AFRICA

Gambia: ECOWAS softens on Jammeh, says it still prefers peaceful mediation to military intervention

West African leaders are not ready yet to send troops as they negotiate with President Jammeh to relinquish power, Liberia’s President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has announced. The crisis in The Gambia is becoming more complex as the 19 January handover date approaches. In a surprise development, Liberia’s President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf told reporters on Saturday in Accra that ECOWAS leaders …

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President Akufo-Addo declares Ghana open for business as he promises to govern with integrity

Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo was sworn in on Saturday as Ghana’s new president at a ceremony in Accra, the country’s capital, marking the latest peaceful transition of power in the West African country. In a speech as he took office, the president said “I pledge to do my best to move this country to higher level of development; I will …

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Son of Equatorial Guinea’s president goes on trial for corruption in Paris

The corruption trial of Teodoro Nguema Obiang Mangue, the eldest son of Equatorial Guinea’s President Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, opened Monday, 2 January in Paris. Obiang, who is his country’s vice president, is accused of amassing millions of dollars through “bribes and kickbacks”. As the US authorities forced him to hand over property worth millions of dollars in a settlement …

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Gambia: Jammeh blasts ECOWAS, says deployment of troops is ‘an act of war’

Gambian President Yahya Jammeh has warned that any troop deployment by ECOWAS members would constitute “a declaration of war”. In a New Year’s message broadcast on Saturday, Jammeh said the “blatant and one-sided” approach of the regional body, “disqualified it from providing mediation services”. “Let me make very clear, we are ready to defend this country against any aggression,” Jammeh …

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Congolese President Kabila to step down under new deal with opposition

Agreement reached by Congolese political parties aims to have transitional government in place by March. President Joseph Kabila will step down as president of the Democratic Republic of Congo after elections held before the end of 2017, under a draft agreement reached by political parties, according to a lead mediator from the Catholic Church. Under the deal, reached on New …

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Gambian election crisis: Jammeh appoints six foreign judges to Supreme Court to hear his petition as President-elect Barrow prepares for inauguration

Gambia’s President Yahya Jammeh has appointed six foreign judges into the Supreme Court to join the remaining member, Chief Justice Emmanuel Fagbenle, a Nigerian national, so that his election petition could be heard. Although the names of the judges have not been officially revealed, they are believed to come from Nigeria and Sierra Leone. The President has also ordered the …

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Nigeria Army ousts Boko Haram from its last major camp; two major roads in Borno re-opened

The Nigerian Army has driven Boko Haram militants from their last camp in the northeastern Sambisa forest, President Muhammadu Buhari has said in a statement. The military has launched a large-scale offensive against the jihadist group in recent weeks. Buhari said in a statement that the head of the army informed him on Friday, 23 December that the last major Boko Haram …

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Gambia: ECOWAS threatens Jammeh with military action; Senegalese troops ‘on alert’

President Yahya Jammeh of The Gambia stands the risk of being forcefully removed from power should he carry out his threat to sit tight after losing the December 1 election. ECOWAS leaders warned yesterday that they would not hesitate to send troops to Banjul, if Jammeh, who lost the election to opposition candidate, Adama Barrow, fails to step down next month. Senegal,which …

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Congo’s opposition agrees to deal for Kabila to step down

Congolese politicians have agreed in principle to a deal under which President Joseph Kabila willl leave office by the end of 2017, opposition leaders said on Friday, 23 December, an unexpected breakthrough after dozens were killed in anti-government protests this week. If the deal does succeed, it would be a major achievement for the Catholic church, which has been mediating …

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Nigeria to reward those who expose thieves of government funds with 5 per cent of the recovered loot

The Federal Government of Nigeria has approved the payment of 5 per cent of recovered looted fund to the whistle blower behind the recovery. Minister of Finance Kemi Adeosun briefed State House correspondents at the end of the cabinet meeting chaired by President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday, 21 December. According to her, the programme is designed to encourage anyone with …

