Top leaders from Chad, Nigeria, Niger and Cameroon were holding talks in N’Djamena on Thursday to discuss the recent escalation of attacks by Boko Haram jihadists in the Lake Chad area.
Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari and Niger’s Mahamadou Issoufou flew into the Chadian capital where they were holding closed-door talks with Chad’s Idriss Deby and Cameroon’s Prime Minister Philemon Yang, an AFP correspondent said.
The meeting, which began during the morning, was focused on “the security situation in Lake Chad”, a strategic area where the borders of four countries converge and where there has been a worrying “resurgence” of attacks in recent months, a Chadian diplomatic source said.
All four countries belong to the Lake Chad Basin Commission, an intergovernmental organisation which oversees the usage of water and other natural resources in the region but which has also been engaged in the fight against Boko Haram.
The group began a bloody insurgency in northeastern Nigeria in 2009 that has since spread to neighbouring Cameroon, Chad and Niger, prompting a regional military response.
In 2015, Boko Haram jihadists split into two branches, one of which is affiliated to the Islamic State (IS) group.
In Nigeria alone, more than 27,000 people have been killed over the past nine years, and some 1.8 million people have been forced out of their homes by the violence.
And since July, there have been at least 17 attacks on military bases in Nigeria, almost all of them in the region around Lake Chad, according to an AFP count.
Earlier this month, IS claimed its militants had killed 118 people in five operations in Nigeria and Chad between November 15 and 21.
In the most audacious attack on November 18, IS-allied Boko Haram jihadists killed at least 43 soldiers when they overran a base in Metele village near the border with Niger, although the survivors put the number at more than 100 dead.
On Tuesday evening, jihadists raided another Nigerian military base in a village near Lake Chad, killing three soldiers. Local residents said their truck was armed with anti-aircraft guns.
Nigeria’s Buhari, who came to power in 2015 on the promise to end the violence, is under increasing pressure to act following the recent surge in attacks as he gears up to seek re-election in a February ballot.
Visiting troops in violence-hit Borno State on Wednesday, Buhari said defeating Boko Haram was “a must-win war”. He has come under attack for previously claiming the Islamists were “technically defeated”.
Since 2015, all four countries have been collaborating militarily as part of the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) which seeks to counter Boko Haram in the Lake Chad region.
Rwanda Court Jails Ex-Politician For Life Over His Role In The 1994 Genocide
Rwanda’s High Court on Thursday May 28th sentenced a former mayor to life in prison for his role in the country’s 1994 genocide, which resulted in the deaths of 800,000 people in the East African country.
Ladislas Ntaganzwa, was one of the top fugitive suspects, accused of playing a key role in the massacre. He was arrested in neighboring Democratic Republic of Congo in 2015 before he was brought back to Rwanda in 2016 where he has been on trial.
Ntaganzwa, who had a $5-million (4.6-million-euro) US bounty on his head was accused of organising “the massacre of thousands of Tutsis at various locations,” the UN-backed Mechanism for International Criminal Tribunals (MICT) said when he was arrested.
“He was also alleged to have orchestrated the rape and sexual violence committed against many women,” it said.
A statement from Rwanda’s prosecution authority said the court “convicted him for genocide, extermination as crime against humanity and rape as crime against humanity and sentenced him to life imprisonment.”
Ntaganzwa was, however, “not found guilty of murder as crime against humanity and direct and public incitement to commit genocide,” the prosecution authority said.
The court found the former mayor of southern Nyakizu personally led a series of massacres of Tutsi civilians, including an attack on a church where thousands had taken shelter.
“It’s a guilty verdict. The court has sentenced him to life in prison. Overall we are not satisfied with the ruling. We are going to appeal,” his lawyer Alexis Musonera told AFP.
In a related development, a French court on Wednesday denied bail to Felicien Kabuga, the top-most fugitive from the genocide who was arrested earlier this month in France after 25 years on the run.
COVID-19: Africa Doing Better Than Other Continents — WHO Declares
The World Health Organisation (WHO) has declared that Africa is doing better than other continents in the management of the coronavirus pandemic with lowest number of cases and deaths so far recorded.
Figures it released yesterday showed that Africa has 1.5 per cent of global reported cases of COVID-19 and less than 0.1 per cent of deaths.
