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Calvary Chapel Emmett Welcomes Wes Bentley of Far Reaching Ministries

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Calvary Chapel Emmett is blessed to host special guest Wes Bentley, founder and director of Far Reaching Ministries. A missionary ministry organization heavily involved in South Sudan and Uganda. Enjoy.
(THIS AUDIO MESSAGE MAY NOT BE APPROPRIATE FOR YOUNG CHILDREN DUE TO DESCRIPTIONS OF VIOLENCE, PERSECUTION, AND MARTYRDOM)


          

Trauma and True Justice

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The level of mischief, grievances and conflicts are increasing in many communities. Trust levels and honest relationships are questionable.  One critical way to combat these rising tensions is how justice is by administering justice to achieve maximum respect for all involved. The modern court systems leave a lot to be desired. 

Later, Elly joined as a fighter in the South Sudan People Liberation Movement.

Take the story of 62-year Elly Dada Solomon for example. He is a refugee from Equatorial State of South Sudan. Elly has diverse experience in leadership from South Sudan. He served in General Court Martial, South Sudan Development Organization and South Sudan Immigration office at the Uganda border at Kaya. Later, Elly joined as a fighter in the South Sudan People Liberation Movement and moved on to oppose the government. 

Due to his position and history, Elly was arrested by the Nuer soldiers and sentenced to imprisonment for one year. After he was released he was under strict observation of his movements that gave him no peace and liberty. When the opportunity availed he escaped into Uganda via Congo (Senama) border to save his life that was being threatened. Today, Elly has been at the Bidibidi Refugee Settlement for eight months.  

Elly’s psychological state was affected. 

While in prison, under the hands of the Nuer Soldiers Elly’s psychological state was affected.  He was subjected to ill treatment that affected his life. He was traumatized by living in sad conditions with anxiety, frustration and became confused over the next steps of his life. Elly acknowledges his escape into Uganda as God’s desire and plan after encountering with the team of World Renew and staff of our partner organization – Here is Life

We are able to provide trauma healing and peace building, which is often an answered prayer. To many that are affected by trauma, healing and reconciliation is a necessary prerequisite. The affected need this more than ever. 

For Elly the process of healing motivated him to share his story of getting involved in the war. Elly’s testimony is an encouragement of God’s faithfulness even when he did not know him as Lord and friend. He narrates that he participated in reckless war activities with no benefit but instead ruined lives, property and families. There are many young people who escaped into Uganda but still engaged into the rebel activities in South Sudan, who now benefit from hearing Elly’s story.  

Elly’s testimony is an encouragement of God’s faithfulness

Elly is a source of reference and encouragement to the young people to avoid such atrocities.  He encourages forgiveness and love for one another regardless of ethnic differences and pains experienced. As Elly offers trauma healing support to the affected refugees in Bidibidi settlement he gets relieved of past hurt as well.  Elly’s story offers a great learning about how true justice means bringing healing from trauma for the present and the future.  

 

Photo by Alex Radelich on Unsplash


          

Kenya launches first county-level SGBV policy

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26 Jun 2019

Meru County in Kenya became the first to adopt a county-level policy on sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV). Approved in April 2019 and launched on June 26, 2019, the Meru County Policy on SGBV aims to close the gap between provisions in national legislation and the lived experience of SGBV survivors.

The adoption of the policy follows the Model Policy on SGBV for Counties, which provides guidance on minimum standards and critical elements needed to tailor the responses of local authorities to the specific SGBV challenges faced in different counties.

The county-level policy is particularly important for Meru given the high rates of SGBV, with surveys indicating that 66.7 per cent of women had experienced SGBV in the preceding 12 months.

The 2010 Kenyan Constitution provides that every person has the right to freedom and security and recognizes all international treaties ratified by Kenya – including the UN Declaration on the Elimination of Violence against Women. In 2014, Kenya also adopted the National Guidelines on the Management of Sexual Violence, providing a framework for the provision of services to SGBV survivors.

Notwithstanding these positive developments, SGBV remains prevalent. At the national level, 45 per cent of women in Kenya aged 15-49 have experienced either physical or sexual violence according to the 2014 Kenya Demographic Health Survey.

What’s more, the introduction of two levels of Government by the 2010 Constitution - national and county – created different operational structures in both policy and legal frameworks.

To mitigate possible disconnections, Kenya has made major strides in developing frameworks that ensure the effective response, prevention and management of SGBV.

“It is important to identify the factors that lead to gender inequality, unequal power relations and gender discrimination, since these are the main contributors of gender-based violence. This policy is adopted at an opportune time, since it will allow for the development of a baseline on the overarching causes of gender-based violence,” stated Shiro Mogeni, IDLO Gender Specialist at the Kenya Country Office.

“IDLO applauds Meru County for the adoption of this policy, which is trying to do something very ambitious: tackle a phenomenon that is not limited to specific regions, socioeconomic, religious or ethnic groups, but is instead happening everywhere and is potentially a risk for everyone,” Mogeni continued.

The Kenyan National Gender Equality Commission (NGEC) disseminated the Model Policy on SGBV for Counties to county governments, including the County of Meru. The newly adopted policies at the county level will create an enabling environment for the implementation of national and international measures meant to curb SGBV.

“This policy was developed on the principle that SGBV represents not only a human rights violation, but also a hidden obstacle to economic and social development. Domestic violence not only entails private costs for the victims and their families, but also wider social and economic costs, which in the end slow down the rate of development of a community,” commented Linner Nkirote Kailanya, Meru County Executive Committee Member for Education, Technology, Gender and Social Development.

“This policy will give effect to the various 2010 constitutional principles that prohibit SGBV and promote the rights to freedom and security. It will also empower women, transforming them from victims of gender-based violence into key drivers of the county’s structural transformation.”

IDLO’s technical support to eradicating SGBV in Kenya

IDLO provided technical support to develop both the Model Policy on SGBV for Counties and the Meru County Policy. In addition, IDLO supported the State Department for Gender Affairs to establish an Inter-Agency Committee to work on the creation of state-owned Gender-Based Violence Recovery Centres in 5 hospitals across all 47 counties. These centres will provide free medical services to SGBV survivors, including psycho-social support, temporary shelter for survivors of SGBV, linkage with the police to strengthen the chain of evidence, and a comprehensive database of SGBV survivors.

Beyond support to survivors, IDLO played a major role in supporting the training of 50 female judges from the International Association of Women Judges in December 2018. The training sought to discuss the role and contributions of women justice professionals in adjudicating cases of SGBV. Through this training, women judges from Kenya, Tanzania, South Sudan, Somalia, Zambia and Liberia shared experiences on SGBV cases and began the development of a regional network, which will facilitate the equitable solution of these disputes through peer-to-peer learning.

Through these contributions – from the adoption of SGBV policies to the provision of adequate services to SGBV survivors – IDLO is directly contributing to the ambitious target set by Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 5.2 of eliminating all forms of violence against women and girls worldwide.

 

Learn more about IDLO's work in Kenya

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Sud Sudan: l’opera dei missionari è un appello alla fratellanza

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Si è tenuta ieri l’assemblea generale di “Solidarity with South Sudan”. Intervista con la religiosa comboniana, suor Maria Teresa Ronchi
          

South Sudan: Free Arbitrarily Detained Journalist

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Emmanuel Monychol Akop, Managing Editor of the Dawn Newspaper has been in detention without charge since November 4, 2019. 

© Private 2019

(Nairobi) – South Sudanese authorities should immediately release a journalist who has been arbitrarily detained, Human Rights Watch said today.

