Monday 23 October 2017
(AFP (eng) 10/21/17)
The killing of four American special operations soldiers in Niger has highlighted the increasing role elite units are playing across Africa, which is rapidly becoming a major center of US military action. Their mission is to counter the advances of a slew of jihadist movements across the continent, including Al-Shabaab in Somalia, affiliates of the Islamic State group in the Sahel region and Boko Haram in Nigeria. Of the 8,000 special forces "operators" deployed globally this year, more than 1,300 are in Africa, according to officials from the US Special Operations Command (SOCOM), which is based in Tampa, Florida. Another 5,000 or so are in the Middle East. In five years, the number of US...
(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...
(Xinhua 10/19/17)
Kenyan universities are embracing biometric registration of students in bid to curb terror networks within the institutions, a government official said on Wednesday. University students have become easy targets of terror groups in Kenya as witnessed by the April 2015 attack at the Garissa University College where 148 students were killed. Some of the gunmen were said to have been university students. To curb repetition of such incidences, in June 2016, Education Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiangi ordered all universities to...
(Xinhuanet 10/17/17)
Kenya's Garissa University College (GUC), which Al-Shabaab attacked in April 2015 and killed more than 140 people, mostly students, is set to be awarded a Charter this week, a legal document that authorizes the university to discharge its mandate. President Uhuru Kenyatta was expected to award the Charter in Nairobi on Thursday, completing the turnaround of the university following the attack. The award would bring the number of public universities in the East African nation to 31. Kenya currently has...
(Reuters (Eng) 10/16/17)
ISIOLO, Kenya (Reuters) - An expelled student shot dead six of his former schoolmates and a security guard at his school in northern Kenya on Saturday, and was then himself lynched by a furious mob, officials said. The attack took place at a school in the remote town of Lokichogio in Kenya’s Turkana region, close to the border with war-torn South Sudan. At least six other students were flown to hospital with bullet wounds. The assailant was a 17-year-old from...
(AFP (eng) 10/12/17)
At least seven people were killed Wednesday when a three-storey building under construction in southwestern Kenya collapsed, authorities said. Julius Tinega, the head of the country's disaster department, said 22 people have been rescued from the town of Kisii. "So far seven bodies have been pulled out and taken to the mortuary and the search is on for more," a senior police officer told AFP. "We still believe there are more people alive inside." Kisii Governor James Ongwae added: "Rescuers...
(Reuters (Eng) 10/11/17)
NAIROBI (Reuters) - Kenyan police fired teargas at more than 1,000 opposition supporters marching through the capital Nairobi on Wednesday to demand election reforms, a Reuters witness said. Police also used teargas to disperse protesters in the western city of Kisumu, a stronghold of opposition leader Raila Odinga, who on Tuesday announced his withdrawal from a repeat presidential vote scheduled for Oct. 26, citing concerns over fairness. A Reuters witness in Kisumu said the crowd had refused to disperse after...
(Xinhuanet 10/11/17)
The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) on Wednesday called for protection of children trapped in emergencies across Sub-Saharan Africa. In a statement issued to mark the International Day of the Girl, UNICEF said millions of girls in the Eastern and Southern African region continue to be denied their basic rights amid the ongoing conflict in South Sudan, a protracted crisis in Somalia, and unrelenting drought in the Horn of Africa. "In conflict situations, girls are 2.5 times more likely to...
(AFP (eng) 10/10/17)
Two university employees were killed and two police officers and a driver injured Tuesday morning when unknown gunmen fired on a vehicle close to Diani, a popular coastal tourist resort in Kenya. The car was transporting officers and staff members from Diani to the Technical University of Mombasa's nearby Kwale campus when gunmen opened fire on Tuesday morning. "The officers were escorting university staff members when they were ambushed by the gunmen who killed two and wounded three including two...
(The Associated Press 10/10/17)
Gunmen killed two female employees of a university in Ukunda, near Mombasa on Kenya’s Indian Ocean coast in a suspected extremist attack, a Kenyan police official said Tuesday. The assault occurred as President Uhuru Kenyatta campaigned in the coastal region for the rerun of presidential elections later this month. The gunmen suspected to be al-Shabab rebels from neighboring Somalia sprayed a vehicle carrying university staff and police with bullets near the campus, Larry Kieng, the region’s police chief said. Ukunda...
