In 2012, I had a question: where are the skateparks in Accra? I didn’t get a satisfactory answer. 5 years later, this question might just be answered. If we successfully fund a proper skatepark in Accra that is.
Make we speak Pidgin chale!
I have already spelled out my thoughts on Pidgin. Predictably, I have taken flack for those thoughts, so the first time I heard that the BBC is launching a service in Pidgin, I had a really good laugh. Like many, I still have memories of all the warnings from my Ghanaian teachers that Pidgin ruins one’s English. To hear that the British Broadcasting Corporation (of all the world’s English-exporting corporations) is launching a service in Pidgin…
Okay: I’m still laughing.
How do I feel about it though? Part of me thinks it is a great idea. It allows information about our world to reach more people, and for more people to potentially participate in sharing their information and experiences with the rest of the world. It also celebrates a language that has thanklessly served and entertained us for centuries. What’s not to like?
However, another part of me hates…
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Xornam wiped sweat from her brow and dug into another orange. So much for pleasing papa. Everyone knew she was enterprising. Not papa. She rarely cared for his opinions but, he had said something unforgivable and unsettling.
More unforgivable than Ho’s dehydrating heat. She sighed. This was important, she would stomach her discomfort and clear the pan of oranges on her head.
Getting the oranges was fairly easy. But not for most people. This guaranteed she would be a hit. Except, nobody was buying. Some occasional stares from people with hints of nostalgic longing and…nothing. Evening was near and she had sold nothing.
She walked beside an incessantly honking taxi and peeked inside. There were a bionic driver and a woman in the back, who looked like she might soon crap a baby. Wow, just wow! Hadn’t this woman heard of the Procreation Department or egg-pods at least?
Unless she was one of those Luddites, then no luck. This was Ho, where traffic was thicker than groundnut paste and Mondays, more loathsome than the terrifying Christian fundamentalists.
They weren’t getting through.
Xornam sauntered on. A sudden, violent chill crept up her skin. Xornam turned around. She screamed…no, not quite, she couldn’t. She swallowed and stared.
Slimy, man-sized tentacles slithered out of the taxi. She looked on, horrified, as a tentacle decapitated the driver.
The woman screamed and Xornam unwillingly ran towards her, deftly balancing her oranges. The woman was crapping out a baby alright, except, it wasn’t a baby. Instead, some, thing, with razor-sharp tentacles. Babies aren’t programmed that way, right?
Chaos erupted as people run helter-skelter towards safety.
Swish, slice, grip, dice! The tentacles were everywhere, choking, slicing and sparing Xornam, stopping inches from her face, contemplating her call to glory.
The tentacles wrecked everything, exempting her and the screaming mother who writhed in pain and possibly regret. She must’ve known, Xornam reasoned.
Xornam reached her and pulled on the largest tentacle. Xornam tugged, the thing, whatever it was, struggled against her. It thrashed about and forced her back. She was going to save this woman or die trying.
She tightened her grip and yanked with all her might. The thing erupted from the woman, something of a cross between an octopus and a roach.
The roachtopus looked repulsed and tried to back away. She held on. Then it desperately smacked her oranges away.
Xornam understood; oranges were its weakness. Roachtopus wrapped her in its tentacles and squeezed.
Her dead mother handed her an orange. She took it and immediately awakened, hovering above the ground and cocooned in a glorious, golden glow. She pointed at the roachtopus and watched it implode in horrified relief.
“No shit” she cursed between hysterical outbursts. Papa was semi-right. She wasn’t human. A terribly selfish creature however, that was a lie. She was…
“You’re up Agent Orange” spoke the pilot into her intercom, zapping Xornam from her memories. She looked down at the swarming insectoid forms and smiled, time to glow!
2016 has been such an amazing year and we have you to thank. Our biggest gratitude goes to you creative folk consistently producing content that makes us smile or frown, inspires and depresses us, and above all, feeds us something beautifully important to form our opinions of the continent around. We say a big akpe to you! Yours is the biggest end of year/ holiday present to us.
In return, we offer you Nkarim Chronicles, one of the finest comics from Nigeria that you’ve probably never heard of. The lucky few that know of Nkarim Chronicles know this beauty is a re-imagination of soccer as an alternative to warfare. How you ask?
By jumping into the colorful and action packed world of Nkarim chronicles at these links.
We’re grateful to Canary 7even, the guys behind the comic who gave us permission…
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NCAG our Facebook group is kick starting its tutorial week an initiative that aims to teach people who are interested in the art of comic making how to make comics in a stage by stage process. here’s a message from the groups admin announcing the beginning of tutorial week.
” Hi guys so we decided to kick start a new initiative called ncag tutorial week
basically for seven days we will share with you tips tricks and videos
that wil help you , guide you through the process of making a comic book from start to finish
we aim to enlighten and empower those who care to participate during the seven day period
i personally implore you guys to participate , share and comment fill free to ask questions and if
your not comfortable asking it openly inbox me and my fellow admins.
and to those with a working knowledge…
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June XII is the title and lead character in Ibrahim “Sirgai” Ganiyu’s comic. June XII marks the first elections after the 1983 military coup that resulted in the widely acknowledged victory of Moshood Abiola in 1993 and subsequently, its annulment by Ibrahim Babaginda and eventually, General Sonny Abacha’s coup.
The day is celebrated by some in pro-Abiola states. In a 2013 interview with Vanguard, Senator Roland Owie argued that, while the elections were free and fair, the events leading to Abiola’s candidature and presumed victory weren’t as rosy. That notwithstanding, the day stands as a herald of Nigerian democracy and some have even hailed it as Nigeria’s true democracy day. This is most likely Sirgai’s inspiration for the comic and we’re grateful for the birth of a living corruption eraser.
On the twenty-third anniversary of the day that spurred the comic, we share our thoughts.