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S.Africa: Ramaphosa Outlines Seven Focus Points During State Of The Nation Address 

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Ramaphosa Announces Action Plan To Tackle Violence Against Women

President Cyril Ramaphosa has delivered his first state of the nation address on Thursday since last month’s election.  He outlined a 10-year plan and said his administration will focus on seven key points: economic transformation and job creation, education, skills and health, consolidating the social wage through reliable and quality basic services, spatial integration, human settlements and local government, social cohesion and safe communities, a capable, ethical and developmental state and a better Africa and world.

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He said the decision to focus on these specific areas comes as his administration would not be able to do “everything at one time.”

He also said the nation’s power supplier, Eskom cannot be allowed to fail and told citizens that the time to dodge paying for electricity has passed.

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South Africa’s top opposition parties said Ramaphosa’s speech lacked details and a clear plan.

Economic freedom fighters leader, Julius Malema said the address was too imaginative and avoided the land question, while Mmusi Maimane of the Democratic Alliance said it was vague on how to turn South Africa’s economy around.  Maimane said declaring 10-year goals “means very little to people who desperately need immediate change.”

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Ten Killed In Deadly Somalia Prison Break Attempt

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Ten Killed In Deadly Somalia Prison Break Attempt

Somalia prison officials say 10 persons have been killed following a failed prison break that led to a shoot-out inside the capital -Mogadishu’s main prison.

State radio reported, another six were injured when Somali security forces beat back an uprising in the prison on Monday.

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A senior police officer said mutinous prisoners snatched guns from guards who were on duty on Monday evening, and killed three of them.

There are reports that one of the prisoners managed to get a pistol off a prison warden, then a group of inmates broke into the armoury. The guards and other security forces regrouped and killed the inmates.

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A specially trained police unit was deployed to deal with the violence at the prison which holds some of the most notorious al-Shabab prisoners on either life or death sentences.

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At Least 10 Dead In Ethiopia Protests Over Autonomy

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At Least 10 Dead In Ethiopia Protests Over Autonomy

Ethiopia’s health officials say at least 10 persons have died during clashes between protesters and security forces in the country’s southern region on Monday.

The protests were sparked by Sunday’s arrest of local officials and activists seeking a new autonomous region for their Wolaita ethnic group.

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Spokesman for the opposition party Wolaita national movement party- Matheos Balcha says one of their party members was arrested.

Security forces shot dead protesters in Boditi on Monday, a town 295 km southwest of the capital Addis Ababa. A 14-year-old boy was reported to be among the dead. Opposition spokesperson says 34 persons were injured.

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Prime minister Abiy Ahmed, who came to power in 2018, and introduced democratic reforms, has struggled to appeal to ethnic nationalism.

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France Helps Hunt For Killers Of Aid Workers In Niger

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France Helps Hunt For Killers Of Aid Workers In Niger

Soldiers from France and Niger are collaborating to find killers of six aid workers, their local guide and driver at a giraffe reserve.

The troops began operations on Monday in the reserve and surrounding areas for signs of the gunmen who killed the French international aid workers along with their local guide and driver.

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Attackers on motorbikes ambushed the group on Sunday while driving through the reserve, a popular destination for expatriates, 65 km from Niger’s capital Niamey, in an area considered safe by the government.

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A French military source said, “military operations are ongoing including the use of air support to find the gunmen.

France and other countries have warned people against travelling to parts of Niger where militants, including Boko Haram and an affiliate of Islamic State, operate in rural areas.

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