A member of the Board of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), Valentina Mintah, an information technology expert and founder of West Blue Consulting, has emphasized the pressing need for African countries to support and strengthen intra-African trade in line with the goals of the Africa Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA). The AfCTFA was signed into law in 2018 and lowers intra-border restrictions across the continent alongside other economic incentives to encourage trade between countries on the continent.
Ms. Mintah noted that despite the current global health and economic crisis, Africa should not be overwhelmed but leverage on the numerous opportunities that abound in the continent.
Go deeper: For many African countries, most of their trade is still with global trading partners. This will not change in the near future and neither will their commodity dependence. It is the leadership that must change hands and look inwards to a more unified continent; as Ms Mintah has mentioned.
Missed opportunity as Uganda withdraws from hosting beach soccer AFCON
Uganda has withdrawn from hosting the 2020 Beach Soccer Africa Cup of Nations, and will now have to take part in the qualifiers. This is a huge blow for the East African country’s leadership which is fighting bad press over its restrictive policies.
The beach soccer finals were supposed to be played in December but due to the COVID-19 pandemic, FUFA failed the meet the requirements needed by CAF.
Other details: Following Uganda’s withdrawal from hosting the event, a new call for candidates will be launched to host in 2020 or 2021 but Uganda will now have to take part in the qualifiers.
The decision to name Uganda as the host was taken during the CAF executive committee meeting in Accra, Ghana in 2018, where FUFA president, Moses Magogo represented Uganda.
Lido Beach and Mutoola Beach are some of the venues that were likely to be considered for the competition.
Cameroon govt debunks talks with separatist leaders
The Cameroon government says it is not in any talks with separatist leaders, negating the socia media trend that suggested otherwise.
Even a number of mainstream news outlets including the BBC reported that a government representative had met with some anglophone separatist leaders in the capital Yaounde where they were being incarcerated.
Go deeper: The Anglophone crisis, that has continued for years, has led to the loss of lives, mass destruction of properties and displacement across the two regions accusing the central government of marginalisation. Many have called the country’s absentee president a dictator and the country’s pogroms a genocide.
Nine separatist leaders are currently serving life sentences in a Yaounde prison. The now dismissed talks were held after they were briefly let out of prison to meet a government envoy.
Human rights group decry extrajudicial killings in Burkina Faso
Human Rights Watch (HRW) has denounced recent extrajudicial executions of 180 people in Djibo, northern Burkina Faso.
In a Wednesday report based on testimonies from local residents, the human rights organisation said “mass graves containing at least 180 bodies have been discovered in recent months, and available evidence suggests the involvement of government security forces in mass extrajudicial executions.”
Go deeper: Over the past three years, Burkinabe law enforcement officials have been repeatedly accused of serious abuses and extrajudicial killings of civilians in their fight against jihadist groups.
Burkina Faso is plagued by frequent jihadi attacks, sometimes intertwined with inter-community conflicts. These attacks have killed more than 1,100 people since 2015, and forced nearly a million people to flee their homes.
The lifting of the lockdown and social distancing measures has caused a surge of coronavirus infections in South Africa.
Food and agriculture pundits in Nigeria are championing a course that could birth reforms targeted at forestalling a potential food crisis following the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic.
The African Development Bank (AfDB) has said that 49 million Africans could be pushed into extreme poverty by the coronavirus pandemic.
The Ghanaian president’s office has refuted a newspaper report which claimed that President Nana Akufo-Addo had travelled to the UK to be treated for Covid-19.