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Eritrea’s president hails thaw in relations in return to Ethiopia
July 14, 2018 | 0 Comments
By Aaron Maasho*
Eritrea's President Isaias Afwerki is welcomed by Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed upon arriving for a three-day visit, at the Bole international airport in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia July 14, 2018. REUTERS/Tiksa Negeri

Eritrea’s President Isaias Afwerki is welcomed by Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed upon arriving for a three-day visit, at the Bole international airport in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia July 14, 2018. REUTERS/Tiksa Negeri

ADDIS ABABA (Reuters) – Eritrea’s President Isaias Afwerki said on Saturday history was being made as he started his first visit to Ethiopia in more than two decades, days after the two neighbors declared an end to their “state of war”.

Arriving for three days of meetings, Isaias was greeted warmly at the airport by Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, and thousands lined Addis Ababa’s main thoroughfare Bole Road, sporting T-shirts emblazoned with the pictures of both leaders.

The visit comes just days after Abiy visited Eritrea and signed a pact with Isaias on resuming ties, a move that ended a near 20-year military standoff after a border war.

“Words cannot express the joy we are feeling now. History is being made as we speak,” Isaias said during a lunch hosted by Abiy.

“Lives have perished but we are lucky to observe today … We are one people – whoever forgets that does not understand our situation.”

Abiy introduced Isaias to guests attending the lunch as an “esteemed and missed guest”.

Eritrea formally seceded from Ethiopia in 1993 after a long battle for independence, but the two went to war in 1998 over a border dispute. Though a peace deal was signed two years later, Ethiopia refused to implement it, saying it wanted more talks.

Reconciliation between Ethiopia and Eritrea could change politics and security in the volatile Horn of Africa region, which hundreds of thousands of young people have fled in search of safety and opportunities in Europe.

During the lunch, Abiy presented Isaias with a gold ring, while a painter handed Isaias a giant portrait of the Eritrean leader.

Ethiopia’s government spokesman said Isaias and his delegation would visit an industrial park in the southern Ethiopian town of Hawassa later on Saturday. Isaias was also due to give a speech in Addis Ababa on Sunday.

Eritrea and Ethiopia have so far agreed to open embassies, develop ports and restart flights.

Eritrea is due to reopen its embassy in Addis Ababa on Monday for the first time since 1998.

Eritrea’s Information Minister Yemane Meskel said on Twitter Isaias was accompanied by several ministers and other senior government officials.

Abiy, who is also trying to bring stability to a country that has been torn by protests since 2015, survived a grenade attack last month.

*Reuters

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Raila allies reap big as Uhuru reshuffle his Cabinet
July 14, 2018 | 0 Comments

By Samuel Ouma

President Uhuru Kenyatta and Nasa leader Raila Odinga at Harambee House recently. PHOTO | JEFF ANGOTE | NATION MEDIA GROUP

President Uhuru Kenyatta and Nasa leader Raila Odinga at Harambee House recently. PHOTO | JEFF ANGOTE | NATION MEDIA GROUP

President Uhuru Kenyatta on Friday made some key changes in his administration, including sacking the embattled Youth Affairs Principal Secretary Lillian Omollo over sh.468 million ($4680000) scandals.

In a statement to Media house by the State House spokesperson Kanze Dena, changes are expected to steer the achievements of Four Big Agenda which include manufacturing, universal health, affordable housing and food security.

“President Uhuru Kenyatta has this afternoon made changes in the Cabinet and Diplomatic Service as part of his ongoing efforts to re-engineer the government in line with his Big Four development blueprint,” State House deputy Spokesperson Kanze Dena said.

Raila’s allies have emerged the beneficiaries of famous ‘handshake ‘after landing the state jobs. Kathleen Openda, Director of Communication and Media at the Secretariat, has been appointed the chairperson of Kenya Institute of Mass Communication while Joe Owaka is the new chairman of the placement Board of Kenya Universities and Colleges Central Placement Services (KUCCPS). He was the Director of operations in the former premier’s campaign team.

Francis Owino was appointed as the Principal Secretary of Youth Affairs; Former Nation Television CEO Linus Kaikai is now a non-executive chairperson of Brand Kenya Board while the previous Deputy Inspector General of Police Joel Kitili will be heading Jomo Kenyatta Foundation.

Former Meru Governor Peter Munya, the Cabinet Secretary of East African Community has been swapped with Adan Mohammed, Trade and Industry Cabinet Secretary. Adan Mohamed is among the Cabinet Secretaries who are under fire over the contraband sugar which got into the Country illegally.

