Independent / Independent on Sunday

Book ID 326

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Independent / Independent on Sunday
Extract Date: 1995 November 12

Camel Camp

also in FT 16 Dec 95

Just south of the Kenyan border town of Namanga, the [Camel] camp is the brainchild of Brian Hartley, a livestock expert in his 80's. Together with his son Kim, he hopes to crown his career by convincing the Maasai, one of Africa's most romanticised but impoverished tribes, of the Camel's superior qualities.

Extract ID: 312

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Independent / Independent on Sunday
Extract Date: 1996 December

research in Mkomazi

1 December 1996, article by Matthew Brace

The research in Mkomazi is part of an on-going programme co-ordinated jointly by the Royal Geographical Society (with the Institute of British Geographers) and the Tanzanian Department of Wildlife.

The Society got involved when the Tanzanian government (condemned as the reserve has lost much of its game and been ravaged by fires), came to them in 1989 for help in undertaking a major geographical study of the area in order to collect information to prepare a long-term management plan for the future of the reserve.

The programme has remained a Anglo-Tanzanian venture with joint directors Mr Bukari Mbano, director of wildlife in the Tanzanian Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, and Dr. Malcolm Coe, a leading ecologist from St Peter�s College, Oxford.

Extract ID: 598

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Independent / Independent on Sunday
Extract Date: 21 January 2007

24 Hours In: Arusha

Smell the coffee

09.00: Breakfast at Arusha Coffee Lodge (00 255 27 254 06301;, a couple of miles outside the centre. This luxury hotel is on the site of Tanzania's largest coffee plantation. Its Victorian-style bungalows are full of Europeans and Americans waiting to go on safari. There are excellent views of Mount Meru. Doubles from $100 (�51) per person per night, including breakfast.

Savour flavours

10.00: Take a daladala (mini-van taxi) to the Central Market. There you can buy herbs, spices, sandals made from old tyres, colourful kangas, traditional medicines and other produce including baobab seeds and tamarind, both of which can be sucked like sweets. Open daily, 7am-6pm.

Monkey business

11.00: Time for more coffee and the best is to be found at Jambo's next to Makuti Gardens. While you're there, you can take a look at Aang Serian's stall selling "Mazingira Monkeys", cuddly toys stuffed with plastic bags. Or, try the Ice Cream Parlour on Sokoine Road, which does good sundaes.

Cut a gem deal

12.00: Go shopping. Visitors to Arusha usually buy Tingatinga paintings, Masai jewellery and batiks, all of which can be found at the craft shop on Goliondoi Road (they can arrange shipping). Ask about the ethically mined Tanzanite gems and a dealer will come to meet you.

Time for a curry

13.00: It's lunchtime. Arusha Naaz Hotel (00 255 27 250 2087) on Sokoine Road near the Clocktower, serves great Indian food. All you can eat for 4,000 tzs (�1.60).

Head for the hills

14.00: Take a daladala to Ng'iresi Village (about four miles from Arusha) from where you can walk to Lekimana Hill for views of the Masai steppes and, on a clear day, Mount Kilimanjaro. Or try Kivesi Hill, an extinct volcano with forested slopes full of birds. To visit Ng'iresi itself you will need a guide, which costs around �8 for half a day, �2 of which goes to local schools.

Time travel

16.00: Visit the Old Boma Museum at the end of Boma Road. A German fort, built in 1889 (and the centre of disputes between Masai and colonialists), it now houses a small display of animal and hominid fossils unearthed at Olduvai and Laetoli, plus life-size models of man's ancestors. Open 9am-5pm.

The next chapter

17.00: Browse the shelves at Bookmark on Sokoine Road (opposite Twin Peaks Casino), which stocks maps and books about Ernest Hemingway and Karen Blixen. You can also buy maps and guides at stalls clustered around the Clocktower or second-hand books along the alley that connects Boma Road and India Road.

Eat by the water

19.00: Eat dinner at Via Via, part of the Boma complex on the banks of the Themi [Temi] river. Take a seat overlooking the river and dine on a mixture of European and African food. If Kilimanjaro beer doesn't appeal try Meru banana wine (available sweet or dry). Main courses from just 4,000 tzs (�1.60).

Hit the clubs

21.00: Nightlife options include Colobus Club on the old Moshi Road, which hosts a disco and pool bar, or nearby Rick's Bar. Soweto Gardens has an outdoor bar with live music at weekends. For real night owls ask at Via Via about their "Arusha Nightlife Tour" of the city's outskirts, which costs 5,000 tzs (�2) plus taxi and drinks.

Extract ID: 5169

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Independent / Independent on Sunday
Extract Author: Mary Lean
Extract Date: 26 January 2007

Agnes Hofmeyr: Worker for reconciliation in Africa


Agnes Leakey, worker for reconciliation: born Limuru, Kenya 8 May 1917; married 1946 Bremer Hofmeyr (died 1993; one son, and one son deceased); died Johannesburg 1 December 2006.

