Somalia: Statement by H.E. Mr. Abukar Dahir Osman Ambassador Permanent Representative of the Federal Republic of Somalia to the United Nations on Friday, August 28th, 2020 (28.08.2020)

Chad: Complex security, environmental crises worsen conditions for over 360,000 in western Chad (29.08.2020)

Many families are facing heavy rainfall without proper housing, with the added complexity of the COVID-19 pandemic.

NEW YORK, United States of America, August 29, 2020 – More than 360,000 internally displaced persons in Chad’s Lake province are facing a “double” crisis, exposed to security and environmental risks, the UN International Organization for Migration (IOM) has reported, highlighting the need to strengthen resilience of affected communities.

According to Paul Dillon, an IOM spokesperson, while the region has been a target of repeated attacks by insurgents since 2015, the situation has worsened dramatically in 2020.

“Recurrent security attacks and incursions by non-State armed groups since the beginning of the year prompted the Chadian Government in March to declare the departments of Fouli and Kaya, two of Lake Chad’s borderlands departments ‘war zones’,” he said.

Since April, the number of the displaced has increased by almost 22 per cent, according to the IOM Displacement Tracking Matrix, a tool to monitor displacement and movement of people in emergency or crisis situations.

Double crisis 

Located in the western part of Chad, the Lake (or Lac) region borders Nigeria and Niger. The three nations along with Cameroon form the Lake Chad Basin, where thousands have lost their lives and millions forced to flee their homes due to attacks by non-State armed insurgents.

The crisis has also exacerbated food security, leaving many dependent on humanitarian assistance.

In addition to the security challenges, the situation in the Lake region has been further complicated by some of the heaviest rainfall in nearly 30 years, with roughly 400 millimetres of rainfall that resulted in flash floods in villages and fields.

“This is a worrying trend as the displacement is recurrent, protracted due to the deterioration of security and environmental situations, and involves large in numbers of people,” said Mr. Dillon.

IOM response 

In response, IOM is providing emergency assistance to vulnerable populations. It has delivered more than 2,500 transitory and semi-permanent shelters to nearly 13,000 persons; and over 2,700 non-food item packages including hygiene kits, sleeping mats, clothes and basic cooking equipment for over 14,000 persons.

However, much more is needed immediately as many families are facing heavy rainfall without proper housing, with the added complexity of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In addition, three-quarters of the displaced persons IOM identified live in displacement sites, most of which are made of straw and metal shelters.

Many of them sleep in the open without adequate protection from bad weather, with limited access to amenities such as water, hygiene facilities, health services and COVID-19 protective equipment.

RDC: Communique du Front Commun pour le Congo (FCC) – (28.08.2020)

Tanzania: The CCM must be proud of blocking opposition candidates…[ahead of the polls]

If your thinking of free and fair elections? Are you thinking of Tanzania? If you do? Your wrong. They are neither free nor fair. In Tanzania, the Chama Cha Mapundzi (CCM) are the state and ruling with a whip. They are whipping the opposition into submission. The party is using the state to hold control and censor the dissidents.

That is why media houses are shut down or suspended. This is why the state has to allow opposition to hold press conference and rallies. Even their party program and their internal training exercises has to get a go from the authorities.

The CHADEMA and ACT-WAZELENDO are now being blocked. Just like they were in the 2019. They were ensuring the opposition parties couldn’t field candidates. That is why the CCM initially ran against ghosts and goats.

They are doing the same ahead of the polls in late October 2020. There are several of Members of Parliament of the CCM who are running unopposed. After the Electoral Commission have dismissed several of them. For various of reasons. However, there are never any reports of the same commission dismissing nominations made by the CCM. Isn’t that a sign of something, right?

The CCM is the state and acts like the state. They are appointing anyone and controls everything. The CCM has the army, legislation and the civilian government. There are nothing they don’t have. They even have a bickering, faint-hearted and weak-spirited President in Magufuli. Who cannot stomach criticism, statistics or foreign broadcast without giving a thumbs up. It has to fit his narrow mind.

