10 February 2022

Newly independent Africa/CIA: In her new book White Malice – The CIA and the Neocolonisation of Africa, Susan Williams “ruthlessly reveals through factual evidence the unsavoury machinations of the American Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) in Africa during the Cold War until the late 1960s.” Hammarskjöld’s death, the murder of Patrice Lumumba, the removal of Kwame Nkrumah from office, Nelson Mandela’s arrest, even cultural programmes like sponsoring festivals and conferences including a concert tour through 27 African cities in 11 weeks during late 1960 by Louis Armstrong… - the CIA pursued “a hegemonic agenda with lasting impact”.

Sudan: Protests against the coup have been sustained over more than three months. Neighbourhood or resistance committees and the Sudanese Professionals Association (health workers, doctors, lawyers) are the main organisers. The neighbourhood committees were originally established in 2012 to ensure the distribution of essentials (bread, sugar, cooking gas) and only later turned into underground resistance committees. Protests against Omar al-Bashir in 2018/19 provided experience in organising protests. The success of those protests to this day provides inspiration and allows the continuation of the protests despite the harsh reaction of the authorities. The protesters only have themselves to trust – disappointment with formal political forces (the Forces of Freedom and Change) runs high; they didn’t achieve anything after the toppling of al-Bashir. Nor did the international community.

Libya: Unknown gunmen fired several rounds at the car of Prime Minister Abdulhamid al-Dbeibah in Tripoli but he survived. Later today Thursday, the parliament in the east of the country “is to vote (…) on a replacement prime minister for a government of national unity” – an election that Abdulhamid al-Dbeibah has announced he’ll ignore.
BBC Africa Live 10 February 2022. 4:41

Libya: Fathi Bashagha, a former interior minister, has been voted new interim prime minister by Parliament. Mr Dbeibah’s, his predecessor’s mandate, had expired in December, says Parliament – but not Mr Dbeibah who thinks he will be in office until general elections take place.
BBC Africa Live 10 February 2022. 13:31

Mozambique: The Resilience and Development Strategy for the North is to be approved by the Cabinet shortly. It no longer sees terrorism as an import from abroad but recognises internal factors – “socio-economic inequalities, frustration related to the exploitation of natural resources, especially among youth in the north, political and economic exclusion, and perceived marginalisation by the local population” – as causes of the crisis in Cabo Delgado. The three pillars of the strategy are “support for the construction of peace, security and social cohesion; reconstruction of the social contract between the state and the population; and recovery economics and resilience.” On the basis of the strategy, the government hopes to raise hundreds of millions of dollars from donors. But is the government serious about changing its approach quite fundamentally?

Tanzania: A ban on four newspapers (Mwanahalisi, Mawio, Mseto and Tanzania Daima) has been lifted by the government. They had been critical of ex-President John Magufuli. His successor, Samia Suluhu, “has vowed to uphold media freedom” – unbanning of the four papers seems a good step in that direction.
BBC Africa Live 10 February 2022. 12:49

09 February 2022

A family with a sick person at home will not miss another’s funeral
BBC Africa Live 09 February 2022. Wise words of the day. An Oromo proverb from Ethiopia sent by Michu Sena

South Africa: The article provides “some thoughts and analysis” on the 640-page Zondo Commission Report Part 2. Successful parasites do not harm their hosts. The “scale of (the Guptas’) rapaciousness meant that, within just a few years, the institutions they leeched were in a state of collapse”: the transport parastatal Transnet, the national carrier South African Airways, the power utility Eskom and the state defence company Denel. The Guptas cost Transnet alone R41bn (US$2.7bn). Revealing all this is good and important, but “the success or failure of the Zondo Commission Report will be what consequences will result from it for the criminals and corrupt.”

Kenya: With Al-Shabaab active again, the article gives reasons why terror alerts are important but rarely specific.

Kenya: The State House i.e. the President is asking Parliament for a 47.7% increase to its budget, saying it will need 2.6m USD for buying new presidential cars, an increase in its fuel allocation by four times to 870,000 USD, 1m USD for renovating the head of state’s residence and state lodges.
BBC Africa Live 09 February 2022. 11:56

Congo-Kinshasa/Uganda: Congo is demanding more than 11bn USD in compensation for Uganda's occupation and looting of Ituri province from 1998 to 2003 and Uganda is demanding reparation for an attack on its embassy in Kinshasa. In 2005, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) at The Hague ordered the two countries to negotiate mutual reparations. The two being unable to reach an agreement, the case was referred back to the ICJ
Uganda will have to pay 325m USD to Congo (225m for damages to persons (10-15,000 dead, women raped), 40m for damages to property, 60m for looted gold, diamonds and timber) in five annual instalments of 65m USD up to 2026. “The court's decision is final with no recourse to appeal, but (the ICJ) has no means of enforcing its verdict.”
BBC Africa Live 09 February 2022. 6:27

Madagascar: According to the latest count, tropical Cyclone Batsirai killed 80, “left 94,000 people in need of emergency assistance and forced 60,000 from their homes”. Most of the dead were victims of their houses collapsing on them.
BBC Africa Live 09 February 2022. 16:01

Nigeria: The oil spill caused by the explosion of The Trinity Spirit – the oil production vessel with capacity for storing 2m barrels of oil – covers 315 hectares. Nigeria is confident that it can clean it up itself. 3 died in the explosion.
BBC Africa Live 09 February 2022. 17:14