Category Archives: Africa

Nigeria: three suicide bombers kill at least 20 people at market

Bombers leave dozens wounded at crowded fish market in Konduga, just outside Maiduguri

Three suicide bombers have detonated their devices at a crowded fish market in northern Nigeria, killing at least 20 people.

Borno state police spokesman Joseph Kwaji said on Saturday that the attack happened on Friday night. Hospital officials said two patients later died from their injuries.

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Source: gad

Meet the Winter Olympians making big strides for diversity

Simidele Adeagbo and Jazmine Fenlator-Victorian are part of a wider movement at competition that has been predominantly white

Simidele Adeagbo spent a decade training in the hopes of heading to the Olympics for the triple jump, missing out on a coveted spot by just eight inches. Then she spent five months training for the Winter Games and made history.

Adeagbo is one of three women representing Nigeria in Pyeongchang, the country’s first ever team at the Winter Olympics, and part of a wider movement among black athletes seeking to increase diversity at a competition that has been predominantly white for much of its history.

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Source: gad

State of emergency declared in Ethiopia amid political unrest

Emergency rule imposed by ruling EPRDF coalition following prime minister Hailemariam Desalegn’s decision to resign

Ethiopia has announced a state of emergency after prime minister Hailemariam Desalegn on Thursday announced his intention to step down amid a political crisis in the country.

The ruling EPRDF coalition’s council met on Friday and decided to impose emergency rule for an unspecified period, the state-run Ethiopian Broadcasting Corporation said. The council “came to the conclusion that imposing emergency rule would be vital to safeguarding the constitutional order of our country”. Further details are expected to be given by the defence minister on Saturday morning.

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Source: gad

South Africa: Cyril Ramaphosa to outline anti-corruption strategy

New president to deliver first major speech vowing to prioritise economic growth and combat inequality

Cyril Ramaphosa will outline his strategy to restore economic growth, fight corruption and tackle entrenched inequality in South Africa in the first major speech of his presidency.

The former deputy president was sworn in as head of state hours after being elected unanimously by parliament to replace Jacob Zuma, who resigned late on Wednesday following accusations of corruption and economic mismanagement.

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Source: gad

The brutal world of sheep fighting: the illegal sport beloved by Algeria’s angry young men

Algeria’s ‘lost generation’ has been shaped by years of conflict, unemployment and state repression. Sheep fighting offers an arena where men can escape the constant supervision of the state. By Hannah Rae Armstrong

Last August in Algiers, one week before the holiday of Eid al-Adha, men in tracksuits and trainers were guarding their sheep in anticipation of the fights to come. Kbabshis, as these men are known, scour villages looking for lambs that are fast, belligerent and shock-resistant. They then spend years raising them to be champion fighters. Coaches are tough but also surprisingly tender. They treat their sheep like mistresses, stopping by the garages where they install them, bringing food, caressing and massaging them before they head out together for long walks on the beach.

Professional trainers toughen their sheep by chaining their horns to a wall: as they pull and twist to break away, the resistance thickens their sinewy necks. Unlike with cockfighting, there is no gambling on sheep fights, but speculation on the sheep market can make it a lucrative trade. Each fight lifts the value of its victor and sentences the loser to slaughter. A champion ram might fetch as much as $10,000 – although most sheep trainers on a winning streak prefer to chase glory than cash. The sheep are given names that inspire fear, like Rambo, Jaws or Lawyer. In the third round of one recent match, Hitler delivered a brutal defeat to Saddam.

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Source: gad

For South Africa's new president the only way is up | Larry Elliott

Jacob Zuma scandals dragged down the economy. Now Cyril Ramaphosa has the chance to unleash a regional superpower

Timing matters a lot in determining political success. Gordon Brown could hardly have become prime minister at a worse time because in the summer of 2007 the UK economy had been growing for 15 years, the financial crisis was just around the corner and the only way was down.

For Cyril Ramaphosa, by contrast, the only way is up. The new South African president has taken over an economy that should be a regional superpower but has been seriously underperforming in recent years. The growth rate has been on a downward trend since the initial bounce back from the “great recession” and is close to zero. Unemployment is above 25% and the poverty rate is higher than in other large emerging market economies.

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Source: gad

Cyril Ramaphosa to be sworn in as president of South Africa

Former anti-apartheid activist turned businessman replaces Jacob Zuma, who dramatically resigned on Wednesday night

Cyril Ramaphosa is to be elected president of South Africa by a parliamentary vote less than 16 hours after the resignation of his rival Jacob Zuma, following days of defiant refusal to leave office.

Ramaphosa – who, as deputy president, became interim leader immediately after Zuma’s late-night resignation on Wednesday – will be sworn in as head of state on Thursday by South Africa’s chief justice in Cape Town.

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Source: gad

Zuma's departure ends South Africa's most troubled period since apartheid

Accused of corruption and economic mismanagement, Zuma denies all wrongdoing

Jacob Zuma’s resignation as president of South Africa ends a nine-year rule seen by many as the most troubled period for the “rainbow nation” since the end of the apartheid regime 24 years ago.

Zuma’s decision came after days of intense pressure from opponents within the African National Congress (ANC), the deeply divided ruling party.

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Source: gad

Morgan Tsvangirai obituary

Founder and leader of Zimbabwe’s Movement for Democratic Change party who battled Mugabe for years

With the death of Morgan Tsvangirai at the age of 65 from cancer, Zimbabwe has lost a man of conspicuous courage. He took the country’s political scene by storm, becoming president Robert Mugabe’s only serious rival for the better part of two decades, and campaigned until the end for a better country with greater democracy and transparency.

Tsvangirai became prime minister of Zimbabwe in September 2008 as part of a power-sharing agreement with Mugabe. He was sworn in the following year, and remained in office till 2013, but the path to get there had been long and vexed.

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Source: gad