Ivory Coast’s Former First Lady Simone Gbagbo Gets 20-Year Prison Sentence

Ivory Coast's Former First Lady Simone Gbagbo Gets 20-Year Prison Sentence

Ivory Coast’s Former First Lady Simone Gbagbo Gets 20-Year Prison Sentence (Photo Credit: YouTube Video Screengrab)

Simone Gbagbo, Ivory Coast’s former first lady, was sentenced to 20 years in prison for her role in the violence that erupted following the 2010 elections. She was charged with undermining state security.

Her husband, former President Laurent Gbagbo, is awaiting trial at the International Criminal Court (ICC).

More than 3,000 people died in the post-election violence that erupted after Gbagbo refused to accept defeat from Alassane Ouattara.

The couple was arrested in 2011 when they were found in a bunker in Abidjan.

 

Jacob Zuma Plan: Foreigners Will Be Banned from Owning Land in South Africa

Jacob Zuma Plan:  Foreigners Will Be Banned from Owning Land in South Africa

Jacob Zuma Plan: Foreigners Will Be Banned from Owning Land in South Africa

South African President Jacob Zuma shocked many when he unveiled his plan to ban foreigners from owning land in South Africa.

Two decades after the end of apartheid, land is still concentrated in the hands of a largely white minority, and remains a sensitive issue.

The government is under growing pressure to put more land in the hands of the country’s black majority.

“Land has become one of the most critical factors in achieving redress for the wrongs of the past,” said Mr Zuma, elaborating on the plans on Saturday.

“In this regard, the regulation of land holdings bill will be submitted to parliament this year.”

In the future, foreigners will only be allowed to lease land, not to own it, he said, adding that local farmers would not be able to own more than 12,000 hectares.

That is presumably aimed at white farmers who still own much of the best farmland a generation after the end of racial apartheid, says the BBC’s Andrew Harding in Johannesburg. Source: BBC News

Kenyan Government Apologizes for Tear-Gassing Student Protesters at Lang’ata School

Kenyan Government Apologizes for Tear-Gassing Students Protesting Playground Sale

Kenyan Government Apologizes for Tear-Gassing Students Protesting Playground Sale (Photo Credit: Twitter via CapitalFM_Kenya)

Kenyan authorities apologized after police used tear gas on students protesting the sale of the playground at Lang’ata school in Nairobi to a developer.

Internal Security Minister Joseph Nkaissery apologized after meeting with students at the school on Tuesday. He confirmed that the playground belonged to the school.

BBC News reports the students had returned to school after a “two-week teachers’ strike to find the playground fenced off.”

Teachers and activists joined the students in trying to “push down the barriers” before the police intervened, using tear gas to disperse the protesters.

Top Al-Shabaab Militant Zakariye Ahmed Ismail Hersi Surrenders to Somali Police

Top Al-Shabaab Militant Zakariye Ahmed Ismail Hersi Surrenders to Somali Police

Top Al-Shabaab Militant Zakariye Ahmed Ismail Hersi Surrenders to Somali Police (Photo Credit: Wikipedia)

Top al-Shabaab militant Zakariye Ahmed Ismail Hersi surrendered to Somali police. BBC News said Hersi, a leading figure in the group’s intelligence wing, surrendered to police in the Gedo region.

In June 2012, the US state department offered $3m (£1.9m, 2.5m euros) for information leading to his capture.

It comes three months after al-Shabab leader Ahmed Abdi Godane was killed in a US air strike.

A Somali intelligence officer, quoted by the Associated Press news agency, suggested Mr Hersi may have surrendered because of a dispute with al-Shabab members loyal to the former leader.

BBC Africa editor Mary Harper says Somali intelligence had received a tip off that he was hiding in a town close to the border with Kenya. He fell out with Godane last year and has been on the run ever since but he is still a powerful figure, she adds. Ahmad Umar was named the new leader of al-Shabab, days after Godane’s killing last September. Source: BBC News

Riots Erupt in Zambian Capital Over Acting President Guy Scott Firing Edgar Lungu

Riots Erupt in Zambian Capital Over Acting President Guy Scott Firing Edgar Lungu

Riots Erupt in Zambian Capital Over Acting President Guy Scott Firing Edgar Lungu (Photo Credit: Wikipedia)

Riots have erupted in Zambia’s capital city Lusaka as protests mount over white acting president Guy Scott, firing Edgar Lungu, the ruling party’s secretary general following the death of president Michael Sata.

The riots started on Monday night in several places in the Zambian capital of Lusaka, including the University of Zambia and a government building designated as a place for Sata’s mourners to gather, according to witnesses.

Protesters had descended on the building, Belvedere Lodge, with stones, machetes and other weapons, and police fired tear gas into the venue to clear demonstrators from the area.

The protesters were angry over the decision by acting president, Guy Scott, to dismiss Edgar Lungu, the ruling party’s secretary general.

