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Kenya:UDA allies protest Ruto’s Uganda trip cancellation
August 3, 2021 | 0 Comments

By Samuel Ouma

Relations between Deputy President Ruto and President Kenyatta have gone south

A section of political leaders allied to the United Democratic Alliance (UDA) has condemned the government for blocking the Deputy President William Ruto from traveling to Uganda.

On Monday, August 2, William Ruto was forced to abort his private visit to neighbouring Uganda after he was blocked from leaving the country at Wilson Airport in Nairobi.

The second in command is said to have arrived at the airport with his 7-member delegation ready for the trip before the security told him that he needed clearance from above.

However, his entourage was allowed to proceed with the journey. His delegation comprises lawmakers Ndindi Nyoro, Oscar Sudi and Benjamin Tayari, businessman Harun Aydin, David Lagat, Eric Ruto and Elijah Rono.

After waiting for more than two hours to have his documents verified for the trip, he finally gave up and left.

Senior civil servants must seek travel clearance when leaving the country, but it is unclear whether the law applies to the deputy president.

Reports from Ruto’s office said that he was asked to seek clearance from the Head of Public Service, Joseph Kinyua, who denied issuing such directive when contacted.

MP Nyoro claimed he heard Ruto being told to present his birth certificate or a letter from his area chief for clearance.

“We saw something unprecedented upon arrival at the airport. Those of us who are Members of Parliament were told to seek clearance from the House leadership. Upon seeking the same, Parliament was categorical that we needed no clearance.

“The DP inquired what clearance he was to give and all he was told was that there orders from above. People in Immigration Department told us CS Fred Matiangi issued the instructions. He was contacted and denied giving such directives,” said Nyoro.

According to Senator Aaron Cheruiyot, Ruto’s rising political star gives the government a sleepless night, adding that President Uhuru Kenyatta’s administration is out to frustrate the Deputy President.

On his side, legislator Caleb Kositany said the government has resorted to revenge after the ruling party was floored in the recent Kiambaa by-elections. UDA’s candidate John Wanjiku trounced Jubilee’s Kariri Njama in a hotly contested mini-poll.

“We understand your pain, jubilee is a shell, Musambweni & Kiambaa results, BBI in ICU, NASA dead, KEMSA heist & the bottom up economic model changing the discussion,” said Kositany.

Following the incident, Ruto expressed his sentiments on Twitter.  He tweeted, “It’s alright..let’s leave it to God.”

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Mozambique: Military Now Beating Terrorists , says Defence Minister
August 3, 2021 | 0 Comments

By Jorge Joaquim

Mozambican Defence Minister Jaime Neto

The terrorists in Cabo Delgado province are finally being beaten as a result of intense operations by the Mozambican security forces and Rwandan troops, Mozambican Defence Minister Jaime Neto has said.

The exact number that had been killed was unknown, but it was more than 14 as Rwandan military authorities claimed last week, Neto said on the sidelines of a military accreditation ceremony in Maputo.

“If we look at it, it’s the number that was counted by the Rwandan troops. But our air operations, as well as land operations, have been doing a lot of work. Therefore, it is difficult at the moment to say exactly how many were slaughtered,” he said.

There was an intense confrontation between the two forces and insurgents on 30 July, in an area called Nova Família, in Nangade district, that left 13 insurgents dead and three wounded, and led to the recovery of 13 firearms.

The violent attacks in Cabo Delgado have triggered a humanitarian crisis with more than 800,000 internally displaced people.

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Be leaders of today not tomorrow-Former Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo tasks African Youth
August 2, 2021 | 0 Comments

By Boris Esono Nwenfor

H.E Olusegun Obasanjo served two terms as Nigeria’s president from 1976 to 79 and again from 1999 to 2007

Former Nigerian president H.E Olusegun Obasanjo who served two terms as president from 1976 to 79 and again from 1999 to 2007 has encouraged youths to be actively involved in leadership today and not go by the popular saying that “they are the leaders of tomorrow.”

President Olusegun Obasanjo was speaking to Cameroon calling over the national broadcaster to CRTV as he continues his private stay in the county that first saw him as guest speaker for the 6th graduation ceremony of the ICT University last Saturday, July 30.

President Obasanjo went on to recount his stay in Cameroon during the British/French rule and also why peace is very important. Upon his military training out of the country, the former Nigeria President had his first operation in Bamenda, Cameroon. Since then, he has been in and out of Cameroon on several occasions.

“I remember we came through Mamfe and to go up Bamenda you can only go on Monday and come down on Tuesday… The road was narrow then and it is a different case today. Again, there was a tea plantation there and the pace of life was gentle,” Dr Olusegun Obasanjo said when responding to the question of how life was when he first came to Bamenda.

Head of the AU election observation mission, H.E. Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, observes the close of polls in Ethiopia

“I was at the border one morning with my troops and some people were passing from the British side to go to the French side of Cameroon and we said they could not go. They asked why can’t go and we said it was the border but they said it is not a border to them because the next village is part of their village.”

“That was my first practical experience of the artificiality of our borders; they do not mean anything to the local people.”

According to the former president, part of the problem with Africa when it comes to conflict or crisis is mismanagement or poor management of diversity. Diversity to him is nature and nature is diversity. “Why should we not understand that diversity is natural and should be managed and treated for what it is,”? He asked.

“I have said when people get frustrated for one thing or the other it could be real or perceived injustice, perception must not be treated with levity because to some people perception is taken as reality. When people feel frustrated either by real or perceived injustice do not just leave it unattended to; do something about it.”

“We did not do that to win a Nobel Peace Prize. We did it because it was necessary for us and our people. If any people see what I have done to influence humanity for good as something that can be rewarded, all well and good but that should not be the purpose for me to do good for my peace,” the former President said as he responded to a question on why he, Koffi Annan and H.E Paul Biya have not been awarded the Noble Peace Prize in recognition for their efforts on bringing the Bakassi Peninsular crisis to an end.

Dr Obasanjo is an ardent lover of agriculture, something many do not see a need to invest in. He jokingly says you can take him out of the village but you cannot take the village out of him. “I feel comfortable, I feel natural and belonging to where I come from when I am in the village. If we are going to get it right in Africa we have to go there (in the village and the soil).”

Dr Olusegun Obsanjo (r) receives a special award from the ICT University from Prof Fame Ndongo, Minister of State, Minister of Higher Education

He added: “Education has always been my passion… What is your life worth if you cannot impact other people for good or in their own life; that is what I do. Even when I was president, I did morning devotion every day and I teach Sunday school in my church.”

The former president then went on to encourage the young people not to take the usual advice that they are the leaders of tomorrow because to him “if you wait for tomorrow, you will not have it because those who are there today are going to make sure that they destroy the tomorrow before you get there.”

Leadership is today; you be part of it today and do not let anybody destroy your tomorrow. I became head of state at 39 at 42 I had finished my term and then went on to become of a farmer…”

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Tanzanian President Suluhu in Rwanda For two day visit.
August 2, 2021 | 0 Comments

By Maniraguha Ferdinand

President Suluhu will be in Rwanda for her first visit as Tanzanian President

From Monday, August 2, 2021, Tanzanian President Samia Suluhu Hassan will be in Rwanda for a two-day State Visit, the first of its kind since she assumed office in March this year.

Upon arriving in Rwandan capital Kigali, she will begin with a tête-à-tête with President Paul Kagame, which will be  followed by bilateral talks. 

The Heads of State will then address members of the press and witness the signing of several bilateral agreements.

Agreements to be signed have not been disclosed before but it is believed that construction of Isaka –Kigali railway will be on agenda.

Other expected agreements are in business sector. Tanzania is Rwanda’s  big economic partner as Dar es Salaam port is a route  to more than 60 percent of goods coming from or going to Rwanda.

In March 2021, goods worth $ 33,75 million entered Rwanda from Tanzania, according to National Institute of Statistics of Rwanda.

On evening of  her first day, President Samia Suluhu will be hosted by President Kagame for a State Banquet at the Kigali Convention Centre.

On her final day of the visit, President Suluhu together with President Kagame will visit several companies in various sectors including the Special Economic Zone which is home to 120 companies with activities ranging from manufacturing, agro-processing and education among others.

To date, the SEZ has generated 800 million USD in exports and created 13,000 jobs.

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Namibia objects to Israel’s AU observer status .
July 29, 2021 | 0 Comments

By Andreas Thomas

President Hage Geingob of Namibia

Windhoek – Namibia, like her neighbour South Africa, has on Thursday expressed its objection to the decision by the African Union (AU) Commission to grant Israel observer status in the continental union.

The Ministry of International Relations and Cooperation Executive Director, Penda Naanda said in a statement that the Namibian government is deeply concerned and disappointed that the AU Commission received credentials from the Ambassador of Israel. 

“Granting observer status to an occupying power is contrary to the principles and objectives of the Constitutive Act of the African Union, particularly at a time when the State of Israel is increasing its acts of oppression in total violation of international law and disregard for the human rights of the Palestinian people.  

“It is also contrary to the firm and solid commitment of the Heads of State and Government of the AU to support the Palestinian cause, as evidenced in the various declarations adopted at each Ordinary Session of the Assembly. Namibia believes in the two states as a solution to the issues between the State of Israel and Palestine. 

“Namibia, therefore, disassociates itself from granting observer status to the State of Israel, while the reason for Israel loss of the observer status in 2002 remains unchanged. Namibia maintains that Israel can only re-gain observer status at the AU on condition that it ceases to occupy Palestine, and grants its people the right to self-determination,” Naanda said.

Naanda stressed that Namibia will officially submit its reservation to the Chairperson of the AU Commission, in due course.  

Namibia’s objection came a day after South Africa also objected to a similar decision by the AU Commission. In a statement issued by the Department of International Relations and Cooperation, the South African government described the decision as “unjust and unwarranted.” Pretoria further accused the AU Commission of taking the decision unilaterally without consultations with its members.

“It is therefore incomprehensible that the AU Commission chooses to reward Israel at a time when its oppression of Palestinians has been demonstrably more brutal. The South African government will as the Chairperson of the Commission provide a briefing to all member states on this decision which we hope, will be discussed by the executive council and the assembly of heads of states and government,” read the statement.

The Chairperson of the AU Commission Moussa Faki Mahamat on July 22, 2021, received credentials from Aleli Admasu, Ambassador of the State of Israel to Ethiopia. 

Mahamat noted in a statement that the conflict between the State of Palestine and Israel has been a cause of great concern for over seventy years with various regional and international actors having participated in the search for peace between the two nations. 

He noted that a lasting solution was required to ensure the co-existence of both nations and to allow their people to live in a state of peace and stability.

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Malawi: Chakwera justifies job creation strategy.
July 29, 2021 | 0 Comments

By Joseph Dumbula

Malawians are waiting on President Chakwera to fulfil electoral promises

President Lazarus Chakwera has rallied behind his 1 million job creation ideology, despite a backlash that the campaign promise is not making worthwhile strides.

Before assuming the office of the President, Chakwera and nine other leaders of other political parties came to full popularity at the back of a promise to create more jobs for the youths, who form the country’s largest population.

But a year down the line, government through the ministry of labour has previously said a policy to regulate the initiative is only being developed.

Speaking to BBC Hard Talk, Chakwera insists young more and others have been employed through the Affordable Input Program,- an agricultural subsidy program.

He said his belief is that there is need to empower people so that jobs are created.

Asked on issues of nepotism, against a report that he had appointed his daughter to diplomatic works in Brussels, Chakwera was quick to dismiss the reports.

This contradicts what state house press secretary told the media last week that the president’s daughter deserved the appointment because she is qualified.

Chakwera also defended his entourage saying each had a different role.

