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African Union hit by sexual harassment claims
November 25, 2018 | 0 Comments
The AUC chairperson formed a special team to investigate sexual harassment claims after he received an anonymous letter alerting him of the abuse

The AUC chairperson formed a special team to investigate sexual harassment claims after he received an anonymous letter alerting him of the abuse

Sexual harassment is a major problem for women who work at the African Union Commission (AUC), an internal investigation has found.

Most of the victims are short-term staff, youth volunteers and interns looking for jobs, the report said.

Those responsible “position themselves as ‘gate-keepers’ and ‘king-makers'”, it added.

The inquiry was launched in May and all staff members who had a complaint were invited for a confidential interview.

The special committee was formed by the AUC Chairperson, Moussa Faki, after an anonymous letter alerted him to the abuse.

The team found 44 cases of alleged sexual harassment and that young women were being “exploited for sex in exchange for jobs”.

The report did not name any of the alleged perpetrators.

Staff behind the harassment made “believable promises to young women that they will be offered contracts,” the report said.

Mr Faki says a policy on sexual harassment at work will be set up

Mr Faki says a policy on sexual harassment at work will be set up

Interviewees said reporting incidents of sexual harassment was often counterproductive as there was no process internally to do so because the AUC does not have a sexual harassment policy.

The team also found incidents of bribery, corruption, bullying, discrimination and intimidation.

South Africa’s Mail & Guardian paper says the inquiry was established after it reported on a petition signed by 37 female members of AU staff complaining about sexual harassment at the commission.

The AU Commission, which has its headquarters in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, said that given the findings and serious allegations, it would establish “a comprehensive sexual harassment policy that protects the victims and takes the strongest punitive measures against any perpetrator”.

Mr Faki would also form an internal committee to look into all the reported cases and make recommendations, a statement said.

*BBC

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Ethiopian Airlines Steps up Hunt for African Connections
November 25, 2018 | 0 Comments

BY OMAR MOHAMMED AND Maggie Fick*

Yamlaksira Getachew, a management professor at Loyola Marymount University, warned Zambia's relaunched flag carrier could steal traffic from Ethiopian's existing southern African hub in neighboring Malawi.  Ethiopian has been forced to adopt the piecemeal approach to expansion because full air transport liberalization has failed to materialize, despite several attempts.  In 1999, 44 African countries signed the Yamoussoukro Decision in Ivory Coast's capital giving airlines freedom to ferry passengers between two foreign countries.  But the agreement was barely implemented as governments moved to protect domestic carriers.  To try to revive the stalled process, 23 African governments signed another deal this year to forge a single aviation market.  So far, Ethiopian's plan appears to be working. It says it has clocked average growth of 25 percent a year since 2010 and expects to carry nearly 10.6 million passengers this year, up from 3.7 million eight years ago.  Unlike many African rivals, it is also making money. Net profit rose 2 percent to $233 million in its 2017-18 fiscal year.  It says Western banks are helping to fund plans to boost its fleet of 108 planes, with 66 more on order.  Highlighting the potential riches at stake, Chinese banks are involved too, partly reflecting Beijing's drive to build a new trade corridor to the Middle East and Africa, bankers said.  (Reporting by Omar Mohammed in Nairobi and Maggie Fick in Addis Ababa; additional reporting by Tim Hepher in Hong Kong; editing by David Clarke)

Yamlaksira Getachew, a management professor at Loyola Marymount University, warned Zambia’s relaunched flag carrier could steal traffic from Ethiopian’s existing southern African hub in neighboring Malawi.
Ethiopian has been forced to adopt the piecemeal approach to expansion because full air transport liberalization has failed to materialize, despite several attempts.
In 1999, 44 African countries signed the Yamoussoukro Decision in Ivory Coast’s capital giving airlines freedom to ferry passengers between two foreign countries.
But the agreement was barely implemented as governments moved to protect domestic carriers.
To try to revive the stalled process, 23 African governments signed another deal this year to forge a single aviation market.
So far, Ethiopian’s plan appears to be working. It says it has clocked average growth of 25 percent a year since 2010 and expects to carry nearly 10.6 million passengers this year, up from 3.7 million eight years ago.
Unlike many African rivals, it is also making money. Net profit rose 2 percent to $233 million in its 2017-18 fiscal year.
It says Western banks are helping to fund plans to boost its fleet of 108 planes, with 66 more on order.
Highlighting the potential riches at stake, Chinese banks are involved too, partly reflecting Beijing’s drive to build a new trade corridor to the Middle East and Africa, bankers said.
(Reporting by Omar Mohammed in Nairobi and Maggie Fick in Addis Ababa; additional reporting by Tim Hepher in Hong Kong; editing by David Clarke)

NAIROBI/ADDIS ABABA (Reuters) – Ethiopian Airlines is accelerating its strategy of weaving a patchwork of new African routes to soak up traffic on the continent and fly customers towards its more lucrative flights to rapidly expanding Asian markets.

