Inspirational and Socio-Political Blog.

Monday, 25 July 2011

Africa's Population Growth and The Impending Danger.

Africa's population is growing at a dangerous rate, Ethiopia has a population of 85 million, among which about 10 million is starving, the country is reported to have a growth rate of 2.6%, which means in 20 years Ethiopia’s population will hit about 130 million. Egypt's recent unrest was about food and standard of living, but their population stands to double in just over 30 years, so they will still continue to starve. Many African's are still not using birth control and family planning measures, if we continue to procreate at the rate we are now, though regrettably, many more will starve to death. Somalia,is currently going through acute famine, with no food to eat or water to drink, with many already dead, also parts of Kenya, Djibouti, Sudan and Uganda experiencing the worst drought in 60 years; but that has not stopped more children being sired in the region. Josette Sheeran of the World Food Programme wrote that “A hungry world is a dangerous world. Without food, people have only three options: they riot, they emigrate or they die.”

Africans have failed to address the imminent disaster inherent in the continent because of their increasing population. Despite the history of bad and clueless leadership, poverty, weak economy and famine currently ravaging several parts of Africa, its people have continued to procreate at rapid rate, increasing the already overpopulated planet if compared with the available resources. This rapidly increasing population is having a big negative-impact on our world and until we began to address this, we may not start to get solution to the impending trouble we are subjecting the continent to.

The United Nation's population division has recently predicted that the world's population will reach 7 Billion by the end of this year. This is a big global problem and will have further negative impact in the already over-stretched resources of the world. There is need to be concerned and Africa needs to be more concerned if it is to improve the situation of the continent and manage the already limited resources. United Nation has noted that the world population has increased by 1 Billion over the last 12 years and 4.5 Billion over the last 60 years, while our food supply and energy reserve has not expanded to keep pace with the the population growth. The surge is having a great impact on our planet and if it continues, it may well be catastrophic.

More than 2 in 5 pregnancies in Africa are unintended. The rate at which we are having children needs to be urgently addressed if we aim to move the continent forward. The intuition in different parts of Africa that women must procreate as many children as they can to show they are fertile, should be stopped immediately, the world has gone past that era. Now is the time to plan; rather than forecast the future, we need to start securing it. Let us make provisions to secure and protect the children we already have, than make more to suffer.

It is becoming increasingly difficult to put on the television on a daily basis, all you are inundated with is the pictures of some poor, improvised African children, looking weak, lean and malnourished, with some charity organisations seeking help to feed and care for them. You also see their still pregnant mothers in the background, all looking stunted and malnourished, yet they have not stopped making more children or use birth control measures. Furthermore, it is becoming very difficult to explain to our western neighbours and friends that this is not entirely the situation in the whole of Africa, as they have been made to believe this how we live in Africa. They see these debilitating and heart breaking pictures everywhere they go, from the wall of their malls and train stations to their offices, on the billboards in the street and when they turn on their television, these pictures are everywhere.

Some may argue that our growing population in Africa is not the problem, but the scarce resources. Some may also attribute it to the African Government. We have our way of passing our aberration on others, which is why we constantly attribute the food shortage, hunger, poverty and famine we have experienced in Africa to our leaders; though Africa has a history of bad, sit-tight and clueless leadership, however we all have roles to play to manage the population explosion. We need to address this issue head-on and realise that if we do not stop procreating as we are at the moment, the amount of per-capital arable land for food production in Africa will soon get to a dangerously and unbearable low-level.

We can sure manage this situation if we reduce the number of children we progenerate and concentrate our energy in developing our continent, rather than the embarrassing situation we put ourselves. Africa will develop if our energy is galvanised towards creating ideas and not children we cannot cater for as we do at the moment. We are not created to simply eat and procreate, it takes more energy and time to keep procreating than it will for us to develop a model continent.

There is no doubt that the growing population is affecting the decreasing resources in Africa and adversely impacting on its sustainability. This growth is having direct impact on the environmental cycle, our glaciers, lakes and forests are disappearing, fresh water is scarce, there is limited food to go round and inadequate power supply. We are all in this together, we need to curtail the menace and play our part if we want Africa to work.

