|News Round Up
Nigeria FG Declines Bailout for Banks
Daily Independent has reported that President Umaru Yar'Adua concentrated on the 2009 budget on his return from vacation, but Minister of State for Finance, Remi Babalola, reiterated that the government is not considering a bail out for any bank, because none is distressed. Babalola told the Senate Committee on Banking, Insurance and other Financial Institutions that the relief package on the cards is for the manufacturing sector, specifically textile. Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Yayale Ahmed, would meet with Ministers of Commerce, Finance, Agriculture and Rural Development to brainstorm on the modalities. Babalola admitted that he personally lost more than 50 per cent of his net worth on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), and stressed that if the financial sector needs help, the government would offer it.
China President Hu Jintao Tours Africa
China's President Hu Jintao is in Cameroon at the start of a 12-day tour of Africa, aimed at strengthening economic and political ties according to the BBC. Mr. Hu met Cameroonian counterpart Paul Biya and signed a series of bilateral co-operation agreements. Trade has expanded dramatically between Africa and China in recent years as China seeks resources to feed its economy and markets for its exports. It is Mr. Hu's third trip to Africa since he took office in 2003.
Madagascar Minister Resigns citing Killing of Innocent Civilians
Madagascar's defense minister resigned citing that civilians were killed when security forces fired on anti-government protesters over the weekend. Cecile Manorohanta, tended her resignation from the government indicating that she will not have anything to do with a government that could not protect its citizens.
Mandela Foundation to Tackle Scourge of Xenophobia
In living up to its mission of preserving former president Nelson Mandela's legacy of reconciliation, his foundation has launched an initiative to promote peace in divided communities previously plagued by xenophobic attacks according to BusinessDay. The programme by the Nelson Mandela Foundation is in response to last year's wave of xenophobic attacks that claimed 62 lives -- including 21 South Africans -- and displaced more than 80000 people. We cannot deny the fact that there have really been traumatised communities and that is why the focus is on those communities where there have been attacks," said the head of the dialogue programme, Mothomang Diaho.
Women's Equality in Theory, But Not in Practice in Swaziland
IRIN has reported that a groundbreaking legal action in Swaziland's High Court is testing the new Constitution and its recognition of equal rights for women. King Mswati III, sub-Saharan Africa's last absolute monarch, approved the Constitution in 2005 - on the back of centuries of discrimination against women that accorded them second class status - ending customary and institutional discrimination based on gender. Although the Constitution recognizes the equality of women, in practice much legislation remains unchanged and discriminatory. Mary-Joyce Doo Aphane, an attorney, filed the lawsuit to compel government to overturn Section 16 (3) of the Deeds of Registry Act, which forbids women to register property in their own names.
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