| Africatime
Sunday 30 April 2017
(Reuters (Eng) 11/24/16)
A mother and her four-year-old daughter who were separated after fleeing the threat of female genital mutilation (FGM) in Ivory Coast may be reunited in Italy before Christmas after a stroke of luck allowed police to trace the woman, authorities said. The girl, identified only as Oumoh, is one of at least 20,000 unaccompanied minors who have reached Italy this year from war-torn and poverty-stricken countries mainly in Africa and the Middle East. She arrived on the southern Italian island of Lampedusa on Nov. 5 after being rescued from a rickety boat by the coastguard, police said. "She was quite traumatized, and initially wouldn't speak or communicate," Marilena Cefala, the head of Lampedusa's reception center, told the Thomson Reuters Foundation...
(APA 11/23/16)
Fighting in Bria in the northern part of the Central African Republic on Monday between two ex-Seleka factions had caused the deaths of at least 48, humanitarian sources said here Wednesday. The elements of the Union for Peace in the Central African Republic of Ali Darass and those of the Popular Front for the Rebirth of the Central African Republic (FPRC) are still fighting, the same sources said, mentioning about 50 wounded and nearly 5,000 displaced persons at the UN Mission for the Stabilization of the Central African Republic (UNMISCA) closest camp to Bria. Administrative, educational and business activities have ceased and the inhabitants have remained at home, according to the same sources who said that the city of Bria...
(The Guardian 11/23/16)
Rulers of the DRC, Burundi, Zimbabwe and others say tide has turned after Obama’s efforts to promote democracy abroad. As the sun rose over Kinshasa on 9 November, Martin Fayulu was awoken by a phone call from a relative in the US telling him to switch on his television – Donald Trump appeared set to become the next US president. Fayulu, an opposition politician at the forefront of recent protests calling for elections to be held on time in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, immediately switched on a French channel. “Many Congolese were watching, and a lot had mixed feelings,” he said. Across Africa the interest was equally intense, with the surprise result prompting fierce speculation about the unexpected...
(AFP (eng) 11/22/16)
The UN peacekeeping force in Central African Republic (CAR) said Tuesday one of its bases had come under fire during clashes between rival groups, prompting its troops to respond. The violence erupted on Monday between rival factions of the so-called former Seleka Muslim rebel group in the town of Bria, 400 kilometres (250 miles) northeast of Bangui, MINUSCA said in a statement. "The MINUSCA base was targeted by some elements of the FPRC before they were driven out of the area by retaliatory fire," it said. The FPRC -- the Popular Front for the Renaissance of the Central African
(Reuters (Eng) 11/22/16)
African states failed on Monday to halt the work of the first U.N. independent investigator appointed to help protect gay and transgender people worldwide from violence and discrimination. The 47-member U.N. Human Rights Council, based in Geneva, created the position in June and in September appointed Vitit Muntarbhorn of Thailand, who has a three-year mandate to investigate abuses against lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) people. In an unusual move, African states put forward a draft resolution in the 193-member U.N. General Assembly third committee, which deals with human rights, calling for consultations on the legality of the creation of the mandate. They said the work of the investigator should be suspended. However, Latin American countries, supported by Western...
(AFP (eng) 11/21/16)
The number of HIV-infected people taking anti-retroviral medicine has doubled in just five years, the UN said Monday, while highlighting high infection rates among young African women. A new report by UNAIDS said it was on course to hit a target of 30 million people on ARV treatment by 2020. "By June 2016, around 18.2 million people had access to the life-saving medicines, including 910,000 children, double the number five years earlier," UNAIDS said in a statement. But the report showed the huge risks that some young women face. Last year more than 7,500 teenagers and young women became infected with HIV every week worldwide, with the bulk of them in southern Africa. "Young women are facing a triple threat,"...
(AFP (eng) 11/20/16)
Above the sacks of seeds and coal, three kerosene lamps gather dust in the tiny shed that Kenyan chicken farmer Bernard calls home. He prefers to use solar energy to light up his evenings, listen to the radio or watch television, after abandoning a diesel generator he said was expensive to maintain and burned fuel too quickly. "Solar panels are a good, cheap solution," he told AFP. Across the continent, consumers are opting for their own off-grid solar solutions to power homes and small businesses, even as African governments unveil massive new solar projects seemingly every month to expand their grids. According to International Energy Agency projections, almost one billion people in sub-Saharan Africa will gain access to the grid...
