The 7th World Social Forum in Nairobi

Published on 9th January 2007

The 7th World Social Forum (WSF) is set for 20-25th January 2007, at the Moi International Sports Centre Kasarani Nairobi - Kenya. Up to 150,000 delegates from all over the world are expected among them being former South African President Nelson Mandela. This is the first time such a forum is being held in Africa. “Africans are also global citizens and this is a chance for Africa to be seen as a continent of hope and not despair,” said Ms. Wahu Kaara, a committee member.

$40 Million School Opened in SA

Oprah Winfrey has opened a $40- million school for poor South African girls. The facility which spreads over 21 hectares with 28 buildings, modern classrooms, a dormitory, computer and science laboratories and an auditorium is funded entirely by Ms. Winfrey’s foundation. Ms Winfrey hopes that by educating girls she can help change the face of a nation.

China Signs Agreements with Chad

China has signed a series of loan, debt relief and economic cooperation agreements worth $80 million with Chad.  Chad is the latest African country to cut its ties with Taiwan.

African Woman Lands Top UN Job

Asha-Rose Migiro, Tanzanian Foreign Minister, has been appointed United Nations’ Deputy Secretary General. She becomes the second woman in history to hold the post.

Journalists Up in Arms

A long-discussed bill to decriminalize violations of press laws would go before parliament in March 2007 potentially ending the frequent imprisonment of journalists in Niger. Press freedom watchdogs have accused the former French colony of using its strict media laws to settle scores with journalists who expose corruption or other wrong doings, either by jailing them or banning their organization from reporting.

Telkom Media to Launch Media Services

Telkom Media, the recently formed company to serve Telkom’s media needs, will begin launching media services in the first quarter of 2007. “During the first quarter of 2007, Telkom Media will begin the launch of digital media services over multiple integrated delivery platforms, including broadband, satellite, mobile and Internet,” said Steven Hayward, Telkom’s Managing Executive – Retail Marketing. Telkom Media (Pty) Ltd is a Telkom joint venture with partners Videovision Entertainment, MSG Afrika Media and Women Development Bank Investment Holdings (Pty) Ltd.

East Africa SMEs Boosted

The US Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) has extended a US$473,050 grant to the East African Development Bank (EADB) to support small and medium enterprises (SMEs). SMEs play a pivotal role in Africa's development, fostering economic growth, spurring innovation, creating employment, and providing inputs for larger enterprises and large public-private partnership infrastructure projects. EADB has selected Structured Credit International Corporation, a New York-based financial advisory firm, to provide the technical assistance. In addition to the USTDA grant, EADB will contribute additional resources towards the completion of the technical assistance programme.

Diamond Ban Looms

Zimbabwe's chances of a diamond ban escalated amid revelations that a complaint had been lodged with the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS) detailing how the international rules and regulations were violated as the wrangle over the right to mine diamond spilled onto the international spotlight. River Ranch and Bubye Minerals are fighting over the Special Grant 1278 that gives the right to mine diamond. The Mines and Minerals Act does not allow players without authority to mine in an area.

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