• Pope lands in Africa hoping to bridge Christian-Muslim faultlines

    25/Nov/2015 // 290 Viewers

    Africa's Catholic church is growing fast with an estimated 200 million adherents in 2012, a figure expected to reach half a billion in 2050. About 30 percent of Kenya's 45 million people are baptised Catholics, including President Uhuru Kenyatta.

    The pope will address the faithful in a public Mass at Nairobi University on Thursday, declared a national holiday, and is expected to seek to heal ethnic rifts that have long plagued Kenya.

    "We are living at a time when religious believers, and persons of goodwill everywhere are called to foster mutual understanding and respect, and to support each other as members of our one human family," the pope said in a pre-trip message.

    Kenyan media has said at least 10,000 police will deployed in the capital for the Kenya leg, which includes a visit to the regional U.N. headquarters in Nairobi where the pope is expected to address climate issues.

    In Uganda, where police said they would deploy 12,000 officers for the visit, the pope holds Mass on Saturday and then addresses young people on a continent that has a big youth belt.

    In the Central African Republic, he will visit a mosque in one of the most dangerous districts of the capital Bangui.

    French officials have hinted heavily that the Vatican should consider scrapping the Bangui leg of his trip or at least scale it back.

     

    Reuters


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  • Over five million lives in Nigeria threatened by rising inflation, others - UN Report

    25/Nov/2016 // 554 Viewers

     

    An arm of the United Nations, the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) has warned that the rising inflation in Nigeria coupled with the insurgency in the northeast  exposes well over five million Nigerians to imminent death arising from acute food insecurity.

    The United Nations agriculture agency has appealed for $25 million through May 2017 to support irrigated vegetable production and micro-gardening in the dry season, as well as rebuild livestock systems, the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports.

    In a situation update, FAO said the urgently needed funds would tackle food insecurity among returnees, internally displaced persons (IDPs) and host communities.

    In addition, the agency is seeking funds now to provide critical agricultural inputs to farmers in time for the 2017 main rainy season.

    “We must act now to rapidly restore food security and combat severe hunger and malnutrition,” FAO said in the update.
     
    It noted that inflationary pressures in the national economy have pushed the prices of staple food crops extremely high across the three northeastern states of Adamawa, Borno and Yobe.

    According to it, prices of food crops are expected to rise further, requiring “immediate intervention.”


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  • Ivory Coast hopes for peaceful ballot as country heads to polls

    25/Oct/2015 // 176 Viewers

    Ivorians head to the polls to vote in presidential elections on Sunday with incumbent Alassane Ouattara fending off challenges from six other presidential contenders. Preliminary results are expected early in the week.

    The Ivory Coast on is holding its first presidential ballot since a disputed vote five years ago, with international observers hoping to avoid a repeat of post-election violence that killed more than 3,000 people in 2010.

    Polls have opened in Abidjan, the country’s largest city, at the official 7am (local and GMT) start time for the election, but delays were reported elsewhere.

    “In the town of Abobo, polling stations were still not open at 8:30am because of missing voter lists,” FRANCE 24 correspondent Guillaume Guguen said from the suburb north of Abidjan.

    President Alassane Ouattara, 73, has been campaigning for a second consecutive term in office, with opinion polls earlier this month suggesting he was the front-runner.

    In 2010, Ouattara defeated incumbent Laurent Gbagbo who refused to concede defeat, sparking the worst fighting the country has experienced since independence.

    The crisis was a bloody epilogue to a decade of upheaval, splitting West Africa's economic powerhouse between a rebel-held north and a loyalist south.

    More than 6 million people are eligible to vote, but with memories of the violence sparked by the last election still fresh in many people's minds, there are concerns that turnout will be low.

    Preliminary results are expected early in the week.

    Opposition crying foul

    A trained economist, Ouattara is seeking a solid first-round win to dodge the threat of a run-off against one of six other presidential contenders.

    Ouattara has touted an economic rebound and security gains, though opponents say he has failed to reconcile the country or alleviate poverty.

    His main challenger on Sunday will be former prime minister Pascal Affi N'Guessan, who is running on behalf of Gbagbo's Ivorian Popular Front.

    Former prime minister Charles Konan Banny dropped out of the running on Friday – becoming the third candidate to do so – citing "grave irregularities" in the organisation of the vote.

    Former foreign minister Amara Essy has also withdrawn, along with former national assembly president Mamadou Koulibaly, who condemned the vote as "rigged".

    The government shrugged off their boycott as a bid to duck out of a competition they were tipped to lose anyway.

    But Ouattara has also come under criticism from Amnesty International for the detention of opponents ahead of the vote.

