radio / Straight Talk Africa [simulcast]

Join veteran journalist Shaka Ssali on Straight Talk Africa every Wednesday as he and his guests discuss topics of special interest to Africans, including politics, economic development, press freedom, health, social issues and conflict resolution.

October 2012

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October 2012

Discussion Program on African Issues

Join us every Wednesday for Straight Talk Africa - an international call-in talk show hosted by Shaka Ssali. Shaka and his guests discuss topics of special interest to Africans, including politics, economic development, press freedom, health, social issues and conflict resolution.

Broadcast Schedule

Straight Talk Africa is broadcast live every Wednesday from 1830-1930 UTC/GMT simultaneously on radio, television and the Internet.

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Join the Discussion

On our Wednesday, July 8, 2015 Program:


Beyond South Sudan’s Fourth Independence”


South Sudan is marking four years of independence from Sudan on July 9th but the world's newest nation is standing on the brink of failure with the United Nations Security Council imposing sanctions. Six South Sudan commanders are now subject to a global travel ban and asset freeze for perpetuating the conflict in the country. Fighting erupted in December 2013 between forces loyal to President Salva Kiir and supporters of former Vice President Reik Machar. The 18 month conflict has displaced more than two million people from their homes and created a humanitarian crisis. This comes as the East African regional body, the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), prepares for a new round of peace talks in the coming weeks in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The talks are expected to focus on outstanding issues like the structure of the executive, a power sharing formula, integration of the military, federalism and the composition of parliament.


Join us on the next edition of Straight Talk Africa for our live, one-hour television and radio call-in simulcast when host Shaka Ssali and his guests examine the impact of the political instability of South Sudan four years after independence and how Africa’s newest nation can move forward.


VOA Reporter:

John Tanza Mabusa

Host and Managing Editor of VOA's South Sudan In Focus




Washington Studio Guests:

Baak V. A. Wol

Deputy Head of Mission of the Embassy of the Republic of South Sudan to the U.S.

Reath Muoch Tang

SPLM/SPLA Representative to the United States of America

and former Member of Parliament in the South Sudan National Legislative Assembly


Noah Gottschalk

Oxfam America Senior Policy Advisor on Humanitarian Response



Question of the Week:

Had South Sudanese known that peace would remain elusive in their new nation, would they have voted for independence from Sudan?

Send an email to or post our comment on our Facebook or Twitter pages. And, maybe we will read your response on Wednesday's program!


Social Media

Twitter:  @VOA Shaka

Hashtag:  #VOASouthSudan


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Contact Us:

Postal Mail
Voice of America
TV to Africa - Suite 1613
330 Independence Avenue, S.W.
Washington, D.C. 20237

Internship Opportunities

In the competitive and changing television industry, nothing is more valuable for job-seekers than "real world" experience. The Straight Talk Africa internship program offers motivated and outstanding students exciting opportunities to experience practical journalism.  In addition to helping to get our weekly studio programs on-the-air, interns also produce a final project for their portfolios. Projects include writing and producing promos, stories, and even full-length documentary or magazine shows.

Watch our interns in action

For more information and/or send your resume to:
Attention to Roblyn Hymes.



A Straight Talk Africa Special

About the Host

Shaka, a Ugandan-born American journalist, holds a doctorate in cross-cultural communication and history from UCLA in California. He is a former Ford Foundation Fellow and has received numerous honors, including a United Nations Peacekeeping Special Achievement Award in International Journalism. Other awards include VOA's Best Journalist Award and Kigezi College Butobere's first ever Highest Achievement Award in International Human Communication. Butobere is located in Kabale, southwestern Uganda, and is Shaka’s alma mater.

During his career, Shaka has interviewed and hosted many presidents and prime ministers.  Among them:  General Olusegun Obasanjo, Former President, Nigeria; Levy Patrick Mwanawasa; Former President, Zambia; Tony Blair, Former Prime Minister, United Kingdom;  Botswana President Seretse Khama Ian Khama; Ghana President John Evans Atta Mills; Tanzania President Jakaya Kikwete; Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, President, Liberia; Hifikepunye Pohamba, President, Namibia; Uganda President Yoweri Museveni; Joseph Kabila, President, DRC; Rwanda President Paul Kagame; and General Salva Kiir, First Vice President, and president of the government of Southern Sudan.

He has also hosted newsmakers and policy makers who interact with Africa, including:   Norbert Mao, President, Uganda Democratic Party; Johnnie Carson, U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs; Donald Yamamoto, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs; Donald Kaberuka, President, African Development Bank; South African jazz legend Hugh Masekela; Nobel Peace Prize laureate Wangari Maathai; Luis Moreno-Ocampo, Chief Prosecutor, International Criminal Court; Mo Ibrahim, Chairman Mo Ibrahim Foundation; Nobel Literature laureate Wole Soyinka; Professor Muna Ndulo, Cornell Law School; Professor Ali Mazrui, SUNY; Professor George Ayittey, American University; Professor Sulayman Nyang, Howard University; Uganda Supreme Court Justice George Kanyeihamba; Dr. Rebecca Nyandeing de Mabior, a Southern Sudan government official and widow of former SPLA leader Dr. John Garang; Jeff Sharlet, author, The Family; Bob Hunter, Associate, Fellowship Foundation; Mbulelo Rakwena, former South African Ambassador to Brazil; Baffour Ankomah, Editor, New African magazine.