By Bedah Mengo NAIROBI, (Xinhua) --
As political campaigns for the repeat Oct. 17
polls gather momentum in Kenya, the main presidential candidates
are portraying themselves as victims of corrupt institutions in
a bid to win voters.
President Uhuru Kenyatta of the
Jubilee Party is painting himself as a victim of “corrupt”
judges at the Supreme Court, who annulled his win in Aug. 8
other hand, his main rival, the National Super Alliance (NASA)
presidential candidate Raila Odinga is portraying himself as a
victim of a “corrupt” electoral system perpetuated by the poll’s
decision by the four Supreme Court judges to nullify my win was
the most painful moment of my life. Four people cannot change
what Kenyans have decided. I don’t and will not agree with
them,” Kenyatta, who initially labelled the judges crooks and
promised to ‘fix’ the apex court if elected, said on Wednesday.
expressed the sentiments at a meeting with leaders and
supporters from the Abagusii tribe, from which the Chief Justice
David Maraga hails from, as he tried to win back the community’s
very painful for me to accept the decision. I’m a human being
and I was angry at Maraga and the Supreme Court, not the
Abagusii community as Odinga would want you to believe,” said
defended his outbursts against the Supreme Court, asking his
audience if it was wrong for him to come out and defend himself
if he is robbed.
I won the election. Just imagine a thief is caught with your cow
and then the court rules that the police did not record the
crime, so the cow cannot be yours,” Kenyatta said, as he
propagated the victimhood narrative.
Thursday, a Jubilee Party lawmaker filed a petition at the
Judicial Service Commission seeking the removal of the Chief
Justice, who he accused of gross misconduct.
on the other hand, reiterated that NASA would not go to the
polls with the current electoral commission officials accusing
them of robbing him of victory and bungling the polls.
only go to an election when the playing field is level,” said
Odinga on Wednesday. “The last time the commission was partisan
and the evidence we produced in court was enormous. We are not
ready to engage in a farce.”
coalition announced that there would be no elections on Oct. 17
unless those who stole their victory are sacked and punished.
to inform all Kenyans that there will be no polls if the
concerns raised in our petition are not met,” said Odinga’s
partner in NASA Moses Wetangula.
not only boycott the elections, but we will also not allow
Jubilee to go to polls alone,” Wetangula said.
coalition on Wednesday said it would institute private criminal
prosecution of the electoral commission officials over the
bungled polls in a new political tactic to stop them from
managing the repeat polls.
war against the commission, the party is targeting 11 top
officials, including the chief executive and a commissioner in
charge of information and communication technology.
noted that playing the victim card is a strategy both Odinga and
Kenyatta have perfected to galvanize their strongholds and win
votes in the past elections.
Wandera, an economics lecturer in Nairobi, explained that
someone who plays victim seeks to gain sympathy often by
misrepresenting facts to create an image of persecution.
2013 polls, Kenyatta played victim of the International Criminal
Court where he was facing crimes against humanity charges
following the violent 2007 elections.
and his deputy William Ruto portrayed themselves as innocent and
were being pursued by the court due to pressure from western
nations so that they could not win polls.
narrative worked well for the two and they managed to galvanize
their political bases in Rift Valley and Central Kenya, where
their supporters voted them to the last man,” noted Wandera.
he added the victim narrative was hard to sell ahead of the Aug.
8 polls for Kenyatta as there was nothing to cling on,
therefore, he sold a development agenda.
with the Supreme Court ruling, Kenyatta has something to use to
persuade his supporters and seek sympathy. That is what he would
sell during this campaign period,” he noted.
on his part, has for the last three elections in 2007, 2013 and
2017 claimed that he was robbed of his victory by the electoral
commission through rigging and has fought for reforms at the
Zimbabwe government to reform
HARARE, (Xinhua) --
Government ministries have been instructed to
come up with strategies to resuscitate ailing state enterprises
and parastatals (SEPs) under their purview and to recommend the
dissolution of those that are inefficient, a senior government
official has said.
Secretary to the President and Cabinet Misheck Sibanda told an
engagement workshop between the public and private sectors on
the Public Entities Corporate Governance Bill on Thursday that
Cabinet had directed him to ensure that SEPs were restructured
and operated viably, the Herald reported Friday.
the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development would work with
various government agencies to help the ministries come up with
turnaround strategies for the state entities under their
has 107 SEPs whose majority report losses every year, and at
least six are insolvent.
President Mugabe recently said the SEPs were contributing only
11 percent of GDP in recent years compared to about 40 percent
in the 1990s.
decline has been attributed to asset stripping and
effective performance and efficient service delivery by the
sector, most especially the majority utility providers and
commercial enterprises, the ambitious goals and development
objectives under ZimAsset may remain beyond reach, certainly
within the expected timeframes,” he said.
has an economic blueprint called the Zimbabwe Agenda for
Sustainable Socio-Economic Transformation (ZimAsset) which set
targets for certain milestones to have been achieved within
Zimbabwe begins biometric voter
registration ahead of polls next year
HARARE, (Xinhua) --
Zimbabwe’s electoral body begins biometric voter
registration on Thursday in preparation for general elections
is for the first time using the biometric voter registration
system to compile a new voters’ roll, which means that all
voters including those previously registered must register
state-run Herald newspaper reported that President Robert Mugabe
will launch the voter registration exercise Thursday.
hoping that President Mugabe will launch the program ...in the
morning and thereafter we are going to continue with
registration in public of a few invited guests,” the newspaper
quoted Zimbabwe Electoral Commission chairperson Rita Makarau as
voter registration exercise will run until January 15, 2018 as
proclaimed by Mugabe last week.
so far received 400 kits for biometric voter registration and
another 2,600 are still expected.
said it will start countrywide voter education in October.
