| Africatime
Sunday 26 March 2017
(Bloomberg 01/27/17)
Barclays Africa Group Ltd. was targeted by protesters who entered one of its branches on Thursday and demanded the bank pay back money from a bailout provided to a company it bought before the end of apartheid. Demonstrators linked to the youth league of South Africa’s ruling African National Congress gathered outside the branch in Durban on South Africa’s east coast, Johannesburg-based Barclays Africa said in an e-mailed response to questions. Police ensured customers and staff were protected during the incident, it said. The protests come after the leaking of a draft report compiled by South Africa’s graft ombudsman that said Barclays Africa, which traded as Absa then, may have unduly benefited from state support when it bought Bankorp in...
(Xinhuanet 01/26/17)
Adopting African Continental Free Trade Area (CFTA) has been named a major task for the African Union (AU) this year as the 30th session of its Executive Council opened on Wednesday. In her remarks at the opening of the meeting, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, Chairperson of the AU Commission, called for member countries' commitment to meeting the first target in Agenda 2063 of commencing the CFTA by end of 2017. She underlines the need "to do what needs to be done on the free movement of persons, so that we unlock opportunities for intra-African trade, studies, business and tourism." In her remarks at the opening of the 33rd session of the AU Permanent Representatives Committee on Sunday, Dlamini-Zuma said the AU's major...
(Bloomberg 01/25/17)
Taiwan’s last two African allies have no plans to switch allegiances and break ties with Taipei as Beijing tries to woo the self-ruled island’s diplomatic partners. Burkina Faso won’t cut relations with Taiwan despite people and companies with links to China offering funding in return for recognition of the One-China principle, according to Foreign Minister Alpha Barry. Swaziland said its relationship with Taiwan is based on mutual interests, not on money. “We get outrageous proposals telling us, ‘if you sign with Beijing we’ll offer you $50 billion or even more,’’’ Barry said in an interview in the capital, Ouagadougou, this month. “Taiwan is our friend and our partner. We’re happy and we see no reason to reconsider the relationship.” Competition...
(Cnbc Africa 01/24/17)
While Brexit and the U.S. election dominated headlines in 2016, the African continent witnessed major changes of its own. Its two largest economies were destabilized, with Nigeria being driven into recession and the South African political elite grappling for power. Conflict continued to make news, with the continuation of people trafficking across the Mediterranean and violence in South Sudan bubbling over. Macroeconomic concerns Growth in Sub-Saharan Africa fell to 1.5 percent in 2016 according to the World Bank, which deemed this "the weakest pace in over two decades." The slowdown was chiefly blamed on low commodity prices. But, the organization forecasts growth of 2.9 percent in the region for 2017. Africa's two biggest economies have a lot to account for...
(Reuters (Eng) 01/23/17)
Tanzania is considering putting a tax on charcoal with the aim of discouraging the use of the fuel, which is a big source of energy for cooking but also a major contributor to deforestation. Officials say they believe making charcoal more expensive would significantly reduce demand for it and cut runaway tree felling in the east African nation. Justus Ntalikwa, permanent secretary in the Ministry of Energy and Minerals, told the Thomson Reuters Foundation that the government hopes to present a bill in the next parliament in February to put in place the levy, with funds raised going to finance reforestation activities in district councils. "The idea is to reduce destruction of forests," Ntalikwa said. However, putting such a levy...
(Voice of America 01/20/17)
By most measures, Africa is safer today than it has been in the modern era: Diseases are less deadly and wars are less frequent. But recent years have also been marked by a rise in radical extremism on the continent, and the terror threat could derail some of the world's fastest-growing economies. Dealing with the spread of radicalization has been a central focus of U.S. President Barack Obama's foreign policy during his time in office. Few areas have been spared over the past eight years, with much of the continent living in the shadow of a violent extremist group: al-Shabab in Somalia and East Africa, Islamic State (IS) in Libya, al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) in Mali, the Lord's...
