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Africa

Guineans overwhelmingly vote to back controversial new constitution

Issued on: 28/03/2020 – 07:21Modified: 28/03/2020 – 07:21 Guinea has voted to back a contested new constitution, the countrys electoral body said Friday, in a blow to President Alpha Condes opponents who fear the reforms are a ploy to extend his grip on power. Advertising Read more The proposal to change the constitution was hugely controversial in the West African state, spurring mass demonstrations in which at last 32 people have been killed, according to an AFP tally. Independent National Electoral Commission president, Amadou Salifou Kebe, told reporters that 91.59 percent of ballots were in favour of adopting the new constitution, while 8.41 percent were against. Turnout was 61 percent, he added, saying that these were provisional figures. The vote was originally planned for March 1 but was postponed until March 22 because of international criticism of its fairness. The authorities went ahead with it after scrubbing some 2.5 million unverifiable names from its electora..

Africa

South Africa reports first coronavirus deaths as unprecedented lockdown begins

Issued on: 27/03/2020 – 10:03Modified: 27/03/2020 – 10:04 South Africa on Friday reported its first COVID-19 deaths, just as the country joined other African nations in imposing strict curfews and shutdowns to halt the spread of the deadly coronavirus. Advertising Read more “This morning we wake South Africans up with sad news that we now have our first deaths resulting from COVID-19,” Health Minister Zweli Mkhize said in a statement. He said the two people died in the Western Cape province, as the country went under a nationwide 21-day lockdown that took effect at midnight. The minister promised to release more details later “when we announce the latest confirmed COVID-19 cases, which have increased from yesterdays number and have tipped the 1,000 mark”. On Friday, just hours after the country embarked on the nationwide military-patrolled lockdown, South Africa reported 927 confirmed cases, a more than 30 percent jump from the previous day. Some 57 million people have been..

Africa

Coronavirus: France 24 speaks to Africa’s leading virologist

Issued on: 26/03/2020 – 21:49 There are now over 3,000 cases of the coronavirus across Africa. Forty-six of the continent's 54 countries have the virus. Eye on Africa has an exclusive interview with one of Africa's leading virologists, Professor Jean-Jacques Muyembe, now in charge of his country's response to the novel coronavirus. Advertising There has been a significant upsurge in the number of cases of COVID-19 in Africa this week – with 11 new countries confirming cases, according to the WHO. There is now growing concern about the continent's ability to keep the epidemic under control and protect its population. Our correspondent in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Clément Bonnerot, has an exclusive interview with a leading virologist. Professor Jean-Jacques Muyembe. Professor Muyembe was part of the team that first discovered Ebola in the 1970s, he explains how the lessons learned from the recent outbreak will be used to tackle COVID-19. We also lo..

Africa

Malian opposition leader kidnapped ahead of general elections

Issued on: 26/03/2020 – 16:13Modified: 26/03/2020 – 16:13 Mali's government said on Thursday that leading opposition figure Soumaila Cisse had been kidnapped in the West African nation's volatile centre, just days before a long-delayed parliamentary poll. Advertising Read more In an unprecedented first for a Malian politician of his rank, unidentified gunmen kidnapped Cisse and his team on Wednesday afternoon, his party said. The Union for the Republic and Democracy (URD) party sounded the alarm later on Wednesday after Cisse failed to turn up to an appointment and was no longer answering his phone. Cisse is a former finance minister and has run for the presidency three times. The circumstances of his disappearance remain unclear, but the government and URD members have said it was a kidnapping. On Thursday morning, URD spokesman Demba Traore told reporters that Cisse was travelling with a group of 12 people on two jeeps when unidentified gunmen took them. Fi..

Africa

Mali on lockdown as first coronavirus cases reported, but parliamentary elections to go ahead

Issued on: 26/03/2020 – 01:32Modified: 26/03/2020 – 01:32 Malian President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita announced a nationwide night-time curfew on Wednesday to limit the spread of coronavirus, but said a parliamentary vote planned for this week will go ahead. Advertising Read more In a televised address, Keita said the government will enforce a curfew between 21:00 to 05:00, from Thursday, and close land borders in response to the virus. Freight will still be allowed into the West African state, he said, and markets will remain open. Earlier on Wednesday, Malian authorities recorded the country's first coronavirus infections, in two nationals who had recently arrived from France. Experts fear the country is particularly exposed to an outbreak because of its jihadist conflict, which first broke out in the north in 2012 and has since engulfed the centre. Thousands of soldiers and civilians have died in the conflict, and swathes of Mali's territory remain outside state ..

