Jump to navigation

Published 10th October 2014

Vol 55 No 20


Sudan

The world according to Khartoum

Top Secret
Top Secret

The smuggling out of what appear to be top secret state documents points to a major security breach in the government

The Khartoum government is yet to react to the circulation of what purport to be detailed minutes of a meeting on 31 August of top security and military officers in which they discuss arming Riek Machar Teny Dhurgon's rebels in South Sudan, supporting armed jihadists in Africa and the Middle East, and destroying crops in South Kordofan to starve out rebel supporters. The officers present also show a fairly uniform contempt towards the governments of Egypt and Saudi Arabia, Western states and African officials trying to mediate Sudan's internal conflicts.

READ FOR FREE

Khartoum in fact and fiction

Most of the Sudanese activists and officials (serving or former) that we have contacted believe the leaked reports of the National Intelligence and Security Service (NISS) meeting ...


Narcotics links tarnish Frelimo

A US-sanctioned narcotics kingpin's finance for the governing party complicates commercial and diplomatic relations

The appearance of Mohamed Bashir Suleiman – designated a 'drugs kingpin' by the United States – at the banquet of a local business association on 18 September has infur...



BLUE LINES
THE INSIDE VIEW

There is a strong sense of apocalypse as the World Bank and International Monetary Fund hold their annual meetings in Washington DC on 10-12 October. Part of that comes from the blunt warnings from Bank President Jim Yong Kim that the future of Africa may be at stake if there is no overwhelming, coordinated international response to the Ebola outbreak. He spoke of worst-case losses to Africa of US$32 billion as economies in West Africa are hit by restrictions on production, trade and transpor...

There is a strong sense of apocalypse as the World Bank and International Monetary Fund hold their annual meetings in Washington DC on 10-12 October. Part of that comes from the blunt warnings from Bank President Jim Yong Kim that the future of Africa may be at stake if there is no overwhelming, coordinated international response to the Ebola outbreak. He spoke of worst-case losses to Africa of US$32 billion as economies in West Africa are hit by restrictions on production, trade and transport.

The United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon warned that international assistance must be increased 20-fold to stop the outbreak. Tom Frieden, Director of the United States Centers for Disease Control, added more urgency: ‘We have to work now so this won’t become the next AIDS’. Western concern has accelerated as Ebola patients have arrived in the USA and Spain. Given that this outbreak began in November 2013, Kim is right to say the international system has failed miserably to tackle it.

As head of the world’s biggest development agency and a public health expert, it may be also a mea culpa from Kim as he calls on rich governments to back a $20 bn. global health fund to react immediately to such emergencies. He should listen to the doctors from West Africa at the Bank meeting who say the healthcare crisis goes far deeper there: a chronic lack of doctors and nurses (many working abroad for better pay and conditions); sporadic supplies of electricity and running water in most hospitals and none of the specialised protection and testing equipment required.

Read more

From Russia with love

Amidst the vicious scrabble for the succession, ZANU-PF’s new best friend Moscow delivers investment in the platinum industry, money and planes

Nothing and no one seems able to stop the rival factions of the ruling party from undermining each other as they position themselves for the presidential succession. The claimed vi...


Critical votes and toxic loans

Ahead of key national elections, concern is mounting about the legacy of bad loans from the time of President Ben Ali

Dealing with bad debts from the Zine el Abidine Ben Ali era which threaten the banking system has proved so problematic that the government has been contradicting itself. On the mo...


Conflict over conflict minerals

Arguments grow over whether measures to ensure mineral exports are conflict-free need strengthening or are damaging local society

An open letter from a group of 70 academics and specialists in Congo and the Great Lakes region has claimed that legislation and other measures to control conflict minerals are not...


DBSA moves centre stage

The state-owned bank repositions itself as a likely African hub for the new BRICS development bank

South Africa's state-owned Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) is being restructured to become the regional centre of the new development bank for the BRICS group of Brazil,...


Julius Malema in the dock

Will attempts to clip the wings of the maverick leader sink him or raise his profile?

Within the space of a week, Julius Malema, the self-styled 'commander-in chief' of the opposition Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), has been charged with both corruption and parliam...


Uranium profits decline

The protracted slump in global uranium prices has dashed African hopes that higher mining taxes would boost economic growth

A geographical shift in uranium production should, in theory, have benefitted Malawi, Namibia, Niger and South Africa as, together with the world's biggest producer, Kazakhstan, th...


ENI in the cross-hairs

Italian prosecutors want British help in investigating ENI for possible bribery of Nigerian officials

Italian public prosecutors have asked Britain to freeze an account holding US$85 million in their preliminary investigation into whether top officials in the ENI oil company conspi...



Pointers

Drama in court

Some 140 members of parliament turned President Uhuru Kenyatta's first appearance at the International Criminal Court on 8 October into something of a circus. Nairobi Senator Mike ...


Finding the funds

Accra's economic team is set to resume negotiations for a three-year programme with the International Monetary Fund after the IMF's annual meetings on 10-12 October. Prospects for ...


Gauteng challenge

Five months after the May general elections that returned President Jacob Zuma and the African National Congress to office, the provincial conference of the Gauteng ANC, which open...


Power struggle

Doubts about President Michael Sata’s health have heightened the power struggle in the governing Patriotic Front. The party’s focus is to ensure that Sata completes hi...