| Africatime
Wednesday 29 March 2017
(AFP (eng) 01/16/17)
Riyad Mahrez scored twice but Algeria had to settle for a 2-2 draw with rank outsiders Zimbabwe as their Africa Cup of Nations campaign got off to a slow start in Franceville on Sunday. Newly-crowed African player of the year Mahrez gave Algeria an early lead in the Group B match but Kudakwashe Mahachi quickly equalised and a penalty before the half-hour mark scored by Nyasha Mushekwi had the Warriors in front. In an action-filled encounter Zimbabwe -- whose build-up to the finals was overshadowed by a row over bonuses -- were just eight minutes away from claiming a famous victory before Mahrez
(AFP (eng) 01/14/17)
Zimbabwe have endured a troubled run-up to the Africa Cup of Nations, with players refusing to attend a farewell gala and missing scheduled flights to the tournament in a dispute over pay. The "Warriors", who have all now arrived in Gabon, look to overcome their minnows status in their opening Group B game on Sunday against Algeria, followed by clashes against Senegal and Tunisia. Zimbabwe, ranked 103 in the world and 30 in Africa, return to the tournament hoping to improve on failing to make it beyond the group stage in 2004 and 2006. Supporters are pinning their dreams on Belgium-based striker Knowledge Musona, the leading scorer at top-flight side KV Oostende, and South Africa-based Khama Billiat, who had a...
(AFP (eng) 01/14/17)
Virtually all the pre-2017 Africa Cup of Nations talk about Group B has concerned which two countries from Algeria, Senegal and Tunisia will advance to the quarter-finals. Zimbabwe, who complete the quartet based in southeastern Gabonese city Franceville, have been dismissed as no-hopers in a section featuring three of the top five ranked African teams. The Senegalese headed the monthly FIFA listings released this week with the Tunisians fourth, the Algerians fifth, and the Zimbabweans a distant 30th. Recently appointed Algeria coach Georges Leekens has warned, however, that his 'Desert Foxes' dare not underestimate the 'Warriors', the lone qualifiers from southern Africa. Algeria confront Zimbabwe Sunday in the first half of a double-header at the 20,000-seat Stade de Franceville, followed...
(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,...
(Bloomberg 01/10/17)
Farmers in southern Africa face a growing threat amid an outbreak of armyworms, a destructive pest that’s spread to Zimbabwe while continuing to decimate fields in neighboring Zambia. The black-striped caterpillars have infested 124,000 hectares (306,400 acres) of Zambian fields out of 1.4 million planted hectares, Agriculture Minister Dora Siliya told reporters on Tuesday in the capital, Lusaka. That’s up from an estimated 90,000 hectares last week. In Zimbabwe, the fall armyworm has been reported in seven of the eight corn-growing provinces, the government and farmers’ representatives said. The fall armyworm is a “major problem for us,” Zimbabwe Commercial Farmers Union President Wonder Chabikwa said by phone on Tuesday from Harare, the capital. The spread of the caterpillars is linked...
(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...
(AFP (eng) 01/07/17)
Zimbabwe has banned street food vendors in the capital Harare after a typhoid outbreak blamed on poor sanitation and erratic water supplies. Portia Managazira, director for epidemiology and disease control in the health ministry, told AFP there had been more than 2,300 suspected cases of typhoid nationally in the last year, and 12 deaths. "The cases were mostly from Harare... We are still in emergency response mode and we are doing everything possible to get the situation under control," she said. Harare has been reeling under an acute shortage of piped water and to add to the woes of residents
(Bloomberg 01/07/17)
CBZ Holdings Ltd., Zimbabwe’s largest bank, suspended the use of Visa Inc. cards for local transactions as the country struggles to cope with a cash shortage. Charges on making transactions are very expensive for customers, CBZ Chief Executive Officer Never Nyemudzo said by phone from Harare, the capital, on Friday. Money also has to be settled outside the country for accounts that are held overseas in foreign currency, he said. The measures take effect Jan. 15 although customers will be able to make transactions abroad, with daily limits of $250 at ATMs, $1,000 for point-of-sale business and $500 for payments over the internet, the lender said in a statement. Visa didn’t immediately respond to e-mailed requests for comment. Most local...
(International Business Times 01/06/17)
Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe jet set to Asia for a $6 million vacation. Meanwhile, people all across Zimbabwe continue to starve as the southern African country faces its poorest economy since 2009. Mugabe has faced criticism in the past for taking an expensive vacations to other countries. However, his latest month-long vacation to Singapore and other Asian countries comes at a particularly crucial time as other Zimbabwe leaders recently had to ask neighboring countries for cash donations to help provide food for people suffering from a drought. Starvation in the country has become so severe that some residents have started consuming toxic locusts due to food shortages. Aside from the president spending close to $6 million by the time he...
