Deena on 3 Oct 2000 21:54:52 -0000

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<nettime> [Fwd: articles and poems for publications]


I apologize for the late forward, but I have been travelling constantly and
have not been able to keep up with my correspondance.  Would anyone know of a
place to publish these articles on Africa?


Deena Larsen
Come on over to explore the amazing possibilities in hypertext
 [headited @ nettime]

Subject: articles and poems for publications
Date: Wed, 06 Sep 2000 05:10:56 GMT


Dear Editor

My name is Handsen Chikowore and I am a young  man aged twenty three. I have 
send my four poems and two articles which I hope you are going to publish. 
Please reply me and inform me whether you will publish my articles or  not.  
You can also refer  to someone whom you know can publish my articles by 
either forwarding my articles to him or her or by send me his or her e-mail 
address so that I will contact him or her.. There are four poems and two 
articles God bless you. I  write articles to inform , educate ,entertain as 
well as raising my standards of living when I am paid for my articles. 
Please reply me. Thank you so much in advance.


The killer disease AIDS has  caused poverty in many African nations and 
nearly one thousand  people are dying weekly in Zimbabwe s. Africa has the 
highest number of people infected with HIV-Aids , with about 33.2 million 
people , while Sub-Saharan Africa alone, Zimbabwe included , top the list 
.Christians have come together  with ideas and solutions to reduce the 
impact of AIDS in Zimbabwe as they have seen that it is not the government 
alone which should fight against this deadly diseases but it is everyone’s 
responsibility. This disease has affected people economically and one of the 
most surprise thing is that there are many orphans who are struggling to 
make ends meet after the death of their parents.

Some churches as they have seen that  Zimbabwe faces serious pressure on the 
provision of public health sector services, have  assisted the government in 
awareness campaign of this deadly disease by the provision of funds and 
building clinics and hospitals. This means that apart from preaching , 
churches are playing a pivotal role in assisting the health sector. Other 
individual christians , having seen the impact of Aids to the orphans ,  
have formed  childrens homes for the orphans. These people have actually 
demonstrated that christianity does not only mean going to church every 
Sunday but it means showing  your christianity in societies where you live.

Some churches are identifying the poorest members in the society and are 
assisting them with food and clothing . Other church members are pledging to 
send orphans to school from primary education to secondary education which 
is a great thing indeed. These principles and values which christians are 
demonstrating should be done in other African countries where a lot of 
people are dying of Aids. Christians should  continue with their teachings 
on Aids and  encourage people abstain from sex before marriage.

2.“Africa has the strength and resources for all its people to lift 
themselves out of poverty into a life of  prosperity and dignity.”
Poverty is a complex and multi-dimensional phenomenon involving people’s 
lack of empowerment as well as their lack of income as basics. In terms of 
natural resources , Africa is the world’s richest continent . It has fifty 
percent of the world’s gold , most of the world’s diamond and chromium , 
ninety percent of the cobalt , forty percent of the world hydro-electrical 
power , sixty five percent of the world’s manganese , millions of acres of 
untilled farmland as well as other natural resources. Despite its wealth of 
resources, Africa is  home to the world’s most impoverished people. Africa 
which was a net food exporter , has become a net food importer since the 
early 1960’s.

Firstly, environmental factors coupled with human activities have 
contributed to poverty in Africa. These include drought, land degradation, 
desertification and poor soil structure. Africa is a continent suffering 
from degradation of its natural resources base through overcropping without 
supply of appropriate inputs to the land, overgrazing and deforestation. 
This damage, combined with the progressive depletion of much arable land in 
Africa through continued cropping with little or no replenishment of plant 
nutrients , has resulted in a loss of land productivity and contributed to 
widespread  poverty and food insecurity. Tropical forests in Africa are 
being lost at an escalating rate . Since large areas in all sub-regions of 
Africa , except the centre have an arid , semi arid or dry subhumid climate 
desertification affect food security and sustainable  livelihoods. 
Dersertification also reduces the land available for production. For 
instance , food production in Africa declined in the past decade due to 
unavailability of arable land for agricultural purposes.

