African countries should pay more attention to online gender based violence

By Annah Nafula

Experts say lack of data may be a hindrance to intervention on the increased domestic violence during this COVID-19 induced lock down.

In a report released by a Civic technology organization, Pollicy and partners, it was discovered that 75% of women interviewed were suffering from mental stress and anxiety due to online violence, 50% of the people who participated this survey and had reported the experience to social media platforms had no resolution, about 66% of the women who were offended opted to block their perpetrators while 20 % chose to ignore them.

The report released on online gender based violence also indicated that most of the countries across Africa do not have specific legislation and strategies against this nature of violence.

Now the founder of Pollicy Neema Iyer says that as an organization they are trying to understand how online gender based violence manifests across Africa and how technology companies that are most not in Africa can respond to these cases.

Neema, therefore proposes that digital security resources be availed to local contexts and languages but also be mainstreamed in the educational curricular. She further suggests that law enforcers should be trained on gender sensitive digital safety so as to provide timely assistance.

“Countries should also adopt data protection and privacy laws, as well as ensure that commissions and mechanisms are in place to implement data protection laws.” Says Neema

Covid-19 Presents Opportunity to Reset Africa- Elumelu

By Edwin Muhumuza

The Chairman of the United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc, Tony Elumelu, has said that the Corona virus Pandemic presents an opportunity to reset the African continent so that Africans can be empowered to become more productive and self-reliant.

He made the remarks during a high-level Round table discussion comprised of African leaders including Dr. Ngozi Okonjo – Iweala, the Special Envoy of the African Union on Covid-19 and Tidjane Thiam who is also a Covid-19 Special Envoy responsible for mobilizing international economic support for Africa.

During the session titled ‘Resilient World: An African call for a new world order’. Elumelu noted that Africa as a continent has all it takes to emerge into a strong digital economy adding that there is need for a concrete plan to galvanize the entire continent and make Africa less dependent on the ‘circularity of debt’ from developed nations, which according to him, has been a major setback for decades.

“I feel that as we engage the rest of the world in providing relief, we need to look for a more fundamental solution to Africa’s challenges. I have often argued for a martial plan overtime. We need to mobilize everyone. If we have a martial plan that mobilizes resources to address particular issues, then we can mitigate against this constant begging for assistance.”

There are now more than over 91,000 confirmed cases, more than 2,900 deaths and over 35,000 recoveries of corona virus across the continent, with a number of African countries imposing a range of prevention and containment measures and as of May 13, every African country had recorded an infection, the last being Lesotho.

However, the economic impact of the pandemic is yet to be fully ascertained on a continent fully. With the continent’s economies heavily dependent on aid amid a rise in entrepreneurship driven by Small and Medium-size enterprises (SMEs), the future presents a dim picture.

The Billionaire has called for the need to prioritize youths and empower SMEs as well as boosting Electricity and Easing the debt burden, adding that there is need to encourage the people that work hard.

Tidjane Thiam who supported what Elumelu had proposed, said that rather than depend on international assistance at every point, there is the need for governments and institutions to invest in activities that will prioritize the youths and create a better enabling environment.

“I totally agree with Tony Elumelu. The major challenge is that we do not see enough entrepreneurs. Similar to what obtains in Asia and Europe, there is the need to promote a class of Entrepreneurs to drive the African economy. We need to groom more Tony Elumelus’ from Africa’ he said.

Okonjo-Iweala, on her part, called for a system where youths and women will be empowered to create and produce more to boost the African economy,Whilst calling on private and government parastatals to engage in meaningful partnerships that will help to galvanize job creation and entrepreneurship among youths in Africa,

Explaining further, Elumelu pointedly said, “The truth is that we have resources to help mobilize people. As the founder of the Tony Elumelu Foundation, we committed to endow $100m to support young African entrepreneurs and we have been seeing the positive results this has yielded so far.

