Sunday 18 February 2018
(AFP (eng) 12/06/13)
PARIS, December 6, 2013 (AFP) - The death of Nelson Mandela weighed on African leaders as they gathered in Paris Friday for a summit focused on security and France's military intervention in the Central African Republic. Some 40 African leaders have flown into the French capital for two days of talks on security and economic issues, as Paris looks to revive its influence on the continent in the face of the growing clout of China and other developing economies. President Francois Hollande was to open the summit at 1300 GMT with a tribute to Mandela, who died late Thursday aged 95. "His death will no doubt weigh on the summit," Congo-Brazzaville President Denis Sassou Nguesso told AFP. "It will be...
(Voice of America 12/06/13)
NAIROBI — Mourning the loss of a man who bridged South Africa's racial divide, many Africans hope their leaders today will be inspired by Nelson Mandela to heal another rift widening dangerously across the continent: the wealth gap. “We need the next Mandela to fight for the poor,” said Thomas Kozzih, 30, a community worker in Nairobi's Kibera slum - an expanse of metal shacks butting up against smart new flats that testify to Africa's new growth that has left many behind. Nelson Mandela 1918 - Born in Transkei, South Africa 1944 - Joined African National Congress 1956 - Charged with treason, later acquitted 1962 - Convicted of sabotage and sentenced to 5 years 1964 - Sentenced to life in...
(AL Jazeera 12/06/13)
Minutes after news of the passing away of former South African president Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, tributes and speeches started streaming in. United States President Barack Obama was one of the first global leaders to speak out following the news that the country's first black president had passed away. Speaking from the White House on Thursday, Obama said he was one of the countless millions around the world who was influenced by the anti-apartheid activist Mandela. US President Barack Obama Obama met with Mandela's family earlier this year when he visited South Africa, but he did not meet with the ailing leader, who was hospitalised throughout the US president's visit. Obama told the media that had been inspired by Mandela, who...
(Tanzania Daily News 12/05/13)
African countries still lack political will to implement the Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance (ACDEG), promulgated by the African Union (AU) in 2007. Speaking in Dar es Salaam, State of the Union (SOTU) Coordinator, Ms Jamillah Mwanjisi, said the agreement could act as a roadmap in encouraging better governance across the continent. SOTU is a coalition of civil society organisations working together to hold African governments accountable for the ratification and implementation of African Union decisions at the country level. According to Mwanjisi, the ACDEG Charter sets out international standards of good governance and democracy in such areas as rule of law, free and fair elections and condemning unconstitutional changes of government. "Some countries are using the charter as...
(Voice of America 12/05/13)
French President Francois Hollande told African leaders that France is ready to double its aid and trade to the continent over the next five years. Hollande made the announcement Wednesday ahead of the formal opening on Friday of the annual Africa-France summit. Hollande also said the increased ties would mean thousands more jobs in France. “If we're only looking at the interests of France, we can estimate that 200,000 jobs could be created in five years if we doubled our exports to the African continent. So that's my objective. France must double its trade with Africa,” said Hollande. Senegalese President Macky Sall welcomed the news, as did the presidents of Cote d'Ivoire and Tanzania. "Africa is growing. It's becoming more...
(Reuters (Eng) 12/05/13)
PARIS ---(Reuters) - President Francois Hollande told African leaders on Wednesday France was ready to double its aid and trade to the continent over the next five years. The target, announced at a conference in Paris ahead of the formal opening on Friday of the annual Africa-France summit, is part of an effort by France to win back African business in the face of growing rivalry from China and others. "Africa's time has come - and France should see that as an opportunity," Hollande told the conference. "The road between France and Africa is not a one-way street," he told assembled leaders such as Ivory Coast's Alassane Ouattara. Hollande said France would look to double its global aid to the...
(Bloomberg 12/04/13)
African bourses from Ivory Coast to Kenya are forecasting an increase in share sales in 2014 as a rally in stock markets helps end a drought of initial public offerings. The Abidjan-based Bourse Regionale des Valeurs Mobilieres, which trades securities from eight West African nations, is set for its first new listings since 2010 with two Senegalese companies, Chairman Gabriel Fal said in an interview in the city yesterday. The Stock of Exchange of Mauritius may see 15 offerings in 2014, while the Nairobi Securities Exchange is predicting five, the heads of the bourses said in separate interviews. “We have been through a very severe crisis since 2008, especially in the exchange industry,” Fal said. “It’s important that we get...
