1Tanzanian Civil Aviation Authority makes Airports Drone-friendly
In the wake of the recent chaos at Gatwick Airport, where a drone grounded hundreds of flights for three days just before Christmas, getting air traffic control involved in drone flights makes a lot of sense. East Africa is leading the way in terms of forward-thinking and world-leading drone regulation. Rwanda boasts the world’s first cargo drone delivery service with Silicon Valley start-up Zipline, which is delivering blood to the country’s hospitals thanks to a deal with the government which gave its drones the status of government flights. And in Malawi, a drone test corridor for humanitarian purposes was launched in 2017 in a partnership between Unicef and the government.
2The Man who Captured Images of Libya Dies on the Frontline
Ben Khalifa’s death underscores the dangers facing photojournalists working in conflict. The 35-year-old was killed by shrapnel while accompanying a militia on patrol south of the capital Tripoli. Since Libya’s uprising began in 2011, at least 12 journalists were killed in relation to their work, of which 10 were photographers or camera operators, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists. His body of work for the Associated Press since 2014—spanning 260 photos and scores of videos—was especially cogent and compelling, revealing a country unraveling and a people trying to stay grounded in the face of adversity..
SOURCES: Quartz Africa
3In the Trenches and Digging for Gold in Africa
Traditionally, women have often been barred from taking part in the actual digging or leadership positions in East Africa’s artisanal gold mines. Instead, they’re left with roles such as stone crushers, washers, food vendors or sex workers that are lower in status and pay less, according to a 2018 report by The International Institute for Sustainable Development. But more and more women like Samwel are now receiving support from a series of regional and international initiatives that are empowering them with greater influence and transforming the economic fortunes of their families and communities.
4Surviving the Namib Desert
Researchers have found that lions in Namibia have turned to hunting seabirds and seals in the face of scarce food resources in the desert landscape. The desert lions, which are found exclusively within the country’s Skeleton Coast region, are the only lions known to target marine life. Among the creatures they have been recorded eating are fur seals, flamingos and cormorants. The Skeleton Coast spans the coastal backbone of Namibia and is the driest place in sub-Saharan Africa, receiving as little as 5mm (0.2in) of rain a year. The desert lion’s usual prey of oryx and ostriches are thin on the ground there.
SOURCES: The Guardian
5MSF Changes its MO in Nigeria
The aid group expanded its work with children last year, carrying out 700 consultations between March and June. Children now make up 35 percent of its mental health patients in Diffa, but it is the only agency providing these services in the area and is nowhere near reaching everyone in need, Harouna said. Militant group, Boko Haram has targeted schools and abducted more than 1,000 children since 2013, according to the U.N. children’s agency, including, most notably, the abduction of 276 schoolgirls from the town of Chibok in 2014.
6Deadlock in Zimbabwe Wage Talks
Public sector unions gave Zimbabwe’s government a 48-hour ultimatum to make a new salary offer or face a strike after wage negotiations reached a deadlock, raising the prospect of more unrest following this month’s violent protests. President Emmerson Mnangagwa is under pressure to deliver on pre-election promises to revive an economy wrecked during the tenure of his predecessor Robert Mugabe, who ruled for 37 years before being forced to resign after a coup in 2017.
7Liberian Academic Looks at the Country’s ‘Negro Clause’
It has been exactly one year since newly inaugurated Liberian President George Manneh Weah sparked controversy by declaring staunch support for enacting dual citizenship and repealing a constitutional “Negro clause”, which prohibits non-blacks from obtaining citizenship by birth, ancestry or naturalisation. Research by Robtel Neajai Pailey on how Liberians view citizenship in general and dual citizenship in particular – based on over 200 interviews in cities in West Africa, Europe, and North America – shows that the laws remain unchanged because objections to amendments are deeply socioeconomic in nature, and cannot be simply wished away by presidential proclamations. Liberians experience citizenship differently based on their socioeconomic status, gender and ethnicity, and this largely influences whether they reject or accept dual citizenship and the “Negro clause”.
SOURCES: Al Jazeera
8Ugandans can Now have a Share in the MTN Pie
President Yoweri Museveni says telecom firm MTN Uganda needs to sell shares on the local stock exchange to facilitate domestic ownership of the company and ensure more of the money it earns stays in the country. The company is the East African country’s largest telecommunications firm, controlling a subscriber base of more than 10 million.
SOURCES: CNBC Africa
9The Transformation of Arts in South Africa
Since the dawn of democracy in 1994, this has been on the cultural agenda since the dawn of democracy in 1994. Prior to that the apartheid government was deeply vested in advancing and funding the performance of Western European art forms.More inclusive performance arena and funding models have emerged in the past 30 years. Arguably, opera has undergone the most significant changes. Once viewed as an elitist Eurocentric art form with little relevance in South Africa, opera has become an international export commodity eliciting pride among all South Africans. Opera used to be seen as a “white” art form. Today most opera singers are black.
SOURCES: The Conversation
10This Central African Country is the Safest for Travelers
While most visitors to Rwanda’s Nyungwe Forest National Park need to organize an early morning hike to track colobus monkeys, at One&Only Nyungwe House the primates come directly to you. The resort is among several brand new ventures that are helping Rwanda establish its credentials as a luxury travel destination, particularly for people flying from Europe looking for temperate year-round escapes. The main draw remains Volcanoes National Park in the northwest, home to a 480-strong population of mountain gorillas made famous by Dian Fossey, the American researcher played by Sigourney Weaver in “Gorillas in the Mist.”