Top Africa stories: Roy Bennett, Mugabe, Senegal

2018-01-20 07:13

Roy Bennett and wife were 'two of Zimbabwe's greatest patriots'

Raton - A group of prominent friends, including a key Zimbabwean opposition leader and a Texas-based investor and philanthropist, was heading to a ranch in the US state of New Mexico when their helicopter crashed and burned in a remote area, killing five people aboard.

Friends and family members confirmed on Thursday that opposition leader Roy Bennett and his wife, Heather, had travelled to New Mexico to spend their holiday with friend and wealthy businessman Charles Burnett III at his ranch. Burnett's friends, pilot Jamie Coleman Dodd of Colorado and co-pilot Paul Cobb of Texas, were ferrying the group aboard a Huey UH-1 when it went down after dark on Wednesday.

Roy Bennett

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Roy Bennett helicopter crash 'claimed wealthy Texas investor, decorated pilots'

Raton - Five friends, including a Zimbabwean opposition leader, traveling to a ranch in the US state of New Mexico died when their helicopter crashed in a remote area. Here's more about the prominent people on board:

Charles Ryland Burnett III, 61 

Born in England, Burnett was an investor and philanthropist with links to a wide range of businesses and a love of entertaining friends extravagantly.

Burnett was based in Houston and listed as an officer in dozens of companies registered with the Texas secretary of state's office. The Guardian newspaper reported in 2009 that he drove a steam-powered car at an average speed of 225km per hour, setting a world record.

Roy Bennett

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EXCLUSIVE: Roy Bennett 'suffered a lot in his attempt to build a new Zimbabwe'

Cape Town – Zimbabwe's main opposition, the Movement for Democratic Change party's deputy president Nelson Chamisa has described Roy Bennett’s unexpected death in a helicopter crash in the US as "a big loss to the country's democratic struggle".

In an interview with News24, Chamisa said that Bennett's death was a huge blow to democracy, as the country was "on the brink of ushering in a new dispensation that he also suffered greatly to achieve".

Bennett and his wife Heather were among five people who were killed in a helicopter that went down in a mountainous rural area of New Mexico. 

Roy Benett

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Clues sought in copter crash that killed Zimbabwean opposition leader

Raton - A husband and wife who pushed for political change in Zimbabwe, an adventurous Texas investor and a pair of decorated pilots died in a fiery helicopter crash in a remote area in the US state of New Mexico.

Investigators will comb through the charred wreckage in search for clues as to why the helicopter carrying the group of prominent friends went down after dark on Wednesday.

Roy Benett

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WATCH: ‘Mugabe forgot he fired me,’ Mnangagwa reveals ex-president shocker

Harare – Zimbabwean president Emmerson Mnangagwa has reportedly claimed that his predecessor Robert Mugabe had forgotten he had fired him a week before a military intervention that culminated on the nonagenarian’s ouster last year.

According to New Zimbabwe.com, in a telephone conversation between the two, Mugabe enquired about the whereabouts of his former deputy and was told that he was in South Africa after elements within the ruling party were plotting to kill him.

Mnangagwa says that as the two were talking he realised that Mugabe did not remember firing him a week earlier.

Robert Mugabe

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Sixteen face prosecution in Senegal over Casamance massacre

Dakar - Sixteen people are to be prosecuted in connection with the massacre of 14 young men in Senegal's troubled region of Casamance, a source close to the case said on Friday.

The accused face charges of murder and criminal association over the January 6 killings in the forest of Bayotte.

The 16 suspects, who were arrested on Sunday, also face charges of participation in a rebel movement and possession of weapons without authorisation, according to the source.

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Burundi opposition says 42 held over referendum campaign

Nairobi - Opposition lawmakers in Burundi on Thursday said 42 activists had been arrested for illegally contesting an upcoming referendum that could let President Pierre Nkurunziza extend his stay in office.

Those arrested "were held arbitrarily and have been imprisoned on the accusation of campaigning for a No vote," Pierre-Celestin Ndikumana, who heads a coalition called Amizero y'Abarundi ("Hope of the Burundians"), told AFP.

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Read more on:    robert mugabe  |  roy bennett  |  emmerson mnangagwa  |  burundi  |  senegal  |  zimbabwe  |  southern africa  |  east africa  |  west africa

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