Meanwhile, a statement signed by Information Gospel Kazako has clarified that Sean Kampondeni, (Chakwera’s son in law) travelled because he is the assistant to the President while Violet travelled because she is the First Lady’s assistant.

There has been a massive backlash over Chakwera’s interview on BBC with others stating on social media that he underperformed while some feeling he was at his best.

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Nigeria: State Sponsored Terrorism Against The Yoruba People Must Stop- -Attorney Ade Omojola On ICC Case Against President Buhari .
July 28, 2021 | 0 Comments

By Ajong Mbapndah L

We filed the Submission at the ICC, because we cannot secure justice for the Yoruba people within Nigeria, due to the hijacking of the federal government, by agents of Fulani identity, says Aderemilekun “Ade” Omojola

State sponsored terrorism against the Yoruba people in Nigeria has reached alarming levels and must be stopped at all costs, says   Aderemilekun “Ade” Omojola, ., a U.S based Attorney in  New Jersey  who  recently filed a complaint at the International Criminal Court ,ICC against  Nigerian officials.

The complaint accuses multiple members of the Nigerian government of genocide, torture, and crimes against humanity amongst other charges. Officials listed in the complaint include Muhammadu Buhari, President; Hameed Ibrahim Ali, Comptroller-General, Customs; Ibrahim Kpotun Idris, Police, Former Inspector General; Mohammed Adamu, Police, Former Inspector General; Usman Alkali Baba, Police, Current Inspector General; Tukur Yusuf Burutai, Former Chief of Army Staff; Farouk Yahaha, current Chief of Army Staff; Sadik Abubakar, Air Force, Former Chief of Air Staff; Ahmed Abubakar Audi, Former Commandant General, Security & Civil Defense Corps; Abdullahi Gana Muhammadu, current Commandant General, Security & Civil Defense Corps;  Muhammed Babandede, Comptroller General, Immigration Service; Abubakar Malami, Lawyer,
Minister of Justice, Attorney General.

“We filed the Submission at the ICC, because we cannot secure justice for the Yoruba people within Nigeria, due to the hijacking of the federal government, by agents of Fulani identity, who are promoting the Fulani agenda,” says Ade Omojola in an exclusive interview with Pan African Visions.

To Omojola, a reasonable outcome from the ICC, would be  to launch a thorough investigation, and to ultimately prosecute and punish as many individuals as are found to have been complicit or active in facilitating the evil that is befalling the Yoruba people.

Could you start by giving us some background and context into the case you have filed against Nigerian leaders at the ICC?

Nigeria’s federal government is now dominated by the Fulani, along with the security agencies; we allege that they are complicit and actively supporting Fulani terrorism against the Yoruba People, in an attempt to take the land, and subjugate them into a political minority and permanent underclass.

This is set forth in greater detail on pages four and five of the Submission to the ICC.

What are the issues between the Yoruba tribes and the Federal government?

The federal government, or I should say, the Fulani government, has become a lever in the hands of the Fulani, who have hijacked it, and are using its powers and resources to crack open the society, for Fulani from across Africa, who aren’t even Nigerian, to dominate Yoruba ancestral lands, and to subjugate the Yoruba People as a permanent underclass. Violence and terrorism are their principal tools, for which Fulani terrorists have been imported; the federal government is allegedly complicit and actively facilitating through a supply chain, this the violent terrorism of the Yoruba People. They are doing the same to our brothers in the Middle-Belt and the South East.

The crimes took place in Nigeria, why are you suing at the ICC and what competence or jurisdiction does it have  over crimes of that nature perpetrated in Nigeria?


We filed the Submission at the ICC, because we cannot secure justice for the Yoruba people within Nigeria, due to the hijacking of the federal government, by agents of Fulani identity, who are promoting the Fulani agenda.  Those facilitating this evil are the ones running the Nigerian government. Abubakar Malami, for example, is the supposedly the Attorney General and Minister of Justice, but he has become a minister of injustice, in purposefully failing to protect the Yoruba People, by refusing to enforce the law via prosecution of government officials, who are complicit or actively facilitating these crimes. 

Whereas, under the Rome Statute, to which Nigeria became a state party on June 1, 2000, the International Criminal Court has jurisdiction over acts of genocide and crimes against humanity, in cases where the government refuses to do anything meaningful about the situation.

Is there any precedence for the kind of justice or case you have lodged against Nigerian authorities?

  • On November 22, 2017 the ICC, through the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia convicted Ratko Mladic of the former Yugoslavia, of war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide; the court went on to sentence him to life imprisonment.
  • In April 2012, the ICC, through the Special Court for Sierra Leone, convicted Charles Taylor, the former president of Liberia of Liberia of terror, murder, and rape; the Court went on to sentence him to 50 years in prison.


The images are pretty shocking and traumatizing for the human conscience, how were this obtained?

We issued a call for our People to send to us evidence of the atrocities, and we received hundreds of still and motion images, some of which were included in the Submission. 

Nigeria is a deeply polarized country, we see a so many high profile authorities listed, what about the local authorities in whose jurisdictions the atrocities took place?

It is impractical to list local government officials, because the incidents occur across several local government jurisdictions throughout Yoruba land. Whereas the purpose of the Submission is to trigger an initial review by the ICC prosecutor, and a subsequent investigation by the ICC. We have every confidence that when the ICC launches a full-scale investigation, many other individuals who are not listed in the submission will also be brought before the Court. 

With many of the accused persons from the Northern part of the country, are you concerned your team may be criticized for wading into the sectarian political fights of Nigeria?

The very essence, the foundation, and the roots of what the Yoruba are facing is ethnic, or as you put it, “sectarian” in nature, in that the Fulani seek to dominate Yoruba ancestral lands and subjugate the Yoruba as a permanent underclass. As the fruit is subject to the roots, the claims, and most likely the ultimate solutions will, by nature, have a heavy ethnic or “sectarian” element. 

Do you intend to use just the documents you have available or are there plans to have some of the victims testify in person?

We will follow the lead of the ICC, cooperate with them in the investigation, and facilitate whatever is necessary to secure justice for the victims. 

What kind of reaction have you received from the public and the Nigerian government on the case?        

News of the filing went viral, particularly in Nigeria and among Yoruba Civic Organizations, who ensured that the Nigerian news media gave it due attention. Yoruba People have been elated about the Submission; someone even wondered why it took so long for someone to file such a submission with the ICC, while another person contacted me to confirm if the Submission were real or a rumor circulating on social media.

With regard to the Nigerian government, shortly after the Nigerian news media broke the news of the filing, the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) ordered television and radio stations not to disclose “details” of the activities of bandits, terrorists and kidnappers in daily Newspaper Reviews” as reported by the Daily Trust and several other news outlets. We believe news of the ICC filing caused the government to target the media houses with this order, because when the ICC decides to investigate, they could likely begin their investigation with information documented in the archives of the news organizations, who report these stories. 

President Buhari and others are accused of been complicit in fostering genocide against the Yoruba people in Southern Nigeria

From gathering evidence, and hiring lawyers , running such a case should require considerable resources, where are the funds coming from or everything is pro bono?

The greatest expense thus far, has been the time spent in producing the Submission to the ICC, which I have offered pro bono to our beloved Yoruba People, as a sacrifice, in our pursuit of justice for the unfortunate victims, many of whom have perished, thereby paying a much greater price.

What will be considered a reasonable outcome for you and the victims you represent in this case?

A reasonable outcome from the ICC, would be for the for the ICC to launch a thorough investigation, and to ultimately prosecute and punish as many individuals as are found to have been complicit or active in facilitating the evil that is befalling our People.

If the case does not go in your favor, how far are you willing to go to get justice?

We have filed our Submission, at the appropriate venue, in accordance with the rule of law, and we have every confidence that justice will be served.

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SADC stand by force has not yet arrived in Mozambique
July 27, 2021 | 0 Comments

By Jorge Joaquim

The SADC stand by force has not yet arrived in Mozambique, despite the mandate envisaged that the deployment of the force should happen as from 15 July, defence ministry spokesman Omar Saranga said yesterday.

An advance team has arrived, as well as security analysts. Pictures of a South African military transport plane have been circulating, apparently at the airport of Pemba in Cabo Delgado.

“So from 15 July to now activities have been undertaken in order to receive this force, which is rather substantial. Steps are being taken so that it can be received and carry out its work. That means there are advance teams which are working with our troops on the ground to receive the force,” Saranga said.

South African defence minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula told members of parliament on Sunday that an advance party would determine if the full SADC force was needed; the size has not been revealed, but military experts advised SADC in April to send almost 3,000 troops plus helicopters, aeroplanes, patrol ships and a submarine.

Meanwhile, Rwandan troops, who have already arrived in Mozambique, have begun to engage the insurgents. They reportedly killed 30 insurgents, who were retreating towards the Tanzanian border, after encountering them at the village of Quionga.

President Filipe Nyusi has said that no other country supplying troops to fight terrorism in Cabo Delgado province has asked for anything in return, calling the help an “act of solidarity”.

Nyusi said that the situation had improved overall in the region compared to a few months ago, but he admitted that there were still areas controlled by insurgents, including Awasse, where intense fighting continues for an area that was under terrorist control until recently.

The president also reiterated that Mozambique was in charge of the foreign troops deployed to the country and that Mozambicans should not fear their presence.

According to the Ministry of Defence, besides South Africa and Botswana, Tanzania and Angola have also confirmed that they will send forces.

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Government Of Ghana To Earmark $25million For Local Production Of Covid Vaccines.
July 27, 2021 | 0 Comments

By Maxwell Nkansah

The Committee established by the President will be under the leadership of world-renowned Ghanaian scientist, Professor Kwabena Frimpong Boateng

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has said that the global shortage of coronavirus vaccines means that Ghana must develop its capacity to produce own vaccines domestically, and reduce the dependence on foreign supplies. He said Ghana must be self-sufficient in this regard in the future, and prepare better to deal with any such occurrences in the future.

To this end, he said in an address to the nation on Sunday July 25 that the Committee he established, under the leadership of the world-renowned Ghanaian scientist, Professor Kwabena Frimpong Boateng, to investigate Ghana’s potential as a vaccine manufacturing hub, to meet national and regional needs, has presented its preliminary report which, amongst others, recommends the establishment of a National Vaccine Institute to spearhead this development.

According to the President, the Government has committed to inject seed funding of some twenty-five million United States dollars (US$25 million) this year into this whole enterprise. The Institute, Mr. Akufo-Addo said will be charged with delivering six clear mandates.

These are establishing local vaccine manufacturing plants; deepening Research & Development (R&D) for vaccines in Ghana; upgrading and strengthening the FDA; forging bilateral and multilateral partnerships for vaccine manufacturing in various areas, such as funding, clinical trials, technology transfer, licensing, and assignment of intellectual property rights; building the human resource base for vaccine discovery, development, and manufacture; and establishing a permanent national secretariat to coordinate vaccine development and manufacture.

President Akufo-Addo further indicated the government is procuring some 18,478,670 vaccines through the COVAX facility, African Medicine Supply Platform and other bodies.

He noted that these vaccines will arrive in the country in the third quarter of the year. The United States of America through the COVAX facility is providing 1,000,000 Pfizer vaccines; the African Union is providing 229,670 Pfizer vaccines while the United Kingdom is giving out 249,000 AstraZeneca vaccines.

The Government of Ghana is also in the process of procuring seventeen million (17 million) single dose per person Johnson & Johnson vaccines, through the African Medicine Supply Platform, in this quarter.

