Africa at a glance

Tuesday October 15 2019

Mozambican voters wait to cast their ballot at

Mozambican voters wait to cast their ballot at a school during the Mozambican General Elections on October 15, 2019 in Maputo, Mozambique. The ruling Frelimo party of President Filipe Nyusi is expected to win the polls with the main opposition Renamo and its candidade Ossufo Momade expected to take control of at least three of the country's 10 provinces. Provisional results are expected on Thursday. PHOTO | GIANLUIGI GUERCIA | AFP  

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  • Mozambique votes in tense election after restive campaign

Mozambique began voting in a general election on Tuesday that some fear could test the country's fragile peace, after a heated campaign marred by violence and allegations of electoral fraud.

The Frelimo party, which has ruled the southern African nation since independence from Portugal in 1975, is widely expected to again beat its arch-rival Renamo.

President Filipe Nyusi (60), who cast his ballot as polls opened at 7:00 am (0500 GMT), called on voters to show "the world we stand for democracy and tolerance".

Renamo, led by President Nyusi's main challenger Ossufo Momade, 58, is projected to take control of at least three of Mozambique's 10 provinces.

  • Guinea-Bissau court approves 12 candidates for presidential vote

Guinea-Bissau's Supreme Court has approved 12 candidates to contest upcoming presidential elections in the West African state, including incumbent Jose Mario Vaz and representatives of the main political factions.

Vaz is running as an independent in the vote, expected on November 24, as he seeks a second term while seven candidates including Nancy Schwartz, the only female candidate were turned down.

However, they were allowed to appeal to participate in the delayed elections after Vaz's five-year mandate ended on June 23, leaving the country under a mediated caretaker government.

  • Angola President to address Parliament

The economy is expected to take the centerstage when Angola President Joao Lourenco gives a State of the Nation address in Parliament on Tuesday.

The speech will set the tone for the government's legislative and economic agenda and comes months after President Lourenco weeded out of MPLA, the ruling party, a faction allied to former president Eduardo dos Santos.

That means he will focus on stimulating an economy recently hit by drought, HIV/AIDS, erratic commodity prices and corruption which is at the heart of his enmity with the former first family.

  • South Africa ex-president Zuma faces court on corruption charges

South Africa's former president Jacob Zuma is expected in court on corruption charges on Tuesday in what would be the first time he faces trial for graft after years of multiple accusations.

Zuma stands accused of taking kickbacks before he became president from a 51-billion-rand ($3.4 billion) purchase of fighter jets, patrol boats and military equipment manufactured by five European firms, including French defence company Thales.

After several court attempts to block the trial, he will appear before a High Court in the southern eastern city of Pietermaritzburg for the opening of the case in which he allegedly profited four million rand ($270,000).

However, he is expected to appeal last week's ruling that he should stand trial for the matter that is more than two decades old.

  • Nigerian police rescue hundreds from another 'torture house'

Police in northern Nigeria have rescued over 300 young men from an Islamic boarding school where they were chained and sexually abused, the second such operation in a month.

A police team raided the school in Daura in Katsina state after some students escaped from their hostel on Sunday and poured into the streets in protest.

Katsina police chief Sanusi Buba told reporters in Daura on Monday that the young men were chained and tortured.

  • Four protesters feared killed in Guinea clashes with police

Four demonstrators were killed in clashes between security forces and thousands of protesters in the Guinean capital Conakry on Monday as authorities said a gendarme had also been killed during the unrest.

The deaths occured during rallies called to oppose constitutional changes that could enable 81-year-old President Alpha Conde, in office since 2010, to seek a third term in office.

Pockets of violence erupted around the outer districts of Conakry, with some demonstrators setting up barricades, burning tires and throwing stones.

  • S. African police march against gender-based violence

More than a thousand police officers marched against gender-based violence in South Africa's capital Pretoria on Monday after a surge in murders and sexual crimes against women.

There has been a rising outcry against sexist violence in the country over the last two months after a series of murders that shocked the public.

In a sea of blue, police officers at the Pretoria rally held up signs reading "It hurts us as police officers to pick up bodies of women, children and vulnerable groups on a daily basis".

The hashtag #AmINext started trending in South Africa as more than 30 women were killed last month, among them a student from Cape Town who was raped and killed in a post office.

  • African legislators adopt Draft Model Law on Disability

The Pan African Parliament (PAP) has adopted a Draft Model Law on Disability (DMLD) during the PAP Third Ordinary Session of the Fifth Parliament heldin Midrand, South Africa last week.

The Law aims to provide a legal and institutional framework for the protection and promotion of the rights of persons with disabilities, in line with existing international and regional legal and policy instruments.

Zimbabwean representative, Hon Stars Mathe encouraged member states to locally legislate in the area of disability, give free education and health and ensure convenient access in all buildings to people with disabilities.

  • AI accuses Nigeria of stifling freedom of speech, arrest of journalists

Amnesty International (AI) has asked the federal government to investigate and bring to book people found culpable in the arrest of 19 journalists this year on frivolous grounds.

Osai Ojigho, the Country Director, Amnesty International Nigeria, said Nigeria was scoring poorly on human rights and right of information. 

She said media practitioners were facing increased risks for publishing articles and demanding accountability from the authorities.

  • China wants centralised digital currency

China is set to introduce its own digital currency without the anonymity and no-trail benefits that have made cryptocurrencies popular with traders.

Beijing is considering a tightly regulated e-cash system that would allow the government and the central bank to see what people spend their money on, according to analysts.

They said it would be run by The People's Bank of China whose governor Yi Gang said in September the currency may be associated with the country's existing e-payment platforms such as WeChat and AliPay phone apps

  • Zimbabwe readmitted as International Cricket Council member

Cricket chiefs readmitted Zimbabwe as an International Cricket Council member on Monday following a three-month suspension over political interference.

An ICC statement said the move followed a meeting in Dubai involving the Zimbabwe Cricket chairman Tavengwa Mukuhlani and sports minister, Kirsty Coventry.

Zimbabwe will now be able to take up their place in the men's Under-19 World Cup in January and the ICC Super League later in 2020.