A different take on Africa's year ahead...

 
A handout picture taken on 4 January 2012 and released on 11 January 2012 by the African Cup of Nations 2012 press office Andrew predicts Guinea will win the Africa Cup of Nations - do you agree?

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This year, no tea-leaves, no "muti" or traditional medicine, no entrails or astrology and none of the usual stuff about elections, wars and dying politicians.

Instead, my predictions for 2012 deal with more every-day matters. Sorry they are a bit late, but if you like them, or hate them, or have infinitely better suggestions - please write in, and we can get together again in 2013 to compare notes.

Incidentally, how do you think my sangoma's forecasts for 2011 came out?

So, in 2012....

  • A consortium of well-connected Angolans will purchase Portugal's Benfica football club
  • The phrase "African middle class" will appear in more international headlines than "famine"
  • Guinea will win the Africa Cup of Nations (they are my pick in the office sweepstake)
  • An international chain will open a store in Somalia's capital, Mogadishu. For several weeks
  • The number of Chinese language schools in Nigeria will quadruple
  • The number of Africans living below the "poverty line" will drop from 61% to 57%, but almost nobody will report the fact
  • Someone will coin a new name for Africa's middle class - which will be 400-million strong by the end of the year. The phrase will come from Mandarin
  • A catchy song about malarial bed-nets will become an unexpected hit in Zambia, and a star of South Africa's undervalued poetry scene will be sampled by US rapper Jay-Z
  • An unemployed Spanish woman, seeking work in Mozambique's capital Maputo, will be disqualified from winning a local beauty pageant
  • Zimbabweans will stop accepting the euro as currency
  • The continent will win more medals at the Olympics than ever before but four African athletes will get lost on the London underground system and miss their heats.
 
Andrew Harding Article written by Andrew Harding Andrew Harding Africa correspondent

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  • Comment number 10.

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    Comment number 9.

    An international chain store opening up in Mogadishu might be underway already given there were reports oil exploration has began again.....Funny reading though, but i can only bank on some mobile innovation to keep us glued to our phones...but i hate having phones that are richer or clever than me, phones which own me instead of myself owning them so i wish it wouldn't happen

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    Comment number 8.

    Zimbabweans will stop accepting euro. Don't think so - based on ZEN. ZEN & EU initiatives/actions including UN Human Rights Council, the Security Council, the African Union & SADC. Disagree. Continent will win more medals at the Olympics than ever before. Agree (No comment re lost athletes.)

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    Comment number 7.

    Song about malarial bed-nets will become an unexpected hit in Zambia, & star of South Africa's undervalued poetry scene will be sampled by US rapper Jay-Z. If these are going to happen, I see millionaires like P.Diddy, Jay-Z, & Oprah getting on board. Unemployed Spanish woman, seeking work in Maputo, will be disqualified from winning local beauty pageant. Makes sense - citizenship.

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    Comment number 6.

    Africans living below the "poverty line" will drop from 61% to 57%. I can see this for some African countries, but not for war-torn places like the Congo. 4% is not much. I can live with prediction. Someone will give new name for Africa's middle class. Phrase will come from Mandarin. Mandarin for China is Zhongguo (middle country). New word for Middle-Class will be some format of Zhongguo.

 

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