Friday, August 28, 2009

Ghana To Travel To "Space": Ambition or Foolhardiness..?

I heard from source, to be specific - Cyberworld that, yesterday marked the 40th Anniversary of the NASA Moon Landing. That must be a great feat. I have my doubts though, if that thing really did happen. Did Neil Armstrong and his colleagues actually land on the moon 40 years ago?

Someway, somehow, I'm tempted to agree with a friend who thinks the whole thing is one big hoax and a carefully choreographed US prank, just to prove their superiority over the USSR. You know how these two have been engaged in superiority contest since then.

One other thing that makes the picture a lot more blurred, is the fact that 40 year ago, technology was barely developed, but that claim was slapped on the world. And yet, till date we still know very little about the moon. Today, with all the technologies and speed of lightning, NASA is now 'planning' to return to the moon in 2030. Woooaw! What a plan! Why should it take them that long?

I wonder if I will be alive to see that day. But they did that 40 years ago with crappy & cheap technology. One would have expected that an encore of that feat be achieved earlier than 2030. Anyway, that is an entirely US headache and not something for my small head.. My take is on Ghana's fanciful thinking about space travel. Yes, you heard me right. Ghana's Fanciful SPACE TRAVEL..

Listening to News Night on Joy Fm; I heard a few arguments to the effect that Ghana should be considering a space travel. Oh yes.. You just heard it.. Only from me. Don't doubt it. I was amused and I laughed silently listening to that trash. Sorry, its more a blunder than a trash.

It is absolute wishful thinking. Travel to space to do what in the first place? Honestly, given even 50 years from today, I bet we are not and never going to get anywhere near there. As usual, let me be the only pessimist here. You can join me if you do agree. I don't expect you to agree with me though. In fact, I'd be glad if Ghana and her so-called scientist can prove me wrong for once. But sadly, I'm going to be proved right. We won't even be able to build an aircraft in the next 50 years, talk-less of a spaceship. Where is Ghana Airways, Black star Line and the rest...??
My premise is this simple. 50 years after that miserable independence (I wonder who at all advised Kwame Nkrumah and his friends to get that from the British, we would have been better off); one which we were proud to celebrate with USD$70 million, we have nothing to show. We have not yet been able to figure out how to keep hawkers off the streets of the Accra Central Business District, we don't have a stable National Education and Youth Policy.

We are always shifting blame on other people instead of looking for the right solution to our problems. We can't think of a sustainable way of providing affordable clean drinking water for even a quarter of the nation's population. I live in a community known for it affluence and all but, we still have to buy water every week since we moved there.

We still can't find enough intellect to create a good drainage system in the capital, Accra. Our major health institutions have remained largely as transit points to the grave. No wonder, when our political leaders have simple "kaka" [trans: toothache], they fly outside, of course at our expense, to get treatment. When people elsewhere are traveling to the moon, we are still struggling to reach our villages from the city.

50 years after independence, NDC and NPP activists are still fighting over who has the political right to keep the keys to public toilets in Cape Coast, Accra New-Town and Axim; and we are talking about traveling where? To the moon? Please... Spare the crap-talk.

Let's try to figure out how to clear the debris in the Korle Lagoon, take the primary school kids from under the mango trees in Garu Tempane, Yendi, Bawku and Zabuzugu-Tatale, into very good and well-equipped classroom buildings; let's work out a permanent solution to the perennial flooding in Accra; let's find a way of reducing the driving hours between Adenta to the Tetteh-Quarshie Interchange and to the Central Business District.

If we are able to find our way around these little things, then we can have a clear space in our heads to spare on thoughts of a space travel. Simply put, age-old wisdom should teach us to count one before two. Let's not place the cart before the horse.

My fingers hurt so badly... Heading to ACP Canteen opposite DWA-Ghana with Fred and Joyce [colleagues from work] to find some beans & fried plantain as usual. Accraboy, how I go do am...??

Photolinks Credit: AtoKD's Blog

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Togolese President Here.. Road-Blocks There...!!!

Togolese President, Faure Essozimna Gnassingbe, arrived in Accra on Tuesday August 25, 2009 for a two-day official visit during which he is expected to visit some industrial and energy project sites.