Poor soil structure also reduced food production in Africa. Due to this , a 
large share of African population has become absolutely poor. Hunger and 
undernutrition are widespread , particularly among women and children. Poor 
methods of farming caused poverty in  Africa and these include overcropping 
, monoculture , cultivation near river banks  as well as ploughing along the 
slopes. These factors also affected the availability of water for  household 
, food production and livestock. Since poverty is the deprivation of basic 
necessities of life, these factors have deprived many African societies of 
water and food.

Prosperity and dignity can and will be achieved in Africa by introducing 
policy reforms .
Economic and incentives to farmers through price , trade and foreign 
exchange liberalization , land tenure empowering women , promotion of role 
of private sector in food production. There should be measures taken to 
enhance production , distribution and storage of  food , research on modern 
and traditional technologies to increase crop yields and livestock 
productivity, strengthening extension services to reach a larger communities 
of small farmers. Apart from that there should be improvement of input 
supply services and credit facilities , improvement in transport and 
communications as well as minimization of food losses through improved 
processing and storage facilities.

Prosperity can also be achieved by establishment of national and regional 
famine early warning mechanisms , creation of institutional activities for 
responding to crises , such as relief and rehabilitation commissions , the 
creation of emergency food reserves  and improvements in vulnerability 
assessments aimed at better targeting most needy regions and households for 
humanitarian assistance. There should be protection and enhancement of 
productivity of natural resource base that constitute for many African 
countries the capital for economic and social developments.

The other thing which must be done to get out of poverty are to sensitize 
and secure commitments from the international community to support the 
development and implementation of natural and sub-regional action programmes 
to combat desertification , assist in formulating and establishing 
innovative mechanism to channel resources to strengthen the efforts of local 
communities in countries affected by drought and desertification.

There should be monitoring and controlling of methods of farming and those 
found against the rules should dealt with. Stern measures should be 
implemented to avoid unnecessary cutting down of trees. Other sources of 
energy should be used in place of firewood such as biogas and solar energy.

In order to achieve prosperity in terms of water management, these measures 
should be put in place and are reviewing and reform of national water 
resources development and irrigation policies and strategies , including 
water legislation and institutional reforms in such a manner that they are 
compatible with broader national development and agricultural policies as 
well as encouraging adoption of appropriate technologies , management 
practices , economic incentives and institutional measures to increase water 
use efficiency.

Other natural disasters such as  floods and winds also cause poverty in 
Africa . These disasters causes homelessness and destroy clothing which in 
turn causes poverty. Dignity  and prosperity can be achieved through 
establishment of national and regional floods warning mechanisms.

Political instability and civil wars also causes poverty in  Africa. They 
actually slow growth in food production and also prevent access to basic 
commodities through disrupting transport and communications. In order to 
reduce poverty associated with civil wars , Africans should be taught that 
war is not the only solution but it adds more problems , sufferings , hunger 
and starvation.

Poverty is also caused by the low status of women in many African societies. 
Women who produce the bulk of food are not empowered. Eighty percent of 
women in African rural areas have no access to land yet land is one of the  
means for feeding the family
Since food is one of the basic needs of  life , women should be empowered 
through access to assets and productive resources such as land , credit 
facilities , technology training and markets as well as enabling them to 
participate in political forces that shape their lives.

