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Celebrating Africa: Facts about Africa
Posted by Ronald Mapamula on 5/28/2015

This is the season Africans join hands to celebrate our great continent. The 25th of May is a sacred day in Africa as it resembles our unity, uniqueness, pride and heritage as Africans. With all the hype, many do not know how amazing Africa his, there's so much grandeur (and ill too) that goes with it. Here are some key facts about Africa that the everyday African may not know.

1. The largest Desert in the world is in Africa. The bulk of the North African countries are engulfed in it. The Sahara desert stretches from the northernmost parts of the continent to Central Africa, South Sudan, covering the vast expanse of 9 million square kilometres.

2. 25% of the Earth's languages are found in Africa. Having close to 2000 recognised languages, Africa carries a host of diversity in terms of culture and language.

3. The World's Longest River, the 6 670km majestic Nile River, worshipped by some, feared by many for its fierce and famous Nile Crocodiles and a source of life to all those along its banks, the Nile has been noted to have housed some of the greatest civilisations in history along its banks...and it is, in Africa.

4. The World's largest freshwater reptile is an African. The Nile Crocodile, weighing at an average of 650kgs, and an average length of 5.5m these ferocious beasts are found along the Sub-Saharan plain. Human deaths due to Nile Crocodiles are at an annual estimate of 250. It is the 2nd largest reptile after the gigantic Saltwater Crocodile of Australia.

5. Lake Assal - Djibouti, the lowest point in Africa (200m below sea level) has much salts that it is 10 times saltier than sea water.
- Assal is also the World's largest salt reserve.

6. Africa's deforestation rates are twice that of the rest of the world's average. 6 of the top 10 countries with the largest annual net loss of forested areas are in Africa.

7.Africa is home to the biggest land animal - The African Elephant. Growing to 3-4m tall and weighing an average of 2.5 - 6 tonnes, this humble beast resides in the African Savannah Grasslans.

8. Africa is home to a host of amazing animals, among these is the Cheetah, know to be the fastest of all land animals by reaching speeds of 112km/hr. The of the 4 remaining fastest animals are also found in Africa - The Wildebeest, Thompson's Gazzele, and the Lion.

9. The biggest frogs, the Goliath Frogs are found in Cameroun, and considered a delicacy by the locals there.

10. Giraffes, the tallest animals on earth are found in Africa.

11. 40% of African adults are illiterate, two thirds of them being women.

12. Approximately 90% of the World's Malaria cases are from Africa.

13. 30% of the Earth's remaining mineral resources are in Africa.

14. China, is the Africa's top trade partner, having a direct investment of more than 50 billion dollars.

15. Lake Victoria, is the World's second largest freshwater lake. 

16. Interestingly enough, hippos are the deadliest animal on the Africa continent, claiming more human lives than Lions and Crocodiles.

17. The Largest religion in Africa is Islam, followed by Christianity.

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