PLANO, TX, December 6, 2013/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- DreamTrips™ Vacation Club (https://dreamtrips.com), one of the world's leading travel and vacation club membership organizations, was named “World's Leading Travel Club” at the 2013 World Travel Awards Grand Final, the highest honor awarded in the global travel industry. The awards ce […]
ABUJA, Nigeria, December 5, 2013/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- ECOWAS officials and health experts from within and outside the region are meeting in Abuja to develop a Community Mobilization Plan of Action to boost the regional Malaria Elimination Campaign through the strengthening of the vector control strategy. The meeting, which opened on 2nd Decem […]
PARIS, France, December 5, 2013/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- The UN Security Council (UNSC) adopted a resolution today providing technical and financial support to MISCA, the African Union's peacekeeping force currently being deployed in the Central African Republic (CAR). The resolution also authorized the deployment of more French troops to th […]
DUBLIN, Ireland, December 5, 2013/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- Minister for Trade and Development Joe Costello TD has launched a school rehabilitation programme in Uganda. The Minister launched the programme in Karamoja, the poorest area in the country during a visit to see the impact of Ireland's support to Uganda's most vulnerable communi […]
GENEVA, Switzerland, December 5, 2013/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- Following attacks since 5am this morning in Bangui, Central African Republic, Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) teams are responding and have treated wounded in hospitals in the city. Sylvain Groulx, the general coordinator of MSF in CAR, reports that around 65 wounded have been taken to […]
MOGADISHU, Somalia, December 5, 2013/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- The Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General (SRSG) for Somalia, Nicholas Kay, has strongly condemned a violent attack on Puntland government forces today. At approximately 11 am this morning, a suicide car bomber targeted Puntland forces in the port city of Bossaso; reports […]
PARIS, France, December 5, 2013/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- Schneider Electric (http://www.schneider-electric.com) announces that two projects in its BipBop (1) access to energy program have been chosen to participate in the “Africa Forum – 100 innovations for sustainable development” taking place in Paris on 4 and 5 December 2013. This forum was in […]
NAIROBI, Kenya, December 5, 2013/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- A team from Combined Joint Task Force – Horn of Africa recently installed a new weather system at the Kenyan Military Airport in Nairobi. The team included U.S. service members from the J3 Meteorological and Oceanographic Office, J3 Special Operations Command and Control Element Weather Sy […]
CAPE-TOWN, South-Africa, December 5, 2013/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- South African financial services group Sanlam (http://www.sanlam.co.za) announced today that it had opened its prestigious financial journalism awards to reporters across Africa for the first time. The group aims to recognise and celebrate the contribution journalists across the c […]
ROME, Italy, December 5, 2013/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- World cereal production will reach a new high of almost 2 500 million tonnes, including rice in milled terms, according to new FAO estimates. The figure is almost 8.4 percent more than last year and some 6 percent above the previous record in 2011, according to the latest issue of the Crop Pr […]
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Randy Forbes, a key member of the House Armed Services Committee, on Thursday urged Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel to rethink the U.S. Navy's current plan to allow Boeing Co's F/A-18 fighter jet production to close in 2016.
JERUSALEM (Reuters) - U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry assured Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday that core sanctions against Iran would remain in place despite its interim nuclear deal with world powers.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama said on Thursday he expects a blue-ribbon panel to soon propose reforms that both parties can back to address concerns over the long waiting times some American voters experienced at the polls in 2012.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The White House said on Thursday that China's new air defense zone over the East China Sea was "unacceptable" and urged Beijing not to implement it, but stopped short of calling for it to rescind its declaration.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama said on Thursday that Republicans who control the House of Representatives have to be "embarrassed" by their inability to produce legislation such as an immigration overhaul.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama says both Hillary Clinton and Joe Biden would make outstanding presidents. And beyond that, he's staying out of the debate about who should succeed him in 2016.