The National Security Service (NSS) arrested and detained Emmanuel Monychol Akop, the managing editor of The Dawn newspaper after he answered a summons on October 21, 2019 to appear at the security service headquarters in Jebel neighborhood of Juba. Credible sources told Human Rights Watch that Monychol’s arrest appears to be linked to an October 15 Facebook post in which he poked fun at the dress worn by the foreign affairs and international cooperation minister, Awut Deng Achuil.

“Emmanuel Monychol’s detention is just the latest act of harassment by South Sudanese authorities in response to criticism or perceived dissent,” said Mausi Segun, Africa director at Human Rights Watch. “The authorities should immediately release him unless he has been charged with a recognizable offense.”

Four days after Monychol’s arrest, he was released on bail to attend the burial of a relative and other family functions. He responded to a second security service summons on November 4 and has been in custody ever since. On October 29, while out on bail, Monychol apologized to the minister for his comments on Facebook, which were also published by The Dawn newspaper the next day. Since 2017, the minister has had a defamation case in the high court in Juba against Monychol and The Dawn newspaper.

Monychol’s detention appears to be part of a broader crackdown by South Sudanese authorities to silence criticism by the media, nongovernmental groups, opposition parties, and National Assembly members. Since conflict broke out in South Sudan in December 2013, the NSS has spread a climate of fear and terror, targeting critics and perceived dissidents with arbitrary arrest and detention and torture and other ill-treatment. This has led to self-censorship in which human rights activists, journalists, critics of the government, and ordinary people no longer feel safe to speak freely and openly about topics deemed controversial.

The National Security Service Act (2015) grants the security agency sweeping powers to arrest, detain, conduct searches, and seize property. The law, however, requires the NSS to bring detainees before a magistrate or judge within 24 hours of their detention. Detainees under NSS detention are often kept in poor conditions including in congested cells with inadequate access to food, water, and medical care.

Human Rights Watch has repeatedly called on South Sudanese authorities to ensure that the NSS powers are limited to intelligence gathering, as envisioned by the Transitional Constitution of 2011, which mandates the agency to “focus on information gathering, analysis and to advice the relevant authorities.” Human Rights Watch has recommended that the powers to arrest, detain, conduct searches, seize property, and use force be excluded from the agency’s authority, and should instead be exercised by an appropriate law enforcement agency.

South Sudan’s “revitalized” peace deal signed in September 2018 provides for the review of security sector laws including the NSS Act by the National Constitutional Amendment Committee. In January, this committee submitted proposed amendments to the NSS Act to the Justice Ministry for deliberations and for presentation before the National Assembly. The ministry has yet to transmit the amendments to the assembly.

“South Sudan’s authorities should expedite action on the necessary reforms to curb the security agency’s broad powers and ensure full compliance with existing legal safeguards,” Segun said. “They should also ensure broad-based, public, and transparent consultations during the review process.”


          

Targeted: Counterterrorism Measures Take Aim at Environmental Activists

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On November 29, 2019, young people will gather at locations around the world for a Fridays for Future Global Climate Strike. On December 2, United Nations delegates, world leaders, business executives, and activists will meet at the 25th Conference of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP25) in Madrid to discuss ways to protect the environment. Participants in these events should also discuss ways to protect the protectors: the individuals and groups targeted around the world for their efforts on behalf of the planet.

The dangers facing environmental defenders do not stop at accusations that they are national security risks. From the Amazon rainforest to South African mining communities, activists seeking to preserve ecosystems and ancestral lands are being threatened, attacked, and even killed with near total impunity, Human Rights Watch has found. But in contrast to many of these illegal acts, the unjust labeling of environmentalists as security threats is often more insidious, as it is generally carried out under the color of law.

And while not all environmental activism is peaceful, only in exceptional cases would the actions of environmental activists meet a generally recognized definition of terrorism – actions aimed at terrorizing populations by causing or threatening death or serious physical harm to others to advance an ideological or political agenda. Nor, in nearly all cases, do their actions aim to undermine the rule of law. Typically, these individuals and groups are peacefully exercising their rights to freedom of speech, association, and assembly. When they engage in civil disobedience, their aim is usually to strengthen – and improve the enforcement of – existing environmental protection measures. Here are a few examples where environmental activists have been smeared as terrorists or other national security threats:

  • In Poland, the authorities denied entry in December 2018 to at least 13 foreign climate activists who were registered to attend COP24 in the southern city of Katowice, contending they posed a threat to public order and national security. Along with other individuals and groups, the activists had planned to press COP24 participants for rapid action to address climate change.

    Protesters march during the United Nations COP24 climate change summit in Katowice, Poland, on December 8, 2018.

    © 2018 SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images/Damian Klamka)

    The authorities had previously passed a special law empowering the police to collect data about conference participants without judicial oversight or the participants’ knowledge and consent and ban spontaneous protests during COP24. They also issued a terrorism alert that authorized increased vehicle checks and other security controls for Katowice and surrounding areas for the duration of the summit. Border officials detained and questioned several activists for hours, in some cases without allowing them to communicate their location or contact a lawyer.

  • In November 2015, French police used a sweeping counterterrorism emergency law enacted in response to the deadly Paris attacks earlier that month to place at least 24 climate activists under house arrest without judicial warrant, raid activists’ homes, and seize computers and personal belongings.

    Police raid a building suspected of housing climate activists in Paris on November 27, 2015, prior to the UN COP21 climate change summit. 

    © 2015 AFP/Laurent Emmanuel
    The activists were accused of flouting a ban on organizing protests related to COP21, which was being held in France the following week to sign the Paris Agreement on reducing emissions that contribute to global warming.

  • In Iran, six members of the Persian Wildlife Heritage Foundation (PWHF), imprisoned since early 2018, were handed prison terms of up to 10 years in November for allegedly spying for the United States. During a deeply flawed trial, the Islamic Revolutionary Guards said the environmentalists used their work to protect the Asiatic cheetah – one of the world’s most endangered species – as a cover. A charge against four of the accused of “spreading corruption on Earth,” a crime that can carry the death penalty, was reportedly dropped in October. Two other PWHF members also detained in early 2018 were awaiting judgment. A ninth environmentalist, PWHF founder Kavous Seyed Emami, died a few weeks after his arrest under suspicious circumstances in what the Iranian authorities alleged to be a suicide.

    A campaign poster showing environmental activists Taher Ghadirian, Niloufar Bayani, Amirhossein Khaleghi, Houman Jokar, Sam Rajabi, Sepideh Kashani, Morad Tahbaz and Abdolreza Kouhpayeh, who have been detained since early 2018 in Iran. An Iranian court in November 2019 sentenced Bayani, Tahbaz, Jokar, Ghadirian, Khaleghi and Kashani to prison terms of 6 to 10 years. 

    © 2018 #anyhopefornature Campaign

    Issa Kalantari, the head of Iran’s Department of Environment, said there was no evidence that the detained environmentalists were spies. He said the arrests have had a chilling effect on environmental groups in the country.

    The arrests appear to be motivated both by Iran’s “paranoia” about foreign countries using environmentalists as cover and its recognition that anger over environmental degradation can unite populations against government policies, said Kaveh Madani, the country’s former deputy environmental director. Madani returned to his native Iran from London in 2017 to take up the post, but said he was immediately detained and questioned by Revolutionary Guards, who broke into his phone, computer, emails, and social media accounts, and called him a “bioterrorist,” a “water terrorist,” and a spy. He left Iran after seven months, alleging repeated harassment including for his criticism of dam projects, which are constructed by the Revolutionary Guards.

