I am only well if you are well

Originally published by https://issblog.nl/ on January 9, 2020 I am only well if you are well: can the Utu-Ubuntu philosophy help drive the acceptance of sexual and reproductive rights in Africa? by Joan Njagi In the face of growing resistance of religious and conservative groups on the African continent to the advancement of sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR), this article discusses the potential for African philosophy and theories to drive the acceptance of SRHR here and elsewhere. Utu-Ubuntu, a philosophy focusing on humanity and interconnectedness, may help to bridge divisions and advance SRHR for young people on the … Continue reading I am only well if you are well

Lowering age of consent exposes girls to abuse

Originally published by the Standard Media on 13th May 2019 https://www.standardmedia.co.ke/article/2001325199/lowering-age-of-consent-exposes-girls-to-abuse The Sexual Offences Act was designed to provide for all conceivable sexual offences, especially practices where adults engage in sexual activities with minors without being punished. However, debate has arisen following proposal of an amendment that would lower the age of consent from 18 to 16 years. Three Kenyan judges; Daniel Musinga, Patrick Kiage and Roselyn Nambuye state that the basis for this proposal is the high number of young men who are in prison “serving lengthy sentences for having sexual intercourse with adolescent girls whose consent has been … Continue reading Lowering age of consent exposes girls to abuse

I am because we are

November 2015 marks exactly one year since I started blogging. My blog was largely inspired by the spirit of Ubuntu, an African philosophy that states, “I am because we are” and in some cases expressed as, “I am because you are”.  The Ubuntu philosophy that appreciates the interconnectedness of humanity; that our humanity is inextricably linked. Writing was therefore my platform to use my voice to add onto the efforts to challenge exclusion that deprives some groups of people from experiencing their full humanity, with the understanding that I cannot be free when others, particularly women continue to be bound. … Continue reading I am because we are

Lessons from a taxi driver

I often hear researchers say that talking to taxi drivers is a good way to get a sense of the political atmosphere of any place. My experience with one tells me that Kenyans are angry and despondent at a political system that has completely failed them. While I was in a taxi today, the driver was very vexed, and I decided to hear him out. It turned out that he was so ideologically grounded, it felt like I was in a Sociology 101 class that was speaking to the realities of what is happening.  He spoke with a lot of … Continue reading Lessons from a taxi driver

We too shall rise, but how?

I started following the South African university students’ movement from March this year, when UCT students declared that #RhodesMustFall.  I have followed the movement closely and with a lot of excitement, because South African students are demonstrating that they understand the meaning of freedom, not just in its superficial form, but in its deepest and truest form. The students understand that ending apartheid is not enough, the symbols of apartheid must be destroyed, and they began doing that by demanding the fall of the Rhodes statue at the UCT Campus.  They understand that the remnants of apartheid must be destroyed, … Continue reading We too shall rise, but how?

The great discomfort

A Facebook friend of mine unfriended me. Before unfriending me, she mentioned that she had observed that I had started a blog on feminism, and made a point of being offensive about the fact that I was an active feminist.  She told me that she didn’t believe in feminism and that although she championed for the rights of women, she would not want to be associated with feminism, adding that she would be offended if she was ever referred to as a feminist. I had just started writing my blog at that time, and I was getting a number of … Continue reading The great discomfort

I’m tired but I will keep going

When I read Wangari Maathai’s autobiography Unbowed, I was going through one of my lowest points this year.  I was feeling tired, deflated and depleted, and questioning whether “all this” matters.  “All this” being my struggle for emancipation of women and other oppressed groups. I was so deflated, that I thought I would never blog again.  I was tired of the constant scandals and crisis mode that has become of this country.  I remember sharing with a friend how tired I was of the fact that the entire year has been characterized by crisis after crisis, with a new scandal … Continue reading I’m tired but I will keep going