Friday, February 25, 2011

Up-date on South African Kids' Health

According to Discovery's Vitality programme, in 2007, the Healthy Active Kids SA Report Card showed that South African kids scored a C- for health. In 2010, a new report card was compiled to assess whether there had been a change in the state of kids’ health since then.
The research panel was expanded for the 2010 Report Card

For this report card, the panel was expanded to include important partners from the Health Sciences Research Council, the Medical Research Council, several tertiary academic institutions, and health-related non-governmental organisations, along with the private sector. They examined the best and most recent peer-reviewed evidence concerning healthy eating, physical activity, tobacco and alcohol use in children and adolescents in South Africa. Here’s what was found…

Results from the 2010 Healthy Active Kids SA Report Card

Physical activity:

■There has been a decline in physical activity amongst youth. The 2007 report card showed that 45% of teens surveyed reported doing enough physical activity to be considered health-enhancing, this decreased to 43% in 2010
■Less than a third of youth reported doing any moderate activity, and nearly 42% did little or no physical activity weekly.
Overweight and obesity:

■There has been an increase in the number of overweight and obese children.
■The findings showed that there was an increase from 17% to 20% for being overweight, and 4% to 5% for obesity.
‘Screen time’:

■This has increased by 4%, with nearly 1 in 3 South African adolescents watching more than 3 hours of television daily. (Increased screen time is linked to overweight and obesity.)
Unhealthy eating:

■There has been no improvement in the score for unhealthy eating.
■A recent survey showed that nearly 30% of those interviewed consumed fast food between 2 and 3 times per week
■There is no indication that tuck-shop intake or food choices have changed in kids since 2007.

■Prevalence of smoking amongst adolescents has remained constant since the last report card
■Nearly 30% of teens surveyed reported having ever smoked, with 1 in 5 admitting to being current smokers. This is well above the global prevalence for children and youth.
At this stage, South African children’s overall mark for health remains at C-.

Improving the state of children’s health

Although these trends are concerning, studies like this have given us insight into the actions that need to be taken to improve the state of children’s health. They have also led to an increasing number of programmes that have been implemented to further children’s health promotion in South Africa.

One such programme is the Vitality Schools Programme, which aims to educate learners, teachers, parents and the wider community with regard to leading healthier, more active lifestyles.

It is ideal to set healthy lifestyle habits early on in life, so join the movement these initiatives have begun, and start improving kids’ health at home as well.

More information on the Vitality Schools Programme

For more information on the Vitality Schools Programme please visit

Wednesday, February 16, 2011


Indeed, few things that can be done in times of grave emergencies. Your mobile phone can be one of these few life savers or an emergency tool for survival. Check out the things that you can do with it:

1ST: Emergency call!!!

The Emergency Number worldwide for all Mobile Phones is “112”. If you find yourself out of the coverage area of your mobile network and there is an emergency, dial “112” and your mobile will search any existing network in your area to establish the emergency number for you. Interestingly, this number – “112” - can be dialed even if the keypad is locked.

NOTE: This works on all phones worldwide and is free. It is the equivalent of “000”.

2ND: Reserve Phone Battery Power.
When your phone is almost dead activate a hidden reserve cell phone battery power by pressing the 6 keys - *3370# - (good to memorize, remember the asterisk). Your mobile will restart in a special way with this new reserve and the instrument will show a 50% increase in battery life. This reserve will get recharged when you charge your mobile next time.

NOTE: This secret is in the fine print in most phone manuals. Most people however skip this information without realizing.

3RD: Anti-robbery support through ATM PIN Number Reversal - Good to Know!!!
If you should ever be forced by a robber to withdraw money from an ATM machine, you can notify the police by entering your PIN # in reverse. For example, if your pin number is 1234, then you would put in 4321. The ATM system recognizes that your PIN number is backwards from the ATM card you placed in the machine. The machine will still give you the money you requested, but unknown to the robber, the police will be immediately dispatched to the location.
NOTE: All ATM’s carry this emergency sequencer by law.

4TH: Disabling a STOLEN mobile phone to discourage rampant theft!
To check your Mobile phone's serial number, key in the following 5 digits on your phone - *#06# - (Ensure you put an asterisk BEFORE the #06# sequence).
A 15 digit code will appear on the screen. This number is unique to your handset. Write it down and keep it somewhere safe. If your phone ever gets stolen, you can phone your service provider and give them this code. They will then be able to block your handset so even if the thief changes the SIM card, your phone will be totally useless. You probably won't get your phone back, but at least you know that whoever stole it can't use/sell it either. If everybody done this, there would be no point in people stealing mobile phones.
NOTE: This secret is also in the fine print of most mobile phone manuals. It was created for the very purpose of trying to prevent phones from being stolen.

