Life Style News

Tanzania is among the developing countries facing the major challenge of Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs).

Despite efforts being made by health stakeholders in fighting the diseases, more is yet to be done. In an exclusive interview, The Citizen's reporter Herieth Makwetta speaks to the minister for Health, Community Development, Gender, the Elderly and Children, Ms Ummy Mwalimu, who explains what the government is doing to implement strategies and policies aimed at countering the diseases.

What does it mean when we speak of NCDs and how has Tanzania repositioned itself in countering them?

In 2010, the World Health Organisation (WHO) released a report titled, 'Global status report on non-communicable diseases: Description of the global burden of NCDs, their risk factors and determinants that stated that the diseases were affecting 47 per cent of patients and that, out of the 100 that died, 60 died of NCDs.

These statistics show that if concerted action is not taken to fight the diseases by 2020, the statistics will go up from 47 to 60 per cent and the death rate will also shoot up from 60 to 73 per cent.

Here in the country, we get a picture about NCDs through a study conducted in Dar es Salaam, Mara and Kilimanjaro regions in the 1990s, but I would not like speak about that as for now we are using a study carried out in 2012 by the National Institute for Medical Research (Nimr).

Nimr carried out the study in collaboration with the WHO, the Ministry of Health and health stakeholders as it is the one that we have been using to date, giving us a summary on NCDs.

The findings of the research show that 15.9 per cent of Tanzanians use tobacco and this includes cigarette smokers that are a catalyst for respiratory diseases, 29 per cent are alcohol drinkers that are considered one of the main causes of the diseases, 26 per cent are obese and overweight, 26 per cent have raised cholesterol in their body and 33.8 per cent have raised triglycerides, the main constituents of natural fats and oils.

The findings of the study also show that 9.1 per cent are diabetic while 25.9 per cent suffer from hypertension.

The government launched a campaign called 'Afya yako, mtaji wako' that sensitised people to engage in physical exercises so as to fight NCDs. Has the campaign brought about positive results?

The campaign was a result of the study carried out in 2012, whereby a quarter of interviewees said they were neither exercising nor doing laborious jobs. Out of those interviewed, four said they neither engaged in any physical exercises nor did any physical work and this gave us a picture of NCDs in the country.

I admit that the campaign has not succeeded to its full potential in the implementation of the exercise campaign.

I must be realistic that we started well, but our expectations were that every council would have continued with the implementation of the campaign that was launched by Vice President Samia Suluhu Hassan.

We met with council and discussed together that there was a need of relaunching the campaign that was being implemented in some regions.

Is there any current policy or guidelines for fighting NCDs currently?

In 2016, the government designed and launched a five-year national strategy for fighting NCDs. The strategy has already identified the areas that we will work on.

Tobacco consumption is one major risk factor for NCDs. What is the government doing on tobacco control?

Tanzania is a member of WHO as we have signed the 2007 framework convention on tobacco control.

I must admit that the framework is outdated as there are some areas that have not been worked upon, despite the fact that we have managed to control tobacco smoking in some areas, particularly airports, where there were no warnings on smoking. We have gone as far as special rooms for smoking. The challenge we face is on open space areas.

That has not been tackled as the law requires people not to smoke in those open space areas, but there has been confusion about who is supposed to enforce the law, it is a policeman or a health officer? The law confuses and that is why before I became the health minister, efforts were made to amend the law on tobacco control and a new one was introduced.

However, we need to agree that the new law is on the issue of controlling tobacco farming. For instance, if you tell tobacco farmers in Urambo and Tabora rural not to cultivate the crop that is part of increasing their incomes, I don't think they will understand you.

What we need now is to discuss the matter within the government while tobacco stakeholders need to come up with alternative farm crops that will help increase their incomes.

The alternative farm crops will not affect their incomes and even their future lives.

Besides that, what efforts are being made?

I'm very happy to hear that question as two weeks ago a meeting was called by the Prime Minister's Office that the time had come to agree with one another on how we can have a common stand as a country and as a government in controlling the use of tobacco.

However, we as a Ministry of Health have said that since there is no law and the one existing is outdated, we will neither ban nor go against tobacco farming.

We will educate members of the public about the effects of tobacco use. That is our main objective.

To avoid spending huge sums of cash on treating the diseases, what is the government doing on prevention?

Even in the 65th conference of health ministers from East, Central and Southern Africa, we discussed that the main risk factors of NCDs is the use of tobacco and excessive alcohol consumption.

Also the issue of a life style was highlighted as many people don't walk long distances. All these risk factors are worked upon.

Do we have a recent study on NCDs?

A special study was conducted in 2012, almost six years ago, but when you look at the number of patients going to health centres due to NCDs have been increasing.

Now, what's the next plan as we look ahead?

We have repositioned ourselves in three big areas: first on prevention, second on early diagnosis and third on medical treatment.

Currently, we are focused on preventing people from falling a victim to NCDs by educating them through awareness programs.

As part of low-cost interventions, WHO recommended a minimum amount of money that should be allotted to every Tanzanian in fighting NCDs? If so, is it sufficient?

What we get is a budgeted disbursement from the Central Government.

But, we need to find ways of improving the funding. For instance, in South Africa sugar is taxed because of its massive use and it is a contributing factor to NCDs and eventually contributes to medical care bills, hence sugar is taxed.

press release

South Africa has just made history today as it becomes the first country in the world to take a bold step of replacing an injectable drug with toxic side effects, with a promising new oral medicine (bedaquiline) in the standard multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) treatment regimens for adolescents and adults.

Doctors Without Borders (MSF) has welcomed the South African National Department of Health (NDoH)’s announcement and sees this as a positive step aimed at making MDR-TB treatment more tolerable, and reducing the devastating impact of side effects caused by the injectable agents.

“The standard treatment for MDR-TB is currently effective only 50% of the time, and includes a painful injectable antibiotic known to cause terrible toxic side effects, including kidney failure and hearing loss. Experience with bedaquiline in treating drug-resistant TB – mainly from South Africa - demonstrates improved clinical outcomes in people living with MDR-TB, and initial evidence shows that it can be safely and effectively used in place of the toxic injectable,” says MSF’s Dr. Anja Reuter, a DR-TB doctor in Khayelitsha in the Western Cape, where MSF has run a DR-TB programme since 2007.

Although there are still some hurdles in implementation, MSF has called on the government to support health facilities in developing capacity to use bedaquiline and other new drugs, and to manufacturers to reduce the prices they charge in South Africa and globally. Worldwide, more than half a million people are infected with MDR-TB every year but extremely few who could have benefited had access to newer TB drugs such as bedaquiline.

