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Africa Watch
The news map of US military operations in Africa, followed by an overview of the Boko Haram in Nigeria and all the Al-Qaeda aligned terrorist groups across Africa and Middle-East as they continue their operations. We provide a closer look at Boko Haram and al-Shabaab organization, plus show you the U.S. Terrorist Most Wanted poster offering rewards of between $3m and $7m for the leaders of the Islamist militant groups in Africa. - READ MORE
Americas View
In this section we present the official U.S. government statements, public opinion polls and general comments America makes about Africa, with the intent to keep Africa officialdom aware of the Africa temperament in the USA –and to see “What America Sees” – This posting caries a report by The African Times-USA Editor-in-Chief participation in the visit of President Buhari to Washington D.C., plus the remarks made by President Obama an President Buhari, followed by a reprint of a Commentary which appeared in the recent issue of The New Yorker Magazine-READ MORE
Africa Comment
Conversally this section presents comments by Africa which the U.S. and other overseas quarters should be aware of and understand. Current posting features the issue where Malawi is contemplating removing English from their classrooms. We also feature the African Transformation Report which outlines a view of Africa's possible or probable future- full report is linked for download. -READ MORE
Insight
This posting leads off with the unsolved murder of Burkina's revolutionary leader Thomas Sankara. Followed by "Made in Ghana "with great pride and ingenuity – Kantanka Group designed, produced and is manufacturing passenger cars in Ghana. Now that is NEWS! -READ MORE
Briefing

We name the top 10 philanthropists in Africa.

-READ MORE
Profile

Profile of Ghana President, John Dramani Mahama – PLUS eight other noteworthy African politicians Michael Sata, Blaise Compaoré, President of Burkina Faso, Somalia Prime Minister; Re-elected President Paul Kagame of Rwanda, Al-Bashir, President of Sudan; Jacob Zuma, President of South Africa

-READ MORE
Africa Inc
Insightful article of Sub-Sahara economic standing, plus a report of Russian business probes in Cote d'Ivoire. China will earmark more than half of all of its foreign aid to Africa Chinese Premier Li Keqiang announced during his Africa visit. PLUS -Oil industry executives believe that by late 2014 or early 2015, the US will stop importing Nigerian crude.-READ MORE
Interviews
Eyewitness account of the treacherous journey by sea and desert for a fife in Europe. Followed by Kenya Jihadist meets a reporter who is an atheist; the interviewee is Abubakar Shariff Ahmed, better known by his nickname, Makaburi. It means "graveyard" in Swahili. Ask around in the Majengo area of Mombasa and people will know where he lives. But ask around too much and you are likely to have a problem -READ MORE
Culture
Children and grandchildren of African immigrants who sought refuge in the United States during the turbulent 1970's and 80's era of military dictatorships in the Continent are now clearly distinguishing themselves – we meet some of them. Followed by the meaning of a name among Africans. Many African children are given at least three names. Each is carefully selected to reflect the circumstances of the child's birth, the family history, the parents' status or the expectations for the child's future. Cuban Ganga finds his roots in Sierra Leonean village- a touching 175 year return to the Continent -READ MORE
The Arts
We report of the world's most remote film festival - in a refugee camp in the Sahara desert, where nothing grows and few people visit. Followed by report where the Ebola epidemic has created new song that explains what not to do and what to do and become a radio hit. With all the political events taking place in Egypt, its history and grandeur still comes to life - until a decade ago, no one knew of, an ancient harbor city Heracleion -READ MORE

 

Africa Kitchen
Safari Cuisine overview. Followed by Art of Sushi-Making African-Style. The unique drinks of Africa. Then we tell you of Morocco and its saffron crop. France's cherished culinary tradition holds big attraction for foreign visitors. But few tourists realize that many chefs and most kitchen staff in Paris and other big cities are immigrants from Africa. Review of a classic Nairobi restaurant Carnivore – Plus a great Senegal food article which appeared in the “Saveur” magazine, courtesy of Peirre Thiam, our chef colleague. Link to the U.S. based African Dinner website listing African restaurants in all the major metropolitan areas of the U.S.-READ MORE
Book Review
"Foreign Gods, Inc." a new must-read book by a Nigerian author reviewed. Nelson Mandela's autobiography turned into a film – our review. From orphan to author, the self-help guru is turning the spiritual world upside down by exploring a new concept, African Spirituality. “Our ancestors believed in African deities and gained their strength to survive one of the worst atrocities in American history," Followed by a review of a book by the President of Ghana “My First Coup D'état” – and a review of a 19th Century travel book of West Africa by Mary Kingsley, published in 1892, a must read before your visit to Sierra Leone - READ MORE
Career Info
The African Times/USA presents Career Opportunities as a community outreach resource to our readers and site visitors. World Bank seeking new talent; Africa Development Bank’s new career program is outlined; U.S. White House internship information, a way to work with the U.S. President; Fulbright Scholarship availability and contacts for US and non-US applicants -READ MORE
Travel
Festivals and Celebrations and Carnivals are a given in all parts of Africa, here are four very special ones that you should consider putting on your "To Do List". And then we tell you with a WARNING! The following is not a place to visit at this time, but you should put it on your Africa travel bucket list, because when all will become peaceful it will be the top Africa destination. -READ MORE

 

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Why Term Limits Matter For Africa

Burundi's struggle to institute term limits is emblematic of a broader battle to establish checks on Africa's heads of state. The capacity for perpetuating their stay in office explains why nine current African leaders have been in power for more than 20 years (four of these for more than 30 years). This pattern may however be on the wane. Some 20 African countries of the 54 nation states, now effectively limit their Presidents to two terms. Of note, is Nigeria’s Goodluck Jonathan who voluntarily conceded power in Africa's largest democracy.