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Burundi: A Year in Office For President Ndayishimiye.
July 24, 2021 | 0 Comments

-Despite positive gestures, rights organizations want him to do more

By Jean-Pierre Afadhali

It has been a year since President Evariste Ndayishimiye took office in Burundi

After one year at the helm of Burundi, President Evariste Ndayishimiye is seen by some as a progressive leader who seeks to turn around a country that was isolated by the international community following his predecessor ‘s controversial third term marred by violence, but Human rights organizations and activists are calling for more changes and reforms.

President Ndayishimiye won elections in May 2020 and replaced President Pierre Nkurunziza who plunged the small east African into social, political violence for extending his rule to a third contested term in 2015. Crackdown on opposition, killings, international sanctions and other human rights violations that pushed about 400,000 people to flee to neighboring countries characterized Mr. Nkurunziza’s third term.

The new president was sworn in mid-2020 after a sudden death of his predecessor and elections held during Covid-19 pandemic that his predecessor had downplayed. Mr. Ndayishimiye, a former military general who has also been a secretary general of the ruling CNDD-FDD has taken a different path that appears to bring back Burundi on international scene by strengthening diplomatic relations with African countries, neighboring Rwanda and multinational partners who had cut ties with the Great lakes nation following the 2015 political crisis.

While the country’s president appears to turn the page, some remain cautiously optimistic saying a lot needs to be done to turn around Burundi and restore the once vibrant civil society and all public freedoms.

In late June the country held a mass to mark one-year-anniversary of president Ndayishimiye’s administration at a catholic church in the capital Gitega, in the centre of the country. During the mass that was attended by government officials, the president apologized for human rights violations his government is accused of. “We have violated the rights of our compatriots, others have been harassed, we have sowed hatred, we do not practice brotherly love, some authorities have failed in their responsibility, we ask forgiveness because we do not deserve to come before you,” said the president in the recent mass.

The country’s multilateral partners such as European Union (EU) had imposed sanctions on Burundi by stopping direct financial support to the government while the Organization of French speaking countries- La Francophonie suspended the country. The new president has made some changes welcomed by Human rights organizations and Burundi’s partners but they are calling on the new leader to do more by fighting impunity, initiating reconciliation process among others.

In addition to the amnesty of about 5,000 prisoners, the president has pardoned four journalists working with a private media outlet who were arrested in 2019, a gesture welcomed by campaign organizations. Regarding press freedom, one of private radio stations that were closed during the 2015 crisis called ‘Bonesha FM’ has been allowed to re-open by the country’s media regulator known as ‘National Communication Council’. Many journalists fled Burundi during 2015 crisis and authorities subsequently closed BBC and The Voice of America, a move that was seen by press freedom watchdogs as a media control tactic.

Improved International cooperation

In addition to the decreased human rights violations, the new head of state has ushered in a new era in diplomacy as he tries to improve political and economic cooperation with various African countries. This was done mainly through the signed bilateral agreements. Ms. Carina Teritsakian, a researcher at the Human Rights Initiative for Burundi (IDHB), a human rights organization said recently that in the past year in power, president Ndayishimiye initiated positive changes on diplomacy and international cooperation.

“Regarding international relations, President Ndayishimiye is certainly more open than his predecessor towards international partners. He knows what these partners expect from him, he has made efforts to renew dialogue with several countries, which will undoubtedly help Burundi to emerge from its isolation,” the human rights researcher was quoted as saying.

EU has started the process to lift sanctions that were imposed on Burundi in 2016 following political crisis and violence. The move that will boost the country’s economy as the European block plan to finance agriculture and the port of Bujumbura.

One of the recent state-visits to strengthen ties with several countries was in Kenya in early June at the time the East Africa’s leading economy was celebrating its self-rule locally known as ‘Madaraka Day’.  The two countries signed several deals to boost their trade and development cooperation.  President Ndayishimiye was quoted as saying: “Burundi fully appreciates the state of cooperation between the two countries and is hopeful that the agreements signed will effectively be implemented for mutual benefit,”.

Burundi’s new President Evariste Ndayishimiye delivers his speech during the national funeral of late Burundi’s President Pierre Nkurunziza, who died at the age of 55, at the Ingoma stadium in Gitega, Burundi, on June 26, 2020. (Photo by TCHANDROU NITANGA / AFP)

Economic hardship

Meanwhile Burundi remains one of the poorest countries in the world according to various reports. The 2015 political crisis affected the country’s economy due partly to international sanctions. The frosty relations with neighboring Rwanda worsened the situation as trade between two sister-countries stalled. Commenting on economic situation the main opposition politician inside the country Mr. Agathon Rwasa told the BBC that economic hardship continues to bite the population as many basic commodities are scarce. “It’s rare to find on the market the sugar produced in Burundi,” Mr. Rwasa who challenged Ndayishimiye in the last elections commented.

As the relations between Kigali and Gitega normalizes some expect it will boost trade relations. Rwanda’s prime minister Dr. Edouard Nigerente graced the ceremonies to mark the 59 years of Burundi’s independence making him the first senior government official from Rwanda to visit the neighboring country since 2015. Burundi accused Rwanda of having a hand the failed coup, but the latter denied any interference in its neighbors’ affairs.

While the new administration is keen on improving international cooperation, security remains a big challenge amid continued armed attacks in the country. The latest happened in late June in Muramvya province, Central Burundi in which dozens of people were killed in a roadside ambush. A similar attack had happened in the same province in May.

Human rights groups are calling on government for more political reforms and justice for the crimes committed in the 2015 crisis and a more control of ruling party’s youth league locally known as ‘Imbonerakure’ that were involved in several human rights incidents under Ndayishimiye’s predecessor and to some extent in the current government as they harass the population in rural areas. Rights groups also are saying the lack of dialogue with exiled political opponents hold back the country’s democratic gains.

**Culled from July Issue of PAV Magazine

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Nnamdi Kanu’s Trial And A Roadmap For Enduring Peace In Nigeria’s South East
July 24, 2021 | 0 Comments

By Richard Mammah

Chairman of the Governors Forum Gov. David Umahi of Ebonyi State .Photo courtesy

The recent arrest and return to trial of the leader of the Independent People of Biafra, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu has understandably raised the tempo and temper of discussions on the relations between Nigerians of Igbo descent and the mainstream Federal Government in the country.

Kanu, who had been undergoing trial in the country and was granted bail by the Federal High Court on medical grounds in April 2017 had before his current incarceration been living outside the country, following his flight to exile in the aftermath of a raid by the Nigerian military on his ancestral home in Abia State on September 14, 2017.

As the country awaits the resumption of his trial on July 26, the interval is being taken up by questions of how and where he was apprehended as well as his current state of health. However, the bigger issue remains: what is the potential effect of his trial on the South East question?

Indeed, in recent months, the Nigerian polity has been further inflamed by acts of insecurity related to the South Eastern part of the country.

Hitherto considered as one of the most peaceful regions in the country, it has however come to experience some of the extenuating crisis of insecurity that has sadly now almost become the standard fare across the country.

While the federal authorities are pointing almost every finger in the direction of Nnamdi Kanu and the Independent People of Biafra, along with their associated Eastern Security Network, ESN, other rounded observers and commentators say that the origins and dimensions of the crisis are indeed much deeper and broader, and proceeding from this they equally canvass that a rounded bouquet of solutions should be put on the table.

According to Abia Onyike of the Ala Igbo Foundation, the roots of the crisis clearly lie above the surface and as such its resolution should also be more than ankle-deep. His first charge is for the formal elected political authority in the region.

‘The South East Governors should be sincere in their commitment to the security of their region. Unfortunately, the Chairman of the Governors Forum,  Gov. David Umahi of Ebonyi state has not demonstrated such sincerity of purpose. People see him as talking from both sides of his mouth. For instance, he claims that there are laws banning open grazing in the South East. That is false. Only in Imo State was the law made during the Government of former Governor Achike Udenwa. But the law is rendered comatose as it is not being implemented. The other four states in the South-East, namely Abia, Enugu, Anambra and Ebonyi have no such laws as their State Houses of Assembly are yet to pass such laws. Passing the anti-open grazing law will help to checkmate the murderous activities of the FULANI Herdsmen in the South East, where the forests of  over 700 villages are currently  occupied by the AK-47 wielding Herdsmen.’

Going beyond the governors and appreciating the practical reality that the Nigerian constitutional and political structure today literally vests about all practical security functions at the federal tier of governance, Onyike then directs his attention to that tier:

‘The Federal Government headed by PMB should adopt the path of dialogue in dealing with the IPOB and other self-determination groups in the zone. After all, it was Buhari’s separatist style of governance and his anti-Igbo policies that gave rise to the renewed agitation for the restoration of Biafra since 2015. The youths can be assuaged if the Government can engage the leaders of these groups like Nnamdi Kanu of MASSOB and Uwazurike of MASSOB.’

Not done, the former aide of the Ebonyi State Governor, also appreciates the need for attention to yet be placed on one particular banana peel scenario that is related to the crisis:

‘The internal political conflict in Imo State which led to the imposition of Hope Uzodinma as the Governor of Imo State by the Supreme Court is at the heart of the security crisis in Igboland today. That is why it would appear that Imo State is a major flashpoint of the crises. There should be a way of resolving the problem, otherwise the youths seem hell-bent on resisting the Government of Uzodinma.’

The arrest of Nnamdi Kanu is generating fresh tensions in the polity

Some other commentators have linked the crisis to the agitation for a President of Igbo extraction in the forthcoming 2023 polls. While everything could be said to be somewhat contextually inter-linked in the current Nigerian political playfield, the continued insistence by IPOB that its sights are set on a referendum to initiate the excision of the South East from the present Nigeria to bring into birth the State of Biafra continues to delegitimize this link. Indeed, the same IPOB has also been known to canvass the boycott of several lower level elections within the South East.

What is however not in doubt at the moment however is that a lot of attention continues to be placed on the Nnamdi Kanu challenge. Since his arrest for example, the nation has come to be seemingly divided between those who see him as the problem and therefore desire his expeditious trial and sentencing and those who caution that beyond Kanu, the nation does have a basket of problems to resolve and that any attempts to reduce the myriad of challenges in the country to a Kanu challenge would very clearly not achieve much. But it remains to be seen if good and better sense would prevail at the end of the day.

*Culled from July Issue of PAV Magazine

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Kenya: Uhuru meets Irish minister in Mombasa.
July 24, 2021 | 0 Comments

By Samuel Ouma

On Friday, July 23, Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta held bilateral and multilateral talks with the visiting Foreigner Affairs Minister of the Republic of Ireland, Simon Coveney.

Agriculture and technology transfer top the agenda of their discussion.

President Kenyatta lauded the Government of Ireland for its financing of the $10000 Irish potato value-chain project. The project, located in Nyandarua County, central Kenya, is implemented by the International Fertiliser Development Centre (IFDC).

Kenya’s Head of State welcomed Ireland’s decision to support Kenya’s dairy sector and encouraged the European nation to extend the same assistance to the beef sub-sector.

“We would appreciate help in this field (beef sub-sector) as it will go a long way in creating food stability amongst our people besides boosting meat exports from our livestock,” said President Kenyatta.

Uhuru said the country will continue partnering with Ireland through the Young Scientists Kenya organization on technology transfer.

Kenyatta noted YSK had given Kenyan youth a platform to incubate and exhibit their innovations through the annual national science and technology contest.

“Technology is one area where we are keen on improving as our youth are quite tech savvy. We have invested heavily and collaboration in this field will be of mutual benefit to both our countries. I see tremendous opportunities with your help in the technology world,” added Kenyatta.

On his part, Minister Coveney thanked the President for the Kenya Government’s commitment to building strong relations with his country, noting that the potato project in Nyandarua County was a significant success.

He expressed Ireland’s desire to expand its support to other Kenyan economic sectors, saying the European nation’s cooperation support for science and technology projects laid a firm foundation for the country’s economic prosperity.

