| Africatime
Monday 27 March 2017
(AfricaNews 01/09/17)
A pro-government militia group in Sudan says that it has saved some 115 hostages from the clutches of human traffickers in the desert along Sudan’s border with Libya and Egypt, sources say. The chief commander of the Sudanese Rapid Support Forces (RSF) Mohamed Hamdan Dalgo told the media on Sunday that majority of the victims were from neighboring countries, including Ethiopia, Eritrea and Somalia. The force also said it has intercepted 1,500 illegal migrants on the Sudanese-Libyan border during the last seven months. Sudan is considered as a country of origin and transit for the illegal migration and human trafficking, as thousands cross its territories on their way to Europe through Libya or Egypt. Sudan has been under US economic...
(AFP (eng) 01/09/17)
Gabon witnessed one of the most sensational finishes to an Africa Cup of Nations tournament when no-hopers Zambia stunned the Ivory Coast to win the 2012 final. Zambia failed to qualify this time, but the Ivorians will be among the favourites again when the competition returns to the central African state with the first fixtures scheduled for Saturday. AFP Sport rates the chances of the 16 challengers for the $4 million (3.8 million euros) first prize (last three competitive results in brackets with W denoting a win, D a draw and L a loss): FAVOURITES Egypt (WWW) Back among the elite and in good form. After winning three consecutive Cup of Nations titles, they failed to qualify for the past...
(Agence Ecofin 01/06/17)
Indian firm Aaviskaar Venture Management Services (AVMS) has announced plans to raise between $100 million and $150 million for Africa investments. “We will start the fund-raising around the middle of 2017 and we expect to close it in 2018,” said Vineet Rai, founder of Intellecap-Aavishkaar group. The new African fund will focus on investing on African low-income groups, especially in the agriculture, finance and financial technology sectors. “We will use the sow-tend-reap strategy of multiple round investing and will be an early investor,” Rai told local Indian media Regions targeted are West and East Africa, especially Kenya, Ethiopia, Nigeria, Rwanda, Tanzania and Ghana. Investments will range from half a million to $5 million. The investment firm’s expansion strategy in Africa...
(Sudan Tribune 01/04/17)
The Egyptian government has proposed to hold a meeting among Sudan, Ethiopia and Egypt Foreign Ministers to complete discussions on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) ahead of the African Union summit this month. The 28th African summit will be held in Addis Ababa from 22 to 31 January. According to the Turkish news agency Anadolu, Egypt’s Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry made the proposal during a telephone conversation with his Ethiopian counterpart Tedros Adhanom on Tuesday. The Egyptian Foreign Ministry said the meeting is intended to provide the necessary political support for the technical talks pertaining to the GERD. In March 2015, Sudan, Egypt and Ethiopia signed a declaration of principles on the dam project that tacitly approves the dam...
(AFP (eng) 01/04/17)
Italy vowed Wednesday to increase deportations of migrants whose asylum requests have been rejected, after a riot in a reception centre sparked by the death of a young woman. The country, which has been on the frontline of migrants arriving across the Mediterranean from North Africa, is pushing for an agreement with Niger and a renewed deal with Tunisia to facilitate returns. "We have saved many lives but we cannot accept rule-breaking. We need to speed up deportations," Foreign Minister Angelino Alfano, the country's former interior minister, said in an interview with La Stampa daily. He was "working to tie up agreements which will reduce arrivals and prevent departures" from the coast of North Africa, he said after a record...
(AFP (eng) 01/03/17)
Gunmen in military uniforms have killed eight people in Sudan's war-torn Darfur region, residents and an NGO said Monday, as rebels accused the army of being behind the attack. The shooting happened on Sunday in Nertiti in the Jabal Marra area, where sporadic clashes between the army and rebels have continued despite a government-announced unilateral ceasefire. Ashafih al-Saleh, who heads an association that supports displaced people in Darfur, said: "Eight people, mostly women, were killed inside their homes." He accused the army of carrying out the attack "to avenge the death of a soldier whose body was found" in Nertiti. Resident Faisal Ashaq said his 13-year-old daughter was killed in the attack. "Gunmen in military uniforms appeared suddenly in their...
