Thursday 22 February 2018
(Reuters (Eng) 10/20/17)
DAKAR (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - The #MeToo social media campaign to raise awareness about sexual harassment and abuse has sparked conversation in parts of Africa where domestic violence is rampant but strong cultural and religious taboos prevent women from admitting it. Prompted by sexual abuse allegations against American film mogul Harvey Weinstein, millions of women around the world have been sharing their experiences of harassment and abuse on Facebook and Twitter with the hashtag #MeToo. The movement has reached only a small part of the population in West Africa, but some women are participating in defiance of attitudes which dictate that being abused brings shame on the family, is a curse, or makes a woman unmarriageable. In Senegal, some women...
(AFP (eng) 10/19/17)
The new UN envoy for disputed Western Sahara, Horst Koehler, met leaders of an Algerian-backed independence movement Wednesday after visiting Morocco in a bid to get stalled peace talks back on track. Koehler, a former German president tasked by the United Nations in August with mediating the decades-old dispute, sat down with leaders from the pro-independence Polisario Front as he made his first trip to the refugee camps in Algeria where they are based. The meeting is part of a fresh push by the United Nations to try to resolve one of Africa's longest-running territorial disputes, which saw the Polisario Front wage a bitter 16-year insurgency against Moroccan control. A UN-brokered ceasefire in 1991 halted the fighting, but Morocco insists...
(Xinhuanet 10/19/17)
Algeria said Wednesday that the government will take a series of decisions, including earmarking a budget of 40 billion U.S. dollars to boost economic recovery process. Algerian Prime Minister Ahmed Ouyahia noted that the government decided to revive public investment through a capital budget of more than 40 billion dollars in 2018, up by 10 billion dollars compared to 2017. Speaking at the opening of the ongoing Algerian Employers Forum (FCE), Ouyahia said these public expenditures aim at encouraging and developing local production, including in agricultural sector. The government will also reactivate the National Investment Fund to accompany major investments, and maintain the support measures to all investment projects, including providing low interest rate loans. The PM further specified that...
(AFP (eng) 10/19/17)
Algeria have brought back former player Rabah Madjer as their new national coach, succeeding the sacked Lucas Alcaraz, the Algerian federation confirmed on Wednesday. Madjer, 58, becomes the country's fifth national coach in three years and must pick up the pieces after their failure to qualify for the 2018 World Cup. That cost Spaniard Alcaraz his position as he was sacked earlier this month after just six months in the role. Madjer, one of the greatest Algerian players of all time, is best remembered for his nonchalant back-heeled finish for Porto in their 1987 European Cup final win over Bayern Munich. He first took charge of his country in 1994, with his most recent spell ending in 2002 after an...
(AFP (eng) 10/18/17)
Rent-a-room giant Airbnb said Tuesday that it had provided accommodation for 1.2 million visitors to Africa over the last year -- double the previous year as tourism expands across the continent. The website now offers more than 100,000 accommodation options in Africa, global public affairs director Chris Lehane said on a visit to Johannesburg. "It's an incredibly rich and diverse continent, an incredibly dynamic place, certainly a big part of our future," Lehane told AFP. Airbnb was founded in 2008 and offers accommodation ranging from single bedrooms to whole homes in 65,000 cities in 191 countries. The company announced Tuesday that it would invest $1 million (850,000 euros) in Africa by 2020 to "promote and support community-led tourism projects". "For...
(AFP (eng) 10/17/17)
Though its motto is "one Africa, one voice", the reality of "Africa's parliament" could not be more different. Since its creation in 2004, the Pan-African Parliament (PAP) has struggled to make its voice heard, prompting its deputies to ask themselves at a recent gathering: "What are we for?" "Every time we're here, we obsess over the same things. If we are not making laws, then what's the point of being here?" Corneille Padonou of Benin said to his fellow parliamentarians. "This forum is not a parliament, it is just a discussion platform that does not have any legislative powers. This institution is still wobbly," said Floyd Shivambu, a parliamentarian from South Africa. "As it is, it is a waste of...
(AFP (eng) 10/16/17)
The UN's new envoy for Western Sahara will travel to Morocco at the weekend as part of a regional tour aimed at kick-starting talks on ending the decades-old conflict over the disputed territory. Former German president Horst Kohler will travel to Rabat on Sunday before heading to Algeria and Mauritania, UN sources said. The visit comes ahead of his first report to the Security Council on October 24 on prospects for re-launching negotiations that have been comatose for years. The council adopted a resolution in April that called for a new UN push for talks between Morocco and the Algerian-backed Polisario Front.
