Friday, April 30, 2010


Dubai makes me wish Ballard was still here to describe it. It is the closest we have to seeing what human life would amount to on another, less hospitable planet. A slave economy that built the most startling canyons of tall buildings, now with a sleek futuristic overhead metro system. Some episodes from my day here:

At the airport, the musclebound Muscovite (at least I imagined he was), waiting by the barrier. His biceps are as well defined as his face is puglike. Eventually, his blonde bombshell from Kiev arrives (again, in my mind). Another henchman mills around in the background. A few minutes later, their car screeches out of the car park. A large Chrysler that looks like a Bentley driving towards the skyscrapers. Late for a meeting with the Columbians, or D Company perhaps.

Three Japanese women taking tea in the foyer of the hotel. Their postural elegance belongs in an Ang Lee film. Who would not be entranced? Are they airline crew or the wives/travelling geishas of visiting diplomats?

The crowds gathering in front of the double height aquarium at Dubai Mall. A 2 metre shark floats benignly by. Sting rays flap like stunned birds in slo mo. Inside the tank, visitors can be seen, looking up from inside a transparent tunnel.

Staring up at the Burj Khalifa. So tall, yet so much smaller than a mountain. I wonder: did anyone die building it? Close by, 40 story buildings that stand incomplete, the cranes frozen in time, waiting for money to come through from Abu Dhabi. No one buys property in Dubai anymore.

An anoxeric British woman shops for food at Organics. She moves about on crutches. She wills herself to buy a flapjack but then doesn't eat it.

Ali, the Yemeni taxi driver. He complains that the North get everything: the capital city, the higher wages, the favours. That's why he had to leave. He works up to 90 hours a week. Ali's sees his wife and three kids once a year.

The Philippino working girls, arriving in the bar for the evening's labours..


The cold truth about Cameron's Tories..


Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Soyinka weighs in..

This is quite surprising really, Soyinka accusing the BBC of being colonialist through the Welcome to Lagos series. You expect knee jerk reactions from politicians and philistines (apologies for the tautology), but not from him.

The thing is, even if you decided to do a film on the melodramas of duplex living on Queen's Drive or Banana Island, you'd have to work hard in your editing to avoid images of open gutters, beggars and mass poverty in the background. Your sound editor would have a job to reduce the background grumble of generators, but at least your film wouldn't capture the smell. If you are filming a car traversing 3rd Mainland bridge, must the background be smudged out, for fear the viewer catches site of Makoko? Must everything in Lagos be scrubbed clean, if it is to be shown overseas?

There are so many representations of British poverty in British films and no one bats an eyelid. Dirty linen is dirty linen. When will the post colonial shame reflex disappear?


Ellah Allfrey on being a Caine Prize judge

"But how can one prize possibly claim to assess the literary output of a continent of over 991 million people and its diaspora? Is there any such thing as an "African writer"? Does the very existence of the prize encourage a continued inclination to ghettoisation of these writers and their work? Surely we've come far enough that Africans no longer need (if they ever have) the special consideration this categorisation implies?"



The fighting rams of Lagos

Photo story here.


The Post American World

I recommend Fareed Zakaria's book to anyone yearning for a macro perspective on shifts in global power at work in the recent past, today and in the near future.

His no nonsense analysis focuses on the rise of two of 'the rest', India and China, with some well researched detours into the decline of Britain and failures for China to develop in earlier times.

Zakaria (he is the editor of Newsweek) nicely contrasts the way in which China has been able to grow in a continuous spurt, thanks to a powerful centre, such that there will be increasing political power and influence by stealth, whereas India, dominated by regionalist democracy, will play the role of the third power, but more in economic terms than political. Even since the book was published, we are seeing signs of this, with the growing reach of the Chinese navy in the past few weeks.

The book is also excellent at helping us to understand modernisation and distinguishing it from westernisation. What is happening in India (the rise of the IPL for instance) and China (the glitz of the Olympics for instance) are not examples of westernisation, rather, they are signs of a certain level of development within capitalism. The consumerism we associate with malls in London or Los Angeles has acquired a local flavour in Mumbai or Dubai. Zakaria is interestingly confident that when per capita GDP rises above US$5000 per annum, forms of liberal democracy start to take emerge in any society. In that respect, the fraying at the regional edges we have seen in China of late may be the first signs of a revolution away from command and control centrism.