During his visit, the Togolese president and his delegation would hold bilateral discussions with President John Atta Mills on a number of issues including strengthening of ties, cross border concerns, trade and energy.

I have a question on mind and I want some answers. How does his visit affect the general lives of the common Ghanaian on the street....?

Waking up Tuesday morning at around 0600GMT and leavingthe house at 0625GMT, I was greeted with a heavy traffic just around the Tetteh Quarshie Roundabout heading towards Airport.

This particular traffic jam wasn't the normal one I used to see when going to work every morning. I asked about it, only to be told; because of President Faure Gnassingbe's visit, all major roads linking the Akuafo Interchange popularly known as [37] and other roads linking the airport was closed to vehicular traffic as part of security measures towards President President Faure Essozimna Gnassingbe’s visit to the country...

Me, been the common Ghanaian, an accraboy for that matter had to resort to finding other routes to work. I humbly advised the vexed tro-tro driver to try using the road in front of Aphrodisiac Nite Club and National Service Secretariat; so we could either join the Alliance Francaise d' Accra link..

Trust me, that road was also heavily packed with cars since most had no option than use that one too.

Did the Ministry of Information properly broadcast news about the Togolese President's visit? How many days before was this news item carried out? Did most media houses carried this news article just as they did for President Obama when he was visiting? Are you thinking, what I'm thinking...??"

I checked my time-piece on my wrist and it reads, 0848GMT. Whaaaaaat....? I have been in traffic for this long hours? Well, I couldn't do much than just sit in the rickety tro-tro which moves about one-quarter a minute.

Some passengers who couldn't wait anymore and had waited in the traffic for hours had to alight and make the rest of the journey on foot. Come listen to the curse-words coming from these passengers. You wouldn't want to hear..

To me, the situation have been the same since President Obama visited Ghana some months ago till now. The situation is and always poorly been managed by the so-called policemen/women on duty..

The Ministry of Information and the Police Administration should take this up and treat it with all seriousness because, it seems as if the big people up in government don't really care about the plight of the ordinary Ghanaian. Yes, they don't care a whooat. Let me know, if you think they care... They only care for their families and their pockets..

Next time a visiting dignitary is coming to Ghana [Ogyankrom], information should be sent out earliest for people to be informed about the road-blocks, the various affected routes and many more..

I don't know think, you'll like to know the very time I got to my company premises... I haven't been that late to work in my life than that day..

Well, I can rest my case here....!!!


Sunday, August 23, 2009

Hudin Write About BusyInternet & Internet Research...

Before Miquel Hudin, co-founder of Maneno departed from Ghana on Tuesday back to Spain and on-ward to his home in San Fransisco, we spent the whole afternoon at the office of Internet Research @ BusyInternet in Accra.

Whiles here, Miquel wrote about Internet Connectivity in Ghana, Bandwidth, Taxis in Accra, BusyInternet Services and Internet Research.

And Miquel wrote..... |Like most things encountered by unsuspecting foreigners in Ghana, the high quality offerings at Busy Internet in Accra are quite impressive. It sits on the main Ring Road just a bit east of Kwame Nkrumah Circle. This is a large, modern building with every service imaginable for those who choose the geeky path in life to those who just need to check their email. Even nefarious taxi drivers know where this place is. |

You can read more here....

In The Photo: Charles Amega-Selorm, Myself and Worlali Senyo of Internet Research.
Miquel Hudin Balsa

Summary Report on MakerFaireAfrica '09

From the 14th to 16th August, 2009 MakerFaireAfrica (MFA) was held on the premises of the Advanced Institute of Information Technology (AITI) in Accra, Ghana. As quoted from the homepage of this group; MakerFaireAfrica (MFA) is a celebration of African ingenuity, innovation and invention.

The 3-day event drew innovators and inventors from countries including: Brazil, Guatemala, Tibet, Kenya, Nigeria, Tanzania, Malawi, South Africa, Liberia, Pakistan, Uganda, Madagascar, India, Cote d’Ivoire and Ghana. There were several guests of who mostly came from the USA.

MakerFaireAfrica aims to stoke the fires of innovation, catalyze the seeds of ingenuity, and amplify the pace of invention, wonder and curiosity amongst the young and young at heart,” said Emeka Okafor organizer of MFA and director of TEDAfrica. “We intend to dial back the negative reinforcement that pervades the continent in matters of career choice and conformity and will give center stage to the risk-takers, the doers, the makers of things.”

