Monthly Archives: May 2017
Its 20th May. National day. For some obvious reasons so people don’t want to celebrate today because they don’t feel they are included in it but for old times sake,for good times sake and for third term’s sake lets look back at the memories that turn older today.
Squint your eyes and look up. You may just see yourself a couple of decades ago in a shirt with the most elaborate spider web lines ironed behind. Or a little straight gown. Lets not even talk about the white socks. One of the best parts was the money. It felt like a cheque that came with a silent “spoil yourself”. So there you are in the field in blue,green or which ever Colour was the theme of your primary school days,feeling ecstatic,surrounded by choices of what to “spend” on. Ice cream,candy, chewing gum,biscuits,sugarcane,play games of chance to win Fanta or double your money or pay for a bicycle ride. How can we forget our very own almighty Alaska- Coloured ice our systems could not do without. For a moment your 4 hours in the field felt like childhood heaven. Most of what you see is more kids like happy n happily spending in their little crews with so much care to make the most of the money they have and the sweet things they buy.Who could imagine what 20th May meant? Few were lucky to even define a nation then. What was important to remember was the way back home obviously dirty looking but in one piece then mama and daddy can give you the national day version of “this child why are you like this?”. Good old times. Some of the things that fled away with the flock of time.
You can look down now,and look around. Before we all grew up into the politics of the matter I think we can agree those were good old days and those were great times.
What was your experience? Share with the team. Lets reminisce together.
By Sylvia Waindim
It’s because of the narratives and stories we get which makes it okay for Africans to be okay.
It’s not okay to be in this deep pit of routine ignorance. We have to change this and that time is now. We are big, bigger than what you ever think.
As Ngozi Chimamanda says “We should all be feminist” I say “we should all be entrepreneurs”. This is what’s going to save us from mental slavery, it’s not alright for us to have start small and stay small… We need to unlock our thinking, it’s not OK to be Road side vendors and peti business men and women. What we need to do is to own the place the produces what we sell, own the road infrastructure that moves the products, own the retail infrastructure that sells the food and own the banking system that transects the whole platform and why not take the taxes as well
A radically new form of thinking which is based on entrepreneurship philosophy is the the way forward.
We can seat back and blame colonialism for all the malice but that isn’t the real problem of why we aren’t doing what we are supposed to do, the real problem is understanding our ecosystem/ communities and the life cycle of entrepreneurship.
What makes the West and now Asia great is because of the huge fund vested on venture capital called patient money, this is use to invest in small and medium sized businesses which have high growth potential.
We need six things to succeed
Access to markets
Have you ever thought of what top talents does to Africa?
Most of the talented and brilliant minds from Africa ate been praised for their works dome outside of Africa, this kills the growth potential of our economies. How do we bring them to build what is jointly ours there is a huge mass of knowledge in the African diaspora.
Reshaping this has to start by us building long lasting businesses, created from profound philosophies that is aimed at liberating us from poverty.
We need to create our institutions in the philosophy space and the reward is higher and they are much different because we create businesses for lifestyle and trying to look successful meanwhile we are in debts.
We have to uphold the principle of delayed gratification which limits the ability of getting something now, for the pleasure of being able to have something bigger and better.
Nzonda Fotsing Kenneth
Entrepreneur and Critical Thinker
Twenty years from now it will be possible and twenty years ago it would have been practically impossible.
“Twenty years from now, you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than the ones you did. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the harbour. Catch the trade winds in your sails. EXPLORE. DREAM. DISCOVER”
What If you had the means and the resource to create the kind of life you want, what if you were opportune to meet all the people you have ever wish to meet in your life time? What would you tell them, what if you had the chance to change the world and the narrative of how the people of color have always been looked at? What’s that one very important thing that you will do?
The world is evolving each passing second and things are changing with just a blink of an eye. Where we stand today and the things you do when no one is watching are going to be the predetermined actions of our overlapping future of people from a continent that has been branded as the most poorest, highly indebted, disease infested, weak political and socio-economic institutions, less industrious and the list is long
That has been the narrative of how the African people or black people in general for centuries till date.
