidapo-Obe.

Secretariat
Professor Peter Okebukola (Ag. Director), Omotayo Ikotun, Vitalis Ortese, Damian Oyibo, Oladiran Olaniyi, Akintayo Peters, Tunde Sobola

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Vol 2. No. 1

African Culture and International Understanding

Institute for African Culture and International Understanding Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library Oke-mosan, Abeokuta, Nigeria Tel: +2348022904423; +2348023400030 Website: www.iaciu-oopl.org

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Editor
Peter A. Okebukola

Editorial Office
Editorial Office Institute for African Culture and International Understanding Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library Oke-mosan, Abeokuta, Nigeria Tel: +2348022904423; +2348023400030 Website: www.iaciu-oopl.org

Invitation to Potential Authors


Invitation to Potential Authors We welcome articles and reports for publication in the journal. Such articles should be succinct and should convey messages in line with the aims and objectives of the Institute. Articles should be sent to peter@okebukola.com.

Disclaimer
The opinions expressed in the articles in this journal are those of the authors and do not represent the official view of the Institute. Institute for African Culture and International Understanding, OOPL, Abeokuta