Africa Media Review for September 9, 2022

Angola Court Rejects Poll Result Appeal, Opposition Urges Protest
Angola’s Constitutional Court made a final ruling on Thursday to dismiss a complaint filed by the runner-up in the August 24 election seeking to annul the results that gave victory to the ruling MPLA party. After the country’s most closely fought election, the electoral commission declared the People’s Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA) the winner last week. That paved the way for a second term for President Joao Lourenco and extended the MPLA’s stay in power, which has continued uninterrupted since independence in 1975…UNITA and other opposition parties called for peaceful demonstrations to protest against what they have described as election “irregularities”. Among other issues, there were only 1,300 observers to cover a country twice the size of France and about 2.7 million deceased people were included in the electoral roll. Al Jazeera

EU Pledges 15 Million Euros to Mozambique to ‘Fight Terrorism’
The European Union’s top diplomat said on Thursday the bloc was committed to help Mozambique fight “against terrorism”, as he unveiled new military aid for the country a day after a deadly jihadist attack. Josep Borrell held security talks with Mozambique’s President Filipe Nyusi and Foreign Minister Veronica Macamo in the capital Maputo after arriving in the southern African nation for a two-day visit. “I wanted to express the commitment and the solidarity of the European Union with Mozambique in fighting against terrorism,” Borrell, the EU’s foreign policy chief, told a press conference. The diplomat said the EU on Thursday approved 15 million euros ($15 million) in additional military aid to support a regional mission in the restive northern province of Cabo Delgado. The money will provide equipment including camp fortifications and vehicles, and adds to the previously agreed 89 million euros in assistance earmarked for the Mozambican armed forces, the EU said in a statement. AFP

Tunisian Opposition to Boycott December Elections, Decry ‘Coup’
The National Salvation Front, a body representing the main parties in Tunisia’s opposition, including Ennahdha, has announced that it will boycott December elections to replace a parliament dissolved by President Kais Saied. Saied called the December vote after he suspended the Ennahdha-dominated assembly and dismissed Prime Minister Hichem Mechichi in July 2021, before later pushing through a new constitution that critics say enshrines one-man rule. “The National Salvation Front has definitively decided to boycott the upcoming elections,” said Ahmed Nejib Chebbi, the head of the alliance, which is made up of parties and movements opposed to Saied. “The elections will be held under the supervision of a body that is not neutral and is loyal to the ruling authority,” Chebbi said. He added that the boycott was a response to an electoral law written “by Saied alone”, which was part of a “coup against constitutional legitimacy.” Al Jazeera

Resistance Committees in Sudan Capital Agree on ‘Tight Cooperation’
Coordination teams of resistance committees in greater Khartoum have agreed on the necessity of tight cooperation between them and other democratic forces, in order to reverse the October 2021 military coup and start building a democratic Sudan. The initiative received a wide welcome among political and professional groups. Other resistance committees criticised the step. Nine coordination teams from the cities of Khartoum, Omdurman, and Khartoum North, explained in a joint statement on tuesday that “the step comes in response to calls for a broad national front, in order to develop the peaceful struggle quantitatively and qualitatively by establishing a coordinating framework”. They deplored “the fragmentation among the anti-coup forces by which the putschists could continue their destructive politics.” Dabanga

Egypt Vows to Champion Climate Finance for Africa at COP27
When Egypt hosts a global climate summit in November, it will seek to represent Africa which shares little of the blame for global warming but suffers many of its worst impacts, its environment minister says. Yasmine Fouad told AFP in an interview Wednesday that Egypt will also remind rich countries of the industrialised world of their unfulfilled aid pledges, at the COP27 summit in the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh. Part of Egypt’s role as host is to “represent the African continent and its needs clearly and explicitly: We were not the cause of these emissions, but it is us – our people and our natural resources – that are affected,” Fouad said. AFP

In Rwanda, an 18-Hole Sign of Growth
Construction of the Kigali Golf Resort & Villas comes at a time of economic growth for this landlocked country, which is hoping to emerge, 28 years after a genocide in which around 800,000 citizens were murdered by their own neighbors, as a hub of technology, business and professional athletics for all of Africa…The Rwandan government is hoping to both build a local golf culture among its citizens as well as harness the sport to grow the country’s appeal to international tourists and investors. “Kigali has become known as a destination, rather than just a stop-off to visit the gorillas,” said Clemence Nzayisenga, 27, guest relations supervisor at the Retreat, a luxury boutique hotel in Kigali. “We now have clients who are interested in sports tourism, and they always ask about golf.” But activists and some political observers say there is a dark side to Rwanda’s progress…But Mr. Kagame’s administration is widely seen as authoritarian, and he has been accused of stifling opposition, jailing political adversaries and limiting freedom of the press. He has brought stability to Rwanda, but has done so, critics say, via an iron fist. New York Times

