Letter from the Editor: April 2017


Godwin Ifedi Editor

Godwin Ifedi

Good morning all

First a big Shout Out to retired firefighter Greg Birtch, who showed grace and magnanimity in response to the outrageously childish, disrespectful and insensitive conduct of some Ottawa Police Officers. These misguided officers, sworn “to serve and protect” our society, had initiated a wrist band campaign, in support of a fellow officer, charged with the serious crime of manslaughter, in the death of Abdi Abdirahman. By launching his own wrist-band campaign in support of the late Abdi Abdirahman’s family, he has demonstrated that Ottawa is filled with good people, who can tell right from wrong, regardless of the circumstances, or the race and ethnicity of those concerned. His selfless and inspirational action easily earns him the Top Story for April 2017. The public outrage about the misguided actions of these officers is also featured in this edition.  On the same topic, veteran journalist Ewart Walters, comments on the impact of their action on the relationship between the Ottawa Police and the public.

Speaking of good people, we report on Noah’s Ark project, in which Ottawa school boy, ten-year old Noah Martincich, has on his own, initiated the donation of books to schools in St. Lucia. Also trending is the report of an innovative guidebook created by two youthful Ottawa residents,  Zainab Muse and David Ebere.  We also report on the Black History Month gala hosted by Yomi and Kelly Pratt with Bertilla Christian, as well as the call for more diversity in senior ranks, by the first Black female RCMP officer, Shelley Peters Carey.

Our Interview features veteran social worker Yohannes Drar, who shares his insights into his work, at the Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre,  with persons with serious mental health problems.

Also this month, we present the first in what we expect to be a regular monthly feature on Religion, with respected Bishop Jacob Afolabi on the meaning of truth.

We also present coverage of disgraced Senator Don Meredith, with various perspectives on the embattled senator,  from editorial writer and reporter MacAndrew Clarke, academic Andy Kusi-Appiah and community activist Sam Getachew.

Psychologist and career specialist Dr. Helen Ofosu tackles the tricky subject of office romances, while realtor Micheal Arthur provides tips on how to prepare your house for sale.

On a sad note, our community continues to lose some of its best and brightest, as we say goodbye in the Obituaries, to Alice Layiki-Dehne, Victor Aiyere and Lucya Spencer.

Other events of note are the African Canadian Achievement awards in Toronto; the plans by the University of Toronto to attract more Black medical students, and a photo gallery by master photographer Seyi Malcom-Okuribido.

All these and more in the April 2017 edition of Black Ottawa Scene.

Here is the result of the March 2017 poll:
Should Canada accept all refugee claimants walking across the border from the US to Canada?

Yes 56%

No 44%

Thank you to all who voted.

Remember to take part in the April 2017 survey:

How do you feel about Ottawa Police officers wearing wrist bands in support of the officer charged with manslaughter in the death of Abdi Abdirahman?

Wishing you all a blessed month.

Godwin Ifedi



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