He comes unstuck however in the later chapters when he tries to propose policy responses to the rise of the rest for the US govt. One gets a sense of the newly arrived immigrant still in love with the dream, daring himself to not study the fissures closely. For instance, on page 192, he writes (apropos of America's failing standards of secondary education),

"America is a large and diverse country with a real inequality problem."

Just five pages later, when writing about the competitive advantage that America has in welcoming foreigners over Europe, he writes,

"America is creating the first universal nation, made up of all colors, races and creeds, living and working together in considerable harmony."

Which version is it to be Fareed? The dream or the reality? From what we are seeing in Arizona, it looks like the dream is gone.

Like the UK twenty years ago, America is losing its industrial base. However, the move to a services based economy (what alternative is there?) is much more risky than it was in the 1980s, precisely because of the rise of the rest: massively increasing global competitiveness. As China and India invest more heavily in tertiary education and improving their business environments, innovation will gradually shift eastwards. When universities in Beijing or Chennai develop the research depth and resources that many of the top US universities have (as they will in the next few decades), America will have no competitive advantage left.


Afghan cricket....there is always hope

By Vicki Michaelis

Hamid Hassan's father did not want him to waste time on cricket when he was a boy, playing it with a tennis ball on the streets of his Afghanistan neighborhood. He once locked Hassan in a room to keep him from the game that seemed only to be child's play, an unworthy distraction from schoolwork.

In the coming days, all of Afghanistan is sure to be riveted as Hassan and his teammates compete in the ICC World Twenty20 tournament, cricket's World Cup. Among those who will watch the Afghan senior team play live on global television for the first time is Hassan's father.

"He called me this morning," Hassan, a 22-year-old bowler, said in a phone interview earlier this month from a training camp in the United Arab Emirates. "He said, 'How are you my son?' I said, 'I'm OK, Dad, just busy in cricket all the time.' He said, 'Good luck in the World Cup, and keep doing well.' "

Afghanistan, a country with just one primitive cricket ground, in Kabul, shocked the cricket world by qualifying for the Twenty20, being held in St. Lucia. With players who learned the game in refugee camps in Pakistan or on dusty streets back home, the team has risen in two years from 29th in the world to make the 12-team field at the Twenty20.

"Given the resources they've got, the conditions they are going through back home for the last 30 years, I would say it's a huge achievement for them," said Kabir Khan, a former top cricketer from Pakistan whose tenure as Afghanistan's coach spans the team's rapid ascent.

Hassan, a four-year national team veteran, compares the rise to the story line in one of his favorite movies, Rocky.

"He's a very small boxer, a poor boxer," Hassan says. "And then one champion, he challenges him. He just accepts the challenge, like our team."

Before Khan arrived, the team made progress through the lower cricket ranks but had coaches with few top-level credentials.

"He improved lots of things in the team — bowling, batting, fielding and how to play cricket," Hassan said of Khan, who also has coached in Pakistan and Scotland and for the United Arab Emirates team.

Afghanistan, competing in a group at the Twenty20 with traditional powers India and South Africa, opens play against India on Saturday, then plays South Africa on May 5. A win would reverberate throughout Afghanistan and the sports landscape.

"By beating India or South Africa in World Cup — just by winning a single match — it would be seen like Afghanistan beating England in a soccer game or Afghanistan beating an American team in baseball or basketball," Khan said.

In Afghanistan, Hassan said, it would be seen as something even more.

"Our people are very poor," he said. "They didn't see any happiness in their life. It would bring some joy and happiness."

Afghanistan does not enjoy a rich sports history, and that was further marred in recent decades by Taliban restrictions on athletic participation and the staging of public executions in Kabul's main sports stadium.

The country won its first Olympic medal just two years ago, a bronze in taekwondo at the Beijing Summer Games.

Success at the Twenty20 could be more than a climactic chapter in history. It could, Khan said, be pivotal to Afghanistan's future if it spurs the construction of cricket grounds across the country. Already, building is underway for a cricket stadium in Jalalabad.