MSF is urging other countries and officials responsible for WHO guidance on the use of DR-TB medicines to follow South Africa’s progressive example and commit to replacing the toxic injectable drug and ensuring expanded global access to effective new medicines, including bedaquiline.

By Brenda Yufeh

This was during an event to donate gifts to patients at the Chantal Biya Foundation yesterday in Yaounde.

"Sickle cell today is no longer a rare disease but friends to sickle cell patients such as the First Lady of Cameroon, Chantal Biya, are rare." It is with such words of appreciation towards Mrs Chantal Biya that the association of parents with children suffering from sickle cell at the Chantal Biya Foundation (FCB) received a delegation from the Circle of Friends of Cameroon (CERAC) with special gifts from their Founding President, Chantal Biya as the international community commemorated the 10th World Sickle Cell Day, yesterday June 19, 2018. It was a get-together that permitted CERAC members and other actors to sensitize the population on the genetic disease which can be avoided.

The Head of the CERAC delegation, Aissa Motaze, who is also the Secretary General of CERAC, expressed the love, care and concern the First Lady has for those affected by the sickle cell disease. She implored the necessity for the population to create a better life for those affected by which they can be able to do lots of things in a better way.

While explaining that sickle cell is a lifespan ailment, Aissa Motaze said it is vital to educate people on the disease particularly those who are already touched on how to have a healthy life. Going beyond emotions, Aissa Motaze on behalf of CERAC, called on couples to know their electrophoresis hemoglobin test before making plans for procreation.

This is in a bid to have healthy babies. Noting that it was an obligation for CERAC and its Founding President to assist those in need, the Secretary General of CERAC, symbolically handed gifts to sickle cell children who are being taken care of at the FCB.

The head of the sickle cell unit at the FCB, Dr Anastasia Alima lauded the good gesture from CERAC which comes to add to the efforts of the Foundation in caring for people with sickle cell who have constant health problems due to red blood cell disorders.

Dr Alima said this could lead to anemia and eventually death in most cases. While explaining that many people are still ignorant about the disease, a pediatrician at FCB, Dr Rose Ngoh eps Etambat, called on parents to take their children to the hospital when sick for the FCB has doctors 24/24 to provide care to sick children especially those suffering from sickle cell.

While children suffering from sickle cell expressed gratitude to their benefactor through songs and sketches, parents of these children particularly thanked the First Lady whose motherly care and love to the children has gone beyond what words can't express.

By Kundai Marunya

Man of-the-moment Alick Macheso brought the house down with a three-song, but magnificent performance at the winter warmer concert last Friday night.

Though performing early in a near empty auditorium, he gave a superb performance that featured two songs off the latest album "Dzinosvitsa Kure".

As usual his amazing guitar skills were a force of reckon while his dancers notably Zambezi Kariba and Majuice amazed revealers with a beautiful shoe and bodywork.

As the night went on, music lovers trickled in but failed to fill up the venue. They were however well captured with an amazing line-up of artists.

Some of the musicians who did great include Jah Prayzah, Seh Calaz, Leonard Zhakata, Killer T, Jah Signal and Suluman Chimbetu.

For Jah Prayzah, his well thought of selection that included "Goto", "Mdara Vachauya" and "Chengetedza" won hearts of many.

Though the sound was terrible his vocal and performance prowess won the night to the extent that fans kept on pulling on him as he tried to great them. Seh Calaz's started on a low but heated it off with the crowd as he sang his new hit single "Taligaliser Mbanje".

Then there was Leonard Zhakata. His yesteryear hits, among them Mugove were well sang along to. It was, however his dancers that stole his set. Resplendent in suits and white gloves, Michael Jackson style, their choreography that fused breakdance with other local styles left the crowd in awe. To close off the show was Killah T who came with a celebrity entourage that included Warriors star players namely George Chigova, Tino Kadewere and Khama Billiat.

While he was busy churning out hits from his new album and yesteryear hits, the Warriors were also great at entertaining fans in the VIP section posing for selfies, singing along to Killah T as well as displaying amazing footwork in dance. Kadewere ruled the roost as he amazed fans with well-choreographed 'clarks' dances.

Dodoma — Mbeya Urban MP Joseph Mbilinyi, popularly known as MC Sugu is planning to sue the National Arts Council popularly known by its Kiswahili acronym as Basata over the body's recent ban of his rap song.

Debating the government's Sh32.5 trillion budget proposal for the financial year 2018/19, Mr Sugu said he has directed his six lawyers to file a court case against Basata.

Basata, a government institution that regulates music, movies and other creative works, announced a ban on Sugu's new song dubbed #219 on grounds that it contained inciting message.

"Basata has officially banned Joseph Mbilinyi's song #219 because of its violent and incitement nature. The institution also blocks the rapper from performing, recording or distributing his music," Basata said in its recent press release reads.

It says the song does not only contain incitement messages but also did not follow the due process of release.

In Parliament, Sugu said it was unfortunate that Basata has decided to ban a 'leaked song' while debating the budget.

"The song has leaked. How could they issue a statement to ban a leaked song? They have never been to a recording studio. They don't even know the costs of recording a song. Do they want all of us to sing about love?" enquired Sugu, noting that it has reached a point whereby every institution in the country works like the Police Force.

But the Deputy Minister for Information, Culture, Arts and Sports, Ms Juliana Shonza stood up on a point of order and informed the House that she had personally listened to the song and got convinced that it (the song) was indeed inciting.

According to Ms Shonza, Sugu also erred by releasing a song without following the right procedures.

But in response, Sugu said: "I am neither Roma nor Diamond (in apparent reference to the banned songs of the two other singers). I have instructed my six lawyers to take measures," he said.

By Idoko Salihu

Nigerian afro-fusion artiste, Damini Ogulu, popularly known as Burna Boy has signed a music publishing deal with Universal Music, USA.

The announcement of this new stride was made in a statement made available to PREMIUM TIMES.

The deal comes months after he released his last studio album "Outside" which has been getting rave reviews ever since its release in January under Atlantic Records.

According to the statement, the deal will give him the privilege to manage his songs and ensure he receives all the royalties from the back end as he is entitled to.

"This deal will also seek and issue licenses for Burna's work. This is, of course, in addition to administrative duties, tracking, exploitation of copyrights, and collection of monies generated from the exploitation of those copyrights," the statement read.

The new deal also comes after Burna Boy enjoyed benefits off the confusion stirred by the release of America hip-hop star, Kanye West's eight studio album "Ye".

