Sunday 18 February 2018
(Voice of America 09/09/13)
The Italian coast guard has rescued more than 700 people in the last two days from boats carrying migrants and refugees. Italian officials say four vessels got into difficulty in waters near Sicily. People from Syria, Egypt, Eritrea, Nigeria and Ghana were rescued. The Italian news agency ANSA reported Saturday that more than 207 people were taken to the island of Lampedusa after their rescue by the coast guard and navy. Among them were two women in the late stages of pregnancy. Another boat with 212 people aboard was being towed to Lampedusa. Two other broken-down boats carrying 293 people were taken to Augusta on Sicily's eastern coast. Violence in Syria and Egypt this year has spurred an increased number...
(AL Jazeera 09/07/13)
As Kenya votes to withdraw from this 'court of last resort', we ask if other African nations will follow suit. Kenya's parliament has voted to withdraw from the International Criminal Court (ICC), sending another strong message from the continent against what is perceived to be interference from the West. The motion was passed after an emergency session of parliament was convened - and the timing could not have been more telling. William Ruto, Kenya's deputy president, is due to appear before the ICC on September 10, on charges of crimes against humanity, while Uhuru Kenyatta, the Kenyan president, is scheduled to face similar charges in November. They stem from violence that broke out after disputed elections at the end of...
(Business Day 09/06/13)
Multinational companies operating in Africa are hitting back at claims that government coffers are being eroded by deliberate intragroup mispricing and shifting of profits across borders to pay significantly less tax. Apart from a lack of clarity on what guidelines to use, reports of bribes to resolve tax disputes, poorly educated tax officials focusing only on their bonuses, and a lack of will to follow global guidelines are emerging. Governments are concerned that money they should be receiving is being diverted to other countries, which then receive the tax revenue. This is leading to major moves by tax authorities to ensure transactions between related companies or parties, such as employers and employees, are done at arm’s length. This means these...
(The Guardian 09/06/13)
Scheme could herald a 'green gold' revolution as mines commit to ban child labour, enforce safety rules and prevent toxic run off. In a bustling area of Nyarugusu, in the heart of Tanzania's gold lands, a stocky man is fanning a dustbin lid of smouldering charcoal, gold ore and mercury on the pavement. Each waft sends a cloud of toxic vapour into the faces of children and adults as they gather to watch. The burning of mercury is a common sight in the streets, homes and cottage-industry mines throughout east Africa. The liquid metal is used to extract the gold and then vaporised to leave behind flakes of the precious metal. But in this dangerous industry, seeds of a gold...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/05/13)
NEW YORK | (Reuters Health) - Despite concerns that iron supplements may increase children's risk of malaria in regions where it is common, a new study found kids in Ghana who received nutrient powder with iron were no more likely to get the disease than their peers. According the World Health Organization (WHO), there were approximately 660,000 deaths from malaria in 2010. About 90 percent of those occurred in Africa, most in children under five years old. Some studies have suggested giving children iron might increase their risk of malaria - including one trial that was halted early due to more hospitalizations for malaria and other infections among children receiving iron. The theory is that malaria-causing parasites can take up...
(Haaretz 09/03/13)
Last week’s announcement that an agreement had been reached with an African country, later identified as Uganda, to accept African migrants from Israel was not only premature but far too optimistic in terms of the number of people likely to be involved, a senior government official said Monday. Haaretz has learned that the contacts with Uganda relate to the absorption of only a few hundred migrants, so even if an agreement is successfully concluded, its influence will be limited. According to the Population, Immigration and Border Authority, some 54,000 African migrants are now living in Israel, more than 90 percent of them Eritrean and Sudanese nationals. The initial announcement about an agreement with Uganda was made last week by Interior...
