Africa Media Review for November 28, 2022

Cease-Fire Holding in Eastern DR Congo, Residents Say
The frontlines between government troops and M23 rebels remained calm in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo on Sunday for a second day running, local residents told AFP, after a cease-fire came into force. DRC President Felix Tshisekedi attended a regional mini-summit in Luanda on Wednesday, agreeing a deal on the cessation of hostilities in DRC’s war-torn east from Friday evening…Local people reported no sign of a rebel pullout by midday Sunday. Clashes had continued right up to the cease-fire deadline north of the provincial capital Goma, but on Sunday both sides were holding their positions, locals told AFP by telephone. AFP

Comoros Court Sentences Former President to Life in Prison
A court in the Comoros on Monday handed down a life sentence for high treason to ex-president Ahmed Abdallah Sambi, who was convicted of selling passports to stateless people living in the Gulf. Sambi, 64, was sentenced by the State Security Court, a special judicial body whose rulings cannot be appealed. Prosecutors in the Comoros had sought a life sentence for former president Sambi, who was tried in absentia for high treason…Sambi, who led the small Indian Ocean country between 2006 and 2011, passed a law in 2008 allowing the sale of passports at an exorbitant fee. France 24

Malawi Vice-President Charged in Corruption Investigation
This is the climax of a years-long investigation by Malawian and British authorities into a bribery scandal that allegedly centres on multimillionaire Zuneth Sattar, a Malawi-born British citizen. Chilima is accused of receiving a share of $280 000 from Sattar, who allegedly sought to influence the award of lucrative government contracts. Sattar denies all wrongdoing. By the time of his court appearance on Friday afternoon, Chilima was vice-president in name only. President Lazarus Chakwera suspended him from his duties in June, when the allegations first surfaced. Addressing journalists and his supporters after being granted bail, Chilima avoided making any comment on the proceedings or his political future. Mail & Guardian

Lesotho Unhappy Over ‘Traumatising’ Repatriation of Its Nationals From South Africa
Lesotho says South Africa breached its “free movement” arrangement with the country when authorities instructed 400 Basotho to leave Newcastle in KwaZulu-Natal early last week. The Lesotho government had to repatriate its nationals amid questions about their status in South Africa. “Over 400 Basotho were transported to Lesotho by the government of Lesotho following an incident of being chased by the authorities there, in concern about their legality in South Africa,” read a statement by Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office Limpho Tau. Tau called it a “traumatising” event that should not have happened because of the two countries’ cordial relations. He noted Lesotho’s deep concern over the treatment of its citizens while in South Africa, saying the countries had signed bilateral agreements that included free movement. News24

DR Congo To Hold Next Presidential Polls in December 2023
The Democratic Republic of Congo will hold its next presidential polls on 20 December, 2023, the country’s electoral commission said on Saturday. The announcement comes as M23 rebels have advanced in the restive east of the African country, displacing tens of thousands of people from their homes. The electoral commission’s president said “persisting insecurity in some parts of the territory” would be a challenge to holding a “free, democratic and transparent” vote. In the DRC, the presidential poll is held at the same time as parliamentary, provincial and local elections. President Felix Tshisekedi came to power in January 2019, succeeding Joseph Kabila after 18 turbulent years as leader. AFP

4 Killed in Sao Tome’s Failed Coup Bid, State Media Reports
Four people were killed in a failed coup attempt on Sao Tome and Principe, the state news agency STP-Press said Sunday reporting a toll from the armed forces chief of staff. The military, which Friday thwarted a coup bid in the tiny Portuguese-speaking archipelago off central Africa considered a beacon of democracy, announced “four human lives were lost” after “exchanges of fire” at a military site…They were “neutralized and captured” after trying to storm military sites and three of them died from their wounds despite the army’s efforts to preserve their lives by taking them to the hospital, Trovoada added. AFP

Militants Attack Hotel Used by Officials in Somalia’s Capital
Islamist militants attacked a hotel used by government officials in Somalia’s capital Mogadishu on Sunday evening, police and witnesses said. Al Qaeda-linked al Shabaab, which controls large swathes of the country, claimed responsibility for the attack, saying in a statement that it was targeting the nearby presidential palace…”The forces rescued government officials and members of the public who were trapped in the building,” the broadcaster said. The assailants stormed the Villa Rose hotel, which is close to the presidential palace, two police officers told Reuters. It was not immediately clear how many attackers there were, the officers said. Reuters

Worried About Ebola, Uganda Extends Outbreak Epicenter’s Quarantine
Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni has extended a quarantine placed on two districts that are the epicenter of the country’s Ebola outbreak by 21 days…Movement into and out of the Mubende and Kassanda districts in central Uganda will be restricted up to Dec. 17, the presidency said late Saturday. It was originally imposed for 21 days on Oct. 15, then extended for the same period Nov. 5…The East African nation has so far recorded 141 infections. Fifty-five people have died since the outbreak of the deadly hemorrhagic fever was declared on Sept. 20th. Reuters

Bridging Gender Gaps Holds Lasting Hope for Great Lakes Stability
Campaigners of gender equality say countries in the Great Lakes region should implement various regional and continental legal instruments meant to boost the representation of women in election management bodies. This piece of advice arose last week as experts pored over the gender gaps in the region, with some saying some of the political problems in the region are due to women staying out of leadership roles. Currently, only five countries out of the 11-member states of the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR) have met the threshold of 30 percent of women representation in the Electoral Management Bodies (EMBs). East African

Sudanese Civilian Forces To Form Negotiating Team for Talks With Military
The signatories to the political declaration in Sudan agreed to form a team tasked with negotiating with the military component and set criteria for selecting the prime minister and the government’s program. The initial signatories to the constitutional framework and political declaration including the FFC groups, Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) faction led by Alhassan al-Mirghani, Popular Congress Party (PSP), the Republican Party, and the Sudanese Revolutionary Front held a meeting on Sunday with the tripartite facilitation mechanism of the AU, IGAD, and UNITAMS…Khidir added that the meeting of the initial signatories aims to achieve an inclusive agreement on the transitional government fulfilling the military’s condition to hand over power to civilians. Sudan Tribune



Photo: Adam Jones