Burna Boy's "Ye" which became an instant hit is currently a fan-favourite off his "Outside" album.

The conflicting title however became a bonus for Burna Boy as his single kept showing up on major streaming platforms, especially on iTunes when fans searched for Kanye's album.

Burna Boy is currently on his 'Life on the Outside' tour in the U.S.

By Adejumo Kabir

The Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile Ife, has dismissed a lecturer of the institution, Richard Akindele, who demanded sex from a female student to help her improve her grades.

The dismissal was disclosed during a press conference by the Vice Chancellor, Eyitope Ogunbodede, on Wednesday.

Mr. Ogunbodede said the conclusion was reached after the investigative panel found Mr. Akindele guilty of inappropriate relationship with one of his students, Monica Osagie, a claim to which he admitted.

The vice chancellor said the dismissal of Mr. Akindele will serve as deterrent to others as "the university has taken further steps to ensure total elimination of sexual harassment in the OAU community"

PREMIUM TIMES reported the audio conversation between Mr. Akindele, a professor in the accounting department, and Ms Osagie.

The university had initially suspended Mr Akindele indefinitely, following an interim report of its investigation.

Read the full statement by the vice chancellor confirming the dismissal below.

COUNCIL DECISION ON THE AUDIO CONVERSATION BETWEEN PROFESSOR RICHARD AKINDELE AND MS MONICA OSAGIE

Around the 7th of April, 2018 or thereabout, there was an audio conversation between a man and a lady which was sensationally trending on social media because of its explicit sexual tone. After thorough investigation, it was discovered that the said audio conversation was between a lecturer and a student of our University (OAU) who were later identified to be Professor Richard Akindele and Ms Monica Osagie.

To save the image of the University and to unravel the circumstances that surrounded the whole saga, the University Management set up a committee and mandated it to submit its report within a week. Furthermore, the Management issued a query to Professor Richard Akindele to explain his role after which he was suspended pending the final determination of the case in line with the University regulations.

Although the committee invited the two persons involved, only Professor Akindele could be initially reached and invited. This necessitated the submission of an interim report. However, when the committee eventually succeeded in inviting Ms Monica Osagie, and finally concluded its sittings, it then submitted its final report to the Management.

To disabuse the minds of the general public on the issue of an alleged cover-up, the Vice-Chancellor, on two occasions, issued press releases that were personally signed by him. The press releases were maximally published by virtually all the media houses and aired by Radio and Television Stations across the globe.

Last Thursday, 14th June, 2018, the University Senate considered the Committee's Findings that:

(1) Professor Akindele had an inappropriate relationship with his student Miss Osagie. This was established through their conversation in the audio recording; his reply to the query; the oral evidence; and the printed 'WhatsApp conversations' tendered before the Committee.

(2) He had acted in a manner that is seen to have compromised his position as a teacher and examiner, in that, his conversations with Miss Osagie were about examination scores and inducement of favour for the alteration of examination scores.

(3) He offered to change Miss Osagie's purported "33%" result to a pass mark in consideration for sexual favours, this was established in the audio recording which he admitted.

(4) His claim that Miss Osagie knew that she had passed with a score of '45' but was seeking to score an 'A' and that this led to him being sexually harassed by Miss Osagie cannot be supported by any evidence.

(5) Professor Akindele's actions in requesting for sexual favours from Miss Osagie to change her examination scores was scandalous behaviour that has brought ridicule to the name of the University and has tarnished the reputation of the University, as it portrays the University as an institution where its teachers and examiners trade marks for sexual favours.

(6) From the evidence, Miss Osagie had no idea that she scored '45', a pass mark as later claimed by Professor Akindele, although she later found out she did not fail the course.

(7) Professor Akindele's claim that he reported Miss Osagie's 'harassment' to his colleagues cannot be supported by any evidence as all his colleagues denied it and one mentioned that she only talked about the matter with him after the audio recording was released over the internet.

(8) Professor Akindele operated in a position of power and authority over Miss Osagie and as such sexually harassed her.

(9) Professor Akindele was liable for all the allegations of misconduct levelled against him.

Accordingly, the Senate recommended that Professor Richard Akindele, having been found liable on all the allegations against him, should be dismissed from the services of the University.

The Council, at its meeting of today, Wednesday, 20th of June, 2018, having considered the recommendation of Senate, as well as the report of the Joint Committee of Council and Senate, decided that Professor Richard I. Akindele should be dismissed from the services of the University for gross misconduct.

The University has also taken further steps to ensure the total elimination of Sexual Harassment (SH) in the OAU Community. The University has a legal duty to prevent sexual and gender-based harassment within the institution and ensure that both men and women are protected from this menace; and thereby provide conducive environment for teaching and learning. To achieve this, the university:

(a) is creating more awareness and disseminating information on what constitutes Sexual Harassment (SH) within the university, and noting the veracity of SH concepts which include - sexual solicitation and advances, sex exploitation, prostitution, seduction, pimping, sexual assault, unwanted touching, vulgar sexual jokes, rape among others. These concepts are well specified in the University Sexual Harassment Policy approved by the University Council in 2013;

(b) has put in place a strategic implementation framework for the SH Policy which will ensure effective/rapid redress mechanisms to incidents of SH. The SH Policy clearly states mechanisms for reporting and for dealing with SH cases through the committee system. This would be made more functional;

(c) will continuously educate staff and students about their right to seek redress in cases of SH;

(d) has uploaded, on its website, the Sexual Harassment Policy, under the administrative blog, while copies are being given to students at matriculations, and when staff are newly recruited;

(e) intends to add 'Zero Tolerance to Sexual Harassment' as part of its core values, and openly display this on bill boards.

A whistle-blower policy is also being developed by the University.

OAU is fully committed to the eradication of sexual and other types of harassment from our tertiary institutions and will do all that is possible to nip this menace in the bud. OAU has zero tolerance for Sexual Harassment and as a renowned University will do everything humanly possible to maintain the rules and regulations of the University.

Professor Eyitope Ogunbodede

Vice-Chancellor

June 20, 2018

Photo: Daily Nation

Education Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed.

By Sethi Ncube

Johannesburg — Kenyan exams have in the past been marred with rampant cheating. Teachers, learners and security guards have ended in court for their participation in these notorious acts.

In May, Education Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed announced that school found to have engaged in examination cheating will be deregistered and the culprits punished.

In an attempt to dis-empower these culprits, the cabinet secretary has ordered the ban of public events in schools, including visiting days, a move that has angered Kenyans. She says the move is meant to ensure that there is uninterrupted focus on students.

