Good News from Africa

  1. Nigerian gateman opts for community bore-hole over house gift:

After serving his expatriate employers for decades, a Nigerian gateman turned down the offer of a house as parting gift. He opted for a bore-hole to be built back in his village. This is the story of Musa Usman, who asked his Indian boss in Lagos to build a bore-hole in his village of Giljimmi, located in the northern Jigawa State. The Daily Trust news portal said Usman continues to live with his family in a thatched house whiles his gesture has saved the community that hitherto suffered acute water shortage. His boss, Managing Director of a Lagos-based pharmaceutical company had offered the gift of a house for Usman’s diligence having served him for twenty-five years. He is quoted as saying he did not regret opting for the communal good over his personal gain.

  • Ethiopia PM visits HQ of e- commerce giant Alibaba on China trip:

Ethiopia Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed continued his engagements in China where he is attending the Belt and Road Forum that started on Thursday. A major highlight of Abiy’s second day was his visit to the headquarters of global e-commerce group, Alibaba, in Hangzhou. He met with the group CEO, Jack Ma, the second meeting between the two in as many months. Abiy and Ma first met during the World Economic Forum, WEF, held in Davos earlier this year. “Jack Ma expressed he has been inspired by the reforms that have been undertaken, confirming that Ethiopia is now a key strategic partner which he will visit this year,” the PM’s office confirmed in a social media post.

  • Celebrating African First Ladies: Rwanda’s Jeanette Kagame:

Often described as mothers to the nations their husbands lead, Africa’s first ladies are often expected to be unifying figures, serving the president of the nation and the voters who entrusted him the mandate to lead. A first lady by definition is the wife of the head of state, and it therefore follows that most African nations led by a male president, has a first lady. As of March 2019, all African countries have male heads of state. The last female head of state who led an African nation was Liberia’s Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, whose tenure expired in January 2018.Across the continent, several first ladies have been recognized, applauded and sometimes vilified for the roles they play to support the politics of their husbands.

  • Senegal’s Sadio Mane named on English premier league team of the year:

Senegal’s talisman and Liverpool forward, Sadio Mane was on Thursday named on the Professional Footballers’ Association (PFA) Team of the Year 2018-19.The eleven players on the team were voted for by members of the PFA, as the best players in their positions over the past seven months. The PFA is the players’ union. Sadio Mane, who is having the best season of his career in the English Premier League has scored 18 goals and been involved in up to 19 goals. Mane has also been shortlisted for the season’s PFA Player’s Player of the Year. The Senegalese captain is the only African player on this list, and the Team of the Year. The other players on the team of the year include City goalkeeper Ederson, forwards Raheem Sterling and Sergio Aguero, midfielders Bernardo Silva and Fernandinho, and center back Aymeric Laporte.

  • South Africa’s May 8 vote, sixth post- apartheid general elections:

South African voters will go to the polls to elect a president but in an indirect process that involves voting for members of the legislature instead. The party with majority in the parliament deploys one of their own to become president. The elections of May 8 will usher in the fourth president of the country since the end of apartheid in 1994. South Africa’s three elected presidents since 1994 are Nelson Mandela, Thabo Mbeki and Jacob Zuma. Voters vote for a political party, not individuals. The political party then gets a share of seats in Parliament in direct proportion to the number of votes it got in the election. Each party then decides on members to fill the seats it has won. This is called a proportional representation (PR) voting system. South Africa operates a parliamentary system of government; the National Assembly consists of 400 members.

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Good News From Africa

  1. DRC MP’s elect woman speaker of parliament, Jeanine Mabunda:

Lawmakers in the Democratic Republic of Congo, DRC, on Wednesday elected Jeanine Mabunda as head of the national assembly. Mabunda was the only candidate fielded for the position after her main opponent, Henri Thomas Lokondo, was disqualified. The main opposition boycotted the process citing political maneuvering. The new speaker belongs to the Common Forum for Congo, FCC coalition, which is led by former president Joseph Kabila. She also got the backing of president Tshisekedi’s CACH coalition. She becomes the first woman to occupy the top legislative seat. She is the sixth substantive speaker and takes over from Aubin Minaku – speaker between 2012 – 2019.

