Africanews RSShttp://www.africanews.com/feed/Receive free and in real-time all news published by africanews.com, by subscribing to our RSS feeds.Fri, 20 Apr 2018 10:57:23 +0000Fri, 20 Apr 2018 10:57:23 +0000South Africa's Ramaphosa visits violence hit province after return from U.K.http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/south-africa-s-ramaphosa-visits-violence-hit-province-after-return-from-uk/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/south-africa-s-ramaphosa-visits-violence-hit-province-after-return-from-uk/South Africa’s new president Cyril Ramaphosa visited North West province on Friday to try to quell protests over poor local services that have turned violent, after cutting short a trip to the Commonwealth summit being held in London. Police Minister Bheki Cele said Ramaphosa would meet local officials from his ruling African National Congress (ANC) party at around 1000 GMT in a bid to defuse tensions. “I am here to listen more than talk,” Cele told local television. “The president, together with the deputy president, will be having a meeting in the area to see what decisions need to be taken to make the situation better.” Ramaphosa, who replaced Jacob Zuma as head of state in February, has staked his reputation on rooting out the corruption and mismanagement associated with Zuma’s nine scandal-plagued years in power. Unrest erupted on Wednesday in and around the city of Mahikeng in the province, located around 300 km (200 miles) west of South Africa’s commercial hub Johannesburg. South African media reported that cars were set alight, shops looted and roads blockaded by protesters calling for North West Premier Supra Mahumapeloa, a member of the ANC, to quit. Police fired rubber bullets to disperse the crowds and made more than 20 arrests. One man died in a car chase between police and protesters, the Times Live news website cited a local police spokeswoman as saying. “Service delivery protesters” seeking jobs, better housing, roads and hospitals frequently clash with police in South Africa, where weak economic growth has left more than one in four workers unemployed. Ramaphosa cut short his visit to Britain on Thursday because of the demonstrations. Calling for calm, he ordered police to exercise maximum restraint and urged those with grievances not to resort to violence. Foreign Minister Lindiwe Sisulu told state broadcaster SABC on Friday from London that neighbouring Botswana’s decision to close some border points into North West province was a factor behind Ramaphosa’s decision to leave the summit early. Both countries are members of the Commonwealth, a network of 53 mostly former territories of the British Empire. The president, a trade union leader turned businessman, has a reputation as a painstaking negotiator after playing a key role in talks to end white minority rule more than 20 years ago. REUTERSFri, 20 Apr 2018 10:57:23 +0000Ramaphosa, who replaced Jacob Zuma as head of state in February, has staked his reputation on rooting out the corruption and mismanagement associated with Zuma’s nine scandal-plagued years in power.Ethiopia PM continues national tour with visit to Gondar, Amhara regionAbdur Rahman Alfa Shabanhttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/ethiopia-pm-continues-national-tour-with-visit-to-gondar-amhara-region/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/ethiopia-pm-continues-national-tour-with-visit-to-gondar-amhara-region/Ethiopia Premier Abiy Ahmed on Friday morning arrived in the city of Gondar in the northern Amhara region. The trip forms part of his nationwide tour that started two weeks ago. The state-affiliated FANA Broadcasting corporate (FBC) reported that Abiy was received by head of the region, Gedu Andargachew and other top officials of the state. As part of his itinerary, he is expected to address residents at the Gondar stadium. “Today’s meeting is parts of his plan to send messages of unity to the public across the country,” the FBC report added. #Ethiopia – PM #AbiyAhmed received a warm welcome this morning upon arriving at the historic city of #Gonder in #Amhara regional state, where he is expected to address a public gathering. The premier will also attend this year’s #TanaForum in #BahirDar, the capital. pic.twitter.com/W7m9NkGvla— Addis Standard (@addisstandard) April 20, 2018 He will also deliver an address during the TANA Forum gathering to be held in Amhara capital, Bahir Dar on Saturday. Abiy since taking over from PM Hailemariam Desalegn on April 2 has embarked on a national tour that has seen him visit Jijiga (Ethio-Somali region), Ambo (Oromia region) and Mekelle (Tigray region). He has shared the message of peace during all his rounds across the country. Abiy is tasked with undertaking political reforms that were announced in early January by the ruling Ethiopia Peoples’ Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF).Fri, 20 Apr 2018 09:26:57 +0000Abiy since taking over from PM Hailemariam Desalegn on April 2 has embarked on a national tour that has seen him visit Jijiga (Ethio-Somali region), Ambo (Oromia region) and Mekelle (Tigray region).'I feel it is the right time for me to step down' - Wenger to quit Arsenalhttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/i-feel-it-is-the-right-time-for-me-to-step-down-wenger-to-quit-arsenal/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/i-feel-it-is-the-right-time-for-me-to-step-down-wenger-to-quit-arsenal/Our journalists are working on this story and will update it as soon as more information becomes available.Fri, 20 Apr 2018 09:20:23 +0000English Premier League side Arsenal have confirmed in a statement that long-serving manager, Arsene Wenger, will leave the club at the end of theCameroon needs urgent dialogue, human rights to solve Anglophone crisis – U.K.Abdur Rahman Alfa Shabanhttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/cameroon-needs-urgent-dialogue-human-rights-to-solve-anglophone-crisis-uk/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/cameroon-needs-urgent-dialogue-human-rights-to-solve-anglophone-crisis-uk/The British Foreign Affairs Chief, Boris Johnson, has reiterated the United Kingdom’s call for dialogue in solving the political and security crisis in Cameroon’s Anglophone regions. Johnson’s views were made when he met Prime Minister Philemon Yang on the sidelines of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in London. After holding what he described as important talks with the Premier who represented President Paul Biya, Johnson added: “Urgent need to pursue dialogue, decentralisation and respect human rights in Anglophone Regions as President Paul Biya has previously committed. “ He stressed that the UK will support peace, prosperity and security for its friends in Cameroon. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) has a security alert in place for the Anglophone regions – NorthWest and SouthWest – cautioning citizens against travel to those areas. The security situation in the region has been chaotic for the better part of this year in an armed confrontation that started in October 2017. Separatists under the banner of the so-called Ambazonia republic attempted to secede from Cameroon and were met with heavy security crackdown. President Biya is on record to have said that dialogue was the only way out but very little has been done in that respect. The last time dialogue came up, it was by Interior Minister Paul Atanga Nji, who stressed that the government was only going to speak with persons seeking a united country. Important talks with Cameroon PM Yang at #OurCommonwealth summit. Urgent need to pursue dialogue, decentralisation and respect #humanrights in Anglophone Regions as PR_Paul_BIYA</a> has previously committed. UK will support peace, prosperity and security for our friends in Cameroon <a href="https://t.co/YgkMDVRzoU">pic.twitter.com/YgkMDVRzoU</a></p>&mdash; Boris Johnson (BorisJohnson) April 19, 2018Fri, 20 Apr 2018 08:54:15 +0000The last time dialogue came up, it was by Interior Minister Paul Atanga Nji, who stressed that the government was only going to speak with persons seeking a united country.Pics of the day, April 19, 2018http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/pics-of-the-day-april-19-2018/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/pics-of-the-day-april-19-2018/Fri, 20 Apr 2018 08:49:20 +0000Niger: University of Niamey campus closed[The Morning Call]http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/niger-university-of-niamey-campus-closedthe-morning-call/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/niger-university-of-niamey-campus-closedthe-morning-call/Niger’s main university campus of Niamey, the biggest in Niger, was closed on Wednesday April 18 until further notice. This follows violent demonstrations by students who are demanding the reinstatement of five of their classmates, expelled in mid-March. The violent clashes between the students and security forces left many students injured, some seriously.Fri, 20 Apr 2018 09:19:59 +0000Niger's main university campus of Niamey, the biggest in Niger, was closed on Wednesday April 18 until further notice.Burundi: Draft law changing the criminal code [The Morning Call]http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/burundi-draft-law-changing-the-criminal-code-the-morning-call/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/burundi-draft-law-changing-the-criminal-code-the-morning-call/A draft law changing the criminal code in Burundi. The country’s Justice Minister presented the bill to the National Assembly on April 18, and after eight hours of debate, it was passed. Some members of parliament and members of the civil society are however opposed to it especially on the provision of overnight searches by security forces even without a search warrant from a magistrate.Fri, 20 Apr 2018 09:16:09 +0000A draft law changing the criminal code in Burundi. The country's Justice Minister presented the bill to the National Assembly on April 18, and after eight hours of debate, it was passed.Press Review of April 20, 2018 [The Morning Call]http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/press-review-of-april-20-2018-the-morning-call/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/press-review-of-april-20-2018-the-morning-call/We review the headlines of Africa’s top newspapers on The Morning Call.Fri, 20 Apr 2018 08:23:49 +0000We review the headlines of Africa’s top newspapers on The Morning Call.Sudan's al-Bashir fires foreign minister by presidential decreehttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/sudan-s-al-bashir-fires-foreign-minister-by-presidential-decree/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/sudan-s-al-bashir-fires-foreign-minister-by-presidential-decree/Sudan’s President Omar al-Bashir has issued a presidential decree relieving Foreign Minister Ibrahim Ghandour of his position, state news agency SUNA reported on Thursday. The news agency did not provide any further details or say who would be appointed in his place. Ghandour on Wednesday asked parliament to step in and help Sudanese diplomats, who had not been paid their salaries in seven months or given funds to rent Sudanese diplomatic mission headquarters abroad. The funds requested by the foreign ministry amount to less than $30 million, he said, the first public comment by a Sudanese government official on the central bank’s inability to provide foreign currency to cover state affairs. Sudan has been largely cut off from international financing in the past decades by U.S. sanctions, which were lifted in October. Since then, officials have been trying to attract investors to help prop up its economy, which has been struggling since the south seceded in 2011. That cost Sudan three-quarters of its oil output, the main source of foreign currency and government income. The central bank has for years avoided publicly releasing information surrounding its foreign currency holdings. REUTERSFri, 20 Apr 2018 08:16:01 +0000Ghandour on Wednesday asked parliament to step in and help Sudanese diplomats, who had not been paid their salaries in seven months or given funds to rent Sudanese diplomatic mission headquarters abroEthiopia revokes right of top journalist Eskinder Nega to leave the countryAbdur Rahman Alfa Shabanhttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/ethiopia-revokes-right-of-top-journalist-eskinder-nega-to-leave-the-country/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/ethiopia-revokes-right-of-top-journalist-eskinder-nega-to-leave-the-country/Eskinder Nega, an award winning Ethiopian journalist who was jailed for being critical of government has been barred from leaving the country, a writers’ body, PEN America and a famed blogger, Befeqadu Hailu have said. According to Hailu, Eskinder’s passport was seized when he was about to fly out to Netherlands to attend the Golden Jubilee celebrations of Amnesty International. “... his passport is confiscated at immigration check in Bole Airport and informed of his ban,” the blogger said in a tweet on Friday morning. It is not known as yet what reasons and on whose orders the action was taken. Breaking: We are appalled that #EskinderNega, our 2012 #FreedomToWrite award winner, has had his passport seized and prevented from leaving Ethiopia on a short trip abroad, and call for his right to travel to be restored ASAP.— PEN America (@PENamerican) April 20, 2018 Journalist #EskinderNega is banned from travelling abroad. He was supposed to attend amnesty’s 50th anniversary in the Netherlands but his passport is confiscated at immigration check in Bole Airport and informed of his ban. pic.twitter.com/X3ImxQ1dtR— BefeQadu Z. Hailu (befeqe) April 20, 2018 Eskinder was among prominent persons released by government early this year as part of political reforms meant to foster national unity. His particular case has been the subject of years of advocacy by international rights groups and media rights outfits. He who had been in jail since 2011 after he was convicted of having links with banned opposition groups and leading a plan to throw the country into serious political chaos through a series of terrorist acts. He has continued to maintain his innocence with most activists calling his charges ‘trumped up and politically motivated.’ His release on February 14 did not come without controversy as he was reported at the time to have refused to sign a confession form causing his release to be further delayed. Barely a month after his release, he was rearrested along with other politicians and journalists. They were said to have breached rules of the February 16 state of emergency by attending a meeting without clearance from the authorities and using a banned national flag. They were released around mid-April.Fri, 20 Apr 2018 07:45:04 +0000His release on February 14 did not come without controversy as he was reported at the time to have refused to sign a confession form causing his release to be further delayed. Barely a month after hisCastro era ends in Cuba [International Edition]http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/castro-era-ends-in-cuba-international-edition/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/castro-era-ends-in-cuba-international-edition/Ahead of a historic summit meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, US president Donald Trump has threatened to cancel the meeting or walk out if there are signs it “is not going to be fruitful.” Meanwhile, it is the end of the Castro dynasty. Raúl Castro has stepped from his post in favour of his first vice president, Miguel Diaz-Canel. Diaz-Canel is the first non-Castro to lead the Caribbean nation since Marxist revolutionaries swept to power almost six decades ago. These are some of the stories we have in store in the International Edition, a programme that highlights stories packaged by the Editorial team of Euronews presented by Elayne Wangalwa.Fri, 20 Apr 2018 07:28:52 +0000Raúl Castro has stepped from his post in favour of his first vice president, Miguel Diaz-CanelSouth Africa president leaves Commonwealth summit to address protests at homehttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/south-africa-president-leaves-commonwealth-summit-to-address-protests-at-home/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/south-africa-president-leaves-commonwealth-summit-to-address-protests-at-home/South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa has cut short his visit to Britain by a day to return home to deal with protests in the country’s North West province, his office said on Thursday. Protesters seeking jobs, better housing, roads and hospitals frequently clash with police in a country faced with weak economic growth and near-record unemployment – but these are the first big demonstrations since Ramaphosa took power in February. The unrest, dubbed “service delivery protests”, has mounted over the years. The latest protests erupted on Wednesday with residents demanding that the province’s Premier Supra Mahumapelo, a member of Ramaphosa’s ruling African National Congress party, step down. Ramaphosa called for calm, ordered police to exercise maximum restraint and urged the aggrieved parties to express their grievances without resorting to violence. He was due to return to South Africa on Friday from London, where he is leading a delegation to a Commonwealth summit. “The president will return to Pretoria today, Thursday,” the president’s office said in a statement. South African media reported that a bus was set alight, vehicles stoned and roads blockaded by protesters calling for Mahumapelo to quit because of a failure to adequately deliver services. Polife fired teargas to disperse the crowds. Botswana’s government said on Thursday it had closed exit points to South Africa’s North West province, where the two countries share a border. The troubled province lies 300 km (200 miles) west of South Africa’s commercial hub Johannesburg. __REUTERS*Fri, 20 Apr 2018 07:16:24 +0000The latest protests erupted on Wednesday with residents demanding that the province’s Premier Supra Mahumapelo, a member of Ramaphosa’s ruling African National Congress party, step down.[Interview] Africanews @ 2: Review of the year and prospects for the futurehttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/interview-africanews-deputy-editor-in-chief-on-milestones-achieved-in-2-years/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/interview-africanews-deputy-editor-in-chief-on-milestones-achieved-in-2-years/As Africanews celebrates 2 years of broadcasting across the continent, the team celebrates several milestones and challenges overcome in the quest to tell the African story. Over the past 12 months, the channel has grown by over 80% to amass 6.3million viewers across 37 countries, and impressive numbers on the digital platforms. Our determination to serve you where you are has given birth to the release of our Android application, which has over 50,000 downloads. We sat down with the deputy editor in chief and English Language head of Africanews, Raziah Athman, who shared with us the strategies that have delivered these milestones, the challenges that have been faced and overcome by our journalists and the expectations for the next 12 months and beyond. What have been the key milestones and challenges faced in the last 12 months? Africanews has been part of the changing trends in media, in content consumption and production. From new technologies that have taken us to the deepest corners of the continent, to dealing with journalists from diverse cultures, who have different styles of bringing the news to our audience. I think our biggest achievement is the fact that we have been able to take advantage of these factors, blend that into our parent system developed by our sister channel Euronews and still be able to grow on the African continent. We are new. We deliver the news as it happens. We broadcast in both French and English simultaneously. We cover close to 40 African countries with our network of correspondents. Because of this uniqueness, in the last year, our audience has grown by over four million viewers, which is a key milestone. How has Africanews engaged its audiences through its digital platforms? If you are on Twitter or Facebook and do follow Africanews, you are guaranteed a flow of updates on news happening around Africa, including those we package in our magazine programmes like This Is Culture and Sci Tech. In the last 12 months, we have maintained consistency that is quite necessary for our audience online, especially those who might not be able to catch the news on TV. Our numbers have grown into thousands and we are investing more into social media tools like the recently released Android application which has amassed over 50,000 downloads in a few months. What were some of the biggest stories covered by the Africanews team this year? We tend to cover political events that are shaping the history of this continent, the stories that will still be told generations and generations to come. Take the example of a court overturning an election in the case of the Kenya August 8 polls. That is unprecedented, even if constitutions allow for such rulings. Certainly, Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe’s ouster made headlines across the world, including at Africanews on November 21, 2017. South Africa’s Jacob Zuma’s resignation on February 21, 2018 was a story we had been closely following throughout the president’s turbulent years in office. We have also been keeping a keen eye on the conflicts tearing apart nations on the continent. And, the idea of peace is becoming even more complex. We have as well covered the conflicts in the Sahel region. We are particularly sensitive about terror in Somalia, a country that is definitely intertwined in a much more complex web of conflict. From traditional influences, to modern politics, and the role of international actors, this unstable nation gives us the one of the accurate scenes to observe where Africa is going in terms of security. You lead a diverse and multilingual newsroom at Africanews. How has your experience here informed your outlook on journalism in Africa? The most important thing I have learned in this diverse Africanews newsroom is that audiences are diverse and so are stories. Our journalists represent this very diversity and so journalism is more diverse than what we may already know. I keep on learning to deliver the news for the entire continent. Stories that matter to everybody. What can Africanews audiences expect going forward? The Africanews audiences can expect unwavering principles in our style of delivering the news. This is made possible through the advantages we share with our sister channel Euronews. Together, we have been able to make partnerships for instance with award winning global media outlets like AJ + and NBC, as part of the efforts to bring the best to our audience. Our audience can expect partnerships with local media platforms in their respective countries as we strive to reach everybody. The Africanews audience can always be sure we’ll move with the trends so they are not left behind. It’s why we are here, to give ‘your voice’.Thu, 19 Apr 2018 22:44:59 +0000As Africanews celebrates 2 years of broadcasting across the continent, the team celebrates several milestones and challenges overcome in the quest to tell the African story.Congo Republic still not ready for IMF deal despite pledged reformshttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/congo-republic-still-not-ready-for-imf-deal-despite-pledged-reforms/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/congo-republic-still-not-ready-for-imf-deal-despite-pledged-reforms/An International Monetary Fund team in the Congo Republic said on Thursday it was not ready to propose an aid programme for the debt-crippled country to the IMF board but did applaud reforms promised by Brazzaville to obtain a bailout. Like other Central African oil producers, Congo has been hit hard by low crude prices. But while several regional neighbours, including Chad and Gabon, have secured bailouts from the IMF, talks with Congo have dragged on since last year. The delay is largely due to the IMF’s demand that the government restructure its debt, which stood at $9.14 billion, or around 110 percent of GDP, by the end of July and which the Fund says is unsustainable. The IMF wrapped up its latest visit to Congo on Wednesday. “Staff understands that the authorities will continue to work in the coming weeks on implementing their comprehensive strategy to restore debt sustainability and ensure full program financing,” it said in a statement. “Once compliance with all relevant IMF policies has been established, an arrangement to support Congo’s economic program would be proposed for the IMF Executive Board’s consideration.” Congo is seeking to restructure its debt with commodities trading houses after borrowing $2 billion from merchants including Trafigura and Glencore. The bulk of its external debt, however, is owed to Chinese entities. In a statement released late on Wednesday, Prime Minister Clement Mouamba said that any restructuring of the external debt would not affect multilateral creditors or holders of Congo’s Eurobond, which matures in 2029. It added that the government expected the talks to “rapidly lead to the adoption” of a three-year programme with the IMF. Government revenues have dropped by a third since world prices for crude plummeted in 2014 and 2015. The IMF said last year that the non-oil economy was expected to contract by 9.2 percent in 2017. That hardship was exacerbated by Congo’s chronic governance problems, the Fund statement said. “The authorities will need to take bold and immediate governance reforms to put into effect the government’s proclaimed intention to mark a break with past policies and practices,” it said. The mission commended the government’s pledges to establish an independent anti-corruption body, oblige senior officials to declare their assets and foster transparency regarding natural resource management and large infrastructure projects. REUTERSThu, 19 Apr 2018 22:24:59 +0000An International Monetary Fund team in the Congo Republic said on Thursday it was not ready to propose an aid programme for the debt-crippled country to the IMF board but did applaud reforms promisedNkurunziza reshuffles Burundi cabinet ministers ahead of referendumDaniel Mumberehttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/nkurunziza-reshuffles-burundi-cabinet-ministers-ahead-of-referendum/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/nkurunziza-reshuffles-burundi-cabinet-ministers-ahead-of-referendum/Burundi’s president Pierre Nkuruniziza announced a partial cabinet reshuffle on Thursday night replacing the Foreign Affairs minister Alain-Aimé Nyamitwe with Ezéchiel Nibigira, former boss of the notorious Imbonerakure youth league. Ambassador Nyamitwe had been in office since May 2015, just after the attempted coup, tasked with containing the diplomatic uproar that followed Nkurunziza’s ambitions to seek a third term in office. The reshuffle comes less than a month to the referendum. The May 18 vote has been set to allow Burundians vote on whether or not to allow President Pierre Nkurunziza to extend his tenure in office. The president who is already serving a controversial third-term would rule till 2034 if the vote succeeds. The other new members of the cabinet include Gaspard Banyankimbona, former Rector of the University of Burundi, who has been appointed minister of education, technical and vocational training. Senator Evelyne Butoyi has been appointed minister of youth, posts and information technologies while Thaddée Ndikumana, former