Tuesday 26 September 2017
(AFP (eng) 06/14/17)
Extortion, corruption and fear; violence, hunger and sometimes even death: for west African migrants dreaming of reaching Europe, the road to get there can be an absolute minefield. - Departure - Whether it's The Gambia, Ivory Coast, Senegal or Nigeria, everything starts with the "hustlers" -- slang for the middlemen or fixers who organise the trip. Their honesty and prices vary, with the would-be migrant usually deceived about the welcome expected in Europe. Many possess no official documents from their home country, and do not understand illegal status in Europe. Most are ignorant about the extreme difficulties they will encounter en route. "We didn't know we were risking our lives," said Kante Sekou...
(AFP (eng) 06/14/17)
Maria gave smugglers all her family savings and crossed three countries and the searing Libyan desert, but when she finally boarded a boat for Europe her dream was swiftly shattered. She was 24 and pregnant with her second child when she left Liberia with her husband and their three-year-old son. The family passed through Guinea and Mali before crossing southern Algeria to reach the Libyan desert. "The smugglers took all our money" -- more than $2,150 (2,000 euros), she said. "We spent four days in the desert. People died of thirst and the sun in the back of the truck." They finally arrived on the beach at Sabrata, 70 kilometres (45 miles) west of Libya's capital Tripoli, a key departure...
(APA 06/13/17)
The South African and Lesotho governments have agreed on the equitable sharing of contracts to be awarded during the construction of the Lesotho Highlands Water Project (LHWP). Speaking at the Lesotho Highlands Development Authority (LHDA) briefing sessions held at the Wanderers Club in Johannesburg on Monday, Water and Sanitation Deputy Director-General Lindiwe Lusenga emphasised on the equal participation of the Lesotho and South African contractors. Lusenga said the LHWP was committed to enhance the use of Black entrepreneurs, individual experts and smaller companies. She encouraged smaller and bigger entities to join forces with one another to form a competent and financially efficient...
(AFP (eng) 06/13/17)
Uche's real journey had yet to begin but he had already spent four days in the northern Nigerian city of Kano after travelling on public buses and potholed roads from Imo state in the southeast. He planned to go to Agadez, a transit town on the southern edge of the Sahara desert in central Niger, take a truck to Sebha, in southwestern Libya, and from there to the capital Tripoli, and then to Italy or Spain. But his contact, who was supposed to drive him and three women across Nigeria's northern border, was arrested on suspicion of people smuggling. "His house had been under surveillance," explains the 38-year-old electrician in Kano's bustling Sabon Gari district. "The movement of the three...
(AFP (eng) 06/12/17)
German Chancellor Angela Merkel will on Monday meet African leaders in Berlin on initiatives aiming to reduce the poverty and conflict driving a mass migrant influx to Europe. The idea is to team up African nations willing to reform with private investors who would bring business and jobs to a continent where instability or graft often scare off foreign companies. Merkel is hosting the initiative as part of Germany's presidency of the Group of 20 powerful economies, whose leaders meet in the northern port of Hamburg a month later. Invited to Berlin are Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and the leaders of Ghana, Ivory Coast...
(Reuters (Eng) 06/10/17)
Lesotho's former deputy prime minister Mothetjoa Metsing has called for a national unity government, saying a broader coalition deal would ensure stability after last week's election failed to produce an outright winner. Lesotho, which has been on a political knife-edge since an attempted coup in 2014, held elections last week, the third in five years, after Pakalitha Mosisili, with whom Metsing had been in a coalition government, lost a no-confidence vote as prime minister in March. Mosisili admitted defeat on Friday to his opponent Thomas Thabane, whose All Basotho Convention (ABC) emerged as the winner of 48 parliamentary seats but short of the 61 needed to form a government. "There is no need for the removal of the existing government...
(Reuters (Eng) 06/08/17)
More girls are completing secondary school across sub-Saharan Africa as attitudes change and state spending rises, but some of the most marginalized girls — like those married young or forced to work — are still missing out, education experts say. The percentage of girls completing secondary school has risen in all regions of Africa since 2005, said a recent report by the African Development Bank, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, and the U.N. Development Program. Almost twice as many girls in East Africa and three times as many in Central Africa completed secondary education in 2014 as in 2005, according to the annual African Economic Outlook report, which was published at the end of last month. Yet more...
