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National and International News Roundup – September 12th 2019.

1 A greater part of Bamenda in the North Region of Cameroon continues to observe lockdown imposed by separatist fighters. The streets remain deserted despite a call for dialogue made by the president of the Republic during his state of the nation’s address last Tuesday.  The continuous observation of lockdown equally contradicts calls by governor Adolph Lele L’Afrique for the people of the North West to start consultations ahead of the national dialogue.

2 Two bandits are currently detained at a police station in Ezeka in the Centre Region of Cameroon. They were apprehended by security forces after an attack on a Micro Finance Institution. The armed men stormed the financial house taking both the customers and the workers hostage. Other gang members are on the run.

3 Inhabitants of Rail Berlin at the Mballa 3 neighbourhood in Yaoundé are calling on the government to station a police post in the area.  The call follows the burning of a car yesterday in the area by suspected bandits.  People living in this neighbourhood say bandits have been terrorising them on daily basis.

4 Students of the Government Technical High School Douala Bassa have not been receiving effective practical lessons for close to fifteen years. This is because the technical laboratory has not been operational.  This was discovered today by the Minister of Secondary Education. Pauline Nalova Lyonga frowns at inspectors at the ministry that have been giving fake reports of what is happening in the school. At GBHS Deido also in Douala, the minister promised the dismissal of any school administrator that would not consider the security of the students as a priority.

5 How to resume studies in state universities in the Anglophone Regions with growing insecurity has been a point of concern as Vice Chancellors and other personalities of the institution are meeting in Yaoundé. The meeting chaired by the Minister of Higher Education, Professor Jacques Fame Ndongo is equally examining the quality of academic work.

6 The Social Democratic Front SDF has promised to examine in greater details the process of dialogue as stated by the government. An SDF delegation led by the first vice president Hon. Joshua Osih met with the Prime Minister Joseph Dion Ngute today. Hon. Osih has stated that the political dialogue to resolve the anglophone crisis should be given the pride of place. Earlier yesterday, PM Dion Ngute held talks with ministers from the Anglophone Regions of Cameroon.

7 The president of the South West Regional Chiefs’ conference has stated that the national dialogue is an opportunity for the region to raise issues affecting the region. In an executive meeting today in Yaoundé, Chief Martin Mafany Njie expressed hope that the Anglophone crisis will come to an end following this dialogue.

8 There is still controversy over where the first black president of Zimbabwe will be buried. The state of Zimbabwe and the family of Robert Gabriel Mugabe are still negotiating to come to a common understanding.  While the state wants Robert Mugabe to be buried at a state chosen area, the family wants Mugabe buried in his village. The body arrived Harare, the capital of Zimbabwe yesterday from Singapore, where the former president died.

9 The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has today announced that more than 22,000 people are missing in Nigeria as a result of the decade-long conflict with the Boko Haram insurgents. This confirmation came in a statement by the ICRC President Peter Maurer who further confirmed that nearly 60 per cent of the missing persons were children and that this was the highest number of missing persons ever registered with the ICRC in any country. “They were minors when they went missing, meaning thousands of parents don’t know where their children are and if they are alive or dead,” Mr Maurer said on Thursday at the end of a five-day trip to Nigeria.

10 British and Kenyan lawyers are reported to have submitted a complaint to the UN special rapporteur on the promotion of justice, Fabián Salvioli, on behalf of over 115,000 people who claim to have originated from Kericho county. The plaintiffs are claiming that they were forcibly removed from their ancestral lands by the British army during the colonial era. There are also thousands of Kenyans who say they were forced out of their homes and suffered abuse under British colonial rule which subsequently led to severe hardship and poverty. They are all calling on the UN to launch an investigation into their treatment. The victims allege that they were moved by the army, under instructions from the colonial administration, from their fertile lands to arid and disease-prone “native reserves” and were offered no compensation.

11 The Ghana Health Service (GHS) has launched a series of vaccination campaigns to combat the spread of polio. Polio has been reported in a few cases and there are fears that the virus might spread to high-risk areas, and especially among children under five years old. The first phase of the campaign dubbed ‘round zero’ would make sure that children in all districts in Greater Accra who are eligible, are vaccinated between September 11th to 14th. The polio outbreak response campaign comes against the backdrop of a health sector confirmation of three cases of circulating vaccine-derived poliovirus type 2 (cVDPV2) from the 8th July this year

12 The #AmINext campaign on Twitter and other social media platforms is gaining momentum as an online petition has been signed by more than 500,000 persons demanding the reinstatement of the death penalty in South Africa. The campaign has been instigated by a spate of gruesome rapes and murders of women in recent weeks. Among the notable victims is a schoolgirl who was reported to have had her head staved in, and a university student who was bludgeoned to death. The rapes and murders have instigated street protests in addition to the social media campaigns. This presents a huge challenge to the nation that has seen a significant rise in violent crimes.  

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