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Courier (English)
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    Back Matter
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    Back Cover
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Full Text




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Editorial Committee
Sir John Kaputin, Secretary General
Secretariat of the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States
Mr Stefano Manservisi, Director General of DG Development
European Commission

Editorial staff
Director and Editor-in-chief
Hegel Goutier

Debra Percival

Editorial Assistant and Production
Joshua Massarenti

Contributed in this issue
Marie-Martine Buckens, Sandra Federici, Gibril Foday-Musa, T. T Fons, Batrice Gorez,
Gaoussou Gueye, Andrea Marchesini Reggiani, Franois Misser

Public Relations and Artistic coordination
Public Relations
Andrea Marchesini Reggiani (Public Relations Manager and Responsible for NGOs' and
experts' network)
Joan Ruiz Valero (Responsible for Networking with EU and National Institutions)

Artistic Coordination
Sandra Federici

Graphic Conception, Layout
Orazio Metello Orsini
Lucia Gervasio arketipa

Contract Manager S' -G O
Claudia Rechten
Tracey D'Afters ENG HOR

Man sells aluminium cooking pots made from recycled material in Our privileged
Freetown, Sierra Leone, 2008 Debra Percival prI e
Back Cover partner, the
On the right: Ismail Farouk, Entrance to the Jack Mincer Taxi Rank &
Park Central Filling Station, Shot from the Drill Hall, Video, colour ESPRCE SEIIGHOR
2006. Courtesy of the artist
On the left: Ismail Farouk, GHB626GP, 2006. Courtesy of the artist
Contact C cultural centre promoting artists
The Courier from countries in Europe,
45, Rue de Trves Africa, the Caribbean and the
1040 Brussels Pacific and cultural exchanges bet-
Belgium (EU) ween communities through perfor-
info@acp-eucourier.info mance arts, music, cinema, to the
www.acp-eucourierinfo holding of conferences. It is a mee-
Tel +32 2 2374392
Fax +32 2 2801406 ting place for Belgians, immigrants
of diverse origins and European
Published every two months in English, French, Spanish and Portuguese officials.
For information on subscription,
Go to our website www.acD-eucourier.info or contact info@acD-eucourier.info Espace Senghor
Publisher responsible Centre cultural d'Etterbeek
Hegel Goutier Brussels Belgium
Consortium espace.senghor@chello.be
Gopa-Cartermill Grand Angle Lai-momo www.senghor.be
The views expressed are those of the authors and do not represent the official view of the EC nor of Place dedicated to other privileged
the ACP countries. partners
The consortium and the editorial staff decline ail responsibility for the articles written by external


N. 5 N.E. APRIL MAY 2008


Table of contents

Old fears return


In the driving seat of the Caribbean 'Machinery'.
Meeting with Dr Richard Bemal


Fishing: in search of a sustainable model
Open warfare on "illegal, undeclared,
unregulated" fishing
New Partnership Agreements
The controversial example of Mauritania
ACP small-scale fishing:
the most effective for the new millennium
Local fishing in Senegal:
quality and traceability challenges


Figureheads of ACP-EU cooperation


Debate ignites on market for biofuels

A day in the life of King Fisher

Dam under close watch

Sierra Leone
From peacebreaking to peacemaking
The business of governance

Government digs deep to reform mining
3 Focus on farming as rice price rises

Rising to the environmental challenge
EU funding to underpin stability

Is tourism a stirring lion?

Cyprus and Malta
Cyprus -a meeting and mixing of cultures
Economic miracle
11 The Planning Bureau, architect of the economic
13 miracle at the service of development
15 Cypriot identities
Stelios leronimidis. Deputy Mayor of Nicosia
18 The beauty and charm of three continents
As if Malta was master of its own history
The soul of Malta. Opening and closing
A smart economy with no fear of globalisation
21 Malta -past and present

25 Contemporary photography from the DRC.
Congo Eza prints of dreams and realities
Young art from South Africa
Support programme to cultural industries
in ACP countries
28 Danzas des deux mondes.
Classical music in the mix


Goorgoorlou, the fisherman


A two-way opposition



'l* ;



deeply-rooted ancestral fear -that of suf-
fering through famine -was awakened by
worldwide skirmishes which were quickly
dubbed "hunger riots". Even better-off
countries that seemed to have protected themselves
against this sort of scourge were affected. As news
seeped through, increasingly tense words were used to
put across the increasing manifestations of fear:
demonstrations in Egypt, riots in Cameroon, Burkina
Faso, Senegal, Sri Lanka and Cte d'Ivoire, and vio-
lent clashes in Haiti.

Watching these events unfold, some may recall that
the rich economic blocs were originally created to
protect against famine. In the past, the European
Union allocated up to two-thirds of its budget to its
agricultural policy. This was the price for peace of
mind over the fear of hunger that cruelly played on
the minds of those who had known such suffering
and which was stamped on their collective memory.
Others recall that while in the past no country had
ever become rich through scrupulous respect for
nature, good governance or human rights, the
demands placed on poor countries today to meet such
expectations are unparalleled.

Today still the major economic powers are the ones
that have managed to feed themselves rather than
those with exportable raw materials, whether oil or
diamonds. This is not simply a matter of good gover-
nance. Both China and India are entering the circles of
the powerful, but only after firstly becoming more
successful at feeding their own populations. And India
had already been providing engineers and mathemati-
cians to the world for some time.

Until recently that which had been little cause for con-
cem was quickly shown in its true dimensions: as a
global disaster. European Development Commissioner,
Louis Michel, who in the past had already expressed
his concem, now described this as a "tsunami."
Moreover, the World Food Programme (WFP) already
sounded the alarm back in March, a month before the

But how many of the forecasters, economists and ana-
lysts saw anything coming, despite the fact that there's
nothing really new to all this in the countries affected?
In Haiti, for example, under the first presidency of
Ren Prval in the late 1990s, rice fields vanished.
Haiti is a country that was at one time a net exporter
of rice. The blame for this was put on irrigation prob-
lems, but was above all it was due to the actions of US
agro-food giants that sold their rice below the local
production price until Haitian farmers were finally
forced out of business.

Of course, explanations existed: bad governance, lack
of freedom, low quality education and health. While
such reasons are all valid, they do not alone suffice.
Then there were the advice given to many emerging
economies when it seemed that economic develop-
ment was being held back by rising energy prices. The
solution? More biodiesel had to be produced -but it
seems that the soya, palm oil or maize used to manu-
facture the product came at the expense of crops
grown for food. Of course, biodiesel initially won over
as it commanded a higher price. This is an economic
game that can prove extremely dangerous and lead to
spiralling food prices. The road to hell really is paved
with good intentions. This issue of The Courier looks
at the dilemma.

We also report on Sierra Leone, a country at the very
bottom of the UNDP development rankings. It is today
a place of hope: the expansion of electricity in the
country coinciding with a new govemment in office.
Although the nation's agriculture minister is being
wooed to produce biofuel from palm oil, he would
rather think this through before making a final deci-
sion. It would appear he is not ready to let the 'golden
calf' of energy take the place of staple foodstuffs like
rice and cocoa. There is light in such uncertainty.

Hegel Goutier

N. 5 N.E. APRIL MAY 2008

o the point

Debra Percival






Fourteen members of CARIFORUM** belong to the only regional grouping ofACP
nations which have, to date, initialled a fully-fledged European Partnership
Agreement (EPA) with the European Union (EU). This is seen as a tribute to the
jamaica-based Caribbean Regional Negotiating Machinery (CRNM), set up in
1997 by heads of government of CARICOM the Guyana-based regional organ-
isation promoting integration of the Caribbean people to pool resources and
coordinate ail trade talks with partners. The new CARIFORUM-EU Agreement
was to be signed in spring 2008 with 'provisional application' in July. Director-
General of the CRNM, economist Dr Richard Bernal, speaks to The Courier.
Bernal (on the right) signing
o what extent is the EPA's successful tion properly and consistently as the nature and the EPA agreement with Karl
conclusion due to the CRNM? scope of CARIFORUM foreign trade policy Falkenberg, the Deputy
S Director General for Trade at
evolves, the European Commission.
The CRNM has had a coordinating To the rear, Kusha Haraksingh,
role in facilitating the development of regional Did youfeel rushed into signing upfor an EPA? lead negotiator on EPA
legal issues with the
negotiating positions. Such coordination has College of Negotiators.
included facilitating consultations with stake- The implications of the elimination of the W ayn Lewis
holders, research and technical work. The suc- non-reciprocal trade preferences under the
cessful conclusion of the EPA is owed therefore Cotonou Agreement
in part to the technical labour undertaken by the CC CL Ilc.! .i, i
negotiators and the CRNM, but more impor- :c..." Tl c i!i.. c
tantly to the Member States, which were ulti- ~'i' ..I i..
mately responsible for determining the negoti-
ating mandate and guiding the negotiators
throughout the process.
'Machinery' implies an onward march, no mat-
ter what.
When one gets into one's car, there is a reason-
able expectation that the car will start once the
key is engaged. Similarly, the expectation of the
negotiating 'machinery' is that it too will func- .. ',. .. .


o the point

were to resort to the Generalised System of
Preferences (GSP), to negotiate a new market
access arrangement for goods only, or to nego-
tiate a complete EPA.

The region, recognizing the market potential in
services and investment, decided that a full EPA
was its best option. The negotiations were com-
pleted on 16 December 2007 not because of
external pressure, but rather because the nego-
tiators and the heads were confident that the
Agreement was a good one and that the man-
date had been achieved.

Is the EPA (,',. *-.. *i..... 'fin the WTO?

In law, successful litigation is generally depend-
ent upon two variables: the interpretation of the
law and the credibility of arguments presented
by the challenger and by the defence. The WTO
is no exception. Therefore, it is possible that
challenges to the EPA from WTO membership
could arise. Some elements of the rules of the
WTO are ambiguous and have not been conclu-
sively tested and interpreted within WTO
jurisprudence. This ambiguity facilitates
avenues for challenge, especially from compet-
ing developed countries and non-ACP develop-
ing countries. At the same time, legal ambigui-
ty provides latitude for liberal interpretations
and the application of the legal principle.

The whole purpose of entering into negotiations
was an arrangement which, in contrast to the
Cotonou preferences that required a waiver,
would be compatible with the rules of the
WTO. We have been careful to negotiate an
Agreement that would secure our trading inter-
ests but that could survive legal scrutiny.

What are the i'. .. r; (<* i. EPAfor Caribbean

One of the most immediate benefits of the EPA
is that it allows CARIFORUM to avoid facing
the GSP, which would have been significantly
less advantageous than the EPA. Certainly key
CARIFORUM industries, such as the banana
industry, would have suffered if no EPA was in
place because there is no coverage for bananas
under the GSP.

Additionally, in the short to medium term, tariff
reductions could lead to the depreciation of
some prices of goods and services, which may
result in savings to the consumer. Falling retail
prices would also lower the production costs of
CARIFORUM producers whose production
processes and inputs are highly dependent upon

Centre: Ambassador Richard Bernal; on his right, Henry Gill, Senior Technical Director of the Caribbean Regional
Negotiating Machinery (CRNM); on his left Junior Lodge, the CRNM's senior co-ordinator based in Brussels. wayne Lewis

In the long term, the EPA secures CARIFO-
RUM preferential market access to Europe,
across both traditional and new sectors in goods
and services in a form that is consistent with
WTO rules.

What about the i.,, revenue losses for ACP

The commitment to liberalise means that both
CARIFORUM and Europe will have to remove
import duties from certain goods. This will lead
to a loss of revenue originating from these tar-
iffs. CARIFORUM is expected to liberalise as
much as 80 per cent of all goods imported from
Europe. However, the commitment to remove
tariffs is not immediate for CARIFORUM.
Whereas Europe is expected to immediately
remove duties and quota restrictions for all
goods except rice and sugar, CARIFORUM is
allowed several phasing schedules before it is
necessary for products to become completely
duty free. For some products, CARIFORUM is
allowed to delay liberalisation by 5, 10 or 15
years, and in some other cases up to 25 years.
Furthermore, the EPA provides a list of products
which will be exempted from liberalisation.

Under a trade agreement like the EPA, it is
expected that any revenue losses will be com-
pensated by capitalisation of the market access
opportunities available to firms. However,
CARIFORUM adjustment to revenue loss
caused by liberalisation can be realized further
by reforming tax systems with the aim of tran-
sitioning away from taxes that impede trade
flows to other forms of taxation.

What sort of development aid is needed to
underpin the EPA?

Successful implementation of the Agreement
within CARIFORUM hinges upon the expres-

sion and implementation of financial and non-
financial development support and cooperation.

The EPA's development support measures and
priorities are broadly outlined in a chapter on
development but are more specifically detailed
in individual chapters related to the particular
trade subjects under the Agreement. Defining
the formulation and implementation of specific
development support projects must be preceded
by a process of needs assessment. This process
of needs assessment, though not complete,
started even before the conclusion of the EPA
negotiations. The evaluation of the costs of
implementation will be determined through this
process. It is up to the Member States to deter-
mine what these projects will be.

And the imonitoi in i,

Monitoring of the implementation of the EPA is
to be facilitated through participatory processes
at the national levels of CARIFORUM and
Europe. However, the EPA also includes certain
institutional provisions. Such provisions
include the establishment of the Joint CARIFO-
Trade and Development Committee and the
CARIFORUM-EU Parliamentary Committee.t

For further information, go to www.crnm.org and
CRNM Director General
** CARIFORUM is the Caribbean Forum of the African,
Caribbean and Pacific Group of States, which includes
members of the CARICOM regional grouping: Bahamas,
Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti,
Jamaica, St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia, St Vincent, Surinam,
Trinidad and Tobago, the Dominican Republic and Cuba.
The EU initialled an EPA on 16 December 2007 with all
CARIFORUM States apart from Cuba.

Debra Percival; Richard Bernal; CARICOM;

N. 5 N.E. APRIL MAY 2008

I found up

Hegel Goutier





nG FRom a


On 13 December, the Solomon Islands' parliament elected a new prime minister, fol-
lowing a motion of no confidence in his predecessor. This time, the democratic rules
were respected without any skirmishes, unlike unfortunate events in the country's
recent past. Tensions with the nation's powerful neighbour, Australia, quickly eased.
There now finally appears to be progress in the long process of exiting the crisis.

motion of no confidence in the govemment, prompting the res-
ignation of its leader, Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare. A
week later, his newly installed successor, Derek Sikua, was
warmly welcomed by the international community and, above all, by
Australia who agreed to step up cooperation, thus putting an end to the
tension that has soured relations between the two countries.
Most importantly, one of the new govemment
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plunging the country into a protracted crisis that began in the early 1990s.
Derek Sikua's call for a major reconciliation effort was accompanied by a
request for negotiations with the Malaita Province executive in order to
get major development projects back on track, including the Aulauta palm
oil project, long-awaited on the island.
> The notion of 'wantok'
When The Courier visited the Solomon Islands a few months ago, for-
mer Prime Mini tcr Sn'n-nre (Ctill in office nt the time dtrnni!:- emphn-
rli. I I' l il2 ii['! c, i ii ll l ,1i r c I'Ii.!il ,ii ih c .iirn l i iI l, 'll'[i'Ii .i i,. iI -

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.'!i.' !, I, I,, I !. s|i .il. I[ ii .l i ').il!. i-. l .ic i ,l IIi i, 1- H I

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C~- --..~

Round up

this country -which only came together as one nation with independence
-are inhabited by many different clans, many of whom are historically
antagonistic towards one another. About 70 languages are spoken by the
country's estimated 540,000 population, with each language totally dif-
ferent from another.

The process of unification only really started during the Second World
War, when the region (and Guadalcanal in particular) was the epicentre of
one of the most dramatic and decisive clashes between Japanese and US
forces. Here the Japanese finally lost the war and it was the huts at the
Honiara military airport that formed the basis of the future capital,
Honiara. Together with the other islands grouped around Guadalcanal, the
state of the Solomon Islands was formed, despite having no real shared
history, and was granted independence from the United Kingdom in 1978.

The wantok practiced by politicians in positions of power has often been
viewed by donor countries as a symbol of bad govemance, which helps
to explain some misunderstandings, if not serious tensions.

> Repeated troubles

Tensions between the Malaitans and the population of Guadalcanal
quickly marked the short history of the new state. To put this into con-
text, the population density on Malaita is relatively high but economic
opportunities are relatively low compared to neighboring Guadalcanal,
which is the seat of political power and where a large part of the Malaita
population emigrated.

The first major troubles date back to the late 1990s and originate in con-
flicts between the inhabitants of Malaita who had settled in the province
of Guadalcanal and the local indigenous population. The Gwale people
of Guadalcanal, the most prosperous of the Solomon Islands, started to
protest strongly at what they considered to be an invasion by people from
other islands (especially Malaita), accusing them not only of stealing
their land but also their jobs. Paramilitary groups were formed. The first
of these was the Guadalcanal Revolutionary Army (GRA) which intimi-
dated the Malaitan 'immigrants', forcing them to flee the rural areas in
their thousands, to either the capital or their place of origin. In response
to the intimidation by this group of extreme nationalists the Malaitan
Eagle Force created in June 2000, staged what amounted to a coup d'e-
tat when they seized the prime minister. This in tum gave rise to a new
Gwale paramilitary group, the Isatabu Freedom Fighters (replacing the
GRA), who assassinated a member of the new govemment. The resulting
violence in the country cost hundreds of lives.

Two successive peace agreements between the warring parties pro-
duced no lasting solutions and in April 2000 further conflict erupted in
the Western Province. The background to this latest crisis was the
unsustainable exploitation of the forests by foreign (principally Asian)
companies who -in addition to their impact on the environment, the
economy and good governance -also affected the country's culture
and customs. On several of the region's islands (including
Guadalcanal) land ownership is traditionally handed down among the
women of the family. The logging companies were however accused
of conducting irregular transactions with some of the village officials
and dispossessing women. This sparked a series of mass demonstra-
tions by the female population, who were also reportedly the victims
of violence at the hands of private security guards employed on some
of the plantations. Explaining the situation to The Courier, Ella
Kauhue, Secretary General of the National Council of Women, noted

N. 5 N.E. APRIL MAY 2008

Round up

~ .V;C P UEi hild'eri

that "in Guadalcanal for instance, there is matrilineal rule. Women own
the land. But often, when they allow foreigners to core, women don't
participate in the decision, so the men receive huge amounts of money.
They travel, spend the money and then go back to the village."

In April 2003, the Pacific Island States decided, within the framework of
the Biketawa Declarationi, to send a policing mission to the Solomon
Islands -RAMSI (Regional Assistance to the Solomon Islands) -under
the command of Australia who supplied 80 per cent of the manpower,
with units from New Zealand and other Pacific islands also contributing
and Australia funding the units from Fiji and Papua New Guinea.

RAMSI managed to restore order, despite sporadic troubles. However,
after elections that passed off relatively peacefully in 2006, the prime
minister elected with a large majority based on the country's three prin-
cipal parties -was forced to resign following several days of rioting.
Accusations of links with corruption were levelled against the prime min-
ister. Particular anger was directed at Asian businesses active in forest
management, particularly the Taiwanese. During these riots Honiara's
Chinatown among other places, was destroyed.

A new prime minister, Manasseh Sogavare (who was still in office when
The Courier visited) seemed to meet with the rioter's approval and was
elected. However, his relations with some sections of the international
community (particularly Australia) were very strained. The main reason
for this was his appointment to govemment of two figures who were
accused of involvement in organising the riots. The European Union dis-
approval came in a statement published in May 2006. Under intemation-

al pressure, these appointments were finally overtumed but relations with
Australia remained acrimonious due to other contested appointments. Mr
Sogavare had previously been prime minister in the wake of a coup d'e-
tat in 2000 until December 2001.