(Reuters (Eng) 10/10/17)
KAKUMA, Kenya (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Turkana County is one of Kenya’s most arid regions, but land near the town of Kakuma sports a dense thicket of thorny trees. That’s not good news. The plant is Prosopis juliflora, a fast-growing invasive species that has wreaked havoc by taking over land once used for pasture, choking rivers and overwhelming indigenous trees in this part of northwest Kenya. But a clever plot is now underway to clear the invader – by turning...
(The Associated Press 10/10/17)
Kenya’s main opposition leader Raila Odinga has surprised the nation by withdrawing his candidacy for the fresh presidential election set for later this month. It was his legal challenge that led the Supreme Court to nullify the August election won by President Uhuru Kenyatta and order the new vote. It was the first time a court had overturned a presidential election in Africa. Here’s a timeline of the recent developments: ___ Aug. 8: Kenyans vote in presidential election with Kenyatta...
(Reuters 10/06/17)
Police fired teargas at opposition activists in Kenya’s capital as protests mounted in cities on Friday calling for the sacking of election board officials involved in August’s cancelled presidential vote. Crowds gathered in Nairobi, the western opposition stronghold of Kisumu and the port of Mombasa for the second time this week. Kenya’s Supreme Court voided the Aug. 8 election citing irregularities without finding any individual at the election board responsible. [nL5N1M119T] President Uhuru Kenyatta, who won the vote only to have his victory annulled, has accused the Supreme Court of bringing the country close to “judicial chaos”.
(Xinhuanet 10/05/17)
The African Development Bank (AfDB) is currently looking for a co-financing partner to fund the 445 km Kenya-Tanzania highway, officials said. AfDB Chief Regional Program Officer Lawson Zankli told Xinhua in Nairobi in a recent interview that his bank has tentatively set aside 300 million U.S. dollars towards the road project that runs along the East African Coastline from Malindi in Kenya to Bagamoyo in Tanzania. "We are looking for partners to bridge the remaining 485 million dollars required to...
(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...
(AFP 10/03/17)
Campuses at one of Kenya's largest universities were closed on Tuesday after demonstrations broke out ahead of the country's tense presidential election re-run, a university official said. Students at the University of Nairobi were ordered to vacate their dormitories on short notice after overnight protests that went into Tuesday morning, corporate affairs director John Orindi told AFP. "We've closed the university due to the directives of administration," he said. The demonstration started last week after the arrest of Babu Owino,...
(AFP (eng) 10/03/17)
NAIROBI (Reuters) - Administrators closed Kenya’s oldest university on Tuesday, citing fears for students’ safety in a planned protest over police beatings at a campus demonstration last week. Kenyan police frequently face accusations of brutality and extrajudicial killings from civilians and rights groups, but officers are rarely charged and almost never convicted. Despite this, Kenya, an economic and transport hub in East Africa and a key Western ally in a volatile region, receives substantial financial support for its security services...
(Reuters (Eng) 10/02/17)
NAIROBI (Reuters) - The U.N. World Food Programme is cutting food rations by 30 percent for more than 400,000 refugees living in camps in Kenya due to insufficient funding, it said on Monday. Dadaab and Kakuma camps in Kenya are primarily home to refugees from neighboring Somalia and South Sudan, both ravaged by wars that have forced millions of people to flee. The World Food Programme said it needed $28.5 million to cover the food assistance needs of the 420,000...
(Reuters (Eng) 10/02/17)
NAIROBI (Reuters) - A Kenyan government watchdog said on Friday it was investigating whether police had assaulted students during protests this week at the University of Nairobi over the detention of an opposition lawmaker. Police fired tear gas on Thursday at the protesting students. Video footage posted on social media later in the day showed uniformed officers outside dormitories and inside classrooms using batons to hit people who did not appear to be involved in the campus protests. It was...
(Xinhuanet 09/29/17)
Kenya plans to roll out an investor education campaign to boost the country's national savings rates, the capital markets regulator said on Friday. Capital Market Authority (CMA) CEO Paul Muthaura told a media briefing in Nairobi that the campaign will target investors, potential issuers of securities as well as market intermediaries. "Our aim is to ensure that capital markets become a tool of increasing Kenya's national savings rate from the current level of 17 percent of gross domestic product (GDP)...

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