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Monthly Archives: November 2019

Namibia. Nothing Surprising.

Ever since it won the first democratic elections, held in November 1989 and supervised by the UN, by a comfortable 57%, the South West Africa People’s Organization (SWAPO, now called the ‘SWAPO Party of Namibia’) has continued to enjoy an absolute majority over its opponents. A majority that grew even further over the years from…

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Economy. Too much inequality.

The structure of the economy of Namibia reflects the contradictions that are typical of all southern Africa. On the one hand, the country may boast of one of the highest per capita incomes in the continent (almost 12,000 dollars which, in terms of 2017 real purchasing power, amounts to five times that of the poorest…

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Research and Rating, a tool of Advocacy.

Advocacy is a strategy used around the world by NGOs, activists, and even policy makers themselves, to influence policies. Advocacy is about creating reform of policies, and their effective implementation and enforcement. A policy is a plan, course of action, set of regulations adopted by government, business or an institution, in order to influence or…

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Burkina Faso. Father Jacques. Biologist and Geneticist.

A Camillian and also professor at the University of Ouagadougou, Father Jacques Simporè assists the sick and most neglected. He has always worked with tenacity against the spread of HIV decimating the country.  Fr. Jacques Simporè’s dream was to place himself at the service of science and the poor: besides the motivation he received from…

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Western Sahara. The wall that nobody talks about.

The 2,720 kilometre wall, which  separates the areas occupied by Morocco and those liberated by the Polisario Front in Western Sahara, is actually the largest active military barrier in the world,  and the second longest wall after the Great Wall of China. One can observe the wall only from the mandatory safety distance of five…

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South Sudan. Death. A place of Rest.

The Bari, a South Sudan ethnic group who live on the Savannah along the White Nile, believe that death is not a curse but a ‘going to rest’ . Among the Bari, death is seen as something natural, the common fate of all. It is desired by God but is not seen as a curse.…

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An Unhappy Fish.

0nce upon a time there was a colony of little fishes who lived together in their own small pool, isolated from the rest of the fish in the river. It was a still, grey pool, dotted with stones and clumps of weed, and surrounded by thorn bushes and a few palm trees. Most of these…

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Eswatini. Arriving unannounced.

Originally from the Argentine, Mons. José Luis Gerardo Ponce de León has for five years been Bishop of Manzini in the Kingdom of Eswatini, the former Swaziland. He shares his experience with us. Before becoming Bishop of Manzini I had been appointed, in 2009, to the Apostolic Vicariate of Ingwavuma in South Africa, a diocese…

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Namibian Mosaic.

With only 2.6 million inhabitants and an area of 824,292 square kilometres, Namibia presents a particularly complicated ethnic and cultural geography. Low population density and the absence of large urban centres of development (Windhoek, the political capital and the main city of the country, has little more than 300,000 inhabitants) deprive Namibia of the powerful…

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Peace and Climate Justice is Needed to Save the Planet.

The world is afire again, the flames heartbreakingly consume shrubs, trees and forests in Australia, Portugal, Brazil, and recently in California and Siberia and elsewhere too. The world community has reacted in protest to the hundreds of fires burning the Amazon rainforest. These are destroying the habitat of thousands of endangered species and the communities…

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DR. Congo. “I am a missionary doctor, in love with God”.

She lives and works in the Democratic Republic of Congo and has dedicated all her life to her mission to welcome and care for the worst cases, those who need her as an experienced surgeon and as one who has unfailing faith in divine providence. “In the Congo, it is the missionaries who are really…

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New Catacombs Pact.

More than a half century after a group of bishops at the Second Vatican Council made a solemn pledge “to live a simple lifestyle close to their people”, a group of participants from the Synod of Bishops for the Amazon signed a new pact in the Catacombs of Domitilla. On 16 November 1965, just a…

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Advocacy

Breaking Bread.

In the Autumn of 2011, the Occupy movement was growing like a weed – quickly and strongly. In groups as small as two and as…

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Baobab

How Giraffe acquired his Long Neck.

Long, long ago, Giraffe did not have the long, elegant neck that he has now. In those days his neck was short and squat, resembling Rhinoceros's…

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Youth & Mission

Youth Movement and UN Food Systems Summit.

A wave of self-organised youth-led groups across the world has joined the growing momentum behind the 2021 UN Food Systems Summit, which will peak in September. The…

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