Latest COVID-19 Situation Report–127 (Data as received by WHO by 10:00 CEST, May 26, 2020) showed that Africa has 83,044 cases and 2,214 deaths compared to 5,404,512 global cases and 343,514 deaths.
America has highest number of cases with 2,454,452 and 143,739 deaths, followed by Europe with 2,041,705 cases and 173,213 deaths; Eastern Mediterranean with 438,900 cases 11,293 deaths; South-East Asia with 210,273 cases and 6,140 deaths; and Western Pacific with 175,397 cases and 6,902 deaths.
Director-General of WHO, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus at the media briefing on May 25, 2020, said, “So far, although around half of the countries in the region have community transmissions, concentrated mainly in major cities, Africa is the least-affected region globally in terms of the number of cases and deaths reported to WHO.
“Africa has 1.5 per cent of the world’s reported cases of COVID-19 and less than 0.1 per cent of the deaths. Of course, these numbers don’t paint the full picture, because testing capacity in Africa is still being ramped up and there is a likelihood that some cases may be missed.”
However, a professor of pharmacology and pioneer Director General of the Nigerian Institute of Pharmaceutical Research and Development (NIPRD), Professor Charles Wambebe and Chairman, Association of Hospital and Administrative Pharmacists of Nigeria (AHAPN), Dr. Kingsley Chiedu Amibor, have explained why chloroquine should be useful in the management of COVID-19.
Wambebe said, “From theoretical considerations, chloroquine should be useful in the management of COVID-19. Firstly, chloroquine has antiviral activity. The Chinese scientists confirmed it before they started using it to treat their patients. Secondly chloroquine has immune-modulatory property.
“There is a current trial involving hydroxychloroquine in Australia which involved about 2000 patients. It is called Ascot Trial, which is still in progress.”
Meanwhile, the WHO and United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) have explained why women who have contracted COVID-19 could breastfeed their babies.
A new report they released yesterday in conjunction with the International Baby Food Action Network (IBFAN) encouraged women to continue breastfeeding their children even if they have the virus.
“While researchers continue to test breast milk from mothers with confirmed or suspected COVID-19, current evidence indicate that it is unlikely that COVID-19 would be transmitted through breastfeeding or by giving breast milk that has been expressed by a mother who have COVID-19.
“The benefits of breastfeeding substantially outweigh the potential risks of illness associated with the virus. It is not safer to give infant formula milk,” it noted.
Rwanda Takes Delivery Of Robots That Can Screen ‘150 People Per Minute’ For COVID-19 [PHOTOS]
The Rwandan government has taken delivery of 5 humanoid robots which can screen and deliver foods and drugs to those suffering from Coronavirus.
BBC reported that the country’s health minister, Daniel Ngamije made the announcement on Tuesday May 19.
He also disclosed that the robots were brought in to reduce the exposure of health workers to COVID-19 patients.
Ngamije said: “We need additional robots for other duties like disinfection in public space and we are working to get them.”
The 5 robots which were named Akazuba, Ikizere, Mwiza, Ngabo and Urumuri, are manufactured by a Belgium-based company.
Rwanda’s health ministry says the units have a number of abilities, including:
Screening 50 to 150 people per minute
Recording and storing patient data
Alerting health workers to abnormalities
Warning people who aren’t wearing marks, or are wearing them improperly
There are two Coronavirus treatment facilities in Rwanda, one is on the outskirts of the capital Kigali and the other in the south-eastern town of Nyamata.
The country has so far recorded 308 confirmed cases of Coronavirus, 203 recoveries and no deaths.
- Biafra News6 days ago
Biafra: Nnamdi Kanu Threatens To Excommunicate Saboteurs From IPOB
- Top Story7 days ago
‘In America, We Need More Prayer’ — Trump Orders Places Of Worship Reopen Immediately
- Entertainment7 days ago
Nollywood Actress, Emilia Dike, Slumps And Dies In Enugu
- News5 days ago
Southeast Governors, Inspector-General Clash Over Community Policing Plan
- Metro4 days ago
Joe Igbokwe Removed As Lagos Igbo Leader
- Metro7 days ago
I Killed My Brother Because He Was Our Father’s Favorite — Murder Suspect
- Biafra News6 days ago
War In IPOB Leader Nnamdi Kanu’s Community
- Inside Nigeria6 days ago
Lockdown Won’t Go Longer Than Necessary — Buhari Assures Nigerians