Monday, 18 July 2011

Welcome To The New South Sudan.

South Sudan is the newest country in the world, it has joined the league of African countries after breaking off from Sudan, a country that has been ravaged by war and famines over few decades. The new South Sudan is officially known as the Republic of South Sudan, with its capital in Juba, after becoming an independent state on the 9th of July 2011. The Southern Sudan independence is coming as an aftermath of the peace agreement of 2005 reached with Sudan. The Republic of South Sudan has also joined the United Nations on the 14th of July 2011 as an official member state.

Southern Sudan Legislative Assembly has ratified an interim constitution and this was signed into law by the first elected president; Mr Salva Kiir Mayardit to take effect from the independence day. This new constitution becomes the new supreme law of the land. The constitution recognises a mixed presidential system of Government. The new government has the President as the head, head of Government and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces. The new constitution also establish two houses of National Legislative: The elected National Legislative Assembly and a second chamber of representatives of the state; forming the council of states.

The official language of South Sudan is English, while many also speak Arabic. The population is currently about 6 million and the region has been affected by over two decades of war, causing major depletion in resources, infrastructure, noticeable destructions and massive displacement of its populace. The war has led to the deaths of over 2 Million people in the region and there are many displaced as refugees in many countries. A lot of southern Sudanese are currently taking refuge in Israel and are happy to come back home to the new country to join in developing the new nation. Most of the residents of South Sudan live in rural and subsistence society, with no adequate electricity, water or other infrastructures. The larger part of Southern Sudanese practice traditional religions, the rest majority are Christians. South Sudan have about 200 Ethnic groups, each with different languages.

The new Government of South Sudan has a lot to do in the area of its economy, the new country has one of the weakest economy in the world and very underdeveloped, due to war and infrastructural depletion. The region ranks very high in infant/maternal mortality and female illiteracy. A lot of work needs to be done as most of the sectors needs to be developed from scratch, areas such as health and education needs urgent attention. South Sudan has many natural resources, which if well managed will help the new government's drive to achieve an improved economy. South Sudan is noted to be very prominent in international timber exportation and many other natural resources like; petroleum, iron ore, zinc, chromium ore, copper, mica, silver and gold. The economy of southern Sudan has always been dependent on agriculture, however, there is the prospect of a quick recovery due to large deposit of petroleum in the region.

There have been lots of acrimony between the Southern and Northern Sudan over sharing revenues from the Oilfields, the two regions are still working on a viable agreement on how the revenues should be shared. Northerners have been pushing for a 50-50 split of the Oilfield revenues. Whichever way it goes, South Sudanese stands to gain and needs to start implementing the much needed infrastructural and human development. There is also need to decide on issues such as drawing up the new border, the rights that southerners will have in the north, how the wealth and debt will be divided and whether the new country will have its own currency.

The greatest challenge is changing the mindset of average South Sudanese, most especially the young men of Juba, whose majority have guns. These able bodied men have been trained to take up arms in defence of the territory due to wars that have lasted a few decades and to fight for independence that is now achieved. There is urgent need to improve the health and education sector which is in very bad shape at the moment. There have been large investments in the defence of the economy, these investments now needs to be channelled towards developing human resource base of the economy and infrastructures. Welcome to the newest country in the world, the Republic of South Sudan.

Monday, 11 July 2011

Smart World Transformation: Africa's Dilemma.

The world is changing, changing at a fast pace, leaving Africa behind. Africa is still dragging along in its self pity, embroiled in political, tribal and economic quagmire. Poverty is everywhere despite the natural resources, there is so much disunity and hatred. Africa is few decades behind, while the world is braising-up for a new innovative world. The new world that is smart, a world less expensive, less stressful and more economical, leaving behind the old tedious ways of doing things, this new world is starting to take shape on a daily basis. The world is beginning to use imaginative intelligence to create breakthroughs in many areas of human endeavours.