Polls show that 75 percent of Africans favor two-term limits for their heads of state. Moreover, the last successful circumvention of term limits was in Djibouti in 2010. The outcome in Burundi, consequently, has broader implications for Africa's efforts to institutionalize democratic norms and the rule of law.

Historically, pre-colonial Africa was largely made up of kingdoms and vassals ruled by de facto kings and chiefs who served at the pleasure of kingmakers and regents. This monarchical mindset was invariably foisted on the political ruling class even after the various African nation states gained independence from their colonial masters. This has continued to foster a breeding ground for sit-tight leaders such as was experienced during the reign of the late Mobutu Seseko, Jean Bedel Bokassa , Idi Amin, etc.

Consequently, the situation in Burundi again shows the fallacy of the winner-takes-all mentality of some of the remaining despots in Africa such as Marcias Nguema, Robert Mugabe, Yoweri Museveni and Paul Kagame whose stranglehold on power only ushers in an orgy of death and unwarranted killings – the type that should have no place in today’s Africa.

Thank goodness that the intolerance for despotism all of Africa is on the rise and The African Times-USA believes that the end of the era of totalitarianism is obviously in sight.

We believe implicitly that the two-term limit is essential to the future of Africa. And those who would wish to subvert the climate of democracy are doomed to ultimate disappointment


Debate - knowledge - opinions - ideas are all part of the AFRICA DIALOG. This is your opportunity to debate, come under the traditional village tree and become a part of the community.

We look forward to your comments:

editor@theafricantimes.com

Regional Trading Firm Is Set To Triple Trade Between Guinea-Bissau and the United States

The smallest and quite possibly one of the most forgotten countries in continental Africa has done only $3.2 million worth of business with the United States in 2013, almost all in the grains and edible fats sector. That number is about to change thanks to the efforts of the recently established Guinea-Bissau Trade & Investment Commission and a highly ambitious Bissau based trading company, West Afritrade.

From a dilapidated warehouse in the capital of this former Portuguese colony the company began as a humble commodity trading firm. In the early days they distributed rice and cooking oil to remote parts of the country. Today they distribute hundreds of products all over the ECOWAS countries, from Chinese plastic goods to cosmetics and auto parts West Afritrade overseas a diverse portfolio.

From 2014 the company's North American import manager, David Wright has set a new direction for the company and his division. "We've noticed that despite what you see on the news, there's a growing middle class in West Africa that is ready to pay higher prices for better quality goods", said Mr. Wright, who is a native of Canada. He arrived in West Africa 5 years ago on a charity mission and fell in love with the continent. "I love the people. I admire the natural beauty and now I believe the time is right to do serious business here." Today he runs West Afritrade's North American trading desk. "Our goal is to open new markets for US and Canadian companies and open their eyes to a forgotten emerging market.” added Jose Da Costa, managing director of West Afritrade.

With the Ebola crisis David's division found an early niche market. They began importing sanitation and medical supplies. "My favorite product that we tumbled on is a personal water filtration system by a US company called, Sawyer". The system allows anyone to produce 1000 liters (250 gallons) of clean drinking water for less than $12. It's small enough to fit in a fanny pack. "I've seen children tending their goats and turning dirty creek water into drinking water.” added Mr. Wright. West Afritrade also gave these away as gifts in the Northern regions of Guinea-Bissau. But it's not only medical supplies and water filters that Wright's company is importing from North America. We've found strong demand for quality auto parts. Since most of the vehicles are old models imported from Europe and their longevity is a key issue, customers need reliable quality auto parts. We're selling generators, filters, windshield wipers and other products in seven West African countries now.

"We are very pleased to see that trade is increasing between the United States and Guinea Bissau", said Andrew G. Szabo head of the Guinea Bissau Investment And Trade Commission and government economic advisor. He sees the next step in development in showcasing Guinea-Bissau companies and artisans in North America to keep trade balanced between the two countries.

Officials in Bissau are also welcoming the changing trade winds. The country has emerged from years of military rule, a series of coup d’états and economic recession. The capital is abuzz with businessmen and new factories opening up.

The Prime Minister Domingo Simoes Pereira has also recently praised West Afritrade.  "These businesses and projects are part of the regional development program, as outlined in the strategic vision presented by the government at recent roundtable meeting in Brussels.” said the 51 year old Prime Minister.


