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Showing posts from 2010

Lola on Nigeria needs more than new leaders to change

Nigeria needs more than new leaders to change By Lola Adesioye, Special to CNN October 1, 2010 2:20 p.m. EDT STORY HIGHLIGHTS Nigeria celebrates 50 years of independence on the 1st of OctoberAccording to Adesioye, Nigeria's wealth is represented by its peopleNigeria's transformation depends on mindset shift from the people and not just change in leadership, she says Editor's note: New York-based British/Nigerian commentator Lola Adesioye is a regular contributor of commentary and features to a range of media including The Economist, The Huffington Post and CNN. She writes for as Africa's most populous country marks 50 years of independence Friday.  (CNN) -- People are corrupt. The elite don't care. The leaders steal from the people. Everything is falling apart and no one is doing anything about it. These are just some of the complaints regularly made by Nigerians about Nigeria. There's no doubt that these are valid complaints.Indeed, the car bombs which hi…

Lola in The Guardian: Shirley Sherrod's case exposes ugly media flaws

[Originally published in The Guardian] The hasty sacking of Shirley Sherrod shows how easily we are manipulated by 'journalism' based on inaccuracies When Shirley Sherrod spoke at an NAACP event and shared a 24-year-old story of overcoming her prejudices, little did she realise the same speech would come back to in a new, highly edited form, putting her at the centre of a national controversy, costing her a job at the department of agriculture and almost ruining her reputation. Yet that is exactly what happened this week. Rightwing blogger Andrew Breitbart, in cahoots with Fox News, went on a mission – which he claims was to reveal the "truth" about the NAACP – to cause controversy. He took a bite-sized clip from Sherrod's speech, tagged it with a headline accusing her of being a racist and released it to the world. The clip showed Sherrod, who at the time was the director for rural development in Georgia, saying that she did not use the full force of her power t…

Lola in The Guardian: After Oscar Grant, just take guns away from US police officers

[Originally published in The Guardian]

 A passerby walks by a mural of Oscar Grant in downtown Oakland, California. Photograph: Susana Bates/EPA
Friday 9 July 2010 11.35 EDTFirst published on Friday 9 July 2010 11.35 EDT

Lola in The Guardian: Lena Horne, a true breakthrough act

With the passing of singer, actor and entertainer Lena Horne in New York yesterday at the age of 92, we remember yet another person – an African-American woman – whose life and work paved the way for America to be what it is today. It was the perseverance and passion of people like Lena Horne that helped shift America away from the accepted segregation and discrimination of the 40s, 50s and 60s to having an African-American president in 2010. In Horne's day, being a black actress was a civil rights act within itself. Lena Horne will be remembered as a woman who stood strong, for more than 70 years, in the face of what could have been spirit-crushing discrimination. In doing so, she leaves a legacy of inspiration and empowerment as well as wonderful music and memories for many Americans. Horne's career started at 16 when her mother sent her to sing in the chorus at Harlem's Cotton Club (which still exists), an entertainment venue where black entertainers performed for wealth…

Lola in Nigeria and Democracy Inaction

[Originally published at]
How long can Africa’s most populous country go on without a clear leader? Imagine that one day President Barack Obama disappears. It is rumored that he has gone to Saudi Arabia for medical treatment of a condition that nobody is quite certain about. After three months, the public starts to speculate as to whether or not he is still alive. As a result of failing to follow the correct constitutional steps to ensure that the country would be run in his absence, Vice President Joe Biden has been unable to take power. The country is leaderless, in political turmoil, and Americans are left wondering what is going on. Nearly four months later, the protests of a despondent and resigned public prompt some action and Biden steps in to run the country. Shortly after that, Obama reappears–still not telling anyone exactly where he has been, nor the truth about the current status of his health. Access to him is limited and first lady Michelle Obama starts takin…