The African societies in Eastern Mediterranean University today, the 28th of April 2016 organized an Inter–African debate. The debate held in Blue Hall of Business and Economics Faculty. The debate was hosted by the Cameroonian Student Society in collaboration with Zimbabwean, Nigerian and Tunisia Student Societies.
The event is the first of its kind and in the spirit of oneness, it is organized to stimulate idea sharing, creating awareness and above all applying all lessons learnt theoretically in various classes to topical issues in Africa. The Debate was in two categories and each one was addressing a different topic; under the chair of Assist. Prof. Dr. Baruck Opiyo. In attendance were other faculty members, African students and few students from other countries outside Africa.
Education at home is better than education abroad was the first topic deliberated on by debaters from Cameroon and Zimbabwe. Each team consisted of three persons and the Cameroonian side spoke against the motion and Zimbabwean side spoke for the motion. The second debate session was between Nigeria and Tunisian debaters and the topic was; ” Is Africa the cause of its underdevelopment?” Which Tunisian side spoke for the motion and Nigerian side spoke against the motion.
It was an engaging session as all participants spoke well. Most importantly, debaters mentioned topical and trending issues in the continent to buttress their arguments at all levels. The debate was not any different from any competition as there were members of jury. The jury members were Asst. Prof. Dr. John Albert Turner, Assist. Prof Dr. Umut Bozkurt and 6 other members of the societies represented. At the end of every competition like this one, a winner will always emerge. For the first category of the debate, the Zimbabwean side won over the host, Cameroon with 67 points out of hundred. The Cameroonian side had 58 points out of hundred. Meanwhile, the 2nd debate ended with Nigerian side emerging the winner with 65 points while the Tunisian side had 60.5.
The event ended with the certification of all the participants and members of Jury in appreciation for their contributions to make the event successful.
By Sheena Munbang
Gundem Voxpop is a new public opinion program brought to you by Gundem English Online Newspaper and the underlying goal is to educate students about Eastern Mediterranean University in a fun way. In this episode, we asked students if Eastern Mediterranean University could be a food, what would it be? Click here to see the second episode
Christmas is the celebration of Jesus Christ by the Christians. Its a festive season where the Christians celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ by coming together to share food, bible stories and songs with families and loved ones. This celebration has been in existence since time immemorial and it is still being celebrated. This year, the Eastern Mediterranean University celebrated the birth of Christ by organizing a Christmas program for all. The program brought together students from different countries in the spirit of Christmas. It was organized to make the students of the university feel at home away from home. It was also organized to remind them that they are part of the EMU family.
We spoke to the organizer of this year’s EMU Christmas event, Miss Fiona Kafakure, a research assistant at international office. She told us about the preparations. She accedes that “A large population of students that form the international student community are Christians. However, we have decided to put together a Christmas celebration. We made a rough list of the activities we want to do this semester and the Christmas celebration was part of it. We started organizing this event a month ago, postal designs were made, Facebook announcements were floated and we got school sponsorship from the school and some students supported the event. The program is to bring together different people from all around the world to come celebrate, and we hope to achieve this”.
The event took place at Eastern Mediterranean University cultural center on 25th December 2015. The event recorded EMU student attendees from different countries. The program was spectacular this year as there were different performances and activities. The Vice Rector for student affairs, Prof. Dr. Hıfsiye Pulhan gave a speech. In attendance were pastors from different churches and the major activities of the night was from EMU classical choir and special performance from students that included dance and drama.
We spoke with the coordinator of the international office; Mr Ahmed Kasim on this year’s Christmas celebration and he said ” every year we try to improve the standard of the Christmas program, this year Fiona is the organizer of this program, they have all worked very hard and we have supported them fully anyway we can, we organize this program for the student, to enjoy and feel like they are home, we try to give them that feeling they get when they are home. everything here is done for the students”.
We spoke with a Nigerian student, Hope Nancy about the event and she stated that ” Christmas is annual event for Christians, we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. I have been here for two years now and this year is so different, i actually enjoyed the Christmas and i was excited. Thanks to EMU and the international office for organizing this program, we really enjoyed it.”. A Turkish student Walid Nawaz, also talked about the Christmas and the program organized by school; ” Christmas is like a spiritual belief, and today, we are here together trying to enjoy this day and our beliefs. It was a great idea for the university to plan such event for us to celebrate Christ. I think its a nice thing to do”.
