Somalia's Newly Elected President Assumes Office

Mogadishu, Somalia —  Hassan Sheikh Mohamud officially took office in the Horn of Africa country after a handover ceremony in Mogadishu. A week ago, Mohamud won the presidency after an intense election, defeating Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed, known as Farmajo, in a third round of voting. Hassan Sheikh Mohamud becomes the first ex-president in Somalia to…

German Chancellor Scholz Kicks off Africa Trip in Senegal

dakar, senegal — 
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said his country is interested in a major gas exploitation project in Senegal as he began a three-nation visit to Africa on Sunday that also is focused on the geopolitical consequences of the war in Ukraine.
Senegal is believed to have significant deposits of natural gas along its border with Mauritania at a time when Germany and other European countries are trying to reduce their dependence on importing Russian gas.
“We have begun exchanges and we will continue our efforts at the level of experts because it is our wish to achieve progress,” Scholz said at a joint news briefing with Senegalese President Macky Sall.
The gas project off the coast of Senegal is being led by BP, and the first barrels are not expected until next year.
This week’s trip marks Scholz’s first to Africa since becoming chancellor nearly six months ago. Two of the countries he is visiting — Senegal and South Africa — have been invited to attend the Group of 7 summit in Germany at the end of June.
Participants there will try to find a common position toward Russia, which was kicked out of the then-Group of Eight following its 2014 seizure of Crimea from Ukraine.
Leaders at the G-7 summit also will be addressing the threat of climate change. Several G-7 countries, including Germany and the United States, signed a ‘just energy transition partnership’ with South Africa last year to help the country wean itself off heavily polluting coal.
A similar agreement is in the works with Senegal, where Germany has supported the construction of a solar farm.
German officials also said Scholz will make a stop in Niger, a country that like its neighbors has long been battling Islamic extremists.
Earlier this month, the German government backed a plan to move hundreds of its soldiers to Niger from neighboring Mali. The development comes amid a deepening political crisis in Mali that prompted former colonial power France to announce it was withdrawing its troops after nine years of helping Mali battle insurgents.
Germany officials say their decision also was motivated by concerns that Malian forces receiving EU training could cooperate with Russian mercenaries now operating in the country.
Germany, though, will increase its participation in a U.N. peacekeeping mission in Mali, providing up to 1,400 soldiers. The Cabinet’s decisions still need to be approved by parliament.
Niger is also a major transit hub for illegal migration to Europe. People from across West Africa connect with smugglers there to make the journey northward to attempt the dangerous trip across the Mediterranean Sea.

Libyan rivals resume U.N.-brokered talks on elections | AP News

CAIRO (AP) — Rival Libyan officials on Sunday resumed talks in the Egyptian capital, the latest U.N.-led efforts to agree on constitutional amendments for elections as the North African nation again finds itself at a political impasse.Twelve lawmakers from Libya’s east-based parliament and 11 from the High Council of State, an advisory body from western Libya, were attending the Cairo-hosted talks, said Abdullah Bliheg, the parliament’s spokesman.The U.N. special adviser on Libya, Stephanie Williams, said the talks aim at addressing core challenges — including the political system, eligibility criteria, and a timeline for elections. She advised the attendees that they have until May 28 to come with an agreement.“This session constitutes your last chance to provide a credible response to the expectations of the Libyan people and make concrete progress on these issues,” she said.The first round of the talks

Chad: Hundreds stage anti-French Protest In N'djamena | Africanews

Hundreds of Chadians joined anti-French protests called by the opposition coalition Wakit Tama on Saturday, May 14.
Protesters oppose France’s military presence in the country and support for transitional President Mahamat Idriss Déby Itno, who has been in power since his father’s death in 2021.
They reportedly attacked “symbols” of their former colonial power, including several Total petrol stations.

The protest was mainly attended by students with many on motocycles and chanting “France get out”.
**”Now France is meddling in politics, we don’t know, now the whole Chadian territory is occupied by the French army. The French army is concerned with the wealth of Chad’s subsoil and not with the well-being of the Chadian people.”**Souleyman Tahir, Protester
Former president, Idriss Déby Itno, headed an authoritarian regime for 30 years and was killed in battle on April 20, 2021, during a rebellion in the north of the country.
Chadian police fired tear gas and used water canon to disperse hundreds of protesters who took to the streets of the capital and other towns in an anti-French protest that saw the destruction of some French-linked businesses.
The protest was called by Chadian civil society coalition Wakit Tamma to denounce France’s backing of the Transitional Military Council that seized power following the battlefield death of President Idriss Deby in April 2021, a spokesman said.
As France’s influence wanes in its former colonies, recent protests in countries such as Mali, Burkina Faso and Niger have seen calls for increased military ties with Russia instead of France.

