Sunday, October 31, 2010

Nigeria Photo Contest Ninth Entry: Landscape

Dear Readers,

This is another entry by Simona, this time in the landscape category.

The photograph is called "Amazing Nature" and was photographed in Bauchi State.

Hope you like it! Remember to COMMENT on your favorite picture!


Saturday, October 30, 2010

Nigeria Photo Contest Eighth Entry: People

Dear Readers,

This is from Sibo, a French photographer. It was taken in Abuja, and the photograph has no name.

What do you think it should be called?


Nigeria Photo Contest Seventh Entry: People

Dear Readers,

This photograph is from Anshul, who is a medical student.

He took it on the Buchi - Jos Road on the 18th October.

It was on a vacation, he came to visit his father in Abuja and decided to take a trip to the North.

Since the man is walking through storm and doesnt stop and continues walking, he wants to call it, "When there is a will,there is way''.



Friday, October 29, 2010

Nigeria Photo Contest Sixth Entry: Other

Dear Readers,

Another photograph from the Abuja Expats Yahoo Group. This one is from Irene and her daughter Amelie who is 6 years old. Quite talented already!

This one is called "Popo" which the Nigerian pidgin word for papaya. I learned this the hard way myself when I asked my driver to find me some papaya and he came back and said no one in the market knew what I was talking about.

At that moment we drove past some papaya...and I pointed at it and said 'papaya'. My driver (Joseph) looked at me like I was a moron and said "POPO".

Now that I've told that story, I'm going to go cut myself one and eat it.


Nigeria Photo Contest Fifth Entry: Other

Hi all,

This photograph is by Fiona, who is brand new to Nigeria! She's just been here a week or so!

I liked this one because of the brilliant colors.

It is titled 'beads' and came from one of the markets in Abuja.


Thursday, October 28, 2010

Nigeria Photo Contest Fourth Entry: Landscape

Dear Readers,

This photo is by Katherine. She was born and raised in Lagos, and now resides in Abuja. Her family has been here in Nigeria since 1972. I'm sure she's seen some big chances!

Her photograph was taken sometime last year on the road going to Gwarinpa.

What a beautiful scene! Make sure to COMMENT on the photo if you like it!


Nigeria Photo Contest Third Entry: Landscape

Dear Readers,

Make sure to COMMENT on the pictures you like so that I can tally your responses.

This photograph is from Laine Strutton, taken taken on the banks of the Obuasi River
(name of the village unknown) in the Niger Delta.

This could technically also fall under the people category, but I'm putting it in landscape for now.

Hope you like this one!


Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Nigeria Photo Contest Second Entry: People

Dear Readers,

Make sure to COMMENT on the pictures you like so that I can tally your responses.

This next photograph is from Sam Rosemarin, who used to work in Abuja.

"Olive farmer" Taken outside of Jos in July, 2008. Category: People

Hope you like this one!


Nigeria Photo Contest First Entry: People

Dear all,

This photograph was submitted by Simona--an Italian who's lived in Nigeria for 15 years!

The Post that gets the MOST COMMENTS for that category will be considered to be the winner! So if you LIKE this photograph, comment a lot!

This photograph was taken in January 2010 on Bauchi Road.

This photograph is titled: "No Standing."

Hope you enjoy this and the many other photographs!

Monday, October 25, 2010

What is the future of China-Japan relations?

By Francis Asprec, currently working in Sichuan, China. He holds a MSc from New York University in Global Affairs.

Some Background:

In the past month, tensions between China and Japan have escalated to new heights. The latest incident involves a Chinese fisherman who was detained by Japanese authorities and released after much pressure from the Chinese government.

In early September, Captain Zhan Qixiong, a Chinese fisherman, encountered trouble in the East China Sea when his boat was seized by Japanese patrol vessels. He was detained by Japanese authorities, with the possibility of being prosecuted. His arrest in Japan sparked outrage throughout China. China’s leaders threatened retaliation and economic sanctions if Japan did not release Mr. Zhan.

Eventually, he was released. While China felt victorious in getting Mr. Zhan back home, the relations between these neighboring countries is far from healed. China is still demanding an apology.

The Real Problem: Territory.

