Tuesday 17 October 2017
(AFP (eng) 09/26/17)
Chad expressed its "astonishment" and "incomprehension" on Monday after it was added by the United States to the list of countries targeted by its travel ban. The landlocked African country "was surprised to learn of the US government's decision to include Chad on the list of countries whose nationals are banned from entering American territory," a spokesman for the government, Madeleine Alingue, said. For N'Djamena, Chad's capital, the grounds for its inclusion on this list -- officially for security failures on travellers and a lack of cooperation with Washington -- "contrast with Chad's constant efforts and commitments in the fight against terrorism at a regional and global level". Chad called on the United States to "better understand the situation" and...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/26/17)
Israel’s Elbit Systems Ltd said on Tuesday it won a contract worth $240 million to provide a wide array of defense electronic systems to an unnamed country in Africa. The contract, which will be carried out over a two-year period, is comprised of Directed Infra-red Counter Measure (DIRCM) systems to protect aircraft from shoulder fired missiles, based on passive infrared systems, and includes missile warning systems, radio and communication systems, land systems, mini-unmanned air systems and helicopters upgrade.
(Voice of America 09/25/17)
African first ladies and activists hailed progress that some governments on the continent are making on gender equality. They met on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York. “We used to have 23 percent female representation in parliament but, with the stroke of a pen it went up to 48 percent. So, we managed to double our female representation with that decision,” said Namibia’s first lady Monica Geingos at a roundtable invitation-only event co-hosted by the Global First Ladies Alliance (GFLA) and Facebook. Geingos credited the quota enacted by the ruling SWAPO party of her husband, President Hage Geingob. But she said a similar quota might be needed for Namibia’s private sector, where only 10 to...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/22/17)
From deadly droughts and destroyed crops to shrinking water sources, communities across sub-Saharan Africa are struggling to withstand the onslaught of global record-breaking temperatures. But the dangers do not end there. Rising heat poses another threat - one that is far less known and studied but could spark disease epidemics across the continent, scientists say. Mosquitoes are the menace, and the risk goes beyond malaria. The Aedes aegypti mosquito, which spreads debilitating and potentially deadly viruses, from Zika and dengue to chikungunya, thrives in warmer climates than its malaria-carrying cousin, known as Anopheles, say researchers at Stanford University. In sub-Saharan Africa, this means malaria rates could rise in cooler areas as they heat up, but fall in hotter places that...
(AFP (eng) 09/21/17)
The Chadian government said Thursday that more than 50 people have died of cholera in Chad where authorities have since declared an outbreak. "We count 312 cases, including 52 deaths," said health ministry secretary-general Hamid Djabar. Authorities declared a cholera outbreak on Monday, which put in place a "crisis committee" to monitor the situation and to strengthen cooperation with partners such as medical charity Doctors Without Borders (MSF) and the UN children's agency UNICEF. "For the time being, the outbreak is confined to the region of Sila" near the borders with Sudan and the Central African Republic, said Djabar. In the neighbouring region of Salamat, 19 cases and two deaths were recorded, but the health ministry said the situation is...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/21/17)
Makers of generic AIDS drugs will start churning out millions of pills for Africa containing a state-of-the-art medicine widely used in rich countries, after securing a multi-million dollar guarantee that caps prices at just $75 per patient a year. Global health experts hope the deal will help address two looming problems in the HIV epidemic - the rising threat of resistance developing to standard AIDS drugs, and the need for more investment in manufacturing capacity. Bill Gates’ charitable foundation will guarantee minimum sales volumes of the new combination pills using dolutegravir, a so-called integrase inhibitor that avoids the drug resistance that often develops with older treatments. In return the drugmakers, India-based Mylan Laboratories and Aurobindo Pharma, will agree the maximum...
(APA 09/20/17)
Over 50 people have died of cholera, mainly in Chad’s Sila (east) and Salamat (south-east) regions, the permanent secretary at the Ministry of Public Health, Dr Hamit Djabar announced on Tuesday. The cholera epidemic was first reported by Medecins sans frontières (MSF) in the Sila region, where 25 people out of 200 cases died in refugee camps accommodating Sudanese. The Salamat region recorded two deaths out of 19 cases, according to Dr Djabar, who said the situation was so serious that his department had to deploy a team to the area to coordinate the response with partners, especially MSF, WHO and UNICEF. The Health ministry also pointed out that since the first outbreak of the disease, 28 villages have been...