Among the Makers that intrigued visitors at the Faire were William Kamkwamba from Malawi also known as the "boy who harnessed the wind". He was a school drop-out who was inspired by the picture of a windmill he saw in a book in a local library. “Once someone had made it I believed I could make it too and I am happy I did. I hope to train a lot more of the local folks and to eventually start it on a commercial venture". William said.

Perhaps the most compelling of all the inventions at MakerFaireAfrica was a Maker Faire radio station designed from scratch by Hayford Bempong, David Celestin and Michael Amankwanor from Accra Polytechnic. They announced upcoming Maker Faire activities, broadcasting on 101.7 FM, and it could be heard up to a couple of thousand meters away using gear they designed and fabricated from scratch.

Dominic Wanjihia from Kenya exhibited two products, an evaporative cooler and a food dryer both of which aimed at extending the shelf-life of food. His motivation for those pieces were that in Africa obviously 60-80% of the food goes bad due to insufficient storage and refrigerating solutions.

Another Maker/Inventor; Johannes made his entire room furniture with recycled plastic water bottles. He plans to experiment building a home with these plastic bottles and eventually all children homes across the country with these plastic bottles. He needs funding however to achieve this dream.

The Kofi Annan ICT Centre of Excellence hosted the three day event providing makers and visitors a relaxed and friendly atmosphere to witness the event as it fold by. Internet connectivity was good though with intermittent brakes and slowness it provided people with opportunity to share the event online via blogs, tweets, Skype, flickr … for the international community. Mac-Jordan H. Degadjor and his team of IT Geeks were always keeping the ears and eyes outside Ghana informed by their tweets.

Quite a good number of organizations took part in the Maker Faire event amongst which included the Butterfly Works, American Society of Mechanical Engineers, NairoBits, MIT- International Development Design Summit’s (MIT-IDDS), Inveneo, Mozilla, AndSpace Labs, BusyLAB, eSoko, Internet Research, eCoband and BusyInternet.

MFA has also attracted a host of industry thought leaders, bloggers and news organizations who are dedicated to building the future of Africa including Amy Smith; Founder of MIT’s D-Lab, Miquel Hudin Balsa; Co-founder of Maneno, Florian Sturm; co-founder, Nana Kofi Acquah; a Pro photo-blogger, Sam Kessie, Africa News, AshokaTech, Ghana Bloggers, Next Billion, and TechBridgeWorld.

Participants were served with delicious Ghanaian dishes favorite amongst them “Red Red” - cooked cowpea with palm oil, served with fried ripe plantain-, Vegetarian meals, Fried Rice and chicken. Water and pure natural fruit drink was also available for everybody.

As a result of the event, a project dubbed “Match-a-Maker” was launched. The project aims at connecting Makers/Innovators/Inventors offering solutions all over the world and will be made available online soon. The GO Ingenuity Award also known as the GO Campaign was also launched by Scott Pfeiffer to stimulate the next generation of "makers."

Among the organizers were Erik Hersman, Founder of AfriGadget; Emeka Okafor of Timbuktu Chronicles and the Director of TED Africa; Lars Hasselblad Torres, Director MIT IDEAS Competition; Mark Grimes, Founder and Founder NedSpace, Emer Beamer; Founder of Butterfly Works, Nii Simmonds of Nubian Cheetah & Afrobotics and Henry Barnor of Afrobotics/Internet Research.

The next edition of MakerFaireAfrica would hopefully be in Nairobi, Kenya in 2010.

Compiled by Mac-Jordan H. Degadjor, Worlali Senyo and Charles Amega-Selorm.

Friday, August 21, 2009

How Harmless Is Pornography

My topic for this post might look a bit off-the-hook but let me tell you this; we got to try out others areas in this business of writing/blogging.  Hope, I am still within the scope of my writings though. If I’m going off guard, somebody bring me back before it’s too late. Blogging surely is a business… Don’t you agree?

The definition of pornography says; “Sexually explicit pictures, writing, dressings or other material whose primary purpose is to cause sexual arousal.” Everyone knows that eyeing a shapely woman is a harmless male pastime. Don’t be confused. Staring sometimes can be a sin. The man gets a cheap thrill – maybe even thanks God for it – and the woman is flattered, and everything is cozy, hence the title, “How Harmful Is Pornography...?”.. Or is it not?