"If those young generations are provided cricket grounds, with the way they love the game, it could help to make peace in Afghanistan in the future as well."


Chuka Umunna for Streatham

To counterbalance Ms Adegoke in Brixton (trublu), let's cheer on Chuka Umunna, prospective parliamentary candidate for St. Reatham (Labour). Another young Nigerian background politician in the UK.


Interview with Adaobi Nwaubani

Belinda Otas interviews Adaobi Nwaubani here.


A new piste opens up....

Bamiyan is the new Klosters.


Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Interview with Cassava Republic



Belinda Otas interviews Sarah Ladipo Manyika



S.N. Goenka.

One of the most enlightened human beings of our time.


The energy of the Sahara....

Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) is gaining credibility again in energy circles, as Desertec plans to use the Sahara to create energy for Europe. Why is this not being considered in northern Nigeria? There is no gas available, so why not use the sun?


On Welcome to Lagos (guest post)

A Somewhat Unexpected Welcome to Lagos

Generally speaking, I am inclined to agree that international audiences appear to be far more interested in pictures of starving Africans, as opposed to well to do Africans living in luxury in Africa.

Whether this is due to what they are shown by the media or due to their own expectations is debatable. However there is no doubt in my mind that a situation that allows supposedly educated people to state that the only thing that they know about an entire continent is wildlife in East Africa, wars around the continent or starving people is unacceptable.

It is always extremely saddening to hear that children in the Western world, some of whom bear African names indicating their roots are guilty of asking ignorant questions about people living in trees in Africa. It really makes me wonder about the quality of education in the West and appreciate the power of the media to shape the way we think.

There is no doubt a lack of balance in the coverage of Africa, and Nigeria in particular as I know too well. Such coverage leaves a lot of people suspecting average Nigerians such as myself who have never been in trouble, or committed any crime whatsoever of being fraudulent.

I have a degree in electronic engineering and like a lot of young Nigerians, am working to make a living. I am by no means an uncommon example of hard work and honesty (and believe it or not modesty too) in Nigeria, but that is not the Nigerian the world knows, instead they know the Nigerian stereotype that large corporations such as Sony perpetuate with tasteless insinuations in TV ads, or that the very same news corporations that we will eventually pay to air ads promoting Nigeria emphasize by focusing on the negatives whenever reporting on Nigeria.

Let’s be honest, a lot of Western businesses would be very wary of an email from a Nigerian indicating interest in doing business.

I am of the opinion that as long as other people tell our stories, they will naturally tell what strikes them the most – that is probably human nature.

I think it was Fela that implied in one of his songs that Mungo Park was led to the source of the River Niger by African guides, but because he had the pen and paper history will forever claim that he discovered it.

As for the BBC documentary Welcome to Lagos, it first came to my attention when I saw the pictures on the BBC website and I thought to myself here we go again.

I saw the comments in response to Will Anderson’s blog, one of which pretty much summed up the entire mood of the majority of Nigerians by asking him to stick his face in a dustbin. Unavoidably, my opinion was already skewed before I had seen the documentary myself.

However on Saturday I saw the first episode of the documentary and far from leaving me with a feeling of annoyance, it left me with a sense of pride and the desire to send Will (…yes we can now be on first name basis), the warmest pat on the back an email can achieve.

It is true that he focused on the slums of Lagos when there was a lot more to Lagos than its slums, but to me the documentary was more about Lagosians than about the city itself. In less than one hour he managed to capture the essence of Lagos, its people – the frustrated yet happy, hardworking, determined, ingenuous, loyal, and caring people that the majority of us are in spite of our difficulties. He was able to show people that there are quite a few of us who are determined to honestly work our way out of poverty, getting our hands dirty…literally.

Some people have questioned why he chose a men at a dump, and not some equally hardworking young men outside the slums of Lagos and I have to say that he may be guilty of not trying because British audiences might not be as moved by the story of say largely self taught computer programmers in their mid-20’s who about three years after obtaining their degrees and starting a business in their living room now employ about ten people and are handling multi-million dollar deal, providing Nigerian made solutions to meet our local needs (that example is not fiction).

