Daily Archives: April 8, 2018

PROMINENT EAST AFRICAN ATHLETES RUN FOR PEACE IN SOUTH SUDAN

JUBA– Leading athletes from Kenya, Uganda and Ethiopia on Saturday joined hundreds of South Sudanese marathoners in a race aimed at promoting peace, healing and reconciliation in the war-torn country.

This year’s Great South Sudan Run attracted four athletes from Ethiopian, two Kenyans and one Ugandan for the 10 kilometers race.

Ugandan long-distance runner and 2012 Olympic gold winner, Stephen Kiprotich told Xinhua that he hoped his presence at the race would inspire south Sudanese youth to take up sports and embrace unity in diversity.

Elias Kiptum, a two-time Linz marathon winner, said he participated in the race to show solidarity with the South Sudanese people affected by the ongoing conflict.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK

AFDB URGES AFRICA TO PROCESS COCOA, PRODUCE CHOCOLATE

ABIDJAN, — The African Development Bank (AfDB) has advised that it is time to process cocoa and produce chocolate in Africa, and to end the continent being at the bottom of global value chains.

AfDB said there is huge opportunity for Africa, the largest producer of cocoa in the world, to rake in economic value that the global market offers.

It identified cocoa as the main ingredient for chocolates which come in all shapes and sizes.

And the demand for chocolate will most likely continue to increase, according to experts, AfDB said.

Africa produces about 75 percent of the world’s cocoa, but the region faces a daunting paradox.

Though it accounts for a majority of the world’s cocoa production, Africa gets just 5 percent of the US$100billion annual chocolate market value.

Africa has been unable to extract a larger share of the global chocolate market value because it only exports raw cocoa beans.

Africa is stuck at the bottom of the cocoa value chain, dominated instead of dominating, despite being the leading producer! exclaims Akinwumi Adesina, President of the African Development Bank.

Adesina said: African farmers sweat, while other eat sweets. While the price of cocoa has hit an all-time low, profits of global manufacturers of chocolate have hit an all-time high.

The bank is leading a call to action on Africa’s agro-industrialisation, which is key to transforming the cocoa value chain.

Africa must not be locked at the bottomit must rapidly add value to what it leads the world in producing, Adesina said.

It is time for Africa to move to the top of the global food value chain, through agro-industrialisation and adding value to all of what it produces.

The African Development Bank has prioritised industrialisation in its High 5 agenda. This could create an opportunity for African countries to add value to their raw materials. It is this regard that the Bank’s Annual Meetings for this year has the theme ‘Accelerating Africa’s Industrialisation’.

This year’s Easter celebration signals a further call to action for African cocoa producers to start producing chocolate to compete with countries like Belgium, Switzerland, the U.S. and France.

This will not only bring in money, but also afford opportunities for the many cocoa farmers who are yet to taste chocolate in their entire life.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK

SOUTH AFRICA EX-PRES ZUMA JACOB ZUMA CHARGED WITH CORRUPTION

DURBAN, — South Africa’s former President Jacob Zuma has been charged with corruption linked to a 1990s arms deal.

After the 75-year-old’s 15-minute appearance at the High Court in Durban, the case was adjourned until June 8.

He faces 16 counts of corruption, racketeering, fraud and money laundering, which dogged his presidency and were reinstated in 2016.

Zuma, who was forced out of office in February, denies any wrongdoing.

His supporters descended on the city to rally for him, while his critics think court action is long overdue.

After the hearing, Zuma addressed the crowds who had come to stand alongside him at the court in his home province.

“I have never seen it before where someone is charged with a crime, those charges are dropped and then years later those same charges are re-instated,” he said, speaking in Zulu. “This is a just a political conspiracy,”

He then led the crowd in song and dance.

The arms deal took place in 1999, the year Zuma moved from being a provincial minister to deputy president.

He is accused of accepting 783 illegal payments.