5TH: Remote unlocking of your car - have you locked your keys in the car?
Does your car have a remote (keyless) entry? Good reason to own a cell phone:

If you happen to lock your keys in the car and the spare keys are far away (for example at home), call someone who can access the spare keys (e.g. at home) on their mobile phone using your cell phone, and open your car at a distance.
How to proceed: Hold your cell phone about a foot from your car door and have the person at your home press the unlock button, holding it near the mobile phone on their end. Your car will unlock. This saves someone from having to drive your keys to you. Distance is no object. You could be thousands of miles away, and if you can reach someone who has the other 'remote' for your car, you can unlock the doors (or the trunk).

This information was recently broadcast on by Crime Stoppers however it is seldom used because people just don't know about it. It could be helpful to pass this along to family and friends; since this can be the kind of information people wouldn't mind receiving.

Please note that I am not the original author of this. I just thought of sharing great ideas.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Developing reading habits in children

Most parents will agree that reading habit can't be developed over night. You must spend some time and put in hard effort to encourage your kids to read more in a consistent manner.

For beginning readers, you are reminded to select books that match their skill level. Don't expect your kids to love reading immediately. You must help them to find the suitable books. For your information, younger children enjoy books that use word repetition, rhymes and predictable text. Hence, you should look for books with colorful pictures and simple words for them. For instance, if your kids have favorite books, they may enjoy other books written by the same author. You can get different books written by the same author for them.

You are reminded to find out what your children are interested in. Then, you should help them to choose the books that are related to their interests. Once they start showing their preferences, you can encourage them to choose the books on their own.

When the young children have already started reading, you can select a wide variety of books for them. You are advised to choose those books that you can read together with them. At the same time, you can also choose books which your kids can read to you. By doing so, you are able to share some nice stories with your kids and it helps to develop their reading habit.

What if your kids do not like reading at the first place? Don't worry. Never ever force them to read. You can encourage them to write along when they read. You can ask your children to produce artwork or make their own books. You can even ask them to make their own bookmarks. By doing so, they will be able to develop a reading habit slowly.

It is not necessary to read at home. You can ask your kids to read any material wherever they go. When you go shopping, you can ask your kids to read the sign boards or the names of the products. By doing so regularly, I am sure you will be able to start building their background knowledge and vocabulary easily.

In order to achieve great success, you need to apply the above mentioned strategies in a smart manner. At the same time, you need to have great patience in creating good learning environment for the young kids.

Monday, February 14, 2011


Mbappe Lepe's Photos - CAMEROON NATIONAL SOCCER TEAM 1970 ; Talking of Cameroon as a Soccer Power House...Is Talking Efficacy of the Trail Blazing Squad of the Sorcerers/Pioneers Versus the present money blinded young whatever of the Indomitable Lions of Cameroon.

Cameroon National Team shortly before CAN 1970 (1968)
Squatting from left to right: Tokoto JP (Oryx), Mbappe Lepe (Oryx),
Manga Onguene (Canon), Mbette Isaac (Caïman), Epacka (Caïman)
Standing, from left to right: Mukoko Confiance (Oryx), Atangana Ottou
"Remetter" (Diamant), Bassenguen "Docta" du (Dragon Yaoundé), Owon...a Norbert (Union), Ndoumbè franzt(Caïman), Oyono ’Cogefar’ (Tonnerre)

Yes - they - can!!
“Cameroon is the first nation to have prematurely crashed out from the 2010 World Cup with zero point”. Who can claim to have easily digested such a lamentable adventure of our indomitable Lions? Where is that passion and anxiety to win by wetting the national tricolour jerseys, defeating the opponent in style and giving pride to the entire nation! We are filled with hope that it is still possible to acquire and celebrate the glories of the present, not just that of the past, that of the time of Felix Mbappe Leppe, Theophile Abega, Roger Milla, Ndip Akem Victor, et al. Closely observing this recent World Cup in South Africa like many others, the evenness between the African, American, Asian and European football was flagrant. Yet a certain lack of optimism and self confidence could be noticed in our national team. As a result, the dismay and damning results sent us off the tiny door with humiliation. While in the main time, other determined teams demonstrated an unprecedented combative spirit with no complex.
Sports and football in particular is a formidable unifying factor and, it would therefore be in the interest of the national authorities to guarantee its smooth running. The glories of the Lions are celebrated the same way in Kousseri, Kumbo, Mbalmayo, as in Esu, Edinau and all over. And similarly, the woes of the Lions give the same pain to Cameroonians of all levels, wherever they are across the globe. The psycho-emotional investment in their national team is based on no political affiliation, social status or geographical origins, it is simply the same. It is quite comprehensively acceptable for the ‘Indomitable Lions’ to be beatable, but hardly acceptable to see them pitifully ejected from such a popular competition. From Johannesburg to Rustenburg via Durban, no victory, no draw, only defeats conceded. No! deserve better! No! Cameroon...we deserve better!

