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Archive for May 30th, 2007

Posted by African Press International on May 30, 2007

Blantyre (Malawi) The Malawi Nation newspapers editorial on Monday blasted President Bingu wa Mutharikas remarks made Saturday at the ordination of a Catholic bishop (Alessandro Pagani) in Mangochi District as being insensitive to all Malawians.

In his remarks, Mutharika described unnamed politicians whom he said were trying to put a wedge between Moslems and Christians in the country as confusionists and agents of Satan.

But the Nation in its editorial said that Mutharikas remarks were unbecoming at such an occasion which was highly patronised by people from all religions in the country.

It was unfortunate that President Bingu wa Mutharika brought an element of conflict between some religions, a reality that could not be supported by the attendance we saw, where all faiths sat with the Catholics to welcome the new bishop, the daily said in its editorial.

It added, It would really have been nice if, as some commentators have already said, the president had limited his speech to issues of the day.

According to the pro-opposition tabloid, This was a day never to be marred by anything, let alone individual observations like the ones held by the president.

As the opposition says, it is time Mutharika learned to properly tailor his speeches for his audiences.

Opposition parties like the former ruling United Democratic Front and the Peoples Progressive Movement condemned Mutharikas speech as wrong and inappropriate.

The editorial concluded: At the bottom of it all, he is surely aware that Malawians are a united people. They know what they want, which is why they do things together, as was the case in Mangochi on Saturday.

The Malawi Nation newspapers editorial on Monday blasted President Bingu wa Mutharikas remarks

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Former Nigerian President Declared Changes in Liberia

Posted by African Press International on May 30, 2007

Outgoing Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo, on his last visit here as president, told a cheering officials at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs that the country has undergone changes since the rise to power of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.

I want to commend and congratulate you, Madam President. You did not have an easy task because anybody who has been a regular visitor here will see that changes have been made

He however cautioned against high expectations: But permit me to say this to all my brothers and sisters in Liberia. It takes time for things to happen. Dont let us expect changes to take place over night. It takes time for things to happen. It takes efforts for peace to happen; it takes peace and security for development to take hold

President Obasanjo equated sustainable democracy with economic prosperity:
One of our own economists in Nigeria said to me, and it may be a fact, that some people have said that when your per capita income is US1000 and above, you can be sure that you can be able to sustain democracy for 8-years.

When it is US2000 and above, you can be sure that you can be able to sustain democracy for about 16 years. When it is US3000 and above, then you can sustain democracy for 33 years. We have just past the US1000 and above, and we have been able to sustain democracy for 8-years.

So our challenge in Nigeria today is that our per capita income must get to US2000 so that the successor to our own administration can sustain democracy for another 8-year at least, to make 16-years and the one who takes over from him have to make our per capita income up to US3000 in which we will say democracy is firmly established

He said he will remain a factor in African affairs. He promised to be a regular visitor here and familiar face after leaving office.

By Brooks, Liberia

Published by African Press in Norway (APN)/ African Press International (API) africanpress@chello.no tel +47 932 99 739 or +47 6300 2525

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Iraq: Westerners kidnapped

Posted by African Press International on May 30, 2007

BAGHDAD (Reuters) – Gunmen wearing police uniforms abducted at least three Western lecturers and several of their foreign bodyguards from a Finance Ministry building in central Baghdad on Tuesday, a witness told Reuters.

The witness, who did not want to be identified, said the lecturers, believed to be Americans, had been giving ministry personnel a lecture on organising electronic contracts in a Finance Ministry building in Palestine Street.

The gunmen, led by a police major, had entered the conference room shouting “Where are the foreigners, where are the foreigners?” she said.

A fourth lecturer escaped being abducted because he was sitting apart from his colleagues. The witness said the lecturers, employed by a U.S. organisation, had given at least 12 lectures at the ministry over the past year.

There was no immediate comment from the U.S. Embassy. A source at the ministry confirmed the lecturers had been kidnapped but said he had no further information.

Lifted and published by African Press in Norway (APN)/ African Press international (API) africanpress@chello.no tel +47 932 99 739 or +47 6300 2525 source.Reuters

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