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Published 22nd September 2017

Vol 58 No 19


South Africa

KPMG feels the Gupta heat



The global auditor becomes the latest corporate casualty of a spiralling corruption scandal claiming unexpectedly prominent scalps

In a grovelling public apology after 18 months of silence, auditing giant KPMG admitted that its senior executives in South Africa had 'made mistakes' and 'ignored red flags' in working for the Gupta family. The firm also disowned a confidential report they prepared for the South African Revenue Services (SARS) in 2014, which stated that former finance minister Pravin Gordhan knew, or ought to have known, that a rogue investigations unit within the agency was spying on President Jacob Zuma and his allies.


ANC contest lands in court

The outcome of the leadership race in December may hang on a raft of legal challenges as to how conference delegates were chosen

The campaign for Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma to succeed her ex-husband as African National Congress leader, which he is backing heavily, may fail if the courts allow the challenges of d...


Opposition's ailing fortunes

The sudden decline in Morgan Tsvangirai's health is a heavy blow to prospects of a united anti-ZANU-PF front in the next elections

Opposition hopes are fading that a repeat of the massive poll victory for President Robert Mugabe and the Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF) in 2013 can be a...



BLUE LINES
THE INSIDE VIEW

Some African leaders in the United Nations General Assembly on 19 September listening to United States President Donald Trump's planned remedies for rogue states seemed to breathe a sigh of relief at his lack of interest in their continent. The following day, during discussions chaired by Ethiopia, which presides over the UN Security Council this month, African offici...

Some African leaders in the United Nations General Assembly on 19 September listening to United States President Donald Trump's planned remedies for rogue states seemed to breathe a sigh of relief at his lack of interest in their continent. The following day, during discussions chaired by Ethiopia, which presides over the UN Security Council this month, African officials saw in more detail what planned US budget cuts are likely to do to UN operations on their continent.

President Trump's enthusiasm for the military and US projection of power doesn't extend to financing or participating in UN peacekeeping operations. US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley is pushing for swingeing cuts – of up to 10% – to UN missions in Congo-Kinshasa and Sudan. Trump wants to limit the US share of the UN's US$7.3 billion peacekeeping budget to 25%. It is currently 28.5% and the US is easily the biggest contributor.

UN operations in Congo-K are to be cut by about $90 million by economising on staffing and travel. This comes at a time when the country could be on the brink of political implosion as opposition mounts to Joseph Kabila's attempts to extend his presidency, against the terms of the constitution. Other missions in the frame for cuts are those in Central African Republic, Mali and South Sudan. Washington evidently wants France to lead in the
two francophone states, and for Britain to take on a stronger role in Juba.

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El Sisi marshals his allies

The President is calming the nerves of supporters in parliament who fear a new election is too risky

The approach of Egypt's presidential elections, which are scheduled for April 2018, revealed a split among supporters of President Abdel Fattah el Sisi in the House of Representati...


Own goal in Ouaga?

Responsibility for the August atrocity in Ouagadougou remains unclaimed. Jihadists may have hit the wrong target

The assault on the Aziz Istanbul restaurant on 13 August which claimed 20 lives remains shrouded in confusion. A Special Forces detachment, the Unité spéciale d'intervention de la ...


Sassou in a corner

Confronted by economic crisis and armed insurgents, the President has battened down the hatches as he talks to the IMF

A fortnight after the ruling Parti congolais du travail (PCT) won 91 of the national assembly's 151 seats, Prime Minister Clément Mouamba tendered his government's resignation on...


Storm over probe into UN experts murder

Doubts are growing about the UN inquiry into the killing of two of its experts in March as pressure mounts for an full investigation. Some link the government to the deaths

The United Nations' Board of Inquiry report on the murders of Congo-Kinshasa Group of Experts members Michael J Sharp and Zaida Catalán in central Kasaï on 12 March has come under ...

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False start to IMF talks

The government's attempt to mislead the Fund over the scale of its debts does not bode well for their negotiations

Few countries can ever have warranted as terse a press release as that issued by the International Monetary Fund on the meeting of its chief, Christine Lagarde, with President Deni...


The incumbent never loses

No sitting president has ever lost an election in Kenya, but no such election has ever been annulled. What happens next will be rooted in the history of the alliances and splits in Kenya’s previous presidential polls

Founding President Jomo Kenyatta and his successor Daniel arap Moi ruled in turn from 1964 until 2002 under the umbrella of the Kenya African National Union, the party which brough...



Pointers

Picked up or not picking up?

The whereabouts and status of Diane Rwigara, the would-be presidential challenger to President Paul Kagame, have been uncertain for about ten days. She was detained in the aftermat...


Clashes in the east

Weeks after ending a nine-month State of Emergency, major outbreaks of deadly violence have taken place at the borders of Oromia and Somali Regional State provinces.


Euronews 'soft on Angola'

Portuguese Member of the European Parliament (MEP) Ana Gomes has complained to the European Commission about the Angolan presidency's propaganda unit influencing Euronews, a Commis...


Bibi rebuffed

A five-day Africa-Israel summit scheduled for 23 October in Lomé, Togo, has been postponed indefinitely after pressure from African governments and fears of a boycott. South Africa...