Principal Secretary Nelson Marwa has been moved from Devolution to Social protection, pension and senior citizen affairs, Charles Sankuli from environment to devolution.

David Mwere is now the chairperson of Kenya Broadcasting Corporation, Calvince Odoyo, non-executive chairperson of the Board of Lake Basin Development Authority; Linda Musumba, Board of Kenya Institute for Research and Analysis; Francis Wohoro, National Sports Fund Board of Trustees; Khadija Awalee, National Council for Children Service; Flora Mutahi, Anti-Counterfeit and Agency Board and Agnes Pareiyo is the new chairperson of Anti-Female Genital Mutilation Board.

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Cameroon’s Biya: 85 and ready to retain rule of the roost
July 13, 2018 | 0 Comments
'The Sphinx': Biya, 85, has been president since 1982 (AFP Photo/Lintao Zhang)

‘The Sphinx’: Biya, 85, has been president since 1982 (AFP Photo/Lintao Zhang)

YAOUNDE (AFP) – Cameroonian President Paul Biya became Africa’s second longest-serving leader because, say his critics, dead people voted for him.

Allegations of rights abuses have swirled for decades around the 85-year-old ruler, but his nickname — “The Sphinx” — is well-deserved for a smooth, discreet profile that contrasts sharply with that of many of his flamboyant peers in Africa.

Biya, in power since 1982, told his “dear compatriots” on Twitter on Friday that he had decided to “respond positively to your overwhelming calls” to stand in the October 7 elections, bidding for a seventh consecutive term.

“I will be your candidate,” he said, adding that he was “aware of the challenges that we must face together for a Cameroon that is even more united, stable and prosperous”.

Those words appeared to be a veiled acknowledgement of the troubles besetting Cameroon.

The oil-rich state is facing an armed insurgency in two English-speaking regions in the west and cross-border incursions by Boko Haram jihadists in the far north.

Cameroon has faced divisions since independence in 1960, and Biya’s party, the Cameroonian People’s Democratic Movement (RDPC), sees itself as a unifying force.

With a powerful executive branch and amid widespread poverty, the regime fends off charges of crooked elections and endemic corruption from Transparency International and human rights bodies.

“For 30 years, we have been hoping for a better Biya and a better Cameroon, but for 30 years now, the country has been sinking,” according to the Joshua Osih, the presidential candidate of the opposition Social Democratic Front (SDF).

“He has put in place a strange operation where his position at the heart of the system is enough to sustain the system itself,” researcher Stephane Akoa once remarked.

Biya is “master in the art of maintaining the status quo”, French journalist Fanny Pigeaud said in her book “The Cameroon of Paul Biya”. “He never seems to have had any intention of giving up.”

Born on February 13, 1933 in a village 220 kilometres (140 miles) south of the capital Yaounde, Biya studied law in France before landing a government job on his return home in 1962.

He was named prime minister in 1975, and took over from Cameroon’s founding president Amadou Ahidjo, who was ailing, in November 1982. The details surrounding this episode remain murky.

Biya was first elected in 1984. He allowed a multi-party system in the early 1990s, accepting political opposition from the west.

The national assembly in 2008 sparked riots that claimed at least 139 people lives when deputies scrapped the limit on presidential terms.

Joshua Osih is the flagbearer of the opposition Social Democratic Front

Joshua Osih is the flagbearer of the opposition Social Democratic Front

The late protest singer Lapiro de Mbanga earned three years in jail for a song “Constipated Constitution”, which became an anthem for demonstrators.

In the last election in 2011, Biya took about 78 percent of votes according to Cameroon’s Supreme Court.

It rejected opposition charges that “dead people” like late deputy prime minister Andze Tsoungui Gilbert had voted.

Film director Richard Fouofie Djimili told AFP in April 2013 that he was kidnapped, interrogated for 11 days and tortured for a political fiction seen as lampooning Biya’s longevity.

Asked in January 2013 about alleged abuses, Biya told Paris media: “We don’t have a human rights problem … Cameroonians are among the freest Africans.”

*AFP

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South Sudan lawmakers extend president’s term until 2021
July 13, 2018 | 0 Comments
Salva Kiir

Salva Kiir

South Sudan’s parliament on Thursday approved extending President Salva Kiir’s term until 2021, angering the armed opposition and threatening already fragile peace talks in a five-year civil war.

