Thursday 25 May 2017
(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...
(AFP (eng) 03/21/17)
Under a cloudless sky in South Africa's northwestern farming region, donkeys still amble along muddy paths, pausing to nibble on grass, oblivious to the threat from a demand for Chinese medicine. The gelatin found in the animals' skin has made them a target, leading to a growing wave of donkey slaughtering in several African countries, as gangs seek to fuel a lucrative, and in South Africa illegal, trade. Animal rights groups say the docile beasts of burden are often cruelly bludgeoned to death before being skinned in backyards and clandestine slaughterhouses. Around Mogosani village, in South Africa's North West province, residents say syndicates catch the animals in grazing fields and pens. Soon after, skinned carcasses with hooves chopped off are...
(AFP (eng) 03/20/17)
Pope Francis on Monday begged for God's forgiveness for "the sins and failings of the Church and its members" implicated in the 1994 Rwanda genocide that killed around 800,000 people. The pontiff "conveyed his profound sadness, and that of the Holy See and of the Church, for the genocide against the Tutsi," the Vatican said in a statement after a meeting between Francis and the Rwanda President Paul Kagame. "He implored anew God's forgiveness for the sins and failings of the Church and its members, among whom priests and religious men and women who succumbed to hatred and violence, betraying their own evangelical mission," it said. Francis's pardon plea followed a request from Rwanda in November for the church to...
(Reuters (Eng) 03/20/17)
The head of Rwanda's only registered opposition party, the tiny Green Party, said on Sunday he will stand against President Paul Kagame, who is expected to run for third term in August presidential polls. Kagame is widely admired by many for restoring stability to the East African nation after its 1994 genocide, presiding over rapid economic growth and creating a relatively corruption-free government. But rights activists say those achievements have come at the expense of civil liberties. Some of Kagame's political opponents have been killed after they fled abroad, in cases that remain unsolved. Frank Habineza was elected to oppose Kagame in a Green Party congress of about 400 members.
(Xinhuanet 03/20/17)
The World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim is expected in Rwanda on Tuesday. During his visit, from March 21-22, Kim is expected to meet with Rwandan President Paul Kagame to discuss the east African country's development achievements, innovations and the progress made in fostering private sector growth and development, according to a statement issued by the World Bank office on Friday in Kigali. Kim will also hold meetings with private sector leaders and visit human development and other projects in various parts of the country including an ICT innovation centre at K-lab in Kigali and a social protection center at Kinyana to see how the World Bank Group can help sustain and further strengthen them. He will also address...
(Agence Ecofin 03/20/17)
At the Africa CEO Forum which opened this morning in Geneva, AFD Group – in partnership with the European Union – unveiled the “African Renewable Energy Scale-Up facility”, designed to boost private sector investment in on–grid and off-grid renewable energy production in Africa. In order to meet Africa’s constantly increasing energy requirements, support must be provided for mass development of the renewable energy technologies – especially solar energy – that will play such a key role over the coming years, given the recent drop in prices and the emergence of new innovative business models. The EU’s electrification funding initiative, “ElectriFI”, helps to harness and stimulate private sector investment to enhance access to renewable energy. More specifically, it focuses on poorly-served...
(Voice of America 03/18/17)
Each year, the University of Southern California hosts the African Global Economic and Development Summit, bringing delegations from Africa to meet with business leaders, government officials and others in the U.S. But this year, the African summit has no Africans. All were denied visas. Visa issues are not uncommon for people traveling from African nations. During her prior three summits, Mary Flowers saw a high percentage of her attendees unable to attain visas. "Usually we get 40 percent that get rejected but the others come," said Flowers, chair of the African Global Economic and Development Summit. "This year it was 100 percent. Every delegation. And it was sad to see, because these people were so disheartened." Flowers estimated that she...
(Voice of America 03/17/17)
One of the enduring legacies of the Barack Obama presidency will be the relationship built between the United States and young Africans. As part of Obama’s Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI), each year 1,000 young people from sub-Saharan Africa travel to the United States to spend six weeks at a U.S. college or university. The program will continue this summer. But building enduring relationships is a two-way street, and many in Africa want to see Americans coming to their continent as well. That’s what 26 Americans selected to participate in a Reciprocal Exchange program, a new component of the Mandela Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders, are now planning to do. The U.S. Department of State partnered with IREX, a...
