Sunday 22 October 2017
(AFP (eng) 10/21/17)
The killing of four American special operations soldiers in Niger has highlighted the increasing role elite units are playing across Africa, which is rapidly becoming a major center of US military action. Their mission is to counter the advances of a slew of jihadist movements across the continent, including Al-Shabaab in Somalia, affiliates of the Islamic State group in the Sahel region and Boko Haram in Nigeria. Of the 8,000 special forces "operators" deployed globally this year, more than 1,300 are in Africa, according to officials from the US Special Operations Command (SOCOM), which is based in Tampa, Florida. Another 5,000 or so are in the Middle East. In five years, the number of US...
(Reuters (Eng) 10/20/17)
DAKAR (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - The #MeToo social media campaign to raise awareness about sexual harassment and abuse has sparked conversation in parts of Africa where domestic violence is rampant but strong cultural and religious taboos prevent women from admitting it. Prompted by sexual abuse allegations against American film mogul Harvey Weinstein, millions of women around the world have been sharing their experiences of harassment and abuse on Facebook and Twitter with the hashtag #MeToo. The movement has reached only a small part of the population in West Africa, but some women are participating in defiance of attitudes which dictate that being abused brings shame on the family, is a curse, or makes a woman unmarriageable. In Senegal, some women...
(Reuters (Eng) 10/17/17)
NYANYADZI, Zimbabwe (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - In this drought-prone region of eastern Zimbabwe, relying on rain to grow crops no longer makes sense. That’s one reason Joseph Zviuya, a small-scale farmer in the Nyanyadzi area, looks with satisfaction at the canal near his fields that is now overflowing with irrigation water. “This water is our lifeline; without this irrigation scheme we are hopeless,” the farmer in Zimbabwe’s Chimanimani district told the Thomson Reuters Foundation. As climate change has brought worsening...
(APA 10/12/17)
APA-Harare (Zimbabwe) - Riot police on Thursday launched an operation to restore order on the streets of the Zimbabwean capital Harare where illegal vendors and rowdy pirate taxi operators have become the order of the day. According to eyewitnesses and rights groups, the police moved ordered the vendors and pirate taxis to leave Harare’s central business district under a campaign codenamed “Operation Restore Order”. The Zimbabwe Human Right NGO Forum said the riot police, working with municipal police from the...
(APA 10/05/17)
APA-Addis Ababa (Ethiopia) - The African Union (AU) will on Thursday endorse reports and recommendations on Agriculture, Rural Development, Water and Environment (ARWE) made by experts and senior officials in a meeting held on Monday and Tuesday. The endorsement will take place during the ministerial session of the AU’s Specialized Technical Committee on ARWE that opened on Thursday in Addis Ababa under the theme “Improve environmental sustainability and transform agriculture to ensure food and nutrition security.” These include policy papers...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/27/17)
A Zimbabwean court on Tuesday freed activist pastor Evan Mawarire, a critic of President Robert Mugabe, following his weekend arrest on new charges of attempting to subvert the government. It was the second time he has been detained for a similar offense. Mawarire went on trial on Monday on separate subversion charges stemming from protests last year against Mugabe’s handling of the economy. The magistrates court said the rights of Mawarire, who appeared in khaki prison uniform, had been violated...
(APA 09/26/17)
Global mine clearance charity HALO Trust said Tuesday that it has cleared more than 14,000 landmines in northeastern Zimbabwe in a development expected to open a world of possibilities for communities along the borders with Mozambique and Zambia who have lived in fear of the mines. HALO programme manager for Zimbabwe, Tom Dibb said a total of 14,742 landmines were cleared over a 29-kilometre-long stretch in Mount Darwin district in Mashonaland Central province by HALO over a three-year period. “This...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/25/17)
Zimbabwean police arrested activist pastor Evan Mawarire of the #ThisFlag movement as he stepped down from his pulpit, accusing him of subversion for a series of social media posts that charged Robert Mugabe’s government had wrecked the economy, his lawyer told Reuters on Sunday. Lawyer Harrison Nkomo said Mawarire was arrested and charged with subversion, which carries a maximum term of life imprisonment, for a Facebook video he posted on Saturday lambasting the government over its economic policies. Over the...