The president is expected to sign the extension Thursday or Friday after parliament met in extraordinary session, lawmaker Atem Garang told The Associated Press. Elections have been delayed amid the fighting that has killed tens of thousands and set off Africa’s largest refugee crisis since the 1994 Rwanda genocide.

“The government had to extend the term until there’s peace. We can’t leave the country without a government,” Garang said.

Opposition spokesman Mabior Garang told the AP that “we regret the move as it shows the regime is playing games at the negotiating table.” He called on the international community not to recognize the president’s extended term.

The extension comes days after South Sudan’s government said the government and opposition had agreed to reinstate opposition leader Riek Machar as first vice president. The opposition quickly denied it, however, and a final peace deal has not been signed.

The peace talks began last month as both sides faced the threat of United Nations and regional sanctions.

Kiir and Machar, meeting face-to-face for the first time in almost two years, agreed on a “permanent” cease-fire that began June 30 and, like past cease-fires, was violated within hours.

Both sides have been accused of abuses during the civil war that broke out in late 2013, two years after independence from Sudan. In the latest snapshot of atrocities, a U.N. report this week said government troops and allied fighters killed at least 232 civilians in a five-week period this year, hanging some people from trees and burning others alive, while at least 120 women and girls were raped or gang-raped.

*AP

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Life In A War Zone : 30 Days in Ambazonia/Anglophone Cameroon (6)
July 13, 2018 | 0 Comments
Ghost Towns, Elites and Passive Resistance in a Militarized Ambazonia

By Solomon Ngu*

In my last article I focused on the Amba Fighters – how they are perceived as freedom fighters ready to take bullets for their people  (https://www.panafricanvisions.com/2018/life-war-zone-30-days-ambazoniaanglophone-cameroon-5/). We must understand their activities as part of the Anglophone project to deFrancophonize Ambazonia. They are of a generation that is hostile to all forms of tyranny. And anyone who stands on their way, be s/he armed or not, is treated as an obstacle to freedom. We are now caught in a scenario where the government no longer has monopoly to discipline bodies or openly inflict pain on people through the gun. This dramatic change within the past nine months has seen disenchanted youths fighting what they see as occupational forces  (https://www.panafricanvisions.com/2018/life-war-zone-30-days-ambazoniaanglophone-cameroon-4/).  Their resistance is part of the greater project of making Ambazonia ungovernable. In this post I take a look at Ghost Town, a passive resistance method that was unthinkable just two years ago. This is framed within a context where the government and its gluttonous Anglophone elite have lost legitimacy at the grassroots in the Southern Cameroons.

After the police brutalized protesting lawyers and teachers in late 2016, there were calls, primarily on social media, for Anglophones to demonstrate solidarity with the protesters. Anti-Francophonization demonstrations on the streets had become dangerous – people were dragged in mud, others were shot, university girls were raped, some youths were arrested, etc. I can remember a Facebook group calling for people to stand with Anglophone teachers. It was within this context that Ghost Town emerged as a more practical and collective offline protest at the ways in which the Anglophones leaders were manhandled. By this passive resistance, it was meant no economic activity took place on a day that was designated for the Ghost Town. All businesses remained closed. By 2017, Monday had become the official Ghost Town day. It is now called contri Sunday (native Sunday). In addition to this, all official or national days are assigned Ghost Town status, meaning people in the Anglophone zone are not expected to participate in celebrating whatever is celebrated in Cameroun such as the Youth and National Days. Some of the Ghost Towns – particularly those referred to as mami wata Ghost Town – have been so tense that state employees simply do not turn up for work.

At the early stages of the resistance, the government and local councils responded to these developments by intimidating citizens, informing them that whoever observed the Ghost Towns would be punished. Patrick Ekema, the Mayor of Buea, threatened to shut down or fine shops that observed Ghost Town, that is, shops rented out to shopkeepers by his Council. Frustrated that the citizens were exercising this passive resistance, the government threatened to punish parents who didn’t send their children to school. Parents ridiculed the government, saying they stood to lose if their children were harmed; the people knew the government would not protect them, their children or property if they were to resist the call for Ghost Town. They had lost trust in the government, so to speak.

 

It was time for the government to gamble on another strategy that had hitherto worked in most instances. It sent Anglophone elite to act as mediators and quite a lot of them spoke of the need for the people to stop the passive resistance. But the government failed to know that these French Cameroun-based individuals have lost legitimacy among their people. Anglophones have been questioning the dishonest elite for a long time; they are perceived as thieves, as swindlers who do not account to the villagers what they do with investment money handed over to them by the government. This question is asked within a wider concern as to why the elite collaborate in the Francophonization of Ambazonia.

