May 18, 2018

Letter from Africa: Why is no-one talking about the Zamfara conflict?

Letter from Africa: Why is no-one talking about the Zamfara conflict? Image copyright AFP Image caption Zamfara has been suffering from bad governance for decades In our series of letters from African journalists, Kadaria Ahmed looks at the brewing crisis in Nigeria's Zamfara State, which analysts say has the potential to become as deadly as the Boko Haram conflict. Growing up nearly 50 years ago in Nigeria's north-western Zamfara State, I could never have imagined its future of grinding poverty and escalating violence. The capital of Zamfara State, Gusau, used to be a prosperous town. British company John Holt ran a tannery, which bought and treated hides before shipping them off to Europe. Sugar giant Tate and Lyle had a presence. There was also a textile company, an oil mill, and a ginnery that prepared cotton for export. As children, our favourite place in Gusau was the sweet factory, run by a Lebanese family who were, for all intents and purposes, locals. There, we could..
May 18, 2018

Madagascar emerges as whale shark hotspot

Madagascar emerges as whale shark hotspot Image copyright Simon J Pierce Image caption Whale sharks are the largest living fish Large numbers of endangered whale sharks have been sighted in waters off Madagascar. The first major scientific survey in the area shows there are far more of the huge fish than previously thought. Eighty-five individuals were identified in a single season from photographs of their distinctive markings. The coastal waters contain a huge diversity of marine life, including sharks, whales and turtles. "No one thought there were that many [whale] sharks," said Stella Diamant of the Madagascar Whale Shark Project in Nosy Be, an island off the coast of Madagascar. "They don't seem to be there all year round - they come back for the food." Many starsWhale sharks, which have unique spot patterns, are known locally as marokintana, meaning many stars. The marine biologists uploaded photographs of the sharks' markings to a global database of sightings known a..
May 17, 2018

DR Congo Ebola outbreak: WHO in emergency talks as cases spread

DR Congo Ebola outbreak: WHO in emergency talks as cases spread Image copyright Reuters Image caption Suspected cases are being treated at isolation hospitals in the Democratic Republic of Congo The World Health Organization (WHO) is to hold an emergency meeting to discuss the risk of Ebola spreading from the Democratic Republic of Congo. A panel will decide on Friday whether to declare a "public health emergency of international concern", which would trigger a larger response. At least 44 people are believed to have been infected in the current outbreak and 23 deaths are being investigated. Cases emerged in a rural area with one now confirmed in the city of Mbandaka. The city of about one million people is a transport hub on the Congo River, prompting fears that the virus could now spread further, threatening the capital Kinshasa and surrounding countries. Why Ebola keeps coming back Why Ebola is so dangerous How not to catch Ebola Ebola is an infectious illness that causes internal ..
May 17, 2018

Africa’s week in pictures: 11 May – 17 May 2018

Africa's week in pictures: 11 May - 17 May 2018 A selection of the best photos from across Africa and of Africans elsewhere in the world this week. Image copyright AFP Image caption South Africans gathered outside the Israeli embassy in Johannesburg on Tuesday to protest at the deaths of Palestinian demonstrators. Image copyright AFP Image caption The same day, Kenyan women took to the streets of Nairobi to condemn the treatment of a young mother asked to breastfeed her baby in a toilet. Image copyright AFP Image caption On the other side of the continent, campaigners in Lagos, Nigeria, were protesting on the first anniversary of the forced eviction of the Otodo Gbame community - a waterfront community like this one. Image copyright AFP Image caption People were celebrating the 27th independence anniversary of the self-declared Republic of Somaliland three days early, on Tuesday, to avoid clashing with Ramadan. Image copyright AFP Image caption People were also in a festive mood..
May 17, 2018

DR Congo Ebola outbreak spreads to Mbandaka city

DR Congo Ebola outbreak spreads to Mbandaka city Image copyright AFP/Getty Image caption Twenty-three people are known to have died The Ebola outbreak in Congo has spread from the countryside into a city, prompting fears that the disease will be increasingly difficult to control. Health Minister Oly Ilunga Kalenga confirmed a case in Mbandaka, a city of a million people about 130km (80 miles) from the area where the first cases were confirmed earlier this month. The city is a major transportation hub with routes to the capital Kinshasa. Forty-two people have now been infected and 23 people are known to have died. Why Ebola keeps coming back Why Ebola is so dangerous How not to catch Ebola Confirmed, probable and suspected cases of Ebola have been recorded in three health zones of Congo's Equateur province, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said. The WHO's Peter Salama said health workers had identified 430 people who may have had contact with the disease and were worki..
May 16, 2018

His Eminence Sultan Sa’ad Officially announced Thursday beginning of Ramadan fasting

His eminence Sa’ad Abubakar III, the Sultan of Sokoto has declared Thursday as the first day for the beginning of the Ramadan fasting in Nigeria. Abubakar […]
May 16, 2018

ECOWAS experts meet on Trade Information System

From L to R Mr. Julien Bornon of UNCTAD, Mr. Kelechi Okoro of GIZ, Mr. Tèi Konzi, Commissioner of Trade and Dr. Gbenga Obideyi, Director of Trade Abuja, 16th May, 2018. Trade experts from Members States of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) on Wednesday, 16th May, 2018 began a two-day meeting in Abuja, Nigeria, to enhance their knowledge on the ECOWAS Trade Information System (ECOTIS) project and deliberate on the expected content for national trade portals to be linked to the ECOTIS. In his welcome address, the Commissioner for Trade, Customs and Free Movement of the ECOWAS Commission, Mr. Tèi Konzi emphasized the importance of reliable and timely access to trade information in the West African region for developing export competitiveness in the global market place. Mr. Konzi stressed the need for ECOTIS and its potentials to create transparency in trade policy development in Member States as well as country involvement in the process to ensure that the system wi..
May 16, 2018

President Jean-Claude Kassi Brou presents Commission’s Strategic Plan, Community Report to ECOWAS Parliament

President Brou responding to the questions from Parliamentarians Abuja 16th May 2018.The President of the Commission of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Jean-Calude Kassi Brou presented the Commission’s strategic plan as well as a Report of the state of the Community to the ECOWAS Parliamentarians on the 15th of May 2018 in Abuja, Nigeria. Addressing the 1st Ordinary Session of the 4th Legislature of the ECOWAS Parliament, in the Community’s three official languages, President Brou enthused that the year 2018 is expected to be marked by increased growth compared to the previous year “within the context of a more favourable global environment” President Brou flanked by Parliament Speaker Cisse Lo Apart from raising awareness among national stakeholders with a view to accelerating the ratification and effective implementation of ECOWAS Conventions and Protocols, the President told the august gathering that the Commission is poised to working closely with all ECOWA..
May 16, 2018

President Jean-Claude Kassi Brou calls for increased synergy between ECOWAS and Permanent Representatives

A group picture of the President Brou (in red tie) and the Permanent représentatives Abuja, 16th May 2018. The Commission of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and its Permanent Representatives in Nigeria in their bi-monthly meeting which held on 16th May 2018 in Abuja, Nigeria resolved to increase collaboration in order to implement various programmes geared towards regional integration. The President of the ECOWAS Commission, Jean-Claude Kassi Brou stated in his remarks that the bi-monthly meeting serves as a good platform for dialogue, interaction and sharing of ideas on ECOWAS activities. “It affords Permanent Representatives an opportunity to brief the Commission on the implementation of ECOWAS projects in their respective Member States and on progress made on the payment and remittance of Community Levy”, he said. In turn departments and technical directorates of the Commission will be able to leverage on the experience and counsel of the Permanent Represen..
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