(Xinhuanet 01/18/17)
Tanzania's ruling party, Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM), on Tuesday lashed out at opposition parties for misleading the public on food situation in the east African country. Humphrey Polepole, CCM Ideology and Publicity Secretary, said politicians and traders claimed Tanzania was facing food shortage in order to attain cheap political mileage. He told a news conference in the commercial capital Dar es Salaam that opposition parties were creating food shortage to help them achieve their political interests. Polepole appealed to the public to ignore false and misleading information given by leaders of opposition political parties on food situation. He urged the public to support the government on its endeavours aimed at improving social services and boosting economic growth. "Politics should be...
(Xinhuanet 01/18/17)
The Chinese government's decision to terminate ivory processing and trade by the end of 2017 marked a critical milestone in the journey toward eliminating poaching and other threats to Africa's elephant species, a conservationist group said on Wednesday. Kaddu Sebunya, president of African Wildlife Foundation (AWF) hailed China for taking bold measures to revitalize global efforts to save African elephants whose numbers had declined this decade due to poaching and climatic stresses. "The recent announcement by the central government of China to ban all domestic ivory trade by the end of 2017 offers a glimmer of real optimism in the fight against elephant poaching," Sebunya said in a statement issued in Nairobi The Chinese authority in December 2016 announced the...
(Tanzania Daily News 01/17/17)
President John Magufuli yesterday nominated two Members of Parliament, a move that has made some political analysts 'smell' some changes in the cabinet. Those nominated are Law Professor Palamagamba Kabudi and Chairman of the CCM parents' wing, WAZAZI, Mr Abdallah Bulembo, bringing the total number of presidential nominees in the House so far to eight. Along with the nomination, President Magufuli has appointed Mr Benedicto Mashiba as a new ambassador. Mr Mashiba's working station and the date for his swearing-in will be announced later, according to a statement issued by the Directorate of Presidential Communications in Dar es Salaam yesterday.
(Tanzania Daily News 01/17/17)
Distribution of food across regions currently hit by skyrocketing prices is about to start, the government announced in Dodoma yesterday, insisting that over 1.5 million metric tonnes (MT) of various food items are available for the undertaking. The Prime Minister, Mr Kassim Majaliwa, insisted in the new national capital-designate that the country "has not reported any food shortage," pointing out that media reports to the contrary were being engineered by some politicians and business persons. "We don't have food shortage. No one is authorised to declare food shortage but the government ... we have not declared so since all regions have reported availability of enough food," the premier said shortly after officially launching Air Tanzania's direct flights from Dar es...
(Voice of America 01/17/17)
More than 550 people took to the streets of Tanzania’s biggest city on Saturday morning to protest the trade in ivory. The "Walk for Elephants" march was co-organized by the Chinese Embassy in Tanzania and the Tanzania-China Friendship Promotion Association. Demonstrators, including the Chinese ambassador and many from the city’s Chinese community, walked five kilometers and called for the protection of elephants. Tanzania is an epicenter of the African elephant poaching crisis. In 2015, a government census suggested the country had lost 60 percent of its elephants to poaching in just five years. Elephants are mainly poached for their tusks, which are turned into ornate ivory carvings. Investigations into the trade have pointed to China as the leading destination for...
(Daily Nation 01/17/17)
Former Tanzania prime minister and Chadema party leader Edward Lowassa was arrested and briefly detained by police in Geita for allegedly holding an illegal meeting. Mr Lowassa, who was coming from Kagera in the company of other senior Chadema officials, arrived in Geita at about 3.30pm and was received by party members and supporters. Chadema members on bikes and a minibus escorted Mr Lowassa on his way to Nkome Ward to hunt for votes for a civic by-election. His convoy of five vehicles arrived at a road junction in Geita town and Mr Lowassa, who ran against President John Magufuli of CCM in 2015, took some moments to greet residents. YELLED The former premier waved to the residents who yelled...