In any case, those who have failed to observe Ghost Towns have been treated unkindly; the shops, cars, motorbikes and schools (just to name a few) of defaulters have been torched by the population. And the government has not been able to do nothing about it. This aside, those elite that have sided with the government and those who have urged the villagers to denounce the passive resistance now find themselves in uncomfortable situation. Some of them have been told they are not welcome in their villages. And the youths delivering these bans have not spared those elite who ignore the injunctions. A few collaborators of the regime in power have been caught, stripped naked and humiliated. Unfortunately, some have been tortured. These are all recorded and shared on social media. Basically, these elites have been told that they can no longer speak for the people of Ambazonia. And it doesn’t bother the Francophone government that these tokenistic elites aren’t representing the people.

 

This screenshot photo is from a video in which the Amba Fighters in one of the villages in Ambazonia accuse the elite of ‘stealing’ their future; they are ready to punish any of these elite if and when they visit the village. Essentially, Elung Paul and Elvis Ngole Ngole are banned from coming back to the village.

This screenshot photo is from a video in which the Amba Fighters in one of the villages in Ambazonia accuse the elite of ‘stealing’ their future; they are ready to punish any of these elite if and when they visit the village. Essentially, Elung Paul and Elvis Ngole Ngole are banned from coming back to the village.

By and large, the militarization of Anglophone Cameroon has had as specific aim of protecting French and Francophone investments and system of oppression. This means the military is there to provide a secure environment for the French and Francophones to exploit resources in Southern Cameroons. The oppressed are by the military intimidation told their attempts to oppose oppression is futile in the face of heavily armed government troops. Now, come to think of Ghost Town operating in a militarized zone. La Republique du Cameroun conceives power mainly in terms of brute force and this would require that the police/military is physically present to enforce discipline. In this sense, citizens respond to authority only out of fear of physical or psychological injury that could be brought to bear on those who resist the Francophonization of Ambazonia. This is unlike in Ghost Towns where citizens respond to calls from physically-absent leaders, some of whom are only imaginary.

 

While in Bamenda in mid-April 2018, I realized that people observed Ghost Town more rigorously as compared to Buea. All businesses were closed, the streets were scanty and only a few transport services were operational within the city. I could not leave the city before evening because of the Ghost Town. On our way back to Buea that evening we passed through high security military control on the Anglophone site of the country.  The darkness was terrifying. We stopped, descended from the bus, showed our identity cards and then trekked for about 150 meters before getting back into the bus. The frightened military police had their guns pointed and were perhaps ready to shoot.

 

One would expect the government to be in total control in parts of the country that are militarized. And being in control here would entail among other things, guaranteeing the running of daily activities in a direction the government wishes. This could be either out of fear or respect. It could even be both. But the passive resistance in Ambazonia has proven that brute force does not necessarily make people to conform, fix or adjust themselves to an oppressive condition. The oppressor can use the gun to control people if s/he can find them, if the people are within spaces where the oppressor can control. But if the oppressor can’t access people within controllable spaces, the gun and its frightful sight, (powerful as it is), is just what it is: a potential object of repression.  

 

When you are on the ground in Cameroon, you quickly realize that threats from the government, elite and local authorities are taken less seriously nowadays in the Anglophone region. Even after the government disconnected the internet and threatened to send to jail anyone posting information/images related to the war, Ambazonians still update the world about the ongoing war. Anglophones are by this passive resistance signaling that they are ready to use any means to fight oppression. To engage in Ghost Town would mean people are ready to sacrifice – willingly or by force – their present economic benefits in view of a better life in the future.

 

Lest anyone interpret this article as glorifying the suffering of the oppressed in a war zone; it is more about their resilience and courage in the face of a calamity!

*This is part of the series Life in a War Zone:30 Days in Ambazonia by  Solomon Ngu for PAV under the blog Kamer Blues

 

Life in a War Zone: 30 Days in Ambazonia/Anglophone Cameroon

Life In A War Zone : 30 Days in Ambazonia/Anglophone Cameroon (2)

Life In A War Zone : 30 Days in Ambazonia/Anglophone Cameroon (3)

Life In A War Zone : 30 Days in Ambazonia/Anglophone Cameroon (4)

Life In A War Zone : 30 Days in Ambazonia/Anglophone Cameroon (5)

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Kenya:Ruto’s 2022 Succession Is Unstoppable-Aden Duale
July 13, 2018 | 0 Comments

By Samuel Ouma

Majority Leader Aden Duale

Majority Leader Aden Duale

Kenyan leader of the majority in the National Assembly Aden Duale has revealed that Deputy President William Ruto’s presidential bid is intact and none can affect the succession plan.

