‘Memoirs Of Muhindi’ Draws Packed Audience In Vancouver

VANCOUVER – Award-winning journalist Mansoor Ladha’s latest book, Memoirs of a Muhindi: Fleeing East Africa for the West, drew a standing-room only crowd of friends, book enthusiasts, and well-wishers in Vancouver. 

The book launch, which was held in Holiday Inn, north Vancouver, was stupendously emceed by Vancouver entrepreneur Alnoor Tejpar while Mansoor Waljee, a former classmate and friend provided a reader’s perspective. Hanif Ladha gave closing remarks and a vote of thanks.

Memoirs of a Muhindi’ has received favorable and glowing reviews from the media and literary journals. The engaging audience asked many questions relating to episodes narrated in the book, ensuing a lively discussion. In his presentation, Mansoor touched upon two interesting excerpts from his book, describing his role in organizing student demonstration against compulsory national service in Tanzania, his ‘Canadian experience’ in seeking a job and problems of settlement encountered by immigrants in search of a home.

Memoirs of a Muhindi,’ has also been endorsed by Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi, who described it as “a valuable voice,” adding, “Mansoor Ladha adds vivid detail to his personal story while colouring in the lines of the family stories of many Canadians.” 

Mansoor Ladha with Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi pictured after his book presentation in Calgary.

Here is what some of the reviewers have been saying about the book

Mansoor Ladha’s eminently readable “Memoirs of a Muhindi” helps us not to forget a very critical time in the post-colonial history of East Africa. Ladha does capture the authentic voice of the Indian family in a relatively rural setting in Colonial Tanganyika which he relates without the fear. He does this with honesty and candor. Ladha’s book is riveting reading. I could not put it down!

* Mohamed Keshavjee author of “Into that Heaven of Freedom – an Indian family’s journey through apartheid SA” and “Diasporic Distractions – New Faces in New Places.”

*Memoirs of a Muhindi gave me a glimpse into a story I knew nothing about. So much of Africa’s history focuses on the struggle between black and white. Ladha’s story is a unique perspective of a particular time and place in Africa’s history.  WWW.SKBOOKS.COM

Mansoor Ladha’s memoir is more than the story of a life well lived; it is a history of the tens of thousands of East African Asians – most viciously in Uganda under Isi Amin, but also in Kenya and Tanzania – who were forced to uproot themselves because of racist policies. A journalist, he and his family arrived in Canada in 1972 and made a good life for themselves. Ladha made his mark as a publisher in small-town Alberta, a white society that wasn’t always welcoming to a brown outsider.”

Sarah Murdoch – Toronto Star

Ladha’s chronicle is a positive addition to our narrative. His intention is to make sure the Asian-African saga isn’t lost. Today’s migrants are also looking for safety and stability. Those who want to preserve so-called “Canadian values” should be reminded that the dispossessed and desperate make appreciative, productive citizens. They should also look back to see themselves reflected in the faces of those knocking at our door.”

Harriet Zaidman – Winnipeg Free Press

Ladha has written Memoirs of a Muhindi with a universal audience in mind. Immigrants can learn perhaps how to avoid the pitfalls of settling in a new country, and employers can learn different ways so that they can treat immigrants with fairness and equality,” he says. “One should be able to learn from past incidents and derive positive policies for future use.”

Margaret Anne Fehr – Prairie books NOW

Bottom of Form

Memoirs of a Muhindi is a story of a descendant of immigrants, brown in colour, living in a black society (Tanzania), who later became a brown immigrant living in a white society (Canada). The book sheds light on the experiences felt by immigrants, the challenges of cross-cultural differences, the hurt of discrimination, and other hardships of displacement. Many of us have gone through this and our stories have similar journeys. 

Mansoor, who has held senior editorial positions with newspapers in Canada, Tanzania and Kenya, had the distinction of being the only weekly newspaper owner of colour in Canada for several years. Now retired, he has freelanced as a columnist and travel writer for several leading western Canadian newspapers. 

An award-winning journalist, he was chosen Citizen of the Year by residents of Morinville, received the Silver Quill Award by Alberta newspapers for distinguished service to newspapers and bestowed award for volunteerism by the Governor General of Canada. 

Memoirs of a Muhindi is available from

www.amazon.ca, www.chapters.ca, www.indigo.ca

and other local book stores in Canada and USA

Mansoor Ladha has also published: A Portrait in Pluralism: Aga Khan’s Shia Ismaili Muslims

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