All indications point to the fact that in spite of his four month stay in Lagos, Will was unable or unwilling to find a story worth telling outside of the slums of Lagos.

In spite of that, I appreciate that he did not import the slums and that they are real. What he showed us is a reality in Lagos, though by no means the only reality. I feel satisfied that while he could easily have shown any of the easy to find evils around Lagos he found positivity where most people would have failed to look. He found love, friendship and respect for others, qualities that sometimes appear to be scarce in people.

I worry that the biggest critics of the documentary including our High Commissioner to the UK who really needs to find more productive ways to keep busy, are guilty of what appears to concern them the most, an inability to see beyond the dump and see the people whose stories all human beings, especially us Nigerians with all that is said about us can be proud of.

Lagos faces a lot of challenges, but somehow manages to be one of the largest single economies in West Africa, boasting annual budgets larger than those of quite a few African countries. More than anything else, Lagos is its people – we all play a role. I hope that in the future, organizations like the BBC will show the other faces of Lagos as well.

If the first episode of this series does not show that we are great people from a (potentially) great nation then it’s quite possible that only a miracle will.

Personally, I cannot wait to see the next episode; I hope it’s at least just as good as the first.

Umeike Ekenedilinna

[email protected]

April 27, 2010.


Vote BNP

Ok so you are Nigerian, you live in the UK, you're on the electoral role and you are looking forward to casting your vote.

You might be wavering towards Cameron or Clegg and away from Gordy, but definitely off your list is voting BNP right?


Kemi Adegoke on the doorsteps

A piece on race and the elections here, with a mention for the Nigerian candidate for Brixton we are all routing for, Kemi Adegoke.


Hafsat Abiola-Costello on IBB's candidacy

I first heard about IBB‘s declaration of intent to run for the position of President of Nigeria while in Jakarta attending the World Movement for Democracy‘s 6th Assembly. Since then, many people on social networks like Facebook have been asking me to join one or other campaign opposing IBB‘s bid to run. So far, I haven‘t done so. Principally because I think all citizens in a democratic country have a right to seek any office in the land. Indeed, this principle was precisely what both my parents gave their lives to defend.

However, as a concerned Nigerian, I would like to register my reservations about his declaration. Nigeria is a long story of stalled potential. So rich in human and other resources, it should be the jewel on the continent‘s crown. Yet, here we are, divided across ethnic nations, religion and class, poorer now than we were at independence.

The challenge of moving the country forward is daunting, indeed, and the single leadership currency that stands between failure and success is not past experience, nor capacity, but trust. Nigerian people must trust whoever steps forward to lead them.

Unfortunately, trust is an elusive quality even in the best of times, emanating from an individual‘s ability to do what he or she says.

Considered in this manner, no other public figure suffers from a greater deficit of trust than IBB. We could speak about so many reasons for this deficit, but let us focus on one: June 12, 1993. On that day, millions of people lined up to cast their vote because they trusted their head of state who had organised the elections, who had promised to step aside for a democratic government based on the results. These millions saw the elections annulled, their votes set aside. Till today, IBB has given no credible explanation for failing to do what he said, for letting Nigerians down.

In 2011, Nigeria‘s next president will promise to meet the country‘s challenges. So much of his or her success will depend on the people believing what is said. After all, it is the people that must carry out the policies designed to realise his objectives. If they do not believe, they will subvert even the best of plans.

Who believes someone who has a record of not doing what he says? Who believes someone who does not take responsibility for his own actions? Who will sacrifice current gratification because this same leader now promises that the future would be better, if we only wait? However much IBB may wish things to be different, under the shadow of his past actions, he will only be seen as a continuation of all that is wrong.

Should IBB wish to be taken seriously, before even conceiving a campaign, he should seek to close his credibility gap. ‘Maradona,‘ ‘evil genius,‘ and all these other epithets point to qualities of a liar, a dupe, a fraud. That persona may have been an asset in the context of a military dictatorship but in the quest for a leader that can move Nigeria forward, it is a liability. Whatever his camp may say, until this credibility gap is closed, average Nigerians listening to IBB will do so with a smirk, understanding that as he has not cleaned his hands, he need not be taken seriously.