(AFP (eng) 06/07/17)
Lesotho's former prime minister Thomas Thabane is poised to form a coalition government after his party won snap elections at the weekend and defeated the governing alliance, according to official results released Tuesday. Thabane's All Basotho Convention (ABC) won 48 parliamentary seats and will form a coalition with three other parties to obtain the required 61-seat majority. The ABC's secretary general, Samonyane Ntsekele, said the party would join with the Alliance of Democrats (AD), the Basotho National Party (BNP) and the Reformed Congress of Lesotho (RCL)
(AFP (eng) 06/07/17)
Lesotho's former prime minister Thomas Thabane is poised to form a coalition government after his party won snap elections at the weekend and defeated the ruling alliance, official results released Tuesday showed. Thabane's All Basotho Convention (ABC) won 48 parliamentary seats and will form a coalition with three other parties to obtain the required 61-seat majority. The ABC secretary general Samonyane Ntsekele said the party would join forces with the Alliance of Democrats (AD), Basotho National Party (BNP) and the Reformed Congress of Lesotho (RCL)to form the country's third coalition government. "We will officially announce the formation of this coalition government within the next two days," Ntsekele said.
(Reuters (Eng) 06/07/17)
Building a network of African women leaders in fields ranging from business to politics could galvanize female leadership across the continent and boost peacebuilding efforts and good governance, the head of U.N. Women said on Tuesday. The African Women Leaders Network, which was launched last week in New York by the United Nations and the African Union Commission, hopes to drive more women into leadership roles, through mentoring, peer learning and harnessing contacts. By supporting women's leadership in Africa, the platform aims to galvanize their contributions to building and sustaining peace, improving political processes and driving social change, and realizing the U.N. global goals, according to U.N. Women. The 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), adopted in 2015, include targets on...
(Bloomberg 06/06/17)
Lesotho’s main opposition party took a commanding lead as the constituency vote count from June 3 elections in the tiny southern African mountain kingdom passed the two-thirds mark. With results tallied from 57 of the 80 constituencies, Thomas Thabane’s All Basotho Convention, or ABC, had won 45 parliamentary seats, the ruling Democratic Congress, or DC, led by Pakalitha Mosisili, had secured eight and four smaller parties one each, the nation’s Independent Electoral Commission announced in the capital, Maseru. Results from the southern part of the country, a ruling-party stronghold, haven’t been announced. Under Lesotho’s electoral rules
(Xinhuanet 06/06/17)
Delegates of an African conference in solidarity with Cuba on Monday called on the United States to lift its over 50-year economic blockade against Cuba. "We applaud the positive development in this respect and we commend the U.S. government and Cuba for their efforts towards normalizing of ties," said Namibian President Hage Geingob, officially opening the fifth Continental Africa Conference in Solidarity with Cuba here on Monday. "However, there is still much ground left to cover to ensure the complete lifting of the blockage against Cuba," said Geingob. According to Geingob, the conference will lead to the development of the common African strategy in terms of support to Cuba. The delegates also called for the return of the Guantanamo Bay,...
(AFP (eng) 06/05/17)
Foreign observers on Monday described Lesotho's weekend election as "largely peaceful" despite the shock deployment of armed soldiers at polling stations on voting day. Counting was underway Monday in the restive mountain kingdom, which has been rocked by attempted coups and instability in recent years. Regional observers said the snap polls were "largely peaceful" but called for post-election reforms to bring stability to a country hit by chronic political infighting and suffering from weak government institutions. "Elections alone cannot address the underlying political and structural challenges facing the country," said Joaquim Chissano, the former...
(AFP (eng) 06/04/17)
Election officials in the mountain kingdom of Lesotho on Sunday investigated why armed soldiers had been deployed at many polling stations on voting day. The army has often been accused of interfering in politics in Lesotho, a landlocked African country of two million people that has been hit by attempted coups and instability in recent years. "The nation, the voters and even the observers were surprised... they felt that some voters were intimidated," Independent Electoral Commission spokesman Tuoe Hantsi told reporters. "The law dictates who should be at the polling stations, and (the soldiers) caused confusion."
