Saturday, July 24We Break the News

African Union

Kenya backs AU role in resolving Nile dam dispute

Kenya backs AU role in resolving Nile dam dispute

AFRICA, African Union, DEVELOPMENT, Egypt, ETHIOPIA, Nature, RELATIONS, Sudan
The Blue Nile river as it passes through the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), near Guba in EthiopiaDecember 26, 2019. PHOTO | AFP Summary Kenya told the Security Council that the UN should back the African Union to ensure Ethiopia, Sudan and Egypt, who are squabbling over the use of the Nile, reach an amicable solution.Says the countries on the Nile Basin have “legitimate rights” on the use of the Nile, and their differences and desires to secure waters for their people are not yet a threat to international peace and security. Kenya on Thursday called on the African Union to continue leading discussions on the Nile dam operations in Ethiopia, even as Egypt warned that Ethiopia’s mega hydro power project was “an existential threat.” At a session of the UN Security Counci...
China backs African Union effort to resolve Ethiopian mega-dam dispute

China backs African Union effort to resolve Ethiopian mega-dam dispute

AFRICA, African Union, China, DEVELOPMENT, Egypt, ETHIOPIA, Sudan, UN
In rare show of unity, UN Security Council members agree to not take the lead in mediation efforts between Sudan, Egypt and Ethiopia Members can still offer management help, incentives or sanctions to encourage parties to reach a deal, analyst says Work got under way on Ethiopia's Grand Renaissance Dam in 2011. Photo: Reuters China has backed an Africa-led mediation process to resolve a dispute between Ethiopia, Sudan and Egypt over the operation of a massive hydropower dam on the Blue Nile.China’s envoy to the United Nations, Zhang Jun, said Beijing supported efforts for the three countries to reach a deal through dialogue and consultation on the operation of the project.“China looks forward to the African Union’s continued due role,” Zhang said on Thursday in a meeting called b...
Africa protests EU’s vaccine apartheid in Green Pass policy

Africa protests EU’s vaccine apartheid in Green Pass policy

AFRICA, African Union, EUROPEAN UNION, PAN AFRICA, TRADE, Transport, TRAVEL
The African Union is deeply upset about an apparent discriminatory policy by the European Union in travel bans for people vaccinated with the World Health Organisation-backed AstraZeneca vaccine produced in India. Further, with a paltry one percent of Africa’s population vaccinated as the delta strain of the Covid-19 sweeps across the continent leaving a trail of death and suffering, the AU is citing bias in the global distribution of the available doses. Only a trickle of vaccination donations are coming in from wealthy countries. Major moves to quicken commercial vaccine rollout across the continent have come too late to prevent calamities, the AU says. On Thursday, when the EU digital programme Green Pass came into effect, AU officials leading the war on the coronavirus co...
South Africa’s Zuma handed 15-month jail term for inquiry no-show

South Africa’s Zuma handed 15-month jail term for inquiry no-show

AFRICA, African Union, CRIME, DEMOCRACY, GOVERNMENT, PAN AFRICA, POLITICS, PRESIDENT, South Africa, South African Parliament
South Africa’s Constitutional Court sentenced former President Jacob Zuma to 15 months in jail for contempt of court following his failure to appear at a corruption inquiry earlier this year. Zuma did not appear at the inquiry led by Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo in February, after which the inquiry’s lawyers approached the court to seek an order for his imprisonment. “The Constitutional Court can do nothing but conclude that Mr Zuma is guilty of the crime of contempt of court,” judge Sisi Khampepe said on Tuesday. Zuma, 79, is accused of enabling the plunder of state coffers during his nearly nine-year stint in office. “This kind of recalcitrance and defiance is unlawful and will be punished,” Khampepe said. ‘Unequivocal message’ “I am left with no option but t...
Côte d’Ivoire: Gbagbo “happy to be back” home in Africa after a decade

Côte d’Ivoire: Gbagbo “happy to be back” home in Africa after a decade

AFRICA, African Union, DIPLOMACY, Diplomats, Ivory Coast, PAN AFRICA, POLITICS, PRESIDENT, West Africa
After ten years in exile abroad, the former president of Côte d’Ivoire Laurent Gbagbo touched down on home soil Thursday upon receiving permission to return from the government of longtime rival President Alassane Ouattara. After making his way down the steps to the runway, Gbagbo made his way to a vehicle that was then surrounded by crowds as it headed toward the city. Tensions between the jubilant crowds and security forces were high, with tear gas being used to disperse people coming to greet Gbagbo near the airport. Gbagbo somehow managed to navigate his way around the frenzy of supporters via heavily security clad vehicles to his political party’s campaign headquarters in Cocody -- where he expressed elation to be back in Cote d'Ivoire on the motherland. "I'm happy ab...
Zambia: 21 days of mourning for founding father Kenneth Kuanda