    Rights campaigners have also complained that little justice has been meted out to members of his camp that were involved in over the post-election violence of 2010-2011.


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  • ICC rejects Gbagbo request for release on health grounds

    25/Oct/2015 // 264 Viewers

    Appeals judges at the International Criminal Court on Tuesday rejected a request for the temporary release of former Ivory Coast President Laurent Gbagbo on health grounds.

    Gbagbo, 70, is accused of plunging his country into civil war rather than relinquishing his grip on power after losing a presidential run-off vote in 2010.

    His trial has been scheduled to start in November.

    Gbagbo is to be tried together with Charles Ble Goude, a former minister and close ally of the ousted ex-leader. The court in March combined Gbagbo and Ble Goude's trials because the cases against them are nearly identical.

    Both men face four charges of crimes against humanity for murder, rape, inhumane acts and persecution related to the deadly violence that erupted after the disputed presidential poll.

    'Campaign of violence'

    Long-time leader Gbagbo's refusal to concede defeat in the election sparked a bloody five-month stand-off, in which some 3,000 people died, according to the United Nations.

    Gbagbo is alleged to have fomented a campaign of violence in a vain attempt to stay in power after being defeated in his bid for reelection by long-time rival, Ivory Coast's current President Alassane Ouattara.

    Prosecutors said Goude commanded militias that murdered, raped and burned hundreds of people alive in an orgy of violence involving both sides that ended only after Gbagbo's arrest in an assault on his Abidjan compound by Ouattara's French and UN-backed forces.

    Ble Goude was arrested in Ghana in January 2013 and extradited to the Ivory Coast, but it wasn't until March 2014 that he was sent to the Netherlands to face prosecution at the world's only permanent war crimes court.

    Gbagbo has been held at The Hague since his transfer to the ICC's detention unit in late November 2011. No charges have been filed against Ouattara's backers, raising claims of a "victor's justice".

    An Ivory Coast court in mid-March sentenced Laurent Gbagbo's wife Simone to 20 years in prison for her role in the unrest.

    AFP with DailyGlobeWatch


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  • South Africa: 4 cops granted bail for apartheid-era killing

    26/Feb/2016 // 355 Viewers

     

    JOHANNESBURG (AP) — A South African court has granted bail to four former policemen who are charged with murdering an anti-apartheid activist in 1983.

    National Prosecuting Authority spokesman Luvuyo Mfaku said Friday the men were granted bail of nearly $320 each on condition that they do not interfere with witnesses. Their next court appearance is March 29.

    Prosecutors say the four were members of the apartheid-era security forces linked to the torture and disappearance of 23-year-old Nokuthula Simelane. Her body has not been found.

    Prosecutors say three of the men applied for amnesty to South Africa's Truth and Reconciliation Commission for Simelane's kidnapping but not for her murder. The commission recommended legal action in 2002.

    Mfaku said the case was delayed by years of bureaucracy and a lack of resources.


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  • UN chief bypasses Morocco on North Africa trip

    26/Feb/2016 // 377 Viewers

    UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon waves from the UN airplane during his east Africa tour on February 25, 2016, before heading to north Africa next week (AFP Photo/Albert Gonzalez Farran)

    United Nations (United States) (AFP) - UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon will visit North Africa next week to draw attention to Western Sahara's 40-year-old unresolved conflict, but will not be stopping in Morocco, UN officials said Friday.

     

    Ban, who steps down at the end of the year, had hoped to travel to the main city of Laayoune in Western Sahara and visit Rabat to try to advance deadlocked peace efforts.

    "The secretary-general will not be going to Rabat. The king will not be there," said UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric.

    "Obviously, the secretary-general would be delighted to go to Rabat at any time."

    After visiting Burkina-Faso and Mauritania on March 3 and 4, Ban will travel to western Algeria on March 5 to tour camps in Tindouf that have been housing tens of thousands of refugees from Western Sahara for decades.

    READ: INTERVIEW: Reconstructing Edo State; who does the cap fit?

    There, he will also hold talks with leaders of the Polisario Front, who are campaigning for Western Sahara's independence from Morocco, and visit a nearby office of the MINURSO peaceekeeping mission, but not its headquarters in Laayoune.

    "It is of course the secretary-general's right to visit any peacekeeping mission, but the de facto authorities in that area would need to provide the clearance for the plane to land," he said.

    Ban's predecessor Kofi Annan in 1998 visited Rabat and Laayoune, as did Boutros Boutros-Ghali before him in 1994.

    Ban will wind up his trip with talks in Algiers on March 6 and 7 for talks with government leaders.

