| Africatime
Saturday 29 April 2017
(Reuters (Eng) 04/07/17)
Access to off-grid solar energy in rural areas of Africa goes beyond lighting up homes - it also enables people to connect to the wider world and boosts their economic prospects, said the head of one of the continent's biggest solar companies. Azuri Technologies' entry level solar system - for which customers pay a one-off installation fee, then use scratch cards or mobile phone payments to top up on a weekly or monthly basis - provides eight hours of lighting each day. Having power at home for the first time encourages customers to also buy mobile phones, radios and televisions, giving them regular access to the media and the internet, said Simon Bransfield-Garth, chief executive officer of UK-based Azuri. "This...
(The East African 04/06/17)
RwandAir CEO John Mirenge has been sacked. Mr Mirenge was dropped as boss of the Rwandan airline Wednesday, following a Cabinet meeting chaired by President Paul Kagame. Col. Chance Ndagano has been named the new chief executive. Other appointments include Lt Col Sylvere Munyaneza who has been named the deputy CEO in charge of operations and Makolo Manzi who will now serve as deputy CEO in charge of corporate affairs. The appointments come barely a day after RwandAir launched a flight to Mumbai, India. By Edmund Kagire
(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 stay within their own country. African Union Commission head of humanitarian affairs, refugees and displaced people Olabisi Dare says the situation of IDPs in Africa is very critical, dire and worsening. "...The issues that are generating internal displacement [are] multiplying...
(Xinhuanet 04/04/17)
Rwandan national carrier RwandAir will introduce a four times weekly service between Kigali and Harare staring on Wednesday (April 5), Zimbabwe's Civil Aviation Authority (CAAZ) said Tuesday. This follows the airline's announcement in January this year that Harare will be among six new African and international destinations it planned to start servicing in 2017. The flights also commence after Zimbabwe's tourism minister Walter Mzembi met RwandAir officials in Kigali on the sidelines of an African Union summit last year and discussed the possibility of the airline servicing the Kigali-Lusaka-Harare route. The two sides also explored the possibility of RwandAir doing the Harare-Kigali-Guangzhou, as well as the Harare-Kigali-London routes in the future. Plans by RwandAir to launch Harare flights had been...
(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 contributed to the overall slump in global commodity prices since 2014, making it unlikely that China will again fulfil the role of driving commodity prices. Rather, its position has now shifted to becoming the largest exporter of capital. This provides...
(The East African 04/03/17)
I&M Bank Rwanda shares closed at Rwf105 ($0.12) per share on Friday, on their first day of trading. The initial public offering price a week ago stood at Rwf90 ($0.11). Just over 100 shares were traded on the Rwanda Stock Exchange amid supply concerns as investors in the primary market held on. At the close of the debut trading, the bank's market value reached Rwf52.5 billion ($63.6 million). I&M Bank Rwanda is a subsidiary of the Nairobi Securities Exchange-listed I&M Bank Holdings. "This is a fair opening price. But the challenge we have is that investors in the primary market have held on to their shares causing a supply gap on the secondary market," said I&M Bank Rwanda managing director...
(The East African 04/03/17)
Nairobi — The 2017 Mo Ibrahim Foundation annual Governance Weekend will be held in Marrakech - Morocco from April 7-9. A press release from the Foundation identifies the Palmeraie Resort as the venue for this year's meeting. The three-day event brings together prominent African and Africa-focused leaders, civil society representatives, multilateral and regional institutions and Africa's international partners to identify policy challenges and possible solutions. Violent extremism The conversation is normally extended to a wider audience through music, art and sport at major public events, showcasing some of Africa's brightest talent. The Foundation has released a report that sets the stage for high-level discussions in Morocco. The priority areas for the Marrakech talks, according to the report, include violent extremism...
