Articles on West Africa

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Recently, the Sahel has been in the global spotlight due to famines, religious terrorism, anti-state rebellions, and arms, drugs and human trafficking. EPA/KHALED EL FIQI

Sahel region, Africa

The Sahel region of Africa is a 3,860-kilometre arc-like land mass lying to the immediate south of the Sahara Desert and stretching east-west across the breadth of the African continent. A largely semi-arid…
The IMF was blamed after the 2014 Ebola crisis for contributing to the failure of West African health systems to develop. Reuters/Baz Ratner

How years of IMF prescriptions have hurt West African health systems

West African health systems were weak before the IMF got involved. Sadly, the policy reforms demanded by the IMF in exchange for loans have undermined governments' ability to repair these problems.
An army soldier in Douentza in the Mopti region of central Mali in March 2013, before the government lost control. Farafi net.com/flickr

Central Mali gripped by a dangerous brew of jihad, revolt and self-defence

With northern Mali mired in conflict, increasing instability in the centre of the country is worrying observers. The attitude of the Malian authorities holds the key to defusing these tensions.
Countries like Nigeria affected by Ebola have launched campaigns to curb the consumption of bushmeat like fruit bats. Shutterstock

How an Ebola campaign in Nigeria discouraged bushmeat consumption

Consuming bushmeat is thought to have contributed to the outbreak of Ebola in west Africa. Countries in the region are trying to slow down consumption.
Ntombithini Ndwandwe, an agroecology farmer displaying her diversity of traditional seeds in Zimele, KwaZulu-Natal. Rachel Wynberg

Seeds under siege: it’s time to support traditional systems

Since 2000, the growth of the commercial seed market has almost tripled. More than 63% of the world’s commercial seed is now owned by six corporations.
Burundian refugees fleeing conflict at home gather on the shores of Lake Tanganyika in Kigoma region in western Tanzania. Thomas Mukoya/Reuters

Africa has some work to do before it starts its own humanitarian agency

The initiative to establish an African Humanitarian Agency is a welcome one. But political, technical and financial support will matter. This will require the AU to take a pragmatic approach. Can it?

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