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Wednesday, May 24th, 2017


Parliament tells Uganda govt to close Nalufenya torture chambers

Two blunt re ports by Parliament’s Human Rights Committee have further lifted the lid on the harrowing tales of torture meted out on suspects at the Nalufenya high security detention facility with some detainees found with blood oozing out of their ears. Both the majority report, and a minority one authored by the Kilak County North MP Anthony Akol, paint a grim picture of the detention centre with suspects detained incommunicado beyond the legal 48 hours allowed in a facility not gazzeted as a police facility. MPs on the HumanRead More

Trump is turning into Idi Amin and no one is laughing

It is fascinating watching US President Donald Trump. It used to be that the bizarre and crazy behaviour of Trump was something you expected from Third World leaders, mostly the African ones. The nepotism, lying, bullying, threats against opponents, sacking bothersome officials, and raving, that was our thing. Not anymore. And the world will be the better for it. First, half the books on politics need to be rewritten. There is a lot of literature about how “mature” democracies behave, and the politics of industrialised societies. One thing that seemedRead More

Kenya signs healthcare deal with Cuba

Kenya has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Cuba to enable the country enhance its capacity and acquire skills in specialised healthcare. The MoU covers areas such as biotechnology, cancer care (oncology), kidney care (nephrology), critical care, cardiovascular surgery, drug manufacturing among other specialisations. The MoU signed on Tuesday at the sidelines of the 70th World Health Assembly in Geneva, Switzerland, will also see the two countries collaborate in the pharmaceutical sector, as Cuba explores options of setting shop in Kenya, with an interest in the manufacture of anti-retroviral medicinesRead More

Maize flour shortage stokes anger ahead of Kenya elections

A government scheme to subsidise staple maize flour has hit problems over shortages, stoking anger over high food prices ahead of a national election in August. President Uhuru Kenyatta, seeking a second five-year term, faces veteran rival Raila Odinga (NASA), who says the high food prices show Uhuru’s government has failed poor citizens. The government unveiled a Sh6 billion ($58.14 million) maize (corn) subsidy programme last week to lower the unit cost of flour to 90 shillings, after it soared by a third to around 136 shillings during a regionalRead More

Bomb blasts kill 8 police officers in Kenya

NAIROBI, Kenya — Eight Kenyan police officers were killed when their vehicles ran over improvised bombs in two separate incidents near the border with Somalia, officials said Wednesday. The dead included a personal bodyguard for a local governor whose convoy was targeted. The deaths came a day after Kenya’s police chief Joseph Boinnet announced that al-Shabab extremists based in Somalia were stepping up attacks inside the country. He said al-Shabab is under pressure from African Union troops supporting Somalia’s government, which recently declared a new offensive against the extremist group.Read More

Ugandans driven to despair by spending on MPs’ cars as basic services suffer

Uganda’s inequalities are laid bare as MPs are awarded extravagant allowances while the country’s failing infrastructure remains desperately underfunded. eckie Mauso has had enough. The 28-year-old wife of a police officer in Uganda has a heart problem that requires her to visit hospital regularly. But every time she has sought treatment at the Mulago national referral hospital, she is told there are no drugs and referred instead to another public hospital. “There is no help there either,” Mauso says. “They have never given me even the simplest tablets. They sentRead More

World is plundering Africa’s wealth in ‘billions of dollars a year’

More wealth leaves Africa every year than enters it – by more than $40bn (£31bn) – according to research that challenges “misleading” perceptions of foreign aid. Analysis by a coalition of UK and African equality and development campaigners including Global Justice Now, published on Wednesday, claims the rest of the world is profiting more than most African citizens from the continent’s wealth. It said African countries received $162bn in 2015, mainly in loans, aid and personal remittances. But in the same year, $203bn was taken from the continent, either directlyRead More

US, China Spy wars – Woman arrested for smuggling US space technology as 7 others are charged

A woman smuggled technology used for communications for years before she was caught. If convicted, she could face up to 150 years in prison. A woman in California was arrested on Tuesday on federal charges of conspiring to procure and illegally export sensitive space communications technology to her native China, according to the US Justice Department. Si Chen, also known as Cathy Chen, faces 14 charges that accuse her of purchasing and smuggling more than $100,000 (89,000 euros) worth of equipment from the US to China between March 2013 and DecemberRead More

VIDEO: Landslide buries California’s Pacific Coast Highway

A section of one of America’s most famous routes – California’s Pacific Coast Highway – has been buried beneath a landslide. More than a million tonnes of rock and dirt tumbled into the ocean on Saturday, eight miles (12km) north of San Luis Obispo. The landslide spans about a third of a mile and has heaped up to 40ft of debris on the road. No injuries or property damage were reported. The California Department of Transportation is working to remove the mountain of rubble from the route, which covers theRead More

VIDEO: Pope asks Trump to be a peacemaker

Pope Francis urged U.S. President Donald Trump to be a peacemaker at their first meeting on Wednesday after they exchanged sharp words last year, and Trump promised he would not forget the pontiff’s message. Under clear blue skies, Trump received a tribute from the Swiss Guard in a Vatican courtyard when he arrived. He entered a small elevator taking him to the third floor of the Apostolic Palace and, after a long ceremonial walk past frescoed corridors, shook the pope’s hand at the entrance to the private study that theRead More