| Africatime
Thursday 23 February 2017
(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,"...
(Xinhuanet 02/22/17)
Africa Energy Indaba, the continent's premier energy event, kicked off in Johannesburg on Monday with the aim of finding solutions to the continent's energy future. The three-day conference is being attended by the governments' representatives, business and funders. The meeting seeks to unleash the continent's potential by coming up with an energy mix to develop Africa. Dr. Garth Strachan, Deputy Director General and Head of Gas Industrialization Unit in South Africa's Department of Trade and Industry said the recent discoveries of gas in Mozambique, Angola and Tanzania provides a huge opportunity for the continent. He said there is a need for the countries to work together to tap benefits from the gas for the good of the continent. Strachan said...
(AFP (eng) 02/21/17)
The Democratic Republic of Congo on Monday flatly rejected international calls to investigate a video purporting to show a massacre of unarmed men and women by DR Congo soldiers. The government's refusal came as two other videos showing alleged abuses by DR Congo soldiers began circulating on social media networks. The seven-minute video that emerged over the weekend shows a group of uniformed men opening fire, then walking among at least 20 bodies, apparently in the violence-wracked central Kasai region...
(AFP (eng) 02/21/17)
The Democratic Republic of Congo's government, under pressure to act after months of violence in the south, on Sunday vowed to move away from a solely military solution. Interior Minister Emmanuel Ramazani Shadari told reporters: "The state is envisaging political, traditional and humanitarian solutions on the ground." But he added Kinshasa's response could be "military if arms are not laid down in a peaceful fashion to enable a lasting peace" in restless areas. Shadari did not give further details as...
(Reuters (Eng) 02/21/17)
Democratic Republic of Congo must investigate credible reports of atrocities including summary executions by the armed forces, U.N. human rights chief Zeid Ra'ad al Hussein said on Monday. The U.N. human rights office has documented the killings of more than 280 people since July 2016 in a flare-up in violence in Kasai Central province, where Congolese forces have been battling an uprising by the Kamuina Nsapu militia. "There are multiple, credible allegations of massive human rights violations in Kasai, Kasai...
(Bloomberg 02/21/17)
Ashish Thakkar, who co-founded Africa banking conglomerate Atlas Mara Ltd. with ex-Barclays Plc head Bob Diamond, lost a ruling over the ownership of family assets in a London divorce case, with a judge questioning Thakkar’s truthfulness. Judge Philip Moor ruled that Thakkar, and not his mother and sister, was the owner of disputed assets in the divorce. He found that the 35-year-old owned 100 percent of Mara Group Holdings Ltd. and other corporate entities. The result will have ramifications in...
(AFP (eng) 02/19/17)
A Democratic Republic of Congo spokesman condemned as a "ridiculous montage" Saturday a video purporting to show a massacre of unarmed civilians by DR Congo soldiers (FARDC). But confusion reigned after a later government statement referred to possible "excesses and abuse" by soldiers, two of whom it said were on trial for unspecified charges. The seven-minute video, which appears to be taken by cellphone, was provided to AFP late Friday by a Congo specialist, who said it might have been...
(AFP (eng) 02/17/17)
The international community on Thursday urged government and opposition parties in Democratic Republic of Congo to restart deadlocked talks to set up a transition regime ahead of elections due late this year. The United Nations, African Union, European Union and the International Organisation of the Francophonie "are increasingly concerned by the continuing impasse in the dialogue among the political stakeholders" in DRC, a joint statement said. The talks aim to implement a power-sharing deal signed on New Year's Eve by...
(Voice of America 02/17/17)
The budget minister of the Democratic Republic of Congo has cast doubt on whether the country will be able to finance elections this year. His statement has sparked concern as delaying the polls last year led to violent unrest. DRC Budget Minister Pierre Kangudia gave reporters the news Wednesday. He said it will not be possible to disburse $1.8 billion from this year’s budget to organize elections in 2017. That hardly comes as a surprise. Total government spending for 2017...
(AL Jazeera 02/16/17)
Against the backdrop of a brutal civil war, millions of Congolese turn to football to cope with the conflict. The decades-long civil war in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) divided communities that had previously coexisted peacefully. But millions of young Congolese still have a lot in common, particularly their love for football. Football is the most popular sport in the DRC and at the grassroots-level interest in it keeps growing. The sport brings together children from different ethnic and...