Ultimately, as the country marks its 50th anniversary, the next election gives Nigeria a chance to turn the corner. Since independence, our country and its peoples have endured one failed promise, one experience of inadequate leadership after another. Perhaps it is time that out of love for our one and only country we vote for a leader we can trust. This will not guarantee success. But without such a leader, failure is assured.

Hafsat Abiola-Costello is the daughter of late Chief MKO Abiola.



A CNN style rolling news station is launching soon in Nigeria. Here for more.


Abdulmutallab training in Yemen

Video here.


Keziah Jones returns to the Jazzhole, this Friday


Africa United

Excellent book by Steve Bloomfield coming out next month from Canongate. Here is the blurb:

"Africa United is the story of modern day Africa told through its football. Travelling across 13 countries, from Cairo to the Cape, Steve Bloomfield meets players and fans, politicians and rebel leaders, discovering the role that football has played in shaping the continent. He recounts how football has helped to prop up an authoritarian regime in Egypt, end a conflict in Ivory Coast, and provide a tiny ray of light in war-torn Somalia.

The influence of African football continues to spread rapidly through Europe. Today, no Premiership team is complete without a major African star – Drogba, Essien, Touré, Adebayor, and Kanu. Countless African players are now enriching English football and becoming household names.

Steve Bloomfield’s wide-ranging and incisive book investigates Africa’s love of football, its increasing global influence, the build-up to the 2010 World Cup itself and the social and political backdrop to the greatest show on earth."


Gas Flares: the solution is simple

The lead story in the Independent today is on gas flaring in Nigeria. Its about time there was more global attention placed on this issue; it was deeply saddening to see that it was not higher on the agenda at Copenhagen. There was a real opportunity at the climate conference to call for a strict deadline to be enforced in Nigeria; it didn't happen.

The amount of gas flared in the Niger Delta is a staggering amount (2.5 billion cubic feet per day), easily enough to satisfy Nigeria and its neighbours energy needs at present and a significant contribution to greenhouse gas emissions. The gas flared in Nigeria meets Germany's entire energy needs.

The majors have ignored all bans on gas flaring in Nigeria for years. Gas flaring creates acid rain, fills the air with particulates and is directly responsible for the early deaths of thousands of people in the Niger Delta. At some point, Shell and co may well face corporate manslaughter charges. For the moment, the Nigerian government needs to significantly increase gas flare penalties and enforce them (beginning with ensuring that the amount of flared gas from each source is accurately measured). The question of why they have not thought to do so in the past is a good one. The policy to end gas flaring would be based on a simple calculation: make it more expensive to pay gas flare penalties than it costs to convert flared gas into useable energy (mini power stations at the source, providing ample electricity for host communities). Enforcement would also be simple: either you comply, or we withdraw your licence.


Africa's World Cup

Sometimes I'd rather be living in New York. Especially when there are events like this:

Africa’s World Cup



Room 510

Date: May 4, 2010

Time: 3-5 pm


Sean Jacobs, GPIA assistant professor, in conversation with Time Magazine senior editor Tony Karon, Austin Merrill, who writes the Fair Play blog for Vanity Fair, and writers Binyavanga Wainaina and Teju Cole.


Monday, April 26, 2010

Skip Gates on reparations

Here. One of the most fascinating historical accounts of African complicity in the slave trade is here. Crowder makes the important distinction between Bight of Biafra sell thy neighbour/brother slave trading and Bight of Benin sell the enemy's village to Dahomey version. It seems to me that this distinction is still ramifying today...


The Afghanistan cricket team (from the AFP)

From desperate, hand-to-mouth survival in squalid refugee camps in Pakistan to a world championship jam-packed with multi-millionaires, Afghanistan's cricketers have come a long way.

Only recognised by the International Cricket Council in 2001 and playing in Division Five of the World Cricket League, alongside the likes of Germany, Vanuatu and Norway, less than two years ago, Afghanistan are the unlikely lads at the 2010 World Twenty20.

Many believe that having been drawn in the same first round group as former champions India as well as South Africa, their stay in the Caribbean may be short-lived.

But coach Kabir Khan, a former Pakistan international, senses an upset in the air.

