Saturday 27 May 2017
(The Guardian 05/22/17)
Dazed and exhausted, Joyce Mori sits on the floor cradling her sleeping daughter as they wait to have their fingerprints taken. One of 1,600 refugees who have arrived at the Imvepi reception centre in the West Nile region of northern Uganda, she has finally made it out of South Sudan’s war but, like many others, is thinking about loved ones left behind. Leaving her village of Mukaya, she travelled to the town of Yei with her four children. From there it took eight days to walk to the border, pushing her three-year-old on a bicycle while the others followed on foot. “My husband is a soldier and was forced to stay and fight. I have...
(Voice of America 05/19/17)
Police in Uganda have come under fire for allegedly torturing suspects, with both the president and interior minister publicly recognizing the problem this week and calling for it to end. On March 17, Uganda's assistant inspector general of police was gunned down in Kampala. Five days later, police said they were holding 17 suspects; however, it was a month before those individuals appeared in court. While media was blocked from the proceedings, leaked photos of the inmates appeared to show clear signs of abuse. When the suspects were brought to court for a second time
(Bloomberg 05/18/17)
Uganda, which wants to start building part of a multi-billion-dollar rail line to Kenya, must wait for its neighbor to decide on plans for its portion of the track before the project’s main funder makes money available, the country’s finance minister said. Export-Import Bank of China will arrange financing for Uganda only when it’s sure that Kenya “is willing and able to extend its railway to the border, so that they don’t fund a white elephant,” Finance Minister Matia Kasaija...
(Bloomberg 05/18/17)
Steinhoff International Holdings NV plans to list its African assets separately as the acquisitive retailer seeks a new prize for shareholders following this year’s failed merger talks with Shoprite Holdings Ltd. The company said Wednesday it will seek to list businesses including clothing retailer Pepkor and furniture chain JD Group Ltd. on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange, about 18 months after moving its primary listing to Frankfurt from the South African commercial hub. The new business could be worth as much...
(Fox News 05/10/17)
After five years of no major attacks on merchant vessels, piracy around the Horn of Africa seemed to be on hiatus. Acts of piracy in those treacherous waters have fallen sharply since 2012, according to statistics released by the United States Navy. The Navy credits aggressive patrolling by international forces and increased vigilance by the commercial shipping industry for the decrease. However, in the past month, Somali pirates have intercepted five ships, raising concerns that piracy has returned to the...
(Voice of America 05/05/17)
As Africa grapples with a severe drought, and famine threatens millions of people, experts at the World Economic Forum on Africa this week in the South African city of Durban say food security needs to be a major part of discussions on advancing the continent economically. The annual World Economic Forum in Switzerland is usually a high-powered event, but at this week’s Africa meeting of the international organization, the continent’s big players are welcoming the humble farmer, now known as...
(Voice of America 05/04/17)
In Uganda, the case of a university lecturer jailed last month for allegedly insulting the president on Facebook has revived concern over what civil society groups say are growing efforts to limit freedom of expression in the country. Civil society groups in Uganda continue to campaign for the release of Stella Nyanzi. She remains behind bars awaiting a bail hearing, charged over allegedly calling President Yoweri Museveni “a pair of buttocks” in an online post. The university researcher had been...
(Voice of America 05/03/17)
African military expenditures have finally slowed down after more than a decade of steady increases, according to a new report on global defense spending. The main reason, the report found, is a drop in oil prices. “The sharp decreases in oil prices has affected quite a number of African countries, namely South Sudan and Angola. This has kind of driven almost the entire regional trend,” said Nan Tian, a researcher at the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute’s (SIPRI) Arms and...
(Bloomberg 05/02/17)
Saudi Aramco is seeking to boost its fuel-trading volume by more than a third as the world’s biggest crude exporter expands its capacity to refine oil to grab a bigger share of growing markets in Asia and Africa. Aramco, as Saudi Arabian Oil Co. is known, is building refineries in the kingdom and in Asia to help it increase sales and purchases of gasoline, diesel and other products to more than 2 million barrels a day, said Ibrahim Al-Buainain, chief...