His financial adviser, Schabir Shaikh, was found guilty of trying to solicit bribes on his behalf from a French arms firm and was jailed in 2005.

The case against Zuma was dropped shortly before he ran for president in 2009.

A woman representing French arms manufacturer Thales was also in the Durban courthouse on Friday, as the company faces corruption charges too.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK

Government update on memorial and funeral of Mrs Winnie Madikizela-Mandela

The Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) on State Funerals led by the Minister in the Presidency, Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, met on the 06 April 2018 and wishes to provide the following update:

1. On Tuesday the 10th of April 2018, the IMC will hold a media briefing to update the nation on the logistical details of the Official Memorial Service. The venue and time of the media briefing will be communicated in due course.

2. Both the Memorial and Funeral service will be held at Orlando Stadium. The Memorial Service will take place on the 11th April and the Funeral Service will take place on the 14th April 2018. The Burial will take place at Fourways Memorial Park Cemetery.

3. Whilst organising the memorial services, the IMC urges officials to strictly adhere to the rules and regulations of financial management policies.

4. Guidelines, rules and regulations of financial management for the memorial services have been sent to all provinces and municipalities by the Minister of Cogta.

5. From Monday the 09th April 2018, a schedule of memorial events taking place countrywide will be placed on the GCIS website.

6. Members of the media can collect their accreditation from 08 April 2018 at Nasrec Station.

7. Condolence books are available at the following points:

International Ports of Entry (airports)

DIRCO Head Office at the OR Tambo Building in Pretoria

Parliament

Tuynhuys

The Union Buildings

Department of Arts and Culture

Department of Communication (GCIS Head office)

All Provincial Legislatures

All Premier’s Offices

Masilonyana Local Municipality offices, Brandfort

Mbizana Local Municipality

KSD Local Municipality, Mthatha

Source: Government of South Africa

Somalia Seizes Nearly $10M From UAE Plane in Mogadishu

Somali security officials said they have seized a large cache of money that arrived Sunday at Mogadishu airport from Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.

Two senior security officials told VOA Somali three suitcases containing $9.6 million have been put In storage in the central bank of Somalia pending an investigation.

Another security official said Ambassador Mohammed Ahmed Othman Al Hammadi, UAE envoy to Mogadishu, was at the airport to receive the money.

The official said Al Hammadi’s entourage tried to take the money out of the airport but were instructed by security forces to have the bags scanned.

The ambassador refused, walked back to the plane with three bags, and counterterrorism units confiscated the three bags, said the officer who requested anonymity.

The Royal Jet plane has since been released.

Al Hammadi told VOA Somali the money was not intended for the UAE embassy. The money is for the ministry of defense. It’s for the salary of the Somali soldiers, he told VOA.

He said the government knew in advance that the money was coming for the troops. The UAE has been training Somali soldiers in Mogadishu, as well as about 1,000 maritime police in the Puntland region.

Somali officials argue the money was not intended for the Somali army. The salary for the army is less than $1 million. This is almost $10 million, the official said.

I’m certain that they have been informed not to bring money. The onus is on us to respond, the official said. He added that an investigation will determine whether the money was brought in to destabilize the country.

Relations between Somalia and the UAE have been frosty since last year when the government of Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed resisted pressure to cut ties with Qatar and took a neutral position on a dispute between Saudi Arabia and Qatar.

Last month, the Somali government rejected an agreement between the UAE’s Dubai World, Somaliland and Ethiopia over Berbera port, saying the deal violates the territorial integrity of Somalia.

Somali officials said a foreign country believed to be Saudi Arabia has agreed to mediate between Somalia and UAE. It is unclear if there were direct talks between the two countries.

According to Somali diplomatic sources, late last month the Somali Ministry of Foreign Affairs summoned Al Hammadi and explained its position on the port agreement, as well as a separate military agreement between Somaliland and UAE to build a military base in Berbera.

Source: Voice of America