Do we; men [I am talking about the typical Ghanaian MEN] dismiss leering as harmless because we are too engrossed in seizing our own pleasure to give a split second’s consideration to our victims’ feelings?

What would you think of a one-armed man, those normally from the war-torn areas who suddenly grab a stranger [lady] and starts trying to rip off her clothes? She’s struggling to fend him off, frantically trying to protect herself from humiliating exposure, attempting to hold down her skirt with one hand, and clutching her neckline with the other while he’s doing his utmost to expose more of her flesh and underwear.

Doesn’t that same desperate battle take place whenever a woman with normal feelings is gawked at? Let say, an elegant lady shapely dressed from head to toe in an “am-ware” outfits. The absence of violence makes it no less an assault on a woman’s desperate attempt to preserve her modesty and avoid humiliation. Even if she manages to keep prying eyes out of her private parts, the entire ordeal is an offensive attack on her person.

Like struggling with a one-armed man, she has a chance of emerging with some of her modesty intact, but should she have to endure such a degrading battle, tugging at her skirt, calculating how to avoid bending over, knowing that if she relaxes her defenses for a moment filthy eyes could be thrust up or down her dress? Should she have to go through life haunted by the knowledge that at any moment her decency could be violated – even by someone who claims to be a Christian? These are all questions; I pose to you my female-friends.

"If women don’t want to be treated as sex objects, why do they go out of their way to dress like sex objects? If any woman really wanted to protect her modesty, why would she wear the ridiculous clothes most women wear these days? – the “I’m aware” types, so vulnerable to wind, and riding up, or flopping down, showing their beads and exposing parts of their boobs?’ 

Because they feel pressured to walk the thin line between not being looked down upon for dressing in a dowdy manner, while at the same time trying to preserve their decency. Ultimately, men determine women’s fashions. You have to agree with me on this. Some women are desperate to appeal to men and the rest follow like “n’guan” [trans: sheep], scared to act differently in a world in which so much rides on whether one is fashionably dressed.

In the western society where I’ve been to, it is usually the case that a woman is either dressed seductively or she is not considered to be well dressed and this is what our women/ladies/girls these days are copying blindly. This is so much the norm that women rarely stop to consider how carefully women’s clothing is designed to maximize sexuality. 

Despite being quite experienced, there are gaping holes in the average woman’s understanding of male sexuality. A woman can be remarkably naive as to exactly what arouses a man and yet seem highly skilled in dressing provocatively. All she needs to do is buy fashionable clothes; something my Ghanaian ladies can’t do because it’s not the norm. Let’s be real here; how many of you my passionate readers/followers would boldly say; he/she has seen a Ghanaian lady buy a dress worth $5000.00 before? Show me that lady and I shall give her peanut pay-cheque.

Women/ladies who consider themselves to be well dressed, but modestly so, are usually oblivious to the fact that they display more flesh than their male counterparts. Any woman/lady not dressed provocatively risks so much scorn that most women feel driven to dress within a fraction of an inch of exposing to the world flesh that they long to conceal and reserve for the sanctity of marriage. 

"I’m sick to the stomach of men forever being portrayed as villains and women as innocent victims." I'm resting my case here.. If you have any comment, please feel free and drop them here and I shall be glad to respond.. 


MakerFaireAfrica - MFA2010. Nairobi-Kenya

Going forward with Maker Faire Africa-MFA 2010

As a follow-up to the invigorating inaugural Maker Faire Africa 2009. The organizing team has announced a number of initiatives to harness the momentum and energy felt at the just recently held MFA-Accra event.

They are:

* Maker Faire 2010 Nairobi, Kenya

* A build-a-MultiMachine prize

* An inaugural Maker prize to be launched at MFA 2010

* A Maker Directory for participants in MFA 2009

Please stay tuned to the MFA blog AfriGadget Nubian Cheetah and Timbuktu Chronicles for further details on these and other exciting developments.

TGIF - I'm in love

I'm a Tuesday born but trust me, I love Fridays. Fridays are mostly for releasing the stress that came from Monday till Thursday-ish. Its the day of the week which makes me work so briskly, fast and in such a manner, I wouldn't do on any other day b'cos I have a lot planned.

