Africa News blog

African business, politics and lifestyle

No place like home

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If there really is no place like home, then for many Africans in France the Chateau-Rouge neighbourhood of Paris is the next best thing.

At the open air market fish and vegetable vendors sell produce that reminds their African customers what they are missing.

Aurelie Robert owns a store called Togo Exotique. She came to France when she was 16 years old.

“The majority of my produce comes from Togo, Ivory Coast and Cameroon but I also get some supplies from wholesalers,” she said. “My customers are happy because here they can find fresh produce from Africa and they can eat the food they miss from back home.”

An easy win in Mauritania?

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Last year Mauritania’s first democratically elected president, Sidi Ould Cheikh Abdallahi, was ousted in a coup led by General Mohammed Ould Abdel Aziz.

Next week, the country goes to the polls to elect a president but opposition parties say the elections won’t be fair and are asking people to stay away.
Though a few opposition candidates are still in the race, analysts say there is no real threat to Abdel Aziz and expect him and his Union for the Republic party to win. Meanwhile the opposition coalition holds regular protests.

Malawi: the economy, stupid?

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On May 19, voters in Malawi will go to the polls to elect their next president. The Democratic Progressive Party has been in power for the last four years and is fielding President Bingu wa Mutharika as its candidate once again.

Despite facing a strong alliance of the main opposition leader and a former president, the incumbent is expected to win on the back of an economic boom.

What’s the best way to fight malaria?

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Nine out ten of malaria deaths occur in Africa – that’s nearly 1 million fatalities a year. The World Health Organisation estimates the financial loss to Africa because of malaria at 12 billion dollars a year.******And yet it’s an illness that’s preventable: the cheapest and easiest method is to stay under a mosquito net during the night.******In South Sudan, a mosquito net costs around $2, still too expensive for many here, where income per capita is just 25 cents per day. So the government and private charities have launched a campaign to distribute 75 million dollars’ worth of nets to 6 million people in the south before the rains start in July. With only 14 km of paved roads in the entire region, it won’t be easy.****** (more…)

Zuma: some views from abroad

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Jacob Zuma is cruising towards the South African presidency and the main question now is the size of the ANC’s majority.

So what do people from other African countries think of the man who will take over the continent’s most powerful economy?

Rwanda: legacy of a genocide 15 years on

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This April marks 15 years since the Rwandan genocide, an event that still casts a dark shadow over the region. It was a killing spree that lasted just three months, but that left 800,000 people dead, most ethnic Tutsis, killed by soldiers and civilians from the majority Hutu ethnic community.

It took an army of exiled Tutsi Rwandans, led by Rwanda’s current president Paul Kagame, to stop the killings. That government, still in power 15 years later, has vowed that a Rwandan genocide can never happen again. It’s a policy that has had a deep impact on the whole region, especially on Rwanda’s bigger neighbour, the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Going organic in Kenya’s biggest slum

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A group from east Africa’s biggest slum has proved that you don’t need a big farm in the countryside to produce food crops for sale.

They’re planting organic vegetables on a small allotment in the middle of Nairobi’s Kibera slum that his been cleared out of an old rubbish tip.

Getting children into school in Ghana

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More than a million children in Ghana don’t go to school because they have to work to help their parents pay the bills.

One woman in the capital, Accra, is trying to persuade working kids to give up their jobs and go to school instead.

Welcome to Ugawood

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Welcome to Ugawood, Uganda’s fledgling movie industry.

The country’s film-makers may only have limited production skills and equipment but they’re determined to grow the industry until it can compete with Nigeria’s Nollywood and other more established film industries in Africa.

“We’ve just started, I believe Nigerians are somewhere … but we will get there as time goes on,” film director Joseph Mabirizi told Reuters Africa Journal.

Can shea nuts help the women of Mali?

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By Rainer Schwenzfeier

How can African countries earn more from their raw materials. And how can the women of Mali improve their ability to trade with buyers in the West?

Korotouma Doumbia, a 29-year-old from south-west Mali, has no education or formal skills but she manages to earn the family income. She harvests shea nuts and turns them into shea butter, a popular ingredient in many western cosmetics.

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