Monday 26 June 2017
(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...
(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...
(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...
(Voice of America 04/03/17)
When Ebola struck Liberia, consumption of bushmeat dropped dramatically. But in an odd twist, poorer households cut their consumption much more than well-to-do households. The findings have implications for public health, as well as wildlife conservation. Education campaigns about the risks and consequences of bushmeat hunting have focused on rural villagers near protected nature reserves. But, it turns out, the more tenacious consumers may be the wealthier city-dwellers. Bushmeat — wild animals like monkeys, duikers and pangolins — is an essential protein source for many rural West Africans, but it's also a favorite of urbanites. Satisfying that demand has created, in some places, "empty forests"
(Liberia News Agency 04/03/17)
The Chief Executive Officer of the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), Alex Cuffy, has said the Government of Liberia is exerting efforts to combat money laundering and terrorist financing around the world. He made the statement Tuesday in an interview with reporters at the start of a three-day national workshop on law and procedure of international criminal assistance at a local hotel in Monrovia. The training, which is being funded by the United States Government and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, brought together Judges, Magistrates, Prosecutors, Law enforcement officers from the Ministry of Justice and the FIU. According to him, the measures include the call for international cooperation and mutual assistance in criminal matters and how countries around...
(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...
(Liberia News Agency 03/31/17)
The Royal Dutch Airline, KLM, is expected to resume flights to Liberia shortly, the Managing Director of the Liberia Airport Authority (LAA) has said. W. Bako Freeman indicated that KLM's return is a result of over six months of discussions and negotiations with the airline's management which were finalized Sunday. Speaking on the UNMIL Radio "Coffee Break" Wednesday, Freeman said KLM will be flying to Liberia three times weekly, giving a boost to the airline industry in the country. According to him, the airline's return after more than 20 years is not only a boost to the aviation industry, but also to the tourism sector
(Front Page Africa Online 03/30/17)
Washington — If US President Donald Trump has a plan for Africa, he and his aides are holding it pretty close to their chest. "The United States has been our longstanding partner throughout history. Each administration determines what its priorities are. While it is true that any significant cuts in development assistance might affect us; we, as a sovereign nation should become inspired to raise revenue locally to support our own development agenda. We remain grateful to the United States for its continued support" - President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf Liberia, Africa's oldest republic in particular which has been a key beneficiary of US assistance since independence finds itself in a state of uncertainty as it prepares for what many say is...
(Gnn Liberia 03/30/17)
Fish Town, River Gee County: President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has broken grounds for Phase II of the Mano River Union Road Development and Transport Facilitation Programme that will lead to the asphalt concrete paving from Karloken in Maryland County to Fish Town, River Gee County. According to an Executive Mansion release, President Sirleaf performed the ground breaking ceremony on Friday, March 25, 2017 in Fish Town City, River Gee County. The project, which is estimated at US$108 million – financed by the African Development Bank Fund while the implementing partner is China Henan International Cooperation Group Co. Ltd (CHICO) President Sirleaf used the occasion to commend the African Development Bank Group and CHICO for their commitment to the project. She...
(Gouvernement 03/30/17)
A special meeting of Cabinet has carefully reviewed a 150-day action plan focusing on agriculture, education, energy, health and infrastructure. According to an Executive Mansion release, the 150 days dubbed: "The Last Mile" is intended to keep the administration on course and focused. In the area of agriculture, four rice mills at ten metric tons each will be operationalized; 8 cassava processing hubs/clusters in seven counties will be completed; completion of GVL and Sime Darby Palm Mills; and the completion and dedication of Robertsport and Mesurado fishing facilities. WASH program in the education sector will be accelerated. The 150 days under the energy sector will take into account the CLSG, Mt. Coffee with the coming on stream of the fourth...
(Xinhuanet 03/30/17)
The African Union (AU) is extremely appalled by the attacks against African students in Noida and other cities in India. The pan-African bloc has deplored the violence unleashed during the riot that started on Monday targeting Africans of various nationalities, particularly Nigerians, which resulted in loss of innocent lives and serious injuries, the AU said in a statement. The attacks have also resulted in the displacement of many Africans from their normal places of residence, thereby putting their lives in serious danger, it said. AU has expressed heartfelt condolence to the families of the deceased; and it wished speedy recovery to all those who have sustained injuries. AU has called on the Indian authorities to provide all necessary support to...