Zambia: 21 days of mourning for founding father Kenneth Kuanda

ADVOCACY, AFRICA, African Union, BREAKING NEWS, PAN AFRICA, POLITICS, Zambia
Former president of Zambia Kenneth Kaunda died peacefully at 2:30 pm (1230 GMT) on Thursday of pneumonia at a military hospital where the 97-year-old had been receiving treatment since Monday. The news comes by way of -- as announced by the government which declared 21 days of national mourning as televised announced by Cabinet secretary Simon Miti. He expressed President Edgar Lungu’s deep regret and sorrow at the passing of the nation’s beloved founding father, icon and global statesman. "You have gone at a time we least expected," Lungu said on Facebook, describing him as a "true African icon." The government declared 21 days of national mourning with flags flying at half-mast and all forms of entertainment suspended -- in honour of the now-deceased leader who was ...
Zambia’s Kenneth Kaunda dies at 97

Zambia’s Kenneth Kaunda dies at 97

ADVOCACY, AFRICA, African Union, CELEBRITY, PAN AFRICA, POLITICS, Zambia
Zambia's former president, Kenneth Kaunda, the father of the country’s independence who ruled for 27 years has died. He died at the age of 97 on Thursday. Kaunda had been admitted to the Maina Soko Medical Center, a military hospital in Lusaka, on Monday where authorities disclosed he was being treated for Pneumonia. But a Facebook post by his son Kambarage Kaunda, announced the Zambian founding president’s passage. Kambarage asked for prayers for his father whom he called Mzee. Rumors of COVID "He is being treated for pneumonia but he does not have Covid," his aide Rodrick Ngolo told AFP, denying rumors to that effect "The problem of pneumonia comes up regularly (in the ex-president) and every time you hear that he is in hospital, it is because of pneumonia," sai...
Kenya to reopen its embassy in Somalia

Kenya to reopen its embassy in Somalia

AFRICA, African Union, EAST AFRICA, KENYA, PAN AFRICA, RELATIONS, Security, Somalia
Kenya will reopen its embassy in Somalia "as soon as possible", Nairobi authorities announced on Monday, responding favorably to a proposal from their neighbour for the normalization of diplomatic relations between the two countries. The Somali Minister of Foreign Affairs had sent a letter last weekend to his Kenyan counterpart inviting him to reopen the Kenyan diplomatic representation in Mogadishu, which was closed since December after Somalia broke off diplomatic relations between the two states. The unilateral decision according to Mogadishu came "in response to Kenya's recurrent and blatant political violations against Somalia's sovereignty". The situation led to the expulsion of the Kenyan ambassador in Mogadishu while the Somali ambassador in Nairobi was recalled. In a...
Zambia’s Kenneth Kaunda, 97, hospitalized amid virus surge

Zambia’s Kenneth Kaunda, 97, hospitalized amid virus surge

ADVOCACY, AFRICA, African Union, PAN AFRICA, PRESIDENT, Zambia
Zambia's first president Kenneth Kaunda, 97, has been admitted to hospital, his office announced Monday, as the southern African country battles a surge in COVID-19 cases. Kaunda asked for ``all Zambians and the international community to pray for him as the medical team is doing everything possible to ensure that he recovers,'' according to the statement issued by Kaunda's administrative assistant Rodrick Ngolo. The short statement did not specify the cause of Kaunda's illness, but Zambia is experiencing a surge in COVID-19 cases and the country's founding president was admitted to Maina Soko Medical Center, a treatment center for the disease in the capital, Lusaka. Zambia's 7-day rolling average of daily new cases has risen dramatically over the past two weeks from 1.44 new...
Presidential welcome for ex-Ivorian leader upon his return from exile

Presidential welcome for ex-Ivorian leader upon his return from exile

ADVOCACY, AFRICA, African Union, DIPLOMACY, Diplomats, Ivory Coast, PAN AFRICA, POLITICS, PRESIDENT, TRAVEL, West Africa
A welcome fit for a king for the former president of Côte d'Ivoire Laurent Gbagbo. After ten years in exile, Gbagbo will finally return to his home country. Upon his flight's arrival, he will go through the airport's VIP facilities to then be received at the presidential pavilion -- as announced on Monday by the politician's party at a press conference. Assoua Adou, the general secretary of Gbagbo's Ivorian Popular Front political party. "Today I solemnly confirm that President Laurent Gbagbo will arrive in Abidjan on Thursday, June 17 2021 by scheduled flight from Brussels at 3.45 pm at Félix Houphouët-Boigny airport. " Gbagbo has been acquitted of crimes against humanity by the International Criminal Court -- charges he faced after 3000 people lost their in electoral ...
South Africa: Presidential Message

