| Africatime
Friday 24 March 2017
(Bloomberg 03/24/17)
Tanzanian President John Magufuli warned media organizations against “inflammatory” reporting, a day after he fired a cabinet minister who defended press freedom. “Media owners, let me tell you: Be careful. Watch it,” Magufuli said Friday in the commercial capital, Dar es Salaam. “If you think you have that kind of freedom -- not to that extent.” Magufuli on Thursday dismissed Information Minister Nape Nnauye, who this week ordered an inquiry into a regional commissioner who tried to force a privately owned media company to broadcast footage about a paternity case involving a political rival. The commissioner, Paul Makonda, is an ally of Magufuli, according to Dubai-based research
(The Associated Press 03/24/17)
Zimbabwe's 93-year-old leader might be slowing down, but his busy foreign travels have led the opposition to call him the “non-resident president.” President Robert Mugabe has visited Singapore, Ghana, Swaziland and Mauritius in the past three weeks alone. At times he stops over in Zimbabwe's capital, Harare, for just a night before leaving again. Some critics say Mugabe's trips are a drain on this southern African country's depleted finances. Others are amazed at how a visibly elderly man remains fit enough to clock thousands of miles in the air. The foreign travels of the world's oldest head of state often provide comic relief for Zimbabweans weary of the country's
(AFP (eng) 03/24/17)
FIFA president Gianni Infantino said Friday the election of Ahmad Ahmad as Confederation of African Football chief was "a vote for change" after almost 30 years under Cameroonian Issa Hayatou. Ahmad, head of Madagascar's football federation, won the election in the Ethiopian capital this month by 34 votes to Hayatou's 20. "The African confederation needed to decide what it wanted for the future and Africans voted for change," Infantino told journalists on the sidelines of a football congress organised at...
(AFP (eng) 03/24/17)
South Sudan's famine is a disaster created by its leaders, say analysts who argue that while food may save some lives now it is only peace that can bring lasting relief. But peace is as distant as ever with an international community that appears paralysed, while the men ruling over the country's misery are unmoved by pleas for them to lay down their weapons. There is no catastrophic drought in South Sudan, no natural driver for the famine afflicting 100,000...
(AFP (eng) 03/24/17)
A Tripoli court has suspended a deal between Libya and Italy to limit irregular migration to Europe, the unity government's justice ministry said. Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni and his Libyan counterpart Fayez al-Sarraj signed the deal in February to tackle people smuggling through the North African country. Italy pledged money, coastguard training and equipment to assist the UN-backed government in efforts to address Europe's biggest migrant crisis since World War II. But an appeals court in Tripoli this week suspended implementation of the deal, the justice ministry said Thursday. "The justice ministry of the Government of National Accord confirms that the court is still
(Andalou Agency 03/24/17)
North African nation gears up for controversial referendum on proposed constitutional changes. Mauritanian President Mohamed Ould Abdel-Aziz on Thursday said he would not hold any fresh political dialogue with the country’s opposition. Speaking at a press conference in capital Nouakchott, Abdel-Aziz said his priority was to prepare for a popular referendum on a raft of proposed constitutional amendments. He denied that he or his government had been subject to pressure -- by either the UN or the EU -- to...
(Xinhuanet 03/24/17)
Sudan's Foreign Minister Ibrahim Ghandour and South Sudan Ambassador in Khartoum Mayan Dot on Thursday reviewed arrangements relating to visit of South Sudan President Salva Kiir Mayardit to Sudan. "Foreign Minister Ghandour and Ambassador Mayan reviewed arrangements relating to visit of President Salva Kiir to Khartoum," said Sudan's Foreign Ministry in a press release Thursday, without fixing a date for the visit. The meeting also reviewed cooperation between the two countries and speeding up implementation of outcome of recent meetings of the joint political and security committee besides the communication program between the two countries' oil ministries, it said.
(AFP (eng) 03/24/17)
The International Criminal Court Friday ordered 297 victims of ex-Congolese warlord Germain Katanga to each be paid "a symbolic" $250 in damages for a brutal 2003 attack on their village, in the tribunal's first such award. Awarding both individual and collective damages, the court also found that Katanga was liable for one million dollars of the total damages estimated at $3.7 million (3.4 million euros). Katanga was sentenced by the ICC to 12 years in jail in 2014, after being...
(Bloomberg 03/24/17)
Ghana’s central bank may have space to cut its benchmark interest rate for a second time in four months as the cedi started to recover from record lows and inflation slowed to the lowest rate in more than four years. Governor Abdul Nashiru Issahaku has enough room to cut the West African nation’s main rate by as much as 100 basis points, according to Courage Kingsley Martey, an Accra-based economist at Databank Group. Two of the four economists in a...