On 13 December, a no-confidence vote in parliament forced Sogavare to
resign and on 20 December he was replaced by Derek Sikua. Sogavare is
now opposition leader. Rarely since the 1999 crisis has a change of gov-
emment been so peaceful and violence-free in both the towns and sur-
rounding countryside. For the new prime minister and his govemment, this
is a sign that the democratic institutions have gained in strength: "the
recent political leadership crisis has demonstrated the strength of our fun-
damental democratic institutions to ensure a just and democratic outcome."

Indeed, since the arrival of the RAMSI forces, the rules of democracy
have been respected but often in a volatile atmosphere and fairly serious
unrest. This does not bode well for a total resolution of the crisis and the
eventual departure of the RAMSI forces. Nevertheless, many people saw
the applause of the crowds on Malaita for the new prime minister as a
sign of the beginning of genuine national reconciliation. It is to be hoped
that the present dtente is not followed by further prevarication and hic-
cups on the road to democracy. M

1 The Biketawa Declaration, adopted in October 2000 by the Pacific Islands Forum, laid
the basis for a coordinated response to regional crises.

Solomon Islands; Pacific; forestry; governance; Sogavare;
Derek Sikua.


Round up

EU member State aid cuts

threaten POUERTY pledges

os Manuel Barroso, President of the
European Commission, has called on EU
Member States to up their respective
Overseas Development Assistance
(ODA) if the Millennium Development
Goals (MDGs) are to be met. They include
halving extreme global poverty by 2015.
Barroso told a Brussels press conference 9
April: "We are doing well on aid effectiveness
but we have to be honest and admit that our
2007 aid volume performance is simply not
good enough."
The call for more aid is contained in part an EU
paper, 'EU as a global partner for development'
released by Barroso 9 April to get talks started
on a common EU position for the High Level
Forum of Aid Effectiveness in Accra, Ghana in
September and the Doha Financing for
Development Conference in December.
For the first time since 2000 the combined
overseas aid from 27 EU Member States to all
developing nations fell to 46.1 billion in 2007
compared with 47.7 billion in 2006.
Recent figures from the Organisation for
Economic Cooperation and Development
(OECD) reveal that aid fell in 2007 from the
following states who are traditionally large con-
tributors by volume: Belgium (-11.2 per cent),

France (-15.9 per cent), Italy (-3.6 per cent),
Portugal (-9.4 per cent), Sweden (-2.6 per cent)
and the United Kingdom (-29.1 per cent).
The following states gave more in 2007:
Germany (+5.9 per cent), Ireland (+4.6 per
cent), Luxembourg (+11.7 per cent), Spain
(+33.8 per cent), Austria (+7.6 per cent),
Denmark (+2.9 per cent), Finland (+5.5 per
cent), Greece (+5.3 per cent) and the
Netherlands (+3.1 per cent).
President Barroso said the European
Commission had a leadership role in meeting
the MDGs and asked Member States to specify
annual development spending up to 2015. This
message would be taken to the June meeting of
EU Heads of State in Slovenia and the group of
eight most industrialized nations (G8) in July in
Japan, he said.
Member States were also asked to contribute to
a new annual European Commission annual
budget line of 2 billion for 'Aid for Trade' up
to 2010, half of which will come from the
Commission and the rest from EU Member
States. It will finance such as infrastructure to
boost regional trade in developing nations and
African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) states are
expected to be big beneficiaries.
Larger amounts of aid are just one part of the
'global partner' paper which also stresses
improved aid effectiveness. Here a lot of
progress had been made with EU Member
States taking joint planning decisions, Louis
Michel, EU Commissioner for Development,
told jouralists on 9 April. In Somalia six EU
countries and Norway coordinate aid. Michel
also gave his backing to budget support which
created, "a relationship of confidence between
equals." Forty-seven per cent of the 22.6 bil-
lion 10th EDF (2008-2013) is earmarked for
budget aid in ACP nations.
And the paper urges more synergy between
development and other EU policies to avoid sit-
uations where they are at odds with eachother,
a case in point being biofuels. (See article on
biofuels in trade rubric). D.P. M

Debra Percival; MDGs; Aid; Jos Manuel
Barroso; Louis Michel.

SAyoung girl learning the Koran in
Freetown, 12 August 2004. IRIN

N. 5 N.E. APRIL MAY 2008


in search

of a
le model

by Marie-Martine Buckens

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Fishing Dossier

Open warfare on

"illegal, undeclared,

unregulated" fishing

The EU has decided to attack a crisis head-on that could affect almost a fifth of the
global volume of fishing: illegal practices. This initiative is headed by Cesar Deben
Alfonso, Director of monitoring and implementation at the Directorate-General of
Fishing and Maritime Affairs at the European Commission.

S or the ACP countries -and our relations with them
the issue of illegal fishing is of great importance,"
explains Cesar Deben. He continues, "...in as much as
we are seeing an increase in this type of fishing and
Europe plays a major role in the fact that we are the biggest growth
market (even with the emergence of Russia and China) for quality pro-
The EU is a big player in the international fish product industry. In
2003, the quantity imported by the then 25 Member States was more

than 10 million tonnes totalling some 24 billion. In the same year, the
EU exported just 6 million tonnes of fish products -a total value of
around 14 billion. The EU is, hence, a net importer of these products
and this is a growing trend. This is why, over a period of time, the EU
has concluded fishing agreements with various ACP coastal states.
They include mixed agreements (permitting different species to be
caught), in particular with West African States close to European coast-
lines (especially the Spanish coast), and tuna fishing agreements with
Indian Ocean countries (primarily the Seychelles and the Comoros) and

Inspectors arrive to control a fishing boat, 2002. CEC

countries of the Pacific Ocean (the Solomon
Islands, Kiribati and the federated states of
Micronesia), which is one of the regions rich
in migratory species.

Above all, these agreements aim to ensure reg-
ular stocks for the European fleet. However,
the international market in fish products has
grown to such a size that ever-increasing num-
bers of pirates roam the seas, lured by the
lucrative profits to be made by those who
don't observe the rules (fishing methods and
quotas) which are imposed on legal boats.

> fn enormous task

"There are three reasons why we are tackling
this enormous task," says Cesar Deben. "First
of all, it's about preserving a resource.
Secondly, the rules that we put on the table in
October 2007 offer a framework of coopera-
tion, particularly with ACP countries, as they
are the primary victims since they lack the
structural capability to confront this threat and
deal with corruption. Therefore we must bear
in mind that controlling fishing activity
involves huge costs that many countries are
unable to meet. Thirdly, we want to put
European fleets on an equal footing with third-
country fleets." He continues, "Our fleets are
the most regulated in the world and they must
be allowed to operate under conditions of fair

The toughness of the regulation is illustrated
by the requirement for EU boats to carry a
'blue box' on board (so they can be located by
satellite) and an electronic logbook, to be in
general use from 2009.

However, Cesar Deben recognizes that illegal
fishing affects all fleets, whether in the form of
companies created in third countries or the use
of certain flags of convenience.

> Restrictiue measures

To date, the EU has backed the adoption of
various measures of regional fishing organisa-
tions to combat illegal fishing, but this is the
first time that legally binding measures (in the
form of EU Council rulings) can be adopted by
European Fisheries Ministers. So, what are
they? The first is aimed at attacking the status
of flags of convenience.

Notes Deben: "The Maritime Law states that
countries are responsible for the activities of
ships that sail under their flags and we have to
ensure that this obligation is fully upheld."

Happily, says Deben, cases are becoming rarer
as countries like Equatorial Guinea, the
Dominican Republic, Belize and Panama
abandon the practice. "But there are still many
others." He adds, "We want to deal with this
on two fronts. Firstly to compel states to
strengthen their controls -if they don't coop-
erate we will not accept their products at
European ports. Then we want to change the
legal framework by reversing the burden of
proof, so that boats wishing to export to
Europe must prove that their catches are legal
-normal practice in the United States. To
make this possible, the rules provide for a cer-
tification mechanism, which already exists for
tuna fishing, and countries that don't cooper-
ate could be 'decertified'."

So, it will not be a case of drawing up a black-
list of pirate boats, but rather of withdrawing
an automatic right. "There are already ade-
quate rules, adding a legal requirement suf-
fices," says Deben.

> flccompanging measures

"The mechanisms to make this work," contin-
ues Cesar Deben, "must also respect World

Trade Organisation rules, and must not have
negative repercussions for developing country
exporters. The main ACP exporters of fish
products to Europe are South Africa and
Namibia, followed by various West African
countries, specifically Mauritania. On that
basis it is estimated that 80 per cent of fish
products stay in Africa as frozen products."

Many of these exporting countries are also the
main victims of illegal fishing and the Asian
fleets that fish without a licence in their waters
have become a real scourge. The EU is now
drawing up financial incentives to help coun-
tries maintain legal fishing activities.
Financial aid is included in the Partnership
Agreements drawn up between the EU and
some ACP states (destined, admittedly, to
become fewer in number).

Suggests Deben: "We can expect long delays
while waiting for countries to fall in line just
like with the accompanying measures, espe-
cially in the training of customs officers."
These measures could be funded by the
European Development Fund (EDF) or the
Common Fisheries Policy (CFP).

"Overall these proposals have been well
received, both by NGOs and the European
Parliament, as well as the European Economic
and Social Committee," concludes Cesar
Deben. And not just by the Europeans, but also
by the EU's prime competitors in the sector,
notably Norway, the United States and China.
Even the Chinese seem willing to cooperate
an important factor since the rules envisage
the creation of an international network.
M.M.B. M

Marie-Martine Buckens; illegal fishing;
Cesar Deben; European Commission; ACP;
WTO; European fleet.


Fishing Dossier




The EU's former 'fish, pay and go' policy for bilateral
fishing agreements with ACP countries is no more. It has
been replaced by Fishing Partnership Agreements (FPA)
focused on sustainable development.

both commercial and ecological
reasons. The new generation of
agreements addresses the ongoing
over-exploitation of resources. According to
the European Commission, new World Trade
Organisation (WTO) regulations on aid to the
fishing industry do not mean that the, "EU's
financial contribution should be considered as
a subsidy for European fishermen." It goes on
to say that ".... in future, the EU's financial
contribution will have to be regarded as an

investment to ensure responsible fishing and
therefore be based on new considerations".
This transformation of fishing agreements into
Fishing Partnership Agreements is a recent
development -most of the FPAs have only
been in place for a year.

But some things haven't changed. The main
aim of the FPAs, as with the former previous
bilateral agreements, is to provide European
fleets with access to the territorial waters of
certain coastal states. In the 1970s most

Tuna are amongst fish stocks in the waters of ACP
coastal states of interest to EU fleets.
Chrissie Shepherd Image from BigstockPhoto com
coastal states established exclusive economic
zones, extending their jurisdiction at sea from
a distance of between 3 and 12 nautical miles
to 200 nautical miles. This move put almost 90
per cent of the world's fish stocks under the
control of these coastal states. As a result, the
fishing fleets of the EU Member States, which
traditionally operated in the waters of third
countries, suddenly found themselves exclud-
ed from these areas. To solve this issue, the EU
signed fishing agreements with the third coun-
tries involved to ensure access for its fleets. In
addition, ever since Spain and Portugal joined
the EU in 1986, their national bilateral agree-
ments have gradually been replaced by the EU
agreements. However, national bilateral agree-
ments are still in place where the EU does not
have fishing agreements, for example with
South Africa.

> Ensuring access

According to the Technical Centre for
Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA), the
EU's policy on fishing in third countries
aimed at protecting the EU's interests in the
fishing sector has been the driving force in

I Octopus
Laurl Dammert Image from BigstockPhoto com

N. 5 N.E. APRIL MAY 2008

Dossier Fishing

ACP-EU relations in the fishing industry. The
EU concluded 14 fishing agreements with ACP
countries in July 2007 involving the payment
of financial compensation. In return, the EU
fleets obtained access to resources that, in the-
ory, are not used by the coastal state concerned
and are often referred to as 'surplus resources'.

> Primarily Spanish interests

A study carried out in 2005 by the UK's
Department for International Development
(DFID) gave the main reasons for the EU sign-
ing fishing agreements as:

- to supply the EU's fish processing industry
with raw materials. This took into account
the huge demand on the EU market and the
poor supply in EU waters mainly caused by
overfishing. Currently, the EU has to import
about 60 per cent of the fish it consumes and
since 2000 has had to import an additional 9
million tonnes of fish annually to meet the
demand of the fish processing industry and

EU consumers. The added value created by
the ACP-EU agreements through the pro-
cessing and sale of fish in the Member States
is estimated at 694 million.
- to maintain fishing capacity outside EU
waters. In the 1990s, the ACP-EU fishing
agreements authorised 800 EU vessels to
fish in the waters of developing countries.
This fishing, created through the ACP-EU
agreements, has increased over the years for
technological reasons.
- to protect employment in the EU. Some
35,000 jobs depend on the ACP-EU fishing
agreements, mainly in the EU's fish process-
ing industry.

The Spanish are the main beneficiaries of the
agreements between the ACP countries and the
EU, with more than 80 per cent of the added
value and the employment. Additionally,
France and Portugal receive about 7 per cent.
In 2006, the total budget of the fishing agree-
ments was 240M and expenditure in 2006 on
the main ACP-EU fishing agreements was:

- 86M for the EU-Mauritania agreement;
- 7.2M for the EU-Guinea-Bissau agreement;
- 4.12M for the EU-Seychelles agreement;
- 3.9M for the EU-Guinea agreement.

Fish stocks in the waters of the ACP coastal
states of interest to the EU fleets can be divided
into three main categories:

- Demersal species: mainly octopus, sole,
prawns, snapper, hake;
- Small pelagic species: sardinellas, horse
mackerel/scads, sardines, pilchards;
- All tuna species.

> The FPfs: root of all euil?

Some observers believe that the new Fishing
Partnership Agreements the EU is currently
negotiating with ACP coastal countries (to
replace bilateral agreements) will be the "root of
all evil" and will only further encourage illegal
fishing. The CTA disagrees, highlighting the
example of Spanish trawlers fishing in South
African waters with the approval of the South
African Marine and Coastal Management
(MCM), who get around the reduction in the
quantities of hake fished (required by current
quotas) by processing the hake into sausage. The
CTA points out that, "in the case of South
Africa, the absence of a fishing agreement has
not prevented some European ship owners from
accessing South African fishing waters". They
conclude that, "Private agreements often result
in situations that are neither beneficial to the
local populations in the ACP nor to levels of fish
stocks." M.M.B. M

Marie-Martine Buckens; Fishing
Partnership Agreements (FPA); ACP;
European fleet; overfishing; CTA.

SPort of Kalaban Koro, near Bamako, Mali. CAnne Sophie
Costenoble Courtesy of the photographer Contact costl@skynet be


Fishing DoSSierf

The controversial example of

nm URiTnIi

Providing access to resources and ensuring sustainable development at the same time
can sometimes prove impossible. This has been highlighted by the difficulties encoun-
tered in implementing the partnership agreement between the EU and Mauritania.

between the EU and Mauritania, as "EU ship owners were ot management ofMauritanian marine resources, taking into account th best
making full use of the opportunities for fishing." A series of teclhni- scientific opinion available in particular over the state of fish stocks." The
cal meetings have since been planned to ensure the new agreement initial Fishing Partnership Agreement (FPA) between the EU and
is, in the words of the Commission, i"more in line with flthic size of thi EU Mauritania was dravni up in 1987. The latest agreement was concluded for
fishing fleet in Mauritanian waters and better meets Mauritania's require- the period 2006-2012. The protocol establishing fishing opportunities and
mnients willith regard to th development 1of its national fishing sector." On 19 financial reimbursement was signed for a period of two years and entered
February this year, EU fisliheries ministers gave their backing to the into force on i August 21006. At the end of th first year of this agreement,
Commission to determine "fishing opportunities for EU vessels in such a the European Commission indicated that the fishing opportunities grantedI
\lway as to ensure a balance between thse quotas and the finanlicial reim- to the Member Sltates were insufficient.
tbursement to Mauritania. In short, this meant rev iewing the EU's finan-
cial contribution to allow its fleets to fish in Mauritanian waters. The EU The EU-Mauitania Fishing Partnership Agreement is designed to set an
Council of Ministers also indicated thaat the two parties should engage in example. It is the most important fishing agreement that the European

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Dossier Fishing

Union has ever concluded with a third country -not least in financial
terms, as the EU's contribution is 86 million a year, or around a third of
Mauritania's national income. In retum, about 200 vessels from Spain,
Italy, Portugal, France, Greece, the Netherlands, Lithuania and Latvia cur-
rently have the right to fish in Mauritanian waters. But the FPA should also
set a precedent in attempts to control the key issue of the overexploitation
of resources (the present agreement provides the right to fish for crus-
taceans, prawns, hake and other demersal species, as well as small pelag-
ic species, tuna and cephalopods).

> The spectrum of ouerexploitation

In December 2007, 20 fishing boats from the Spanish Association of
Cephalopod Fishing (ANACEF), fishing cephalopods under the current EU-
Mauritania agreement, decided to stop their operations owing to losses.
According to the association, this was because of inappropriate technical
measures written into the agreement. The ANACEF specifically highlighted
the minimum size set for catches of cephalopods (500g), which it considers
too high and says forced it to fish outside the six-mile limit. It has now been
involved in a battle with the Mauritanian authorities for several months to
obtain the right to fish for sizes that are prohibited commercially. The Spanish
also complain that they have been prevented access to young cephalopods
unless they pay heavy compensation. According to ANACEF, the Spanish
boats retuming home will mean the direct loss of 340 jobs and a further 1,600
indirect job losses. Furthermore, supplies will be disrupted to the Spanish,
Italian and Japanese markets that will be deprived of the seven tonnes of
cephalopods usually brought back from Mauritania by these boats (a tonne of
octopus can fetch US$7,000-8,000). However, mindful of the concern of
over-fishing, the scientific committee ofthe Mauritanian Ocean and Fisheries
Research Institute (IMROP) launched a campaign several months ago
designed to protect the regeneration of cephalopods.

Currently, all the fleets working in Mauritanian waters, both local and for-
eign, are continually recording losses due to the overexploitation of
cephalopods. Therefore the main aim of the agreement, according to the

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The EU-Mauritania Fishing Partnership Agreement is designed to
set an example. It is the most important fishing agreement that the
European Union has ever concluded with a third country not least
in financial terms, as the EU's contribution is 86 million a year, or
around a third of Mauritania's national income.
EU Delegation Mauritania

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Fishing Dossier

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Belgian Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA),
should be to help Mauritania adjust its fishing capacity to the resources
available, maintaining the principle that the European fleets can only have
access to the surplus resources that cannot be fished locally. The centre
also says that it is vital for the EU to continue its efforts to help Mauritania
establish a sustainable development policy for the fishery sector.

> The importance of cephalopods

Cephalopods, and octopus in particular, are one of Mauritania's major
fishing resources. The Mauritanian Fish Marketing Company (SMCP),
which sells all of the frozen demersal species and cephalopods brought
in by the national fleet, exported 40,000 tonnes of fish worth almost
S119M in 2004. Octopus, which alone accounts for 51.2 per cent of this
total export tonnage (with a value of almost 98M), makes up 82 per
cent of SMCP's turnover. Moreover, the Mauritanian octopus is equal-
ly important for the European fishing industry.

In 2004, the European cephalopod trawlers comprised 33 per cent of the
turnover generated within the framework of the fishing agreement
(compared to 38 per cent for small pelagic species and 16 per cent for
prawn trawlers).

> The arrival of the Chinese

Since the beginning of the 1990s when fishing for octopus began its
sharp growth, there has also been a huge influx of Chinese vessels into
the local fleet as part of its modernisation programme, despite the warn-
ings of CNROP and the Food and Agricultural Organization of the
United Nations (FAO) about fish stocks being unable to withstand such

pressure. The arrival of the EU cephalopod trawlers between 1994 and
1996 further accelerated the depletion of stocks and the subsequent
decline in landings. Batrice Gorez, spokesperson for CAPE, a non-
govemmental organisation campaigning for fair fishing agreements,
explained that in 2006 the 125 vessels in the national fleet were main-
ly of Chinese origin.