South Africa: Presidential Message

AFRICA, African Union, DEMOCRACY, FAMILY, PAN AFRICA, PEOPLE, POLITICS, South Africa, South African Parliament
Dear Fellow South African,In two days’ time we commemorate the fateful events of June 16th 1976, when brave young men and women in Soweto and other parts of the country rose up against the iniquity of Bantu Education.On that day and in the days that followed, many lost their lives. They were killed by a callous regime that had little regard for black lives and thought nothing of opening fire on unarmed, uniformed schoolchildren. These events hardened international opinion against the apartheid regime and gave further impetus to the liberation struggle.Young people have always been at the forefront of social protest, from the anti-authoritarian protests in Latin America in the late 1950s to the May 68 movement in France, to the protests across many parts of Africa in the late 1960s.History...
DRC postpones Patrice Lumumba tributes over Covid-19 surge

DRC postpones Patrice Lumumba tributes over Covid-19 surge

ADVOCACY, AFRICA, African Union, BELGIUM, CRIME, CRISIS, DRC, PAN AFRICA
As the Health crisis worsens in the country, Democratic Republic of Congo's president Felix Tshisekedi has warned the DRC could face a deadly third wave of Covid-19 contaminations. Drastic measures are set to be announced in the days to come. "The situation of the Covid pandemic is serious. We have seen an upsurge in cases of infection and, unfortunately, in cases of death as well. Our hospitals are saturated," DRC president Felix Tshisekedi said. The Democratic Republic of Congo has recorded 3 deaths and 254 new contaminations on Friday, with 210 in capital city Kinshasa alone. "Drastic measures are required to face this increase in infection, which has the potential to be more virulent than the first two waves," Felix Thisekedi added. As a result of the recent surge o...
Mali: New prime minister sets priorities towards civilian rule in 2022

Mali: New prime minister sets priorities towards civilian rule in 2022

AFRICA, African Union, GOVERNMENT, MALI, PAN AFRICA, POLITICS, PRIME MINISTER, Security, West Africa
Mali's new transitional prime minister Choguel Kokalla Maiga set an ambitious roadmap on Sunday towards a return to civilian power in February 2022 The new transitional prime minister in Mali, Choguel Kokalla Maiga, assembled his government for the first time on Sunday. The meeting was to set as priorities for the West African nation, i.e. "the improvement of security, political and institutional reforms" -- plus the organization of highly anticipated credible elections to return civilians to power in February 2022. He takes office at a time when the country has been caught up in jihadist turmoil and violence of all kinds for years. The security crisis goes hand in hand with serious political and social crises. The Malian Prime Minister addressed his government: "We wil...
South African president Ramaphosa “pleased” with G7 vaccines “support”

South African president Ramaphosa “pleased” with G7 vaccines “support”

AFRICA, African Union, G7, G7 SUMMIT, PAN AFRICA, PRESIDENT, South Africa, South African Parliament
South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa is happy about the promise made by nations at the G7 meeting in Britain on Sunday -- to donate at least 1 billion coronavirus vaccines to countries in less favourable situations. Although he questioned why only one African nation was invited to attend the summit, the South African leader nevertheless welcomes the pledged assistance that will be beneficial to many countries on the continent. "We brought a message here that we would like to have access to the vaccines as well, so that the people of Africa, from whom only 2% have now been vaccinated as opposed to much higher percentages in the North, should also be vaccinated. "We also raised the issue of giving capacity and capability to countries in the developing economies so that ...
Mali: New government sees military in key ministerial positions

Mali: New government sees military in key ministerial positions

AFRICA, African Union, CRISIS, GOVERNMENT, MALI, PAN AFRICA, PRESIDENT, PRIME MINISTER, West Africa
In Mali Friday a new government has been formed. It sees the military -- which staged two coup d’états in nine months, in charge of the West African nation's key ministries. At its head -- albeit facing criticism of his position’s legitimacy, transitional president Colonel Assimi Goïta, who was sworn in on Monday. Ministerial positions of defence, security, interior and national reconciliation are all occupied by military personalities -- some of whom held these titles at the time they were also leaders of the August 18 2020 coup that removed then-President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita. Namely, Colonel Major Ismaël Wagué who remains the Minister of National Reconciliation and Colonel Sadio Camara -- who is back as Defence Minister after being ousted in late May by the since rece...
French President Macron declares end of Barkhane Operation In Sahel

