Africa at a glance

Friday June 7 2019

A man is arrested during a demonstration in

A man is arrested during a demonstration in front of the Liberian Police Headquarters in Monrovia on June 5, 2019, ahead of a large anti-government protest expected on Friday. The Council of Patriots has called the protests over massive corruption and rising cost of living, two issues President George Weah vowed to tackle on election in October 2017. PHOTO | ZOOM DOSSO | AFP  

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  • Ethiopia PM in Sudan over crisis

Ethiopian prime minister Abiy Ahmed is in Sudan to hold talks with the ruling military council and the opposition alliance.

A source in the protest movement said they had received invitation to attend a meeting at the Ethiopian embassy in Khartoum on Friday morning.

The mediation follows the suspension of Sudan by the AU after a crackdown left 61 protesters dead. Independent sources put the death toll at more than 100.

  • Liberia's Weah faces key test with protests over economy

Liberian President George Weah faces a key test on Friday when demonstrators take to the streets of Monrovia to protest at inflation and corruption, the economic beasts he vowed to tame when he ascended to the presidency 18 months ago.


A possible violent showdown with police or prolonged disruption is feared as thousands are expected to turn out in the demonstrations.

The protest coalition, calling itself the Council of Patriots, comprises politicians, professions, students and ordinary members of the public.

  • Malawi president accuses opposition of wanting to 'overthrow govt by force'

Malawi President Peter Mutharika has accused the opposition of wanting to "overthrow the government by force".
Backers of the opposition Malawi Congress Party (MCP) reject the outcome of the May 21 election in which their leader Lazarus Chakwera lost by 159,000 votes.

In a national address broadcast on Thursday accused Chakwera, a reverend, of calling for violence and a blood bath.

MCP supporters held peaceful demonstrations across the capital, Lilongwe, on Wednesday but were dispersed by teargas.

  • Algeria interim leader calls for 'dialogue' over election

Interim Algerian president Abdelkader Bensalah on Thursday called for "dialogue" after the authorities ruled out holding a planned election on July 4.

Bensalah said the "inclusive dialogue" would involve political leaders and civil society with the aim of settling a new election date.

The vote for a successor to ousted president Abdelaziz Bouteflika was pushed back after the only two candidates - Abdelhakim Hamadi and Hamid Touahri - failed to qualify.

  • Nigeria shuts private TV, radio close to opposition

Nigeria's broadcasting authority said Thursday it had shut down a private radio and a television station both owned by a key opposition figure over alleged bias in their broadcasts.

The National Broadcasting Commission(NBC) said it suspended the license of the Daar Communications Plc, owners of the African Independent Television(AIT) and RayPower FM radio for breach of the broadcast codes following two year of summons.

The two broadcast stations are owned by a business tycoon Raymond Dokpesi who is also a key member of opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

He accuses the authority of intimidating the media on the instructions of President Muhammadu Buhari.

  • Bloomberg pledges $500m to clean energy in 'fight of our time'

US billionaire Michael Bloomberg, 77, said Thursday he will spend half a billion dollars in the "fight of our time" to move the US away from carbon energy and combat climate change.
The former New York mayor and philanthropist said the $500 million investment will go toward launching the Beyond Carbon initiative, which aims to close nearly 250 coal plants throughout the country by 2030 and prevent new ones being built.
The camapign means he has pledged a total $1 billion toward fighting climate change, including the 2011 Beyond Coal effort, which has so far closed 289 coal plants in the US.

  • Gas surges globally as green groups cry foul

Demand for gas surged by 4.6 per cent worldwide in 2018, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA) annual report, the fastest increase since 2010.

Gas also accounted for nearly half of the total increase in worldwide energy consumption, prompting concern from environmental groups over the fuel's climate impact.

The surge in natural gas, a fossil fuel that is just cleaner than coal, was put down to Chinese demand for alternatives to coal.

The report said gas had helped in reducing air pollution and limiting the rise of greenhouse gas emissions but environmentalists say the scientific case for slashing fossil fuel use is stronger.

  • BP denies BBC accusations over Senegal gas deal

BP has denied the conclusions of a BBC investigation that the oil major's gas deal with Senegal would deprive the West African state of badly-needed income.

The investigation has caused an outcry in the impoverished country, where oil and gas finds over the past five years have stoked public expectations of a bonanza.

BP purchased the rights to shares in two gas fields in Senegalese waters that had been acquired in 2012 by the Timis Corporation, controlled by an Australian-Romanian businessman, Frank Timis.

BP paid $250 million (222 million euros) to Timis Corp. together with a commitment to pay royalties of around $10 billion over 40 years, the report said.

BP's head in Senegal, Geraud Moussarie, said the documents BBC relied on were not authentic having been "produced by another party."

  • WHO alarmed at STD spread in the era of dating apps

The World Health Organization says no progress has been made since 2012 in curbing sexually transmitted diseases because of complacency despite increased sexual activity.

In a report, said each day brought more than one million new cases of treatable sexually transmitted diseases (STD) or infections (STI).

More than 376 million new cases of chlamydia, gonorrhoea, trichomoniasis and syphilis were registered around the world in 2016; the same number in its study four years earlier.

The stagnation is attributed to online dating apps spurring sexual activity and declining condom use as people believe they can get antiretroviral drugs that manage HIV/AIDS.

  • Chinese artists set new records at Paris auction

Paintings by two of the "Three Musketeers" of Chinese art, Chu Teh-Chun and Zao Wou-Ki, have set new records, going for nearly 10 million euros ($11.2 million) at a Paris auction.

The abstract work "Synthese hivernale C" by Chu went for more than 5.17 million euros, five times its estimate in an Artcurial sale late Wednesday.

Zao's work "24.1.61/62" went under the hammer for more than 4.6 million euros in the same Artcurial auction, four times what it was expected to sell for.

With Wu Guanzhong, the pair are known as the "Three Musketeers" of Chinese art.

  • CAF president Ahmad questioned by French authorities

The president of the Confederation of African Football (CAF) Ahmad Ahmad was questioned Thursday by French investigators, according to reports, over a breach of contract with Puma.

France Jeune Afrique magazine said Ahmad was asked about allegations that CAF unilaterally broke a contract with German sports merchandise giant Puma, before signing a merchandise deal with a French supplier.

FIFA said it had "taken note" of the questioning but was "unaware of the details surrounding this investigation."

  • US billionaire Commisso buys Italian club Fiorentina

Italian-American media magnate Rocco Commisso on Thursday completed the takeover of Serie A team Fiorentina from the Della Valle family , the Italian club announced.

The deal is reported to be worth in the region of 170 million euros ($190 million).

Commisso, 69, is chairman of cable television provider Mediacom group, and owns New York Cosmos soccer club.

He had in recent years tried to buy AC Milan.