With a long-delayed African “open skies” revolution still mired in red tape, Ethiopian has been snapping up stakes in small carriers around the continent to pre-empt potential rivals and become the dominant pan-African airline.

The carrier is in talks with Democratic Republic of Congo, Congo Republic and Djibouti about either launching airlines or securing landing spots, CEO Tewolde GebreMariam told Reuters.

He also said in May the airline was looking to set up carriers in Equatorial Guinea and Guinea through joint ventures.

“The task of African integrati on is not easy,” Tewolde said in an interview. “The context is the need for air transport. There is huge demand. We are responding to it.”

Ethiopian’s push comes as Middle Eastern rivals who expanded heavily in Africa are feeling some pain from overcapacity, while African carriers such as South African Airways and Kenya Airways are on the back foot after losing money for years.

The success or failure of Ethiopian’s plan is being watched by long-haul competitors such as Turkish Airlines and suppliers led by Boeing and, more recently, Airbus.

Ethiopian’s fortunes are also important for Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s government, which has said it plans to sell a minority stake in the airline to domestic and foreign investors as part of broad economic reform pledges.

Ethiopian unveiled its 15-year expansion strategy in 2010, and started small. First it helped launch ASKY Airlines in the West African country of Togo and then acquired a 49 percent stake in Malawi’s flag carrier in southern Africa in 2013.

Since May, Ethiopian has announced plans to launch an airline in Mozambique, relaunched Zambia’s flag carrier, established a new airline in Chad to cover West and Central Africa and resumed flights to Somalia after a 41-year hiatus.

REGIONAL HUBS

The prize is growing fast. Air traffic in Africa is forecast to grow 6 percent a year, twice as quickly as mature markets and faster than any other region over the next two decades.

Ethiopian is hoping to snare a greater share of capacity on flights between cities in Africa, which are already 90-percent controlled by African carriers, according to data firm OAG.

In most cases so far, Ethiopian has taken minority stakes in “start-up” airlines and tried to implant its management culture, often in nations haunted by costly failures of state carriers.

Tewolde also wants to claw back market share on routes to and from the continent, dominated by Turkish and Gulf carrier Emirates. This year, 61 percent of capacity to or from Africa has been controlled by non-African carriers, says OAG.

There are big risks.

Ethiopian is spending tens of millions of dollars in some of Africa’s toughest markets and the strategy of buying minority stakes to get a foothold abroad has failed spectacularly for some, such as Abu Dhabi’s Etihad.

Analysts worry accelerated expansion may spread Ethiopian too thinly if traffic doesn’t pick up fast enough at its new hubs in Togo, Malawi and Chad.

The regional hubs are designed partly to channel customers to Ethiopian’s main hub in Addis Ababa and so fill its direct flights to the Middle East and Asia.

OPEN SKIES?

There are also concerns that none is in a major African city. Lome is far smaller than west African cities such as Nigeria’s economic capital Lagos, or Abidjan in Ivory Coast, while Chad’s dusty desert capital is even smaller.

“You want to build (a hub) in a place where you are going to get local traffic and connecting traffic,” said Craig Jenks, president of consultancy Airline/Aircraft Projects Inc http://aap.aero/index.html.

Tewolde said the new airline in Chad would draw in passengers from Cameroon, Central African Republic, Niger, northern Nigeria and Sudan.

Yamlaksira Getachew, a management professor at Loyola Marymount University, warned Zambia’s relaunched flag carrier could steal traffic from Ethiopian’s existing southern African hub in neighboring Malawi.

Ethiopian has been forced to adopt the piecemeal approach to expansion because full air transport liberalization has failed to materialize, despite several attempts.

In 1999, 44 African countries signed the Yamoussoukro Decision in Ivory Coast’s capital giving airlines freedom to ferry passengers between two foreign countries.

But the agreement was barely implemented as governments moved to protect domestic carriers.

