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Last Updated: Thursday, 27 January, 2005, 19:18 GMT
Why I love Africa
African HIV/Aids orphans
BBC listeners and readers share their personal experiences of the African continent.

Here are the latest contributions celebrating Africa's sense of identity, its villages and its brotherly love.

Cleopatra Mukula, Kenyan in the UK

Why do I love Africa? It's the continent of my birth. My roots come from Africa. My identity, my culture comes from Africa. My beliefs, my principles I derive from my Africa.

Why do I love Africa? The things I love the most are in Africa. The people I love the most live in Africa. The love of my life is African.

Cleopatra Mukula and children orphaned by HIV/Aids
Cleopatra is sponsoring these children, orphaned by HIV/Aids

Why do I cherish Africa? The most beautiful and strongest people I know are African. The most natural down to earth people I know are African. The most inventive people I know are African. The happiest people I know are African!

Why do I love Africa? Before western civilisation, there was the great African civilisation... Egypt! I bear the name of the most powerful woman in history, Cleopatra - queen of Egypt! The tastiest food I eat comes from Africa. And yes, my African Skin does not need sun cream.

I love my Africa because the sun shines everyday. The people smile everyday. In the midst of all the pain and suffering, Africans know the value of the little things in life.

Don't get me wrong, Africa - like the weather - can be unpredictable and quite stormy, but it's still the most beautiful continent I know.

I would never want to be anything but African, because I am a strong, beautiful, intelligent female... an African woman! Without my roots I would be none of these things.

I love Africa and I'm proud to be African.

Afam Igwe, Nigeria

I love my village. The name of my village is Okuenyi village. It's 15 minutes drive from Aba - the commercial city of Abia state and the home of Africa football giant - Enyimba, the back to back African Champions League champions.

Enyimba captain Obinna Nwaneri lifts the Champions League trophy
Enyimba are two-time African Champions League champions
My village, despite of being very near to Aba, has since the inception of Nigeria not experienced commercial electricity. In fact most kids in my village don't know what electricity is.

In my village there are no tarred roads or piped water, except one owned privately by a popular business man. The majority of the villagers still go to the stream and wells.

But in spite of all this, I still love my village. You know why? Because it is an exact typical African setting - just as it would have been before the emergence of the colonial rule in Africa, and it equally tells me how our forefathers lived long time ago.

I love my village, I love Africa

Nfor Emmanuel Nfor, Cameroon

In Africa we are each other's keeper.

When a child is born, it is the joy of the whole village.

We shower both the parents and the newly born child with gifts. We sing and dance. The child belongs to the whole village. It becomes everyone's responsibility to care for him or her.

If someone is sick, the whole village is affected.

Everyone in the village ensures that they visit the sick person; they help him or her with household chores if necessary or just offer advice relating to his or her sickness.

Should the person die, everyone is filled with sorrow. We all offer various services to the funeral service and help the bereaved.

Where else can you find such brotherly love? I love Africa.

What do you think?

Do you find Africa annoying, frustrating and slow or is it fun, fast and exhilarating? Share your joys and sorrows of the continent in the new 2005 BBC competition - Why I love Africa.

If you have photos to accompany your contribution send them to newsonline.africa@bbc.co.uk, otherwise use the form at the bottom of the page. Entries should be no more than 300 words.

The best will be published on the news website and broadcast on the BBC World Service's Network Africa programme. Some will receive small prizes.

Use the form below to send your entry.

Your E-mail address
Postal address, Town & Country

The BBC may edit your comments and not all emails will be published. Your comments may be published on any BBC media worldwide.

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