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Changemaker: Thom Stevenette

The word Simua means ‘to tell a story’ in Swahili. For centuries Africa’s story has been told through varying European paradigms, which are distinguished in the way that they have excluded Africans from the telling. These stories have been incomplete. In a digital age this Western monopoly is no longer acceptable, it is imperative that we update these stories by opening up their authorship. Simua is not about denying that poverty, war, corruption and disease are realities in Africa, but we recognise that the best stories are the ones which are told by the people who are living them. Our agenda is openness but, given the rising tide of Afro-optimism, we suspect that a free license for Africans to tell their own stories will shock many outdated European perceptions. This is important because Africa’s continued growth relies upon her active engagement with an international community which recognises Africa as a dynamic player on the global scene; as a site for foreign investment, a destination for tourism and a source of innovation.


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