Africa Live: Nigeria fuel crisis talks due, ‘US joins assault’ on al-Shabab

Military assault against al-Shabab in Somalia
Crisis talks due in Nigeria over fuel price hike
Nigeria arrests over oil pipelines attacks
Tanzania purges ghost workers from payroll
Kenya vaccination campaign to curb rubella
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Monday 16 May 2016
Live Reporting
By Clare Spencer and Farouk Chothia
Jolie warns of ‘race to the bottom’
Watch as Angelina Jolie warns that the refugee crisis has
created a “race to the bottom” with countries competing to
the toughest on immigration.
12:41 (11:41 GMT)
CIA ‘spied’ on Mandela
Nelson Mandela’s arrest in 1962 came as a result of a tip-off
from an agent of the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), a
report says.
The revelations, made in the Sunday Times newspaper, are
based on an interview with ex-CIA agent Donald Rickard
shortly before he died.
There has been a long-running campaign to get the CIA to
release classified documents that will help shed light on the
Among those who have a pending suit against the CIA is
Ryan Shapiro, a national security researcher at
Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
He spoke to BBC Newsday about the Mr Rickard’s
‘I was accused of being a witch when I was eight-years-
Mardoche Yembi was accused of eating human flesh and
killing his own mother who died after a long illness.
He was eight years old.
His extended family made plans of sending him back to
the Democratic Republic of Congo in 2005 for an exorcism.
But his headteacher instead contacted social services and he
was taken into care.
Now an adult, he told the BBC’s Noel Philips how it felt to be
accused of being a witch:
Refugee spotlight ‘wrongly’ on Europe
Angelina Jolie-Pitt says that the spotlight of the refugee crisis
is firmly on Europe, but the crisis in Europe is only “a
fraction of the global refugee problem”.
In a speech at the BBC in London, added:
We in the West are neither at the centre of the refugee crisis,
nor – for the most part – the ones making the greatest
The majority of the world’s refugees live in countries such as
Turkey, Pakistan, Lebanon, Iran, Ethiopia, and Jordan.”
Angelina: Africa refugee crisis getting worse
Angelina Jolie-Pitt, the UN refugee agency’s special envoy,
says that the number of people left homeless by conflict in
Africa is increasing.
Speaking in London as part of the BBC’s World on the Move
special coverage, she said:
In the past six years, 15 conflicts have erupted or re-ignited.
The average time a person will be displaced is now nearly 20
The number of refugees returning to their homes is the lowest
it has been in three decades. Africa has more people displaced
than ever before.”
Senegal-Gambia body dispute
Abdourahmane Dia
BBC Afrique
Senegal’s government says it will meet representatives of
lorry drivers in a bid to persuade them to lift the blockade
they have imposed at the border with The Gambia since
The announcement follows a seven-hour meeting on
Sunday between the Senegalese and Gambia governments
to get the border open again.
The Gambia, a popular tourist resort because of its
beaches, has decided to scrap its decision to increase fees
for Senegalese lorries transporting goods. The increase
led to angry drivers enforcing the blockade, causing a
shortage of essential items on both sides of the border.
The drivers are also demanding the building of a bridge over
the Gambia River, linking southern and northern Senegal.
The Gambia’s Foreign Minister Neneh Macdouall Gaye says
her country, which is surrounded by Senegal, is not opposed
to it, but some technical issues have to be resolved first.
Senegal’s government wants the bridge to be built.
‘Three armies’ raid al-Shabab stronghold
Ibrahim Mohamed Adan
BBC Africa, Mogadishu
A coalition of US, Somali and African Union (AU) forces have
carried out an assault on al-Shabab bases in the southern
Somali town of Barire, some 60km from the capital,
Loud explosions and gunfire were heard during the
operation against the al-Qaeda-linked militants.
Residents told me that US forces were on the ground, giving
cover to US-trained Somali commandos and accompanied
by AU troops as they entered Barire.
Shots were also fired from US helicopters which were flying
overhead during the operation, but there were no air
strikes, as earlier reported, the residents said.
They added that al-Shabab fighters fled Barire, and coalition
forces entered – only to withdraw later, possibly after
destroying al-Shabab bases in the town.
The militant group said its fighters had repelled the attack.
The US has not yet commented on the operation, but Somali
officials have confirmed the joint operation.
It is the latest sign of US forces becoming increasingly
involved in Somalia in the campaign to fight al-Shabab.
Last week, US officials confirmed that its special forces had
opened “defensive fire” after al-Shabab posed an “imminent
threat” to Somali and AU troops.
Sweden sentences man for Rwanda genocide
A court in Sweden has sentenced a 61-year-old man to life
in prison for his role in the 1994 genocide in Rwanda,
Reuters news agency reports.
