As a lifelong resident of Uganda and Africa as well as president of the Atheist Association of Uganda, I have a good idea of the conditions and challenges that Africans face to live.
Africa is perhaps the most miserable place the world has ever known. This fact is all but ignored by the media in western countries. Most of the governments here, although calling themselves promoters of democracy, are ruthless dictatorships, ruled by greed and callous disregard for human life and dignity. They are supported by religious institutions that desire a share in the power, and they are supported by the "Western World" because they can still exploit them for profit.
Nigeria is often described as a deeply religious society where most, if not all persons, profess religious beliefs without qualification. Nigeria is often portrayed as a country where the religious demography is static- everybody is religious, everybody belongs to one faith or the other. Everybody professes religion, nobody renounces religion. Nobody is critical or skeptical about religious dogmas. Non religious and freethinking Nigerians are purportedly so insignificant. For me this is a misrepresentation of the religious demography and dynamics in the country. And the time has come for us to rectify this misrepresentation.
Kenya is not a unique country in Africa. We all share in the colonial histories that the European civilization embedded on our orientation, thereby changing reality through industrialization. Kenya, like many other nations in the world, had resisted subjugation by its colonizers, the British. However, the colonialists’ need for emancipating us from the traditional dark past resulted to establishment of protectorates, concentration camps and ultimately, a settler population. They brought the constitution, introduced a social contract and made morality a key debate in any leadership. Even now, Kenya still uses its colonial constitution, which was planned in Lanchester House (Britain) decades before independence.
The British Charity Commission denied the Council of ex-Muslims, an AAI affiliate, charity status this week.
In its refusal letter the Charity Commission stated: “Under English law the advancement of religion is a recognised charitable purpose and charities are afforded certain fiscal privileges by the state. The prohibition of any such financial privilege as called for in the demand made in [your] Manifesto would require a change in law. Similarly a separation of religion from the state and legal and education system would appear to require both constitutional reform and change to the law.”
CeMB chair Maryam Namazie responds to this denial here.
On 4th June, 2011, the Jahwar Amber Humanist Fund held their first ever conference, also being the first of its kind in the history of Kenya. The theme for the event was “Philosophy, Sexuality and Atheism”, a banner that resulted to most of the conference committee members being put on media alert and remorsefully, others losing their jobs, including Mr. Boaz Adhengo, who chaired the whole process to its finish. Notably is Dr. Willy Mutunga who has been constantly quizzed of his relation to sexual activist organizations and consequently, his nomination for the position of Chief Justice halted by the Catholic Diocese, who have sued the nomination process terming it devilish and unfair. The conference realized 67 participants, which was lesser than our 100 target. Though, at the festival dinner, the attendance exceeded into being 170 with an increased subscription into JAF membership. We gained 28 new members to total as 127.
The conference realized 67 participants, which was lesser than our 100 target. Though, at the festival dinner, the attendance exceeded into being 170 with an increased subscription into JAF membership. We gained 28 new members to total as 127.
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