(Xinhuanet 09/22/17)
Harare International Airport will be renamed after President Robert Mugabe with effect from Nov. 2017, a Cabinet minister has said. Transport and Infrastructure Development Minister Joram Gumbo told state media that the airport will be renamed Robert Gabriel Mugabe International Airport after the International Civil Aviation Organization approved the proposed change of names. "The International Civil Aviation Organization has approved the change of name. The process has started and by end of November we will have renamed it," Gumbo said.
(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...
(Independent Online 09/21/17)
Adcock Ingram and other pharmaceutical companies in Zimbabwe are battling imported medications and rising interventions by donor communities, although the SA manufacturer’s unit in Zimbabwe has managed to raise revenues by 30% and enhanced profitability by 402% in the just ended financial year. Adcock, which operates the Datlabs unit in Zimbabwe, said foreign currency constraints were also hurting operations for the Zimbabwean pharmaceuticals’ manufacturers. Analysts were, however, less bullish of the prospects of the industry in Zimbabwe, saying there were...
(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...
(AFP (eng) 09/19/17)
The South African glamour model who accuses Zimbabwe's first lady of battering her with an electrical plug launched a legal bid on Tuesday to have Grace Mugabe stripped of her immunity. Gabriella Engels and her lawyers sought to persuade the North Gauteng High Court to allow them to proceed with their effort to have Mugabe's diplomatic immunity lifted. Engels, 20, claims that Mugabe beat her repeatedly with an electrical cord in a Johannesburg hotel on August 13. A public spat followed in which Engels and critics of President Robert Mugabe sought to...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/19/17)
Zimbabwe opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai is “out of danger” in hospital in South Africa after being airlifted from Harare at the weekend following the sudden onset of severe vomiting, a party source said on Tuesday. Tsvangirai, who is due to challenge President Robert Mugabe in elections next year, was recovering well but had been told by doctors to avoid stress and strain until at least the weekend, the source said. The 65-year-old’s symptoms came on suddenly at a meeting of his opposition coalition, the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), on Thursday evening in Kadoma, a city around 160 km (100 miles) southwest of the Zimbabwe capital.
(ZimEye 09/12/17)
President Robert Gabriel Mugabe has promoted senior Zimbabwe National Army (ZNA) officers to substantive ranks of brigadier general, colonels and lieutenant colonels. Colonel Stephen Gwekwerere has been promoted to the rank of a Brigadier General, while 10 senior officers were conferred with ranks of colonels and 18 others elevated from ranks of being majors to lieutenant colonels by the President Mugabe. Addressing the new senior officers at the conferment of Brigadier General Gwekwerere and 10 other colonels, Chief of Staff...
(News Day 09/12/17)
In response to Mugabe to blame for parastatal mess: ZCTU: Your report that the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) blames President Robert Mugabe for the collapse of State-owned companies is spot-on. Mugabe has been the chief executive officer (CEO) of the country for the past 37 years during which time the rot has sunk in. But the ZCTU should not entirely escape blame. They have been quiet on corporate governance issues at the workplaces, including State enterprises, to this...
(The Citizen 09/11/17)
Zimbabwe’s first lady claims Gabriella Engels, who brought charges of assault against her, was drunk and ‘unhinged’. Mugabe has given her side of the story after she allegedly went on a violent rampage at a luxury Sandton hotel, where her sons were staying in the company of a model and her friends. According to Reuters, Mugabe has completely denied the report brought forward by Engels that she was hit with a cord. Engels sustained injuries to her forehead and was...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/11/17)
Until recently, farmers in this town in southern Zimbabwe struggled to water their crops, frustrated by poor rainfall and the regular breakdown of the diesel engines that powered their irrigation systems. As in most areas of rural Zimbabwe, rain-fed agriculture provides most of the jobs in this part of Gwanda district, some 130km (80 miles) southeast of Bulawayo. But sparse rains over the last decade, a worsening problem associated with climate change, have caused many harvests to fail, and cut...
(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...
(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...

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