Wednesday 23 August 2017
(Xinhuanet 03/16/17)
China's aid to the education sector in Africa is helping boost teacher training, a key component in skilling the population to fast track development, a UN official has said. Ann Therese Ndong-Jatta, Director of United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Regional Office for Eastern Africa, in an interview recognized China's contribution to Africa's education sector over the years. "We value the initiative in teacher training in Uganda and other countries in Africa. This will revitalize the teaching profession," she said. China through UNESCO donated equipment to three teacher training institutions in Uganda on March 3. Figures from the Chinese embassy here show that 137 tutors were trained and 272 pieces of Information Communication and Technology and studio equipment...
(AFP (eng) 03/16/17)
Africa will host a Commonwealth Games one day despite the blow of Durban being stripped of hosting the 2022 edition, David Grevemberg, the chief executive of The Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF), told AFP. Durban lost the right to host the Games on Monday -- just 18 months after being awarded them -- when it failed to meet criteria laid down by the CGF, primarily over costs. "I wouldn't want to make a judgement call," Grevemberg told AFP on the sidelines of a briefing by 2018 Games hosts Gold Coast on Wednesday. "Durban has hosted some great events, it is a fantastic city and are wonderful warm hosts with bright ambitions and great aspirations. "However, it takes more than a municipality,...
(AFP (eng) 03/15/17)
Liberia is making a giant leap into an electrified future with the rehabilitation of a hydropower plant damaged during a civil war, allowing small businesses to lower costs and boost productivity. The national grid of Liberia has until recently run on 38 MW of electricity, according to official figures, which is ordinarily enough to power just 38,000 homes in a nation of four million people. Taken offline by damage inflicted by Charles Taylor's forces during Liberia's first civil conflict in 1990, the Mount Coffee Hydropower plant has undergone extensive repairs over the last five years with US, European and Saudi funding. After the first turbine was switched back on in December, small businesses in Liberia's capital Monrovia are seeing a...
(The Wall Street Journal 03/15/17)
Ndalo Media founder Khanyi Dhlomo and Mara Group founder Ashish Thakkar on where the potential is and what’s blocking it How is innovation in Africa different from innovation in Silicon Valley? And how can innovation in Africa be encouraged? Dan Keeler, frontier-markets editor of The Wall Street Journal, discussed those questions with Khanyi Dhlomo, founder and chief executive of Ndalo Media, a publisher based in South Africa, and Ashish Thakkar, founder of Mara Group, a pan-African investment group with operations in banking, real estate, infrastructure and technology. Edited excerpts follow. MR. KEELER: What about innovation in Africa? Khanyi, what sort of things are you seeing that are inspiring you? MS. DHLOMO:There’s a lot of innovation happening in Africa. But it’s...
(Agence Ecofin 03/14/17)
The Land Policy Initiative (LPI), a joint programme of the tripartite consortium consisting of the African Union Commission (AUC), the African Development Bank (AfDB) and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) has launched a pilot project to track progress in implementing in the AU Declaration on land issues in Africa. This was revealed by the ECA in a press statement dated March 7. In collaboration with the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), the project will assess progress made in implementing the key decisions and commitments of the AU Declaration on Land adopted in July 2009 by the General Assembly of the pan-African institution. “We are to a large extent in unchartered waters given many of our Member...
(Reuters (Eng) 03/13/17)
The United Arab Emirates, one of the Middle East's largest economies, wants to expand trade ties with faster growing nations in Asia and Africa, a senior official said on Sunday. Rich Gulf Arab states are looking at ways to diversify their economies, including who they trade with, after more than two years of depressed oil prices forced a rethink of government spending. The pace of economic growth in Asian and sub-Saharan African economies has made them ideal partners, Abdullah al-Saleh, undersecretary for foreign trade and industry at the UAE ministry of the economy, told Reuters in an interview in Dubai. Asia's two largest economies China and India are expected to grow by 6.5 percent and 7.2 percent this year whilst...
(AFP (eng) 03/10/17)
In the beginning was .com, followed by a host of other .somethings, but on Friday, 32 years after the world's first domain name was registered, the African Union has launched .africa for the continent. Africans who want to register a website will be able to apply for a .africa domain name in the coming months, which outgoing AU commission chair Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma said would allow the continent's people and businesses to better reach the world. "With .africa, I would say Africa has finally got its digital identity," said Dlamini-Zuma, who will next week hand power to Chadian Foreign Minister Moussa Faki Mahamat after four years at the helm of the continental body Sub-Saharan Africa has one of the lowest rates...