Meanwhile, the government has scrapped off charges to acquire
identity documents by members of the public during the 90-day
mobile registration blitz being conducted by the Registrar
General’s Office ahead of the 2018 polls.
in response to a plea from the public that the charges were
high. The Registrar General’s Office was charging between 5 U.S.
dollars and 10 U.S. dollars to replace national identification
targeting to register 7 million voters for the 2018 elections,
up from 6.8 million registered in the previous 2013 elections.
President Mugabe, 93, will seek re-election in next year’s
Egyptian police kill terrorist
involved in anti-police attacks
CAIRO, (Xinhua) --
Egyptian Interior Ministry said Wednesday that a
wanted terrorist was killed in a fire exchange with police
forces in the country’s Mediterranean city of Alexandria.
statement, the ministry said the terrorist was a prime suspect
in an anti-police terror attack in July that left a number of
policemen dead near the capital Cairo.
forces attempted to arrest the suspect after spotting his
location, but he opened fire at the police force as they
approached his hideout, according to the statement.
14, a group of militants opened fire against a police vehicle in
Badrashin city, killing five policemen in the vehicle.
five security men were killed on the same day when militants
opened fire randomly at a checkpoint in Egyptian province of
Giza, near Cairo.
has been fighting against a wave of terror activities that
killed hundreds of policemen and soldiers since the military
toppled former Islamist president Mohamed Morsi in July 2013 in
response to mass protests against his one-year rule and his
currently outlawed Muslim Brotherhood group.
attacks in Egypt used to focus on police and military men in
North Sinai before spreading nationwide and targeting the Coptic
minority as well, with most of them claimed by a Sinai-based
group loyal to the regional Islamic State (IS) militant group.
Egyptian military and police have killed hundreds of militants
and arrested a similar number of suspects as part of the
country’s anti-terror war.
Ethiopia receives 72,890
refugees in first 8 months of 2017: UNHCR
ADDIS ABABA, (Xinhua) --
Ethiopia received 72,890 refugees in the first
eight months of 2017 ending August 31, according to the United
Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR).
to Xinhua on Friday, Kisut Gebreegziabher, Assistant
Communications Officer at UNHCR Ethiopia said the largest group
of refugees come from South Sudan at 44,000 followed by
Eritreans at 17,000 and Somalis at over 6,400.
“Refugees from South Sudan fled to Ethiopia to escape civil war,
Eritrean refugees mentioned indefinite military conscription and
human rights violations for their flight while Somalis mentioned
a combination of conflict and drought for fleeing to Ethiopia”
72,890 refugees recorded in Ethiopia in the first eight months
of 2017 have pushed the number of refugees living in Ethiopia to
reach 852,721 as of August 21, making the country home to the
second largest refugee population in Africa, according to UNHCR.
Gebreegziabher said UNHCR is giving basic social services to
refugees living in 26 refugee camps in six regional states of
social services given by UNHCR in the refugee camps include
education, health, water and sanitation, food security,
nutrition support and community empowerment.
refugee camps are located in Gambella, Tigray, Afar, Benishangul
Gumuz, Oromia and Ethiopia Somali regional states.
Malawian court sentences
Angolan cocaine dealer to 5 years imprisonment
LILONGWE, (Xinhua) --
A magistrate court in Lilongwe, Malawi, Thursday
sentenced 44-year-old Angolan, Joad Matateu Manuel, to five
years imprisonment with hard labor for attempting to smuggle
cocaine through Kamuzu International Airport, KIA.
Spokesperson for KIA, Sgt. Sapulain Chitonde, said in a
statement made available to Xinhua that Manuel, who hails from
Luanda in Angola, was arrested on August 30 at KIA when he was
about to board Kenya Airways en-route to Nairobi.
search of his travelling bags Manuel was found with male condoms
containing a liquid which, when examined by the country’s
National Quality Control Laboratory, was confirmed to be cocaine
weighing 2.1 kg.
pleaded guilty before court, according to the police
spokesperson, hence the five-year jail term sentence.
State, through Deputy Director of Prosecution, asked the court
to pass an immediate custodial sentence of not less than five
years considering that drug traffickers are people with money
and a fine would mean nothing to the convict,” said Chitonde.
continued: “The state further stressed in the court that Malawi
government would never allow to be used as a transit country for
dangerous drug dealers and that the Angolan sentence should send
warning shots to any would-be-offenders.”
through his lawyers, pleaded for a suspended sentence saying he
could not understand any language apart from Portuguese and that
he suffers from hypertension and custodial sentence would do
more harm to him.
state said Malawi prisons were already keeping convicts with
language barriers like Manuel and that the Angolan case would
not be unusual.
health services, the state said there was fully fledged health
facility at Maula Prison where the Angolan would be confined to
serve his jail term and that the facility would take care of
Manuel’s hypertension problem.
was forfeited and destroyed right at the court, according to the
police spokesperson, and after serving his sentence, the convict
will be deported to his country and he will also be declared a
prohibited immigrant in line with section 4 of the Immigration
Heavy rains leave over 200
families homeless in eastern Rwanda
KIGALI, (Xinhua) --
Heavy downpour that hit Ngoma district in eastern
Rwanda on Monday has left 221 families homeless, Rwanda’s
Ministry of Disaster Management and Refugees Affairs said late
ministry said in a statement that victims had sought temporary
shelter at their neighbors’ homes, adding that government
officials had visited the affected areas to provide urgent basic
not living with their neighbors have been sheltered temporarily
elsewhere in the district with the help of local leaders, it
August, heavy rains have destroyed nearly 400 houses and 76
hectares of crops in different parts of the east African
country, according to the ministry.
