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South Africa

Foreign Investors See Potential in African Agriculture

Agriculture is one of the most important economic activities in Africa.  In addition to providing employment, agriculture has the potential to transform African societies through the increased export of produce to Western markets. Many agree that transformation will not take place without increased investment in agriculture, including public or...

Disagreement Persists on SADC Madagascar Proposal

A southern African mediator says a proposed deal to end Madagascar's political crisis will be concluded in a few days despite the main political parties rejecting it.  Andry Rajoelina, who seized presidential power in a 2009 coup, has threatened to move ahead if the deal is not signed soon, while deposed President Marc Ravalomanana says no...

Growing African Middle Class is Potential Source of Political Stability

The middle class has been at the forefront of demands for political change in Tunisia and Egypt. Now, a growing middle class south of the Sahara presents challenges for governments there, as well as a potential source of political stability.Political upheaval across North Africa is being driven, in part, by a growing middle class that wants more...

Ivory Coast: Gunmen Kill Soldiers Loyal to Laurent Gbagbo

Authorities in Ivory Coast say gunmen have shot and killed at least three soldiers loyal to incumbent President Laurent Gbagbo, in the capital, Abidjan.The violence erupted Tuesday, in a neighborhood that supports Alassane Ouattara, the United Nations certified winner of November's presidential election.The shooting in Abobo occurred on the same...

Ivory Coast's Ouattara: AU Mediation 'Last Resort'

Alassane Ouattara, one of Ivory Coast's two rival presidents, says the latest effort to resolve the country's political crisis is a "last resort."Mr. Ouattara met Tuesday in Ivory Coast's capital Abidjan with four African presidents from a panel appointed by the African Union to settle the crisis.Incumbent President Laurent Gbagbo has resisted...

Former Madagascar President Calls for AU to Help Lift Restrictions

Madagascar's ousted president, Marc Ravalomanana, is calling for the African Union to pressure the transitional government of Andry Rajoelina to allow him to return home. The Rajoelina government banned him from returning Saturday to enter into what Ravalomanana called a dialogue aimed at ending the country's two-year-old political crisis.  ...

Arab and Sub-Saharan Countries Share Issues of Poverty, Unemployment

Sub-Saharan African countries are closely watching developments in North African and Middle East countries, according to a South African foreign policy analyst. Thomas Wheeler, who’s with the South African Institute of International Affairs in Johannesburg, is a former ambassador. In Libya, where violence has perhaps claimed hundreds of lives,...

Ravalomanana: Madagascar Aviation Official Blocks Return Home

Madagascar's exiled president says his country's aviation authority has blocked his return from South Africa.Marc Ravalomanana told reporters Saturday his planned trip to Madagascar was sabotaged by a letter from an aviation official to the South African Airways, denying him a boarding pass.Mr. Ravalomanana had vowed to return Saturday, despite...

Harare Political Violence Unacceptable - Zuma

SADC facilitator South African President Jacob Zuma yesterday condemned politically motivated violence and intimidation that has flared up in Harare's high-density suburbs since Zanu PF launched its 2011 election campaign. According to Zuma's international advisor Lindiwe Zulu, the South African president has called on the principals, President...

Rising Political Violence Reported in Zimbabwe

South African mediators travel to Zimbabwe in the next few days amidst reports of increasing political violence and selective arrests in the country. Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai says security forces are violating their national mandate, and President Robert Mugabe’s ZANU-PF blocks reconstruction of Zimbabwe. The Movement for Democratic Change...

Madagascar Crisis Sparks Worry, Hope Among Businessmen

Madagascar’s ousted President Marc Ravalomanana is due to return home Saturday from exile in South Africa despite a warrant for his immediate arrest. It has been almost two years since a coup d’etat and ensuing political standoff sparked an economic crisis in Madagascar characterized by the freezing of most foreign aid and investment. The...

South Africa President Joins AU Panel Heading to Ivory Coast

South African president Jacob Zuma will travel to Mauritania and Ivory Coast as part of the African Union’s initiative aimed at resolving the political crisis in Ivory Coast.Zuma joins the high-level African Union panel led by Mauritanian President Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz, and which also includes the leaders of Burkina Faso, Tanzania and Chad....

Madagascar’s Former President Says He Will Return

Madagascar's ousted president Marc Ravalomanana says he will return home despite a threat by the current government to arrest him on arrival.  The former president made the remarks in South Africa where he has been in exile for the past two years. Former President Marc Ravalomanana told reporters he will return Saturday to Madagascar, saying he...

Development Experts Ring Up Kenya's Mobile Money Success Story

The success of the M-Pesa mobile money system in Kenya is attracting the attention of development experts, aid organizations and companies seeking to replicate its effectiveness. An award-winning advertisement for M-Pesa shows money flying from a smiling son's mobile phone, handled from his luxurious city desk, into his mother's cell phone, which...

South African Charged After Animal Disease Threats Against Britain, US

The trial in South Africa of a man accused of threatening Britain and the United States with a biological weapon has been postponed until Friday. Brian Patrick Roach allegedly tried to blackmail the British government to prevent an outbreak of foot and mouth disease. Sixty-four-year-old Brian Patrick Roach allegedly threatened to release a toxic...