Our players should be made to understand that, the national team’s jersey should be worn by the deserved, and playing for the nation is no favour to the nation, but a brave assignment for the nation. They should avoid demonstrating their Lion’s claws in the media, but on the football pitch like responsible Lions. The national team’s preparation cannot be done on a short term basis with just a few training sessions. It is a long term Herculean task that requires a resilient familiarisation of players who keep on together in many matches and several training sessions. This should also be handled and accompanied by a stable Manager who is also able to select and work with the best local players nationwide and destroy any clannish idea in the team. Though in a tailspin, the rank and reputation that Cameroon still enjoys in football internationally is left-of-all encouraging, and in order to progress, we must start investing in sports and football facilities nationally. This is crucial and vital because it would be thanks to these infrastructures that our sports men and women will be prepared and be able to compete with their opponents in the upcoming competitions. The world is fast-moving ahead; we can’t afford to stay stagnant when we have the means to advance. From these facts, we must cross the threshold of appointments¬¬ - ceremonies and then infightings for personal interests. Let’s do the real work and build a real sports nation, worthy of the name.

The recent African Nations Cup did significantly boost the Angola’s economy from Luanda to Cabinda and elsewhere nationwide. Different construction worksites were put up as employees were hired, buildings, as different infrastructures appeared from the grounds. Similarly, the socio-economic fruits of the recently organised World Cup were harvested from the chic suburbs of Durban, Cape-town, same as in the poor Townships of Soweto to the business quarters of Johannesburg etc. Tomorrow will be the turn of Gabon and Equatorial Guinea to host the African Cup of Nations, 2012 Olympics are for London, and then Brazil is to host both the World Cup and the Olympics in 2014 and in 2016 respectively. Cameroon too should enter the race and bid to host one of these sponsored tournaments. This will help and build both the formal and the informal sectors’ economy nationally. The population will also enjoy the high demand of manpower, which will construct different infrastructures nationwide.

As a Cameroonian also haunted by our humiliating performance in South Africa, I think the moment of bitterness and frustration is over. Now is time to move forward with proposals in order to find solutions and carry out sports nicely and safely. We’ve got to critically revolutionise this unifying factor of fame [sports] which strengthens and brings people together from all angles of the nation, irrespective of their differences.
Long Live the roaring Lions...Long Live the winning Cameroon.
Original article written by Benjamin Bin Meh

Thursday, February 10, 2011

African Leaders who have manipulated the constitution over the years to stay in Power.

FabAfriq dug into the annals of history to uncover constitutional changes made by African Leaders to 'eternalize' themselves power and we noticed that in Algeria, A constitutional amendment was passed by the Parliament in 2008, abolishing the two-term limit for rulers, allowing President Abdelaziz Bouteflika to be re-elected. Bouteflika has had three five-year mandates, starting with his election in 1999. The next elections are due in 2014.

Meanwhile When President Blaise Compaore of Burkina Faso reached the end of his first two seven-year terms in office in 2005, the constitutional council ruled that a 2000 amendment to the constitution limiting the president to two five-year terms did not apply to him since it took effect while he was president. This cleared the way for his candidacy in the 2005 election, which he won. Compaoré, who took power in a coup in 1987, was elected in 1991 and has been re-elected twice. In the presidential elections of November 2010, the incumbent won by a landslide

The National Assembly in Cameroon voted in 2008 to change the 1996 constitution to remove the limit of two presidential terms, allowing President Paul Biya to run for re-election in 2011. Biya assumed the presidency upon the resignation of his predecessor in 1982 and was subsequently elected (as the sole candidate) in 1984 and 1988. He was re-elected again in 1992 in the country’s first multiparty presidential election, then re-elected in 1997 and 2004. He is scheduled to run again for the 2011 presidential election.