(AFP 10/16/17)
L'ancien joueur vedette de l'Algérie, Rabah Madjer, pourrait prendre les rênes de la sélection nationale la semaine prochaine, a annoncé vendredi le vice-président de la Fédération (FAF) Bachir Ould Zmirli. "Rabah Madjer fait partie de techniciens susceptibles de diriger l'équipe nationale. C'est un entraineur capable de mener la sélection grâce à son vécu en tant que joueur puis entraineur", a déclaré à la radio le N.2 de la Fédération. La FAF, qui veut qu'un Algérien succède au sélectionneur espagnol Lucas Alcaraz, limogé mercredi, a également "songé aux services" de l'ancien international Djamel Belmadi, qui a fait l'essentiel de sa carrière de joueur en France (au PSG et à l'OM, notamment), selon M. Ould Zmirli.. Mais Djamel Belmadi, qui a été...
(APA 10/16/17)
APA-Dakar (Senegal) - The president of the African Development Bank, Akinwumi Adesina, will deliver the Norman Borlaug Lecture on Monday 16 October as part of the World Food Prize events taking place from October 16 to 20, 2017 in Des Moines, Iowa, USA. The Norman Borlaug Lecture under the title: “Betting on Africa to Feed the World”, will be held on World Food Day, October 16, in conjunction with the annual World Food Prize celebration. AfDB President Adesina will receive the 2017 World Food Prize on Thursday October 19, announced a press release issued by the AfDB on October 16, which also said “the prize is to agriculture what the Nobel Prize is to peace, science and literature.” The World...
(Reuters (Eng) 10/12/17)
CHEMORA, Algeria (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Squinting under a relentless sun, Houssin Ghodbane watches his son tend a flock of 120 of their sheep. Heads bowed, the sheep slowly search for sparse vegetation poking through the parched, crunchy soil. Fifty-year-old Ghodbane, his tanned face etched with deep lines, has been herding sheep for 20 years, having inherited the job and land from his father. But in this dry region, worsening cycles of drought are posing new challenges to an old profession. According to a report Algeria developed as part of its contribution to the 2015 Paris Agreement on climate change action...
(AFP (eng) 10/11/17)
Ailing Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika, who rarely appears in public, received Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev on Tuesday, the APS news agency reported. Russian and Algerian state media published pictures of the meeting, which was closed to other news outlets. Bouteflika, who is 80 and has held office since 1999, suffered a mini-stroke in 2013 that affected his speech and mobility. He has since used a wheelchair and is occasionally featured in state media receiving foreign dignitaries. In September, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro paid a 24-hour visit to Algeria without officially meeting Bouteflika, despite intense speculation that he would do so. Before Medvedev, the last senior foreign visitor officially received by Bouteflika was his Congolese counterpart Denis Sassou Nguesso, on...
(AFP (eng) 10/10/17)
Economic growth in sub-Saharan Africa is set to accelerate to 3.4 percent next year, the International Monetary Fund said Tuesday, citing Nigeria's recovering oil and agricultural sectors. The IMF said in its latest World Economic Outlook report that the region would grow by 2.6 percent this year after 1.4 percent in 2016. "Growth is expected to rise gradually," it said, while noting that the rate would be uneven and "barely above population growth". GDP in the west African powerhouse Nigeria contracted by 1.6 percent in 2016, but is predicted to grow by 0.8 percent this year and 1.9 percent next year. The IMF said Nigeria was benefitting from "recovering oil production and ongoing strength in the agricultural sector", but the...
(AFP (eng) 10/08/17)
Three Algerian public figures including a former foreign minister said Sunday that President Abdelaziz Bouteflika "is no longer able to lead" and should be barred from seeking a fifth term. Bouteflika, who is 80 and has held office since 1999, won a fourth term in a 2014 election despite having suffered a mini-stroke the previous year that affected his speech and mobility. He has since used a wheelchair during his rare appearances in public. Members of his team have publicly suggested that he may run for a fifth term in 2019 elections. In a joint statement Sunday, former foreign minister Ahmed Taleb Ibrahimi, lawyer and rights activist Ali Yahia Abdenour and retired navy chief Rachid Benyelles said Bouteflika should be...
