Happy New Year! We made it! Not all of our friends and family members made it, however, I am glad that some of us are still here. I believe that the year 2022 will be a great year for us. My wishes are that our dreams would come true, our world would be a better place to live in with more happiness, love, care and equality.
Last year, many people passed away, and I personally lost a friend, Nigerian preacher Prophet T.B. Joshua. Some people considered him to be controversial because of his miracles, but I considered him to be a friend. He was only 57 years old when he suddenly passed away on June 5, 2021 in the commercial city of Lagos.
Prophet TB Joshua had gone from a humble beginning to touching the lives of millions of people around the world. I spoke with him on the phone regularly. But nothing like on January 6, 2021 when the US Capitol came under attack. We spoke almost the entire day as he wanted to have updates from me beyond what was on TV. He was praying about the situation.
Everywhere in the world I was, I received a call from him, whether I was in Cameroon, Nigeria, the United States, everywhere, he was often the first person to call. Anyone who came close to him knows that the secret of his success was that he did what he said he would do.
There was never a time he said he would call that he never did. He always did what he said he would do. That was my personal experience with him. May his soul rest in peace.
Today News Africa in 2022 and our request for our readers:
Some of you got to know Today News Africa while watching this interview here that our publisher Simon Ateba granted The Tucker Carlson Show on Fox News in December 2021 over the travel ban on African nations.
Others got to know us over the course of the year as we kept seeking answers from the White House and the Biden administration on a range of topics, including the deadly conflict in Ethiopia, instability in Sudan, coups across Africa, the coronavirus crisis in Africa, the U.S. vaccine donations to the continent, human rights violations in Africa, economic ties between the United States and Africa, and the visits by three African leaders to the White House as compiled below.
Today News Africa has been on this for a very long time. We have been focusing on U.S.-Africa ties and interactions daily since 2019.
And while it is good to get some recognition and appear on Fox News and other platforms to explain difficult issues, it was only 1 percent of what we did this year.
Our publication, Today News Africa, focuses on ties and interactions between the United States and Africa.
We have never claimed that we would be covering everything happening in Africa or everything taking place in the United States. There are many other publications already doing just that. Our focus has been clear from the very beginning: U.S.-Africa ties and interactions.
The reason we chose that focus was because we realized that we could serve as a bridge between the United States and Africa and use our voice and platform to improve relations between the United States and Africa. The Holy Book says people perish due to lack of knowledge.
Some people who do not pay attention or do not like the United States have countered that U.S.-Africa relations are not that important and no publication should focus on them.
They have even asked me sarcastically whether the United States can solve African problems.
These are often people who use Facebook, Google, LinkedIn, Instagram, watch CNN, take COVID-19 vaccines developed in the United States and when they need a surgery, they do not know it but many of the things that they use come from the United States. A cure for AIDS or Cancer here in the United States would benefit everyone. A successful launch of electric cars here in the United States would benefit everyone, including people in Africa.
The United States is the most advanced country in the world and what happens here, from the freedom of the press to democracy, to the free market, to the fight for women rights and against discrimination and racism, has a global implication. Only someone who does not pay attention would mock our focus and be sarcastic about it.
In any case, there are more international students in the United States acquiring knowledge at a high level they would not be able to acquire elsewhere and making the world a better place.
The United States is great and strengthening ties between the United States and Africa and providing an accurate information to people on all areas, including in the area of medicine where the United States is now on the brink of solving diseases that have killed millions of people in Africa for decades.
Only a fool would laugh at us and try to discredit or belittle our focus, which is U.S.-Africa ties and interactions.
Our publications has continued to grow despite many challenges, many of them financial constraints.
For instance, over the course of last year, we also trained many interns. We also gave them a stipend from the very small resources that we had. They came from various American universities and were focused on foreign policy, especially U.S.-Africa foreign policy.
Some of them have become fantastic writers and have moved on to other companies where they can get solid salaries that we are not yet able to offer them.
One thing we have not been able to do well this year is to make enough money to keep doing our job, to keep pressing leaders for answers and to keep training interns on how to become good journalists.
As we grow, we would become a news platform that solve practical problems. Someone who has been battling Sickle Cell Disease would be able to read us and know exactly where the science stands and how the US National Institute of Health has already cured it and the solution would soon be global.
People involved in agriculture in Africa would be linked directly with the latest technology in the United States and use it in their farms. Someone relocating to the United States would know exactly what to do, what it takes and who can provide them the assistance they need.
American politicians, people at the State Department would have a stronger US-Africa platform that explains in clear details their policies to Africans in Africa and people in the United States whose job is to focus on that relationship.
It would be the same thing for the IMF, the World Bank, the UN, and all other international, policy and research organizations that do such a great job but often do not have Africans in Washington DC who can interact with them directly and serve as a link between them and the people back home.
Our job is not to write about dramas and scandals and what people are wearing or who is dating her or him. Our aim is to influence the world and be part of the positive change by providing concrete solutions to the people in need.
That’s why we call on all our readers and followers to either subscribe to gain full access to our content by clicking here, or to make a donation to our company by clicking here. Just to give you some context, $100k would be enough for us to train our interns in 2022, and perhaps improve their understanding of the world and maybe even change the world.
And just to disclose something we have not disclosed in the past: When we applied for a COVID loan for small businesses, we did not get it because the government said our taxes were too small to get it. And when we applied for a smaller grant for small businesses, the government told us it was for businesses in poor areas and that Today News Africa is located in a wealthy area in the District of Columbia. It seemed anything we did, we could not win!
When we heard that $100 billion of that money might have been stolen, it appeared to us that to get it, you needed to be connected or commit outright fraud.
Some people who got the COVID money bought luxury cars and houses. One family bought at least four houses around Florida if I recall well.
As I kept reading stories of theft, I understood why this world is in a mess. We deny funding to people training students, asking questions, holding our leaders accountable but we give it to fraudsters and people who do not need it.
Our hope is that in 2022, we will fund those who deserve it and not fraudsters who buy more houses than they can sleep in.
By supporting us, you are not just helping us to keep doing our job and be that little voice challenging those in power, you also assist us to keep training students and change the world.
Kindly contribute by going here.
Happy New Year.
Simon Ateba is the publisher of Today News Africa in Washington DC