Shortage of shelter or accommodation is another thing causing poverty in 
Africa. Quite a large number of people in Africa have no decent 
accommodation . Some live in house made of plastics  where they do not have 
enough blankets to keep them warm. The causes of shortage of shelter are the 
demands for houses especially in urban areas. Economic hardships faced by 
other African counties have forced people to live without decent 
accommodation . Some live in areas where there are no  good sanitary 
In order for dignity to be maintained , the government should build 
multi-storey houses in urban areas. There is need for the government to 
establish low income housing projects  so that the poor can afford to own 

The killer disease AIDS have caused poverty in Africa in different ways. 
These include over-stretching the few health facilities available and 
therefore depriving other people of the health facilities. Many people in 
Africa fail to access health facilities because of this disease. The other 
way in which AIDS has caused  poverty in Africa include the death of many 
breadwinners in the family living the children of tender ages to sustain 
The major vehicle to achieve significant health improvement will be health 
sector reform in all countries in Africa. The major component of the reform 
are improved financial resources mobilization, and allocation of improved 
management of health services and resources as well as  increasing equality 
to help the last village achieve a reasonable degree of health. The most 
important condition or success of  health reform is country ownership of 
both the reform process and programme. The reform needs to ensure an 
adequate access by all populations to an essential level of care and support 
services and result in resolution of country specific priority health 

Unemployment is another major cause of poverty in Africa. For instance , in 
Zimbabwe unemployment is around fifty percent. In order to reduce 
unemployment , there should be an establishment of micro-finance project of 
which the unemployed can start small income generating projects. Many people 
especially women and youth should gain access to credit enabling them to 
start income earning enterprises such as small farms and handicraft 
industries. The primary approach to address this area must be through  
measures , since direct assistance to individuals can only benefit a portion 
of those in need. Improvements in both sides of the  supply demand are 
needed for a better enabling environment for sustainable livelihoods.

Government systems cause poverty in Africa. This means that government need 
to expand people’s choices and allow them to participate in decisions 
affecting their lives. Systems of government that are required should 
encourages peoples involvement in decision –making stimulate economic growth 
and ensure that the benefits of that growth reach all segments of society. 
Key things should be free and fair elections , freedom of association and 
participation , an independent judiciary , bureaucratic accountability , 
freedom of information , effective and efficient public sector management 
and government interaction with organisation of civil society.

Economic situations in some of African countries have contributed to 
poverty.  High inflation , high interest rates and price increases of basic 
commodities. Due to exorbitant prices of basic commodities , many people 
fail buy the basic commodities an therefore causing poverty. In order for 
dignity and prosperity to be achieved , the government should control prices 
of basic commodities or subsidize. Economic reforms need to be further 
deepened. There should be a programme set up to support the decentralisation 
of rural development through the restructuring of agricultural extension 
services for a greater participation of local communities. This include the 
transfer of centralised functions to local and regional co-operation. There 
should be human resources development to ensure access of vulnerable groups 
to basic services.

Poverty of  unavailability of basic education for children is another thing 
haunting Africa. Most children in Africa lack basic education. Since 1990, 
slow but steady progress towards education for all has been made in most 
regions of the world . Africa is the one outstanding exception. Despite the 
critical importance of education , about half of the African adults are 
illeterate. To achieve prosperity and dignity , due attention should be 
given to skills training for unemployed urban youth , and the adults 
literacy programmes and appropriate measures to sustain literacy through 
different aspects of non-formal education. If present education trends 
persist the number of illiterate or under-educated adults will grow , as 
high proportion of children do not attend primary schools. The first step 
therefore towards a long solution to this vicious circle of illiteracy is to 
provide basic education for all. This will gradually reduce the number of 
illiterates , produce students well prepared for further education and 
provide the people with basic knowledge and skills.

Religion to a lesser extent has contributed to poverty in Africa. Some 
churches do not allow its followers to go to the hospital and these deprive 
members of the church access to health facilities. There are methods of 
marriages which are still practiced by different societies in Africa whereby 
children under the age of thirteen are forced to marry . This will actually 
create poverty as they become mothers and fathers who will not able to feed 
the family well and to give basic commodities to their families. Sometimes 
they drop out of schools without acquiring basic education. In order for 
dignity to be achieved churches which do not allow members to go to the 
hospital must be banned and some methods of marriage which is against the 
rights of the children must also be illegal.