spokesperson of the Ministry of Public Health is now the minister of public health and the fight against AIDS. Jean-Marie Niyokindi is the minister for trade, industry and tourism. Burundi has been rocked by insecurity since 2015, when Nkurunziza decided to seek a third term in office that his opponents said was unconstitutional. Those who opposed Nkurunziza’s third five-term launched an armed struggle against his government, and the resulting violence has left hundreds dead and forced at least 400,000 people into exile.Thu, 19 Apr 2018 21:42:24 +0000Burundi's president Pierre Nkuruniziza announced a partial cabinet reshuffle on Thursday night replacing the Foreign Affairs minister Alain-Aimé Nyamitwe with Ezéchiel Nibigira, former boss of the nSouth Africa must tame Zambia's 'brutal regime', opposition leader sayshttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/south-africa-must-tame-zambia-s-brutal-regime-opposition-leader-says/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/20/south-africa-must-tame-zambia-s-brutal-regime-opposition-leader-says/Zambia’s opposition leader Hakainde Hichelema accused President Edgar Lungu’s government on Thursday of political killings, rights abuses and rampant coruption, calling on South Africa to intervene to restore calm. Hichilema, who spent four months in jail last year on a treason charge, said regional allies needed to apply pressure on Lungu or risk Zambia descending into the economic disarray seen in neighbouring Zimbabwe under former President Robert Mugabe. Zambia, Africa’s second largest copper producer, has been criticised by rights groups for an increase in political arrests under Lungu and concerns about corruption following reports of billions of dollars in undisclosed borrowing. Lungu denies there is a government corruption problem or that police are used to stifle dissent. “I am asking the region to open its eyes to a brutal regime and to do all it can to restore the rule of law, or the world will be looking at the next Zimbabwe,” Hichilema said in an interview in Johannesburg. “It is in South Africa’s interest as the regional powerhouse to act now or it will suffer from economic collapse of its neighbour and mass migration over its border.” South Africa is the commercial gateway to the region and has powerful influence over its neighbours. Pretoria intervened to bring together a unity government in Zimbabwe after scores were killed in post-election violence in 2008 and swiftly brought an end to an attempted coup in Lesotho in 2014. Zambia is due to hold elections in 2021 but Hichilema said it was impossible to hold a free and fair vote in the current environment because Lungu controlled the electoral commission. Rights groups and diplomats have not reported a crackdown on dissent on the scale described by Hichilema. “It is much, much worse than the world thinks,” he said. Hichilema, an economist and businessman widely known as HH, was arrested in April last year and charged with treason after his convoy failed to make way for Lungu’s motorcade. He was released in August after state prosecutors dropped the charges. Former South African President Jacob Zuma did not publicly call for Hichilema’s release, drawing criticism from South African opposition parties who said Zuma was failing to uphold regional democracy. Hichilema said he had more faith in new South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, a successful businessman who came to power in February after Zuma was forced out by his own party. REUTERSThu, 19 Apr 2018 22:37:29 +0000Zambia’s opposition leader Hakainde Hichelema accused President Edgar Lungu’s government on Thursday of political killings, rights abuses and rampant coruption, calling on South Africa to intervenChampagne consumption in Gabon impacting the economy [Business Africa]http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/champagne-consumption-in-gabon-impacting-the-economy-business-africa/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/champagne-consumption-in-gabon-impacting-the-economy-business-africa/The sales of champagnes are in full boom in Gabon. The Central Africa country with 1.8M inhabitants is one of the largest consumers of the beverage of bubbles by the increase of the request from the people of high class. The latest report of exports of champagne in the world, published last year by the Interprofessional Committee of wine placed the the country in the top 10 of largest consumers. Mbandinga says sales of the product explodes from the begining of may till the end of August due to marriages, Baptism and other occassions. Some customers say the drink can be taken by anybody in the world. An economist notes that the impact of the product on the economy is overwhelming “The impact is direct, when we take into account the lives of the population and the fact that it is imported, and comes from abroad, all income, all expenditures that will be made in obtaining it will necessarily benefit the final producer who are generally strangers”, says an economist, Christian Awana, . Gabon is one of the biggest producers of oil in Africa and the country generates billions from the product however, huge percentage of the money is diverted to the purchase and consumption of champagne mostly in the capital, Libreville.Thu, 19 Apr 2018 06:40:40 +0000In Gabon, there seems to be two liquids that count: oil, which brings in millions of dollars, and champagne, which costs much less despite everything. Champagne consumption is a passion for the LibrevRevising mandates of African central banks [Business Africa]http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/revising-mandates-of-african-central-banks-business-africa/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/revising-mandates-of-african-central-banks-business-africa/Financial strength and stability gives a nation the ability to focus and solve other issues. But for many African nations, financial strength seems to be a tall dream. In many ways financial strength and stability has eluded these African nations for so long. Following the attainment of independence of many of these nations, little progress has been made in the attainment of financial strength in some individual economies. In 2013 for example, Africa was identified as the world’s poorest inhabited continent and the world’s fastest-growing continent at 5.6% a year, and GDP is expected to rise by an average of over 6% a year between 2013 and 2023. But even with such growth, Africa’s entire combined GDP is barely a third of the United States’ GDP. In actual fact, even though the growth has remained consistent, the financial strength and stability meant to follow such growth has been lacking. In many opinions, this is as a result of the unrevised mandates of the African central banks asides many other factors like the underdevelopment of financial sectors in Africa. Assets in most low-income African countries are smaller than those held by a single medium-sized bank in an industrial country. The absence of deep, efficient financial markets seriously challenges policymaking, hinders poverty alleviation, and constrains growth. In addition, many of the African central banks still hold on to mandates that are as obsolete as colonialism, and the need to revise these mandates is pressing. In a recently launched book, Financer l’Afrique: Densifier les systems financiers locaux’ (Financing Africa: Strengthening local financial systems) by Cédric Achille Mezui Mbeng, reference is made to the mandates of African central banks, where the book explains the overarching need to revise the mandates of the African central banks. At the inception of any structured central bank, there is a stipulated mandate that guides the activities of the bank. The U.S. Federal Reserve System’s (The Fed) mandate, for example, is long-term price stability and sustainable growth. The Bank of England (BoE) on the other hand, asides maintaining monetary and financial stability, is charged to keep prices stable and maintain confidence in the currency. To accomplish this, the central bank has an inflation target of 2%. If prices breach that level, the central bank will look to curb inflation, while a level far below 2% will prompt the central bank to take measures to boost inflation. Many central banks of successful economies have similar mandate, which become a yardstick for measuring the effectiveness of the central banks. The mandate of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) for example is derived from the 1958 Act of Parliament, as amended up till 2007. The CBN Act of 2007 of the Federal Republic of Nigeria charges the bank with the overall control and administration of the monetary and financial sector policies of the Federal Government. The Bank of Ghana is charged with formulating and implementing monetary policy to achieve price stability, contribute to the promotion and maintenance of financial stability, and ensure a sound payment system. These individual mandates could benefit from a revising of the original mandates to accommodate newer economic realities.Thu, 19 Apr 2018 06:25:56 +0000In actual fact, even though the growth has remained consistent, the financial strength and stability meant to follow such growth has been lacking. In many opinions, this is as a result of the unreviseCuba marks end of an era as Castro hands over to new president Diaz-Canelhttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/cuba-marks-end-of-an-era-as-castro-hands-over-to-new-president-diaz-canel/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/cuba-marks-end-of-an-era-as-castro-hands-over-to-new-president-diaz-canel/Cuba marked the end of an era Thursday as Miguel Diaz-Canel was formally elected as the country’s new president, becoming the first leader of the Caribbean island in six decades who is not named Castro. The silver-haired Diaz-Canel, a top Communist Party figure who has served as first vice president since 2013, assumes power from Raul Castro, who himself took over from his elder brother Fidel, father of the 1959 revolution. In his first speech as president, Diaz-Canel vowed to keep the country on the path of that “revolution,” but also on the road to economic reform. “The mandate given by the people to this legislature is to continue the Cuban revolution at this crucial historic moment, which will be marked by what we must do to implement the economic model” put in place by Raul Castro, he said. “I am here to work, not to make promises,” he said. Diaz-Canel was elected in a landmark vote of the National Assembly which took place on Wednesday, he was the sole candidate for the presidency, with the result formally announced on Thursday. He is the island’s first leader born after the revolution, and will be 58 on Friday. Among the first world leaders to congratulate the new leader were China’s President Xi Jinping and President Enrique Pena Nieto of Mexico. Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro, a close ally of Cuba, described the new leader as a “faithful representative of a brilliant generation.” AFPThu, 19 Apr 2018 18:54:10 +0000Cuba marked the end of an era Thursday as Miguel Diaz-Canel was formally elected as the country's new president, becoming the first leader of the Caribbean island in six decades who is not named CastrMalawi can eradicate HIV infections says U.S. doctor who discovered AIDS virushttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/malawi-can-eradicate-hiv-infections-says-us-doctor-who-discovered-aids-virus/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/malawi-can-eradicate-hiv-infections-says-us-doctor-who-discovered-aids-virus/Malawi, which has one of the highest rates of the deadly HIV/AIDS infections, is on course to eradicate the virus, Jay Levy who co-discovered the AIDS virus 35 years ago said. Most of the AIDS cases globally are in poorer countries, where access to testing, prevention and treatment is limited. More than one million people in Malawi have the human immunodeficiency virus that causes AIDS, the U.N. AIDS agency (UNAIDS) says. However, according to official figures, Malawi’s national HIV/AIDS prevalence dropped to 8.8 percent in 2016 from 30 percent in 1985 when the first HIV/Aids case was registered in Malawi. Levy cited the Malawian government’s efforts in increasing access to treatment, mother to child transmission interventions, and awareness on prevention and treatment as some of the steps that are helping to fight the disease. “Malawi is not a rich country, but has done a remarkable job of reducing HIV infections and deaths from AIDS,” Levy, a University of California researcher and renowned virologisit and infectious disease expert told Reuters on a visit to Malawi. “Malawi could be one of the countries in Africa on target to eradicating infection,” he added. Levy delivered a lecture at College of Medicine in Blantyre, the nerve centre for HIV/AIDS research in Malawi, and is touring HIV testing centres in the countryside. Malawi is one of the world’s poorest countries, and the country’s economy depends on substantial inflows of economic assistance from the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, and individual donor nations. In 2016, Malawi started testing the use of drones to speed up the time it takes to test infants living in rural areas for HIV, where poor roads and high transport costs often result in delays in testing that can prevent access to treatment. Early diagnosis is important with HIV because it allows people to start treatment with AIDS drugs sooner, increasing their chances of living a long and healthy life. Malawi now has a much lower HIV prevalence than some of its neighbours, UNAIDS says. South Africa has the biggest HIV epidemic in the world, with 7.1 million people living with HIV. HIV prevalence is high among the general population at 18.9 percent. The Kingdom of eSwatini (formerly called Swaziland), a