To try to revive the stalled process, 23 African governments signed another deal this year to forge a single aviation market.

So far, Ethiopian’s plan appears to be working. It says it has clocked average growth of 25 percent a year since 2010 and expects to carry nearly 10.6 million passengers this year, up from 3.7 million eight years ago.

Unlike many African rivals, it is also making money. Net profit rose 2 percent to $233 million in its 2017-18 fiscal year.

It says Western banks are helping to fund plans to boost its fleet of 108 planes, with 66 more on order.

Highlighting the potential riches at stake, Chinese banks are involved too, partly reflecting Beijing’s drive to build a new trade corridor to the Middle East and Africa, bankers said.

(Reporting by Omar Mohammed in Nairobi and Maggie Fick in Addis Ababa; additional reporting by Tim Hepher in Hong Kong; editing by David Clarke)

*Culled from Reuters

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Abdulsalami Charges Nigerians to Vote Out Incompetent Governments
November 24, 2018 | 0 Comments

By Teslim Olawore

former Head of State, Gen. Abdulsalami Abubakar (retd.)

former Head of State, Gen. Abdulsalami Abubakar (retd.)

A former Military Head of State, General Abdulsalami Abubakar has urged Nigerians to stop criticising failures of government and misrule of bad leaders but should rise up and vote out incompetent government in the fast approaching 2019 general election.

General Abubakar while speaking at the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPSS) in Kuru, where he delivered a Distinguished Annual Lecture on ‘Election and Security in Nigeria: Policy Options and Strategies’ to mark the Graduation Ceremony of the Senior Executive Course (SEC) 40 said, “Let me try to conclude by saying that every citizen must do their duty; you must not sell your vote, you must register to vote, and stop criticising the failures of government if you will not go and vote them out if they are not doing their job. You should not allow your children to be used for violence.”

The General identified some of the causes of political violence in Nigeria since independence to include incredible election umpires, militarization of elections by security agents, crowded political parties, poor electoral laws, and delay in judicial system.

He said that the responsibility of security agencies must be defined as their roles were very critical to the success or failure of any election as “Heavy policing and militarization of election as observed in Ekiti was enough to scare voters from coming out to exercise their franchise.”

The General also decried vote-buying, describing it as an ill act that must be urgently addressed before the 2019 elections. He said Boko Haram was certainly a threat to the 2019 elections in the North-east, adding that IPOB, the MEND and others were also a threat.

Abubakar also criticized too many registered political parties for the elections, describing it as an undesirable crowd, especially that “many of the so-called political parties do not have ideological orientation”.

He feared that if quick actions were not taken, political hooliganism was gradually taking over the system, while anarchy steered Nigerians in the face, adding that all these were even complicated by the current abuse of the social media which must be put to stop by all means.

He also blamed Nigeria’s ordeal on colonial historical baggage, noting that “Nigeria’s amalgamation was not scripted to benefit the nation, coupled with the divide and rule practice by the British in Nigeria, and the inordinate greed and ambition of our political elites.

“Absence of check and balances and culture of winner takes it all in Nigeria have made politicians to become desperate to get it by hook-or-crook.”

While appealing to Nigerians to give peace a chance, he said “without peace there will be no Nigeria.”

 

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3 Joint Winners of Million Dollar 2018 Al Sumait Prize for Health Announced
November 24, 2018 | 0 Comments
The prize amount of one million US dollars, offered by the State of Kuwait, is awarded annually to individuals or institutions within one of the three fields of Food Security, Health and Education
KUWAIT CITY, Kuwait, November 21, 2018/ — Three joint winners of the 2018 cycle of Al Sumait Prize for African Development in the field of Health have been endorsed by the award’s Board of Trustees, in recognition of their exemplary work in health improvement on the African continent. 

Following consideration of the jury and selection committees’ reports, the Board of Trustees has decided to award half of the Prize to Professor Salim S. Abdool Karim, Director of the Centre for the AIDS Program of Research, Pro Vice-Chancellor (Research) at the University of KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa and Professor at Columbia University. The second half of the prize is to be shared equally between Professor Sheila K. West Vice Chair for Research Wilmer Eye Institute at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, and the Rakai Health Sciences Program, which is a nonprofit independent research center based in Rakai, Uganda.

Professor Abdool Karim has been jointly awarded the prize for his recognised contributions to science in HIV treatment and prevention over the past three decades, which have led to significant changes in health policy and practices worldwide. He has published more than 350 papers in world-class medical journals and his efforts in research on prevention and treatment of AIDS patients has been a major factor in the decline in HIV/AIDS and mortality rates in Africa and the world.