“Cooperation through the Young Scientists Kenya (YSK) is also picking momentum and some of the members were able to come to Ireland and participate in some science events and competitions,” Mr. Coveney said.

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Zimbabwe’s elections lobby organization dismayed by the failure of Electoral Commission to provide 2018 and 2019 accounts for audit .
July 22, 2021 | 0 Comments

By Wallace Mawire

FILE – In this May, 4, 2018 file photo, a man has his picture taken in front of an election campaign poster of Zimbabwe President Emmerson Mnangagwa portrait, in Harare. Mnangagwa said Wednesday, May 30, 2018 that the country will hold elections on July 30. These will be Zimbabwe’s first-ever elections since independence from white minority rule in 1980 without the participation of Robert Mugabe, who resigned in November amid pressure from the military, his party and the public.(AP Photo/Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi, File)

  Zimbabwe’s Election Resource Centre (ERC) reports that it is dismayed by the failure of the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) to provide 2018 and 2019 accounts for audit to the Auditor General.

  ERC said that they took  the opportunity to remind ZEC that the Principles of Public Administration and Leadership under section 195 of the Constitution requires all institutions and agencies of government at all tiers to be accountable to parliament, cooperate with each other and 196 3 and to be accountable to the public for decisions and actions.

 The ERC said that the ZEC is not an exception and that the commission must comply with the provisions of the law and best practices.

 ‘The use of finances by any Election Management Body is governed by principles of election administration of which transparency and accountability are key characteristics to foster trust and confidence. As a public body, ZEC has a responsibility to open itself up to public scrutiny and to account on how it uses public funds,’ ERC said.

 It added that Parliament of Zimbabwe, equally, has the responsibility, on behalf of citizens, to hold ZEC to account periodically to foster a culture of transparency that should transcend all other functions of the public body.

 It said that if the use of public funds by an election commission is shrouded in secrecy, then chances are high that the management of the elections themselves could also suffer the same fate.

 ‘We, therefore, encourage the ZEC to fully disclose its budgets and use of public funds as part of its efforts of building public and stakeholder confidence in its work. The ERC insists that in between elections, the prioritization of the use of funds by ZEC should be targeted at enhancing the integrity of the electoral process,’ ERC said.

 It added that Zimbabwe cannot afford another disputed election.

 In light of the above, ERC said that it recommended  ZEC  provide its accounts and financials to the Office of the Auditor-General for the years 2018 and 2019 for audit purposes, Parliament of Zimbabwe through the relevant Portfolio Committees summons ZEC to appear and be answerable for the failure to submit the accounts for audit purpose, ZEC to comprehensively consult election stakeholders and also provide its calendar of events and activities to ensure accountability to the citizens of Zimbabwe and to electoral stakeholders.

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Nigerian Government Charged with Ethnic Cleansing, Systematic Terror, Rape and Slaughter of Landholding Yoruba Tribes.
July 20, 2021 | 0 Comments
President Buhari and others are accused of been complicit in fostering genocide against the Yoruba people in Southern Nigeria

Newark, N.J., U.S. – July 19, 2021 – A group of 22 international organizations led by the Yoruba Strategy Alliance have filed claims to the International Criminal Court against leading members of the Nigerian government. The claims allege that these members of the Nigerian government are complicit in fostering genocide against the Yoruba people in Southern Nigeria. Those charged include Muhammadu Buhari, Nigeria’s president, and a number of military, police and other security officials.

The complaint alleges that the systematic rape and slaughter of the Yoruba people is part of a land annexation strategy being carried out by Fulani cattle herdsmen functioning as militia at the behest of the Nigerian government. The Nigerian government is currently dominated by members of the Fulani tribe.

“The Fulani are not indigenous to Nigeria, but have made no secret of their desire to have the whole country – including its oil money – to themselves. In the name of ‘one Nigeria,’ the Yoruba People initially welcomed Fulani herdsmen to share our ancestral lands, but now that they control the government they seek to dominate, terrorize and enslave the Yoruba,” said Aderemilekun “Ade” Omojola, Esq., a New Jersey attorney who filed the complaint in The Hague against Nigerian officials. “These so-called ‘herdsmen’ are the forward guard – storm troopers acting as militia and given free reign by the government to rape, slaughter and terrorize the Yoruba people with impunity as they take the land. Many of them aren’t even Nigerian. They’re brought in from surrounding countries, given a green light, handed AK-47s and sent into Yoruba territory.”

The complaint, filed with the International Criminal Court, accuses multiple members of the Nigerian government of genocide, torture, and crimes against humanity amongst other charges. Those government officials named in the complaint are:

Muhammadu Buhari, President; Hameed Ibrahim Ali, Comptroller-General, Customs; Ibrahim Kpotun Idris, Police, Former Inspector General; Mohammed Adamu, Police, Former Inspector General; Usman Alkali Baba, Police, Current Inspector General; Tukur Yusuf Burutai, Former Chief of Army Staff; Farouk Yahaha, current Chief of Army Staff; Sadik Abubakar, Air Force, Former Chief of Air Staff; Ahmed Abubakar Audi, Former Commandant General, Security & Civil Defense Corps; Abdullahi Gana Muhammadu, current Commandant General, Security & Civil Defense Corps;  Muhammed Babandede, Comptroller General, Immigration Service; Abubakar Malami, Lawyer,
Minister of Justice, Attorney General.

“The state-sponsored terrorism against the Yoruba people has to stop,” said Omojola. “These so- called herdsman are merely death squads with cattle. They terrorize with impunity and have done so since Muhammadu Buhari took power as president in 2015 and placed Fulani tribesman in key police, military and legal positions.”

In 2016 the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights issued a statement on a reported slaughter of the neighboring Igbo people “by armed Fulani herdsmen and associated militia,” in the Uzo-Uwani Local Government Area of Southern Nigeria. In the massacre, the UN noted that at least 40 people were reported killed in “what appears as a well-prepared raid carried out by some 500 men armed with guns, bows and machetes.”

Pointedly, the UN further noted that authorities were said to have been given advanced warning of the attacks but effectively failed to act.

Although the Nigerian government had communicated that it would “investigate” the matter, the UN Commissioner further noted that he was “worried by the complete impunity enjoyed so far by perpetrators of previous attacks,” citing more than 300 murders and 20,000 displaced in attacks by Fulani herdsmen that entirely destroyed 13 villages earlier that same year.

“Nothing has changed,” said Gani Alagbala, spokesperson for the Yoruba Strategy Alliance. “It’s only gotten worse in Southern Nigeria. The militia herdsmen actually video themselves now raping and beheading the Yoruba people so they can spread their terror even further. They do what they want because they know they will not be punished – they have government support and sanction for their atrocities. The International Criminal Court must act now – before this turns into Rwanda.”   

The complaint against Nigerian public officials has been filed with the International Criminal Court and awaits decision by the Office of the Prosecutor as to whether an official investigation will be opened.

The complaint filed at the International Criminal Court can be viewed at the link below, BUT WARNING, the evidentiary pictures and video contained therein contain images of rape, murder and what can only be described as a gruesome beheading.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1lCZjuSoC2_bS9uNJ5H-UwSwB98ZWjwOT/view?usp=sharing

Attorney Aderemilekun “Ade” Omojola can be reached via ade@oapc.law

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An Epic Failure and Betrayal of the Liberation Struggle-Mabior Garang On South Sudan At 10.
July 19, 2021 | 0 Comments

By Ajong Mbapndah L

As a country, the years ahead are more than the last 10 years of disappointment ,says Mabior Garang

The last ten years of independence in South Sudan have been an epic failure and a betrayal not only of the liberation struggle, but of shared cultural values as South Sudanese and Africans, says Mabior Garang.

In an interview with Pan African Visions, Mabior says the leadership in the country has failed to deliver the promise of the liberation struggle as the population that bore the brunt of the war effort have been deprived the dividends of peace.

The fact that we have a country is worth celebrating, says Mabior, the son of the country’s iconic revolutionary leader Dr John Garang. As a country, the years ahead are more than the last 10 years of disappointment Mabior Garang says in the exclusive interview to discuss decade of independence in South Sudan.

How do you sum up ten years of Independence for South Sudan? 

The independence of South Sudan is incomplete. We have gone through the procedures of establishing a modern country. We are internationally recognised by the global family of nations at the United Nations. We have a flag and a national anthem. It is a great achievement. Many generations of South Sudanese sacrificed over generations for this noble cause. I do not want to belittle the struggles of our ancestors,

but the job is incomplete. 

We have failed to deliver the promise of the liberation struggle. The civil population who bore the brunt of the war effort have not received their peace dividends. Our civil population continues to suffer in abject poverty. The material conditions of our civil population could be said to have been better in the old Sudan than in our nascent Republic. We were more independent in the liberated areas of the new Sudan. Today we use oil dollars to import simple things like tomatoes. 

In summary, the last ten years of South Sudan’s independence have been an epic failure. A betrayal not only of the liberation struggle, but of our shared cultural values as South Sudanese and Africans. It would take volumes to explain this failure and the way forward. I write about these topics extensively in my blog MGS www.mabiorgarangspeaks.com . 

Where were you on Independence Day in 2011, and was the present scenario or shape of South Sudan something you envisaged? 

I was at the Independence Day ceremony. It was a joke at best. While most independence ceremonies in Africa occurred at the stroke of midnight, ours happened hours after midnight. This was the day countless generations fought and died for over the years. For our leaders not to be prepared for this day, was a bad omen. President Salva Kiir even apologized for the embarrassment and stated we would do it better next time. There is no next time for the independence of a country. 

This has been the mischief of the first Republic of South Sudan. 

It was the most disorganized event in the history of our country and a sign of things to come – a culture of disorganisation. Simply put, it was an embarrassment. The security of President Zuma had a scuffle with President Salva Kiir’s security. The President of Togo left in protest. I saw current President Uhuru Kenyatta share a plastic chair with the late Hon. George Saitoti. Princes came from Europe and could be seen wandering around.  I saw Amb. Susan Rice stand on a crate of beer to deliver her speech. 

I have been writing about this for over a decade. Some of my articles about this topic have been published in this gazette over the years. 

A curious thing about the 10th anniversary is how little we hear about Dr John Garang, the historic leader of the struggle.  How different is South Sudan from the vision he had? 

The vision was of the SPLA/SPLM, perhaps because the brand Garang is associated with the vision, some leaders have rejected the vision. The vision of new Sudan was cognate to the vision of the new society expounded by the liberation Movements of the 1960s – which gave us independence through the principle of self-determination. It was not a vision of a new land, but of a new man and a new woman. It was a vision based on a concrete analysis of our objective realities and a resolution to the contradictions we identified in our land. 

There are traditional elite in the country with vested interests who are the beneficiaries of the power relations established during the slave trade and colonialism. These power elites are an anti-people clique who have no interest in the triumph of the people’s revolution. They have used their intellectual mercenaries and hired keyboards to engage in a serious propaganda campaign to discredit the revolutionary theory which guided us during the Bush war days. 

The vision of new Sudan has been erroneously portrayed as John Garang being against the independence of South Sudan. Whether this is deliberate or genuine confusion, is a different question altogether. 

Coincidentally, the government has shelved celebrations or festivities because of COVID 19. Still, is it possible to pick some positives for us, what would have been some of those developments’ worth celebrating? 

The fact that we have a country is worth celebrating. It is our right to rule or misrule ourselves. As long as we live, we can always correct the situation and hopefully learn from the mistakes. As a country, the years ahead are more than the last 10 years of disappointment. I am hopeful that through ‘political education’, we can transform the situation in the next decade. 

What is your take on the revitalized peace agreement and the efforts by President Kiir and Vice President Machar to put the country back on the rails? 