  • In Kenya, the police and military have frequently labeled environmental activists opposing a mega-infrastructure project in the Lamu coastal region, including a coal-fired power plant, as “terrorists” while subjecting them to threats, beatings, and arbitrary arrests and detentions. In 15 cases documented by Human Rights Watch between 2013 and 2016, the authorities accused environmental defenders of membership in, or links to, the extremist armed group al-Shabab but provided no compelling evidence.

    Residents and environmental activists on Lamu island, Kenya, protest the proposed Lamu Port-South Sudan-Ethiopia (LAPSSET) project on March 1, 2012.

    © 2012 Reuters/Joseph Okanga

    The activists are protesting construction of the Lamu Port-South Sudan-Ethiopia Transport (LAPSSET) corridor, the biggest infrastructure project in Central and East Africa, which is to include a 32-berth seaport, three international airports, a road and railway network, and three resort cities. They contend that LAPSSET will pollute the air and water, destroy mangrove forests and breeding grounds for fish, and take farmland without just compensation, displacing communities and destroying their livelihoods.

    In July, Kenya’s environmental tribunal blocked approval of the power plant absent a new environmental impact study, finding the China-backed developers’ original assessment and public consultation process inadequate. The rest of the LAPSSET project continues. So does the intimidation campaign, activists protesting LAPSSET told Human Rights Watch.

  • In the Philippines, President Rodrigo Duterte in 2018 placed 600 civil society members, including environmentalists and indigenous rights defenders, on a list of alleged members of the country’s communist party and its armed wing, which he declared to be a terrorist organization. Duterte’s “terrorist list” included Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, an indigenous Filipina who is the UN special rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples and a climate change activist.

    Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, the United Nations special rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples, at UN headquarters in New York in April 2018. 

    © 2018 New York Times/Annie Ling
    In late 2017, Tauli-Corpuz had criticized the government for attacks and other abuses against indigenous communities that opposed coal and diamond mining on ancestral lands. Although a Manila court months later ordered the government to remove Tauli-Corpuz from the list, a Philippines military official in 2019 renewed the campaign against her, accusing her of “infiltrating” the UN for the communist insurgents. Several UN human rights experts condemned Tauli-Corpuz’s listing.

  • In Ecuador, eight years passed before the prominent environmental activist José “Pepe” Acacho, a Shuar indigenous leader, was able to clear himself of “terrorism” charges for his activities opposing mining and oil exploration in the Amazon. Acacho was charged with terrorism in 2010 for allegedly inciting violence during Shuar protests against a mining law.

    Pepe Acacho, second from left, leaves a courtroom in Quito, Ecuador, on February 8, 2011, after a judge granted his habeas corpus petition.

    © 2011 AP Photo/Dolores Ochoa
    He was convicted in 2013 and sentenced to 12 years in prison. Human Rights Watch reviewed the trial documents and found no credible evidence of terrorism-related crimes. In 2018, Ecuador’s highest court threw out the terrorism conviction but instead sentenced him to eight months in prison for “public services obstruction” – a charge for which he was never tried and hence never had the opportunity to contest. Acacho spent 17 days in jail before receiving a presidential pardon in October 2018.

  • In the US in August 2018, then-US Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke blamed “environmental terrorist groups” that opposed logging for wildfires on the West Coast – a proposition immediately attacked by leading environmental organizations including the Sierra Club. In 2017, 84 members of the US Congress, most of them Republicans, asked the Justice Department if activists mobilizing against the construction of oil pipelines could be prosecuted as terrorists. (The department’s response was that in some cases, yes.)

    Native Americans protest construction of the Dakota Access oil pipeline in North Dakota on September 4, 2019. 

    © 2019 AFP via Getty Images/Robyn Peck

    That same year, a major pipeline operator, Energy Transfer Partners LP, filed a lawsuit against Greenpeace and other environmental groups, accusing them of launching a “rogue eco-terrorist” campaign against the Dakota Access crude oil pipeline. Environmental activists and Native American tribes had tried to block construction of the 1,172-mile-long, underground pipeline through North Dakota during a protracted standoff with the authorities in 2016, saying it threatened sacred sites and drinking water. A federal court dismissed the lawsuit earlier this year.

    Although the protesters were largely peaceful, some resorted to violence and were convicted of protest-related crimes, but none for offenses that even remotely approximated terrorism. UN experts condemned security force responses to the protests as “excessive,” including their use of rubber bullets, teargas, compression grenades, mace, and “inhuman and degrading” detention conditions.

  • In Russia, at least 14 environmental groups have stopped work in recent years, and the head of the prominent group Ekozaschita! (Ecodefense!), Alexandra Koroleva, fled the country in June to avoid prosecution under the draconian Law on Foreign Agents. The 2012 law requires any Russian group accepting foreign funding and carrying out activities deemed to be “political” to register as a “foreign agent,” a term that in Russia implies “spy” or “traitor.” Authorities have used the law to silence groups that opposed state-sanctioned development projects and petitioned authorities for the release of imprisoned environmental activists, a Human Rights Watch investigation found.

    Alexandra Koroleva, the head of the Russian nongovernmental organization Ecodefense, fled to Germany in June 2019 to avoid being targeted under the abusive Russian “foreign agents” law. 

    © 2019 Ecodefense

    Russian officials including the special envoy for environmental protection, Sergey Ivanov, have applied the “extremist” label to Greenpeace Russia. An activist with Stop GOK, a Russian group seeking to block mining and enrichment plants, was fined in April 2019 for “mass distribution of extremist materials” because he published a poem on the organization’s social media page that the government had banned as extremist in 2012. The Russian nongovernmental organization SOVA Center, which analyzes counter-extremism trends, found that the poem, “Last Wish to the Ivans,” is a satirical address to destitute, alcohol and drug-addicted Russians from oligarchs and authorities profiting from extracting natural resources.

    Stop GOK and Greenpeace Russia were among groups named in a 2018 report by pro-government technologists as “environmental extremists” working for “influential forces in the West” bent on sabotaging strategic industries. The report was widely covered by state-controlled media.

Civil society participation will be crucial to ambitious outcomes at COP25. Parties to the summit, which include all UN member countries and the European Union, should allow activists ample opportunity to air their concerns about the climate crisis and use their combined expertise to help identify solutions. They should also provide activists with a safe space to speak out about the threats they face for carrying out their work.

In addition, parties should publicly commit to robustly carrying out international and regional treaties that protect environmental defenders. One of these treaties is the Escazu Agreement (the Regional Agreement on Access to Information, Public Participation and Justice in Environmental Matters in Latin America and the Caribbean), the world’s first covenant to include specific provisions promoting and protecting environmental defenders. Twenty-one countries have signed the 2018 agreement. But only six countries have ratified it – five shy of the ratifications needed to enter it into force. Chile, which stepped down as COP25 host because of protests stemming from economic grievances, but will still preside over the negotiations in Madrid, should lead by example and ratify the agreement.

COP25 participants should also commit to upholding the Aarhus Convention (the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe Convention on Access to Information, Public Participation in Decision-making and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters), to which Spain is a signatory. The convention – an environmental pact for Europe, the European Union, and Central Asia – grants the public, including environmental groups, an array of rights including public participation and access to information and justice in governmental decisions on the environment, without harassment or persecution. Parties to the treaty, including the EU, and Poland for its crackdown at COP24, have been criticized – including in some cases by the Aarhus Convention’s own oversight body – for flouting these provisions.

COP25 delegates should recognize that to genuinely protect the environment, they also need to protect its defenders – including those unjustly targeted in the name of security.


          

Eritrean Investors Provided South Sudan Capital With First-Ever Electricity

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Eritrean businessmen are aiding in the development of African countries


Eritrean investors are continuing to pour millions of dollars in investments in South Sudan, Uganda, Rwanda and Angola.