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Bill Bratton, a veteran police chief who has led departments across the country, was named on Thursday as New York City's next police commissioner, taking over a force credited with a sharp drop in violent crime but criticized for its tactics.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. budget negotiators were down to the final, most difficult items in a two-year deal to avoid another federal shutdown next month and ease some across-the-board spending cuts set to hit military and domestic programs, congressional aides said on Thursday.
Is he not satisfied? 1988 through 1998, 1999 hrough 2008, 2008 to December 2012! This is enough for Ole. Let the young take charge and they will respect him. He will remain their advisor, but in the background.
Reading the StandardMedia of today where William Ole Ntimama says young people are eyeing his seat is saddening. Does he not understand that he does not own that seat. The people decide. Many observers believe that his time is now out. The voters should let a younger vibrant Maasai man or woman take over and give the constituents modern leadership and technology.
Of course we know it is not the media to decide, but the people of Narok North. However, this time, many observers believe they will go for a younger leader.
May be Ole Ntimama’s son or one of his younger wives should take over if the Maasais in the constituency want it to remain in his family, but not Ole – Time-out. Look at the parliament of today in Kenya. The young energetic men and women are running the politics in the house. Give them time by taking leave as a gentle old man.
That way, you retain the respect accorded to oldmen – to advise the young leaders.
API polls which has run from 8th of May to today, the 20th of June, indicate that the PM Raila Odinga is unbeatable if the elections were held now.
Our readers have spoken. The results of the poll indicate that Prime Minister Raila Odinga has 39.15% support, while Uhuru has 32.55%, Ruto 10.38%, Karua 9.43% and Vice President Kalonzo has 8.49%
This is an indication of the swing in Kenya politics. Leadership wrangles changes things. appointments to constitutional positions changes things. Visits to foreign countries and meeting presidents of other countries changes things. Even speeches during funerals influence political landscape.
The past week saw the suspended Higher Education Minister William Ruto meet President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda and President Kikwete of Tanzania. Discussions were held. They talked about Kenya ahead of 2012 and East Africa Cooperation. This is good for the region.
We cannot question the fact that President Museveni and his counterpart President Kikwete held meetings with Ruto and his entourage. After all, Ruto is not trying to become the President in the two countries, so there was not threat having a meeting and gauging the political environment in Kenya. Discussions held must not be belittled. Museveni and Kikwete got the opportunity to get first hand information from the Kenyan delegation. It is useful for their countries as neighbours and information they got must have been a score security-wise as well.
Ruto’s delegation must have learned a lot from the two Presidents. That said, the visit was good for the three countries. One should not read much negativity to the event.
According to the standardmedia Kenya ”The suspended Higher Education minister left the country with Ministers Ali Chirau Mwakwere and Samuel Poghisio on Thursday morning for Uganda, where they met President Museveni. They then moved to Tanzania the following day for a meeting with President Kikwete at State House, Dar es Salaam arranged by Museveni. Ruto’s team included former Speaker Francis ole Kaparo and MPs Eugene Wamalwa (Saboti), Aden Dualle (Dujis), Kazungu Kambi (Kaloleni) Mithika Linturi (Igembe South) and a former Rift Valley power broker in the Moi era, Mark Too.”
The PM, Raila Odinga who was back home in Kenya wasted no time. He decided to visit William Ruto’s region and used the time well telling the voters there that he wants votes from them come 2012.
Both leaders know what the voters want. It is just to visit them and tell them face to face. One may be lucky and get the votes when the time comes.
We say this, but we are not going tribal at all: Kenya had President Kenyatta who was the founding father. On his record we say he represented the whole country because the Kenyans wanted to run their own affairs. It is therefore not right to say he came from the Kikuyu tribe, thus, the Kikuyus have had their opportunity to run the country. That will not be a fair judgement.
Let us start with President Moi because he came when Kenya was independent. That said, it is fair to say the Kalenjins have had a president. The Kikuyus now have produced President Kibaki.