Poverty can be better overcome if the poor themselves are mobilized and 
allowed to choose suitable ways to improve their living conditions . The 
best people placed to attack poverty are the poor themselves. Once mobilized 
, people can themselves choose the direction in which they wish to move and 
sources of their deprivation. Experience has shown that poor communities do 
not need to be led. As opportunities emerge , they will produce their own 
leaders and set their own pace. For development efforts to be sustainable , 
they must begin by fitting within the economic , cultural  and social 
parameters established by communities .

Conclusively , poverty is the deprivation of basic necessities and in Africa 
it is caused by land degradation , illiteracy , drought , deforestation , 
food insecurity , gender inequality and it can be eradicated through  
establishment of microfinance for small businesses , introducing education 
for all policy , women empowerment , drought management , land degradation 
and desert control and soil quality improvement.

Africa ,Africa Africa
Our beloved continent cries
Problems, troubles haunt the continent
This is the voice of the Africans

In Mozambique
Floods destroyed infrastructure
Outbreak of diseases haunt the nation
Roads and bridges are non -existent
Please help poor Mozambique

In Zimbabwe
We need investors
We want employment creators
Zimbabwe a country with resources
For those who need real investments

In South Africa
Thousands are dying weekly
We talk of AIDS daily
Orphans are increasing daily
We cry for God’s mercy

We talk of war
Peace agreements being breached
We cry for peace in Africa
Peace peace in DRC

In Kenya
We talk of hunger and starvation
Emanating from prolonged drought
Food resources are scarce
We really need urgent help
This is the voice of Africa

Day in day out I am always suffering
No permanent place to sleep
Hunger, hunger my stomach complains
The mouth always dry
Bins are the sources of my food
Clothes are tattered and torn
When I cry for help , no one come to my rescue

Everyday I am always shouting
Begging in the city centre streets
Where the riches do their shopping
Sometimes I don’t because of weakness and hunger
They always scold me and neglect me

I walk barefooted
My teeth always dirt
My hair scruffy
No toothpaste and soap available
I use water from public places

My fellows go to school
Whilst I am busy walking in the streets
My relatives denied me
I am an opharn
I have no one to care for me

When I  seek help from churches
They say we have no money
They think I am insane
I hope one day in my life
God will rescue me
>From this bondage of poverty

Up in the azure sky
Shoots the sun’s rays
Rises to meet another day
Another promise
To me its not yet any hope
As each day brings more problems
Which trouble a thirteen year old girl

Setting alight fire early morning
Sweeping the sheets of dust and dirt early morning
A beast of burden for firewood so I am  bound
All those long distances I have to walk
A throbbing ever throbbing pain to my foot
With the baby clinging on my yonder back

The thorn infested forests
The meandering long walks to boreholes and wells
The back breaking dreary buckets full of water
Its so tiresome my body sweats
Its so punishing my body cannot endure

All African girls
Cry for your rights
The rape, torture and victimisation
Our life an eerie furnace of denied paradise
A sad song of denied education
I am so weary, Oh weary, So weary
A breath for fresh air cometh not
Don’t fall African girls
Up and fight
Yearn for another life
Another era.


Our country
Our nation
Our territory
Our dwelling
Have suffered long enough
May you cancel our debt please
Zimbabweans are destitute
Companies are closing up
The dollar weaken daily
Prices of basic commodities
Are sky rocketing daily
Please cancel the debt
The economy is ailing
Trading is becoming less and less
Foreign currency no longer available
Imports are now limited
Poverty, poverty is the daily song
We are in true economic quagmire
Please cancel our debts
Breadwinners are jobless
De-investments at its peak
Unemployment ever-increasing
Mines are closing down
Owing to forex shortages
Please cancel our debt
You the rich giver and the lender
Consider our problems seriously
Have mercy on the masses of Zimbabwe
Health institution faces drug shortages
For the sake of development
We need your best support
Cancel our debt please

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