Monday 26 June 2017
(Voice of America 06/21/17)
WASHINGTON DC — On June 5, Saudi Arabia and its allies, including Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, cut diplomatic ties with Qatar, accusing it of funding extremist groups such as the Muslim Brotherhood and Islamic State. In response, Qatar said it was the victim of a policy of “domination and control” by its larger neighbor and that Saudi Arabia was, in fact, the one responsible for backing extremism. So what is the truth? Fundamentalist strains of Islam, including Saudi-born Salafism and Wahhabism, form the ideological bedrock for most terror groups. According to a study by Leif Wenar of King’s College London based on the Global Terrorism Database, three out of four terror attacks...
(Voice of America 06/20/17)
YAOUNDE — Cameroon has detained 30 of its soldiers fighting Boko Haram in the northern part of the country. The Defense Ministry says the soldiers abandoned their positions in a protest over pay and working conditions. Military officials in Cameroon say the incident happened earlier this month. Several dozen Cameroonian soldiers erected barricades near the country's border with Nigeria and asked to be immediately replaced. The soldiers were part of the Multinational Joint Task Force fighting Boko Haram since 2015. Colonel Didier Badjeck, spokesperson of Cameroon's military, said the protest was "unacceptable." He said so far 30 of the soldiers who took part have been arrested. He said the minister of defense gave instructions that the protesters should be arrested...
(Voice of America 06/19/17)
YAOUNDE — In Cameroon, the case of a bishop found dead earlier this month has sparked calls for a wider investigation into what the country's Catholic authorities say has been a string of suspicious clergy deaths. Two other priests were also found dead in the past month. Worshipers at a Catholic church in Oveng, on the outskirts of Yaounde, held a memorial service for Jean Marie Benoit Bala. Oveng is Bishop Bala's birth place. The 59-year-old bishop disappeared from his...
(BBC News Africa 06/16/17)
Cameroon will be driven by the memory of Marc Vivien-Foe when they contest the Confederations Cup for the first time since the midfielder's death. Foe died after collapsing on the pitch during the 2003 semi-final against Colombia in France. The 28-year-old was later found to have suffered from a heart condition called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. The Indomitable Lions will end their 14-year absence from the Confederations Cup when Fifa's World Cup dress rehearsal kicks off this weekend. Cameroon open their Group...
(Voice of America 06/13/17)
Suicide bombers attacked two border towns and a military base in northern Cameroon over the weekend, according to local officials. The violence is part of a recent string of attacks in the border area attributed to militant group Boko Haram. Five suicide bombers crossed from Nigeria into the Mayo Sava division of northern Cameroon on Saturday, said Babila Akao, the most senior government official in that area. He told VOA by phone that the bombers were targeting the towns of...
(Voice of America 06/06/17)
Hundreds of internally displaced persons in northern Cameroon are deserting camps near the Nigerian border, saying they no longer feel safe after a series of suicide bombings. The Kolofata central mosque on Cameroon's northern border with Nigeria is now a sanctuary for 70 people who began escaping a nearby IDP camp last Friday, after two suicide bombers disguised as refugees begged for food and blew themselves up. Nearly a dozen people, including the bombers, were killed and 30 people were...
(Washington Post 05/31/17)
The old man’s house had become a camp for the displaced. In the back yard, groups of women boiled water for rice. Small children skittered across the dirt, running into the bedroom, where they careened around the long, skinny legs of Elijah Karama. “Because of the conditions, they are mine to take care of,” said Karama, 57, more tired than proud. By conditions, he meant Boko Haram’s destruction of vast areas of northeastern Nigeria, and the hunger crisis that has...
(Bloomberg 05/18/17)
Steinhoff International Holdings NV plans to list its African assets separately as the acquisitive retailer seeks a new prize for shareholders following this year’s failed merger talks with Shoprite Holdings Ltd. The company said Wednesday it will seek to list businesses including clothing retailer Pepkor and furniture chain JD Group Ltd. on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange, about 18 months after moving its primary listing to Frankfurt from the South African commercial hub. The new business could be worth as much...
(Bloomberg 05/12/17)
Cameroon is fast becoming a battleground for international cement makers drawn by an abundance of major infrastructure projects and the end of a monopoly long held by LafargeHolcim Ltd. Dangote Cement Plc, Africa’s largest producer of the building material, and Morocco’s Douja Promotion Groupe Addoha SA have both announced an expansion of production capacity in the central African country this year, challenging Cimenteries du Cameroun, a unit of the world’s biggest cement maker, LafargeHolcim. Demand for cement is estimated to grow 8 percent a year by 2020 from 3 percent now, according to Trade Minister Luc-Magloire Mbarga Atangana. “Not only is the essential building material now sufficiently available even in the remotest
(Fox News 05/10/17)
After five years of no major attacks on merchant vessels, piracy around the Horn of Africa seemed to be on hiatus. Acts of piracy in those treacherous waters have fallen sharply since 2012, according to statistics released by the United States Navy. The Navy credits aggressive patrolling by international forces and increased vigilance by the commercial shipping industry for the decrease. However, in the past month, Somali pirates have intercepted five ships, raising concerns that piracy has returned to the...