U.S. and Nigerian Presidents Hold Crucial DC Talk

Nigeria’s new President, Muhammadu Buhari visited Washington D.C. and met with U.S. President Obama. President Buhari represents one in five black Africans – and one in every 40 people on the planet are Nigerians. The meetings and talks in Washington, as well as all the celebratory events, including the invites by U. S. Vice President Joseph Biden held to celebrate President’s Buhari U.S. visit are expected to produce and deliver the results Nigeria needs and that the Nigerians voted for. (READ our Comments and Coverage in the America’s View)

 

SOUTH SUDAN

A top South Sudan rebel general stated that he and other powerful commanders had split from their chief Riek Machar, rejecting ongoing peace talks and risking a worsening of the country's civil war. Already more than two dozen armed groups are involved in a 19-month-long civil war that has left tens of thousands dead and has been marked by widespread atrocities on both sides. Rebel commander Gathoth Gatkuoth, sacked last month along with another key commander, Peter Gadet, said they were now at war with both former rebel comrades and the government in Juba. Gatkuoth, the former rebel logistics chief, said he and Gadet would now battle both, Machar and President Salva Kiir.

AFRICA

It has been one full year since polio was detected anywhere in Africa, a significant milestone that has left health experts around the world quietly celebrating. The goal had seemed tantalizingly close in recent years, but polio always managed to roar back, particularly in Nigeria. Then officials embraced a vigorous new approach to vaccination and surveillance, hiring thousands of community "mobilizers" to track down the unvaccinated, opening operations centers nationwide to track progress and seeking out support from clerics and tribal chiefs. The result has been remarkable. The last African case of polio was detected in Somalia on Aug. 11, 2014, the final sign of an outbreak with its roots in Nigeria - the one country where the virus had never been eradicated, even temporarily. But the last case in Nigeria was recorded on July 24, 2014.

BURUNDI

After the disputed presidential election in, that was widely criticized by the international community; violence has been rising in Bujumbura, particularly at night. Government officials, civil society organizations and opposition members are all being attacked by an unknown armed group. For example, Adolph Nshimirimana, a former army chief of staff and intelligence chief, was killed in the capital Bujumbura. The attackers reportedly targeted his car with machine guns and rocket launchers. Gen Nshimirimana's death was seen as a major blow to President Pierre Nkurunziza as he played a critical role in foiling the May 13 coup d'état led by the former intelligence chief Gen Godefroid Niyombare.

ZAMBIA

Zambian President Edgar Lungu appointed an opposition lawmaker to the powerful job of defense minister, a post he had held since his election early this year. Richwell Siamunene, 43, is a businessman and member of the opposition United Party for National Development (UPND), whose leader Hakainde Hichilema narrowly lost to Lungu in the presidential election in January. Lungu came to power in January after the death of President Michael Sata in October and he retained the defense ministry job until now. On assuming the Presidency he appointed several opposition members into his cabinet.

GUINEA

Guinea's first democratically-elected President Alpha Conde will seek re-election in polls later this year. In a widely-expected move, Conde's Rally of the Guinean People (RPG), named the 77-year-old as its candidate at the close of a three-day party conference. Conde will face former Prime Minister Cellou Dalein Diallo in a repeat of the west African country's last presidential vote in 2010. The first round is scheduled for October 11. The country of around 12 million witnessed deadly protests earlier this year after the opposition rejected the election commission's timetable for the presidential and separate local elections.

SOUTH SUDAN

Barack Obama in Kenya called for the US to take swift action to halt continuing violence in South Sudan, where new evidence emerged of horrific atrocities amounting to war crimes and crimes against humanity.

USA in AFRICA

The US superpower's military footprint on the continent is growing. But US diplomatic and trade ties in Africa have not kept pace with defense cooperation, and lag far behind those of Europe and China. Targeted military presence - compared to its large-scale bases in Europe and Korea, and ongoing operations in the Middle East and Afghanistan -- the US deployment in Africa is discreet. Indeed, the US military's Africa Command is still based in Stuttgart, Germany, having failed to find a suitable host country on the continent itself. The United States has also deployed a joint task force in the Horn of Africa that operates from a base in Djibouti and carries out missions in the broader region.

SOMALIA

African Union and local troops have seized one of the last major towns held by the al-Shabab Islamic extremist rebels in the southwest of the country. The militants withdrew from the town as the troops moved into Bardhere, an agricultural center, said Maj. Abdullahi Mohamed. David Odongo, the spokesman of the Kenyan army, which is part of the African Union force, confirmed that coalition forces had seized the bridge into town, killing 24 militants with the loss of two Somali soldiers.

CONGO

Congo Republic's opposition parties have convened an Alternative National Forum in rejection of a government-sponsored conference that opens the door to President Denis Sassou Nguesso seeking a third term next year. The government-backed talks, boycotted by the main opposition alliance FROCAD, recommended changing the constitution to remove a two-term limit on the president and to scrap an age cap of 70, both of which would have disqualified the 71-year-old Sassou Nguesso from running again. The former military officer has ruled the oil-producing central African nation for a total of 31 years in two spells since 1979.