In this regard, the state is more envisioned to the small perspective of Magufuli. That is why the CCM are blocking nominated MPs from the Opposition. So, they have constituencies without any competition. When you are blocking 100s of candidates from both parties. The CCM and the Electoral Commission is proving their “independence”.

The CCM is destined to win this. Not because they have any policies or manifesto. Neither does it has any will or character to pull it off. However, they are the state and controls the whole thing. They will use all means to dislodge and disrupt the opposition. The Opposition also have no power or ability to operate without validation from appointees from the CCM.

That is why the October Election is pre-fixed and the recent actions proves it again. The CCM are not even willing to play it out. They rather use their means to humiliate and destroy the opposition. Instead of campaigning against them. The CCM doesn’t even have the heart to pull that off under Magufuli.

That is who the CCM under Magufuli is, a bunch of cowards. Who doesn’t have the character to even try to run a honest campaign. They have to use the powers of the authorities to stop the opposition from challenging them. Cannot even be on the ballots and act this out. That is too much to ask from these folks, apparently. Peace.

Mali: FAMa – Communique (28.08.2020)

Opinion: Besigye’s ‘Plan B’ is continuing the same struggle…

In this plan, we assent that the means to cause that change, to reclaim our influence is to fight. Plan B is a plan for fighting. You can fight while sitting down. Our ancestors fought to get rid of colonial power and we have also already been fighting for sometime now and that’s why we have wounds. We have not taken out guns, but we have been fighting, It is a fight for whoever feels that he is oppressed. Ordinary people will have to be turned into fighters and we shall draw a line between the oppressed and the oppressors” – Dr. Kizza Besigye (28.08.2020)

Today, Dr. Kizza Besigye revealed his ‘Plan B’ after recently opting out of the race for Presidency. Which he has taken part of 4 times and seen the rigging being done. The front-runner of Forum for Democratic Change (FDC), one of the founders of the party and the one leading “People’s Government”. Are now unleashing a new plan, which is in fact the same as older plans.

Besigye today didn’t come with anything new. It is in a fashion, which he has stood tall before. Not that its wrong. However, the message, the way of articulating the grievances and the struggle. It is more of the same. It is only a rebranding of the Walk to Work, Defiance and such.

It is organizing civil disobedience in groups of workers as associations or unions. This being all sort of measures of people to work against the oppression. The ideal and the message is fine. There is no trouble in that. This is all natural by all means.

Besigye is not wrong in this. Actually his right and been right all along. As the elections are rigged and the results are prepared long before the polls. The President has it all figured out and use intimidation as a tactic to get his way.

This man has tried all tricks of the trade. Besigye’s Plan B is in fashion with his previous works. He has started campaigns and wanting to enlighten. The man wants a revolution and a peaceful transition. An end to the junta, the military government of Museveni and end his reign.

However, there haven’t been enough people believing in it or tired of it. They are accepting the tears, the heartache and the suffering, which is brought with this reign. While Besigye as a freedom fighter have stood by everyone’s side and been a voice of reason.

Besigye can be right, but if too few is listening. Then it doesn’t really matter. If people are not following his plans or guidelines. It will not make a difference or a change. Just like so many government plans are beautiful on paper, but never implemented. The same can happen to the opposition… when no one listens or not enough does.

Lot of times, Besigye have fallen on deaf ears. There was times when he hit a nerve, but not the needed push further. Things been close to the edge and the state has been pushed. That is why his been arrested, house-arrested and charged with treason. Because he has dared to challenge the state, endlessly.

Now, today as he launched ‘Plan B’, I don’t expect magic nor swift change. Then people has to follow and listen. Use the mind of Besigye and organize a revolt. It will be chaos, but if it is enough. Then the state cannot contain it. They can arrest a few, but cannot arrest them all.

Besigye, a man that should be admired… but most importantly listened too. Peace.

Opinion: Zuma’s rebuttal to Ramaphosa is useless…

If it was a lecture of how to defend yourself and make you into an angle. The letter of former President Jacob G. Zuma would be in classrooms in the future and be studied. To be a proof of someone delusional and defensive as can be.

