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Hefty Fine for Corrupt Multinational in Africa

Corrupt Multinational in Africa

Gunvor, one of the world’s biggest energy traders, has agreed to pay Swiss prosecutors almost $100m to settle a long-running corruption case that exposed serious deficiencies in its oversight of staff. In a damning verdict, Switzerland’s attorney-general said the Geneva-based company had failed to take all of the “organisational measures that were reasonable and necessary” to prevent its employees and agents from bribing public officials to win oil deals in Congo-Brazzaville and Ivory Coast between 2009 and 2011. Gunvor’s settlement follows the conviction last year of a former employee, Pascal Collard. He was given an 18-month suspended sentence after he admitted to bribing officials in Congo-Brazzaville and the Ivory Coast between 2009 and 2012 to secure oil cargoes. The trading firm no long does business in Congo-Brazzaville, and Africa only accounts for 4 per cent of its business.


Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend for SA Sisters

Mathole and Ramodipa

A passion for diamonds drove South African sisters Mathole and Ramodipa to drop their careers as an investment banker and an optometrist. The siblings run one of the few women-owned diamond polishing businesses in the world. And, despite the slumping global market for diamonds, and a shrinking industry in South Africa, they’ve managed to keep shining and developing new female talent. After qualifying as diamond valuators, in 2008 they started a cutting and polishing shop, Kwame Diamonds — the first and only one run by sisters in South Africa. The sisters cut their way into the diamond industry, selling only responsibly sourced, certified stones bought from mining companies operating in South Africa.


Unlikely Form of Birth Control in Uganda

Birth Control in Uganda

Uganda has one of the highest birth rates in the world. It also has some of the most dedicated soap opera watchers anywhere in Africa. Now a group of enterprising Ugandans is aiming to tackle the former through the medium of the latter. Soap operas are expensive to make, however, so they plan instead to “hack” a Venezuelan import, recutting the existing series and overdubbing it with Ugandan actors. Using content originally from Nacer Contigo (Reborn), the new show has been rescripted and turned into a programme titled Love & Wealth. Talks are under way to determine which African country Love & Wealth will make its screen debut in, but it is hoped the show will be distributed to as many English and French free-to-air channels as possible on the continent.


AS Roma Tweets in Swahili

AS Roma Tweets

Italian club AS Roma has become the first European club to launch an official Swahili Twitter account, allowing it to interact with millions of fans who speak and understand the language. The club’s president Jim Pallotta had promised fans they would launch the account following requests to do so in response to the club congratulating Kenyan Eliud Kipchoge on running a marathon in under two hours on Saturday. According to Roma, the tweet was well-received in Kenya, that followers began asking the club to launch a Swahili account.


Great News for Lenders in Nigeria

Lenders in Nigeria

Nigerian central bank has refunded lenders part of the $1.4 billion taken as additional cash reserves after banks failed to meet a target to provide more credit. Citigroup Inc. and Zenith Bank Plc were among a dozen lenders fined last month for not reaching the set goal.  Citigroup was handed a $279 million penalty out of a combined sanction that was transferred from the lenders’ cash reserves to the regulator pending compliance. The group has since called for greater consistency in implementing regulations for the banking industry in Africa and warned frequent changes would harm the sector. Nevertheless, Citigroup still sees plenty of opportunity on the continent and plans to boost its digital investment in Nigeria and parts of West and Central Africa over the next 12 to 18 months.


More Tunisians Join the Migrant Trail to Europe as Apathy Grows

Migrant Trail to Europe

A survey by the Arab Barometer, a research network, said a third of all Tunisians, and more than half of young people, were considering emigrating, up by 50% since the 2011 revolution. The aid agency Mercy Corps said last year that a new surge of migration from Tunisia began in 2017, a time when the economy was dipping. Unemployment is higher among young people than anyone else in Tunisia. In the first round of the presidential election on Sept. 15, and in the parliamentary election, in which voter turnout was low, they also abstained by the highest margin.


Cutting Travel Time and Linking more African Cities

African Cities

Flights from the United States to the African continent can take 30 or even 40 hours depending on the routing, and many travelers face lengthy layovers. But that might be changing soon: Airlines are increasingly introducing nonstop flights, dramatically reducing travel time and further linking the United States to major African nations. This spring, Royal Air Maroc offered the first Miami-to-Africa nonstop route in two decades, a direct route from Miami to Casablanca, Morocco. In December, United will start a direct flight from Newark to Cape Town, a 14 1/2-hour journey offered three times a week. And by next summer, fliers will be able to go nonstop from Philadelphia to Casablanca, on American Airlines’ new route. 


Why Ethiopia’s PM got the Sole Nobel Peace Prize

Ethiopia's PM

The decision to award the 2019 Nobel Peace Prize only to Ethiopia’s Ahmed Abiy was hardly surprising. Eritrea’s Isaias leads one of the most repressive military dictatorships in the world; his government has been compared to North Korea and accused of possible crimes against humanity. And even though he reached an agreement with Abiy in Eritrea’s capital last year to end the conflict between the two nations, in practice the agreement remains largely unimplemented, and there have been little visible benefits for Eritreans. In some years, the Nobel Peace Prize has been awarded to multiple parties for their work trying to end a conflict. In 1994, for example, the prize was awarded to Israel’s Shimon Peres and Yitzhak Rabin, as well as Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat.


Fisheries and Aquaculture Development Project in Malawi

Fisheries and Aquaculture Development

The sustainable fisheries, aquaculture development, and watershed management projects will provide infrastructure for increased productivity in fishery and also improve market access. These projects are expected to contribute to nutritious diets, boost employment along the fish value chain, and build climate resilience along major watersheds. The estimated cost of the project is $14.57 million, comprising an ADF loan of $8.98 million and a grant of $4.21 million, while the Malawi government will contribute $1.38 million.


Top 10 Budget-Friendly Tourist Spots in Africa

Tourist Spots in Africa

Looking for the best budget-friendly tourist spots in Africa?Tourism is one very lucrative business in the whole of Africa, only if it could be given more attention. Generally, people love to unwind and relax after several months, weeks or day of hard work. Means of relaxation should not be too expensive or hard to come by. There are many beautiful and inexpensive locations to be explored in Africa, whether North, South, East or West.


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