Making calls starts from about 16:45GMT to find out, where the latest hang-out going to be. After all is settled, my back sees the office door at exactly 17:00GMT.

Would either meet-up with my geeky-nerdy friend, Bobby Esco who's most of th time wanting to hang-out to avoid the traffic on his way home. Trust me, dude; kinda lives very far. damn.. !!

On a normal FREAKY-FRIDAY, it surely should end at either Rhapsodys of Realities @ the Accra Mall or Aphrodisiac Nite Club.. Don't really know how today's gonna be like though. Leaving all in God's hand. Long Live Freak Friday... Long Live Me.. :))

Desires On My Next Birthday

See other parts of the world

My next birthday is and should be a joyous one. It's a time I need to see other parts of world though I have seen some parts already, offer a helping hand to others, try out something new and stay focus.

Grabbing a Partner

I am hoping to find a partner [one that is here for good. No games, No wahala, No com si - com sa]around that time and celebrate it with her. All of my birthday's have been celebrated with close friends and not with a partner.. Hope all goes well.. :))

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Ghana Bloggers Meet-Up in August

Ghana bloggers do meet once every month to dissect issues concerning blogging in Ghana and how to run the group. There's no group in this world without issues, therefore we deem it necessary to meet every last Thursday of every month.

In the month of August, we had a developer/blogger guest, Miquel Hudin who was in the country for MakerFaireAfrica [techno-exhibition] and decided to introduce his blogging platform [maneno]-(meaning ”words” in Kiswahili) to us. According to him, his platform is tailored for the sub-Saharan conditions and seek to invite more Africans to become bloggers.

Before the Ghana bloggers meet-up, Miquel was touring Cape Coast and Kumasi so couldn't meet him before joining the rest of the group at Smoothies on the Oxford Street in Osu that Thursday.

I was late in showing up for the thursday-ish meet-up because I had to bring a few Gh-bloggers[Emmanuel Bensah and Charles Amega-Selorm ] who couldn't locate where the group was meeting.Getting to Smoothies, I saw this large crowd of about 20+ people. I was almost telling myself; "I'm in the wrong place because I had no idea we were going to have more guest than before." I finally joined, introduced myself and everyone was kinda glad seeing me for the first time because, most have heard and read my blog but haven't seen the Human being Mac-Jordan before.. I was happy to see Erik Hersman - Founder of AfriGadgets and Emeka Okafor - Author of Timbuktu Chronicles. I follow their blogs and I get more information in the techy world from their blogs.

One issue raised by Emmanuel.K.Bensah II was the fact that most of the bloggers were returnees writing about their life in Ghana through the filter of their overseas experience, but how that was changing...

The most interesting part of the meet-up was when Erik Hersman spoke about blogging for money. He started blogging as a hobby until he realized he could make more from it. He writes about technology in Africa and when starting AfriGadget recently; it quickly surpassed his popular personal blog, WhiteAfrican.

If my memory serves right; the following Ghanablogging members: Cornelis Rouloph Otoo, David Ajao, Samson Ojo [was my first time meeting him, story about him will come later], Toke Olagbaju, Nana Yaw Asiedu, Nana Kofi Acquah, Edward Amartey Tagoe , Gameli Adzaho and Emmanuel K. Bensah jr II.Lora Akati is a student at the University of Ghana who want to be a blogger as usual. I joked about her been a *model-blogger* because she's got the looks of a model. I therefore invited her to join us for the meet-up and also afford her the chance of meeting other pro-bloggers.

I introduced her to everyone and according her, she really received a lot of goodies from most of the earlier bloggers especially Wayan Vota and Miquel Hudin.

I later got alone very well with Klaas Kuitenbrouwer, William Kamkwamba (who autographed his book; "The boy who harnessed the wind"), 'iTosh' Hamilton Juma from Nairobits, Chika Okafor Uchenna - a Nigerian Entertainment photo-blogger and Brian Shih from Inveneo pretty well @ Container opposite Papaye for a beer drinking spree...