Speaking during an interview with Ebru television in July 12, Duale refuted the claims by Elgeyo Marakwet Senator Kipchumba Murkomen and Gatundu South legislator Moses Kuria that there are cracks in Jubilee, the ruling party. He termed those statements as opinions.

“Raila did not join Jubilee by shaking hands with Uhuru. Ruto’s succession plan is intact and unstoppable. The handshake was an informal meeting which reassured Kenyans that the two leaders valued Kenya over personal and political interests. If Jubilee would have emerged with Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) then we would be worried about Ruto’s future,” he said.

The Garissa Town Member of Parliament assured Ruto’s supporters of Jubilee full support comes 2022 despite President Uhuru Kenyatta and opposition leader Raila Odinga’s peace deal in March 9, 2018. The vocal legislator said the absence of Ruto and Odinga’s Running mate during August 8 polls on the fateful day is a non-issue. He congratulated President Kenyatta and the opposition chief for making history by coming together. The two families have been antagonists since post-colonial era.

“Raila is the leader of opposition and must continue to keep the government on check which is his cordial role as we implement our Big Four Agenda. As Jubilee we are united under one leader who makes key policy decisions which we have no obligations not to support whether consulted or not,” reiterated Mr. Aden Duale.

In last few weeks Ruto’s diehards from his home turf called on President Kenyatta to revoke his deal with Odinga claiming that there are hidden plans by some State House officials to scuttle the former Eldoret north legislator’s presidential bid.  They attributed disquiet in the Ruling party to the famous handshake which calmed high political tension following the alleged bungled presidential elections.

“The meeting would be timely because even a fool knows there is a crisis that is threatening to tear Jubilee apart. We need to understand some few things about the handshake and why things have changed suddenly in Jubilee,” said legislator Samuel Arama one of Ruto’s ardent supporters.

 

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Bonfires, teargas as traders clash with police in Nairobi
July 13, 2018 | 0 Comments

By Samuel Ouma

A bonfire lit by Wakulima Market traders during their demonstration against high rates by the Nairobi county government, July 12, 2018. /LEWIS NYAUNDI

A bonfire lit by Wakulima Market traders during their demonstration against high rates by the Nairobi county government, July 12, 2018. /LEWIS NYAUNDI

Transportation and business came to a standstill in Nairobi streets on Thursday morning after traders engaged police into running battles protesting against high rates, harassment by police and arrest of their colleagues.

The traders who are said to be plying their businesses at Wakulima and Marikiti markets within the city, lit fire smacks in the middle of roads causing a traffic snarl-up on Haile Selassie highway and Jogoo road. They hurled bottles and stones at the police.

The Thursday incident is alleged to be a culmination of tension that has been looming since Wednesday between the traders and County government officials. Police arrested five traders at Marikiti market among them being the traders association Chairman Cyrus Kaguta and seized their goods.

The move by police to arrest Cyrus Kaguta triggered verbal confrontation between the city authorities and traders and escalated to violence. The county officers were roughed up by irate merchants but the police came to their aid.

“The traders were angered by the arrest of their chairman and they proceeded to beat up one of the county officers and it is only then that the officers fled only for the police to show up this morning,” said one of the traders.

Police are being accused of persistent extortion and melee meted on traders and demanding for kickbacks to the tune of sh.1000 ($10). Traders are appealing to Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko to intervene.

“This has been going on to an extent that the authorities are now arresting innocent passers-by who are mistaken for traders. Governor Mike Sonko should intervene,” reiterated Maina Kago, one of the traders.

Central Police boss Robinson Thuku confirmed the traders were arrested for violation of City by-laws. Thuku said “We are yet to identify the crimes they committed but our obligation is to restore order. The protests are an act of hooliganism because once arrested it is only the court that can acquit the traders.”

Starehe Member of Parliament Charles Njagua dislocated his ankle when he was caught in a Wednesday standoff. He had moved in to calm the situation.

“I came to the rescue of the traders and tried to talk to talk to the officers but little did I know that they had called for reinforcement. They threw tear gas canisters, forcing people to scamper for safety, “said the legislator.