The round-table which was organized by the New York Forum Institute, also had in attendance African Heads of States including President Mahamadou Issoufou of Niger; President Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya; President Alassane Ouattara of Cote d’Ivoire; President Macky Sall of Senegal and President Julius Bio of Sierra Leone;

Attacks on human rights defenders have become rampant in Africa

By Deo Wasswa

Attacks on Young Human Rights Defenders have become unprecedented allover Africa.

According to a report dubbed “African youth defenders perspectives 2019 from rhetoric to action” launched by Transformative leaders Network-Africa, these attacks are carried out by a range of state and non-state actors, including armed militant and extremist groups, police and military forces, government authorities and off campus groups among others.

According to Fredrick Ekakoro Etoori, head of secretariat at Transformative Leaders Network -Africa (TRANET-Africa), the report, provides a general situation of youth human rights defenders in 2019, the category of the youth human rights defenders at most risk, the country and or region that recorded the most cases of youth human rights defenders at risk among others.

The report documented 70 cases in Uganda, 25 cases in South Sudan, Kenya 25, Sudan 16, Tanzania 2, south Africa 5 Among others.

Africa needs leaders who care about humanity – Elumelu

By Edwin Muhumuza

“The Future of Africa is at Stake – We All Must Show A Genuine and Uncompromising Commitment to Building A Better Africa” – Tony Elumelu

UBA’s Group Chairman-Tony Elumelu while speaking to delegates at the recently concluded Africa Summit along with other African Heads of State and influential personalities from the private sector, remarked that “The leaders we need in Africa today, are leaders who genuinely care about humanity. We need leaders who are driven by an ambition to leave society better than they met it. We need leaders who understand and care about creating a positive legacy. We need leaders who are genuinely committed and care about the future of Africa,”

This as he gave the keynote address, entitled “The Leadership Needed to Catalyse Africa’s Transformation” at the inaugural Africa Now Conference held in Kampala, hosted by the President of Uganda, HE Yoweri Kaguta Museveni.

Tony Elumelu, is the Founder of the Tony Elumelu Foundation and Chairman, Heirs Holdings and the United Bank for Africa while The Tony Elumelu foundation has funded over 300 entrepreneurs in Ugandan since inception.

He challenged African leaders to prioritise the future of the African continent to an audience of public and private sector leaders where he was introduced as Africa’s leading proponent of entrepreneurship,

In his speech Elumelu offered a robust and direct message to African leaders from the public and private sectors emphasised the need for public-private sector collaboration to drive sustainable development, encapsulated in his economic philosophy, Africapitalism.

“Leadership should not be about directing blame, leadership is not about absolving responsibility. Leadership is the catalyst for positive change.

‘’We need to take collective responsibility for our own future – as I have often said, no one is going to do it but ourselves – whether we are in the public or private sectors. This is the philosophy of Africapitalism, which is a call on the private sector to play its role, the leading role in securing our continent’s destiny – and achieving it by creating both social and economic wealth.”

In his speech, President Museveni outlined key enablers required to empower the African people and transform the continent. ‘At independence, although a lot of time was lost with military governments engaged in primitive fascism, nevertheless, many African governments have correctly identified two crucial stimuli that can catalyse social transformation. These are education and health for all (human resource development) and private sector-led growth’

Commending President Museveni on the achievements of his country, Elumelu noted that “We have a role to play and we need to play this role by investing and managing, so we can create employment, create prosperity in a manner that will help to address many of the problems we have in the society today.

Speaking on the concept of shared prosperity, Elumelu stated that the Tony Elumelu Foundation’s Entrepreneurship Programme was a robust mechanism to empower Africa’s entrepreneurs, with the goal of delivering efficiently and effectively wealth creation directly into local communities. Reiterating the importance of entrepreneurship in unleashing the continent’s true potential, Elumelu concluded by making a call to partners, charging private sector leaders to focus on inclusive wealth.“As private sector leaders, we realise that, if the wealth we have is not inclusive, if the prosperity we have is just for family and self, it will not help us create the society we need” he concluded.

