Scam, kidnap by South African police

Scam, kidnap by South African police

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Scam, kidnap by South African police

Scam, kidnap by South African police

 
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June 8, 2011. The Consul General for Angola moved from her job in New York to a consular position in Houston. Dr Chika Onyeani, above, gave a speech in recognition of the great work she has been doing in African communities. Dr Chika Onyeani publishes African Sun Times, and is a prolific writer of intellectual works.

Pictures of dancers above right and on Aug Daily Updates. Also on Aug Daily Updates, picture of the Consul General Mrs Julia Machado Esq with Princess Tosin Mustapha and Dr Susanna.
The Republic of Angola
Flag and map from Wikipedia

The Portuguese colonized Angola, and left in 1975, and a civil war started which ended in 2002. Angola has a lot of oil, a lot of minerals and a lot of poverty. They banned Islam in 2013.

Latest Top (10) News


El virus gana impulso en América Latina
La desigualdad, las ciudades densamente pobladas, las legiones de trabajadores informales y los débiles sistemas de atención médica han socavado los esfuerzos gubernamentales de combate a la pandemia.

Wed, 24 Jun 2020 18:10:40 GMT


Virus Gains Steam Across Latin America
Inequality, densely packed cities, legions of informal workers and weak health care systems have undermined efforts to fight the pandemic, as some governments have fumbled the response.

Tue, 23 Jun 2020 16:28:35 GMT


Los gobiernos hablan, el crimen dispone
La nueva normalidad podría ser una versión empeorada de la cruda normalidad antes del coronavirus en América Latina. Se corre el riesgo de que la crisis contraiga aún más el alcance de unos Estados frágiles y los grupos del crimen organizado ganen espacios.

Mon, 22 Jun 2020 12:00:10 GMT


Una tormenta azotará las democracias latinoamericanas
Las políticas de austeridad para responder a la pandemia podrían traer a la región males mayores al que buscan conjurar.

Mon, 15 Jun 2020 12:00:08 GMT


Cómo evitar que las cárceles de América Latina se conviertan en una incubadora del coronavirus
Reducir la sobrepoblación penitenciaria es crucial para evitar un contagio generalizado en las prisiones de la región. Los gobiernos y los jueces deben actuar con urgencia.

Thu, 21 May 2020 14:41:29 GMT


Nayib Bukele, el joven presidente que prometió cambiar El Salvador, gobierna con mano dura
El mandatario ganó las elecciones al presentarse como un líder transformador que haría avanzar al país. Sus críticos dicen que ahora, al apoyarse en el ejército, se parece a los autócratas del pasado.

Wed, 06 May 2020 18:49:09 GMT


Young Leader Vowed Change in El Salvador but Wields Same Heavy Hand
Elected as a transformative leader who would propel the country forward, Nayib Bukele is now reminding critics of the country’s past autocrats, with his reliance on the military.

Tue, 05 May 2020 22:25:46 GMT


Bukele, el autoritario
Ninguna democracia puede funcionar como funciona El Salvador ahora mismo: el presidente tuitea y los militares salen a las calles a cumplir la orden.

Mon, 20 Apr 2020 14:28:48 GMT


El virus disminuye la criminalidad en América Latina (por ahora)
Con la suspensión de actividades y las órdenes de inamovilidad en buena parte de la región hay menos personas en los espacios públicos y las calles son más fáciles de vigilar.

Mon, 13 Apr 2020 18:39:04 GMT


Murder Rates Were Staggering. The Virus Has Brought Some Quiet, for Now.
With businesses and commercial activity all but shut down, there are fewer people outdoors, making the streets easier to police and less likely to be zones of criminal opportunity and conflict.

Sat, 11 Apr 2020 09:00:20 GMT

Latest Top (10) News


Congo central bank keeps 2020 economic growth forecast at -2.4%
(Reuters) - The Democratic Republic of Congo’s central bank kept its 2020 economic growth forecast unchanged at -2.4% because of the uncertainty over the COVID-19 pandemic. ,

“This situation has contributed to weakening growth prospects both globally and regionally,” the central bank said in a statement.