(Tanzania Daily News 01/17/17)
Air Tanzania Company Limited (ATCL) yesterday launched its first direct flights to Dodoma from Dar es Salaam in a historic event that will promote business and travel ties between the two cities and upcountry regions. Launching the route yesterday, Prime Minister Mr Kassim Majaliwa said the development is part of the government decision to enable Dodoma become a fulladministrative capital for the country. "Negotiations are progressing well to build an international airport in Msalato. All the process are indeed going on well," he announced at a gathering shortly after ATCL plane made its first landing on Dodoma soil from Dar es Salaam. ATCL will operate twice a week scheduled flights using its Bombardier Dash 8 Q400, stretched to 78 passengers...
(New Vision 01/17/17)
“I can tell you that rats destroy up to 60% of health equipment in Africa,” Ssali said. Ssali sought to highlight the dangers that exist when biomedical engineers are not consulted in the management of health equipment including x-rays and CT scans. For instance, he narrated, cables of a CT scan installed at one unnamed facility were eaten up by rats, costing the institution over $5,000 to replace. Biomedical engineers are professionals who maintain and repair machines for diagnosing medical problems. They design medical equipment and devices, artificial internal organs or synthetic body parts. In Africa, the profession is relatively new-just about 10 years old in Uganda, it has been in existence in the developed world for nearly half a...
(RFI 01/14/17)
The 27th Africa-France Summit kicked off on Friday in the Malian capital Bamako with more than 30 African heads of state meeting French officials to discuss the threat of jihadists in the Sahel region and improve democracy in Africa. the meeting is also an opportunity for French president François Hollande to showcase his legacy. The choice to hold the 27th Africa-France summit in Mali is not insignificant. Bamako is where president François Hollande first revealed himself as an international statesman, when France's military launched Operation Serval in January 2013 as jihadists allied to Tuareg rebels took control of the north of the country. "I took the necessary steps and we intervened militarily, and what we did there in terms of...
(AFP (eng) 01/13/17)
France's top diplomat Jean-Marc Ayrault struck a defiant tone at a summit on Friday with foreign ministers from across Africa as he urged them to show confidence and hope despite the deadly jihadist threat. With the battle against extremists, the struggle to improve governance and the migrant crisis high on the agenda, ministers from at least 30 nations met in Mali's capital Bamako ahead of heads of state due on Saturday. Mali called on France four years ago to help force jihadists out of key northern cities. To this day, 4,000 French troops remain in the country and across the Sahel region. "(Choosing) Bamako as the venue is an act of confidence after the intervention," Ayrault told journalists as the...
(AFP (eng) 01/13/17)
Talks gathering some 30 African states and France begin in Mali's capital Bamako on Friday, with leaders expected to focus on Africa's battle against jihadists and bid to improve its democratic record. The summit, also due to take in the migrant crisis, will see foreign ministers gather first, with heads of state expected to follow Saturday, according to Malian and French conference organisers. Many of the nations taking part were once ruled by France, which in recent years has boosted its military involvement in the continent. Several English-speaking African countries will also be present. In a bid to help crush the growing jihadist threat, France has trained more than 20,000 African soldiers every year since a Paris summit in 2013,...
(Huffingtonpost 01/10/17)
And it’s ironic given the growing consensus that Beijing is the U.S. president-elect’s enemy number one. Eric Olander and Cobus van Staden are the duo behind the China Africa Project and hosts of the popular China in Africa Podcast. We’re here to answer your most pressing, puzzling, even politically incorrect questions, about all things related to the Chinese in Africa and Africans in China. The election of Donald Trump has introduced a new era of uncertainty in global politics, especially in Africa where the president-elect has said little about his foreign policy agenda for the continent. Not surprisingly, Trump’s unpredictable, provocative style is sparking widespread concern across the continent as to whether the United States plans to remain engaged in...
(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...

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