Jump to navigation

Zambia

Rivals close as polling day nears

President Edgar Lungu and ZESCO MD Victor Mundende at the River Diversion Ceremony at Kafue Gorge, October 2017. Pic: Salim Henry / State House
President Edgar Lungu and ZESCO MD Victor Mundende at the River Diversion Ceremony at Kafue Gorge, October 2017. Pic: Salim Henry / State House

Ahead of the 12 August vote the ruling party offers handouts and grand projects while the opposition points to the crashing economy

Against a backdrop of falling support for President Edgar Lungu and a sliding economy, the Patriotic Front government is showering farmers and civil servants with handouts and good news stories in the hope of retaining power in the general election on 12 August.


Addis tries to rewrite the script

Copyright © Africa Confidential 2021
Copyright © Africa Confidential 2021

After political victories and battlefield defeats, Prime Minister Abiy wants to boost military budgets and centralise more power

In the face of diplomatic efforts by African and Western officials to broker a ceasefire and humanitarian access, the fight over the future of Tigray and the national political str...


After the insurrection

A tank patrols after several days of looting following the imprisonment of Jacob Zuma. Pic: Rogan Ward / Reuters / Alamy
A tank patrols after several days of looting following the imprisonment of Jacob Zuma. Pic: Rogan Ward / Reuters / Alamy

The security services are in the dock for failing to prevent or warn of the conspiracy behind the acts that touched off the recent murderous unrest

The government is taking a hard look at its own intelligence and security leaders in the aftermath of the orchestrated campaign of sabotage and protests which morphed into an orgy ...


Who runs Gauteng?

Union Buildings, Tshwane (Pretoria). Pic: South African Tourism (CC BY 2.0)
Union Buildings, Tshwane (Pretoria). Pic: South African Tourism (CC BY 2.0)

As the national political and commercial powerhouse, Gauteng is one of the most contested provinces in the country

Gauteng is South Africa's smallest but most densely populated and richest province, covering 1.5% of the country's land mass, with an estimated population in excess of 15 million a...

READ FOR FREE

Saïed lashes out

Kaïs Saïed. Pic: Khaled Nasraoui/dpa/Alamy
Kaïs Saïed. Pic: Khaled Nasraoui/dpa/Alamy

Public delight greeted the president's sudden suspension of parliament and dismissal of the premier, but taking the reins himself may spell trouble

President Kaïs Saïed's decision to sack his prime minister, Hichem Mechichi, after the massive anti-government protests on Republic Day (25 July) took few by surprise. Th...


Spy chiefs on manoeuvres

French President Emmanuel Macron and King Mohammed VI of Morocco. Pic: Eliot Blondet / Abaca Press / Alamy
French President Emmanuel Macron and King Mohammed VI of Morocco. Pic: Eliot Blondet / Abaca Press / Alamy

Rival security agencies and factions are battling for influence in both Rabat and Algiers, feeding worsening regional tensions

The recent media reports suggesting Moroccan security services were using the Pegasus spyware by Israel's NSO – possibly with the financial support of the United Arab Emirate...


The oil economy breaks up

Pic: TheAsoVilla Facebook
Pic: TheAsoVilla Facebook

The architects of industry reform bid a long goodbye to oil and welcome the brave new world of gas for all

Energy companies, trades unions and politicians are beginning to get to grips with the prospect of wide-ranging reform of the oil and gas industry, the foundation of the country's ...


Election bill deepens rivalries

President Muhammadu Buhari. Pic: @MuhammaduBuhari Facebook
President Muhammadu Buhari. Pic: @MuhammaduBuhari Facebook

Trumpeting their commitment to a democratic ethos, the two main parties argue over how to rewrite the electoral rules

For years the National Assembly in Abuja is lambasted as hosting among the best paid but least productive legislators. Then within the same month they steer through two of the most...


Promises, promises

US Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken. Pic: Ron Przysucha / US State Department
US Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken. Pic: Ron Przysucha / US State Department

United States President Joe Biden's initial African policy plans are starting with a programme inherited from President Donald Trump called Prosper Africa. The Biden White House wa...


Crude deal

Matthew Prempeh. Pic: @MatthewOPrempeh Facebook
Matthew Prempeh. Pic: @MatthewOPrempeh Facebook

Government plans to borrow US$1.6 billion to buy back stakes in two offshore licences not yet in development have triggered anger and incredulity from oil industry officials and op...


