Separatist rebels on Monday killed around 20 people, including women and children, in an attack on a village in one of Cameroon’s restive anglophone regions, the government said.
The overnight assault occurred at Egbekaw village, western Cameroon, the scene of deadly clashes between rebels and government forces for seven years.
“There were men, women and children, more than 20 killed,” minister at the presidency Mengot Victor Arrey-Nkongho told public radio. “It’s intolerable.”
Cameroon’s primarily English-speaking Northwest and Southwest regions have been gripped by conflict since separatists declared independence in 2017.
That followed decades of grievances over perceived discrimination by the francophone majority.
In the middle of the night “terrorists” opened fire with guns and used “traditional arms”, Manyu department prefect Viang Mekala said on the radio.
“There are about 20 dead and seven seriously wounded, a dozen houses burnt,” he added.
President Paul Biya, 90, who has ruled the central African nation with an iron fist for 41 years to the day, has resisted calls for wider autonomy and responded with a crackdown.
The conflict has claimed more than 6,000 lives and forced more than a million people to flee their homes, according to the International Crisis Group.
“It happened at 4:00 am. Armed young people came and fired on sleeping residents in their houses and set a whole block of houses on fire,” a resident told AFP by telephone requesting not to be identified out of security concerns.
“Twenty-three people have already been removed from the debris, some of whom are not even recognisable because of the fire.”
He said there was reason to believe it was connected to the November 6 anniversary of Biya assuming power as president in 1982.
A meeting of the ruling Cameroon People’s Democratic Movement (RDPC) was planned in the area, he added.
Both the separatists and government forces have been accused of atrocities in the fighting.
There had been no claim of responsibility over the attack on Egbekaw.
Sudan: War Enters Sixth Month, No Hope In Sight
Six months since conflict broke out, Sudan’s brutal war continues to inflict immeasurable suffering: endangering lives, displacing millions from their homes, and causing deaths even in areas far from frontlines.
“The war continues mercilessly. We wake up every day hoping that a solution or agreement or ceasefire will be reached. Unfortunately, this hope fades day by day,” decries Rashid Mohamed Ahmed, resident of Omdourman.
More than 9,000 deaths, 5.6 million displaced people and refugees, cholera and deindustrialisation, the war that broke out between general Al-Burhane and Mohamed Hamdane Daglo has brought Sudan to its knees and ravaged its capital Khartoum.
Sudanese hopes of an end to the fighting are “fading” as people feel more and more scared.
“The past six months were a bitter period. We are scared day and night. Scared of the bombs and bullets,” shares Mona Mohamed Taher, another resident of Omdourman.
Across Sudan, the fragile health system is struggling; emergency rooms are congested, and many hospitals have closed completely.
According to the International president of Doctors without borders, Sudan’s crisis epitomises a catastrophic failure of humanity, marked by the warring parties’ failing to protect civilians or facilitate essential humanitarian access.
“Some charity organisations are helping, but we still need health aid, blankets, bedsheets, and also there is water and medicine shortage. In general, there is shortage in healthcare services,” pleads Mounira El Ser, volunteer in the al-Wahda school camp?
With no end to the war in sight, NGOs are calling for a substantial increase in efforts to provide humanitarian aid and for people of Sudan to be allowed unhindered access to medical aid.
Egypt Main Opposition Hopeful Abandons Presidential Race
Egyptian opposition politician Ahmed al-Tantawi declared on Friday that he would withdraw from the presidential race. This decision followed weeks of accusations of harassment and arrests by the authorities.
“Whoever believes that the problems in Egypt will be solved if the elections end up with the current president remains in power, needs to think twice, because he [the president] is the root of the problem and does not have any desire or ability to contemplate this fact or review himself,” shared Egypt’s Hope.
Despite garnering significant support after announcing his intention to challenge the current President, Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, Tantawi managed to secure only 14,000 endorsements, falling short of the required 25,000 endorsements necessary to officially register his candidacy, as stated by his campaign coordinator.
