Deforestation is haunting the African continent as industrial growth paves over public commons and puts more hectares into private hands.
Reports this year of illicit moneys from African countries stashed in a Swiss bank – indicating that corruption lies behind much of the income inequality that affects the continent – have grabbed international news headlines.
Hidden by the struggles to defeat Ebola, malaria and drug-resistant tuberculosis, a silent killer has been moving across the African continent, superseding infections of HIV and AIDS.
There’s a buzz in Zimbabwe’s lush forests, home to many animal species, but it’s not bees, bugs or other wildlife. It’s the sound of a high-speed saw, slicing through the heart of these ancient stands to clear land for tobacco growing, to log wood for commercial export and to supply local area charcoal sellers.
For 47-year-old Albert Mangwendere from Mutoko, a district 143 kilometres east of Harare, the Zimbabwean capital, transporting his three pregnant wives using a wheelbarrow to a local clinic has become routine, with his wives delivering babies one after the other.
About eight years ago, 44-year-old Tilda Chihota was struck with tuberculosis which kept her bed-ridden for over six months at her rural home in Zimbabwe’s Mwenezi district, 144 kilometres southwest of Masvingo, the country’s oldest town.
Fifty-one-year-old Mateline Msipa is living with HIV. Her 17-year-old daughter, born after Msipa was diagnosed with the virus, may also have it, but she has never been tested.
Zimbabwe boasts of one of the highest rates of literacy across Africa but, but without free primary education, achieving universal primary education here may remain a pipe dream, educationists say.
Despite a mandate to eradicate HIV/AIDS under the U.N. Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), Zimbabwe has done little or nothing to reduce the rate of infection among vulnerable gays and lesbians, say activists here.
As unemployment deepens across this Southern African nation and as the country battles to achieve the United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) ahead of the December 2015 deadline, thousands of urban Zimbabweans here are facing starvation.
With the ruling Zimbabwe Africa National Union Patriotic Front party in Zimbabwe seized with internal conflicts, attention to key development areas here have shifted despite the imminent end of December 2015 deadline for global attainment of the U.N. Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
Mavis Gotora from Mabvuku high-density suburb, in Zimbabwe’s capital, Harare, walks up and down, as she persuades one passer-by after another to board the private taxi cab she drives.
Millicent Gananda, 34, and her two children enjoy their food at a roadside restaurant in downtown Harare, Zimbabwe’s capital, before they dash into the supermarket next door.
For many young Zimbabweans like 19-year-old Shelton Mbariro, running an unlicensed, backyard handmade shoe business has become a way to escape unemployment in this southern African nation.
As the African Union is set to celebrate its 51st birthday on May 25, it does so as the continent remains caught up in a tide of terrorist conflicts, which many analysts feel the AU has done little to resolve.