That Zuma answered to the private letter of his successor Ramaphosa wasn’t shocking. Neither was it unexpected in a way. As the man with a plan, as the man with the schemes and as the man who enriched himself in the time in office. He wouldn’t give way and be silent.

Zuma wants to be free of the shackles. Zuma wants to be out of the legal conundrum and stop the Capture of State Inquiry. As all the commission does is to undermine his legacy and his work. All the things he did to get wealthy, get connected and ensure family heirlooms to his own. Because, that is what it does.

Zuma knows how he used his time in office. He even tried to defend a pool in Nkandla as a “fire-pool”. The man built a village, owns a mansion in either Dubai and such. This is what values he was able to get during his tenure in power.

The former President knows this. Instead using “white-monopoly” and blame gaming the approach of Ramaphosa. It is all to throw shade and blame elsewhere. Because, the former president cannot be seen as “criminal” and someone who was “corrupt”. Even if the whole Republic knows and the evidence is gathered against him. There is enough shady deals with the Gupta’s and others. To ensure Zuma having a hard time in the Courts.

Zuma can play like a fool. Use words and describe things. However, it is all done to save himself. He uses the ANC and the party as a shield in his writing. I’m not saying the white minority doesn’t have a huge advantage economically in South Africa. Because, that would be a lie. There are plenty of folks who are living well. Also, a new middle class who has been created in the years of the ANC. Nevertheless, the former President doesn’t mention that. As that doesn’t fit his narrative.

While the impoverished communities haven’t been saved or salvaged. The society is still broken economically and a huge divide between the rich and poor. Zuma have not changed this in his time. Neither has Ramaphosa. The grand corruption have persisted within both administrations and Zuma cannot run away from that.

He only mentions a deal made during Mbeki. However, not mentioning all the Eskom, Gupta family involved deals or anything else. However, only pushing on one story to vindicate himself. Even, as he claims in the letter. That this is not his intent.

Zuma has his Nkandla, the village project and the amassed wealth. He lived like a king in the years in power. A letter like this cannot disguise that or even take that away.

That’s why he knows what he has done. While trying to act hurt by the criminal process and the inquiries. However, that is needed. If the republic was to ever challenge the behaviour of corruption. Since, he was the head of state and still he ate good. A bit to good and also money, which wasn’t intended his way. Nevertheless, he still ate it and enjoyed the perks. Peace.

Ethiopia: The Trump Administration halts aid to the Republic for all the wrong reasons…

The US Presidency and US Foreign Policy is going bonkers. The latest move to sway Addis Ababa is just obnoxious. It is neither productive nor sincere in its action. That the United States are involved as a partisan influence on a development project and electrification of Ethiopia. They are putting in hurdles and international set-back to stop a infrastructure project from happening. This being the Great Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD). Because the US wants to support their ally Egypt.

The US if it had been sincere and cared about its standing in the Horn of Africa or even with all the counterparts of the region. They would have used other means to halt aid. Which isn’t implied in the development of the GERD. However, the brilliance and the brains has left Washington DC a long time ago it seems.

Just look here:

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo approved plans to halt some aid to Ethiopia as part of its effort to mediate a dispute over a dam on the Nile River that’s pitted the Horn of Africa nation against Egypt and Sudan, Foreign Policy reported. The decision could affect about $130 million of assistance to programs including security, counter-terrorism and anti-human trafficking, the news website said, without saying where it got the information. The cuts won’t impact funding for emergency humanitarian relief, food assistance or health programs, it said” (David Malingha – ‘U.S. May Cut Funding to Ethiopia Over Nile Dam Dispute’ 28.08.2020, Bloomberg News).

If the Trump Administration had some balls, had some finesse and some flex. They would have halted aid for other reasons. There are plenty of mischief and misgivings in the current leadership of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed Ali. His whole Prosperity Party is dissolving the civic space, getting rid of activists and opposition. His using the means of extra judicial killings, political prisoners and oppress the voices of dissidents. There are enough blood, sweet and tears in the Republic.