In 2006, IMROP, which every four years brings together the leading
international experts on Mauritanian fishing, estimated a 31 per cent
excess the fishing of octopus, which means a decrease in production of
20 per cent. To achieve the goal of maximising income established by
the Mauritanian policy, it would be necessary to reduce the fishing
effort by 40 per cent to return it to the maximum economic level.

According to CAPE, 43 licences for fishing octopus are assigned to
European trawlers under the access provided by the current Mauritania-
EU agreement. Compared with the previous agreement, the most recent
figures available show that only 46 of the 55 licences provided for by
the 2001-2006 agreement were used during the first quarter of 2005 due
to a lack of resources. According to CAPE, the 46 licences are set to fall
to 43, representing a decrease of 6.5 per cent. It is difficult to under-
stand how this modest decline adds up to the fall of 30 per cent in the
European fishing effort, which is what has been officially announced.
M.M.B. M

Marie-Martine Buckens; Mauritania; APP; ANACEF; China;
cephalopods; CAPE.

N. 5 N.E. APRIL MAY 2008


for the new millennium

O overall, small-scale or traditional
fishing -provides over 80 per cent
of direct and indirect jobs in the
sector. Small-scale fishing in the
ACP countries is also vital to the traditional pro-
cessing activities that ensure a supply of fish to
local and regional markets. In sub-Saharan
Africa, for example, FAO statistics show that
small-scale fishing accounts for up to 80 per
cent of the fish landed for direct human
consumption. In West Africa, small-scale
fishing also plays an important role in the

value te

growth of fresh fish supplies to lucrative interna-
tional markets, such as Europe, the United
States and Asia.

In 2006, at a meeting of European shipowners
where they looked at how they could contribute
to the sustainable development of ACP coun-
tries, Mozambique's fisheries minister spoke of
the need for Europe to "better understand the
problems facing countries when they seek to
manage their fisheries in a sustainable manner."
He continued: "The principal struggle is the
struggle against total poverty and the fishing
sector has a major role to play in this struggle."
He ended by stressing that, "in this respect, our
principal objective is the integrated develop-
ment of small-scale fishing."

The fact that small-scale fishing is an effective
tool in combating poverty is confirmed by all
the coastal ACP states. Far from the bleak
image conveyed by some, small-scale fishing
is a dynamic sector engendering innovation
and, with the right focus and support, can be a
main player in meeting the challenges of the
new millennium.

One of the major challenges for ACP countries
is to restore fragile ecosystems and fish stocks
depleted by intensive and harmful fishing meth-
ods. Given fish shortages, ACP fishermen must
now commit to qualitative rather than quantita-
tive fishing, prioritising methods that respect

both the marine environment and product quali-
ty. A clear link between product quality and the
catches of traditional fishing fleets has already
been established. In Mauritania, for example,
the superiority of small-scale fishing in terms of
the quality and adding value to a product is a
constant factor. In 2005, octopus caught using
traditional Mauritanian fishing vessels sold for
US$200 more per tonne than that caught by
refrigerated trawlers. As for the noble seabed
species, only the product of small-scale fishing
provides the quality for export to Europe, reach-
ing an average price of 4.5 per kg. The frozen
fish -produced by the industrial fishing chain
sells at under 2 per kg.

Giving priority to investment in small and
medium-sized businesses in the ACP small-
scale fishing sector -as well as the service
sectors and infrastructure (ports, access to pro-
cessing sites and use of appropriate technolo-
gies) -enables this industry to maximise its
full potential in both combating poverty and
ensuring food safety. This should be at the
heart of measures governing EU involvement
in the ACP fishing sector. m

* Coordinator, Coalition for Fair Fisheries Arrangements
Key words: traditional fishing; Coalition for
Fair Fisheries Arrangements (CFFA);
Batrice Gorez.


e 1 Dossier

Local fishing in Senegal:



Local fishing in Senegal consists of 12,000 pirogues (small, flat-bottomed boats),
60,000 fishermen and as many jobs again indirectly linked to local fishing communi-
ties where women are working in processing, fish-related activities and as wholesale fish
merchants. Local fishing in Senegal is also the main source of fish products for interna-
tional, regional, and local markets. Therefore improvement in the traceability and the
quality (especially cleanliness) of our products is of major importance to the industry.

...... ....... ..

........ .........

i --. . *. C, *. *lU InS

Dossier Fishing

quality assurance begins at sea
from the moment the fish leave
the water, which is why we must
work to improve the quality of our
fleet. So w local fishermen take a positive
view on the gradual replacement of the traditio-
nal wooden pirogue with fibreglass versions.
And this change could turn out to be a positive
move, as our country is now facing deforestation
and it requires two large trees to make one woo-
den pirogue. More than that, wooden pirogues
require frequent and costly maintenance -they
need to be repaired every six months.

The new, fibreglass pirogues are also cleaner
and lighter than the traditional boats, are better
equipped for storing and preserving fish, and are
easier to maintain. They also use less fuel, some-
thing to bear in mind at a time when fuel costs
are an increasing burden on our livelihoods.

> modern boats and hygiene

But replacing wooden pirogues with fibreglass
is expensive for the fishermen, given that a
fibreglass pirogue costs more than twice as
much as a wooden one. Therefore, to ensure the
gradual renewal of our fleet, and make sure that
this option is not only available to those who can
afford boats, specific aid or credit mechanisms
must be available.

However, replacing wooden pirogues with
fibreglass ones will not solve the cleanliness
issue if the local fishing industry does nothing
about changing its methods for handling fish.
Today, most of the people handling fish on the
boats, as well as the many women involved in
the industry (including those on the landing
quays), are not well enough informed about the
requirements for traceability and cleanliness,
and what that means in terms of changing their
daily working habits. To meet these require-

ments, information and training are needed.

Many of the people involved in the industry have
no command of French; however the majority are
perfectly competent in their national language,
both written and spoken. It should therefore be
possible to draw up procedures in their national
language to allow people in the industry to com-
plete the necessary documents and provide accu-
rate information. In fact, the 'point of first sale'
(the landing quays) is the perfect location for
bringing together all the elements required to
improving traceability of fish catches.

> The uital role played by the

We can already see significant changes that have
taken place in both the professionalism and the
specialisation of people with responsibility for
traceability and cleanliness. For example, the
polystyrene boxes for storing the fish on board
the boats are no longer cleaned by the fishermen
themselves, but by men and women who spe-
cialise in this work and have acquired the skills
to ensure a high level of cleanliness.

Similarly, drivers of refrigerated trucks (who
transport the fish from the landing quays to
Dakar) are now members of an association and
have undergone training in transporting fish in
the best way possible. This involves, amongst
other things, individual approval ratings in
recognition of their specialisation.

There is an enormous task ahead, particularly in
the improvement of working and handling con-
ditions for locally processed products that are
sold throughout the sub-region. And the prob-
lems are numerous: cleanliness and hygiene at
processing sites; the efforts required by local
authorities to collect rubbish regularly; the pro-
vision of drainage and drinking water at these

sites; issues concerning the packing of the mer-
chandise and so on.

Finally, I would like to draw attention to the
responsibilities of consumers and the need to
educate them about sustainable fishing, as well
as the need to combat illegal fishing.

On the one hand, consumers want a good quali-
ty, wholesome product. On the other hand, they
are still not interested in knowing whether the
product is legally caught or not. For example,
the consumer wants a 300g fish on their plate
even though the law stipulates that in order to
preserve stocks the minimum permitted size is
400g. The fisherman will then do his utmost to
meet consumer demand, even if this means
breaking the law and forging the required trace-
ability documents.

It is also the case that many hotels demand
young, small fish, especially with species such as
white grouper, sea bream, prawns, etc., even if
this goes against the Senegalese Code of Fishing.
But this is also the case in Spain, where, during
our visit to the market in Barcelona, we saw
young fish of species from our regions on sale.

That is why consumers and customers -includ-
ing hotels -must be informed and made aware of
their responsibilities in relation to their demand
for fish products. These should fall in line with
the laws and regulations linked to conservation.M

* Vice President of the Inter-professional National
Council for Local Fishing in Senegal (CONIPAS).
E-mail: gaoussoug@yahoo.fr

** Presentation made at the Fishing Products Summit
organised by the Seafood Choices Alliance,
from 27-30 January 2008 in Barcelona (Spain).

traditional fishing; Senegal; pirogue; CONI-
PAS ; traceability.

Franois Misser, Hegel Goutier and Andrea Marchesini


of flCP-EU cooperation

As much as being measured by results, cooperation is the outcome of democratic
debate. However, results of those debates are ail down to one thing, individual men
and women. While it may not be possible to name every last individual involved over
the years in ACP-EU cooperation, here the Courier attempts to showcase a gallery of
some of the leading voices in those discussions and debates.

S adly, some key names were indisposed or could not be rea-
ched while others like Lorenzo Natali (European
Commissioner from 1985 to 1989), Tioul Mamadou Konat
(the first Secretary-General of the ACP Group, 1975-1980),
and Isabelle Bassong (Cameroon's Ambassador to the European insti-
tutions from 1988 to 2006), are no longer with us.
As you can imagine, the list of people who have played either an ad hoc
role or a key part throughout the years is a very long one and all the
Courier can do is offer an overview. So let's begin by naming one of the
founders: the legendary head of protocol and head of the press office for
the ACP Group, Alpha Niaka Bary. Sengalese, Niaka Bary was famed
both for his speed at solving a whole host of problems as well as for his
amazing collection of walking sticks! His fellow countryman, Seydina
Oumar Sy, former Ambassador and a Minister for Foreign Trade and
Affairs, was involved in all the talks on the various Lom Conventions.
From the same era, and heading the ACP negotiating team during the
first Lom Convention, the Nigerian Ambassador, Olu Sanu was noted
for his dogged determination.

Royalty had its place too, with the House of Windsor's Princess Anne
making her mark on the cooperation process during the September 1985
meeting in Inverness. There she urged the ACP-EEC Joint Assembly to
do more than just talk about aid and to make it effective. Leading polit-
ical figures such as the French Home Affairs Minister, Michel
Poniatowski, also made a significant contribution. On the eve of Lom
III, in his role as Chair of the European Parliament's Development
Committee, he made a call for a renewal of the cooperation policy.
The architects of Lom also include Edgar Pisani (European
Commissioner for Development, 1981-1984), the father of the political
dialogue with the ACP countries: the focus on rural development and
food security was a reflection of his earlier experience with France's
Ministry of Agriculture. History will also record Lorenzo Natali's
appointment as Commissioner for Development in 1985, ending what
appeared to be a French monopoly of this post. He was followed by
Manuel Marin (1989) of Spain, Joao de Deus Pinheiro (1994) of
Portugal, Poul Nielson (1999) of Denmark and Louis Michel (2004) of

N. 5 N.E. APRIL MAY 2008

Interaction FigureheadsACP-EU

> Dieter Frisch

As the European Commission's
Director-General for Development
from 1983 to 1993, Dieter Frisch,
an economic science (Bonn
University) and modem languages
graduate (Heidelberg university),
joined the European enterprise in
1958. After leaving the
Commission, Frisch continued to
fuel the development debate as one
of the founders of Transparency
International, alongside with his
German compatriot and former
World Bank official, Peter Eigen,
that campaigns against major corruption and the detrimental impact this
has on development. He claims that one of the key lessons to be drawn
from the Lom Conventions between the European Community (as it
was at the time) and the ACP countries was that these were break-
through pacts that launched a dynamic process leading to later agree-
ments with the Mediterranean, Latin American and Asian countries.

> Ghebray Berhane

Secretary-General of the ACP
Group from 1990 to 1995, this
Sorbonne doctor of law had 14
years of experience in EU-ACP
cooperation as Ethiopia's
Ambassador to the European insti-
tutions from 1978 to 1987 where
he negotiated the Lom III and
Lom IV Conventions.

And his involvement with devel-
opment work continues as the
head of an Addis Ababa-based
firm offering legal advice and consultancy services.The firm has pro-
vided expert knowledge to the Ethiopian Privatization Agency and the
Commonwealth Development Corporation, while operating in the field
of arbitration on behalf of the World Food Programme and the EU.

Ghebray Berhane believes that while the ACP regions are committed to
signing individual economic partnership agreements with the EU, the
time is ripe for the ACP countries to find "a new momentum, another
aspiration". He says the ACP countries would be well advised to face
up to the major challenges that cannot be addressed on a regional basis,
such as climate change or the major health issues.

> Claude Cheysson

A former Foreign Minister of
France (1981 to 1984), Claude
Cheysson is one of the architects
of the EU's cooperation policy. In
his capacity as European
Commissioner for Development,
he inaugurated the first Lom
Convention (1975), which sig-
nalled a radical change in cooper-
ation. One key element was the
contractual dimension ensuring
that concessions granted could no
longer be withdrawn.

A further example was Lom being regarded as a gamble on the ACP
partners' insistence of how their cooperation with the European Union
is prioritised. What is more, Lom I was the first international cooper-
ation agreement to usher in a compensatory finance scheme to stabilize
the earnings of the ACP countries from their farm exports to the EU:
Stabex. None of these decisions were surprising to a man who, ever
since he joined the French diplomatic service at the end of the Second
World War, understood the former colonies' desire for independence.
An adviser to the Vietnamese President in 1952, Claude Cheysson was
also a keen supporter of Algerian independence. And he returned from
1985 to 1988, as European Commissioner for Mediterranean Policy and
North-South Relations, to nurture a vibrant Lom spirit and provide a
further proactive push for cooperation with other countries.

> Edwin Carrington

The Tobagian economist Edwin
Carrington spent 14 years with the
ACP Secretariat, as Assistant
Secretary-General (1976-1985)
and as Secretary-General (1985-
1990). Regarded as one of the
experts on the Lom Convention
She was involved in all the negotia-
tions. Later as Secretary-General
of Caricom, from 1992 he has been
able to keep close track of the
evolving cooperation with the EU.

We have no space here to sum up the hours and hours of speeches Edwin
Carrington has made on this subject but we should record the call he
made (coinciding with the January 1982 issue of the Courier) for "an
increasingly realistic assessment of what cooperation has the potential to
offer. In a nutshell, the agreements by themselves do not offer any easy
solutions to the woes of the ACP countries, even if they provide the sole
framework for this type of cooperation. It is up to the ACP countries to
discover the areas they can benefit from and as they themselves help to
set the priorities they have to be regarded as bearing a responsibility..."


Figureheads ACP-EU Interaction

> Giouanni Bersani

Known for his commitment to the
campaign against the war in
Algeria, and as a supporter of New
Caledonia's right to self-determi-
nation, Michel Rocard has contin-
ued to wage a fight within the Joint
Parliamentary Assembly's (JPA)
Development Committee and as
member of the European
Parliament's Development
Committee in a bid to lift one or
two taboos or barriers that he
believes get in the way of today's reality. These include trafficking in
arms, precious stones and human beings being confused, under the head-
ing of" informal" trade, within economies of the ACP countries.Another
taboo, he claims, is the "misleading and dangerous idea" that "the key to
development in Africa is having its products gain access to markets in the
developed countries." This, even though, "two-thirds of African countries
have nothing to export and the oil revenue being earmarked for develop-
ment in the other countries has failed to deliver anything." Rocard also
continues to stress the need to protect food agriculture owing to the
decline of food self-sufficiency in Africa.

> Louis michel

At the helm of Europe's
Development Cooperation policy
since 2004, Commissioner Louis
S Michel, a former Belgian Foreign
Minister has already made his
mark on relations with the
African, Caribbean and Pacific
(ACP) partners. First and fore-
most, under his leadership the
European Commission has boost-
ed the level of direct aid to ACP
'States' budgets to create a greater
sense of ownership and a bigger
sense of responsibility in adminis-
tering EU-sponsored development
programmes. Moreover, it is under
his guidance and that of his colleague, Peter Mandelson, European
Commissioner for Trade, that Economic Partnership Agreements
(EPAs) are due to be concluded with ACP during 2008. These agree-
ments should boost regional trade, attract much-needed investment
whilst taking into account development needs of the ACP countries. A
key element of Louis Michel's policy to reach the Millennium
Development Goals has been to focus on support to infrastructure, par-
ticularly in Africa, so as to give ACP partners the means to become
competitive and generate wealth for their citizens.

Law graduate, activist against
Nazism and fascism in Italy, after
World War II, Giovanni Bersani
was among the founders of the
Italian Movement of Christian
workers, vice-president of the
ACLI and Italian parliamentarian
for seven terms. He was undersec-
retary of the Ministry of Work
during De Gasperi's government
in 1952-1953.

As a Member of the European Parliament from 1960, he was especial-
ly involved in exteral relations, particularly with Africa, to develop a
European policy of peace through strong relations, towards the end of
the sixties. The aim of his political activity was to affirm Europe,
according to the spirit of the founding fathers, as a civil and moral
power rather than a military force.

He was then vice-president of the Development Committee and mem-
ber of the Extemal Economic Relations Committee of the European
Parliament. At first he joined the Christian Democratic Party, subse-
quently moving to the European People's Party parliamentarian group.
From 1976 to 1989, he was President of the ACP-EU Joint
Parliamentary Assembly created by the Lom Convention and, at the
end of his mandate he was appointed President Ad honored for life.
Since the 1980's he has devoted his political life to relationships with
non-EU Mediterranean countries. In April 1989 he called upon the first
Mediterranean Parliamentarian Assembly for "a total cooperation."
This assembly approved a permanent plan of cooperation in which a
Joint Parliamentarian Assembly plays a central role, as was the case in
the Lom conventions.

> Glenys Kinnock

. Former teacher Glenys Kinnock
was elected to the European
SParliament in 1994 and re-elected
: in 1999 and 2004 as one of the
SMEPs representing Wales. She is a
i member of the European
Parliament's Development and
e1 .Cooperation Committee and Co-
President of the Joint ACP-EU
-Parliamentary Assembly (JPA)
ensuring that its agenda is lively
and to the point. As a fellow JPA
member noted at the Wiesbaden JPAs in June 2007: "Our meetings would
just not be the same without her." President of the Non Governmental
Organisation, One World Action and Patron of the Drop the Debt
Campaign, her development activities extend beyond Parliamentary fora.

All JPA members remember her vibrant plea in favour of the
Millennium Development Goals at the November 2006 session in

N. 5 N.E. APRIL MAY 2008

> michel Rocard

Interaction FigureheadsACP-EU

Barbados where she urged both the ACP countries and the European to
focus on essential public services, arguing that "the market alone can-
not and should not take over these vital tasks." She also insisted that
"aid has to be more predictable, flexible and timely so that govemments
can plan and spend on health and education in a concerted and transpar-
ent way." On trade, she then stressed that Europe must have in mind
that it "is negotiating EPAs with an ACP group which includes some of
the most vulnerable economies in the World." Finally, she concluded
that "none of us will escape the effects of climate change but it is the
poorest of us who will disproportionately pay the highest price."

> Jean-Robert Goulongana

When Jean-Robert Goulongana
was appointed head of the ACP
Secretariat, in the countdown to
the signing of the future Lom
Convention, many observers had
deep misgivings about the
Group's ability to see through cer-
tain changes in the cooperative
relationship with the EU. Equally,
others did not hold out much hope
for much cooperation between
ACP countries at the end of the
trade talks that were to take place.

However, Goulongana was quick to size up the situation, realizing that
the group's strength was conditional upon the abilities of the
Secretariat, which itself was down to its stand-alone status and above
all its depoliticisation. Above all, the Secretary General's role is to serve
the states and supervise the group and Goulongana took on this task,
rallying flagging spirits whenever there was a risk of losing momentum.

