Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Ambassador Sanders and Dr. Johnnetta Cole Discuss Sanders' Uli Book @ Smithsonian African Art Museum BHM Event

Smithsonian Nat'l Museum of African Art Director Dr. Johnnetta Cole and Ambassador Robin Renee Sanders @ February Black History launch of Sanders' book, "The Legendary Uli Women of Nigeria."

The recent February 2015 Black History Month program at the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art (NMAA) which was the official Washington, D.C. launch of Ambassador Robin Renee Sanders first book, "The Legendary Uli Women of Nigeria," included a "conversation segment," between the incredible, iconic NMAA Director Dr. Johnnetta Cole and Dr. Sanders on key elements of her Sanders book and also highlighted relevant aspects of the Museum's collection.  The launch, a sold out event, emphasized the main message of Ambassador Sanders' Uli book which stresses the importance of preserving traditional non-written, non-oral cultural practices through the life stories of nine Nigerian women in the December phase of their lives who struggle to keep their beloved Uli practice alive, which is endanger of disappearing.   The book was based on Dr. Sanders' doctoral dissertation which argued that non-text, no oral traditions are just as viable to the global community as written and oral traditions. Sanders calls Uli a "communications expression," and the Uli women "legendary" because they struggle to keep their traditions relevant in an uphill anti-Uli environment and still respect and cherish this matriarchal practice taught to them by their mothers, who in turn learned from their mothers. The launch event also included a video of clips from the villages and the Uli women talking about their beloved practice and showing Sanders how to prepare the practice from the Uli plant from which the Uli ink. The Uli practice, which dates back to the era of the Aro Kingdom, according to Sanders' research, was used in selected Igbo villages  located west of the Nigerian river called "Cross River," and was used on the body during special ceremonies and on the homes of the royal chiefs of Igbo villages in the region.  Click here to see the Sanders video on her Uli Book: https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=JfJ8KwEF2jI


Ambassador Sanders - Africa Speaking Event @ Washington DC's American University

Ambassador Robin Sanders will be speaking on key Africa and national security issues at American University in Washington, D.C., February 25, 2015.  The event is part of the School of International Studies program that focus on bringing in international affairs professionals to share their analyses and diplomatic experiences with the University's students. Her presentation will also be followed by a signing event of Sanders's book "The Legedary Uli Women of Nigeria."


Sunday, February 15, 2015

Ambassador Sanders Discusses Nigeria's Postponed Elections on Al Jazeera America

Having work on the run-up to Nigeria's 2011 election, Al Jazeera America and Al Jazeera English, interviewed Ambassador Robin Sanders, on her views on the recently postponed Nigerian 2015 elections.  The issue of security in the North remains a challenge, but the postponement has embolden Boko Haram's self perception as attack in the North continue and now in addition to Borno, Yobe, and Adamara, Gombe has now been included in its regularly attacks from female suicide bombers to attacking and killing innocent villagers in the state. She notes that it is important to understand that the recently announced African Union Force of 7,500 could take from 4-6 months to stand up, while the regional military forces of Chad-Niger-Nigeria-Cameroon try to recapture territory and provide some stability in certain areas of the now four states affected. On Nigeria's election Commission, called INEC, Dr. Sanders gives them high praise, particularly its Chairman Jega who she worked with during the 2011 pre-election period, for doing everything possible to be administratively ready for the elections with nearly 70 percent of voter cards distributed to the 68.4 million registered voters. 
Click here to see interview:   https://ajam.boxcn.net/s/j92ypznh5arvpnnjyzofbp1z0ebmkaq8


Sunday, February 8, 2015

Smithsonian African Art Museum Hosts Dr. Sanders & Her New Book on Uli, Feb 10, 2015

The Smithsonian National Museum of African Art (NMAA) Hosts Ambassador Robin Renee Sanders to discuss the role traditional Uli practitioners have preserved the cultural practice of Uli. During the February 10, 2015 Washington, D.C. Black History Month event on Sanders' book "The Legendary Uli Women of Nigeria," NMAA Director Dr. Johnnetta Cole and Ambassador Sanders will hold a conversation segment to highlight the role of women of color in preserving traditional cultural practices. See announcement below:



Ambassador Sanders on Postponement of Nigeria February 14, 2015 elections

Ambassador Robin Sanders who worked with her team, INEC and other civil society organizations in the run up to Nigeria's 2011 elections, comments on the February 6, 2015 announcement postponement of Nigeria"s upcoming election which was scheduled for February 14, 2015. Sanders states in Al Jazeera interview that the decision to postpone was disappointing and shows to Boko Haram that it can affect national issues like presidential and legislative elections.