***Sorry for the late posting of this article. Please bear with me as I have a lot to do, to write and to work on during the past weekend.***

Photo: Credit - Miquel Hudin

Maneno on Accra Taxis

Last weekend saw me very busy with the MakerFaireAfrica crew. Had to co-ordinate this here, that there and it was the best experience I've ever had from any Tech-no workshop/exhibition. Miguel, co-founder of Maneno blogging platform for Africa wrote this piece about his experience with Taxis in Accra and other parts of Ghana he visited whiles here . You can read more here.......

Photo: Credit - Miquel

Monday, August 10, 2009


Have you heard of MakerFaireAfrica? How about, The Speed Networking Roundtable Lunch? Are you looking to network, meet and socialize with top CEO’s in Ghana. Believe me, this is your chance, so grab it now before it’s too late…

MakerFaireAfrica [MFA] is also happening live at the Advanced Information Technology Institute [AITI], Ghana-India Kofi Annan Centre of Excellence [KACE] in Accra from the 14th – 16th August from 0800GMT to 1800GMT daily. It sure would be worth the time spent there.

A Ghanaian blogger friend, Nana Kofi Acquah who’s a seasoned international photo-journalist will be exhibiting his works on “Water Flies”.

MFA is designed to create a space on the continent where Afri-gadget-type innovations, inventions and initiatives can be sought, identified, brought to life, supported, amplified, and propagated, this conference will answer the question, "What happens when you put the drivers of ingenious concepts from across the African continent together and add resources to the mix?"

With more than 900 people expected to participate, MFA is a chance to change the conversation about Africa from development to innovation. Check out my post on MakerFaireAfrica.

If you are a blogger and living/residing in Ghana, we have a Ghana Bloggers Group that meets once every month. We are meeting again on August 13th @ Smoothies Pub at the end of the Oxford Street in Osu from 0630GMT.

Miquel Hudin Balsa is visiting Ghana for the Maker Faire Africa workshop and would like to meet Ghana Bloggers. He's one of the founders and the main programmer of Maneno; (which is a blogging platform) being built for the African blogger. You can read more about MANENO

Hope to see you at any of the events mentioned above.. AccraConsciousForever would bring you more..!!!

The Africa Mentor Network Incorporated is to launch on August 12th, 2009 a premier networking event in Ghana dubbed: “The Speed Networking Roundtable” at the African Regency Hotel in Accra, which would bring together top executives of companies in Ghana to listen to “wisdom and knowledge” of African child and guide him or her (child) to achieve greater heights. “It is an organization made for Africa by Africans to help the continent's youth to help themselves through mentoring and networking.

Ms. Esi Yankah, President of the NGO, said the event would give the youth the platform to unearth their skills and capabilities at a face-to-face interaction with these top executives and managers. The idea is to promote networking where participants could be hired by the companies and organizations of these executives and or gain a second interview for possible employment.

The Africa Mentor Network event will introduce the art of networking into the Ghanaian community and create an environment where all corporate executives who may be competitors can come together for a common purpose,” it said.

Well; for your information, I have already confirmed and booked my seat for this event and would be glad if you could also. I am not sure, the group is still receiving applications for “The Speed Networking Roundtable” by now but I hope, this link can be able to help us out.

Hope to see you at any of the events mentioned above.. AccraConsciousForever would bring you more..!!!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

African "delicacies" You Might Want To Try

Have you had any African diet apart from your home country's own? Have you tried any foreign delicacies? Have you thought of eating something way out of your religion or tribe? Well, my answer to most of the questions is a big YES.

African cuisine has never been very popular among the places I have visited on my road trip some years back and after seeing what some people consider delicacies, I can understand why. Poverty and drought push people to find new ways of sustaining themselves. In some places insects are the most nutritious meal available. Here are 5 African foods that can easily turn your stomach inside out:

5. Fried Locusts

The swarms of locusts th
at frequently destroy vast crops are seen as a curse and blessing at the same time. They may compromise hundreds of thousand hectares of fertile land but they sure are crunchy. That’s what Nigerians say, anyway.

Every time a swarm of locusts hits Niger, you can see people everywhere munching on fried locusts like popcorn. Some say that when you see people eating fried locusts, it’s not a sign of famine, for them it’s like eating caviar. The wings are removed, sautéed in a pan, sprinkled with spices and left in the sun, to make them crunchy.