(The Guardian 09/18/17)
Anna Jones says that, through selling its cocoa cheaply, Africa is exporting its wealth overseas; while Sue Banford claims that the soya moratorium in the Amazon has done nothing to halt deforestation. Only the final paragraph in your article on cocoa farming causing deforestation in Ivory Coast (Forests pay price for world’s taste for cocoa, 14 September) mentioned the most fundamental thing – the farmer’s livelihood, or lack of it. The low value of his (or more likely her) crop is undoubtedly the cause of this problem. But cocoa farming could also provide the solution. Recently, I was in Ivory Coast for the African Green Revolution Forum (AGRF) in Abidjan. It united many different parties – governments, the UN’s Food...
(APA 09/15/17)
APA-N’Djamena (Chad) - Some 4500 Chadian pilgrims who have completed the fifth pillar of Islam are still stranded in Saudi Arabia. Out of the 4786 Chadians who went this year to Mecca for the pilgrimage, only 200 returned since last week, a situation which aroused a public controversy, all the more since the committee tasked with organizing the hajj has not given any explanation so far. According to several sources contacted by the African Press Agency in Mecca, the members of hajj committee are nowhere to be seen. “None of us knows when we’re going back home. For the last few days, we have been going through hell in Mecca. The meal is unaffordable. We have to spend between CFAF5000...
(Bloomberg 09/15/17)
Societe Generale SA, challenged on its home turf by Orange SA’s push into banking, is fighting back with a new mobile lender in Africa. The French lender started YUP, a new app for smartphones, in Senegal and Ivory Coast and plans to begin operating in four other sub-Saharan countries this year and next, the company said on Thursday. The bank aims to double its client base to 2 million in the region within three years. “Telcos have opened the way and they’ve gotten ahead,” Alexandre Maymat, who oversees Societe Generale’s operations in French-speaking Africa, said at a press briefing. “We’re catching up” by redefining the retail strategy and providing a broader offering than telephone companies. Chief Executive Officer Frederic Oudea...
(AfricaNews 09/13/17)
France has called on Chadian President Idriss Déby, to announce a “timetable” for the parliamentary elections. A statement from the French foreign ministry urged Chadian authorities to announce dates for the elections saying Legislative elections are an important part of democratic life. The legislative elections were postponed last February by President Déby, who has been in power since 1990. He was re-elected for a fifth term in April 2016 after a disputed election. President Deby had declared that the legislative elections would not take place before 2019, arousing the anger of the opposition.
(Xinhuanet 09/13/17)
In an effort to promote economic development and solve complex conservation challenges facing world heritage sites, the African World Heritage Fund Patron and former President of Namibia Hifikepunye Pohamba will host a business leader's breakfast event in Namibian Capital, Windhoek on Thursday. The African World Heritage Fund is an initiative of the African Member States of the African Union and UNESCO, launched in 2006. Webber Ndoro, executive director of the African World Heritage Fund, at a media briefing on Tuesday in Windhoek said that the aim of the event is to promote a holistic private sector engagement, raise a sense of ownership and accountability for heritage protection as well as transmission of World Heritage sites in Namibia and Africa. "To...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/12/17)
PARIS (Reuters) - France on Monday urged Chadian authorities to press ahead with parliamentary elections after securing billions of dollars in pledges from donor countries aimed at helping to revive the country’s struggling economy. President Idriss Deby, who was re-elected in 2016 after gaining power in 1990 at the head of an armed rebellion, said in February that lack of financial resources meant Chad’s parliamentary elections would be postponed indefinitely. “The legislative elections are an important moment in democratic life,” French foreign ministry spokeswoman Agnes Romatet-Espagne told reporters in a daily briefing. “We hope in this regard that the Chadian authorities ... will be in a position to announce a calendar (for elections) soon.” In a statement on Friday, Chad’s...
