Gregory Warner

Gregory Warner is NPR's East Africa Correspondent. His reports cover the diverse issues and voices of a region that is experiencing unparalleled economic growth as well as a rising threat of global terrorism. His coverage can be heard across NPR and NPR.org.

Before joining NPR, Warner was a senior reporter for American Public Media's Marketplace, where he endeavored to make the economics of American health care vivid and engaging. He's used puppets to illustrate the effects of Internet diagnoses on the doctor-patient relationship. He composed a Suessian cartoon to explain why health care job growth policies can increase the national debt. His musical journey into the shadow world of medical coding won the 2012 Best News Feature award from the Third Coast International Audio Festival.

Prior to Marketplace, Warner was a freelance radio producer reporting from conflict zones around the world. He climbed mountains with smugglers in Pakistan for This American Life, descended into illegal mineshafts in the Democratic Republic of Congo for Marketplace's "Working" series, and lugged his accordion across Afghanistan on the trail of the "Afghan Elvis" for NPR's Radiolab.

Warner's radio and multimedia work has won awards from Edward R Murrow, New York Festivals, AP, PRNDI, and a Sigma Delta Chi award from the Society of Professional Journalists. He has twice won Best News Feature from the Third Coast International Audio Festival in 2009 and 2012.

Warner earned his degree in English at Yale University. He is conversant in Arabic.

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6:05am

Sun September 14, 2014
Goats and Soda

Africans Are Introduced To The Blood Pressure Cuff

Originally published on Sun September 14, 2014 12:40 pm

Esther Okaya has a health problem that is a growing concern in Sub-Saharan Africa: high blood pressure.
Gregory Warner NPR

Some blame witchcraft. Others think it's a bad batch of moonshine.

But Esther Okaya, who lives in Korogocho, a slum in Nairobi, Kenya, says even teetotalers are falling victim. One minute quarreling with a neighbor; the next minute, dead.

And it's happened to her.

Okaya's husband left her. He took the money for her children's school fees. A few mornings later, her 9-year-old son shuffled home after being turned away by the teacher.

And then she felt it. It was as if her heart seized up. She could not breathe.

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3:02pm

Wed September 10, 2014
Parallels

In Strange Twist, Kenyans March For Police Officer Accused Of Murder

Originally published on Wed September 10, 2014 6:38 pm

Kenyan police confront university students protesting higher fees on May 20. The police have a reputation for corruption and violence and are not well-liked. But when a popular officer was arrested and charged with a vigilante-style killing, residents took to the streets to support him.
Tom Maruko Barcroft Media/Landov

Kenyans rate their police force among the most corrupt institutions in the country. Even worse, police are often accused of inflicting violence on citizens. So when a Nairobi officer was arrested for murder this week, you would think most people would applaud.

But in a strange twist, residents in the officer's district rose defiantly in defense of his vigilante approach to justice.

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3:02pm

Wed August 27, 2014
Parallels

When Do Food Shortages Become A Famine? There's A Formula For That

Originally published on Wed August 27, 2014 5:29 pm

A child with suspected malnutrition is examined at a medical clinic in Malakal, South Sudan, in July.
Matthew Abbott AP

Chris Hillbruner has a little-known job with an extraordinary responsibility: to determine how close a given country has come to famine.

In his six years at the U.S. government's Famine Early Warning Systems Network, or FEWS NET, he's only officially declared famine once before, in Somalia in 2011.

Hillbruner explains that the bar for declaring famine was deliberately set high to avoid the confusion of the 1980s and 1990s, when well-meaning aid agencies acted like the boy who cried wolf.

"Famine," Hillbruner says, "is a word that gets thrown around a lot."

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3:00am

Fri August 15, 2014
Planet Money

Fleeing War And Finding Work

Originally published on Fri August 15, 2014 6:20 am

Ali Daud Omar will repair your cell phone for $6. He's one of the refugees benefiting from the Ugandan government's right-to-work policy.
Gregory Warner/NPR

In most parts of the world, refugees are not allowed to work.

But in Uganda, refugee life is different. One of the oldest refugee camps in Africa is remarkable not just for its stone houses instead of plastic tarps. The camp is also full of markets and traders, selling everything from imported fabric to smartphones.

Mohammed Osman Ali, a Somali refugee, runs an arcade at the camp. He rents out time on a PlayStation to other refugees from Eritrea, Ethiopia, or fellow Somalis.

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7:42am

Tue August 5, 2014
Parallels

African Leaders: No One Country Can Stop Elephant Poaching

Originally published on Tue August 5, 2014 2:08 pm

Satao was a 45-year-old Kenyan elephant with tusks so long they brushed the ground. Poachers killed him in June with a poisoned arrow. African leaders gathered in Washington said there needs to be better cooperation on the continent to prevent poaching.
Tsavo Trust

The killing, by poisoned arrow, of a 45-year-old elephant named Satao this June hit Kenya particularly hard. Not just because Satao had lived so long, with tusks so grand they brushed the grass where he walked.

But also because Satao was under almost 24-hour watch by Kenyan game rangers to protect him from poachers. However, the game rangers were unable to follow Satao when he roamed into an area of dense brush at the boundary of the park, an area where poachers are known to hide.

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