United Nation launches fund to foster cheaper loans, green development for Africa; South African author Damon Galgut wins Booker Prize

United Nation launches fund to foster cheaper loans, green development for Africa

At COP26, the global climate conference underway in Glasgow, Scotland, the United Nations on Wednesday launched a new finance mechanism aimed at saving African governments $11 billion in borrowing costs in the next five years, while fostering greener investments and sustainable development.

According to the global body, it would allow International investors with portfolios containing African government bonds to be able to approach the LSF for short-term loans, known as repos, using the bonds as collateral, enhancing investors’ ability to turn those bonds into cash at short notice, known as liquidity. The LSF also said it could potentially save African governments up to $11 billion in borrowing costs over the next five years.

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South African author Damon Galgut wins Booker Prize

For his novel “The Promise”, about a white family’s failed commitment to give their Black maid her own home, South African author and playwright Damon Galgut has on Wednesday won the Booker Prize.

Starting in the mid-1980s and set just outside Pretoria, “The Promise” transitions through several decades and South African presidents. Told through four family funerals, it begins with a young girl hearing her father promise her dying mother their maid will get the deeds to the annexe where she lives – something he later reneges on. The award was Galgut’s third nomination for the 50,000 pounds ($68,175) English language literary award.

Kenya set to reopen inquiry into murder of woman last seen with British soldiers

A Kenyan National police chief said on Monday that the country will reopen a nine-year-old murder investigation into the death of a single mother last seen at a hotel with British soldiers.

Two months after missing, Agnes Wanjiru was found in a septic tank at the Lion’s Court Hotel in the garrison town of Nanyuki in June 2012.  The report caused viral anger in Kenya and many have taken to social media to demand justice for Wanjiru. Though no suspect has been arrested or charged over the murder, but Interest in the case was renewed last month when Britain’s Sunday Times newspaper said it had identified a possible suspect after a months-long investigation.

MTN set to sell shares in Nigeria unit via public offer

South Africa’s biggest telecoms operator, MTN Group Ltd reported higher third-quarter revenue and core profit, it has on Thursday announced it will begin book-building this month for a public offer to sell up to 575 million shares in its Nigeria business,

Along with Vodacom Group Ltd which controls more than 70% of the South African mobile market in terms of subscribers, said this month’s book building exercise would target institutional investors before a fixed price was announced for retail investors.The company, which has been exiting or reducing its stakes in some areas including its Ugandan and Zambian units, also said the separation of fintech and fibre assets was on track.

Tunisia issued an international arrest for ex president
Following accusations of masterminding insecurity, a Tunisian court has on Thursday issued an international arrest warrant for former president Moncef Marzouki.

Though the court didn’t provide any further explanation on the charges, but Marzouki who has labelled the country’s president as a dictator has repeatedly appeared on French  television channels, and on social networks to call for his removal.

Calls for ceasefire in Ethiopia grow amid deepening conflict

After Tigrayan forces from the country’s North reportedly made advances towards the capital this week, African and Western nations has called for an immediate ceasefire in Ethiopia on Thursday.

In a preparation to halt military operations and a start the planned ceasefire talks, African Union Commission Chair Moussa Faki Mahamat said he met with the U.S. special envoy for Africa, Jeffrey Feltman, to discuss efforts towards dialogue and political solutions to the conflict, which pits the central government against the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) and its allies.

South African author Damon Galgut wins Booker Prize

For his novel “The Promise”, about a white family’s failed commitment to give their Black maid her own home, South African author and playwright Damon Galgut has on Wednesday won the Booker Prize.

Starting in the mid-1980s and set just outside Pretoria, “The Promise” transitions through several decades and South African presidents. Told through four family funerals, it begins with a young girl hearing her father promise her dying mother their maid will get the deeds to the annexe where she lives – something he later reneges on. The award was Galgut’s third nomination for the 50,000 pounds ($68,175) English language literary award.

U.N. launches fund to foster cheaper loans, green development for Africa

At COP26, the global climate conference underway in Glasgow, Scotland, the United Nations on Wednesday launched a new finance mechanism aimed at saving African governments $11 billion in borrowing costs in the next five years, while fostering greener investments and sustainable development.

According to the global body, it would allow International investors with portfolios containing African government bonds to be able to approach the LSF for short-term loans, known as repos, using the bonds as collateral, enhancing investors’ ability to turn those bonds into cash at short notice, known as liquidity. The LSF also said it could potentially save African governments up to $11 billion in borrowing costs over the next five years.

South Africa’s Dis-Chem profit jumps as drugs demand rebounds

On Wednesday, Dis-Chem Pharmacies Ltd of South Africa reported a 35.3 percent increase in half-year earnings, boosted by pent-up demand for medications and vaccines following the lifting of pandemic lockdowns.

Dis-Chem, which competes with Clicks Group for the second-largest pharmacy chain in South Africa, claimed it has administered 405,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses in the half-year ending August, with that number rising to 860,000 by the end of October. During and after the second and third pandemic waves, however, a disproportionate increase in sales of lower-margin COVID-19-related products pushed transactional gross margin behind sales growth year over year.

Ethiopia “disappointed” by U.S. move to suspend trade benefits

While calling for a reversal, Ethiopia’s ministry of trade said on Tuesday that it is “extremely disappointed” by the United States’ move to suspend the duty-free access of its exports under an Africa trade pact.

Citing concerns over human rights and democracy, President Joe Biden said in a letter to Congress that the United States plans to remove Ethiopia, Mali and Guinea from the agreement that gives them duty-free access to the United States. The Ethiopian government has as a result promised to take all human rights allegations seriously, conduct investigations and ensure accountability.

Gabon gambles on sustainable logging to prevent deforestation

Gabon is banking that cautious logging can protect the tremendous wealth of its forests, halving associated carbon emissions while producing more lumber, as its oil reserves dwindle. The country faces a dilemma because its relatively unspoiled share of the Congo Basin rainforest makes it one of the world’s most wooded countries, a home for endangered creatures, and one of the few net carbon dioxide absorbers.

However, a joint statement at the COP26 climate talks in Glasgow on Monday revealed that more than 100 global leaders has pledged to halt and reverse deforestation and land degradation by the end of the decade, underpinned by $19 billion in public and private funds to invest in protecting and restoring forests.

Kenya set to reopen inquiry into murder of woman last seen with British soldiers

A Kenyan National police chief said on Monday that the country will reopen a nine-year-old murder investigation into the death of a single mother last seen at a hotel with British soldiers.

Two months after missing, Agnes Wanjiru was found in a septic tank at the Lion’s Court Hotel in the garrison town of Nanyuki in June 2012.  The report caused viral anger in Kenya and many have taken to social media to demand justice for Wanjiru. Though no suspect has been arrested or charged over the murder, but Interest in the case was renewed last month when Britain’s Sunday Times newspaper said it had identified a possible suspect after a months-long investigation.

Mali army frees three kidnapped Chinese construction workers

The Malian presidency said on Monday that the country’s security forces in Mali have freed three Chinese nationals abducted from a construction site in the north of the country in July. The three Chinese nationals from the COVEC construction company were seized by unknown gunmen alongside two Mauritanians from the town of Kwala.

Kidnapping has been a lucrative source of cash for terrorist groups in West Africa’s Sahel region, where they are waging an expanding insurgency against national armies, French forces and U.N. peacekeepers.

 

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