National and International News Roundup: 31 October 2019

US President, Donald Trump has cut AGOA Trade Ties with Cameroon Over Human Rights Violations. In a statement Thursday, October 31, 2019, the United States of America has said she will as from January 1, 2020, terminate Cameroon’s trade benefits under the African Growth and Opportunities Act, AGOA. President Donald Trump says the move is in response to many human rights violations in the sub-Sahara African state. AGOA was approved by the U.S. Congress in 2000 and is aimed at assisting the economies of sub-Saharan Africa and improving economic relations between the United States and the region. After completing its initial 15-year period of validity, the AGOA legislation was extended on 29 June 2015 by a further 10 years, to 2025.

There have been mixed feelings in Buea following the appointment of Dr Efande John Lyonga as the interim Mayor of Buea council in the South West region of Cameroon. There have been questions if Dr Efande will properly handle the municipality, for the next sixty days, before an election takes place to get a new mayor to replace Ekema Patrick Esunge. The Mayor died on the 27th of October.

Two school children in Bamenda in the North West of Cameroon are in the hands of kidnappers.  They were taken this morning at Upper Meta quarter. The kidnappers were onboard a vehicle. An investigation has been opened.

Despite the announcement of a 200 million francs financial assistance disbursed by president Paul Biya to assist victims of Bafoussam landslide, some victims have been seen roaming the streets of Bafoussam in search of where to live.  The distribution process of financial assistance is still being awaited.

Sultan Ibrahim Mbombo Njoya of the Bamoun community has prayed for the peaceful repose of the souls of people who lost their lives in the course of the landslide.  At Gouache quarter in Bafoussam, the people, led by the Sultan, have prayed against the repeat of such a catastrophe.

Serge Espoir Matomba has called on the government of Cameroon to be more proactive to prevent natural disasters. The 1st secretary-general of the PURS party visited the site of the natural disaster in Bafoussam.  The politician has applauded the prompt financial assistance of the president of Cameroon to victims of the landslide.  Serge Matomba is proposing a national day of mourning for the victims.

A man has killed his friend for demanding that he pays a debt of 20.000 FCFA. This happened at Mballa 4 quarter in Yaoundé today. Neighbours explain that a fight erupted between the two men then followed by a suspicious calm. Curious, they alerted the gendarmes.  The suspected murderer was caught trying to escape through the ceiling. He is under detention at the Etoudi gendarmerie.

The 225 African migrants rescued by Cameroonian military men last Friday have been escorted to the Federal Republic of Nigeria, their point of departure. The African migrants from over seven African Countries were heading to Gabon for greener pastures. They spent four days in Cameroon.

Two suspected Ambazonian fighters are said to have been arrested with the sum of over 4 million Francs CFA meant to buy guns in Nigeria.  According to the chief administrative officer of Donga Mantung Division, the fighters were arrested by Nigerian Forces as they crossed over from Cameroon to buy weapons in Nigeria. He says the arrest is the fruit of a diplomatic collaboration with his Nigerian counterparts. Over 20 well-equipped Vigilante groups have been formed within Donga Mantung, the coordination unit in Nkambe notes.

The SDO for Donga Mantung Division of the North West region of Cameroon has revealed that he has enforced collaboration with the chairmen of Taraba, Takum, Kormi, Ita and other local government areas in neighbouring Nigeria and the divisional District Police commissioners of those local government areas in order to track and frustrate the activities of Ambazonia fighters. Ndoh Simon Nkwenti says such efforts recently led to the arrest of some Amba Boys who went to buy arms in Nigeria.

Close to ten years after heads of states of the CEMAC sub-region adopted the free circulation of goods and services within the economic zone, it’s effective implementation remains a problem. Equatorial Guinea has again closed its border with Cameroon. At the border town of Kye-Ossi in the South region of Cameroon, traders are stuck with their merchandise and are unable to cross over to Equatorial Guinea. They complain that their co-traders who dare cross over to the Equator Guinean side are brutalised by security officials.

Technicians of the ministry of public works began working on the broken Sangmelima-Djoum stretch of road in the South region of Cameroon. The culvert linking the two localities collapsed after a heavy rainfall splitting the road into two parts. It is not certain for how long the project will last

Cameroons Minister of communication has warned media organs which he says are not working within the guidelines of promoting peace and social cohesion in the country. Speaking in Yaoundé today, Mincom Boss Rene Emmanuel said the promotion of peace and social cohesion is an obligation for all media organs in Cameroon.  The minister, however, did not mention sanctions against the organs concerned

More than 100 foreign-owned shops have been closed by Ghanaian traders in the second city, Kumasi. Irate Ghanaian traders, believed to be members of the Ghana Union of Traders Association (Guta), have forcibly locked up shops with padlocks.

Algerians on social media are calling for large demonstrations on Friday to protest against heavy restrictions imposed on a prominent opposition activist Ahmed Benmohamed after he had addressed a rally in the capital, Algiers. Mr Benmohamed criticised the army’s chief of staff, Lt Gen Ahmed Gaid Salah, saying that he was the real president of Algeria.

Some 78 people were killed in the violence which hit parts of Ethiopia last week, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s press secretary, Billene Seyoum, has said. The security forces had arrested more than 400 people in connection with the killings and the destruction of properties, she added.

Zambia’s state-owned power company has announced an indefinite extension of power cuts lasting for 15 hours a day. Two weeks ago, Zesco said announced the cuts, saying repairs were being done at a thermal power plant owned by Maamba Collieries.

A court in South Africa has cleared firebrand opposition politician Julius Malema of hate speech for calling Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan a “dog of white monopoly capital”. Equality Court Judge Roland Sutherland dismissed Mr Gordhan’s application and ordered him to pay the legal costs for Mr Malema, the leader of the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF).

The Nigerian government says it has temporarily lifted the ban on two international charities – Action Against Hunger and Mercy Corps that had been in place since September. The humanitarian organisations have now been allowed to resume operations. They were accused of aiding Boko Haram fighters in the north. (Source Foreign News: BBC Africa)

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