To use the GERD just seems like the Ethiopian state is just supposed to accept treaties of colonial times. That the Republic should be bullied into submission by force. That their hand is tied, because the financial system would crack and the US support would vanish.

That is the sort of behaviour, which only shows how much love the US has for Cairo. It is really obvious that they are serving them and want to deliver for their needs. Just like when Pompeo went to Khartoum to serve Israel with a symbolic victory there.

The Trump administration thinks this is smart. It is not. Especially, that the Ethiopian side would feel the hurt. They are more alone in Addis Ababa and they do need the GERD. While they are using force against their own. Which the US doesn’t condemn or even state word of reckoning. That shows where the heart of Washington is.

They only want to serve their allies on a gold plate. While bullying others to submission. Not even have the skills to use the extra judicial killings and political prisoners as a bargain chip. That one would have not implied the relations to Cairo, but it does by doing it because of GERD.

The Trump Administration and its foreign policy is a hack-work and this is yet another one of those. It shows that they are not that knowledgable nor have the skills to prove their point. They are just like an bull in a china shop. Peace.

DRC: Bachelet urges investigation into death threats against Dr Mukwege (28.08.2020)

GENEVA (28 August 2020) –  UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet on Friday expressed deep concern over the recent death threats directed at the Congolese human rights defender and Nobel Prize laureate Dr. Denis Mukwege, and called for swift action to investigate who is behind the threats and bring them to justice.

Dr. Mukwege, who founded and runs the Panzi hospital in Bukavu, has won international recognition, including the 2018 Nobel Peace Prize, for his decades of work helping thousands of women victims of sexual and gender-based violence in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). He has also been a determined advocate against the use of rape as a weapon of war, and for increased protection of women.

He has also been a strong and consistent voice calling for those responsible for sexual violence to be brought to justice. He was a staunch supporter of the 2010 ‘Mapping Report’ by the UN Human Rights Office which chronicled hundreds of serious human rights violations and abuses that occurred in the eastern DRC between 1993 and 2003, in many cases identifying the groups and entities believed to be responsible for perpetrating the crimes.

He has received deaths threats in the past and survived a major assassination attempt in October 2012. The recent alarming surge of threats against Dr Mukwege, which have been conveyed via social media and in direct phone calls to him and his family, followed his condemnation of the continued killing of civilians in eastern DRC and his renewed calls for accountability for human rights violations and abuses.

“Dr. Mukwege is a true hero – determined, courageous and extremely effective,” said Bachelet. “For years, he helped thousands of gravely injured and traumatized women when there was nobody else to take care of them, and at the same time he did a great deal to publicize their plight and stimulate others to try to grapple with the uncontrolled epidemic of sexual violence in the eastern DRC.”

“His life seems to be at serious risk,” the High Commissioner said. “I welcome the public commitment of President Tshisekedi to ensure his security, and I hope that Denis Mukwege and his team will be provided with comprehensive protection by the Congolese authorities so that the indispensable work they perform day in, day out, at Panzi hospital can be guaranteed.”

She also called for an effective, prompt, thorough and impartial investigation into the threats made against him. “It is essential those responsible are brought to justice and that the truth is known, both as a means to protect Dr. Muwege’s life, but also as a deterrent to others who attack, threaten or intimidate medical workers and human rights defenders who, like him, work for the benefit of the Congolese people, often in exceptionally difficult circumstances,” she added.

The UN Human Rights Chief underscored the need for all relevant authorities to openly condemn the threats. And, in order to tackle the problem in the longer term, she urged the Congolese authorities to adopt the draft law on the protection and regulation of the activity of human rights defenders in a form that is fully consistent with international standards.

She also called on the authorities to reinforce their efforts to prevent further human rights violations and abuses in eastern DRC and to take concrete steps to establish transitional justice processes that grant thousands of victims of successive conflicts their right to justice, truth, and reparations.