(Zimbabwe Independent 01/06/17)
The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) has more than doubled the current holdings of bond notes to $79 million in just less than a month as the central bank moves to ease a biting cash crunch amid concerns the apex bank could run the printing press unabated. Zimbabwe is reeling from a severe liquidity crunch which has worsened as exports collapsed. The bond notes are ostensibly a 5% incentive on exports, which human rights groups and social movements have rejected as a government ploy to re-introduce the defunct Zimbabwe dollar through the backdoor. The central bank says the bond notes are backed by a US$200 million African Export and Import Bank facility. Market analysts told the Zimbabwe Independent that failure...
(Agence Ecofin 01/06/17)
LSE-listed mining company, Caledonia Mining, which operates on the Blanket gold mine in Zimbabwe, said it plans to produce 60,000 ounces of gold in 2017, and by 2021, an average annual output of 80,000 Ounces. To achieve this, the firm relies on a major program launched at Blanket, during which it will mine the ore at a depth of more than 750m. Meanwhile, the firm declared a quarterly dividend of $ 0.01375, thus remaining one of the few junior mining listed on the London Stock Exchange able to pay its investors. “The continued payment of dividends to our shareholders is a key component of our strategy as we invest in future production growth and we are particularly proud of being...
(The Associated Press 01/06/17)
Zimbabwe's wildlife agency said on Thursday it has sold 35 elephants to China to ease overpopulation and raise funds for conservation, amid criticism from animal welfare activists that such sales are unethical. This once-prosperous country's economy has fallen apart, and Zimbabwe's government has said it needs to sell wildlife to support its people and conservation efforts. The government also has sought to sell its ivory stockpile for millions of dollars. The Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority did not say how much China paid for the 35 elephants but said it was "turning to friendly countries to extract value out of our wildlife." This is the first time Zimbabwe has confirmed the December 23 sale since activists announced a plane...
(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...
(AFP (eng) 01/05/17)
Zimbabwe's sports ministry stumped up $1 million emergency funding after player grievances over accommodation and training facilities threatened preparations for the Africa Cup of Nations, an official said Thursday. The side was training at a private school outside the capital Harare because the financially hamstrung football association failed to pay a $60 fee to use the national sports stadium, local media reported Players also refused to use accommodation at a facility run by the association as it was in poor condition. "The issue was dealt with yesterday," Zimbabwe Football Association chairman Phillip Chiyangwa told AFP. "I found them money.
(AFP (eng) 01/05/17)
Star Khama Billiat and fellow midfielder and captain Willard Katsande are among eight South Africa-based footballers chosen by Zimbabwe for the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations in Gabon. The 'Warriors' will be the outsiders this month in Group B, where they will play former champions Algeria and Tunisia, and Senegal, with the top two finishers advancing to the quarter-finals. It will be the third appearance by Zimbabwe in the tournament -- they were eliminated after the first round in Tunisia in 2004 and suffered a similar fate in Egypt two years later. Wide attacker Billiat was a key player for South African club Mamelodi Sundowns when they won the CAF Champions League for the first time last year. He is...
(Bloomberg 01/04/17)
Grain millers in Zimbabwe want the government to halt a plan to impose a 15 percent tax on rice imports, which vie with corn as the southern African nation’s staple food. Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa proposed bringing back value-added tax on the grain, which was removed in 2009, in his budget presentation last month. “A reintroduction of value-added tax will immediately trigger” a price increase of “at least 15 percent” and cut demand by about 40 percent, Grain Millers Association of Zimbabwe Chairman Tafadzwa Musarara said in a letter to Chinamasa dated Dec. 30 that Bloomberg News received by e-mail. Rice has become a key staple in Zimbabwe, with imports helping alleviate food shortages as rural parts of the country...
(AFP (eng) 01/04/17)
Italy vowed Wednesday to increase deportations of migrants whose asylum requests have been rejected, after a riot in a reception centre sparked by the death of a young woman. The country, which has been on the frontline of migrants arriving across the Mediterranean from North Africa, is pushing for an agreement with Niger and a renewed deal with Tunisia to facilitate returns. "We have saved many lives but we cannot accept rule-breaking. We need to speed up deportations," Foreign Minister Angelino Alfano, the country's former interior minister, said in an interview with La Stampa daily. He was "working to tie up agreements which will reduce arrivals and prevent departures" from the coast of North Africa, he said after a record...

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