Guinea Junta Bans Political Protests

Conakry, Guinea —  The military junta ruling Guinea has banned political protests after announcing a three-year transition period before civilian rule is restored. “All demonstrations on public roads, whose nature is to jeopardize social tranquility and the correct implementation of activities in the (transition) timetable are banned for the moment until the period of electoral…

For Macron's Second Term — a Lower Profile in Africa?

Paris —  Five years ago, France’s Emmanuel Macron saw big when it came to Africa. Days after his presidential inauguration, he flew to northeastern Mali, meeting with French troops and vowing, alongside his Malian counterpart, Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta, to wage an “uncompromising fight” against Islamist terrorism. A few months later in another Sahel country, nearby…

Agenda 2063: Education in Africa, a key to success, By Rahma O. Oladosu – Premium Times Nigeria

I believe one of the easiest ways to push this Agenda forward is through education. Africa acknowledges the fact that social and economic development is not possible without substantive investment in education and research, especially at the tertiary level.

Over time, it has become imperative for Africa to map out a strategy of regional cooperation and integration and lay the foundation for sustainable development. The establishment of the African Union (replacing the Organisation of African Unity) has been a step in that direction. The Union aims at achieving greater unity and solidarity and accelerating the political and socio-economic integration of the continent.

In great efforts by the African Union to accomplish what it has set out to achieve in making the continent a better one, AGENDA 2063 was introduced.

Now, what exactly is agenda 2063?

Agenda 2063 is Africa’s blueprint and master plan for transforming the continent into the global powerhouse of the future. It is said to be the continent’s strategic framework that aims to deliver on its goal for inclusive and sustainable development and it is a concrete manifestation of the pan-African drive for unity, self-determination, freedom, progress and collective prosperity, pursued under Pan-Africanism and towards African Renaissance. Agenda 2063 encapsulates not only Africa’s Aspirations for the Future but also identifies key Flagship Programmes which can boost the continent’s economic growth and development, and lead to the rapid transformation of the continent. It also identifies key activities to be undertaken in its 10-year Implementation Plan, which will ensure that Agenda 2063 delivers both quantitative and qualitative transformational outcomes for Africans.

I believe one of the easiest ways to push this Agenda forward is through education. Africa acknowledges the fact that social and economic development is not possible without substantive investment in education and research, especially at the tertiary level.

Getting an education is not just a fundamental human right, It is pivotal to increasing employment and income opportunities. It is fundamental to breaking the cycle of poverty. Education is the key to unlocking the golden door of freedom for all in Africa. It is the bedrock of social and economic development.

Education is crucial as it is an investment in human capital. This yields tremendous benefits on many levels and spheres. It benefits the individual, family community, and nation. Education is a sustainable means of alleviating poverty and bring lasting change.

Consequently, to effect permanent change, any effort to bring lasting change must include education, in one way or the other.

Recently, the executive secretary of the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund), Architect Sonny Echono, played host to a team from the African Union Commission for Education, led by Professor Mohammed Belhocine, the commissioner for education who came to the Fund on an impactful courtesy visit, which I was privileged to witness.

The Fund, generally known for providing support for research and development in tertiary institutions in Nigeria, revealed its readiness, through its management, to forge a partnership with the Pan African University to push the African Union agenda forward. Arc. Echono further said that the Nigerian government is actually thinking in the direction of promoting technology and is in the process of establishing a national institute in Abuja, which will be a post-graduate institution for the promotion of the technological transformation of the country.

I personally think this would be a plus for the education sector in Nigeria, considering the fact that there hasn’t been much attention given to technology in most of our tertiary institutions recently.

The Pan African University (PAU) is the culmination of continental initiatives of the African Union Commission to revitalise higher education and research on the continent. According to the African Union, the PAU will greatly boost the population and retention of high-level human resources, alongside quality knowledge outputs and will attract the best intellectual capacity from all over the world.

Fortunately, the Pan African University partnership with TETFund will most definitely yield positive results with the latter providing tremendous support in terms of the construction of more classrooms, procurement of laboratory equipment and all other basic infrastructure needed. This major development will provide a conducive environment and enable student researchers to learn one or two things to attract value. It will also be a huge opportunity for scholars to troop to the university.

With this, the goals of the African Union is being geared towards the right direction with education as an early foundation, encouraging research through the Pan African University and bringing young Africans together to study and conduct research for about three to five years, and in the process they get to know each other better in terms of their cultures, languages and beliefs. And this will create the real momentum for Pan Africanism, and a step towards realising Agenda 2063.

Rahma Olamide Oladosu writes from Wuye District, Abuja.