Sub Saharan Africa and the Power of it’s Potential Lauren Nortier

A Green Revolution

According to the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation, Rwanda’s farmers produced 792,000 tons of grain in 2014—more than three times as much as in 2000. Production of maize, a vital crop in east Africa, jumped seven times that.

One native, Dative Mukandayisenga, says most of her neighbours are getting much more from their land. Only about one in five persists with the old, scattershot “broadcast” sowing—and most of the holdouts are old people.

Tools For Hope

Millions of African farmers have become more secure and better-fed as a result of better-managed, better-fertilized crops grown from hybrid seeds. They are demonstrating that small farmers can benefit from improved techniques.

Progress doesn't need to mean forcing millions of smallholders off the land, as some had feared, but by making them richer it may give them and their children the opportunity to move, if they wish.

This relates back to when we were talking about the benefits of rice field farming in Southeast Asia.

Banning of Child Marriage in Tanzania and gambia

Before banning child marriage in Tanzania, the rate of child marriage was around 37 per cent - one of the highest in the world. A Women’s advocacy group, Msichana Initiative, presented a legal case against the Tanzania Law of Marriage Act earlier this year. The country’s high court ruled sections 13 and 17 – which allowed girls as young as 15 to marry – unconstitutional. Marriage under 18 has now been outlawed.

In Gambia, about 30 per cent of girls are married underage. In 2016, President Yahya Jammeh announced:

"As from today, child marriage below 18 years is illegal in the Gambia…If you want to know whether what I am saying is true or not, try it tomorrow and see."

He had also warned that offenders will face heavy penalties over any reported child marriages. The punishment would be 20 years in prison for both the husband and parents of the girl being married. However, one law and jail threats will not stop all children from marrying early, due to the fact about one third of the girls in the country are wed before they turn 18. Isatou Jeng of the Gambian women's rights organisation Girls Agenda stated:

"The government should engage with local communities to try to change attitudes towards child marriage, instead of threatening families with prison sentences"

This relates back to when we were discussing China, and they implemented the One Child Policy.


Created with images by Steve Slater (used to be Wildlife Encounters) - "road to on high a landscape of the drakensberg mountains kwazulunatal south africa processed in hdr"

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