| Africatime
Friday 28 April 2017
(The Guardian 02/23/17)
Funding response follows UN warnings that 40% of South Sudan’s population are in urgent need, with people already dying from hunger. New and existing funds provided by the EU and the UK government will be made available to South Sudan following the declaration of famine in the country. The UN has warned that about 40% of South Sudan’s population are in urgent need of humanitarian assistance and that people are already dying from hunger caused by famine in parts of the country. An emergency package of €82m (£69m) has been announced by the European commission to tackle what the UN described as a “man-made” famine in the oil-rich country, which has been ravaged by three years of civil war. This...
(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," said lead author Arnab Pain,...
(Reuters (Eng) 02/22/17)
Britain will provide additional aid money to South Sudan, where famine has been declared in parts of the country, and to Somalia, where there is a credible risk of famine, the government said on Wednesday. Britain will provide 100 million pounds ($125 million) to each country in 2017/18 in addition to existing flows of aid. "The world faces a series of unprecedented humanitarian crises and the real threat of famine in four countries," International Development Secretary Priti Patel said in a statement. U.N. children's agency UNICEF said on Tuesday that nearly 1.4 million children were at imminent risk of death in famines in South Sudan, Somalia, Nigeria and Yemen. "These crises are being driven by conflict and drought and we...
(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)
South Sudan's President Salva Kiir vowed Tuesday that government would ensure aid could reach areas hit by famine after three years of war that has restricted access for humanitarian workers. The world's youngest nation on Monday declared famine in parts of the northern Greater Unity state where 100,000 people were facing starvation and another one million were on the brink of famine. A total of nearly five million are going hungry. Aid groups have slammed a "man-made" famine caused by ongoing fighting in the country where civil war has forced people to flee, disrupted agriculture, sent prices soaring, and seen aid agencies blocked from accessing some of the worst-hit areas. "It underscores the complete failure by government, opposition forces, and...
(AFP (eng) 02/21/17)
Almost 1.4 million children suffering from severe malnutrition could die this year from famine in Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan and Yemen, the UN children's agency said Monday. In Yemen, where war has been raging for nearly two years, 462,000 children are suffering from acute malnutrition while 450,000 children are severely malnourished in northeast Nigeria. Fews Net, the famine early warning system, said some remote areas of Nigeria's Borno state are already affected by famine since late last year and the disaster is likely to continue as aid agencies are unable to reach those in need. Drought in Somalia has left 185,000 children on the brink of famine but that figure is expected to reach 270,000 in the next few months,...
(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 the proceedings where a judge will have to decide how much Thakkar -- described in videos posted on his foundation’s website as "Africa’s Youngest Billionaire" -- is worth. Thakkar says he has assets of 445,532 pounds ($553,000) while his wife,...
(AFP (eng) 02/20/17)
South Sudan's government said Monday that more than three years of war have led to famine in parts of the nation, a tragedy aid agencies criticised as "man-made". Isaiah Chol Aruai, the chairman of South Sudan National Bureau of Statistics, said some parts of the northern Greater Unity region "are classified in famine, or... risk of famine". A joint press statement from aid agencies said 100,000 people were affected by the famine, which threatened another one million people in the coming months. "A formal famine declaration means people have already started dying of hunger. The situation is the worst hunger catastrophe since fighting erupted more than three years ago," said the statement signed by the World Food Programme (WFP), UN...
(AFP (eng) 02/17/17)
South Sudan's labour minister resigned Friday and declared allegiance to rebel leader Riek Machar, making him the second top official to quit in the war-torn country this week. Gabriel Duop Lam, who joined a unity government last year as a member of Machar's opposition, did not give a reason for his resignation in a statement released to the press, but declared his "full allegiance and commitment" to the exiled rebel. Information Minister Michael Makuei confirmed to AFP that Lam as well as his deputy had "defected" and had left to Khartoum. "It will not have any impact and it is just individual behaviour. Those who have gone away have their right to go," he said. Lam's resignation comes just days...
(Voice of America 02/17/17)
Officials in South Sudan say army troops entered a village near the capital, Juba, on Sunday and raped at least a half-dozen women and girls, some of them at gunpoint. The alleged rapes occurred less than two weeks after South Sudanese President Salva Kiir issued a warning that soldiers who commit acts of rape and sexual assault will be shot. An increasing number of rapes by members of the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) have sparked outrage among civilians and raised tension between the Kiir government and countries that pay for most of the war-torn country’s
(Xinhuanet 02/17/17)
South Sudan's Minister of Labor Gabriel Duop Lam resigned on Friday from the transitional unity government (TGoNU) and vowed his allegiance to exiled rebel leader Riek Machar's faction. Lam, who did not give reasons for his resignation, became the latest official to abandon the cash-starved TGoNU amid fighting between warring factions in the world's youngest nation. "I Lt.Gen. Gabriel Duop Lam, the national minister of labour in South Sudan with sound mind and excellent reasoning do hereby resign from the position of being the minister of labour in the so called partial government of national unity with effect from Feb. 17," he said in a statement. Lam was a member of the splinter SPLA-in opposition (SPLA-IO) faction in Juba led...
