Saturday 21 April 2018
(AFP (eng) 03/28/18)
Ten civilians and a Ugandan militant died when Congolese troops clashed with rebels in the flashpoint town of Beni in Democratic Republic of Congo's troubled east, an army spokesman said Wednesday. The incident took place on Tuesday evening when rebels attacked military positions around Beni in North Kivu, Captain Mak Hazukay told AFP. "We listed 10 dead civilians so far," he said. A rebel from Uganda's Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) militia was also killed, he said, adding that fighting was ongoing. Michel Kakule, the lead physician at Beni hospital, told AFP some of the victims "had gunshot wounds while others had been attacked with machetes." The violence sparked an angry backlash among locals "who blocked...
(AFP (eng) 03/23/18)
Ugandan police said Friday they had arrested 10 officials working at a camp housing refugees, mainly from neighbouring Democratic Republic of Congo, for stealing food aid. Benon Byamukama, police chief for the region in western Uganda where the Kyaka II refugee camp is located, said they had been caught stealing maize meal and cooking oil meant for refugees at night. "Acting on a tip-off, we have arrested 10 officials from Kyaka II refugee camp including two staff of Danish Refugee Council, an implementing agency for the World Food Programme, for selling on the black market food meant for refugees," he said. "We have recovered the food and it will be used as exhibit in court," said Byamukama. Kyaka II began...
(AFP (eng) 03/21/18)
Forty-four African countries have signed an agreement establishing a free trade area seen as vital to the continent's economic development, the head of the African Union said Wednesday. "The agreement establishing the CFTA (African Continental Free Trade Area) was signed by 44 countries," said Moussa Faki Mahamat, chairperson of the AU commission. The creation of a free trade area -- billed as the world's largest -- comes after two years of negotiations, and is one of the AU's flagship projects...
(AFP (eng) 03/16/18)
An Emirates crew member has died after falling out of an emergency door of an aircraft parked at Uganda's Entebbe airport, a hospital official said. Francis Sekandi, spokesman for the Kisubi hospital where the female crew member was taken for emergency treatment following the fall on Wednesday, confirmed her death. "We received her from the Civil Aviation Authority in an ambulance, but she was already dead," Sekandi said late Thursday. Uganda's Civil Aviation Authority said an investigation into the incident...
(AFP (eng) 03/15/18)
A Ugandan lawmaker apologised Wednesday after encouraging men to beat their wives to "discipline" them, in comments that sparked an outcry in the east African nation. The MP, Onesmus Twinamasiko, wrote in a letter to parliament that he actually "detests all form of violence against women". "Kindly accept my most sincere and unreserved apologies honourable members and the general public and more particularly the women." The apology comes after Twinamasiko gave an interview the day after women's day, March 8,...
(Reuters (Eng) 03/14/18)
KAMPALA (Reuters) - A Ugandan male lawmaker has provoked outrage among rights activists by exhorting men to beat their wives in order to discipline them, in comments carried by a Ugandan TV channel. Onesmus Twinamasiko’s remarks followed a speech by President Yoweri Museveni on Women’s Day on March 8 in which he condemned assaults on women by husbands and called it cowardly. “As a man, you need to discipline your wife,” the lawmaker told local NTV Uganda in an interview...
(AFP (eng) 03/14/18)
The EU warned African and other countries on Wednesday that their citizens will find it harder to get visas to Europe if they refuse to readmit economic migrants under the bloc's efforts to curb migration. Brussels has been seeking greater cooperation from such countries to take back irregular migrants since Europe was hit in 2015 with its worst migration crisis since World War II. "I cannot understand how a country can refuse to take back its nationals" when they have...
(AFP (eng) 03/10/18)
Every morning, Joseph gets on his motorbike to tend to his field of manioc, in the thick bush surrounding the Obo, in southeastern Central African Republic. This day, though, is not ordinary. Joseph is tense with worry. There are rumours that the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA), one of Africa's most notorious and longest-surviving militias, is in the area. "They recently attacked hunters just 15 kilometres (nine miles) away," said Joseph, who, despite his fears, picks up his tools to work...
(AFP (eng) 03/10/18)
By his own admission, former militia man Patrick Kidega spent half of his life as a plunderer -- guarding his leader, stealing from locals and kidnapping children as his group rampaged across central Africa. But he himself was a stolen child, abducted at the age of 15 and forced to join one of Africa's most notorious armed groups: the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA). "One evening, in Uganda, I was coming back home after school and as I arrived men from...
(AFP (eng) 03/09/18)
A thousand artists from over 50 countries will gather in Ivory Coast on Saturday for a week-long festival of African music, theatre, dance, comedy, slam poetry and storytelling. The 10th edition of the biannual Market for African Performing Arts, known by its French initials as MASA, will mark the 25th anniversary of the event. This year's crop of artists come from all over Africa and the African diaspora in Japan, Haiti and Canada, performing in the economic capital Abidjan and...