(Agence Ecofin 03/24/17)
The Algerian deputy minister of Finance, in charge of digital economy and modernization of financial systems, Mouatassem Boudiaf, declared on Wednesday March 15th that a digital database for documents related to land conservation would be developed this week. The news was reported by l’Algérie Presse Service. “Starting next week, the State’s domain administration, in relation to land conservation, will be digitalized. The purpose of the operation is to de-materialize transactions by capitalizing on the development of Algeria’s digital economy,” the deputy minister said at the time. The digitalization processes should accelerate land-related processes which are slowed
(AFP (eng) 03/24/17)
Royal Dutch Shell has sold its onshore oil and gas interests in the central African nation of Gabon for $587 million to private equity firm Carlyle Group, it said Friday. The Anglo-Dutch energy giant announced in a statement that it has sold the assets to Carlyle for the equivalent of 544 million euros in a deal expected to complete in mid-2017. Carlyle will also take on debt of $285 million as part of the deal. It will make extra payments up to a maximum of $150 million depending on production performance and commodity prices. Shell will however retain exploration licences for two offshore blocks west of Gabon, a company spokesman added.
(Reuters (Eng) 03/24/17)
Gambia said on Thursday it would set up a Truth and Reconciliation Commission and offer reparations to victims of former President Yahya Jammeh's government, which is accused of the torture and killing of perceived opponents. Justice Minister Abubacarr Tambadou said in a statement the government will also probe the finances of Jammeh, who fled into exile in January to Equatorial Guinea after a rule that began in 1994 when he seized power in a coup. Jammeh lost an election in...
(Agence Ecofin 03/24/17)
In a debriefing to the UN special rapporteur on environment and human rights last week, the research and publication centre on relations between the third world and Europe (CETIM) denounced abusive expropriations of Malagasy rural land owners. These expropriations mainly profit international mining companies and precious wood smugglers. “Many farmers are displaced, moved or sacked from their own lands regardless of land legislation which recognizes customary rights. From the North to the South of Madagascar, mining and agro-industrial firms get operating permits to the detriment of biodiversity,” said CETIM. Expressing himself on the matter
(Reuters (Eng) 03/24/17)
Gold miner Acacia Mining said it was incurring an average daily loss of more than $1 million in revenue at its two mines in Tanzania due to a local government directive banning exports of gold and copper concentrate. Shares in the company were down as much as 1.6 percent in early morning trade, compared with a marginally lower FTSE mid-cap index. Tanzania's energy and minerals ministry imposed a ban earlier this month on sending copper concentrate or mineral sand for...
(Agence Ecofin 03/24/17)
(Ecofin Agency) - Namibia’s government plans to expropriate many white land owners soon in order to accelerate property transfer to the black majority of the country. This was revealed on March 21st by the nation’s president, Hage Geingob, on the sidelines of the 27th anniversary of Namibia’s independence. The president however plans to be fair in the process by providing compensation to the white owners as the constitution states in the case of expropriation. “If we are committed to achieving...
(Agence Ecofin 03/24/17)
Yesterday, the 5th edition of the forum of currency and digital payment opened at the Hyatt Regency hotel in Casblanca, Morocco. Organized by the communication and events agency Interworld, and VISA, the forum will end today, March 23rd. At the heart of the two-day event are panels, workshops, sharing and training meetings, expositions, etc. The main topic which will be debated at the occasion is “digital banking”, “one of the most significant levers of e-payment”. In details, actors present will...
(BBC News Africa 03/24/17)
Kenya has become the first country to exclusively sell government bonds to citizens via their mobile phones, as it seeks new ways of raising money. The country is already a pioneer in the use of mobile money. The government is looking to tap into that network by allowing mobile phone users to trade the government securities across their phones. Kenyans can buy one of the bonds for as little as 3,000 Kenyan shillings ($30; £23), the country's central bank said...
(AFP (eng) 03/24/17)
Egypt's ousted president Hosni Mubarak left a military hospital on Friday where he had spent much of his six-year detention, his lawyer said. Mubarak had been cleared for release earlier this month after a top court finally acquitted him of involvement in protester deaths during the 2011 revolt that ousted him. "Yes," his lawyer Farid al-Deeb told AFP when asked if Mubarak had left the hospital on Friday. Mubarak was accused of inciting the deaths of protesters during the 18-day...
(Agence Ecofin 03/24/17)
In Cote d’Ivoire, each day, about 17 billion CFA francs pass through Mobile Money. This was revealed by René Tano, executive of BICICI, subsidiary of BNP Paribas, during the 5th edition of the currency and e-payment forum taking place in Casablanca, Morocco. Citing the regulatory organ of telecommunications in Cote d’Ivoire (ARTCI), Tano said the sum mentioned takes into account all transactions (transfers, deposits, bills payment) of Orange, MTN and Moov which are the three telecom companies operating in the...
(AFP (eng) 03/24/17)
Evangelical preacher Emmanuel Momoh prayed for five years that he would discover the diamond he needed to pull his family out of poverty in eastern Sierra Leone. The 39-year-old pastor obtained his first mining licence in 2012 when the paltry income he received from the Deeper Life Church in Kono, the country's key mining district, was stretched too thin for his growing family. Momoh went on to build a small business of 18 employees, digging and sifting through gravel with...

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