| Africatime
Sunday 23 April 2017
(AfricaNews 03/16/17)
Giant flames razed down a food market in Bamenda northwest of Cameroon on Tuesday. Officials said nearly 200 shops were burned down in the inferno. Cameroonian authorities have also opened an investigation to determine the cause of the fire in the market that supplies food to the entire city. Although the cause of the fire is not known, traders suspect an arson attack, as they say flyers had earlier circulated warning traders who continued to operate their shops during ghost town protest days when people were urged to remain indoors. Bamenda has been the center of recent civil unrest in the country as demonstrations started in late 2016, when local lawyers and teachers in the area went on strike. The...
(Xinhuanet 03/16/17)
China's aid to the education sector in Africa is helping boost teacher training, a key component in skilling the population to fast track development, a UN official has said. Ann Therese Ndong-Jatta, Director of United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Regional Office for Eastern Africa, in an interview recognized China's contribution to Africa's education sector over the years. "We value the initiative in teacher training in Uganda and other countries in Africa. This will revitalize the teaching profession," she said. China through UNESCO donated equipment to three teacher training institutions in Uganda on March 3. Figures from the Chinese embassy here show that 137 tutors were trained and 272 pieces of Information Communication and Technology and studio equipment...
(AFP (eng) 03/16/17)
Africa will host a Commonwealth Games one day despite the blow of Durban being stripped of hosting the 2022 edition, David Grevemberg, the chief executive of The Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF), told AFP. Durban lost the right to host the Games on Monday -- just 18 months after being awarded them -- when it failed to meet criteria laid down by the CGF, primarily over costs. "I wouldn't want to make a judgement call," Grevemberg told AFP on the sidelines of a briefing by 2018 Games hosts Gold Coast on Wednesday. "Durban has hosted some great events, it is a fantastic city and are wonderful warm hosts with bright ambitions and great aspirations. "However, it takes more than a municipality,...
(Voice of America 03/15/17)
Cameroon says it has killed at least 60 Boko Haram fighters and destroyed a stronghold for the militant group, as well as a huge stock of seized weapons, in fighting along its northern border. Issa Tchiroma Bakary, Cameroon minister of communication and a government spokesperson, said, since January 26, thousands of Cameroon soldiers, supported by Nigerian troops, have launched raids on Boko Haram strongholds in the Mandara mountains, freeing more than 5,000 people, including women and children, from captivity. Issa Tchiroma said at least 60 terrorists have been killed since the offensive began in late January. More than 20 suspects have been arrested and are helping the Cameroon and Nigerian militaries in their investigations, he added. He also said troops...
(AFP (eng) 03/15/17)
Issa Hayatou, born a prince and emperor of African football for three decades, has been at the centre of scandal -- but never wounded -- for much of his life. The 70-year-old Cameroonian, seeking an eighth term as head of the Confederation of African Football (CAF) in an election on Thursday, defied his royal roots early on when he chose sport as a career. "It was a scandal in my family. I wanted to do sport, that was my passion," Hayatou said in an interview with Jeune Afrique magazine. He went on to represent Cameroon in basketball and athletics, holding the national 400m and 800m records for a while. While other football barons -- Sepp Blatter, Michel Platini and the...
(The Wall Street Journal 03/15/17)
Ndalo Media founder Khanyi Dhlomo and Mara Group founder Ashish Thakkar on where the potential is and what’s blocking it How is innovation in Africa different from innovation in Silicon Valley? And how can innovation in Africa be encouraged? Dan Keeler, frontier-markets editor of The Wall Street Journal, discussed those questions with Khanyi Dhlomo, founder and chief executive of Ndalo Media, a publisher based in South Africa, and Ashish Thakkar, founder of Mara Group, a pan-African investment group with operations in banking, real estate, infrastructure and technology. Edited excerpts follow. MR. KEELER: What about innovation in Africa? Khanyi, what sort of things are you seeing that are inspiring you? MS. DHLOMO:There’s a lot of innovation happening in Africa. But it’s...
(Agence Ecofin 03/14/17)
The Land Policy Initiative (LPI), a joint programme of the tripartite consortium consisting of the African Union Commission (AUC), the African Development Bank (AfDB) and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) has launched a pilot project to track progress in implementing in the AU Declaration on land issues in Africa. This was revealed by the ECA in a press statement dated March 7. In collaboration with the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), the project will assess progress made in implementing the key decisions and commitments of the AU Declaration on Land adopted in July 2009 by the General Assembly of the pan-African institution. “We are to a large extent in unchartered waters given many of our Member...