“Stability can not be built on oppression, rather it is consensual and built on the government’s commitment to the constitution and law,” added the opposition leader.
To be eligible for the presidential race, each candidate must submit endorsements from either 20 lawmakers or 25,000 citizens by October 15.
The opposition candidate had previously reported that over 100 of his supporters were detained in the past few weeks. Egypt disclosed last month that it scheduled its presidential election for December 10-12, and President Sisi subsequently officially declared his intent to run for a third term.
Tantawi’s campaign had consistently alleged that it was subjected to harassment and arrests by the authorities. Several of its members publicly attested to enduring physical assaults or being obstructed from registering their endorsements. Tantawi himself claimed that his phone had been under surveillance since September 2021.
Corruption Not An African Issue –Adesina
The African Development Bank (AfDB) President, Dr Akinwuni Adesina, says corruption is not an African issue.
Adesina said this in a statement made available to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Saturday.
According to him, what is important is to continue to improve transparency, accountability, and the use of public resources.
“The global financial crisis that brought the world down in 2008 was not in Africa. We have no Wall Street. That collapse came from greed, from corruption, and from fraud.
“You have people cooking the books that are in the financial industry in Europe, not in Africa. Corruption is not an African issue.
“The issue is that is not to say that there’s none. What you have to do is continue to improve transparency, accountability, and the use of public resources.”
According to Adesina, he discovered during his first visit to Eritrea that the country has a zero percent corruption record.
“During my first visit to Eritrea, I was talking to UN Development Programme staff. You know what they told me? In Eritrea, corruption is zero percent.
“Why do we not talk about that? That’s the kind of thing that we want to do. As a development bank, we take good governance very seriously.
“As far as I am concerned, people’s resources do not belong in other people’s pockets. Governments must be accountable to their people,” he said.
According to the AfDB boss, there has to be transparency on how resources are acquired and used. That’s why we have a governance programme.
He said, “When you get money from us, we also support you technically. You are accounting for those resources.
“I don’t want to minimise that Africa has a significant amount of illicit capital flows; it does anything between 80 billion and 100 billion dollars a year.
“But guess what? Those that are doing that are the multinational companies. And so what we have got to do is bring a searchlight to that.”
On how Africa could improve its position in the global value chain, Adesina expressed sadness about the continent’s constant position at the bottom of the value chain.
According to him, the fastest way to poverty is through exporting raw materials, but the highway to wealth is through global value chains.
He said this could be achieved by adding value to everything you have, from oil to gas to minerals to metals and food. We must add value.
“The issue is, we have to invest right; we have to make sure the governance environment is right; we have to make sure the incentives are right.
“Africa must take a position that it is no longer going to be at the bottom but at the top,” he said.
Commenting on the Bank’s support for food security in Africa, the AfDB boss said, “I don’t think that you can have development with pride unless you can feed yourself.
According to Adesina, the 81 shareholders of the AfDB provided it with an increase in the bank’s capital at the end of 2019, from 93 billion to 208 billion dollars.
The AfDB boss said the figure was the highest capital increase in the bank’s history.
He said the increase, however, allowed the bank to do an emergency support facility of 10 billion dollars in COVID crisis response for Africa.
Adesina said the bank inaugurated a 1.5 billion-dollar emergency food-production facility to mitigate the global geopolitical crisis leading to a food crisis in Africa.
On the need to restructure the international financial systems, Adesina said, “What is very important for us is the issue of the Special Drawing Rights (SDRs).
“Africa needs to have a lot more resources for financing climate change, but what is actually out there is not enough.
“We have on the table right now the special drawing rights of the IMF. But when they were issued, 650 billion dollars were issued, and Africa got 33 billion dollars.”
“It’s 4.5 percent; it’s not good. You have small countries in Europe that got more, and that is not fair and not inclusive.”
According to him, African Heads of State are asking for 100 billion dollars to be re-channeled from the countries that got it but don’t use it or need it.
“We might think of maybe just adjusting it a little bit. And calling it Supporting Development Revitalisation. That’s also SDRs,” he said.