While he might describe himself as a servant, he is, in reality, more of
a conductor the musicians play and he sets the tempo. His skills as a
negotiator, reconciler and facilitator have helped the Group out of some
tight comers and allowed the ACP-EU cooperation process to clear one
or two hurdles, to say the least. He has fiercely argued the case of the
ACP countries, yet never failed to pay close attention to their partner's

Goulongana brought these conciliatory skills to bear in several areas,
including the "political dialogue" between the EU and the ACP coun-
tries on human rights, the EPA negotiations, and the WTO consulta-
tions. Time and again he has proved to be a master in managing the fol-
low-up to negotiations between often disparate parties.

Manuela Carzo,
Abbracciamo il mondo,
2007 Manifesta!
Africa e Mediterraneo

> Sir John Kaputin

Agreement since 1978 and was
Assembly from 1995 to 1997.

m Appointed Secretary General of the
ACP Group of States on March 1,
2005, Sir John Kaputin is a lawyer
withal ci'.i,. i i. i ii. i ..id1ofpolit-
ical service as an MP in his home
country for 30 years (Papua New
Guinea from 1972 to 2002). A
knowledgeable expert on the finer
points of ACP-EU cooperation, he
has been involved in the Lom
Conventions and the Cotonou
Joint President of the ACP-EU Joint

Sir John joined his govemment early in his political career and stayed
almost constantly from 1973 to 2002 in a series of ministerial posts
(Justice, Planning and Development, Finance, Mines, Energy, Foreign
Affairs) and eventually as Minister for International Financial
Institutions. M

EU; ACP; Dieter Frisch; Sir John Kaputin;
Jean-Robert Goulongana; Louis Michel; Giovanni Bersani;
Glenys Kinnock ; Michel Rocard ; Edwin Carrington ;
Claude Cheysson ; Ghebray Berhane; JPA; Lom; EPA.


Jim Pirkin. Imalu frmm
Bigslockllu ve. mrri


Lii lJi

rJJ-_I J




in rft ..Leone's bush signalling the potential
id fuels. But in Brussels circles there are warnings


t's Saturday and the venue is Body Guard Studio in a backstreet in
Freetown with King Fisher, Sierra Leone's no. 1 DJ turned musi-
cian, music producer and documentary maker. He's just back from
up country where he's been shooting videos to heighten public
understanding of issues facing Sierra Leoneans.

A passion for his nation and music immerse Fisher. Opportunities to
relax are rare. It's a 6.30 start and after listening to BBC World News,
it's straight to the studio to hook up new equipment for music and video

For many Sierra Leoneans like King Fisher, aka Emrys Savage, the
civil war altered the course of the future. The music scene in his coun-
try took off during the decade-long conflict of the '90s, "when every-
thing else ceased to function."

"At that time I was a DJ and we started having rap competitions. Most
of the time, I was chosen to be the judge. At one of them I met a group
called Black Roots. They were the first young group to play live music.
1 was so impressed that I made a promise to help with the albums. That
was in 1995."

In 1997, Fisher started to compose his own songs. He explains how the
studio's name came about: "There was a British Forces broadcasting
station, with a very powerful DJ who had a group of guys called the

Bodyguard. I just took the name from them. I also saw the name kind
of protecting against many things that were to come later."

He speaks of the influence of Jimmy Bangura (aka Jimmy B), a Sierra
Leonean with a record deal with EMI who spent most of his youth in
the United States and South Africa, and was the first to bring digital
equipment to Sierra Leone. He set up Paradise Recording Studio after
the war in 2002 and gave the opportunity to young people, collectively
known as the Paradise Family, to release the first album made in Sierra
Leone. It was a big hit. "I tried to get Black Roots into the Paradise
Family but couldn't. But I made a promise to them that one day I would
set up my own recording studio."

Another door opened for Fisher when he was working for Search for
Common Ground, a Sierra Leonean NGO with whom he has continued
to work, shooting videos on issues of concern to Sierra Leoneans from
health to tackling corruption. "I met an expatriate guy who was setting
up the digital equipment there. I thought, wow, I can buy a computer, I
can buy a few things, hook them up and make a studio. And that became
the digital studio."

Fisher breaks off for a tea break at 10.30 then heads straight back to the
studio until lunch at 3 pm. He tells us about his first album release.
"When we did our first compilation at the Body Guard Studio called the
Body Guard Revolution Chapter 1 people asked me, 'what's the mean-



. o;,;

SEmmersons popular album produced by King Fisher

ing of the revolution, do you want to go back
to war?' I told them that this one is a positive
revolution." For Fisher, 'conscious vibes' are
important to each album: "When I did that first
album, I told the guys that we have to speak
about things that led us to war."

> U go si am

"On that album there was a song in Krio
called, U go si arn or You will see, sung by
Emmerson," Fisher continues: "the message
was that you are corrupt and are misusing the
country's resources and one day it will come
fall back on you. That one became a very big
hit. People so fell in love with that song
because it said what they wanted to say and

Fisher went on to produce a solo album,
Borbor Bele for Emmerson Bockarie. Its title
track also hit a public nerve. "It means a
human being with a huge stomach, or you are
embezzling money, that's why your stomach is
so big." Fisher claims the song brought down
the last govemment. So has he ever been cen-
sored? "Never," he replies.

Fisher explains his musical blend: "Most of
the young guys are into the hip-hop, Notorious
B.I.G and Tupac, all the rap stuff, so I thought
why not bring the rap into the local language,
Krio, and blend the hip-hop beat with
Caribbean and Jamaican type of music. At first
people laughed. Now everybody's playing it."

Many young people in Sierra Leone are now
trying to make money out of music. Fisher
fears some of what is produced is sub-stan-




dard. He also intends to do something about
piracy. You just have to go to any crossroads
to get hold of a cheap, copied compilation for
just 4,000 Leones -under US$2.

"We've formed an organisation, the
National Association of Performing Artists
(NAPA).There is an anti-piracy law but the
problem is that it's outdated. So if you take
somebody who has been pirating your stuff
to court you will end up spending more
than what the court will award you. We are
going to use the power of music again to
change things. We haven't got the name of
the song yet. They have to bring that law
into full functionality."

Fisher is working on two albums, one of which
is dedicated to children and is to be sung most-
ly by kids from an orphanage. Sierra Leone
has signed up to the Child Rights Bill of the
United Nations, he says, but parliament has
yet to ratify it. "The focus will be on getting
parliament to sit up and pass that bill. Basic
education is supposed to be free but when you
go to school there are so many charges, like
buying books, that you find out that you are
spending more than if it was not free."

He's also brought on the current hottest female
star in Sierra Leone, DJ Lulu: "She went
through a lot of things as a kid. She is of mixed
race. Her father is Lebanese and her mother is
Sierra Leonean. But the Lebanese Community
doesn't like those kinds of relationships. Her
father died when she was very young so the
Lebanese side of her relatives decided to push

N. 5 N.E. APRIL MAY 2008

her out so she struggled for herself. She has a
song about the way she grew up, Na Me Kam
So. She is saying: "You thought I wouldn't get
here but here I am."

He's also busy with videos for Search for
Common Ground on local governance. Local
council elections will be held in July 2008.
"What we are doing is going to locations
across the regions and capturing footage of
how councils are performing and trying to
compare them with other councils so when
they have council workshops with councillors
from different areas they can play these videos
and the people can comment and say, this
council is doing good with their money, or this
council is not performing." The aim is to give
people a voice for change. Another of Fisher's
concem is a guarantee of a govemment of
unity including all tribes: "This is going to be
the subject of one of my songs."

It's around 7 pm and Fisher leaves his studio to
hang out with 'his men' and drink a beer. After,
he may watch an action film. And he'll have to
find time, he says, to get his dancing legs
working again for the launch of the new
albums. D.P. M

Debra Percival; King Fisher; Sierra Leone
Musician; Rap.

Pages 26 & 27
King Fisher in the Talking Drum Studio, Search
for Common Ground, Freetown (Sierra Leone), 2008.
C Alfred Bangura aka Funky Fred, Talking Drum Studio

lur Planet


On 7 January, the EIB agreed a
US$136M (92M) loan to the
Ugandan company, Bujagali
Energy Limited (BEL). BEL is
responsible for the construction and operation
of a dam and hydroelectric plant of 250-mega-
watt capacity in Bujagali, on the Upper Nile,
downstream from Lake Victoria. In addition to
the EIB, other co-funders will be the
International Finance Corporation (the World
Bank subsidiary that grants loans to the private
sector), the African Development Bank (ADB)
and a group of European financial institutions.
In all, the loan comes to the equivalent of
E462M. This decision puts an end to the


delays surrounding this project, which has
been condemned by a coalition of local organi-
sations, both international and Ugandan, and
some riverside dwellers, due to its impact on
the environment.

The project promoters argue that the hydro-
electricity produced on the Nile will be the
cheapest energy option for a country like
Uganda, which has no access to the sea and is
one of the poorest African nations. Bujagali
will in fact provide support for two other dams:
the Nalubaale Dam, built by the British in the
late 1950s, and the Kiira Dam, built by
Kampala authorities in the 1990s. The EIB has
stressed that these two dams do not have
enough capacity to meet a growing demand for
electricity and acknowledges that power outa-
ges during periods of low water flow cause
serious disruption to the country's economic
activity. Building a third dam downstream will
make it possible to increase electricity produc-
tion and, better still, Bujagali will be reusing
the water already used to produce electricity at
the upstream dams.

> 8 threat to the health
of Lake Uictoria?

The Ugandan Dam Development Forum, a
group of ten NGOs, has worries about the pro-
ject's long-term viability. Drawing on a report
by the American NGO International River
Networks (IRN), the Forum believes that the
dams are partly responsible for falling water

levels in Lake Victoria. It is also conceded
that no study has yet been carried out to assess
the impact of climate change on the lake's
hydrological health. A number of studies have
subsequently been carried out to determine the
project's environmental and social fall-out.

For its part, the EIB says any environmental
impact will be relatively limited. A study by
Canadian consultants Burnside, commis-
sioned by the World Bank, suggests that the
Bujagaly project will not 'significantly' impair
the lake, nor the river's hydrology. It says that
the only aspect of the project that requires con-
tinual monitoring is changes to downstream
water levels. The consultancy recommends the
introduction of a management plan for this.
Whatever the case, the EIB has promised that
the project is -and will continue to be mon-
itored with measures taken, if necessary, in
line with stringent international standards
which stipulate close consultation with the
local population, local authorities and all other
associations affected.
M.M.B. M

Marie-Martine Buckens; Uganda;
Lake Victoria; Nile; EIB; Dam.

The Nile.
iStockphoto com/FrankvandenBergh
Bottom left
Victoria falls, Uganda.
iStockphoto com/Lingbeek


1 n 7q
"- ^.hl.-


To be able to switch on lights for the first time earlier
this year brought expectation of change for those cit-
izens of Freetown who were used to being in the dark.
President Ernest Bai Koroma won a slim victory in the
run-off elections in September 2007, and energy gen-
eration remains a top priority. The Bumbuna hydro
electric power plant project, which Koroma has himself
described as, "the longest hydro project in human his-
tory", should be completed this year and there is antic-
ipation of other projects to boost output beyond
Freetown to rural areas. Koroma has told the public
that he will not stop "until we are in a position of get-



ting 100 negawatts for the country."
It's now over five years since the end of a brutal 11-year
diamond-fuelled conflict waged by rebels that displaced
almost half the population, left tens of thousands dead
and others suffering, and government bodies and the
economy in tatters.
Sierra Leone is still at the bottom of the United Nations'
Human Development (UNDP) Index. Yet with the assis-
tance of international donors, including the EU, is build-
ing up government institutions and reforming all sectors
of the economy: mining, agriculture and tourism for all
Sierra Leoneans.

report Sierra Leone



When Portuguese explorer Pedro da Cintra came across the mountains surrounding
what is now the country's capital Freetown in 1462, he named the land 'Sierra Lyoa,
meaning 'lion mountains'. To his eyes, the jagged heights were shaped like a lion's
teeth. The new government of Ernest Bai Koroma wants the page to turn on past rage
and help his nation make an economic roar.

y the 16th century, English sailors referred to the country as
'Sierra Leoa'. During the late 1700s, Bunce Island, close to
Freetown, became one of the major slave trading operations
along the West African coast. It was in 1782 that British
philanthropists founded the 'Province of Freetown', resettling some
of London's black poor in Sierra Leone in the 'The Province of
Freedom'. Thousands of freed enslaved Africans were returned to
Freetown. They settled from all over Africa and came to be known as
the 'Krio' people. The Krio language is spoken widely amongst the
country's 15 ethnic groups today.

In 1808, Sierra Leone became an official British crown colony and the
seat of government for its other West African colonies along the coast.
The establishment of one of the first higher education colleges in West
Africa in 1827, Fourah Bay College, excelled in medicine, law and edu-
cation and led to Freetown being known as the 'Athens of Africa'.

Sir Milton Margai, leader of the Sierra Leone People's Party (SLPP), was
appointed the country's Chief Minister in 1953. Sierra Leone won its
independence from the British in 1961 and Margai became its first Prime
Minister. Siaka Stevens, candidate of the All People's Congress (APC),
won the elections of March 1967, but was ousted after just a few hours,
only to be retumed to power in 1968. In 1971, the country became a
republic with Stevens, then Prime Minister, appointed as Executive
President. In 1978, a new constitution proclaimed Sierra Leone as a one-
party state with the APC as the sole legal party. Major Joseph Saidu
Momoh became President on Stevens's retirement in 1985 following a
one-party referendum.

President Momoh's constitutional review recommended re-establishing
in 1991 a multi- party democratic constitution. By this time, suspicions of

Sierra Leone report

SWall painting. Football is a national passion 2008.

abuse of power and mismanagement of the dia-
mond resources were rife, both of which were
triggering factors of the civil war that ensued.

Former army corporal, Foday Sankoh, and his
Revolutionary United Front (RUF) campaigned
against Momoh, capturing towns on the border
with Liberia. Its initial attacks were on the
Kailahun District in the diamond-rich east.

Another factor at the start of the conflict was
war in neighboring Liberia. Charles Taylor,
then rebel leader of the National Patriotic Front
of Liberia, allegedly helped the RUF in retum
for Sierra Leonean diamonds.

Due to the govemment's failure to deal with the
rebels at the time, army captain Valentine
Strasser launched a military coup sending
Momoh into exile in Guinea in April 1992.
Strasser formed the National Provisional Ruling
Council (NPRC), which was to last four years.

By 1995, the rebels held much of the diamond-
rich eastem province and were on the doorstep
of Freetown. The NPRC allegedly hired merce-
naries from the private security firm, Executive
Outcomes, to repel the rebels. But there was
unhappiness about the handling of the crisis and
Strasser was subsequently ousted in a coup led
by his defence minister, Brigadier General
Julius Maada Bio. Bio subsequently re-instated
the constitution and called for elections. SLPP
candidate, Alhaji Ahmad Tejan Kabbah, was
democratically elected and voted into office in

An alleged attempt to overthrow Kabbah by
Major General Johnny Koroma resulted in
Koroma's trial and imprisonment. Unhappy
with this decision, a group of soldiers, the
Armed Forces Revolutionary Council (AFRC),
overthrew the president and released Koroma
who in tum became president and invited the
RUF to join him in govemment on banning
political parties, demonstrations and shutting
down private radio.

These moves led to UN Security Council sanc-
tions in 1997 including banning arms and petro-
leum products in 1997. In March 1998, the West
African Peackeeping force, ECOMOG, rein-
stalled Kabbah. The next year another attempt to
overthrow the govemment by the AFRC, with
RUF backing, left 5,000 dead in Freetown and
widespread devastation.

In October 1999, UN peacekeepers restored
order and disarmed rebel forces. A total of
17,000 'blue helmets' of the United Nations
Mission in Sierra Leone (UNMSIL) were even-
tually sent to the country, describes Christian
Holger Stohmann, Information Officer with the
United Nations Integrated Office in Sierra
Leone (UNIOSIL) in Freetown. The ensuing
1999 ceasefire and peace agreement in the
Togolese capital of Lom ensured positions in
govemment for the rebels.

But Sam Bokari, one of the rebel leaders, retali-
ated against the presence of UN troops who
were attacked and abducted in the east. A contin-
gent of 800 British paratroopers arrived to
secure the airport for the peacekeepers and
Foday Sankoh was captured. In May 2001, the
disarmament of rebels began with the aid of
Sierra Leone's national army.

In January 2002, war was officially over. The
SLPP's Kabbah won a landslide victory in
multi-party elections the same year. He was
defeated by APC candidate, Emest Bai Koroma,
in the 2007 Presidential election. Koroma cam-
paigned on a ticket of change.

It is difficult to meet someone who hasn't been
directly affected by brutal war crimes. Horrific
accounts of mutilation, with victims chosen at
random, are still vivid. One young Freetown res-
ident, 'Kenneth', describes how he was ordered
to stand fiat against a wall with his hands tied
whilst rebels argued about whether to sever his
limbs. He was freed, but many others were mul-

tilated, including women and children. Another
young man 'Kanu' recounts how his sister dis-
appeared for three months in the bush where
young women were stolen to cook and clean for
rebels. Rape was common. Many child solders
were killed. For victims with missing arms and
legs, it is now doubly hard to find employment
in a country where 65 per cent young men 18-40
have no employment.

A Special Court established post-war by the
United Nations, at the request of the Sierra
Leonean govemment, still sits but is due to
wind up during 2010, explains Francesca
Varlese, project manager at the EU Delegation
in Freetown. The EU has been giving financial
backing to the Court since 2003, providing
services such as a live video feed to listen to
the ongoing trial of Charles Taylor from the
Hague and internships so the Court's legacy
will continue.

Poster of Special Court- punishable crimes 2008.
Debra Perival

Opinion is however divided over the Court's
effectiveness, says Ambrose James who is
Country Director of the NGO, 'Search for
Common Ground', which produces videos and
radio broadcasts to voice the views of all Sierra
Leoneans. He says Sierra Leoneans have mixed
feelings about the Court. Firstly, the 'big rebel
leaders' like Sam Bokari, 'Mosquito', and oth-
ers either died or fled.

Then there is also confusion about why some
members of the Civil Defence Force are before
the Court. After all, they opposed the rebels.
"People didn't realise that they carried out some
human rights abuses, so this is where there are
complications," says Ambrose James in his
Freetown office. He added that there are also
questions about the functions of the Special

N. 5 N.E. APRIL MAY 2008

Area. 73.?26 sq km

PopulI711on. S.9M I (2u07

Foiecant. 6 9rI (2015)

LINDP Indre. 177 ouL of 1 77 countries
(2007-2008 Human De, elcppment Report

Ldf ve..rpcl/ncv 41 8 (2005)

Adult litlac> rote ("v n'le f5 ~fp' cent
or oMlder 34 8 (1995-2005)

Lindeir ti e mnortalt)} rate (per 1.000 birthsi-
282 (2005)

Imrpi'rts E'u6O 1 (foc:ilstutfs, machinery,;

E.'ports 163.5M (dlarnonids. rutile,
occoa. bauiiite, cottee, ti'h. iron ore,
palm kernels)Y

Political landscape

President Ernest Bai Koromni since
September 2uu7

LiUncarnrmnl Hc'ise President elected by
popular iotE every five years. President's
tenure is rest ncted o t t tcermrn
Parlianentarians are elected by popular
vote every ti, e years.

hliAin ii pliticl partle' All People's C.ongres'
(APC). Sieria Leone People's pai Ly (SLPP).
People s M. loernent foi Dpemocraic
Change (PMIDC'l 12 independently elected
Paramouni Chiefs representing the coun-
Irv's districts also sit in Parliament.