Sudan says ties with Egypt in
crisis due to disputed Halayeb area
KHARTOUM, (Xinhua) --
Sudanese government has said its ties with Egypt
in crisis due to the issue of Halayeb triangle and restrictions
by Egyptian authorities on Sudanese miners, Sudan’s Ashorooq net
relation with Egypt is not good and we hope it will get better
in the coming days,” Hamid Mumtaz, State Minister for Foreign
Affairs, was quoted as saying.
insists on affiliation of Halayeb to it without documents. It
also rejects arbitration or negotiation,” he added.
on saying “we have documents proving that Halayeb is Sudan’s,”
urging the Egyptian side to overcome minor issues to restore the
relations between the two countries.
Sudanese official further reiterated Khartoum’s keenness on
restoring ties with Cairo, saying “we are looking for peaceful
solutions, but the endeavour should be made by both parties.”
and Egypt have dispute over the Shalateen and Halayeb areas as
both countries claim sovereignty over them.
S. Africa urges Myanmar to
address situation of displaced civilians
CAPE TOWN, (Xinhua) --
The South African government on Wednesday urged
Myanmar to address the current situation in Rakhine State where
violence has sent more than 300,000 Rohingya civilians fleeing
their homes in Myanmar.
Myanmar government should handle the situation within the ambit
of the law and uphold the rights of all those living within its
borders, said Clayson Monyela, spokesperson for the Department
of International Relations and Cooperation.
have been reports of civilians being killed during security
operations in Myanmar’s Rakhine State. This latest round of
violence came after the attacks on Myanmar security forces on
Friday by Rohingyas, a Muslim ethnic minority denied citizenship
Sunday, 313,000 Rohingyas, mostly women and children, have left
Rakhine for Bangladesh since August 25, according to UN figures.
Myanmar government regards Rohingyas, Muslims living in a
Buddhist nation, as illegal immigrants from neighboring
Africa supports the recent statement by UN Secretary-General
Antonio Guterres who has appealed to the Myanmar government to
provide security to affected populations, and requested for
humanitarian agencies to be granted access to affected
communities in need of assistance and protection, Monyela said.
South African government urges all parties to halt the violence
in order to avoid further human suffering, said Monyela.
South African government is mindful of the manifold challenges
confronting the government and the people of Myanmar and has
full faith that the Myanmar government will continue its process
of democratization and political reform in order to deliver
sustainable development, stability and to contribute to national
reconciliation, Monyela added.
News Analysis: Egypt plays
unique roles to push Palestinian internal reconciliation
RAMALLAH, (Xinhua) --
The current improvement in the ties between Hamas
movement and Egypt would keep the latter the sole sponsor for
achieving a reconciliation that ends more than ten years of
internal Palestinian split, but a breakthrough is ruled out for
the short run, analysts said.
Following the ouster of former Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi
in 2013, when ties between Egypt and Hamas got tensed, Cairo’s
role in the file of internal reconciliation had significantly
retreated, despite its importance, where Egypt had almost
stopped hosting delegations of Palestinian factions for this
separate remarks, analysts told Xinhua that the recent
improvement in the ties between Egypt and Hamas has strongly
brought the file of internal Palestinian reconciliation back to
Cairo, where this file has been previously mandated by the Arab
ago, Hamas said it is ready to hold talks with Palestinian
President Mahmoud Abbas Fatah Party to conclude a reconciliation
deal. The announcement was made after Hamas delegation, headed
by its politburo chief Ismail Haneya, met in Cairo with Egyptian
intelligence chief Khaled Fawzi.
chaired a meeting of his Fatah Party’s Central Committee in
Ramallah on Tuesday, and stressed on “its keenness to have
intensive and fast dialogue with the brothers in Egypt to end
the Palestinian internal split.”
Following the meeting, Azzam al-Ahmad, head of Fatah delegation
to the dialogue with Hamas announced he will go to Cairo within
few days to meet with the Egyptian leadership to follow up the
efforts of ending the Palestinian division.
Ajrami, the Ramallah-based writer and political analyst
describes the developments as “positive,” stressing on “the need
to be reflected in concrete steps and immediate progress in the
file of Palestinian reconciliation.”
Xinhua that Hamas is required to dissolve the administrative
committee it formed in the Gaza Strip months ago, without any
delay, in order to halt the recent punitive measures, taken by
Abbas against the Gaza Strip.
step will create a positive atmosphere for reconciliation and
for achieving unity that the Palestinian cause is in need for,
mainly in resuming the stalled peace process,” said Ajrami.