I will not make the answer about these two leaders. I prefer to look at them as a generation. As a generation of leaders, they have failed the future generations. However, mother nature is on our side, and we shall correct these mistakes in due time. The peace process has been turned into a zero-sum game. It is impossible to find peace with such attitudes. 

As a generation, they sacrificed to give us this day and we give them full credit. That being said, I believe the lion’s share of this credit goes to those who never made it to see the Independence Day. Those who saw the day and inherited the new Republic, instead of paying back our civil population for their invaluable contribution to the war effort, plunged us back into a tribal war of attrition. This generation will be divided in two. Those who died before independence and those who lived to see the glorious day our country was born. The legacy of independence will be the credit of those who died during the struggle. The rest of their generation of so-called liberators will take the legacy of the failure of our first Republic to their graves. It will be their legacy, unless they come to their senses now and unite for the sake of future generations. It is not too late as long as they are still alive. But they are running out of time. To use the words of Jr. Gong, I am confident my generation will make a change. 

Mabior Garang says the leadership in the country has failed to deliver the promise of the liberation struggle

The oil seems to be flowing again, what role did oil play in the crisis and any advice to the present government on efficient management of proceeds? 

Oil played a big role. It was when the Governor of the oil producing region – H.E. Gen. Taban Deng – was sacked and no longer had control of the 2% oil, that the low intensity conflict started. The main role played by oil, however, has been in fueling the war as the revenues are used to invest in their war economy. The infamous oil curse is definitely at work in South Sudan. 

What is your appraisal of the role played by the international community in helping South Sudan navigate these challenging first ten years? 

The international community is a community of the various nations of the human family. It is not some tangible thing you can sit down and have a conversation with. By becoming an independent country, we joined this community of nations, and we are part of it. The international community did all they could, even from the days we were negotiating the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA). The international community was the midwife to our newborn country – as it were. The world has a stake in our independence, and we have enjoyed tremendous good will. The leaders have squandered this good will and the world is tired of leaders who do not care about their own people. 

We the leaders of South Sudan are solely to blame for the mess we are in today. It will be difficult for readers to understand this, and I shall expound on it in future writings. South Sudan’s slave trade history has influenced our constitution as a modern country.  We are only a Republic by name, but we are closer to state Slavery than any other political philosophy out there. I remember Kenya even opened a whole office dedicated to helping South Sudan, so I cannot fault the international community for our country becoming a failed state. 

It is shameful for our civil population to get food, clothing and shelter from taxpayers in other countries when our country is rich with oil, gold and vast arable land for agribusiness. 

The struggle we shall wage in the NCSS is not for political power of individuals or tribes, our struggle is for political empowerment, for our civil population to become bona fide citizens who understand their relationship to their government,says Mabior Garang

Looking at the future, what makes you hopeful for South Sudan and what are your fears? 

I am hopeful because we have mother nature on our side. This generation will go with this mischief, and we shall continue to wage the struggle for fundamental change in our society. We have registered a local NGO in South Sudan and we have identified ‘political education’ as our method of struggle. Our aim is to have a politically empowered civil population which can build a free society to reflect its values. Through political education, we aim to demystify politics in the psyche of our peoples, who think politics is supposed to be a dirty game. Our basic documents can be found online on www.nationalconversationssd.com. 

And about this future, what role for Mabior Garang, what will it take for you to join the government in Juba and contribute your quota in moving the country forward? 

I am the Chairman of the board of trustees of the National Conversation South Sudan (NCSS) a.k.a. The Tomato Renaissance. Our organisation’s history is rooted in the history of the SPLA/SPLM Civil Authorities for New Sudan (CANS). As the country went through political changes leading to independence, the organization has undergone several incarnations as the objective realities have changed in turn. We have had to change our registration severally; from CANS to instructions of Legal Affairs-SSRRC Office, and finally Ministry of Justice. 

Civility was lost in December 2013 and so the civil society had to either flee or go underground. Many of our members joined the SPLM-IO and we contributed our faculties to finding peace in Addis Ababa. We are using the opportunity of the current peace process to continue with our projects. We have no interest in power struggles in Juba. It is the contention of the NCSS that independence ended the political struggle in Africa. There is less need for the power struggles at the center, which are usually characterized by tribalism – a legacy of colonial politics. 

The struggle we shall wage in the NCSS is not for political power of individuals or tribes, our struggle is for political empowerment, for our civil population to become bona fide citizens who understand their relationship to their government. It is only when the society is composed of empowered individuals that they can build a democratic society. Independence alone is meaningless without political education. Those fighting for independence in Biafra, Southern Cameroons, Tigray, Western Sahara and anywhere on the continent, should take the independence of South Sudan as a case study. There are many lessons to be learned. In conclusion, the NCSS is non-governmental, but we are most definitely political. We deal with macro politics as opposed to micro politics. Amandla!

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Guinea: Under international pressure, Alpha Condé releases four political prisoners .
July 18, 2021 | 0 Comments
President Conde has a very battered image after changing the constitution to get additional term limits for himself.Photo credit AFP.BBC

Isolated and under pressure from the international community, Guinean President Alpha Condé made a limited “magnanimous” gesture towards the opposition on Friday by releasing, under conditions, four members of the UFDG executive board who were arrested and  imprisoned  in the wake of the disputed presidential election of October 18, 2020 in Guinea. They are Ibrahima Cherif Bah, former  Central Bank top official, Ousmane Gaoul Diallo, Abdoulaye Bah and Mamadou Cellou Baldé.

They were released after spending several months in a dismal Conakry prison reserved for the country’s common criminals.

The conditions of their release include, in particular, the prohibition to travel in the countryside without prior authorization from the prison authorities. In addition, they cannot organize political meetings, nor are they allowed to leave Guinean territory, a coercive regime already imposed on their UFDG boss, Cellou Dalein Diallo.

The release of these political prisoners coincides with the visit to Conakry of the Congolese leader  and current chairman of the African Union Félix Tshisekedi Tshilombo.

Diplomatic sources said that Mr. Tshisekedi Tshilombo was to discuss with his Guinean counterpart the political crisis in Guinea marked by repeated human rights violations and the turmoil in the sub-region, in particular the closure of Guinea’s borders with Senegal and Guinea Bissao.  It is expected that the Congolese President would  encourage Guinean counterpart to be flexible on these issues int order to break the deadlock.

Historical leader of the opposition turned president, Alpha Condé was once considered a hope for millions of Guineans, the one through whom socio-economic development was to come. But his categorical refusal to undertake reforms and especially his disproportionate ambition to remain in power for life at the end of his two constitutional terms, make him today an outcast on the international scene.

In September this year, the European Union, a key partner of Guinea, is due to consider sanctions to be taken against some twenty officials of the Guinean regime involved in various crimes ranging from the human rights violations to the misappropriation of public funds.

These officials, including the regime’s number 2 man and Defence Minister Mohamed Diané, could see their assets hidden abroad freeze and ban them from traveling to several Schengen countries.

“If such a measure is adopted by the European Union, it would further complicate the situation for Alpha Condé and I believe that the release of these opposition members is a calculated move that he would be willing to listen  in order to avoid a deeper isolation of his regime,” said a Abidjan guinean political expert who did  not want to be named .

*Source AlloAfricaNews

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Benin: Long Ways, Long Lies
July 15, 2021 | 0 Comments

By Ambassador Omar Arouna, MBA*

Ambassador Omar Arouna is sounding alarm bells on third term designs of President Patrice Talon

The French expression is “a beau mentir qui vient de loin”. It’s a proverbial expression whose meaning is crystal clear.  Appeared at a time when the means of locomotion and communication were not very fast, “it was easy for a traveler returning from afar to tell lies about what he had seen during his journey, sure that it was that no one would go to check.” It is easy to lie when what is said is not verifiable or when no one can contradict the speech.

Fortunately, in this era, where the average time of information propagation is around 175 minutes, nothing remains hidden for too long, everyone knows, and all is true. The possibility of going back, the time of a comparative analysis, a statement or an affirmation, the possibility of reconstructing a context, of examining the author’s antecedents, of an affirmation or a promise is real and usually is only a few keyboards strokes away.

Was I surprised when last weekend internet-version-Benin was set on fire, following Patrice Talon’s statement.  The same Talon whom the political activist and human rights activist, Nathalie Yamb nicknamed “Mister I will only serve one term”.  

Indeed, he declared during his appearance at the work of the 2nd West African Citizens’ Summit on Good Governance and Democracy, that “Limiting mandates is, in all respects, for the benefit of the people, rather than letting each other remain in office forever.” It did not take more for some to get excited and applaud while others are already working to reinvent his qualities as a democrat… the same one who had promised that by moral obligation he would only serve one presidential term, to be in his second…

For example, among many others, in a frantic series of tweets, Senegalese activist Alioune Tine hastened to relay “the good news”.  Even if for some this enthusiasm can be excused if we really do not know Patrice Talon and what became of Benin under his dictatorship. This is certainly not the case of Alioune Tine who was until recently in Cotonou incognito at the invitation of Patrice Talon, all expenses paid, the time of a few meetings with several personalities handpicked by the power, in a deliberate effort to whitewash and conceal unpleasant or incriminating facts concerning the last electoral crisis.

Pathological liars?

And yet it only takes very little to realize that for almost six years of power Patrice Talon has made lies an instrument of governance in Benin.   The man has often knowingly and intentionally made false statements to finally make an about-turn of which only he has the secret.

All of Africa and the rest of the world is experienced the episode of “I will make my single mandate a moral requirement” and yet Patrice Talon did not bother to exclude all his challengers, stuff the ballot boxes and walk on corpses to offer himself a second mandate which he said he did not want. Less well known is the 2016 episode of  “I dream that Beninese will carry me in triumph in five years”  which several years later in the test of power turned into “I  never said that my compatriots were going to carry me in triumph at the end of my mandate”.  Or when he declares that he is not going to change the Beninese constitution, but that at the turn of a Halloween night, in one time three movements he quickly changed to tailor it to himself.

Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me…

If we dwell on it, we realize it very quickly. A character like Patrice Talon who has an exaggerated sense of his own importance, a deep need for attention and excessive admiration, troubled relationships, and a lack of empathy for others will always tend to make statements or say anything to mark the moment for an instantaneous adulation.

To give credence to this new declaration not to run for a third term in view of the last five years of systematic dismantling of democracy, suppression of basic human rights, muzzling of dissenting voices of gratuitous relentlessness against young and promising leaders such as Komi Koutché exiled in the United States, all-out-arrest such as in the case of   Reckya Madougou and Pr. Joel Aivo, currently jailed and economic and financial abuses is a suicidal exercise.  

Moreover, in a sub-regional context where some heads of state have proclaimed urbi et orbi their intention not to run for a third term to renegade themselves at the last moment based on absurd and fallacious arguments.  So welcome to the autocratic republic of Benin… as if to say that Patrice Athanase Guillaume Talon will only leave power if he is driven out of power.

*Former Ambassador of Benin to the USA

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Broke Mnangagwa Govt Fails To Finance Mozambique War – Report
July 13, 2021 | 0 Comments

By NewZimbabwe.com

President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s administration is struggling to mobilise sufficient resources to contribute to the Southern Africa Development Committee Standing Force (SADC SF), which is supposed to start military operations to quell an insurgency in Mozambique Thursday.

Senior military and official sources told NewZimbabwe.com that presently, Zimbabwe can only afford to contribute soldiers and classic guns.

SADC last month resolved to deploy troops to combat Islamic insurgents who have over the past four years launched deadly raids in Mozambique’s oil and gas-rich Northern province of Cabo Delgado, killing at least 2 000 people and displacing nearly one million.