His findings on HIV-TB, a leading cause of death in Africa, are specifically mentioned in many country treatment policies and guidelines, and are being implemented worldwide. The impact is highly tangible (eg. HIV-TB deaths have halved in South Africa since 2012).

Professor West has been jointly awarded the prize in recognition for her dedicated research focused in Africa on ways to improve trichiasis surgery outcomes and eliminate blinding trachoma. Her work has contributed to the control of blindness for both children and adults.

She has been instrumental in the development of the World Health Organization SAFE strategy for Trachoma prevention and control, a sustainable strategy that is now widely used throughout the world and is preventing blindness among both children and adults. Professor West continues her work on neglected tropical diseases in the poorest communities with partners across the globe.

The third joint winner of the 2018 prize is the Rakai Health Sciences Program (RHSP) in recognition for its important role in improving public health in the African continent by fighting against HIV/AIDS and sexually transmitted diseases, and for discovering -three decades ago- the first clinical symptoms of what was then a new medical phenomenon called “slim disease” on the African continent.

The program also succeeded in documenting the importance of male circumcision and its positive impact as an effective means of reducing HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases, while the publications of the program in prestigious medical journals have had a significant impact on health policies in Africa and the world.

RHSP employs 350 full-time Ugandan research and clinical staff that include epidemiologists, demographers, clinical and basic science researchers, behavioral, laboratory scientists, and research support staff.  Additional RHSP staff, about 370, provide HIV treatment and prevention services resulting from RHSP research.

H.E. Sheikh Sabah Khaled Al-Hamad Al-Sabah, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Chairman of Al Sumait’s Board of Trustees said: “Our goal with this prize is to promote positive change across Africa, and these newly announced laureates of the Al-Sumait Prize for African Development have been working tirelessly in their field of Health to create a positive and sustainable difference across Africa and the world.”

Dr. Kwaku Aning, Chairman of the Ghana Atomic Energy Commission (GAEC) and Member of Al Sumait Prize Board,  said: “The achievements of all the winners for the award this year represent a high level of commitment to the challenges facing the African continent in ​​health care. The efforts of two of the three winners are focused on ways to treat and prevent HIV/AIDS, which is the leading cause of death in Africa.

“The third winner focuses on the treatment of blinding trachoma, which is not a direct cause of high mortality, but a disease that is described as an “orphan” affecting members of the poorest communities in developing countries. The decision to award the prize to three winners is a testament to the dedication of all candidates to efforts to improve health in the African continent.”

Dr. Adnan Shihab-Eldin, Director General of the Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Sciences (KFAS), said: “Our Laureates for the 2018 Al Sumait Prize are responsible for measurable improvements to the lives and life expectancy of millions of those suffering from HIV and Trachoma and decreasing death rates of AIDS, through innovative research on treatment and prevention and in championing sustainable changes in health polices across Africa and the world.”

The prize amount of one million US dollars, offered by the State of Kuwait, is awarded annually to individuals or institutions within one of the three fields of Food Security, Health and Education. The Board of Trustees (BOT), which  oversees the prize,  is chaired by H.E. Sheikh Sabah Khaled Al-Hamad Al-Sabah, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs, and its members include:  Bill Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Dr. Kwaku Aning, Chairman of the Governing Board of Ghana Atomic Energy Commission, Chairman of Ghana Nuclear Energy Institute and Former Deputy Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency, Abdulatif Alhamad, Director General and Chairman of the Arab Fund for Economic and Social Development, Tareq Al-Mutawa, Executive Member of the Board of Public Gathering Charity Committee and Makhtar Diop, Vice President for Africa, The World Bank. The Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Sciences (KFAS) provides all the administrative and logistic support.

An initiative of His Highness Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al- Sabah, the Amir of the State of Kuwait, which provides the annual million dollar, the Prize honors the late Dr. Abdulrahman Al Sumait, a Kuwaiti doctor who dedicated his life to addressing the health challenges confronting Africa.

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East African countries agree to strengthen regional integration through the continental free trade area
November 24, 2018 | 0 Comments
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Africa’s Protocol on the Free Movement of People under spotlight at East African Community (ECA) meeting
November 24, 2018 | 0 Comments
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Keep making Ghana proud – Bawumia to Ghanaian Peacekeepers
November 23, 2018 | 0 Comments

By Papisdaff Abdullah

Dr Bawumia pinning medals at a colourful ceremony

Dr Bawumia pinning medals at a colourful ceremony

Vice President of Ghana Dr Mahamudu Bawumia has commended personnel of the Ghanaian battalion currently attached to the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL), GHANBATT 85, for proudly flying the Ghana flag in the discharge of their duties.