By Eritrean Press

South Sudan has received electricity for the first time marking a new era.

The Ezra Group from Eritrea has invested as much as US$289 million in a power plant that will provide 100 megawatts for Juba when completed, according to Managing Director of the company Mr Ghebrengus Ezra told reporters during the launch.

Yesterday, the grid and power distribution system was launched in the country’s capital Juba.

The government and other private institutions have been using their own generators.

Speaking at the launch (pictured), President Salva Kiir said war is over and the focus will now be on development to deliver services to people.

He said electricity will eradicate pollution that comes with large scale use of diesel in the environment, and assured the country that the government will focus on developing hydroelectric power and the renewable energy sector.

The Government Spokesman for the Republic of South Sudan has applauded the Eritrean business community in his country for the vast investment they have made and described it as exemplary in fostering the already existing excellent ties between the two people and governments.

The first phase of the 30 megawatts shall be complete in four phases over the next two years.

Eritrean investors are continuing to pour millions of dollars in investments in South Sudan, Uganda, Rwanda and Angola.

According to Uganda Investment Authority (UIA), from financial year 2011/12 up to 2017/18, Eritrea has appeared among Uganda's Top 10 investment source countries, beating many traditional as well as developed source countries for foreign direct investment (FDI).

Interestingly, prior to 2011/12 financial year, Eritrea never featured in the Top 10 FDI source countries, raising eyebrows why the sudden jump.

The assurance was given to the Eritrean investors in 2011 after Uganda invited Eritrea's leader, President Isaias Afwerki, to a state visit.


          

Standard Bank Derek Cooper Africa Scholarships 2020/2021 for African Students (fully-funded Masters at LSE)

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 The Standard Bank Derek Cooper Africa Scholarships offer an exciting opportunity of funding for students who are ordinarily resident in one of Standard Bank’s African presence countries, with a preference for residents of South Africa, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, Angola, Mozambique and South Sudan. Application Deadline: 27th April 2020 Offered annually? Yes Eligible Countries: African countries preferably residents of South Africa, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, Angola, Mozambique […]

After School Africa


          

‘Millions of Nigerians at risk of heatwave’

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A new report on climate change and its effects on humans says millions of Nigerians are at risk of heatwave.

Nigeria has in recent times been experiencing extreme heat, with the Nigerian Meteorological Agency saying most parts of the country, including coastal areas, would be affected.

Sustainable Energy for All, an international organisation working with leaders in government and the private sector to drive action towards achievement of Sustainable Development Goal 7 on sustainable energy by 2030, said 1.05 billion people in poor rural and urban areas were now at risk from lack of access to cooling.

According to the report, the risk is particularly high across Nigeria, Angola, Benin, Burkina Faso, Djibouti, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Malawi, Mali, Mozambique, South Sudan and Togo, where more than 60 per cent of the population are at risk.


The report said it would become worse due to lack of cooling access for about 19.1 per cent of urban poor or those living largely in urban slums and 28.7 per cent of rural poor or those living in rural areas and largely without access to electricity.

“This increase in risk seems to be driven by rapid urbanisation, drawing people from poor rural settings, placing more and more pressure on urban slums to support them, and a lack of electricity access gains,” the report said.

The Head of Energy Efficiency and Cooling at Sustainable Energy for All, Brian Dean, in an interview with the newsmen, said governments, industry and development finance had huge roles to play in reducing the risks.

He explained that in a warming world facing deadly impact from climate change, cooling should not be seen as a luxury.

“It is essential for public safety, public health, nutritious food supplies, and effective medicine. Delivering it sustainably is an issue of equity that will enable millions to escape poverty and realise the sustainable development goals,” he said.

Dean said the report, ‘Chilling prospects: Tracking sustainable cooling for all 2019’, had set out a series of action-oriented recommendations to allow policymakers, development financiers and industry to accelerate action on access to cooling.

He said, “Governments can actively promote regional collaboration and market integration that lower the costs of cooling services, while development finance can make solutions for the most vulnerable a central part of project preparation grants.

“Industry can take steps to ensure high efficiency cooling technologies are available at an affordable price, and advocate to government on the need for policy and regulatory measures that support this goal.”

He stated that individuals could also take steps to help themselves, by becoming aware of risks and the resources available in the event of extreme heat.

According to him, public cooling centres can be set up to provide refuge during extreme heat.

Speaking on Nigeria’s electricity challenges which could have negative impact on any efforts towards sustainable cooling, Dean said alternative approaches to cooling could be deployed.

He said, “There are alternative approaches that do not require energy, such as cool or white roofs, passive solutions like shading, insulation, and using vegetation and green space to reduce heat stress in cities.

“By encouraging a more efficient use of energy, these types of approaches can reduce risks and the demand for cooling, in turn reducing the strain on the electricity distribution at peak times and contributing to greater access to reliable energy.”

He said such alternatives would be particularly important in warm areas where energy access deficits were high.

According to Dean, public awareness is crucial to addressing the issue, adding that awareness of resources available to people during a heatwave can improve outcomes significantly.
          

World - Aid group says gunmen storm its compound in South Sudan

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NAIROBI, Kenya - An international aid group says armed men stormed its compound in South Sudan and sexually assaulted two staffers and wounded three others. Relief...
          

History Of South Sudan From Slavery To Independence

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History Of South Sudan From Slavery To Independence
          

