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New Era Newspaper Wednesday February 14, 2018

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16 YOUTH CORNER Wednesday, February 14 2018 | NEW ERA The British Council is celebrating the diversity of Africa by bringing you this series of articles from around the continent to help you with your English language studies. Today we visit Benin. Benin: The motorcycles of Benin iStockPhoto Benin QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS Crossing the busy streets of Cotonou or Porto-Novo, Benin’s biggest cities, the first thing you notice is the huge number of motorcycles. It is not unusual to see over 20 bikes lined up at the traffic lights. They are driven by both men and women and nobody seems to wear a crash helmet. It is common to see whole families on a motorbike and they are often the preferred transport to carry produce from farm to market or to get home from work. So when it comes to calling a taxi people don’t look out for a car or a bus, they demand a motorcycle taxi! Zémidjan in Cotonou. LEARNING ACTIVITIES Activity 1 Correct the errors, there is one in each sentence: 1. He gets on his car every morning. 2. We usually go by foot to school. 3. They like driving their bicycles. 4. There isn’t much room into the minibus. 5. Let’s get in that zémidjan. Road safety Do you agree with these sentences? Put these in order of importance: It is important to... 1. check tyres and brakes regularly. 2. keep speeds down in the city. 3. have safe crossings for pedestrians. 4. wear a helmet on a motorbike. 5. make everyone take a driving test. 6. improve the road surfaces. Photo credit: François Porcheron FACTS BENIN POPULATION: 9,325,032 CAPITAL CITY: Port-Novo LARGEST CITY: Cotonou AREA: 112,622 km 2 WESTERN SAHARA SENEGAL THE GAMBIA GUINEA- BISSAU MAURITIANIA Over to you What actions would you take to make it easier and safer to travel around your town? Think of more ideas and discuss. GUINEA SIERRA LEONE LIBERIA IVORY COAST MALI Why are there so many motorbikes on Benin’s roads? Well, some say that a financial crisis at the end of the1980s made it too expensive to keep the roads in good condition. Motorbikes were the only vehicles that could get around the potholes. University students looking for some extra employment began to offer lifts to passengers and could take them all the way home on the back of their bikes. Nowadays the taxi motorbike is really popular everywhere in the country and they are called the zémidjan. Where does this name come from? The name zémidjan – zem or zimzim for short – means ‘get me there fast’ in Fon, which is one of the main languages spoken in Benin. The trend BURKINA FASO GHANA TOGO BENIN NIGER NIGERIA EQUIT GUINEA CAMEROON GABON CONGO CHAD NAMIBIA ZAMBIA ZIMBABWE TANZANIA for taxi motorbikes apparently started in the capital, Porto-Novo, and then it spread to other areas so that now the zémidjan is well established as the most popular type of taxi. Who uses the zémidjans? Practically everyone. People wanting to get to work. Women going to the market. Tourists seeing the sights. Even children going to school. In fact, a few years ago, the zémidjan drivers joined a campaign to get more girls to school which was very successful. But isn’t there only room for one on the back? Yes, officially there’s only room for one, but zémidjan drivers will often make room for more, plus their bags and boxes. It’s a very flexible form of transport and will take you right to P SUDAN Z ERITREA Z W E Q O P N U DJIBOUTI E S ETHIOPIA G C C O A C H S CENTRAL AFRICAN REP ANGOLA UGANDA Find these means KENYA of transport in the grid. RWANDA DR of CONGO WORDSEARCH M O T O R B I K E P T B E I S C K C Z T D T T T W H A A E T P B U R N N I R M M M L Y U B O C P I I W B I C Y C L E D N V Z M K R J O R J I P B T R A I N O A B bicycle car train BURUNDI MALAWI MOZAMBIQUE SOMALIA motorbike truck ship MADAGASCAR MAURITIUS minibus coach zémidjan your door! It is the most effective way to travel through the crowded city streets. People are not left stranded at the roadside. There are always plenty of motorcycles looking for business. How do you know which motorcycles are taxis? In Cotonou and the surrounding towns the drivers wear yellow shirts or waistcoats so they can be easily spotted amongst all the other motorbikes. Other towns have their own colours. Night or day, zémidjans drive up and down the streets of Benin’s main towns and cities looking for passengers. How do you hail a zémidjan? You have to look for a driver with no passenger on the back and yell ‘kekeno!’ Or you can make a waving gesture at the driver. It’s important to agree a price for the ride before you get on. What is a kekeno? A kekeno is a zémidjan driver. In Fon, ‘keke’ means bike and ‘no’ means person. So kekeno is a ‘bike person’. Where do all these taxi motorbikes come from? Most are imported direct from China, although some are also now assembled in Benin. The cost of a motorbike is a lot cheaper than a car and it’s much easier to move at speed through a lot of traffic. Don’t the passengers feel nervous? Visitors from outside Benin have to overcome their fears! Most of the drivers are young men, they are extremely skilful but as they rev up at the traffic lights, you may feel that you are in a rather dangerous race. But locals look completely relaxed as they sit back and text their friends on their way home via zémidjan. BOTSWANA SOUTH AFRICA LESOTHO SWAZILAND Answers: Activity 1 A. into (not on); B. on foot (not by foot); C. riding (not driving); D. in or inside (not into); E. on or onto (not in) To find out more visit Send your feedback to © British Council 2016 Brand and Design/B284