(Reuters (Eng) 03/13/17)
The United Arab Emirates, one of the Middle East's largest economies, wants to expand trade ties with faster growing nations in Asia and Africa, a senior official said on Sunday. Rich Gulf Arab states are looking at ways to diversify their economies, including who they trade with, after more than two years of depressed oil prices forced a rethink of government spending. The pace of economic growth in Asian and sub-Saharan African economies has made them ideal partners, Abdullah al-Saleh, undersecretary for foreign trade and industry at the UAE ministry of the economy, told Reuters in an interview in Dubai. Asia's two largest economies China and India are expected to grow by 6.5 percent and 7.2 percent this year whilst...
(AFP (eng) 03/10/17)
In the beginning was .com, followed by a host of other .somethings, but on Friday, 32 years after the world's first domain name was registered, the African Union has launched .africa for the continent. Africans who want to register a website will be able to apply for a .africa domain name in the coming months, which outgoing AU commission chair Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma said would allow the continent's people and businesses to better reach the world. "With .africa, I would say Africa has finally got its digital identity," said Dlamini-Zuma, who will next week hand power to Chadian Foreign Minister Moussa Faki Mahamat after four years at the helm of the continental body Sub-Saharan Africa has one of the lowest rates...
(Dw-World 03/09/17)
It's been exactly 50 days since Cameroonian authorities imposed an internet blackout on English-speaking regions in the majority French-speaking nation. Hundreds of youths shouted "Bring back our internet! Bring back our internet!" on the streets of the western city of Bamenda as the convoy of Cameroonian Prime Minister Philemon Yang passed. He was dispatched to the city by President Paul Biya in an attempt to negotiate a peaceful resumption of classes and business activities in the English-speaking northwest and southwest regions of Cameroon. "Fear cannot build a country. Fear cannot create confidence. We must all refuse to spread fear to innocent children, to innocent parents, to innocent
(Xinhuanet 03/09/17)
A critical mass of trained and well equipped community health workforce is key to easing the rising burden of infectious and noncommunicable diseases in Africa, experts said on Wednesday at a continental forum taking place in Nairobi. The experts, policymakers and campaigners who attended Africa Health Agenda International Conference agreed that optimal engagement of community health workers is key to revolutionize response to diseases ravaging the continent. Kenya's Cabinet Secretary for Health Cleopa Mailu in his opening remarks said that investments in training for community health workers will have multiplier impact on Africa's socioeconomic development. "We require highly skilled and motivated cadre of community health workforce to deal with a high diseases burden in disadvantaged settings in this continent. These...
(AFP (eng) 03/08/17)
Lawyers and human rights campaigners launched an initiative for African whistleblowers in Senegal on Tuesday, aimed at providing a secure means of exposing wrongdoing on the continent. African nations such as Somalia, South Sudan, Libya and Guinea-Bissau regularly appear at the very bottom of rankings such as Transparency International's Corruption Index, while none make it into the top 30. The Platform for the Protection of Whistleblowers in Africa (PPLAAF) will provide guidance from legal experts, secure submission of information and a hotline for potential informants, according to its founders. The initiative is the brainchild of Spanish superstar lawyer Baltasar Garzon -- who has defended Julian Assange of whistleblowing website WikiLeaks -- along with French lawyer William Bourdon, who worked on...
(The Independent 03/06/17)
Th term was coined by sceptical officials, worried about the importance given to Commonwealth trade deals ahead of Brexit negotiations. Plans by government ministers to boost trade links with African Commonwealth countries are being internally branded “empire 2.0” by sceptical officials who are worried about the importance being placed on such deals ahead of the UK’s negotiations of leaving the European Union (EU). International Trade Secretary Liam Fox is expected to promise to build better links with the whole of the 52 member countries of the Commonwealth when ministers from each country meet in London later this week. But as the UK is prepares itself to leave the European Union, The Times reports that British ministers are planning to talk...