Only candidates will remain in school as the other learners close for the November/December holiday and she she will personally lead the teams monitoring the opening of examination containers across the country.

She has also urged school principals to guard against practices that might lead to exam irregularities, leading to the cancellation of results or deregistration of schools.

Here's what outraged Twitter users had to say:

Did Amina study 8-4-4 ? To know how hectic it is, and how freshening it is to be visited by family and friends to give you hope and morale to push on. - yung kemp (@Kempchacha)

Seriously? Dictatorship everywhere. Visiting is one way of checking on the kids and giving them moral support. That's the main purpose of visiting. What's wrong with kenya? Instead of dealing with the problem of rape, arson and other vices in schools now schools are prisons. - Calystus Murunga‏ (@MurungaCalystus)

Kenyan Education system separates parent from children, and the result is obviously corruption! - Mr. Harrison Karuga‏ (@harrisonthuo)

seriously retrogressive move. Visiting days should be increased not scrapped. Parents need to be more involved and available for their kids if we are to deal with the crises among our youth. - Pauline Mugure‏ (@pjmugure)

Bad move. Very bad move. We used to look forward to visiting day - it was great stress relief in a hectic education system. Kids are in their formative stage n they still need parents. Now the kids will be more stressed. - Mwaura Gichuru‏ (@mwauragichuru)

Unacceptable! Boarding school is often traumatic even with visiting days. So to add onto exam trauma, she wants to ban visiting days? Does she hate her own children that much so we should punish ours? Who annoyed you Amina that you would wish to isolate our children so. - VioAnne‏ @vioanne

By Okeri Ngutjinazo and Angela Kabozu

Education minister Katrina Hanse-Himarwa yesterday said there is nothing wrong with the education system in the country, but some people within it.

Hanse-Himarwa, who met Khomas school principals during a visit to the Eros Primary School in Windhoek, did not mince her words when she called on principals to play their part in schools as she would not be held accountable solely.

She told the principals that success rises and falls on leadership, and that she will not allow them to continue at the schools if they were continually scoring below the red line.

"We cannot have under your guidance as school principals teachers who are perennially failing and producing ungraded results year in and year out, and at the beginning of the year, that teacher comes back as if everything is normal, just to do the same damage, and you are supervising them," she said.

The minister stated that there was no excuse for the Khomas region to be at the low ranking it is at the moment, adding that 50% is nothing to be proud of, and the average must increase from 50% to 70%.

"Khomas is the capital region, the face of this country, meaning schools in the region are first and foremost representing the government's face. Therefore, my expectation from the Khomas region and the school principals is to be trendsetters," she said.

She added: "In my terminology, 50% is nothing to be proud of because 50% means out of 100, only half of that number goes through. We cannot be happy because half of that number is left behind."

The minister said the average of the Khomas region is expected to be higher because of the conducive environment, the learning aids which are available, and the leadership.

"There is no way Khomas should be surpassed by regions with fewer privileges and less conducive environments for learning and teaching," she stressed.

She had visited the Nehale Senior Secondary School in the Oshikoto region last week that has structures made of sticks, cow dung and shacks.

"I am told a school in Khomas that has proper structures and potable water, with perhaps most of the qualified teachers, access to the internet, exposed to all sorts of benefits, has a 17% pass rate at junior secondary school (JSC) level," she said, comparing that to Nehale which is producing a 100% pass rate at JSC level.

Hanse-Himarwa added that the pass rate at rural schools indicates that it is not about the books or the gadgets, but the leadership at those schools.

Meanwhile, Khomas education deputy director Paulus Lewin presented statistics at the meeting, compiled on 16 JSC schools and 19 Namibia senior secondary schools in the Khomas region to evaluate their academic performance for the year 2016 and 2017.

Lewin said last year, 20 schools dropped in their ranking by 60,6% regionally, while 24 dropped in their national rankings by 77,4%.

"This means there are 497 learners registered to repeat Grade 10, with only 248 learners promoted to the next grade," he said.

The Grade 10 statistics, he said, show that 11 schools out of 33 scored 50% and above; 22 schools scored below 50%; 20 schools dropped their rankings; while 10 schools improved their rankings.

"Grade 12 statistics show that last year, 18 schools dropped in their national rankings by 55%, with regional schools showing a drop of 43%," he stated.

Lewin added that Namibia Senior Secondary Certificate for Ordinary (NSSCO) level statistics show that 14 schools dropped in their national rankings, while 12 schools dropped in their regional rankings.

The official also outlined the regional challenges, saying there is a need for constructing more schools due to the high influx of learners to urban areas, as well as a pressing need for the rehabilitation of hostels.

"Additional classrooms have to be constructed at existing schools to mitigate the establishment of pre-primary classes and eliminate platoon systems, while the high absenteeism rate of teachers needs to be addressed," said Lewin.

Furthermore, a lack of a permanent national examination venue, shortages of qualified Afrikaans and German teachers, limited parental involvement, high staff turnover, lack of strong leadership at schools were a few of the challenges faced by the ministry.

Khomas education director Gerard Vries, education inspectors and a representative from the Namibia National Teachers' Union (Nantu) also attended the meeting.

A photo "bursting with flavour" that got 282 likes online earned Alexander Jovanović first prize in the Seychelles Tourism Board's (STB) Facebook photography competition.

Jovanović won the prize with his photograph which showcased a spicy, slow-cooked octopus coconut curry. His caption describes the dish as "bursting with flavour as it is spilling out of the Nautilus' shell, perched on black wild rice and mellow avocado salad over a bed of jasmine rice."

Jovanović, who said he is absolutely thrilled about winning, explained that it is a hobby of his to upload photos dishes he prepares to his Instagram account.

"After my mother mentioned the contest to me and reckoned I do decently, I agreed to give it a go. I had a few ideas and sent the final photo of the octopus coconut curry to my mum, who didn't have much criticism for it, I knew at that point I would stand a chance at winning," said Jovanović.

Commenting on the number of likes he got, Jovanović, who is currently studying in Switzerland, said that he had help from family members from Turkey, US, Sweden and Seychelles. They encouraged people to check the board's page.

"I'm sure the STB's page on Facebook got great international exposure. I'm bumping into friends asking me about Seychelles after watching all the videos STB has up and who are very keen on visiting," said Jovanović.

According to the board, the Facebook photography competition album reached 15,556 people in total.

Jovanović will get to enjoy a two-night stay for two persons on half board basis in a Junior Suite sponsored by H Resort Beau Vallon.