Zimbabwe is expected to volunteer troops for a strong 3 000-fighter regional force.

But with the country, in the middle of a debilitating economic crisis, now worsened by Covid-19, sources said Treasury had indicated there was no money to fund such an expensive operation as it would empty the already depleted coffers.

NewZimbabwe.com also understands that reservations have been expressed in military circles about the shortage of adequate and suitable weaponry necessary in fighting asymmetric warfare.

Asymmetric warfare is one in which a conventional state army fights against an internal or external non-state actor, often terrorists and or insurgents.

Under the SADC arrangement, member states are supposed to fund and equip their own combatants.

Sources said there have been several meetings over the past three weeks involving all stakeholders where it was repeatedly emphasised that there was no money for the exercise.

“There are basically three things here. First, the Ministry of Finance says there is no money at the moment to finance the operation. Fighters who go there will require allowances which can only be paid by the government and, as we learnt from the DRC experience, this is a very expensive undertaking,” the source said.

“Secondly, reservations came from those in the military that we lack the necessary tools to fight asymmetric warfare like this. Remember terrorists are different from a conventional army that fights openly. They play hide and seek.

“They are mostly embedded in communities and launch coordinated and sporadic raids before retreating quickly. There is a need for us to invest in modern technologies to successfully fight the insurgents such as drones and unmanned aerial vehicles. We need to exploit cyberspace, but we do not have that capability at the moment,” the source added.

A military source said: “Last year, highly skilled members of special forces were sent to Mozambique to do reconnaissance work. Their report suggested that the best way to win this war was to use these technologies to identify and weed out terrorists. Conventional warfare does not necessarily apply.”

Efforts to get a comment from Treasury were fruitless as both Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube and his permanent secretary George Guvamatanga were not available for comment.

Defence Minister Oppah Muchinguri’s mobile phone was being answered by one of her aides who said she was attending meetings.

Information Minister Monica Mutsvangwa said she could not comment as was attending to a family bereavement.

Her deputy, Kindness Paradza referred questions to Zimbabwe National Army (ZNA) spokesperson Alphios Makotore, who in turn referred them to SADC.

The SADC national media coordinator, Ivanhoe Matengarufu Gurira said: “I do not know anything. I have not been given information on whether the army is ready or the amount of money being set aside for that.”

Gurira then referred NewZimbabwe.com to presidential spokesperson George Charamba, whose cell phone directed calls to the voice mail.

Mozambique has also been trying to directly engage Zimbabwe for a bilateral arrangement where Harare would deploy troops outside the SADC plan.

However, Mnangagwa has been hesitant to commit to that because of the huge financial bearing it has.

Recent media reports also suggest that Mozambican President Felipe Nyusi was asked by French President Emmanuel Macron to ask Mnangagwa for an army to hire to protect French investments in the Liquified Gas Project in the strife-torn region. Again, Mnangagwa has been hesitant, insisting on the SADC arrangement.

France was offering both financial and technical assistance in the event Zimbabwe agreed to send its troops, the same arrangement they have with Rwanda which last Friday sent 1000 soldiers there.

On Friday, 9 July the Rwandan government announced its deployment of a 1 000-person contingent made up of the army and police force to Mozambique.

“The government of Rwanda, at the request of the government of Mozambique, will start the deployment of a 1 000-person contingent of the Rwanda Defence Force (RDF) and the Rwanda National Police (RNP) to Cabo Delgado Province, Mozambique, which is currently affected by terrorism and insecurity,” reads its statement.

“The Rwandan contingent will support efforts to restore Mozambican state authority by conducting combat and security operations, as well as stabilisation and security-sector reform (SSR).”

Meanwhile, the deployment of Rwandan troops to Mozambique has rattled the South African government as it was before SADC troops expected Thursday.

“It is regrettable that this dispatch takes place before the deployment of Sadc troops, because whatever the bilateral relations between Rwanda and Mozambique, one would expect Rwanda to go to Mozambique in the context of a mandate given by heads of state in the Sadc region,” South Africa Defence Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula said.

The minister said this was a bilateral issue, “a situation over which we have no control”.

Rwanda is not a SADC member.

However, Mozambique President Nyusi confirmed the arrival of Rwandan troops saying it would boost the fight against militants who have devastated some districts of northern province Cabo Delgado, since October 2017.

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South Africa in flames Following Zuma’s Arrest
July 11, 2021 | 0 Comments

By Prince Kurupati

Burned out cars in downtown Johannesburg. Photo credit BBC

Widespread protests have erupted in South Africa following the arrest of the country’s former President Jacob Zuma. The protests which started in Zuma’s home province of KwaZulu Natal have slowly engulfed other parts of the country. Numerous vehicles and trucks have been burnt while major roads blocked.

The protests started in earnest a few hours after it was confirmed that the former South African president had handed himself over to the law enforcement agents. Zuma was given a deadline to hand himself over to the law enforcement agents by the Constitutional Court for contempt of court after he refused to appear before a state commission inquiry.

Jacob Zuma is set to spend the next 15 months behind bars. However, if anything is to go by, Zuma’s 15-month stay in prison will definitely not be smooth sailing for the country’s leader Cyril Ramaphosa together with the ruling party the African National Congress (ANC) as they will have to appease the multitudes of Zuma’s supporters who think he was unfairly targeted and just a political scapegoat.

According to the South African police, the protests have provided a conducive environment for criminals to take advantage of as they have been reports of numerous break-ins and looting since the start of the protests. KwaZulu-Natal police spokesman Jay Naicker said that the numbers of “criminals or opportunistic individuals trying to enrich themselves during this period” rose significantly.

Since the start of the protests, it’s been reported that several buildings and cars were burnt while NatJOINTS, the national intelligence body said that over 300 people barricaded a major highway in Johannesburg, South Africa – a move which affected the smooth flow of business in Africa’s biggest economic hub.

In one incident, a police officer was shot in Alexandra, a township in Johannesburg while two other officers were also hurt. Over 60 protesters have been arrested while one man is believed to have died during the protests. A statement released by the police starts that “An investigation is under way to determine the circumstances surrounding the fatal shooting of a 40-year old man who was certified dead at a local clinic”.

Protesters in Johannesburg on Sunday.Photo Credit BBC

Speaking on the protests which have engulfed some parts of the country, President Cyril Ramaphosa called for peace to prevail and for the rule of law to take its course. “The impact of public violence against the road freight industry and damage to freeways that serve as economic arteries will be felt also by the people organizing and committing these crimes,” Ramaphosa said.

Mzwanele Manyi who is the spokesman of the Jacob Zuma Foundation said the protests are a response to an unjust system – “It is the result of a vicious sentence given to a 79-year old man without giving him the right to a fair trial.”

South Africa’s Parliament presiding officers said they were “sympathetic to the personal difficulties confronting former President Jacob Zuma. However, the rule of law and supremacy of the constitution must prevail.”

Zuma’s legal team will have an early day in court on Monday 12 July, 2021 hoping to get the former president’s prison sentence rescinded or reduced.

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Rwanda: Kagame Throws Weight Behind Nyusi with deployment of 1,000 troops to fight terrorism
July 9, 2021 | 0 Comments

By Jean d’Amour Mbonyinshuti

Rwanda said on Friday that it will start the deployment of a 1000 person contingent of Rwanda Defence Force (RDF) and Rwanda National Police in a war torn Mozambique to fight an Islamic State-linked insurgency in Cabo Delgado Province.

According to the statement by the government of Rwanda released on Friday July 10, 2021, the joint force will work closely with Mozambique Armed Defence Forces (FADM) and forces from Southern African Development Community (SADC) in designated sectors of responsibility.

“Rwandan contingent will support efforts to restore Mozambican state authority by conducting combat and security operations as well as stabilization and security sector reform (SSR),” reads the statement in part.

The statement says the deployment is a result of the request by the Mozambican Government.

It added that the deployment was based on the good bilateral relations between the Republic of Rwanda and the Republic of Mazambique following the signing of several agreements between the two countries in 2018.

 And {|Deployment is grounded in Rwanda’s commitment to the responsibility to protect (R2P) doctrine and the 2015 Kigali Principles on Protection of Civilians,” it added.

Thousands of civilians have been killed and others displaced due to insecurity in the gas-rich region since 2017 after terror attacks linked to Islamic militants.

Rwanda is one of the biggest contributor in fighting conflicts and peace building missions across the world, having contingent in Central Africa Republic, Southern Sudan, Haiti and has expressed its commitment to serve elsewhere deemed necessary.

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S. Sudan: No Independence Celebrations; Stay Home
July 8, 2021 | 0 Comments

By Deng Machol

A man waves South Sudan’s national flag. REUTERS/Thomas Mukoya

Juba – South Sudan transitional government has called off the official celebrations for the country’s 10th independence anniversary tomorrow, citizens urge to observe from home.

The planned 10th anniversary that was slated for Friday, July 9, will be a low-key event due to the COVID-19.
This is the 6th consecutive year in which the state has failed to give prominence to the day.
 

South Sudan Became the Africa’s 54th and World’s 93rd newest nation on July 9th, 2011 after Southerners voted 98% for separation in the referendum, ended a decades of civil war.

But the independence’s hopes were ruined by the conflict that broke out in late 2013.
However, the council of ministers’ meeting chaired by President Salva Kiir resolved that the celebration of

Independence Day be done with limited gatherings, possibly from home. 
Addressing journalists after the meeting in Juba, the Deputy Minister of Information, Communication Technology, Baba Medan said President Kiir will address the nation in a televised address in commemoration of the day. Medan encouraged all the South Sudanese to follow the directives of the president.

According to Deputy Minister Medan, the citizens will be expected to be glued to their Televisons and radio boxes to listen to the presidential speech from State House, Juba, as the country reflects on the 10 years of self-rule.

The deputy minister also said the council had resolved to push forward the swearing-in of the peace legislators. 
He did not reveal the date when the presidency intends to swear in the nominees of the Revitalised Transitional National Legislative Assembly.

Last week, President Kiir’s office revealed that the plan for swearing-in had entered the top stage and that all was set for the D-day.

South Sudan is just emerging from the country’s five year of conflict, but the peace process remains fragile.

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S. Sudan: No Independence Celebrations; Stay Home
July 8, 2021 | 0 Comments

By Deng Machol

A man waves South Sudan’s national flag. Photo credit REUTERS/Thomas Mukoya

Juba – South Sudan transitional government has called off the official celebrations for the country’s 10th independence anniversary tomorrow, citizens urge to observe from home.

The planned 10th anniversary that was slated for Friday, July 9, will be a low-key event due to the COVID-19.
This is the 6th consecutive year in which the state has failed to give prominence to the day.
 

South Sudan Became the Africa’s 54th and World’s 93rd newest nation on July 9th, 2011 after Southerners voted 98% for separation in the referendum, ended a decades of civil war.

But the independence’s hopes were ruined by the conflict that broke out in late 2013.
However, the council of ministers’ meeting chaired by President Salva Kiir resolved that the celebration of

Independence Day be done with limited gatherings, possibly from home. 
Addressing journalists after the meeting in Juba, the Deputy Minister of Information, Communication Technology, Baba Medan said President Kiir will address the nation in a televised address in commemoration of the day. Medan encouraged all the South Sudanese to follow the directives of the president.

According to Deputy Minister Medan, the citizens will be expected to be glued to their Televisons and radio boxes to listen to the presidential speech from State House, Juba, as the country reflects on the 10 years of self-rule.

The deputy minister also said the council had resolved to push forward the swearing-in of the peace legislators. 
He did not reveal the date when the presidency intends to swear in the nominees of the Revitalised Transitional National Legislative Assembly.

Last week, President Kiir’s office revealed that the plan for swearing-in had entered the top stage and that all was set for the D-day.