small landlocked country in southern Africa, has the highest HIV prevalence in the world, with 27.2 percent of their adult population living with HIV. “There are still no real heroes to point at in Africa. But Senegal was the first country to really focus on the epidemic and reduce infections to a lower level,” he said. “South Africa is now catching up with the fight.” Levy called on African governments to continue lobbying for more funding to direct towards eradicating HIV/AIDS. REUTERSThu, 19 Apr 2018 18:39:48 +0000Malawi, which has one of the highest rates of the deadly HIV/AIDS infections, is on course to eradicate the virus, Jay Levy who co-discovered the AIDS virus 35 years ago said.Nigerians react to Buhari's work ethic remarks with #LazyNigerianYouthshttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/nigerians-react-to-buhari-s-work-ethic-remarks-with-lazynigerianyouths/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/nigerians-react-to-buhari-s-work-ethic-remarks-with-lazynigerianyouths/President Muhammadu Buhari has drawn criticism from social media and the opposition alike for saying many young Nigerians think they need “do nothing” to enjoy free homes, hospitals and schooling because they live in an oil-rich country. Buhari, who said last week he will run for a second term in elections next February, made the comments in London where he is attending a Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting. “More than 60 percent of the population is below the age of 30,” he told a business forum on Wednesday. If you haven’t seen it Here’s your adorable president MBuhari calling Nigerian youths lazy and only waiting to benefit from oil revenues #LazyNigerianYouths pic.twitter.com/KNeQ4m9dNq— WOLE OJO ? ? (SirWoley) April 19, 2018 “A lot of them haven’t been to school and they are claiming that Nigeria has been an oil producing country, therefore, they should sit and do nothing, and get housing, healthcare, education free.” This went down badly with the very people the 75-year-old will need if he is to remain leader of Africa’s top oil producer. The median age in the nation of around 190 million people is just 18, according to the United Nations. His remarks prompted the ironic hashtag #LazyNigerianYouths on Twitter even though Buhari, a former general who was also a military ruler in the 1980s, did not use the word “lazy”. Young Nigerians cited examples of their industry and fortitude in a nation where most people live on less than $2 a day, public services are poor and corruption is rife. Dear Mr President, I may not have a job at the moment but still, you don’t have the right to call me lazy. At least, after eating, I wash my plates… I’m sure your son doesn’t do that ? #LazyNigerianYouths pic.twitter.com/9r2xkWRs6i— CrÂzy Twitt3r Usēr?? (@IamPreshioloye) April 19, 2018 I am a final year student in unilorin and run an online/offline store Vickysaccessories both on IG and twitter..i have up to 8 students on my payroll who work for me as distributors..not even hit my 2 decades yet..in months tho.I am not lazy!!We are not #LazyNigerianYouths— Icky with the V☺ (ArinzeVictoria1) April 19, 2018 I have two degrees, One in Chemical engineering and the other in Marine Engineering. I am ridiculously underpaid & under employed in my country and so are many other Nigerian youths I am not lazy. My president lied or totally uninformed of the true situation #LazyNigerianYouths— Noris Eli (@iam__NORIS) April 19, 2018 Nigerian youths are lazy? Lol ? I can tag at least 80 developers/techies that are shaking & breaking tables here & abroad without Government’s help.? PS: We still pay tax that helps you & family survive your stupendous health bills ☺️ #LazyNigerianYouths— Prosper Otemuyiwa (@unicodeveloper) April 19, 2018 Others used another hashtag – #LazyNigeranPVC – in reference to the Permanent Voter Card (PVC) used to cast a ballot, linking Buhari’s comments to next year’s election. “Dear #LazyNigerianYouths 2019 is around the corner let us get our #LAZYNIGERIANPVC so that we can show him our Laziness,” said one Twitter user called @Blessmhe. Buhari has promised to fix the economy and reduce Nigeria’s dependence on oil but it fell into recession in 2016, largely due to low crude prices. Growth returned last year but remains sluggish, and four out of every 10 people in the workforce are unemployed or underemployed. The opposition People’s Democratic Party (PDP) described Buhari’s comments as “false, derogatory and unpatriotic”. “Most disheartening is that these are the same young persons who form the highest demography of voters that put their confidence in him in 2015,” it said in a statement. The PDP, which was in power in 1999-2015, has not selected a presidential candidate. Buhari himself still requires his party’s endorsement, although many see this as a formality. Atiku Abubakar, a former vice president and erstwhile Buhari ally, said he backed the young. “I will never refer to Nigeria’s youth as people who sit and do nothing. They are hardworking,” Abubakar, who left the president’s party in November and rejoined the PDP, said in a tweet. I will never refer to Nigeria’s youth as people who sit and do nothing. They are hardworking. I should know, I have thousands of youths working for me all over the country who have been the backbone to our success.— Atiku Abubakar (@atiku) April 19, 2018 Abubakar, who has declared his readiness to run for president in 2019, also said “their entrepreneurial spirit, work ethic, and creative abilities are things of pride and should be applauded”. Bashir Ahmad, a presidential aide, tweeted that Buhari had “always applauded and celebrated Nigerian youths who excel in different areas of endeavour, from sports, to academia, and other realms”.Thu, 19 Apr 2018 14:32:15 +0000President Muhammadu Buhari has drawn criticism from social media and the opposition alike for saying many young Nigerians think they need “do nothing” to enjoy free homes, hospitals and schoolingFuel smuggling costing Libya $750 Million a year- Oil ChiefMichael Ike Dibiehttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/fuel-smuggling-costing-libya-750-million-a-year-oil-chief/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/fuel-smuggling-costing-libya-750-million-a-year-oil-chief/Fuel smuggling is costing Libya about $750 million a year, the head of the country’s National Oil Corporation said on Wednesday. Mustafa Sanalla in a speech delivered in Geneva said about 30 to 40 percent of fuel produced and imported by Libya is stolen or smuggled. He called on the European Union naval mission to combat smugglers by seizing their ships in the Mediterranean, adding that the United Nations should consider sanctioning smugglers, and urged Libya to reform massive subsidies that allow fuel to be sold for as little as 2-3 U.S. cents per liter. “The fuel smugglers and thieves have permeated not only the militias which control much of Libya, but also the fuel distribution companies which are supposed to bring cheap fuel to Libyan citizens,” Sanalla told an inaugural Oil and Fuel Theft conference in Geneva. He also urged international institutions such as Interpol to aid domestic agencies in breaking up smuggling rings in the country. Libya, holder of Africa’s largest crude reserves and an OPEC member, is already reeling from political divisions that have slashed oil production. Sanalla noted that Smugglers have “permeated” some fuel distribution companies as well as the militias currently vying for control of the country. The issue is “destroying the fabric of the country,” he said. “The huge sums of money available from smuggling have corrupted large parts of Libyan society,” he said. Fuel smuggling is costing #Libya more than $750 million each year and harming its economy and society, the head of the National Oil Company in the conflict-riddled country said: https://t.co/UKTKSxdY3k pic.twitter.com/ZaihwU4RdS— Arab News (@arabnews) April 19, 2018 He called for the mandate of the EU’s naval mission, Operation Sophia, to be extended to combat the smuggling of refined fuel as well as oil, adding that much of the illegal activity could be traced by radar or satellite.Thu, 19 Apr 2018 16:21:06 +0000Fuel smuggling is costing Libya about $750 million a year, the head of the country’s National Oil Corporation said.Senegal: Police fire tear gas at protestershttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/senegal-police-fire-tear-gas-at-protesters-demonstrating-against-proposed/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/senegal-police-fire-tear-gas-at-protesters-demonstrating-against-proposed/Hundreds of protesters on Thursday morning demonstrated against a law to change Senegal’s electoral code due to be voted on in parliament in the capital Dakar. The new law would require presidential candidates to be endorsed by a minimum of one percent of the electorate nationwide to be eligible to stand for election. The minister of justice said the new rule would put an end to “constitutional and electoral manipulation.” The opposition said the move was undemocratic and anti-constitutional. Police blocked roads leading to the national assembly in the centre of Dakar and threw tear gas at groups of protesters dispersed in the streets. Local radio stations reported that two opposition leaders, El Hadj Malick Gackou and Idrissa Seck, were arrested on their way to the national assembly. The former prime minister, Abdoul Mbaye, had to be evacuated when police fired tear gas at him and his supporters shouting ‘Freedom!’ Inside the assembly, an attempt by opposition members of parliament to adjourn turned into chaos after their motion was voted down by 117 votes to 26. Senegal Police Fire Tear Gas to Break up Anti-Government Protest https://t.co/6gXpDLebSB pic.twitter.com/MiN0QFIRvn— VOA Africa (@VOAAfrica) April 19, 2018 After the vote members of parliament walked up to the president’s stand demanding to end the session and stop the vote. The president of the assembly, Moustapha Niasse, then temporarily suspended the parliamentary session before the vote on the electoral law.Thu, 19 Apr 2018 14:42:12 +0000Hundreds of protesters on Thursday morning demonstrated against a law to change Senegal's electoral code.Swaziland now eSwatini: King renames Africa's last absolute monarchyhttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/swaziland-now-eswatini-king-renames-africa-s-last-absolute-monarch/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/swaziland-now-eswatini-king-renames-africa-s-last-absolute-monarch/Swaziland’s King Mswati III has changed the name of the country to the Kingdom of eSwatini, a BBC journalist has tweeted. King Mswati III has announced Swaziland ?? will now be known as The Kingdom of Eswatini— Nomsa Maseko (@nomsa_maseko) April 19, 2018 The monarch reportedly made the announcement during the double celebration in the southern African country. The first landmark is his 50th birthday and the country’s 50 years of independence. The kingdom of Swaziland – officially Eswatini – is known to be one of the world’s last remaining absolute monarchies. The king who has been in charge for 32 years took over at the age 18. He rules by decree over his subjects. King Mswati III presides over the annual Reed Dance ceremony during which occasion he chooses a new bride. The king currently has over a dozen wives. Mswati has over the years been at the crossroad between ruling as a traditional monarch or modernising his kingdom through multi-party democracy. Rights groups like Amnesty International, Freedom House, Human Rights Watch and Reporters Without Borders have accused him of policies that trample human rights and democracy. In August 2004, British newspaper the Daily Mirror named him as one of the world’s 10 worst dictators on a list headed by the leaders of North Korea and Myanmar. 