Category Archives: Africa

Congo awaiting elections winner

Preliminary results of the presidential election in the Democratic Republic of Congo (RDC) will be delayed past Sunday’s deadline, the head of the election commission said. (Image: illustration).

Corneille Nangaa, the chair of the commission (CENI), notified that they had received half of the vote tally sheets before the weekend, subsequently the outcome of elections was not yet clear.

The Catholic Church, which fielded thousands of observers, declared on 3 of December there was a “clear winner”, however they did not announce the name. The incumbent President Joseph Kabila summoned the conference of bishops (CENCO) in an attempt to avoid any agitation in anticipation of the official results announcemet.

Congo Catholic church exercises influence on elections

The Joseph Kabila government confirmed they are well aware, that the Catholic church had identified Mr. Fayulu as the winner. Kikaya Bin Karubi, a diplomatic adviser to the President Kabila, said in an interview on Friday that the governing coalition party was “aware” that the church had “chosen to publish the winning candidate as Martin Fayulu.”

Barnabe Kikaya bin Karubi, a senior adviser to President Kabila, has already said internet and SMS services were cut to preserve public order after “fictitious results” began circulating on social media.

Donatien Nshole the secretary-general of the church’s bishops’ conference, known as Cenco, said its vote tallies showed a clear victor in election. “The announcement of voting trends by Priest Nshole is likely to brainwash the population while preparing an insurrection that Cenco alone will be responsible for” wrote in a letter to the priest the president of the election commission.

It was at the request of the bishops that the meeting took place this afternoon at the Palais de la Nation, seat of the presidency, in the commune of Gombe in Kinshasa. Representatives of the Catholic Church have warned the Congolese head of state  against any attempt at a constitutional coup d’etat, vairous media claims, however, the meeting took place behind closed doors, and there is no record of the conversation released.

 

Russian sailors abducted near Benin

Six sailors were abducted when pirates attacked a ship with a Russian crew off the coast of Benin (picutred) in West Africa, Russia’s Maritime and River Transport agency confirmed.

The pirates boarded Panama-flagged MSC Mandy early on December 2, Wednesday, Rosmorrechflot said.

There were 23 Russians and one Ukrainian among the crew members. Six sailors were kidnapped by the perpetrators, while the rest remain aboard unharmed.

AMENDED 5.01.2019 A group of armed individuals boarded the MSC Mandu vessel in the Guinea Strait on the night of January 2 and kidnapped six members of the crew: five Russians, and one Ukrainian.

In the Russian Embassy in Benin in West Africa the diplomats commented on information about the abduction of the vessel crew. The diplomatic mission confirmed the incident, citing representatives of the Benin government.

To clarify the situation with the cargo ship MSC Mandy, the Russian Embassy in Benin contacted the relevant authorities. They were informed  by the Navy of Benin,  about the incident on the night of January 1 and 2, when the cargo vessel MSC Mandy, which was located near the territorial waters of Benin was attacked by an armed group <…> The attackers kidnapped six people and escaped. Afterwards the ship navigated into the territorial waters of Nigeria and is currently located five nautical miles from Lagos, said Dyabin Albert, first secretary of the Russian Embassy in Benin.

According to preliminary information, on board of the ship MSC Mandy, there were 26 people, including 20 Russians, four Ukrainians and two citizens of Georgia. Armed with firearms attackers, a group of 7-9 people, climbed onto a ship sailing under the flag of Panama, and committed a robbery and kidnapping.

Now the consular departments in Nigeria and Benin are working on the issue of the release of people abducted by pirates. There are some indications, making investigators suggest the attackers were Somalian pirates.

 

 

 

DR Congo votes for new President

Polling stations opened in Democratic Republic of Congo on Sunday, December 30, for a presidential election that is meant to lead to the country’s first democratic transfer of power.

Due to the time difference, voting started an hour earlier in eastern parts of the  country. The last polls are scheduled to close at 1700 (1600 GMT), although voting will continue for those still in line.

President Joseph Kabila, ruling since his father’s assassination in 2001, is due to step down after the vote in a milestone change for a country suffering from authoritarian rule, coups and civil wars since independence from Belgium in 1960.

Kabila’s agreement to respect the constitutional term limits should represent progress for Congo and the continent.

Critics say the vote will be plagued by fraud, and that Kabila could continue to rule via his close allies. Formally he can also come back again for presidency in 2023.

There are reports of high turnout of the electorate in different places.

The citizens of areas excluded for Ebols risks decided to organise their own plebiscite, in spite of exclusion.

 

Congo Martin Fayulu leads in polls

The opposition candidate Martin Fayulu is a absolute favorite to win Democratic Republic of Congo’s delayed election on December 30, while the government candidate is only at third place, according to a recent poll.

The polls reveal an electorate eager for change. A large majority supports the opposition,” Congo Research Group (CRG), which commissioned the polling on which the survey was based, said in a statement.

Fayulu, a former Exxon Mobil manager is a new face in politics, but his star was rising swiftly when he became a joint candidate of an opposition coalition in November, but extensive campaigning, including plagued with Ebola eastern regions, has since lifted his reputation.

 

 

Abducted Polish sailors freed

All of the crew abducted by pirates from a container ship off the coast of Nigeria in October, including eight Polish nationals, are safe and will be reunited with their families, Poland Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

We would like to thank the shipowner, its co-workers and advisers for their professional handling of this difficult matter. We are grateful also to the Nigerian authorities,” the statement said.

The culprits targeted the MV Pomerenia Sky, a container ship owned by Midocean (IOM) Ltd and headed for the Nigerian port of Onne, in October.

Abductions are common in Nigeria and the Gulf of Guinea. The Polish Foreign Ministry said it was the fifth abduction of Polish citizens there since 2013.

S.Africa ensures minimum wage

South Africa’s new national minimum wage will take effect from January 2019, President Cyril Ramaphosa said, ensuring workers earn $1.42 an hour. 

We are here to declare that from the 1st of January in 2019, the national minimum wage shall be introduced. No worker in South Africa may be paid below the national minimum wage,” Ramaphosa said at an event in the township of Soweto.

Last month he signed into law the national minimum wage bill, in an efforts of the government to deal with wage inequality in South Africa.

The National Minimum Wage Act sets the minimum wage at 20 rand ($1.42) an hour, equal to 3,500 rand per month.

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