“There is a real reason to believe that things are changing for
the better in light of the development of Egyptian relations
on saying that “this allows a greater margin for Cairo to move
from the security file (on its border with the Gaza Strip) to
other political files.”
internal Palestinian division began in 2007 after the Hamas
violent takeover of the Gaza Strip following rounds of internal
fighting with forces loyal to the Palestinian National Authority
response to seizing control of Gaza, President Abbas dismissed
the national unity government, headed by Haneya. However, Hamas
rejected the decision and kept a government that ruled the
the formation of the first consensus government in June 2014
under the understandings of reconciliation reached two months
earlier between a delegation from the PLO and Hamas in Gaza, it
did not contribute to a practical end of split.
consensus government kept accusing Hamas of not ruling Gaza and
keeping a shadow government under its administration, while
Hamas complained that the government neglected the Gaza Strip
and didn’t help resolving its growing crises, especially the
salaries of 43,000 employees Hamas assigned since 2007.
months ago, Hamas form a “high committee” for running the daily
affairs in the Gaza Strip, and announced that it will continue
to work as long as the division exists. It insisted that it will
end its work when the consensus government comes to Gaza to run
the enclave’s daily affairs.
response to Hamas reject to dissolve the administrative
committee, Abbas took a series of “punitive steps” against Gaza,
mainly reducing the salaries of PNA employees and sending 7,000
of them to early retirement, while reducing the funding of basic
services for the enclave.
Abu Shanab, a Gaza-based political analyst told Xinhua that
Egypt at this stage restored “the lead” in the file of
Palestinian reconciliation. He expected that Cairo will soon
launch an initiative for this purpose.
Shanab stresses on the importance of Egypt in moving the file of
reconciliation and ending its stagnation, particularly Cairo
vision is acceptable to most of the Palestinian factions and has
a weight and influence on the Palestinian issue.
Shanab also expects that relations between Hamas and Egypt will
be strengthened in the coming stage, even if the desired
progress is achieved in the reconciliation file “in the light of
Hamas’ keenness not to escalate with Egypt.”
part, the political analyst from Gaza, Mustafa Ibrahim, said
that Hamas “rushed” to Cairo because of the worsening crisis in
Gaza and because of the increasingly difficult humanitarian
situation and the need for urgent solutions.
and Hamas have reached a number of bilateral understandings
within a comprehensive framework of the Palestinian factions and
under the auspices of Egypt and other Arab countries, but failed
to put an end to the internal divisions and restore the desired
unity between the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.
of continuing to implement the reconciliation understandings, a
series of measures taken by the two movements considered that
they gradually contributed to the consolidation of the situation
of division, especially with regard to Hamas taking full
administrative and security control in the Gaza Strip.
years of division, the developments in the regional situation
have affected the Palestinian division, especially in terms of
progress or retreat from both sides (Fatah and Hamas) and the
desire of each party to build alliances that strengthen its
position at the expense of the other party.
Therefore, the head of the Institute for Democratic Studies in
Ramallah, George Jaqman, underestimates his expectations of a
“real breakthrough” in the file of Palestinian reconciliation,
whether sponsored by Egypt or elsewhere.
files of the differences between Fatah and Hamas have worsened
significantly over the past two years, showing the extent of
deepening the internal Palestinian division and the difficulty
of concluding it soon.
points out that the internal division has created a reality that
is divided between two regimes that govern individually in Gaza
and the West Bank. They have special interests linked to the
Authority, and both refuse to surrender to the other side.
also stresses on the existence of political considerations that
have sharpened the division between the Israeli and American
rejection of the Hamas entry into the PLO or the integration of
its elements within the framework of the Palestinian Authority.
UN blames climate change for
increased malnutrition rates in Kenya
by Peter Mutai NAIROBI, (Xinhua) --
Climate change effects are to blame for the
increasing acute undernourishment of children in Kenya, the
United Nations said in a report released in Nairobi on Friday.
According to the UN, the failure of the March-June long rains,
the third consecutive poor rains since early 2016 has
contributed an additional 37,000 children across the country
below the threshold of acute malnutrition.
“Climate-related issues have increased food insecurity in parts
of northern Kenya where malnutrition rates have doubled in
recent months,” the UN report says.
report noted that the country’s undernourishment affected 8.8
million people, accounting for 19.1 percent of the population.
states that almost 370,000 children across the country now
require treatment for acute malnutrition, including 72,600 who
are suffering from the most severe form and requires specialized
out of 17 surveys conducted in June and July, acute malnutrition
rates were at least double the emergency threshold of 15
percent,” the report said.
failure of the March-June long rains, following two extremely
poor rains in 2016, have led to widespread crop failure, acute
water shortages, and declining production of milk in years,
which pastoral children rely on for protein.
report further blames drought related migration, early child
marriages and child labor to lack of food and water.
schools have closed while others are overcrowded because of
migrating children or children who come in search of
school-feeding,” it says.
Following the development in the country, the UN children’s fund
(UNICEF) has urged for efforts to help fund its drought
to make nutritious food, safe water and basic health care far
more accessible to vulnerable children and families so that
malnourished children can recover, and so that those at risk do
not fall sick,” UNICEF’s Representative in Kenya Werner
Schultink revealed that the UN agency has reached 60 percent
more children with life-saving assistance in the first half of
2017 compared to 2016, yet more and more children are becoming
is repairing water points in the country to help avail water to
additional nine million children who lack access to safe water.
According to the report, Turkana Central, Turkana North and
North Horr in Marsabit in northwestern Kenya registered acute
malnutrition rates between 30 and 37 per cent.
the country, 1.6 million children are now food insecure, up from
1.2 million in February and 600,000 in August 2016.
feeding practices, disease outbreaks and limited access to
health services in the country are being exacerbated by a
nationwide nurses’ strike, now in its third month.
State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World 2017 was
jointly prepared by UNICEF, the Food and Agriculture
Organization, the International Fund for Agricultural
Development, World Food Program and the World Health
U.S. urges Somalia to build
strong democratic institutions to spur peace
MOGADISHU, (Xinhua) --
The United States on Friday called on Somalia
government to build strong and credible democratic institutions
that will promote peace and stability in the country.