 

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Sun, 12 Jul 2020 07:17:49 GMT


Uganda cracks down on media ahead of elections in 2021, watchdog says
IGANGA, Uganda (Reuters) - - Uganda’s security forces are cracking down on authors and journalists who challenge the 34-year-old rule of President Yoweri Museveni ahead of elections next year, a watchdog told Reuters. ,

The New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) said it documented the cases of 10 journalists and writers assaulted by security personnel, detained, or charged with offences to do with their work this year, compared to four such cases last year.

 

“Police and the military have turned political reporting into a dangerous assignment,” said Muthoki Mumo, the committee’s representative for sub-Saharan Africa.

 

Calls seeking comment to police spokesman Fred Enanga, information minister Judith Nabakooba and presidential spokesman Don Wanyama were not answered.

 

Presidential elections are scheduled for early next year. Opposition leaders say the clampdown makes campaigning even harder after the government forbade mass rallies, citing the spread of the new coronavirus.

 

“It will be near to impossible to campaign,” said opposition legislator Asuman Basalirwa, pointing out that most television and radios stations are pro-government.

 

Satirical Ugandan author Kakwenza Rukirabashaija, 32, said he was arrested in April and interrogated for five days in the Ministry of Defence Headquarters in Mbuya about whether his novel “The Greedy Barbarian” is a satire of Museveni.

 

He was beaten with a baton, punched in the face, and chained up, he said, showing Reuters scars and a scan of a damaged kidney he said came from the torture.

 

“I was like, tomorrow I will tell them anything because I am going to die... my body became numb, the blood stopped flowing,” he told Reuters, his voice trembling. “I prayed… bless my family, my wife and children.”

 

He was eventually charged over Facebook posts that prosecutors said encouraged people to disobey anti-coronavirus measures.

 

Uganda military spokesman Brigadier Richard Karemire said he was unable to comment because he had not spoken to the people who handled Rukirabashaija’s case.

 

Political opponents of Museveni, 75, have frequently been arrested and beaten.

 

University professor Stella Nyanzi’s profanity-laden invectives against Museveni earned her a large online following but also landed her in jail.

 

She was released in February after serving more than a year on cyber harassment charges stemming from anti-Museveni Facebook posts. A popular blogger, Joseph Kabuleta, was arrested last year after calling Museveni a thief. He told local TV he had been stripped and drenched during interrogation.

 

 

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Sun, 12 Jul 2020 07:09:59 GMT


Skin whitening creams remain online despite mercury findings
LONDON (Reuters) - Skin-whitening creams identified as containing potentially dangerous levels of mercury continue to be sold online more than seven months after a watchdog group raised the alarm, including on platforms run by eBay, Amazon.com and Alibaba, a Reuters review of the sites shows. ,

The findings come at a time when skin lightening, a multi-billion dollar industry especially popular in Asia, Africa and the Caribbean, is under renewed criticism for promoting light skin as a beauty ideal. Many countries ban or restrict mercury in creams, which can damage the kidneys, brain and nervous system. An international ban on manufacturing products with mercury in them comes into effect at end-2020.

 

The Zero Mercury Working Group (ZMWG), an international coalition of non-governmental organizations, issued a report last November that found unacceptable levels of mercury in 95 skin-lightening creams out of 158 samples tested.

 

The tests looked for concentrations of mercury above 1 part per million, the level set in a 2017 global treaty, and found levels ranging from 1.9 to 131,000 ppm.

 

Reuters didn’t independently confirm the levels of mercury found in the brands cited by ZMWG.

 

The samples were sold under more than 20 brand names, mostly by smaller manufacturers in developing countries that had been flagged by governments or in previous testing.

 

Major global brands from the likes of Unilever, L’Oreal and Procter & Gamble were not flagged and were not included.

 

ZMWG bought more than two-thirds of the creams online, including on Flipkart, majority-owned by Walmart; South Africa’s Bidorbuy; Nigeria’s Jumia; and Lazada and Daraz, which are both part of the Alibaba Group and operate in Southeast and South Asia, respectively, as well as on Amazon and eBay, the coalition said. One month after its report came out, ZMWG said that eBay, Lazada and Daraz had pledged to remove its high-mercury product listings but had not done so, while Amazon removed products from its U.S. and EU platforms, but not in India. Reuters checks in late June showed at least 19 listings of the products on different country sites run by all seven e-commerce platforms, however.

 

After Reuters raised the issue, the platforms scrapped most of the specific listings or promised to do so. But as of July 10, brands cited by ZMWG continued to pop up, including on Daraz, Amazon, and eBay.