(AFP (eng) 03/05/18)
Uganda's President Yoweri Museveni has fired controversial police chief Kale Kayihura as well as the country's security minister, a statement said Sunday. Kayihura, a serving general, was once regarded as the most powerful military officer in the country but has recently fallen out of favour with Museveni who has ruled Uganda since he took power at the head of a rebel army in 1986. Kayihura was appointed inspector general of police in 2005, the same year that a successful referendum...
(AFP (eng) 02/26/18)
The Ugandan army said Monday its troops shot dead three Somali soldiers in Mogadishu after a military convoy carrying Uganda's commander came under friendly fire over the weekend. Friday's incident involving the convoy of Brigadier Paul Lokech, who heads the Ugandan contingent of the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM), happened when Somali soldiers established road blocks to lock down the capital after two bomb blasts that killed dozens of people. Uganda's military spokesman Brigadier Richard Karemire said Somali troops fired at the convoy and its soldiers retaliated in self-defence. "There is absolutely no reason why the AMISOM...
(AFP (eng) 02/22/18)
Twenty-six Congolese refugees at a fast-growing camp in western Uganda died from acute diarrhoea in just three days, the UN said Thursday. Tens of thousands of people have fled an upsurge of fighting in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo this year, many of them arriving weak and unwell at Ugandan camps that are struggling to accommodate them. "The number of deaths caused by acute diarrhoea is 26 over the period from 15 to 18 February," said Duniya...
(AFP (eng) 02/22/18)
KAMPALA (Reuters) - Twenty-six refugees from the Democratic Republic of Congo have died in a camp in Uganda from acute diarrhea, and hundreds more cases have been registered, an official from the United Nations refugee agency UNHCR said on Thursday. The East African country’s refugee population has risen sharply recently as people flood in from eastern Congo, where resurgent ethnic and inter-communal violence has uprooted hundreds of thousands. Duniya Aslam Khan, spokeswoman for the UNHCR in Uganda, said health workers...
(Reuters (Eng) 02/22/18)
GULU, Uganda (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Francis Okello wanted to kill himself after he was blinded at the age of 12 by an unexploded bomb while digging in his family garden in northern Uganda - until he made friends with a dog. “I would have nightmares,” said Okello, who lives in an area that has been scarred by two decades of conflict between Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) rebels and Ugandan forces. “Life became worthless because I was stigmatized.” Hope flickered...
(AFP (eng) 02/19/18)
About 224 million people are suffering from malnutrition across Africa as climate change and conflicts heighten food insecurity across the continent, a top UN food agency official said Monday. The official, speaking at a conference on Africa organised by the UN's Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), said the situation was a "cause of concern" as the continent's population was expected to reach 1.7 billion by 2030. "Under-nourishment appears to have increased from about 21 percent to nearly 23 percent between...
(Reuters (Eng) 02/16/18)
KAMPALA (Reuters) - Uganda said on Thursday it was widening a probe of government officials who allegedly stole aid intended for refugees to include U.N. staff, amid concern the scandal may hold up donor cash needed for the country’s surging refugee population. Allegations that officials may have inflated refugee numbers to skim aid and engaged in other types of fraud have angered donors and embarrassed a country whose open embrace of a huge influx of refugees from South Sudan’s war has won global praise. The minister for relief, disaster preparedness and refugees, Hilary Onek, told a news conference...
(Reuters (Eng) 02/14/18)
GENEVA (Reuters) - Over 22,000 people fled Congo to Uganda last week following a surge of ethnic violence in the northeast, raising the total number of arrivals to about 34,000 since the start of the year, the U.N. Refugee Agency (UNHCR) said on Tuesday. At least 30 people have been killed in fighting between Hema herders and Lendu farmers in the province of Ituri this month, echoing clashes that killed thousands of Hema and Lendu during a civil war that...
(AFP (eng) 02/13/18)
Over 22,000 refugees have fled fighting in Democratic Republic of Congo to neighbouring Uganda, violence that has left several dead and villages torched, the UN said Tuesday. At least four refugees drowned while crossing the waters of Lake Albert between the two nations, the UN refugee agency, UNHCR, said. "Last week, over 22,000 Congolese crossed Lake Albert to Uganda in three days, bringing the total number of people from the DRC arriving in the country to about 34,000 since the...
(AFP (eng) 02/08/18)
The African Union's chairman dismissed during a visit to Beijing on Thursday a French newspaper report alleging that China had spied on the continental body as "lies" intended to derail cooperation. The report published by Le Monde in January claimed technicians at the AU's Chinese-built headquarters in the Ethiopian capital discovered last year that the contents of their computers had been regularly copied to servers in Shanghai since 2012, citing unnamed AU sources. "I don't see it is in the...

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