(Voice of America 09/12/17)
BUDUA, CAMEROON — The head of the multinational task force fighting Boko Haram says the war against the militants is being won, but warned that suicide bombings remain a threat, killing close to 400 people in Nigeria and Cameroon since April. Soldiers from the 7,800-person task force have been stationed in several towns and villages along the Nigeria-Cameroon border since those communities were liberated from Boko Haram a little over a year ago. The force's commander, Nigerian-born General Lucky Irabor, visited four communities along the border on Saturday to reassure local residents and rally the troops.
(Reuters (Eng) 09/12/17)
Olympic boxing’s governing body, AIBA, has banned African confederation head Kelani Bayor for three years for allegedly provoking the crowd at the continental championships in Brazzaville last June. Bayor is an AIBA vice-president and executive committee member as well as chairman of Togo’s national Olympic committee. “The Disciplinary Commission found that a hostile and threatening reaction to AIBA officials by spectators after the result of a bout on the last day of the competition was exacerbated by comments from Mr Bayor,” AIBA said in a statement on Monday. It found Bayor had “committed serious and unacceptable violations of the AIBA Disciplinary Code” at the tournament in Congo Republic. AIBA said the ban was from all boxing activities and responsibilities and...
(Bloomberg 09/11/17)
The South African companies that dominate the U.K.’s growing private hospital industry are counting on more people like Katie Corrie. A children’s party entertainer, Corrie opted to use 13,000 pounds ($17,000) of her savings and inheritance to get a hip replacement rather than spend months on a National Health Service waiting list. Britons like her are forking out almost 1 billion pounds a year to cover their own medical expenses, a trend that’s giving at least one industry the scope to look past Brexit turmoil. “Even if I hadn’t had the money put aside, I would have found a way to pay for it,” said Corrie, 50, who estimates the business she runs with her husband would have lost 10,000...
(APA 09/08/17)
Deprivation and marginalization, underpinned by weak governance, are primary forces driving young Africans into violent extremism, according to a comprehensive new study by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the first study of its kind. Based on interviews with 495 voluntary recruits to extremist organizations such as Al-Shabaab and Boko Haram, the new study also found that it is often perceived state violence or abuse of power that provides the final tipping point for the decision to join an extremist group. “Journey to Extremism in Africa: Drivers, Incentives and the Tipping Point for Recruitment” presents the results of a two-year UNDP Africa study on recruitment in the most prominent extremist groups in Africa. The study reveals a picture of a...
(Bloomberg 09/07/17)
African Rainbow Minerals Ltd., the miner chaired by South Africa’s richest black businessman, will pay a record dividend this year as rising iron-ore and manganese prices boosted earnings at its ferrous unit. ARM will pay investors 6.50 rand a share, almost triple that of the previous year, and its 11th consecutive dividend, the Johannesburg-based company said in a statement Thursday. The company benefited from a 45 percent increase in prices received for exported iron ore and 93 percent more for its manganese. While ARM is “confident in the long-term outlook for commodities,” the company said prices will “remain volatile” this year. The rand, in which ARM pays most of its costs, has strengthened against the dollar this year, reducing earnings...
(APA 09/06/17)
APA-N’Djamena (Chad) - Two pilgrims from Chad in Saudi Arabia for the pilgrimage to Mecca died from illness, APA learned Tuesday from the national organizing committee for Hajj 2017. The body which did not specify the nature of their illness added that all arrangements were taken to ensure the good health of the pilgrims, and that all reported cases of malaria were treated. Chad, which had a quota of more than 6,000 places for this year’s pilgrimage, only sent 4,786 pilgrims to Mecca. A source close to the organizing committee attributed the lower number of Chadian pilgrims to the economic and financial crisis affecting the country.
(AFP (eng) 09/05/17)
France unveiled plans on Tuesday to start using armed drones, joining a growing number of countries worldwide to operate the deadly unmanned aircraft. "I decided to begin the process of arming our intelligence and surveillance drones," Defence Minister Florence Parly told a gathering of recruits and lawmakers in the southern port city of Toulon. France currently operates a handful of unarmed Reaper drones as part of its presence monitoring jihadist groups in Africa's Sahel region. Parly said the military planned to equip six unmanned aerial vehicles purchased from the United States with "precision guided"

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