Saturday, 9 January 2010


update on the below - looks like the Togo team have now pulled out of the contest and three people are dead, very sad.

the Togo football team has been shot at, with the driver of their bus apparently killed and four players hurt. Seems they were not the precise target, and the attack was part of the Cabinda separatist issue in Angola, where the Africa Cup of Nations is being held, as the world's people know. I have never been to Angola, or to Togo either (though I got close to the latter when I was an election observer in Ghana in 2004, in a constituency close to the Togo border). However I have since 2007 had Togolese family, as in that year my niece married a man from Togo and adopted his son - they are expecting a child of their own in May this year. So I have francophone African family members, to whom I send French football magazines and French BD (graphic or comic books) sometimes. Anyone remember how in the apartheid times beefy red-faced men used to appear on television saying "Keep politics out of sport"? They wanted the white-only South African teams to play internationally of course. What has changed? (This is a serious question).

Anyway, Le Monde had an interesting article last week about working girls in South Africa (a great many of whom are from Zimbabwe, now why would they want to leave that country?) and how their earning prospects are expected to be enhanced by the football World Cup in South Africa later this year. One of them said that it was rich white men who were the ones who tried to get away without paying. Hmmm.

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