(Bloomberg 05/09/17)
Cameroon’s plans to more than double the nation’s production of cocoa beans by 2020 will not be achieved as falling prices are dissuading farmers from planting new crops, according to the state’s support company for growers. Producers in the world’s fifth-biggest cocoa producer have seen farmgate prices slump by more than a third in the past year as London future contracts declined on forecasts of an oversupply. Cameroon, which produced 269,495 metric tons in the year through July, is in the third year of a strategy to increase annual output to more than 600,000 tons by 2020. “The falling prices are seriously discouraging farmers,” Jerome Mvondo, director-general of the Cameroon Cocoa Development Corporation
(Voice of America 05/05/17)
As Africa grapples with a severe drought, and famine threatens millions of people, experts at the World Economic Forum on Africa this week in the South African city of Durban say food security needs to be a major part of discussions on advancing the continent economically. The annual World Economic Forum in Switzerland is usually a high-powered event, but at this week’s Africa meeting of the international organization, the continent’s big players are welcoming the humble farmer, now known as...
(Voice of America 05/03/17)
African military expenditures have finally slowed down after more than a decade of steady increases, according to a new report on global defense spending. The main reason, the report found, is a drop in oil prices. “The sharp decreases in oil prices has affected quite a number of African countries, namely South Sudan and Angola. This has kind of driven almost the entire regional trend,” said Nan Tian, a researcher at the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute’s (SIPRI) Arms and...
(Bloomberg 05/02/17)
Saudi Aramco is seeking to boost its fuel-trading volume by more than a third as the world’s biggest crude exporter expands its capacity to refine oil to grab a bigger share of growing markets in Asia and Africa. Aramco, as Saudi Arabian Oil Co. is known, is building refineries in the kingdom and in Asia to help it increase sales and purchases of gasoline, diesel and other products to more than 2 million barrels a day, said Ibrahim Al-Buainain, chief...
(Voice of America 04/28/17)
A low-cost and widely available drug could save the lives of 1 in 3 mothers who would otherwise bleed to death after childbirth, according to a new study. Severe bleeding, known as postpartum hemorrhage, or PPH, is the leading cause of maternal death worldwide, killing more than 100,000 women every year. Even for mothers who survive, it is a painful and traumatic experience. The world's poorest countries, especially in Africa and India, are the worst hit. Drug from 1960s But...
(Bloomberg 04/20/17)
WorldRemit Ltd., a British money-transfer operator, sees revenue from transactions involving Africans doubling by 2020 as more people on the continent access mobile-payment platforms and expatriates send cash home. The seven-year-old company, in which Facebook Inc.-backer Accel Partners LP invested $40 million in 2014, will this year open a regional office in South Africa, its largest market on the continent in terms of money-transfer value, founder and Chief Executive Officer Ismail Ahmed said in an interview. Another site will start...
(Voice of America 04/17/17)
The Italian coast guard says it has rescued nearly 6,000 migrants on the Mediterranean since Friday, underscoring the continued flow of people along this dangerous route. A group of Africans living in Europe visited Cameroon this week to launch a campaign against illegal migration. The group is called “No More Death in the Desert or on the Sea.” Its mission is simple: to educate youth in Africa about the harsh realities of illegal migration. "We want to tell them that...
(BBC News Africa 04/06/17)
Cameroon coach Hugo Broos has insisted he wants to stay in the job, just a week after saying he was seriously considering his future. The Belgian had threatened to quit over management and funding problems but after a meeting with sport authorities has changed his stance. Broos also rejected speculation he had applied to be coach of Ghana, who have now appointed Kwesi Appiah. "I don't want to leave Cameroon," the 64-year-old Broos said. "If I was going to leave...
(Voice of America 04/05/17)
A Red Cross report says African countries are failing their internally displaced people. Reversing that trend was the subject of a high level meeting of the International Red Cross and the African Union that wrapped up Tuesday in Zimbabwe. Africa has about 13 million internally displaced people, a third of the global number of IDPs, and more than double the amount of refugees on the continent. By definition, refugees flee across a national border, while IDPs leave their homes but...
(Voice of America 04/04/17)
Cameroon’s government says secessionist groups in the English-speaking regions have been behind arson attacks on public buildings, most recently a large market in the town of Limbe. The destruction is prompting renewed calls for dialogue to end the five-month strike in the English-speaking areas. The fire at Limbe market burned for four hours Saturday. Fifty shops were destroyed. The governor of the southwest region, Bernard Okalia Bilai, said police arrested a suspect believed to belong to a secessionist group. "The...

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