08 June 2022

South African History & Music in Photography: An homage of Mike Ndumiso Mzileni, the “(r)espected elder statesman of press photographers” who has just died at the age of 80 (16th of January 1942-1st of June 2022). Besides news, he photographed music like nobody else.

Indian Ocean world & novels: The article is about (a book which is about) Amitav Ghosh (India), Abdulrazak Gurnah (Zanzibar resp. UK), Lindsey Collen (Mauritius) and Joseph Conrad (Poland resp. UK) who have “centred the Indian Ocean world in the majority of their novels.” The four authors “reference a different set of histories and geographies than the ones most commonly found in fiction in English. Those are mostly centred in Europe or the US, assume a background of Christianity and whiteness, and mention places like Paris and New York.”

Mozambique/South Africa/USA: The Mozambican government will not be allowed to appeal against its ex-Finance Minister Manuel Chang’s extradition to the USA. Chang, who is accused of corruption, fraud and money laundering has been in prison in South Africa since December 2018 upon a US request “where investors were affected by the scandal.”
BBC Africa Live 08 June 2022. 6:44

07 June 2022

South Africa/United Arab Emirates: In 2021, an extradition treaty was signed between the two countries. But will the Gupta brothers, who were arrested yesterday, ever be extradited? It could take years… “The Guptas have been accused of using their association with Mr Zuma to cash in on huge government contracts by paying bribes.” They fled South Africa in 2018, around the time that Jacob Zuma lost power. They have been on a US sanctions list since 2019.
BBC Africa Live 07 June 2022. 12:50

Congo-Kinshasa: According to an announcement by the government, Codeco (Congo Economic Development Cooperative) – one of the many militia groups of Eastern Congo and one of the deadliest – is ending its insurgency. This comes after peace talks between the government and different ethnic groups, amongst them the Lendu who Codeco is linked to.
BBC Africa Live 07 June 2022. 7:22

Congo-Kinshasa: The Belgian king, his wife and some ministers start a 7-day DRC visit today that will take them to Kinshasa, Lubumbashi and Bukavu. The king, in June 2020 had expressed his “deepest regrets” for colonial abuses – “the first time a Belgian monarch had formally expressed remorse for what happened during the country's colonial rule.”
BBC Africa Live 07 June 2022. 6:31

Natural Reforestation: By defecating the seeds of the fruits they eat and spreading them over large distances, fruit bats have a very high potential for reforesting Africa. The authors’ research in Ghana, Burkina Faso and Zambia (deploying the bats with small GPS loggers) established that fruit bats can fly up to 95 km to find food and 95 km back to their sleeping places for the day. And they defecate slowly, which favours a large dispersal of the seeds. The benefits for biodiversity are enormous. Unfortunately, the numbers of fruit bats have dwindled of late – “(t)hey are primarily at risk from hunting and persecution out of superstition, fear or simple annoyance due to the noise they make when they roost.” We should rather leave them alone.

Somalia: After the long-delayed and by no means one (wo)man-one vote elections providing the country with a president who is a modern traditionalist, “the test will be how to marry the social power of the clan system with a democratic future.” Constitutional reforms will be necessary so that the importance of clans and the traditional “xeer” law can be integrated. Seen that Mogadishu is unlikely to be able to establish a monopoly on the use of force, it should apply a system of subsidiarity, where it intervenes only when traditional and local mechanisms fail to work. In the article’s author’s view, “a system in which rights and duties are based on clan affiliation rather than place of residence” would be most appropriate for Somalia.

Cameroon/USA: The almost 40,000 Cameroonians who fled the anglophone crisis in the country’s west or the Islamist attacks in the north and live in the USA have been granted temporary protected status and can stay and work in the USA for 18 months. The measure could be renewed should the security situation not improve.
BBC Africa Live 07 June 2022. 15:10