Despite its 'official' abolition in 2003, slavery still exists in Niger. Girls are sold as 'Fifth Wives', a form of physical and sexual slavery. They are denied basic rights and essentially owned by their master; some are fitted with heavy bronze ankle bracelets to prevent escape. Other Nigeriens with slave ancestry suffer discrimination throughout their lives. Tom Rowe meets them.
A sadly typical headline flashed up on the newswires recently - 'In Ivory Coast, Two Presidents Claim Office'. This is a disastrous outcome for the recent elections in the country, but not completely unexpected, considering the political situation in the West African country.
A new political consciousness is developing in the bedrooms of Ireland. Angry, tech savvy and disillusioned with the situation they find themselves in economically and politically, these people are mad as hell and they're not going to take it anymore.
Or they are, but they're at the very least going to post some videos on Facebook. They might even go on that march, as long as it’s not too cold.
There is little evidence to suggest that the Jesuits had a huge influence in the formative years of our current cabinet of ministers. Lots of Christian Brothers were involved. The Cistercians trained the mind of our dear leader in Roscrea.
Finance Minister Brian Lenihan, on the other hand, was once under the wing of the Jesuits in Belvedere College on Dublin's Northside, the Alma Mater not only of James Joyce and Sir Terry Wogan, but also Richard Bruton, Garret Fitzgerald and his own younger brother Conor.
African Guinness is marketed as a liquid Viagra. By Tom Rowe.
'Water, water everywhere, and not a drop to drink', said the ancient mariner, lost at sea. This may be akin to how an Irishman adrift in Africa feels, where Guinness abounds, but not the same black stuff as made in St. James Gate.
African Guinness is labeled 'Foreign Extra', a quaint term carried over from when Guinness was produced in Ireland or England and exported to Africa, beginning in 1827. The stout had more alcohol than other beers, and travelled well on the long voyage south.
Elections are promised in Guinea, causing excitement among a people tired of military rule and a living standard of less than a dollar a day. But the country is not ready for elections and democratic rule. By Tom Rowe.
Guineans know what it means to wait. They spend a lot of their time sitting in the dark, waiting for the electricity to come back. It usually does, sometimes after five minutes, sometimes a few hours. In the suburbs they are lucky if they have power every second day.
West Africa’s longest running separatist conflict has already claimed as many lives as the Troubles. In a new departure, rebels have brought the conflict to Ziguinchor, the capital of Casamance state. By Tom Rowe.