  • Selfie by caretaker, gorillas in DRC’s Virunga park goes viral:

Gorillas are not known to stand straight by nature but that is what two female gorillas did over the weekend. Doing so for a selfie opportunity with two rangers. The photo of the rangers and gorillas went viral on social media platforms and attracted wide coverage by mainstream media outlets. The photo was taken in the Democratic Republic of Congo, DRC’s famed Virunga National Park. Virunga is “Africa’s oldest national park and is also the continent’s most biologically diverse protected area. “You might have recently seen caretakers Mathieu and Patrick’s amazing #selfie with female orphaned gorillas Ndakazi and Ndeze inside the Senkwekwe center here at Virunga. Is it real? Yes! Are these gorilla gals always this cheeky? Yes!,” the park’s Twitter handle clarified the viral photos.

  • Malawi hopeful in new Malaria vaccine:

High hopes in Malawi as the country made history on Tuesday by taking the bold step to be the first country in the world to vaccinate children with a new malaria vaccine. Mothers with babies below the age of 2 turned up in the week long vaccination campaign, in trust of the revolutionary vaccine. “Finally my child has received the malaria vaccine. I am so happy because I know that she will not suffer from malaria and that I can concentrate on other important things,” said Hendrina Ositeni, mother.

  • Ghana starts largest medical delivery scheme using drones:

Hundreds of drones have started delivering life-saving vaccines, blood and medicines to patients in Ghana this week in the largest scheme of its kind, the global vaccine alliance GAVI said on Wednesday. Medics will place orders by text message when supplies run dry, said GAVI chief executive Seth Berkley. Drones will then fly in from four distribution centers, hover over health posts and drop deliveries using tiny parachutes. “The idea is that these four distribution centers can make up to 600 on-demand delivery flights a day,” Berkley told reporters in a telephone briefing. “And that can expand up to 2,000 (a day) over time.”

  • Uganda, Kenya, Morocco named among world’s most beautiful places:

Uganda’s Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, Kenya’s Samburu national reserve and Morocco’s Mount Toubkal have been named among the 25 most beautiful places in the world, according to a survey done by CNN Travel. The list of ‘breathtakingly beautiful’ places was compiled by the American media channel, in commemoration of Earth Day, and shared to tip travellers on which places they could visit this year. ‘‘In celebration of Earth Day…from lush African forests to vast Latin American deserts, watery Balkan paradises to ancient Middle Eastern cities, here are our picks for the world’s top breathtaking, beautiful destinations,’‘ CNN Travel said. This is what was said about the African destinations on the list.

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Good News from Africa

  1. World Press Freedom Day 2019: Ethiopia, Ethiopian in thick of affairs:

The 2019 edition of the United Nation’s World Press Freedom Day will take place in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa. A move that is allied to reform efforts by Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s administration. The main celebration of the UNESCO-led day will take place in Ethiopia between 1st to 3rd of May. Many media rights watchers have said the decision was both a surprise but welcome. Until April 2018, Ethiopia was one of the biggest jailers of journalists. Months after Abiy, according to the press rights group, Reporters without Borders; there was no journalist who was being held in jail with relation to their work.

  • Malawi becomes first nation to vaccinate children against malaria:

Malawi has become the first nation to immunize children against malaria. Launched on Tuesday, the Malaria vaccine pilot Programme will see at least 120,000 children in Malawi under the age of two injected with the RTS,S vaccine, for partial protection to malaria parasite. Malawi’s Ministry of Health, deputy director, Michael Kayange, said the new system of control and prevention will help Malawi hopefully avoid one million of the six million cases of malaria detected each year in the country, and prevent 4,000 deaths. Researchers and health authorities hope that, combined with other means of prevention, there will be a significant reduction in the number of victims.

  • Egyptian store cells clothes by the kilo, easing financial woes:

Brands such as Zara, Adidas, Nike and Marks & Spencer are out of reach for many Egyptians but a store in one of Cairo’s lower income districts is making these products more affordable. Some of the customers say ‘Kilo Stock’ sells clothes by the kilogram, trading garments at relatively inexpensive prices compared to what they would have cost at the brand shop itself. Customer, Heba, was so pleased with her experience, she described the prices and variety as unimaginable.

  • Angola elections; power decentralization could help revamp local communities:

Angola’s local elections are scheduled to take place in 2021 for the first time, an important step towards democracy. Decentralization appears a plausible solution that could respond to some serious local problems, such as in the city of Luanda. In the neighborhood of Morro Bento for instance, there are many needs. Basic sanitation is one of such that bedevils the area. When it rains, here in Rua das Margarines, the children have a gorge to pass before they get to school. It is full of water and reaches the waist,” says a resident. The Administration of the Neighborhood knows the problems and has already signaled them to the government of the province of Luanda. Firmino José, the neighborhood administrator, believes that the creation of municipalities will make the management of public funds more transparent and efficient.

