According to the United Nation’s World Food Programme, Islamist militants in Somalia are stopping convoys of food from reaching its target destination of more than 360,000 displaced people. The trucks carrying the food from the capital Mogadishu to camps in Afgoye are being stopped by armed men.
Al-Shabaab, a local insurgent group, says the WFP is ruining local farming because it is forcing Somalis to rely on imported food. The UN says that without help, farmers in Somali cannot supply enough food for all those in need. The largest concentration of refugees in all of Somali are located in the camps of Afgoye. Due to threats from rebel groups, the WFP pulled out of large parts of southern Somali in January.
Al-Shabaab stated that any Somalis who co-operate with the WFP would be treated as contributing to the destruction of the Somali economy. The group accuses the WFP of distributing expired food, a public health hazard and say that the agency’s work is cover for a political agenda. An agency representative said that the people in Afgoye last received a general food distribution from WFP in November 2009.
The Democratic Republic of Congo is set to receive more than 90 million dollars, or 66 million euros, from Britain. The British Embassy reported that it is giving the funds to help Congo rebuild the provinces that have been destroyed by violence in the eastern part of the country.
The prime minister of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Adolphe Muzito, and Britain’s junior minister for African affairs, Glenys Kinnock, recently agreed on this amount after discussing ideas to rebuild the war-torn eastern province of the country. This aid will mark a new step in the continuation of the community reconstruction in Congo, which has been termed the “Thuungane Project.” This project was started in 2003, but has yet to provide decipherable progress in the eastern provinces of the country.
The eastern provinces of Sud-Kivu and Maniema, as well as Katanga in the southeast, have seen considerable progress from Thuungane funds since 2007. This money has provided great assistance in areas such as education, health, and clean water supplies. The new phase of this project will be expanded into the Nord-Kivu province in order to encourage provincial governments to work more closely with local communities. Authorities expect to allocate more than 26 million dollars for important grass-roots projects.
The British Embassy has estimated that this new funding will assist almost 3.2 million people that have been affected by violence in the Sud-Kivu and Nord-Kivu provinces. These two provinces have been the most unstable areas due to conflicts between rebels and local militias. Historically, Britain has been the biggest source of aid for the Democratic Republic of Congo. In fact, Britain gave around 140 million dollars in developmental aid to the Congo.
The UK has continued its support for the vast central African nation in an attempt to modernize the government and improve infrastructure for the people of the Congo.
Next month seven African countries will show the power of unity in a surveillance programme to fight a deadly banana disease against threatening the continent.
The International Institute for Tropical Agriculture or IITA will lead and launch the new front. ITTA and its contributor’s main mission is to stop the spreading of banana bunchy top disease or better known as BBTD and also banana Xanthomonas wilt (BXW). The new measures come from the Nigerian based institute after 70 million people in Sub-Saharan are in danger from the disease mentioned. According to IITA and Africangoodnews.com no banana varieties are known to resist BBTD or BXM and fear that similar banana types will be wiped out if immediate action is not in place.
In order to progress in the disease surveillance last month researchers, policymakers, many countries from Africa including Rwanda, Tanzania, Zmabia and the Democratic Republic of Congo all were trained in control methods. The mentioned countries in some ways or another have reported the existence of BBTD and furthermore report being at high risk of contracting it from adjacent places. One of the pathologists from the organization said that the training was to link research and government staff within and between countries.
With the help of Geographic Positioning Systems researchers will use it to create a visual plan and record where the disease is distributing. The IITA study originated 2 years ago in order to understand why BBTD was so spreading across the continent so quickly in the last 20 years. It is worth to mention that the first wilt banana disease was first reported in 2006 in western Kenya thus the country is conducting its research to understand the complexity that is frightening millions of residents in Africa.
BBTD is caused by the banana bunchy top virus known as BBTV that spreads via an aphid. This causes the narrow bunched leaves and forces the plants to be fruitless that lead to its death. It is not rare for farmers to miss the infected plants therefore the actual reported incidents is not known.
President Robert Mugabe is caught in a sticky situation over the raging diamonds conflict, facing an explosive confrontation with the Reserve Bank and the Supreme Court. Officials say Mugabe is sailing close to the wind in a diamond dispute after he went along with the mines minister Obert Mbofu unlawful explanation that gemstones extracted from the Chiadzwa diamond fields must be kept at the Minerals marketing corporation of Zimbabwe instead of the Reserve bank.
They call this scheme the Kimberley process certification in which they say the diamonds must be held in the Marketing corporation. Mugabe had bought into the dirty scheme in which the Reserve bank considers illegal in view of the recent court ruling on the matter. The owner of the diamonds, Africa Diamond Resources also say keeping the diamonds at Mineral marketing corp. is illegal as it deffinently defies the supreme court ruling. The battler over the diamonds drastically escalated last week after mugabe, in an interview with ZBC on the eve of his birthday. he defended Mbofu’s actions considered unlawful by the Reserve bank. Mugabe said “I understand we have quite a number of diamonds piled up in the Minerals Marketing corporation of Zimbabwe offices. They are ones that are approved by the Kimberley process, not the reserve bank.”Sources say that this has angered Reserve bank officials who are mostly Mugabe loyalists. It is also said that the supreme court is anxious about the issue which has the rule-of-law and contempt of court implications.
We all know of the long standing diamond wars in Africa since time begins. Lets just hope that these issues get resolved and the diamonds end up in the hands of the Reserve bank. Because we know this Kimberley scheme is a load of crap and are just hiding diamonds from the reserve bank.