Addressing a durbar of all ranks of the contingent at their operational headquarters at Al-Qawzah, Lebanon on Wednesday 21st November, 2018, Dr Bawumia urged members of the contingent not to rest on their oars but continue to maintain the high standards of discipline which has earned them commendation from all stakeholders.

Dr Bawumia was in Lebanon to witness the award of United Nations Medals to Ghana’s contingent attached to the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL).

This is the first time in history that a Vice President has visited Ghanaian troops in Lebanon, although Ghana has supported UNIFIL with troops since the inception of the mission 40 years ago.

The 850 Officers and men of the GHANBATT 85, under the direct command of Lt Col Fiifi Deegbe, have been deployed with UNIFIL for the past 5 months, and have been engaged in promoting peace and security in the troubled Middle Eastern country, especially on its southern border with Israel.

“I congratulate the Commanding Officer, Officers, Men and Women of UNIFIL GHANBATT 85 for the impressive performance over the period. Your performance is a true reflection of the high standard of professionalism, diligence and discipline of all Ghanaian soldiers,” Vice President Bawumia stated.

“From the briefings we have been given, I am pleased to note that your effective and continuous domination of GHANBATT 85 Area of Responsibility as well as timely reaction to incidents have been highly commended by key stakeholders, notable among them, the Sector West Commander and indeed the UNIFIL Force Commander.

“Well done for the zeal and seriousness you attached to your duties at keeping the flags of Ghana and United Nations high. Special commendation to the Contingent Commander, Colonel Robert Ayi who is also the Chief Military Personnel Officer (CMPO) at the UNIFIL Headquarters for the guidance to the battalion. I urge you to display the same professionalism and commitment.”

Vice President Bawumia assured that Government on its part, will continue to provide logistical and other support to troops, not just in Lebanon, but in other peace keeping theatres as well as the entire Ghana Armed Forces.

 

“I wish to emphasize that Ghana as a nation must give our Contingent the best support we can, in return for the sacrifices that they make on a daily basis in all international peacekeeping operations. In this regard, the Government of His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo will ensure that you have the resources to match your commitments,” Vice President Bawumia pledged.

In a related development, the Sector West Commander of UNIFIL, Major General Stefano Del Col, assisted by Dr Bawumia, on Thursday 22nd November, 2018 pinned medals on the troops of GHANBATT 85 at a colourful ceremony at the battalion headquarters at Al-Qawzah, Lebanon on the occasion of the UNIFIL Medal Day.

 

 

 

 

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Fresh Look At Traditional Medicine as economic hardship hits health sector in Zimbabwe
November 23, 2018 | 0 Comments

By Nevson Mpofu

Zimbabwe looks forward to new Health Research. This is meant to match with modern latest technology in the Medical field. The move from old days to today’s World has come at a time the country is struggling to procure drugs from outside using foreign currents.

A one day workshop held in Harare on 23 November  by the Medical Research Council of Zimbabwe  under the theme , Health Research in Zimbabwe today .. Opportunities in a changing Environment emphasises a New Zimbabwe open for Business.

Giving a speech, the Minister of Health and Child Care, DR Obediah Moyo said the need for future focus lies in building a Health Nation tomorrow. He further pointed out that Zimbabwe which is open for Business must come up with a drive to come with new ideas in the field of medicines. The new ideas, he added must also focus on Traditional Medicines and more also on the growth of Pharmaceutical Industries for Allopathic Medicines.

‘’We now want to look Green as well in New Health research methods. The deep understanding is that Medical Research is life focused. Let us not forget that the World is changing. At the same time, let us move with the times to grapple with Technology, Research, methods and medicines moving with the times. To make the Drug Industry grow, there is need to utilise medicinal herbs. Further, this creates the growth as well of Allopathic drugs, those ones common to us ‘’.

‘’Promoting Sustainable Drug development in the wake of drug shortage retains foreign currents, leads to economic growth and Human Development. If we reach a stage where we export drugs, then we can make affordability and accessibility in the country’’.