    The United Nations has been trying to broker a settlement for Western Sahara since 1991 after a ceasefire was reached to end a war that broke out when Morocco sent its forces to the former Spanish territory in 1975.

    Local Sahrawi people are campaigning for the right to self-determination, but Morocco considers the territory as a part of the kingdom and insists that its sovereignty cannot be challenged.

    The African Union, which recognizes the Sahrawi Arab Republic as a member, views the dispute as an example of unfinished decolonization on the continent.

    The conflict over Western Sahara has been among the most sensitive issues on the UN agenda, with Rabat, backed by France, fiercely rejecting any challenge to its hold on the mineral-rich territory.

    The visit comes ahead of discussions at the UN Security Council on renewing MINURSO's mandate in April.

    In an appeal released in November, Ban said the situation in Western Sahara was "becoming increasingly alarming" and called for the launch of "true negotiations in the coming months."

     


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  • Roli Bode George heads NDLEA as Ahmadu Giade retires

    26/Nov/2015 // 691 Viewers

    Mrs Roli Bode George has been appointed as the acting chairman of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency as Alhaji Ahmadu Giade retires after 10 years of service in the agency, DailyGlobeWatch has been reliably informed.

    She remains the first woman to be appointed in this capacity which is seen by many as gender balancing in the appointment made so far by the present administration under Muhammadu Buhari.

    Commending the appointment Mrs Tinuade the Chairman of Women Initiative Group expressed satisfaction and sees the appointment as none other than ''redressing the gender imbalance in the recent appointments made by President Muhammadu Buhari.”

    Mrs Roli Bode George is also seen by many who reacted to her appointment as a round peg in a round hole whose competence is not in dispute to pilot the affairs of the anti-drug body.


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  • 44 vessels coming to berth, NPA says

    26/Nov/2015 // 261 Viewers

    A sum total of 44 vessels is expected to arrive Lagos anytime soon commencing from November 26 to December 18 Nigerian Port Authority disclosed to our reporter in Lagos, Nigeria.

    In its daily Shipping Position, the officials said 15 of the ships being expected have containers on board while 8 will sail in with general cargoes.

    According to the document released to newsmen 12 ships laden with foods such as rice, palm oil, sugar, salt, wheat and 9 other vessels with petrol, diesel and kerosene on board, it said further, would be sailing in soon.

    Meanwhile, 7 other vessels with foods and various cargoes such as rice, crude palm oil, diesel and petrol have arrived and about nosing up to docks.

     

     


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  • Be patient with Buhari, Water Resources Minister pleads

    26/Nov/2015 // 320 Viewers

    Water Minister Resources, Alhaji Suleiman Adamu has pleaded with Nigerians to be patient with President Muhammadu Buhari who he expressed confidence in to deliver on his political promises to Nigerians.

    While speaking to newsmen today after a stake holder's meeting of the All Progressives' Congress in Dutse, Jigawa State capital, the minister pleaded with Nigerians to be patient adding that President Buhari inherited a lot of problems from the immediate past administration which will take time to address.

    Speaking further in the interview with newsmen, Adamu said everything is being done by the present administration to halt rural-urban migration drift by industrialization. This, he said, will provide youths with employment, create wealth as an antidote to the cause of conflicts in the country.

     


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  • We give you 2 weeks to end fuel scarcity, Senate orders Buhari

    26/Nov/2015 // 403 Viewers

    The Nigerian senate has issued two weeks ultimatum to President Buhari in his capacity as the Minister of Petroleum to end the ongoing fuel scarcity in the country.

    THE Senate Committee on Petroleum issued this ultimatum today in Abuja, Nigeria's capital. In the past 10 months, the Pipeline Products Marketing Company disclosed that Nigeria has lost over N50 bln resulting from petroleum pipeline across the country which has  been identified  as one of the causes of the ongoing acute fuel scarcity.

    Senator Uche Ekwunife, the committee chairman said the minister of petroleum should as a matter of urgency end the ongoing scarcity and ensure the product is sold to the public N87 per litre which is the government official control price. 

    A visibly worried Senator Ekwunife representing Anambra south under the platform of the People's Democratic Party said this directive has become absolutely necessary considering the untold hardship faced by Nigerians since the fuel scarcity commenced.

    Angered by what he called inaction on the part of the Minister of Petroleum Resources, the Committee Chairman said: ”We are mandating the Minister of Petroleum Resources, the Permanent Secretary and heads of agencies to stop this fuel scarcity in two weeks'' “We are giving a target now,we don’t wan’t to know how you would achieve it. Nigerians want to see an end to this fuel scarcity''., the statement added.


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