There is a new breed of people (outliers) who are disrupting this narrations and reshaping our destinies as African people this people I call entrepreneurs, reason why I say we should all be entrepreneurs in oder to make the whole process easier and the tackle it from a continental front.
We need to assert ourselves in order to create communities build by ourselves for us and for our generations to come, there is no need fighting with other races in order to make our voices heard, we just need to seat back and create a better future for our children and their generations. We need only ourselves to get there and I say affirmatively that if we are working hard enough, we will not have the time to seek for help or fight for what we deserve but we will earn it.
For how much long are we going to seat back and be happy about the status quo that exists, a status quo which put the black community as the recipients of all forces sharing the global…
(To be continued…) part 2 drops soon…
…and as always, thanks for reading
I believe a lot of women, if not all have once heard this comment or read it from a man “If I be be na woman ehh, the kind money wey I for don get am”. It makes me laugh all the time. So I will permit myself to ask this question, “Wetin you for do?” It’s hilarious because to every man who gave me that statement, I asked that question, yet, none gave me a concrete response. I am, however, still very interested in getting an answer. Are they advising us to…sell our bodies? (LOL). Yet, the same women are slut-shamed for dating a man who could coincidentally be influential or least again, for a reason I don’t understand, using the dog filter on Snapchat. “The kind money wey you for don get am” is it from the highly sexualised women in music videos or sleeping with your boss to have a promotion. It is very difficult even for some of the smartest men I know, to acknowledge the fact that women could actually be better in other things than in the kitchen and “the other room”. I have another friend of mine, K, whose intelligence practically intimidates me. I can’t say anything next to him without being sure and certain it is true and holding a whole folder of tangible facts. He too has been exposed to a lot of different cultures and people and I actually think he is too smart for all the books he could ever read. Yet, K, according to his lifestyle, believes that women can be smart, no doubt, but prefers them for his erotic gratification. He is, conversely, a very professional man, focused and motivated yet worryingly sexist. K, in spite of our different point of views on the significance of womenfolk, remains an inspiration and a spur to me.
The value of women has been exalted with the years. We now have the right to education, we can have professional lives (on a general scale), we can permit ourselves to talk in the midst of men (still on a general scale) and even engage in politics. Nevertheless, we will have a problem if we said we have gender equivalence. Some men, will read the previous sentence and say I am wanting too much. I have a friend with whom I had a similar argument in the comment section on a Facebook post I made. We got to a point when he said that all we want is for Hillary Clinton to be elected president of the U.S. because she is a woman. He actually meant we had to be satisfied with the fact that she was even given the right to discuss politics. Firstly, why would I be satisfied with the fact that Hillary C. was, at least, in the race? Who has it ever killed to be ruled by a woman? Secondly, Hillary did not have to win because she is a woman. She did not launch her campaign with her vagina but with her intellects. If she had to win, it should have been because she was made eligible for the post by the U.S citizens.
As a final point, I am not trying to raise an “anti-men in business” campaign or poke their ego, absolutely not. All I am trying to orate is that, it is time we unlearn the old and learn the new. You will tell me “Our fore-fathers lived this way and they were happy with it” but we are not our fore-fathers. We are a new generation, with new aptitudes, mind-sets and technologies. We can only be receptive to change. We have accepted to use the electric blender, the gas cooker, the computers and the internet, what will it take to accept the full emancipation of the womenfolk? Can we someday proudly say “My wife is the bread winner” “My girlfriend invited me for dinner” or “My sister just offered me a job”? The world is changing and culture as well and in the words of Chimamanda N. A. I will say “Culture does not make people. People make culture. If it is true that the true humanity of women is not our culture, then we can and must make it our culture.”
