Africanews RSS free and in real-time all news published by, by subscribing to our RSS feeds.Tue, 11 Dec 2018 22:24:12 +0000Photos: Kagame says Rwanda's army can deal with 'enemies'’s defence forces are well equipped and capable of dealing with the country’s enemies, president Paul Kagame declared on Tuesday. Kagame, who joined the soldiers at the Gabiro Combat Training Center, tipped the army on optimal utilisation of resources. ‘‘Every bullet you shoot counts. Every resource you use must accomplish its purposes. We do not have room to waste,’‘ the president said. The president also explained that the country’s meagre resource envelope means that government prioritises education, health and other development needs over ‘salary increment’ for the soldiers. ‘‘When we look at salaries or other resources, we know that even though you deserve to be given more, we do not have enough means.’‘ In June, Rwanda’s finance minister, Uzziel Ndagijimana presented a Rwf2.44 trillion ($2.8bn) budget, saying the economy is expected to grow by 7.2% in 2018. Kagame, who witnessed demonstrations on how different military capabilities are integrated and synchronised during a military operations, commended the soldiers’ bravery and hard work. ‘‘What you have showed us here today is proof that you are capable of dealing with those who wish ill to our nation. There is no room for them to succeed with the courage, determination and the skills we have within us.’‘ President Kagame and Commander in Chief is now meeting with members of the Rwanda Defence Forces at Gabiro Combat Training Centre— Presidency | Rwanda (@UrugwiroVillage) December 11, 2018Tue, 11 Dec 2018 22:24:12 (Daniel Mumbere) of the Museum of Black Civilizations in Dakar [No Comment] President Macky Sall recently inaugurated Museum of Black Civilizations (MCN) in Dakar, a 50 year-old project which aims at celebrating the achievements of black men from the beginning of humanity to the present day.Tue, 11 Dec 2018 09:53:27 +0000editorial@africanews.com More than 150 UN members adopt global migration pact than 150 countries adopted the United Nations Global Migration Pact on Monday in Marrakech (Morocco), defending it with strong pleas in the face of criticism from nationalists and supporters of border closure. The non-binding pact seeks to better manage migration in a safe and orderly manner. Like several leaders present in Marrakech, Mr. Guterres also denounced what he considers as the “many lies” about the Pact, which has generated political tensions in several countries. The document still needs to be the subject of a final ratification vote on 19 December at the United Nations General Assembly in New York. Some countries announced their withdrawal or the freezing of their decision after approving the text on 13 July in New York. Despite this opposition, Mr. Guterres expressed confidence in the outcome of the process and lauded the presence of more than 150 countries during the conference.Tue, 11 Dec 2018 13:58:17 +0000editorial@africanews.com's hometown celebrate Nobel Peace Prize dancing and cheers broke out inside a viewing hall in the town of Bukavu, home to doctor Denis Mukwege, who received his Nobel Peace Prize on Monday. Hundreds gathered at the viewing hall to watch on a big screen the Congolese doctor receive the coveted prize at a ceremony in Oslo. Residents from his hometown said his award was a source of pride for the central African nation. “The prize that Denis Mukwege has just received is a prize he deserves. This prize is now a source of pride for Congo and Central Africa in general,” Bukavu resident, Jeanette Bisimwa said. Mukwege was co-recipient of the 2018 prize for his work as a doctor helping victims of sexual violence in the eastern city of Bukavu. He has performed surgery on scores of women and campaigned to highlight their plight after they were raped by armed men. He shared the prize with Nadia Murad, a Yazidi rights activist and survivor of sexual slavery perpetrated by Islamic State.Tue, 11 Dec 2018 13:42:50 +0000editorial@africanews.com The rise of Congolese photographer Robert Nzaou is a form of expression that several people all around the world use to document different aspects of their lives. In Africa, a number of photographers have come up, who try to change the perception traditional media has had of the African continent. One such photographer is Robert Nzaou-Kissolo, a self-taught photographer from the Republic of Congo. He speaks to Africanews journalist Linnete Bahati. Notable photographers who captured images from Africa were those from Europe and and the United States. But the trend has significantly changed over the years. Names like Kenya’s Osborne Macharia, Senegal’s Siaka Soppo Traoré, Cote d’Ivoire’s Joana Choumali, etc continue to dominate the world of photography in Africa and beyond. The list continues to grow, as we have seen with Congo’s Robert Nzaou, to engage audiences in the visual representation of the African continent.Thu, 06 Dec 2018 11:06:35 +0000editorial@africanews.com president's impeachment flops as 14 MPs back down impeachment motion brought against Somalia president Mohamed Abdullahi Farmaajo has been dropped after the required number of petitioners was not met. The main crust of the petition was because of international deals Farmaajo had signed with neighbouring Ethiopia and Eritrea. The issue of unilateral appointments in the army and judiciary was also highlighted. Fourteen out of an initial 92 MPs who signed a petition last Sunday rescinded their decision crippling the motion which had insufficient members to proceed with. Reports indicate that the fourteen said they did not support the motion but had been included wrongly.Tue, 11 Dec 2018 13:06:54 +0000editorial@africanews.com, mistress of deceased Ghana MP jostle for his parliamentary seat deceased ruling party lawmaker in Ghana whose funeral is yet to be organized is having drama behind him as his wife and mistress reportedly jostle to replace him in parliament. Emmanuel Agyarko, MP for Ayawaso West Wuogon in the Greater Accra region, died in November and by law is supposed to be replaced. Even before the Electoral Commission, EC, sets a date for the seat – traditionally a ruling party stronghold, the party primary is shaping up to be an interesting duel. Supporters of his wife, Josephine Agyarko, said they were presenting a petition for her to be made the New Patriotic Party, NPP, candidate. On the other hand, another group backing his mistress, Lydia Alhassan, have also petitioned for her to be picked as the candidate. In a statement, she said she was interested in burying the father of her kids and that party politics be toned down at this moment. “The wife and the supporters are with due respect taking tradition out of the way, are we supposed to be encouraging that?” a high ranking party official said on local radio network, Joy FM.Tue, 11 Dec 2018 12:46:02 +0000editorial@africanews.com trade union protests austerity, constitutional tweak’s largest trade union called on its members to lay down their tools in a double-edged protest against recent actions by government. The union asked members to strike in protest against austerity measures initiated by Libreville in June 2018. The second reason being a mid-November constitutional amendment. Even though over 100,000 workers were expected to abandon their posts for the three-day strike, reports said not as many people heeded the call. A union leader, Louis Patrick Mombo, is quoted as saying: “We call all Gabonese workers to strike to demand the cancellation of the austerity measures, the respect of the Gabonese constitution which was violated on November 14th by the Constitutional Court and to demand the resignation of the court.” The country’s top court in November inserted a clause that allowed a delegated official to lead the cabinet meeting which was by law solely the job of the president. The move followed the ill health and subsequent hospitalization of President Ali Bongo Ondimba in a Saudi hospital. The court ruled that the vice-president could chair the meeting which had not been held for weeks. Before being amended by the Court, the Gabonese Constitution stipulated that only the president could authorize his vice-president to organize a meeting of Council of Ministers. The union, however, held that the amendment was a manipulation of the Constitution for which the President of the Constitutional Court, Marie-Madeleine Mborantsuo should be removed from office. The union also dismissed talk that it was taking on a political colour and announced that in the event, that their concerns remained unattended, they were going to organize a major march on December 18th. “These are not political demands when we talk about the Constitution because the constitution is the fundamental law of a country, so the fight for its respect is a republican fight,” Mombo told a local news portal. President Ali Bongo Ondimba has been hospitalized for several days in Rabat, where he is recuperating. On Saturday, for the first time since his hospitalization in Saudi Arabia on October 24, Vice President Pierre Claver Maganga Moussavou acknowledged that President Bongo had a stroke. Until then, no official source had revealed the evil suffered by the Gabonese president.Mon, 10 Dec 2018 21:03:07 (Abdur Rahman Alfa Shaban) uncovers 30,000 ghost workers on govt payroll has identified some 30,000 non-existent civil servants on its payroll, the Public Service ministry said on Monday. It said the ghost workers had cost the country €220 million in salaries and wages. The fraud was detected following a two-year audit that spanned between 2015 and 2017. Following the operation, Maputo put its public sector workforce at 318,000. Mozambique, which has over 50% of its budget devoted to the payment of government workers, has been going through financial difficulties over the past two years, which has weighed heavily on its economic performance. In 2016, president Filipe Nyusi’s government was forced to admit to secretly borrowing $2 billion to buy arms. Donors have sanctioned it by freezing their budget support. Maputo has since suspended its payments to its creditors and is seeking to renegotiate its debt.Tue, 11 Dec 2018 11:09:25 +0000editorial@africanews.com to