‘’Let us not forget, we are in the modern times. Old days are gone with their times. Let us not be archaic. If we do so, we are not developing the medical field. However we need to discuss issues relating to the ethical conduct of Health research.

‘’Our main goal is therefore to ensure protection of human subjects. Since we are moving towards becoming a middle Income country. Vision then must be quality research that speaks our needs. Standardisation and co-ordination of clinical trials and Health Research requires review to align with the Health Act of 1966 and the Constitution.’’

A leading Researcher, Lynda Stranix of the University of Zimbabwe  School of Medicine said Medical Health Research is vital in today’s World. The need to work towards International standards and ethics are important in bringing professionalism in medicines control. Health Infrastructure is developed in view of fighting HIV and AIDS, Tuberculosis, malaria and cholera.

‘’The World is fast changing but we are moving slowly. Thus why we are now more affected by blood borne diseases, water bourn, vector bourn, Cancers and non-communicable ones. We need to move on with the times, develop best practices, qualitative research and standardise at International level as changes occur ‘’.

‘’More evidence based medicine demand research, more education on Health and to move with the times in hard times hitting us back. Useful interventions and controversies about best practices call for more justified research in communities.

The research is also more to get into Traditional medicine. Professor Charles Nhachi said the country is ready to accept and regulate more research on any new drugs. He said the need to have new trials will lead the country to successful outcome and impact of latest drugs which are efficacious.

‘’As a country we have to promote efficacy through new research studies in traditional medicines. We only come to conquer by looking wisely with fresh knowledge of Scientific Research. The country must take off traditional medicine as well as new focus in the treatment of communicable and non-ones.

Zimbabwe is going under transformation. Numerous challenges stand in the way of a prosperous and healthy society. One of the challenge is provision of quality medicines to communities. Most of the drugs for various ailments need to be imported from outside our boarders.

However, foreign current may not – be adequate to cover all essential medicines .Taking a step further he said demand , supply and adequate supply comes with research and construction of Drug Manufacturing Industry .

‘’It is therefore important to come with innovative research studies which address local needs. Eventually we need to manufacture and supply most of our drugs to satisfy human needs and wants. Government will continue to strive and source funds for research, He concluded.

Recommendations have been laid on the ground to source foreign currents to procure drugs from outside countries at the moment. This is done for the sake of improving drug supply. Also the Government will strive to source funds for research in relevant areas. The revamp of the Drug Manufacturing Industry is promoted to reduce imports and save scarce foreign currency.

 

 

 

 

 

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Kenyan Missionary Killed in Mamfe: Eye Witness accounts say he was killed by Government soldiers-Bishop Nkea
November 23, 2018 | 0 Comments

By Boris Esono (Buea-Cameroon)

Fr. Ondari, Kenyan missionary murdered in Cameroon

Fr. Ondari, Kenyan missionary murdered in Cameroon

The Bishop of the Mamfe diocese Bishop Andrew Nkea says the killing of Rev. Fr. Cosmas Oboto Ondari was done by government soldiers (Gendarmerie Nationale) according to eye witness accounts. This was one of the messages enclosed in a letter by the Bishop shortly after the murder.

Rev. Fr. Ondari was killed on the 21st of November 2018 in Kembong, Manyu Division of the South West Region of Cameroon. The Father was reportedly shot in front of the parish after it was reported that fierce clashes had taken place between separatist and security forces.

According to Bishop Nkea “A certain Mr. Johnson Ndip Nchot was also shot in front of his house, a few meters from the Church building. I visited Kembong Parish on Thursday the 22nd of November and I personally counted 21 bullet holes made on the Church building of Kembong where at the time, the priest, the catechist and many Christians were carrying out various activities in the mission compound”.

He added that: “in December 2017, when the situation in Kembong was very tense, Fr. Ondari and his parish priest Fr. Tiberius Vouni, MHM, along with some of their parishioners moved out from Kembong to Mamfe. The village of more than 5,000 people was almost completely and many houses were burnt down”.

“In April, 2018, in a bid to give hope to the desperate population, many of whom were courageously opted to go back to Kembong so as to encourage the people to return…. It was in this context that Fr. Ondari was brutally and recklessly murdered on the 21st of November, 2018”.

 

The Bishop has called on the powers that be to carry out a thorough investigation into this heinous crime committed against an innocent peace loving missionary and bring the culprits to face justice as he says “it is the only way those who have been hurt can truly be comforted, and peace can return to our land”.