(AL Jazeera 01/03/17)
Rebels blame government forces for killings of civilians at a camp for displaced people. A Sudanese official and rebels have traded blame over civilian deaths in central Darfur, an area that has seen sporadic clashes between the army and armed groups despite a government-announced ceasefire. The Darfur Union UK, an activist group, reported on Tuesday that gunmen, reportedly in military uniforms, killed 11 at a camp for displaced people in the Jabal Marra area.A Sudanese official and rebels have traded blame over civilian deaths in central Darfur, an area that has seen sporadic clashes between the army and armed groups despite a government-announced ceasefire. The Darfur Union UK, an activist group, reported on Tuesday that gunmen, reportedly in military uniforms,...
(BBC News Africa 01/03/17)
An electricity grid for the whole village Problem: A total of 1.3 billion people worldwide currently don't have electricity, according to Yale Environment 360. Getting people in rural areas on to the national grid is proving too difficult and traditional solar panels generate meagre amounts of energy. Solution: Steamaco makes solar and battery micro-grids which can work for a whole village. They are small electricity generation and distribution systems that operate independently of larger grids. How it works: Micro-grids are nothing new. The new part is that Steamaco's technology automates the regulation of electricity. So, if the system detects there will be a surge in demand for electricity, for example on a Saturday night when people want to start playing...
(Voice of America 12/30/16)
2016 was predicted to be a tough year for African economies, and it delivered. Traditional economic leaders faltered this year amid a storm of falling commodity prices, unpredictable and destructive weather like droughts and floods across large swaths of the the continent. Slow economic growth in China, a major investor and trading partner, only added to their challenges. “This year, you’ve seen the two Africas: the commodity exporters going through tough times, while the non-commodity exporters being more resilient,” Nigerian economist Nonso Obikili, who researches Nigerian and sub-Saharan economic trends for Economic Research Southern Africa, told VOA. He says 2016 has been hard on African commodity giants as oil prices fell to lows not seen since the global financial crisis...
(AFP (eng) 12/29/16)
Sudanese lawmakers voted Wednesday to bring back the post of prime minister, a position abolished after President Omar al-Bashir came to power in a 1989 Islamist-backed coup. The move to delegate limited powers to a prime minister fits with reforms proposed by a national dialogue between Bashir's government and some opposition groups. Bashir scrapped the post after leading a bloodless coup against then-premier Sadiq al-Mahdi with the help of Mahdi's brother-in-law, Islamist leader Hassan al-Turabi. In October, after a quarter-century in power, Bashir concluded a year-long national dialogue aimed at resolving the insurgencies in Sudan's
(AFP (eng) 12/29/16)
French border police intercepted 45 African migrants who were trying to enter the country from Italy and arrested the two smugglers involved, local prosecutors said Wednesday. Travelling in two vans, 25 migrants in the first vehicle were stopped while 20 in the second breached a checkpoint at Montgenevre in southeastern France, before later being found. According to the prosecutor's office, the migrants were returned to the border and the two smugglers are to be tried in Italy.
(Xinhuanet 12/28/16)
Sudan and Ethiopia on Monday agreed to find new mechanisms to develop bilateral ties and continue consultations and coordination on common issues. Ethiopia's Minister of Foreign Affairs Workneh Gebeyehu hailed the bilateral relationship as "exemplary" and vowed to develop it "to the highest peak and to get benefit out of that." He added that the two sides have also agreed to establish a permanent platform to exchange ideas and experiences. Sudanese Presidential Assistant Ibrahim Mahmoud Hamid, for his part, assured commitment in pressing ahead with and establishing new mechanisms to develop this strategic relationship.
(AFP (eng) 12/28/16)
Its lower cost has made it popular in commercial food production, but after being blamed for deforestation in Asia, palm oil plantations are now getting a similar rap in Africa. The sheer scale of land required is having an impact in Gabon, Cameroon and the Congo Basin, environmentalists say. With financing coming from American, European and Asian agri-businesses, palm bunches are cultivated then cut from trees and sent to factories where oil is extracted by hot pressing. But the production process accelerates deforestation, contributes to climate change and threatens fauna and flora in vulnerable areas, opponents argue. However the companies say that palm oil is not only less expensive than soya or sunflower oil but requires much less land to...
