| Africatime
Thursday 27 April 2017
(Reuters (Eng) 04/14/17)
Crop-eating caterpillars known as fall armyworms have damaged crops across southern Ethiopia, the latest country to be struck by the pests in a region already struggling with widespread drought and hunger, authorities said on Thursday. In March, Uganda confirmed that the caterpillars had attacked crops on farms in about 20 districts in the country, while neighboring Kenya has dispatched a team of scientists and other experts to investigate reports of their appearance. In a statement, Ethiopia's farming ministry said the pests have so far damaged crops in nearly 10,700 hectares of land in the country's Oromiya area and a region known as SNNP, short for Southern Nations
(AfricaNews 04/13/17)
On the occasion of the 15th anniversary since Eritrea and Ethiopia agreed to draw a borderline, the European Union (EU) says it remains concerned over tensions between the two countries, stating that it was bad for security in the Horn of Africa region. ‘‘The EU remains deeply concerned that the present stalemate continues to put regional stability at risk, with potentially negative implications on international peace and security as well as international trade, and hampers regional cooperation and development,’‘ a statement issued by EU chief Federica Mogherini read. The EU maintained that it was in the interest of both nations to resolve their differences and ‘‘to move to a phase of building constructive and peaceful relations.’‘ As part of its...
(AFP (eng) 04/13/17)
Africa's Matabele ants, fierce predators of termites, rescue their wounded soldiers and bring them back to the nest where they are "treated," a new study showed Wednesday. This helping behavior for the injured is the first to be detected in the insect world, according to an article in the US journal Science Advances by a German research team at the University of Wuerzburg's Biocentre. The ants, formally known as Megaponera analis, are widespread south of the Sahara on the continent. Two to four times a day, they set out in long files on raids to kill worker termites at their foraging sites. But the attacks meet strong resistance from soldier termites guarding the worker termites, which have powerful jaws that...
(AFP (eng) 04/11/17)
El Nino, the cyclical climatic phenomenon in the Pacific Ocean, is linked to shifts in cholera cases in Africa, providing an early warning that could save lives, scientists said Monday. During the years when El Nino is warming the eastern Pacific, East Africa has about 50,000 additional cholera cases a year, new research from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health suggests. By contrast, the years when El Nino is not active, there were 30,000 fewer cholera cases in East Africa, according to the study published Monday in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The researchers analyzed more than 17,000 annual observations from 3,710 different locations between 2000 and 2014 in Africa, which has the most...
(Reuters (Eng) 04/07/17)
Access to off-grid solar energy in rural areas of Africa goes beyond lighting up homes - it also enables people to connect to the wider world and boosts their economic prospects, said the head of one of the continent's biggest solar companies. Azuri Technologies' entry level solar system - for which customers pay a one-off installation fee, then use scratch cards or mobile phone payments to top up on a weekly or monthly basis - provides eight hours of lighting each day. Having power at home for the first time encourages customers to also buy mobile phones, radios and televisions, giving them regular access to the media and the internet, said Simon Bransfield-Garth, chief executive officer of UK-based Azuri. "This...
(AFP (eng) 04/06/17)
An Ethiopian court on Thursday ordered two bloggers who had been critical of the government to face trial again more than a year after they were acquitted of terrorism charges. Prosecutors had appealed the October 2015 ruling that absolved five bloggers from the Zone 9 website of allegations of plotting attacks and having links with a banned group in a case that rights groups decried as an attack on press freedom. After more than a year of adjournments, the Supreme Court in Addis Ababa ruled that two of the bloggers, Atnaf Berhane and Natnail Feleke, should face new charges of inciting violence. The bloggers were among six from the Zone 9 website who were arrested in April 2014 as part...
(Bloomberg 04/05/17)
Sudan will receive electricity from Ethiopia’s flagship dam via a transmission line once Africa’s biggest hydropower plant is complete, the two countries’ leaders said. The line will connect the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam on the Blue Nile River with Sudan’s capital, Khartoum, Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn said Tuesday. Sudanese President Umar al-Bashir, addressing reporters alongside the premier in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, praised an existing road and telecommunications networks connecting the neighboring nations. He also mentioned plans for the countries to develop a “free economic zone,” without giving further details. The GERD, scheduled for completion next year, is being built at an estimated cost of $6.4 billion, according to a June report by Bloomberg Energy Finance. It’s designed...