50/50 Golden Jubilee celebrations in Swaziland ??King Mswati III celebrates his 50th birthday while the kingdom marks 50 years of independence pic.twitter.com/CKHmzHc5hW— Nomsa Maseko (@nomsa_maseko) April 19, 2018Thu, 19 Apr 2018 14:03:56 +0000The monarch reportedly made the announcement during the double celebration in the southern African country. The first landmark is his 50th birthday and the country's 50 years of independence.E.U. gave asylum to over 500,000 migrants in 2017 - stats officehttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/eu-gave-asylum-to-over-500000-migrants-in-2017-stats-office/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/eu-gave-asylum-to-over-500000-migrants-in-2017-stats-office/The European Union gave asylum to more than half a million refugees in 2017, its statistics office Eurostat said on Thursday, with Germany taking in more than 60 percent. The number was still down by about a quarter compared with 2016, and followed a major surge of migration in 2015 which has strained the bloc’s asylum system and caused political wrangling over how to deal with the influx. Syrian citizens accounted for about a third of successful asylum cases in 2017, Eurostat said, followed by Afghans and Iraqis. On a per capita basis, Germany had the most successful asylum cases in 2017, followed by Austria and Sweden. Slovakia, the Czech Republic and Poland had the fewest successful asylum cases in 2017 on a per capita basis. Syrians and Eritreans were most likely to get asylum in the EU in 2017, with more than nine in 10 cases being approved, while migrants from Albania and Kosovo were the least likely. REUTERSThu, 19 Apr 2018 13:28:41 +0000Syrians and Eritreans were most likely to get asylum in the EU in 2017, with more than nine in 10 cases being approved, while migrants from Albania and Kosovo were the least likely.Africanews @2: Major highlights of the year under reviewhttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/africanews-2-major-highlights-of-the-year-under-review/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/africanews-2-major-highlights-of-the-year-under-review/April 20, 2018; marks two years since Africanews launched the television channel. The website is much older but by only four months. Africanews.com (English / French) went LIVE on January 4, 2016 whiles the TV followed in April the same year. It has this far been a journey of several ups and downs but with the successes after 24 months outstripping the challenges that the channel grappled with. Year 2018 has been significant for consolidation of gains that we made in year one. The team – online and TV – continue to perfect tasks relating to serving news to our esteemed audiences across Africa and around the world. This article seeks to refresh your memories on the key landmarks from the year gone by. It highlights our steady growth in reach – TV, online, social media, the launch of Africanews applications and new programs. At the level of growth, our television signal is received by 6.3 million viewers across over 37 African countries, growth of over 80% from last year. Our verified Youtube channel has steadily been growing as well. In the course of this year, Africanews released our Android application which was preceded by the iOS version. As at today (April 19, 2018), Google PlayStore figures indicate that 50,000 people have downloaded the app – hope you are part of that figure. Aside having all the top African news served on the application, you get the offline feature and data-saving mode and then there is our notification push for the breaking news and big stories for each day. International Edition is a new program we launched during the year. It is a weekly round up of top international news from our sister channel, Euronews. Euronews also serves our audience with Inspire Middle East, a weekly feature program that brings top news and culture stories from across the Middle East. And all these successes are because of your loyalty to the Africanews brand. The team from Pointe Noire in the Republic of Congo, says a big ‘Thank You’ for being part of our journey. Cheers to many more years ahead with better programming and news delivery. Interact with us on our social media platforms – Facebook (Africa News Channel) and Twitter (@africanews).Thu, 19 Apr 2018 12:54:06 +0000The Africanews team from Pointe Noire in the Republic of Congo, says a big 'Thank You' for being part of our journey. Cheers to many more years ahead with better programming and news delivery.South Sudan shutdown BBC stations over unpaid debtsMichael Ike Dibiehttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/south-sudan-shutdown-bbc-stations-over-unpaid-debts/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/south-sudan-shutdown-bbc-stations-over-unpaid-debts/Authorities in South Sudan’s capital, Juba has shutdown the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) relay stations in the country for not paying accumulated debts for last three years. BBC relay stations Arabic and English in Juba and Wau on 88. 2 have been off air for close to two weeks now. South Sudan Broadcasting Corporation (SSBC), Managing Director James Magok Chilim, said the BBC had ignored requests to “pay debts” for last three years, despite a reminder in January. In a statement issued by South Sudan Broadcasting Corporation, it is alleged that BBC has been using the SSBC facility for 3 years without paying. “SSBC gave them a verbal warning in March, 2018 and they ignored it. SSBC gave them several notices in writing through all communications channels but they ignored,” the statement read. The state-owned broadcasting medium, SSBC, called this a breach of contract. The BBC has been using SSBC facilities since 2008 in an agreement subject to renewal every year. The statement clearly confirms that the BBC relay stations in Juba and Wau will not go back on air until they have cleared their arrears. “If they want to move away from SSBC premises, they are free after paying all the money. Failure to pay, we will sue the BBC,” the statement added. Meanwhile, the British Broadcasting Corporation has said that it is aware it has been switched off in Juba and Wau. In a statement, the BBC said it regretted SSBC’s decision to stop broadcasting “its news services to an audience of more than 400,000 in South Sudan.” The corporation was working hard to reach an accommodation with SSBC to restore the service, it added. However, Wesley Maritim, the BBC Business Development manager of East and Southern Africa, said the international media house is working to resolve the issue. “I am aware that we have been switched off in South Sudan. There are issues we are trying to resolve with the ministries and the media bodies in the country,” Maritim said as quoted Eye radio in Juba. The amount of money the BBC owes the SSBC is still unknown, but SSBC threatened to sue the BBC should the broadcaster fails to pay its bill. However, the media outlets in the East Africa’s youngest nation have increasingly come under tight control, including the freedom of press and restriction of journalists from the relevant regulators since the civil war erupted last four years.Thu, 19 Apr 2018 12:15:32 +0000Authorities in South Sudan's capital, Juba has shutdown the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) relay stations in the country.Ghanaian delegation on trade mission to UAE, holds 175 bilateral meetingsMichael Ike Dibiehttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/ghanaian-delegation-on-trade-mission-to-uae-holds-175-bilateral-meetings/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/ghanaian-delegation-on-trade-mission-to-uae-holds-175-bilateral-meetings/A delegation of government officials and business leaders from Ghana held a175 bilateral meetings during a recent high-level trade mission to the UAE, which promoted investment opportunities in the African country. The high-level trade mission was organised by the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s representative office in Accra in cooperation with the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre and the Consulate General of Ghana in Dubai. The visiting delegation was joined by top officials, CEOs and executives representing Ghanaian government agencies, banks, as well as insurance, agri-business, engineering and fintech companies. During the visit, the Ghanaian delegates attended the Annual Investment Meeting in Dubai, where they showcased attractive investment opportunities within Ghana’s banking, agriculture and tourism sectors and networked with UAE businessmen. A high-level meeting was held at Dubai Chamber’s premises which was attended by Dr. Owusu Afriyie Akoto, Ghana’s Minister of Food and Agriculture; Alhaji Ahmed Ramadan, Ambassador of Ghana to the UAE; Samata Gifty Bukari Consul General of the Republic of Ghana in Dubai; Yofi Grant, CEO of Ghana Investment Promotion Center; Atiq Juma Nasib, Senior Vice President – Commercial Services at Dubai Chamber; and Omar Khan, Dubai Chamber’s Director of International Offices. The meeting was followed by business matching meetings which were hosted at the Dubai Chamber’s head office. Dr Akoto stressed Ghana’s commitment to expanding economic cooperation with the UAE, as well as its aims to attract investment from the UAE. He highlighted the tremendous business potential that exists in Ghana and invited UAE companies to visit the African country to explore new opportunities that are opening up in the market. Addressing the Ghanaian dignitaries, Nasib explained that Ghana is a market of strategic importance to Dubai Chamber, and noted that the Chamber has worked to build strong relationships within key stakeholders in the country in recent years. “Ghanaian companies are looking abroad for growth opportunities as they aim to expand their global reach and attract foreign investment. Given these trends, the timing is ideal for Ghanaian companies to build bridges with their Dubai counterparts and benefit from the emirate’s position as a global gateway and preferred investment destination,” Nasib said. He revealed that the number of African companies registered with Dubai Chamber has grown rapidly over the last few years to exceed 17,000, which he said reflects Dubai’s reputation as a preferred hub for African businesses. On his part, Khan noted that the trade mission succeeded in achieving its objectives of strengthening bilateral relations, adding that the visit supported the Chamber’s strategy of exploring promising markets around the world with the aim or providing its members with access to new growth opportunities. The Ghanaian delegates also made site visits to Dubai Airport Free Zone Authority (DAFZA), Dubai Multi Commodities Centre (DMCC), and the Abu Dhabi Chamber of Commerce, where they familiarised themselves with the local business environment and learned about the key advantages that the UAE offers foreign companies and investors.Thu, 19 Apr 2018 12:01:47 +0000A delegation of government officials and business leaders from Ghana held a175 bilateral meetings during a recent high-level trade mission to the UAE.Ethiopia parliament ratifies PM Abiy's first cabinethttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/ethiopia-parliament-ratifies-pm-abiy-s-first-cabinet/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/ethiopia-parliament-ratifies-pm-abiy-s-first-cabinet/Ethiopia’s new prime minister named a cabinet on Thursday that includes the former mining minister as defence minister and retains the finance and foreign ministers from his predecessor’s cabinet. Abiy Ahmed, who was appointed by Ethiopia’s ruling coalition last month and sworn in as prime minister on April 2, made the announcement on state television. “I am requesting parliament to ratify the reshuffle of six ministers and the new appointment of 10 others,” Ahmed, a former army officer, said. The remaining ministers from the previous cabinet, including finance and foreign affairs, were unchanged. Every lawmaker in the 547-seat parliament is from the ruling EPRDF coalition, the new cabinet has subsequently been ratified by the assembly. Ethiopia’s economy has officially grown at an average of nearly 10 percent for the past decade, the fastest in Africa, but political unrest in the country of 100 million people led to the sudden resignation of Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn in February. Here is the list of ministerial appointments – approved by the parliament today: Shiferaw Shigutie Minister of Agriculture and Livestock resource Sirag Fegessa Minister of Transport Dr. Hirut Woldemariam- Minister of Labor and Social Affairs Teshome Toga – Minister of Public Enterprises Umer Hussien – Authority of Customs and Revenue Director-General (with the rank of minister) Uba Mohamed – Minister of Information and Communication Technology Dr. Ambachew Mekonen- Minister of industry Motuma Mekassa – Minister of Defense Fozia Amin – Minister of Culture and Tourism Ahmed Shide – Minister of Government Communication Affairs Office Jantirar Abay – Minister of Housing and Urban Development Melese Alemu – Minister of Mines, Petroleum and Natural Gas Birhanu Tsegaye – Attorney General (with the rank of minister) Yalem Tsegay- Women and Children Affairs Minister Melaku Alebel – Minister of Trade Dr. Amir Aman – Minister of HealthThu, 19 Apr 2018 10:50:20 +0000Ahmed, a former army officer, said. The remaining ministers from the previous cabinet, including finance and foreign affairs, were unchanged.Pics of the day, April 18, 2018http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/pics-of-the-day-april-18-2018/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/pics-of-the-day-april-18-2018/Africanews samples the best pictures of the day’s news.Thu, 19 Apr 2018 10:39:30 +0000Africanews samples the best pictures of the day’s news.