 

Goree Cosmetics in Pakistan and Bangkok-based Smilephan, two companies whose name brand products were available on several sites and showed high mercury levels, told Reuters they do not use mercury and warned about counterfeits. Smilephan shared with Reuters an ingredient list, test reports from 2019 and 2011 showing no mercury in samples, and copies of certifications it said attest to regular audits. “We strongly believe those are not our original products,” said Songkiat Kulwuthivilas, Smilephan’s assistant managing director. The company no longer sells its Pop Popular brand in Africa because of the excess of counterfeits, he said.

 

EBay said it would sweep its sites to remove listings and update surveillance filters imposed in December that had already blocked 250 listings. “We comply with local restrictions and also we have a long history of partnering with rights owners, industry groups and law enforcement,” eBay spokeswoman Ashley Settle said. Daraz told Reuters it would to take “necessary action” if the listings were found to violate its policies or harm customers. An Amazon spokeswoman in India said the company was investigating, but that on its ‘marketplace,’ responsibility rests solely with the seller.

 

A California judge in 2019 ruled that Amazon was immune from liability for third-party sellers in a case involving warnings about mercury in skin-lightening creams. “Most people buying on Amazon have no idea that Amazon isn’t anything like walking down to your grocery store,” said food safety lawyer Bill Marler.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Sun, 12 Jul 2020 07:07:20 GMT


Nigeria suspends anti-graft chief -attorney general's office
ABUJA (Reuters) - Nigeria has suspended its anti-corruption chief pending the conclusion of investigations, the attorney general’s office said on Friday, without elaborating.,

Ibrahim Magu has been appearing before a presidential panel reviewing activities of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the agency said on Monday.

 

“President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the immediate suspension of Ibrahim Magu as Ag. Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC),” the attorney general’s office said in a statement.

 

The president put EFCC operations director Mohammed Umar in charge pending the outcome of Magu’s case.

 

Buhari has made tackling corruption a priority since taking office in 2015. Endemic graft among the political elite dating back decades has left most Nigerians mired in poverty, despite the country being Africa’s biggest economy and energy producer.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Sun, 12 Jul 2020 07:01:15 GMT


Ethiopia arrests suspects in the killing of popular singer
ADDIS ABABA (Reuters) - Ethiopian authorities said on Friday they had arrested two suspects over the killing of a popular political singer, whose death last week sparked protests in which 166 people were killed.,

The shooting of Haacaaluu Hundeessaa, a musician widely revered among his Oromo ethnic group, ignited protests in Addis Ababa and the surrounding Oromiya region. Prime Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed described his killing as “an evil act”.

 

In a televised statement, Attorney General Adanech Abebe said that the shooter was acting on the orders of an anti-government group, the Oromo Liberation Front (OLF-Shene).

 

The two men who were arrested included the suspected shooter and an accomplice. A third suspect was still at large, Adenech said.

 

“We have arrested those who killed him, and those who collaborated in the killing,” Adanech said in the statement. “We will continue to ensure the rule of law.”

 

The suspects have not yet been charged.

 

Haacaaluu sang in Oromo, the language of Ethiopia’s biggest ethnic group. His killing tapped into grievances fuelled by decades of government repression and what the Oromo describe as their long exclusion from political power.

 

Abiy, himself an Oromo, came to power in 2018 as the first modern Ethiopian leader from that ethnic group, after months of violent demonstrations led to his predecessor’s resignation.

 

The unrest last week was the deadliest since Abiy took office. The prime minister has initiated a broad package of political and economic reforms in what has long been one of the most tightly controlled countries in Africa, and won last year’s Nobel Peace Prize for making peace with neighbouring Eritrea.

 

But the increased freedoms under his leadership have also been accompanied by a rise in ethnic violence, and some Oromo figures say he has not done enough to address their longstanding grievances.

 

 

 

 

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Sun, 12 Jul 2020 06:59:05 GMT


Mali opposition says headquarters raided after mass protest
BAMAKO (Reuters) - Mali’s opposition coalition said security forces had raided its headquarters on Saturday in the wake of violent protests against the president that saw the temporary occupation of state buildings and the arrest of a protest leader.,

On Friday, police fired gunshots and tear gas to disperse protesters who had occupied parliament and the state broadcaster as part of a civil disobedience campaign aimed at forcing President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita to resign for failing to tackle Mali’s security and economic problems.