(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 stay within their own country. African Union Commission head of humanitarian affairs, refugees and displaced people Olabisi Dare says the situation of IDPs in Africa is very critical, dire and worsening. "...The issues that are generating internal displacement [are] multiplying...
(The Ethiopian Herald 04/04/17)
The World Bank Group Board of Executive Directors approved a loan worth 645 million USD recently to help the development agenda in Ethiopia. Of the total amount, 445 million USD will be used to enhance water supply and sanitation services in the capital Addis Ababa and 22 secondary cities of the nation, a press release sent to The Ethiopian Herald stated. The remaining loan will be deployed to increase the efficiency of trade logistics of the National Quality Infrastructure (NQI) Development Project aimed at improving the competitiveness of Ethiopian industries respectively. The projects demonstrate the government's commitment to development, stated World Bank Ethiopia Country Director
(Reuters (Eng) 04/04/17)
Somalia's al Shabaab Islamist group has taken control of El Bur, a town in the Horn of Africa's semi-autonomous region of Galmudug, after Ethiopian forces left, a government official has said. Al Shabaab is seeking to drive the African Union-mandated peace keeping force, AMISOM, out of Somalia and topple the country's Western-backed central government. The Islamist militants also want to rule the country according to a harsh version of sharia, or Islamic law. "Ethiopian troops left the town ... thus al Shabaab captured it today," Burhaan Warsame, Galmudug’s minister for ports and sea transport, told Reuters late on Monday. Ethiopian forces, who are part of AMISOM alongside troops from Uganda, Kenya and other countries, had captured the town from al...
(Ips News 04/04/17)
Sales of huge land areas of Ethiopia, by the Ethiopian government, to foreign investors, have led to starvation and forced displacement. In his documentary Dead Donkeys Fear no Hyenas, Swedish film director Joakim Demmer exposes the consequences of land grabbing, and holds the World Bank complicit. The chase for this Green Gold started over ten years ago. Just before the global financial crisis, agricultural land areas in developing countries became a target for investment among global investors. Joakim Demmer experienced first hand at the Addis Abeba airport how emergency food supplies was being unloaded while local food produce was being loaded for export. "It was so odd. I started reading up on the subject and became aware of the extent...
(APA 04/04/17)
More than 16,000 South Sudanese refugees arrived in Gambella state of Ethiopia in March, bringing the total number of new arrivals since September 2016 to 77,874, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) said on Tuesday. The UN agency said in a statement that the daily average arrival of South Sudanese refugees in Ethiopia stood at 508 individuals last week alone. According to UNHCR, about 65 percent of the total registered new arrivals since September 2016 are children, including 17,709 unaccompanied and separated children. It further revealed that 85 percent of the new arrivals originate from Upper Nile State (Nasir, Longechuk or Mathiang, Ulang and Maiwut Counties) of South Sudan, while 14 percent are from Jonglei State (Uror, Akobo...
(Financial Times 04/04/17)
Countries should develop policies to attract labour-intensive production leaving China. China’s initial wave of investments in Africa focused on natural resource extraction. Their demand for metals and energy was so large that it actually boosted global commodity prices overall, which in turn accelerated growth across the African continent. These times of China propping up global commodity prices are now over, as it has built up excess capacity in many sectors and now faces slow investment growth. This lower demand has contributed to the overall slump in global commodity prices since 2014, making it unlikely that China will again fulfil the role of driving commodity prices. Rather, its position has now shifted to becoming the largest exporter of capital. This provides...
(AFP (eng) 04/03/17)
A rain-battered Rome marathon was won by Ethiopia's Shura Kitata Tola in 2hr 07min 30sec on Sunday, almost two minutes clear of Kenyan pair Dominic Ruto and Benjamin Bitok. The women's race was also taken by an Ethiopian as Rahma Tusa burst clear for a solo finish in 2hr 27min 21sec, while compatriots Mestawot Tadesse and Abeba Tekulu Gebremeskel completed a national sweep. One of the abiding images of the 1960 Olympic Games in Rome was the remarkable barefoot marathon run from Ethiopia's Abebe Bikila, who captured the hearts of the city with his then world best time of 2hrs 15min 16sec.