(AFP (eng) 02/15/17)
Eight suspected members of an outlawed political-religious group were critically injured and 22 arrested in clashes with police in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) capital, police sources said Tuesday. Violence erupted late Monday and continued into Tuesday when police stormed a house believed to harbour members of the Bundu dia Kongo (BDK) movement. BDK stands for "Kingdom of the Kongo" in the Kikongo language and members, known as the Makessa, are hostile to the police as symbols of the vast central African state's authority. "Twenty-two people were arrested including eight who were critically injured," said police spokesman Pierre Rombaut Mwanamputu.
(Reuters (Eng) 02/15/17)
Soldiers targeting the Kamwina Nsapu militia group in central Democratic Republic of Congo killed at least 101 people between Feb. 9 and Feb. 13, including 39 women, the U.N. said on Tuesday. The soldiers fired indiscriminately with machine guns when they saw the militia fighters, who were armed mainly with machetes and spears, human rights spokeswoman Liz Throssell said, citing sources in the country. "We are deeply concerned at the reported high number of deaths, which if confirmed would suggest...
(AFP (eng) 02/15/17)
Sub-Saharan Africa, where more than a half billion people live without electricity, trails the world in government policies that promote sustainable energy, according to a new World Bank report Wednesday. Much of the rest of the world, however, has made strides toward making energy broadly available, developing renewable power sources and increasing efficiency, the inaugural Regulatory Indicators for Sustainable Energy report said. In a survey of 111 countries, the World Bank found that through 2015 nearly 80 percent had begun...
(Reuters (Eng) 02/14/17)
Police in Democratic Republic of Congo launched an assault on the residence of the leader of a separatist religious sect in Kinshasa early on Tuesday and fired live ammunition and tear gas at his supporters, a Reuters witness said. The assault on the home of Ne Muanda Nsemi, a self-proclaimed prophet and leader of the Bundu dia Kongo (BDK) sect, began around 4:30 a.m. local time. Dozens of police were involved in the operation and gunfire could be heard in...
(AFP (eng) 02/14/17)
Mining giant Glencore said Monday it had struck a deal worth nearly $1 billion to purchase shares of two mines in the Democratic Republic of Congo from a controversial Israeli magnate. Switzerland-based Glencore said it will pay Israeli billionaire Dan Gertler's Fleurette group $960 million (905 million euros) for Fleurette's 31 percent share in the Mutanda mine and 10.25 percent stake in the Katanga mine. Glencore, widely regarded as a maverick in the global commodities sector, will assume full control...
(Reuters (Eng) 02/14/17)
Congo police made a pre-dawn raid on a separatist group in Kinshasa on Tuesday, killing four people but failing to arrest their leader, a self-styled religious prophet, witnesses and group members said. Dozens of armed police stormed the home of Ne Muanda Nsemi, leader of Bundu dia Kongo (BDK), a religious cult that seeks to revive the pre-colonial Kongo kingdom that flourished for centuries around the mouth of the Congo river. Police have clashed with BDK members several times in...
(Xinhuanet 02/14/17)
Serbia and Democratic Republic of Congo agreed on Monday to give a new impetus to their cooperation through mutual support on the international scene and economic cooperation despite last December's EU sanctions against Congo. Foreign Minister of Democratic Republic of Congo Leonard She Okitundu visited Serbia and met with his Serbian counterpart Ivica Dacic at the government building where they held a press conference. Dacic said Serbia and Democratic Republic of Congo agreed to deepen their relations and mutually support...
(Voice of America 02/14/17)
U.S. President Donald Trump made his first phone calls to African heads of state Monday, speaking with Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari and South African President Jacob Zuma. Nigeria and South Africa said the calls were made at the request of the U.S. president, who until now has said little about Africa or African issues since assuming office last month. The Nigerian presidency said Trump and Buhari discussed issues of terrorism, and said Trump assured Buhari the United States is ready...
(AFP (eng) 02/12/17)
In crisis-hit Democratic Republic of Congo, people in the capital increasingly turn to street hawkers to feed themselves and their families cheaply, but the makeshift option is often not a hygienic one. From civil servants and students, to construction workers and parents with their children, hungry Kinshasa residents depend on so-called malewas, or street food sellers, whose numbers have grown as the economy has worsened. "Here, I eat my fill for under 2,000 Congolese francs ($1.1, one euro)," said Jose Bangamba, a 29-year-old taxi driver. Leaning over a plate of chicken in gravy
(Voice of America 02/11/17)
The United Nations and Congolese authorities launched an appeal Friday in Congo's capital, Kinshasa, for $748 million to provide lifesaving assistance for 6.7 million people across the conflict-wracked country. The appeal this year is 8 percent higher than last, and reflects a new three-year strategy. In Geneva, where the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, or OCHA, is based, spokesman Jens Laerke said the new action plan involves a more integrated approach in dealing with "two decades of recurring humanitarian crises."

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