South Sudan is just emerging from the country’s five year of conflict, but the peace process remains fragile.

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Nigeria 2023: It is our turn to produce next President -Southern Governors Insist
July 5, 2021 | 0 Comments

By Richard Mammah

The Governors set Set a timeline of Wednesday, 1st September, 2021 for the promulgation of the anti open grazing law in all member States

While it is no longer news that a lot of scheming and jostling is going on in Nigeria now ahead of the 2023 General Elections, what has come out quite strongly in the mix is the effect of what is considered by many as the poor governance records and hardline posture of the Muhammadu Buhari presidency in the entire process.

This is the backdrop to the meeting of Governors from the Southern States of Nigeria in Lagos on Monday, where the chief executives rose with a clarion call for the very clear enthronement of the time-tested values of equity and justice as a basis for the continued unity and efficient administration of the country.

Wading into some of the hottest issues in the nation’s socio-political firmament, the governors insisted that the next president of Nigeria must come from the South, the regime of open grazing of cattle in the Southern states must come to an effective end and several other contentious legislative adjustments that tend to undermine the South and the interests of Southerners should be reviewed and corrected.

The text of the communique issued at the end of the parley underscored that the governors, among others, ‘reviewed the situation in the Country and focused on the current security situation, constitutional amendment and the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB).’

Specifically on the issue of power shift:

‘The Forum reiterates its commitment to the politics of equity, fairness and unanimously agrees that the presidency of Nigeria be rotated between Southern and Northern Nigeria and resolved that the next president of Nigeria should emerge from the Southern Region.’

The Governors also had other views on the unfolding political process:

‘In order to consolidate our democracy and strengthen the Electoral process, the Southern Governors’ Forum reject the removal of the Electronic transmission of the election result from the electoral act; and also rejects the confirmation of exclusive jurisdiction in pre-election matters on the Federal High Court.’

Delving into the thorny crisis of insecurity which continues to throw up a haul of displaced persons, victims and casualties on a daily basis, the Forum, while generally commending ‘security operatives for their relentless efforts in restoring security and safety,’ equally commiserated ‘with families and loved ones of those who have fallen in the line of duty.’

Underscoring their earlier stated position however that the challenge was far more than what the existing forces could fully address, the governors ‘re-emphasised the need for State Police; even as they went on to affirm ‘that if for any reason security institutions need to undertake an operation in any State, the Chief Security Officer of the State must be duly informed,’ a position that some commentators say is very likely to have been informed by the night raid on the home of the Yoruba Nation advocate, Sunday Igboho.

That position is also buttressed by the forum’s frowning at what it termed the ‘selective criminal administration of Justice’ and its advocacy ‘that arrests should be made within the ambit of the Law and fundamental human rights’

On the long-drawn issue of open grazing which had occupied a prime spot in its Asaba declaration of May 2021, the forum went on to:

‘Set a timeline of Wednesday, 1st September, 2021 for the promulgation of the anti open grazing law in all member States.’

It also ‘Resolved that Funds deducted from the Federation Account for the Nigeria Police Security Trust Fund should be distributed among the States and Federal Government to combat security challenges.’

On the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) Law, the Forum while commending the National Assembly for the progress made in the passage of the PIB, however moved to reject ‘the proposed 3% and support the 5% share of the oil revenue to the host community as recommended by the House of Representatives…the proposed 30% share of profit for the exploration of oil and gas in the basins…and the ownership structure of the proposed Nigeria National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC).’

‘The Forum disagrees that the company be vested in the Federal Ministry of Finance but should be held in trust by Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA) since all tiers of Government have stakes in that vehicle,’ the communique underscored.

The meeting was chaired by Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Odunayo Akeredolu SAN

Governor, Ondo State and Chairman, Southern Governors’ Forum and hosted by Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu.

Indeed, with about half of the citizens of the country living below the extreme poverty mark, spiraling unemployment, low growth rate, massive insecurity and a ravaging spate of inflation countrywide, it is clear that there is indeed very little breathing room for the Buhari presidency at this time. But observers believe that a critical part of the challenge has to do with a certain tendency by the leading drivers of the administration to be manifestly inflexible.

Indeed, one of the issues from the Communique of the Southern Governors Forum, namely that of the recommendation to the federal government to first inform the governor of the state as chief executive officer before carrying out special law enforcement action in the states is one such area where the regime’s inflexibility has been quite manifest and it touches a chord for the analyst and commentator, Dr. Sam Amadi.

‘This is a practice that does not require any urging. It should be standard practice. Why would the federal government undertake special law enforcement operations without the approval or even mere knowledge and consent of the state government? This is frontally against the concept and practice of federalism, even minimal federalism.

The Forum reiterates its commitment to the politics of equity, fairness and unanimously agrees that the presidency of Nigeria be rotated between Southern and Northern Nigeria and resolved that the next president of Nigeria should emerge from the Southern Region

I have argued that the meaning of the constitution making police and other established security agencies within exclusive legislative competence of the federal government is to say that state governments should not regulate the management of the police and such established security agencies. This does not strip the states of their legislative and executive competences to control security in their state. The state legislature and executive still have the legislative and executive competences to manage security in the state. There are some law enforcement activities that relate only to state laws and interests. In those circumstances, the police and such other established law enforcement agencies will enforce such state laws and manage such state law enforcement issues for the states. There are also law enforcement situations arising from federal law but impacting on state laws. For such situations, the law enforcement agencies, although controlled by the federal government will work with state authorities to manage such federal law enforcement situations that impact on state matters. This is actually how the constitutional provisions of both the federal competence of the police and other law enforcement agencies and the role of state governments as protectors of security in their states would be constitutional coherent and administratively effective. 

The Southern Governors should insist on this minimum administrative protocol for effective and meaningful federalism,’ the don surmised.

But if history remains our guide, a terse rebuttal and tirade of denunciation could very well be all that the Southern Governors would get from the Presidency at the close of the day. And this evidently would not have addressed the issues.

Perhaps better sense would prevail this time around. Perhaps.

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Cameroon: MRC’s Maurice Kamto Demands Release of COVID-19 Fund Report.
July 4, 2021 | 0 Comments

By Boris Esono Nwenfor

Maurice Kamto

The leader of the MRC Party Maurice Kamto has called for accountability to be given to the management of the COVID-19 fund by the government, who seem to be backpedalling in the release of the findings on the said matter.

The findings of the “covidgate” as it has been termed were expected to be delivered by the Minister of Finance in parliament for debate during a special plenary sitting but were “mysteriously” absent from the discussions.

The scandal has been top news in Cameroon in many private media houses, and the general public with many calling for those who are reported to have squandered funds meant to carter for COVID patients to be held accountable.

The Audit Bench of Cameroon’s Supreme Court reports says postponed the presentation of the final report on the management of the Special National Solidarity Fund for the fight against the coronavirus. This decision not to present the findings has not gone down well with Maurice Kamto, leader of the opposition MRC Party.

In his statement below, the opponent suspects manoeuvre to hush up this affair which risks splashing out on a good part of the government.

“After the outbreak of what has now been called the “Scandal of the management of the Covid-19 Fund”, following the publication a few weeks ago, of a partial report attributed to the Chamber of Accounts of the Supreme Court, national and international opinion remains to await the follow-up that would be given to this case, Maurice Kamto, leader of the MRC party said in a statement.

“Knowing the practices of the regime in place in Cameroon, which drags on the not reassuring reputation of opacity in the management of public funds, including when said funds are granted by bilateral or multilateral partners and of manoeuvres to cover up the indelicacies of certain senior officials public, many compatriots were convinced that the light will not be shed on this scandal with the hints of a crime against humanity.”

 Maurice Kamto added: “For our part, we remained on the lookout, convinced that a scandal of this magnitude involving funds from international partners could not be hushed up. This suspicious backpedalling provides information on the regime’s constant desire to evade the democratic duty to give an account and denotes its usual and indecipherable contempt for the Cameroonian people.”

Dr Manaouda Malachie, Minister of Public Health is under huge pressure due to the management of COVID-19 Funds

“The Mouvement pour la Renaissance du Cameroun (MRC) expresses its deep concern at this back-pedalling, certainly in line with the autocratic and irresponsible behaviour of this arrogant regime, but which, given the consequences never given to other scandals, could be the beginning of the suffocation of this affair.”

Maurice Kamto has further indicated that “perpetrators of embezzlement if it is proven that there is any, be punished by the law.” He has also indicated that all light be shed on the management of this Covid-19 Fund by the Government; and that the responsibilities be established.

It is still uncertain if any punishment will be given or if at all the findings will be presented as many of the Members of Parliament are split on the presentation of the findings. 

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Budget : Félix Tshisekedi touche 162.000$ d’emoluments le mois avec d’autres avantages!
July 3, 2021 | 0 Comments

Félix Tshisekedi

Le revenu du Président de la république Félix Tshisekedi défraye la chronique et continue d’alimenter le débat, depuis les dernières déclarations du chef de l’État.

Contrairement à ce qu’a affirmé Félix Tshisekedi, la loi des finances 2021 que nous avons consulté (disponible sur le lien https://budget.gouv.cd/wp-content/uploads/budget2021/plf2021/lf2021_vol2_depenses.pdf), révèle que le président de la République touche, 324.011.161 francs congolais, soit 162,005.58 dollars américains par mois, en termes d’emoluments.

En terme de liste civile, la première institution de la République consomme 23.503.749.127 francs congolais, soit 11.751.874,56$ (Onze millions sept cent cinquante et un mille, huit cent septante-quatre dollars américains).

A considérer le PIB par habitant qui est d’environ 470$, le revenu du chef de l’État est bien assez exhorbitant.

En rappel, dans un point de presse le 1er juillet à Goma, le Président de la République a affirmé n’avoir pas connaissance de son salaire.

« Je ne connais pas mon salaire. Je vous le dis très sincèrement. Je suis incapable de vous dire mon salaire parce que ça ne m’intéresse pas. D’ailleurs, ce n’est pas exhorbitant« , avait déclaré le Chef de l’État.

Aussi, poursuivit-il, « Je suis pour qu’on baisse le train de vie des institutions. Quand ça sera fait, c’est en ce moment-là que je vous le dirais au centime près« , avait-il promis.
PM

L’article Budget : Félix Tshisekedi touche 162.000$ d’emoluments le mois avec d’autres avantages! est apparu en premier sur Matininfos.NET – Information de la RDC en toute impartialité.

Source: Matininfos

Source : African Media Agency (AMA)

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Affaire 500 Jeeps : « il ya des députés qui partent au parlement à pieds » (Félix Tshisekedi)
July 1, 2021 | 0 Comments

500 Jeeps RDC

Interrogé sur la nécessité d’offrir des Jeeps aux députés, Félix Tshisekedi a affirmé que c’est pour permettre aux élus d’exercer correctement leur mission.

« Il ya des députés qui vont au parlement à pieds ou à moto« , a-t-il déclaré.

Pour le Président de la République, offrir des Jeeps aux députés ne relèvent pas de la corruption.

« Comment peut-on corrompre 500 députés, dont ceux de l’opposition?« , s’étonne-t-il.

Pour rappel, dans un discours aux députés de l’Union sacrée, Mboso NKodia avait affirmé que ces Jeeps étaient un cadeau du chef de l’État. Le président de la chambre basse du parlement avait même parlé de la « grandeur d’âme » du Président de la République.

PM

L’article Affaire 500 Jeeps : « il ya des députés qui partent au parlement à pieds » (Félix Tshisekedi) est apparu en premier sur Matininfos.NET – Information de la RDC en toute impartialité.