By Deborah Sylvester
Looking back to previous years in football history, we can emphatically say that major football leagues have the big, consistent and undisputed two, three or four champions. As we know the game of football has never been about just kicking the ball to the goal net. It is a game that symbolizes peace, happiness, power, and above all a game that brings the spirit of togetherness. Looking at football from this point of view in major FIFA leagues, the likes of the English premier league, the Budesliga, the Spanish la liga and the Seria A, one would notice that there has been dramatic changes in recent time; thus, there is another history to be written and yes it is already starting. The changes in football story can be seen in English premier league for the case we are going to analyze here.
There are so many assertions to make as to these changes but lets start this way. Since the past 5 years in the premier league, one can never tell who would win the first place of the league, who would finish in the second, third and fourth place respectively and who would be going to the champions league in the up coming season. These unanswered questions tend to bother the officials and sponsors of the EPL. Unlike before where it was so easy to predict who would win the game. Things have really changed. Now, when people ask who would win the league, those asked just make predictions based on sentiments but deep down, they know that nothing is sure. 7 years ago, there used to be the indivisible big four. The likes of Liverpool, Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal. These teams before possess the power, the resources, the players to go to champions league each year and represent the EPL. Now the story has changed. Tottenham and Manchester city have been active lately especially with their participation in champions league. So the big question now is, are there still any certified big four. If your answer is yes, then who are they?
Now to the details, the noticeable beginning of the changes was when Liverpool could not make it to the top four, Manchester United were left out of the champions league before, even Chelsea were left out once but were very lucky that in the same season they clinched the UEFA champions league and they were to come back as a defending champion and not necessary because they qualified from the EPL as keeping the first four positions. The truth is that the top four according to the books have been the major flaw in today’s football. Taking a look at the recent happening, Manchester united known as the red devils are no longer going red right now, to be sincere, the red is going dark. Since the past two to three seasons, Manchester united have been finding it hard to win games, the old tradition of their counter attack tactics seems not to working lately. When ever you want to get bored, I guess a Manchester united game would do just that. To show that Manchester united has really been down for sometime now. They were knocked out in the round of 16 in the champions league and it is not the normal tradition for Manchester united. It shows clearly that the bigger boys are now little babies and the game of football is getting into another dimension. Clearly, the Manchester united of 2008 who wore the red AIG jersey cannot be compared to the Manchester united now. It is almost like the red is different and the devil is going out of old Trafford.
Looking at Arsenal, we all know that they are part of the big four, but on a second thought with all sincerity; are they really among the real four? There is no doubt that their style of football is amazing. Recently, they seem to be doing well from all indications, i guess if you ask their fans, they will say its not easy to occupy the second position in the EPL. But record shows that Arsenal FC have not been able to win any major trophy. It is ultimately important to note that for the past 10 years, the team have not been able to win the most important title in English football, the English premier league title. Arsenal has never recorded wining the most prestige trophy in competitive football: the UEFA champions league title. It clearly shows that the big boys are not so big if they cannot win the biggest trophies. Football is difficult, it is changing, it is unpredictable to know who the winner of a particular match would be until the referees final whistle of the match.
As for Liverpool, since the past five years, they have been flushed away from the position of the top four by the city side. Manchester City FC seems to have taken their place with all indications. This shows that they can’t retain or fight for their spot as one of the big four which is not a good feature of a big team.
It seems the best would be the worse and the worse the best as the favorite of the English premier league in the 2015/2016 season; Chelsea FC has really disappointed football lovers. Chelsea were the defending champions of the English premier league but since the season started they have found their self losing 9 matches out 17 matches played in this season living them in the 15th position. The truth of the matter is that Chelsea’s current squad is the same with the set of players that won the title last season but unfortunately for them, things are not going well in their favor. To be sincere, they are still that old Chelsea but the truth is that the football history is becoming new. The game is growing and no small team again in the league. Losing to Bournemouth and Leicester City shows that the English premier leagues clubs respects no name. Now that we all have witnessed the dismissal of Mourinho, lets watch and see if the decision will be worth it. As of this day, Leicester City is topping the league with 38 points. Interesting, right?
