Thursday, August 28, 2008

Me on the BBC radio

Listen to some of my comments on Africa have your say, BBC Radio.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/talking_point/africa_have_your_say/default.stm
The topic was African films and as an aspiring scriptwriter, I was asked to join the discussion. It was an honour to hear some of Africa's greatest film-makers share their thoughts on the future, past and present of African films.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Pakistan and Sudan- what they have in common

I was reading an article by Paul Sullivan about Pakistan and then it hit me...everything he said screamed Sudan.
The two countries have a lot in common

- Ranked Failed states in 2007 by ForeignPolicy
- Extremism
-Distortion of Islam
-Inequalities
-Constant war-fare ( exported to Afghanistan)
-Badly maintained infrastructure
-Ethnic biases and clashes
-Failure of political parties to unite
-Political Feuds
-Bitterness on all sides ( especially ethnic and religious minorities)
-Culture of Revenge
- A weak state


Interview

The Arab Press Network interviewed me

http://www.arabpressnetwork.org/articlesv2.php?id=2564

Friday, August 22, 2008

RIP Levy Mwanawasa


Mwanawasa,59, the president of Zambia died last Tuesday in a hospital in Paris.

The world is going to remember him as a competent and responsible African leader, Zambians are going to remember him for his great economic policies and the nation-wide fight against corruption.
He encouraged investments to Zambia and he stood up against African tyrants like Mugabe.


Mwanawasa was only 59 ( Mugabe is 84 and Bashir is in his early 60's and they are healthy and wealthy.)

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Paying for your rights

In Sudan, there is no rule of law, I believe.
I've been trying to convince myself that things in Sudan are "not that bad" for a while now.. but it is not working!
Sudanese people are known to use the word "ma3leesh" ( sorrry) and"mafi moshkela"( no problem) a lot. Something happens and we are quick to say not a big deal, thank god for everything else!
The war in Sudan is the longest-running war in Africa- it's ok, at least it's not the longest-running war in the world!
At least 2 million died in the war- well, 38 million are still living! Thank god for that!

But sometimes it's difficult to say mafi moshkela.

We have two stores in my house in Sudan. They are facing the main street and we usually rent them . A few years ago, we rented it to this guy who looks exactly like an arms dealer.
Anyways, a few years later, our deal with him was over and we wanted him out. He also didn't pay a penny in a very long time.
Apparently, the guy had contacts in the government. We had documents and we were the owners of the store. So, the court was on our side.

Wrong Answer.

I don't know how much it costs to bribe a judge , but he bribed him and we knew it.

Three years on, three lawyers and thousands of dollars later, he is out of OUR property.

I don't feel any better knowing that there is no rule of law in Sudan. I don't feel any better knowing that if you don't know the right people, you don't have any rights.

I can't help but wonder if my mother's friend gave us the best advice when she said " hire a few thugs, let them break into the store and smash everything there"
I mean I don't support violence , but what do you do to get your rights in Sudan?

Take up arms like the rebels. Be gangster about it. Bribe or my favorite, sleeping with an official to get what you want ( according to my sources: it works!)