4. Cooked Mopane Worms

The Mopane is a species of moth found in Southern Africa, whose caterpillars are considered a delicacy. They are handpicked by women and children in the wild and either dried in the sun or smoked to give them extra flavor. After they are picked, the worms are pinched at the back and squeezed to get rid of the slimy insides.

The dried Mopane caterpillars are either eaten raw as a nice, crispy snack, or rehydrated and cooked with vegetables and spices. The caterpillars have a yellow color and a taste similar to green tea leaves.

3. Bushmeat

What started as a way to fight famine, has slowly become a new cuisine in countries like Ghana, Kenya, Ivory Coast or Guinea. Bushmeat is basically fried, grilled or boiled wild animal meat served both in established restaurants and households. In some parts of Ghana, there's never shortage of bushmeat as its the main source of meat for a whole farming community.

You should be careful when trying out bushmeat someday, you could be chewing either a crocodile, snake, rodents, great apes, even cats and dogs. It would interest you to find on the Bushmeat menu in some restaurants any of animals earlier mentioned above... The situation is becoming truly desperate for many wild animals in the countries where Bushmeat is popular especially Ghana and the Ivory Coast, as poaching becomes a very profitable business.

2. Cow Blood

A popular meal in the Masai tribe, cow blood is often mixed with milk, as it is believed that it makes the men stronger. The blood is collected by puncturing the cow’s jugular with an arrow and the hole plugged after enough blood has poured. This can be done once every month, without harming the animal.

The blood clots are separated and the pure blood is mixed with fresh milk and consumed raw. Other cultures mix the cow blood with fresh or sour milk and cook it on an open flame until it thickens, resembling scrambled eggs.My kenyan friends from university really persuaded me into trying this but trust me, I couldn't stand the sight of it. I have tried their staple food, that is Ugali and Chapati but Cow blood is not a thing for me..

1. Goat Head

I love goat meat and I believe everybody loves it. Go to any chopbar in Ghana and youll surely be served with a variety of soups with goat meat in it but there's no restaurant in Ghana that I know of that serves Goat head.

Goat head is served in many upscale restaurants in Nigeria, Congo and most parts Southern Africa. After the goat is beheaded, its head is shaved and burned to remove any stray hairs. It is then chopped into fragmented pieces with an ax and boiled with onions, garlic, tomatoes, ginger, chilies and other seasoning. Yummy, init [sounding British, here]??

People brave enough to try this dish can enjoy traditionally cooked brains, tongue, ears and eyes. The goat’s eyes are usually reserved for the guests of honor, so if you’re lucky enough to find them on your plate…enjoy!

Have you tried any delicacies recently from your trip? Feel free and share them. All comments are welcome.. :))

Thursday, August 6, 2009

How On Earth Did Swine-Flu Come To Ghana?

It’s a Thursday-ish morning and upon waking my sleepy self from my bed, I decided to do a few things before going to work. Trust me, I just decided to be late for work this morning, I didn’t know why; but I felt I should just be late. You know, the type of feeling you get; when you just want to do something for just no reason. Well, that’s the same I got..

Normally, my phone’s alarm is clocked at 0530GMT; but at times, I do ignore its crazy-buzzing tones and sleep more... “Massa, man don taya.” [trans: Master, man is tired]… This should be common amongst most working-class youths in Ghana.

I just wanted to be late, so I intentionally switched the television on, at exactly 0545GMT and started flickering through the channels until I got to BBC. Normally, I would go to ESPN first, catch up with the latest in the sporting world, listen and watch Sport Center a bit before moving away to the News networks. I didn’t see anything interesting much, so I turned it off.

Just as I turned on the radio, I heard something like; BREAKING NEWS:- Ghana Record First Swine Flu Incident. There and then, I asked myself; Ghana has done what..?? OMG, not Ghana. Why Ghana?

The most annoying part about this news was the fact that, it was discovered in the Oil city (Sekondi-Takoradi). Why should it be in Sekondi-Takoradi…?? How I love Takoradi, no-one knows about that at all. Now, I am very scared; but it’s just a little. Moving to Takoradi, I am going to defy all odds and still go despite “Pork-Kplotoo-Ehaa-Prekoo-Swine” flu has been discovered. Why should this happen when I wanted to move and go settle in Takoradi? Is it my destiny or what? “w3i nkwa di3, m3 hwehwem” [tr: as for this one, I have to look deep into it].