Embassy in Mogadishu lauded the government for its continued
progress towards a more inclusive democratic governance system
and the peaceful transition to a new government in early 2017.
encourage all stakeholders to rise above political distractions
in order to work together to achieve progress in democratization
and good governance,” the embassy said in a statement issued to
mark the International Day of Democracy.
Washington also encouraged the Western-backed government to
continue to enhance its commitment to democratization by putting
in place the legal and institutional tools needed to make
progress towards one-person one-vote elections in 2020/2021.
also called on Somalia to hasten completion of the
constitutional review, and build strong credible institutions
that are accountable to the people of Somalia.
statement said the Horn of Africa nation is a country recovering
from many years of conflict, and the road to democracy is long
and full of challenges.
United States remains a strong partner to Somalia in its effort
to build strong, credible, and democratic institutions that will
promote peace and stability in the country,” it said.
global community observes the International Day of Democracy on
Sept. 15 to raise public awareness about democracy.
year’s theme of democracy and conflict prevention focuses on the
critical need to strengthen democratic institutions to promote
peace and stability.
Gambian President lays
foundation stone for Chinese-funded conference center
BANJUL, (Xinhua) --
The Gambian President Adama Barrow has laid the
foundation stone on Thursday to mark the official commencement
of the construction of the Chinese funded International
Conference Center at a tune of 50 million US dollars.
said the bond of friendship and cooperation between The Gambia
and China is growing stronger within the framework of
South-South Cooperation, and that the strategic partnership
between the two countries is based on mutual respect and common
construction of the Center comes at the right time, to showcase
the new Gambia, as a viable and peaceful destination, and as a
place of democracy, good governance, rule of law, and freedom of
speech,” he said.
Chinese Ambassador to The Gambia Zhang Jiming said The Gambia
International Conference Center is the very first major
bilateral cooperation project between China and The Gambia since
the resumption of the diplomatic ties. He said it is so far the
biggest grant project in terms of finance scale in the history
of the bilateral relations.
project demonstrates China’s resolve to closely combine its own
development with assisting the development of The Gambia and
Africa as a whole so as to realize win-win cooperation for
common development,” he said.
Lamin Jobe, The Gambia’s Infrastructure Minister said the
building will have a conference hall which will have a capacity
of 1,021 persons. According to him, it will have four thematic
rooms each with a 200-person capacity, and it will also have
fourteen bilateral meeting rooms, four press rooms, banquet
halls and offices.
the contractor is China Jiangsu Provincial Construction Company
Ltd and it will last for two years.
countries established formal diplomatic links in 1974, but China
suspended relations in 1995 when Gambia resumed so-called
“diplomatic” ties with Taiwan. Gambia severed ties with Taiwan
in 2013. China and Gambia resumed diplomatic ties in March 2016.
Rwanda cracks down on wetlands
KIGALI, (Xinhua) --
Rwandan authorities Wednesday cracked down on
establishments which were set up in wetlands, leaving several of
exercise was led by Rwanda Environment Management Authority (REMA)
in conjunction with authorities of the capital city of Kigali
and Ministry of Local Government of Rwanda.
the closed entities was a warehouse, a flour factory and church
all located in Kigali’s Gasabo district, Director General of
REMA Colette Ruhamya told journalists during the operation tour.
unlawful activities in wetlands will not be tolerated, adding
that the operation would be extended to other parts of the
latest State of Environment Report shows that wetlands cover a
total area of 165,000 hectares, representing about 7 percent of
the total surface area of the landlocked country.
Diarrhea outbreak infects 4,500
in north Ethiopia
ADDIS ABABA, (Xinhua) --
An Acute Watery Diarrhea (AWD) outbreak in
Ethiopia’s northern regional states of Afar, Amhara and Tigray
has infected about 4,500 people over the last four months
according to Ethiopia Federal Ministry of Health.
regional state had the highest number of infected people with
3,000, followed by Tigray regional state at 1,200 and Afar
regional state at 300.
to reporters on Friday, health minister Yifru Berhan said the
diarrhea outbreaks are being controlled through collaboration of
his ministry and regional health bureaus.
ministry in particular is working on eradicating possible Acute
Watery Diarrhea breeding grounds by treating unhygienic
conditions in mining areas, agricultural areas and factories.
also said educational programs on the cause of AWD are being
taught in addition to monetary assistance being given to
regional health bureaus to deal with diarrhea outbreaks.
Ethiopia’s rainy season stretching from late June to September
already underway, the ministry has urged community members to
stay vigilant to avoid the spread of infectious diarrhea.
Facts & figures about China’s
China’s assistance to Africa in fight against Ebola
Editor’s Note: China is
rolling out a major documentary series on its diplomatic
principles, practices and achievements over the past five years.
The English-language version of the program is now also
available on TV and online. To help audience better understand
Chinese diplomacy, Xinhua is releasing a variety of reports that
include anecdotes, quotable quotes, facts and figures.
BEIJING, (Xinhua) --
The following is a set of numbers related to
China’s assistance to Africa in the fight against the Ebola
China’s assistance was the first to reach the three
worst-affected countries in West Africa—Guinea, Liberia and
million—China’s response to the Ebola crisis was the country’s
biggest-ever overseas medical aid mission. China provided 120
million U.S. dollars worth of materials and funding.