Farmers asked to form groups to get government support

By Moses Kidandi

The Uganda People’s Defense Forces have announced the second roll out of government support from Government to local farmers under the operation wealth creation project. Under the second phase, farmers will be required to form groups from 61 in rural-based areas, 41 in urban areas and committees of 9 people in different villages across the country.
“We encourage them to form committees for management, for supervision, committees for finance and investment and then committee for technical for value addition, because we want to go agro-industrialization so that whatever they do, there is value addition,” said Gen. Angina

He emphasized that the committees are for collective responsibility to ensure that you cannot compromise an individual. “In finance where we find a group with a treasurer, we know that it is liable to miss the rest of the group because if the treasurer is compromised then you lose everything, we even believe that we take lessons from other failures that have been in cooperative, in SACCOs because of compromise” he stressed.

Deputy Chief Coordinator of Operation Wealth Creation Lt. Gen Charles Angina is now asking different farmers to start mobilizing themselves to groups to benefit from the free distribution of seeds, animals and other agricultural inputs. Gen Angina says farmers who will be organized stand the chance to be the first beneficiaries of Government support to local farmers

“We intend to see to it that we form farmers groups so that they themselves will choose what they want to plant. We only guide them that in this ecological zone you should not grow what will not do well. Because each ecological zone of Uganda has its strength in what you can do best” he said.

With a vision to promote and transform the agricultural sector in Uganda from the point of view of technical leaders, political leaders, farmers, the private sector, Operation Wealth Creation was launched by the Uganda government as an intervention intended to create a system that facilitates effective National Socio-economic transformation with a focus of raising household incomes for poverty eradication and sustainable wealth creation.

Gen Angina was speaking at the National Launch of activities to mark the 38th Tarehe Sita Anniversary at the Ministry of Defense Headquarters in Mbuya, a suburb of the capital Kampala. The day will be observed under the theme “Consolidating peace for sustainable development and prosperity”. The main celebrations will be held on 6th February .in the northern district of Kitgum.

Women root for more leadership positions to rid Africa of corruption

By Edwin Muhumuza

Legislators meeting in Kigali, Rwanda want African governments to give women more leadership positions as a solution to corruption. They say women tend to behave more honestly than men and are concerned about fairness in their decisions.

Several studies suggest that women are less corrupt, and that companies with a higher number of women in decision making perform better in terms of resource management and maintaining a zero tolerance level for corruption,” said First Lady, Mrs Janet Kagame, who opened the 11 th Pan African Parliament Conference on the Rights of Women.

She said that women’s leadership as proactive and social agents of change is the game changer in the fight against corruption in Africa.

Alhagie Mbow, a legislator from The Gambia, reinforced the assertion that women’s leadership is crucial in combating corruption and bolstering African economies.

The latest research by Virginia Tech says that a greater representation of women in government is bad news for corruption,” he said adding that, “If we want to eliminate corruption in this continent, we need to empower women more by giving them positions of leadership. Women empowerment is not just about giving women basic positions but positions such as being heads of state, ministers of finance, ministers of energy, because these are positions where they can make an impact.”

The study, published in the Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization by Virginia Tech in June 2018, spanned 125 nations worldwide, and established that corruption is lower in countries where there are a greater number of women in political leadership.

Responding to the findings, Uganda legislator Hon. Babriye Veronica Kadogo, observed that indeed corruption is a cancer affecting development because it affects all sectors. She noted that women are affected the most because corruption affects service delivery especially in the areas of health, infrastructure, education, water, sanitation, and other social sectors, which mainly affect women and children.

The legislator however sought to be provided statistics to support the proposition of the piety of women in leadership.

The discussants have talked about women not being corrupt but they have not given us statistics,” she said adding “What is the percentage of women compared to men who are corrupt because if the statistics indicate 40 per cent then it is high. And who are those women who are corrupt? The majority are rural women and that means it’s the elite and those women here that are corrupt.”

With regard to corruption being exacerbated by low levels of women’s empowerment, Kadogo said Uganda has programmes of empowering women, especially those in rural areas to equip them with capital and entrepreneurial skills.