There are contenders from Kalenjin that is William Ruto, from Kikuyu that is Uhuru Kenyatta, from Kamba that is Kalonzo Musyoka, from Luhyia that is Eugene Wamalwa, from Kikuyu that is Martha Karua and from Luo that is the Prime Minister Raila Odinga.
Kenya, with many tribes, should be fair to her people. fair to all communities.
When Kenya got independence, Jaramogi Oginga Odinga would have taken over as the first Prime Minister, thereafter the first President of Kenya if he wanted to do so. He chose to sacrifice, leaving the seat to Mzee Jomo Kenyatta.
To show maturity in Kenyan politics, Kenya should listen to the calls for unity and care for all Kenyan tribes. To succeed in that, the Luo community, the people whose leader Jaramogi sacrificed should be given a chance to lead the country. Raila Odinga has in the past years shown that he can lead as Prime Minister. It is not impossible for him to lead the country as the fourth president of the Republic of Kenya.
Next time, the Kenyans can give the flag to the Kamba people followed by the Luhyia. Leaders come and go. Opportunity will always come by.
If the Kenyans do not want a Luo to lead them this time around, then there is no excuse not to give Kalonzo or Wamalwa. The country could also take the example of Liberia and let a woman to lead in Kenya for the first time.
If Kenyans want to get out of tribal wrangling and the dream to be superior than the other tribe, a line-up as here-below could be put to test:
President: Raila Odinga (Luo)
Deputy President and Secretary for Home Affairs: Martha Karua (To be the first woman – view her as women representative according to the new constitution)
Secretary for Internal Security and Administration: William Ruto (Kalenjin)
Secretary for Finance: Uhuru Kenyatta (Kikuyu)
Secretary for Foreign Affairs: Kalonzo Musyoka
Secretary for Justice and Constitutional Affairs: Eugene Wamalwa
With the above list, each tribe that has indicated the wish to run for the presidency is covered and the tribal wrangling may be avoided. Better this way than each candidate looking for the top job. All the above leaders are educated and can sit down together and agree to show leadership, put the country and the welfare of the people above everything else, so that the country may never again experience the same as was in 2007 general election that saw Kenyans killing one another resulting in many deaths of innocent people.
OUAGADOUGOU, 15 June 2011 (IRIN) – The roll-out of a revolutionary meningitis vaccination in Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger has dramatically cut transmission rates, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), and if each country can find sufficient funds to co-finance the campaign, it will be extended to all 25 countries in the Africa meningitis belt by 2016, says the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI).
In the 2010-2011 meningitis season, Burkina Faso has confirmed just four cases of meningitis A; Niger has reported four cases; and Mali none, according to WHO.
While in Burkina Faso everyone in the 1-29 age group was vaccinated – representing 70 percent of the population – Mali and Niger are doing phased roll-outs over a longer period.
Group A meningitis causes deadly epidemics every 8-10 years in the Africa meningitis belt, where 430 million people are said to be at risk, according to WHO. Meningitis is an infection of the brain lining that kills up to 10 percent of people who contract it.
Residents of Burkina Faso capital Ouagadougou told IRIN they were surprised by the results. “Even though we were vaccinating our children we did not believe it would be this effective,” said Alexis Kabore, whose daughter contracted meningitis in 2004, leaving her paralyzed. “We have not heard the same [mourning] cries that we are used to hearing during the meningitis season,” he said.
Under the current agreement, GAVI purchases the vaccine, covering 50 percent of the campaign costs, while individual countries are expected to cover the other 50 percent – including transport, training and storage costs. The vaccine, produced by Indian company Serum, currently costs 49 US cents per dose.
The campaign will next reach out to Cameroon, Chad and Nigeria, followed by Benin, Ghana and Senegal. Once the campaign is complete, health ministries are expected to include vaccination in routine campaigns, said Mercy Ahun, managing director for programmes at GAVI.
