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Kenya Commits To Leading Regional Counter-Terrorism Efforts

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UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres

Kenya’s president Uhuru Kenyatta has told the global community that the country will lead eastern Africa’s counter-terrorism efforts by working with regional governments and partners.
Kenyatta reiterated that Kenya will leverage on its membership in the united nations security council to contribute more to global peace and security.

Kenyatta said during a virtual meeting of the Aqaba process on COVID-19, convened by King Abdullah II of Jordan, that through Kenya’s non-permanent member seat at the united nations security council, Kenya will contribute to global peace and security, with the ultimate goal being the attainment of sustainable development for the year 2021-2022.

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The meeting brought together several global leaders, including Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau, the Philippines president, Rodrigo Duterte, and UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres.

Kenyatta said COVID-19 is a catalyst to global insecurity by amplifying pre-existing security and contributing socioeconomic difficulties. He also said the pandemic had slowed down global and regional crisis and conflict resolution efforts thereby escalating tensions and negating peace-building gains made over the years.

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The president said COVID-19 had heightened potential for terrorist acts in the horn of Africa, worsened the refugee crisis and led to the proliferation of small arms and light weapons.

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To address security challenges made worse by COVID-19, president Kenyatta said frontline states in the fight against terrorism and violent extremism should be assisted by strengthening their capacities to deal with both emerging and pre-existing security challenges.

Canadian prime minister Trudeau called for the involvement of women in the global security conversation to ensure that diverse voices are heard.

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Uganda: Sickle Cell Awareness Fundraising Campaign Launched

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Uganda: Sickle Cell Awareness Fundraising Campaign Launched

A sickle cell awareness fundraising campaign has been launched by Uganda’s ministry of health to create awareness about sickle cell disease and to provide free screening services to stakeholders.

The exercise is expected to help give specialized health care, to promote awareness and testing, and to provide tele-medicine services.

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The campaign is a joint effort with CTI Africa Uganda sickle cell rescue foundation.

A study has shown a prevalence of sickle cell trait at a very high rate of more than thirteen percent.  As a result, health authorities have called for premarital and newborn screening.

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The ministry’s director-general for health services, Dr. Henry Nwebesa, says the ministry will strengthen partnerships and ensure every sickle cell child is able to live a quality life.

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Sickle cell is a chronic illness that effects people from childhood and restricts them for participating in many activities that could affect their conditions.

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Ivory Coast President Says New West African Currency Launch May Take Five Years

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Ivory Coast President Says New West African Currency Launch May Take Five Years

The plan to launch a new currency to replace the CFA franc-being used by several French speaking west African countries has been postponed. Ivory coast president Alessane Ouattara, said the coronavirus pandemic has derailed the project to introduce the eco currency this year.

Last December, the eight countries of west Africa’s monetary union decided to sever the financial colonial link with France by switching to a new currency called the Eco, which the union says would be pegged to the European Union’s euro. Other countries that do not use the CFA franc, like Nigeria and Ghana, are also interested in adopting the new regional currency.

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The plan has been affected by the economic fallout of the global COVID-19 pandemic. The Eco launch may not happen for at least five years. The international monetary fund predicts sub-Saharan Africa’s economy will contract by more than 3% this year.

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Nations in the bloc, former French colonies, like Benin, Mali, Niger and Senegal have agreed to work towards reducing their budget deficits to below 3% of GDP, a measure of the value of their economies.

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Anti-Nigerian Hashtag Trends In South Africa

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Anti-Nigerian Hashtag Trends In South Africa

South Africa`s internet is buzzing with top trending hashtag on twitter #NigeriansMustGo in a latest sign of growing xenophobia in the country.  Last week, a protest was held outside the Nigerian high commission where locals were asking that South Africans be put first.

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Demonstrators held a small protest at the Nigerian diplomatic building in Pretoria, under the hashtag #PutSouthAfricansFirst.

During last week’s protest, Nigeria’s high commissioner Bala Kabiru said “we don’t accept the profiling of Nigerians in South Africa.”

Some South Africans accuse immigrants of taking the jobs of locals, and of being involved in crime. Others say most immigrants are law-abiding, and should not be blamed for South Africa’s economic and social problems.

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Digital forensic research lab – which is made up of forensic researchers who track conflicts – said last week, it had identified a dismissed lance corporal in the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) running a fake Twitter account used to fuel xenophobia.

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