Source: Matininfos

Source : African Media Agency (AMA)

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22 Years At The Service Of Humanity For The Fomunyoh Foundation
June 30, 2021 | 0 Comments
TFF Founder Dr Christopher Fomunyoh making a book donation to students in Yaounde

When Dr Christopher Fomunyoh pioneered a group of dedicated advocates in the national and international democracy community to champion a Foundation that would improve the quality of life of the Cameroonian people, assist and support people and organizations dedicated to the promotion of democracy and human rights, little could they have imagined that their mission would be more significant twenty-years after its creation in 1999.

And like the man to whom the Foundation is dedicated, (Bah Agwo Fomunyoh, grandfather of The Fomunyoh Foundation’s (TFF) founder) through courage and wisdom, the Foundation has sought to right the wrongs inflicted on ordinary citizens over the years.

The Foundation is made up of the following components:

Foundation Radio: Foundation Radio FM 100 (FR) prides itself on being one of the first in-country pillars of the Fomunyoh Foundation (TFF).  FR is the first institutional organ of TFF to go operational within the head office complex in Ngomagham, Bamenda in 2007. FR mission is to share information and knowledge on issues that improve the well-being of Cameroonians. The stations objectives, programs, grill and editorial codes are within the guiding principles of TFF’s vision, and the norms of Cameroon and International Journalistic Ethical Standards.

Foundation Library: The Foundation Library is the largest community library in the North West Region of Cameroon with over 25.000 books initially ranging from the kindergarten to university covering the social and natural sciences, health, management, law, ICTs among others. From this reservoir book donations have been made to schools and other libraries in all ten (10) Regions of the country, Spacious and located in a quiet environment, the library offers an ideal milieu for reading and research.

ICT Center: In order to keep pace with an ever-modernizing world The Fomunyoh Foundation had engaged in the installation of modern ICT facilities. Unfortunately, the socio-political crisis that erupted in the English speaking North West and South West Region of Cameroon slowed down the process.

Foundation Conference Hall: The Foundation has a conference room that can host workshops and seminars of up to 50 persons. It is well equipped with a modern sound system, internet facilities, projector and offices to ease the holding of such events. The calmness of the setting situated out of the hustle and bustle of the city center makes.

Foundation Event Center: For bigger events such as weddings, anniversaries the centre can accommodate close to 300 invitees.

Consistency

Over the years the Foundation has also been carrying out Civic education and grassroots community programs directed at women and young people all over Cameroon while  developing local partnerships with traditional rulers, women, youth and the population at large so as to raise their awareness on development and human rights issues.

Small grants, and/or in-kind assistance to needy segments of the Cameroonian population as recommended by the Foundation’s Board of Directors have also been on its agenda of activities. The latest gesture was the donation of kind and cash to Persons Living with Disabilities in Kumba Meme Division of South West Cameroon.

Humanitarian activities

Events in Cameroon in recent years have obliged the Foundation to tilt more of its resources towards humanitarian assistance. The Boko Haram insurgency in the North of Nigeria led to a huge spillover effect on the Far North Region of Cameroon. Over 80.000 refugees were camped under appalling conditions in Minawao Refugee camp.Thedreadful conditions could not keep the Foundation indifferent. Its President Dr. Christopher Fomunyoh was the first prominent figure to visit and donate food items to the camp in the heart of the Boko Haram insurgency in 2014.

This humanitarian action took the Foundation team all over Cameroon, visiting and donating as the case may be to schools, hospitals, orphanages.

Dr Fomunyoh and Foundation delegation at a ceremony to donate sewing machines in Makalingai, Far North Region

The Anglophone Crisis: Since the start of the Anglophone crisis in 2016, Dr. Christopher Fomunyoh, has been very consistent on how to break the deadlock. According to him this crisis is more than one government can handle and drive it to its logical end.  To him a military solution cannot solve the crisis in the country’s North West and South West Regions. “We have to sit back and revise the approach we have taken for this crisis that what we have tried in the past four years has not worked. We have to understand that this issue can only be resolved through dialogue, mediation, negotiations so we can bring the sufferings to an end. Violence only bequeaths violence and right now I am concerned about not just this conflict but the next one. What people have gone through, close to 70,000 refugees in Nigeria and other countries that people are not going to forget and forgive easily the suffering that they are going through?”

Touched by the plight of these refugees in Nigeria a TFF team led by its president in partnership with Community Refugee Relief Initiative (CRRI) spent 2021 Easter holiday visiting and supporting refugees in some localities in Nigeria. The NGOs distributed food items such as rice, noodles, fruit juice among others to refugee camps in rural, urban areas as well as major cities, including Calabar, Oban, Akor, Adagom I & III, Okend, Ajasor and Basua all in Cross River State; Ikyogen in Benue State and Abuja.

TFF founder making donations in support of IDPs at the Foundation Center in Bamenda

Recognitions

The works of the Foundation has not gone unnoticed.  Twice TFF’s president Dr. Christopher Fomunyoh has named “Cameroon Personality of the Year”, by The Eye Newspaper in 2015. The 2015 award ceremony took a different twist when over 15 traditional rulers from Bui and Donga Mantung Divisions led by the over 95-year old Fon of Nkambe, Ibrahim Jabu Nfor, conferred and clad Dr. Christopher Fomunyoh with the traditional title of “Ta’a Nformi Cameroon” – (Hunter for Cameroonians). In 2015 it was Cameroons lone daily English newspaper The Guardian Post, that recognized him with a similar award.

In 2020 The Scoop newspaper voted him as “2020 Most Objective Personality”.

The 2020 “Democracy and Good Governance” Award from Guardian Post

The Time Media Group for its part rated The Fomunyoh Foundation as “All Round Best Humanitarian and Solidarity Aid Impacting Project Foundation.”

*Culled from June Issue of PAV Magazine

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Matata Ponyo : Acharnement ou mauvais sort ?
June 29, 2021 | 0 Comments

matata-ponyo

Après l’affaire Bukanga-Lonzo dont il a été soustrait des poursuites avec notamment le refus de la levée de ses immunités par le sénat, l’ancien premier ministre, Matata Ponyo, est de nouveau poursuivi par la justice pour des faits datés de 2013, soit huit ans passés.

Dans son réquisitoire transmis au Président du Sénat, le procureur général près la cour constitutionnelle sollicite cette fois, non pas la lavée des immunités, mais l’autorisation d’instruction à charge de Matata.

Pourquoi le poursuivre aujourd’hui alors que dans son réquisitoire, le procureur Mukolo Nkokesha note que le dossier RI 3448/D.023/30182/PGR/2013 a été ouvert à la demande de l’ancien Président de la République, Joseph Kabila ?

Pourquoi avoir attendu si longtemps ? Peut-être parce que la justice a son mode de fonctionnement, certes. Mais, à considérer la proximité, sinon l’exhumation de cette nouvelle affaire après celle de Bukanga-Lonzo, l’on peut être tenté de dire que s’il n’est pas victime d’un quelconque acharnement, Augustin Matata est peut-être victime d’un mauvais sort.

Alors qu’il n’était plus Premier ministre et n’était donc couvert d’aucune immunité, pourquoi n’avait-il pas été poursuivi ? Difficile de répondre à cette question. Ce qui semble pourtant certain, est qu’avec cette nouvelle affaire, l’homme à la cravate rouge se s’en sortira pas, sans laisser quelques plumes lui qui dénonçait, il y a quelques jours, une justice « politiquement motivée ». Surtout qu’à la suite du non levée de ses immunités, le Chef de l’Etat a donné de la voix récemment, dénonçant une certaine « maffia » qui règnerait au Sénat.

Bahati Lukwebo est donc piégé : ne pas livrer, cette fois, Matata à Justice reviendrait à dire, sinon confirmerait l’hypothèse selon laquelle il travaille contre la vision Chef de l’Etat. Livrer Matata, malgré lui, assurerait sans nul doute sa survie politique et son avenir au sein de l’Union sacrée et aux cotés de Félix Tshisekedi. L’enjeux est donc de taille pour le Président du sénat.

PM

L’article Matata Ponyo : Acharnement ou mauvais sort ? est apparu en premier sur Matininfos.NET – Information de la RDC en toute impartialité.

Source: Matininfos

Source : African Media Agency (AMA)

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Leaders unite in opposition to calls to postpone next year’s polls.
June 28, 2021 | 0 Comments

By Samuel Ouma

Opposition leader Raila Odinga

The majority of Kenyan leaders have condemned the calls to postpone 2022 general polls to pave the way for the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) preparation, whose fate still hangs in the court.

The latest to join the bandwagon opposing the postponement of elections are the opposition chief Raila Odinga’s allies.

In an interview with a local daily, the National Assembly Minority Whip Junet Mohamed said the date of the elections should not even be extended by a single day.  Junet maintained that the term limits should be adhered to as stipulated by the Constitution.

“We are strongly opposed to any debate on postponing next year’s election. Not evening for a minute should the General Election be extended,” said Junet.

“We must respect the Constitution even as we pursue to make it better through the BBI. We cannot plan to break the law and extend polls date because we want to change the law,” he added.

The Deputy President William Ruto had also opposed calls to postpone elections.

“Impunity has no space in Kenya. We are a government that believes in the rule of law and i know for sure. This administration will not accept to do anything unconstitutional or illegal. I very sure there will be elections next year…and Kenyans will elect new leadership, whoever they may be,” said Ruto during a live TV interview last week.

A section of leaders led by Kenya’s Central Organisation for Trade Unions secretary-general Francis Atwoli is pushing the elections to be postponed to enable the country to amend its Constitution.

Mr Atwoli had claimed that BBI would prevent election-related violence saying “no BBI, no elections”, a statement that other leaders have condemned.

Article 136 of the Kenyan Constitution states that an election of the president shall be held on the same day as of General elections of lawmakers, on the second Tuesday of August every five years.

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SADC agrees to send troops to Mozambique in fight against terrorism
June 24, 2021 | 0 Comments
From left: South African President Cyril Ramaphosa. (Photo: Waldo Swiegers / Bloomberg via Getty Images) | Zimbabwe’s President Emmerson Mnangagwa. (Photo: Waldo Swiegers / Bloomberg via Getty Images) | President of Mozambique Filipe Nyusi. (Photo: EPA-EFE / YURI KOCHETKOV / POOL) | President of Botswana Mokgweetsi Masisi. (Photo: EPA-EFE / GIAN EHRENZELLER)-courtesy of Daily Maverick

The Southern African Development Community has approved the deployment of an SADC Standby Force Mission to support Mozambique in its fight against the terrorist attacks in Cabo Delgado.

The brief statement, issued after a summit in Mozambique’s capital of Maputo on wednesday, did not give details on the size of the force or when troops would be sent. However, the head of the SADC Standby Force recommended a 3,000-strong military deployment following a visit in April.

The deployment followed two extraordinary summits held earlier this year, and could bring some finality to the back-and-forth deliberations on how to respond to the growing regional crisis.

It is also not yet clear how the force will bolster Mozambican police and military already in the region. However, Mozambican President Filipe Nyusi previously asserted his country’s sovereignty and its right to lead any regional intervention.

Leaders of the 16-nation Southern African Development Community also urged that humanitarian assistance be given in northern Mozambique where nearly 1 million people need food aid.

The Islamic extremists’ violent campaign in Mozambique’s northern province of Cabo Delgado has caused a rapidly escalating humanitarian crisis. The jihadi violence is blamed for the deaths of more than 2,000 people and has caused more than 700,000 to flee their homes.

Mozambique will also welcome a SADC Humanitarian and Emergency Operations Centre in Nacala, a port town 400 kilometres south of Pemba, the main city in Cabo Delgado, which is home to hundreds of thousands of internally displaced persons.

The violence in northern Mozambique has been going on for three years.

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