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Murder, he rapped! And the West Indies gets a new regional anthem


What Black Publications are talking about today on the internet


By Shola Adenekan


Haven’t we been here before? Another personality in the rap game gunned down in his prime.


Vibe magazine, the genre’s Bible leads with how T.I - one of the hottest MC around at the moment - struggles with his words as he gives eulogies at the funeral of Philant Johnson, his close friend and personal assistant, who was murdered in Cincinnati on May 3 during a gun shoot out.


The funeral was at Atlanta, Georgia’s Jackson Baptists Church.


"We are family for life," T.I. said. "I've held the microphone at many concerts and other situations, but I've never had to do anything this hard before. I can tell you that we had a lot of fun spending a lot of money. We rode a lot of different cars and we just had fun."


For Black Enterprise, it’s time for Black businesses to come to grip with trend tracking.   The magazine believes that staying on top of the latest trends is vital because one of the best ways to innovate is to seize trends.


"Trend tracking is just as important for small businesses as it is to major corporations," reports Ann Brown for the magazine. "Big companies often employ trend-spotters all around the globe, but even small businesses without big research budgets can use free or inexpensive tools to stay on top of what's new."


In addition to checking out Websites such as Ubercool.com and Trendwatching.com, Black Enterprise advises that small businesses can stay on top of trends by subscribing to industry newsletters or Really Simple Syndication feeds —listings of headlines and stories from a variety of Websites.


In Britain, Blink magazine reports the trial of ten police officers charged with the death of a black man in the city of Birmingham back in September 2003.


The police officers all pleaded not guilty to assault and misconduct charges.


Relatives and friends of Mikey Powell, who have waited two and a half years to get to this stage, sat in the public gallery as twelve charges were read out.


Blink says the court is expected to hear evidence that Mr Powell was struck by a Peugeot 307 police car and then beaten with batons.


The trial was moved to the city of Leicester after lawyers for the officers successfully argued they would not get a fair trial in Birmingham.


For Blackbritain.co.uk, the most important news of the day was the British ruling party’s dismal performance at last week’s local elections.


“Local election results show Black voters mean business,” says Deborah Gabriel in Black Britain.


A major loss was the London borough of  Camden, which is now a hung council after 35 years of being run by Labour. But in Lambeth it was a different story. Plagued by accusations of racism following the sacking of black worker Alex Owalade and the furore over efforts to get more black residents on the electoral register, Labour won with 39 seats, with 17 going to the Lib Dems, 6 to the Conservatives and 1 to the Green Party.

Simon Woolley, Director of Operation Black Vote told Black Britain that the clear message is that if the black community participates in the political process then it is possible to have representative governance:

“As a direct result you will now see talented black faces around decision-making tables such as housing and regeneration that could transform the lives of many people in that part of south London.”


Blacknet.co.uk, another online British publication says that an ex-soldier who was shown on CCTV lying handcuffed on the ground as he was kicked by a policeman is to sue Greater Manchester Police, in north of England.


Lawyers acting for 35-year-old Delbo King, from Gorton, have written to the police chief for that area warning him of the civil action after legal aid was granted.


Mr King's legal team have refused to say how much compensation he is claiming, but it is thought he could be awarded up to £50,000

In South Africa, The Sowetan leads with the sudden death of  former South African soccer star, Patrick “Ace” Ntsoelengoe, whose body was found by a hotel worker in Lenasia, south of Johannesburg.


A police source close to the investigations told The Sowetan that a woman was present when Ace’s body was found.

This revelation shocked the dead football maestro’s wife, Thato.

She arrived at the hotel soon after being informed of her husband’s death yesterday morning.

Thato, the newspaper says, was visibly upset.

Later, when Thato had calmed down, but was still sobbing, she was helped to her luxury car.


Many soccer pundits agree that Ace was one of the most talented players ever produced in South Africa.


The acquittal of Jacob Zuma from rape charges is story that has been feeding media frenzy across the world and The Independent Online, like most South African publications continue with the story.


The Independent reports that Zuma who  is poised to take back his senior post within the ANC, the country’s ruling party, has also accused the media of tarnishing his image.


Speaking in Zulu after the verdict, he told supporters: "They insulted me and called me names."

Without identifying anyone, he added: "Others were not doing it on their own but were sent by some people somewhere."


Zuma said that he had all along maintained his innocence, making it clear he would not discuss the matter in the media but in court.


In Nigeria, Punch newspaper, recently voted the most trusted publication in that country by an opinion poll alleges that the Nigerian government has been taking money from the country’s treasury to finance the third term ambition of President Olusegun Obasanjo.


In what is a good piece of investigative journalism, Punch reveals that the Nigerian Central Bank of Nigeria had recorded massive and curious withdrawals in the last seven months fuelling speculations that the government may be withdrawing from the bank to fund the campaign for tenure extension.

The withdrawals were from the Excess Crude Account kept with the bank and managed by the Federal Ministry of Finance.

According to a  document obtained on Monday by the paper’s correspondents in Abuja, a total of US$14.284billion  had been withdrawn from the apex bank’s vault between October 2005 and April 2006.

In some cases, the government did not give reasons for the withdrawals.

The Express, one of Trinidad and Tobago’s leading newspapers announces a new regional anthem for the whole of West Indies.


When the Soca Warriors, the country’s national soccer team and Peru football team take to the play field tomorrow evening at  and President Max Richards and his party subsequently greet them, the Express says that the crowd will then rise for the playing of not just the usual national songs of the two competing countries but stay on its legs for a third - the world premiere of the West Indies Anthem.


A one-minute song designed for rallying regional self-esteem, The West Indian Anthem has already been endorsed by ten Heads of Governments, including Trinidad and Tobago's Patrick Manning, unanimous approval having come at the end of the plenary session of last February's Caricom Heads meeting.


For  the world premiere of this ground-breaking concept, the anthem will be performed by a combination of steel-band music and voices.


Shola Adenekan is the publisher of The New Black Magazine. He also writes for The Guardian (London), BBC News Online and The Christian Science Monitor.


Please e-mail comments to comments@thenewblackmagazine.com


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