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Good News From Africa

  1. Return to Juba: South Sudan’s Kiir urges Machar:

South Sudan’s president Salva Kiir has called upon the rebel leader Riek Machar to ‘urgently’ return to the country, and implement the peace deal signed last year. Kiir, who was delivering an Easter message, also recounted the ‘piercing experience’ during his recent Vatican visit, when the pope kissed his feet, along with Machar and other political leaders. ‘‘On the occasion of Easter as your leaders, we are working together to bring peace to our country. It is not too late, I am inviting Dr, Riek Machar to urgently return to Juba so that we can work together to expedite the process of forming the Revitalized Transitional Government of National Unity (RTGoNU),’‘ Kiir said.

  • Congo Brazzaville begins exporting Iron Ore:

The grand arrival of the first train ferrying the first iron ore extracts in Congo Brazzaville, mined in Mayoko district, 300 kilometers from the train central station in the economic capital, Pointe-Noire. One year later, and Congo has become one the iron exporting countries. About 23,000 tons of this material was loaded last week into a ship at the Pointe-Noire Port Authority destined for China. The mining company, the Sapro SA group plans to increase exports to 12 million tons per year from 2022.This major trade comes at a time when Congo Brazzaville is dealing with an economic and financial crisis since the fall in oil prices in 2014. The country hopes that these iron exports will empower its plans to diversify its economy from being an oil dependent nation.

  • Preserving Africa’s cultural heritage:

Many people say the charity of African heads of state begins and ends abroad. Several of them have joined the sum of world’s wealthiest families in a fundraiser to rebuild the iconic 850-year-old Notre Dame cathedral in Paris which was devastated by fire last Monday. But how do these African leaders react to similar projects geared towards preserving the continent’s cultural heritage? UNESCO has made calls for the continent to restore and preserve the 11 medieval monolithic cave churches of the 13th-century ‘New Jerusalem’, situated in the heart of Ethiopia. The historic dug-out churches have been have been spoiled by rain, erosion, repairs and modifications. Yet, UNESCO’s calls seem to have fallen on deaf ears.

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Good News From Africa

  1. Celebrating African First Ladies: Gabon’s Sylvia Bongo Ondimba:

Often described as mothers to the nations their husbands lead, Africa’s first ladies are often expected to be unifying figures, serving the president of the nation and the voters who entrusted him the mandate to lead. A first lady by definition is the wife of the head of state, and it therefore follows that most African nations led by a male president, has a first lady. As of March 2019, all African countries have male heads of state. The last female head of state who led an African nation was Liberia’s Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, whose tenure expired in January 2018.Across the continent, several first ladies have been recognized, applauded and sometimes vilified for the roles they play to support the politics of their husbands.

  • Multimedia: Ivanka incredible Ethiopia, wonderful Ivory Coast trips:

A total of four days, two days in each country she visited; the images from Ivanka Trump’s visit to Ethiopia and then Ivory Coast shows she enjoyed her time visiting. The presidential advisor described her packed itinerary in Ethiopia as “incredible” and her engagements in Ivory Coast as “wonderful and productive. ”Our collage below shows a pictorial brief of her time in Addis Ababa signing deals, engaging in high-level diplomacy, paying tribute to victims of the March 10 Ethiopian crash etc.

  • Tunisia, the safest country for journalists in the Maghreb:

Tunisia has been ranked the safest country for journalists in north Africa and the middle east by the 2019 World Press Freedom Index report. “Tunisia is the exception and continues its democratic transition process. It has admittedly made a remarkable improvement of 25 places, but still faces innumerable challenges especially in relation to the legislative framework,” said Souhaieb Khayati, RSF head of North Africa office. Tunisia not only ranked first in its region it moved by 15 slots to rank 72 in the world. Meanwhile Syria (174th) continues to be extremely dangerous for media personnel. “Journalists are under tremendous pressure in every Maghreb countries, with the exception of Tunisia. But in Algeria, Morocco and Libya, journalists are the victims of continuous pressure from the authorities,” said Souhaieb Khayati, RSF head of North Africa office.

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