Photo: Vanessa Nakate, a Ugandan climate justice activist. CC BY-SA 4.0 - Photo: 2022

A ‘Rousing Manifesto and Poignant Memoir’

Ugandan Activist’s New Book

By Lisa Vives, Global Information Network

NEW YORK (IDN) — A young climate activist from Uganda about to address the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, faced one final indignity from western media when they staged a photo op of her with her white climate colleagues and then clipped her out of the final shot.

Vanessa Nakate said she was heartbroken to see websites using the photo featuring four white activists but not her. In an emotional video Nakate said: “This is the first time in my life that I understood the definition of the word racism.”

< Copyright: Amazon

The Associated Press later apologized to Nakate: “We regret publishing a photo this morning that cropped out Ugandan climate activist Vanessa Nakate.”

But the bizarre scandal was not to end there.

Nakate gained a wide platform from the incident that included her picture on the cover of Time magazine, appearances with Trevor Noah, Amy Goodman of DemocracyNow and many others. In the days since Nakate has gained over 100,000 followers across her (now-verified) Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram accounts. Someone even set up a Wikipedia page for her.

Being cropped out of a photo featuring Greta Thunberg and three other white climate activists was heart-breaking for Vanessa Nakate, but it has now become a huge source of motivation.

Her message is short and to the point. Africa is responsible for only 3 per cent of global emissions, she says, and yet Africans are already suffering some of the most brutal impacts fuelled by the climate crisis. Many Africans are losing their lives.

“Countries in the global South are among the least responsible for causing climate change compared to the global North but are among the ones suffering the most from its effects.”

An activist since 2018, Nakate was inspired by Swedish activist Greta Thunberg to start her own climate movement in Uganda and began a solitary strike against inaction on the climate crisis in January 2019.

Now she’s making the new author circuit, talking about “A Bigger Picture: My Fight to Bring a New African Voice to the Climate Crisis”, her first book in which she points to how the climate crisis is impacting Africa and the discrimination she’s faced in speaking up.

“A Bigger Picture is part rousing manifesto and part poignant memoir,” writes Rachel Conrad on the website Social Justice Books. “It presents a new vision for the climate movement based on resilience, sustainability, and genuine equity.” [IDN-InDepthNews – 29 August 2022]

Photo: Vanessa Nakate, a Ugandan climate justice activist. CC BY-SA 4.0

IDN is the flagship agency of the Non-profit International Press Syndicate.

This article is published under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International licence. You are free to share, remix, tweak and build upon it non-commercially. Please give due credit.

Related Posts

Begin typing your search term above and press enter to search. Press ESC to cancel.

Back To Top