"We are excited about facing India. We have been working hard and we want to give them a big fight. We will make it hard for them and hope to make an upset. We are not just going there just to participate," said Kabir.

"Our team is mentally very strong. We have lectures on how to keep calm in front of the cameras and playing in front of big crowds.

"Wherever we go, we play in front of crowds who support us. But at the big tournaments, they have to get used to fans cheering against them as well."

All-rounder Asghar Stanikzai also believes that Afghanistan have nothing to lose.

"We're kind of the underdog for our group and the pressure is actually really on South Africa and India as to them we're the unknown quantity to take on in this tournament," said Asghar.

"We just want to go out there and enjoy each game we play. We're quite excited, we've been waiting for a while to be able to prove ourselves in a big tournament and we've worked really hard to get there and we're really looking forward to the experience."

Just reaching the 12-nation tournament is an achievement for a team who forged their skills in refugee camps in the north-west of Pakistan having fled their homeland where cricket, like all sports, was banned by the Taliban.

The players' average salary is 300 US dollars a month.

In marked comparison, India skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni, according to the Forbes rich list, banked a cool 10 million dollars in 2008.

Stark reminders of Afghanistan's troubles are never far away.

When they returned home after winning the Division Five tournament in 2008, the official welcome was staged in Kabul's national stadium where the Taliban regime once staged public executions.

Even now the security situation is so brittle that Afghanistan can't play home games inside their own country.

Not that travelling seems to be a problem.

They reaced the World Twenty20 by winning the qualifying tournament in the United Arab Emirates while, last year, they narrowly missed out on a place at the 2011 World Cup when qualifiers were staged in South Africa.

However, their performances did earn them one-day international status.

For their trip to the Caribbean, Afghanistan have prepared in Kuwait, Lahore and Sharjah.

Afghanistan have plenty of batting strength and this was demonstrated in the ICC Intercontinental Cup match against Canada in Sharjah in February.

Set 494 to win Asghar was at the crease, 23 not out, when the winning runs were scored for the loss of only four wickets.

At the World Twenty20, they will be led by 25-year-old captain and off-spinner Nowroz Mangal who took three wickets and made an unbeaten 21 when Afghanistan beat Ireland by eight wickets in February's qualifying final.

Afghanistan begin their campaign against India in St Lucia on Saturday, May 1 and then meet South Africa in Barbados on Wednesday, May 5.


Sunday, April 25, 2010

Adaobi Nwaubani in India...

Here. Watch for book readings of I Do Not Come To You By Chance next month..


One day is for the owner...

Good review of Teju Cole's first book here.


Friday, April 23, 2010

The OLPC laptop hospital in Nigeria

Lovely story here.


The widow and her son

The widow and her son, originally uploaded by nobodaddy69.


At the barbers

At the barbers, originally uploaded by nobodaddy69.

The cutting of the hair was only one part of it. I was given a head and neck massage, a cut throat razor was applied to be neck hairs, various pomades were added along the way...


Who needs Banksy?

Who needs Banksy?, originally uploaded by nobodaddy69.

On a Kabul wall...


Wednesday, April 21, 2010

The Sungbo Eredo

Who can fail to be excited by tales of the Sungbo Eredo? Perhaps only someone bored of life.


And so I set out from Oshogbo

Great writing as always from Frank Bures here.


On writing the Rough Guide to Nigeria...

Interview with yours truly here. You know you are growing old when you find yourself sending out image portraits from five or more years ago..


Scars of Torture (Stepping Stones ad)


Lift Above Poverty my ass...

Finally, the lid is being lifted on the loan sharking business that has been masking itself as micro finance in Mexico and Nigeria. This has put large dollops of egg on the face of the Grameen Foundation and its Nobel Peace prize winning founder Muhammad Yunus. Both the Grameen Foundation and Deutsche Bank have invested in LAPO, knowingly investing in a fund which charges well over 100% interest on loans through which the lender keeps a portion of the loan. For the lead article in the New York Times on this, click here.


Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Pinar Yolaçan photography workshop from tomorrow.

