21 Nov '13

Familiarity breeds affection

4008
door RK
Chris Ngonge from Cameroon arrived in Belgian as a political refugee all of 15 years ago but he is still amazed about the image Europeans have of Africa. ‘Africa is not only hunger and mud huts.’ He and a bunch of African friends enjoy organising Belgo-African evenings. A fun atmosphere guaranteed.

Chris Ngonge from Cameroon arrived in Belgian as a political refugee all of 15 years ago but he is still amazed about the image Europeans have of Africa. ‘Africa is not only hunger and mud huts.’ He and a bunch of African friends enjoy organising Belgo-African evenings. A fun atmosphere guaranteed. 'We provide music, dancing, singing and African food. Not only for parties and festivals but also for private individuals. You can overcome enmities by getting to know each other.' He enjoys the good fortune he belatedly discovered in Houtem but does have one or two misgivings. 'One thing that strikes me as odd is how you are expected to speak Dutch on your very first contact with officialdom. I have a qualification and speak Dutch quite well but most employers are caught unawares by my accent.' (RK, dec 2013)