(Voice of America 04/28/17)
A low-cost and widely available drug could save the lives of 1 in 3 mothers who would otherwise bleed to death after childbirth, according to a new study. Severe bleeding, known as postpartum hemorrhage, or PPH, is the leading cause of maternal death worldwide, killing more than 100,000 women every year. Even for mothers who survive, it is a painful and traumatic experience. The world's poorest countries, especially in Africa and India, are the worst hit. Drug from 1960s But...
(Voice of America 04/27/17)
This month saw hundreds of Ugandan shop owners march in Kampala against Chinese traders. Local merchants and some city officials want foreigners barred from petty commerce. The government has promised to address the long standing tensions. Inexpensive Chinese goods are common in the markets of downtown Kampala, where locals operate small businesses selling the imported merchandise. But it has also become increasingly common for Chinese in Uganda to set up shops selling the same items, only cheaper. Local shop owner Everest Kayondo, the Kampala Capital City Traders Association chairman
(Bloomberg 04/20/17)
WorldRemit Ltd., a British money-transfer operator, sees revenue from transactions involving Africans doubling by 2020 as more people on the continent access mobile-payment platforms and expatriates send cash home. The seven-year-old company, in which Facebook Inc.-backer Accel Partners LP invested $40 million in 2014, will this year open a regional office in South Africa, its largest market on the continent in terms of money-transfer value, founder and Chief Executive Officer Ismail Ahmed said in an interview. Another site will start...
(Dw-World 04/19/17)
Tens of thousands of pastoralists fled from Turkana in Kenya to Uganda last week to escape the drought. It is the latest blow for the parched region for which politicians once made rash promises of rapid modernization. As many as 10,000 Kenyan pastoralists have crossed the border from Turkana in Kenya to Uganda in search of pasture and water for their cattle. Josephat Nanok, governor of Kenya's Turkana County, confirmed their departure and urged Uganda to accommodate them, The Monitor...
(Bloomberg 04/18/17)
Uganda’s central bank reduced its benchmark rate for a seventh consecutive time to support economic growth and encourage banks to lend more to the private sector. Policy makers at the Bank of Uganda cut the rate by 50 basis points to 11 percent, extending an easing cycle that began in April 2016. They have reduced the rate by a total of 550 basis points at the past six meetings. “Given that core inflation is forecast to remain around the medium-term...
(Voice of America 04/17/17)
The Italian coast guard says it has rescued nearly 6,000 migrants on the Mediterranean since Friday, underscoring the continued flow of people along this dangerous route. A group of Africans living in Europe visited Cameroon this week to launch a campaign against illegal migration. The group is called “No More Death in the Desert or on the Sea.” Its mission is simple: to educate youth in Africa about the harsh realities of illegal migration. "We want to tell them that...
(Bloomberg 04/05/17)
Economic growth in Uganda may accelerate in the coming fiscal year, underpinned by government spending on infrastructure and an anticipated recovery in lending to the private sector, according to the International Monetary Fund. The growth rate may increase to 5.5 percent in the 12 months through June 2018, compared with an estimated 4.5 percent this year and 4.8 percent in the prior 12-month period, Clara Mira, IMF’s resident representative in Uganda, said in an emailed response to questions. The Finance...
(NPR 04/05/17)
As soon as you set foot in any of the refugee camps along the South Sudan border in Uganda, a vast human suffering becomes easily apparent. We explored some of the personal stories of people fleeing this young country's conflict in a story over at Goats and Soda, but it's hard to express the scale of this conflict, which has killed more than 50,000 people since the end of 2013. What began as a dispute between the president and vice...
(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...
(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...
(Voice of America 03/30/17)
The Ugandan military says an aide to Lord's Resistance Army chief Joseph Kony has surrendered, a day after the United States said it will withdraw from the task force chasing the notorious rebel group. Ugandan military officials said Thursday that Michael Omona, Kony's chief communications officer, gave himself up in the Central African Republic. Omona was part of the LRA for 23 years after being kidnapped by the group in 1994. On Wednesday, the U.S. military said it will remove its forces from Operation Observant Compass, the task force established in 2013 to hunt down bands of LRA fighters roaming across Central Africa

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