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State funeral' for hundreds of Kenyan lawmakers
Throngs of Kenyans wearing black marched down the streets, coffins perched on their shoulders, crooning altered dirges in a mock funeral for lawmakers.

When the march came to a halt outside parliament offices in downtown Nairobi, hundreds of caskets lay charred, a defiant message against a recent hefty retirement package lawmakers passed for themselves.
The Kenyan president rejected the package, which included a bonus of $110,000 each and a state funeral for lawmakers, an honor reserved for presidents and high achievers.
The mock caskets were a spoof on the state funerals.
Major newspapers in the nation heaped praises on the president and criticized the lawmakers, who had attempted to pass another retirement package in October.
"Africa's big men behaving badly," an editorial in the Daily Nation newspaper screamed.
"Drama as civil society members bury greedy MPs," a story in the Standard read.
Good news for Mubarak
Former President Hosni Mubarak, once a powerful figure in Egyptian politics, will get a new trial after an appeals court tossed out his life sentence.
A judge overturned his conviction for failing to stop the killing of hundreds during the uprising in 2011. He will remain in prison as he awaits his next court date, likely in April.
Compared to the defiant riots that erupted during his trial in June, Egyptians appeared to welcome the news Sunday with shrugged shoulders. During the trial, both sides lunged at one another in court as fiery supporters and foes clashed outside.
The nation has spent the last year mired in protests, prompting the Economist to describe it as a "Dilemocracy."
20 years and over $1B later, U.S. recognizes Somalia
After pouring more than $1 billion in aid to Somalia, the United States officially recognized the nation's government for the first time in more than two decades.
American officials have not recognized it since warlords toppled dictator Mohamed Siad Barre in 1991. Clan warlords and militants battled for control, sparking a civil war and mayhem nationwide.
Two years later, militants shot down Black Hawk helicopters and killed American forces attempting to raid a warlord in the capital of Mogadishu.
U.S. applauded Somalia's progress, citing its first democratically-elected government and its successful efforts to push out al Qaeda-linked militants.
"We provided more than $650 million in assistance to the African Union Mission in Somalia, more than $130 million to Somalia's security forces," Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said. "In the past two years, we've given nearly $360 million in emergency humanitarian assistance and more than $45 million in development-related assistance to help rebuild Somalia's economy. "
Global uncertainty amid Algerian hostage crisis
Algerian forces stormed a gas facility to free foreign hostages without warning other governments, leaving leaders in a series of capitals scrambling to get information on their citizens' fates.
Heavily armed fighters attacked the remote BP facility in the desert this week, holding workers from various nations hostages. Attackers said the raid was a result of the French offensive against Islamist militants in northern Mali.
Captives included Americans, Japanese and Britons.
Hours after the raid, it was unclear how many hostages had been let go, killed or still held captive.
Analysts say Algeria raided the complex to salvage its tough military's reputation after militants attacked with security forces nearby.
"The temptation to show its strength first and foremost must have been overwhelming for a regime that showed as little weakness in the face of the Arab Spring," the Telegraph's Richard Spencer said.
The nation has a massive military budget, which makes it influential in stabilizing the region, Anouar Boukhars, a scholar in the Carnegie Endowment's Middle East program, said in an editorial in The New York Times.
Roaring success for South African musician
Your African culture may be your ticket to Hollywood, according to a famous South African musician.
Lebo M put his stamp on "The Lion King," his powerful opening vocal sequence contributing to its appeal as a popular culture phenomenon.
More than two decades later, the singer and songwriter still has a passion for what he does.
His arrangements captured the spirit of Africa -- and the politics in his home country at the time.
"That's the hardest thing to do right now -- to tell young people in Nigeria, in Johannesburg, in Ghana that the African in you is your ticket to Hollywood," he said this week.
Before he got the gig, the movie's producers scoured his hometown of Soweto, looking for him.
"They looked all over," Lebo said. "At the time, there was no iPhone ... to find somebody in Soweto, good luck!"



Some 80 years after its first launch, the iconic board game of Monopoly has finally released its first African city edition.

A Lagos-themed version of the popular real estate game was unveiled earlier this week, making Nigeria's bustling economic capital the first city in the continent to have a dedicated Monopoly edition.
"Lagos is special, it's a megacity, one of the fastest-growing cities in Africa," says Nimi Akinkugbe, head of Bestman Games which is distributing the Lagos edition.
"But apart from that, Lagos also holds a very special place for Nigerians all over the world. There are about 15 million Nigerians in the diaspora who are very nostalgic about Lagos; it's not just for Lagosians but for people all over the world," she adds.
The affluent Banana Island, a man-made waterfront community boasting multi-million dollar mansions and manicured lawns, was revealed as the game's most expensive property, joining Boardwalk in the standard U.S. edition and Mayfair in the London version.
Many of the squares for the game's upmarket locations feature sponsorship from banks, radio stations and shopping centers. In contrast, the square dedicated to the floating shantytown of Makoko, which is the cheapest piece of real estate in the Lagos edition of the game, was left unsponsored.