Souices: Woild Bank. Uniteri Nations
DeCvelopriment Pioqrnrnrine (LIUN'P', E1iiopicJn
CCr',riTlsi.,ln. ,Serra LeoIne En[c;:\lopedia 200O

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Sierra Leone report



Interview with Ernest Bai Koroma,
President of Sierra Leone.

rest Bai Koroma won the 8 September 2007 presidential run-
off election, defeating the opposition candidate of the Sierra
Leone People' Party (SLPP), Solomon Ekuma Berewa. No
single candidate won the 55 per cent of the vote needed for a
win in the first round. Koroma has set out to apply his business skills
to running a government. He is a former managing director of the
Reliance Insurance Trust Corporation, a fellow of the West African
Insurance Institute, Associate of the UK's Institute of Risk
Management and a member of the UK's Institute of Directors in the
UK. Koroma's All Peoples' Congress (APC) party holds a majority of
59 seats in Parliament following the August 2007 elections. He has
signed 'contracts' with his Ministers to ensure the delivery of results,
he told us in an interview in State House, Freetown at the end of
February 2008.

You were brought in as a ticket of change. What changes have you made

1 have put in place a mechanism that will lay the basis for a tumaround
where we will see the country begin to move again and have investors
come in. We have brought about a peaceful transition from the past gov-
emment to this government. We have also addressed the issue that we
believe should be primary in our objective, that is, providing energy for
this country.
Freetown now has a certain amount of electricity. We solicited the partic-
ipation of the World Bank and other donors and put into action an

Independent Power Production programme (IPP) where generating
power was given to the private sector with the National Power Authority
(NPA) doing the sales.We inherited six megawatts of power generation
and added 15 megawatts. That has given us a situation of 21-22
megawatts and we have requisitioned an independent power generator

The completion of Bumbuna
hydroelectric station

adding an extra ten megawatts.
What's next is to find a medium-term solution which lies in the comple-
tion of Bumbuna hydroelectric station. The donor community has given
us the US$45M required to finish the project this year. As for our com-
mitment to having electricity throughout the country, we have to embark
on a rural electrification programme. As we speak, the Chinese are exam-
ining our hydroelectric potential. There is a possibility of having mini
hydro-projects all over if we can successfully hamess the five rivers that
flow across the country.

Which sectors will alleviate poverty?

For any country coming out of war you have to address the humanitarian
and social stabilisation issues. You must also address issues of the
amputees and the displaced. Now is the time for us to go into real econom-
ic growth and to create an impact on the economy. In addition to mining
there is tourism, fisheries and agriculture.
About 60-70 per cent of our people are engaged in agriculture.We have
the potential of not just feeding ourselves but also exporting our agri-
cultural produce. It is only when we will be able to commercialise agri-

N. 5 N.E. APRIL MAY 2008

report Sierra Leone

culture that we will be able to address poverty
reduction seriously.
You have said you want to run Sierra Leone like
a business?

We have to be more business-like. We have just
come from a governmental retreat in Bumbuna
and identified goals. We have made a promise
that in the next 36 months we should start see-
ing a turaround. That's why I have initiated
management contracts for ministers. They are
now all talking with State House and agreeing
on both their annual targets and those they
should achieve over the next three years.

"We have to be more


How can you attract overseas investors?

We are reviewing our laws, improving the inde-
pendence and credibility of the judiciary and
putting up a strong fight against corruption to
ensure that people will be guaranteed fair play.
This will bring in investors. We have about the
best diamonds in the world, the largest deposits
of rutile, huge deposits of iron ore, bauxite and
platinum, etc. We also have huge potential in
the agricultural sector. On top of this is our
unique tourist potential. With the right invest-
ment Sierra Leone can easily become the best
tourist destination in the world. Our flora and
fauna, topography and beaches are not found
anywhere else.

Sierra Leone is right at the bottom of UNDP
index. How can you move up?

We have just launched the 2008-2010 strategy
plan for children and others. We are reviewing
our education system and are working on
improving on the number of people who have
access to pipe-bore water as well as improving
our medical facilities. When all of that is on
course, I think the focus will be for us to moti-
vate the people in charge of these services,
those who deliver; doctors, nurses and teachers.

Are you ..,,i;. ,,t of repeated success in the
July local elections?

1 believe that we will win most of the seats in
the country because in a very short period the
citizens have come to realize that we are a
results-oriented government. We don't talk
politics. What we say is what we do, as in the
case with electricity. We will be launching
our agricultural programme and want to

ensure a health programme.
You don't expect to see tangible results
overight. What you see is activity in govern-
ment: an effort by us to work on the promises
made to our people, and I think that people have
trust in that. The only difficulty for us is that we
have come in at a time when world market
prices are increasing. The price of fuel is on the
rise, as are the prices of rice and wheat. It is
unfortunate that some of these have a direct
impact on the life of the ordinary man. We can-
not subsidise, as we do not have the funds. We
are not an oil producing country.

Is your government ethnically biased?

This is not the case. We have people from the
other regions; our ministers of Health and
Marine Resources, for example. I have always
insisted that it is a government of inclusion and
we have people of every district represented,
not only in goverance but also at deputy min-
ister level. We are appointing people to state-
run companies and diplomatic missions, all of
whom represent the national character.

What is your view about thefocus on budget aid
in your partnership with the EU?

It is important for it to continue, as our revenue
base is very limited. We are asking for support
to give us an opportunity to stand on our feet.
When we kickstart the activities in mining,
agriculture and tourism, I think we will have
enough to run our budget and take care of our
development endeavours. The EU is also play-
ing a lead role in infrastructure programmes.
Just like energy, an improved road network will
facilitate economic activities in the country. It
will create free movement of people, help the
movement of agricultural commodities and
enhance tourism and trade with our neighbours,
Guinea and Liberia. D.P. I

Website: www.statehouse.gov.sl

Debra Percival; President Ernest Bai
Koroma; Sierra Leone; Budget Aid;

. -a



Sierra Leone report

O TWO-WYv 991 i uj 1JJ

The largest opposition party, the Sierra Leone's People's Party (SLPP), has
dominated the political landscape in Sierra Leone along with the current
ruling Ail People's Congress (APC). The SLPP came into existence in 1951 and
agitated for independence from Britain, won in 1961. It has been in active
opposition to the ruling APC, formed in 1960.

ach has its respective stronghold, the
SLPP amongst the population in the
south and east amongst the Mende eth-
nic group, which makes up roughly 30
per cent of the population. Most of the APC's
supporters are found in the north and west
amongst Temnes who also make up 30 per cent
of the population.
The SLPP won 43 seats at the last parliamentary
elections in August 2007. It maintains its candi-
date won the 8 September 2007 presidential
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multitude of international election observers
present, including those from the EU.
Former SLPP President, Ahmad Tejan Kabbah,
was in power for 11 years prior to stepping
down before the 2007 elections: "Our first pri-
ority as a party was that people give us a man-
date to return to peace. This was our pledge.
Having said that, we won the election in 1996
and had to run the country from exile 1996-
1997. We set our target to end war, which was
delivered," said Koroma.
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ing the APC in the September presidential run-
off, explained its secretary general, lawyer Ansu
Lansana. His party gives Sierra Leoneans a
third choice: "The two have been playing polit-
ical ping-pong for quite a long time so our peo-
ple have been clamouring for a third force."
PMDC supporters are largely "...disaffected,
unemployed and abandoned Sierra Leoneans,"
Lansana told us.
He said the 11 years of former SLPP rule were
characterized by gross inefficiency: "A leader-

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report Sierra Leone

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mine iron ore andI ill. -. il.lii .iii i. -iiil!
J I bauxite, as they h., c i. il. ii c n.iiic !.i!!-
Sway and the same !"i- '. i i.,ii.
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set up a sub-corrmni iiict i.- l. I. i .I11 illi
4 agreements of th. Ihi. iih iiiiii. i !i.ii|!!c.
and in the process, c !! ilc i ili.i ii..
the new agreemrcnii, ici cc.. ii, .I Il.ic.
Shining companie-
"The worst thing c h. .i . cc .'I il.,i
people come herc .in. Ci .1i 'iiiiii. ci'.p!,-
ration licence which they take to the stock markci .i>. iii .' c '" '. ,il iiI
heads. They say it's legal but we want to change ili-r ..iiiiuinl i.i!! "
Alfred Carew, executive secretary of the Na' ,i,.i! F. iinii .11 Iiin ii.ii
Rights and chair of the National Advocacy Coa ;i ii.. E '.ii.ili. ,i. i,.. il
us that he believes Interet companies are dou,. ilc .me .iic ilr. II c.
worried about the social costs of mining, sucdi .i, ilc c.ii!. .nieii .!
child stonecrackers, prostitution, disease in mniu,,,. .ite.i ..i.I Ilic ci., i-
ronmental fallout.
The Minister spoke about the current 'free-for-all i! ilic .i.iiii i.l ,.1 i.iiI i
of Kono and related smuggling: "We try our bei, i i.... i.iiic .i i ..i ,ii.-
tured way. In most cases you have a dealer who ic!!,i lic !.ii .ii ici. .iil.
workers get machinery. You then have to sell to ilir, iii.ii l.i.i.iii lic ilc
one who helped you. This man will give the dia:uii, i>.l i .1ii ci'.|i ii.i li".
has a licence and is the only one with the auth. i. i. ci.. .. !i T. -.ici lic
licence you have to pay US $40,000. We belic c ili.i ...iii.lii. i.il.c.
place in between this but we can't prove it."
He said that the country subscribes to the Kimbci ic. Pr'i' -.c. li,. i is.-
hibits sale of diamonds from the world's c. i!!!!i ,,iic. 1 .,l .i
Kimberley certificate for anybody who is exportu.i_ Riii I. i c i ., i
the destination to get an end picture. Somebod: 1i. i- h lic il!c iC. c ci
to check if the diamonds arrived. There's heavy .i.iiiumii.iius.ii i !' c u.
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t Keywords
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24r1. loan giant in part fiom 'SYSMIN', the EC s foiier fund to
assist the miinin sector with the remainder frrnm the European
Development Fund (EDF) has enabled ierna Rutile Ltl. Ic, start up again
in the B'onihe District in the South-wvest. Rutile titaniumm dioxide' is
mainly exported to Eurcpe, Ncrtih America, Brazil japan and Russia
where it is used in paint pigment, wvilh the higher grades going to
manufacture welding rods
The grant tor the re-start was passed on to the qgoernment, wlich
then channelled he i monies in the torim of a commercial loin to tie
conipany. Bob Lloyd. the coimpanys imanacing director desl ibes it as:
a significant milestone in th1e le-bii tli o Sieira Leone i t tahe end of t1e
conflict." W\ith prioected production thi' yeai ot 18in,Cic0 tonnes, the
coirmpny is already on tLrget to beat last yela's 14In.nll-tonne figure
The extraction process leaves large bodies ot water. These can Ibe used
tc:r other prxluctic.e purposes, explained lean-Pierre Milard wiho is an
EU-tunded technical assistant Lo the Ministr% And since the process is
not toxic, there are niany possible ,entures Bob Llo.d explained that
Sierr Rutile Lid has set up a foundation which is currently' funding a
pilot agriculture reclamation :on one of the 'lakes'. Others include
aquaculture and the pristine white sand left beached by mining is trig-
geiin thoughtL of toui'mn
It seers tlhe company has many moiire years in business. Bob Lloyd
showed The CoiJier a rmp pinpointinL the deserves found around
Bonthe. And eplc:ration is also c:ingo:ing alc'ng the ccastline.
The capital and interest on the I:can amounting ict i4MS are La be
repaid tl tthe go.ernmeni c.:t Sierra Leone 2008-201 ., starting with an
initial 716,000 in June this yar. The EC. is expected to have a say in
ho<, thee monies are Lsed Bob Lloyd said that relations with the local
population ieie good: officials meet regull[ly with the eight para-
nmoint chiefs of the chiefdoms surrounding the mine.

report Sierra Leone


. .....
S.... .... .. ...
.. .... .

Lush and fertile, it's easy to see why many feel that farming holds huge potential in
Sierra Leone. As with many areas of the country's economy, conflict has taken its toll
and funds are lacking. Then there's a problem of getting people to work the land.
Farming is seen by some as a punishment rather than way of making a living,
explained Agriculture Minister Dr Sam Sesay whose task is to stimulate production
and create jobs in the sector.

e will not succeed in
poverty reduction if
we don't change the
circumstances of
the farmers," said President Ernest Bai
Koroma, visiting Kenema in the east of the
country during March this year. Renewable
natural resources such as agro- forestry, agri-
culture and fisheries add up to 50 per cent of
gross domestic product (GDP) with 75 per
cent gaining their livelihood from the sector.
The country is heavily reliant on imports for
its staples like rice. When we visited at the end
of February 2008, the high price of a standard
bag of rice caused tempers to flare on the
streets of Freetown. It was then around 80,000
leones (approximately $27US), whereas a bag
cost 50,000 leones (US$17)* during the elec-
tion season in August 2007.
The international food crisis was mainly to
blame for the price hike, explained President
Koroma in Kenema, rather than the new
government, and had led to a ban on rice
exports in some areas. But he added that the

crisis had put the spotlight on the country's
reliance on imports and need to up home pro-
duction. The government is to set up a produce

development agency to look at the whole far-
ming sector and strengthen production.
Agriculture Minister, Dr Sam Sesay, told The
Courier in his Freetown office he was also
worried about rice easily getting through the
country's porous borders: "We only fulfil 60
per cent of our rice requirement domestically.
We have traditionally been rice producers and
were in fact exporters in the 1960s. Of concern

A ban on rice exports
in some areas

to the government is that a lot of our rice is
interestingly going to neighboring countries
like Liberia and Guinea. Studies have shown
that Sierra Leone has a comparative advantage
of rice production both in the domestic market
and to compete internationally."
He sees a future too in other crops like chili
pepper, cashews and ginger beer: "The pro-
blem is it [ginger beer] is not properly made.


--- --

Sierra Leone report

This is one area where you can do a serious
value addition and in fact make it a very good
local drink that can be processed virtually
anywhere." Cashews, a fruitful crop in the
north, will even out the north-south economic
divide, said Dr Sesay.

Improved feeder roads, harmonised product
standards in countries of the West African regio-
nal organisation, ECOWAS, and land tenure
were also issues in re-launching the sector, said
Sesay who said that in areas where land is for
sale "you have to pay a proper price. There is
value for land and people are not getting a fair
Agriculture is not one of the focal sectors for
new EC funding under the 10th EDF In the
post-war period, EDF funding channelled to
rural development went to resettling people in
rural areas and promoting food security. A
resettlement and rehabilitation programme
(E 30M) was launched for social infrastructure
in rural areas countrywide, reconstructing
health centres, wells and other infrastructure
destroved hv war It was followed hv a e_24M
lnil. Rih Relh.hl!i. ,ii & D i' !,|il i l

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.,,,d. K .il, .,l!,, , .,..I, I .,tt!,,.l R ..Ii Ii Il '.,d

of Rural Development at the EU Delegation in
Sierra Leone, explained that the country cannot
compete with the bulk cocoa exports of Cte
d'Ivoire and Ghana, but working with the
Dutch NGO,AGRO ECO, has improved drying

A shortage of

organic Robusta coffee

methods and certified the cocoa as fair trade
and organic. Sold at US$1,000 per tonne pre-
dried, it can now fetch upwards of US$1,400
$1,600 per tonne.
Reusing suggested that it would be a good time
for the country to hone in on the shortage of
organic Robusta coffee in the global market. In
the EU there is plenty of good Arabica coffee
on the market grown at high altitude in
Ethiopia, but not of Robusta, which is grown at

a lower level. As Europeans like a blend of
Arabica and Robusta, this could be an upco-
ming niche.
To keep up the momentum of the STABEX pro-
ject, a 12M sum has been set aside under the
10th EDF to improve production, processing
and marketing of cash crops, also including
state actors again. And E4M from the 10th
EDF will go to decentralisation of the sector
building the capacity of district councils and
non-state actors. Georges Dehoux emphasi-
sed the need to act at a local level to move
forward. D.P. 1

Websites: www.megapesca.org, www.oceanic-dev.com
* 1US dollar = 3,000 Leones; 1 Euro = 4,789 Leones

Debra Percival; Sierra Leone; Agriculture;
Trade; Fishing.


Illegal fishing could be costing Sierra Leone as much as e2?.M per year,
acco-rding La an EC- funded report drawn up b- the co-nsorlium, OL'COnif
Dceloppemnnt (France) and MEGCAPESCA (Portugal). The sltude explores
the different captions for a fisheries partnership with the EU. Some 8,0u0
artisanal vessels such as dluq-oul canoes and planked vesselss and 52 ocean-
qg:ing trawlers, nmainl Scuiith-east Asianannd Spanish and Greek boats cur-
rently ha. e joint venturess Ict tish in Sierra Lec:ne's waters. Chinese vessels
are alleIgedl% fishing illegally in Sierra Lec:nean 4vaters, say c:bsrerers.
'E'. erything close to shore is criticall" said Reusing. One of the tour options
explored by the c cons,:rtium is tor EU vessels i t fish tuna, deep water

shrimp and sniall pelagc: wvith s ich an agreement po tentially' bringing in
rovalLies of e2 5M a year
Since there is currently an EU ban on Sierra Leone's fisl eiports v.hich
co:ulid e litteli this 'ear catches under the joint ventures niust be enter-
inq the EL tlirc:uqlih third co untry, suggested Freetown observers. The EU
has lust launched a E3M lnstitutji:nal Suppi:rt for Fisheries Malnaemennt
(ISFM) ti assess stocks and provide technical advice for the ci:onservatii:n
oit resources v,.orking v.ith the Institute at Marine Biolog' and
Oceoinixraph' cfA Sierra Leone. The idea is to establish the current status
quo of stocks and de.,elcp a sustainable management plan, said Reusinq.
In future the EU wants to continue Lo improve hgqiene standards in the
industry% and do mo re to ci:cntri:l and suiir'e hshing in seven West Afncan
states, including Sierra Leone, La stamp out illegal tishinq

N 5 N E APRIL MAY 2008

report Sierra Leone

Rising to the


By Gibril Foday-Musa*

he hall was colourfully decorated
with garlands of EU Member
States' flags criss-crossing the roof
of the British Council in Freetown.
It is 10 December 2007 and the four month-old
presidency of Emest Bai Koroma is about to
launch the Gola Forest Programme. The proj-
ect will protect the 75,000 hectares of tropical
forest host to rare mammals like the pygmy
hippopotamus, chimpanzee, forest elephant
and up to 14 globally threatened bird species
including the strange white-necked Picathartes
and the Rufous Fishing-owl.

When fewer than 40 per cent of invited public
officials tumed up at the event, President
Ernest Bai Koroma had no alternative but to
express great disappointment and admonished
his fellow countrymen of the "looming global
threat" to the country's natural habitation.

A 3M EU grant over five years was recent-
ly earmarked for the Gola Forest Programme
through the UK-based Royal Society for the
Protection of Birds (RSPB). It will start up
protected area management, capacity build-
ing on all levels, livelihood programmes and
community engagement in forest manage-
ment planning, research and biodiversity
assessment and environmental education and
advocacy. The target is to protect the Gola
Forest reserves for biodiversity conservation
and community development, creating a new
model of sustainable natural resource man-
agement in Sierra Leone. It will be im
plemented jointly with partners -the
Conservation Society of Sierra Leone and
the National Commission for Environment
and Forestry (NACEF). The RSPB is itself
soliciting donor support for a 10M endow-
ment fund to generate annual interest pay-
ments to run the Gola conservation project in
the future.

President Ernest Koroma was thrilled. He
linked environmental importance to peace,
stability and sustainable development. He
also pledged his commitment to a transfor-
mation of the Gola Forest into a national
park in the future. Koroma ended with a call

to the nation to recognize the devastating
impact of environmental hazards.

But the challenges facing the new All Peoples
Congress (APC) govemment in the area of
environmental protection is pile-high.Years of
civil war in the sub-region saw mass migra-
tions into virgin settlements which are still a
heavy burden on biodiversity and flora and
fauna. With little knowledge and experience in
handling refugee situations, scant attention was
paid to the environmental consequences of
these migrations by governments, NGOs or
United Nations (UN) agencies which were
responsible for the establishment of so many
new settlements for people running away from
danger. This was aggravated by the merciless
plunder of the natural resources and the ravage
of biodiversity during the war period.

