18 March 2021

Africa/Covid vaccination: Which countries have started vaccination, what vaccine is being used, how many have been vaccinated so far. A map+country information to be updated daily.

Nigeria: Under attack from Boko Haram, border communities feel neglected by the government. Unlawful killings, arrests, extortion and intimidation by the army can push locals into the arms of the terrorists. “To win the confidence of communities under threat, the Nigerian government needs to demonstrate its resolution and sincerity of purpose. It must devise coordinated efforts with other stakeholders to end the insurgency.“ “(A) military approach to fight an organisation whose identity and structure was fluid” has proven to be no good.

Namibia: Support for the dominant party, the South West Africa People’s Organisation (SWAPO), is wearing thin. The prestige of the independence struggle and of having led the country into independence no longer suffices (“heroic narratives tend to have a sell by date”). An overview of all that has gone wrong, from economic woes to corruption.

Ghana/South Africa/Women in politics: Quotas are good. Ghana (never had more than now/14% of women in parliament) needs one. Even where quotas are in place (50% in South Africa): “But South Africa’s experience shows that to achieve substantive gains on gender equality it’s necessary to look beyond formal gender equality reforms. Attention needs to be given to tackling the informal institutions that work against having more women in political offices, or when they get there making it impossible for them to promote gender equality.” “Women MPs point to a toxic environment in which a politics of insults, ridicule and rumour work against having more women in political offices. Women are put under more scrutiny than their male counterparts. They are also attacked by political opponents because of their appearance, gender and sexuality. They endure derisive comments about their make-up and have often being labelled prostitutes.”

Tanzania: Samia Suluhu Hassan, so far Vice-President, will serve as President for the rest of deceased Magufuli’s second term. She’ll be the first female president and the second who comes from Zanzibar.
BBC Africa Live 18 March 2021. 10:46
Samia Suluhu Hassan has turned 61 in January. She has studied public administration, in Tanzania and as a post-graduate at Manchester University. “She will become Africa's only current female political head of state - the Ethiopian presidency is a largely ceremonial role - and join a short list of women on the continent who have made it to the top.”

African female presidents
1993 - Slyvie Kiningi - Acting President of Burundi - following the killing of Melchior Ndadaye
2006-2018 - Ellen Johnson Sirleaf - elected President of Liberia
2009 - Rose Francine Rogombé - Acting President of Gabon following the death of Omar Bongo
2012 - Monique Ohsan Bellepeau - Acting President of Mauritius after the resignation of Sir Anerood Jugnauth
2012-2014 - Joyce Banda - President of Malawi after the death of Bingu wa Mutharika
2014-2016 - Catherine Samba-Panza - transitional President of Central Africa Republic
2015-2018 - Ameenah Gurib-Fakim - President of Mauritius, elected by parliament
2018-present Sahle-Work Zewde - President of Ethiopia, elected by parliament

17 March 2021

Egypt: According to a Human Rights Watch report, the Egyptian army had destroyed at least 12,350 buildings (mostly homes) over the last seven years – this may amount to war crimes. The army also razed, ruined, and closed off approximately 6,000 hectares of farmland. The report alleges that “most of the demolitions happened without a formal designation of affected areas, without specific reasons, and without a fair compensation process”.
BBC Africa Live 17 March 2021. 15:51

Kenya/FGC: Should adult women have the right to undergo female genital cutting? A Kenyan doctor in 2017 petitioned that banning the practice was unconstitutional. The High Court of Kenya has today upheld the ban, ruling that “one cannot choose harm on (oneself)”.
Anti-FGC activists had feared a major setback for their efforts if the Court had ruled differently.
BBC Africa Live 17 March 2021. 5:31
and BBC Africa Live 17 March 2021. 17:20