Traders have warned that they will continue to disrupt the business until those arrested are freed. They have vowed to give police uneasy time unless their grievances are addressed.

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Youngest Kenya Senator Loses Seat Over Irregularities
July 13, 2018 | 0 Comments

By Samuel Ouma

Lamu Senator Anwar Loitiptip during judgment by Court of Appeal. (Kelvin Karani, Standard)

Lamu Senator Anwar Loitiptip during judgment by Court of Appeal. (Kelvin Karani, Standard)

Court of Appeal in Kenya has nullified election of Anwar Loititip as Lamu Senator during August 8, 2017 polls over irregularities.

The appellate judges on Alvishram Nassir, Martha Koome and Wanjiru Karanja on Thursday ordered the Independent Electoral Boundaries Commission (IEBC), a body which oversees elections process, to conduct fresh senatorial election within three months.

Wanjiru Karanja, who read the judgment, accused the High Court Judge Asnath Ongeri for validating the 32-year-old win without looking at the grounds established by the petitioner.

“The appellant adduced enough evidence with should have called for a vote recount,” said Justice Karanja.

The Judge further said there was need to scrutinize votes at nine polling stations. She noted that votes casted in those stations exceeded the number of registered voters.

Loititip, who contested the seat on Jubilee party ticket, garnered 14,432 votes against his fierce rival Hassan Albeity of Wiper party who got 14,374.

The ruling followed a petition by Hassan Albeity who faulted High Court for throwing away his case citing inadequate evidence.

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The Initiative for Global Development’s Board of Directors Names Leila Ndiaye As President & CEO
July 12, 2018 | 0 Comments

Ndiaye, an African affairs expert and accomplished senior policy and business strategist, will assume President & CEO position on August 1

Leila Ndiaye

Leila Ndiaye

WASHINGTON, D.C. – July 12, 2018 – The Initiative for Global Development’s Board of Directors announced today that Leila Ndiaye will be promoted to President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of IGD. She succeeds Dr. Mima S. Nedelcovych, who will remain close to the organization in his new role of President Emeritus and Senior Advisor.

Ndiaye, who joined IGD as Executive Vice-President in March, will assume her new role on August 1, 2018. The Initiative for Global Development (IGD) is a Washington-based network of African and global business leaders who are committed to advancing sustainable development and inclusive growth through business investment.

A native of Côte d’Ivoire and a US resident, Ndiaye brings more than 20 years of experience as an accomplished senior policy and business strategist with a proven track record in policy design and implementation at the highest level of African governments and the private sector.

As President and CEO, Ndiaye will be the driving force in transforming the organization into an engaging and influential platform that fosters greater investment of U.S. and African small- and medium-sized enterprises (SME) in Africa. Through her strategic vision and leadership, IGD will be positioned to be the leading voice and advocate for SMEs investing in Africa to fuel the continent’s economic progress.

She will be responsible for leading the strategic direction for IGD’s exceptional programming and policy engagements to advance a business-driven development agenda, overseeing the growth of the Frontier Leader Network, and building strategic alliances with key stakeholders to advance organizational priorities.

“The IGD Board of Directors is delighted to appoint Leila Ndiaye to the position of CEO and President of IGD. Leila is clearly a proven leader who can take IGD into the future,” said Rob Mosbacher, IGD Board Chair and Chairman of Mosbacher Energy Company.

“I’m deeply passionate about addressing key development issues in Africa by harnessing the power of the private sector to create jobs and economic prosperity on both sides of the Atlantic,” Ndiaye said. “I look forward to this opportunity to continue the momentum and build on IGD’s current progress to take the organization to the next level.”

Board Chair Mosbacher expressed a deep appreciation for the leadership of outgoing president Mima S. Nedelcovych. Nedelcovych spearheaded the rapid expansion of African companies into IGD’s Frontier Leader Network for the last four years.

“On behalf of the entire Board, I want to thank Mima for his dedication and leadership at IGD,” said Mosbacher. “Given his new role as President Emeritus and Senior Advisor, the board is confident IGD is on the right path to drive forward its continued success.”

Nedelcovych said as IGD continues to grow into a thriving organization, Ndiaye’s leadership qualities, skills and professional relations were a perfect fit for the organization.

“Leila Ndiaye recently joined IGD and has already demonstrated strategic and decisive thinking and a strong ability to lead,” said Nedelcovych. “I have known Leila a long time and can assure you that her deep experience and broad connections will ensure IGD’s continued success into the future.”