Wednesday, February 14 2018 | NEW ERA NEWS 17 Zuma did nothing wrong - Magashule JOHANNESBURG President Jacob Zuma has done nothing wrong as party leader and South African statesman, African National Congress secretary general Ace Magashule said after of the beleaguered state president. ‘’We are still treating Comrade Zuma as the president of the country. He has not been found guilty in a court of law,’’ Magashule told reporters in Johannesburg. A staunch Zuma supporter, Magashule was at pains trying to explain to journalists why his long-time ally was shown the door by the governing party. Although there was no deadline given to Zuma to step down, he is expected to revert to party leaders on Tuesday, Magashule added. The scandal-ridden Zuma asked the ruling party an extension of three to six months before his departure. This, said Magashule, was because the president wanted to introduce the next South African president to the Southern African Development Community (SADC), Brics and the African Union (AU). ‘’If Comrade Zuma wants to further engage with us we will do so ... we are all given grace periods in whatever we do, as an employee you get that from your employers as well. However, the NEC decision to recall Zuma is final and cannot be changed.’’ Describing his and party president Cyril Ramaphosa’s visit to Zuma at the Mahlambandlopfu Pretoria on Monday night to inform him of the NEC decision, Magashule said Zuma was ‘’cordial and up and about’’. sleeping, he was up, healthy as he is. Our discussions were cordial because we respect him as leader. I have always supported Comrade Zuma as the leader of the ANC. As members, we rally and support a leader at any given time.” Magashule said Zuma has never demanded conditions for his exit as it had been reported. The party top brass were yet to decide ORANJEMUND TOWN COUNCIL EXPRESSION OF INTEREST NOTICE NUMBER: SC/RP/ORTC-01/2018 PROVISION FOR FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT SYSTEM “Proposals are hereby invited from reputable Service Providers (Namibia based) for a compatible fully integrated Financial Management System preferrably in a municipality environment for the Oranjemund Town Council. The FMS modules will include: 1. Conversion of Existing Data & SCOA Compliant 2. Implementation and continuous monthly on-site support and comprehensive training to users and any other related requests” Closing Date and Time: 28/02/2018 12:00 Submission: Submit Proposals and/or live presentations Technical Enquries: Olavi Nathanael/ Festus Nekayi Procument Enquries: Varonique Forbes who would take over as the country’s deputy president once Ramaphosa occupies the Union Buildings. Names such as that of President Jacob Zuma NEC members Lindiwe Sisulu and Naledi Pandor have reportedly been put forward for the deputy presidency. – Nampa/ANA CALL FOR APPLICATIONS FOR RECOGNITION OF PRIOR LEARNING (RPL) ASSESSMENT AND TRADE TESTING Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) is the process of recognising individual skills and knowledge acquired through work experience in the informal and formal for a part of a training programme. ventions under the Key Priority Training Grant Funding window of the Vocational Education and Training (VET) Levy. The NTA is hereby inviting individuals with proven work experience to apply for RPL assessment in any applicants should meet the following criteria: Occupational Area 1. Accommodation Services 4. Auto Electrical 6. Boilermaking 9. Clothing Production 10. Commercial Cookery (Level 4 only: minimum of 7 years working experience) 17. Hairdressing 18. Instrumentation (Level 4 only: minimum of 7 years working experience) Application forms are available at: (VTCs): Eenhana VTC; Okakarara VTC; Rundu VTC; Valombola VTC (Ongwediva); Zambezi VTC VTC (Outapi) link: e-mailed applications will be accepted. Enquiries: Email address: Ben-Ellis Tjikuere Email address: CLOSING DATE: 496/30/01/2018

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New Era Newspaper Vol 22 No 167