Africa needs to catch the innovation bug if it stands to join the fast emerging smart world. A new world emerging through wireless networks, human and material contraptions, all co-joined to form a conglomerate of innovative thoughts and ideas. These thoughts and ideas are interconnected through wireless sensors and cameras, forming a communication network backed by strong inventions, powered by companies like IBM, Siemens, Ericsson, Google and many more.

Smart Phones are the closest smart gizmos to us, using the power of applications (apps) from Iphones and Android market to make our world easier, faster and economical. These smart phones contains several apps, which are incredibly making communication and accessibility easier. They contain sensors that have the full capacity to measure and track everything from user's location to controlling equipments in our homes. These apps in mobile phones are capable of unimaginable virtual abilities. You can now operate your microwave, washing machine,television and lots of other appliances in your home from anywhere you are at any time outside of your home, you can start this appliances or turn them off from any location. You can pick calls to your home phone from any location and track your journey start and arrival times.

Google Earth and Street View is another major smart development that makes the world seem so easily accessible from any corner you are sited. It means you can sit in the comfort of your home and know your destination even before you embark on a journey for free. You can now track and get traffic information and weather updates in real-time. You can easily navigate your way through the fastest routes. Cost of travelling and the risk has also reduced immensely because companies with branches in may different locations can now easily hold real-time conference meetings in different locations through virtual-conferencing.

Sensors are now placed in cows to monitor their every movement from birth through their milking stages and these are done automatically, rather than using the broader field of animal husbandry. The UK government has mandated all homes to have smart meters installed to replace the current sets of meters by 2015, this will put a stop to meter operatives and readers visiting homes and will in turn reduce human cost as the new smart-meters measure usage in real-time and transfers the information to the energy supplier as energy is used. The new meter will help customers to plan/manage their usage and makes bill calculation more accurate, taking away estimated readings.

There is now automated Demand Response similar to Dynamic Demand Mechanism to manage customers energy consumption in response to supply conditions, this is achieved by connecting the smart meters to the national grid, a feature that allows the meters to monitor consumption and flashes or beeps when consumption is at the high, customers can then turn-off some of their equipments at the peak time. It is generally believed that people use more electricity between 4 pm to 7 pm daily, this period is often the peak period.

The current modes of transportation have been designed since the last century, there is now need to develop more durable means of transportation. New vehicles are now emerging, electric cars and others run-off alternative fuels are now on the increase. A company called Terrafugia's Transition has already been given license to manufacture commercial flying cars and the company has said this cars will be available as soon as late 2012. This is a sure way to beat the rush hour traffic in our densely populated cities The latest anti-theft systems in newly made cars means that the cars can only be stolen if the thieves get the keys to the cars. The latest tracking systems also makes it very easy to track stolen cars. These and many more innovations are taking shape on daily basis and the new smart transformation is within reach.

The smart world is developing at an amazing fast rate and it is the next big thing to emerge in the information technology world. Leading information technology companies, Government and world organizations are dedicating a large chunk of their budget to developing smart infrastructural projects and digital technology to make communication, transportation, manufacturing, hospital services, energy, and many more areas intelligent and the world easier for us to live in.

China is a country that is in the fore-front of the drive to implement the smart world transformation. China economy is growing at a fast speed because of its dedication and support for smart ideas and innovations. China is harnessing the power of smart system to tackle its environmental problems and future populations explosion. China is using digital technology to provide its urbanized population with food, electricity, transportation, communication and water.

Africa has so much to gain if it joins in the smart world transformation, there is nothing it stands to lose. With smart systems, Africa can plan and monitor its resources more. Increase its productivity and alleviate the current poverty ravishing the planet. Africa needs to rise from its current dogmatic state and invested in research and technology to develop an innovative society, so the continent is not completely left behind in the emerging smart world.

Monday, 4 July 2011

First Aid: Daily Manslaugter in Nigeria.

First Aid is the act of helping people out of dangerous situations and making them more comfortable until definitive treatment can be accessed. It is important that we follow the best practices to save the casualties lives rather than help them to die due to our avoidable errors. First aid is very simple and a good potentially life-saving practises when performed correctly.