(Agence Ecofin 11/19/16)
Abdellatif Jouahri and Lucas Abaga Nchama, respectively governors of the Bank Al Maghrib (Central Bank of Morocco) and the Bank of Central African States (BEAC), recently signed a revised cooperation convention for banking supervision. The agreement aims to boost bilateral cooperation between the two lenders, mainly in regards to on-field control of the cross-border banks. The move comes amid the expansion of Moroccan banks in Central Africa. According to experts, the expansion could present systemic risks.
(The Guardian 11/19/16)
At COP22, the African Development Bank’s president, Akinwumi Adesina, tells of strategies to improve energy supplies and fight the impact of climate change “We lose 5% of our potential GDP every year, and African industries cannot be competitive without access to electricity,” says Akinwumi Adesina, president of the African Development Bank. “I believe that’s why we can’t break away from reliance on exporting our raw materials – new industries will only go to where there’s power.” He is speaking on the sidelines of the COP22 climate change conference in Marrakech, which ends on Friday. Adesina and colleagues from the bank have been using the conference to highlight its new initiatives on energy, including the New Deal on Energy for Africa,...
(Reuters (Eng) 11/18/16)
International donors promised 2.06 billion euros ($2.2 billion)for the Central African Republic on Thursday, seeking to cement a recovery from three years of sectarian strife that has left the country dependent on United Nations peacekeepers. At a conference in Brussels, 80 countries and international agencies pledged the money for the next four years, including more than 700 million euros from the European Union. "We need to aid the most vulnerable, the many displaced, those who sought refuge in neighboring countries and to help them go home," said Andre Vallini, France's junior minister for development
(AFP (eng) 11/17/16)
President Faustin-Archange Touadera on Thursday urged donors to help the Central African Republic, one of the world's poorest countries, recover from years of bloody civil strife. "Yes the situation of my country is difficult but it is not a lost cause," Touadera told donors meeting in Brussels to discuss his call for aid of some $3.0 billion over the next five years. "We call on you to give us the support needed to make the difference ... we need your solidarity and help," he said. The Central African Republic sits strategically on the crossroads of Africa and is home to five million people split deeply along ethnic and religious lines. Former colonial power France intervened in 2013 to stop violent...
(AFP (eng) 11/17/16)
African leaders met in Morocco Wednesday on the sidelines of UN climate talks to agree a joint stance to fight global warming on the continent. "Africa is paying a heavy price over the climate issue and is without doubt the continent worst affected," Morocco's King Mohammed VI told the summit attended by 20 African leaders. "These disruptions... greatly hamper Africa's development and gravely threaten the basic rights of tens of millions of Africans," he said. He said the continent needed to "speak in a single voice, demand climate justice". France's President Francois Hollande and UN chief Ban Ki-moon also attended the summit which took place alongside the COP22 climate change conference in Marrakesh. Ban said Africa was at the forefront...
(AFP (eng) 11/16/16)
Though elected early this year, Central Africa's new president has no army to command or civil service to call on. He still fills in as a university maths lecturer due to lack of teaching staff. But this week could offer Faustin-Archange Touadera a lifeline, as donors come together in Brussels to plot a future for a country strategically positioned at the heart of Africa, but ravaged by three years of intense inter-religious strife. He hopes Thursday's donor conference generates a massive financial shot-in-the-arm for the around five million residents of one of the world's poorest nations. "We have come a long way and the country needs to be rebuilt," 59-year-old Touadera told AFP in an interview. "We're working in favour...
(AFP (eng) 11/16/16)
"We're not jihadists, we're not bandits, we're defending our community," insisted the leader of a militia group in a powder keg Muslim district of the Central African Republic's capital Bangui. Outside the group's improvised base, a short distance from the mosques and shops of Bangui's flashpoint PK5 district, a youth from the so-called "50/50" self-defence group guarded the headquarters with an M16 assault rifle. Another man concealed a weapon under a red blanket. Three years of conflict and massacres that pitted Muslims against Christians and displaced hundreds of thousands have spawned several of the so-called "50/50" armed groups. They take their name from demands by Muslims, who make up as much as 20 percent of the country's population of 4.5...