Democratic order and rule of law have trig-
gered governments of the region to attempt to
control and regulate activities like logging,
mining and hunting, among others, by imple-
menting 'bans' on some of these activities.
Logging and the exportation of timber for
instance, have been banned by President
Koroma's government. A law to combat land
degradation through a National Action Plan has
been drafted by the govemment of Sierra
Leone in collaboration with the United Nations
Convention to Combat Desertification. The
programme aims to identify the symptoms,
causes and effects of land degradation at both
local and national levels. Recently the govem-
ment also suspended the activities of the kim-
berlite mining company Koidu Holdings after a
violent confrontation with community youths
left two people dead.


Sierra Le .- eporf

- -H .- H"' I C

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he EU las earmarked 1 1 for tech-
nical assistance to build LJp the
Nlatii:-nl Commissic-n for Enviri-nnment
and Fo:'restrv (NNACEF), explains
M atthias Reusinq, head c:f Rural
Develicpmen in the EU Deleqaticin in
Sierra Lecne IL will be a focal point for
ail enviroinniental police reviews, leiiis-
lation and data and incoiporiate ieni-
ioinmental issues into main policy-mak-
ing aiea' such as mining, fisheries,
vater, .anitation and decntialiaiatioin.

As part ot the Gola Forest Pri:iraiimme,
the county is also looking at carbon
trading. One pos'ibillty is Clean
Development Klecianism of the Kyoto
Protocol. Thlii. is imnd at setting Lup
Certified Emission Reduction (CER)
credits to developing nations to cut
back enmssiois. Sierra Leone i' not iici-
rently a Kyoto signiator, Ibut niilht iook
at vi:oluntarv carbon markets which sell
activities that reduce greenhouse qases
to c(ioimp inies c:r individuals wvho '.ant
Lo reduce their carbon footprints,
explains Reusinq

Sieirr Leone is also included in a 'tLudy
of DG Development due to be lauJnched
in Spring 2008 on legal and illegal
cross-border tide of timibepr nd forest
product in West Atrica Tie goeri n-
nient recently\ showed interest in a viil-
untary partnership agreement under
the EU's Forest Law Enfo:rcement,
Gi:vernance and Tralde (FLEGT' tI:
clamp down :ion illegal oigging'

* FLEGT agreements are *.c'luntib., li:enjin
'he 'es i,.ith partner countnre ensurin.l that
c.nlI, legal timlitei fr parl tneia r couJiii es cari
enter Lhe EU.

ri N riE LF'RiL r*ii _ii

report Sierra Leone

EU funding to

Funding for Sierra Leone under the six-year 10th European Development Fund (EDF)
(2008-2013) will build on projects to underpin stability and good governance and
help get the economy moving.

here are E242M in the 10th EDF's 'A' envelope focusing
on good governance (37M), rehabilitation of priority
infrastructure (E95M) and general budget support
(E90M). Outside the focal sectors, funds are earmarked
for agriculture ( 12M -see article on agriculture); trade, which
includes funding to underpin an eventual European Partnership
Agreement (E3M); a technical and cooperation facility (E2.5M);
and contribution to regional projects (E 2M).

An additional 26.4M -initially for two years but renewable -is
contained within a 'B' envelope. This covers unforeseen needs such
as emergency assistance, a contribution to internationally agreed
debt relief and adverse effects of instability in export earnings.

EDF monies to Sierra Leone have increased since 1975 when the 4th
EDF was on stream. War interrupted planning, so 100M from pre-
vious funds is still being spent. Between 1999 and 2002 the EC's
humanitarian aid office, ECHO, pledged E44M for war victims,
returnees and Liberian refugees.

Sierra Leone is one of only a handful of ACP countries where the EU
is jointly planning its aid strategy with an EU Member State, the

k ...... .
s s

UK's Department for International Development (DFID). "There is
huge complementarity between DFID, which concentrates on health
and sanitation, and the EU with its focus on transport and infrastruc-
ture," Richard Hogg, head of DFID's office in Sierra Leone, told us.

Both donors also provide budget support. Under the 10th EDF,
S15M has been pledged per year, amounting to 29 per cent of the
total budget support by donors, or 5 per cent of total government rev-
enue. Benchmarks for disbursal of these monies are drawn up with
the AFDB, World Bank, DFID and include good public financial

Of the 95M going to infrastructure under the 10th EDF, 48M is for
feeder roads, 15M for overlaying the Songo-Moyamba junction
road and E7M for construction of the Magbele bridge. Currently
being upgraded with EDF funds are a 86 km stretch from Rogbere
junction in Sierra Leone to Guinea and the 168 km from Masiaka to
Bo. Continuation of this road to Liberia is seen as a funding priority
since it would create a trade-enhancing artery from Liberia to Guinea.

Also included in the budget chapter for infrastructure are funds for
the vital energy sector (E 12M), a 'master plan' for Freetown (E 8M)
-including development of urban roads and markets -and the devel-
opment of river transport (E2M) including the building of jetties at
points on the 380 km of inland waterways. There is a support for the
Ministry of Transport (E 3M).

Out of 37M earmarked for good governance, explained Francesca
Varlese, Project Manager at the EU Delegation in Freetown, 8M
will go toward continued election support, including 3.7M for the
holding of the July local elections and to election bodies -the
National Electoral Commission and Political Parties Registration
Commission. Chiara Bellini of the Delegation's governance section
adds that reform of the civil service (E 10M), and decentralisation of
services (E9M) are also priorities. Additionally, there is continued
funding for the National Authorising Office which coordinates EU
projects for the government (E5M), sums for environmental gover-
nance (E4M) and the building up of civil society (E 1M). D.P. I

Debra Percival; Sierra Leone; lOth EDF; Infrastructure.


Sierra Leone report



Long stretches of white sand, intimate coves, beachside bars, barracuda straight from
the sea and a laid back feel. It's a far cry from the war torn label that has stuck for a
decade and the government is keen to tear off for good.

ature's abundance of intense
green foliage contrasting with
the deep red earth and sheltering
a wealth of fauna and flora is
both humbling and enveloping. The govern-
ment knows that by nurturing such natural
assets it can pull tourists back to the country
(see environment article).

Sierra Leone's Tourism Minister, Hindolo
Tyre, who has a small office tucked into the
national sports stadium, says the sector will
not be sidelined: "There has always been a
tourism ministry but it has always been
looked upon as the forgotten ministry. In
fact, there was a joke that when a minister
does something wrong he is usually pun-
ished by being sent to tourism. For me, it's
not a punishment it's a challenge. People
can't count on mining forever."

It's only a six hour flight from Europe but
there's a lot to tackle to turn around the
external perception of the country. On sandy
beach terms, the country can compete with
Gambia and Senegal with hidden bays like
Sussex and River no.2, as well as the long
stretch at Lumley. It's a different case with
infrastructure. Flights to Sierra Leone are
comparatively high-cost and the position of
the national airport at Lungi on a peninsula
means an extra unique helicopter hop into
Freetown on arrival. At the time of writing
there was no alternative sea transport to the

Other things that put off some tourists: visi-
ble destitution, a largely cash economy and
environmental problems such as waste
mainly plastics -washed up on Lumley
beach. The last Saturday of every month has

been declared environmental 'clean-up day'
by the government when there's no traffic on
the streets and you are expected to stay at
home to tidy your area.

"The sector can become a major foreign
exchange earner and an employment genera-
tor. To say that we are war torn is not right.
What we need is to market and promote our
country outside as well as inside," said the

For starters, the Minister wants to print a
map pinpointing the country's beauty spots,
historical sites and relics. He talks about
some spots: Bumbuna's amazing scenery
and very nice guest rooms and Tiwai Island,
a stunning nature reserve.

Old colonial houses with ornate verandas
give a bygone time feel to Freetown. And the
cotton tree an immense tree found growing
in the late 18th century by former American
slaves who won their freedom by fighting for
the British in the American Civil War and
named their new settlement Freetown -is a
focal point in the capital.

"Part of our strategic plan involves having
legal consultants even just for short periods
of three months to look at rules and regula-
tions; for example, the Tourism
Development Master Plan in 1982. The
Monuments and Relics Act was as far back
as 1957. Even some of our agreements with
hotels are not pro-Sierra Leone," said
Minister Tyre.

He said external investment was vital since
domestic priorities are electricity, food and
water: "When you look at the country it's
like a virgin untouched by investment and
investors, but the approach we want to use is
totally different. One of the failures of the
system before is political interference. We
want to de-politicise as much as possible."

Website: www.sierraleone.org

Debra Percival; Sierra Leone; Tourism
Environment ; Heritage.

gfeSBfe 41 Umm*

..... '..... '

N. 5 N.E. APRIL MAY 2008

discovering Europe

,,,, me eting
.............. .


In this issue, The Courier highlights excep-
tionally two European Union countries -
Cyprus and Malta to mark their entry
into the eurozone. On 1 January this year
both adopted the euro.

Malta and Cyprus also have a lot in com-
mon, starting with their small but open,
flourishing and sound economies that
enabled them to quickly fulfil the EU's
convergence criteria, notably relating to
growth, inflation rates and the govern-
ment debt. The two countries joined the
European Exchange Rate Mechanism on 2
May 2005. On 16 May 2007, the
European Commission and European
Central Bank gave them the green light to
join the eurozone, a decision formalised
at the 11 July Council. Both countries had
a strong and stable currency at the time,
the Cypriot pound (.1 = CYP0.5853) and
the Maltese lira (.1 = MTLO.4293).

Cyprus and Malta are also old European
countries, lying on the fringes of the con-
tinent and with a long history of being
permeable to the territories and culture of
Africa and the Orient.

a ineetilig

an'd mixing'lnM 1n

of cultures

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Ji 5 Pi E FPRIL r.lA' 2iCi


discovering Europe Cyprus


One of the surprising things about Cyprus is its high level
of economic development. Everything is new. Nicosia is
sparkling. Its shopping and business districts can rival in
size and luxury those of the world's richest cities.
Jewellers, luxury boutiques, banks and the offices of
major companies are everywhere. In the southern section
of Nicosia, that is. Although not without its charms, the

north of the city that lies in
of abandon.

before 1974, almost three-quarters of
economic activity were concentra-
ted in the north of the country. The
occupation caused 40 per cent of the
population to take to the roads, residing in
makeshift shelters. The economy was in free-
fall. Yet in less than 15 years Cyprus was a
nation rebuilt.

Marios Tsiakkis, Director of Industry
Department at the Cyprus Chamber of
Commerce and Industry, says this 'Cypriot
miracle' is due to a determination by all sec-
tions of the population. He speaks emotionally
of how the trade unions spontaneously
appealed for a cut in wages as their contribu-
tion to the reconstruction effort.

By 1990, the feat was achieved. Today, consid-
ers Mr. Tsiakkis, Cyprus is facing another
challenge: that of competitiveness -on the one
hand from Europe and on the other from China
and other Asian countries. Agriculture current-
ly accounts for 3.5 per cent of the economy,
manufacturing industries 10 per cent and serv-
ices 74 per cent. "We must evolve further
towards a knowledge-based industrial econo-
my with high added values. We are encourag-
ing Cypriot companies to invest in research
and development projects and innovation. The
Chamber of Commerce is working with the
Public University of Cyprus. It has set itself

the occupied zone has a feel

the task of acting as a catalyst between the uni-
versity and enterprise."

Of the 74 per cent share of the economy repre-
sented by services, tourism accounts for 20 per
cent. Other important branches are financial
services, shipping, the booming construction
industry, and the accounting and audit services
used by many major international companies.

At 10 per cent, the low level of corporate tax
is a big investment draw. What's more, Cyprus
has sealed agreements with about 40 countries
around the world to avoid double taxation.
Last but not least, wages in Cyprus are lower
than in most EU countries (about 84 per cent
of the EU average). The quality of the roads
and communication systems, the common-
place use of English, the advanced education
and health systems, and a good social environ-
ment combine to secure the country's excel-
lent reputation among foreign investors. And
don't forget, insists Tsiakkis, the security, an
agreeable climate and the beauty of Cyprus.

Cyprus's attraction for foreign investors and
residents was very evident in the property
boom. This explains why, within business cir-
cles that generally favour reunification, mem-
bers of the construction sector are especially
supportive. They are already looking ahead to
the billions of euros that would flow into the

north of the country in the wake of reunifica-
tion. H.G.

Cyprus, economy, Marios Tsiakkis, invest-
ments, Emmanuela Lambrianides, Georges
Virides, Hegel Goutier.


Cyprus discovering Europe

architect of the economic miracle at

the service of development

To set up its development policy, Cyprus has mobilised both its development depart-
ment in its Foreign Affairs Ministry and the Planning Bureau of the government whose
task was to reconstruct the country's economy in the wake of the Turkish invasion of
the island.

already there. Our main partners
are Lesotho and Mali among the
ACP countries and four countries
in our vicinity in North Africa and
the Middle East.** Smaller
amounts of aid go to ten other

mmanuela Lambrianides,
Senior Coordination Officer,
Planning Bureau, Ministry
of Foreign Affairs*

In 2007, the percentage of the
GDP of Cyprus allocated to
development policy reached 0.12
per cent. The target is for 0.17 per
cent by 2010 in line with commit-
ments made in the EU Council.

Our strategy is to delegate imple-
mentation of our cooperation to
other EU Member States. This is
not only because we don't have
enough local experts but also for
efficiency -why spend a lot of
money on building up a big
administration to deliver assis-
tance when we can use what's

N. 5 N.E. APRIL MAY 2008

Our sectors of concentration are
health and education. We have
comparative advantages in these
areas and want to use our skills.
We have set up custom-made
courses on agriculture -short-
term courses of around six weeks
covering research.

After the first phase we can man-
age things ourselves, but we also
work through NGOs. We are
presently working with them to
pre-empt what we can do on our
own after 2010 at the closure of
the medium-term strategy
(2007-2010). We also have to set
up the decision-making mecha-
nism to establish 'CyprusAid',
fostering closer links with the
beneficiary countries and devel-
oping links with our NGOs.

We are also working on shipping
and banking where we have
received requests for short-term
training. Another area is econom-
ic planning. We have some expe-
rience in this as the economy of
Cyprus was itself completely dis-

mantled. Cyprus had to take many
planning initiatives and the role of
the Bureau was instrumental. It
created a five-year plan and
instructed the private sector. We
brought about a complete recov-
ery of the economy after just 15
years -a fact the Planning Bureau
is proud of.

eorges Virides, Director of
Cooperation and
Humanitarian Aid, Ministry of
Foreign Affairs*


There are three projects we have
been involved with. One is in
Lesotho where a boarding house
was constructed for girls in the
district of Mokhotlong. The girls
residing in the nearby area had
had to travel a distance of eight
kilometres each day on foot to go
to school, facing the danger of
being attacked by people with
firearms. This project was under-
taken in partnership with Irish Aid
and the implementing agency was
the Ministry of Education of
Lesotho on the basis of an agree-
ment between Ireland and
Lesotho. The total cost of the
project was 350,000.

In Mali we have completed a proj-
ect on sustainable waste manage-
ment in the town of Sikasso in
partnership with the government

of Belgium and Mali. The imple-
menting agency was Belgian
Technical Cooperation. The town
of Sikasso faced major public
health problems with increasing
production of all sorts of waste,
mainly industrial. The total con-
tribution was 151,000 and
equipment was delivered at the
end of 2006.

Now we are in the process of
another project with the govern-
ment of Mali. This time we will
construct four small bridges
which will provide access to vil-
lages in case people are cut off
when there is rain. H.G.

* Based on interviews by Hegel Goutier

** Egypt, Yemen, the Lebanon and the
autonomous Palestinian Territories are
ail beneficiaries.
Cyprus; economic;
Emmanuela Lambrianides;
Georges Virides;
development; policy; NGO;
Hegel Goutier.




There is confusion over identity in Cyprus. There are vertical and hori-
zontal definitions. There are religions: Christian and Muslim. And then
there are nationalities: Turkish and Greek. The British asked people to
define themselves. Some of the so-called Turkish Cypriots were black
Africans, others probably Turkmen rebels brought here who adopted
the Muslim religion.

In this country you can introduce yourself as Turkish, Turkish Cypriot,
Cypriot, Greek, and Greek Cypriot. The way you define yourself is
linked to your political perspective on the future. As a Greek person,
you might be perceived as right wing. If you say Cypriot, you probably
lean towards the left. Greek Cypriot or Turkish Cypriot means in the
middle. But how much Cypriot and how much Greek or Turkish do you
actually mean?

Cypriot identity also means being committed to a geographical project
of unity, or not. As an island, Cyprus has no other boarder than the sea.
And all Cypriots like the shape of the country. Its form is copied in lapel
pins and jewels. We keep the place where we lived in our memory but
a lot of us were forced to forget this memory.

Identity is always expecting something. I am a poet. Some poets are
looking for hybridity and consider that Cypriot is a hybridity. In lan-
guages, you find the same music. Words are even sometimes shared.
You will find Italian words in all of our languages and similarly in the
mind and character. We have the same memory. The way of thinking is
quite similar. The family structure is quite similar, and the way people
talk, the excitement.

In the villages, you have to help each other to survive. For example, on
Turkish religious days, you used to give an animal to a Greek Cypriot
to take care of and vice versa. All this came to an end with the conflict
over nationality...


There are so many identities in Cyprus. There are several religions:
Greek orthodox, Muslim, Maronite, Armenian Christian and Roman
Catholic. Linguistically speaking, all Christians were assimilated into
the Greek language.

The Roman Catholics are linked to the Maronites from Lebanon. The
Maronites use the Greek language but they have also kept their
Maronite dialect which is spoken in some Cypriot villages. This lan-
guage is mixed with Greek words, as well as with Turkish and Arabic.

My wife is Armenian, from Yerevan. The Armenians have a publication
in Armenian and English. From 1996, each citizen has had to specify
his or her religion.

The perception of a Greek Cypriot or a Turkish Cypriot is not impor-
tant. If you use a language, you use a culture. Greek culture for one and
Turkish culture for the other. But everyone is part of the story. Greek
Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots lived for centuries in the same village.
One shepherd looked after their flocks. They shared everything, the
land and the shepherd. As a student I remember visiting parents of a
friend of mine. Greeks and Turkish were together sharing everything:
land, cattle, playing in the same neighbourhood. The folk music, the
folk dancing, the food were the same. The same friendship, the same
hospitality, the way they cultivated their land. Everything was the same.

A part of identity is language, culture and tradition. But another part is
everyday life. H.G.
* Based on interviews by Hegel Goutier.

Neshe Yasin, Giorgos Moleskis, Greek Cypriot, Turkish Cypriot,
Hegel Goutier.


| a iscovering Europe

w isovRnn I

Deputy mayor of nicosia

Interview by Hegel Goutier

How would you attract someone to Nicosia?

If we're talking about doing business, Cyprus
has always been a centre of services and used
to be a business centre, even prior to accession
to the EU. We have a flourishing offshore

Now, following EU membership, we have the
lowest corporate taxes in the EU so many peo-
ple from both within and outside the EU want
to set up business here. The majority of busi-
ness activities take place here, in Nicosia.

Nicosia is little known to many people.

Nicosia is the English version of .. L ...'
meaning 'white city'. i. i- means white. Bel
also means white in the Slavic language so
Belgrade also means 'white city'.

Why Lefkosia? Because of the bright weather
and white colours that dominate the buildings.
But it is not only the weather that is good all
year round. There are historical monuments. It
is very easy to travel around Cyprus as it is
small. The history of Cyprus dates back to the
Stone Age. You can see settlements of the
Stone Age people, as well as historic monu-
ments that show the evolution of civilisation in
the Middle East -the Phoenicians, Egyptians
and Babylonians. This makes the country quite
interesting from an archaeological viewpoint
and Nicosia has a very interesting museum for
anybody that wants to know more about how
history has evolved, not only for Cyprus, but
also for the whole of the region.