 

Security forces on Saturday morning targeted the headquarters of CMAS, an opposition movement led by influential Muslim cleric Imam Mahmoud Dicko that is part of the M5-RFP opposition coalition, the group said.

 

“While our activists were in a meeting, they came and attacked and ransacked our headquarters,” M5-RFP spokesman Nouhoum Togo said.

 

One protest leader, Issa Kaou Djim, has been detained and remains in custody, Togo said earlier.

 

There was no immediate comment from police.

 

The protest came after the coalition rejected concessions from Keita aimed at resolving a political stand-off that began after a disputed legislative election in March.

 

Mali’s neighbours and outside powers fear the impasse could further destabilise the country and jeopardise a joint military campaign against Islamist insurgents in the West African Sahel region.

 

Three protesters were killed on Friday and several others seriously wounded, according to the United Nations MINUSMA peacekeeping mission in Mali, whose human rights division monitored the protests.

 

Keita issued a statement deploring the violence and said an investigation would be launched.

 

“However, I would like to reassure our people once again of my desire to continue dialogue and reiterate my readiness to take all measures in my power with a view to calm the situation down,” he said late on Friday.

 

The streets of Bamako appeared largely quiet following the protest. State television ORTM resumed broadcasting after going off air when its building was occupied.

 

Social media platforms Twitter and Facebook were restricted late on Friday, Internet blockage observatory NetBlocks said. Internet access remained patchy on Saturday.

 

 

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Sun, 12 Jul 2020 06:56:43 GMT


Congo justice minister resigns after judicial reform dispute
KINSHASA (Reuters) - The Democratic Republic of Congo’s Justice Minister Celestin Tunda tendered his resignation on Saturday in the wake of a dispute with the president over proposed laws that would give politicians more control over criminal prosecutions. ,

In a televised statement, Tunda gave no reason for his departure, which comes a week after President Felix Tshisekedi privately threatened to fire Tunda if he did not quit, sources close to the president said.

The disagreement over a proposal from Tunda’s political allies to give the justice ministry more control over the judiciary highlighted strains in the coalition between Tshisekedi and his long-serving predecessor Joseph Kabila.

Tshisekedi had said in a speech he would oppose any reforms that undermined the independence of the judiciary.

 

“I leave the government with the conviction that my actions in the ministry of justice made a contribution to the consolidation of the rule of law,” said Tunda, a senior figure in Kabila’s FCC political alliance.

Peter Kazadi of Tshisekedi’s UDPS party said Tunda had sent a letter to parliament approving the judicial reforms without consulting the government.

“His resignation is normal because the minister acted in violation of the line laid down by the government,” Kazadi told Reuters.

Tension mounted in late June when Tunda was briefly detained by police, prompting Prime Minister Sylvestre Ilunga to threaten the government would resign over the matter.

 

His resignation “removes one element of tension between the two camps, but it’s far from the only point of contention,” said Vincent Rouguet at London-based security firm Control Risks. “(It) is not going to be enough to restore collaboration.”

Tshisekedi has struggled to assert himself since forming a coalition government in January 2019 with Kabila, who maintains extensive powers through his parliamentary majority, control of most cabinet ministries and the army.

Friction between their parties has spilt into the streets in recent weeks. On Thursday at least three people including a policeman were killed during protests in Kinshasa and elsewhere over the nomination of an election commission chief.

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Sun, 12 Jul 2020 06:54:39 GMT


Five killed in attack on South African church, hostages freed
JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - Five people were killed in an attack on a church west of Johannesburg in the early hours of Saturday, South African police said, with some of the attackers taking hostages who were later freed.,

 

Police arrested around 40 people and seized 40 firearms, including rifles, shotguns and handguns, related to the attack on the International Pentecost Holiness Church in Zuurbekom, police spokesman Vishnu Naidoo told the eNCA television station.

 

Police earlier posted pictures of some of the confiscated weapons on Twitter, saying they were dealing with a “hostage situation and shooting”.

 

One potential motive for the attack is a power struggle at the church between rival factions, local media reported.