(Reuters (Eng) 12/04/13)
Wed Dec 4, 2013 (Reuters) - While Peugeot the company may be struggling to find its way, Peugeot the car is still going strong on some of the world's most treacherous roads in the former French colonies of West Africa. The indefatigable 504 estate, based on the saloon produced by the French automaker from 1968, remains the mainstay of the cross-border bush taxi trade in the region. Millions depend on the vehicles to visit relatives or trade goods between countries such as Mauritania, Senegal, Mali, Burkina Faso and Guinea. Local cab-owners jack up the rear-end to provide greater ground clearance, then add a third bench at the back of the car to pack in even more passengers - typically a...
(Bloomberg 12/04/13)
Ecobank Transnational Inc. (ETI), the most geographically diverse lender in Africa, said it will probably seek banking licenses in two more Portuguese-speaking countries on the continent next year. “What we’re trying to do is really to strengthen our network in lusophone countries,” Chief Executive Officer Thierry Tanoh said in an interview yesterday in Abidjan, Ivory Coast’s commercial capital. He didn’t give further details. Ecobank, which trades on three African exchanges and operates in 35 nations on the continent, already has operations in Portuguese-speaking Cape Verde, Guinea-Bissau and Sao Tome and Principe. The Lome, Togo-based bank doesn’t operate in Mozambique and only has a representative office in Angola, another former Portuguese colony in Africa. Ecobank plans to “continue to expand organically,”...
(Reuters (Eng) 12/04/13)
PARIS Wed Dec 4, 2013--(Reuters) - France will tell African leaders at a Paris summit on Friday it will no longer play policeman on the continent, even as it prepares to act in a new conflict in Central African Republic after its Mali intervention this year. Held since 1975, the Africa-France summit was an opportunity for French and African officials to agree back-room deals to reward France for propping up sometimes corrupt regimes. But a drive by France to clean up its African policy together with new powers such as China and Brazil seeking lucrative business on the continent will give a new tone to this week's talks with some 40 African leaders. "Mali, CAR - these are missions we...
(Ips News 12/04/13)
For more than 20 years, Anastasia Ngwakun from Bamunkumbit village in central Cameroon has been farming rice the hard way - using only hand tools. But Ngwakun knows that if she were a man, she would have access to the technology that would not require her to work so hard. "Rice farming is hard work, especially for a woman, because I am involved in the planting and processing using limited or no resources and tools, unlike the men folk in my village, who can easily get credit or have access to a tractor," Ngwakun, who grows rice on a 1.5-hectare plot, told IPS. "Women do not have access to land, and many times we farm plots that are owned by...
(Voice of America 12/03/13)
Several African nations were among the worst performers in Transparency International's annual report on perceived corruption. Somalia was one of three nations receiving the lowest score in the report released Tuesday by the corruption watchdog group. The report gave each nation a score between 0 and 100. Besides Somalia, African countries that scored 20 or below on the list include Sudan, South Sudan, Guinea-Bissau, Equatorial Guinea, Chad and Eritrea. Only three African nations received scores above 50 - Botswana, Cape Verde, and Rwanda. Transparency International says Africa has improved on indicators related to "human development and sustainable economic development." The Berlin-based group says, however, there has been a "noticeable deterioration" in terms of safety and the rule of law. Transparency...
(Voice of America 12/03/13)
JOHANNESBURG — In most African countries, pharmaceutal drugs are poorly regulated or not regulated at all, posing huge risks for those who depend on them to stay healthy. But for the first time, the topic has gotten the attention of African officials, who holding a scientific conference on the topic in South Africa. Access to safe and effective medicine can be touch and go in Africa, where the market abounds with drugs that are fake or expired. That can have disastrous consequences, says Margareth Ndomondo-Sigonda, a Tanzanian who oversees pharmaceutical issues for an African Union agency, the New Partnership for Africa's Development, or NEPAD. "The situation that you see in Africa is that most of the medicines circulating in our...
