Home » 2018 » February (Page 7)

ZIMBABWE GETS PERMISSION TO ERECT BOB MARLEY STATUE

HARARE-- As Jamaica prepares to celebrate the birth of world-renowned Reggae icon, Bob Marley, Zimbabwe has been given the go-ahead to have a statue erected in his honor.Bob Marley famously performed at Zimbabwe's independence celebrations in 1980, mak...
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Poor Rains and Crop Infestation Threaten Deeper Hunger Across Southern Africa

Photo: WFP/Jonathan Dumont 

JOHANNESBURG – The twin scourges of another prolonged dry spell and an invasive crop-eating worm are set to sharply curtail harvests across southern Africa, driving millions of people – most of them children – into severe hunger, warns the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP).

The warning follows an alert by regional food security experts that “erratic rainfall, high temperatures and persistent Fall Army Worm infestation…are likely to have far-reaching consequences on access to adequate food and nutrition” over the next 12-15 months.

The alert, by officials from the 14-nation Southern African Development Community (SADC), the Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWSNET), UN agencies and non-governmental organisations (NGOs), listed Botswana, Malawi, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Madagascar, Zambia and South Africa as the worst-affected countries.

The dry spell, which started in October, has caused crops to wilt. Pasture has also suffered, threatening the survival of livestock herds. 
 
Even if there is above-average rainfall over coming months, much of the damage to crops is irreversible. 

“Given that the region has barely emerged from three years of very damaging El Niño -induced drought, this is a particularly cruel blow”, says Brian Bogart, WFP’s Regional Programme Advisor. “But it shows how important it is to address the root causes of hunger and malnutrition in the face of changing climatic conditions”.

There are now fears for another rise in the number of people in the region needing emergency food and nutrition assistance – this fell from a peak of 40 million during the 2014-2016 El Niño crisis to 26 million last year.

The humanitarian community is now working with governments, SADC and other partners to assess the extent of the damage and its likely impact on those most at risk in the region.  

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WFP is the world's largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide, delivering food assistance in emergencies and working with communities to improve nutrition and build resilience. Each year, WFP assists some 80 million people in around 80 countries.

For more information please contact (email address: firstname.lastname@wfp.org):
Gerald Bourke, WFP/Johannesburg, Tel. +27 11 517 1577, Mob. +27 82 908 1417 
David Orr, WFP/Rome, Tel. +39 06 6513 3179, Mob. +39 340 246 6831
Steve Taravella, WFP/New York, Tel. +1-646-556-6909, Mob. +1-202-770-5993
Francis Mwanza, WFP/London, Tel.  +44 20 3857 7411, Mob.  +44 7968 008474
Challiss McDonough, WFP/Washington DC, Tel. +1-202-653-1149, Mob. +1-202-774-4026

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Poor Rains and Crop Infestation Threaten Deeper Hunger Across Southern Africa

JOHANNESBURG The twin scourges of another prolonged dry spell and an invasive crop-eating worm are set to sharply curtail harvests across southern Africa, driving millions of people � most of them children � into severe hunger, warns the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP).

The warning follows an alert by regional food security experts that erratic rainfall, high temperatures and persistent Fall Army Worm infestationare likely to have far-reaching consequences on access to adequate food and nutrition over the next 12-15 months.

The alert, by officials from the 14-nation Southern African Development Community (SADC), the Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWSNET), UN agencies and non-governmental organisations (NGOs), listed Botswana, Malawi, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Madagascar, Zambia and South Africa as the worst-affected countries.

The dry spell, which started in October, has caused crops to wilt. Pasture has also suffered, threatening the survival of livestock herds.

Even if there is above-average rainfall over coming months, much of the damage to crops is irreversible.

Given that the region has barely emerged from three years of very damaging El NiAo -induced drought, this is a particularly cruel blow, says Brian Bogart, WFP's Regional Programme Advisor. But it shows how important it is to address the root causes of hunger and malnutrition in the face of changing climatic conditions.

There are now fears for another rise in the number of people in the region needing emergency food and nutrition assistance � this fell from a peak of 40 million during the 2014-2016 El NiAo crisis to 26 million last year.

The humanitarian community is now working with governments, SADC and other partners to assess the extent of the damage and its likely impact on those most at risk in the region.

Source: World Food Programme

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AACSB Announces the 2018 Class of Influential Leaders

Third annual Influential Leaders Challenge celebrates 29 change-makers and their impact on global issues TAMPA, Florida, Feb. 8, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — Today, AACSB International—The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB), the world’s largest business education network, celebrated the positive impact business school graduates are making in communities around the globe as part of the 2018 Influential […]
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What’s Next for South Africa’s Embattled Zuma? Court, Probably

South African President Jacob Zuma is likely to end his presidency the same way he started it: mired in corruption charges.

In 2009, just two weeks before Zuma led the African National Congress to victory at the polls, the National Prosecuting Authority dropped an eight-year-old corruption case against him. Politically, however, that case never went away: The opposition vowed not to let the matter drop, and has since used it to illustrate its lack of faith in the president through eight no-confidence votes in relation to his alleged corrupt acts before and during his presidency.

The ANC's parliamentary majority has allowed him to survive each of those votes, but the latest one, in August, gave him a lean margin of 198 to 177.

Since Zuma was replaced as head of the ruling party in December, the ANC has turned against him, and a looming no-confidence vote scheduled for February 22 may succeed � if the ANC leadership doesn't convince him to step down first.

Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa, who took over as party leader when Zuma's term expired, this week met privately with Zuma after a series of high-level party meetings that did not produce Zuma's resignation.

"This is a challenging time for our country," Ramaphosa said in a statement this week, after the nation's parliament took the surprising and unprecedented step of postponing the annual State of the Nation address, originally scheduled for Thursday. "Both President Zuma and myself are aware that our people want and deserve closure."

His day in court

Whenever he does leave office, the outgoing president is unlikely to enjoy a quiet retirement.

In recent months, the charges that were dropped nine years ago have threatened to resurface. Last year, the nation's Supreme Court upheld a High Court decision to reinstate the charges, which include 783 counts of corruption over a $2 billion arms deal in the late 1990s.

The national director of public prosecutions, Shaun Abrahams � long seen as a close Zuma ally � now has to decide whether to reinstate the charges. Separately, Zuma faces an investigation into his actions with a powerful Indian family that is accused of unduly influencing South Africa's government.

And so, says analyst Daniel Silke, director of the Political Futures consultancy, Zuma's future looks cloudy.

"The future for President Zuma is indeed going to be rocky," he told VOA from Cape Town. "It's highly unlikely that he'll be able to strike any sort of deal which will prevent the legal process from attacking him. ... This is going to be an expensive business for Jacob Zuma and, of course, the investigations going forward in the courts could potentially uncover even more wrongdoings, or alleged wrongdoings from the president."

'The sooner the better'

But that, Zuma's detractors say, is not the only reason to remove him. South Africa faces general elections in 2019, when Zuma's second term is scheduled to end. In recent municipal and national elections, the ruling party has steadily lost ground as Zuma's popularity has fallen.

In 2016 municipal polls, the party lost control of three major metropolitan areas. With just over a year before the national elections, ANC leaders are aware they need to act fast to keep voters backing the party that has, for so long, dominated national politics.

"We were saying to President Zuma on Sunday that we don't want two centers of power; we want President Ramaphosa to take control not only of the ANCS but [also] the affairs of the state," ANC treasurer general Paul Mashatile told investors earlier this week at an annual mining industry gathering in Cape Town.

"Our view as the leadership of the ANC is that the sooner the president of the republic steps down for the new leadership to take overS the better because then you have certainty of policyS of direction there will be no confusion," he said.

Source: Voice of America

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What’s Next for South Africa’s Embattled Zuma? Court, Probably

South African President Jacob Zuma is likely to end his presidency the same way he started it: mired in corruption charges.

In 2009, just two weeks before Zuma led the African National Congress to victory at the polls, the National Prosecuting Authority dropped an eight-year-old corruption case against him. Politically, however, that case never went away: The opposition vowed not to let the matter drop, and has since used it to illustrate its lack of faith in the president through eight no-confidence votes in relation to his alleged corrupt acts before and during his presidency.

The ANC's parliamentary majority has allowed him to survive each of those votes, but the latest one, in August, gave him a lean margin of 198 to 177.

Since Zuma was replaced as head of the ruling party in December, the ANC has turned against him, and a looming no-confidence vote scheduled for February 22 may succeed � if the ANC leadership doesn't convince him to step down first.

Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa, who took over as party leader when Zuma's term expired, this week met privately with Zuma after a series of high-level party meetings that did not produce Zuma's resignation.

"This is a challenging time for our country," Ramaphosa said in a statement this week, after the nation's parliament took the surprising and unprecedented step of postponing the annual State of the Nation address, originally scheduled for Thursday. "Both President Zuma and myself are aware that our people want and deserve closure."

His day in court

Whenever he does leave office, the outgoing president is unlikely to enjoy a quiet retirement.

In recent months, the charges that were dropped nine years ago have threatened to resurface. Last year, the nation's Supreme Court upheld a High Court decision to reinstate the charges, which include 783 counts of corruption over a $2 billion arms deal in the late 1990s.

The national director of public prosecutions, Shaun Abrahams � long seen as a close Zuma ally � now has to decide whether to reinstate the charges. Separately, Zuma faces an investigation into his actions with a powerful Indian family that is accused of unduly influencing South Africa's government.

And so, says analyst Daniel Silke, director of the Political Futures consultancy, Zuma's future looks cloudy.

"The future for President Zuma is indeed going to be rocky," he told VOA from Cape Town. "It's highly unlikely that he'll be able to strike any sort of deal which will prevent the legal process from attacking him. ... This is going to be an expensive business for Jacob Zuma and, of course, the investigations going forward in the courts could potentially uncover even more wrongdoings, or alleged wrongdoings from the president."

'The sooner the better'

But that, Zuma's detractors say, is not the only reason to remove him. South Africa faces general elections in 2019, when Zuma's second term is scheduled to end. In recent municipal and national elections, the ruling party has steadily lost ground as Zuma's popularity has fallen.

In 2016 municipal polls, the party lost control of three major metropolitan areas. With just over a year before the national elections, ANC leaders are aware they need to act fast to keep voters backing the party that has, for so long, dominated national politics.

"We were saying to President Zuma on Sunday that we don't want two centers of power; we want President Ramaphosa to take control not only of the ANCS but [also] the affairs of the state," ANC treasurer general Paul Mashatile told investors earlier this week at an annual mining industry gathering in Cape Town.

"Our view as the leadership of the ANC is that the sooner the president of the republic steps down for the new leadership to take overS the better because then you have certainty of policyS of direction there will be no confusion," he said.

Source: Voice of America

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