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South African President Ramaphosa Reacts To Xenophobic Attack On Nigerians

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Cyril Ramaphosa, President of South Africa

South African President, Cyril Ramaphosa, on Tuesday, condemned the recent attack on Nigerians and other foreign nationals in the country.

Ramaphosa, in a tweet on his official Twitter page, said there is no justification for the attack on foreign nationals.

He was reacting to the looting and burning of businesses and property belonging to foreigners in South Africa which began on Sunday.

He said, ”I condemn the violence that has been spreading around a number of our provinces in the strongest terms. I’m convening the ministers in the security cluster today to make sure that we keep a close eye on these acts of wanton violence and find ways of stopping them.

”The people of our country want to live in harmony; whatever concerns or grievances we may have, we need to handle them in a democratic way.

”There can be no justification for any South African to attack people from other countries,” he added

Meanwhile, President Muhammadu Buhari has expressed “deep concern,” over the attacks on Nigerian citizens and property in South Africa

A statement by Buhari’s Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina said Buhari has despatched special envoy to his South African counterpart, President Cyril Ramaphosa.

“The Special Envoy is expected to arrive in Pretoria latest Thursday, September 5, 2019

Africa

AU Disqualifies Okonjo-Iweala From Vying For World Trade Organisation Director General

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The African Union has disqualified Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala from vying for the office of the Director General of the World Trade Organisation, it has been reported.

In July 2019, the Executive Council of the AU invited member states to present nominations into the office of the DG of the WTO so that the AU would agree on a consensus candidature.

Nigeria initially nominated Fedrick Agah while Benin and Egypt fielded Messrs Eloi Laourou and Abdulhameed Mamdouh respectively.

On June 4, 2020, Nigeria withdrew the nomination of Fedrick Agah and replaced him with Okonjo-Iweala.

However, in a document from the Office of the Legal Counsel of the African Union, Reference Number: BC/OLC/24/5056.20 dated June 15, 2020, the African Union says the nomination of Okonjo-Iweala violates Rule (11), 1, 2 and 3, Rule 12 and Rule 15(3) of the rules of procedure of the committee on candidatures within the International System of the AU as well as Council’s Decisions Ex CI 1072 (XXXV), Ec CI Dec 1090 (XXXVI) and Assembly Dec 795 (XXXIII).

The AU says its Executive Council had endorsed the nominations of Fedrick Agah, Eloi Laourou and Abdulhameed Mamdouh before Nigeria sought to substitute its nomination.

Meanwhile, the council’s endorsement was for the nominees in person and not for their countries.

In addition, the AU says Nigeria’s new nomination of Okonjo-Iweala did not meet the submission deadline and there are no more vacancies into, which Nigeria can make nomination.

The AU wrote, “It is a recognised principle of international law that a sovereign state has the right to substitute and replace a nomination of its citizens as it may wish for a position.

“However, the sovereign right does not endow that state any right to change existing rules, relevant decisions of the Executive Council and decisions of the ther policy organs of the union. A decision of the Executive Council should only be changed by another decision of the council not by any member state and a decision of the Assembly should be changed by a decision of the Assembly not by a member state.”

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China Assures Africa On Coronavirus Vaccine

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Chinese President

The President of the People’s Republic of China, Xi Jinping, has assured African countries that they would be among the first countries to benefit from a coronavirus vaccine being developed by China.

The Embassy of China in Nigeria made the pledge in a statement on Wednesday in Abuja.

According to the statement, Jinping made the pledge in his keynote address on Wednesday in Beijing at the virtual extraordinary China-Africa Summit with African Presidents on solidarity against COVID-19.

He said that listing African countries as first beneficiaries of its vaccines was part of China’s support to Africa’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, explaining that effective response called for solidarity among world leaders.

“First, we must stay committed to fighting COVID-19 together. China will continue to do whatever it can to support Africa’s response to COVID-19.

“China will lose no time in following through on the measures I announced at the opening of the World Health Assembly.

“We will continue to help African countries by providing supplies, sending expert teams and facilitating Africa’s procurement of medical supplies in China.

“China will start ahead of schedule, the construction of the Africa CDC headquarters this year.

“China will work with Africa to fully deliver the health care initiative adopted at the FOCAC Beijing Summit, and speed up the construction of China-Africa Friendship Hospitals.

“We will also speed up cooperation between paired-up Chinese and African hospitals and together, we will build a China-Africa community of health for all.

“We pledge that once the development and deployment of COVID-19 vaccine is completed in China, African countries will be among the first to benefit.’’

Jinping noted that in the face of COVID-19, China and Africa had offered mutual support to each other and that China would remember the invaluable support from Africa at the peak of its coronavirus battle.

He added that when Africa was struck by the virus, China was the first nation to rush in assistance and had since stood firm with the African people.

Jinping stated that COVID-19 was still affecting many parts of the world, stressing the need for both China and Africa to face the task of combating the virus while stabilising the economy and protecting people’s livelihoods.

He stressed the need for leaders to mobilise necessary resources, stick together in collaboration and do whatever they could to protect people’s lives and health.

The Chinese president noted that greater priority needed to be given to cooperation on public health, economic re-opening and people’s livelihoods.

Jinping stated that through the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) framework, China would cancel debts of some African countries in the form of interest-free loans, due to mature by the end of 2020.

“For those African countries that are hardest hit by the coronavirus and are under heavy financial stress, China will work with the global community to give them greater support.

“We encourage Chinese financial institutions to respond to the G-20’s Debt Service Suspension Initiative and to hold friendly consultations with African countries according to market principles.”

Jinping said that China would work with the UN, WHO and other partners to assist Africa’s response to COVID-19 and do it in a way that would respect the will of Africa.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that participants at the virtual summit included, President Muhammadu Buhari, South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa, Chair of the African Union, among others.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and Director-General of the World Health Organisation, Dr Tedros Ghebreyesus were invited as special guests to the summit.

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President Magufuli Declares Tanzania Free Of Coronavirus

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President John Magufuli of Tanzania on Monday June 8, declared the East African country “coronavirus-free”.

The President who attributed the claimed success over the worldwide pandemic to prayers and fasting that the people of Tanzania offered to God, also commended the priest and worshippers for not wearing gloves and masks to protect themselves from the virus.

Magufuli said;

“It gives me joy to be the leader of a country that puts God first, God loves Tanzania.

“The works of the devil will always be defeated in Tanzania because Tanzanians love God and that is why even the corona has been defeated by God.”

This is coming after the World Health Organization (WHO) expressed concern over the government’s strategy on the pandemic which includes not publishing data on the number of Coronavirus cases in the country.

As at April 29 when the last official data was released, 509 cases and 21 deaths had been recorded in Tanzania.

BBC reported that Mr Magufuli had said last week that only four patients were receiving treatment in the largest city, Dar es Salaam. He also dismissed a US embassy warning that hospitals in Dar es Salaam were “overwhelmed” and that the chances of contracting the virus was “extremely high”.

Kenya closed its borders with Tanzania and Somalia due to rising cases of imported COVID-19 cases

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