I have watched with keen interest the unprofessional manner we handle casualties of accidents and emergencies in Nigeria. Nigeria has one of the poorest first aid preparedness and we often allow emotion and panic to take over when there is accidents, people carelessly rush to lift accident victims, leading to outright death. The casualty have gone through trauma and a possible hit to some of their vital organs, lifting them suddenly out of panic will only aggravate the injury and lead to outright death. People who are not trained and do not know how to offer first aid to accident casualties often attend to them leading to the death of the casualties even before getting to the hospital.

Casualties in accident do not need to be subjected to panic or undue emotions, that will worsen the situation and lead to undue shock and in many occasions to heart attack and outright death of the casualty. I recently attended a few days course in first aid with the St. John's Ambulance to learn the best first-aid practices and was shocked by the errors we make and the unnecessary death we cause daily by our negligence and inconsistencies. We commit manslaughter on a daily basis and this needs to stop.

Nigerians need to attend first aid trainings as this will be needed some day, either by themselves, relations, friends or neighbours. There is need for training to learn the recognised first aid practises so we can save our lives, we need to inculcate first aid trainings to our schools, private and public sectors, to all parastatals, groups and agencies. We need certified first aiders at work, on the street and at home.

Our ambulance services needs to be improved and the Government need to allocate adequate parts of the budget to providing ambulance, rescue helicopters and ferries, with well trained first aiders to help curtail this incessant deaths from the hands of untrained Nigerians, providing wrong first aid to casualties. A lot of Nigerians believe that ambulance is for conveying dead people, this needs to be corrected, ambulance is primarily designed to save people's lives during emergencies and accidents. The Government also need to do a lot more in making live more meaningful to the populace by providing adequate Emergency and Accidents(E&A) centres to help casualties access medical facilities at the quickest possible time after an accident. A nation with no adequate E&A centres all over the country is a nation leaving its people for the slaughter.

A first aid kit is a collection of supplies and equipments for use in giving first aid. A typical first aid kit should contain adhesive bandages, disinfectant, pain killers, disposable gloves, scissors, trauma shears, emergency blanket, defibrillator and many more equipments based on trainings and availability. First aiders needs to carry around first aid kit on the back of their vehicles and we need to ensure all public places have constantly revamped first aid kit. Standard first aid kit needs to be green, with a white cross and placed in easily accessible location in order to make them easily recognisable as set by the International Standard Organisation (ISO).

When there is an accident, follow the simple international procedure of accessing the situation first. Do not panic or rush to lift the casualty or objects on or around the casualty. Check the area is not of any risk to you or the casualty, once you decide it becomes safe to approach the accident scene, start by clearing the environment of dangerous objects to prevent further injury to the casualty or yourselves. Then you need to check the casualty to know if they are visibly conscious. Does the casualty respond to your voice or gentle stimulation? If the casualty is conscious, ask questions such as, what happened?, you can also give command such as; open your eyes. You need to speak loudly and clearly. Gently shake the casualty’s shoulder, if there is response, call for ambulance or treat the condition found if not severe.

If the casualty is not responding or unconscious, you need to place your hand on the casualty's forehead and gently tilt the head back, try to place the finger of your hand under the point of the casualty's chin, lift the chin to free the airway and look for chest movement, listen for the sound of breathing. If the casualty is not breathing, or has agonal breathing, call for emergency help or begin chest compression.

To start chest compression, place the heel of your hand on top of the first hand and interlock your fingers. Keep your fingers off casualty's ribs, but on on the centre of the casualty's chest, this is the point at which you will apply pressure, lean over the casualty, with your arms straight. Press down vertically on the chest depress about 4 -5cm (11/2 – 2 in). Release the pressure and let chest recoil. Following the above procedure, compress the chest 30 times, at the rate of 100 compressions per minutes. Then you need to Tilt the head, lift the chin and give two rescue breaths. Keep alternating 30 chest compressions with two rescue breaths, continue the compression until emergency help arrives and take over or until casualty starts breathing normally. Once the casualty becomes responsive, place in recovery position and awaits emergency services.