[Photos] Throwback Thursday: African leaders then and nowhttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/photos-throwback-thursday-african-presidents-then-and-now/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/photos-throwback-thursday-african-presidents-then-and-now/There are parts of Africa where leaders come and go, in other parts, leaders virtually come and stay. Those are the sit-tight leaders who after decades in charge are still going strong. Throwback Thursday (TBT) seeks to explore how especially long serving African leaders have changed or remained the same pictorially. We do a photo comparison of African leaders – from years back to the most recent. Whiles at it, we will share some facts about the particular leader – among others their full name, age, profession before becoming president, length of stay till date, who they replaced etc. Candidate 3: King Mswati III of Swaziland Full Name/Age: Mswati III, born as Prince Makhosetive / 50 years old Profession: Politician Became king: 25 April 1986 (at the age of 18) Predecessor: king Sobhuza II Presidential reign: 32 years Swaziland King Mswati III poses for a photograph as he sits on his throne at his residence outside of the capital city Mbabane January 30. Swazi King Mswati III arrives for the inauguration of South African President Thabo Mbeki in this file photograph taken April 27, 2004. King Mswati III watch maidens gather at Ludzidzini, the royal palace in Swaziland, as they deliver reeds to the King during the annual reed dance September 3, 2006. Swaziland King Mswati III addresses the 72nd United Nations General Assembly at U.N. headquarters in New York, U.S., September 20, 2017. Candidate 2: President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda Full Name/Age: Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, 74 Profession: Politician Became President: 1986 Predecessor: Tito Okello Lutwa Presidential reign: 32 years Museveni talks to Nelson Mandela (L) on arrival at Entebbe International Airport January 26 1998 and Yoweri Museveni casts his vote in his home town in Mbarara May 9, 1996 Yoweri Museveni talks to the media September 6, 1998 on his arrival at the Victoria Falls Airport and Museveni attends the 30th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the Heads of State and the Government of the African Union in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia January 28, 2018 Candidate 1: Idriss Deby Itno of Chad Full Name/Age: Idriss Deby Itno, 65 years Profession: Career soldier Became President: 1991 Predecessor: Hissene Habre Presidential reign: 27 years (L-R) Deby in Libreville at Franco Africa summit in October 1992 and at a rally in Ndjamena in April 2006. Deby at Elysee Palace and at African Union summit, all photos taken in 2017 Chad’s President Idriss Deby Itno sits in an armchair at the presidential palace prior to his meeting with French Prime Minister in N’Djamena, Chad, December 29, 2016.Thu, 05 Apr 2018 09:15:08 +0000Throwback Thursday (TBT) seeks to explore how especially long serving African leaders have changed or remained the same pictorially. We do a photo comparison of African leaders – from years back toEthiopia parliament elects female speaker, Muferiat Kamilhttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/ethiopia-parliament-elects-female-speaker-muferiat-kamil/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/ethiopia-parliament-elects-female-speaker-muferiat-kamil/Our journalists are working on this story and will update it as soon as more information becomes available.Thu, 19 Apr 2018 08:49:23 +0000Ethiopia’s parliament, the House of Peoples’ Representatives, has chosen a former Minister of Women’s Affairs, as its new speaker, state-affiliatedZimbabwe sacks 16,000 nurses on strike [The Morning Call]http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/zimbabwe-sacks-16000-nurses-on-strike-the-morning-call/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/zimbabwe-sacks-16000-nurses-on-strike-the-morning-call/Zimbabwe’s new government has sacked 16,000 nurses who went on strike on Monday over unpaid allowances among other issues. According to Vice President Constantino Chiwenga the nurses’ strike action is “politically motivated”. But despite the government’s move to increase their pay, Zimbabwe’s nurses association says the strike is still on.Thu, 19 Apr 2018 08:23:43 +0000Zimbabwe's new government has sacked 16,000 nurses who went on strike on Monday over unpaid allowances among other issues. According to Vice President Constantino Chiwenga the nurses' strike action iWinnie Mandela's memorial house in Brandfort [The Morning Call]http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/winnie-mandela-s-memorial-house-in-brandfort-the-morning-call/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/winnie-mandela-s-memorial-house-in-brandfort-the-morning-call/Unathi Sonwabile Henama, a tourism expert in South Africa talks about the memorial of South Africa’s first lady, the late Mama Winnie Mandela and also helps us to discover South Africa’s city of Brandfort.Thu, 19 Apr 2018 08:20:23 +0000Unathi Sonwabile Henama, a tourism expert in South Africa talks about the memorial of South Africa’s first lady, the late Mama Winnie Mandela and also helps us to discover South Africa’s city of BSenegal: Sponsorship of presidential candidates [The Morning Call]http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/senegal-sponsorship-of-presidential-candidates-the-morning-call/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/senegal-sponsorship-of-presidential-candidates-the-morning-call/Opinions on the sponsorship system adopted in Senegal on Monday are divided especially in the run up to the 2019 presidential election. If passed, it would require all candidates standing in next year’s presidential election to collect the signatures of at least one per cent of the registered voters in the country’s seven regions before being validated. An equivalent of sixty five thousand sponsors per candidate. The proposal has however sparked a fierce public debate with some opposition and activist groups. The sponsorship of presidential candidates, was one of the stumbling blocks in the negotiations between the government and opposition on the electoral process in the country.Thu, 19 Apr 2018 08:33:13 +0000Opinions on the sponsorship system adopted in Senegal on Monday are divided especially in the run up to the 2019 presidential election. If passed, it would require all candidates standing in next yePress Review of April 19, 2018 [The Morning Call]http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/press-review-of-april-19-2018-the-morning-call/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/press-review-of-april-19-2018-the-morning-call/We review the headlines of Africa’s top newspapers on The Morning Call.Thu, 19 Apr 2018 08:13:26 +0000We review the headlines of Africa’s top newspapers on The Morning Call.Nigeria Senate invasion: Mace recovered under bridge, lawmaker arrestedAbdur Rahman Alfa Shabanhttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/nigeria-senate-invasion-police-recover-mace-under-bridge-lawmaker-arrested/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/nigeria-senate-invasion-police-recover-mace-under-bridge-lawmaker-arrested/The stolen mace, symbol of power and authority of Nigeria’s upper legislative chamber (Senate), has been recovered by the police after it was seized by thugs during a Wednesday invasion of the Senate. Police said the mace was abandoned under a bridge in the capital Abuja. A suspended Senator alleged to have masterminded the act, Ovie Omo-Agege, was also arrested late Wednesday. Deputy Speaker of the Senate Ike Ekweremadu, who was superintending over the plenary session when the incident occured called it an institutional invasion which senators were not going to take lightly. “The Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria has just been invaded and we are not going to take it kindly. This is an institutional invasion,” he said. The mace was replaced and the sitting continued after a closed-door meeting of the Senate leadership. A Senate statement said the perpetrators had committed a tresonable offence and tasked security forces to recover the mace in 24 hours. Local media are also reporting that police have arrested all persons connected to the heist. The action of the thugs have been roundly condemned by senators even though some Nigerians on social media maintain that it serves them right. To some members of the public, the chaos that the lawmakers preside over has now come close to them. The armed invasion of the senate stands condemned.Its treasonable,an attempted coup d etat .Its an assault on democracy and a desecration of an institution of democracy.Those who sanctioned,organized and supported… https://t.co/ExIQ2VvYCt— Senator Shehu Sani (@ShehuSani) April 18, 2018 [Photos] Africa's chaotic parliaments: Uganda, South Africa https://t.co/kYNfBb4f9P— africanews (@africanews) September 27, 2017Thu, 19 Apr 2018 08:02:25 +0000Police said the mace was abandoned under a bridge in the capital Abuja. A suspended Senator alleged to have masterminded the act, Ovie Omo-Agege, was also arrested late Wednesday.Influence of foreign media on tourism in Africa [Travel]http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/influence-of-foreign-media-on-tourism-in-africa-travel/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/influence-of-foreign-media-on-tourism-in-africa-travel/African tourism has a reach that can only be imagined. This is because up till now, tourism in Africa is not yet functioning at half capacity, let alone full capacity. The possibilities are endless if the industry in Africa is as developed all round as it is in other parts of the world. This is taking into account all the kinds of tourism available, which include natural tourism, artificial tourism, birth tourism, religious tourism, cultural tourism and many more. But like any industry or any concept in life, PR, or lack of it, is a vital part of its success or failure. There is the need to get word out on the availability of tourism in Africa, even after all things have been put in place to encourage tourism. No doubt, tourism has a huge potential in Africa, a continent that still receives the lowest share of tourist arrivals in the world, and fostering tourism in Africa requires creating a great awareness, and the media is the key factor to consider in the creation of such awareness. Malcolm X said that the media is the most powerful entity on earth. They have the power to make the innocent guilty and to make the guilty innocent, and that is power, because they control the mind of the masses. The media is a strong industry in any economy and has the ability to talk for the people, teach the people and sometimes even think for the people. This means that their role, which already is crucial, gives them an omniscient quality that cannot be undermined. Africa as a whole cannot depend on locally generated tourism or local tourists alone, but the preconceived notions of Africa by foreign media sometimes stands in the way of international tourism and tourists. Outside Africa, there are many facts and fiction circulated about the continent, and this sometimes mars the beauty that may be found in Africa. In a paper presented at the Sixth Annual African Studies Consortium Workshop, Rod Chavis address, “some evidences of a modus operandi Western Media organizations employ to specifically dump negative news materials and information when reporting, communicating, or disseminating anything concerning Africa.” He went further to explain that “With the stroke of a journalist’s pen, the African, her continent, and her descendants are pejoratively reduced to nothing: a bastion of disease, savagery, animism, pestilence, war, famine, despotism, primitivism, poverty, and ubiquitous images of children, flies in their food and faces, their stomachs distended. These ‘universal’ but powerfully subliminal message units connote something not good, perennially problematic unworthiness, deplorability, black, foreboding, loathing, sub humanity, etc. On the other hand, little is said about Africa’s strategic importance to industrialized nations; her indispensability and relevance to world development, global technology, and the wealth of nations, derived from African largesse, are not acclaimed in the media.” This stipulation explains how foreign media, unchecked can influence tourism in Africa. Foreign media can both make or mar the prospects of tourism in Africa. Consequently, for tourism to begin the climb to a steady position in the economy in Africa, there is a need to change the narrative positively, by balancing out the negative aspects of African realities with the beauty and good that is found in Africa. This is essentially the kind of publicity Africa requires to promote tourism. Thus, local journalists need to be selective about their news content in order that a distorted picture of Africa is not painted, but a clearer, more realistic and true picture is broadcast. By setting such a pace, foreign media may take a clue from the playbook of African journalists, and follow suit in not only propagating what is wrong in Africa, but broadcasting a balanced reports on the great, beautiful, bad and ugly found in Africa.Thu, 19 Apr 2018 06:12:10 +0000Consequently, for tourism to begin the climb to a steady position in the economy in Africa, there is a need to change the narrative positively, by balancing out the negative aspects of African realitiRick Ross slams Kenyan fans over fake list of demands ahead of concertDaniel Mumberehttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/american-rapper-rick-ross-calls-out-kenyan-fans-over-fake-list-of-demands-ahead/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/american-rapper-rick-ross-calls-out-kenyan-fans-over-fake-list-of-demands-ahead/American rapper Rick Ross has blasted fans on social media over an outrageous list of demands that he allegedly made to organisers of his upcoming concert in Kenya. William Leonard Roberts II, known professionally by his stage name Rick Ross, is slated to perform at a high end party in the capital Nairobi on 28th April. A list circulated published by entertainment blogs in the country has been doing the rounds on social media, detailing demands that were reportedly made by Rick Ross’ management ahead of the concert. Demands Among the demands is 30 round trip air tickets, including 10 first class tickets, a helicopter to facilitate travel during interview appearances and transportation to the concert venue for the ‘Boss’. The rapper is also said to have asked for 3500 bottles of his premium Luc Belaire brand champagne, 1500 fresh towels and 200 bottles of lemon flavored water. This, in addition to reservation of three floors of a five star hotel with a round the clock services of a butler and a personal chef. The management of the artist fondly referred to as the Boss by his fans are also supposed to have requested for two major roads in the capital to be closed off for the concert. The list that goes on and on has irked so many fans on social media who went as far as contacting Rick Ross on social media, asking him to explain the demands. One such fan got a scathing reply from the rapper who called out the bloggers for circulating fake news. PSKRATCH1</a> U sound just as stupid as whoever told your stupid ass those false demands. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Kenya?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Kenya</a> <a href="https://t.co/Fv4wfPq3On">https://t.co/Fv4wfPq3On</a></p>&mdash; Yung Rénzél ? (RickRoss) April 17, 2018 The main organisers of the party, NRG Wave, have since issued a statement, discrediting the list, which they say misrepresents the terms of the contract signed with the American superstar. ‘‘The article misrepresents the terms of the contract we signed with the Boss’ management team,’‘ read part of the statement. Official #NRGWave statement from NRGWaveKE</a> and <a href="https://twitter.com/NRGRadioKE?