During the debate on the gender dimension in the fight against corruption, members pointed out that the increasing incidences of electoral corruption had the potential to undermine the effectiveness of women in the fight against corruption. Some legislators also questioned the assertion that women were less corrupt arguing that they participated indirectly through agents or benefited from proceeds of corruption.

Conference Recommendations

Hon. Anifa Bangirana Kawooya, who is also the 3 rd Deputy Chairperson of the Pan African Parliament Women’s Caucus, presented to participants the conference recommendations and way forward, which included among others that African parliaments should advocate for gender mainstreaming in all governance and developmental initiatives in order to ensure that women are given leadership positions and that women empowerment is given priority. That African Union member states should be encouraged to ratify and domesticate AU instruments on gender equality and the fight against corruption. They also recommended to African countries to introduce values of anti corruption in their school curricular.

How things got sour for Miguna Miguna

Miguna Miguna’s exact location and movement remain the preserve of state security and the subject of much speculation.

From his last social media post, the self-styled NRM general was last located in a hospital at Dubai Airport, where he had been repatriated by Kenya’s Immigration and security agents after being drugged and forced onto an Emirates Airlines flight.

Miguna says he has neither the passport of his acquired Canadian nationality nor his native Kenyan one.

His saga bears the hallmarks of the tribulations of another controversial Kenyan Sheikh Khalid Balala who 20 years ago was rusticated in a foreign land after his passport was revoked by the Kenya government.

Like Miguna, Sheikh Balala was a thorn in the state’s flesh. He led the proscribed Islamic Party of Kenya, which had become a nightmare for Kanu soon after the return to multiparty politics.

Shortly after this Easter, Mombasa High Court judge Eric Ogola will rule in a long-running compensation suit launched by the former radical preacher and political activist 21

years ago.

Now living a less-eventful life in a Mombasa flat, Balala turned 60 years on March 22.

In an interview with the Star, he said he has prosecuted a strong case and believes he will prevail against what he calls the “colonial state that still rules Kenya”, after half a century of independence.

Although the two cases bear some similarities, Miguna’s woes pale in comparison to what Balala faced in the 1990s.

Both are victims of ulterior political machinations; both are citizens whose conduct the state frowned upon; both tried to return to the country and were forced back out four times in Balala’s case.

Frustrated by his persistent activism through the now-defunct Islamic Party of Kenya, IPK, which he co-founded, the Moi state suddenly snatched Balala’s passport, cancelled  it and declared he was not Kenyan.

Angered by his confrontational politics, the Uhuru administration confiscated Miguna’s passport, defaced it, declared him an alien and deported him.

Twenty years after he was allowed back into the country, Balala is still waiting for justice. He believes the conclusion of his suit which has been heard by five different judges

has been delayed by political pressure on the Judiciary after he allegedly rejected two bids during the Moi and

Kibaki administrations to settle out of court, or part with a 10 per cent of the anticipated compensation.


Balala had left Kenya to visit Germany, but his situation changed dramatically while abroad.

Balala had launched the IPK, a feisty youthful political outfit that was denied registration.

He became the go-to person for anyone organising political activity in Mombasa. He angered the Moi regime when he entered into cooperation with the opposition Ford Kenya.

Between November 1991 and February 25, 1993, he was tried for treason and acquitted for lack of evidence.

He resumed public politics unbowed following what he described as a sham trial.

“The clear plan was to detain me until after the 1992 general elections. There was no evidence of treason and it was a malicious prosecution,” he tells the Star.

After the acquittal, he was warned not to attend a by-election in South Nyanza occasioned by the defection of an opposition MP to the ruling Kanu party. But he attended several

opposition rallies in Western Kenya where he stepped up attacks on the Moi regime.

Kanu’s chance to exact revenge came in early 1994 when Balala travelled to Germany to attend a conference and raise money for his human rights causes Before his departure, he was alarmed when he went to renew his passport.

His new passport was marked for expiry after only three months.

