Browse results

This volume focuses on the different challenges of language policy in the Southern African Development Community (SADC). Each of the seventeen chapters follows the same structure, ensuring readability and accessibility, and describes the unique aspects of each country. The work as a whole reveals the complex and reciprocal relations between multiple indigenous African languages, Creole languages and former colonial languages and it constitutes an opportunity to notice recurring patterns as well as distinctive characteristics.
Therefore, everyone involved in language policy, education, economics and development, geography, development or area studies and African studies will benefit from such a holistic and innovative overview.
This book series covers the entire African continent on a national scale in order to provide a holistic overview of multilingualism and the language policies. Due to its country-by-country structure all African countries receive the same attention and space. For usability purposes, the countries are grouped in the different regional economic communities (RECs):
- Volume I: SADC
- Volume II: EAC & ECCAS
- Volume III: ECOWAS
- Volume IV: AMU & COMESA
These volumes of the series focus primarily on language-in-education policies (LiEP). The book series aims to describe and analyse the diverse challenges of LiEP for the entire African continent using a standard structure for each chapter to ensure readability. Book chapters will be mainly contributed by authors based in Africa.

Abstract

Changes in forestry policies in Cameroon have often been initiated by different stakeholders in line with their respective interests, political and/or economic power, capacities and views. Consequently, communities, and especially women, inhabiting forest areas have faced difficulty using and managing forests, for cultural, social, economic and institutional reasons that limit their rights regarding the forest. This paper argues that institutional changes in Cameroon around ownership, use and management of forest resources have had far-reaching impacts on women who are dependent on these forests. We use secondary and primary data to support our analyses. Our findings reveal that over time, forestry reforms in Cameroon have been gender-blind or gender-neutral, with no clauses in forestry reforms that consider women’s vulnerabilities, needs and responsibilities. These reforms continue to impose secondary roles on women. By using gender-inclusive success stories from Nepalese forest communities, this research presses on policymakers to be more gender-inclusive when enacting forestry policies. Raising awareness and enforcing accountability that supports women will both improve the standards of living for everyone in forest communities and enhance sustainable forest management.

In: Afrika Focus
Author: Michel Thill

Abstract

My dissertation is about everyday police work, the effects of police reform and the state in the Democratic Republic of Congo (drc). Despite the role of the police in state–society relations, in Congo and the wider region that role remains under-explored. My thesis asks in what ways police practices and encounters with the public reproduce, sustain or collapse Congo’s state. Based on a year of immersive field work during which I followed police officers from the classroom via the station to the street, I argue that officers make police work possible through their everyday performativity that draws on, combines and subverts rationalities of three entangled governmentalities. The resulting Craft of the Congo Cop lies in the ability to reconcile colliding governmentalities and project the state as a temporary yet convincing effect of authority. From this inherently contingent performative process, the state in Congo emerges as a composite of temporary and fast-changing effects.

In: Afrika Focus
Author: Wim Verbruggen

Abstract

Dryland ecosystems are globally widespread and have a large impact on the global land carbon sink. Yet a detailed optimisation of dynamic vegetation models for these ecosystems is lacking. This works contributes to resolving this problem. Based on data from our own field work, we parameterised two dynamic vegetation models to dryland conditions, specifically the Sudano-Sahel region. The optimised parameterisation enables the models to realistically simulate carbon and water fluxes measured at several fluxtower sites across the region, as well as several satellite data products. Using these models, we then studied how climatic factors and soil texture may influence the functioning of dryland ecosystems. By using and tuning dynamic vegetation models for simulating dryland vegetation, this work provides a unique insight into dryland ecosystem functioning.

In: Afrika Focus
Free access
In: Afrika Focus
Author: Rafael Verbuyst

Abstract

The Khoisan were decimated, dispossessed and assimilated into the mixed-race “Coloured” group during colonialism and apartheid, spawning the notion of their supposed extinction. However, Cape Town, where colonial history runs deepest, became the epicentre of “Khoisan revivalism” after apartheid. Khoisan revivalists reject Coloured identity and campaign for cultural development, historical justice and indigenous rights. Many also claim land and traditional leadership titles. Drawing on ethnographic fieldwork among Khoisan revivalists, my PhD dissertation scrutinises Khoisan revivalism’s origins, appeal and political aspirations. It focuses on the various ways that historical events, figures and practices inform diverse articulations of indigeneity. Khoisan revivalists are primarily seeking a relatable connection with the past and select sources, mediums and content accordingly. Moreover, in simultaneously replicating, disregarding and appropriating colonial representations, they produce a “subversive authenticity”. While empowering to many, Khoisan revivalism has also emboldened some to mobilise a racialised identity politics based on prior occupancy, which today extends beyond the movement.

In: Afrika Focus

Abstract

This study investigated the knowledge and willingness of University of Ibadan graduate students regarding seeking redress against professional misconduct by personnel of the Nigeria Police Force. The theory of reasoned action was adopted as the conceptual framework. Data were accessed through survey and in-depth interview methods. The results showed that 55.2% of students were unaware of the available internal channels through which redress can be sought. More than half (52%) were unwilling to seek redress against police misconduct for a variety of reasons. There was no association (χ2 = 3.340; P > 0.05) between respondents’ gender and the gender of police officials they were willing to report. It is imperative that the Police Service Commission and the management of the Nigeria Police Force develop viable strategies through which the public can be adequately sensitised regarding the available channels and the steps that can be taken to file complaints against misuse of power by police personnel.

In: Afrika Focus
Author: Sékou Traoré

Abstract

The growth of marabouts’ divinatory practices in urban centres in Côte d’Ivoire from the 1980s onwards was due to the generational crisis among marabouts and the unemployment of many graduates from universities in the Arab Maghreb. Forced to earn money linked to the difficulties of urban city life, some marabouts replaced the traditional community support with a mandatory fee, so that we witnessed the professionalisation of maraboutage. Professional marabouts mingled with other practitioners of the occult, causing repeated scandals. In response, the Ivorian state took measures to control the activities of “fake” marabouts. This study focuses on the political, economic and religious consequences for the image and the position of marabouts in the postcolony. It is based on the use of press clippings, bibliographic data and oral sources.

In: Afrika Focus

Abstract

The best interest of the child stands as an important and fundamental principle of the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child. The charter’s content is determined and expanded upon by the African Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of the Child through its dual status as a monitoring body for the implementation and as the recipient of the principle. The Committee thus contributes to the promotion and protection of children’s rights. It is therefore important, through this study, to try to answer the question: what is the content of the principle of the best interest of the child under the law developed by the Committee? Indeed, by using the doctrinal approach to legal analysis, it has been shown that the Committee understands this principle in three dimensions. First, it is a principle to be guaranteed in any decision or action taken by the state regarding children. Second, it is an obligation imposed on all persons, authorities and officials in relation to children. Finally, it is the primary consideration and the ultimate result to be achieved. In conclusion, the Committee’s approach is a continuation of the content of its General Comment No. 14 on the best interest of the child. This is to be considered a fundamental right, a general principle of interpretation and a procedural rule.

In: Afrika Focus