The photo competition, titled 'Lakwizin Kreol Seselwa', Creole for the Seychellois Creole Cuisine, was open for locals, aged 18 and above. The top three participants with the highest number of likes came out as the winners.

Launched on April 16, the deadline of the competition was extended from May 7 to May 28 to get more people to participate.

"We had 80 plus people who showed interest, around half of which submitted their registration forms. We received 48 photos in total and 29 were chosen by our internal panel to be placed in an album on our corporate Facebook page for our followers to vote for their favourite," said Jill Freminot, the board's digital marketing executive.

Fan's had 48 hours to vote for their favourite photo.

Amy Sefton got the second highest number of likes. Her photo that received 270 likes also depicted an octopus dish. Sefton also won the third prize with her second submission which raked in 208 likes.

"It is pretty cool to have won two prizes, it is very exciting. They said that you could enter twice, so I gave it a go and never expected to win with two. I was really lucky and this was a great opportunity to showcase the local food," said Sefton.

The hobbyist photographer won two night's stay for two on bed and breakfast basis in a Superior Room at Le Meridien Fisherman's Cove and a one-night stay for two persons on bed and breakfast basis at Carana Beach Hotel.

The photography competition is an annual contest. This year, the board introduced a fourth winner - the Judge's Choice Award, referred to as the most outstanding photograph.

"We wanted to introduce the Judge's Choice Award as we wanted to give a fair chance and objective evaluation of all photos that met our entry criteria. We assessed the entries through technical aspects of photography such as exposure, focus, the rule of thirds, framing among others," said Freminot.

The panel chose Marvis Confait's photograph of a tuna steak with tomato and onion dressing with smoked fish, papaya chutney and Octopus coconut curry served with rice. Confait won dinner for two at the Marlin Bleu Restaurant at Eden Bleu Hotel.

The aim of the competition was building the database of images of the Seychelles Tourism Board, to be used in marketing campaigns around the world.

All photos submitted are now the property of the board and will be featured in the board's image library and website as well as used by its offices around the world. Photographers will be credited accordingly.

By Bridget Chiedu Onochie

Abuja — The 61st meeting of United Nations World Tourism Organisation - Commission for Africa (UNWTO-CAF), has concluded in Abuja, with the organsers and other players in Nigeria's tourism sector listing benefits and lessons drawn from the event.

The three-day meeting, which held between June 4 and 6, no doubt, afforded Nigeria opportunity, not only to tell its story beyond extreme violence and terrorism, but also to showcase its vast cultural potentials.

It was an opportunity for the country to market its rich cultural heritage to the world.

Over the years, stakeholders in the culture-tourism sector have pointed out that Nigeria's vast and rich cultural heritage should be strategically repositioned to partner tourism as its driver to lift the Nigerian economy.

They note that tourism cannot effectively flourish without the cultural components.

They also say that the desire to position culture and tourism as the lever of Nigeria's economic growth and development, however, rests with the Ministry of Information and Culture, as it must plan to mainstream both sectors into a monolithic entity to galvanise national economic development.

Although, delegates were not privileged to visit some of the numerous sites that defined Nigeria's cultural landscape, there were, however, cultural products, exhibitions, dances and cuisines on display that could attract visitors to the country.

According to the President, Federation of Tourism Association of Nigeria (FTAN), Alhaji Rabo Salem Kareem, the forum was a good opportunity to showcase Nigeria as a leader in African culture.

To him, Nigeria's rich cultural heritage remains its greatest asset and attraction. "It was an opportunity to showcase Nigeria as a leader in African culture."

He added: "The meeting was an opportunity, not only for image laundering for the country, but also to showcase our rich and diverse culture to the world.

"Our rich cultural heritage is our main asset and attraction, and the performances during the event portrayed Nigeria as a country with robust culture.

"Also, the earlier impression that the entire country was ravaged by insurgency had been addressed.

"People now know that Nigeria is safe for business and leisure. The meeting was a good public relations strategy to see how the country can reposition the sector for greater benefits.

With 26 ministers of Culture and Tourism and 180 foreign delegates from across the world in attendance, the forum, according to the Minister for Information and Culture, organisers of the event, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, was a veritable platform to reposition Nigeria as a destination of choice.

Other dignitaries in attendance include, the Secretary General UNWTO, Zurab Pololikashvili, African Union Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy, Dr. Aman Abou-Zeid, organised private sector in culture and tourism, culture and tourism institutions as well as policy makers.

Nigeria secured the right to host the global tourism body at the CAF meeting held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, in 2017, and since then, the Ministry of Information and Culture had worked towards a successful outing.

But beyond a successful hosting, the minister was elated that the resources and efforts spent on the event was not a waste. According to him, there was no better platform to sell Nigeria's huge tourism potentials to the world than the forum.

Nigeria was also able to prove to the world that it is still safe for business and leisure in spite of the activities of the dreaded Boko Haram and Fulani Herdsmen in some parts of the country.

In one of the meetings with the media, the minister disclosed that he and his team have benefited immensely by listening to experts on tourism development.

According to him, it was encouraging to hear that Nigeria was on the right part towards tourism development.

For the private sector players, one of the benefits of the meeting was image laundering for the country.

Earlier at the opening ceremony, which was attended by top government functionaries, Nigerian government highlighted some of the efforts already put in place to ensure a functional tourism sector.

Represented by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, President Muhammadu Buhari told his visitors that his government has invested over $9 billion in power, roads and railway, which were necessary infrastructure for tourism development.

According to him, his administration has also provided attractive investment incentives for investors in the sector, such as minimum tariff on imported tourism equipment, amusement park equipment and materials for hotel construction and furnishing.

Others are dedicated transportation for tour operators and equipment for restaurants not manufactured in Nigeria, work permit for foreign workers with specialised skills within the industry as well as land allocation at concessionary rates by state governments to investors.

Mr. President added that his administration, having identified tourism as one of the pillars of its diversification policy, had equally invested in human resources and necessary infrastructure to position Nigeria as a choice destination for tourists.

His words: "In our efforts at diversifying the economy through agriculture, solid minerals development and tourism, we are investing heavily in infrastructure."

He further commended the leadership of UNWTO, the Commission for Africa (CAF) as well as tourism ministers from all over Africa, for considering Nigeria worthy of hosting this event.

For the Culture Minister, Lai Mohammed, the meeting, among other benefits, provided the country an excellent opportunity to discuss ways of promoting intra-Africa travels and tourism.

The UNTWO scribe, Zurab Pololikashvili was generally impressed with the organisation.