shut down Airtel [The Morning Call] telecommunication firm is set for closure in Niger. Barely a month after the closure of French telecoms group Orange because of a tax dispute, the country’s biggest telecoms operator Airtel, a subsidiary of the Bharti Airtel group is on the chopping board. On Saturday the government ordered the closure of Airtel which has been present in Niger since 2001 and holds a 51 percent market share. According to the government the company has unpaid taxes of 107 million dollars.Tue, 11 Dec 2018 11:09:21 +0000editorial@africanews.com Prize winner battling sexual violence [The Morning Call] is known as Dr. Miracle in the Democratic Republic of Congo for his surgical skill and dedication in helping women overcome the injuries and trauma of sexual abuse and rape. Denis Mukwege has spent more than two decades treating thousands of women in a country once called the rape capital of the world. On Monday, Mukwge was jointly awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for 2018 in Oslo, Norway together with Iraqi activist Nadia Murad for their efforts to end the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war and armed conflict.Tue, 11 Dec 2018 11:08:06 +0000editorial@africanews.com needs to invest more on Science and technology [Sci tech] technological capability remains one of the major constraints to Africa’s efforts to achieve sustainable development. Many pan-Africanists believe fostering technological transfer and identifying critical innovation barriers will go a long way to boost development in the continent. It is true that measures have been taken in that light in recent years but a lot still has to be done. Why are most African countries still backward in terms of innovation and technological development? How can this be solved? Find out more in this segment as Elvis Boh reflects on this with his guest Dr. Connie Nshemereirwe, Science and Policy Facilitator based in Kampala Uganda.Tue, 11 Dec 2018 11:05:09 +0000editorial@africanews.com's wildlife prominent on new coins unveiled by central bank’s apex bank on Tuesday unveiled a new set of coins for circulation in the country. Four coins in all were launched, one, five, 10 and 20 shillings. The country’s rich wildlife heritage are a prominent feature on the coins with elephants, rhinos, giraffes and a lion all featuring on respective sides of the note whiles the coat of arms is on the other. President Uhuru Kenyatta was the special guest at the Central Bank of Kenya, CBK, when the currencies dubbed ‘new generation coins,’ were launched. The inscriptions on either side of the coins are in English and Kiswahili – the official languages of the country. They have since been gazetted and are in use. Info brief: The Republic of Kenya 1 – Capital / official languages = Nairobi / English, Swahili 2 – Currency = Kenyan Shillings (KES) 3 – Current president / PM = President Uhuru Kenyatta 4 – Population estimate = Over 49 million (2017) 5 – Independence Day = December 12, 1963 from Britain 6 – Country codes: internet (.ke), telephone (+254) Governor njorogep</a> announces that the new-generation coins have been gazetted and will begin to circulate today. <a href=""></a></p>&mdash; Central Bank of Kenya (CBKKenya) December 11, 2018Tue, 11 Dec 2018 09:26:38 (Abdur Rahman Alfa Shaban) Yahya Jammeh, family banned from entering U.S. United States has slapped a ban on former Gambian President Yahya Jammeh and his family from entering the country. The measure announced on Monday is largely related to charges of corruption and gross rights abuses during his 22 years in charge. His wife, Zineb Yahya Jammeh, and his children, are also on the US blacklist relating to foreign leaders involved in large-scale corruption or serious human rights violations, according to a State Department statement. The statement stressed the resolve of Washington in assisiting the Adama Barrow -led government in the area of support for a transition to greater transparency, accountability and democratic governance. Jammeh ruled The Gambia, a small English-speaking West African country, for 22 years until his defeat at the polls in 2016 by Adama Barrow. He left power after the West African bloc ECOWAS threatened a military intervention. He is currently resident in Equatorial Guinea where regional leaders arranged for him to live in exile.Mon, 10 Dec 2018 21:29:23 +0000editorial@africanews.com of the day, December 10, 2018 samples the pictures of the day’s news.Tue, 11 Dec 2018 08:31:55 +0000editorial@africanews.com to DR Congo’s delayed 2018 presidential polls process leading to the first peaceful transfer of political power A country blessed with abundant natural resources yet suffering Suffering insecurity, disease – Ebola – poverty and corruption With the main alibi of ‘no credible register’ and ‘lack of funds’ A poll delayed for 48-months scheduled after intense pressure Pressure from within – Catholic church, activists and opposition And from without, the U.N., E.U., United States and other allies Kabila agrees to go – one part of the uncertainty all but settled But the biggest test, Congolese look to scale the hurdle of voting And with that, a new page in the life of a nation – full of promise Since independence from Belgium in 1960, the Belgian Congo, one time Zaire and now the Democratic Republic of Congo, DRC, if you want; Congo-Kinshasa has been a theatre of heat – on the political and security fronts especially. Congolese, however, have the opportunity to turn a page and begin afresh. Previous page turns have been a game of ousting and assassinations. Two assassinations and an ouster. But as registered voters across the country line up on December 23, 2018 to vote, they are taking steps towards the first peaceful transfer of political power. The seventeen years of Joseph Kabila winds down – all things being equal. The run up to the polls has not been without twists and turns. A significant death, disqualification of two main opponents, back and forth over voting machines, pro-democracy protests and a crackdown – largely expected. Away from home, the European Union sanctions on Kabila’s chosen successor, Emmanuel Ramazani Shadary, meeting of opposition heavyweights in trying to forge a united front plus international support for and caution about potential flash points. The opposition have all but failed to have the voting machines scrapped in favour of traditional ballot papers. The Independent National Electoral Commission, CENI, insists it is their best bet, a move unsurprisingly supported by the ruling party. Many different groups can claim portions of victory for the ‘change’ that is underway, lives have been lost since 2016 when Kabila’s mandate was expiring. Opposition protests were clamped down upon severely. Then the Catholic Church, CENCO, stepped in with a strong voice – voice of condemnation and of mediation. CENCO managed to broker what became known as the St. Augustine’s deal on the eve of 2017 – it has hardly been implemented. Members of the church were at a point at the end of protest crackdown when they hit the streets in an anti-government march. CENCO along with groups like LUCHA were at the heart of domestic pressure on Kinshasa to organize the polls. The same CENI that at a point averred the earliest polls could be organized was April 2019 will now back down and set a December 2018 date. Kinshasa bravely says it would organize the entire process with state funds to keep out foreign interference. All eyes are on the presidential poll even though the process is a general election meant to vote in lawmakers and other governors of the different provinces. Twenty men and a woman are in the race to replace Kabila. When the process is done and a winner is elected and finally sworn in, it would be a break from a post that saw leaders assassinated or forced out of office. The winner becomes the fifth political leader of DRC. The first, Prime Minister Patrice Lumumba was arrested then assassinated in 1961, a year after taking office Lumumba’s boss, president Joseph Kasavubu and second PM Moise Tshombe were ousted by Joseph Mobutu in 1965 Mobutu Sese Seko took over in 1965 till he was also ousted in 1997, died in exile in Morocco. Laurent Desire Kabila entered in 1997 till his assassination by a personal guard in 2001. Joseph Kibenga Kabila took over in 2001 and won polls in 2006 and 2011, stayed for two extra years. Congolese and the world await the fifth occupant of the presidency. Follow our ‘Africa Elections page for moreTue, 11 Dec 2018 08:28:40 (Abdur Rahman Alfa Shaban) chief brands Ethiopia PM 'anti-reformist' at regional rally of the Tigray Peoples Liberation Front, TPLF, says Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed could not be labeled a reformist because he was presiding over chaos. The latest round of ‘attack’ by Debretsion Gebremicheal was during an address at a regional rally held across the northern Tigray region over the last weekend. Dubbed the ‘Respect the Constitution,’ rally, protesters waved the national and regional flags amid calls for the government to stop alleged targeting of Tigrayans in a corruption and human rights crackdown. “It is bizarre that a leadership that cannot govern people other than causing chaos and violence is termed reformist, but a leadership that properly governs people is termed anti-reform,” Debretsion is quoted to have said. PM Abiy who came into office in April 2018 has been tagged a reformist for changing the political, democratic and diplomatic landscape of a country that was stressed by incessant anti-government protests. The protests which were concentrated in his home region, Oromia, have since cooled amid a raft of reforms strongly hinged on a call for peace and unity. More recent protests in Oromia are demanding government gets a grip on rising insecurity that has led to deaths and displacements. The November 8 rally was the second such in a matter of weeks. During the first, the Tigray chief cautioned against what he said was a political attack on Tigrayans. The arrests… targeting individuals accused of corruption and human rights has veered from course and is being used to bring Tigrayan people to their knees,”  “We do not compromise on the issue of rule of law, all of us should be accountable for our