Even though there's a Christian majority, there
are many Muslim citizens and we have
mosques and churches side-by-side. The sur-
rounding medieval walls were built by the
Italians when Cyprus was occupied by the

Venetians and these are illuminated during the
night. You can also come across British archi-
tecture here, dating back to their rule of the
island. Not a lot of people know that the
Shakespeare classic, Othello, was set in
Cyprus. Its hero got married in Famugusta.

For visitors, there are beautiful landscapes sur-
round Nicosia. Very close by there are high
mountains. Even in this Mediterranean cli-
mate, the mountains are covered by snow for a
period of five to six months. If you travel just
45 minutes from here, you will find yourself in
a snow-covered landscape with more than half
a metre of snow.

How much did Nicosia --. from the divi-

The most peculiar and sad thing about Nicosia
is the division of the city itself. As you know,
in 1974 Turkey invaded Cyprus and took half
of the land. This occupation line goes right
through the heart of Nicosia and splits it in
two. Nicosia is the only divided city in the
world. In Jerusalem there are sectors, but there
are no walls as there are here.

You feel it strongly here. If you go through the
streets, especially in the built-up old town, you
will always be coming up against a wall. You
see empty streets that are very different to the
lively streets a few metres away.

As a City Council, we try to give incentives to
people living close to the division line to relo-
cate to houses that have been deserted. This is
to lessen the problems arising from desertion
in the area close to the line. The municipality
compulsorily acquires deserted houses and
gives compensation to the owners. We then
first invite the previous owners to come and
live there at a very favourable rent. If they

decline, the houses are rented to others who
are interested. We ,iicni-l. cannot meet
demand with the houses that have been re-
done. Some eligibility criteria apply for ten-
ants, who are usually families with a moderate

How did the Turkish invasion change the soul
of the city?

The Turkish invasion forced many people into
leaving their houses in the north. After 1974,
the character of the outskirts of Nicosia
changed with many new buildings. Some of
them are not of the best quality. The city has
expanded. We have made much effort to
demolish part of the walls to have freer acces-
sibility but the Turkish invasion army insists
on being here, proclaiming they have protec-
tive rights over the Turkish Cypriots to keep
military quarters in the heart of Nicosia. Our
dream as a local authority is to see the city
reunited. H.G.

Stelios leronimidis; Nicosia; Cyprus;
Famagusta; Hegel Goutier.

N. 5 N.E. APRIL MAY 2008

discovering Europe Cyprus





Has culture overcome the checkpoints?

wo and a half million tourists visit Cyprus every year. It's an
island that seems to have something for everyone. Some are
attracted by the silence and serenity of the archaeological
sites, others by the beautiful beaches or snow-covered sum-
mits. There are wonderful museums and other cultural attractions for
art-lovers and places of fun and entertainment for partygoers. With
never more than an hour's drive between the two, the island also offers
a taste of exoticism, having mixed its Greek heritage with so many
Oriental and even African influences. All the prestigious archaeological
sites are in fact Roman and not Greek, its painting is Byzantine and its
craftwork Venetian. Cyprus is in fact truly Cypriot, which is its greatest
quality. Christina Mita, a professional tourist guide, sums up her coun-
try as follows: "The dance, music, and dialect are different to Greece.
The Greek influence prevents Cyprus from being Oriental and the very
present Orient prevents it from being 100 per cent Greek."
Since Nicosia airport closed following the occupation, the charming
town of Lamaca on the southeast coast has become the country's main
place of entry. It has the charm of a bygone age, in particular the old
Turkish quarter offering romantic and picturesque walks along the
seashore at dusk. The churches and chapels of some of the region's vil-
lages -Pyrga and Kiti for example -bear superb testimony to the pas-
sage of the kings of France.
North of Lamaca lies the formerly thriving town of Famagusta. Only a
small part of its southem suburbs is under the control of the Republic
of Cyprus. Today it is the sleeping beauty, emptied of all its inhabitants,
retained as a possible bargaining chip for a hypothetical recognition of
the North by the Republic of Cyprus.
On the south coast lies Limassol, an important beach resort with its
thronging crowds and nightclubs. But just outside it is the serenity of
the archaeological site of the Greco-Roman city of Kourion, long cov-
eted by Egypt (Ramses III) and which was first to become Assyrian and

then Persian. Its theatre, with the sea as a backdrop, hosts a major arts
festival, and experts are continuing to unearth whole sections of the
Roman city.
Between Limassol and Paphos on the coast further to the west, almost
at the entrance to this most fashionable of Cypriot towns, imagination
takes hold at Petra tou Romiou where Aphrodite, the goddess of love,
emerged from the foam (aphros) ofthe sea. If you have any doubt about
the reality of the myth, you can still see the rock that reproduces her
profile and that emerged from the waves at the same time as Aphrodite
herself. Further to the north, and inland, is another world. Find the calm
of the monasteries in the high mountains of the Troodos which are also
a destination for skiers.

With its archaeological sites and monasteries, the past is present every-
where on Cyprus. This is especially so in the capital, Nicosia, known as
Lefkosia in Greece and as Lefkofla in Turkish. Nicosia is probably the
most relaxed divided city in history. Even as you approach the demarca-
tion line, there is no air of tension, just a moving symbol. On the demar-
cation line between the checkpoint for the Republic of Cyprus and for
Northern Cyprus, the UNFICYP forces are based in the Ledra Palace.
Once or twice a week the Bi-communal Choir rehearses there. Made up
of Greek and Turkish Cypriots, each member has to pass through the
checkpoint to attend choir practice. The two choirmasters, one from each
community, speak mainly in English. The choir, created in April 2003 as
soon as the first crossing point was opened, gives concerts in the north
and south of the island. The songs are drawn from both communities,
sometimes the same song is sung in the two languages, such as Niksarin
Fidanlari, an old Turkish melody also adopted by the Greeks. Lenia
Melanidou and Costis Kyranides, the two choirmasters, recounted the
long history of their choir, the only bi-community association to have
lasted so long, despite the trials and tribulations.


Cyprus discovering Europe

Nicosia is home to a rich patrimony, such as
the unique Museum of Byzantine Art. Many
cultural associations and foundations, such as
the Symphony Orchestra Foundation, popu-
larise the culture. The northem part of Nicosia
also has much to offer. Of particular note is the
cathedral of Ste. Sophie transformed into a
mosque. Theatres, concert halls, cinemas and
festivals covering all fields of international art
and culture combine to make the island a treas-
ure for art-lovers and tourists alike.

Cyprus; tourism; culture; Nicosia; byzan-
tine; Larnaka; Aphrodite; Hegel Goutier.

On the right
The Rock of Aphrodite. EC
'No boarder Underwear.' Store close to the demarcation
line 2008. C Hegel GoutierOvercoming the checkpomts
Bottom left
Dyonisos House, Paphos 2008. Hegel Gouter
Bottom right
Paphos Medieval castle and marina 2008. Hegel Gouter

w' n

N. 5 N.E. APRIL MAY 2008

discovering Europe A .

was master of its own history

Malta has known seven thousand years of integration rather than occupation, of
adaptation rather than revolt or revolution. Malta has always been an inherent part
of the empires that annexed it. Then in the early 19th century it joined the British
Empire this time at Malta's own request before peacefully negotiating its
independence in 1964. This was an exception to the turmoil of decolonisation. As if
Malta was master of its own history.

he very first inhabitants most pro-
bably arrived during the 7th
Millennium BC and immigrants
arrived from Sicily during the 5th
Millennium. The megalithic temples and
hypogeums bear testimony to the most ancient
of cultures including the remarkable under-
ground temple at Hal Saflieni, recognized as a
world heritage site -were built between the
4th and 3rd Millennia BC. It was the
Phoenicians and the Carthaginians who next
left their indelible mark on the island's culture
- from 700 to 218 AD, the year Malta became
part of the Roman Empire. By this time, the
Carthaginians had already developed shipbuil-
ding there.

At the dawn of the Christian era, in the year
60, a ship carrying the future St. Paul (who
was on his way to Rome where he was to be
put on trial) ran aground on the island, the
event becoming a key moment in the country's
history its conversion to Christianity and its

After Rome, the Byzantine administration
took office in 395 AD until the invasion by the
Aghlabids in 870 AD. The latter remained for
two centuries, at a time when the Arabs also
ruled in Sicily, Gibraltar and Spain.

Malta was steeped in the history of two cen-
turies of Arab occupation. North African
Arabic was to form the basis of the Maltese
language. The Arabs were followed by a suc-
cession of conquerors for most of the next five
centuries. First were the Normans from Sicily
who exploited the divisions between Muslim
countries, many of which were also bogged
down in war with the Byzantine Empire. In
1090 they absorbed Malta, but without driving
out the Arabs. The island, by now home to
Christian, Muslim and Jewish communities,
became a stopping off point for pilgrims and

For four centuries Malta was to remain within
Sicily's fold and subject to its vagaries. In
1130 Sicily became an autonomous kingdom,
when it fell firstly under the authority of
German King and Roman Emperor Frederic II
(1194) and then under the French Emperor
Charles of Anjou (1266). The French were
driven out in 1282 by the Sicilian Vespers and
Sicily pledged obedience to the Kingdom of
Aragon, fully becoming part of the Crown of
Aragon in 1409. From the beginning of the
Sicilian period, Christianity was returned to
Malta with the adoption of the Italian language

by the nobility. Finally, in 1479, with its des-
tiny still linked to Sicily, Malta came under the
control of the Catholic Kings of Spain who
allowed feudal fiefdoms to develop there that
took part in piracy and smuggling.

At the beginning of the 16th century, the
Ottoman troops of Soliman the Magnificent
conquered the Greek island of Rhodes, threat-
ening Sicily that was part of the kingdom of

-.twiL .



Maita discovering Europe

r ,



Valletta Grandmasters Palace (interior) 2008. Hegel Goutler
At first the Knights of the order had little interest in settling in Malta

Charles V at the time. The latter firstly
appealed to the Knights of the Order of the
Hospital of St. John in Jerusalem to block the
Muslim offensive in Malta and finally ceded
the island to them in 1530. At first the Knights
of the Order had little interest in settling on
this arid land, its declining population consist-
ing now of little more than the old nobility of
Mdina who were defendants of the Normans
of Sicily.

After losing Tripoli, the Order won the battle
of Malta against the Turks in 1565. With this
victory the Christians had completed their
recapture of the European Mediterranean. At
this time a new capital city was built -
Valletta, a fortification town whose construc-
tion began in 1566. During this time, naval
battles flared between the Turks and the gal-
leys of the Order. The knights eventually
transformed Malta into a huge European naval
school that supplied sailors to France. This
was to transform Malta into a massive
European naval school providing sailors to
France who in 1765 made the island its protec-

The Order found itself stripped of all its assets
by 1792 having backed the French King Louis
XIV against the revolution of 1789. In
response, the Order elected a German knight
as its head. Then in 1798, Napoleon Bonaparte
and his fleet of 300 ships conquered Malta
without a shot being fired. Bonaparte seized
the Order's treasury and continued on to
Egypt, but the garrison he left behind incurred
the wrath of the population due to its harass-
ment of the island's churchmen. Finally the

French garrison capitulated, assieged by the
British in 1800. No longer wanting the govern-
ment of the Grand Master, in 1882 the Maltese
asked to come under British rule, requesting
nothing other than the guarantee that they
could retain their constitution and Roman
Catholic religion. The agreement between
Malta and Great Britain was ratified by the
Treaty of Paris in 1814.

After a difficult period -mainly due to succes-
sive outbreaks of plague and cholera -Malta
entered a period of relative prosperity during
the second half of the century due to its coal
ports and geographic location close to the
newly constructed Suez Canal. In particular it
would be shaken by a language dispute
between the partisans of Italian and English,
fuelled by the first stirring of a desire for
national independence. Initially calmed by a
number of concessions, demands for autono-
my resurfaced in the climate of economic
recession at the end of the First World War.
The British Administration reacted to this with
a series of policy changes one of these con-
cessions was to give recognition of Maltese as
the official language of the island from 1934.
The Second World War strengthened the bonds
between the British and Maltese and to resist
invasion attempts by the Germans, the fortress
island was transformed into a defensive
bunker. Everything was converted into a shel-
ter against attack, including the Neolithic
caves and the catacombs. At the outbreak of
war, Malta (less than 250 km2 for the main
island, and just over 300 km2 when Gozo and
Comino are included) was subjected to around
2,500 air raids in just two years resulting in the

destruction of 40,000 homes and 2,000 deaths.
The summer of 1942 saw 154 days (and
nights) of continual bombardment on Malta
(compared to 56 on London). 6,500 tonnes of
bombs fell on Valetta harbour alone (compared
to 260 tonnes dropped on Coventry). The
country was decorated with the George Cross
for its heroism. At independence, the Maltese
included this symbol of courage as part of their

Malta, the heroic, was granted self-govern-
ment in 1947. However, the Nationalist Party,
unlike its Liberal rival, was not satisfied and
when it came to power in 1962, its leader
Gorg Borg Olivier -immediately demanded
full independence. This finally became a real-
ity on September 21, 1964.

After being elected to power in 1974, the
Labour Party pushed through a republican
constitution in the same year and the closure of
the British military base on the island. This
govemment, headed by Dom Mintoff, was
also notable for adopting a Third World stance
and a position of neutrality in the face of the
two major world power blocs.

The Nationalist Party was retumed to power in
1984, this time led by Eddie Fenech Adami,
who served as prime minister until 1996.
During this period, the long-banned Order of
Malta was once again recognized. Moreover,
Adami's economic policy marked a break with
the socialist tendencies of his predecessor,
while remaining loyal to the pledge of neutral-
ity on international issues. In 1992, Adami
opened negotiations with Brussels with a view
to Malta joining the European Union.
However, the introduction of VAT cost him the
1996 elections. Labour was then retumed to
power, led by Alfred Santz. This govemment
lasted just two years following the outcry sur-
rounding its decision to freeze negotiations on
EU membership.

When the Nationalists won the 1998 elections,
Eddie Fenech Adami reopened the EU acces-
sion process in 2000, culminating in member-
ship for Malta on 1 January 2004. The
Nationalist Party went on to win the subse-
quent elections the most recent on 8 March
2008. H.G.

Malta, history, megalithic, hypogeum,
Knights, Hegel Goutier.

N. 5 N.E. APRIL MAY 2008

discovering Europe Malta

The soul of Malta


Because it is small, Malta has always been a part of larger empires. It opens up to the
world so as to better concentrate on its security. "Malta is at the edge, a periphery to
itself." Divided on everything, it somehow always manages to reach national
consensus. That, at least, is the analysis of Oliver Friggieri*, professor of literature,
poet and literary critic.

riggieri's work revolves around the problem of belonging to a
nation -an island that lies close to Africa and Southern
Europe, with a mixed Latin and Semitic culture alongside other
influences. His view is that, "I don't write about Malta but
about a human being." Friggieri has published a considerable number
of books, poems, novels and essays that have been translated into many
languages. All of his books explore this tiny island which is an obses-
sesion, Malta and its multiculturalism.

"The Malta I grew up in is completely different from the Malta of
today," he explains. Today the island resembles a town. At the centre of
the village there a church used to stand and opposite, a square (misra),
then houses and beyond these, fields. The church at the centre was a
symbol of power and culture. Huge churches, "because we are small".
Beyond that, there lay yet another village with the same design. And
then it these villages fused together and interlocked. But inspite of

everything, the nation retained its identity. Malta is a nation where
everybody lives in close proximity to everybody else. The 'misra' under-
went a change. Nowadays, the capital, Valletta, is deserted after six in
the evening. The centre is no longer there. Today, people prefer to go out
in St Julians with its diverse entertainment and leisure facilities.

The basis of the Maltese nation's culture is Christianity and language;
within each of which there lies a duality. For example, that of the mag-
nificence of St John's Cathedral in Valletta on the one hand and the small
village churches on the other.

An important characteristic of the country is that it has always been on
the side of major powers. With Napoleon when he was at his strongest
(between 1798 and 1800) and afterwards with the English, alongside
Nelson and Alexander. "Malta was always part of a big empire and now
Malta is in the EU...We tend to exaggerate: the biggest, the strongest,
and the greatest," says Friggeri.


Maita discovering Europe

But feelings are still divided, smiles Friggieri,
especially at a football match when Italy plays
England: "It's deeper than just sport. It's older
than that. It is something to do with the image
of the father. Our identity precedes us. Islands
mean tradition, identity, and resistance to
change." Malta is thus very much an island
but one that has absorbed a great deal from the
large countries that surround it. It has adopted,
compared, and modified a great many things
to suit its needs.

Maltese is without doubt a Semitic language
and to be precise, has an Arabic structure. In
fact, Malta has almost always been exposed
to the arrival of populations from the North,
yet paradoxically it is Africa and the Middle
East that gave it its language, the basis of its
architecture and so many other aspects of its

Again he takes the example of St John's
Cathedral and the sense of duality and ambi-
guity. "From the front, it looks like a garage.
And the interior looks like a theatre. They
always want to portray the image of the impor-
tance of Malta."

On Malta, public opinion is always initially
divided. For example, on EU membership, one
of the two big parties, the Labour party was in
favour of a partnership, but not full member-
ship, while the Liberals advocated the latter. A
referendum was held that produced a clear vote
in favour of membership, which the socialists
accepted. "That's Malta," says Friggieri, "first it
divides and then it comes together. But the
national consensus is strong." A dividing line
runs through this large island, with the more lib-
eral North and more conservative South. "We
don't agree on everything but we need the com-
ing together to survive. And when the next chal-
lenge comes along, we divide again and then
come together again. Always a boxing session,
then peace and then boxing again," he says.

But this ambiguity reflects a profound truth,
that of the wholeness of Malta: "Very small
but complete, like a small insect with a
whole organism, not half a nation." The coun-
try's political vision is like the Maltese soul.
"There is a sense of attachment to the inner

circle, to the parish, to the party. Who are you?
Where are you from? Sect, cast, regions, social
groups, these are all important in Malta. So
our psychology is older than we are," he con-

The Maltese have defined their identity in
terms of land and sea. A map of the country
shows a small island surrounded by forts.
They are always thinking of a possible invad-
er, with a fear of being attacked. Says Friggeri:
"Valletta is a fortress. The city can be locked.
Wherever you are in Malta, you have those
inside and those outside. Who are you? Where
do you come from? The people of Malta har-
bour the memory of being persecuted in

About 100 years ago the divide was on lin-
guistic issues. Should the language be Italian,
the language of tradition, or English, the lan-
guage of power? The question resurfaced,
albeit with less passion force, at the time of
independence. In the meantime there was the
Second World War during which Malta lent
considerable support to allied troops, and the
recognition shown by England in awarding it
the George Cross medal (the only time a place
has received such an honour). English had nat-
urally come to be established as the second
official language, Maltese being, in addition,
the national language.

Friggieri believes that Malta has a sense of
security and self-sufficiency. Coupled with
this is the search for the father as protector.
"So, there is a government and there is
Brussels which brings an international identi-
ty." But, he adds, many feel that Brussels is
very distant. "Why should I care about it?"
The local media speak very little about Europe
except when giving practical information, the
rate of the euro or major political events.
"Malta is an outer edge, a periphery to itself,
on the edge of itself," he concludes. H.G.

* Oliver Friggieri is a professor of Maltese and compar-
ative literature at the University of Malta. His books
have been translated into many languages and his
poems are included in several international antholo-
gies. His works have won many prestigious literary
prizes ail over the world. He is also the composer of a
number of musical works and presents cultural pro-
grammes on TV and radio (see, for example, The
International Who's Who 2007, London).

Oliver Friggieri, misra, Malta, Malti,
Valetta, Hegel Goutier.