 

“(E)verything was in complete disarray, so we have arrested all those that we reasonably believe are suspects, we are busy interviewing and interrogating them to establish exactly what the motive was,” Naidoo told eNCA.

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Sun, 12 Jul 2020 06:50:12 GMT


Africa could have COVID-19 vaccine in Q1 if human trials work: S.Africa trial lead
JOHANNESBURG - Africa could have a COVID-19 vaccine in the first quarter of 2021 if human trials underway in South Africa succeed, a university professor heading the trials said on Thursday. ,

The ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 experimental vaccine is one of 19 being tested on humans globally in a race to find vaccines to stop a pandemic that has killed more than half a million people so far.

It is also being tested in Brazil by Oxford University scientists who are working with British drugmaker AstraZeneca on development and production.

“A vaccine could be made commercial as early as the beginning of next year,” said Shabir Madhi, professor of vaccinology at University of Witwatersrand who is leading the South African trial.

“But it is completely dependent on the results of clinical trials,” he cautioned, adding that out of the 19 potential vaccines being tried out, the most positive outcome would be if even two succeed.

 

Trials will depend on 2,000 volunteers aged 18-65 years who will be monitored for 12 months after vaccination to asses its efficacy.

Madhi, however, said early results could be seen by November or December.

“The timing of an efficacy read-out depends on when we have approximately 42 Covid-19 cases at least one month after vaccination,” he said.

COVID-19 cases in Africa topped half a million as of Wednesday, with almost 12,000 deaths.

Madhi said governments must put in an upfront purchase order for the potential vaccine.

 

A number of countries, including the United States and several in the European Union, have struck deals with drugmakers to reserve supplies of the experimental vaccines, even before they have been approved.

“(The) big challenge is we are looking at requiring billions of doses of vaccine. It is really going to be how companies can scale up and make it affordable and accessible,” said Pontiano Kaleebu, director at Uganda Virus Research Institute.

African manufacturers have not manufactured a single vaccine in the last 25 years, Madhi said.Reuters

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Sat, 11 Jul 2020 12:31:05 GMT


Uganda cracks down on media ahead of elections in 2021, watchdog says
IGANGA, Uganda - - Uganda?s security forces are cracking down on authors and journalists who challenge the 34-year-old rule of President Yoweri Museveni ahead of elections next year, a watchdog told Reuters. ,

The New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) said it documented the cases of 10 journalists and writers assaulted by security personnel, detained, or charged with offences to do with their work this year, compared to four such cases last year.

“Police and the military have turned political reporting into a dangerous assignment,” said Muthoki Mumo, the committee’s representative for sub-Saharan Africa.

Calls seeking comment to police spokesman Fred Enanga, information minister Judith Nabakooba and presidential spokesman Don Wanyama were not answered.

Presidential elections are scheduled for early next year. Opposition leaders say the clampdown makes campaigning even harder after the government forbade mass rallies, citing the spread of the new coronavirus.

“It will be near to impossible to campaign,” said opposition legislator Asuman Basalirwa, pointing out that most television and radios stations are pro-government.

 

Satirical Ugandan author Kakwenza Rukirabashaija, 32, said he was arrested in April and interrogated for five days in the Ministry of Defence Headquarters in Mbuya about whether his novel “The Greedy Barbarian” is a satire of Museveni.

He was beaten with a baton, punched in the face, and chained up, he said, showing Reuters scars and a scan of a damaged kidney he said came from the torture.

“I was like, tomorrow I will tell them anything because I am going to die... my body became numb, the blood stopped flowing,” he told Reuters, his voice trembling. “I prayed… bless my family, my wife and children.”

He was eventually charged over Facebook posts that prosecutors said encouraged people to disobey anti-coronavirus measures.

Uganda military spokesman Brigadier Richard Karemire said he was unable to comment because he had not spoken to the people who handled Rukirabashaija’s case.

Political opponents of Museveni, 75, have frequently been arrested and beaten.

 

University professor Stella Nyanzi’s profanity-laden invectives against Museveni earned her a large online following but also landed her in jail.

She was released in February after serving more than a year on cyber harassment charges stemming from anti-Museveni Facebook posts. A popular blogger, Joseph Kabuleta, was arrested last year after calling Museveni a thief. He told local TV he had been stripped and drenched during interrogation.Reuters

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Sat, 11 Jul 2020 12:29:03 GMT