actions, but the mass arrests should not be used as a cover for political aims,” Debretsion warned. TPLF is one of four blocs of the ruling coalition, the Ethiopia Peoples Revolutionary Democratic Front, EPRDF. The others are the Oromo Democratic Party, the Amhara Democratic Party and the the Southern Ethiopian People’s Democratic Movement, SEPDM.Tue, 11 Dec 2018 08:24:25 (Abdur Rahman Alfa Shaban) Sports Review [2]: Africa tests authority of sports governing bodies football, Africa’s athletes had such an impressive year, notably Kenya’s Eliud Kipchoge, who ran the fastest marathon in history, in September, and was eventually named Male Athlete of the Year by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF). In this article, we continue to review the highs, lows and notable sports takeaways over this year. FIFA clashes with African nations Ghana, Nigeria and Sierra Leone violated FIFA’s rules of non-interference by political authorities, earning the wrath of the global football governing body. Ghana and Nigeria settled their differences with FIFA, agreeing to work with the organisation to fight corruption and resolve leadership disputes respectively. READ MORE: FIFA imposes its will on Nigeria, Ghana over football management disputes Sierra Leone, on the other hand, were banned by FIFA in October, after they defied calls to reinstate the federation’s president Isha Johansen and general secretary Christopher Kamara. The federation officials are accused of corruption by government officials and were removed from their positions, a move that FIFA protested. FIFA who do not tolerate interference by governments in the respective country football federations are conducting investigations into allegations of match-fixing in Sierra Leone and Ghana. Ghana Football boss exposed, banned In October this year, FIFA handed former Ghana Football Association president Kwesi Nyantakyi a life ban, the climax of a fall from grace for a man who was one of the most powerful football officials on the continent. Nyantakyi, a former member of FIFA’s General Council, was found guilty after being filmed by an investigative journalist in a hotel room appearing to take a $65,000 bribe from a supposed businessman seeking to sponsor the Ghanaian football league. ALSO READ: Malawi football chief Nyamilandu elected to FIFA council IAAF vs Caster Semenya One of the biggest athletics stories on the continent this year was the introduction of new regulations for female classification by IAAF. The regulations,which regulate women who naturally produce testosterone levels above five nanomoles per litre of blood, were protested by South Africa and its star athlete Caster Semenya. READ MORE: IAAF refuses to soften stance against Semenya Harnessing basketball talent in Africa The National Basketball Association’s (NBA) relationship with the African continent continues to grow, and was in September, cemented by an endorsement from Rwanda’s president, Paul Kagame in his capacity as African Union chairman. The NBA, which features several players from the African continent, organises several boot camps to identify talent and has an off-season initiative where it organises a show match between Team Africa and the rest of the world. Fashionable African teams Nigeria’s Super Eagles grabbed all the headlines ahead of the World Cup, when their new jersey was voted the ‘most beautiful’ at the tournament in a Sky sports poll. In August, South African club side, Kaizer Chiefs also made fashion headlines when sports magazine FourFourTwo said they have the best kit of the 2018/19 season. The magazine which ranked the top 20 kits for the new season, called the new Kaizer Chiefs outfits ‘delightful’. ALSO READ: Winners, losers and questions facing African football in 2018Mon, 10 Dec 2018 22:12:00 (Daniel Mumbere) to promote intra-African trade: Sisi’s president, Abdel Fattah al-Sisi has declared his intentions to champion intra-African trade when he takes over as chair of the African Union next year. Egypt, which seeks to be a model of economic reform, hosted a high-level business forum on Saturday and Sunday in the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh that will be followed by an intra-African trade fair in the coming week in the capital, Cairo. In a speech to the forum, Sisi encouraged investors from inside and outside Africa to take advantage of opportunities on the continent as countries including his own pursued economic reform. As chair of the African Union, “we will seek with sincere effort to build on what has been achieved over the past years and to complete our continent’s development agenda,” Sisi told the forum, which was attended by heads of state from countries including Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Niger and Madagascar. Egypt’s economic progress Egypt has been praised by international lenders for moving swiftly to implement structural reforms agreed with the IMF in late 2016, though austerity measures and inflation have left many Egyptians struggling to get by. Egypt’s economy grew by 5.3 percent in the 2017-18 fiscal year, the highest rate in a decade, and growth is forecast to surpass 5 percent again in 2018-19. In off-the-cuff remarks, Sisi – who is known to demand ambitiously rapid execution of projects from his ministers – questioned whether African governments could enact change fast enough, recalling that he had insisted on completing an expansion of the Suez Canal in a single year when others had suggested three years or five. Critics have criticised the canal expansion as a waste of money. Intra-African trade Intra-African trade is low, limited by problems including armed conflicts, political rivalry and a lack of logistical and transport connections between states. Speakers voiced hope that the Continental Free Trade Area (CFTA), which aims to bring together all African Union states with a combined population of more than one billion into a single market, would be ratified by 22 countries and enter into force in 2019. Eritrea, Nigeria, G-Bissau only African countries yet to commit to free trade deal Egypt increased its investments in Africa by $1.2 billion to $10.2 billion in 2018, Sisi said. The forum, which Egypt organised jointly with the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), was attended by more than 1,000 “leaders in business and policy from across Africa and the world”, according to its website. ALSO READ: AU leaders adopt key reformsMon, 10 Dec 2018 22:07:00 +0000editorial@africanews.com'Fraudulent election could lead to war': Mukwege warns ahead of DRC polls Peace Prize winner Denis Mukwege has warned that the forthcoming elections in the Democratic Republic of Congo could lead to conflict if they are not free, fair and peaceful, adding that indications show that they will not be. The elections on Dec. 23 will mark Congo’s first democratic transfer of power and end President Joseph Kabila’s rule that began in 2001 after the assassination of his father. Mukwege jointly received the 2018 prize in Oslo for his work as a doctor who helps victims of sexual violence in the eastern Congo city of Bukavu. He has performed surgery on scores of women after they were raped by armed men and has campaigned to highlight their plight. Nadia Murad, a Yazidi rights activist and survivor of sexual slavery by Islamic State, will also receive the prize. ‘Lots of military preparation’ “What I have seen as I was leaving my country did not reassure me,” Mukwege told Reuters, hours before receiving the Nobel Peace Prize at a ceremony in front of King Harald. “There is very little electoral preparation and a lot of military preparation. I am very worried that these elections will not be free, fair, credible and peaceful and that if there are massive frauds …. supporters (from losing candidates) will not accept them.” He said election authorities were struggling to meet deadlines ahead of the vote and that violence was worsening in the eastern borderlands with Rwanda, Uganda and Burundi. “These … elements suggest to me that oppression is being prepared, at the very minimum, and it could be that a war against its own people is being prepared,” he said. What is Kabila’s game-plan? Kabila was due to step down in 2016 at the end of his constitutional mandate. But the election to replace him was repeatedly delayed, igniting protests in which dozens were killed. Kabila told Reuters on Sunday preparations for the election were proceeding smoothly and he wanted it to be “as close to perfection” as possible. He also said he planned to stay in politics when he steps down after elections and did not rule out running again for president in 2023. Critics say he could rule from behind the scenes if his candidate, Emmanuel Ramazani Shadary, wins. READ MORE: Kingmakers behind ‘little-known’ candidates in DRC polls Mukwege said Kabila had the right as every Congolese citizen to run for president in 2023 but he hoped voters would remember Kabila’s “broken promises”. “None of the elements needed to install a real democracy have been made during his time in power,” he said. A war in which some 5 million people died, most from hunger and disease, ended in 2003, but violence is still a problem and militias target civilians. Mukwege’s appeal to DRC’s allies Mukwege called for pressure on manufacturers that use cobalt and coltan that Congo produces to control their supply chains to prevent child and slave labour. He also called for pressure on Rwanda, Burundi and Uganda to pacify armed groups that fight in eastern Congo. He also called on “serious mining players” to push the government to pacify the country’s east so they can mine and do so ethically. .embed-container { position: relative; padding-bottom: 56.25%; height: 0; overflow: hidden; max-width: 100%; } .embed-container iframe, .embed-container object, .embed-container embed { position: absolute; top: 0; left: 0; width: 100%; height: 100%; } Follow our ‘Africa Elections page for moreMon, 10 Dec 2018 22:02:12 +0000editorial@africanews.com parties in Tanzania protest new law: 'It will criminalise politics' parties in Tanzania have called upon legislators not to pass proposed amendments to a law governing political parties, saying it would criminalise their activities. At a news conference in the capital Dar