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Published 9th June 2006

Vol 47 No 12


Kenya

The cocaine conspiracy

The Kibaki government's bizarre handling of a multimillion dollar drug smuggling case is letting the real villains walk free

On 19 June, Justice Aggrey Muchelule is to hand down a verdict in the case of two Italians and five Kenyans charged with smuggling 1.2 tonnes of cocaine into Kenya. The prosecution is a test-case of the government's determination to root out corruption and criminality in its ranks. Senior legal officials and diplomats following the case regard the prosecution of the seven as an attempt to divert attention from the involvement of a group of politically connected Kenyans and foreigners in a conspiracy to repackage cocaine worth hundreds of millions of dollars for export to Europe. The handling of the cocaine case by President Mwai Kibaki's government - particularly its failure to account for millions of dollars' worth of cocaine in police custody and locate several millions more - has prompted further tensions with Western governments already unimpressed by its proclaimed determination to tackle official corruption.


Head to head

Jacob Zuma has won more points in his battle for the presidential succession

Jacob Zuma's supporters claim that a battle of ideas and loyalties is gripping the African National Congress. On his side are the populists, while President Thabo Mbeki leads the p...


Smiling all the way

Botswana will now market diamonds but De Beers' latest move may not please the neighbours

Smiles wreathed the faces of President Festus Mogae and the De Beers' Chairman, Nicky Oppenheimer, as they confirmed the De Beers-Botswana diamond partnership for the next quarter ...


Tough talking

Mortar fire in the capital is the rebels' latest negotiating ploy but they've started talking too

After four quiet months, mortar bombs fell again on the northern suburbs of the capital, Bujumbura, on 31 May, destroying a house near the home of Vice-President Alice Nzomukundu. ...


The signs are rusting

Politicians compete to lead a government with big changes to make

At the Lumley Beach roundabout, the bar sign that said 'Sweet Salone 2025' has rusted over and nearly collapsed, leaving only Sweet Sal. With the other places of relaxation around ...


Old faces

A new cabinet finds presidential stalwarts adapting to multiparty democracy

'The Movement is dead! Long live the Movement!' This might have been a suitable refrain as President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni's new government went to work in Uganda's Eighth Parliam...



Pointers

Aliyu and the drones

The row over a US$200 million contract won by Israel's Aeronautics Ventures to supply aerial drones for use in the Niger Delta coincides with last week's sacking of National Securi...


At the sick bed

Fodé Bangoura is preparing for the presidency. In April, he helped the ailing President Lansana Conté to oust Premier Cellou Dallein Diallo and eleven other ministers...


AU friends

The African Union's next host, for July's summit in Banjul, is upsetting those concerned with good governance and human rights. The charge sheet against Gambian President Yahya Jam...


Green revolution

After the man his supporters call 'the Ayatollah' won the 14 May presidential poll with 58 per cent of the vote, people are waiting to see what President Ahmed Abdallah Mohamed Sam...