China also dispatched more than 1,200 medical personnel and
public health specialists to the areas affected by Ebola.
the Ebola virus was first identified in 1976, sporadic outbreaks
have been reported in Africa, but the 2013-2016 outbreak in West
Africa was the deadliest, resulting in more than 11,300 deaths,
according to WHO estimates.
Feature: Egypt digs in for
Pharaonic treasures discovery
By Ahmed Shafiq LUXOR, Egypt, (Xinhua)
-- Under the
cliff of an ancient hill in Upper Egypt’s Luxor city, excavator
Mohammed Bebish was carefully searching for relics inside a
recently unearthed Pharaonic tomb.
burial place belongs to a goldsmith,” Bebish proudly said as he
inspected a number of pottery items found in the tomb that is
located in Draa Abul Naga necropolis of noblemen on the west
bank of the Nile.
40-year-old, who inherited excavation profession from his
ancestors, said the tomb is rich of priceless antiquities that
date back to the New Kingdom of Egypt; the period between 16th
century BC and 11th century BC, covering the 18th,
19th and 20th Dynasties of ancient Egypt.
tomb is a new addition to Egypt’s rich history,” Bebish, who
works under the authority of Egypt’s antiquities ministry, said,
flashing a victorious smile.
of the most ancient civilizations, Egypt has been hard at work
to preserve its archaeological heritages.
an attempt to revive the country’s ailing tourism industry,
which has suffered from an acute recession in the past few years
due to political turmoil and security issues, Egypt is keen to
uncover the Pharaohs’ archaeological secrets as well as other
ancient civilizations throughout the history of this country.
discovery was carried out by an Egyptian archaeological mission
led by director general of antiquities in Luxor Mostafa Waziri,
who said the tomb belongs to God Amun’s goldsmith, Amenemhat.
said excavation works at the site started in April.
hard work, we discovered such a beautiful tomb that dates back
to the 18th Dynasties; almost 3,400 years ago,”
Waziri told Xinhua. “We have found many treasures such as
mummies, wooden coffins, earrings, rings accessories, funeral
masks and Ushabti figurines.
his coworkers inside the tomb, Waziri said the newly discovered
site includes an entrance located in the courtyard of another
Middle Kingdom tomb.
entrance leads to a squared chamber where a niche is found at
its end. A partly damaged duo sandstone statue depicting the
tomb’s owner and his was found inside,” Waziri revealed.
that the statue shows Amenemhat sitting on a high back chair
beside his wife who wears a long dress and a wig.
their legs stands, in a smaller scale, a little figure of one of
their sons,” Waziri said.
pointed out that the tomb has two burial shafts; the first is
located to the right of the chamber and probably had been dug to
bury the mummy of the diseased and his wife.
burial place is seven meters deep with a collection of mummies,
sarcophagi and funerary masks carved in wood along with a
collection of statuettes of the tomb’s owner and his wife,” the
archaeologist noted that the second shaft is located at the left
side where a collection of the 21st and 22nd
dynasties deteriorated sarcophagi was discovered.
courtyard, the mission stumbled upon a group of burial shafts
which probably date to the Middle Kingdom.
of them, a family burial place of a woman and her two children
shaft includes two wooden coffins and a collection of head rests
... the mummies of the children were found inside one the
coffins while the second has the mother’s mummy,” Waziri added
as he observed excavators cleaning one of the coffins
mission has also unearthed a collection of 50 funerary cones, 40
of which are evidence of the presence of other tombs belonging
to four officials, Waziri said.
he added, the exact location of their tombs has not been yet
expect we will find them in the same area ... we will start
digging to locate them soon,” Waziri said.
Antiquities minister, Khaled al-Anany, who was present at the
opening ceremony of the newly discovered tomb, said the works at
the tombs are not finished yet, adding that he is expecting to
find more objects inside the burial site.
discovery has its value ... this discovery will help us know
more about historical eras and areas,” the minister told Xinhua.
revealed that Chinese archeologists will arrive in Egypt later
this year for new excavations in Luxor, the city that embraces
one-third of the world’s antiquities including the super-famous
King Tut’s tomb.
soon we will have the first Chinese archeological mission in
Egypt ... we are looking forward to cooperate with the Chinese
experts,” the minister said.
Johannesburg FOCAC gives
impetus to Africa’s development: Chinese envoy
LUSAKA, (Xinhua) --
The implementation of the outcome of the 2015
Johannesburg Summit of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC)
has boosted the development of Africa and its relations with
China, a Chinese envoy said on Wednesday.
Ambassador to Zambia Yang Youming said Africa has developed
faster over the last couple of years following the summit.
next year will be the last year for the implementation of the
Johannesburg FOCAC framework arrangement, adding that a new
arrangement will have to come into effect.
National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) to be
held next month in Beijing will inject a new impetus into
China’s rejuvenation drive and create good prospects for
China-Africa friendly cooperation, he said.
Johannesburg summit, China committed 60 billion U.S. dollars to
fund the implementation of cooperation programs over the next
Rwanda urged to fix mismatch
between trade and agriculture policies
KIGALI, (Xinhua) --
There is a mismatch between trade and agriculture
sectors in Rwanda which affects agricultural productivity and
trade, an FAO report released on Wednesday said.
report on Coordination between Agriculture and Trade
Policymaking in Rwanda released in Rwanda’s capital city Kigali
said trade and agriculture bodies need to start working together
Rwanda, the majority of the population is employed in
agriculture related sectors, but initiatives to improve
agricultural productivity in the country are often constrained
by market and trade-related bottlenecks, according to the study
conducted by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the
can result from conflicting agricultural and trade policies,
said the report, adding that this lack of coherence not only
affects Rwanda’s international trade potential, but also creates
obstacles to achieving food security and the sustainable
development goal of zero hunger for all.
report called on government to act as a private sector enabler
as opposed to a private sector actor in order to improve
agriculture and trade policy coordination.
agricultural goods accounts for a significant share of Rwanda’s
total goods trade, where agriculture-related imports including
food crops for consumption and processing, and inputs such as
seeds, fertilizers and pesticides were 386 million U.S. dollars
in 2016, or 21 percent of total imports, according to FAO.