es Salaam on Sunday, Hashim Rungwe, chairman of one of 10 opposition parties, said the proposed amendments would curtail constitutional freedoms. “The proposed bill is against the constitution and political parties were not involved from initial stages and even after providing our views, they were not considered,” he said. “If this bill is passed by the parliament as it is, it is going to criminalise political activities,” he added. “The bill is full of criminal punishments which make political activities … crimes.” He said the law imposed penalties of jail sentences or big fines for minor infringements. Among its provisions, the new law would ban parties from functioning as “activist” groups. It would give sweeping powers to a government official to suspend or fire a party member for a range of reasons, and also gives the official influence over internal party elections. Intolerant Magufuli? The government says the law, tabled in parliament on November 16, is needed to force parties to adhere to the country’s constitution. Critics of President John Magufuli, who came to power in 2015, say he is increasingly cracking down on dissent with restrictions on the political opposition, the media, bloggers and non-governmental organisations. His government denies the accusations. READ MORE: Rights groups urge Magufuli’s gov’t to review restrictive laws, end attacks on journalistsMon, 10 Dec 2018 22:04:21 +0000editorial@africanews.com to investigate bribe allegations against foreign minister: Museveni authorities will investigate claims that foreign minister, Sam Kutesa took a bribe of $500,000 from a Chinese official, the country’s president said on Monday. President Yoweri Museveni, who was launching new initiatives to tackle corruption in Uganda, said the minister had explained that the money was donated to a charity he runs, rather than to him as an individual. Chi Ping Patrick Ho, a former Hong Kong government official, was last week found guilty of bribing Kutesa and Chad’s president Idriss Deby, in exchange for contracts for a Chinese energy company. ‘‘I have told him to get in touch with the Attorney General, who will cross check if this money was indeed for charity as he said, or if it was for him,’‘ the president said when asked about Ho’s conviction. ‘‘Obviously, it is a crime for him to get money from a foreign company. What for? That would be a bribe and he would be answerable.’‘ The president however added, that the New York court decision would not determine the fate of his minister, saying ‘we are going to investigate ourselves’. The president is himself reported to have received gifts and donations from Ho, for his 2016 re-election campaign.Mon, 10 Dec 2018 22:09:57 (Daniel Mumbere) Sudan sexual violence victims narrate their ordeals after sexual violence attacks on vulnerable civilians in South Sudan victims in the Unity region have begun coming forward to narrate their ordeals. An 18-year-old mother of two, whose identity was not disclosed to protect her, recounts how she and a friend were walking to their village in Nhialdiu, about 40 kilometres west of the town Bentiu, when they were attacked by armed men. The two women were bound and dragged into the bush and repeatedly raped by their attackers. After an eight hour ordeal, the women were released the following morning weak and in pain. They were found on the roadside by Good Samaritans. “We were coming back from the town, and on our way, we found people, and these people stole our belongings, and after that, they tied us for eight hours in the bush, and then at 4 am, they released us,” she said. According to the victim, this happened in early November. Reports by aid agencies last week of a wave of “brutal” sexual attacks on women and girls, including the rape of 125 women in Bentiu has drawn outrage and condemnation. Following the reports, the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) has launched investigations into the rapes and stepped up security measures including regular patrols in the area. South Sudan has suffered a wrenching five-year civil war. Despite a fragile peace accord signed two months ago by the government and rebel groups, the country remains ridden with ethnic grievances and awash with weapons. “Now with the current situation we cannot farm, we are not producing food, we are depending on the United Nations, and when we try to go to town to get food, we risk being attacked on the way,” said Roda Chol, who lives in Nhialdiu. Rape and other forms of sexual violence by all sides in South Sudan’s civil war have become widespread and have reached a massive scale in recent years, leaving thousands battling mental distress and stigma with nowhere to turn, according to an Amnesty International report released last year.Mon, 10 Dec 2018 19:53:54 +0000editorial@africanews.com hangs over AFCON 2019 Football Planet this week, more than a week after Cameroon was dismissed as host country for AFCON 2019, CAF is yet to find a replacement. Morocco, seen by many as the most feasible country to host the competition, now six months away, has not officially declared interest. We also report on the 2019 Women’s World Cup where Africa’s representatives were drawn against tough opponents. The Beach Soccer Nations Cup is underway in Sharm el Sheikh, Egypt. Will Senegal defend their crown? These and more on this edition of Football Planet with Johnson Wahany Sambou .Mon, 10 Dec 2018 15:03:03 (Wahany Johnson SAMBOU) Sports Review [1]: Winners, losers and questions facing African football was an eventful year in the world of sport for Africa, as athletes in different disciplines reached for greatness on the national, continental and global stage. In some instances, like the 2018 World Cup in Russia, the entire Africa fell short, but in some brilliant moments like Eliud Kipchoge’s record-breaking run at the Berlin Marathon, the continent’s sports prowess shone brightest. In this article, we’ll review the highs, lows and notable sports takeaways over this year. Salah, Salah, Salah Egypt and Liverpool forward took the English Premier League by storm in the 2017/2018 season, breaking the record for goals scored and winning the best player accolades. He was crowned African Player of the Year by the Confederation of African Football (CAF) in January, and was nominated for the FIFA Best player, UEFA best player and the prestigious Ballon d’Or. Morocco’s Hakim Ziyech was named the best footballer in the Dutch League in September, becoming the third Moroccan to win the top accolade. Morocco wins CHAN 2018 and more Morocco in January hosted and won the Championship of African Nations (CHAN 2018), defeating Nigeria’s Super Eagles (4-0). Moroccan club sides dominated football on the continent as Wydad Casablanca defeated Congolese side TP Mazembe to win the Super Cup in February. Another Moroccan side, Raja Casablanca lifted the African Confederations Cup this month, after beating Congo’s AS Vital (4-3) over a two-legged final. Tunisia’s Esperance were crowned champions of CAF’s Champions League last month after beating Egypt’s Al Ahly (4-3) in the two-legged final. READ MORE: North African sides dominate football in 2018 Morocco’s bid to host the 2026 World Cup was unsuccessful, as it lost out to a joint bid by the United States, Mexico and Canada. The North African is however determines to host the world’s biggest football tournament as it prepares a bid for the 2030 World Cup. READ MORE: Spain, Morocco discuss joint Africa-Europe bid for 2030 FIFA World Cup Africa’s miserable World Cup Speaking of the World Cup, African sides put in a dismal showing at the tournament in Russia, as all five national sides failed to go past the group stages. Egypt, Morocco, Tunisia, Senegal and Nigeria were all eliminated, leaving the continent asking questions and waiting for yet another opportunity to take a shot at bringing the coveted trophy to Africa. READ MORE: Africa’s disastrous performance at the World Cup in Russia Hanging up the boots Following the World Cup that ended in July, Egypt’s veteran goalkeeper El-Hadary (45) retired from international football. Nigeria’s midfielder Victor Moses, also shocked his fans when he announced his retirement in August. The 27-year-old explained that he needed to focus on his club career at Chelsea. Chelsea and Ivorian legend, Didier Drogba hang up his boots last month, after an illustrious 20-year career that saw him lift four Premier League titles and the 2012 Champions League. READ MORE: Essien, Adebayor hail Drogba’s impact on African football Celebrating Women’s football at AWCON 2018 Nigeria’s Super Falcons won their ninth African Women’s Cup of Nations title last month in Accra, Ghana, after winning a post-match penalty shootout against South Africa’s Banyana Banyana. The Nigerians, South Africans and Cameroon’s Indomitable Lionesses will represent Africa at the World Cup in France next year. READ MORE: Nigeria, SA, Cameroon draw tough groups at 2019 FIFA Women’s WC CAF’s AFCON 2019 headache While at least 13 nations have already qualified for the Africa Nations Cup (AFCON 2019), CAF is yet to find a host for the tournament to be held in June next year. CAF re-opened bidding for hosting rights after it stripped Cameroon of the opportunity, citing infrastructural delays and insecurity. READ MORE: Is it time for CAF to revise process of awarding AFCON hosting rights? Madagascar and Mauritania will be playing at Africa’s biggest tournament for the first time.Mon, 10 Dec 2018 15:31:46 (Daniel Mumbere) advocate for gender paraty - Sharm el sheikh conference are more women representations in African parliament than the world average, but its not entirely rosy just yet ,for gender parity on the continent. Chileshe Mpundu Kapwepwe is the first woman secretary general of the common markets for eastern and southern Africa COMESA. For her the SUCCESS Africa has CHALKED so far with women participation in gorvenance, merits applauds “ I think if you look at the recent developments for example we have a new president in Ethiopia who is a woman, we also have for example Rwanda one of our member countries is a very strong on gender representation in cabinet. Its almost 50- 50 basis and other countries are going along as well. I think Africa has made great strides in doing