Describing the meeting as one of the most successful CAF meetings he attended since he took over from his predecessor, he, however, noted that a strong political will was required to bring promises of tourism to reality.

While commending Nigerian government for its hospitality, which he said, began on the eve of the opening ceremony, Pololikashvili noted that the meeting was the best avenue to showcase Nigeria's culture and tourism to the entire continent.

He however expressed the crucial role of the media in the tourism development of any nation.

He also pledged to deliver on the newly adopted 10-Point Agenda for the development of tourism in Africa.

The agenda is a coordinated approach aimed at highlighting the continent's potentials for tourism. These include connectivity, promotion of image and brand Africa, poverty alleviation, security, climate change, education, financing and skills development

"My mandate is four years and I will try within the period to achieve these. We have priorities and we have four to six months to make concrete plans. We need opportunities to create new jobs."

For Abou-Zeid, statistic was the way to go if the interest of government and policy makers was to be drawn to the sector.

According to her, tourism industry stood at $160billion, accounting for 60 per cent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in Africa.

She said: "Tourism alone receives contributions from manufacturing and banking sectors and employs over 20 million people.

"Our priority on the continent is to optimise the role of tourism in Africa based on the aspiration of the agenda 2063.

"It is fully recognised that tourism is an engine for inclusive growth and sustainable economic development within the continent. We are all aware of the value of the tourism industry in Africa. The value of the industry now stands at $160billion accounting for 60 per cent of the GDP in our continent."

Adding: Tourism alone receives the contribution from manufacturing and banking sectors. This industry accounts for more than six per cent of the total investments valued at $29billion and employs over 20 million people accounting for over six per cent of the total workforce in the continent.

"Tourism in the continent supports more than 21 million jobs or one in every 14 jobs. This is how important tourism is," Abou-Zeid stated.

Although five per cent growth was projected for the current year, she was optimistic that the industry will grow beyond the forecast figure.

She therefore admonished continental government to address the growing security concern and other militating factors against tourism growth.

"Addressing safety and security concerns and swift response to prices by our African government and institution are paramount to the growth of tourism.

"Promoting strategies and improving African image in the global media platforms are also critical in ensuring tourism recovery

"During the next decade, we will continue to grow and in growing, we know that when tourism thrives, women thrive.

"In Africa, more than 30 per cent of tourism businesses are run by women. And 36 per cent of its tourism ministers are women which is the highest in the world."

She went further to suggest firm links between tourism and other sectors of the economy, particularly agriculture, infrastructure, ecotourism and the medicals as a way to foster economic diversification.

Above all, she called for peace in the continent, stressing that every peace move would be supporting African Union's initiative to silence the guns by 2020.

The meeting culminated in the visit to Eko Atlantic City in Lagos State. There was no doubt about the fact that it was an impressive outing both for Nigerian government and the visitors, who are likely to relish the memory for a long while.

It was also believed that having listened to experts dolled out statistics on the benefits of the sector, Nigerian government will subsequently treat culture and tourism issues, particularity, yearly budget and commitment, with the seriousness they require.

The World Tourism Organisation (WTO) is the United Nations agency responsible for the development of global tourism.

It comprises 158 members; six associate members and over 500 affiliate members that represent the private sector operators in culture, tourism and educational institutions.

By The Citizen Reporter This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Dodoma — The government has secured an investor for the Mikumi Lodge in the famous Mikumi National Park, raising hope of an increase in the number of accommodation facilities for tourists in the area.

"The government has secured the investor who will revive Mikumi Lodge. The renovation work is currently underway... .we hope the task will be completed by November 2019," the Deputy Minister for Natural Resources and Tourism, Mr Josephat Hasunga told the Parliament on Tuesday.

He was responding to a question from Dr Jasmine Bunga (Special Seats) who said the Mikumi National Park was losing a lot of revenues from tourism activities due to the absence of enough accommodation facilities in the area.

In his response, Mr Hasunga said currently, tourists visiting Mikumi National Park were being accommodated in three tented camps, a lodge and ten hotels located at Mikumi Town.

He said his ministry, through Tanzania National Parks Authority (Tanapa) has set aside seven locations that are fit for investment purposes within Mikumi National Park where investors are invited to build world class accommodation facilities that will attract more and more tourists to the area.

He said under a special project that is known as Resilient Natural Resource for Tourism and Growth (Regrow), the country will see a lot of improvements of its tourism sector in the southern regions.

Regrow was launched in February this year.

interview By Laura Angela Bagnetto

Novuyo Rosa Tshuma, author of "House of Stone", a Zimbabwean epic novel Kwela Books

In Novuyo Rosa Tshuma's debut novel, House of Stone, readers are regaled with a story of the Mlambo family, as told by Zamani, their lodger and a master manipulator. In his quest to re-write his own personal history, he delves into the lives of 'surrogate parents' Abednego and Mama Agnes, and unravels their family secrets that are seemingly tightly wound amidst the backdrop of the post-liberation massacre in Ndebeleland, the Gukurahundi. Zimbabwean author Tshuma speaks to RFI's Africa: Stories in the 55, about the impact writing this book has had on her, and how the characters reflect the spirit of Zimbabwe.

Tshuma says that the novel came from a desire to examine first-hand accounts of the violence, the disappearances and the deaths in Ndebeleland in western and southwestern Zimbabwe during the early 1980s.

"We speak about the Liberation War all the time. But when it comes to the genocide, it is always a matter of shutting it down," she says, adding that by not addressing the psychological, social and communal issues, by not acknowledging people have died, healing cannot begin.

House of Stone unwinds tightly held secrets, touching on the role that Black Jesus, a fictionalized version of Perence Shiri, Zimbabwe's current agricultural minister, played during the Gukurahundi. Ultimately, can history be rewritten? Can personal history be rewritten? Tshuma examines this and more, as she presents Zimbabwe's past that some find hard to remember.

In a bid to promote academic standards in rural communities in the country, Vivo Energy Ghana, sole distributor and marketer of Shell branded products and lubricants, has resourced the New Takoradi Community Library with about 1000 books.

The books which included a collection of storybooks and literature materials was to boost academic standards within the fishing community and its environs under the company's "Energy for Education Project."

The Corporate Communications Manager of the Company, Mrs. Shirley Tony Kum reading a speech on behalf of the Managing Director expressed worry over the non-availability of children's books in the sector given the important role education played in the development of the country.

"In our part of the world, children's books are not always available and this can sometimes rob children of an enriching education during their childhood especially when most libraries are not filled with good story books which will stimulate and develop their imagination," she stated.