(AFP (eng) 06/03/17)
Voters in the small southern African kingdom of Lesotho cast ballots Saturday in an election widely expected to lead to another fractious coalition government and the risk of deepening instability. It is the third general election since 2012 in Lesotho, where years of political in-fighting have undermined attempts to tackle dire poverty and unemployment. Long queues formed outside polling stations from early morning, with many voters wearing traditional Basotho blankets to ward off the winter chill. The snap election was announced in March when Prime Minister Pakalitha Mosisili lost a no-confidence vote after his seven-party coalition government broke up less than two years after it was formed.
(AFP (eng) 06/03/17)
Two veteran former prime ministers lead the field in Lesotho's election on Saturday, in a vote likely to result in another coalition government for the landlocked mountain kingdom. The country's political landscape has been dominated for years by party splits and fragile coalitions. Pakalitha Mosisili Mosisili, the 72-year-old leader of the Democratic Congress (DC) party, is running to serve as prime minister for the third time, having stepped down after losing a no-confidence vote in March. He was first premier from 1998 to 2012, and returned to power in 2015 after a snap election. Despite his long years in office, critics accuse him doing little to improve standards of living for the majority of people in the country who languish...
(Reuters (Eng) 06/03/17)
Lesotho's people braved winter cold to vote in a general election on Saturday just two years after the previous one as the mountainous southern African kingdom struggles with political instability. The landlocked country, surrounded by South Africa, has had King Letsie III as head of state since 1996, but political leadership has been volatile in recent years with the last two elections failing to produce a winner with a clear majority. Prime Minister Pakalitha Mosisili, who had been in power since 2015, lost a confidence vote in parliament in March after several defections by ruling coalition lawmakers to the opposition eroded his support. Democratic Congress party leader Mosisili's main rival is All Basotho Convention head Thomas Thabane, who governed from...
(AFP (eng) 06/02/17)
Lesotho former prime minister Thomas Thabane, who is fighting to regain power in Saturday's elections, will never forget fleeing his official residence in 2014 as rogue soldiers apparently sought to kill him. The attempted coup was just one chapter of the recurrent political instability that has plagued Lesotho, a mountain kingdom surrounded by South Africa. "It was the most undignified thing that happened to me, to wear (just) my pants... and go through the fence with my wife, running away from the state house," Thabane told AFP ahead of the vote. The attempted coup was followed by elections in 2015, when Thabane was ousted from power by a coalition government that collapsed earlier
(Lesotho Times 06/02/17)
SIX of the country's political parties this week agreed on the need to prioritise policies to grow the economy in the aftermath of Saturday's snap elections. The parties, namely, the All Basotho Convention (ABC), Basotho National Party (BNP), Lesotho Congress for Democracy (LCD), Democratic Congress (DC), Majalefa Development Movement (MDM) and the Movement for Economic Change (MEC) participated at The Hook Up Dinner (THUD) - Election Debate on Tuesday night. THUD is a monthly event that provides a platform to prospective entrepreneurs to pitch their business ideas to potential investors and prominent business people who can mentor them. The event is organised by The Entrepreneurs Network (TEN), a non-profit platform of programmes and initiatives aimed at growing an entrepreneurial ecosystem...
(Bloomberg 06/02/17)
Pakalitha Mosisili and Thomas Thabane will resume their long-running battle to lead Lesotho when the southern African mountain kingdom holds its third election in five years on Saturday. Mosisili, the leader of the ruling Democratic Congress, served as prime minister from May 1998 to June 2012, when he lost power to Thabane, who heads the All Basotho Convention. Mosisili reclaimed the post in 2015 elections, but the opposition forced him from office after winning a motion of no confidence in his seven-party coalition government on March 1. Mosisili, who draws most of his support from rural southern Lesotho, has pledged to introduce free high-school education, build a new railway and raise factory workers’ salaries by 9 percent. Thabane, who has...

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