Cameroon Declines Hosting Africa Champions League, Blames COVID-19

YAOUNDE, CAMEROON – Soccer fans in Cameroon voiced disappointment after the government announced Monday it would not host the finals of the 2020 African Champions League in September. The government cites the risk posed by COVID-19. Some fans say they understand, while others question if the infection is the real reason. Mbombo Njoya, president of Cameroon’s Football Association FECAFOOT, says a recent spike in COVID-19 made the government decide not to host the continental event. The disease is caused by the coronavirus. “I have informed CAF that the government has…

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War Crimes Trial Begins Against Malian Jihadist

PARIS – The ex-chief of Timbuktu’s Islamic police went on trial Tuesday in The Hague for a number of alleged war crimes and crimes against humanities charges including rape, sexual slavery and destroying irreplaceable shrines in the ancient Malian city. Wearing a flowing blue gown and white headdress — and a face mask pushed below his nose — Al Hassan Ag Abdoul Aziz Ag Mohamed Ag Mahmoud replied “yes” to whether he understood each of the 13 charges against him. But on each count, he refused to plead either innocent or…

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In Spain’s Complex Migration Game, Africans See a Disadvantage

MADRID – Ousmann Umar knows only too well how tough it is for migrants from Africa to reach Europe. Dumped in the Sahara by trafficking gangs when he was only 13, he believed he would share the fate of other migrants whose bodies lay strewn on the route northwards. Unlike the others, he survived, not just the desert but every step of a five-year odyssey from Ghana to Spain. Thirteen years later, the son of a traditional healer is now a businessman in Barcelona with a master’s degree from one…

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Militia Fires on Darfurians Demanding Better Security

KHARTOUM – A group of armed men killed 10 people and injured 17 others in the Fataborno village of Sudan’s Northern Darfur state on Monday, according to local residents. Witnesses told VOA’s South Sudan in Focus program that a group of militia loyal to ousted President Omar al Bashir opened fire on hundreds of people who had gathered at a sit-in to call for increased security. Resident Suwar Adam Ali, 27, said he saw gunmen attack three locations, including a camp for internally displaced persons. “At around 12 p.m., a…

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41 Health Workers Test Positive for Coronavirus in Kenyan Maternity Hospital

NAIROBI – At least 41 employees at the country’s largest maternity hospital have tested positive for the coronavirus, Kenya’s Ministry of Health said Tuesday. Director General of Health Dr. Patrick Amoth announced that 19 health care workers and 22 support staff have tested positive at the Pumwani Maternity Hospital in Nairobi. The ministry of health had conducted mass testing at the facility, where more than 100 babies are born each month. After visiting the facility Tuesday, Amoth said the government was putting in place measures to stop further spread of…

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East & Horn of Africa COVID-19 Situation Report – #13, 8 July 2020 Update

EHoA SITUATION OVERVIEW The number of COVID-19 cases in East & Horn of Africa continues to rise, with the disease now infecting over 27,000 people. As of July 8, the number of positive COVID-19 cases in the region stands at 27,159. 321 new cases have been reported in the last day with most new cases reported in Kenya (183 daily increase 2.3%), followed by Rwanda (59 daily increase 5.3%), Djibouti (56 daily increase 1.2%) and Somalia (9 daily increase 0.3%). Kenya remains the country with the highest number of confirmed…

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WFP and Takeda partner to strengthen public health supply chains in Africa and the Global COVID-19 response

ROME/YOKOHAMA – Through a new five-year partnership, Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited (Takeda) is contributing JPY 1.5 billion (approximately USD 14 million) to the World Food Programme (WFP) to support the pandemic response and help make health systems more resilient. Nearly USD 3 million is being put to immediate use by WFP to support the Global Humanitarian Response Plan, helping construct a treatment and isolation centre for humanitarian and health workers responding to COVID-19 and establish a supply chain “control tower” to monitor humanitarian cargo that is part of the response.…

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Africa’s Varied COVID Landscapes

There is not a single African COVID-19 trajectory, but rather multiple, distinct risk profiles. Recognizing this can facilitate a better understanding of and response to the pandemic threat in Africa. The number of reported COVID-19 cases in Africa has been steadily increasing since the first confirmed episode in Egypt on February 15, 2020. Since May 1, the number of reported cases has been doubling every 3 weeks. Africa’s experience with past pandemics suggests the fight against the novel coronavirus is still in the early stages of what is likely to…

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