(Voice of America 09/03/13)
JOHANNESBURG — Journalists and South Africans have flocked to former South African president Nelson Mandela’s home in Johannesburg following his release Sunday from a Pretoria hospital. Mandela spent 85 days there after being admitted on June 8 for a recurring lung infection. While many South Africans are breathing a sigh of relief, some have questioned why the world icon was released despite the fact that his condition remains critical and at times unstable. Since Sundays’ announcement that the 95-year-old former president was allowed to return home from the Medi-Clinic Heart Hospital in Pretoria, social media have been flooded with congratulatory messages, and the story has made international headlines. The media that was entrenched for months outside the hospital now has...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/03/13)
DAKAR | (Reuters) - Senegal's new Prime Minister Aminata Toure named a cabinet on Monday, putting a veteran human rights campaigner in the key post of justice minister, suggesting high-profile graft and rights cases were likely to remain a priority. Toure, who was herself justice minister in the previous cabinet, named Sidiki Kaba, the former head of the International Federation of Human Rights, to her old ministerial position. Under President Macky Sall, who won power in March 2012,the government has fast-tracked the prosecution of the son of former President Abdoulaye Wade on embezzlement charges. Kaba will oversee the long-delayed trial of former Chadian leader Hissene Habre, accused of crimes against humanity during his 1982-1990 rule. Earlier this year, Senegal inaugurated...
(BBC News Africa 09/03/13)
The origins of human tuberculosis have been traced back to hunter-gatherer groups in Africa 70,000 years ago, an international team of scientists say. The research goes against common belief that TB originated in animals only 10,000 years ago and spread to humans. The work, published in Nature Genetics, outlines the strong relationship between the evolutionary history of both humans and TB. The disease causes more than one million deaths every year. Previous research has indicated that human TB originated about 10,000 years ago in Africa during the Neolithic Demographic Transition (NDT), when the human population was expanding and agriculture was becoming prominent. Researchers combined geographic and genetic data from 259 strains of TB to reconstruct its evolutionary history and compare...
(Bloomberg 09/03/13)
China’s smallest oil imports from West Africa in at least two years are curbing demand for tankers on the third-longest trade route, prolonging the worst rates in more than a decade for Frontline Ltd. and other owners. Chinese refiners will buy 28 percent less West African crude this month than a year earlier, the least in data starting in August 2011, according to loading plans and a Bloomberg News survey of eight traders. Shares of Frontline, which operates 32 very large crude carriers, will drop 38 percent in 12 months, the average of 14 analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg shows. Those of Euronav SA, with 13 supertankers in its fleet, will retreat 24 percent, the forecasts show. Tanker owners are...
(AFP 09/02/13)
DAKAR, September 2, 2013 (AFP) - Aminata Toure, a rights activist who was named Senegal's new prime minister Sunday, is known for her toughness and crackdowns on high-level corruption that have even targeted her ex-husband. As justice minister, Toure oversaw major dossiers including the arrest of Chad's former president Hissene Habre on war crimes charges and an anti-graft sting that took down political heavyweights from the previous administration. Aged 50, she is the second female head of government in Senegal after Mame Madior Boye, who was prime minister from 2001 to 2002. "She is a woman with principles, who is demanding.... She can bang on the table, but with arguments," said Demba Ndiaye, a journalist who is one of her...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/02/13)
DAKAR | (Reuters) - Senegal's President Macky Sall fired Prime Minister Abdoul Mbaye on Sunday just over a year after naming the former banker to head the government, an official said. Presidential spokesman Abou Abel Thiam did not say why Mbaye, who was not a member of any political party, was sacked but said a replacement and new government would be named soon. Mbaye, 60, was appointed in April 2012. He studied in Senegal and France's top business schools and previously worked at West Africa's BCEAO central bank. He has been credited with turning around several ailing private banks in the country. Sall won a hotly contested presidential election in March 2012 against veteran incumbent Abdoulaye Wade, promising to tackle...
(Voice of America 09/02/13)
JOHANNESBURG — Former South African president Nelson Mandela has been discharged from Medi-clinic Heart Hospital in the country’s capital, Pretoria, where he spent close to three months being treated for a recurring lung infection. However, his health is said to remain critical and at times unstable, and his doctors will keep providing him with intensive care at his Johannesburg home. Thuso Khumalo has more from Johannesburg. A spokesman for South African President Jacob Zuma has confirmed that Mandela left the hospital Sunday morning. Presidential spokesperson Mac Maharaj says the anti-apartheid icon is now recovering at his home in the Johannesburg suburb of Houghton. Mandela had been hospitalized since June 8. Maharaj referred to Mandela using his clan name, Madiba. We...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/02/13)
DAKAR | (Reuters) - President Macky Sall of Senegal appointed rights activist and anti-corruption campaigner Aminata Toure as prime minister after sacking a previous government on Sunday. Toure was justice minister in the outgoing government and led the government's drive to stamp out corruption by pursuing high-level cases involving senior officials, including the son of former president Abdoulaye Wade. Toure has also been the driving force behind government effort to press ahead with the long-delayed trial of former Chadian leader Hissene Habre, who is accused of crimes against humanity during his 1982-1990 rule. "The president has asked me to form and lead a new government...I have accepted the job," said Toure, 51, who is a member of Sall's ruling APR...
