Through a statement by “Network for Africans Unity”, KSB has been requested to pull down a poster that apparently has created a war of words between Network for African Unity on the one hand and Africa Maison on the other
The poster was sent to KSB via email and a request was made that the poster be published at the blog. Through a phone call, KSB did confirm whether the poster was destined for publication and whether it was “Final”. We got an OK.
Because KSB is not responsible for errors in the poster, and because KSB did not participate in the design of the poster in any way, it cannot be pulled down from the blog. We believe that the poster needs to remain at KSB for purposes of reference and to put the stories and statements linked to the poster into their proper context, now and in the future.
We will however be happy to publish any new poster that clears the confusion and other statements being released to address the matter. We believe that in as much as the matter needs to be sorted out, pulling down a poster that has already entered into KSB archives is not just inappropriate but also unethical.
The credibility of KSB will be at stake if we publish material from different sources only to pull them down without proper reasons. We believe that the issue at hand could better be addressed through other available channels. KSB will however cooperate with the two parties as the search for a solution to the dispute continues.
On behalf of the founders of “Network for Africans Unity” in Sweden I would like to respond to the statement that “Africa Maison” posted at KSB regarding the “YES WE CAN ALSO PARTY”. Members of Africa Maison are part and parcel of the initiative that started the Network for Africans Unity in Sweden. They, Africa Maison, has not at any given time indicated withdrawal from the Network for African Unity.
The initial activities that would launch the unity of Africans were agreed upon 01-01-09 and the agreed mode of promoting them was blogs, SMS and posters. Financial resources were contributed by all parties including Africa Maison. The first get together was the YES WE CAN PARTY we held in Sollentuna. This get together drew in participation of Africans from different parts of Africa, whites from Sweden and beyond, browns from all over the world.
The aim of the party was to celebrate the inauguration of one of us, an African, H.E Barrack Hussein Obama, for having been sworn in as President of the United States of America and to take inspiration from him that everything is possible.
Through YES WE CAN theme, we believed also that we could achieve anything we want and bring the change we need for the betterment of our conditions and the future of our children, both here where we live and back home in Africa where we still have masses of people in great need of help. This is how we arrived at the theme “YES WE CAN”.
Realizing that it is not common to gather large numbers of Africans in seminars and conferences, we chose a strategy that would gather them in order for us to put across a message for the need for greater unity of Africans in Sweden and later call a formal conference and democratically and inclusively launch an organization that unites us.
This strategy of using the power of music and entertainment was endorsed and has yielded demand for us to continue making “get togethers” and foster unity.
It is due to great public demand for another get together that we sat in ndugu Jimmys house in Märsta as initiators and planned to have the next gathering on 28th February 2009. At this meeting, Jimmy offered to be one of the DJs to entertain people and that is why his name appears on the poster we made.
As planning of the event went ahead, I was informed by Mr Tengo that they had decided to participate in the second event as individuals and not as an organization – Africa Maison. We said that was fine. At a later stage, Mr Tengo, who represents the group, told me he would not be able to contribute the financial resources required but wished the strategy to continue and that he would continue to promote the event. He then said that other individuals would contact Samson Mande on their own. We said that was fine too and that’s why Tengo’s name and telephone contacts remained in the promotion documents (flyer) just like in the first get together we organized.
Mr Yunas Mutana contacted me and told me that he too was not going to be able to contribute funds but he may offer other services if he finds time.
Ndugu Jimmy Lomme and Mr Otieno Owiyo never told me they could not participate while they never said that they wished to withdraw from the next event or the Network. It is only on Saturday that Jimmy told me he was not happy to have seen his name on the flyer and I was surprised. I went ahead and advised Mr Okoth Osewe not to involve Jimmy’s name in the SMS group which he was scheduled to send.
Then, I talked to Tengo who informed me they were going to have a meeting on Sunday 22nd February 2009 and that he would communicate the out come to us.The next thing I saw was an SMS message from Mr. Otieno about a statement he had published at KSB. Then I advised Mr Otieno to withdraw the flyer from KSB until further notice.
That is how the events have unfolded. We did involve our brothers in good faith and guided by the spirit and gentleman’s agreement that we have to unite Africans in Sweden. These events are documented in protocols we have so far written since we met in January 2009.
We did not understand that for our partners, the inability to participate in one event means withdrawal from the strategy. We thought it would be very un-African for us just to strike people’s names because for one reason or another, they are not participating in an event. In any case, we were not guided to strike their names off.
But we take it that the undertaking has brought miss understanding and anger and for that we wish to apologize for the inconveniences it has caused them and to the public.
Let Mr Osewe stop any publishing of the flyer bearing the names and contacts of Jimmy at once. We are making corrections and sending him a new flyer.
We are also making an effort to remove the posters and ask those volunteers who put them in places we may not know to remove them. You are also free to help us remove them where ever you see them.
Meanwhile the strategy for uniting Africans shall continue. You are all still invited to come to the Party at Rågsved on Saturday 28th February. Our brothers, Jimmy, Otieno,Tengo and Mtana still enjoy free will from us and shall be allowed free entrance if they make it.
We shall have a meeting with our brothers soon after the event to address the miss understandings and to harmonize our cooperation in uniting Africans.
Abib Aidara, Samson Mande, Barry Yahya, Armel Semahuna (networkers)