In the Iron Lady of Kenyan politics, a statement of belief
Raila Odinga’s running mate Martha Karua has excited sections of the population, especially the millions of Kenyan women and young girls who see her as the embodiment of a promise come true.
Whether this excitement will translate to votes for her and her presidential flagbearer is still too early to tell, but those we talked to this week, including senior politicians within the Azimio coalition and tens of women across the country, indicated that she was making an emotional connection with some voters and creating an ideological following among others.
Her selling points are threefold, according to those we talked to; her track record as a governance and human rights crusader, her stoicism on a campaign trail dominated by vile males, and the mark of gallantry and pluckiness that her candidature paints in the minds of women, especially young and middle-aged ones.
(Source: Daily Nation)
Uganda police arrest Besigye as he tries to take to the streets again
Uganda police have arrested political activist and former presidential contender Kizza Besigye as he attempted to leave his home in Kasangati, Wakiso District.
He is currently detained in a police van, which had been parked near his homestead. The veteran politician was heading to Kasangati Town to protest against the high commodity prices.
The police did not give any reason for his arrest on Monday. Since early this month, Dr Besigye renewed his criticism of President Yoweri Museveni’s government for doing nothing to cushion vulnerable Ugandans against the skyrocketing prices of essential commodities.
(Source: The East African)
Tanzania issues precautionary notice over monkeypox as cases rise in Europe
Tanzania’s Ministry of Health has issued an alert over monkeypox disease that has affected various countries in Africa and the world.
On Wednesday, the ministry shared a poster with information on the symptoms and also urging the public to be cautious.
Symptoms include swollen lymph nodes, fever, headaches and muscle and body aches. The Health ministry urged anyone with these symptoms to go to health centres for proper diagnosis and treatment.
No case of the disease has been reported in Tanzania, but cases have been reported in Europe in the past few weeks with the World Health Organization (WHO) raising the alarm on increasing monkeypox cases around the world.
(Source: The East African)
Commonwealth in Kigali: Another chance for Rwanda’s Kagame to project soft power
What does Rwanda gain by hosting the summit?
It gives President Paul Kagame prestige and soft power. Kagame is often termed “the West’s favourite dictator” because he gets no public criticism from states in Europe and northern America. But he receives a steady trickle of criticism from civil society groups over repression of rivals at home and dispatch of death squads to assassinate opponents abroad.
A Commonwealth summit in Kigali enables President Kagame to showcase the modernity of his capital, and position himself as central in international diplomatic networks. Kigali has an impressive convention centre, for instance. Kagame also gets the opportunity to project all the positive dimensions of his achievements such as economic growth (which averaged 7.2% over the decade before the COVID-19 outbreak) and a pro-information technology policy that includes distributing smartphones to households.
(Source: The East African)
Ethiopia launches crackdown on journalists and activists
Ethiopian security officials are conducting a massive operation across the country that has led to the arrest of more than 4,500 people in one region alone. The crackdown, on journalists, activists and others, dubbed a “law enforcement operation,” came into effect after the administration of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed on May 20 cited the need to “protect citizens and ensure the survival of the nation.”
Rights groups are expressing alarm. Tigist Shumye, a sister of prominent Ethiopian journalist Solomon Shumye, told The Associated Press he was arrested at his home by people in civilian clothing on May 20. “They were not willing to tell us who they were. They even detained me for two hours, just because I am a sister to a journalist,” she said.
Independence Day: Views and Reminiscences of some Young Professionals
In the Eritrean calendar, no day is more significant than the 24th of May, the day Eritrea’s independence was realised in 1991. After 30 years of a bloody war of liberation, Eritreans, under the leadership of the EPLF, proclaimed to the world that they liberated their homeland from Ethiopian colonisation and emerged as a newly born sovereign nation.
On the occasion of Independence Day, Eritreans remember and renew that pledge to preserve Eritrea’s sovereignty and work for their nation’s development. The Eritrean youth engage in national development projects and defend the country from aggressors. The political consciousness and moral courage of the people is incredibly high. They are all aware of their shared responsibilities and know what unites them.
The celebration of our Independence Day is a good time for the youth to revisit and understand the past and envision the future. It is very important for the youth to understand Eritrea’s history of struggle for independence and the post-independence complications. The Eritrean youth need to learn more about the arduous and multi-faceted hostilities from reliable sources with solid credentials.
(Source: Ministry of Information Eritrea)
UNITAMS Head – ‘Sudan Crisis Can Only Be Resolved By Sudanese, but Time Is Short’
“The crisis facing Sudan is entirely homegrown and can only be resolved by the Sudanese,” Volker Perthes, UN Special Representative for Sudan, and head of the United Nations Integrated Transition Assistance Mission in Sudan (UNITAMS) told the UN Security Council in New York on Tuesday.
He also lamented that at least 111 people reportedly remain in detention in Khartoum, Port Sudan, and elsewhere, while most recently on Saturday, another protester was killed by security forces, bringing the number of those reportedly killed to 96.
“Time is short for Sudan to reach a solution to its protracted political crisis,” Perthes told the Security Council on Tuesday, warning that if the impasse is not urgently overcome, the consequences will be felt beyond national borders, impacting a whole generation.
Second Chance for Mohamud to Put Somalia On the Road to Stability
After a 15-month delay in voting, Hassan Sheikh Mohamud became Somalia’s new president on May 15. Political leaders had disagreed over the election process, including whether to conduct a one-person, one-vote election or an indirect one. In the end, the poll was indirect, with clan delegates voting for parliamentarians, who then cast their ballot for the president.
Now that the polls and their disputes are over, the country and its international partners can focus on Somalia’s other priorities. These include finalising the constitutional review, building a viable Somali security force and fighting al-Shabaab. Constructive re-engagement with global financial partners also needs attention, as does the drought crisis affecting around 26% of the population. The country will need the continued support of its international partners to achieve these goals.
Mohamud now has a second chance to lead Somalia. His experience will be an advantage in navigating the system and mending prior mistakes. His previous presidency was characterised by state-building and dialogue with political stakeholders. His administration helped shape the country’s federal structure by establishing four of the current five regional member states and encouraging power-sharing. He also constructively engaged regional member states.