KW 3: Many challenge Congo’s election results, Why Merkel’s migration policy depends on elections in Africa, Kenya to start teaching Chinese to elementary school students, Indignant reaction to “Africa solidarity tax”

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Many challenge Congo’s election results: Opposition presidential candidate Martin Fayulu has filed an appeal in the constitutional court against last month’s poll result in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Fayulu insists he won the vote and has demanded a manual recount, but the electoral commission declared rival Felix Tshisekedi the winner. The electoral commission also said the pro-Kabila coalition had won a majority of parliamentary seats. Fayulu accuses Tshisekedi, also an opposition candidate, of making a deal with outgoing President Joseph Kabila. Several Western governments and the influential Roman Catholic Church in DR Congo have expressed surprise and concern at the presidential election results. The influential Catholic Church, which deployed 40,000 observers at all polling stations, said official results did not match its findings, and diplomats briefed on them said rival opposition candidate Fayulu won easily.,

Why Merkel’s migration policy depends on elections in Africa: This year, there will be elections in about twenty African countries. Especially the elections in Nigeria, Senegal and Algeria are important to German politics, since these countries are crucial allies of Germany. The three countries are also of particular importance when it comes to Germany’s migration policies. Tens of thousands of people flee from Nigeria each year. German Chancellor Angela Merkel wants to work to combat the causes of flight. Nigeria is Germany’s second most important trading partner in Sub-Saharan Africa. Berlin views Senegal and Algeria as transit states, the countries through which migrants move on their way to Europe. The results of the upcoming elections will decisively influence which power configurations prevail there and to what extent this will benefit Merkel’s Africa policy.

Kenya to start teaching Chinese to elementary school students: Kenya will teach Mandarin in classrooms in a bid to improve job competitiveness and facilitate better trade and connection with China. Primary school pupils from grade four and onwards will be able to take the course, the head of the agency Julius Jwan told “Xinhua” news agency. Jwan said the language is being introduced given Mandarin’s growing global rise, and the deepening political and economic connections between Kenya and China.

Indignant reaction to “Africa solidarity tax”: Thomas Karmasin, district administrator for the Bavarian town of Fürstenfeldbruck near Munich, has used an interview to comment on his call for a solidarity surcharge for Africa. Karmasin suggested that part of the solidarity tax in Germany could be used to improve living conditions in Africa. His proposal was much criticized. Karmasin has rejected the criticism and insisted that isolation was not the way to do things. He said the negative reactions to his proposal only showed that many people believe that Germany already helps Africans living in Germany too much.

At least eight dead after Nigeria oil tanker explosion
Madagascar police fire tear gas to break up opposition protest
UN urges DR Congo to refrain from violence after election result


New alliance against Africa’s super airline: Ethiopian Airlines is a real heavyweight on the African continent. It is Africa’s largest airline with an annual passenger volume of around eleven million passengers. The competition is now planning to join forces to fight back against the rise of the airline. South African Airways, Kenya Airways Plc, Air Mauritius Ltd. and RwandAir are in talks to create an alliance, as they face mounting competition. Air Mauritius took the initiative to join forces with three other African airlines in a bid to create an alliance that would develop air connectivity in the region, said CEO Somas Appavou. In a highly competitive environment, this alliance would allow the potential partners to create a consolidated network using the individual strength of each airline to offer passenger better choice and flexibility.

Bolsonaro’s foreign policy and Africa: Following the swearing in of Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro on January 1st, a turnabout in Brazilian-African relations could take place. While the bilateral relations among former Presidents Lula and Rousseff were consistently positive, the polemical statements of the ultra-nationalist Bolsonaro have caused outrage in Africa. For example, Bolsonaro had claimed during election campaigning that Africans were themselves responsible for the slave trade. Hardly any African representatives were present at his inauguration, only Bolsonaro’s own country Angola was represented by Foreign Minister Manuel Augusto.


Tunisian President Beji Caid Essebsi pardoned 2,160 convicted offenders on the occasion of the 8th anniversary of the Jasmine Revolution and the Day of Youth on January 14th.


“We are helping ourselves and are flying back home using African airlines.”

German Development Minister Gerd Müller lost his patience when a government aircraft was not able to take him from Zambia back to Germany due to technical issues. He spontaneously decided to fly home using African airlines.


Amazigh celebrate the new year: Hundreds of people gathered in Morocco’s capital Rabat late on Saturday to mark the start of the Amazigh new year with a sit-in calling on the state to make the celebration a national holiday. The first day of the year in the Amazigh calendar, rooted in seasons and agriculture, marks the anniversary of the ascent of Libyan King Sheshong to the throne of Egypt, according to historians. The new year which begins on Sunday is year 2969. Last week, parliament members submitted a motion to Prime Minister Saad Eddine El Othmani asking for the Amazigh new year to be recognized as a national day, a step already taken by neighboring Algeria.

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