“When I asked why my new passport would expire after three months I was told that it was the policy for politicians of my nature,” he says.

During his tour in Germany, he travelled to London where, out of the blue, he encountered a man who identified himself as Mudavadi from the Kenyan High Commission in Bonn.

“After three weeks in London someone accosted me at Heathrow Airport, claiming to be from the Kenyan Embassy in Bonn.

He identified himself only as Mudavadi and he told me straight away my passport was to expire in two weeks.” Balala immediately suspected the

stranger was a Kenyan spy trailing him.

Mudavadi invited Balala to Bonn to renew his passport. He acceded and travelled to the embassy but soon realised he had walked into a trap.

Balala believes British intelligence alerted Kenyan authorities about his presence in London out of mutual interest.

“When I gave him (Mudavadi) the passport he was extremely happy. He actually kissed it and vanished into the embassy. I waited for three days and he reappeared to tell me

he had information from Nairobi that my passport would not be renewed.”

Balala was now stateless, without any documents to travel or seek asylum in Germany. For five days he was stranded in the transit zone at Frankfurt International Airport

because “no airline was willing to take me and the British government did not want me back in London,” Balala recalls.

He was taken in by friends and a church. He also received monetary assistance from sympathetic Kenyan opposition leaders, especially Raila Odinga, who paid for his upkeep and

legal fees in Germany.

On December 12, 1994, Moi publicly declared that Sheikh Balala was not Kenyan and should return to Yemen, where he allegedly belonged.

“At least Miguna has admitted he acquired Canadian citizenship but for my case, I do not understand where the claim I was Yemeni was plucked from,” he says.

That marked the beginning of a titanic legal battle by Kenyan and German activists to restore Balala’s citizenship.

With assistance from the German Social Democrat Party, Balala petitioned Germany, the US and the United Kingdom to pile pressure on the Moi regime to restore his citizenship. He also filed suits in a German court and at the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg, seeking a declaration that the revocation of his citizenship was a gross violation of international law.

Kenyan High Commissioner to Germany Ogutu Obare, Raila Odinga, human rights activist Maina Kiai and officials from the Kenyan High Commission testified. The Yemeni

government presented information to courts and tribunals denying Balala was its national.

In a letter to German authorities on September 17, 1996, Obare restated the official line from Nairobi that Balala was not and had never been a Kenyan citizen.

“Suffice it to say that the Kenya government has not deprived Mr Balala of his travel documents as he is not a bona fide citizen of Kenya.

Mr Balala is in fact Yemenis (sic) by descent and failed to renounce this stature on his 23rd birthday in conformity with our constitution which does not recognise dual citizenship.”

And to demolish Balala’s case, the commissioner claimed, “Balala plays no significant role in the Kenyan political sphere…,” for he was “…neither a member of Parliament nor known leader of any institution of political significance in Kenya…”

This is notwithstanding the fact that Balala who matriculated at Allidina Visram in 1975 and later took Islamic law studies in Saudi Arabia was IPK’s spiritual guide and an articulate leader whose oratory had made him a the darling of many at the Coast and a prime target for all political factions.

IPK had entered into a union with Ford Kenya, Kenya’s strongest opposition party at the time, to erase Kanu’s dominance in Mombasa, besides awakening the Muslim masses across Kenya.

Kenyan envoy Obare would later visit the activist at his house in Frankfurt to warn him not to return to Kenya. Balala quotes him saying, “You will not return to Kenya until

we tell you because you are a threat to national security.”

In mid-1997, a Bonn court issued a judgement urging Kenyan authorities to restore Balala’s citizenship and pay him the equivalent of US$2 million in compensation.

Balala was not paid the money but Kenya succumbed to international pressure and agreed to allow the activist back home. The Kenya government neither bought him an

air ticket nor gave him money for support. He was promised citizenship papers upon return but this was not fulfilled.

An international campaign, including a petition to the Queen of England, US President Bill Clinton and other world leaders forced the Moi regime to allow Balala back on May 13, 1997.