(AFP (eng) 11/16/16)
"Don't go!" That was the heartfelt appeal to African nations as the International Criminal Court opened its annual meeting Wednesday under the cloud of a wave of unprecedented defections. Gambia on Monday formally notified the United Nations that it was withdrawing from the court, following in the wake of South Africa and Burundi. "Don't go," pleaded Senegalese politician Sidiki Kaba, the president of the ICC's Assembly of State Parties meeting in The Hague. "In a world criss-crossed by violent extremism... it is urgent and necessary to defend the ideal of justice for all," he said. The tribunal opened in 2002 in The Hague as a court of last resort to try the world's worst crimes. But in his passionate plea,...
(AFP (eng) 11/14/16)
A month after rebels killed dozens of civilians in Kaga Bandoro, residents of the Central African Republic town still live in fear despite the presence of UN peacekeepers in the country and the prospect of nationwide disarmament. Returning to the scene of the massacre for the first time, Sylvie pointed to the ruins of the small home she built in what was a settlement for 8,000 civilians displaced during years of unrest. "That's where I lived for three years," she said, recovering a comb from the scorched ground between the low walls of now roofless huts. On October 12 the predominantly Christian settlement was attacked by remnants of the mostly Muslim rebel "Seleka" coalition, which overthrew the national government in...
(Forbes 11/14/16)
Africa will have 1-billion mobile subscriptions by the fourth quarter of 2016, while data use will drive the next phase of growth in Africa’s telecoms market, according to researchers Ovum. Mobile subs will reach 1.02-billion by the end of 2016 and will reach 1.33-billion by 2021, says Matthew Reed, Ovum’s practice leader, for the Middle East and Africa. “The take-up of mobile broadband will rise strongly, as operators continue to roll out 3G and 4G LTE networks and as smartphones become increasingly affordable,” says Reed. “There will be 1-billion mobile broadband connections in Africa in 2021, including 157.4-million 4G LTE connections. “Additionally, the number of smartphone connections on the continent will reach 929.9-million at the end of 2021. And non-SMS...
(AFP (eng) 11/12/16)
Across Africa, the approaching presidency of Donald Trump has provoked deep uncertainty over how the United States will pursue policies ranging from counter-terrorism and trade, to aid and climate change. Many African countries had high hopes that Barack Obama would bring transformative benefits to the continent and were left disappointed as he winds down his time in office. But Trump's rise to power poses fresh questions that reveal the lack of concrete detail on his foreign policy plans -- while the president-elect himself has seldom addressed African issues directly. One possible pointer is Trump's often repeated vow to kill "terrorists", which may lead to more aggressive US intervention against Islamist forces such as Nigeria's Boko Haram, linked to the Islamic...
(The Toronto Star 11/11/16)
Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan said Canada has committed to a three-year deployment in Africa that will be reassessed each year to ensure it has an “enduring” impact. Canadian troops headed to Africa will operate in dangerous territory where peacekeepers have been killed, says Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan. In an exclusive interview with the Star from Vancouver Sajjan said Canada has committed to a three-year deployment that will be reassessed each year to ensure it has an “enduring” impact. It will be spread among a number of unspecified African countries, have a major focus on training and increasing “capacity” of the host nation as well as other countries’ troops, and build on existing social, economic and deradicalization programs on the ground...
(AFP (eng) 11/10/16)
All CAF competitions will offer increased prize money from 2017, the Cairo-based African football body said Wednesday. The announcement came months after French oil-gas company Total signed an eight-year sponsorship deal with CAF reportedly worth more than one billion dollars (915 million euros). Winners of the biennial Africa Cup of Nations will receive $4 million, up from the $1.5 million pocketed by 2015 champions the Ivory Coast. CAF Champions League title-holders are going to collect $2.5 million -- $1 million more than South African club Mamelodi Sundowns received last month. There is an even bigger percentage increase for winners of the second-tier CAF Confederation Cup with first prize increasing from $660,000 to $1.25 million. Both the Champions League and Confederation...

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