“It is our fervent hope that those killings should stop in our diocese and in the Anglophone Regions of Cameroon. The value of human life is diminishing and the human person is wasted away for any flimsy reason or even for sport. This has to stop and we call on all those involved in killing innocent civilians to refrain from these inhumane and monstrous acts”.

Bishop Nkea has called on Christians to intensify prayers and not to relent while also calling on all Christians of the Diocese of Mamfe especially those of Kembong Parish to stay calm and unite in prayers. “The forces of evil are rampage against the church of God but as Christians, we believe in the promise of Christ that the gates of the underworld will never prevail over the Church”

Born in Gucha, in Kenya on the 19th of September 1985, Fr. Ondari joined the missionary society of St. Joseph, otherwise known as the Mill Hill Missionaries and was sent to do his philosophy studies in the Queen of Apostles Seminary in Jinja in Uganda. After his studies of Philosophy, the young Ondari was sent to Cameroon for pastoral experience and he spend two years in Fundong Parish, in the Archdiocese of Bamenda, under the supervision of Fr. Christopher Hannock, MHM…. He was ordained on the 26th of March 2017 in his home Diocese of Kisi by Bishop Joseph Mairura Okemwa.

In April 2017, the Superiors of the Mill Hill Society appointed Fr. Ondari to Mamfe Diocese where he was then posted to the St. Martin of Tours Parish, Kembong as his first appointment and which turned out to be his last appointment as a priest.

 

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Akinwumi Adesina, Spearheading Good Governance by Leading Agricultural Innovation and Economic Growth of Africa
November 23, 2018 | 0 Comments
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My Transition Hours: Presidency Calls Jonathan a Liar
November 23, 2018 | 0 Comments

By Teslim Olawore

File picture.President-Elect Retired Maj.-Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (L) In A Handshake With President Goodluck Jonathan During His Official Visit To The Presidential Villa In AbujaOn Friday (24/4/15).With Them Is The Former Chief Of Army Staff,Retired Lt.-Gen. Abduhraman DambazauThe Presidency has criticised Goodluck Jonathan, former President, for saying the country is more corrupt now than it was when he left office more than three years ago.

According to a press statement released and signed by the president’s media aide, Garba Shehu on ex-president, Goodluck Jonathan’s book, “My Transition Hours”

Shehu said president Muhammadu Buhari, in pursuit of the war against corruption, has set a number of local and international records, one of which is to call judicial officers in Nigeria to account. He is the first to set such a record. Not only that, this is the first time that top military commanders and Service Chiefs are brought to trial and convictions were achieved on account of corruption.

He also said that this is the first time a ruling party is convicting high profile citizens including former governors, who are members of same party. This is the first time the international community is acknowledging the efforts of a government of Nigeria in this regard as manifested by the selection of President Buhari by the African Union as the Anti-Corruption Champion of the continent. For the records, this is the first time a ruling party is investigating ranking officers of the administration, including some at the very top.

He insisted the Buhari administration has introduced a lot of changes, considering that the laws relating to the fight against corruption cannot reasonably be static. In line with its aspiration to be ahead of the growing sophistication of corruption and financial crimes, the administration has initiated new legislations and proposed amendments to different sections of laws, among which are:

The Money Laundering Prevention and Prohibition Bill 2017; • Anti-Terrorism Prevention and Prohibition Bill 2017; • Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit Bill 2017 (NFIU); • Proceeds of Crime Bill 2017; • Public Interest Disclosure and Witness Protection Bill, 2017 and • The Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters Bill, 2017. Owing to these efforts and support all of relevant stakeholders, NFIU Act has been passed and President Buhari gave his assent on July 18, 2018.

He said there was no investment in infrastructure during Jonathan’s tenure as President Buhari is now doing in seaports, airports, power plants, railways, roads and housing.

Shehu concluded the press release saying “the former President and his party have nothing to say about achievements. They ruled the country for 16 years and what is their record on jobs, power, rail, seaports, airports and internal security, including the crippling disaster of terrorism?”.

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Disgruntled Cadres Accuse ZANU PF of Human Rights Violations At Motlanthe Commission
November 22, 2018 | 0 Comments

By Nevson Mpofu

Kgalema Motlanthe and his commission at work

Kgalema Motlanthe and his commission at work

The Kgalema Motlanthe led Commission of Inquiry in its consented effort to bring out findings about the 1 August killing is in a bizarre situation at hand. This  emerged on 21 November at a case hearing session held in Harare .