In conclusion, the new changes in history of football is not just in the premier league alone but in major FIFA leagues like the Budesliga, the Spanish La liga, and the Seria A. They are all facing this same problem whereby the said bigger teams are been trashed by the smaller underdogs and this is as a reason of the dramatic change in football. Like they say; Change is the only constant thing in life.
By Hope Ohiomoren
Faculty of Communications and Media Studies organized a seminar as part of the human rights activities on human rights sensitive news reporting in the refugee context and it was delivered by legal practitioner, Faika Deniz Paşa from the Association of Refugee Rights at the faculty’s Purple Hall.
The event started at 2:40 pm with the introduction of the topic and speaker by Assoc. Prof Dr. Hanife Aliefendioğlu. In attendance were other faculty members; Assoc. Prof. Dr. Nurten Kara Assist. Prof. Dr. Metin Ersoy, Assist. Prof. Dr. Ülfet Kutoğlu and Assist. Prof. Dr. Yetin Arslan . Other Attendees were research assistants and students of the faculty.
The speaker, Faika Deniz Paşa introduced herself as a legal practitioner who helps refugees with legal and psychological needs and she immediately delved into the discourse of the day. For an introduction, she defined refugees as ‘people who leave their countries because of war or persecution due to nationality, race, religion, political opinion or membership in a group and their countries of origin cannot protect them’. She further stated the two known rights of a refugee which is Non-refoulement; a customary law based on the level of advancement the world as attained that makes the rights human being not be infringed and Non-penalization for irregular entry which is a right that guides refugees who might have lost their passport or lack visa to enter into a country.
To her treatment of the day, she declared as facts that some media outlets use frames like asylum seeker, refugee and illegal immigrant and they use them wrongly and interchangeably in reporting news. In her words; ‘reporting refugee news should be based on charter of Rome. A take that says all news reports about refugees should pose them anonymous leaving their identity unknown’. The high point of the seminar was her emphasis on the phrase ‘illegal immigrant’ which has been used wrongly by a slew of media outlets. She emphasized that ‘goods and cigarettes for instance can be illegal but not humans ’.
Faika Deniz Paşa also condemned the pithy use of pity words in the media like ‘they need help’ for refugees. She stated that the narrative is wrong and it should stop because the media shapes public opinion and since they do, the media audiences are made to think that refugees have no right which she totally dissents.
According to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which was avowed by the United Nations General Assembly on 10 December 1948, all humans regardless of the age, sex, race, occupation have the Right to life, liberty and personal security (Article 3). The world today is faced with extreme abuse of this article based on the intense global terror and tension especially in Africa and Middle East. Death toll in Nigeria, Somalia, Syria and Yemen in 2015 is dismaying and unfortunately the attacks in all of these regions are still ongoing and getting worse on a daily. Thousands of innocent civilians have lost their lives and so many have fled their homes, leaving away their establishments, jobs, and even in some cases their loved ones.
With the unfortunate state of the world full of tension and panic, the big question now is that are we really supposed to celebrate today December 10th 2015 as human rights day? Going by definition of celebration; it is a joyful occasion for special festivities to mark some happy event. May be the word “mark ” will be better instead of celebration. This question and many more open ended questions like this are open to me and you to answer. As earlier highlighted, thousands of people have been displaced around the world and some of us are lucky not to be in those discomfort zones. That we feel we have the right to live, be free and to feel safe might not be worth the joy because anyone can truly become a refugee. I really don’t think it’s ever a plan set out by anyone in good health and in good faith to flee for safety from their comfort zone.
Like the popular African proverb, “When two elephants fight, it is the grass that gets trampled” which is the case in all of these regions. This proverb paints a picture for us and it can be understood from two different views. From the political perspective, the power tussle among the elites always bounce on the civilians and from the humanistic perspective, the fight between predominantly adult men always affect the innocent kids and women. The pain of the innocent children who don’t understand the situation in all of this troubled zones is the pain of the world. You know why? as you might have imagined, children in all of these troubled regions will want to ask why adults can be so much in disagreement that they turn things this much apart. It is undisputedly a state of ill-being for them due to the affliction of the wars. As we continue to hope that the state of the world ameliorate rather than exacerbate, the meaning of the condensed memorable saying “Peace is costly but it is worth the expense” becomes more clear and concise.
By Elega Adeola