this and i think sometimes its just assumed that maybe we are lagging behind” At the 2018 Africa conference sharm el sheikh, a call was made to give women a greater role on the african agenda. According to an African development bank Afdb study , on inclusive boards in Africa’s top listed companies, one third of African board rooms have no women at all. This, women rights advocates say, needs to change. “ we cant focus on just women when they get into the work place and then think that we are gonna magically help them become leaders it actually starts from early childhood education where we have to look at the curriculum that we are putting in front of young gurls and ask ourselves if its empowering or entrepreneural does it give them the skills but also the confidence to see themselves as leaders irrespective of where they are in their journeys” “ you have the African continent being the only continent that has a gender driven agenda for specifically addressing women and young people. And so my hope is that in the next couple of years we would see more female participation in the boardrooms and rhe financial sector in the construction industrys and other sectors as well.” The women advocates at the forum, believe that a significant increase in gender representation and parity in Africa would help to improve the quality of governance and accelerate development on the continent.Mon, 10 Dec 2018 15:13:21 +0000editorial@africanews.com"Djibril on a rainy day": literature and diversity [This is Culture] necessarily according to Makamousso Traoré. She is a young Malian woman who lives in France….. And she is a slasher as we say today. She wears several hats including that of a DJ, and most recently, that of a children’s book writer since she has just authored her first book: “Djibril, un jour de pluie”. A project that Makamousso has been carrying out since the birth of her son five years ago. At the time she was looking for books in which she could find a little boy like him, with whom he could identify. In the absence of any, Makamousso decided to write one herself! “I really wanted a book that looked like him. Because we have many books with little girls, books that talk about Africa with heroes, little black boys but in general, they are little black boys who live in the middle of the forest with animals etc. So I didn’t want a book with this stereotype which is very common. I really wanted a book with a little boy who lives in a big city, such as Paris, a big African capital, the United States, anywhere but, in a big city with his family and among his own”, she explains. Djibril is a 4 year old boy who discovers life with his friends and family. Stuck at home one day it rains and he can’t go out…Djibril will live many adventures… “Djibril on a Rainy Day” is just the first book in a series that will follow our young protagonist through many adventures. The second volume is already in the making. You can also follow Djibril on the website The site is under construction. These stories will be translated into English with the aim of being distributed worldwide. To finance her project, Makamousso has launched a crowdfunding campaign on the Ulule platform. If you want to contribute, you have until December 20th to do so! @NigeriasinsightMon, 10 Dec 2018 12:33:55 (Bridget UGWE) extends sanctions on DRC's ruling party candidate European Union, EU, on Monday extended sanctions on the Democratic Republic of Congo’s ruling party candidate for polls slated for December 23, 2018. The sanctions, an asset freeze and entry ban into the EU affects Emmanuel Ramazani Shadary and thirteen others. This is the third extension since it was imposed in December 2016. The move means that the Congolese government’s extensive lobbying to have the sanctions lifted had failed. The African Union at a point weighed in seeking the lifting of sanctions. Full Statement: Council extends sanctions for one year On 10 December 2018, the Council extended the restrictive measures currently in place against the Democratic Republic of the Congo until 12 December 2019. The sanctions comprise an asset freeze and a ban on entering the European Union and are targeted at 14 individuals. They were adopted on 12 December 2016 and 29 May 2017 in response to the obstruction of the electoral process, and the related human rights violations, in the DRC. In its conclusions of December 2017, the Council called on all Congolese actors, and above all the Congolese authorities and institutions, to play a constructive role in the electoral process. In its decision, considering the upcoming elections, the Council reaffirms the importance of holding credible and inclusive elections in line with the aspiration of the Congolese people to elect their representatives. The Council will further review the restrictive measures in the light of and following the elections in the DRC and stands ready to adjust them accordingly. About DRC’s first post-Kabila vote There are twenty-one aspirants in the race. Twenty men and a woman running to replace Kabila, the two coalitions have effectively reduced the number to eighteen. Kabila who has been in power since 2001 agreed to step down in August this year.The ruling coalition replaced him as candidate for the long-delayed polls. All things being equal, it will be the first time that the DRC experiences peaceful handover of political authority. Previous cases have been tainted with ousters and assassinations. The opposition, the Catholic Church, activists and international community have cautioned against an electronic voting machine but the elections body, CENI and the ruling party have defended it saying it was reliable.Mon, 10 Dec 2018 12:40:16 (Abdur Rahman Alfa Shaban) MPs aim to impeach president over Ethiopia, Eritrea 'deals' impeachment move brought by lawmakers against Somali president Mohamed Abdullahi Farmaajo has been rejected by deputy speakers of the country’s parliament. A copy of the motion, seen by Reuters, lists as grounds for the impeachment an allegation that the president secretly signed agreements with other countries including Ethiopia and Eritrea. The agreements touched on the use of Somali ports and economic and security cooperation, it said. The rejection according to a Voice of America, VOA, journalist was premised on the basis that there was no top court to rule on the legality of the motion. The two, Abdiweli Mudey and Mahad Awad held that the measure had the potential of causing unnecessary political conflict in the country. A top official of Somali’s parliament administration confirmed on Sunday that he had filed a motion with the speaker of parliament to impeach the president. “We have filed an impeachment against the president of the federal republic of Somalia,” Abdikarim H. Abdi Buh said in a statement. Local media report that as at Monday morning, there were protests in the streets of the capital, Mogadishu, against the impeachment move. Farmaajo has been in charge since early 2017. Constitutionally, 92 lawmakers have to sign such a motion for it to be submitted to the speaker. Parliament would have debated the motion if it was admitted. Somalia’s parliament has 275 lawmakers in total. A successful impeachment vote requires the backing of two thirds of all MPs. He was also accused of illegally extraditing alleged criminals to other countries and violating Somalia’s federalism law and the rules and regulations of parliament.Mon, 10 Dec 2018 12:05:11 (Abdur Rahman Alfa Shaban)'s ex-prez refutes neutrality reports, says Buhari must go Obasanjo, Nigeria’s former president has clarified that he remained opposed to the current government led by Muhammadu Buhari. Obasanjo had reportedly backed Atiku Abubakar, his former veep and main opposition candidate for the 2019 presidential elections earlier this year when the two met. The News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, carried a report that suggested that Obasanjo had months on, opted to remain neutral as regards the presidential race. In a press release issued over the weekend, Obasanjo affectionately referred to as OBJ said his comments at a family event had been misconstrued. He stressed that he was not neutral but did not mention explicitly whether he was backing any candidate aside Buhari who he said had failed. “For the records, and as accurately reported by some media organisations, what the former President said at the Convention in Iwo was that while he would not impress any candidates on them, Nigerians should vote for credible candidates who will drive growth and development and make their lives better than it is now. “Chief Obasanjo’s statement did not suggest his neutrality. In fact, the former President believes that only a fool will sit on the fence or be neutral when his or her country is being destroyed with incompetence, corruption, lack of focus, insecurity, nepotism, brazen impunity and denial of the obvious. “Chief Obasanjo is no such fool nor is he so unwise,” a statement signed by media aide Kehinde Akinyemi read. The statement added that it was OBJ’s conviction that Nigerians had to stand up and actively demand for much needed change failure for which: “what is coming will be much worse than what Nigerians currently suffer.” The February 2019 elections pits Buhari leading the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, alongside Atiku with the main opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP. Campaigning has been intensifying over the past weeks as candidates crisscross the country to canvass for votes. Buhari, in power since 2015 is contesting for a second and final term in charge of Africa’s most populous country. Atiku, OBJ’s veep for eight years is running for a seat he has long eyed. At the heart of the vote is the issue of security, the economy and corruption. The same set of issues that underlined the vote that saw Buhari defeat the then incumbent Goodluck Jonathan. The APC victory ended 16 years of PDP government. Eight for OBJ, Four shared by Jonathan and the late Yar Adua and four of Jonathan’s substantive first term.Mon, 10 Dec 2018 11:01:46 (Abdur Rahman Alfa Shaban) Africa president bans annual salary increase for cabinet of cabinet in South Africa will not have annual salary increases according to a statement from the