Kenya woos oil importers in bid to reclaim business lost to Tanzania

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Kenya hopes to regain its petroleum export market after cutting pipeline tariffs by 50 per cent, a development that sets up stiff competition with Tanzania. Nairobi, which had lost about 30 per cent of its petroleum export market to Dar es Salaam, is also stepping up its crackdown on fuel adulteration and smuggling, a growing menace costing the government $340 million annually in lost taxes. Last week, the Kenya Revenue Authority in collaboration with a multi-agency team formed to strengthen co-ordination among different agencies in curbing illicit trade intercepted a consignment of 7,000 litres of diesel fuel smuggled from Ethiopia. This comes at a time when the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development estimates that the East African Community loses over $500 million in tax revenue annually due to counterfeiting. “KRA has enhanced vigilance at the country’s border points as part of key measures geared towards stepping up the fight against illicit trade and counterfeits,” Kevin Safari, KRA commissioner for Customs and Border Control said in a statement. Kenya hopes the intensified surveillance and crackdown on fuel adulteration and dumping will help the country recapture the petroleum export market from Tanzania. TARIFFS More critically, Nairobi hopes the lower pipeline tariffs will encourage petroleum and petroleum products importers to use the Mombasa port for products destined for neighbouring landlocked countries like Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, South Sudan and the Democratic Republic of Congo. In the new tariffs imposed by the Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Authority, oil marketing companies will pay $30.89 per 1,000 litres down from $60 to transport fuel using Kenya Pipeline Company facilities. The rates, which will apply for the next three years, will further be lowered to $30.65 in 2020 and $29.07 in 2021. “Kenya had lost about 30 per cent of its petroleum export market to Tanzania mainly due to the   high tariffs charged for pipeline transport,” EPRA director general Pavel Oimeke told The EastAfrican. He added that in the past 10 days after the implementation of the revised pipeline tariffs, the export volumes have doubled, a trend that is ultimately expected to regain the lost market share. KPC, which was pushing for an upward review of the tariffs that include the domestic market, has however protested the reduction ostensibly on the basis that it will have a negative impact on its bottom line. The company wanted an increase to raise funds to service massive debts procured to finance infrastructure investments including the new Mombasa-Nairobi pipeline constructed at a cost of $473.4 million, and the four new oil storage tanks in Nairobi that cost $50 million. The company has also invested $16 million in the Kisumu Oil Jetty. Mr Oimeke said that KPC has submitted a protest letter to EPRA, which does not amount to an appeal against the new tariffs. “They are yet to submit a detailed appeal to us. What we received is a protest letter. We have written to them and advised on how to structure the appeal accompanied with justification for each item. We will objectively review once we receive the detailed appeal,” he added. According to the Economic Survey 2019, Kenya’s volume of petroleum exports declined to 739.800 tonnes in 2018, from 842.400 tonnes in 2017. Although the value of total exports rose by 7.5 per cent to $374.2 million in 2018 on account of a growth in the value of re-exports, the value of domestic exports of petroleum products dropped by 15.2 per cent to $40.5 million in 2018. DOMESTIC EXPORTS In the first half of 2019, the value of domestic exports stood at $11.5 million from $20.2 million in same period in 2018, a 43 per cent decline. While the volumes of transit petroleum products imports in Kenya have been on the decline, Tanzania has recorded a significant rise in imports entering through the ports of Dar es Salaam and Tanga. Data by the Energy and Water Utilities Regulatory Authority of Tanzania shows that in the financial year ending June 2018, the volume of transit products stood at 2.6 million litres compared with two million litres for 2017, a 35 per cent rise. Ewura, in its 2018 annual report reckons that importers prefer Tanzania due to the authority’s efforts in ensuring compliance to laws and standards in the downstream petroleum subsector. According to Mr Oimeke, the level of petroleum fuels adulteration in Kenya has significantly reduced since September 2018 when the anti-adulteration of $0.173 per litre was introduced for Kerosene. In addition, dumping has significantly reduced due to improvements implemented to the petroleum fuels marking and monitoring programme since January this year. The improvements include increased frequency of monitoring and stiffer penalties for culprits, which has seen compliance levels for both dumping and adulteration hit 100 per cent as at the end of last quarter. “EPRA has increased surveillance and also enlisted the help of the National Police Service to ensure that the problem is dealt with,” he said. He added that EPRA is working with regional energy regulators under the auspices of the Energy Regulators Association of East Africa to improve compliance across the region. ***   TARIFFS The Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Authority has allowed oil marketing companies to pay $30.89 per 1,000 litres in tariffs, down from $60 to transport fuel using Kenya Pipeline Company facilities. The rates will apply for the next three years and will be further lowered to $30.65 in 2020 and $29.07 in 2021. Oil marketers pay on average $80 to ferry oil from Dar es Salaam on trucks but pay $60 tariff on pipeline to Kisumu and a further $35 to truck the product to Uganda, Rwanda and northern Tanzania buying countries. Tanzania has also stepped up competition by increasing efficiencies at the port. According to the Economic Survey 2019, Kenya’s volume of petroleum exports declined to 739.800 tonnes in 2018, from 842.400 tonnes in 2017. But KPC has protested the cut in tariffs. By The Eastafrica

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Kenya retains seat at global maritime council

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Kenya has retained its seat on the Council of the International Maritime Organisation, giving it a chance to continue playing a role in global shipping rule making. The vote on Friday evening in London saw 174 member states take part with Kenya retaining its seat under Category C of 20 countries usually reserved for those with special interest in maritime transport or navigation. In Africa, Morocco, South Africa, Liberia and Egypt are the other members of Category C. Kenya holds special interests in maritime transport and navigation as the coastal, port and flag state “whose strategic location along the Eastern Africa coast makes it a most important cog in the wheel of steering global shipping,” according to Maritime Principal Secretary Nancy Karigithu who led the delegation to the polls. “Our re-election to Council will ensure continued representation of a major geographic area in Eastern Africa and the Great Lakes region consisting of the countries Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Somalia, South Sudan, Tanzania and Uganda,” she said on Saturday. Kenya’s High Commissioner to the UK Manoah Esipisu, also the Permanent Representative to the IMO, said he was delighted by the vote result. “It confirms the world’s confidence on our leadership around maritime transport and safety, and our commitment to the Blue Economy,” he said. Kenya joined the IMO in 1973 and was first elected to the Council under Category “C” in 2001 and has been re-elected in subsequent elections to date, the last being in 2017. It is one seat at a UN agency where Kenya has dominated lately. But this election saw heavy lobbying. Some marine and shipping giants like Sweden, Nigeria and Liberia lost their bids. Qatar, a wealthy oil producer as well as Saudi Arabia also lost out. The IMO is the specialised agency that determines rules on shipping safety and environment. With more than 80 per cent of global trade running on seas, the IMO’s regulatory framework determines how shipping lines and ports operate. By The Eastafrica 

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Abiy Ahmed fanning instability in Somalia, S. Sudan: UN reports

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Just months after winning the Nobel Peace Prize, Ethiopia’s reformist Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed is fighting accusations of his interfering with the affairs of neighbouring countries. In November, two United Nations reports accused him of being lukewarm in South Sudan peace process and fuelling fires of instability in Somalia; two of the countries he has been closely involved in as the chairman of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development. In South Sudan, where Igad midwifed a revitalised peace agreement in September last year, Abiy’s government, Uganda and Kenya were accused of being inconsistent in ensuring the deal is implemented. PEACE PROCESS “Over the past year, the Igad and member states neighbouring South Sudan – specifically Ethiopia, Kenya, Sudan and Uganda – have not demonstrated full and consistent engagement in the peace process,” a UN report said. “The government of Salva Kiir, in particular, has benefited from the inconsistent approach of the region.” Ethiopia, which chaired Igad until last Friday, and Kenya have only given piecemeal support, with occasional visits or bilateral meetings, the report by the UN Panel of Experts says. Both countries refute the charge, separately saying that they have in fact borne the brunt of violence in South Sudan by hosting hundreds of thousands of refugees and losing business. On Friday, Ethiopia’s ambassador to Kenya Meles Alem told the Nation that the allegations do not hold water. “One of the pillars of Ethiopian foreign policy is non-interference in the internal affairs of other countries. That is our track record,” Meles said. “As a good neighbour, we have only played constructive roles.” REFUGEES Kenya on the other hand accused the UN team of passing the buck, arguing that Kenya suffers whenever South Sudan is at war as its businesses close and it hosts refugees. This past week, a number of Somali politicians have been vocal, accusing Ethiopia of helping the federal government interfere with the states. The Forum for National Parties (FNP), the coalition which brings together six parties, wrote to Abiy telling him to stop “the unfortunate renewal of Ethiopia’s involvement in Somalia’s domestic politics”. The politicians said Ethiopia is deploying non-Amisom forces in the country, referring to the African Union Mission in Somalia. “The Ethiopian National Defence Forces have been repeatedly involved in illegal activities whose outcome could at best undermine the fragile state-building and nascent democratic processes in Somalia,” they wrote on Friday. The FNP letter came on the backdrop of complaints by the Jubbaland administration following two incidents in Gedo. Jubbaland, whose president is Ahmed Madobe, said Ethiopian soldiers forced administrators in Buala Hawa, Dolow and Luuq towns in Gedo region to renounce their allegiance to Jubbaland. In another incident, Jubbaland Vice President Mohamud Sayyid reportedly sought refuge in Mandera, Kenya after escaping a kidnapping attempt by Ethiopian forces. MALTREATMENT Pressed, Jubbaland and FNP did not provide proof of the maltreatment. Meles told the Sunday Nation that his country’s role in South Sudan and Somalia have been limited to the peace process. He said Ethiopia deploys peacekeepers who follow available regulations. “We have played a constructive role under the auspices of Igad to bring peace and stability in the two countries. In fact, Ethiopia hosts a million refugees and we treat them as our citizens,” the diplomat said. Accusations against Ethiopia began in Somalia last year. A UN Panel of Experts on Somalia in its 2019 report said Ethiopia had interfered with the vote in South West where Mukhtar Rubow – a former al-Shabaab deputy head – was barred from running. When South West residents protested, forces loyal to Rubow fought Ethiopian soldiers, resulting in several deaths, the UN experts said. “The role of the Ethiopian forces in the arrest of Rubow has the potential to inflame anti-Ethiopian sentiment among communities in the region, who were previously known to share information on al-Shabaab movements with them,” the panel said. Ethiopia, at the time dismissed the report as a fabrication. As Somalia’s Galmudug state gears for its elections, politicians accuse Addis Ababa of playing a role again. By The Eastafrica