(Xinhuanet 02/16/17)
South Sudan and Uganda have agreed to conduct joint border surveillance exercise in an effort to combat the spread of the avian flu that was reported in Kampala in January, a South Sudanese official said Thursday. Meanwhile, Minister of Livestock and Fisheries James Janka Duku said South Sudan would not ban imports of Ugandan poultry products. The minister said the two countries have agreed to deploy health experts along the Uganda-South Sudan border to monitor and inspect Ugandan poultry products. He said under the new guidelines, all bird products must undergo background checks and traders must have valid export certificates issued by the joint task force. Duku said a team of technical experts from South Sudan would be dispatched to...
(AFP (eng) 02/15/17)
A confidential UN report is warning that the war in South Sudan has reached "catastrophic proportions for civilians" and the rise of militias risks spinning out of control, fueling fighting for years to come. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said in the report obtained by AFP on Tuesday that civilians were fleeing villages and towns "in record numbers" and that the danger of mass atrocities "is real". The stark warning followed a series of meetings that Guterres held with regional leaders and South Sudan's President Salva Kiir last month to push for an end to the three-year war. "The security situation continues to deteriorate in parts of the country and the consequent impact of this ongoing conflict and violence, has reached...
(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 to adopt policies to expand electrical grids, connecting them to solar and wind generation, and to help make electric utilities creditworthy and financially viable while keeping energy prices down. More than a third of countries, home to 96 percent of...
(AFP (eng) 02/14/17)
South Sudan's army said Tuesday a general who quit after accusing President Salva Kiir and his tribe of "ethnic cleansing" was corrupt and had fled to evade arrest. Lieutenant-General Thomas Cirillo Swaka, then deputy chief of general staff for logistics, resigned last week accusing Kiir, aides and other army officers of violating a 2015 peace deal. They had "systematically frustrated the implementation" of the peace agreement and sought to "pursue the agenda" of ... the Dinka ethnic community, Cirillo claimed. But a statement from the army sent to AFP said it was Cirillo who was guilty of misconduct and that it "strongly disputes all inaccurate and inconsistent reasons" he cited for quitting. "His resignation was aimed at avoiding accountability and...
(The Associated Press 02/14/17)
The U.N. peacekeeping department said in a confidential note to the Security Council that recent increased fighting in two hotspots in South Sudan is having "devastating consequences" for civilians. The note, obtained late Monday by The Associated Press, focuses on fighting between government and rebel forces in the Wau Shilluk area of the Upper Nile region that has caused humanitarian organizations to temporarily suspend operations and in Central Equatoria's Kajo Keji county. It said most of the civilian population — approximately 20,400 internally displaced people and local inhabitants — fled Wau Shilluk earlier this month and 30,000 or more have fled three areas of Kajo Keiji since Jan. 22 as a result of fighting, insecurity and fear of reprisals. There...
(The Associated Press 02/14/17)
More than 1.5 million South Sudanese have become refugees and their humanitarian needs are overwhelming aid efforts during the country's civil war, according to the United Nations. South Sudan's civil war began in December 2013 and roughly 3.6 million people have fled their homes or become refugees, according to the U.N. The country is Africa's largest refugee crisis and the third largest in the world, after Syria and Afghanistan. The humanitarian situation in South Sudan has “deteriorated dramatically,” said Eugene Owusu, the U.N. aid chief in South Sudan, who described the country as troubled by the threat of famine and widespread sexual violence. “We are facing unprecedented needs, in an unprecedented number of locations,” Owusu said, adding that $1.6 billion...
(Sudan Tribune 02/14/17)
The South Sudanese presidential adviser on religious affairs, Tahir Bior Lueth Ajak has died. Ajak passed on Sunday evening after a short illness. The presidential spokesperson, Ateny Wek Ateny said President Salva Kiir was saddened by Ajak’s sudden demise. “It is with sorrow to learn of Tahir Bior’s [Ajak] death,” he told Sudan Tribune Monday. Also leader of the Islamic Council in South Sudan, Ajak was appointed presidential advisor on religious affairs in 2016. A veteran politician from South Sudan’s Jonglei state, Ajak helped to explain to the Arab world the multi-religious composition of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) between 1983 and 2005, dismissing claims that religion mainly caused the war between Christians in the south and Muslims in...
(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 to make a new deal to help Nigeria "in terms of military weapons." The statement said Trump also commended Buhari for the strides Nigeria is making against Islamist radical group Boko Haram, and invited Buhari to come to Washington at...
(Reuters (Eng) 02/13/17)
A South Sudanese general has resigned, citing abuses by the security forces against civilians and what he called increasing ethnic favoritism in the military, according to a letter seen by Reuters on Saturday. Lieutenant General Thomas Cirillo Swaka, the deputy head of logistics, is the highest-ranking officer to resign since former Vice President Riek Machar fled after his supporters clashed in Juba in July with soldiers loyal to President Salva Kiir. Swaka, widely known as Cirillo, is respected by the international community and Western governments would see his resignation and the charges he has leveled as an indictment of the government, one security expert in Nairobi said. South Sudan has been riven by conflict since 2013, two years after seceding...

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