presidency. A statement published over the weekend said President Cyril Ramaphosa had taken the decision in the light of economic hardships the country was facing. “President Ramaphosa has determined that there will be no annual salary increase for the Deputy President, Ministers, Deputy Ministers, the Speaker of the National Assembly, the Chairperson of the National Council of Provinces, the Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly and the Deputy Chairperson of the National Council of Provinces,” the statement read. The move is against a government commission’s recommendation that all public office bearers be given a 4% increase. In provincial executives, Premiers, Members of Executive Councils and Speakers will also not receive a salary increase. “President Ramaphosa’s decision not to follow the Commission’s recommendations is informed by the imperative that the state be considerate, responsive and demonstrate restraint, especially during periods of economic hardship, when determining the level of salary increases for public representatives,” the statement added. Other high ranking government officials who will have increases in their salaries are as follows: Salaries and allowances of Constitutional Court judges and judges of other courts will be increased by 2.5% with effect of 1 April 2018. With regard to Members of Parliament, a 2.5% increase will apply to categories ranging from House Chairperson, Chief Whip: Majority Party, Leader of the Opposition and Whips, to Members of the National Assembly and permanent delegates to the National Council of Provinces. Members of provincial legislatures will, however, receive a 2.5% salary increase.  Magistrates will benefit from a 4% salary adjustment, as will office bearers in of both national and provincial houses of traditional leaders. Kings and Queens will be eligible for a 2.5% increase. Senior traditional leaders and headmen and women will receive a 4% salary increase.Mon, 10 Dec 2018 10:00:44 (Abdur Rahman Alfa Shaban) leaders converge in Sharm El-Sheikh [The Morning Call] Business of Africa Forum 2018 kicked off on Saturday in Egypt’s Red Sea resort city of Sharm el-Sheikh with the participation of a number of African leaders. The forum, now in its third year provides is a great platform for business owners to nurture new partnerships and meet investors.Mon, 10 Dec 2018 08:43:11 +0000editorial@africanews.com Calm returns to Lome [The Morning Call] least two people have been killed after clashes between the police and protesters in Togo over the weekend. The opposition has accused the government of deploying security forces in a brutal crackdown after the government banned protests about upcoming elections scheduled for December 20. They oppose the polls, demanding a reform of the electoral commission and a two-term limit for presidents.Mon, 10 Dec 2018 08:41:34 +0000editorial@africanews.com FIFA Women's WC: Nigeria, SA, Cameroon in tough groups draw has been held for next years’ FIFA Women’s World Cup to be held in France. Africa’s representatives: the Super Falcons of Nigeria, South Africa’s Banyana Banyana and Cameroon’s Indomitable Lionesses have been drawn in groups considered to be tough. The Super Falcons who earlier this month were crowned 2018 African champions were drawn in Group A along side host country, France, South Korea and Norway. Africa’s second-best Banyana Banyana are drawn in group B with two times winner, Germany. China and Spain complete the teams in the group. On the part of the Indomitable Lionesses, they have to deal with Canada, Netherlands and New Zealand in group E. Analysts hold that across the board it is a pretty mouthwatering draw which would make for interesting display when the games kick off in Paris and other French cities. A total of 52 matches will be played to determine the winner. Africa has usually struggled at previous tournaments. Earlier this year, Africa’s representatives at the main World Cup in Russia, failed to achieve qualification past the group stages. Nigeria, Egypt, Morocco, Tunisia and Senegal were all kicked out in the group stages. France went on to win the competition beating Croatia in the final. The composition of the French team, gave Africa something to celebrate, given that it was dominated by players with Africa roots.Mon, 10 Dec 2018 08:23:21 (Abdur Rahman Alfa Shaban) veep confirms President Ali Bongo suffered stroke’s President Ali Bongo suffered a stroke which led to his hospitalization, Vice President Pierre Claver Maganga Moussavou confirmed over the weekend. The VP whiles delivering a speech in Franceville, south of the country, said Bongo had suffered a cerebrovascular accident or CVA, commonly known as a stroke. CVA in simple terms involves: a sudden loss of consciousness resulting when the rupture or occlusion of a blood vessel leads to oxygen lack in the brain. He went on to caution against the tendency for anyone to rejoice over another’s state of misfortune especially when it relates to health. “Nobody should rejoice over the death or illness of another, those who have never known a CVA, pray to God that they never know one. “I would not wish it on anyone, not even my worst enemy,” Moussavou added. His role has become prominent in recent times following the ill health of his boss. The Constitutional Court last month ruled that Moussavou is eligible to lead the cabinet meeting which had been put off since Bongo was admitted in a Riyadh hospital in October. The VP along with the Constitutional Court head, Marie-Madeleine Mborantsuo and other top government officials visited Bongo in a Moroccan hospital last week. Bongo was transferred to the Rabat military hospital from Riyadh to convalesce. It is not known as yet when he will be heading back home. The official government account had been that the 59-year-old had suffered severe fatigue following his exertions at home and on international duty. Reuters quoted sources close to the presidency as confirming that Bongo suffered a stroke but Libreville never responded to the allegations directly. A photograph of Bongo and two videos without sound have been published since his arrival in Morocco, further fuelling rumours about his state of health. The Bongo family has governed the oil-rich equatorial African nation for five decades. ALi Bongo took over when his father, Omar Bongo died in office. He won hotly contested elections in 2009 to secure a second-term in office. His main contender and former African Union Chairperson, Jean Ping, insists till date that he was the rightful winner of the election.Sun, 09 Dec 2018 13:07:53 (Abdur Rahman Alfa Shaban) governor, six others killed in helicopter mishap least seven local government officials were killed in a helicopter crash in Sudan’s eastern al-Qadarif state on Sunday, state news agency SUNA reported. The state’s governor and three security officials were among the dead. A number of people were also injured in the incident, SUNA said. The officials had been carrying out a security tour of the province. It was not immediately clear what caused the crash. State TV earlier reported that a plane, not a helicopter, had crashed. Al-Qadarif state is known for its farmland and agricultural projects. The governor of Gadaref state in Sudan, Mirghani Saleh, and a number of his companions died today morning after a helicopter crash— Samir Bol (@SAMIRBOL) December 9, 2018 REUTERSSun, 09 Dec 2018 11:37:43 +0000editorial@africanews.com'It's getting unbearable' DRC's Fayulu decries campaign intimidation opposition candidate in the Democratic Republic of Congo, DRC, Martin Fayulu is decrying intimidation on the campaign trail as the country nears the December 23 general elections. Fayulu, leader of the Lamuka coalition on Monday tweeted that his plane had been refused clearance to take off towards Kindu, capital of the Maniema province where he is due to campaign. “It’s getting unbearable,” stranded Fayulu stated. He kicked off his campaign last week in Beni in the North Kivu province and also in the town of Goma. The Fayulu campaign drew thousands of people during the day and even during campaign stops in the evening. The candidate shared his vision of a new DRC if elected President. An exiled member of the five-man Lamuka coalition and former Katanga governor, Moise Katumbi had last week tweeted about intimidation of Fayulu after his entourage were blocked in Goma. On nous bloque à Goma.— Martin Fayulu (@MartinFayulu) December 7, 2018 The authorities have yet to issue an official explanation for the incident. Other aspirants busy on the campaign trail include the ruling coalition candidate, Emmanuel Ramazani Shadary. Felix Tshisekedi, son of a deceased veteran opposition leader is also leading a coalition that involves another political heavyweight Vital Kemerhe. The duo were initially part of the Lamuka coalition agreed in Geneva under the auspices of the Kofi Annan Foundation. They withdrew barely twenty-four hours later and weeks later announced a coalition in Nairobi, Kenya. There are twenty-one aspirants in the race. Twenty men and a woman running to replace Kabila, the two coalitions have effectively reduced the number to eighteen. Kabila who has been in power since 2001 agreed to step down in August this year.The ruling coalition replaced him as candidate for the long-delayed polls. All things being equal, it will be the first time that the DRC experiences peaceful handover of political authority. Previous cases have been tainted with ousters and assassinations. The opposition, the Catholic Church, activists and international community have cautioned against an electronic voting machine but the elections body, CENI and the ruling party have defended it saying it was reliable. On nous bloque à Goma.