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Juba angered by US’ lack of confidence in Kiir and recall of envoy to South Sudan

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The US government’s withdrawal of its envoy to South Sudan has stoked anger among President Salva Kiir’s close associates, even as the Opposition appeared to back Washington’s hard-line stance on Juba. The US on Monday recalled its ambassador in South Sudan, Thomas Hushek, sending a strong signal that it did not support the decision to allow more time for the country’s political protagonists to form a unity government. But as Juba screamed victim this week, the Opposition said it did not feel the negotiations with President Kiir’s government were progressing at the right pace even as the clock ticks towards the 100 days deadline. Ceasefire violation Details also emerged that the government in Juba was recruiting new soldiers in what could have violated ceasefire agreements and potentially damaged the possibility of merging forces into one national army, under the planned unity government. Washington said it was withdrawing Mr Hushek as Ambassador to South Sudan for “consultations,” having become frustrated with the failure by President Salva Kiir and former VP and Opposition Leader Riek Machar, to start an administration. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had torn into President Kiir, questioning his political will and said they were calling back their envoy to “re-evaluate” their relationship with Juba. “We will work with the region to support efforts to achieve peace and a successful political transition in South Sudan,” Mr Pompeo said. Perpetual deadlines But the decision by the US, one of the group of donor countries behind mediation efforts known as the Troika to recall their envoy was seen in Juba as a bid to force the hand of Mr Kiir to give in to some unspecified demands. Mr Kiir’s diplomats were this week fighting back claims that he is a stumbling block to formation of a transitional government. Instead, they asserted that their principal was being ‘victimised’ for compromising. “The President has never asked for an extension of the pre-transitional period,” argued South Sudan’s Foreign Affairs Minister Awut Deng Achuil, referring to the time allowed to form the transitional government of national unity. Kiir, Machar and several other parties signed the Revitalised Agreement on the Resolution of Conflict in South Sudan (R-ARCSS) on September 12, 2018. They were to form the unity government six months later. They failed and extended by another six months. As the deadline approached on November 12, Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni brokered another deal to extend the period by another 100 days. “His excellency welcomed the decision of the regional guarantors for extension as a compromise measure to avert a return to conflict and maintain peace in the country,” Ms Achuil said this week. Every other party, including mediators at the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (Igad) endorsed the extension with a caveat: That the parties must now list down specific actions to ensure the 100 days lead to a new unity government. Dr Machar’s group, the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-In Opposition, in an interview said Juba had not given specific guarantees to the international community on implementation of the agreement required for formation of a unity government even after signing of the deal to extend the pre-transition by 100 days. Dwarfed by giant “Washington is unhappy with the way things are happening in South Sudan,” said James Oryema, Dr Machar’s Spokesman in Kenya. “There was consensus in Entebbe but Washington is worried we cannot work together (with President Kiir) as things stand.” With the US decision, Juba says it means Washington is not keen on a peace deal but paves the way for external aggressors. “The US has never been a friend of South Sudan. There are big politics in play and South Sudan is just a victim of a giant,” said James P. Morgan, South Sudan’s envoy to the African Union, without elaborating. “Two guarantors (Uganda and Sudan) came up with a middle ground which was to provide 100 days. But the US was not happy with that. “The US acted dubiously by supporting the formation of a revitalised transitional government and yet it also supported the position of Dr Machar,” he added, referring to the initial demand by the opposition groups for six more months. A UN Panel of Experts on South Sudan this week charged that Juba had recruited about 10,000 new soldiers during the transitional period, despite the R-ARCSS requiring that certain measures be taken to retrain, canton and merge forces first. The forces, the Panel claimed, were being hosted in the former Warrap State. The US, which had warned before of re-evaluating relations with South Sudan, has also imposed sanctions on certain South Sudanese warlords, seen to have violated ceasefire agreements. Some of the individuals were still working for President Kiir and had even travelled abroad on assignments despite various US and UN sanctions. New rebel group In a UN report, South Sudan Army chief Gabriel Jok Riak, who was sanctioned and banned from travelling abroad, had in fact attended a military sports event in Nairobi in August, without a formal request for exemption. Another former military chief, Gen Paul Malong, who has been banned from travelling, was also spotted in Johannesburg in July, travelling on a Ugandan diplomatic passport. He travelled back to Nairobi using the same document, according to the Panel. Gen Malong, once Kiir’s Chief of General Staff, formed his own rebel group and refused to sign the peace deal. The US warned that it will impose more sanctions on others like Gen Malong and another rebel called Thomas Cirillo, who also runs a different group that refuses to join the peace deal. But South Sudan’s neighbours came in for criticism for aiding the flop in sanctions. The Panel says in its interim report that there is lack of political will among key protagonists to implement the peace agreement known as R-ARCSS. Dangerous stalemate But they charge that President Kiir is specifically profiting from the region’s reluctance to enforce sanctions imposed on warlords. Kenya, Uganda and Ethiopia are particularly seen as partial players in the conflict. “The selective...

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Kenya takes up Nile Basin leadership

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Kenya is now chair of the Nile Council of Ministers and will be led by Water Cabinet Secretary Simon Chelugui. Mr Chelugui takes over from Burundi’s Minister of Environment, Agriculture and Livestock, Dr Deo-Guide Rurema. The handover was done at a pre-conference in Nairobi on Wednesday, where the Council outlined an ambitious plan for the Nile Basin Initiative (NBI). Regional system On Friday, the Council of Ministers led by NBI Secretariat under the executive director of NBI Prof Seifeldin Hamad Abdalla launched the $5.5 million Nile Basin Regional Hydro-Met System that will enable NBI member states to share reliable data for monitoring of the Nile Basin resources as well as collect data to inform planning to prevent potential conflicts over the use of the Nile waters, said Mr Chelugui. The launch was attended by Water ministers from NBI member states, the Nile Technical Advisory Committee, stakeholders and civil society organisations. The Hydro-Met System project funded by the European Union and the government of Government, will include 79 hydrological monitoring stations, 322 meteorological monitoring stations and upgraded water quality laboratories. To-do list As the chair, Kenya will lead the initiative for a period of one year and is seeking to transform it into a co-operation like other basins around the world. “We want to transform it to a co-operation where equitable use of water resources is practised,” said Mr Chelugui. Top of the to-do list for Mr Chelugui is bringing back Egypt to the Initiative. Egypt left in 2010 to protest the signing of the Co-operative Framework Agreement (CFA) by some member countries, a pact that it was opposed to. Currently, six countries have signed the CFA—Uganda, Ethiopia, Rwanda, Tanzania, Kenya and Burundi—of which only four—Ethiopia, Rwanda, Tanzania, and Uganda — have ratified while Kenya is in the process of ratifying after signing it on May 19, this year. Ethiopia has already deposited the CFA with the African Union, while Sudan reviewed its position in 2010. “We intend to employ persuasion and diplomacy to bring back Egypt. We want to reach consensus and reconciliation on the issues which made the state leave,” Mr Chelugui added. Egypt, on the other hand, wants an alternative agreement which will allow other Nile Basin countries to do projects along the River Nile. The country still stands by the 1929 Nile Waters Agreement and the 1959 agreement between itself and Sudan. Other members of the NBI are South Sudan, Democratic Republic of Congo and Eritrea as an observer state. River Nile upstream countries have been pushing joint projects, and there is an interconnection and power generation project between Kenya and Uganda (Lessos-Tororo- Bujagali), which is expected to increase cross-border power trade and access to reliable and affordable energy and reduce operational costs, said Mr Chelugui. By The Eastafrica

