Wednesday 24 May 2017
(AL Jazeera 02/08/17)
The EU must espouse a transnational approach with a clear development agenda that replaces its current security policy. One year ago, 22-year-old Patrick left Douala, the largest city in Cameroon, to become a football star in Europe. A talented midfielder and an ambitious young man, Patrick felt compelled to reach Europe to help him to realise his dreams. But, as he passed through Agadez in Niger, which has become a major transit hub for migrants taking the Central Mediterranean route, reality proved to be grimmer than he had anticipated. Patrick and two of his male relatives, also travelling from Douala, were beaten, robbed and held captive by organised predatory groups. Finally, their tumultuous journey came to an end in Algeria,...
(AFP (eng) 02/07/17)
Malawi and its northern neighbour Tanzania have agreed to revive talks to resolve a long-running border dispute, President Peter Mutharika said Tuesday after meeting Tanzania's foreign minister in Lilongwe. The two east African neighbours are at odds over the ownership of Lake Malawi which straddles both countries with Tanzania claiming the top half of Africa's third largest freshwater lake -- a claim contested by Malawi. "The mediation efforts will be resuscitated towards a logical conclusion of the Lake Malawi border dispute," Mutharika said in a statement. Mediation to resolve the dispute has been stalled since 2012, but will be revived under the supervision of former Mozambican president Joaquim Chissano.
(Nyasa Times 02/07/17)
Tanzania’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and East African Coorperation, Augustin Mahiga has said a dispute between his country and Malawi regarding their border through Lake Malawi also known as Lake Nyasa in Tanzania is still on. Mahinga said after he signed on behalf of his government a Joint Permanent Commission Coperatuon (JPCC) agreement with Malawi in Lilongwe on Sunday. “This lake border dispute is now under revived discussion,” said the Tanzanian Foreign Minister. He said the matter is being handled by three member committee led by fromer president of Mozambique JoachimChissano and former presidents of South Africa Thabo Mbeki and Botswana. Mahinga said despite this Lake Malawi issue, the two countries continued to cooperate in other areas including those of...
(Bloomberg 02/06/17)
Prem Watsa’s Fairfax Financial Holdings Ltd. is expected to raise about $500 million for its new African investment fund, attracting less than its original goal as investor interest in the region proved weaker than anticipated, according to people familiar with the matter. The Toronto-based insurer sought to raise as much as $1 billion at $10 a share for Fairfax Africa Holdings Corp. in an initial public offering on the Toronto Stock Exchange, according to a regulatory filing in December. Fairfax said it had secured as much as $416 million in commitments for the African venture from both its own funds and partners, including the Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System, a Canadian pension fund and CI Investments Inc., according to the...
(Xinhuanet 02/03/17)
T20 Africa Conference, the meeting for the G20 think tanks and African countries, ended on Friday in Johannesburg with a commitment to accelerate cooperation between the G20 and Africa. The three-day conference aimed to chart a course for the future cooperation between Africa and the G20. The day ended with the formulation of the communique which will be given to the current G20 chair Germany. The communique will also be the reference for further discussion between Africa and T20. T20 comprises of the G20 think tanks. Dr. Christine Hackenesch, researcher at the German Development Institute (DIE) said, "There was an agreement that there must be a continuous and sustained engagement between G20 and Africa because there is a strong dependence...
(Reuters (Eng) 02/02/17)
African leaders have backed a "strategy of collective withdrawal" from the International Criminal Court (ICC), but it came with unspecified reservations, an African Union official said on Wednesday after this week's African Union summit. The official did not give details about the strategy or the reservations, but it highlights broad antipathy towards the court among Africans who feel the ICC unfairly targets them. A document seen by Reuters before the summit proposed a co-ordinated withdrawal unless the ICC was reformed. It included a call for "regionalization" of international law, a reference to proposals for an African war crimes court. Almost a third of the ICC's 124 members are African, and a withdrawal by a large number of them would cripple...
(Xinhuanet 02/01/17)
More than 100,000 Tanzanians are in need of food aid after prolonged drought hit the east African nation, the minister of agriculture said on Tuesday. Charles Tizeba, Tanzania's Minister for Agriculture, Livestock, and Fisheries said that delay and inadequacy of rains in many parts of the country has affected production and forecast show that the country faces a shortage of food. Briefing on Tanzania's food and nutrition situation for 2016/2017, in capital Dodoma, the minister said inadequate and uneven rainfall will also negatively impact production and availability of seeds, noting that the situation will lead to the high price of food in the east African nation. According to the minister, about 118,603 people have no food at all that will...
(Xinhuanet 02/01/17)
Newly elected senior officials of the African Union (AU) Commission, including Chairperson and Deputy Chairperson of the AU Commission, were sworn in on Tuesday at the conclusion of the 28th AU summit in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa. In addition to the two top officials, other officials took the oath for positions including, peace and security; political affairs; trade and industry; social affairs; infrastructure and energy; and rural economy and agriculture. The 28th AU summit also elected Alpha Conde, President of the Republic of Guinea, for a rotating chairmanship of the African Union. In his acceptance speech on Monday, Conde said, "It is with honor and humility that I accept to preside at the destiny of our Organization during the year...
(Xinhuanet 01/28/17)
Drought has disrupted the normal migration wildebeests and zebras in northern Tanzania and forced them to give birth near the Tarangire River, an ecologist said Friday. Tanzania is experiencing a drought after the short rainy season failed to deliver much-needed rainfall during recent months. Derek Lee, an ecologist and scientist of the German-based Wild Nature Institute (WNI) said that the landscape across the Tarangire Ecosystem of northern Tanzania is now unseasonably dry, and where the ground would normally be a carpet of green, grasses and herbs are now in short supplies. "Normally, at this time of year, the long-distance migratory wildlife like wildebeests and zebras would be on their calving grounds on the short-grass plains near Gelai and Simanjiro, far...
(Xinhuanet 01/28/17)
The African Union (AU) has been endeavoring to ensure robust, resilient and long-lasting economic transformation of Africa through promotion of infrastructure and energy development on the continent, noted Elham Mahmood Ibrahim, AU Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy. Speaking at a press conference Friday ahead of the 28th AU leaders' summit here, the commissioner said the pan-African bloc has scored achievements in its flagship projects and programs on the development of energy, transport as well as in the information and communication technology (ICT) areas, which she said are the biggest priorities in Africa's infrastructure sector. In cooperation and coordination with its regional, continental, and international partners, AU has been committed to development of infrastructure on the continent, which facilitates trade, economic...
(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...

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