Twenty years after her father was buried alive during the Mau Mau uprising in Kenya, Agnes Hofmeyr and her husband were having dinner with a Kenyan colleague, Stanley Kinga. He told them that he had been part of the Mau Mau committee that had selected her father as a human sacrifice. Staggered, she asked him to repeat what he had said. "Thank God we have both learned the secret of forgiveness," she said finally.

Agnes Leakey was born in Limuru, Kenya, in 1917, the youngest child of Gray Leakey, cousin of the anthropologist Louis Leakey, and his first wife, Elizabeth. Her early childhood was spent on a succession of farms: stalking lion barefoot with her brothers; moving home in two wagons, each drawn by 16 oxen; wearing clothes made from a bolt of cloth Elizabeth had brought out to Kenya on her marriage, together with a trunk of toys for children of different ages.

This idyll was shattered in 1926, when Elizabeth died of a perforated appendix, and Agnes was sent to boarding school in England. It was there that she encountered the Oxford Group (later MRA) and became involved in its work of reconciliation. She married a South African colleague, Bremer Hofmeyr, in 1946.

The Hofmeyrs were in the United States in October 1954 when they heard that 60 Mau Mau fighters had attacked her father's farm, killed her stepmother and abducted her father. Later the news reached her that he had been buried alive, in a shallow grave on Mount Kenya. He had been chosen to propitiate the gods because he was known to be a good man. His Kikuyu name was "Morungaru": "tall and straight".

In a memoir, Beyond Violence (1990), Hofmeyr describes the grief and rage that overwhelmed her, and her journey towards forgiving. A committed Christian, she turned, with a struggle, to her regular practice of silent listening prayer. The result was an "impossible" thought: to reject hatred and bitterness and "fight harder than ever to bring a change of heart to black and white alike".

Some months before, the Hofmeyrs had visited her father in Kenya in an attempt to persuade him to move to safety in South Africa. They had also visited the Athi River detention camp, where some of the prisoners told them about the injustices and discrimination that had drawn them into Mau Mau. "I was very shaken by all I heard," wrote Agnes,

but inwardly I walled myself off from any personal sense of guilt, saying to myself that it was other whites, not I, who had done these things. We were not all bad, and look at the many good things we had brought to Africa.

Now, she found herself rethinking.

The next year, the Hofmeyrs were back in Kenya, with a large international group from MRA. In spite of a ban on meetings in Kikuyu country, the authorities sanctioned a mass gathering at Kiambu, north of Nairobi. Crowds poured in, some climbing trees to get a better view.

When the chair announced that the next speaker would be the daughter of Morungaru, there was a gasp. "I apologised for the arrogance and selfishness of so many of us whites that had helped to create the bitterness and hatred in their hearts," she wrote. When she spoke of her determination to work for change, there was a ripple of understanding. Many came up to her afterwards to express their sorrow and support. "All traces of bitterness that lingered in my heart were washed away."

The Hofmeyrs settled in Johannesburg, where, to the disgust of Hendrik Verwoerd and the Broederbond, their home became a meeting place for all races long before the first cracks in the walls of apartheid appeared.

Hofmeyr experienced great sorrow in her life. In addition to the early death of her mother and her father's killing, she lost her eldest brother, Nigel Leakey, in 1941 at Colito, where he won the Victoria Cross. Three years after Bremer's death, in 1993, their elder son, Murray, was killed in a car accident in Johannesburg.

A message she wrote to her grandchildren was typical: "Don't ever give up hope, you have fighting genes."

Extract ID: 5224

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Independent / Independent on Sunday

Another main faunal survey, of birds, has resulted in one . . .

1 December 1996, article by Matthew Brace

Another main faunal survey, of birds, has resulted in one of the highest bird counts ever in East Africa. Dr Peter Lack, head of information systems at the British Trust for Ornithology, has identified roughly 400 species. [at Mkomazi]

Extract ID: 436

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Independent / Independent on Sunday

Dr McGavin and his fellow scientists working in the Mkomazi

1 December 1996, article by Matthew Brace

Dr McGavin and his fellow scientists working in the Mkomazi Game Reserve in north-eastern Tanzania believe that they have discovered an ecological treasure chest, an area more diverse than many rain forests, in terms of the number of arthropods (animals with segmented bodies and jointed appendages - insects, spiders, centipedes, etc). On an average day, after 'mist-blowing' a tree in the reserve with insecticide, Dr McGavin watches as clouds of insects fall from the branches into his collecting trays. During years of research in rain forests, deserts and grasslands around the world he has never seen such abundance.

Extract ID: 601

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Independent / Independent on Sunday

The oldest human footprints

October 1993

The oldest human footprints - the only proof that early man walked upright on two legs 3.6 million years ago - are being destroyed through neglect... . Mary Leakey, ... discovered the tracks at Laetoli in 1978. The prints were analysed before being covered up in 1979 with polythene, sand and rocks to protect them. ... However, scientists who recently visited the site were horrified by the neglect. Termites had eaten the polythene, torrential rain had washed away much of the sand, and acacia trees were growing over the tracks, raising fears that their roots had begun to break up the brittle volcanic ash. ...

Extract ID: 439