In 2005, a referendum in Chad approved a change to the constitution removing a two-term limit, which allowed President Idriss Deby to run for a third term in 2006.Elected in 1996 after a new constitution, Deby was re-elected in 2001 and 2006. Next presidential elections are set for 2011.

In 2003, the constitution of Gabon was changed to allow President Omar Bongo approaching his fourth decade in power – to run for an unlimited number of terms. The change also increased term length from five to seven years. Omar Bongo took power in 1967 and was then elected in 1973, 1979 and 1986. A multiparty system was introduced in 1991, under which he was re-elected in 1993, 1998 and 2005. Bongo died in 2009 after 42 years in power, the world's longest-serving ruler.

The constitution of Namibia was also amended in 1999 to specifically allow President Sam Nujoma a third term. He did not run in 2004. Since the amendment applied only to Nujoma, later presidents have been limited to two five-year terms. Nujoma's successor, President Hifikepunye Pohamba, was elected in 2004.

The Niger 1999 constitution limited the president to two five-year terms and made amending that provision illegal. President Tandja Mamadou called a referendum on a new constitution on August 4. The new rules allow him to stay in power till 2012 and to run for office after that for an unlimited number of terms. After the Parliament and the Constitutional Court opposed the referendum, Tandja dissolved both and began ruling by decree. President Tandja Mamadou was elected to power in 1999 and reelected in 2004. In 2009 he was re elected again as President of that country.

President Olusegun Obasanjo of Nigeria "Third Term Agenda" to have the constitution changed to allow him another run for the presidency was blocked by the Parliament in 2006. Presidents are still limited to two four-year terms. President Umaru Yar'Adua was elected in 2007. The next elections are expected to take place in 2011 with the incumbent being Goodluck Jonathan who took over as president when Umaru died in 2009.

In Togo Term limits were scrapped in 2002 to allow Gnassingbe Eyadama a third term. Gnassingbe Eyadama took power in 1967 and was elected in 1972, 1979 and 1986. He won the first multiparty presidential elections in 1993 and was re-elected in 1998 and 2003. After the death of President Gnassingbe Eyadama in February 2005, the army put his son Faure Gnassingbe into office. After an outcry, Faure Gnassingbe resigned and called an election, which he won.

In Tunisia After Zine El Abidine Ben Ali assumed the presidency in 1987, Tunisia's constitution was amended in 1988 to allow presidents no more than two terms. After Ali's first two terms in office, a new amendment in 1998 allowed a third term. Finally, in 2002, term limits were abolished altogether and the age limit raised to 75 (Ben Ali will be 73 in September). Ben Ali assumed the presidency in 1987, was elected in 1989 and re-elected in 1994 as the only candidate. Alternative candidates were allowed for the first time in 1999, but Ben Ali won with 99.66% of the vote in 1999 and with 94.48% of the vote in 2004 he was ousted by the people in January 2011.

The Parliament in Uganda removed the two-term limit from the 1995 constitution in 2005 as President Yoweri Museveni was reaching the end of his second term. The changes also introduced a multiparty system. Yoweri Museveni took power in 1986 and held elections, which he won, in 1996. He was re-elected in 2001 and 2006. Next elections are in 2011.

Frederick Chiluba of Zambia was elected in 1991 and re-elected in 1996. He wanted to run for a third term in 2001 but failed to win support for his bid to change the rules. The president is currently limited to two five-year terms. Chiluba’s successor, Levy Mwanawasa died in office in 2008. He was succeeded by his vice president, Rupiah Banda, who was then elected to the post in October of the same year. Next elections are to take place in 2011. Read more on our website

From FabAfriq Magazine By VibeAfriq editor Mwalimu P. Bela.. follow us...

Have a nice day reading.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Mandela is Invincible also

Like a clock, it clicked on South African, Africans and everyone around the globe that "From dust we are made and to dust we shall return". This happened so fast and in such a manner that not even Nelson Mandela has pre-empt.
When I woke up last week to the news that Papa Mandela was sick, and has been admitted in hospital, the first thing that came to my mind was "... I now see the reason for so much rains this year. Is the weather telling us that a great man is falling" The hype around it all did not ease my feelings. I kept saying to myself in fear of letting anyone know. What will became of South Africa tomorrow? Tomorrow I thought because Mandela was in my opinion dying.
I thank God for giving this man many more days to go by. He shall die one day but please God not today and not in this life time. Many of us share this thought. Either aloud or in secret. But I ask; Would you rather die in his place?
Let me know if you would.