— Martin Fayulu (@MartinFayulu) December 7, 2018 Follow our ‘Africa Elections page for moreMon, 10 Dec 2018 06:54:43 (Abdur Rahman Alfa Shaban) Meite sheds new light on migrant crisis [Inspire Africa] a year ago, Awa Meite Van tuyl directed a documentary on Subsaharan migrants. But the Malian director chose to paint a different picture than the one so commonly showed in the media. In a 12 episode series, she gave the floor to the migrants themselves, hence granting them the opportunity to recount their own ordeal.Mon, 10 Dec 2018 06:29:33 +0000editorial@africanews.com Ethiopia PM hosts students to mark 2018 'Unity Day' job of a leader of government is demanding, more so for a country of over a hundred million plus citizens. Ethiopia’s Prime Minister, Abiy Ahmed, aside his high level engagements at home and with foreign visitors paying courtesy calls on him, made time last Friday to engage with young people. The office of the Prime Minister reported of Abiy’s meeting with 140 grade six students pooled from across the country. The occasion was to mark the 13th edition of the Nations and Nationalities day. Photos showed Abiy in a hearty engagement with the students in a garden at his office complex in the capital, Addis Ababa. Every December 8 is celebrated each year on a national scope as the day on which the rights and equality of the Ethiopian nations, nationalities and peoples were fully guaranteed under Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia Constitution. Read more about Ethiopia’s Nations, Nationalities and Peoples’ Day – UNESCO It is not the first time the PM is hosting school children. Earlier this year, he hosted a cross section of children at his office – where he gave them school supplies for the school year that was about kicking off. PM Abiy Ahmed handed school supplies to 200 low income students. The opportunity for generosity, service & leadership for each citizen is everywhere we look—at a community level. We all are joined as a community in the efforts to fight poverty, disease and despair. #Ethiopia— Fitsum Arega (@fitsumaregaa) August 26, 2018Fri, 07 Dec 2018 22:14:29 (Abdur Rahman Alfa Shaban) to remain in politics after December polls president of Democratic Republic of Congo, Joseph Kabila,on Sunday said he plans to stay in politics when he steps down after elections on December 23. Kabila in an interview with Reuters also said he does not rule out running again for president in 2023. Speaking on his role after the upcoming election, he said he will help to ensure a stable nation. “My role will be to make sure that we don’t go back to square one. Square one meaning where we found the Congo 20, 22 years ago. My role will be to do that by advising, by giving all the necessary information, advice to be taken or not taken so that we don’t go back to the years that should be history in this country,” he said. The long-delayed elections will mark Congo’s first democratic transfer of power and an end to Kabila’s rule that began in 2001 after the assassination of his father. He also stated that they took time to organise the coming elections because they want the elections to be perfect. He added that their intent is on making it certain that the elections are as close to perfection as they can possibly be. “Why don’t we wait for 2023? In order for us to envision anything No, ruling out in politics, in life in fact, you shouldn’t rule out anything because anything and everything is possible. But the question is what’s the bigger picture? Its not just a matter of running in 2023 or 2024 or whatever,” Kabika said. Kabila, 47, was due to step down in 2016 at the end of his constitutional mandate. But the election to replace him was repeatedly delayed, igniting protests in which dozens were killed. “Regrets I always never want to talk about regrets . I never want to talk about regrets because I believe that each and everything happens for a reason. We’ve managed to give the best that we could for our country. That was in itself a task and a mission. Secondly do we have any regrets no, not at all. But our achievements,” he added. The delay in elections has coincided with a breakdown in security across much of the mineral-rich country. Militants fight over land and resources in the east near the border with Uganda and Rwanda. The violence has allowed an Ebola outbreak to spread to become the second largest ever recorded. International observers say insecurity will make holding elections difficult in the vast equatorial country and create the opportunity for Kabila’s coalition to cheat, especially with the use of new voting machines. Kabila said Congo is ready and that the polls will be fair. Follow our ‘Africa Elections page for moreSun, 09 Dec 2018 16:19:00 +0000editorial@africanews.com's Africa Museum mired in controversy despite face-lift over Belgium’s Africa Museum. The museum was modernized from an exhibition of pro-colonial propaganda to one which is critical of Belgium’s imperialist past. Full of artifacts and stuffed wildlife, the facility was often criticized for ignoring the brutalities of King Leopold II’s fiefdom, whose troops collected the hands of those who resisted slave labour at a time when millions of Congolese people are estimated to have died. “What needs to be done is that colonial history becomes part of the curriculum over Belgium schools, in secondary schools. And so that there is much more education programs. You can’t leave it only to our museum to provide a story line on contemporary Africa and on the problems of the colonial past. It’s really something that should be addressed by the educational system starting with all the schools”, said Guido Gryseels, Director General of the Royal Museum for Central Africa. A controversial golden statue still stands of a European missionary with an African boy clutching his robes along with a plaque that reads: “Belgium bringing civilization to Congo.” But a modern sculpture of the profile of an African man has been added in the middle of the rotunda to centralize Africans rather than Europeans. Mireille-Tsheusi Robert is an author and activist. ‘‘From our point of view, we don’t care if the museum is renovated or not, if it reopens or not. What interests us is restitution, because there is no decolonization without restitution”, she said. “We’re willing to talk about restitution within certain conditions, like we need to establish the ownership, who owns it. Clearly the moral ownership is with country. But, does it mean that everything that was acquired in the colonial period is legal or not? So that needs to be discussed further”, Gryseels added. Activists have warned that the museum’s collections contain artifacts stolen from Congo under colonial rule. Until these artifacts are returned, they say the museum will continue to be an extension of colonialism. Belgium’s Africa Museum reopens to the public on Sunday December 9. The renovation cost 66 million euros or $77 million. ReutersSun, 09 Dec 2018 09:16:21 +0000editorial@africanews.com Catholic church beatifies slain members of 1996 civil war Catholic Church in Algeria has organized a beatification ceremony in the coastal city of Oran for seven monks and twelve clergy who were killed during the civil war in 1996. It’s a first beatification organized in a Muslim country and attended by 1, 200 people. The bishop of Oran, Pierre Claverie, who was killed in an explosion in 1996, was among those celebrated. Claverie was proclaimed martyr by the Catholic Church in January, 2018 along with seven monks and eleven other Christians slain in Algeria, beginning the process towards their canonization. ‘‘I am here today to pay tribute to the monks of Tibhirine, especially Brother Luke who is my great-great uncle. He was a doctor with the monks of Tibhirine for the local population and he carried a message of peace with the local population that we want to see here. These monks were a good message of brotherhood between French Europeans and Algerians and that is also what we came to celebrate today”, said Mathieu Laurent, a relative of monk abducted in Tibhirine and murdered. A message read on behalf of Pope Francis thanked the Algerian authorities for allowing the service to take place on Algerian soil. He hoped the celebration will help heal past wounds and create a new dynamic of togetherness in Algeria. ‘‘This is an extremely important day between Christians and Muslims, between French and Algerians. We know that the story is a little difficult, but now we are turning the page and writing new pages together. Living together is what we hope for the whole world and it is up to us to do it and we are doing it here now”, said Bishop of Vivier, France, Father Jean Louis Balssa. About 200,000 people were killed in Algeria during more than a decade of violence that erupted in the early 1990s between Islamist militants and security forces. The conflict was marked by massacres and the killing of civilians.Sun, 09 Dec 2018 08:38:53 +0000editorial@africanews.com, non-OPEC countries reach deal to cut crude output in 2019 oil production will be cut by 1.2 million barrels per day from January 2019 for an initial period of six months. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and non-OPEC oil producers made the agreement in Austria’s Vienna on Friday. According to the agreement, OPEC member states contribute 0.8 million bpd output cut and non-OPEC oil pumpers including Russia contribute 0.4 million bpd output cut from the production of October level. But details of the quota for each member state were not given. The deal was reached after Iran, Venezuela and Libya were granted exemption from curbing its output due to the special political situations. The surge of U.S. oil production, which has increased by 2.5 million bpd since early 2016 to 11.7 million bpd, has given OPEC and other oil pumpers more pressure in global market competition. The joint output cut move by OPEC and non-OPEC members came at a time when oil prices declined around 30 percent over the last two months due to oversupply in the global market. Russia is to cut production by two percent from October’s output of 11.4 million bpd, according to Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak. He noted that Russia would reduce supply gradually due to its climactic and technological conditions. ReutersSun, 09 Dec 2018 07:40:09 +0000editorial@africanews.com Nobel Peace Prize winner dedicates award to 'women harmed by conflicts' Congolese gynecologist Denis Mukwege who won the 2018 Nobel Peace Prize in October has dedicated his award to women all over the world harmed by conflicts. Mukwege is being celebrated for his work with survivors of sexual violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo alongside a Yazidi human rights activist, Nadia Murad. “I dedicate this Nobel