Besides the British refusing to allow him to transit through London, Balala tried unsuccessfully to enter Kenya four times, on temporary Kenyan papers issued by the mission

in Bonn, and was forced out.

“I was returned four times, once in Mombasa, twice at JKIA and once in Dar es Salaam. On all occasions I was forced back onto the plane that had flown me in and I returned to Frankfurt,” he says.

The German government finally paid for his air ticket on his fifth attempt to enter Kenya and he travelled on temporary papers issued by Germany this time.


The Kenya government had promised to reissue him Kenyan documents upon return to the motherland but that was never to be. His house in Mombasa had been vandalised and

all his identification documents stolen by state agents.

After two months, Balala was called by Immigration officials to Nyayo House in Nairobi to pick his new passport. But it was confiscated again before he left the precincts.

“I was issued a new passport on July 22, 1997, at Nyayo House. I felt relieved and descended in the lift from the tenth floor feeling good.

On the ground I was accosted by state agents who asked me to surrender the passport and up to now it has never been returned,” he says.

Balala launched a new legal battle to reclaim his passport.

“I sued and the state acknowledged in court that it had taken my passport,” he says, adding that his suit was sabotaged when Kenyan authorities threw him in jail in late 1997 until 2001.

Although detention without trial had been abolished in the statutes, Balala was held without charge during these years to ensure he did not participate in the 1997 elections,

from which the opposition emerged stronger than in the 1992 polls.


Balala identifies with Miguna and others like Raila aide Salim Lone, former MP Koigi Wamwere and the late Professor Katama Mkangi, who suffered similar withdrawal of citizenship.

But he feels betrayed by the Kibaki regime, which he believes did nothing to reverse these policies, substantially, or at all.

He also believes the British and American governments silently supported his tribulations and could be cheering on Miguna’s humiliation, actuated by the belief that opponents

of the successive regimes in Nairobi, ideologically, threaten their imperial interests in East Africa.

“I have been restless since 1990 to date. Had I been someone who is not spiritual and reads a lot, I would have gone crazy by now,” says the grandfather of 12, who says he is about to complete his memoirs.

“I am a responsible man and I rejected all attempts to compromise me or destroy my people and country through violence. Many times we were provoked but we remained wise and committed to our people.”

He adds, “I have been through everything that Miguna is going through now but this is the price we have to pay to change our country which is controlled by a tyrannical colonial state that began with the British and has not changed.”

“The British and Americans have always supported regimes in Nairobi for imperial and ideological reasons. Kibaki betrayed the cause by shifting power back to Kanu’s tactics and

paved way for the Jubilee regime which is a vestige of Kanu.”

Balala claims that under the Kibaki and Uhuru administrations, his case did not move because he refused to kowtow to the new powers.

“I have been told to compromise or make an undertaking that I will part with 10 per cent of my compensation but I refused because we are in this thing not for financial gain because we wish to strike a blow for freedom and posterity.”



~The Star Kenya

Malawian first lady blames social media for frustrating fight against HIV/AIDS

Malawian first lady, Dr. Gertrude Mutharika, the increased usage of social media among youths in Africa is frustrating the continent’s efforts to fight HIV/AIDS.

Mutharika is the President of the African First Ladies against HIV/AIDS (OAFLA) -an organisation that brings together all first ladies in Africa to combat HIV.

Speaking during the during the Africa Health Agenda International Youth Conference held in Nairobi, Kenya over the weekend, Mutharika noted that whereas many youths have used social media such as Facebook, Twitter and WhatsApp among others to create innovations that have promoted good health behavior among their peers, many have misused it to promoting acts that have increased the number of HIV youths infections.

Margaret Kenyatta, Kenya’s First Lady promised the youth that OAFLA is committed to support them against HIV. She notes that African governments need to understand and engage youth to establish youth led interventions to fight the HIV scourge.

Anderson Tsuma, a youth activist and chairperson of Youth Action Movement Kenya, notes that although social media and mobile technologies  have the potential to prevent HIV by spreading awareness, there  is a challenge of control.