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Anarchy looms in Gambia as hand-over date nears

President Yahya Jammeh has reiterated on Tuesday that he won’t hand over power to President-elect Adama Barrow despite growing international pressure. He would be regarded as a ‘rebel leader’ after 18 January if he refuses to hand over power, says opposition. The Gambia edges to constitutional crisis as the presidential hand-over date of 19 January looms, writes Ken Kamara in …

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Mugabe to stand for election again in 2018

Zimbabwe’s ruling Zanu-PF party has declared President Robert Mugabe as its candidate for the next presidential election in 2018. By then he will be aged 94. His supporters broke into thunderous applause and chanted “tongai, tongai baba” [rule, rule father] as the Zanu-PF annual conference nominated Mugabe on Saturday in the south-eastern town of Masvingo . Mugabe has been in …

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Gambia: Jammeh must step down, say West African leaders

West African leaders under the auspices of the regional ECOWAS have jointly called on Gambia’s President Yahya Jammeh to step when his term of office expires in January. Meeting in Nigeria’s capital Abuja on Saturday, the eleven presidents present at the body’s 50th ordinary session called on Jammeh to accept the results and refrain from compromising a peaceful handover of …

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Gambia: Adama Barrow vows to declare himself president in January as election row continues

The Gambia’s President-elect, Adama Barrow, has vowed to declare himself president on 18 January even if incumbent Yahya Jammeh refused to concede defeat and hand over power. “We have a team that is working on our inauguration. We are working on it; on the 18th, I’m the legal president of this country,” he told the BBC in an exclusive interview …

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Gambia: UN tells Jammeh he has to leave in January as African leaders prepare for showdown with embattled president

The United Nations Special Representative for West Africa said on Wednesday that Gambia’s President Yahya Jammeh would be “strongly sanctioned” if he sought to remain in power after his mandate ends next month. Mohammed Ibn Chambas made the declaration following the failure of regional leaders to persuade the embattled Jammeh to back down from his rejection of the election’s result …

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Gambia: West African leaders fail to convince President Jammeh to hand over power

A high-powered diplomatic move to resolve the gathering crisis in The Gambia seems to have suffered a setback. A delegation of West African leaders failed to convince Gambian President Yahya Jammeh on Tuesday to hand over power to opposition leader, Adama Barrow, who defeated him at the presidential election held on 1 December. The leaders – Presidents Muhammadu Buhari of …

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African leaders head to Banjul to ask Gambia’s Yahya Jammeh to step down

West African leaders are to head to Gambia on Tuesday to try to persuade incumbent President Yahya Jammeh to agree “to leave office” after his defeat at the ballot box, a Senegalese foreign ministry source said Monday. The delegation headed by Liberian leader Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, current chair of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), will include Nigerian …

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What you should know about Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, President-elect of Ghana

Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo was born and raised in Ga-Maami (Accra Central) and in the Nima area of Accra. His father’s residence, Betty House at Korle Wokon in Accra, was effectively the headquarters of the country’s first political party, the United Gold Coast Convention (UGCC), after it was formed at Saltpond on 4 August 1947. Three of the ‘Big Six’ …

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Opposition candidate, Nana Akufo-Addo, wins Ghana’s presidential election

Ghanaians have elected Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, the candidate of the main opposition party, New Patriotic Party (NPP), as their new president. Akufo-Addo, 72, who ran for the office for the third time, comfortably edged out incumbent president, John Mahama of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) by almost 10 points. The Electoral Commission of Ghana (ECG) tweeted late on Friday, …

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After conceding defeat, Gambian president makes shocking U-turn, rejects election result

Gambian leader Yahya Jammeh has rejected the result of the presidential election held earlier this month, a week after admitting defeat. Speaking on state TV on Friday, Jammeh cited “abnormalities” in the vote and called for fresh elections. Jammeh, who came to power in a military coup in 1994, suffered a shock defeat to Adama Barrow. “After a thorough investigation, …

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