Top Africa stories: DRC land dispute, Media laws in Africa

2018-11-14 08:10

German bank caught in DRC colonial land dispute

A German state-owned bank has found itself at the centre of a battle in the Democratic Republic of Congo over agricultural land dating back to the Belgian colonial period, AFP learned Monday.

Representatives from nine communities in the DRC last week called on DEG - a branch of public development bank KfW - to activate a dispute resolution mechanism over land farmed for palm oil.

They say that palm oil producer PHC, owned by Canada's Feronia, has "illegally stolen" ancestral lands and forests for three plantations and factories, depriving them of "the means to feed and shelter their families," according to a statement by several non-governmental organisations (NGOs).

Farm

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WATCH: 'Looming threat' of media laws in Africa

Maria Sarungi-Tsehai, a communications expert from Tanzania, spoke to BBC about the climate of fear among the journalist community.

"They (journalists) think that the media law and the different media laws that have been passed are becoming more and more of a threat," she said.

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Madagascar ex-president denies election bribery claims

Madagascar's former president Andry Rajoelina on Monday rejected allegations by EU observers that he bribed local officials in return for their support in last week's presidential vote.

A European Union observer mission said in a report on Monday that it had "noted candidates committed breaches" ahead of the November 7 poll in the poor Indian Ocean island.

Race frontrunner Rajoelina had paid a total of $5 000 to two local chiefs, it said.

Andry Rajoelina

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Ethiopia arrests 63 suspected of rights abuses, corruption

Ethiopia has arrested 63 intelligence officials, military personnel and businesspeople on allegations of rights violations and corruption, the country's attorney general announced on Monday.

The sweeping high-profile arrests carried out in recent days are a result of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed's order for a months-long investigation into misdoings under the previous government.

Attorney General Berhanu Tsegaye told the media that some of those arrested are suspected of abuses of prisoners including "beatings, forced confessions, sodomy, rape, electrocution and even killings".

Handcuffs

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Pope to visit Morocco in March

Pope Francis, who has made building bridges between Christianity and Islam a cornerstone of his papacy, will visit Morocco in March, the Vatican said on Tuesday.

Francis, 81, will be the second pope to travel to Morocco, following John Paul II more than three decades ago.

He will take in Rabat and Casablanca on the March 30-31 trip to the Muslim-majority country, the Vatican said.

The pontiff was "accepting the invitation extended by King Mohammed VI and the bishops", it said.

Pope Francis arrives at the Vatican.

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Read more on:    drc  |  morocco  |  madagascar  |  tanzania  |  ethiopia  |  east africa  |  southern africa  |  north africa  |  central africa
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