(Xinhuanet 10/05/17)
Algerian Council of Ministers headed by President Abdelaziz Bouteflika on Wednesday approved the budget for 2018 before submitting it to Parliament for approval, Algeria Press Service (APS) reported. The budget was set at 15,149 billion dinars (about 133 billion dollars) while the deficit decrease from 14 percent of Gross Domestic Product in 2016 to 9 percent in 2018. APS quoted the Cabinet's statement as saying that the government has set the value of the management expenditure at 8,628 billion dinars (about 76 billion dollars) while revenues were estimated at 6521 billion dinars (about 57 billion dollars). The country's difficult financial situation due to the sharp decline in the country's revenues since 2014, which will reach 31 billion dollars in 2017,...
(Reuters (Eng) 10/05/17)
NAIROBI (Reuters) - Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc. (HLT.N) plans to spend $50 million over the next five years to add 100 hotels to its chain in Africa, it said on Thursday, joining other chains keen to tap growing business and international travel on the continent. One property will open in the Kenyan capital Nairobi by the end of this year and another in the Rwandan capital Kigali in 2018, it said in a statement. There was 11 percent growth in Sub-Saharan African tourism in the past year, according to data from the U.N. World Tourism Organisation. Hilton said the remaining additions to its 39 existing African properties would be operational within the next five years. “The model of converting existing...
(APA 10/05/17)
APA-Addis Ababa (Ethiopia) - The African Union (AU) will on Thursday endorse reports and recommendations on Agriculture, Rural Development, Water and Environment (ARWE) made by experts and senior officials in a meeting held on Monday and Tuesday. The endorsement will take place during the ministerial session of the AU’s Specialized Technical Committee on ARWE that opened on Thursday in Addis Ababa under the theme “Improve environmental sustainability and transform agriculture to ensure food and nutrition security.” These include policy papers and reports on agriculture, rural development, water and environment and recommendations and guidance on issues in the 2063 Africa Development Agenda, including agriculture, environment, climate change, and youth engagement. Among the points chosen for the discussions are the assessment of...
(AFP (eng) 10/02/17)
Algerian authorities have called on state-owned oil giant Sonatrach to restart shale gas exploration work suspended after protests by locals in the Sahara desert, state media reported. Prime Minister Ahmed Ouyahia "encouraged" the management of the government-owned firm "to invest in the shale gas sector" during a visit to a refinery Sunday, national television said. "It is time for Sonatrach to use all its energy in the service of business and the country," Ouyahia said. "This is not adventurism, but an option aimed at guaranteeing the future in terms of energy," he said. Angry demonstrations rocked Algeria's central desert town of In Salah in 2015 as anti-fracking protesters took to the streets after Sonatrach said it had successfully completed its...
(Xinhuanet 10/02/17)
Algerian counterterrorim troops on Sunday killed five armed militants in the locality of El Kseur, in the province of Bejaia, said a statement of Defense Ministry. The source said this qualitative operation led to retrieving five Kalashnikov machine guns, and three magazines. Army troops on Thursday launched a wide scale dragging operation in the upper woods of El Kseur, as one terrorist was killed by then, bringing the number of killed terrorists to six. The operation is still underway, as counterterrorism troops are still surrounding the site. Located in a region plagued by unprecedented security and political instability, Algeria faces ongoing terrorist threats. A few militants affiliated to al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) and recently established Daesh affiliate groups...
(Xinhuanet 09/29/17)
Algeria's fiscal deficit will reach 1,113 billion dinars (about 99 billion U.S. dollars) by the end of 2017, the official Algerian Press Service (APS) reported Thursday. The APS quoted Faisal Tadinit, the general director of the finance ministry, who made the remarks in the Finance and Budget Committee of the People's National Assembly (Lower House) on Thursday. Tadinit explained that the decline in oil prices since mid-2014 has had a significant impact on the low fiscal revenues. In spite of this, the government is continuing its efforts in the field of public investment to keep the economic growth and employment rate
(AFP (eng) 09/29/17)
Government shutdowns of the internet have cost sub-Saharan Africa about $237 million since 2015, according to a study released Friday, as authorities increasingly implement planned disruptions. At least 12 countries have had internet shutdowns, often before elections or when protests erupt, with mobile internet networks most recently suspended in Togo during opposition demonstrations. "Internet disruptions, however short-lived, undermine economic growth, disrupt the delivery of critical services, erode business confidence, and raise a country’s risk profile," the CIPESA report said. The Collaboration on International ICT Policy for East and Southern Africa (CIPESA) released its...

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