False-flag operation

Pic: bilalulker / stock.adobe.com
Pic: bilalulker / stock.adobe.com

Two Zambian-flagged merchant ships suspected of shipping weapons to Libya have been stopped in the Mediterranean by European Union naval vessels enforcing the United Nations arms e...


Going to market

Pic: Kheng Guan Toh / stock.adobe.com
Pic: Kheng Guan Toh / stock.adobe.com

Rwanda became the latest African sovereign to benefit from money markets issuing US$620 million of international bonds on 2 August. The sale, only the second by Rwanda, at an inter...


Election programme stutters

Mohamed Hussein Roble. Pic: Feisal Omar / Reuters / Alamy
Mohamed Hussein Roble. Pic: Feisal Omar / Reuters / Alamy

Prime minister Roble gets blamed for the latest hiccup in the elections while President Farmajo exploits clan rivalries in his bid for another term

On Sunday 25 July scheduled elections to the upper parliamentary house were dramatically postponed because of a failure of some committees to form and for others to produce candida...


Funding boost needed to bridge two-track recovery

Kristalina Georgieva meets with Democratic Republic of the Congo President Félix Tshisekedi at the Four Seasons Hotel George V. Pic: IMF Photo/Cyril Marcilhacy
Kristalina Georgieva meets with Democratic Republic of the Congo President Félix Tshisekedi at the Four Seasons Hotel George V. Pic: IMF Photo/Cyril Marcilhacy

Multilaterals change rules to boost loans to Africa, to startclosing a $425 billion finance gap

Africa will be the main beneficiary of a new plan by the International Monetary Fund to boost cheap loans for countries hardest hit by the pandemic in what officials hope will be a...


DISPATCHES

Nasa heads for crash landing

Cast aside by Raila Odinga, his former allies plan to join a rival alliance ahead of next year's elections

The collapse of Kenya's National Super Alliance, the opposition coalition that lost the 2017 election, looks certain after three of the party leaders involved – Amani Nation...

READ FOR FREE

Between money and the military

Abdalla Hamdok. Pic: IHA (CC BY 2.0)
Abdalla Hamdok. Pic: IHA (CC BY 2.0)

After negotiating a new round of credits, Khartoum’s respected prime minister warns that the old guard wants to derail the transition

READ FOR FREE

Clearing up after the bulldozer

Samia Suluhu Hassan. Pic: @SuluhuSamia Twitter
Samia Suluhu Hassan. Pic: @SuluhuSamia Twitter

President Hassan has dropped her predecessor's Covid denialism and ultra-nationalism but there are plenty of policy hangovers


Who runs KwaZulu-Natal?

High Court, Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal. Pic: Alexandre Rosa / stock.adobe.com
High Court, Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal. Pic: Alexandre Rosa / stock.adobe.com

Our correspondents look at the leading politicians and their parties in the country’s most volatile and second most populous province


Khartoum's fractious neighbours

General Abdel Fattah Burhan. Pic: Mohamed Khidir/Xinhua/Alamy
General Abdel Fattah Burhan. Pic: Mohamed Khidir/Xinhua/Alamy

The conflicts in Chad and Ethiopia are redrawing local and regional politics


Burkina without Barkhane

Roch Marc Christian Kaboré. Pic: Zohra Bensemra / Reuters / Alamy
Roch Marc Christian Kaboré. Pic: Zohra Bensemra / Reuters / Alamy

The army needs French support to handle the jihadist challenge but public confidence in their security forces is weak


No good options on the table

Abiy Ahmed. Pic: Tiksa Negeri / Reuters / Alamy
Abiy Ahmed. Pic: Tiksa Negeri / Reuters / Alamy

With a lack of credible mediators and both sides ruling out political negotiations, the likeliest outcome is an intensifying conflict


Anatomy of a failed insurrection

Copyright © Africa Confidential 2021
Copyright © Africa Confidential 2021

Recovery from the violence, looting and sabotage is likely to be slow amid spiralling joblessness and with the ringleaders apparently still at large


Macron's man

Mohamed Bazoum and Emmanuel Macron, Elysee Palace, 9 July 2021. Pic: Stephane de Sakutin/Reuters/Alamy
Mohamed Bazoum and Emmanuel Macron, Elysee Palace, 9 July 2021. Pic: Stephane de Sakutin/Reuters/Alamy

After a baptism of fire, President Bazoum is positioning himself as France’s main security ally in the Sahel