(The Herald Online 12/27/16)
The end of 2016 provides an opportunity to take stock of Africa’s recent economic performance and future prospects. It’s been a tumultuous year for some African countries largely due to a commodities crisis and a global economic slowdown.Yet there were still pockets of good growth which displayed the huge potential of the African continent. And 2017 looks to be the year the countries hardest hit by the crisis seek to recover from the economic reversals of the past few years. Since the start of the new millennium average economic growth across Africa has been stronger than the global growth rate. Growth across the continent averaged 5 percent. This fuelled the “Africa Rising” narrative that permeated public discourse. Among the growth...
(Reuters (Eng) 12/24/16)
A record 5,000 migrants are believed to have drowned in the Mediterranean Sea this year, following two shipwrecks on Thursday in which some 100 people, mainly West Africans, were feared dead, aid agencies said on Friday. Two overcrowded inflatable dinghies capsized in the Strait of Sicily after leaving Libya for Italy, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and the U.N. refugee agency UNHCR said. "Those two incidents together appear to be the numbers that would bring this year's total up to over to 5,000 (deaths), which is a new high that we have reported during this crisis," IOM spokesman Joel Millman told a Geneva briefing. The Italian coast guard rescued survivors and had recovered eight bodies so far, he said...
(The Globe and Mail 12/23/16)
The Square Kilometre Array will be the world’s most powerful radio telescope, opening new frontiers in our understanding of the universe. But the builders have to contend with an unforgiving climate and other formidable challenges first, In the desolate rocky plains of the Great Karoo, the dangers are endless. Scorpions and puff adders are underfoot. The harsh sun beats down, interrupted only by occasional lightning storms. Temperatures range from stifling heat to freezing cold. But at night, in the vast empty darkness, the stars are impossibly bright and clear. And it is the stars that have lured a Canadian-backed project to build the world’s most powerful radio telescope, with the potential to unlock the deepest secrets of the universe. For...
(APA 12/22/16)
Somali land and self-declared Khaatumo with in Somalia on Wednesday agreed to end armed struggle followings years of protracted hostility in northern Sool region of the country. The parties came to an agreement to resolve their differences through peaceful means after five days of negotiations in Ethiopia’s capital Addis Abeba. Somaliland has claimed autonomous since some years now, arguing that the Khaatumo region is part of its administration as opposed to the self-declared Khaatumo administration. Saad Ali Shire, minister of foreign affairs for Somaliland told APA that the agreement will bring the two sides closer leaving their disagreements behind.
(AFP (eng) 12/22/16)
Selma saunters on her stilt-like legs, batting thick lashes as she extends a blackish tongue -- as long as an arm -- to grab pellets offered by an awed tourist. The giraffe is after all, eating for two. Her pregnancy is good news for one of the rarest giraffe species, protected at the Giraffe Centre in the Kenyan capital, but experts warn the outlook for the rest of the world's tallest land mammals is far gloomier. While it is hoped the shocking news that the gentle giants of the African savannah are facing extinction will spur action, conservationists largely have their hands tied as many giraffe live in Africa's most conflict-torn regions. Somalia, the Democratic Republic of Congo, South Sudan...
(APA 12/21/16)
Sudan and South Sudan on Tuesday extended the agreement to allow South Sudan's oil flow through Sudanese territory for another three years. The oil flow agreement signed between the two countries in September 2012 will end this month. The Sudanese Minister of Oil Mohamed Awad Zaid told reporters in Khartoum on Tuesday that the oil ministers of the two countries have signed the agreement on Tuesday. He stated that the agreement included its extension in addition to other technical understandings. “The agreement has included two parts, the extension of the agreement and the financial transitional arrangements, especially after the sharp declining of oil international oil prices,” it pointed out. “Sudan has accepted to rescheduling of South Sudan’s debts according to...
(APA 12/21/16)
Three United Nations staff have been released on Tuesday in Darfur after a month of abduction, UN and Sudan government sources confirmed here Wednesday. The UN High Commissioner for Refugees in a statement seen by APA on Wednesday has confirmed the release of the three workers who had been abducted on 27th November in El-Ginena city in Western Darfur state. “The UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Filippo Grandi is very pleased by the safe release Tuesday of three UNHCR staff members Sarun Pradhan, Ramesh Karki and Musa Omer Musa Mohamed, who were abducted on 27th November in El Geneina, Sudan,” the statement read in part. "Special thanks in particular go to the Sudanese government and its personnel, who worked to...

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