Two bold and fearless former ZANU PF supporters who got sacked with the coming in of the new Government have swept off the dirty under the carpet. The two, Jim Kunaka who was leader of ZANU PF Chipangano and Provincial Youth Leader and Shadreck Mashayamombe were sacked out of the new Government because they belonged to G-40 a faction that belonged to ZANU PF Robert Mugabe. Shadreck Mashayamombe is the former Harare South Legislator.

In a hearing chaired by Motlanthe , Chairperson of the Commission , the testifying two implicated  men Jim Kunaka and Shadreck Mashayamombe braved the truth in respect to what transpired . In his defence , the first respondent quoted by Journalist inquisitive to know what really caught attention of the crowd bare all in what really took place  .

In his defence, Jim Kunaka who was implicated in the killing said ZANU PF has a long history pertaining to impunity, killings, abuses and torture to remain in power. He however pointed out that, a lot of the abuses, a few to be said were done during Robert Mugabe era. Jim pointed fingers at Charity Manyeruke whom he said worked with him in many acts of impunity. They spent time working out on how to badly treat MDC supporters from 2008 until a time she got a new position.

‘’I do not want to be asked questions by Charity Manyeruke . She was part of us during many occasions when we abused the rights of MDC supporters. She led us into activities some of which I can’t say . However I can go deep if allowed to , Do I have to ?

‘’I do not fear to say nor do I feel insecure to say out what happened during the time several human rights abuses happened. The lady was part and parcel of the act. Before her , ZANU PF was already instrumental in strategizing how to ill-treat , assassinate and do all sorts of abuses , physically and emotionally .’’

The simple bold and hard words tells more about what really transpired during the 2008 election campaign and beyond. This leaves Robert Mugabe not Mnangagwa answerable. Taking a hard stern snarl of a bare all in the case Shadreck Mashayamombe testified the rigorous tyranny campaign , strategies and antics the Party , ZANU PF took . In close to tears eroding his cheeks he pointed out that people in the party had that tactical antics done to remain in power.

‘’The point is that the Party strategizes tactics to defend the Revolutionary party to iron fist rule. I have gone under tremendous and horrendous experiences. I at this moment know but I cannot further dig down’’,

‘’Party leaders in the party are cruel, volatile and merciless. I used to blame MDC-T  , but hey , its terrible . These power greedy people have made us vagabonds and they have made us languish in our own country.’’ he said in tears at the last utter of his words.

The testimonies of the two drew back people to the past of the ruling party’s cruelty during the time of Robert Mugabe. The voices of truth spared out the current President whom many said mighty be quite out of some issues of cruelty as compared to Mugabe .  There are assassinations and killings .These could be the Gukurahundi massacre which left 20 000 people dead in Matebeleland .

Falling head on with JapaJapa an MDC philanthropist, he in persistence called the Commission of Inquiry to get deep down into the matter by starting a witch hunt of the soldier who bent down at the killing scene. However, Army General Valerio Sibanda claims to be clean. He said by the time the incident occurred, Army was almost about to visit the scene where the riot in political collective action was.

Dirty fingers are repeatedly pointed out to Nelson Chamisa and Tendai Biti who are suspected to have orchestrated the vitiated plan to kill. The thorny mountain question then linger in the vibrant air. Japajapa asks questions

‘’Let us man hunt the soldier who was seen kneeling down firing gun shots at the crowd. Why do we have to go round and round yet the video can play?

‘’How could MDC-T claim its own blood. Let us work out on real evidence rather than criss- cross like this. This is just worst of time and precious resources. ZNU PF  is notorious for anything . Why hide the truth .’’

Economic Analysts fear the country may get into oblivion of deep dark shadows if this continues unvisited. They are talking of visible accountability, transparency and pure credibility. The state of the 1 August shooting scared away potential Investors Mnangagwa had sourced from countries like China , Russia , Turkey and a few countries to name a few in this respect .

The Zimbabwe issue is tough, Experts in Business have concluded. Political Analysts blame it on Two political parties, ZANU PF and MDC T . The root of all the evil is centred on the dictatorship of Robert Mugabe who ruled for 37 years with an iron fist . At the same time, some people cry foul over the actions and words of Nelson Chamisa who lost the recent Presidential and Parliamentary elections. Emmersson Mnangagwa took it for a heavy campaign. He won the elections which MDCT disputed.  He failed to produce tangible evidence that the election was stolen by Zimbabwe Electoral Commission and ZANU PF .

 

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