Africa

Coronavirus cases quickly rising across Africa

Issued on: 25/03/2020 – 22:24 There are now more than 2,400 confirmed cases of the coronavirus across Africa, and there have been over 60 reported deaths. Many governments on the continent have enacted strict measures to slow the spread of the pandemic, closing borders and asking their citizens to stay home. But for people living in close quarters, social distancing or self-isolation are not possible. Advertising We look at the difficult situation in Ivory Coast, where authorities know that social distancing in popular areas will be difficult if not impossible. Our reporter in DR Congo tells us how the country is coping after President Tshisekedi closed borders and declared a state of emergency to diminish the spread of COVID-19. The capital Kinshasa is now cut off from the rest of the country. In other news, nearly a hunRead More – Source [contf] [contfnew] france24 [contfnewc] [contfnewc]

Africa

South Africa prepares to go into lockdown as coronavirus cases top 700

Issued on: 25/03/2020 – 11:22Modified: 25/03/2020 – 11:22 South Africa's coronavirus cases jumped again to 709, the health minister said Wednesday, as the country with the most cases in Africa prepared to go into lockdown first thing Friday. Advertising Read more Health Minister Zweli Mkhize on state television pointed out “intense local spread” in Free State province among attendees of a church gathering where five cases were reported. All five in people who had recently traveled abroad. Now almost 30 cases have been recorded. Cases across Africa are now well above 2,400. With Libya announcing its first case, 44 of the continent's 54 countries now have the virus. Those that have not recorded cases are Mali, Guinea-Bissau, Sierra Leone, South Sudan, Burundi, Malawi, Botswana, Comoros, Lesotho and Sao Tome and Principe, according to the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Some have the most fragile health systems on the continent. Congo became the la..

Africa

DR Congo president imposes state of emergency to contain coronavirus outbreak

Issued on: 25/03/2020 – 09:17Modified: 25/03/2020 – 09:17 The president of the Democratic Republic of Congo closed the countrys borders and imposed a state of emergency on Tuesday to contain the coronavirus outbreak, following other African nations that have imposed strict measures in recent days. Advertising Read more The virus is spreading quickly across Africa, infecting more than 1,700 people across 45 countries, challenging already fragile healthcare systems. Senegal and Ivory Coast on Monday declared their own states of emergency, imposing curfews and travel restrictions on their populations. Over 40 people have contracted the virus in the DRC and three have been killed, raising concerns of a widespread outbreak, especially in the crowded capital Kinshasa where social distancing is an alien phenomenon. "Coronavirus does not need a passport, visa or voter's card to circulate in our house," President Felix Read More – Source [contf] [contfnew] france24 [contfnewc] ..

Africa

Boko Haram kills almost 100 soldiers in a seven-hour attack in Chad

Issued on: 25/03/2020 – 02:17 Boko Haram jihadists have killed nearly 100 Chadian soldiers in a seven-hour attack on an island army base, in their deadliest assault yet on the country's armed forces. Advertising Read more President Idriss Deby told Chad television he travelled to the scene of the attack on Tuesday to pay tribute to the 92 dead soldiers, saying it was the first time so many troops had been lost. The attack early Monday morning in Boma, Lac province, is part of an expanding jihadist campaign in the vast, marshy Lake Chad area, where the borders of Cameroon, Chad, Niger and Nigeria converge. Boko Haram launched an insurgency in Nigeria in 2009 before beginning incursions in its neighbouring countries to the east. "We lost 92 of our soldiers, non-commissioned officers and officers," in the attack in Boma, the president said. "It's the first time we have lost so many men," he said. The attack on soldiers on the Boma peninsula lasted at least seven ho..

Africa

Coronavirus: Africa mourns Manu Dibango

Issued on: 24/03/2020 – 22:02 Afro-jazz legend Manu Dibango passed away in a Parisian hospital after contracting Covid-19 at the age of 86. We look at how the veteran artist had become an ambassador for African music around the globe. Advertising The Cameroonian star was one of the pioneers of Afro Jazz, known for fusing funk, soul, congolese rumba with traditional Cameroonian music and even French chanson. Africans and music-lovers around the world mourn his death. Also on the show, we look at the continent's growing response to the coronavirus pandemic – 43 out of the 54 states on the continent now have confirmed cases. Africa CDC says that more than 2,000 people have tested positive so far. As cases rises, more and more nation's are implementing lockdowns and curfews. Most states Read More – Source [contf] [contfnew] france24 [contfnewc] [contfnewc]

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