Prize to women of all countries in the world, harmed by conflict and facing violence every day. For almost 20 years I have witnessed war crimes committed against women, girls, and even baby girls not only in my country, the Democratic Republic of Congo, but also in many other countries. To the survivors from all over the world, I would like to tell you that through this prize, the world is listening to you and refusing to remain indifferent”, Mukwege said. Mukwege founded Panzi hospital in the capital of South Kivu to offer physical and emotional treatment to hundreds of women raped in the region each year. The number of women and girls raped in eastern D.R Congo is not known, but experts and campaigners say the scale is huge. The former United Nation’s representative on sexual violence in conflict Margot Wallstrom has called Congo the “rape capital of the world”. “My decision to come back to Bukavu was motivated by the fact that I was determined to pursue the fight against sexual violence, which is taking place in eastern Congo. The second reason was the determination of the Congolese women, whether it’s women in the diaspora or the women of the country, the demand and their calls were too strong for me to resist”, he said In May 2011, Mukwege received the King Baudouin International Development Prize for his work, after which he described the severity of the attacks on his patients. In 2014, he was again honored with Sakharov prize, Europe’s top human rights award and a Hillary Rodham Clinton Award for Advancing Women in Peace and Security. The Nobel Peace Prize worth $ 1.4 million will be presented in Oslo, Norway on December 10, the anniversary of the death of Swedish industrialist, Alfred Nobel who founded the awards in his 1895 will. The Democratic Republic of Congo has for decades experienced war and chaos with its vast untapped mineral and oil reserves. Women are particularly vulnerable to the insecurity. ReutersSun, 09 Dec 2018 07:13:51 +0000editorial@africanews.com advances in pediatric cancer treatment is a step closer in the treatment of pediatric cancer in Republic of the Congo. The Adolph Cissé General hospital in Pointe-Noire has a pediatric oncology unit, a first in a country where 18 cases of pediatric cancer were reported this year, out of 180 registered patients. “It is a mobile respiratory device that allows the patient to be cared for from the accident site to the intensive care unit. This device has three functions for adults, children and totally autonomous neo-natology. Since it is always difficult for a doctor to have all the exact parameters of what is needed including systole, diastole, all saturation parameters, this device automatically gives you the opportunity to have all the saturation characteristics of the patient instantly and at this time we have less risk of management”, said Valery Boupda, Technical Director of Euraftrade. A foundation, Calissa ikama, was created by a father whose daughter lost her life 10 years ago to pediatric cancer. He’s since still be working hard to raise awareness about the illness. Our Cedric Sehossolo reports that 8% of pediatric cancer cases have been recorded in Congo Republic, a rate that donors in this pediatric oncology unit hope to see reduced.Sat, 08 Dec 2018 22:15:59 (Cédric Lyonnel SEHOSSOLO) sports ministry denies reports of bid to host AFCON 2019 Sports ministry has denied reports that the country has bid to play host to the 2019 Africa cup of nations. On Friday, the second vice president of the Confederation of African Football, Constant Omari told RFI International that the Central African nation has expressed interest in hosting the tournament. But speaking on the same platform on Saturday, the Congolese Minister of Sports and Physical Education denied any such plans. Hugues Ngouélondélé said that the nation will not be able to organise the continental tournament barely six months to commencement. The Congolese sports minister also said it lacks the required infrastructure to host the event. Cameroon was stripped off hosting rights by the CAF a fortnight ago citing delays in preparation.Sat, 08 Dec 2018 19:41:34 +0000editorial@africanews.com of graves to bury the dead hit South African cities a grave for the eternal rest of a human being is not always easy in South Africa. The country’s cemeteries are scarce and so gravediggers have no choice but to sometimes bury the dead in existing graves. 45 to 60 graves are re-opened every week in Johannesburg. “Since it’s a tomb that was already there, and it’s close to home, we thought it would be easier for us to make this tomb reopening, and then I won’t lie to you, it’s cheaper than making a new tomb”, said Puleng Sipamla, daughter of a deceased. To resolve the problem, South Africans are beginning to look for alternatives. Some have proposed cremation but opinions are mixed. “I think it would help if people understood why we have to turn to cremation, because we have a land problem. People cannot buy land, there are very few of them. There are many people coming in, many births and so forth, said Zoleka Sipamla, grand-daughter of a deceased. Reverend Harold Ginya of the Church of Nazareth supports the use of existing graves. We don’t believe in cremation. So I think these grave openings are a wonderful thing because no one will complain about being underneath. You’ll never hear them complain because they’re already dead”, he said. Aside Johannesburg, other cities are facing shortage of graves to bury the dead. Some municipalities are not ruling out mandatory cremation. AFPSat, 08 Dec 2018 17:17:49 +0000editorial@africanews.com'ts, business leaders converge in Egypt for Africa 2018 conference of governments, business leaders and policy makers from across the continent have gathered in Sharm El Sheikh Egypt for the Africa 2018 conference. Discussions are focused on the way forward for intra Africa trade and economic growth. The continent has the youngest population in the world. 19 percent of the global youth population according to the United Nations are in Africa and by 2030, the number of youths on the continent would increase by 42 percent. Experts warn the challenge is real. ‘‘The population increase in Africa is both exciting and challenging. Because my role is on trade and investment, I see there’s a real opportunity here to turn this into the biggest positive for the continent. But it is all about job creation’‘, said Emma Wade Smith, the UK’s Trade Commissioner for Africa. Also present are young leaders and innovators who believe entrepreneurship is the solution. ‘‘More than 45% of the African population is young so Africa can bring change to the continent. Young people must undertake innovative collaborative entrepreneurship ‘’, said young innovator and founder of MaishaPay, Landry Nyoga. According to the United nations, if sub-Saharan Africa was to invest wisely in its human capital, Gross Domestic Product (GDP) would grow by $500 billion annually for the next 30 years. But for this to happen, action is needed. ‘‘I think we have policy in Africa, but then how much of this policy do we have enforced and working? That’s just the basic thing. When we get the policy right, we will get everything right’‘, said entrepreneur, Olamide Ayeni Babajide. Our Jerry Bambi reports that young African leaders agree that leaders need to realize the economic potential of youths on the continent and desist from paying lip services to the development and welfare of African youths.Sat, 08 Dec 2018 16:52:05 +0000editorial@africanews.com, middle-income countries record worst road traffic deaths in 2018 - WHO and middle income countries have the worst rates of road traffic deaths , the World Health Organization (WHO) has said. The global health body said this is inspite of these countries having roughly 60 percent of the world’s vehicles. According to the report, African and South American countries still lack sufficient speed limits. It said road traffic injuries are the leading cause of death for children and young adults aged between 5 and 29 years. The organization also cited drunk and distractive-driving, non-use of motorcycle helmets and seat-belts as contributory factors. Others factor mentioned in the report include unsafe vehicles, unsafe road infrastructure, inadequate law enforcement on traffic laws and inadequate post-crash care. Globally, the WHO said 1.35 million people are lost each year to road traffic accidents. The WHO is therefore calling on governments to take action in addressing road safety holistically.Sat, 08 Dec 2018 15:08:49 +0000editorial@africanews.com focus of Cairo's IOM Film Festival third edition of the Global Migration Film Festival took place in Egypt’s capital and majorly focused on migration stories, including sexual violence, human trafficking and integration. The event organised in Egypt as well as 100 other countries by the International Organisation for Migration, includes the screening of 30 films in Cairo and Alexandria. The Festival is part of a wider initiative meant to broaden the world’s awareness and understanding of migration and is expected to run until December 18. “Everybody talks about migration, but unfortunately not necessarily in the right words. We are forgetting that all of us or part of us, members of our families, have been migrants. They didn’t do it always in an easy way. And we want to remind people that the world is made up of a series of cultures, of people living together, and that migration is part of us.” said the representative of International Organization For Migration, Laurent De Boeck. Holding under the theme, “the promise and challenge of migration, and the positive contributions migrants make to their communities”, the films chosen this year range from short films and documentaries to fiction stories. “This idea of actually showing migration with people telling stories is a very important one because migration can be something when you have prejudices, where you don’t understand, where you have fears,” said ambassador of Switzerland in Egypt. The Global Migration Film Festival was first launched in 2016 by the IOM as part of a larger effort to heighten international awareness on the rising phenomenon of migration.Sat, 08 Dec 2018 14:41:30 +0000editorial@africanews.com