Agriculture’s share of total exports was 35 percent in the same
year, said FAO.
Agriculture and trade policy coherence in Rwanda would be
improved through several ways such as better use of established
coordination mechanisms and facilitating dialogue with all
stakeholders, said Charles Murekezi, the Director General of
Agriculture Development at Rwanda’s ministry of agriculture, at
a workshop discussing the methods of addressing the issues in
Karangwa, Commodity Value Chain Trade Officer at Rwanda’s
ministry of trade, said collective efforts would be made to
assess the problems that each side has in order to increase
Senegalese tourism counselor
says Africa increasingly important in global tourism
CHENGDU, China, (Xinhua) --
Africa is playing an increasingly important role
in global tourism, while Senegal is taking the opportunity to
attract more tourists, Abdoulaya Ndiaye, technique counselor to
the Senegalese tourism minister, has said.
is an increasingly important force in the global tourism market.
The continent is rich in cultural and wildlife resources, while
it has majestic scenery,” Ndiaye said.
is taking advantage of its wildlife resources to create its
unique tourism products, while more and more people are
attracted to Africa as they search for different experiences and
“It is a
global trend that more and more people are travelling in
Africa,” Ndiaye said, adding that this is becoming part of
African people’s life.
Senegal is stepping up its infrastructure construction in order
to provide better service and make travel in Africa more
convenient for tourists around the world.
ongoing 22nd general assembly of the UN World Tourism
Organization (UNWTO), Ndiaye told Xinhua Wednesday that they
hoped to help the world hear Africa and Senegal’s voice during
think this assembly plays a crucial role in strengthening the
development of global tourism,” the counselor said.
44 African countries attending the gathering, 36 of them sent
their ministers in charge of tourism, “which showed the African
countries value this chance very much,” Ndiaye said.
According to UNWTO statistics, the global tourism industry has
kept its positive growth for seven consecutive years at an
average rate of four percent. Africa’s growth rate in the first
six months of 2017 has reached eight percent, among the
countries enjoying the strongest tourism growth in the world.
Africa’s exceptional tourism resources, regional organizations
like the African Union help to accelerate the free movement of
people inside the continent, Ndiaye said.
tourism industry has entered a stage that, like it or not,
everyone is involved in travelling,” Ndiaye said. “Tourism is
becoming a global production chain, greatly supporting the world
praised the high-level bilateral relationship between Senegal
and China, expressing the hope that more and more Chinese
tourists could come to the West African country.
improving our tourism service by strengthening infrastructure
and coordinating with other countries,” said Ndiaye, promising
that direct airlines would be built between every tourist
destination in Senegal to make travel easier.
would also be more travel products and routes in Senegal
designed to promote the sustainable development of tourism,
while every African country would do its utmost to improve the
tourism connectivity inside the continent, as well as to link
Africa with other regions in the world, Ndiaye said.
than 1,000 delegates, including tourism ministers from more than
130 countries and regions, are gathering in the southwestern
Chinese city of Chengdu to discuss the development of global
tourism, as well as the sustainable growth of the tourism
S. Africa’s Chamber of Mines
withdraws interdict over controversial Mining Charter
CAPE TOWN, (Xinhua) --
The Chamber of Mines on Wedensday withdrew an
urgent application to interdict Minister of Mineral Resources
Mosebenzi Zwane from implementing the controversial Mining
came after the Chamber has reached an agreement with Zwane, in
respect of the Chamber’s urgent interdict to prevent the
implementation of the Mining Charter.
terms of the agreement, Zwane has given a written undertaking
that the Reviewed Mining Charter will not be implemented until
judgment has been handed down in respect of the Chamber’s review
application, which has rendered the granting of an interdict by
the court not necessary at this stage,” the Chamber said in a
minister has also undertaken that if he makes any reference in
public to the Reviewed Mining Charter, he will simultaneously
make reference to his written undertaking and that the Chamber
has brought review proceedings to set aside the Charter, the
interests of expediting the review process, which is the
industry’s primary focus, the Chamber has agreed that the matter
be heard on December 13-14 this year by a full bench of judges,
said the Chamber.
minister’s written undertaking will be presented to the High
Court of Gauteng in Pretoria on September 14 for noting,
according to the Chamber.
the Mining Charter announced by Zwane on June 15, a new
prospecting right must have a minimum of 50 percent plus one
black person shareholding, including voting rights.
Charter requires that a new mining right must have 30-percent
black persons’ shareholding from the previous 26 percent, with
the 30 percent shareholding to be apportioned between employees,
communities and entrepreneurs in a specific manner.
charter wants 70 percent procurement of mining goods and 80
percent procurement of services from BEE (black economic
empowerment) entities. It also requires that analysis of 100
percent of mineral samples be done by South African based
the mining sector expressed unhappiness for not being consulted
properly before the charter was released.