Mrs. Kum charged the community to ensure the books were well-maintained for the benefit of future generations urging school children to "continue to read and study for higher academic success."

The Sekondi/Takoradi Metropolitan Director of Education, Mrs. Elizabeth Akuako described education as "the light that illuminates the world and without it, people would be living in darkness."

She expressed gratitude to Vivo Energy Ghana for resourcing the library which had been left unstocked after its construction.

The Director pleaded with patrons of the facility to take good care of the books and read wide to broaden their knowledge.

The Chief of New Takoradi, Nana Abaka I, entreated parents to desist from the practice of burdening their children with domestic activities at the expense of their education.

He urged them to devote time to allow their children patronize the library to enhance their education.

By Tanaka Chidora

I grew up in the village with my parents and my siblings (Sue, Josy, Anne and, later towards the 2000s, Tawa). My parents, God bless them, trusted my work ethic so much that they practically left the choice of what to read, and when to read, to me.

I don't remember them tyrannically dictating the homework first and TV later rule to me that I see many young boys and girls enduring today. Of course, you might want to say TVs were not a common phenomenon in the village in those days. So find anything to use instead of TV. Mahwani Touch if you want.

Our parents practised a laissez-faire approach to education: I had to decide what I loved, and they had to provide the means (sometimes laboriously). Lots of times, I had to join them, either as father's dhakaboy (a colloquial term for someone who mixes mortar for the builder), or as mother's runner at the township market. During the cropping season, after helping in the fields, I had to look after our small herd of cattle. With such a busy schedule, novels still managed to find me.

By the time I completed my seventh grade at Mutya Primary School, I had already breezed my way through every popular Shona novel one could think of. My reading of these novels was necessitated by two things. First, Josy loved to unceremoniously insert long paragraphs of any Shona novel she would be reading at any given time into an everyday conversation. Imagine, you are having a conversation about invading Mbuya VaRusekeni's mango orchard, and Josy rattles up something from "Kutonhodzwa KwaChauruka" for effect.

Only a perfect WhatsApp emoji can capture the confusion on our faces. So I took to reading every Shona novel that came my way. Some came as complete packages; others came with a couple of missing limbs, but the good thing about Shona novels of that time was that like Nigerian movies, getting into the story 25 pages later was no serious setback. The second reason was my late cousin, Innocent (may his soul rest in peace).

This naughty fellow had a bookphobia of unimaginable proportions. So he would bring his Shona set books home and during bedtime, instruct me to read for him, a chapter per night. Of course, a couple of paragraphs later, he would be snoring loudly so that anyone who dared to listen from the outside would think that I was performing some incantations to the demonic approval of some dark force.

After sensing an invasion of her turf, Josy later migrated to English novels. However, I suspect that her affair with English novels was not a deep one because instead of citing whole paragraphs like what she used to do with the Shona novels, this time she confined herself to sudden citations of novel titles and their authors. For instance, during a game of bakery (I think that's the spelling; no one bothered to spell the names of games because games were meant to be played), she, from nowhere, announced, "Silent Journey from the East". So I migrated as well, but unlike Josy, I actually wanted to read the contents of these novels.

Form 1 of course started with the usual: "Mpho's Search" or "Oliver Twist". Then came Holly Meyers from the United States. She practically upgraded our Rukovo Secondary School library and introduced a reading culture by making sure that every Form 1 pupil had a reading card.

In the library, I stumbled upon the Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys series and loved them. I think I read 66 Hardy Boys novels and around 54 Nancy Drews. I usually worked at a rate of two novels per day. Even my English compositions became action-packed, reflecting the influence of America on a young village boy of my calibre.

Then my uncle, Uncle Tich, came to the village from boarding school. Uncle Tich represented what the village was not. He listened to foreign musicians, and usually whistled "From the Distance" when absent-minded. There was something foreign and fresh about him that made me want to be his friend.

He also brought Dambudzo Marechera (in books and in appearance), Mario Puzo, Robert Ludlum, Wilbur Smith, Jack Higgins, Frederick Forsythe, Eric van Lustbader, Sidney Sheldon, Ken Folliet, Louis L'Amour, James Hadley Chase and many other popular writers.

But the one who really invaded Uncle Tich's life was Marechera. Besides the unlimited collection of expletives that Uncle Tich used when angry or happy, he also began to exhibit behavioural traits that Marechera was famed for. For me, that was what set Uncle Tich apart. It drew me close to him and I became his disciple, reading his books and imitating his English.

By the time I reached Form 4, I had read "The House of Hunger", "Scrapiron Blues" and "Cemetery of Mind" and many other trend-setting Zimbabwean works. I had also read "The Great Gatsby" and many other literary works including "War and Peace".

I was the first, and I am sure the last, to borrow it from the school library. I still remember how I walked up and down the corridors with the book pressed to my chest. "War and Peace" is a voluminous affair and a Form 2 pupil must really be Marecherean to walk around with it.

Uncle Tich had a typewriter. He wrote his stories using that typewriter. I borrowed it from him to write my first story, "The Mountain". I do not remember how I lost it, but I am sure it was when I came to Harare. Uncle Tich has lost his stories too. He has also lost the Marecherean disposition that made him a rebel of sorts. Now he is all reserved and "normal" but the linguistic dexterity is still there.

A couple of weeks ago, I sent him a poem titled "Time": "She led me to the house at the end of the street, and left her caresses on my face." He added two lines about "dark voyeurs" peeping at us from the thick but perforated blanket of darkness, and I knew I still had my favourite uncle around.

Now I teach literature at the university. I have all these books in my head, but every time I rattle off some titles like Josy, I am met by blank faces. I don't know if the generation of learners we have now is different from ours, but the truth is that they no longer read these books like we used to.

By Gbenga Salau

Wife of Lagos State governor, Mrs. Bolanle Ambode, and deputy governor of the state, Dr. Oluranti Adebule, yesterday pleaded with women to pay attention to their health and speak out against social vices, like domestic violence, child abuse and rape.

They spoke in Lagos at an event organised by the First Lady to address issues about women's health and recurring social vices in the society.

Mrs. Ambode, who observed that good health was a prerequisite for everything in life, including children, family, and business, stressed that without good health, nothing meaningful could be achieved.

Condemning the prevalence of social nuisance in the society, she implored women to boldly voice out their discontent against domestic violence, child abuse, rape and teenage pregnancy.

Describing any form of violence against women as barbaric and unacceptable, she urged women to seek to know their rights under the law, shun silence, and be vocal on their own cause.