The Stockholm District Court convicted Claver Berinkindi, a
Swedish citizen originally from Rwanda, of murder,
attempted murder and kidnapping in Rwanda, it reports.
“This relates to participation in a large number of
massacres during the 1994 genocide where the defendant
had an informal role as a leader,” the court said in a
Under Swedish law, courts can try people for crimes
committed abroad.
Tanzania purges ghost workers
Tanzania has removed more than 10,000 ghost workers
from its public sector payroll.
The prime minister’s office said payments to these non-
existent employees cost more than $2m (£1.4m) a month.
The authorities say they are continuing to audit the payroll
and expect to find more phantom workers.
Tanzania’s President John Magufuli, who was elected last
October, has been cracking down on corruption.
He has sacked several senior officials.
Last year he cancelled independence day celebrations and
ordered a clean-up campaign instead.
Manchester United fans rally round Sierra Leoneon fan
A Manchester United fan from Sierra Leone whose dream
trip to Old Trafford was ruined after Sunday’s bomb
alert will attend the FA Cup final thanks to a campaign by
Moses said he “cried a lot” when the match was cancelled.
Shortly after the bomb scare, the vice-chair of the
Manchester United Supports Trust tweeted how sad Moses
Just six minutes later… and Ian announced that fans had
decided to make sure Moses won’t go back to Sierra Leone
without seeing Manchester United play:
He had been invited by friends at the Manchester United
Supporters Trust to watch the Premier League match. Now
they are arranging a ticket for Moses to watch the team’s FA
Cup final against Crystal Palace at Wembley on Saturday
A security alert meant Manchester United’s stadium at Old
Trafford was evacuated shortly before kick-off on Sunday,
leading to the game against Bournemouth being called off.
The alert was triggered by a fake bomb left behind at a
sports stadium after a training exercise.
Read more on the BBC News website
“I was so disappointed and I cried right away and people
come around me and hug me. I come far away from Sierra
Leone. This is my first time in real life to watch Manchester
live and it doesn’t happen.”
Kenya rubella vaccinations campaign starts
A week long vaccination campaign against measles and
rubella starts in Kenya today, the BBC Nairobi reports.
It follows a steady increase in the number of people infected
with the two highly infectious viral diseases,
especially rubella. Health officials say at least 400 Kenyans
are diagnosed with rubella every year.
The campaign will target millions of children aged between 9
months and 14 years.
Nigeria ‘oil militants arrested’
Nigeria’s army says it has arrested several suspects involved
in a wave of attacks on pipelines in the Niger Delta region.
Some of those arrested are suspected members of a militant
group known as the Niger Delta Avengers, said defence
spokesman Colonel Rabe Abubakar.
Foreign powers to discuss Libya crisis
BBC World Service
US Secretary of State John Kerry will today meet foreign
ministers from the UK, France, Italy and Germany to discuss
the crisis in Libya.
The meeting, in the Austrian capital Vienna, will focus on
efforts to bring greater stability to the country and support
its new United Nations-backed unity government.
This could include lifting the arms embargo on Libya to
bolster the new government’s ability to fight the
militant Islamic State (IS) group.
IS has flourished in the political chaos that followed the
overthrow of Colonel Gaddafi in 2011.
Military assault launched on Somalia militants
Somalia’s intelligence and security agency has tweeted that
an offensive is being carried out against militant Islamist
group al-Shabab:
Somalia especial forces #DANAB launched joint air and
ground offensive against #AlShabaab in Lower Shabelle.
5:19 a.m. – 16 May 2016
A journalist has tweeted that US forces are involved in the
operation, although there is no independent confirmation of
Live From Somalia
BREAKING: US, Somalia especial forces launched joint air
and ground offensive against #AlShabaab in Lower
Shabelle. Heavy weaponry heard.
5:17 a.m. – 16 May 2016
Nigeria fuel crisis talks
Nigeria’s government is due to hold talks with the powerful
trade union movement today, the BBC Abuja bureau
It’s a bid to avert a strike over last week’s 67% rise in the
petrol price, as fuel subsidies are removed.
The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union
Congress (TUC) have called for people to stock up on food
items before the strike starts on Wednesday.
The unions have denounced the price increase in the oil-rich
state as “criminal”.
They have also appealed to businesses and schools to be
shut during the strike.
Petroleum Minister Emmanuel Ibe Kachikwu has said that
the price rise would help end the fuel scarcity, and Nigeria
“would remain one of the cheapest fuel markets in Africa”.
Read: Why is Africa’s main oil producer short of fuel?
Today’s wise words
Our African proverb of the day:
Click here to send us your African proverbs
The only grass a buffalo can boast about is that which is in its
stomach as it may die with grass still in its mouth.”
A Shona proverb sent by Peter Chongore, Gweru,