Swahili blogosphere: Sounds of Wisdom, Peacekeeping mission and the Last King of Scotland

the annual Sauti za Busara 2007 Festival (Sounds of Wisdom Music Festival), took place this week in Zanzibar.

Tanzania's leading Photoblogger, Issa Michuzi, takes us around the festival and pays a special tribute to Bi Kidude, a 95 years old 2005 winner of WOMEX World Music award. He follows Bi Kidude on stage as well as backstage relaxing with fans.
Busara Live has a collection of videos from the festival.

Another photoblogger Mrocky posts a picture of Tanzanian troops ready to leave for their first peacekeeping mission outside of Africa. They are joining the UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL).

Abou Salim posts a photo of 10 female soldiers who are part of the 77 going to Lebanon, and sparks speculation in the comments section that this may be the beginning of an era in which women will participate and take leading roles in the once male dominated positions signaling the end the downfall of patriachy:

Watu wanaofanya ustadi wa masuala ya unajimu wanasema tunaingia kwenye zama ambazo moja ya alama zake ni nafasi mpya na majukumu mapya wanaopewa wanawake duniani. Wanawake wa India wanalinda amani Liberia. Sasa dada zetu nao hao Lebanoni. pengine ndio mwanzo wa anguko la mfumo dume.

Astrologers are saying that we entering a new era, one of the signs of this new era is the new roles and responsibilities that women take. All female peace keeping troops from India are now serving in Liberia, and now Tanzanian female troops are in Lebanon.

And, as the disbursement of Tanzanian Shillings 1 billion to each of region is taking place as part of the government's empowerment policy through micro-credit, Charahani doubts whether the loans will alleviate poverty.

He argues that this iniative will not work if the people are not adequately educated:

Umaskini unaweza tu kuondolewa kwa mikakati madhubuti …. Inapaswa kwanza watoto waende shule waelimike, wakishaelimika kisha hizi pesa hata usipozigawa, maendeleo yatakuja tuu… Elimu ni utajiri tosha unaoweza kuondoa umaskini kwa kiasi kikubwa bila ya kutegemea vitu vingine.

Wadogo zetu ambao wanaingia katika taasisi za elimu ya juu inaonekana hawatasoma tena… hawatamudu gharama za kujilipia asilimia 40 ya gharama wanayotakiwa kujilipia vyuoni… Tumeisikia hotuba ya mkuu wa nchi kusema kuwa hakuna masikini ambaye atashindwa kusoma sababu ya kukosa ada. Maneno haya yanafurahisha lakini hayatoi matumaini sababu yana walakini mkubwa, siyo endelevu

For poverty to be alleviated, education should be a priority. When people are empowered with education, development will take place. Ordinary citizens cannot afford to pay 40 percent of their children's education loans. And, How can we trust our dear leader's assurance that all eligible students will go to college regardless of their ability to pay? It sounds good but it does not fill us with any hope.

Recently, the Kenyan Swahili blogger, Maitha, watched the film, The Last King of Scotland. He writes,

Baada ya kutazama filamu mpya ya The Last King Of Scotland nimeshindwa kuelewa kwanini watu wanaendelea kutoa filamu kama hizi kuhusu Afrika . Kando na kurundikiwa sifa tele hakuna lolote jipya linalotoka kwenye picha hii

After watching the new film, The Last King of Scotland, I have not been able to understand why people still produce these types of films about Africa. Despite positive reviews, there is nothing new in the film.

Kibunango reports that after the government of Zanzibar banned the use of mobile phones in schools arguing that they foster immoral sexual behavior, it (Zanzibar government) has also decided to ban students from going to dance clubs. The government argues that this behavior has led to immoral acts and is one of the reasons behind students’ poor performance.

Lastly, Tanzanian bloggers continue to discuss the formation of bloggers’ association. After proposing the name of the organization and leadership structure, the discussion at the moment is about the constitution of the association. One of the main point of contention so far has been membership eligibility. Some bloggers want membership to be open to blogger only, while others want active commentators to be allowed to be members.


  • I wish to convey my sincere appreciation to REUTERS for setting aside some space for bloggers worldwide. This is a huge breakthrough for global voices to reach a wider audience through this very much respected and reputable media corporation. I believe that this sort of partnership will push forward efforts to make the world a better place to live for all beings (humans and non-humans).

    Congratulations Reuters. Asanteni sana wana-Reuters.

    Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

  • sindamikwa

    I have not watched he movie yet, but the way it has been advertased is like Idd Amini, was a great guy, remember he was a dictator who killed several uganda people and invided Tanzania. To me he never a hero and the movie will not change my mind

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