Op ed

Africa is not a country

The continued media misrepresentation of Africa and media Crisis in Somalia or Ethiopia is not tantamount to the entire African continent!. Media  bias against the Continental Africa are omnipresent in all western media realms and constitute  great concern to every African living in the Diaspora. Fairness in news reporting calls not only for our concern  with the utmost precise presentation of the bare news and facts but equally, the geo-political environment must stand in fair, accurate profile to the reported event. Media professionals know how easy it is to present “a dog as an elephant” and vice-versa.

It is not just enough to report for instance on TV that, “President John Agyekum Kofoh of Ghana is on a five-day official visit to Holland” without adequate emphasis given to the correct pronunciation of the names or the geo-political importance of Ghana to Holland or Her status in Africa.

An example of such news reports that send shock-waves to Africans is a discrediting front-page news in Der Spiegel a (German Weekly) reportage few years ago, with the obnoxious caption: Elends Kontinent Afrika Rettung durch die Weißen? (Misery Continent Africa , Should the Whites come to rescue?) Many Africans did not only feel ashamed but were really sad reading it. Many asked themselves again and again how is this possible?

picture from German magazineIn this case, it was just a report on the former situation in Somalia and suddenly someone thought  Somalia has automatically assumed the position of a Continent. Many Africans feel very sad seeing the daily media portrayal of the continental Africa as a country. When civil war breaks out in Liberia : The whole Africa is at war!  If religious fanatics misbehaves in any countries. They take the advantage in making caricature of a whole continent by giving a false impression that the entire continent is a beggar land.
control of Kano/Kaduna in Nigeria , the next day´s news caption will run: “AFRICA IN CRISES AGAIN!” A man from one African country runs amok in Reperbahn Hamburg ; the caption runs: “Afrikaner Amok gelaufen” (“An African runs amok”) The only news from Africa that is newsworthy must be embezzlement of funds, ebola virus, AIDS, cataclysm, hunger and starvation. Why should news and images of Africa in the mass media always be images of suffering and catastrophe? Why must every African media-picture be images of misery? Why must African news always be treated holistically?

In African countries news managers do not just caption stories: ” Europe a Continent under fire” because there is a crisis in Bosnia  or as a result of trouble fomented by the IRA in Ireland  or chaos in Spain from the ETA groups.  In view of all odds it has gone through including the Black Holocaust I think it is time we start researching for the other faces of Africa that has always been left undiscovered. I think it is time we honour Africa and give Africa and her Children the place they deserve, rather than this deluge of woes. Your Reaction To this Story

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Do you also get worried and ask: Why should news and images of Africa in the Western media always be images of suffering and catastrophe? Why must every African media-picture be images of misery? Why must African news always be treated holistically?

If these questions always cross your mind just as they do everyday to many media-conscious people  and you wish to contribute or seek means to influence or change this attitude to a positive one then read on:

How can you get involved?
Anyone of us can help change this.  Perhaps you have a hint to a positive news about any African aspect of life. May be you know of an organization or an African who is engaged in a positive project or who has achieved fame and excellence in his field that is worth publishing.  Then, get in contact with us.

You just can’t keep watching, folding your arms and grudging; get involved: Don’t just read the news  – be part of the news and public  opinion creators.

Write the news,  question the news! Be part of a strong-waxing group of the News Agenda setters!
Earn fame & respect within the Codewit community for your TALENT in writing and conveying your opinion or comments smartly!
Don’t just complain write it!

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