Page 54

Bottom :
Cottonera, The Three Cities Cottonera
to protect Valletta, the fortress city, 2008.
Hegel Goutier Valetta can be locked ..Whereveryou are
in Matta, you have those inside and those outside"

Page 54
Typical bus in Valetta, 2008. Hegel Gouter
"Malta is an outer edge, a periphery to itself, on the edge of itself

N. 5 N.E. APRIL MAY 2008

discovering Europe Malta

Economic overview of Malta

I smart economy

with no fear


Based on interview with Kevin J. Borg, Director General of the Maltese Chamber of Commerce and Enterprise

By Hegel Goutier

alta gained its independence in
1964. From 1964-1979 it still
had a lot of support from UK
which had military bases on
the island. From 1979, Malta became econo-
mically self-sufficient. In the private sector,
the government identified two up-and-coming
sector; manufacturing and tourism.

The government created the Malta
Development Cooperation whose role was to
attract foreign investment. At that time, wages
and the standard of living were low.
Institutions such as the Chamber of Commerce
were on the Board of MDC but it was the gov-
ernment that took a prominent role.
Companies interested in diverse sectors: cloth-
ing, textile, spare parts for car, etc., came from
the UK, Germany and the US.

The government has also given incentives
(subsidies, rent facilities, and other kinds of
support) to encourage investment. In the

tourism sector, the government subsided the
building of hotels and resorts by investors and
gave concessions of land and beaches. In the
70's, the government set up 'Air Malta' whose
primary purpose was to promote tourism.

Malta also relied on its people. We were hard
working, spoke English, and could be trained
by foreigners. By the late 90's, Malta's stan-
dard of living had considerably increased. In
the beginning, jobs were not created very
quickly in the private sector, but by the public
sector; police, land revenue, etc. There were
many national monopolies at the time: elec-
tricity, telephone, TV stations and Air Malta.
They all belong to the government.
Unemployment was never high in Malta. You
either worked with the government or services
or were self-employed. By the late 90's, we
reached today's level and the standard of liv-
ing and and salaries went up. At the same time
competition for investment from Eastern
Europe China surfaced. We were always pre-
pared for this. In 2004, Malta joined the EU
and was eligible for certain funding. With this
aid, Malta was able to train its people, espe-

cially in IT, and we were able to build infra-
structure, roads, develop fibre-optics, establish
internet connections and modernise the air-
port. The economy has changed, becoming
less dependant on manufacturing and more so
on services.

Some factories have uprooted to Tunisia and
elsewhere but they still belong to the Maltese.
Many marketing, design, research and devel-
opment businesses remain in Malta. Tomato
processing is amongst those that have moved
to Tunisia. This used to be done in Gozo. As
for the Maltese clothing industry, the tailoring
is done in Tunisia and design, marketing and
business negotiation in Malta.

Malta is part of the globalised world even if
Maltese people do not travel outside the coun-
try very much. In the tourism sector, Corinthia
(Corinthia Group of Companies) is a big busi-
ness. It has a chain of hotels and is soon to
open a big hotel in London. It has already
launched in Gabon, Libya, Turkev Portugal,
Czech Republic, and Hungary. -

Maita discovering Europe


Our Chamber is encouraging our
enterprises to branch out over-
seas. What we are saying is, if you
can sell here to Maltese people
and to tourists, why not in
Casablanca and Prague? They
have to do that. In the Chamber
we have an expert to assist small
and medium size business. Big
concerns like Corinthia, are big
enough to do it alone.

Our country is orienting itself
towards IT. Smart City is akin to
Dubai's Internet City. The gov-
ernment has given the go ahead
for it to be built here in the neigh-
bourhood of Ricasoli. This project
will create 5600 jobs for IT pro-
grammers and others. Maltese
people will work there.
Development of the area started
six months ago. Smart City will
be finished in five or six years.
We ii I.,il. have one computer
for six students. In six months
time we will have one computer
for four students, the highest rate
in the world. All classes will have
web classes.

N. 5 N.E. APRIL MAY 2008

We also have cruise liner tourism.
In the winter, 15 cruise ships dock
every week. Some of them come
in 12 months of the year. Even if
they come for just one day,
tourists spend money. The aver-
age tourist stays six to seven days.
When it's too cold in the North,
pensioners from UK or Germany
stay two, three weeks, sometimes
five weeks or more.

1 am very optimistic about the
economy. The Government can
afford to lower taxes. Salaries are
increasing and profits are increas-
ing. The overall revenue from
taxes has increased but the rates
have decreased, from 35 per cent
to 32 per cent. The Prime Minister
has announced that the economy
is strong enough to cut the top
rate of income tax from 35 per
cent to 25 per cent. And if you
,iiliciil. earn 12,000 a year,
you don't pay any income tax.
Unemployment is currently 6 per
cent which is very low. This has
gone down over the last five
years. The govemment deficit has
decreased as well as the national
debt. All these factors opened the
way for Malta to join the Euro
zone.We believe that our entry

into the euro zone will allow our
economy to prosper; GDP will
grow and debt will go down.

Malta has very high numbers of
migrant workers. As a small
country, it is not always easy to
find the right skill sets.
Computer specialists, for exam-
ple, usually come from Europe
and especially the UK. The hotel
industry attracts workers from
Italy and France. Building indus-
try workers come from African
and Mediterranean.Without such
workers, salaries would go up
and companies would be less

Malta has a housing problem
because during the First and
Second World Wars, a lot of hous-
es were destroyed in air attacks.
The government voted a law to

in malta

S,:, -ib :ut rh.- pF, r .- ._l l[ r.li i I-- bL L .n_ r o:,n', :,r _:l '.i i.h

_lrl,_r :lrnd ,:,n, ir- a o,: rline ,r :re intel:epr,.,1 b, r I Ir_-_ oi .
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make it very easy to rent a house
if your building had been
destroyed. This law has not
changed since and is very
favourabale for tenants. You, your
children and even your children'
children can stay in a house at the
original rental price and the owner
is responsible for all the mainte-
nance. People still live in nice
houses and pay just 100 per
month. The law changed in 1994,
but only for new tenants, not for
previous ones. If you are an
owner, you often prefer to leave
the house empty. The Chamber of
Commerce is lobbying the
Government for a change of this
law but it is hesitating. It is afraid
some people might not be able to
pay more. All factors have to be
carefully studied before the gov-
ernment makes any move.

Malta; Kevin J. Borg;
trade; economy; tourism;
information technology.

discovering Europe

id' hr


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[KiTiIl(]iiTii mii] iii lIIrTil"j


Congo Eza prints of dreams and realities

to feast your eyes on such a beauti-

Rarely do you have the opportunity
ful book of photographs featuring
the work of creative people from
this part of Africa. Congo Eza is the excep-
tion that proves the rule -although there have
been others, like the special edition of Revue
Noire in 2001 which extolled the virtues of
art photography. Congo Eza brings together
the contemporary reality of Congo, the recent
war and the bustle of everyday life and the
country's creativity.

The book is a collection of emotions and
snapshots. Black, white and in colour.
Spontaneity, dramatic composition, insolence,
revolt, transgression, light-heartedness and
humour: 24 photographers from diverse back-
grounds. They have one thing in common:
participatation in one of two artistic events
and training programmes organised by the
Wallonia-Brussels Delegation in Kinshasa
and the Foreign Relations section of the
French Community of Belgium, amongst
which 'Yambi', the 2007 Congolese Culture
festival in Belgium. The Brussels-based
AFRICALIA association decided to record

the success of their get-togethers in this high-
end publication.

Linking the the different sections of the book are
selected verbs in lingala which punctuate the
various chapters. Kokekola, to lean, to bring up,
to grow. The primarily black and white idealised
images evoke people's desire to lean from
books, in sports fields and from loved ones.
Sadly, also through that most common of chil-
dren's games 'playing at war', as singer and
poet, Marie-Louise Bibish Mumbu's introduc-
tion to this chapter explains. Her contribution is
a marvellous piece of writing. It is beautifully
written, as is allthe p.i,.l i i.,i .ii.inn i.iiI this
pictorial jourey through the kaleidoscope of
Congolese life, its hopes and dreams.

Other verbs in Lingala: kobouger, a word for to
move, to travel; i.. ,,. ...".. to love one another,
to make love; kobeta 1,.,,,..,, to survive, to get
by; komilakisa, to appear, to pose; kosambela,
to pray; kokoma, to write, to markto paint.
Finally, kopana bakambi, to choose, to vote, to
elect, featured in epigraph with a tragic, yet
amusing poem by the Congolese author, Fiston
Nasser Mwanza.

The publication's title is taken from
Ex reflecting:

Ex-Interational Congo Association
Ex-Upper Congo Study Committee
Ex-Independent State of Congo
Ex-Belgian Congo
Ex-Democratic Republic of Congo
Re-Democratic Republic of Congo

Congo ezalaki
Congo eza
Congo ezakoya
It used to be, it is there, it is coming...
........ (extract)

A book that is truly...How do you say 'mov-
ing' in Lingala?

Congo Eza, Africalia Edition & Roularta
Books, Brussels 2007, 264 pages H.G.M

Hegel Goutier; Congo; Zaire; Eza; Africalia;

N. 5 N.E. APRIL MAY 2008

tion's creator Lorenzo Fusi has joined them.
Considering the works presented, what is clear
is that the selected artists do not run the risk of
following African clichs in order to be
accepted or to sell abroad. This interesting
corpus of works though some slightly imma-
ture -is juxtaposed with the venue, which is
an amazing 15th century palace of with a suc-
cession of rooms, halls and ceilings decorated
with Renaissance-style paintings. The beauty
of the rooms is capped by a turret which,
besides offering the best 360-degree view of
Siena, is the location where Galileo had his
prison sentence commuted and was placed
under house arrest after having relinquished
the Catholic Church.
Another important element is the iconographic
material that the five artist-curators have pro-
vided in order to enhance the exhibition's
image: five dynamic, hard-hitting posters cov-
ering both the walls and floor of the entrance
room. This environment introduced the central
performance by Johan Thom during the open-
ing ceremony: for four hours, he endures having
broken glass and yellow oil poured on top of
The co-curators have also written the catalogue
texts to illustrate the contemporary situation of
South African artists. Kendell Geers' analysis of
the country's cultural systems is particularly
poignant: "Since the fall of apartheid South
Africa has been struggling to come to terms
with its violent history, struggling to find a bal-
ance between building a future and addressing
the imbalances of the past. [...] Instead of art
being celebrated for its excellence, the work of
art has been reduced to a politically correct
demographic with an emphasis on traditional
craft." In essence this is an accusation against
affirmative action policies that wanted to
reverse relations between blacks and whites,
and against which art was rebelling.
However, for white artists and writers, bridg-
ing the gap with their black counterparts often
resulted in the loss of credibility and by being
perceived to speak on behalf of oppressed
black people. With the end of apartheid, the
artists' most serious problem has been the dis-
appearance of a common "enemy" as well as
the need to find a new purpose for their work.
The young authors of .ZA, who grew up in
Mandela and Mbeki's Rainbow Nation, seem
to have positively solved this problem without
negative feelings towards their former enemy.
The exhibition comprises artwork about South
African identities and places, and highlights
the unsolved struggles of this multiethnic soci-
ety, while dealing with more universal themes
as well. In the performance-installation,
Serenade by Simon Gush, a local police car is



placed in the entrance of the old building. An
actor, dressed in a police uniform, then sits
inside the car and sings "Can't Take my Eyes
off of You" through speakers mounted on the
car's roof. It is quite strange (and disturbing) to
hear a policeman sing the sweet song, "I love
you baby! And if it's quite alright, I need you,
James Webb's The Black Passage is a narrow
dark corridor in which the visitor walks toward
the source of a rumbling sound the descent
into amine. At the end a light is the suggestion
of a half-closed door, but when we arrive we
find out that there is no way to go out. It is a
shocking and surreal experience to go into the
mine tunnel, but also evokes similar 'no way
out', both physically and psychologically.
Ismail Farouk's videos give us an interesting
representation of life in South African cities.
Photographs by Zanele Muholi shift the focus
to discrimination and identity issues from the

racial, gender and sexual perspectives. .*. i
Journey by Colleen Alborough, an interac-
tive installation: a labyrinth of veil curtains
in which the spectator becomes an active
part of the narrative and sensory path of the
dreams and nightmares of a mysterious per-
son sleeping.
Also, the leather figures by Nandipha
Mntambo move across the wall to elicit the
past. These figures are linked both to the dis-
ruptive and aggressive nature of South African
animals and to the elegance of 18th century
In sum, "new South African art" is not exclu-
sively related to apartheid anymore, though it
retains strong political and social tones. The
artists of .ZA perfectly illustrate the condition
of intellectuals placed in a peripheral position
within the new globalised world where
despite everything seeming to be near and pos-
sible -peripheries remain peripheries. M


Sandra Federici; South Africa; .ZA; Art;
Kendell Geers.

Johan Thom, Come in peace/Go to pieces, Performance,
2008 photo Ela Bialkowska -Palazzo delle Papesse

Club de Bamako Coura. Courtesy of Alban Baussiat.

This picture is part of a photo-report on the film industry
in Mali entitled 'Cins casss', published by the Belgian
photo agency Contraste. Website: www.albanbiaussat.com.

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Europe, Caribbean



Classical music in the mix

Music has been present since the worlds of Europe, Africa and the Americas first came
together. Even if it did not bring joy, music was a respite from the harshness of life at
that time. On their decks and in their holds, African slave ships and Europe's merchant
vessels carried not only slaves, buccaneers, settlers and merchandise but also culture
- in the form ofsongs and sad laments.

A frican influences in Caribbean art are now widely acknowl-
edged, but European influences were just as much in the
blend that would breathe into the essence of the islands and
their songs and dances, romanticism, sensual melancholy
and broad aspirations.
European music (especially that of Central and Eastern Europe) with its
dances -waltzes, mazurkas, pas de deux -and romanticism especial-
ly that of Central and Eastern Europe as embodied by Brahms and
Chopin, became part of the Caribbean fusion. At the turn of the 18th
century in Haiti, for example, the Polish -who often unwillingly
accompanied Napoleon's troops -would be the first Europeans to give
their support to the emerging nation. Their presence contributed to
spreading the violin and melancholic music. The influence of the violin
is also found in the folk music and dances of Dominica (merengue),
Cuba (guaracha), and Guadeloupe and Martinique (the zouk).
European heritage would become grounded in the roots of much of the
music of Cuba as well as that of Haiti, Puerto Rico and Martinique.
Among the burgeoning bourgeoisie, this classical music of Europe and
its local composers came to be known as 'scholarly music'('musique
savante'). In the first decade of the 19th century it would be taught at
the Milo School of Music, founded by King Christophe, in northern

Haiti and in the musical salons of Santo Domingo. Over time, this blend
would become more exciting with distinctive features.You might say,
more romantic, warmer, more mellow.
Such are the danzas of the Cuban Ignacio Cervantes (Duchasfrias and
three danzas) and Haitian Ludovic Lamothe (Danses espagnoles no. 2
in A minor, no. 3 in F minor, Dclaration) and works by Frank
Lassgue (Chanson du rivage no. 3) and Alain Clri (Prlude) are in
the second part of the concert by Michel Laurent, which opens with
pieces by Brahms (Waltzes, Opus 3) and Chopin (Mazurkas, Opus, 6 no
1, Opus 67 nos. 2, 3 and 4). Michel Laurent's fluid, graceful and pas-
sionate interpretation completely captures the sensuality of this famous
repertoire. H.G.M
Theatre Molire, Brussels, 26 April, 20.00
'Danzas des deux mondes' will be organising regular concerts on the fusion between the
classical music of Europe and the Caribbean. Info: danzas2worlds@hotmail.com
Hegel Goutier; Music; classic; Haiti; Cuba; Ignacio Cervantes;
Ludovic Lamothe; Frank Lassgue; Alain Clri; Michel Laurent.


, it ii'.


I or younger readers

T.T. Fons


Courtesy of the author

N. 5 N.E. APRIL MAY 2008

J our say

fi We are interested
W u[u I[uI |in your point of view
and your reactions

ed f to the articles.
So do tell us
Readers Wwhat you think.

Many thanks for the issues of Courier sent to
the Lyce Evariste of Parny (Reunion Island).
We are putting the articles to very good use.

( lii i'im Fourest

It has been some years since I have had the
privilege of reading the Courier. I think ail

politicians and aspiring politicians should
study the articles. If they do, I think they will
better be able to contribute to the overall
development of their countries.
Courtney Lafleur,

I have just received the last issue of the Courier
(on Haiti and Romania). My Compliments for

the good layout and interesting content. It
has ail the potential of becoming a significant
publication. Keep it up!

Andrea Frazzetta,
photographer Agenzia Grazia Neri,
Milano, Italy

Addrs Th Courer 45 Ru de Trve 100 -usl Blim
e al no@acp-ucurir.n- wesie wvwape ucourS S


June September 20C

June 2008

> 13-5 FAO High level conference on
world food security and the chal-
lenges of climate change and bio-
energy, Rome, Italy

> 17-18 WHO TRIPS Council in Geneva

> 8-13 87th Session of the ACP Council of
Ministers, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

> 8-13 33rd Session of the ACP EC
Council of Ministers, Addis Ababa,

> 25-27 3rd ACP Civil Society Forum,
Brussels, Belgium

> 26-1 African Union Summit, Sharm el
Sheik, Egypt

> 30-2 CARIFORUM EU Business
Summit and Business Forum,



> 2-5 Twenty-ninth Regular Meeting of
the Conference of Heads of
Govemment, Antigua and Barbuda

> 12 CARICOM-Spain Summit,
Zaragoza, Spain

> 15-16 CRNM Trade Negotiations
Bootcamp, Haiti

> 16-18 ACP-UN Habitat Meeting, Dar es
Salaam, Tanzania

> 17-18 WTO Committee on Regional
Trade Agreements in Geneva

> 23-25 WTO Trade Policy Review,

> 29-30 WTO General Council in Geneva

CARICOM -Canada Summit, in Ottawa
(date to be decided)

Strasbourg, France is the location for the
third edition of European Development
Days (EDD), 15-17 November 2008.



> 19-21 Annual Pacific Forum Meeting,
Niue (to be confirmed)


> 12-13 Forum for Media and
Development, Ouagadougou,
Burkina Faso

> 23-25 UN Africa's development needs,
New York, USA

CARICOM: Caribbean Community (15 Member
CARIFORUM: The forum of the Caribbean ACP
CRNM: Caribbean Regional Negotiating
EU-LAC: European Union-Latin America &
WTO: World Trade Organisation


flB ica IbIl'n i aIi

ain ErI 1 e iUi II


'li 6 {i, -lll,'. *:i



Antigua and i i.i i ,- :l i,, ,I Barbados Belize Cuba Dominica Dominican
,-i.,,ii.i. "i.-i,,-i, i: i,, H i nii i aica Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint
..,. ,- ii.-, ,,-. i e Trinidad and Tobago



: jiii,, i ... .. ,I II -'' '. ,,, i_ l.,il- ,il ., iL i.l l i.1 1 ,iii I, i, ii i ,iiilir i..
, ll. .IIJ IE.I L TT .... ;i I n I l ll l ll lr l .lll II.I r 1 1 1 l, 1 II I' I I. 1 T I ,I

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Cook Islands Federated States of Micronesia Fiji Kiribati Marshall Islands Nauru Niue
Palau Papua New Guinea Samoa Solomon Islands Timor Leste Tonga Tuvalu Vanuatu


1 ,

Austria ,-i7 r,i r 8ii i ,i ./p L i I 11111 i France
German ''. ,I r i i Ir-, I Malta
Netherlands Poland Portugal : '"" ", i I-,-, United

oe -
*' t

The lists of countries published by The Courier do not prejudice the status of these countries and territories now or in the future. The Courier uses maps from a variety of sources.
Their use does not implv recognition of anv particular boundaries nor prejudice the status of anv state or territory.

*-r (I Q~ i,