(Voice of America 03/04/17)
On a Friday night in September 2014, Boko Haram fighters attacked the village of Guza in northeastern Nigeria, killing and kidnapping young boys as they burned homes and looted. Ismael, now 15, survived that night of terror and hid in his house for 40 days, afraid that if he ventured outside for even a moment, terrorists would abduct him — the fate that has befallen many other boys in his region. “My elder sister advised me to dress like a girl and flee to the nearby villages to save myself,” Ismael said through a translator in the town of Maroua, Cameroon, where he recently arrived. After an odyssey that included more than two years in detention in Cameroon for suspected...
(AFP (eng) 03/03/17)
Ahmad Ahmad insisted Thursday he can bring widespread, meaningful change to African football if he unseats Issa Hayatou as president of the Confederation of African Football (CAF). Ahmad, a CAF executive committee member and head of the Madagascar football federation, made a whistle-stop visit to Nigeria to canvas for support in the CAF presidential poll slated for March 16 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. "I think many things have to change in African football", Ahmad told reporters in Abuja. "We need change in refereeing, officiating, the way we train our coaches. We can't organise a coaching licence course in 15, 10 days. The certificate is just to help you get a work. Our technical development must change." He also disclosed that...
(Bloomberg 03/03/17)
Polar Star Management Ltd., which runs one of the best-performing African and Middle East hedge fund over the past five years, plans to start a private-equity unit that will invest in agriculture to exploit rising demand for food. The Cape Town-based firm plans to use its own money to buy small farms and processing companies in South Africa this year, then increase efficiency through consolidation and better management, said Murray Derksen, a director at Polar Star. It aims to raise 1.5 billion rand ($115 million) for the fund, which may also buy commodities such as grains, while targeting an internal rate of return of 8 percent to 12 percent, he said. “We looked at the increase in corn demand globally,...
(AFP (eng) 03/02/17)
UN Security Council envoys on Thursday travel to Africa's Lake Chad region, where famine, the Boko Haram insurgency, climate change and poor governance have collided to create one of the world's worst humanitarian crises. The 15 ambassadors from the UN's top decision-making body hope to draw global attention to the emergency affecting 21 million people across four countries: Nigeria, Chad, Cameroon and Niger. The visit could also pave the way to stronger action by the Security Council to address what has been a largely ignored crisis, relegated to the bottom of the diplomatic agenda as war in Syria and South Sudan escalated. British Ambassador Matthew Rycroft said the visit will "shine a spotlight of international attention on the humanitarian crisis"...
(Bloomberg 03/02/17)
When the sun sets in Buea, the capital of Cameroon’s English-speaking Southwest region, residents lock themselves in their homes hoping the security forces won’t come knocking. “The atmosphere reigning here is one of fear, so we go to bed early because the security forces usually organize their raids at nightfall,” Lucas Mbonde, a 39-year-old carpenter, said by phone from the city. “Every week people here report cases of missing relatives.” President Paul Biya’s government carried out a wave of arrests after lawyers and teachers in English-speaking areas protested about the dominance of the French language in their courts and schools. He also shut down state-controlled internet services throughout the Northwest and Southwest regions, saying the measure was necessary to prevent...
(AFP (eng) 03/02/17)
A film raging against colonialism and the exploitation of Africa wowed viewers at the continent's top cinema festival Wednesday, winning shouts of approval at a screening packed to bursting point. "The African Storm" tells the story of an African president who nationalises businesses run by racist, cynical Western executives. Directed and produced by its Beninese star Sylvestre Amoussou, it tackles several hot-button issues including an exit from the CFA franc currency, closer ties with Russia and China as opposed to the West, criticism of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank, and pride in being African. One of 20 feature-length movies on show at the Panafrican Film and Television Festival (Fespaco) in Burkina Faso's capital Ouagadougou, the movie was punctuated...
(AFP (eng) 03/01/17)
Former France coach Philippe Saint-Andre will help train Cameroon on a voluntary basis in the African Cup in May. Saint-Andre stepped down as France coach in 2015 after a four-year period in which Les Bleus never finished higher than fourth in the Six Nations, failed to beat Wales, Ireland, New Zealand or South Africa and were humiliated at the World Cup. "I'm graciously lending a hand for this Africa Cup," Saint-Andre told AFP, after a request from a Cameroonian friend. Cameroon face Nigeria in Yaounde on May 6 and Algeria a week later in what is the third level of the continental competition.

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