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">NRGRadioKE pic.twitter.com/TnMI3JgBZ2— NRG Wave (@nrgwaveke) April 17, 2018 It is not uncommon for artists and other showbiz celebrities to make extravagant and sometimes hard to fulfil demands of organisers in the quest to maintain an aura of super stardom. Mariah Carey, Beyonce, Rihanna, Kanye West are some pop stars that have been called out in the past for making very detailed and tasking lists to organisers ahead of concerts.Wed, 18 Apr 2018 22:28:54 +0000American rapper Rick Ross has blasted fans on social media over an outrageous list of demands that he allegedly made to organisers of his upcoming concert in Kenya.Ethiopia PM to announce new cabinet, parliament to replace speakerDaniel Mumberehttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/ethiopia-pm-to-announce-new-cabinet-on-thursday-parliament-to-replace-speaker/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/ethiopia-pm-to-announce-new-cabinet-on-thursday-parliament-to-replace-speaker/Ethiopia’s new prime minister, Abiy Ahmed will on Thursday present his new ministerial cabinet, in his first appearance in parliament since he was sworn in. The parliament whose members are all from the ruling EPRDF coalition will approve the ministers and also replace the current speaker of the house, Abadula Gemeda. Gemeda resigned his position last year in October, before rescinding that resignation on December 29, 2017. The house is also expected to approve the draft bill prepared to reform the structure, power and duties of executive bodies. Ahead of the imminent cabinet reshuffle, Oromia regional government made some changes to its structure, appointing two federal ministers to positions in the regional government. The minister of Public Enterprise, Girma Amente and the minister of Government Communications Affairs Office were appointed to head the Oromia Urban Development & Housing Bureau and Oromia Communications Affairs Office respectively. Replacements for these ministerial slots will presumably be announced by Abiy on Thursday. Gemeda, a former president of Oromia state might also be poised to take on a bigger role within Abiy’s government. Analysts are keenly watching the cabinet announcement, which they say will determine the implementation of Abiy’s reform agenda. Will #Abiy pack his Cabinet with reformists or hardliners? Will the heads of intelligence and defence forces stay or go? These early moves will offer clues as to whether Abiy will be a placeholder or an assertive leader capable of moving #Ethiopia forward https://t.co/yx4RWtpCxV— Hassen Hussein (@AbbaKayo) 18 avril 2018 PM Abiy Ahmed's cabinet coming together per sources: Meles Alem: Minister of Communications Shiferaw Shigute (SEPDM): Minister of Agriculture Siraj Fegessa (SEPDM): Minister of Transport Wokineh Gebeyehu: Minister of Foreign Affairs Muferiat Kemal (SEPDM): Speaker of the House https://t.co/SjPPl3rQks— Mohammed Ademo (@OPride) 18 avril 2018 Abiy is working to establish democratic reforms that can quell protests that have rocked the Eastern African nation since 2015. Since he took office on April 2, Abiy has toured several regional states asking protesters to be patient with him as he institutes reforms in the government that has been accused of gross human rights abuses in the past. He has also met opposition leaders and pledged to ensure a level playing field ahead of elections in 2020.Wed, 18 Apr 2018 22:21:42 +0000Ethiopia's new prime minister, Abiy Ahmed will on Thursday present his new ministerial cabinet, in his first appearance in parliament since he was sworn in.Sudan protests to UN over Egypt voting in disputed Halayeb trianglehttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/sudan-protests-to-un-over-egypt-voting-in-disputed-halayeb-triangle/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/sudan-protests-to-un-over-egypt-voting-in-disputed-halayeb-triangle/Sudan has protested to the UN Security Council against Egypt, accusing Cairo of organising voting in a disputed border area during last month’s Egyptian presidential election. Foreign Minister Ibrahim Ghandour said Khartoum filed a complaint after Egypt held voting in the Halayeb triangle, a border territory claimed by both Khartoum and Cairo. Egypt held a presidential election in March that saw President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi re-elected for a second term. “We have complained to the UN Security Council against Egypt for organising voting in Halayeb during its presidential election in March,” Ghandour told lawmakers in parliament on Tuesday. Ghandour said that between December and March, Egypt had also undertaken some fishing and mining projects in the triangle. Ghandour added that Khartoum had also protested about the demarcation of borders between Egypt and Saudi Arabia that showed “Halayeb as part of Egypt”. “Our position of full sovereignty on Halayeb triangle is something that is not negotiable.” Tension Egypt’s occupation of the Halayeb triangle, which lies near the Red Sea in a mineral-rich border region, has been a bone of contention between the two neighbours for decades. Khartoum says Halayeb has been part of its sovereign territory since shortly after independence in 1956. Tension between Cairo and Khartoum rose particularly since last year after Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir accused Egyptian intelligence services of supporting opposition figures fighting his troops in the country’s conflict zones like Darfur. Ties between the two were further strained after Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan visited Khartoum earlier this year. Turkey and Egypt have tense relations since the Egyptian military ousted Islamist president Mohamed Morsi in 2013, a close ally of Erdogan. In recent months tension also rose between Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia over a controversial dam that Ethiopia is building along its share of the Nile. Cairo fears that once commissioned the dam will reduce water supplies from the Nile to Egypt. Egypt relies almost totally on the Nile for irrigation and drinking water, and says it has “historic rights” to the river, guaranteed by treaties from 1929 and 1959. The Blue and the White Nile tributaries converge in Sudan’s capital Khartoum and from there run north through Egypt to the Mediterranean. AFPWed, 18 Apr 2018 22:23:55 +0000Sudan has protested to the UN Security Council against Egypt, accusing Cairo of organising voting in a disputed border area during last month’s Egyptian presidential election.South Sudan peace talks postponed without explanationhttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/south-sudan-peace-talks-postponed-without-explanation/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/south-sudan-peace-talks-postponed-without-explanation/The East African bloc of nations IGAD said on Wednesday it had postponed this month’s talks aimed at securing the implementation of South Sudan’s peace deal, the latest bid to end a four-year civil war. Despite several agreements and ceasefires, fighting has rumbled on in South Sudan with barely any break since first erupting at the end of 2013, just two years after independence. The government and rebel groups signed the latest ceasefire in December in the Ethiopian capital, aiming to revive a pact reached in 2015. But the truce was violated within hours. IGAD, which was due to hold a new round of talks on April 26, and other international bodies have been seeking to resolve differences between the two sides, including working on the release of rebel leader Riek Machar. The bloc said last month that Machar should be released from house arrest in South Sudan as soon as possible, but on condition on that he renounces violence. This month’s talks were due to be held in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa. But the bloc said they had been postponed, without giving a reason or setting a new date. Civil war erupted in December 2013, when troops loyal to President Salva Kiir clashed with forces loyal to Riek Machar, then the vice president. Tens of thousands of people have been killed and much of the nation has faced dire food shortages. REUTERSWed, 18 Apr 2018 22:32:27 +0000The East African bloc of nations IGAD said on Wednesday it had postponed this month’s talks aimed at securing the implementation of South Sudan’s peace deal, the latest bid to end a four-year civiNeymar to start training in May, hopes to be fit for Brazil's World Cup quest in Junehttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/neymar-to-start-training-in-may-hopes-to-be-fit-for-brazil-s-world-cup-quest-in/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/19/neymar-to-start-training-in-may-hopes-to-be-fit-for-brazil-s-world-cup-quest-in/Injured Brazil striker Neymar has targeted May 17 for a return to training and vowed to work harder than ever to be ready for this year’s World Cup in Russia. The Paris St Germain player, who became the world’s most expensive footballer when he joined the club from Barcelona in August, had an operation on his foot after being injured in a French league game against Olympique de Marseille on Feb. 25. He has been receiving treatment in Brazil and said he expects to be training exactly a month before the five-times champions play their World Cup opener against Switzerland on June 17. “I get my final exam, if I’m not mistaken, on May 17 and then I’ll be free to play,” he told reporters at a news conference in Sao Paulo. “I am having treatment every day, and from the moment I start training I am going to work harder than I ever worked because this is a dream that’s coming up, it’s a World Cup. I’ve waited four years for this chance, it’s close and I hope to get there in great shape.” Neymar played for Brazil at the 2014 World Cup but missed the catastrophic 7-1 semi-final defeat by Germany through injury. Brazil struggled in the two years immediately after their home World Cup but have since rebounded and go to Russia as joint favourites with bookmakers along with Germany. Neymar, who joined PSG for a fee of 222 million euros ($275 million), said he was apprehensive about kicking a football again after almost three months out. “I expect to go (to the World Cup) in a better state than before,” he said. “Of course, doubts exist and I feel them too sometimes, but that’s normal for a guy who has had the first surgery of his career. It’s very difficult for me not playing and not training.” “I have to work even harder but I am going to have enough time to arrive in form for the World Cup, to prepare. It was horrible getting injured but I am more rested, that’s the upside. We have to see the positive side of things.” After opening their Group E World Cup campaign against Switzerland, Brazil face Costa Rica on June 22 and then Serbia five days later. REUTERSWed, 18 Apr 2018 22:30:33 +0000Injured Brazil striker Neymar has targeted May 17 for a return to training and vowed to work harder than ever to be ready for this year’s World Cup in Russia.Mnangagwa's 'Zimbawe is open for business' policy to get legal backinghttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/18/mnangagwa-s-zimbawe-is-open-for-business-policy-to-get-legal-backing/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/18/mnangagwa-s-zimbawe-is-open-for-business-policy-to-get-legal-backing/Zimbabwe is working on a new investment law to open up the economy to foreign investors, President Emmerson Mnangagwa said on Wednesday, part of his government’s drive to revive an economy that stagnated under Robert Mugabe last years in power. While giving the main speech during Zimbabwe’s independence celebrations, the first without Mugabe since 1980, Mnangagwa acknowledged the country had made mistakes and missed on investment opportunities in the recent past. Mnangagwa, 75, became president in November with support from the military, which turned against the 94-year-old Mugabe and forced him to resign following a de facto military coup. Elections Zimbabweans are set to vote in the first post-Mugabe polls in July, where Mnangagwa will face 40-year-old Nelson Chamisa, the main opposition Movement for Democratic Change’s new leader, who also attended the independence celebrations. Mnangagwa urged all political leaders to shun violence during the election period. He is trying to roll back some of Mugabe’s policies that investors said discouraged investment. His ‘Zimbabwe is open for business’ policy is meant to attract foreign capital after years of isolation under Mugabe. Investment law Mnangagwa said the government was preparing a new bill that would simplify investing procedures, cut bureaucracy and create a ‘one-stop shop’ for investor registration requirements. Currently, investors take up to 90 days to set up a business while dealing with several government departments. “The Investment and Business Facilitation Bill, which seeks to give legal underpinning to Zimbabwe’s commitment to opening up the economy is undergoing due legal process,” Mnangagwa said. The southern African nation, which adopted the U.S. dollar in 2009 after its currency was wrecked by hyperinflation, is gripped by shortages of cash, unemployment of more than 80 percent and crumbling public infrastructure like roads and rail. Mnangagwa said while he recognized the hardships caused by shortages, these would not be resolved overnight. He said cash imports would be increased while the government would seek financing from regional and international institutions. Mnangagwa did not comment on his government’s decision to fire thousands of striking nurses as the new administration sought to keep a lid on labour unrest. REUTERSWed, 18 Apr 2018 18:42:50 +0000Zimbabwe is working on a new