What it’s really worth to pipe water to homes in rural Zambia

Access to safe water is central to human health and economic development, yet most rural households in sub-Saharan Africa don’t have water piped to their home. When women and girls are forced to spend hours each day hauling water for their households, the consequences can be devastating. Beyond harming both physical and mental health, fetching water also takes time away from activities such as education, caregiving, gardening and employment. It’s no surprise that households that depend on distant water…

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The story behind International Women’s Day, and the theme for 2021

Year after year, March 8 is celebrated as the International Women’s Day the world over. It celebrates the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women while highlighting the problems they face in day-to-day life as well as in the professional environment. The day also marks as a call to action for accelerating gender parity. This year, International Women’s Day is being specially marked to highlight the challenges brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic. So ahead of this notable…

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Addressing vaccine hesitancy, a potential problem in the fight against coronavirus

The COVID 19 pandemic has wreaked enormous havoc on the health, economic and social fabric of nations around the world. Ghana is certainly no exception. As at the time of writing (February 26th, 2021) the number of SARS COVID 19 recorded infections in Ghana stood at 81673 with 588 deaths (Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center). Whilst the number of deaths may seem minuscule relative to the number of recorded cases, to the families, friends and loved ones of each…

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Growing fears of COVID-19 associated stigma and discrimination in Africa

As the COVID-19 outbreak continues to spread rapidly across the continent, social stigma and discriminatory behaviours against persons perceived to have been in contact with the virus is also on an alarming rise. I recently watched a comic viral video showing people running out of a public bus for dear life as if a bomb had gone off. However, it was not a physical explosion but a loud sneeze from one of the passengers that had sent alarm bells…

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COVID-19 Handwashing campaign promises sustainable hygienic practices in Ghana

( Dr Meshach  Agogoe using his hanwashing machine) Proper handwashing with soap under running water is critical for the prevention of infectious diseases, but this is not a common practice everywhere in most part of the world especially in developing countries.  The outbreak of the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) necessitated the need for a national handwashing campaign alongside other important behaviours like physical distancing as the first line of defence against the spread of the pandemic. The campaign responds directly…

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356 Elephants Died Suddenly. The Cause Is a Mystery.

Some conservationists say the recent die-off in Botswana could be natural, but others expressed more concern. On May 25, conservationists were flying over Botswana’s Okavango Panhandle when they counted something disturbing: 169 dead elephants. A second flight in June revealed more carcasses, bringing the total to 356. Some of the animals appeared to have died suddenly, collapsing chest-first while walking or running. No tusks were removed, suggesting that poaching for ivory may not be to blame. But experts are…

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Eliminating Illegal fishing Practices in Ghana Promise Sustainable Livelihoods and Economic Growth
( Frozen blocks of fish being prepared for tans-shipment from a trawler to a saiko canoe )

(Frozen blocks of fish being prepared for tans-shipment from a trawler to a saiko canoe. Photo credit: EJF) Illegal fishing practices in Ghana’s fisheries sector continue to push stocks of some key species, such as sardinella, mackerel and anchovy otherwise known as the ‘people fish’ to the brink of collapse. These fish species represent an affordable and accessible food protein source for poor households and play a crucial role in maintaining good nutrition and health. One such illegalities which…

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COVID-19 in Africa: The need to improve communication

Some African countries have been criticized for not issuing accurate data on COVID-19. For structural reasons data gathering is more of a challenge in Africa than in Europe. But that’s not the main problem, experts say. Recently, Tanzania’s President John Magufuli raised eyebrows around the world by stating that his country had “eliminated the corona disease, thanks to God.” Magufuli has been on the receiving end of particularly harsh criticism since he decided to stop issuing data on the…

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Enhancing food diversity in the midst of a climate crisis

How plant genetic material ensures future food security   Throughout history 6 000 – 7 000 plant species have been cultivated for food. Yet today 40 percent of our daily calories come from just three crops: rice, wheat and maize. Humans depend on little more than 30 plant species, many of which are struggling in the face of today’s environmental changes. With biodiversity and entire ecosystems in serious decline, the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture plays…

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A year later: Sudanese women raped in crackdown seek justice

On anniversary of deadly dispersal of a sit-in protest, rape survivors describe the horror at the hands of militiamen. Dozens of women raped by Sudanese security forces over the course of a few hours on June 3, 2019, are still seeking justice, a year after a brutal crackdown that left at least 87 people dead. In a rampage that day, members of the notorious paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF) and other troops tore apart a sit-in camp in the…

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