24 April 2022

Rwanda: The catholic church is trying to help communities to again live in harmony – and is even using some “force” to put it in place: people who have committed crimes during the genocide “are not allowed to partake of the sacrament until they have reconciled with their victims' family”, with the reconciliation being a public ceremony. One such reconciliation has led to the marriage of a victim’s son with the perpetrator’s daughter – the latter had started coming to help the victim’s wife in her household when she noticed that her mother-in-law-to-be had no one to help her, knowing full well that it was her father who had killed her husband. In 2004, after 10 years of detention, before a gacaca court, the perpetrator had told his victim’s wife how he had killed her husband and apologised. By publicly forgiving him, she spared him from serving 19-year jail sentence – he only had to serve a two-year community service sentence.

Mali: Terrorist attacks have simultaneously targeted three military bases in central Mali, one of them the Sévaré base. No further information provided.
BBC Africa Latest Updates 24 April 2022. 10:24

Mauritania/Canada/USA: Mohamedou Ould Slahi alleges that Canada provided false information which made him a suspect in a 1999 failed terrorism plot in the USA. He was held at Guantanamo Bay without trial for 14 years and says he was tortured (beatings, sleep deprivation, sexual assault). He is now suing Canada for its role in his detention, seeking 30m USD in damages. Mohamedou Ould Slahi has written several books during his detention, his memoir having “formed the basis for the 2021 film, The Mauritanian.”
BBC Africa Latest Updates 24 April 2022. 9:09

Nigeria: On Friday, an explosion at an illegal oil refinery in Imo State killed more than 100. Many were burnt beyond possible recognition in the ensuing fire. Police are looking for the owner of the illegal refinery.

23 April 2022

Kenya: Mwai Kibaki, the country’s president from 2002 to 2013, has died yesterday aged 90. The article first gives a brief overview of his career (an MP from 1963 to his retirement in 2013, he was for example also Daniel arap Moi’s vice-president from 1978 to 1988) to then discuss his merits and failures during his two presidential terms. While he got the economy going, he failed to transcend ethnic cleavages that plague Kenya to the present day. He had the opportunity at the very beginning of his first presidential term – he had won the elections based on a National Rainbow Coalition which represented Kenya’s regions and major ethnic groups. The coalition’s top organ, the so-called Summit, included Mwai Kibaki (Kikuyu), Moody Awori and Wamalwa Kijana (Luhyia), Raila Odinga (Luo), Kipruto Kirwa (Kalenjin), Charity Ngilu and Kalonzo Musyoka (Kamba), and Najib Balala (Mijikenda). But he squandered this chance – but he soon totally ignored this “Summit” and chose nothing but Kikuyu from Jomo Kenyatta’s times as advisers (the so-called Mount Kenya Mafia). Then he did not come true on the election promise of a new constitution within 100 days. He did nothing to reign in corruption. Finally there is the rigging of the 2007 presidential election. “The violence that the stolen election caused pushed the country to the brink.” At least 1,300 died and more than 500,000 were displaced. The article is called “Mwai Kibaki: president who squandered the opportunity to fix Kenya”.