investment law to open up the economy to foreign investors, President Emmerson Mnangagwa said on Wednesday, part of his government’s drive to revive an economy that stagDR Congo league suspended as football president Omari investigatedhttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/18/dr-congo-league-suspended-as-football-president-omari-investigated/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/18/dr-congo-league-suspended-as-football-president-omari-investigated/The soccer league in the Democratic Republic of Congo has been suspended after the president of the Congolese Federation of Association Football (FECOFA) and FIFA council member Constant Omari was detained in an embezzlement probe. Omari, who is also vice-president of the Confederation of African Football (CAF), faces investigation along with the country’s secretary general for sport Barthelemy Okito, and FECOFA second vice-president Theobald Binamungu and chief financial officer Roger Bondembe. “Following these events Linafoot has suspended its championship,” the Ligue Nationale de Football said on their official website (www.linafoot.com) on Wednesday. The quartet are being questioned over $1 million that was requested from the country’s sports ministry to pay for matches involving the DR Congo national side and club teams competing in continental competition. Luzolo Bambi, who acts as a special advisor to the country’s president, Joseph Kabila, ordered the investigation that has seen the quartet detained at the public prosecutor’s office in Kinshasa since Tuesday night. “They were questioned by the Office of Special Adviser to the Head of State in the fight against corruption, Luzolo Bambi,” the Linafoot statement continued. “According to a statement issued Tuesday by Mr Bambi’s office, those arrested are suspected of misappropriation of funds intended for the DRC football teams.” REUTERSWed, 18 Apr 2018 15:50:10 +0000The soccer league in the Democratic Republic of Congo has been suspended after the president of the Congolese Federation of Association Football (FECOFA) and FIFA council member Constant Omari was detLibya: Misrata residents mobilize to fill 'potholes'http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/18/libya-misrata-residents-mobilize-to-fill-potholes/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/18/libya-misrata-residents-mobilize-to-fill-potholes/Citizens of Libya’s Misrata, who battled the Islamic State in nearby Sirte, are now in a new fighting to repave damaged roads in the streets. Tired of government negligence, the citizens have formed a volunteer group tasked with fixing damaged roads and potholes, which they say are in the thousands across the coastal city. The 80-member crew started the initiative “Our Streets” and are divided into nine different groups, which tackle different streets in the city. ‘‘The problem is that holes are destroying the national economy. Some might ask how are those holes destroying the national economy. Potholes damage the tires, damage car parts, damage vehicles and can cause catastrophic accidents which lead to death’‘, said Soliman Eissa, founder of the volunteer group ‘Our Streets’. The equipment and materials are all purchased using donations and citizens can reach out to them on social media to pinpoint areas that need repair. “Honestly, the holes were many but now, after this campaign, we consider it a great achievement. I was touring Misrata and there really is an achievement. God bless them “, said Misrata resident, Abubakr Belsheikh. Part of the group’s activities include school trips for children to raise awareness of their work. The initiative has been paving Misrata’s streets for the past three months and have since then fixed dozens of damaged streets, but volunteers say they still have a long way to go. Libya’s infrastructure has been on the backburner of the U.N.-backed government’s priorities, after years of turmoil that affected state income and by extension, spending. The Government of National Accord (GNA) established under the December 2015 deal never fully materialised in Tripoli, leaving Libya with three competing governments aligned with rival armed alliances. Hamstrung by internal splits in its nine-member leadership, or Presidency Council, the GNA has been unable to tackle Libya’s acute liquidity crisis, save collapsing public services or bring powerful militias to heel. ReutersWed, 18 Apr 2018 17:30:23 +0000The initiative has been paving Misrata's streets for the past three months and have since then fixed dozens of damaged streets, but volunteers say they still have a long way to goAfrican migrants in Yemen facing physical, sexual abuse-UN, HRWhttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/18/african-migrants-in-yemen-facing-physical-sexual-abuse-un-hrw/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/18/african-migrants-in-yemen-facing-physical-sexual-abuse-un-hrw/The United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) and Human Rights Watch (HRW) say African migrants and asylum seekers in Yemen are being subjected to physical and sexual abuse in detention. In a statement, Human Rights Watch accused Yemeni government employees of “torturing, raping and executing” migrants and asylum seekers from the Horn of Africa in a detention center in the southern port city of Aden, as well as forcibly deporting them out to sea. It said Yemen’s Interior Ministry had responded to an inquiry by saying they had dismissed the centre’s commander and begun transferring migrants to another location. The statement adds that survivors have described to UNHCR being shot at, regular beatings, rapes of adults and children, humiliations including forced nudity, being forced to witness summary executions, and denial of food.” The group said in its statement late Tuesday that the centre was under Yemeni state control, but that migrants were being arrested and taken there by forces backed by the United Arab Emirates (UAE), which is a major component of a Saudi-led coalition that intervened in Yemen’s civil war in 2015. UAE officials and Yemeni officials in Aden did not immediately respond to Reuters’ requests for comment. The Western-backed coalition has been fighting the Houthis in a three-year war to restore the internationally recognized government of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi. His government has a presence in Aden, while Hadi lives in Saudi Arabia. “Guards at the migrant detention centre in Aden have brutally beaten men, raped women and boys, and sent hundreds out to sea in overloaded boats,” said Bill Frelick, refugee rights director at HRW, calling on the government to hold those responsible to account. HRW said the detention centre in Aden’s Buraika area had since early 2017 held several hundred Ethiopian, Somali and Eritrean migrants, asylum seekers and refugees, but that only about 90 migrants remained, mostly Eritrean, as of this month. In a separate report on Tuesday, UNHCR also said it has received reports of the detention, abuse and forcible deportation of refugees, asylum seekers and migrants in Yemen, but did not specify where this was taking place. “Survivors have described to UNHCR being shot at, regular beatings, rapes of adults and children, humiliations including forced nudity, being forced to witness summary executions, and denial of food,” it said. It called on “state and non-state” actors effectively controlling detention facilities where new arrivals are being held to ensure those being detained are treated humanely. HRW accused the armed Houthi movement that controls northern Yemen of arbitrarily detaining migrants in poor conditions and failing to provide access to asylum and protection procedures in the port city of Hodeida. It called on “state and non-state” actors effectively controlling detention facilities where new arrivals are being held to ensure those being detained are treated humanely. Many migrants from desperately poor Horn of Africa countries risk the hazardous journey through Yemen in the hope of finding work in Saudi Arabia and other wealthy Gulf Arab states. ReutersWed, 18 Apr 2018 15:45:40 +0000HRW said the detention centre in Aden’s Buraika area had since early 2017 held several hundred Ethiopian, Somali and Eritrean migrants, asylum seekers and refugees, but that only about 90 migrants r[Photos] Botswana's ex-president visits rural communities with giftsAbdur Rahman Alfa Shabanhttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/18/photos-botswana-s-ex-president-visits-rural-communities-with-gifts/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/18/photos-botswana-s-ex-president-visits-rural-communities-with-gifts/Barely a month after stepping down from the presidency, Botswana’s immediate past president, Seretse Khama Ian Khama, has began settling into life after office. The former soldier who handed over the highest office of the land to his then vice president Eric Mokgweetsi Masisi, shared photos of him in a rural area, specifically the Nthani cattlepost near the town of Mosu. A boot wearing Khama is seen seated whiles chatting with locals. The trip to the countryside he noted in a Facebook earlier this week was part of taking a break as he settled into his new office.Wed, 18 Apr 2018 14:50:14 +0000Barely a month after stepping down from the presidency, Botswana's immediate past president, Seretse Khama Ian Khama, has began settling into life after office.UK treatment of post-war migrants a concern for EU citizens - Verhofstadthttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/18/uk-treatment-of-post-war-migrants-a-concern-for-eu-citizens-verhofstadt/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/18/uk-treatment-of-post-war-migrants-a-concern-for-eu-citizens-verhofstadt/Discussion over the rights of European Union citizens in the United Kingdom after the country leaves the bloc must continue in light of UK immigration officials’ harsh treatment of post-war Caribbean migrants, the European Parliament’s Brexit coordinator, Guy Verhofstadt said on Wednesday. Speaking in the European Parliament in Strasbourg, Verhofstadt said the parliament wanted to be sure that EU citizens remaining in the UK after Brexit would not face a similar “bureaucratic nightmare”. “I want first of all say to (European Council President) Donald Tusk, to the President of the Council, that for the European Parliament even with the Withdrawal Agreement now things are not over. We need still to have the citizens’ rights completed. Because certainly after the Windrush scandal in Britain we want to be sure that the same is not happening to our European citizens and that there is no bureaucratic nightmare there. So we’ll organise,” he added. Known as the ‘Windrush generation’, migrants from the Caribbean were invited to Britain to plug labour shortfalls between 1948 and 1971. They enjoyed a special status that has been eroded over the years by successive immigration reforms. Some of their descendants have been wrongly labelled illegal immigrants, and in some cases denied rights, detained and threatened with deportation in a tightening of immigration rules overseen by British Prime Minister Theresa May when she was interior minister in 2012. ReutersWed, 18 Apr 2018 14:37:11 +0000The European Parliament's Brexit coordinator, Guy Verhofstadt says discussion over the rights of European Union citizens in the United Kingdom after the country leaves the bloc must continue.Thugs invade Nigeria Senate, fight security and steal symbol of authorityAbdur Rahman Alfa Shabanhttp://www.africanews.com/2018/04/18/thugs-invade-nigeria-senate-fight-security-and-steal-symbol-of-authority/http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/18/thugs-invade-nigeria-senate-fight-security-and-steal-symbol-of-authority/Nigeria’s Senate does not have a mace. The ceremonial staff and symbol of authority which usually precedes the Senate President was stolen by thugs who invaded the red chamber of Wednesday morning during a plenary session. A live Facebook video carried by the Senate showed that proceedings for the day were well underway when confusion was registered at the entrance of the building. A group of men fought off security and chased off parliamentary staff at the National Assembly premises in Abuja before making away with the mace. UPDATE: Security Personnel deployed around National Assembly after hoodlum stormed Senate Chamber and went away with Mace. Cc Sumner_Sambo</a> <a href="https://t.co/RW352c9ic4">pic.twitter.com/RW352c9ic4</a></p>&mdash; TVC News (tvcnewsng) April 18, 2018 Even though sessions are not to proceed without it, the deputy speaker, Ike Ekweremadu, who is presiding in the absence of Speaker Bukola Saraki has continued with proceedings. “The Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria has just been invaded and we are not going to take it kindly. This is an institutional invasion. So I want everybody to settle down,” he appealed. Local media portals are pointing to a recently suspended senator, Ovie Omo-Agege, as the brain behind the attack. Reports say about ten men involved in the operation sped off in a black 4×4 vehicle after taking the mace. Hoodlums storm National Assembly, hijack Senate Mace: https://t.co/cnJTumZySY via YouTube</a></p>&mdash; TVC News (tvcnewsng) April 18, 2018 Update: Senate statement on resumption of session with new mace in place. Issued under signature of Dr. Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi, Chairman of Senate Committee on Media and Public Affairs. Below is the video and the relevant aspect starts from the 20th minute. Senators and staff running off as invaders engage security detail. They walk down the stairs, snatch the mace and went off.Wed, 18 Apr 2018 11:56:01 +0000A live Facebook video carried by the Senate showed that proceedings for the day were well underway when confusion was registered at the entrance of the building.