17 August 2021

Niger: 13 children and 24 other villagers have been killed when armed men on motorbikes stormed the village of Darey-Daye in Tillaberi region yesterday Monday. In March, almost 70 people had been killed in an Islamist attack in the same village.
BBC Africa Live 17 August 2021. 13:46

Polio comeback in Africa/Uganda: Africa has been declared polio-free in August 2020 – but 19 countries reported polio outbreaks over the past year. The latest of them is Uganda – declared polio-free in 2006, it suffered outbreaks in 2009, 2010 and now in 2021. The health ministry is stepping up surveillance and “(a) mass vaccination programme is scheduled in October and December this year, for all children under the age of five.”
BBC Africa Live 17 August 2021. 17:47

16 August 2021

Zambia: Hakainde Hichilema has won the presidential elections by a margin of 1 million votes (2,8m versus 1,8m for Edgar Lungu). The biggest challenge for the new president will be the dire economic situation.

Madagascar: The reported assassination attempt on Andry Rajoelina “reveals deep political turmoil”. It is the fourth time Rajoelina claims that his life has been threatened. “We can’t be sure whether this latest ‘threat’ is an excuse for the President to further consolidate power and suppress the opposition, or whether it reveals a deep dissatisfaction with the country’s political direction.” Anyhow, things are not well at all. The two times Rajoelina has come to power (in 2009 and 2018), it was under circumstances that were hardly democratic (being handed power by the military the first time and after unfulfillable promises, amongst accusations of fraud and with low voter turnout the second time). Then “he opened up the country to exploitation by his cronies”, rosewood has never been as heavily logged as during his reign. He has invested in “several vanity projects” which a country where 75% live on less than 2 USD a day and almost half the children under five years of age suffers from stunting. And he has mishandled the Covid crisis.

Congo-Kinshasa: Tshisekedi has announced that US special forces are soon to deploy in the country’s east to help the Congolese army fight the Allied Defence Forces (ADF) – designated a terrorist group affiliated with the Islamic State by the USA some months ago.
BBC Africa Live 16 August 2021. 15:31

Zambia: Who is sixth time lucky Hakainde Hichilema? Born into humble beginnings, he got a scholarship to the University of Zambia, later got an MBA from the University of Birmingham, then made “a fortune in finance, property, ranching, healthcare and tourism”, has been jailed fifteen times since going into politics.