monoLocal officials were heavily involved in bringing Monopoly to the sprawling metropolis of some 15 million people. Their goal was partly to promote the city's rich history and landmark sites but also to encourage responsible behavior and inform citizens about laws that are often overlooked.
"You've been caught driving against traffic. Report for psychiatric evaluation," is the message on one Chance card, which issues a fine -- in line with the laws introduced recently by the local government to deal with the city's major traffic problem.
Read related: Africa's daily commuting grind
Another card reads: "For using the overhead pedestrian bridge on Worodu Road, move forward three spaces." Akinkugbe explains that many lives have been lost as people tend to cross the express highway by running across the road. "By rewarding the person that uses the overhead bridge by moving forwards three spaces, slowly it begins to sink in," she says.
And there are also references to Nigeria's corruption problem: "For attempting to bribe a law enforcement agent, pay a fine," says another card.
"This gives us an opportunity to educate the public about those things," says Akinkugbe. "[It's about] penalizing negative behavior and rewarding good behavior but in a fun and enjoyable way. We all know that learning through play is one of the most powerful forms of learning because it is not forced but is done in a relaxed, easy way."
Akinkugbe says that two other African countries -- South Africa and Morocco -- have a version of Monopoly, but Lagos is the only city in the continent to have its own edition. She says that the Lagos game was sold out within 24 hours of its release, as about 4,000 people got their hands on it.
mono1"Thousands of Nigerian families they are going to be playing Monopoly over Christmas, having a good laugh and learning at the same time, and just appreciating the city," she says.
The first patented version of Monopoly was launched in the United States in 1935 at the height of Great Depression. It has since become arguably the most popular board game in the world, with several localized editions released over the years.


A Kenyan man has been charged after allegedly pretending to be an assistant commissioner of police for five years. Joshua Waiganjo is said to have sacked and recruited police officers in Rift Valley province during this time.

He denied two counts of impersonating a police office, one of illegal possession of police uniforms and one of robbery with violence.

He was reportedly uncovered after flying on a police helicopter to investigate a massacre of officers.

In November, at least 42 police officers were killed by cattle rustlers in the Suguta valley - the most deadly attack on police in the East African nation's history.

After pleading not guilty on all four charges, the case was adjourned to allow Mr Waiganjo to seek medical treatment for diabetes, local media report.

Police spokesman Eric Kiraithe told Nairobi's Capital FM that Mr Waiganjo had not been paid a salary by the police service.

The Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) says it cannot be blamed for Sunday’s ravaging fire that razed over 70 shops at the Kumasi Central Market.

Goods running into thousands of Ghana Cedis were lost in the fire incident, which swept through six lanes of the market. Items include wax prints, leather products and sums of money.

Though Fire officers are yet to ascertain the actual cause of the fire, traders suspect power fluctuation and blamed the Electricity Company of Ghana for the fire.

Regional Public Relations Manager of ECG, Erasmus Kyere-Baidoo dismissed the allegations.

“When incidents like this occur, people are quick to attribute the cause to ECG. This does not normally reflect the true cause of the fire”, he explained.

According to him, Sunday’s outage was as a result of equipment breakdown as two transformers of Ghana Grid Company developed faulta.

But this he said, was later resolved noting, “the outage was not entirely caused by ECG”.

Mr. Kyere-Baidoo however blamed traders at the market for using defective switches and also overloading them.

“Sometimes the capacity of the power they are picking from these switches are more than the power that is being supplied to them”.




Ghanaian President John Mahama is due to be sworn into office following a disputed election victory last month. Mr Mahama, who became acting president in July, has called for unity ahead of the inauguration, appealing to rivals who contested the 7 December result.

Official results gave Mr Mahama 50.7% of the vote, enough to avoid a run-off against opposition candidate Nana Akufo-Addo, who won 47.7%.

The biggest opposition group is expected to boycott Monday's ceremony.

Mr Mahama was Ghana's vice-president until the unexpected death of President John Atta Mills in July.

He has served since then as acting president.

Ghana is regarded as one of Africa's most stable democracies and is one of its fastest growing economies.

Ahead of his inauguration, Mr Mahama appealed to members of parliament to work together.
"For the long-term survival of our nation, we must agree and commit to a multi-partisan process," he told them on Friday.

"Whatever our differences, whatever our politics, we must pull together and rise to meet these challenges."

Mr Mahama is due to be sworn in before 11 African heads of state, the BBC's Sammy Darko reports from the capital, Accra. Officials from the US, China and the UK will also be there.

But Mr Akufo-Addo's New Patriotic Party (NPP) is expected to boycott the ceremony.

The NPP filed a petition over the election result at the Supreme Court in late December, saying it had found irregularities including unregistered voters casting ballots.

Mr Mahama's National Democratic Congress (NDC) said the elections were the most transparent the country had seen.

International election observers described the 7 December poll as free and fair. Ghana's government says the presence of international leaders at Monday's ceremony is an endorsement of the vote.