Prior to joining IGD, she served as the Senior Director of Policy for African Affairs at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. In that position, she developed, promoted and executed the US-Africa Business Center’s program of work relating to trade policy and investment between the United States and African countries. She initiated and managed the US-ECOWAS Business Initiative and spearheaded the Chamber’s program in Western and Central Sub-Saharan Africa, from Angola to Mauritania.

Previously, she worked with the government of Côte d’Ivoire as special adviser to the former Head of State, where she advised the Head of State on a range of policy, national security and economic issues to ensure that all duties were carried out in the best interest of the country as a whole.

Ndiaye is an Advisor to McLarty Associates, where she advises clients on trade and investment in West Africa. McLarty Associates is an international strategic advisory firm headquartered in Washington, DC, that delivers diplomatic solutions and advises many emerging companies venturing abroad.

Earlier in her career, Ndiaye held positions in the lobbying arena with Bayh, Connaughton, Fernsteinhem and Malone, law firm of former Senator Birch Bayh, in Washington, D.C. where she developed and managed the Africa portfolio, and at the World Bank as a consultant.

Ndiaye was decorated by the Republic of Burkina Faso in June 2018 as Knight of the National Order of Merit of the Republic of Burkina Faso.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce presented Ms. Ndiaye with the “US-Africa Business Center Outstanding Leaders’ Award 2018” in recognition of her exemplary leadership in US-Africa relations.

She is a recipient of the 2016 Excellence Award by the Women Ambassadors Foundation in Washington DC and was nominated in 2008 as one of the 50 most influential people of Côte d’Ivoire by the magazine l’Intelligent d’Abidjan and received the same year the Women’s Private Sector Initiative Award in Côte d’Ivoire.

In 1990, she was the first Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar from Côte d’Ivoire to South Africa during apartheid.  Leila Ndiaye is a member of the African Leadership Network, a membership community of the most dynamic and influential new-generation leaders in Africa.

She received a certificate from the Thayer Leaders Development Group (TLDG) at West Point for the “Women Leading from the Front Lines” Leadership Academy in August 2017.

Leila Ndiaye holds a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations from the School of International Service (SIS), at The American University in Washington DC, earned a Master of Arts in Diplomacy with merit from the Diplomatic Academy of London at the University of Westminster, and a PhD degree in International Relations and Diplomacy, from the Centre d’Etudes Diplomatiques et Stratégiques (CEDS), Paris.

MEDIA CONTACT: Shanta Bryant Gyan * sbryant@igdleaders.org * (202) 412-4603

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Kenya:When You Steal You Do It For Yourself Not The Community, Linturi Tells Governors
July 12, 2018 | 0 Comments

By Samuel Ouma

Meru Senator Mithika Linturi

Meru Senator Mithika Linturi

Meru Senator Mithika Linturi has castigated Governors for demanding immunity against prosecution over corruption.

He said the constitution provides opportunity for the impeachment of Governors and president on grounds of misappropriation of public funds. He asked the embattled Busia Governor Sospeter Ojaamong to consolidate his defence to encounter what in the investigative agencies have instead of rallying support from Governors.

Governor Ojaamong was nabbed by Ethics and Anti-corruption Commission officials on Thursday and was arraigned in court on Friday where he was charged with three others of embezzlement of funds. They were released on a bail of sh.1 million ($10000) each.

“All we are saying the Governors as the bosses of devolved units must operate within acceptable decorum. Counties like USA, Canada, South Africa governors run states and they have no immunity to corruption,” said Mr. Mithika Linturi.

On Monday the Council of Governors Chairman Joseph Nanok criticized the Government over the arrest of his Busia counterpart Sospeter Ojaamong saying it was mischivious to call the media and publicly arrest a governor to distract the rot in other ministries, departments and agencies.

“Whereas the fight against corruption is inevitable, this fight cannot be politicized and it cannot be used selectively to target specific officers,” reiterated Mr. Josphat Nanok.

Nanok said governors should be given the same treatment as the president because they are too heads of governments.

“The best practice in jurisdiction that is devolved is that the heads of both levels of government have immunity on civil and criminal proceedings while they are in office,” said Nanok.

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Kenya:Opposition Chief Discloses What Led To Famous “Handshake”
July 12, 2018 | 0 Comments

By Samuel Ouma

The Kenyatta-Odinga embrace  jolted  Kenyan politics

The Kenyatta-Odinga embrace jolted Kenyan politics

Kenyan opposition leader Raila Odinga has divulged what transpired between him and President Uhuru Kenyatta before March 9 peace deal.

