7th January 2022 Political and Regulatory Round Up

January 7, 2022 - 5 minutes read
KENYA

Whistleblowers to get 10pc of cash recovered 

Whistleblowers whose disclosure results in the recovery of money or assets will get 10 percent of the cash or the value of the asset if MPs approve a new Bill.

The Whistleblower Protection Bill seeks to establish a fund for payment of monetary rewards for whistleblowers.

The Whistleblower Reward Fund will be used to reward individuals whose exposure results in the recovery of illegally acquired wealth.

The proposed Fund is being created at the time the KRA has increased reward to whistleblowers who expose tax cheats to a maximum of Sh5 million in a bid to tighten the noose on individuals and companies failing to declare taxes.

If the Bill sails through, a whistleblower who makes a disclosure that leads to the arrest and conviction of an accused person shall be rewarded with money from the fund.

(Source: Business Daily)

TANZANIA

President Samia Mulls Major Cabinet Reshuffle 

President Samia Suluhu Hassan announced on Tuesday plans to reshuffle the Cabinet of ministers to align with her administration’s speed and targets.

Speaking at the State House in Dar es Salaam, the President revealed that the grace period she offered for her appointees to learn her strategies and focus has expired and it’s time to appoint those who could match her speed.

Initially, the President announced she could dissolve the Ministry of Health, Community Development, Gender, Elderly and Children-separating the health sector that has been taking the lion’s share of the ministry whilst affecting gender related affairs.

But in what could be a new year surprise, the President said she had noted some of the Cabinet members had different moves that jeopardized her quest to bring development to the people.

(Source: Daily News)

UGANDA

EU mounts pressure on Uganda government to release Kakwenza 

The European Union (EU) has joined other rights bodies in demanding the unconditional release of Ugandan novelist and activist Kakwenza Rukirabashaija, held incommunicado for more than a week despite court ordering police to free him.

In a tweet on Wednesday, Mr Eamon Gilmore, the EU special representative for human rights, urged the authorities in Kampala to release Mr Kakwenza, who was kidnapped by gunmen on December 28 and disappeared until police acknowledged holding him.

Police say they are holding Mr Kakwenza on allegations of offensive communication after a series of belittling, derogatory and abusive tweets about President Museveni and his son, Lieutenant General Muhoozi Kainerugaba (Commander of Land Forces). He has, however, not been formally charged.

(Source: The East African)

RWANDA

Covid-19 vaccine mandates for all outbound Rwandan travelers

Rwanda Biomedical Centre (RBC) has announced a mandatory Covid-19 vaccine for all Rwandan travelers departing from the country’s points of exit.

According to a statement issued through RBC’s Twitter handle, all outbound eligible passengers will be asked to present a Covid-19 vaccination certificate.

However, the info note for passengers arriving in Rwanda, which was updated on January 2, did not mandate the vaccine for incoming travelers, though they were encouraged to.

According to the info note, all arriving passengers will also test, quarantine for 3 days, and leave the quarantine after a negative PCR and rapid test, the latter being free of charge.

(Source: The News Times)

ETHIOPIA

US special envoy to visit Ethiopia this week

The US special envoy for the Horn of Africa, Jeffrey Feltman, will travel to Ethiopia this week to hold talks with the authorities about the ongoing civil war. The US State Department said that Mr Feltman was “to engage with senior officials regarding the prospects for a broader peace”.

The rebels have in recent times withdrawn to their stronghold Tigray region in the north of Ethiopia. The Ethiopian government said its troops would not pursue the rebels into the region.

“We do believe this offers an opportunity for both sides to halt combat operations and come to the negotiating table,” State Department spokesman Ned Price said.

The special envoy’s visit comes after the US removed trade privileges for Ethiopia over rights abuse claims.

(Source: BBC News)

ERITREA

Eritrea and China agree to strengthen Strategic Partnership 

President Isaias Afwerki received at the State House today a Chinese senior delegation led by State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi.

Both sides agreed to work on joint development programmes including human resources development, infrastructure, and development of Massawa and Assab ports as well as in the mining sector.

Foreign Minister Wang Yi on his part underlined alignment of views and positions of both countries on major issues and expressed gratitude for Eritrea’s positive stance.

Mr. Wang Yi also affirmed China’s rejection of unilateral and illicit sanctions on Eritrea.

(Source: Ministry of Information Eritrea)

SUDAN

What next for Sudan after PM Hamdok’s resignation? 

With Hamdok now gone, analysts say the military may look to co-opt a new civilian face to retrieve billions of dollars in much-needed foreign aid, which was suspended following the coup.

Several unconfirmed reports say military leaders have already approached Ibrahim Elbadawi, a former finance minister who served under Hamdok in 2019 as Sudan embarked on a democratic transition following the military removal of longtime ruler Omar al-Bashir in the wake of mass protests. However, the United States, United Kingdom and Norway, as well as the European Union, have warned the ruling military against unilaterally imposing a new prime minister, threatening to withhold financial assistance if “a broad range of civilian stakeholders” was not involved in the process.

At least 57 protesters have been killed in mass rallies that have gripped Sudan since the coup and continued following the November 21 deal between al-Burhan and Hamdok, according to medics.

Kholood Khair, the managing partner of Insight Strategy Partners, a think-tank based in Sudan’s capital, Khartoum, said she anticipated the military to escalate repression to provoke street violence. That way, she argued, the military could portray the pro-democracy movement as a bunch of young angry men who are a threat to national security.

(Source: Aljazeera)

SOMALIA

Rethinking the electoral process in Somalia 

Unless there is a fundamental change to the political order of Somalia, the political stagnation will continue unabated, risking a backsliding in the state building.

As there are no accountability links between politicians and the public, the politicians across the spectrum are very much in favor of indirect elections – a process marked by malpractice and distrust. As a result, the country is experiencing a protracted systemic crisis.

Political inequality is arguably the biggest source of conflict in Somalia. Hence, authorities should set out a clear road map to hold elections based on direct universal suffrage that includes all sectors of society.

(Source: Daily Sabah)

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