(Xinhuanet 03/09/17)
Health authorities in West Africa have set up a regional Center for Disease Control (CDC) in Abuja, Nigeria to deal with pandemics such as Ebola, a senior official of Ghana said on Wednesday. The establishment of the CDC is to ensure that "we are more prepared, in terms of early detection, epidemic surveillance, training of our staff and upgrading their capacity and research, so we can combat diseases of the nature of Ebola," Dr. Xavier Crespin, Director-General of the West Africa Health Organization told President Akufo-Addo during a meeting at the Flagstaff House in Accra. He said Ghana is serving as the platform for training of staff as the University of Ghana has been chosen for its Field Epidemiology and...
(Xinhuanet 03/09/17)
A critical mass of trained and well equipped community health workforce is key to easing the rising burden of infectious and noncommunicable diseases in Africa, experts said on Wednesday at a continental forum taking place in Nairobi. The experts, policymakers and campaigners who attended Africa Health Agenda International Conference agreed that optimal engagement of community health workers is key to revolutionize response to diseases ravaging the continent. Kenya's Cabinet Secretary for Health Cleopa Mailu in his opening remarks said that investments in training for community health workers will have multiplier impact on Africa's socioeconomic development. "We require highly skilled and motivated cadre of community health workforce to deal with a high diseases burden in disadvantaged settings in this continent. These...
(AFP (eng) 03/08/17)
Lawyers and human rights campaigners launched an initiative for African whistleblowers in Senegal on Tuesday, aimed at providing a secure means of exposing wrongdoing on the continent. African nations such as Somalia, South Sudan, Libya and Guinea-Bissau regularly appear at the very bottom of rankings such as Transparency International's Corruption Index, while none make it into the top 30. The Platform for the Protection of Whistleblowers in Africa (PPLAAF) will provide guidance from legal experts, secure submission of information and a hotline for potential informants, according to its founders. The initiative is the brainchild of Spanish superstar lawyer Baltasar Garzon -- who has defended Julian Assange of whistleblowing website WikiLeaks -- along with French lawyer William Bourdon, who worked on...
(The New York Times 03/06/17)
Bernice Freeman was chatting with some market women, trying to explain why it was so important that they leave their food stalls to vote for the first woman to be elected president of an African country, when she noticed some boys laughing nearby, waving something white. It was October 2005, the first presidential election after 15 years of a hideous civil war in Liberia. On the ballot was Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, a Harvard-educated global technocrat with so much government experience it practically oozed from her pores, and a group of men, most notably the professional soccer player George Weah. Like many of the 1.5 million women in Liberia who had survived the civil war, Ms. Freeman had personally witnessed acts...
(The Independent 03/06/17)
Th term was coined by sceptical officials, worried about the importance given to Commonwealth trade deals ahead of Brexit negotiations. Plans by government ministers to boost trade links with African Commonwealth countries are being internally branded “empire 2.0” by sceptical officials who are worried about the importance being placed on such deals ahead of the UK’s negotiations of leaving the European Union (EU). International Trade Secretary Liam Fox is expected to promise to build better links with the whole of the 52 member countries of the Commonwealth when ministers from each country meet in London later this week. But as the UK is prepares itself to leave the European Union, The Times reports that British ministers are planning to talk...
(AFP (eng) 03/05/17)
In November 2014, Salome Karwah of Liberia graced the cover of Time magazine as a symbol of strength and humanity after surviving Ebola and using her experience to help others with the virus. But last month, Karwah died shortly after giving birth to her fourth child -- and her husband blames the stigma attached to Ebola. "My wife died because she was not catered to by nurses and doctors. The reason, I believe, is because she is an Ebola survivor," James Harris said. "I am saying this because I heard some nurses telling friends not to go near my wife because she is a survivor." The outbreak of Ebola in West Africa starting in 2013, which hit Liberia the hardest,...