3 day Art Photography Workshop
Wed 21st - Fri 23rd April 2010, 10am -5pm

To coincide with New York based, Turkey artist Pinar Yolaçan’s Maria series photography exhibition, CCA,Lagos will be hosting a three day workshop art photography workshop in which the artist will guide participants in conceiving and/or and realizing work(s) that will go on to be exhibited within the CCA,Lagos library space as part of our Fashion, Art and Identity series.

Workshop Content
The workshop will take as the starting point the methodology used by Pinar Yolaçan to create her conceptual photographic works using clothing and its representation through image. During the workshop Pinar will
• Do a presentation of her work and the narrative that underpins the work.
• Discuss her research strategies and methodology highlighting the way to maximum resources available such as internet, fabric stores, libraries, magazines etc.
• Highlight aspects such as casting, location, props
• Carry out hands-on lesson to developing ideas based around art, fashion and identity.
• The results will be developed and form part of an display at the CCA,Lagos library.

Please bring an item of clothing which will form part of your prop

COURSE FEE: N5000 (five thousand naira only)

For more information please contact Oyinda Fakeye at [email protected] or on 07055680104,


Our established P.A.G.E.S event which invites artists and writers to discuss work from our exhibitions will be held on the 24th April 2010, featuring a panel that includes; designer Deola Sagoe and writer Odili Ojubuonu in conversation with the artist Pinar Yolaçan. The event will start at 3pm prompt and be followed by light refreshments.

Pinar Yolacan ‘Maria’ has been presented at CCA,Lagos with the support of Arts Collaboratory.


Sunday, April 18, 2010

Afghan coke can...

Afghan coke can..., originally uploaded by nobodaddy69.

Remember ring pull cans? That's how they still are in Afghanistan..


A glimpse of the future (taken in East London)


The fighting ram

The fighting ram, originally uploaded by nobodaddy69.

Animal fighting is a popular sport in Afghanistan..


Friday, April 16, 2010

Afghan Girl

GIrl, originally uploaded by nobodaddy69.

I took this photo close by the bombed out ruins of the Royal Palace. Her face was embedded trauma, with the glimmer of childhood glee about the mouth. She was dirty and hungry. All I could do is photograph her, to bear witness to how much children suffer in this war torn country. For more pictures from my stay in Kabul, click here.


David Adjaye: Urban Africa

A photography exhibition by one of Europe's top architects at the Design Museum till September.


Kemi Adegoke for parliament

Hi Everyone,

As you know I'm running for parliament in the 2010 UK general elections for Dulwich & West Norwood. The race is very tight. Last year, a survey was carried out in this constituency by the News Of The World and the forecast was that I would win. This year, things are a lot tougher as the party has dropped nationally in the polls. I need your help!

There are just about 20 days to go before polling day and Nigerians have been fantastic. My immediate circle of friends, ex-school mates, their friends and all our families have really rallied round and have been supportive.

UNFORTUNATELY, those that don't know me have been very unpleasant.

In a recent BBC interview, a caller insulted me because I'm Yoruba. I was very disappointed that a Nigerian woman who claims to have lived in London for 45 years has issues with me being Yoruba than with my political views and shamefully made her comments on national radio. We really need to get out of this mindset where we are fighting one another and try and support each other instead. Regardless of party allegiance, a Nigerian in parliament winning purely on merit and not because of her relatives or by buying the election will be amazing.

Like you, I am sick and tired of reading that Nigerians are fraudsters, terrorists, bombing airplanes or slaughtering each other in places like Jos. Our generation has suffered enough from the mistakes of the past, and it is up to us not to repeat them.

So I am asking for your help now to support a Nigerian who is trying to improve our national image and do something great here.

So my promise to you is this, If I get elected as a legislator, I will:

1) Use whatever influence I have to speak out against those who are cheating and robbing Nigeria and who seek refuge for themselves or their money in the UK.

2) Speak out against the UK backing any individuals who are

3) Fully support and help to publicize genuine grassroots initiatives such as #lightupNigeria, where the next generation of Nigerians are trying to change things for the better.

This is a chance to have someone who has real influence over what is going on with British-Nigerian relationships. It will not be about personal gain.

For regular updates, please join my fan page here and my "Nigerians for Kemi" mailing list by clicking here or email me for more details and forward this to as many Nigerians as you know.



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