French President Macron declares end of Barkhane Operation In Sahel

AFRICA, African Union, CRIME, CRISIS, France, MALI, PRESIDENT, TERROR, TERRORISM, WAR, West Africa
A "profound transformation" of the presence in the Sahel of the French military Barkhane forces. This will include the closure of French army bases and the establishing of the international anti-jihadist alliance, as announced on Thursday by the president of France Emmanuel Macron. "We will initiate a profound transformation of our military presence in the Sahel, the modalities and timetable of which will be specified in the coming weeks, I will do so by the end of June, and I will initiate this work in the coming days. "It will involve the transition to a new framework, that is to say, the end of the operation Barkhane, as an external operation for the implementation of an operation of support. "Support of cooperation to the arms of the countries of the region that wish it, a...
PICTURES: President Uhuru Kenyatta arrives in Ethiopia for an Official Visit

PICTURES: President Uhuru Kenyatta arrives in Ethiopia for an Official Visit

AFRICA, African Union, DIPLOMACY, EAST AFRICA, ETHIOPIA, KENYA, PAN AFRICA
ADDIS ABABA, ETHIOPIA President Uhuru Kenyatta arrives in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia for an official visit during which he is scheduled to witness the issuance of a telecommunications license to Safaricom. President Kenyatta, who is accompanied by Cabinet Secretaries Raychelle Omamo (Foreign Affairs) and Joe Mucheru (ICT), was received at Bole International Airport by his host, Ethiopian Prime Minister Dr Abiy Ahmed. 
DR Congo: Vote on Electoral Commission reform for political stability?

DR Congo: Vote on Electoral Commission reform for political stability?

AFRICA, African Union, CONGO, DEMOCRACY, ELECTIONS, PAN AFRICA, POLITICS
In the Democratic Republic of Congo on Friday, a reform of the electoral commission was voted on by the National Assembly. The move is an attempt to ensure the transparency of the next 2023 elections and the political stability of the African nation. The text, adopted by 336 of the 337 deputies present out of the 500 total, will now be examined by the Senate and provides for an electoral commission of 15 members. Respectively, five representatives of civil society, from the majority and the opposition -- which remains unconvinced --- with some politicians alleging a move by President Felix Tshisekedi to legally tailor the commission for electoral fraud. The opposition Martin Fayulu denounced on Twitter "the forcing initiated by Mr Tshisekedi for the parliament to unilatera...
Morocco’s Foreign Minister meets with Libyan officials to diaolgue

Morocco’s Foreign Minister meets with Libyan officials to diaolgue

AFRICA, African Union, DIPLOMACY, Diplomats, Egypt, MOROCCO, PAN AFRICA, POLITICS
Morocco's Foreign Minister Nasser Bourita met separately on Friday with both the head of the High Council of State Khalid al-Mishri based in the Libyan capital Tripoli and the speaker of Libya's parliament in the east Aguila Saleh -- as part of "Morocco's efforts to resolve the political crisis in Libya. Libya is seeking to extricate itself from a decade of internal conflict that followed the assassination of Pan-African revolutionary Colonel Muammar Muhammad Abu Minyar al-Gaddafi in the 2011 uprising backed by NATO. Previous discussions hosted by Morocco have centred on positions including Libya's central bank governor and the heads of the electoral commission, the anti-corruption commission and the supreme court. The new round of inter-Libyan talks on key institutional ...
Katiba Institute contests ‘cherry-picking’ of 34 judges, omission of six by President Kenyatta

Katiba Institute contests ‘cherry-picking’ of 34 judges, omission of six by President Kenyatta

AFRICA, African Union, EAST AFRICA, KENYA, PAN AFRICA
President Uhuru Kenyatta chairs the sixth extraordinary session of National and County Governments Co-ordinating Summit on November 4, 2020. PHOTO | PSCU Katiba Institute has filed an application contesting the appointment of 34 judges and omission of six others by President Uhuru Kenyatta. The institute termed the move by President Kenyatta as cherry-picking, saying the swearing in of the 34 would violate the Constitution as well as the rights of the remaining six. Katiba, in an application filed through lawyer Dudley Ochiel on Friday, argued that Article 166( 1) commands the President to appoint judges of superior courts in accordance with the recommendation of the Judicial Service Commission (JSC). They faulted President Kenyatta for not giving any reasons or explanation fo...
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