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Published 14th March 1997

Vol 38 No 6


A bend in the river

The coming fall of Kisangani is concentrating minds on who and what comes after Mobutu

Even government officials say it is only a matter of time before Zaïre's third city, Kisangani, and the military headquarters based there fall into rebel hands. Rebels have approached on three axes to the north, north-east but with the bulk of their troops heading from the south-east. The government's Forces Armées Zaïroises (FAZ) has withdrawn its three newly acquired Czech fighter planes (flown by Serbian pilots on recent bombing raids) from the international airport, 17 kilometres out of town and in the rebels' path should they advance from the north east.

Langata landmark

Image courtesy of Panos Pictures

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A rare victory for the opposition may present a serious challenge to KANU

Raila Odinga's defeat of the ruling Kenya African National Union's Fred Amayo in the Langata by-election on 11 March offers a rare glimmer of hope to the opposition. With Kikuyu su...

Comrade shareholders

Image courtesy of Panos Pictures

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Union leaders are following the capitalist road to black empowerment

In a revolutionary mix of ideology and pragmatism, black trade unionists are invading the fringes of white capitalist power. Once the unions led the way to black empowerment throug...

Cop out

The Prime Minister is under attack from all sides, including policemen and his own party

Providentially, nobody died when the army unleashed its strength against rebel policemen in their barracks in Maseru. Eight officers of the Royal Lesotho Mounted Police had demande...

Trading places

European politicians sound friendly but do not match post-apartheid expectations

A cloud of misunderstandings surrounds the unfinished negotiations between South Africa and the European Union on the rules for trade between them. In the days before South Africa ...


Second thoughts

Speculation about General Sani Abacha's political ambitions dominates the calculations of aspiring presidential candidates who had wanted to throw their hats in the ring before the...

Mswati mobilises

Dislodging King Mswati III and his followers from their present monopoly of power is proving to be long and difficult. The Constitutional Review Commission, appointed in August 199...

Democracy deficit

South African President Nelson Mandela, rushing from a crisis meeting on Zaïre, told off his colleagues for being late for meetings. He wants African governments to be prompter in ...