Captain Zhan sailed near Diayou, an island that China claims. The Japanese call those islands Senkaku and claim them. This dispute has dragged on for many years and nothing has been resolved.
Eyes On The Ground:

I witnessed a demonstration of more than 200 people in Chengdu, Sichuan, China. This demonstration called for Chinese people to boycott Japanese stores in Chengdu. These people wanted to express their anger and outrage and demanded that Japan apologize to China for this mishap. The demonstrators’ message was loud and clear. Half of Chunxi Lu (Road), a commercial street filled with shops, restaurants, and socializing, was blocked off.


How can each country work on improving their relations?

Will there ever be a resolution towards the territorial dispute?

What lessons can be learned so far about China-Japan relations?

How are the world’s second and third largest economies going to resolve their problems?

These questions will continue to be asked. At the moment, there are no clear answers, but I firmly believe that China and Japan will work out their differences.

What do you think?


Sunday, October 24, 2010

Nigeria Photo Contest!

Dear Readers!

To balance out my usually less than positive comments about the country of Nigeria, I want to have a photo contest of Nigeria pictures. I'll post the pictures up here, and ask you to vote on them and tell me which ones you like.




Culture (probably similar to people, but this section is dedicated to cultural traditions)

Do you want to submit a photo? Send me a comment with a link to your photos or a message of interest and I'll do my best to post your photo.

You do NOT need to be a professional photographer. Also, there is no prize, other than winning the contest and getting some publicity on my blog. The real prize is reminding the world that Nigeria can also be a beautiful place.

I'll need your name, the place being photographed, date it was taken and any comment you would like on your picture.


A Few Good Blog Posts

Hey all,

Things are a little crazy here with my project picking up. Things are on track more or less.

Blogging seems to be the gift that keeps on giving...I click one post, that leads me to another, and I read other new and interesting things.

What's your favorite blog? Why? What makes a good blog?

Here are a few posts that caught my eye:

Time for Africans to Explore Africa

I saw this article through another blog: Africa Unchained

It also led me to: Top Places to Visit in West and Central Africa Why isn't Nigeria on this list? There are tons of neat places in Nigeria! Even parts of the Niger Delta are physically very beautiful!

Also there is: How to Write about Africa. This post is hilarious. I got this through a friend's blog: Mitchell Sipus

Hope you enjoy!


Monday, October 18, 2010

Electricity: Nigerians spend 13 Billion USD a Year, What will the Nigerian government spend to solve it?

Dear Readers,

I think I'm getting back on the blogging track.

This morning I was reading Friday's "The Punch" newspaper.

The cover story was "Nigerians spend $13bn on generators annually"

For those of you who haven't been to Nigeria, it is a country of contradictions. You can have great roads or poor roads. You can have all the champagne you want, but your electricity (if you have it) turns off several times a day (and then you hear the rumble of a diesel gas generator).

According to the story above, Nigerians spend roughly 13 BILLION USD a year on diesel generators. Note that this number doesn't include how much they pay for their electric bills (whether or not they get electricity).

President Goodluck Jonathan, who has been publicly condemning the power problem (and reiterating his administration's determination to solve it), addressed international power sector investors at a presidential retreat last week.

The strange thing is that he also said "from 2011, the Federal Government would cease further investments in power generation in distribution."

So, perhaps I misunderstood something. If power is a priority, then why stop paying to solve it?

Now, I understand working with the private sector to try and stem corruption and mismanagement. I also understand splitting the costs (private public partnerships) with the private sector to try and improve things.

What I don't understand the Nigerian government not paying to solve its own problems.

What do you think? If you have better information on this, please let me know.


Friday, October 15, 2010

Is Malaria a Good Excuse?

Hi Everyone,

Sorry I haven't posted in nearly a month. I had malaria and was under treatment for a week. Hope that's a good enough excuse :).

Some news stories that caught my eye today:

The Sources of Soviet Iranian Conduct
by KARIM SADJADPOUR. George Kennan, Henry Kissinger, Winston Churchill...still the standard in our foreign policy? Should containment be the plan for Iran? How will that work? An interesting piece, either way.

China's leaders meet to plan economic future China's next 5 year plan? Also, China discusses the rich-poor divide--a critical issue!

Another China story: China yuan warning ahead of US currency report

Hope you enjoy!