| Africatime
Sunday 26 March 2017
(Voice of America 03/25/17)
Sudan has been elected to the deputy chairmanship of the executive council of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons. The move concerns some analysts, who point to a September report released by Amnesty International that accuses Sudan's government of using chemical weapons against people in Darfur's Jebel Marra region from January to August 2016. The report alleged that as many as 250 people, including children, might have died as a result of chemical attacks, and hundreds more were injured. In September, the OPCW released a statement that it was aware of the report and would "certainly examine the reports and all other available relevant information."
(Reuters (Eng) 03/25/17)
Nigeria's state oil company said on Friday it was set to recover $184 million in crude oil swap under-deliveries recorded against three oil companies during the now defunct crude for product swap system. Last year the OPEC producer replaced crude oil swap deals with a system under which it will directly sell crude oil to refiners and purchase refined oil products from them. The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) is in the process of reconciling transactions made as part of the defunct system, Group Managing Director Maikanti Baru told journalists in the capital Abuja. He said the companies involved were AITEO
(AFP (eng) 03/25/17)
A jihadist accused of masterminding a deadly attack in Ivory Coast is also suspected of having planned a major assault in Burkina Faso's capital last year, a senior official said Friday. Ivorian officials believe Mimi Ould Baba Ould Cheikh organised the gun and grenade attack that left 19 people dead last March at the beach resort of Grand-Bassam, which is popular with foreigners. Now he is also believed to have been "head of operations" for the attack on a hotel...
(AFP (eng) 03/25/17)
The first soldiers of a United Nations-mandated regional military force are set to be deployed to South Sudan within about a month, the outgoing UN official in charge of peacekeeping said Friday. "The vanguard element of the force will be deployed between end of April, beginning of May," Herve Ladsous, the UN under-secretary-general for peacekeeping operations, told reporters. The first contingent of soldiers to the African country will come from Bangladesh and Nepal, Ladsous said, adding the deployment will include a helicopter unit. Other troops, notably Ethiopians, are expected to arrive in late May or early June.
(AFP (eng) 03/25/17)
Tunisia on Friday summoned the British ambassador to the North African country to protest against what it called an "unjustified" ban on electronic devices on flights to the United Kingdom. The foreign ministry's head of European affairs, Mohamed Mezghani, told ambassador Louise de Sousa that Tunisia was "surprised" it was not consulted or informed of the decision ahead of its announcement. The ban on large electronics devices was "unjustified and does not reflect the security situation in Tunisia", he said. Mezghani also cited a 2016 report by the International Civil Aviation Organization which he said described
(AFP (eng) 03/25/17)
At least 50 people have been killed and dozens more injured since Tuesday after armed men attacked three villages in the central Bambari region of the Central African Republic, local residents who fled their homes told AFP. Prosper Tchoulekrayo, who escaped from Yasseneme village, said the attackers had "fired indiscriminately on the inhabitants". "The provisional toll of the attacks in the Agoudou Manga, Yasseneme and Ngouyanza is at least 50 dead. Dozens more have been injured," said Isaac Arata-Naba, an Agoudou Manga resident. Tchoulekrayo said the attacks were staged by members of the UPC, a faction of the former rebel and mainly Muslim Seleka movement "which is continuing
(AFP (eng) 03/25/17)
Cameroon began their reign as African champions with a 1-0 friendly victory over Tunisia in Monastir Friday thanks to a Vincent Aboubakar goal. The Turkey-based striker took advantage of his first scoring opportunity to beat Aymen Mathlouthi after 14 minutes in the Mediterranean resort. Aboubakar had several other chances, including a one-on-one with the goalkeeper, but could not add to his tally. Tunisians Taha Yassine Khenissi and Syam Ben Youssef were foiled by the woodwork during the first half. Aboubakar...
(AFP (eng) 03/25/17)
Russia is trying to expand its influence in Libya through a combination of military means and oil and weapons sales, a top US general said Friday. General Thomas Tom Waldhauser, who heads the US military's Africa Command, said Russia is "on the ground" in the border region between Egypt and Libya. "They are trying to influence the action, we watch what they do with great concern," Waldhauser told Pentagon reporters. "In addition to the military side of this, we've seen some recent activity in business ventures -- whether it's oil, whether it's weapon sales that perhaps were stopped when the (Moamer) Kadhafi regime took place."
(Bloomberg 03/24/17)
Ghana’s central bank may have space to cut its benchmark interest rate for a second time in four months as the cedi started to recover from record lows and inflation slowed to the lowest rate in more than four years. Governor Abdul Nashiru Issahaku has enough room to cut the West African nation’s main rate by as much as 100 basis points, according to Courage Kingsley Martey, an Accra-based economist at Databank Group. Two of the four economists in a...
(Reuters (Eng) 03/24/17)
Gambia said on Thursday it would set up a Truth and Reconciliation Commission and offer reparations to victims of former President Yahya Jammeh's government, which is accused of the torture and killing of perceived opponents. Justice Minister Abubacarr Tambadou said in a statement the government will also probe the finances of Jammeh, who fled into exile in January to Equatorial Guinea after a rule that began in 1994 when he seized power in a coup. Jammeh lost an election in...