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Museveni: I won’t spare whoever attacks Uganda

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President Museveni has said he will not spare anyone who tries to attack or mistreat Ugandans and Africans. Speaking at the commissioning the CCTV National Command and Control Centre in Kampala yesterday, the President said he considers all Ugandans and Africans part of his family and will even put his life on the line for them. “If you have love for the fatherland, it means all Ugandans are our family members. If you have got this in your head, you will not neglect your duties because you know that any attack any Ugandans is like attacking your child, sister and brother,” Mr Museveni said. “Some people don’t have that feeling. They feel that family members are those from the same woman. But to me, all Ugandans, all Africans are my family; that is why I will cause you a lot of problems. If you are near me and you kill, mistreat or rape an African woman, who is my muzukulu (grandchild), ofudde (you are dead). I can’t spare you,” he added. The President’s remarks left those in attendance puzzled on whether he was referring to the current high crime rate in Uganda or sending a message to external threats. Mr Museveni said defending Africans from oppression is what took him to Mozambique to join freedom fighters in 1968. “What was I looking for? There were no Banyankole. I was not going to greet agandi (a Runyankole greeting meaning how you are?); It is because Mozambicans are Africans and they were being oppressed,” he added. Mr Museveni has previously sent troops to the Democratic Republic of Congo (then Zaire), Sudan before the formation of South Sudan as an independent state and now Somalia. Uganda also helped rebels backed by Mr Paul Kagame to capture power in Rwanda following the 1994 genocide. The President said some people have attempted to discredit his National Resistance Movement party by killing high profile people in urban areas. “Yet security is my area, my constituency. That is my battle ground. If you want to challenge Uganda, you should look for another constituency. We are going to defeat these criminals. This is just the beginning,” he said. The Inspector General of Police, Mr Martins Okoth-Ochola, said CCTV cameras have improved policing in the country. “We have been able to improve of our 999 emergency system and we are now able to identify the location of distress calls in time. With camera and DNA profiling, the institution has registered tremendous success in tracing wanted persons and vehicles,” Mr Ochola said. The function was attended by, among others, Internal Affairs minister Obiga Kania, Security minister Elly Tumwine and Chief of Defence Forces David Muhoozi. By Daily Monitor 

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Peer Navigators Help Connect Thousands to HIV Care and Treatment Services in South Sudan

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November 25, 2019
IntraHealth’s work on the E

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Can Kenya protect its citizens from extreme weather?

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Devastating floods are continuing to spread havoc across parts of East Africa. Somalia and South Sudan had been heavily affected and in Kenya more than 56 people have lost their lives. We look at Kenya's state of preparedness with the deputy director of Kenya Meteorological Department, Samwel Mwangi. On International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, World Health Organisation's Technical Officer Avni Amin tells us why framing violence against women as a matter of public health may help saving lives. We also hear from Leah Eryenyu, an activist with the Uganda Feminist Forum. A company partly owned by the British Government has been accused of a series of environmental and human rights abuses – in a damning report published today. Human Rights Watch says palm oil producer Feronia, which has plantations in the Democratic Republic of Congo, has been dumping untreated waste directly into the rivers used for drinking water, paying some of its workers under 2 dollars a day – and making them work in dangerous conditions.
          

Somalia: UN Accuses Ethiopia of Meddling in Somalia Affairs

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Just months after winning the Nobel Peace Prize, Ethiopia’s reformist Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed is fighting accusations of is interfering with the affairs of neighbouring countries. In November, two United Nations reports accused him of being lukewarm in South Sudan peace process and fuelling fires of instability in Somalia; two of the countries he has […]

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Abiy Ahmed fanning instability in Somalia, S. Sudan: UN reports

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Just months after winning the Nobel Peace Prize, Ethiopia’s reformist Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed is fighting accusations of his interfering with the affairs of neighbouring countries. In November, two United Nations reports accused him of being lukewarm in South Sudan peace process and fuelling fires of instability in Somalia; two of the countries he has […]

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S. Sudan violates peace deal, recruits 10,000 new fighters

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November 27, 2019 (JUBA) – South Sudan National Security Service recruited a new force of at least 10,000 fighters from communities in the former Warrap State, contrary to provisions of the peace agreement, a United Nations Panel of Experts said in a new report to the Security Council. The Panel, on Friday, said fighters recruited […]

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South Sudan

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In December, the Council will receive a briefing on the Secretary-General’s 90-day report on South Sudan. Ambassador Joanna Wronecka (Poland), chair of the 2206 South Sudan Sanctions Committee, is also expected to brief on the Committee’s work. Consultations are expected to follow the briefing.
          

South Sudan: Juba Angered by U.S.' Lack of Confidence in Kiir and Recall of Envoy

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[East African] The US government's withdrawal of its envoy to South Sudan has stoked anger among President Salva Kiir's close associates, even as the Opposition appeared to back Washington's hard-line stance on Juba.
          

South Sudan: Juba Criticizes U.S. Recall of Ambassador

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[VOA] The South Sudanese government said Wednesday that it was disappointed with the State Department's decision to recall the U.S. ambassador to the country.
          

South Sudan: Govt Appeals to U.S. for Patience

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[East African] The government of South Sudan has urged the United States to be patient as its leaders work to achieve peace.
          

South Sudan: Govt Protests Recall of U.S. Envoy, Appeals for Support

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[Nation] The government of South Sudan has urged the United States to be patient as its leaders work to achieve peace.
          

NORCAP is searching for electrical engineers

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Organization: Norwegian Capacity
Closing date: 18 Dec 2019

Are you an electrical engineer with passion for and experience with renewable energy?

There are over 2 million refugees hosted in Uganda, South Sudan, Cameroon and Chad, primarily in rural settlements with limited access to sustainable power. The power demand for UNHCR, government and partners in the field are often met by diesel generators for primary or backup power where grid power is available but unreliable. Such field facilities that are powered by generators may have loads installed or expanded such that their energy efficiency is sub-optimal or insufficient. This amounts to significant operational costs and a large carbon footprint that can be reduced through appropriate optimization and renewable energy solutions. At institutional level, access to sustainable energy is often insufficient including adequate outdoor lighting and basic services in health centres and educational facilities.

While access to grid power is expanding, UNHCR needs to work with local authorities and development partners to plan and cater for the demand in refugee settlements in a systematic way through either on or off-grid sustainable electrical power solutions. Energy efficiency also needs to be optimized through site-specific audits and improvements as well as ongoing power monitoring and management. Therefore there is a need for specialized electrical engineering capacity to support determination of power needs across UNHCR's operations and manage projects to increase access to sustainable power in the humanitarian context.

