National And International News Roundup – 8th July 2020

Inhabitants of the North West regional Chief town Bamenda say some popular neighbourhoods of the city got engulfed by heavy gunshots Wednesday July 8th 2020. The gunshots that began just before 6PM were concentrated at the Commercial Avenue, the heart of the city of Bamenda. Locals believe it was a gun battle between separatist fighters and elements of the bational defense and security forces

Njodzeka Claudia Berinyuy might spend her first night in the hands of unknown armed individuals. The student of Communication and Development Studies at the University of Bamenda (UBa), was kidnapped early Wednesday July 8th 2020 by yet to be identified individuals and taken to an undisclosed destination. Local sources say she was very active in the community activities of her University, especially through the University Radio station.

Students of the University of Bamenda taken hostage by armed men have been released. The student were returned later today with some having minor injuries but are all home and safe now. Kidnapping for ransom has become more regular following the escalation of the Anglophone crisis into an armed conflict, with many fingers pointing at separatist fighters.

The North West Region of Cameroon counts a total of 559 confirmed COVID-19 cases as of July 7th 2020. According to the Regional Delegate of public health- Che Kingsey Soh, the 559 cases were recorded in 13 out of the 19 health districts in the region including; Bafut, Bamenda, Batibo, Fundong, Kumbo East, Mbengwi, Ndop, Nkambe, Santa, Tubah, Wum and Kumbo west. The worst hit health district is Bamenda with 392 cases.

After three explosions in Yaounde Cameroon last week, intelligence sources say an attack is being planned in Bafoussam, chief town of the West Region of the country. According to a confidential letter addressed to the Mayor of Bafoussam I and to the forces of law and order, the Divisional officer (DO) for Bafoussam 1 says, he has been information that some individuals are planning an attack in Bafoussam. He called on the Mayor and forces of law and order to be on alert, increasing vigilance in markets and on public edifice.

Donga Mantung- North West region of Cameroon has recorded its first case of COVID-19. According to sources in the Division, the case detected in the Divisional chief town Nkambe, was announced by the North West regional Delegate of public health. The announced COVID-19 has created panic amongst inhabitants of the Division at a time when Cameroonians are increasingly abandoning the respect of COVID-19 measures. The North West counts 559 COVID-19 cases in total.

Noel Emmanuel Essomba is the the interim Director of the Douala Laquintinie hospital. He was appointed Tuesday 7th July 2020 by the Minister of public health, to replace Prof Louis Richard Njock, appointed by the President to the post of secretary general in the ministry of public health. Before his appointment at the Laquintinie hospital, he was the Director of the Nylon district hospital in Douala. The hospital accused by a family last week of removing some body parts of the corpse of their brother placed at the hospital mortuary. The decree also appointed new directors at the Mbangue and Nylon district hospitals.

Minister Gregoire Owona is begging his Beti brothers and sisters to stop the current infighting, tearing their ethnic group in Cameroon. On his social media page, the Beti elite and Minister of Labour and Social security says the current Beti infighting risks turning into a regrettable massacre. Gregoire owona begged his tribesmen to rather join forces for development and not forming camps to fight. According to social media reports, the current brouhaha generated from a statement from the CEO of Vision 4 tv, indicating that his Beti brothers were lazy, and could only benefit from government.

The Higher Judicial Council has been summoned by the President. In a decision this evening, he convenes them for 10 AM on August 6th 2020. The meeting comes shortly after President Biya appointed new substantive and alternate members of the council.

Cameroon’s ministry of communication has released a list of private online and written press organs to benefit from state subvention. Some pressmen have noted that ‘ghost media organs’ are among the beneficiaries. These newspapers they say mainly surface and submit files for financial assistance without actually functioning.

More Cameroonians will return from Dubai in the days ahead. Listing modalities for their return, Cameroon’s Consul general in Dubai “invites compatriots wishing to return to Cameroon at their own cost whether or not registered as part of this initiative to come…. file their registration fees until the deadline of July 13 2020”.

UN chief Antonio Guterres says foreign interference in Libya has reached an unprecedented level. He told a virtual meeting of the UN Security Council that the conflict had entered a new phase and he was alarmed by the military build-up and the number of mercenaries involved. Germany’s Foreign Minister Heiko Maas called for a halt to the supply of all arms to Libya, to help end foreign interference

The Islamist militant group Boko Haram has released a video in which a fighter says he is be part of a branch in Nigeria’s western Niger state. The group’s more than decade-long insurgency has largely focused on the north-east of the country and the Lake Chad region.

Domestic passenger flights have resumed in Nigeria more than three months after they were suspended as part of measures to contain the coronavirus pandemic. Airports in the capital Abuja and the commercial hub Lagos have begun operating again, while other airports across the country will follow in the coming days. A number of measures have been put in place to check the spread of the coronavirus – including disinfecting passengers‘ luggage and footwear, mandatory wearing of face mask at airports, washing of hands before entry into the terminal building and social distancing.

South Africa now has the world’s 14th highest number of Covid-19 infections globally and officials are concerned that the virus’s “doubling rate” is currently higher than all countries with more cases than South Africa. The doubling rate is the time taken for the total number of cases of an infectious disease to double. South Africa is in the middle of winter when the spread of coronavirus is expected to increase drastically.

The police in Ethiopia say at least 177 people were killed in violent protests last week, which were sparked by the killing last Monday of popular musician Hachalu Hundessa. His murder remains unresolved, although investigations are still under way and there have been some arrests. But the fallout continues. More than 4,000 people have now been arrested because of their alleged involvement in the wave of violence.

Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov is reported to have said that the Libyan renegade general Khalifa Haftar is ready to sign a ceasefire agreement. Mr Lavrov said he hoped that Turkey would be able to persuade Libya’s UN-backed government to do the same thing. Russia is among a number of countries – including Egypt and the United Arab Emirates – that support Gen Haftar.

Kenya has nominated Sports Minister Amina Mohamed for the position of the World Trade Organization (WTO) director general. The WTO is seeking to replace Brazil’s Roberto Azevedo who is stepping down a year early. Ms Mohamed is the sixth candidate to be nominated for the top job. Nigeria’s Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala was also nominated and has received backing from the Economic Community of West African States (Ecowas).

Kenya’s education minister has said schools should either refund parents the school fees paid for this academic year or agree to put it towards next year. George Magoha was responding to concerns raised after his announcement on Tuesday that primary and secondary schools would not reopen until 2021 as coronavirus cases in the country were rising.

Foreign news: Mimi Mefo Info

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