Also speaking, the deputy governor stated that the forum provided a platform where women could engage in sustainable discourse to increase their knowledge and enhance their awareness on health and well-being.

Adebule said it was unfortunate that 23 years after countries signed pledges in the 1995 Beijing Declaration and Platform of Action, women still face many health-cum-social problems, saying that there was need for recommitment to address them.

She, however, appealed to all women to join hands with the government in winning the battle against dogmas inimical to healthy lifestyle and social malaise of domestic violence, child abuse, rape and teenage pregnancy.

A young woman convicted of decapitating and dismembering an elderly woman, who had tried to help treat her injured foot, showed signs of psychopathy, the Western Cape High Court heard on Tuesday.

Sheree Prince, who was 18 when she burgled the home of Sandra Malcolm, 74, appeared unemotional as clinical psychologist Willie Hanekom testified during sentencing proceedings.

During her assessment sessions, Prince, now 21, reported that she had thoughts of killing someone since a young age, Hanekom testified.

"The risk for violent reoffending should be regarded as high in this case. The accused needs to be incarcerated... . [and] intensive psychotherapy is required."

Hanekom explained that Prince's case was "extremely rare" and no comparable cases in terms of the dismemberment could be found.

"She wanted to get rid of the body but there were 24 deep stab wounds reported, indicating some rage and 'overkill' by dismembering - there are indications that the victim was alive when she decapitated her.

"Apart from the fact that it is rare for a female and especially an 18-year-old to dismember, it is also rare to dismember a stranger."

Prince, who spent most of Hanekom's testimony looking at the floor in the dock, showed no remorse for what she had done, the psychologist said.

The accused had indicated she wanted the murdered woman's house, Hanekom testified.

"She said [Malcolm] had had her life. She was old."

Prince pleaded guilty to murdering Malcolm in her Capri Mews, Lakeside home on April 18, 2015.

In her plea explanation, it emerged that she had travelled to the city from Citrusdal, where she had lived with her mother. They ostensibly had a strained relationship.

She was dropped off in Mitchells Plain and spent the night at a stranger's house. The next day, he took her back to the traffic lights in Rocklands, where he had picked her up.

Prince claimed to have walked to a nearby house and, when no one opened after she knocked, she climbed through a window and stole valuables, such as wallets, cellphones and laptops.

She used the stolen money to pay for transport to Muizenberg, where she met a man who helped her find a place to stay in a bush with other people.

On the day of the murder, she said she had seen a house where the side window was open. She scaled the gate and entered the house, where she saw Malcolm lying in bed.

She switched on the light and Malcolm woke up, threatening to phone the police when she saw the intruder.

Prince told the pensioner that she had been looking for help, showing her foot, which she had burnt with hot food when she kicked a pot over the night before.

"We went into the kitchen where she gave me Savlon mixed with water to wash my foot. She then made me toast and tea," Prince admitted.

"The woman said that she was going to phone for an ambulance. I said no and grabbed a knife. I told her that I would stab her if she phoned the police. She tried to take the knife from me."

She admitted to stabbing Malcolm once in the chest, after which the elderly woman fell to the ground.

"I wanted to leave but saw her trying to get up. I then killed her by decapitating her with the big knife. I tried to cut her body in order to take it apart."

She used Malcolm's phone to message her father. It read: "Ek's in groot kak, help." (I am in big trouble, help)

"I then cut off both of her arms and tried to cut off her legs but failed to remove it completely. I then used an axe to chop it off."

She dumped Malcolm's remains in an outside bin. Her arms and legs were put in a plastic container.

Prince fled, but left her handbag which contained goods stolen in Mitchells Plain.

She said she returned to the bush where she had been living and returned to Citrusdal a few days later with the help of relatives.

The stolen items were found at her father's house upon her arrest.

Prince had told Hanekom that she had decided to kill Malcolm because she thought the woman had poisoned her when she had offered her something to eat. She claimed to have feared that the pensioner would phone the police once Prince had fallen asleep.

Malcolm's daughter, Alison Williams, said she was not surprised that her mother had offered assistance to Prince before she was murdered.

"She never hesitated to help," she testified during proceedings.

Her mother was more than a "little old pensioner, a case number"; she was vibrant and full of life, Williams told Judge Bruce Langa.

Her son had found his grandmother's "butchered body", Williams said from the stand, and his "scars will never heal".

She appealed for the highest possible prison sentence for Prince, insisting that, should her mother's murderer ever be up for parole, a family member would be there to "ensure she stays behind bars, where she belongs".

"Our lives will never be the same."

Sentencing proceedings continue on Wednesday.

Source: News24

By Ayodeji Ake

As an advocate of African women, Queen Misker Kassahun Teka from Ethiopia has revealed plans of kick-starting campaign on mental issues, educating women across at least five African countries (including Nigeria), on causes and prevention, as her prime project.

Queen Teka who emerged the winner of African Beauty Queen 2018, in an interaction with journalists recently in Lagos, said mental illness is one of the most common illness mostly caused by stressed and depression, adding that such health issue should be addressed by supply of adequate information on mental illness.

"One thing about mental illness is that you can't really know you have it until someone sees you and notices. I also plan to have panel discussions and public lectures so that everyone can attend and know about it. I also plan to do a media campaign. October is actually mental illness month; I am hoping by the time I finish my project before October I can show my projects using the media.

"I will like to have rehabilitation centers in my country where people can come and get free treatment and recover from mental illnesses. I also want to become a successful business woman because I want to show women that you can be both beautiful and an entrepreneur, you can be a leader and just have that personality that women can look at me and say I want to be like her" she said.

Teka, a psychiatry student in one of Ethiopian universities, speaking on her interest on mental illness noted that her dream while growing up was to sanitise the public on mental illness.

She said: "The reason I choose mental health is because I have always been fascinated about human mind. Since I was a child I have been always reading about how minds work so growing up I discovered we lack a lot on that area especially in my country I see people with depression, people are committing suicide, people not being treated like humans so I think what I saw made me to work on mental illness".

Revealing plans on African countries crusade on mental illness, she said she "plans to print a pocket size magazine of the common mental illness in my country like major depressive disorder, bipolar disorder, autism, mental illnesses and others.

"I will like to take these common diseases in a very simple way and just distribute to everyone especially to universities and high schools so that at least these people can go and share with their parents.

"People don't even consider depression as an illness, so I want people to know the signs and symptoms of at least the common diseases. I am trying to do a documentary showing how people leave this mental illness and how psychiatrists handle it and how we can spot mental illness".


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