Costs of producing the vaccine were significantly reduced under the Meningitis Vaccine Project (MVP), a partnership between PATH and WHO, which brought costs down to less than one tenth of the US$500 million usually required to develop and bring a new vaccine to market.
Nevertheless, some $375 million is still needed for the roll-out of the campaign across the meningitis belt, said WHO’s MVP focal point, Mamadou Djingare. While some countries have raised the money they need, others are still falling short, said WHO focal point for the project in Geneva, Tevi Benissan.
While the new vaccine is more effective than previous ones because it is expected to protect people from the disease for significantly longer – and it protects children as young as one year old – there is no vaccine yet available for infants, said Ahun.
An ongoing trial in northern Ghana, in association with PATH is expected to ascertain what dosage levels and at what intervals the vaccine should be safely administered to infants, and once finalized and approved by regulators, should be available by 2013, said Ahun.
WHO’s Benissan told IRIN new producers should be sourced as the vaccination becomes routinely available, to avoid production shortfalls.
Despite challenges, “the MVP should be taken as a model to develop other meningitis vaccines, and vaccines for other diseases, so they are reasonable and widely available,” she said.
Next steps for the project include trying to develop an equivalent vaccine that can fight against meningitis Y, C, AW135 and X.
In 2009, meningitis infected at least 88,000 people across sub-Saharan Africa and led to more than 5,000 deaths.
BATTICALOA, 15 June 2011 (IRIN) – Thayasevan, aged 36, who lost his right leg fighting for the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), was recently released from a government “rehabilitation centre” and is trying to restart his life. Four thousand other former rebels remain in the centres. He told IRIN his story:
“I lost my leg during the conflict, and until recently felt I had lost my entire life.
“It’s been a tough road. I joined the LTTE in 1991 of my own free will. There were frequent roundups and arrests of innocent people in my village, leading me to become a long-term LTTE member.
“It was a gruesome time being with the LTTE. I have suffered physically and emotionally. I could not even attend to my dying mother due to LTTE regulations. It was a very heart-breaking time.
“After the war, I was placed in a rehabilitation centre, while my wife and two children returned to our village and resettled.
“Last year [in the rehabilitation centre] was particularly tough for us financially – so tough that my wife had to take up fishing to feed our children.
“When I returned from the rehabilitation centre in 2010, I wasn’t really able to manage things for my family and wondered what the future held.
“Without a job I felt disabled and soon found myself having to borrow money to get by. It was a terrible time for us.
“Fortunately, after two months I was able to find work lagoon fishing.
“Today, things are slowly improving and I have paid back my debts and even bought a small plot of land for a house. More importantly, however, the community has accepted me back – accepting me as one of their own.
“Today I feel free from my past; but more importantly am starting to feel normal again.”
Construction workers in Egypt. The sector has been by a recession (file photo)
CAIRO, 14 April 2011 (IRIN) – Egypt has a relatively high average individual income, but 21 percent of its 80 million people still live in poverty, mostly in the south, according to a new report by the state-supervised Central Auditing Organization (CAO).
“The average individual annual income in Egypt is US$2,077,” said the report focusing on 2009-2010, but noted that the number of poor people is on the rise. Some 12.2 million Egyptians, it said, lived in over 1,200 slums; 3,728 villages did not have access to sanitation; and 17 million adults were illiterate.
Commenting on the report, Rashad Abdo, an economics professor at the Cairo’s Arab Academy for Business and Financial Services, said the number of those living in poverty could be much higher. “The real figures about poverty might be stunning,” he told IRIN. “There is a huge income disparity in our country, and unemployment.”
The number of poor, he added, could rise given the recession that has hit important sectors such as tourism and the construction industry, following unrest since January. Matters will be worsened by reduced remittances from Libya, coupled with an influx of Egyptian migrant workers returning home from that country in recent weeks.