Duties and responsibilities

Selected experts will be based in one of UNHCR's Branch Offices in either Uganda, South Sudan, Cameroon or Chad. Based on the local context, the experrt will develop an action plan for the electricity needs, usages and options for transitioning to clean energy. This includes, but is not limited to:

  • Conduct a needs assessment related to the overall power demand study.
  • Support the development of and report on progress on the power demand study and costed electrification response plan for each refugee settlement, basecamp and UNHCR office and staff accommodation.
  • Coordinate and undertake field visits and data collection activities to support the plan.
  • Maintain an in-house dataset of all details emerging from the assessment and identify.
  • Establish the baseline fuel consumption and power consumption.
  • Carry out participatory evaluations of the current power and lighting energy situation and needs, interviewing refugees, host communities, UNHCR’s implementing and operational partners, key Government stakeholders and UNHCR’s own relevant staff.
  • Identify new and improved electrical energy solutions.
  • Review the locally and globally available clean energy solutions that could address the needs for each refugee settlement.
  • Undertake cost-benefit analyses to identify and make recommendations for the most practical and effective viable energy solutions.
  • Develop an implementation plan and prioritized project list for upgrades to UNHCR and partner offices/compounds to improve energy efficiency and reduce carbon footprint through appropriate measures.
  • Design and lead the process to implement sustainable power and lighting solutions.
  • Provide technical review, support and coordination for all operational and development partner sustainable power projects in refugee and host communities.
  • Collaborate and coordinate closely with protection, programme, supply, shelter, WASH, livelihoods, and others to ensure that new proposed solutions are beneficial across sectors.
  • Collaborate with operations and donor partners to secure resources needed to implement the sustainable power and lighting solutions. Collaboration with innovative companies and private sector entities should be explored where possible.
  • Prepare drawings and specifications, call for proposals, terms of reference and similar bidding documents, for companies/entities that will bid for installing the new energy systems.
  • Coordinate operation and maintenance planning to ensure optimum utilization of electrical system facilities.
  • Stay informed of all governmental/national regulations in relation to energy systems to ensure energy activities are legal and sustainable, through active contacts with Governmental counterparts and local authorities.

Qualifications

  • An advanced university degree in electrical engineering or renewaable energy
  • At least 6 years work experience
  • Demonstrated experience of planning, design and implementation and audits of electrical power systems and electrical energy solutions, especially renewable solutions and including power monitoring systems
  • Experience and knowledge of relevant standards in the planning, design, budgeting and management of electrical power systems.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of power generation, transmission and distribution systems.Experience designing and producing drawings of electrical systems using computer-assisted design software.
  • Have a good understanding of testing equipment and the process of test, inspection, verification and commissioning, as well as the procurement cycle.
  • Knowledge of financial, regulatory and/or policy frameworks, renewable energy financial management
  • Experience with managing budgets and required reporting
  • Familiarity with renewable energy business development is an asset.
  • Good knowledge of GIS.
  • Ability to write performance requirements, instructions, and reports and developing maintenance schedules.
  • Excellent command of spoken and written French or English.

Personal qualities

  • Excellent verbal and written communication and listening skills;
  • Sound mathematical and technical skills
  • Ability to think methodically, to design, plan and manage projects.
  • Ability to maintain an overview of entire projects while continuing to attend to detailed technicalities
  • Ability to deal with the different partners involved
  • Good team-working, negotiating and leadership skills combined with the ability to delegate.
  • Ability to think creatively, solve problems, to explore, harness and translate innovative concepts into practice.
  • Ability to apply knowledge from contemporary research in the field of electrical energy, and translate this into humanitarian settings.
  • Strong interest and exposure to development and humanitarian issues, especially in the area of energy and sustainability.

Being deployed through NORCAP gives you:

  • A great opportunity to work in an international setting for a world recognized organization
  • Significant life experiences through challenges and self-development
  • Access to a unique network of humanitarian and development professionals
  • A meaningful job working with the world’s challenges on location

How to apply:

To learn more about the role and to apply, please follow this link


          

Zimbabweans pushed to the brink by drought and economic meltdown

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Unlike previous crises, millions of urban dwellers are threatened along with the rural population.

Millions of people in Zimbabwe are on the brink of starvation as the southern African country struggles with relentless drought and the impact of cyclones, against a backdrop of years of economic decline.

“Within weeks the country may run out of maize, the staple food,” said Verity Johnson of CAFOD. “At best there will be further massive hikes in food prices for an already desperate population, who have seen the price of maize meal [flour] increase five-fold since the beginning of the year. There are severe bread shortages across the country. Where it can be found, a loaf of bread in Zimbabwe now costs up to fifteen times more than it did a year ago. In the struggle to feed their children, parents are going without themselves.”

People are also facing severe water shortages as dams and rivers dry up and urban supplies fail, exacerbated by lack of maintenance. Crippling power shortages are set to get worse, with the Kariba dam, the country’s main source of electricity generation, down to less than a fifth of capacity.

CAFOD is starting to receive worrying reports from volunteer health workers; one told us that he has noticed a number of breastfeeding mothers not able to feed their babies because they [the mothers] are malnourished, and not producing milk.

“People are already dying from poor nutrition and disease as health provision fails, but this could substantially increase”,  Ms Johnson added, warning of “a prevailing sense of despair”.

The UN warns that 7.7 million people, over half of Zimbabwe’s population, are short of food. This is more than anywhere else in the world, apart from the Democratic Republic of Congo, South Sudan and Yemen, all of which are conflict zones.

Unlike previous crises, millions of urban dwellers are threatened along with the rural population. Zimbabwe’s Christian church leaders have cited “systemic corruption, shortages of fuel, prices going out of control and collapse of the health sector” as characterising “the current deteriorating economic crisis”.

Neighbouring maize exporters such as South Africa and Zambia have suffered crop failures of their own, because of the impact of climate change in the region. According to the UN’s Inter Governmental Panel on Climate Change, Southern Africa is warming at about twice the global rate and is set to become drier with frequent droughts and increased number of heatwaves. This is a disastrous situation for Zimbabwe, where most of the rural population depend on rain-fed farming to live.

* CAFOD is the Catholic Agency for Overseas Development. It works with communities across Africa, Asia and Latin America to fight poverty and injustice. The agency works with people in need regardless of race, gender, religion or nationality https://cafod.org.uk/

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Deputy President David Mabuza Facilitates Intergovernmental Authority On Development Meeting in South Sudan

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[Govt of SA] Deputy President David Mabuza has arrived in Juba, South Sudan at the invitation of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), to facilitate an important Meeting of Parties to the Revitalized Agreement on the Resolution of Conflict in South Sudan. The Consultative Meeting is on the contentious issue of the number of States and their boundaries.
          

Individual Consultancy Services to Edit Training Manuals for Training of Staff of State Revenue Authorities and State Revenue Authorities Board in South Sudan

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UNDP: Individual Consultancy Services to Edit Training Manuals for Training of Staff of State Revenue Authorities and State Revenue Authorities Board in South Sudan in Home-Based. Closing date: 2019-12-02
          

UN Mission, community leaders, condemn South Sudan violence which left two dead at camp

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This article is brought to you in association with the United Nations. Community leaders issued an apology on Monday after rioting on 21 November by “drunken youth” within a UN Protection of Civilians site run by UNMISS in South Sudan, left two dead and eight UN personnel injured, including five police officers. Last Thursday’s clashes erupted […]
          

Human Rights Watch Urges the Human Rights Council to Renew and Strengthen Mandate of UN Commission

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Human Rights Watch urges the Human Rights Council to renew and strengthen the mandate of the UN Commission on Human Rights in South Sudan and ensure it has enough resources to carry out its important mandate to collect and preserve evidence of serious human rights violations and identify those responsible.  This mandate is all the ... Read more


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