(Xinhuanet 03/16/17)
China's aid to the education sector in Africa is helping boost teacher training, a key component in skilling the population to fast track development, a UN official has said. Ann Therese Ndong-Jatta, Director of United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Regional Office for Eastern Africa, in an interview recognized China's contribution to Africa's education sector over the years. "We value the initiative in teacher training in Uganda and other countries in Africa. This will revitalize the teaching profession," she said. China through UNESCO donated equipment to three teacher training institutions in Uganda on March 3. Figures from the Chinese embassy here show that 137 tutors were trained and 272 pieces of Information Communication and Technology and studio equipment...
(AFP (eng) 03/16/17)
Africa will host a Commonwealth Games one day despite the blow of Durban being stripped of hosting the 2022 edition, David Grevemberg, the chief executive of The Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF), told AFP. Durban lost the right to host the Games on Monday -- just 18 months after being awarded them -- when it failed to meet criteria laid down by the CGF, primarily over costs. "I wouldn't want to make a judgement call," Grevemberg told AFP on the sidelines of a briefing by 2018 Games hosts Gold Coast on Wednesday. "Durban has hosted some great events, it is a fantastic city and are wonderful warm hosts with bright ambitions and great aspirations. "However, it takes more than a municipality,...
(The Wall Street Journal 03/15/17)
Ndalo Media founder Khanyi Dhlomo and Mara Group founder Ashish Thakkar on where the potential is and what’s blocking it How is innovation in Africa different from innovation in Silicon Valley? And how can innovation in Africa be encouraged? Dan Keeler, frontier-markets editor of The Wall Street Journal, discussed those questions with Khanyi Dhlomo, founder and chief executive of Ndalo Media, a publisher based in South Africa, and Ashish Thakkar, founder of Mara Group, a pan-African investment group with operations in banking, real estate, infrastructure and technology. Edited excerpts follow. MR. KEELER: What about innovation in Africa? Khanyi, what sort of things are you seeing that are inspiring you? MS. DHLOMO:There’s a lot of innovation happening in Africa. But it’s...
(Agence Ecofin 03/14/17)
In Rwanda, the National Agricultural Exports Board (NAEB) announced an increase of 64% of the minimum price guaranteed to coffee-growers. Indeed, the kilogram of the crop will be now sold at 246 Rwandan francs against 150 Rwandan francs previously. According to Pie Ntwari, head of public communication and relations at the NAEB, the decision to increase the price by the government aims to encourage coffee farmers and subsequently boost its production. Besides increasing output, the official believes the measure will also help produce coffee of higher quality.
(Agence Ecofin 03/14/17)
The Land Policy Initiative (LPI), a joint programme of the tripartite consortium consisting of the African Union Commission (AUC), the African Development Bank (AfDB) and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) has launched a pilot project to track progress in implementing in the AU Declaration on land issues in Africa. This was revealed by the ECA in a press statement dated March 7. In collaboration with the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), the project will assess progress made in implementing the key decisions and commitments of the AU Declaration on Land adopted in July 2009 by the General Assembly of the pan-African institution. “We are to a large extent in unchartered waters given many of our Member...
(Xinhuanet 03/13/17)
Rwanda and Sao Tome and Principe have signed five agreements aimed at enhancing cooperation ranging from agriculture to tourism. The agreements are on cooperation in areas of agriculture, animal resources, tourism trade, air transport, and visa waiver. Rwanda's foreign minister Louise Mushikiwabo, and her counterpart Urbino Botelho signed the agreements on behalf of their respective countries, following talks in Kigali aimed at strengthening relations between the two countries. A statement released Sunday said both sides pledged to implement the agreements aimed at consolidating bilateral relations as well as promoting South-South Cooperation and strengthening African solidarity.
(Reuters (Eng) 03/13/17)
The United Arab Emirates, one of the Middle East's largest economies, wants to expand trade ties with faster growing nations in Asia and Africa, a senior official said on Sunday. Rich Gulf Arab states are looking at ways to diversify their economies, including who they trade with, after more than two years of depressed oil prices forced a rethink of government spending. The pace of economic growth in Asian and sub-Saharan African economies has made them ideal partners, Abdullah al-Saleh, undersecretary for foreign trade and industry at the UAE ministry of the economy, told Reuters in an interview in Dubai. Asia's two largest economies China and India are expected to grow by 6.5 percent and 7.2 percent this year whilst...

Pages