(African arguments 12/03/13)
The McKinsey Global Institute has released a new report entitled 'Lions Go Digital: The Internet's Transformative Potential in Africa'. Optimistic about the power of internet to change Africa, the report delineates six categories where internet will have the most powerful impact: Financial services, education, health, retail, agriculture, and government. The research found that while currently, internet penetration throughout the whole continent is 16 per cent, with just 16 million people online; the report estimates that by 2025, around 50 per cent of the population will be online, with 600 million people using internet. While the figures show a hopeful projection of what internet access will look like in a little over a decade, there are clear challenges to achieving internet...
(The Reporter 12/02/13)
The economic performance of Africa in the last few years has been remarkable. The continent has consistently defied the global trend. Five years after the global financial system came perilously close to collapse, the global economic outlook is still uncertain. In Europe, GDP is still below pre-crisis levels and unemployment is at a record high. Recovery in the United States, although stronger, remains weak by historic standards, and even China, which has done so much to drive global growth, is slowing down. Yet, in what some might call an unexpected twist, average growth in Africa over the last decade has been more than 5 percent. Of the 10 fastest-growing global economies, seven are in sub-Saharan Africa. But how will this...
(BBC News Africa 12/02/13)
The winner of this year's BBC African Footballer of the Year award will be revealed at 1735 GMT on Monday. The shortlist of Yaya Toure, Victor Moses, John Mikel Obi, Jonathan Pitroipa and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was announced three weeks ago. African football fans selected their choice for the award, voting online and by text messages. You can find out result later today live on the BBC's Focus on Africa radio and television programmes and on this website. No player on this year's shortlist, drawn up from votes by 44 journalists across Africa, has won the BBC award before and two - Burkina Faso's Pitroipa and Aubameyang of Gabon - are the first nominees from their respective countries. Ivory Coast's Toure...
(The New York Times 12/01/13)
LONDON — The imagery is likely to be the same as it has been for decades — foreign troops in battle fatigues lugging backpacks and assault rifles, confronting mayhem. But when French soldiers reinforce their small existing garrison in the Central African Republic in coming weeks, their presence will probably be depicted as a departure from a long tradition of military muscle as the prime instrument of postcolonial power. The Central African Republic — its territory larger than metropolitan France, with only a small fraction of its population — has occupied an anomalous place since independence from Paris in 1960, ruled by a procession of despots and even an emperor — Bokassa I — who was accused not just of...
(AFP 11/30/13)
JOHANNESBURG, November 30, 2013 (AFP) - African ministers and experts meet next week in Botswana to chart ways to stamp out a spike in elephant killings fuelled by a growing demand for ivory in Asia. "Poaching of elephants and associated ivory trafficking remain of grave concern," said Richard Thomas, spokesman for the animal conservation group Traffic. The three-day meeting opening on Monday in Gaborone has been organised by the Botswana government and the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). Poaching has risen sharply in Africa in recent years and the illegal ivory trade has tripled since 1998, according to the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). Large-scale seizures of ivory destined for Asia have more than doubled since 2009 and...
(Voice of America 11/29/13)
CAPE TOWN — East Africa's oil rush is spreading into parks and protected areas, prompting companies to develop new ways to explore for hydrocarbons without disturbing wildlife and natural treasures such as rare fossils. From Uganda, where France's Total is trying new and less intrusive methods of seismic testing in a national park, to Madagascar, where operations are under way next to a UNESCO site, the industry is working in locations where damage would trigger public outcries. “We can't take anything for granted. We are abutting next to a UNESCO National Park,” said Stewart Ahmed, chief executive officer of Madagascar Oil, which plans the first commercial crude oil production in the impoverished Indian Ocean island state.“We are going to be...
(Reuters (Eng) 11/29/13)
PRISTINA (Reuters) - NATO confirmed on Thursday that France plans to withdraw its 320 troops from Kosovo, citing commitments in Mali and a pending French intervention in Central African Republic. Speaking in Kosovo, NATO's top military commander, U.S. Air Force General Philip Breedlove, did not specify when the troops would leave or whether they would be replaced. France is preparing to increase its force in Central African Republic, an anarchic former French colony, to at least 1,000 soldiers to prevent sectarian violence from destabilizing the wider region. In January, French military forces intervened in Mali, another ex-colony, to reverse an Islamist militant takeover of the north. Around 2,800 French soldiers remain in the West African country. "The French took a...

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