I became an ardent fan of the ever popular “porkshow” not long ago, now a swine-flu menace is going to limit my intake on that. How I used to be at Auntie Adjokor’s joint for “porkshow” and hot kenkey every friday nite will reduce. My radio journalist friend, Cyrus De-graft Johnson of Joy FM would be very sick at this news; so is Auntie Adjokor’s stock of pork which will send her sales down to ZERO… Mz Naa of Yfm will screaaaam, "No sizeee" at this news.. Get well soon, Naa Adjorkor.. :)

I am waiting for the type action; the government is going to take on this new development. Swine-flu go away, Ghanaians want to eat porkshow… Go, Go, Go away…!!!

PRINCIPLES - How Far Would You Go With Yours?

What at all is PRINCIPLES...??, the free online dictionary defines Principles in the following ways:
[ accepted or professed rule of action or conduct: a person of good moral principles. 2. a fundamental, primary, or general law or truth from which others are derived: the principles of modern physics. 3.a fundamental doctrine or tenet; a distinctive ruling opinion: the principles of the Stoics. 4. principles, a personal or specific basis of conduct or management: to adhere to one's principles; a kindergarten run on modern principles.]

We all like to think we have principles, whe
ther religious, political, social or moral. But how far would you go to stand by them?

Dr. Kwame Nkrumah spent some years in prison standing his grounds and defying all odds. Ex-President Jerry John Rawlings was also inprisoned for planning a coup d'etat which eventually happened and led to the uprisings. Tsatsu Tsikata was also imprisoned for causing financial loss to the state whiles standing his grounds on his plea of innocence.

A couple of days ago, The Mine Workers Union is incensed by wage disparities between expatriate and local workers and has threatened a nationwide strike and this is going to affect the countries mining sector. The workers have called on management of mining companies to increase the amount to $500 this year as a beginning of a three year salary adjustment programme aimed at correcting the disparities.

Would you defend your principles even if it means losing your family or putting them in danger? Would you stand up for your rights if it meant losing your job or being ostracised? Does the will to fight for a cause dull with age or when you have family responsibilities? What happens when your principles conflict with those of other people like in choice of marriage partners, schools, jobs and travel plans??

Please share your comments feedbacks.

Photo: Courtesy Esi Cleland's advise from

Monday, August 3, 2009

Maker Faire Africa in Accra, Ghana.

Organizers of Maker Faire Africa announced that Maker Faire Africa (MFA) will be held from August 14 - 16 in Accra, Ghana. Focused on bringing together acts of ingenuity and inventions from across the continent the 3-day event will host a series of workshops, seminars and lectures focused on 4 key innovation areas.

Designed to create a space on the continent where Afri-gadget-type innovations, inventions and initiatives can be sought, identified, brought to life, supported, amplified, and propagated, this conference will answer the question, "What happens when you put the drivers of ingenious concepts from across the African continent together and add resources to the mix?"

With more than 900 people expected to participate, MFA is a chance to change the conversation about Africa from development to innovation.

“So often the world hears the bad news coming from the African continent. Maker Faire is a chance to highlight the innovation, entrepreneurship and opportunity that abounds in Africa,” said Nii Simmonds, co-founder of Maker Faire Africa and Author of the Nubian Cheetah Blog."

With MFA, we can create a space where the best and brightest can come together to support each other, exchange intellectual capital and find the resources they need to deliver products that fulfill the most basic to the most complex needs on the continent. And this is just the beginning. We hope to propel this into a platform that continues to bring people and products together for the future.”

MFA will deliver 4 conference tracks all fostering conversation and collaboration with attendees:

* Robotics – Lead by Afrobotics in the ROBOlab, this track host lectures as well as a LEGO robotics workshop and competition.
* Agriculture & Environment – takes a new look at sustainability, green technologies and innovations such as biofuel and architecture.

* Science and Engineering - this track will highlight new innovations from the 3rd annual IDDS at KNUST as well as a series of hands on workshops.
* Arts & Crafts – held at an outdoor art center this track will showcase everything from sculptures to toys to textiles

To register or sponsor MFA please visit: MakerFaireAfrica