I’m not a very keen fan of international news mainly because, in my opinion, they portray Africa as a continent full of barbarians pre-occupied with conflict, corruption, sex and witchcraft. If you have any doubt log on to Africa’s section of international media websites.
I find it really sad to open the Africa sections and see bad stories dominating the pages with little, if any, mention of the strides we are making as a continent and individual countries.
Even when there is success the media always seems to find ways to question the success. We are a continent that is moving forward and the message that is being transmitted doesn’t capture that fairly.
While all those sad stories are likely true, I feel it irresponsible to highlight such stories while ignoring or giving very limited attention to success stories in Africa.
This only serves to undermine the huge strides that we are making.
For example search for information online about the conflict in Eastern Congo. There were daily updates in the international press when there was conflict but with the advent of peace, there is barely any mention of it.
It seems as if the international press are vultures, hoping for pestilence and death.
Sadly, I have seen many local media involved in this as well. You are entitled to publish whatever story you like, but it is important to report about positive development that will help build confidence in the continent.
Africa is developing and moving forward and we owe it to ourselves, our countries, our children and our grand children to start portraying a more balanced image of what is going on in the continent.
Africa and each country therein are unique and have different stories to tell and it is unfortunate if we will have such a beautiful, diverse, unique and forward moving continent summarized into international stereotypes.
I hope that we at least our local media will report on Africa in a manner that helps to show all sides of the story.