(Voice of America 03/28/17)
The World Health Organization and U.N. children's fund are spearheading a massive immunization campaign across Africa to rid the continent of the last vestiges of polio. Tens of thousands of health workers will fan out across 13 central and western African countries to vaccinate more than 116 million children under age five against the crippling disease. The U.N. agencies report more than 190,000 volunteers, traveling on foot or bicycle, will go house to house across all cities, towns, and villages in 13 countries to vaccinate every child under age five against polio. The synchronized vaccination campaign, one of the largest ever conducted in Africa, will run from March 25-28. Director of Polio Eradication at the World Health Organization Michel Zaffran...
(Xinhuanet 03/27/17)
There is need for China and its African allies to kick start a new dialogue aimed at revitalizing wildlife and ecological conservation in the world's second largest continent, a conservationist has told Xinhua in an interview. Kaddu Sebunya, president of African Wildlife Foundation (AWF), told Xinhua that Beijing is an indispensable partner in efforts to protect Africa's iconic wildlife species that are grappling with human and climatic induced threats to their survival. "China is playing a big role in Africa's economic development and would like to see it direct more support towards protection of wildlife and vital ecosystems in the continent," Sebunya said. Sebunya noted that China's growing economic and diplomat clout place it at a vantage position to help...
(Xinhuanet 03/24/17)
A group of non-government organizations (NGOs) on Friday called on African leaders to find practical solutions to protect and assist Somali refugees and asylum seekers facing ongoing conflict and a humanitarian crisis in Somalia. In a joint statement issued on the eve of the regional summit on refugees, members of the Regional Durable Solutions Secretariat (ReDSS), Somalia NGO Consortium and the Inter-agency Working Group (IAWG) expressed hope that the leaders will take practical steps towards the development and implementation of a comprehensive regional approach. "It is hoped that such an approach, developed in the spirit of the New York Declaration, will support countries and communities that host Somali refugees in improving asylum space, integrated access to services, inclusive economic opportunities...
(APA 03/23/17)
A document exposing U.S covert operations in Liberia and a U.S State Department report on corruption dominate the headlines in the Thursday, March 23 editions of Liberian newspapers. A recent report outlining the U.S government's role in the Liberian conflict has been published. According to the report, the U.S government's interest in Liberia's energy and politics principally contributed to the Liberian civil war and political upheavals which destroyed the Liberian nation and claimed the lives of an estimated 250,000 of its citizens. According to the report, the U.S Embassy endorsed the 1980 coup when the coup makers contacted it after the assassination of then President William R. Tolbert and had a hand in the civil war launched by Charles Taylor...
(Reuters (Eng) 03/23/17)
N'DJAMENA French far-right presidential candidate Marine Le Pen pledged on Wednesday to break with her country's decades-old relationship with Africa known as "Francafrique" and abolish the CFA franc currency policy that binds Paris and its former colonies. Francafrique describes an informal web of relationships Paris has maintained with its former African colonies and its support, sometimes in the form of military backing, for politicians who favor French business interests. Le Pen, one of the frontrunners in the presidential election, spoke at the end of a two-day visit to Chad where she sought to outline her policies regarding the continent, which has long held an important place in French foreign policy. "It was only in coming here and explaining that I...
(AFP (eng) 03/21/17)
Under a cloudless sky in South Africa's northwestern farming region, donkeys still amble along muddy paths, pausing to nibble on grass, oblivious to the threat from a demand for Chinese medicine. The gelatin found in the animals' skin has made them a target, leading to a growing wave of donkey slaughtering in several African countries, as gangs seek to fuel a lucrative, and in South Africa illegal, trade. Animal rights groups say the docile beasts of burden are often cruelly bludgeoned to death before being skinned in backyards and clandestine slaughterhouses. Around Mogosani village, in South Africa's North West province, residents say syndicates catch the animals in grazing fields and pens. Soon after, skinned carcasses with hooves chopped off are...
(Agence Ecofin 03/20/17)
At the Africa CEO Forum which opened this morning in Geneva, AFD Group – in partnership with the European Union – unveiled the “African Renewable Energy Scale-Up facility”, designed to boost private sector investment in on–grid and off-grid renewable energy production in Africa. In order to meet Africa’s constantly increasing energy requirements, support must be provided for mass development of the renewable energy technologies – especially solar energy – that will play such a key role over the coming years, given the recent drop in prices and the emergence of new innovative business models. The EU’s electrification funding initiative, “ElectriFI”, helps to harness and stimulate private sector investment to enhance access to renewable energy. More specifically, it focuses on poorly-served...

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