He notes that there is need for African governments to sensitize the youth on the proper use of the media, that girls have been reported in the main stream media to have been raped  by strangers they met via social media.
Catherine Chiboola, a youth activist from Zambia says that youth have used these technologies to get online resources, information, and learning opportunities and health information including on HIV/AIDS.

She notes that governments should make establishment of ICT centers in rural areas a priority so that youth in remote and hard to reach areas can also benefit from what social media can provide.

According a 2016 report by Unicef,  an estimated 36.7 million people were living with HIV worldwide in 2015. Of these, 1.8 million were children under 15 years of age and about 17.8 million were women and girls.

The report also revealed that each day that year, approximately 5,700 people were infected with HIV and approximately 3,000 people died from AIDS-related causes, mostly because of inadequate access to HIV prevention care and treatment services.

However, according to the report new HIV infections among children are declining rapidly – approximately 70 per cent since 2001 – largely due to scaled-up efforts to prevent mother-to-child transmission.

The toll of HIV and AIDS continues to be harsh, especially in sub-Saharan Africa. In 2015, sub-Saharan Africa accounted for the vast majority of the world’s people living with AIDS, new HIV infections and AIDS-related deaths.




Uganda recognized for aggressive fight against Malaria

Uganda is among eight other African countries honoured for their commitment and innovation in the fight against malaria.

At the 28th African Union Summit in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa, the African Leaders Malaria Alliance (ALMA) awarded the 2017 ALMA Awards to Uganda, Botswana, Cape Verde, Comoros, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Ethiopia and Swaziland.
Uganda achieved a more than 40 percent decrease in malaria incidence and malaria mortality from 2010 to 2015, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO).

To enable the country build upon its momentous headway, Uganda has also secured a US$188 million commitment from the Global Fund for 2018 to 2020 for malaria.

This success was the result of a significant scaling up of insecticide-treated nets and indoor residual spraying as well as case management through public health facilities, the private sector and integrated community level activities.

According to AU press release, the 2017 ALMA Awards for Excellence come just six months after the adoption of the ‘Catalytic Framework’ at the 27th African Union Summit last July. The framework provides a road-map for African countries to increase domestic resources, expand the use of innovation and technology, and improve health infrastructure to eliminate malaria by 2030.

Since 2000, malaria mortality rates across the continent have fallen by 62 percent in all age groups and by 69 percent among children under five. These achievements come at a time when African countries are providing more domestic funding to fight malaria.

The AU statement says that the increase in those sleeping under long-lasting insecticidal nets, or protected by indoor residual spraying, as well as diagnostic testing of children and treatment of pregnant women has contributed to significantly lowering incidence and mortality in Africa.

The growing role of African leaders is also reflected in the recent formation of the End Malaria Council, a group of committed business and public sector leaders that has come together to ensure malaria eradication remains a global priority. The council will explore innovative approaches to mobilise political will and resources to help end malaria.

Malaria remains a critical threat in Africa, according to WHO. In 2015, 195 million of the 212 million new malaria cases and 394,000 of the world’s 429,000 malaria-related deaths were in Africa.




Yahya Jammeh leaves Gambia with more than $11m worth State coffers

More than $11m (£8.8m) is missing from The Gambia’s state coffers following the departure of long-time leader Yahya Jammeh, an adviser to President Adama Barrow has said.

Mai Ahmad Fatty said financial experts were trying to evaluate the exact loss.

Luxury cars and other items were seen being loaded on to a Chadian cargo plane on the night Mr Jammeh left the country.

Mr Jammeh flew into exile on Saturday, ending his 22 years in power.

He had refused to accept election results but finally left after mediation by regional leaders and the threat of military intervention.

President Barrow remains in neighbouring Senegal and it is not clear when he will return.

However, West African troops entered the Gambian capital, Banjul, on Sunday to prepare for his arrival.

Cheering crowds gathered outside the State House to watch soldiers secure the building.