(AFP (eng) 03/24/17)
Egypt's ousted president Hosni Mubarak left a military hospital on Friday where he had spent much of his six-year detention, his lawyer said. Mubarak had been cleared for release earlier this month after a top court finally acquitted him of involvement in protester deaths during the 2011 revolt that ousted him. "Yes," his lawyer Farid al-Deeb told AFP when asked if Mubarak had left the hospital on Friday. Mubarak was accused of inciting the deaths of protesters during the 18-day...
(Agence Ecofin 03/24/17)
In Cote d’Ivoire, each day, about 17 billion CFA francs pass through Mobile Money. This was revealed by René Tano, executive of BICICI, subsidiary of BNP Paribas, during the 5th edition of the currency and e-payment forum taking place in Casablanca, Morocco. Citing the regulatory organ of telecommunications in Cote d’Ivoire (ARTCI), Tano said the sum mentioned takes into account all transactions (transfers, deposits, bills payment) of Orange, MTN and Moov which are the three telecom companies operating in the...
(AFP (eng) 03/24/17)
Evangelical preacher Emmanuel Momoh prayed for five years that he would discover the diamond he needed to pull his family out of poverty in eastern Sierra Leone. The 39-year-old pastor obtained his first mining licence in 2012 when the paltry income he received from the Deeper Life Church in Kono, the country's key mining district, was stretched too thin for his growing family. Momoh went on to build a small business of 18 employees, digging and sifting through gravel with...
(AFP (eng) 03/24/17)
At least 20 people were killed this week as fighting erupted between armed militias in a uranium-rich region of the Central African Republic, a military source said Thursday. Most of the victims were civilians caught up in battles between Christian anti-balaka (anti-machete) militiamen and fighters from the mainly Muslim Seleka in and around the southeastern town of Bakouma, the source said. The final death toll from the violence, which erupted at the start of the week, could be even higher...
(AFP (eng) 03/24/17)
The pregnant Rwandan-British wife of an exiled opposition official appeared in a Kigali court Thursday accused of seeking to form an armed group and revealing state secrets. Violette Uwamahoro, who moved to the United Kingdom in 2004, went to Rwanda for her father's funeral and then disappeared on February 14. Her husband, exiled in the UK, said she had been kidnapped due to his political activities while Amnesty International warned against efforts to "quell opposition voices" ahead of August presidential...
(Xinhuanet 03/24/17)
Namibian research firm IJG Securities said Friday that they expect further contractions in the construction sector in 2017 and beyond. The research firm said in a report that 2017 was off to a slow start with only 231 building plans having been approved in the first two months while 48 were completed, the lowest numbers in the last seven years. "As a leading indicator for economic activity in the country this implies that the whole economy could remain under pressure...
(AFP (eng) 03/24/17)
Judges at the International Criminal Court are expected on Friday to unveil the first compensation awards to victims of war crimes, with lawyers estimating a 2003 attack on a Congolese village caused $16.4 million in damage. Friday's order for reparations for 304 victims of former Congolese warlord Germain Katanga is set to be a landmark step for the tribunal, set up in 2002 to prosecute the world's worst crimes. Katanga was sentenced by the ICC to 12 years in jail...
(AFP (eng) 03/24/17)
The UN Security Council voiced alarm Thursday about the deepening humanitarian crisis and famine in South Sudan, with the United States, Britain and France raising anew the idea of sanctions and a weapons embargo. Attacks on humanitarian and UN missions, serial rapes, recruitment of child soldiers and famine: Six years after independence, "all the optimism that accompanied the birth of South Sudan has been shattered by internal divisions, rivalries and the irresponsible behavior of some of its leaders," said UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres. "Despite the alarm sounded by the United Nations and the international community over this crisis
(AFP (eng) 03/23/17)
Kenya, a pioneer in mobile money, on Thursday began selling the first ever government bonds via mobile phone, allowing anyone from teachers to shop owners to invest and fund infrastructure projects. The bond is named M-Akiba, which means "mobile savings" in Swahili, and was launched with a value of 150 million shillings (1.3 million euros, $1.4 million) ahead of the main launch of a five billion shilling bond in June. "Police officers, primary school teachers or those working in kiosks...
(APA 03/23/17)
Human Rights Watch on Thursday issued a report in Bangui decrying the disruption of schooling for many Central African children thanks to the marauding activities of armed militias still roaming the war-ravaged country. Img : CAR: Armed militias keeping children away from school - HRW “These armed groups lay siege, plunder and ransack schools, thus preventing children from attending classes in the Central African Republic," HRW lamented. It also claimed the peacekeepers also use school buildings as bases or barracks. "Soldiers occupying schools and dismantling desks for firewood is rife in parts of CAR," the human rights defense body complained in its 43-page report entitled “No Courses When