National and International News Roundup – 7th January 2020

Three hundred and fifty gendarme officers arrived Buea today to reinforce security ahead of February 9th twin election in Cameroon.  Commander Henry Tchinda says the soldiers will be dispatched to the six divisions of the region in the days ahead to have a mastery the environment and terrain before the voting day. Ambazonian fighters have vowed to disrupt the election in the Anglophone regions. Government has not mentioned plans to reinforce security in the NWR.

A group of heavily armed men have attacked the Koutchon gendarmerie brigade in Noun, West Region of Cameroon. The close to ten gunmen reportedly came on board motorbikes from Bambalang in Ngohketunjia in the restive anglophone region. Security sources say Ambazonian fighters were behind the attack, adding they made away with arms and munitions. Ambazonian activists have denied responsibility for the attack.

The Social Democratic Front SDF has accused the government of Cameroon of sponsoring armed men to attack SDF officials and their establishments in the North West region of Cameroon. SDF national Communication secretary, Denis Nkemlemo on Canal 2 International says the party will not bow to such acts of intimidations and will run for election next month.

Ayah International Foundation is dragging some individuals and media organs to court for defamation, hate speech, fake news and blackmail. To Ayah Ayah Abine, president of the foundation the individuals accused the Ayah foundation of  buying, importing and distributing arms to Ambazonian fighters in the restive Anglophone regions of Cameroon. The foundation wants the accusers to present evidence of their claims.

The divisional officer of Nkambe sub division, Ngida Laurence Che has called on separatists in bushes to emulate others and drop their arms. His statement followed the killing of Abanda Godlove Ndi, president of bus drivers in Nkambe by separatists.

Cameroon’s minister of labour and social security has said individuals behind the burning of its Limbe offices will be fished-out and punished. Minister Gregoire Owona, spoke as he visited Limbe today, days after a fire disater destroyed the labour delegation. Investigations are underway, he added.

Injured persons of road accident Tuesday afternoon in Akum are receiving treatment in hospital. The accident left one person dead. An intra-urban transport bus from Bamenda collided with another coming from the opposite direction.

The national printing press in Cameroon says it will respect the deadline of January 25th to deliver 43 million ballot papers and campaign posters for the legislative and municipal and parliamentary election next month. Meantime the director of Elections Cameroon says they are set for the exercise.

The lifeless body of a newborn baby tied in a bag has been discovered beside the road in Makepe Misoke, Douala 5 in the Littoral region. Locals suspect the baby was delivered alive, before being strangled by the Mother. The mother, who disappeared into the tin air shortly after, tied the baby in a plastic bag before dumping the body along the road. It is unclear, if the matter is under investigation.

There was an unusual massive deployment of forces of law and order to Eséka in the Nyong and Kelle Division, centers region of Cameroon this afternoon. Sources say they were sent to disrupt a streets protest by members of the Union des Populations du Cameroun -UPC party. No major incident has been reported.

A class six teacher of a primary school in Bonabome, Ndobo, Douala IV subdivision is presently detained at the gendarmerie research unit of Bonaberi for allegedly raping minors of the school. According to Kounj Jean Marie, commander of the gendarmerie research unit, the teacher, Buma Kevin has sexually abvused atleast 18 young girls in the school. Buma is said to have admitted to his crime, saying he was under the influence of an evil spirit.

In the wake of more than two weeks of protest by PhD holders over failure by the state to get them enrolled into the public service, the government is announincing a national colloquium on how to reform the public service. The conference holds between January 13-15, 2020 in Yaounde. The Biya regime promised to launch a special recruitment exercise for the grumbling degree holders, but those concerned say, they are awaiting concrete actions.

There are fears that Ivory Coast could be heading towards a political crisis following news that President Alassane Ouattara intends to modify the country’s constitution ahead of presidential elections later this year. But there is speculation that he could reintroduce an age limit of 75 for candidates – a stipulation that was removed when a new constitution was adopted in 2016.

Thousands of anti-government demonstrators marched through the streets of several cities in Guinea on Monday, against plans by 81 year old Alpha Conde to reform the constitution to stay in office for a third term. At least 12 people are reported to have been injured in the eastern city of Kankan, where protesters clashed with supporters of President Alpha Condé.

A grenade that a child picked up from a bin on the Nigeria-Cameroon border has exploded, killing him and eight others. Twenty-six people were also wounded in the blast on the Nigerian side of the border, a Cameroonian official said. The child, believed to be under 10, mistook the grenade for scrap metal which he intended to sell, witnesses said.

At least four people have been killed by suspected al-Shabab extremists in eastern Garissa County, in Kenya. Deputy county commissioner Kibet Bowen said the gunmen targeted police officers at a roadblock near the village of Saretho. The al-Qaida-linked al-Shabab since December has increased attacks inside Kenya including Sunday’s attack on a military base that killed three U.S. military personnel and destroyed five U.S. aircraft.

Christian communities in Ethiopia, Eritrea and Egypt are celebrating Christmas Day – in line with the Julian calendar that the Orthodox Churches follow. Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed posted an image of himself serving up a Christmas feast on Instragram, with the message: Merry Christmas.

A team of doctors in Nigeria have successfully separated one-year-old conjoined twins. Lead surgeon Emmanuel Ameh told the BBC the operation to separate Goodness and Mercy Martins at the chest and abdomen took place in November and the two sisters were now well enough to go home.

Over 50 people have been killed in a stampede at the funeral of Iran’s  assassinated General Qassem Soleimani.  Nearly 200 others were injured as thousands gathered to pay their last respects to the general, who was killed in a US airstrike last week. The general’s home city of Kerman has been the scene of massive processions as people gathered for his burial which has now been postponed. A new time will be announced later.

It’s been five years since terrorists went on a deadly rampage against journalists of the French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo leaving 11 people dead. The killing, claimed by the Islamic State, has put to question the country’s ability to counter terrorism. (Source Foreign News: BBC Africa).

Liverpool’s Sadio Mane has been named the Confederation of African Football’s (Caf) Player of the Year. The Senegal forward beat Liverpool team-mate and Egypt forward Mohamed Salah and Manchester City’s Algerian winger Riyad Mahrez to the award.

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