(Tanzania Daily News 03/31/17)
The African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights has dismissed an application for interim measures filed by Rwandan General Kayumba Nyamwasa and six others against move for amendment of constitution of Rwanda, extending office tenure of President Paul Kagame. The court composed of Justices Sylvain Ore, President, Ben Kioko, Vice-President and Gerald Niyungeko, El Hadji Guisse, Rafaa Ben Achour, Solomon Bossa, Angelo Matusse and Ntyam Mengue, as members, ruled that the object of the request has been overtaken by events. They declared in their ruling dated March 24, 2017, “The court declines to grant the interim measures since the object of the request has been overtaken by events.
(The New Times 03/31/17)
Rwanda and Egypt have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to strengthen bilateral cooperation in combating crime. Rwanda’s Prosecutor General Jean Bosco Mutangana signed the deal alongside his Egyptian counterpart, Nabeel Ahmed Sadek, on Thursday in Cairo. It was signed on the sidelines of the on-going African Prosecutors Association (APA) executive and strategic committee meetings, in which the National Public Prosecution Authority of Rwanda holds the position of Vice President. Mutangana told The New Times that the MoU is the beginning of cooperation in criminal matters between the two institutions.
(Tanzania Daily News 03/30/17)
Over 7,000 households in Tanzania, Rwanda and Burundi are set to benefit from 80 megawatts of electricity from the Rusumo Falls hydro-electric project along Kagera River whose ground-breaking ceremony is set for today. Tanzania’s Minister for Energy and Minerals, Prof Sospeter Muhongo and his Rwanda and Burundian counterparts are expected to grace the ground-breaking event scheduled at the Tanzania-Rwanda border. Each partner state will have a share of 26.6MW to be connected to their national power grids. The project is as well meant to strengthen the regional power interconnections between the three countries, which are also member states of the East African Community (EAC). Apart from the 7,000
(Xinhuanet 03/30/17)
The African Union (AU) is extremely appalled by the attacks against African students in Noida and other cities in India. The pan-African bloc has deplored the violence unleashed during the riot that started on Monday targeting Africans of various nationalities, particularly Nigerians, which resulted in loss of innocent lives and serious injuries, the AU said in a statement. The attacks have also resulted in the displacement of many Africans from their normal places of residence, thereby putting their lives in serious danger, it said. AU has expressed heartfelt condolence to the families of the deceased; and it wished speedy recovery to all those who have sustained injuries. AU has called on the Indian authorities to provide all necessary support to...
(Voice of America 03/28/17)
Rwanda’s President Paul Kagame hailed Rwanda-Israel friendship Sunday in an address to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) policy conference. He was the first African head of state ever to address the pro-Israel forum that brings together thousands of activists, experts and elected officials. “My message today is simple: Rwanda is, without question, a friend of Israel,” said Kagame,who is credited for putting an end to the 1994 genocide in his country. In a refence to the genocide perpetrated against the Jews in Europe during World War II, he told an audience of close to 18,000 delegates that the shared history of tragedy has brought Israel and Rwanda much closer. “No tragedy is so great, so vast that human...
(The New Times 03/28/17)
The National Bank of Rwanda has announced indefinite suspension of licensing of new forex bureaus, in a move the bank said would ensure a vibrant and dynamic foreign exchange market in line with current economic developments. The suspension takes immediate effect, according to a statement dated March 22 issued by John Rwangombwa, the Governor of the National Bank of Rwanda. This means that over the freeze period, there will be no new entrants into foreign exchange market till the suspension is lifted. The central bank also reviewed the forex bureaus regulatory framework, tightening operating conditions for the operators. Among the new changes is the increase of the minimum operating capital of bureaus from Rwf 20million to Rwf 50million. Other changes...
(Voice of America 03/28/17)
The World Health Organization and U.N. children's fund are spearheading a massive immunization campaign across Africa to rid the continent of the last vestiges of polio. Tens of thousands of health workers will fan out across 13 central and western African countries to vaccinate more than 116 million children under age five against the crippling disease. The U.N. agencies report more than 190,000 volunteers, traveling on foot or bicycle, will go house to house across all cities, towns, and villages in 13 countries to vaccinate every child under age five against polio. The synchronized vaccination campaign, one of the largest ever conducted in Africa, will run from March 25-28. Director of Polio Eradication at the World Health Organization Michel Zaffran...