Kenya Elects Speakers to National Assembly
Kenya’s 13th parliament opened its first sitting Thursday for members to take the oath of office and elect speakers to the National Assembly. Lawmakers elected Moses Wetang’ula the speaker of the National Assembly and Amason Kingi the speaker of the Senate. “I wish to express my heartfelt gratitude to the honorable members here, for the high honor that you have bestowed upon me by electing me as the speaker of this house,” Wetang’ula said after taking office. “I accept and submit to your will and am ready to serve as the 8th speaker of the National Assembly since our independence,” he added. Lawmakers took their oaths at the parliament building in the nation’s capital of Nairobi. They were allowed to take their oaths in Swahili or English, the country’s national languages. Anadolu Agency

How Kenya’s Unemployment Rate Rose Highest in East Africa
The number of Kenyans out of work has doubled over a decade of infrastructure-fuelled economic growth and faster adoption of technology that has left East Africa’s largest economy with the highest unemployment rate in the region. World Bank data shows 5.7 percent of Kenya’s labour force was out of work in 2021, up from 2.8 percent when the Jubilee administration took over in 2013. In the same period, unemployment as a portion of the labour force fell from 2.9 percent in 2013 to 2.6 percent in Tanzania while the rate went up in Ethiopia from 2.3 percent to 3.7 percent. In Uganda unemployment rose from 1.9 percent to 2.9 percent while in Rwanda the rate rose from 1.2 percent to 1.6 percent. The Kenyan economy has grown by an average of 5.0 percent but this growth has come from capital-intensive infrastructure projects which have not trickled down to the average citizen. Business Daily

UN Says Aid to Ethiopia’s Tigray Halted After Renewed Clashes
Renewed clashes in northern Ethiopia have forced desperately needed aid deliveries to a halt in Tigray, the United Nations said, exacerbating a humanitarian crisis triggered by the nearly two-year war between pro-government forces and Tigrayan rebels. The resumption of fighting late last month shattered a tenuous truce agreed in March that had allowed aid convoys to travel to the stricken region’s capital Mekele for the first time since mid-December. In its first situation report since fresh clashes broke out on August 24, the UN’s humanitarian agency OCHA said that the violence was “already impacting the lives and livelihood of vulnerable people, including the delivery of lifesaving humanitarian assistance.” AFP

South Sudan: Human Rights Violations in Unity State Committed with ‘Impunity’
Violations were committed during clashes between joint Government Forces and affiliated armed militias/groups on one hand, and elements of Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/Army in Opposition (SPLM/A-IO (RM)) – loyal to former Vice-President Riek Machar – on the other. The report, which covers the period between 11 February and 31 May, is based on 32 verification missions conducted by UNMISS in the three counties of Koch, Leer, and Mayendit as well as in neighboring areas. The violence and incursions have displaced approximately 44,000 civilians from at least 26 villages. In addition to those killed, hostilities in southern Unity State have affected at least 28 villages and settlements — with approximately 12 injured, and 37 women and children abducted. UN News

Newcastle Arrest over Alleged Liberian Civil War Crimes
A man has been arrested in north-east England for alleged war crimes during Liberia’s civil war in the 1990s and 2000s. The suspect, who is in his 40s, was detained in Newcastle and an address in the city was searched. The investigation involved Counter Terrorism Policing North East and followed a referral to the Met Police’s war crimes team in January last year. Liberia saw two periods of brutal conflict, in 1989-1997 and 1999-2003. About 250,000 people were killed and thousands more were mutilated and raped. The arrested man is suspected of committing offences contrary to Section 51 of the International Criminal Court Act 2001. BBC

How We Are Securing Gulf of Guinea – Nigerian Navy
The Nigerian Navy says it is committed to protecting the country’s maritime space and enhancing security in the Gulf of Guinea. The Director of Information, Naval Headquarters, Abuja, Adedotun Ayo-Vaughan, said this during a visit to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), Lagos Office on Wednesday. He said the Gulf of Guinea was cardinal as it represented almost a quarter of the whole of the African population, stressing that about 13,000 vessels transited the Gulf annually for maritime trade and different things of interest to seafarers. NAN reports that the countries involved in the Gulf of Guinea include Ghana, Liberia, Côte d’Ivoire, Benin, Togo, Nigeria, Cameroon, Santo Tomé and Principe, Equatorial Guinea and Gabon. Mr Ayo-Vaughan, a Commodore, said as a leader in the Gulf, Nigeria had invested in two State-of-the-art Maritime Domain Awareness Assets – the Regional Maritime Awareness Project, an American Technology and the Falcon Eye Alignment project, an Israeli technology – commissioned by President Muhammadu Buhari in July 2021. Premium Times Nigeria

‘We Will Not Mourn Queen Elizabeth’: Colonial Past Divides Opinion on Legacy
While leaders from every corner of the globe have briefly united to mourn and celebrate the long life of service of Queen Elizabeth II, some reactions have been divided about the legacy of the monarch. For many in England’s former colonial territories such as in Africa, India and the Caribbean, the queen’s death has revived memories of a bloody past while evoking the monarchy’s role in the slave trade. For instance, hours after the announcement that Queen Elizabeth II had died, the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) broke rank with most of the world by declaring that it will not be among those mourning the British royal. The party, led by Julius Malema, said it will instead use her passing to highlight what it termed as her contribution to a tragic period in South Africa, a former British colony, and Africa’s colonial history. Nation



Photo: Adam Jones