Lungu, who remains defence and justice minister, said his dismissal was illegal and accused Scott, who is of Scottish descent, of “insulting our culture”. Source: News 24

President Obama Announces $33 Billion in Commitments to Africa

President Obama Announces $33 Billion in Commitments to Africa

President Obama Announces $33 Billion in Commitments to Africa

President Obama announced $33 billion in commitments to Africa to form economic partnerships beyond the usual humanitarian aid. This comes as the U.S. is playing catch-up to the Chinese, who have capitalized on the growing economies. Africa is home to six of the world’s fastest growing economies and fast-growing middle class. That means increased spending power.

The bulk of the commitments Obama made comes from private sector companies like Coca Cola and General Electric.

President Obama noted that just one percent of U.S. exports go to sub-Saharan Africa and the U.S. trade with the continent is about the same as its trade ties to Brazil.

Obama said at the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit, “We’ve got to do better, much better.” He added, “I want Africans buying more American products and I want Americans buying more African products.”

Former New York City mayor Mike Bloomberg, who opened the summit, said, “We also realize we have some catching up to do.” “We are letting Europe and China go faster than the U.S.,” he added.

Fact-sheet on Doing Business in Africa: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2014/08/05/fact-sheet-doing-business-africa-campaign

Here are some tweets about the #USAfrica:

FREE AT LAST: Sudan ‘Apostasy’ Woman, Meriam Ibrahim, Arrives in the U.S.

FREE AT LAST: Sudan 'Apostasy' Woman, Miriam Ibrahim Arrives in the U.S.

FREE AT LAST: Sudan ‘Apostasy’ Woman, Meriam Ibrahim Arrives in the U.S. (Photo Credit: Facebook)

FREE AT LAST: Meriam Ibrahim, the Sudanese woman who was freed from death row for apostasy after international outrage, has arrived in the U.S. with her family. The family arrived at the Manchester, NH, airport, the final leg of their journey, shortly after 8 p.m. ET, after first entering the U.S. via Philadelphia.

Ibrahim, who was sentenced to death by hanging and 100 lashes for committing adultery for marrying a Christian man, Daniel Wani,was finally allowed to leave Sudan, after being detained one day following her release from prison. The Italian government negotiated her release, along with input from Pope Francis.

Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter, who presented Ibrahim with a small replica of the Liberty Bell, said she was a “world freedom fighter.” He compared her to Rosa Parks, and said people would remember her just like “others who stood up so we could be free,” BBC reports.

Meriam Ibrahim and her family flew from Rome with the Pope’s blessings. She is finally free at last.

Dr. Sheik Umar Khan, Who Led Fight Against Ebola in Sierra Leone, Dies from Virus

Dr. Sheik Umar Khan, Who Led Fight Against Ebola in Sierra Leone, Dies from Virus

Dr. Sheik Umar Khan, Who Led Fight Against Ebola in Sierra Leone, Dies from Virus

Dr. Sheik Umar Khan, who led the fight against Ebola in Sierra Leone, died from the virus. Government officials have hailed Khan, 39, as a “national hero.”

Dr. Sheik Umar Khan’s death comes days after prominent Liberian doctor Samuel Brisbane died from the disease.

The government of Sierra Leone said last week that Dr. Khan was being treated for Ebola and had been quarantined.

American doctor Kent Brantly is said to be in grave condition in Liberia after contracting the disease. American Daniel Sawyer also died from the disease. He became visibly ill during a trip from Liberia to Nigeria. He had been taking care of a sister who had also contracted the disease.

 

Liberia Suspends Football Activities to Control Spread of Ebola Virus

Liberia Suspends Football Activities to Control Spread of Ebola Virus

Liberia Suspends Football Activities to Control Spread of Ebola Virus

Liberia suspends all soccer activities as it seeks ways to control the spread of the deadly Ebola virus that has claimed 672 lives in West Africa, according to new UN figures.

There was a risk of infection because football is a contact sport, the football association said.

A major regional airliner, Asky, said it had halted flights to the Liberian and Sierra Leonean capitals because of growing concerns about the virus.

It is the second airline company to take such a decision, following the deadliest Ebola outbreak ever.

“Asky is determined to keep its passengers and staff safe during this unsettling time,” it said in a statement said.

Ebola kills up to 90% of those infected, but patients have a better chance of survival if they receive early treatment.

It spreads through contact with an infected person’s bodily fluids. Source: BBC

Boko Haram Militants Seize Cameroon’s Vice Prime Minister’s Wife in Latest Attack

Boko Haram Militants Seize Cameroon's Vice Prime Minister's Wife in Latest Attack

Boko Haram Militants Seize Cameroon’s Vice Prime Minister’s Wife in Latest Attack (Photo credit: SPM.Gov.CM)

The wife of Cameroon Vice Prime Minister Amadou Ali was among several people kidnapped by Boko Haram militants, who attacked Kolofata, a town on the country’s Far North Region near Nigeria.

Colonel Felix Nji Formekong said, “The situation is very critical here now, and as I am talking to you Boko Haram elements are still in Kilofata town in a clash with our soldiers,” Reuters reports.

Formekong said, “Some of them have already taken away the wife of Vice Prime Minister Amadou Ali and her house help while the bodyguards of the Vice Prime Minister succeeded in taking him out of town to Mora.”