(Bloomberg 03/03/17)
Polar Star Management Ltd., which runs one of the best-performing African and Middle East hedge fund over the past five years, plans to start a private-equity unit that will invest in agriculture to exploit rising demand for food. The Cape Town-based firm plans to use its own money to buy small farms and processing companies in South Africa this year, then increase efficiency through consolidation and better management, said Murray Derksen, a director at Polar Star. It aims to raise 1.5 billion rand ($115 million) for the fund, which may also buy commodities such as grains, while targeting an internal rate of return of 8 percent to 12 percent, he said. “We looked at the increase in corn demand globally,...
(AFP (eng) 03/02/17)
A film raging against colonialism and the exploitation of Africa wowed viewers at the continent's top cinema festival Wednesday, winning shouts of approval at a screening packed to bursting point. "The African Storm" tells the story of an African president who nationalises businesses run by racist, cynical Western executives. Directed and produced by its Beninese star Sylvestre Amoussou, it tackles several hot-button issues including an exit from the CFA franc currency, closer ties with Russia and China as opposed to the West, criticism of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank, and pride in being African. One of 20 feature-length movies on show at the Panafrican Film and Television Festival (Fespaco) in Burkina Faso's capital Ouagadougou, the movie was punctuated...
(AFP (eng) 02/28/17)
The Liberian coastguard has seized three foreign vessels that were fishing illegally in the country's waters, in a joint operation with the Sea Shepherd environmental group, the defence ministry said Monday. Two of the ships were from China and Ghana, ministry spokesman David Dahn said. He did not indicate the nationality of the third, which was held "near the Ivoirian border but in our waters", but Sea Shepherd identified it as the FV Hispasen, a Senegalese-flagged Spanish trawler. It named the Chinese ship as the FV Shanghai 9, and the Ghana-based vessel as the FV Lu Rong Yuan Yu 988. The joint Operation Sola Stella involving some 20 people began more than three weeks ago in order to "totally eradicate...
(Daily Observer 02/28/17)
Lasting peace in Liberian can be attained when every Liberian is considered equal before the law, as enshrined in the Constitution, Dr. Joseph Mills Jones, standard bearer of the Movement for Economic Empowerment (MOVEE), said last Friday. Speaking at a forum of the Rotary Clubs of Monrovia and Sinkor at a resort in Monrovia, Dr. Jones, who was one of three invited presidential aspirants to honor the invitation, said the current administration must ensure that the laws and Constitution are respected especially during the ongoing political process. While Dr. Jones believes that it is the duty of every Liberian to ensure the maintenance of peace in the country, he said much of that rests on the current administration. He noted...
(AFP (eng) 02/28/17)
The Ibrahim Prize for Achievement in African Leadership -- the world's biggest individual prize -- drew a blank once again in finding a suitable laureate, it was announced Tuesday. The prize only goes to a democratically-elected African leader who demonstrated exceptional leadership, served their mandated term and left office within the last three years. The award comes with $5 million (4.7 million euros) paid over 10 years and $200,000 annually for life from then on. The prize, founded by Sudan-born telecoms tycoon Mo Ibrahim, has only been given four times in its 10-year existence. The philanthropist has said in the past that making no award sent just as strong a message on African leadership. "A very high bar was deliberately...
(Front Page Africa Online 02/27/17)
Political veteran and former Advisor to the late President Samuel K. Doe, Bai M. Gbala, Sr. has decided to join forces with Vice President Joseph Boakai to ensure that he is elected President in October. Mr. Gbala in a statement over the weekend noted that Liberia is anxiously engaged to elect honest, loyal, patriotic and competent citizen as President who will lead the country. He cited professionalism in macroeconomic policies, financial management, control and reporting, structural separation of national planning/economic development; and commitment as qualities he saw in Vice President Boakai for which he decided to endorse his candidacy. "Commitment/dedication to professional management of the nation's rapid population growth, rural-to-urban migration, over-population and increasing congestion of the nation's capital (Monrovia)...
(The Economist 02/27/17)
Political veteran and former Advisor to the late President Samuel K. Doe, Bai M. Gbala, Sr. has decided to join forces with Vice President Joseph Boakai to ensure that he is elected President in October. Mr. Gbala in a statement over the weekend noted that Liberia is anxiously engaged to elect honest, loyal, patriotic and competent citizen as President who will lead the country. He cited professionalism in macroeconomic policies, financial management, control and reporting, structural separation of national planning/economic development; and commitment as qualities he saw in Vice President Boakai for which he decided to endorse his candidacy. "Commitment/dedication to professional management

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