(The East African 04/03/17)
Nairobi — The 2017 Mo Ibrahim Foundation annual Governance Weekend will be held in Marrakech - Morocco from April 7-9. A press release from the Foundation identifies the Palmeraie Resort as the venue for this year's meeting. The three-day event brings together prominent African and Africa-focused leaders, civil society representatives, multilateral and regional institutions and Africa's international partners to identify policy challenges and possible solutions. Violent extremism The conversation is normally extended to a wider audience through music, art and sport at major public events, showcasing some of Africa's brightest talent. The Foundation has released a report that sets the stage for high-level discussions in Morocco. The priority areas for the Marrakech talks, according to the report, include violent extremism...
(Addis Standard 03/31/17)
Ethiopia extended the current State Of Emergency by four additional months. The SoE was first declared in Oct. 2016 and was due to end in April. The House of People's Representative, dominated by the ruling EPRDF, during its regular meeting this morning unanimously approved the extension. Speaking to the house while explaining the necessity for the extension, Defense Minister Siraj Fegessa, who is also the front man in the 'command post' implementing the decree, said, "anti-peace elements" mostly in border areas were still active. The minister is referring to months-long conflicts caused by military incursions by armed men from the Somali regional state into many localities in eastern and southern part of Oromia, (bordering the Ethiopian Somali regional state in...
(Zimbabwe Independent 03/31/17)
Ethiopian Airlines, Africa's largest cargo and passenger carrier, is dreaming big. After generating revenue of US$2,43 billion in the 2016 financial year, which saw a 70% jump in net profit and an 18% increase in passenger numbers to 7,6 million, the airline says it is buying an additional 55 aircraft, expanding its fleet to 142 planes. Zimbabwe Independent's assistant editor Brezhnev Malaba (BM) interviewed the Ethiopian Airlines managing director (international services), Esayas Woldemariam (EW), in Victoria Falls at the launch of a direct flight from Addis Ababa. He also spoke about the revival of Air Zimbabwe. Esayas Woldemariam chats to Transport minister Joram Gumbo in Victoria Falls at the launch of direct flights from Addis Ababa. Pics: Winstone Antonio. BM:...
(APA 03/31/17)
Ethiopia is planning to repatriate its citizens staying illegally in Saudi Arabia within three months, a senior official said on Thursday. The announcement came after the Saudi government warned that it will deport undocumented immigrants from the kingdom in an exercise that could take 90 days. “Using amnesty given to all illegal immigrants by the Saudi government, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ethiopia has been preparing for the safe repatriation of citizens”, the Information Minister, Dr Negeri Lencho told journalists in Addis Ababa. In 2013, Ethiopia repatriated over 100,000 of its citizens from the kingdom following a violent crackdown on migrant workers after a seven-month amnesty period for undocumented immigrants had expired. This had sparked running battles between Ethiopian immigrants...
(AFP (eng) 03/30/17)
Ethiopia's parliament on Thursday approved a four month extension of a state of emergency that was first imposed in October to quell nearly a year of anti-government protests. "The House unanimously voted to extend the state of emergency," said a report carried by state media. Defence minister Siraj Fegessa said the "extension is needed so as to take the prevailing relatively good peace and security situations to the point of no return," it said. Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn declared a six-month state of emergency in October after months of protests in different parts of the country that were met with a strong security response that killed hundreds, according to human rights groups. The protesters also targeted foreign farms and businesses,...
(Xinhuanet 03/30/17)
Zambian President Edgar Lungu on Wednesday held talks with visiting Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn which culminated in the signing of three agreements to enhance bilateral ties. The three agreements in media and communication, water development and trade were signed after talks held at State House. The two leaders witnessed the signing of the agreements by officials from the two governments, according to state broadcaster, the Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation. The Zambian leader told his guest that the two countries shared common values based on liberty, peace and prosperity and that Zambia was keen to enhance trade with Ethiopia for the benefit of the two peoples.

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