Chamber of Mines, which represents 90 percent of South Africa’s
mines, claims that the charter is illegal and could destroy
South Africa’s mining industry while undermining transformation
Chamber took Zwane to court in July to stop the implementation
of the Charter.
Kenya’s Kamworor eager to get
maiden marathon title in New York quest
By John Kwoba NAIROBI, (Xinhua) --
After almost one year sabbatical from the
road race, world half marathon champion Geoffrey Kamworor of
Kenya will return to contest the New York city marathon on Nov.
his agenda will be an attempt to improve the course record of
2:05:06, set by Geoffrey Mutai in 2011.
Kamworor to have any realistic chance of attacking the course
record, he has to start by winning the race against spirited
competition of experienced marathon runners from Kenya and
Kamworor finished second in 2:10:48 to compatriot Stanley Biwott
(2:10:34). Now Kamworor, 24, believes he is the heir apparent to
Olympic champion and his training partner Eliud Kipchoge and he
will want to prove his critics wrong by taking the challenge to
is no doubt in my mind of what I intend to do. It is going for
the victory,” said Kamworor.
Kenyan opted to focus on the track competition ahead of the
London World Championships this season, where he finished a
disappointing sixth place in the 10,000m race.
is already water under the bridge and as he marshals his energy
for the quest of the hilly New York marathon, there is only one
outcome he is dreaming of, winning.
will be only possible if he can slay the challenge of defending
champion Ghirmay Ghebreslassie of Eritrea, who is also the 2015
World marathon champion and 2016 Boston Marathon champion Lemi
Berhanu and Lelisa Desisa, both of Ethiopia.
finished second at New York City Marathon in 2014 and third in
2015 before failing to finish last year.
started off as a pacesetter at 2011 Berlin and 2012 Rotterdam
Marathon before his full marathon debut at 2012 Berlin, where he
finished second to Geoffrey Mutai.
2011 Berlin Marathon, Kamworor pushed Patrick Makau to break the
world marathon record in a new time of 2:03:38.
returned to Berlin in 2013 where he once again settled for third
in 2:06:26 as Wilson Kipsang shuttered compatriots Patrick
Makau’s world record (2:03:38) with a new mark of 2:03:23
followed by Kipchoge in 2:04:05.
was also in the 2014 Berlin Marathon field that saw compatriot
Dennis Kimetto break the world record in 2:02:57.
Mutai settled for second place in 2:03:13 followed by Ethiopian
Abera Kuma in 2:05:56 and Kamworor (2:06:39) was in fourth.
Kenya’s Makau, Kibet confirmed
for Berlin marathon conquest
By John Kwoba NAIROBI, (Xinhua) --
Former world record holder Patrick Makau and
former world champion Luke Kibet of Kenya are the latest
inclusion to the men’s elite list at the Berlin Marathon on
who made headlines in 2011 when he became the second Kenya to
claim the world marathon record after legendary Paul Tergat,
will return to the German capital expectant of a strong
with a very strong challenge group ahead of him, albeit on form
and time, Makau will be hoping for a miracle if he is to win.
really look forward to running again. I had to pull out of
Boston marathon because of a knee injury. The doctors said it
was an acute injury of the soft tissue surrounding my left knee.
But I have overcome it and now Berlin is the next stop,” he
be the first time that Makau returns to the course where he set
a world record back in 2011.
“It is a
fast course and we have some very strong runners in Kipsang and
Olympic champion Eliud Kipchoge and Kenenisa Bekele. But I will
have my space and hopefully time my run to perfection,” he said.
last competed in Fukuoka, Japan where he finished second in
December, failing to make it his third straight win on the
course. But that will not detract him from focusing on Berlin
many Kenyans brought up in country communities, Makau is not the
most demonstrative of characters; but as well as having the
build to withstand long fast training, he thinks tactically.
the 2011 edition of the Berlin Marathon in 2:03:38, to beat
Haile Gebrselassie world record. The record had stood for two
years before countryman Wilson Kipsang bettered it by running
just 15 seconds faster, finishing in 2:03:23 in 2013.
will be lining up on Sept. 24 and though Makau conceded that
Kipsang is stronger and capable of beating the current world
record of 2:02.57 by Dennis Kimetto, he holds out as a spoiler.
wait and take my chances. I start slowly but finish strong and
if they will go with my pace, then I have an outside chance of
winning in Berlin again,” he said.
will also be another chance for former world champion Luke Kibet
to make a comeback.
from Kibet, Makau, Bekele, Kipchoge and Kipsang, the men’s field
also includes Ethiopia’s Mosinet Geremew, who has a 59:11 half
marathon personal best time. Pacemakers include former Chicago
Marathon runner-up Sammy Kitwara, who has a lifetime best of
has admitted that there is pressure on his shoulders to break
the world marathon record after clocking 2:00:25 in Monza as
part of the ‘Breaking Two’ project earlier this season.
the three of us (Kenenisa Bekele and Wilson Kipsang), I think I
am the only one under pressure heading to the race in Berlin. If
the two of them have 40 percent pressure, then I have 95 percent
because of the time I ran in Monza and the Olympic gold as well.
I have a lot of pressure,” he said.
expect a tough and beautiful race but at the end of the day,
there will only be one winner.”
elite field in the women’s race is headed by former winner
Gladys Cherono from Kenya and Prague Marathon winner Valary
Aiyabei, plus Ethiopians Amane Beriso, Gullume Tollesa, Meseret
Mengistu and Ruti Aga. Reigning champion Aberu Kebede is a late