| Africatime
Saturday 25 March 2017
(Malawi 24 03/14/17)
Government has assured Malawians that the country will still realise a good harvest despite armyworms attacking some maize fields. Deputy director of crop development in the ministry of agriculture Bartholomew Ngauma said some crops have been attacked by armyworms but he insisted that the pests will not put a dent in crop yields. “To some extent some of the fields that has been attacked by armyworms will affect the harvest but the country will still realise a good harvest,” said Ngauma. However, Civil Society Agriculture Network (CISANET) suggested that government should increase risk management for the agriculture sector as the current climate change situation
(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...
(AFP (eng) 03/13/17)
Malawi have pulled out of the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) and the 2018 African Nations Championship (CHAN) due to lack of money, in a move the government criticised as "hasty". The Football Association of Malawi (FAM) said in a statement on Sunday that "having considered all available options" it was withdrawing "due to lack of funding". The country, ranked 103rd in the world, also halted its search for a foreign coach. Alfred Gunda, the head of FAM, said that the withdrawal "cannot be avoided looking at the current level of desperation in the national team in terms of funding and overall support". FAM has been solely sponsored by government after local companies dropped their support as the national...
(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)
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...
(Voice of America 03/08/17)
In a pediatric ward at Queen Elizabeth Central hospital, the largest referral health facility in Malawi, mothers look frustrated because of a long wait for a nurse to check on their children. A visit to other outpatient wards reveals more packed waiting rooms. Such is the situation in public hospitals across Malawi where 65 percent of nursing positions remain vacant. The shortages leave the country’s public health system in dire need of nurses, and recruiting trained staff remains difficult as many registered nurses prefer the higher pay and better working conditions they can find in private hospitals or abroad. Malawi's National Association of Nurses and Midwifery president, Dorothy Ngoma, says it’s a matter of economics. “They quit on us because...
(Malawi 24 03/08/17)
As Malawians are finding it hard to secure jobs in the country, young people are migrating to Dubai in United Arab Emirates to look for greener pastures. Although some of the Malawians who have been migrating to foreign countries have been facing challenges, scarcity of jobs in the country is acting as a push factor for the young men to leave for foreign countries. Dubai in the United Arab Emirates is gradually matching South Africa in terms of attracting Malawian youth to add to the labour force in the Middle Eastern country. One of the Malawian youth who is planning to quit the country for Dubai told Malawi24 that he is facing challenges to secure a job in the country...
(Malawi 24 03/08/17)
Malawi and Ethiopia held bilateral talks on Monday and Tuesday in order to strengthen the relationship between the countries and discuss issues that will help their economies. Among other issues, the two countries discussed long-term solutions to the problem of Ethiopian migrants who illegally enter Malawi when going to other countries. Malawi Kasaila: a bilateral relationship with Ethiopia is beneficial The two nations also discussed issues of infrastructure, diaspora remittances, trade and security. Speaking during the opening of the two day session of the Malawi-Ethiopia Joint Permanent Commission for Cooperation on Monday, minister of foreign affairs and international cooperation Francis Kasaila said a bilateral relationship with Ethiopia is beneficial as it will tackle a lot of areas helpful for both...
(The Maravi Post 03/08/17)
The Malawi Investment Forum (MIF) which the country hosted last year (2016), was an outstanding gamble to pursue, considering the huge public and privates investment deals that it generating. These will greatly foster the nation’s economic growth. In its MIF 2016 summary report released on March 2, 2017 and made available to The Maravi Post, the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Tourism through the Malawi Investment and Trade Centre (MITC), lauded the success of the forum because it sealed 10 public and 20 private sector investment deals. The forum also helped Malawi accrue US$ 26,305,000 through product-based exhibitions that were showcased locally and internationally. The forum overshot its target by signing 11 public sectors Memorandum of Understanding (MoUs) to work...
(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 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...
(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 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...
(Reuters (Eng) 02/27/17)
Malawi's maize production may rise a third in 2017 to 3.2 million tonnes despite damage inflicted by the fall armyworm, an alien South American pest that has invaded corn fields from Congo to South Africa. Malawi's maize crop, the staple grain, was devastated last year by a regional drought triggered by an El Nino weather pattern. About 6.5 million Malawians, more than a third of the population, are dependent on food aid until this year's harvest in March, according to the United Nations' World Food Programme. The armyworm outbreak raised concerns about this year's harvest in Malawi
(Malawi 24 02/27/17)
Malawi President Peter Mutharika faces yet another tough time in office with a concerned grouping baying for his blood. In a petition, 36 500 Malawians from Mzuzu want Mutharika to step down saying he has failed and also for contempt of court for delegating former Minister George Chaponda to official duties when court a standing court injunction declared him (Chaponda) not a Minister in the wake of the maize gate scandal . The residents have written the petition to lawmaker Leonard Njikho to bring to parliament a motion to impeach Mutharika. The petition has given Njikho dates from 24 February and 4 March to move the motion in the August House. Njikho has since indicated the demands by the residents...
(Malawi 24 02/27/17)
Malawi’s rising population is a serious cause for worry for the country’s socio-development, economy and environment, an analyst has said. According to statistics from the 2015-16 Malawi Demographic and Health Survey) (MDHS) conducted by the National Statistical Office (NSO), the country’s population stands at 17,749,826. This statistic shows an increase of the population by 3.11 % from a similar survey carried out in 2010 whose rise was at 2.99% from the preceding survey. According to Economist Dalitso Kubalasa, this poses a great threat to the country. Malawi’s GDP by 2015 according to the economywatch was at MWK 176,997.00. Kubalasa told Malawi24 that over the years, the trend has affected the nation’s economy, development, people’s socio-economic wellbeing and the environment. He...
(AFP (eng) 02/27/17)
An African road movie about four women wowed its audience Sunday as it kicked off the Panafrican cinema and television festival (Fespaco), a showcase for the continent's burgeoning film industry. "Borders" ("Frontieres") directed by Apolline Traore, a Fespaco laureate in 2013, sweeps across Africa as its protagonists journey through Senegal, Mali, Burkina Faso and Benin on their way to Nigeria. Along the way the women -- Ivorian, Senegalese, Burkinabe and Nigerian actresses -- are spared nothing as they are beset by customs officers, thieves, murderers and rapists. The film -- the first feature-length film to show at the festival -- deals with "the bravery of women," Traore told AFP at the festival in the Burkinabe capital Ouagadougou. "There is a...
(AFP (eng) 02/23/17)
For the first time in Africa, researchers said Wednesday they have detected a malaria parasite that is partially resistant to the top anti-malaria drug, artemisinin, raising concern about efforts to fight a disease that sickens hundreds of millions of people each year. The discovery means that Africa now joins southeast Asia in hosting such drug-resistant forms of the mosquito-borne disease. Malaria infected more than 200 million people and killed some 438,000 people worldwide in 2015, most of them children in Africa. "The spread of artemisinin resistance in Africa would be a major setback in the fight against malaria, as ACT (artemisinin-based combination therapy) is the only effective and widely used antimalarial treatment at the moment," said lead author Arnab Pain,...

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