(AFP (eng) 03/27/17)
Rwanda's President Paul Kagame became the first African leader to address Washington's biggest pro-Israel forum Sunday, hailing the Jewish state as an inspiration for his own country's rebirth after genocide. Kagame was commander of the rebel force that put an end to the 1994 slaughter of Rwandan Tutsis by Hutu extremists and has led the country since 2000, as it recovers from the conflict and becomes a regional economic success story. In Washington to attend the annual policy conference of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), he hailed the success of the state of Israel
(Xinhuanet 03/27/17)
There is need for China and its African allies to kick start a new dialogue aimed at revitalizing wildlife and ecological conservation in the world's second largest continent, a conservationist has told Xinhua in an interview. Kaddu Sebunya, president of African Wildlife Foundation (AWF), told Xinhua that Beijing is an indispensable partner in efforts to protect Africa's iconic wildlife species that are grappling with human and climatic induced threats to their survival. "China is playing a big role in Africa's economic development and would like to see it direct more support towards protection of wildlife and vital ecosystems in the continent," Sebunya said. Sebunya noted that China's growing economic and diplomat clout place it at a vantage position to help...
(AFP (eng) 03/24/17)
The pregnant Rwandan-British wife of an exiled opposition official appeared in a Kigali court Thursday accused of seeking to form an armed group and revealing state secrets. Violette Uwamahoro, who moved to the United Kingdom in 2004, went to Rwanda for her father's funeral and then disappeared on February 14. Her husband, exiled in the UK, said she had been kidnapped due to his political activities while Amnesty International warned against efforts to "quell opposition voices" ahead of August presidential elections. It was over two weeks after she vanished that the government said she had been detained and was suspected of "serious crimes". Uwamahoro is charged alongside her distant cousin and Kigali policeman Jean-Pierre Shumbusho. She is alleged to have...
(Xinhuanet 03/24/17)
A group of non-government organizations (NGOs) on Friday called on African leaders to find practical solutions to protect and assist Somali refugees and asylum seekers facing ongoing conflict and a humanitarian crisis in Somalia. In a joint statement issued on the eve of the regional summit on refugees, members of the Regional Durable Solutions Secretariat (ReDSS), Somalia NGO Consortium and the Inter-agency Working Group (IAWG) expressed hope that the leaders will take practical steps towards the development and implementation of a comprehensive regional approach. "It is hoped that such an approach, developed in the spirit of the New York Declaration, will support countries and communities that host Somali refugees in improving asylum space, integrated access to services, inclusive economic opportunities...
(The New Times 03/23/17)
Rwanda is prepared to send more peacekeepers to be part of the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS), the acting Defence and Military Spokesperson, Lt Col René Ngendahimana, has confirmed. He disclosed this yesterday after the U.N. peacekeeping chief, Hervé Ladsous said during a visit to South Sudan's capital, Juba, on Tuesday that the first peacekeepers from Rwanda, Nepal and Bangladesh will begin arriving in the next few weeks. "That is true. There is an additional force required by the UN and, Rwanda is ready to contribute an additional battalion," Ngendahimana told The New Times. Rwanda presently maintains 1,650 troops as part of UNMISS.
(Reuters (Eng) 03/23/17)
N'DJAMENA French far-right presidential candidate Marine Le Pen pledged on Wednesday to break with her country's decades-old relationship with Africa known as "Francafrique" and abolish the CFA franc currency policy that binds Paris and its former colonies. Francafrique describes an informal web of relationships Paris has maintained with its former African colonies and its support, sometimes in the form of military backing, for politicians who favor French business interests. Le Pen, one of the frontrunners in the presidential election, spoke at the end of a two-day visit to Chad where she sought to outline her policies regarding the continent, which has long held an important place in French foreign policy. "It was only in coming here and explaining that I...

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