Thanks for reading…
Author : PAOLA Gobina
In the next phase, you have to be ACCEPTED. It is very rare to find a man who has to introduce himself as “a man in business” yet, very current with women. Back in secondary school, our teacher once asked us to create a business in groups of five. The groups were formed out of reshuffling the class list and I found myself to be the only girl in the group where I belonged. It was one of the most infuriating experiences I ever had especially when I would give up a great idea but it would only be cheered when, Fouda, one of the group members repeated it. He was speedily made the group leader and was awarded extra marks at the end of the session for his involvement and “his” prodigious concepts. Heavens know it took phenomenal efforts for me not to burst out of indignation in front of the class. I went back home that day completely disorientated and finally blamed it on the probable fact that I had hitches in appropriately expressing my ideas. Maybe he just used better words which helped him get my ideas across better than I did. Today again, I am exposed to the same difficulties but I have refused to keep up with the thoughts that it is a problem of misunderstanding. I have a better lexica and my communication skills are more sophisticated than they were years back. Is it that it is still difficult to accept that a woman can be intelligent? Probably. That is if we were still early men! How often do you hear rumours of an actor having sex with a director to get a role? Or of male secretary to have his job, least again just a male secretary? Very rarely I presume. This is probably because the woman is still more accepted for her physique than for her skills and visions.
The last phase I will comment on is that of the implausible supremacy. Making it to the top today as a woman is hard, definitely, but it doesn’t surprise people as much as it did in the past. What surprises people is if she ever gets genuine respect from her male subordinates without her having “the iron fist”. Generally, they expect the “feminine touch” and if she ever makes the mistake to bring it in, she will be eaten raw! Hence, she has to smile less, be strict on sanctions, look meaner than before and as serious as a heart attack, just to be respected enough. Consequently, she becomes an “evil” woman, as my Cameroonian brothers will say and illegible for marriage if not the case yet. Truth be told, if it were to be a man in her shoes, he would just be…honest and conventional. I was once there, the day I was appointed class prefect in form 2. It may appear to be nothing today but it was a big deal for students back then. I was as strict as my male counterpart when it came to sanctions and writing the name of noise makers, as serious as him and as devoted as him too. Nevertheless I was called “wicked” and him, just square… (To be continued…)
Part 3 comes up shortly follow blog for more
Meanwhile you can check out this amazing video to digest your thoughts || https://youtu.be/kuLSwfh2fEQ
Mr X happens to be a very good friend of mine. He is a very smart and intelligent young man, with a very impressive record of life experiences. He happens to be someone who has travelled a lot round the world, met a lot of people and encountered so many cultures. I am honoured to have him, not only as a mentor but as a friend too. Once, not long ago, X and I got into an instructive conversation and when we were about to close up the topic, he told me these very encouraging words “Paola, you are a very promising young lady”. I must admit, I was flattered, exclusively for the fact that it came from him. However, the “jaw-drop” effect stroke me when he added “You will certainly encounter success, I mean, look at yourself. You are beautiful!” That remark actually left me dumbstruck for a while and today, honestly, I regret my silence. He should have probably intended it to be a compliment but unfortunately for him, I did not take it from that side of the token. I was speechless to realise that my dear friend thought out loud my imminent success would be more as a result of my physiological beauty than for the fact that I could be smart, intelligent or resourceful enough for it. Nevertheless, X and I are still very good friends, my regards towards him remain unaffected and I never miss an opportunity to learn from him.
Being a woman, black or white, African or not, I always say this to my friends- out of experience, believe me –is already very tough. Being a woman in business is even more hard-hitting. I would not boast of a very loaded business career because it would not be true but I can say this, every day I push open the gates to the business world and I must confess, the ushers are not very hospitable. The first phase happens to be that of intimidation and the appeal for respect from the male counterpart, where I found myself until a week ago. The “What will I wear” dilemma which always finds itself between accepting one’s femaleness and being respected by one’s audience. Just like Chimamanda Ngozi on her very first day as a writing workshop trainer (Read “We Should All Be Feminists” by her), we end up wearing very ugly suits and letting go of our favourite glossy lipstick which we might consider very “distracting”. There is the constant fear, especially for the most ambitious, to be found just “beautiful”. The more “girly” you look, the less serious you are, no matter how “decent” your outfit looks. This almost, if not already, makes me think that to be a “woman in business”, you have to dress like a man or look “more serious” as “they” would say. Cover yourself…
(To be continued…follow blog for next write next)