Africa Media Review for November 22, 2022

South Africa’s Leader Wins a Crucial A.N.C. Political Battle
President Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa, whose presidency has been upended by claims that he tried to cover up the theft of a huge sum of cash at his farm, emerged well placed to win a second term as leader of the governing African National Congress, and president of the country, after nominations by his party’s rank and file were released on Tuesday…At the gathering, held every five years, members choose the A.N.C.’s top officials, including their president, and the party’s president typically serves as the country’s president. National elections are set for 2024, and the A.N.C. has won an outright majority of votes in every national election since South Africa’s first democratic elections in 1994. New York Times

Thousands Strike for Wage Increases in South Africa
Thousands of public sector workers in South Africa have embarked on a nationwide strike demanding better wages. Tuesday’s “National Day of Action” comes after wage negotiations between trade unions and the government collapsed; the government offered a 3 percent pay hike, but unions are demanding 10 percent amid rising inflation…Last week, in an attempt to avert the strike, the government made a final offer of an effective 7.5 percent wage increase – comprising 3 percent pensionable and 4.5 percent non-pensionable funds. But in a joint statement on November 18, the unions called the news of the offer “misleading.” Al Jazeera

Zambia Student Serving Prison Term in Russia Dies at Ukrainian Battlefront
Zambia is seeking answers from Russia after a Zambian student who was serving a prison sentence in Russia ended up dying at the battlefront in Ukraine. Nathan Lemekhani Nyirenda, 23, was serving a nine-year prison sentence in Russia after being convicted of drug possession in 2020. But Zambia’s Foreign Minister Stanely Kakubo, at a Monday news conference, said the government was informed on November 9 that Nyirenda had died at the battlefront in Ukraine…Zambia’s Foreign Ministry says it learned that Nyirenda died on September 22 in Ukraine. Voice of America

Opposition Parties Criticise Upcoming FFC Agreement with Sudan Junta
An upcoming framework agreement between the Forces for Freedom and Change-Central Council (FFC-CC) alliance and the military junta has been rejected by several political groups in the country, from pro-democracy grassroots movements and political opposition parties to members of the Sovereignty Council.  Statements rolled in over the weekend following an announcement on Friday by the FFC-CC* that the agreement with the military will probably be signed soon after it had incorporated several suggestions by the military.  Resistance committees in Khartoum said in a statement on Sunday that any agreement that the FFC-CC makes with those responsible for the coup d’état on October 25 last year means that there will be no retributive justice done for the many victims of the military rulers. Dabanga

Twitter Staff in Ghana Reject Musk’s Lay-Off Package
About a dozen Twitter staff based in Ghana, which was the firm’s only office in Africahave rejected a severance package offered to them and are now considering taking legal action…Under local law laid-off staff must be paid redundancy and should be given three months notice, as opposed to under a month in the case of the Ghanaian employees of Twitter who have been told the “last day of employment will be 4 December 2022.” Ghana staff were sent messages about the end of their contracts to their personal accounts, after being denied access to work emails. Twitter offered them what they say was less than the three months severance package that Elon Musk had said staff would get. BBC

EXPLAINER | Why the US Is Sending ‘Abacha Loot’ Back to Nigeria
Over the weekend, the US Department of Justice announced that “under the agreement signed in August, the United States agreed to transfer 100% of the net forfeited assets to Nigeria to support three critical infrastructure projects in Nigeria that were previously authorised by Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari and the Nigerian legislature.”…The money seized by the US was laundered during General Abacha’s military rule in Nigeria. Abacha, his son Mohammed Sani Abacha, their associate Abubakar Atiku Bagudu and others are accused of embezzling, misappropriating and extorting billions of dollars from the government of Nigeria and other parties. News24

Suspected Jihadists Kill Troops, Civilians in Nigeria
Jihadists have attacked an army base and a town in northeast Nigeria killing nine soldiers, two policemen and civilians, security sources and residents said Sunday in the latest violence in the region. Fighters from Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) riding trucks fitted with machine guns stormed the town of Malam Fatori, in Abadam district, late on Friday and early Saturday, they said. Mail & Guardian

Somalia: In War-Torn States Hurt by Climate, Scant Hope for New Funds
In conflict-ravaged nations like Yemen and Somalia, devastating floods and droughts kill hundreds of people and uproot tens of thousands from their homes. These countries and many others in the Middle East and Africa have been plunged into turmoil and wars for several years. Now climate change is an added disaster for those already struggling for survival…Conflict-hit countries are unlikely to receive funds because they lack stable governments, said Nisreen el-Saim, chair of the U.N. Secretary-General Youth Advisory Group. “They don’t have institutions in order to have climate finance,” she said. “You have to have strong institutions, which don’t exist in many countries.” Robert Mardini, the director general of the International Committee for the Red Cross, said that “close to zero amount of climate finance” is reaching conflict-affected nations “because decision makers who decide to allocate those funds consider that it is too risky to invest” there. AP

Uganda to Send 1,000 Troops to Regional Force Against M23 in DRC
Uganda will be the third country to deploy troops after contingents from Kenya and Burundi have arrived in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo…The seven countries of the East African Community (EAC), which DRC joined this year, agreed in April to set up a force to fight militia groups in its east…Eastern DRC already hosts hundreds of Ugandan troops, deployed nearly a year ago under a separate bilateral arrangement to help hunt down the ISIL-allied group Allied Democratic Forces (ADF). Al Jazeera

Civilians Caught Between M23 Rebels and Army in East DR Congo
The fighting has sent relations between the DRC and Rwanda into a nosedive, with Kinshasa accusing its smaller neighbour of backing the M23, something UN experts and US officials have also said in recent months. In the murk of war, it is unclear how many people have been killed in the recent clashes. At Twizere’s hospital in Goma, only ten people have been admitted since the resurgence of combat, according to Annekathrin Muller, a German nurse in charge of ICRC operations at the facility. “They can’t cross the frontlines,” she explained.  “If a humanitarian corridor is opened, there’s a risk that many wounded will arrive here,” Muller added, noting that she was concerned about the number of amputations medics may have to perform. AFP

South Sudan Readies for $112.7M IMF Emergency Funding
The South Sudanese government will be receiving $112.7 million in emergency funding from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to help address food insecurity, support social spending and boost its diminishing foreign reserves…In a statement released on Tuesday, IMF said the PMB involvement will support economic policies aimed at maintaining macroeconomic stability and debt sustainability in South Sudan. “South Sudan’s request for emergency support is subject to approval by IMF management and the executive board in the coming weeks. Ahead of the executive board consideration of this request, the authorities will implement several reforms to strengthen governance and transparency,” said IMF. East African

Liberia: Tim Weah Fulfils Father George’s Dream at World Cup
Liberia’s President George Weah – who was once one of the world’s best footballers – didn’t get to play at the World Cup as his country has never qualified. But his son, Tim, is playing in Qatar for the USA. Last night, in front of his dad, who was in the crowd, he scored a goal in the 1-1 draw with Wales. “Me being here is not only my dream, it’s his dream as well,” Weah junior told BBC Sport. “I know he’s living the moment through me.” BBC



Photo: Adam Jones