|News Round Up
Nigeria Capital Market Loses N3 Trillion in Seven Months
Nigerian Capital Market (NSE) has lost over three trillion naira in the last seven months as the global financial meltdown closes in on the Nigerian Capital Market according to the Director-General, Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Musa Al-Faki. "Manifestation by mid-March 2008 of the declining prices showed that market capitalization dipped by 23.5% from N12.1 trillion in March 2008 when the price drop started to N9.26 trillion by 15th October 2008. Between January 2008 and 15th October, 2008, it had gone down by 13.4%. NSE All Share Index dropped by 31% from 63,016.6 points in March 2008 to 43,492.56 points on 15th October, 2008. Between January and 15th October, 2008, it lost 25.7%," said Al-Faki.House of Representatives committee members are split on whether the Federal Government should create a N500 billon hedge fund for bailout.
Tsvangirai Denied Passport to Attend Regional Summit
MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai will not attend a summit of the regional grouping of SADC in Swaziland on Monday after being denied a passport by the regime, said Elphas Mukonoweshuro, the party's secretary for Foreign Affairs. Mr. Mukonoweshuro said Tsvangirai battled all week to obtain a valid passport after his old passport expired earlier this year. All attempts to renew it have been denied. Mr. Mukonoweshuro said that Mugabe was deliberately creating obstacles for Tsvangirai not to attend the Troika meeting. The party's chief negotiator Tendai Biti, said that Tsvangirai's difficulty in obtaining the documents made it clear that Mugabe was not ready to share power. The meeting of the heads of state of Angola, Swaziland and Mozambique, who form the security committee of the Southern African Development Community, is aimed at trying to help the country' political rivals break a deadlock in negotiations over forming a cabinet.
Uganda Summit: African Leaders Meet in Kampala
Fourteen heads of state will be converging in Kampala for the Tripartite Summit that opens on 22 October 2008. Among them will be Zimbabwe's Robert Mugabe and the new South African president, Kgalema Motlanthe, Paul Kagame (Rwanda), Jakaya Kikwete (Tanzania), Mwai Kibaki (Kenya) and Pierre Nkurunziza (Burundi) who have confirmed attendance. The summit will for the first time bring together the 26 countries of the East African Community (EAC), the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) and the Southern African Development Community (SADC). The leaders will discuss trade arrangements and infrastructural development aimed at harmonizing commerce in the region and providing a solution to the continent's under-development.
Former Botswana President wins $5 Million Prize
Former Botswana President Festus Mogae has emerged the winner of a $5m (£2.8m) Mo Ibrahim prize, the most valuable individual annual prize in the world set up by Sudan-born telecoms entrepreneur Mo Ibrahim to encourage good governance in Africa. Mogae, also gets $200,000 a year for the rest of his life. Announcing the prize, former United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan commended Mogae for his action to tackle the Aids pandemic which has ravaged the country. Mogae inherited a country with one of the world's highest rates of HIV/Aids and took strong action to tackle it. He made Botswana the first sub-Saharan African country where anti-retroviral drugs were widely available for free. “I did not create the democracy in my country, I consolidated it and deepened it by practiced, accountable governance, respect of the rule of law, independence of the courts, respect for human rights, including women's rights,” he stated adding that Botswana was already doing well before he became president in 1998. Mogae stepped down in April after serving two terms in office setting a record that place Botswana as one of Africa's most stable countries. The country has never had a coup and has had regular multi-party elections since independence in 1966.
Uganda and Kenya Fighting for Island
Kenyan authorities have warned the Ugandan government to stop claiming rights over the disputed Migingo Island located on the shores of Lake Victoria in Bugiri District. The Nyanza Provincial Commissioner, Mr. Paul Olando has accused Ugandan authorities of trespass and insisted that the Ugandan flag on the Island be removed since Migingo Island is historically part of Kenyan territory.” The local people whose memory cannot be doubted confirmed that this Island belongs to Kenya," said Mr. Olando. "There is no doubt that Migingo is part of Kenya. In fact, on this Island, we have over 400 Kenyans and a few other people from Tanzania, Congo and Uganda as well." He added. The dispute is suspected to have spark controversy between the two countries after Ugandan authorities expelled over 400 fishermen for failure to comply with the country's rules. Foreign Affairs State Minister of Uganda, Mr. Okello Oryem, said the matter was being handled by Internal Affairs Ministry. Mr. Matia Kasaija, the State Minister for Internal Affairs said Kenyans cannot claim the Migingo Island because it belongs to Uganda until the colonialists decide otherwise. He said they had instructed the Lands Minister to sort out the problem and shall invite the Kenyans to a joint resurveying exercise of the island to determine the owner.
Annan Supports Kenya Violence Probe
Kofi Annan has urged the Kenyan government to set up a tribunal to investigate individuals in the Waki report accused of involvement in the post election violence last year. Philip Waki, a senior judge heading a commission of inquiry into the matter recommended establishment a tribunal mandated to prosecute named suspects that were issued to Mr. Annan in a sealed envelope. The commission found that politicians on all sides had stirred up violence and that the police had used excessive force against protestors. Mr. Annan said it was important for the government to act on the recommendations of the Waki report adding that the victims demand justice too. "I think it is important that the government acts on it," "The victims demand justice too." he told the BBC's Network Africa.
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