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Published 4th May 2001

Vol 42 No 9


Ghana

A hundred days of Kufuor

The new government scores high on political tolerance but is struggling over how to tackle the economic mess it inherited

No one can blame President John Agyekum Kufuor for the economic chaos he inherited on 7 January, when he took over from Jerry John Rawlings. However, plenty of Ghanaians blame his government for its slow start. In the first hundred days, he has won high marks for handling the transition and making government more tolerant, low marks for dynamism and economic management. There still is much goodwill towards the President and his New Patriotic Party. He confidently fielded questions when national television broadcast a press conference live from the Castle at Osu - something Rawlings never allowed during his 20-year rule. Journalists are no longer 'enemies of the people'. Kufuor came over as presidential but accessible, in an inquisition managed by his spokesperson, Elizabeth Ohene; she and Attorney General Nana Akufo-Addo want the obnoxious criminal libel laws abrogated this year. Since the NPP is the party of business, it is obviously much warmer towards local entrepreneurs of all political hues. A leading businessman, Kwabena Darko, was in Kufuor's office throughout the press conference.


War economy

The UN report on the pillage of Congo saw just one side of the issue

A report from a United Nations' expert group on the pillage of Congo-Kinshasa's wealth by outsiders is having unexpected consequences. A group of President Joseph Kabila's advisors...


Storm after the storm

A split in the dominant party may be good for national unity

Ethiopia is in political crisis. In most countries, this would be natural after such riots as those of 17 and 18 April. Perhaps 41 people were killed (according to hospital figures...


The plots thicken

Allegations of conspiracies against Mbeki are widening ANC divisions

The Minister of Safety and Security, Steve Tshwete, is not known for political finesse. Nevertheless, he had to be taken seriously when he announced that the police would investiga...


Exit top brass

Big policy differences are behind the departure of three military chiefs

Did they jump or were they pushed? The retirement on 24 April of the Chief of Army Staff, General Victor Malu; Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Ibrahim Mahmud Alfa; and Chief of Nav...



Pointers

Home and away

France, at least, backs President Laurent Gbagbo. The head of a team it sent to help draw up aid requests (AC Vol 42 No 4) is none other than Jean-Michel Severino, who on his retur...


Talking to Jonas

The government may be getting ready to talk to its arch-enemy, Jonas Savimbi of the União Nacional para a Independência Total de Angola. The new parliamentary commissi...


Recamping out

Rwanda and Uganda must pay for their military involvement in Congo-Kinshasa by exclusion from the French-led peacekeeping programme, the Renforcement des Capacités Africaine...