(Sud Quotidien 09/02/13)
Le secrétaire général national du parti socialiste, Ousmane Tanor Dieng est descendu hier sur la petite côte pour s’enquérir de la situation et des conditions des populations après le passage des pluies diluviennes du week-end . Son souhait est de voir le gouvernement venir en aide rapidement aux sinistrés des différentes localités du pays par un plan national d’urgence.Suite à un périple qui l’a mené dans le département de Mbour entre Joal-Fadiouth, Nguéniène, Ndianda et Thiadiaye, Ousmane Tanor Dieng, secrétaire général national du parti socialiste, s'est prononcé sur les fortes pluies, notamment les pics de 200 millimètres à Fissel et Sandiara et 150 millimètres à Mbour, qui se sont déversés sur la petite côte. A l’en croire, la situation est...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/02/13)
LONDON, Sept 2 | Mon Sep 2, 2013 (Reuters) - Africa-focused mining and infrastructure firm IMIC said on Monday it signed an offtake agreement with Chinese group Hebei Iron and Steel for iron ore produced from the Nkout project in Cameroon, which IMIC is in the process of acquiring. Junior miner Afferro IMIC, which is allied with African Iron Ore Group, run by Afren Plc founder Bert Cooper, says it can build the infrastructure necessary to begin production at its project in Cameroon. IMIC said the offtake agreements will be used as a vital part of financing the project through Chinese partners such as Hebei - the largest steel producer in China. A similar offtake agreement was crucial to African...
(AFP 09/01/13)
DAKAR, September 1, 2013 (AFP) - Senegal's former justice minister, Aminata Toure, has been appointed to replace the prime minister, Abdoul Mbaye, she announced to the press on Sunday after the former government had been dismissed. Toure said after talks at the presidential palace in Dakar that the Senegalese head of state Macky Sall "did me the honour of asking me to form a new government... and I have accepted this post with much humility". Several hours earlier, in a statement from Macky Sall, it was announced that Mbaye's government, which had been in office for 17 months, had been removed although no explanation was given. Toure, 50, is the second woman to occupy the post of prime minister in...
(AFP 09/01/13)
JOHANNESBURG, September 1, 2013 (AFP) - South Africa's anti-apartheid icon Nelson Mandela was Sunday discharged from hospital where he has been treated since June 8 for a recurring respiratory illness, the presidency said. "Former President Nelson Mandela has this morning, 1 September 2013, been discharged from the Pretoria hospital where he has been receiving treatment," said a statement. It is said his condition "remains critical and is at times unstable." An ambulance with police escort was seen arriving at his suburban home, north of Johannesburg, shortly after 0900 GMT. Officials said the 95-year-old will receive the same intensive care from his Johannesburg home. "If there are health conditions that warrant another admission to hospital in future, this will be done."...
(AFP 08/31/13)
JOHANNESBURG, August 31, 2013 (AFP) - South Africa's presidency on Saturday denied reports that Nelson Mandela had been discharged from hospital and had returned to his Johannesburg home. "Madiba is still in hospital in Pretoria, and remains in a critical but stable condition," President Jacob Zuma's spokesman said in a statement, denying reports from several news organisations that he had left the facility. "At times his condition becomes unstable, but he responds to medical interventions." During Mandela's 80-plus days in hospital, the presidency through Maharaj has been the official source of information about the condition of the 95-year-old anti-apartheid icon. But updates have been infrequent and have offered few details, prompting frequent speculation. At the end of July, Zuma's office...
(Reuters (Eng) 08/30/13)
PERTH | Fri Aug 30, 2013 (Reuters) - Australia's Sundance Resources (SDL.AX) expects to bring its $4.7 billion iron ore project in West Africa online by early 2018, despite the collapse of a takeover by China's Hanlong Group in April that many expected to doom the project. Giulio Casello, chief executive of Sundance, told Reuters in an interview that the company is also aiming to finalize an equity partner for the project and have off take secured by the end of the year. By early next year, Sundance expects to have selected a contractor for the development. Investors saw little hope for the future of the project when the Hanlong deal fell through, but Sundance has said it was talking...

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