At least 12 people died in northern Nigeria when attackers raided two churches during Christmas Eve services, police said. One assault occurred at the Church of Christ in Nations in Postikum, in Yobe province. Gunmen attacked worshipers during prayer, killing six people, including the pastor, and setting the building on fire

Worshipers also were attacked at the First Baptist Church in Maiduguri, in Borno state. A deacon and five church members were killed.

They were the latest strikes against Christians in the region. More than 30 people died in a wave of Christmas Day attacks in the north last year, blamed on Boko Haram, a militant group that has targeted Christians and Muslims it considered insufficiently Islamist.

Pope Benedict XVI referred to the northern Nigerian violence in his traditional Christmas message from Vatican City on Tuesday.

"Savage acts of terrorism" in the region, he said, "continue to reap victims, particularly among Christians."

In October, a report from Human Rights Watch also addressed violence in northern Nigeria, particularly from Boko Haram.

"Suspected members of the group have bombed or opened fire on worshipers in at least 18 churches across eight northern and central states since 2010. In Maiduguri, the group also forced Christian men to convert to Islam on penalty of death," it said.

It is not immediately known whether the group was behind the latest attacks.

The Christmas attacks came as families whose kin died in last year's killings delivered graveside prayers for a peaceful holiday period. Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan issued a statement promising better days next year, including better security.

"Sometimes, challenges make people doubt the sincerity of government, but I am confident that God knows everything," he said Sunday.

But residents told CNN that despite assurances of security, they have been attacked again.




We can continue to reap profits from the Blacks without the effort of physical slavery. Look at the current methods of containment that they use on themselves: IGNORANCE, GREED, and SELFISHNESS.

Their IGNORANCE is the primary weapon of containment. A great man once said, "The best way to hide something from Black people is to put it in a book.

We now live in the Information Age. They have gained the opportunity to read any book on any subject through the efforts of their fight for freedom, yet they refuse to read. There are numerous books readily available at Borders, Barnes & Noble, and amazon.com, not to mention their own Black Bookstores that provide solid blueprints to reach economic equality (which should have been their fight all along), but few read consistently, if at all.

GREED is another powerful weapon of containment. Blacks, since the abolition of slavery, have had large amounts of money at their disposal. Last year they spent 10 billion dollars during Christmas, out of their 450 billion dollars in total yearly income (2.22%).

Any of us can use them as our target market, for any business venture we care to dream up, no matter how outlandish, they will buy into it. Being primarily a consumer people, they function totally by greed. They
continually want more, with little thought for saving or investing.

They would rather buy some new sneakers than invest in starting a business. Some even neglect their children to have the latest Tommy or FUBU, and they still think that having a Mercedes, and a big house gives them "Status" or that they have achieved their Dream.

They are fools! The vast majority of their people are still in poverty because their greed holds them back from collectively making better communities.
With the help of BET, and the rest of their black media that often broadcasts destructive images into their own homes, we will continue to see huge profits like those of Tommy and Nike.

(Tommy Hilfiger has even jeered them, saying he doesn't want their money, and look at how the fools spend more with him than ever before!). They'll continue to show off to each other while we build solid communities with the profits from our businesses that we market to them.

SELFISHNESS, ingrained in their minds through slavery, is one of the major ways we can continue to contain them. One of their own, Dubois said that there was an innate division in their culture. "Talented Tenth" he called it. He was correct in his deduction that there are segments of their culture that has achieved some "form" of success. However,
that segment missed the fullness of his work. They didn't read that the "Talented Tenth" was then responsible to aid The Non-Talented Ninety Percent in achieving a better life.

Instead, that segment has created another class, Buppie class that looks down on their people or aids them in a condescending manner. They will never achieve what we have. Their selfishness does not allow them to be able to work together on any project or endeavor of substance.

When they do get together, their selfishness lets their egos get in the way of their goal. Their so-called help organizations seem to only want to promote their name without making any real change in their community.

They are content to sit in conferences and conventions in our hotels, and talk about what they will do, while they award plaques to the best speakers, not to the best doers. Is there no end to their selfishness? They steadfastly refuse to see that TOGETHER EACH ACHIEVES MORE (TEAM)

They do not understand that they are no better than each other because of what they own , as a matter of fact, most of those Buppies are but one or two pay checks away from poverty. All of which is under the control of our pens in our offices and our rooms.

Yes, we will continue to contain them as long as they refuse to read, continue to buy anything they want, and keep thinking they are "helping" their communities by paying dues to organizations which do little other than hold lavish conventions in our hotels. By the way, don't worry about any of them reading this letter, remember, 'THEY DON'T READ!!!!

Now that you have read this, I want to get an ongoing discussion on the topic. I want everyone who reads this to post your opinions of this letter. Do you feel that is true. If so, in what ways? How can us as a black race get away from these sterotypes or accusations that are raised within this text? The evidence is provided in this letter. Did this letter take you aback as it did to me? Let me know what you think.

Tell your friends to read this also. Remember that in order to have progress you must address the issues pertaining to your people so please keep this in mind and educate your friends and most importantly educate yourselves.

Dee Lee, CFP Harvard Financial Educators


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