KW 40: Curfew in Cameroon, Government crisis in Tunisia, Alternative Nobel Prize honors practical fixes to global problems

– NEWS –

Curfew in Cameroon: Authorities in the English-speaking regions of Cameroon on Sunday imposed a 48-hour curfew meant to restrict movement over what it terms „threats from separatists“. The measure is valid until Monday and has to do with the symbolic independence proclamation of the English-speaking regions a year ago. October 1st marks the day on which armed separatists under the banner of the so-called Ambazonia republic sought to declare independence from French-majority Cameroon in 2017. The move led to a violent state crackdown that kick started an armed fightback by the separatists. Over the last year, casualties have been recorded on the side of the army and separatists. Cameroon will vote next Sunday, and 85-year-old President Paul Biya, who has been in power since 1982, is seeking his seventh term.,

Government crisis in Tunisia: Efforts to rescue Tunisia’s ailing economy face the prospect of fresh turmoil after President Beji Caid Essebsi declared his alliance with moderate Islamists at an end. The Ennahda Islamist party and secular Nidaa Tounes agreed in 2014 on a constitution granting far-reaching political rights, limiting the role of religion and holding free elections, which stands out in a region often run by autocrats. But Tunisia fell into a political crisis again this year after Essebsi’s son, who is the leader of Nidaa Tounes, called for the dismissal of prime minister Youssef Chahed because of his government’s failure to revive the economy.

Alternative Nobel Prize honors practical fixes to global problems: Three human rights activists, two corruption fighters, a farmer and an agricultural scientist are the 2018 winners of the Alternative Nobel Prize. They are tirelessly fighting the world over to make it a better place. Australian Tony Rinaudo is also known as „the forest maker.“ The agronomist has lived and worked in Africa for decades. Rinaudo has taken on the task of combating the Sahel region’s extreme deforestation and dehydration. The technique he has developed consists of creating trees from underground root networks. Rinaudo calls these „underground forests.“ His method’s success is impressive: In Niger alone, 19,300 square miles of land with over 200 million trees have been restored.

WHO warns risk of Ebola’s spread is high: The World Health Organization has warned that the risk of the deadly Ebola virus spreading from Congo is now very high after two confirmed cases were discovered near the Uganda border. The WHO raised its official alert level because of violence by local militias, which has slowed efforts to contain the outbreak, and population movements in eastern Congo, where the latest outbreak erupted in August. Since 2000, Uganda has had three Ebola outbreaks, with a total of about 600 cases. Although it is a poor country, its health care system is relatively well organized, and its health ministry said it would start a vaccination campaign if it detected cases there. Inside Congo, the response to the outbreak has been hampered by fighting and by small numbers of victims leaving or refusing to go to treatment centers, spreading the virus to new areas.

Desmond Tutu, former South African archbishop, admitted to hospital
Migrant killed after Morocco’s navy fires on boat
Prince William visits British troops in Kenya, trains with them


Harmful tax deals: A study by Martin Hearson of the London School of Economics concludes that developing countries in Africa and Asia are being penalized by the international system of tax treaties that has developed over the years. The study will be presented to the European Parliament on Wednesday. The double taxation agreements of the 28 EU states are causing considerable damage. The average agreement with African or Asian countries ensures that 60 percent of taxes are paid in Europe. Although no state is obliged to enter into unfavorable tax treaties, developing countries hope for access to foreign investment.

Maniok offers opportunities: The versatile plant Maniok is a staple of many African diets – often without any supplements, which can lead to signs of deficiency. But the plant also has a lot of untapped potential, according to agricultural researchers at the University of Hohenheim. The plant’s leaves and stems that are left behind in the fields after harvesting contain high-quality proteins, essential amino acids and vitamins. In addition, more efficient peeling processes can improve the starch yield. Utilizing the shells in a biogas plant can also reduce harmful methane gas. Germany’s Ministry of Education and Research is funding the research project with 856,000 euros.


50 percent of the world’s population growth will be in Africa by 2050.


„First is making sure children do not just survive but thrive. Most African countries have participated in the global revolution in child survival. Rwanda, just a few years removed from genocide, has built an effective health system from the ground up and seen the steepest drop in child mortality ever recorded. The next step is making sure children can lead productive lives.“

US billionaire Bill Gates has called on Germany to invest in the future, especially of young people in Africa.


Millions in cash went missing in Liberia: Authorities in Liberia said they were investigating the disappearance of 104 million dollars in newly printed bank notes intended for the central bank, in a possible fraud equal to 5 percent of gross domestic product. Liberian officials said the bank notes were ordered by the central bank from overseas printers but disappeared between November and August. The Liberian justice ministry on Wednesday confirmed that 15 officials, including the son of former president and Nobel Prize winner Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and the former central bank governor, were under investigation and had been banned from leaving the country.

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