Speaking at Kitui County, Eastern part of the country, the ODM party leader said high political tension made them to beat off their hard stands so as to save the country from plunging into chaos. They swallowed their pride and came on a negotiation table without involving other politicians.

“We first had preliminary talks on how to conduct the final talks. I gave my demands and he accepted that I will meet him alone. He also insisted that the National Super Alliance co-principals are excluded,” said Mr. Odinga.

President Kenyatta left his deputy William Ruto out of the talks while Odinga kept Kalonzo Musyoka, his running mate during August 8 polls in the dark and other two co-principals; Musalia Mudavadi and Moses Wetangula.

“President Kenyatta asked me to leave out my brother Mr.Musyoka from the talks, after I also demanded that his deputy William Ruto be excluded as well, which he agreed. I insisted that I don’t want to talk to those people who wanted to discuss 2022,” Mr. Odinga reiterated.

According to Odinga, his supporters had reached an agreement to boycott paying taxes to central government and remove the president’s portraits from offices and business premises in his strongholds to protest electoral injustices. He explained how he risked high treason and death by strangulation when he agreed to be sworn in as the people’s president.

The opposition chief who enjoys support from his home turf, Nyanza, Coastal region, Western, lower Eastern, and some parts of Rift Valley got sworn as the people’s president in January 30, 2018 as demanded by his diehards, an event that was boycotted by his co-principals.

“Our people had already agreed to gather all presidential portraits and burn them. We were also going to start collecting taxes from people in our strongholds. I thought about it keenly and figured that we could easily head the Syria or Yemen way,” explained Odinga.

He further revealed that Mr. Kenyatta was under intense pressure from Jubilee loyalists who wanted him arrested and charged with treason after being sworn in saying that the president declined because it could have plunged the whole nation into anarchy.

Mr. Odinga who was accompanied by his wife Ida Odinga, Kitui Governor Charity Ngilu and her Makueni counterpart Kivutha Kibwana said his and Mr. Kenyatta’s decision saved the country from following the paths that led to 2007 post-election violence.

“After my swearing in, I learnt that Uhuru was under pressure from his core Jubilee supporters to arrest and drag me to court on treason charges but he declined because that could have plunged the country into endless protests and chaos.” He added.

The exclusion of the three National Super Alliance (NASA) three principals almost led to the collapse of the coalition. The trio accused him of betrayal.

 

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The New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) transformation into the African Union Development Agency
July 10, 2018 | 0 Comments
The Assembly approved the establishment of African Union Development Agency as the technical body of the African Union with its own legal identity
 

Mr. Ibrahim Assane MAYAKI Executive Secretary of NEPAD

Mr. Ibrahim Assane MAYAKI Executive Secretary of NEPAD

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa, July 9, 2018/ — At the recent 31st Ordinary Session of the Assembly of African Union Heads of State and Government in Nouakchott, Mauritania, African Heads of State and Government received several reports, including the status of the implementation of the AU Institutional Reforms presented by President Paul Kagame of Rwanda. President Kagame is the current chair of the African Union and the champion for the AU Institutional Reforms process.

During the Summit in Nouakchott, a decision was officially taken on the transformation of the NEPAD Planning and Coordination Agency into the African Union Development Agency. 

The Assembly approved the establishment of African Union Development Agency as the technical body of the African Union with its own legal identity, defined by its own statute.  The statue will be developed and presented for adoption at the next AU Summit in January 2019.

The Assembly commended the leadership of Senegalese President, H.E Macky Sall, current Chairperson of the NEPAD Heads of State and Government Orientation Committee, for reinforcing the credibility of NEPAD that has been acknowledged in the international community, including the G20 and the G7.

The current reforms at the AU are an affirmation by member states of their commitment to the NEPAD Agency as the Union’s own instrument established to champion catalytic support to countries and regional bodies in advancing the implementation of the continent’s development vision – as articulated in the seven aspirations and 20 goals of Agenda 2063.

Dr Ibrahim Mayaki, CEO of the NEPAD Agency, stated that, “A core aspect of the current reforms is to streamline and improve effectiveness and efficiency in delivery in the implementation of AU decisions, policies and programmes across all AU organs and institutions. In this sense, as the NEPAD Agency is the technical implementation agency of the AU, one specific recommendation in the Kagame report is to transform it into the AU Development Agency. We are enthusiastic about this transformation, which will make it possible to deploy our programmes even more effectively in the service of our continent’s development.”

 

 

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