African Press International (API)

"Daily Online News Channel".

Archive for May 16th, 2012


Posted by African Press International on May 16, 2012

  • ODHIAMBO DICKSON reporting from Kisumu, Kenya

THE presence of fake drugs in the market still hinders the fight against malaria in Africa Continent.

A Ghana based Non Governmental organization known as African Media and Malaria Research Network {AMMREN} said powerful stakeholders like the African Leaders Malaria Alliance{ALMA} needs to take keen interest and deal with the issue of fake anti-malarial drugs which still hamper the fight against malaria in the continent.

AMMREN Chief Executive Secretary Charity Binka said there is serious need to
treat fake drug manufacturers and their agents with the same ruthlessness employed against dealers in narcotic drugs if the fight against malaria is to be won.

In a speech read on her behalf by the AMMREN-Kisumu Chapter Secretary Bernard  Okebe during a media sensitization workshop in Kisumu on the role of AMMREN in the fight against malaria, Charity said other stakeholders
like drug enforcement agencies, custom officers, the police and drug manufacturing giants should join forces and check the issue of counterfeit
anti-malaria drugs.

“Obviously, the inability of stakeholders such as drug enforcement agencies,
custom officers, the police and drugs manufacturing giants to join forces to check this counterfeits problem can lead to a loss of confidence in orthodox medicine and compel people in poor countries to resort to herbal and unconventional solutions whether or not they have been certified to be efficacious,” Binka said.

She said the recently invented Artemisinin-based Therapies {ACTs}, which is a
combination of drugs to fight the malarial disease, is also being faked and the
trend is really worrying. She added that the continued existence of taxes and tariffs in commodities for malaria control exposes the half-hearted approach to tackle the disease by the very countries susceptible to it.

“The taxes and tariffs on commodities for malaria control make these life-saving products unaffordable to the poor and vulnerable and this exposes the
half-hearted approach to take malaria by the very countries susceptible to the disease,” the Executive Secretary added.

Binka further said that while the whole world is still waiting with bated breath for the first malaria vaccine which will be rolled out in 2015, full support must be given to other ongoing interventions such as the Affordable Medicines Facility for Malaria {AMFm} which is a brilliant idea to expand access to the most effective treatment for malaria under the ACTs at an affordable price.



Posted in AA > News and News analysis | Leave a Comment »

Kenya’s new constitution in conflict with the Provincial administration

Posted by African Press International on May 16, 2012

President Mwai Kibaki recently posted 47 “County Commissioners” to the newly constitutionally created Counties. The postings are illegal because in the constitution, there is no such a thing as County Commissioners! Now they call them County commissioners, a back door policy to give jobs to the preferred in the society. Who are they exactly? When we informed them that their position was no more in the new constitution and requested that they be legally amalgamated in the process, they stated clearly that we were the very forces who did not want the new Kenyan constitution.

The District Commissioners and Provincial Commissioners lost their jobs squarely under their own watch and now want Kenyans to create for them new jobs. Majimbo is here Mr. PC and DC. Go home. The new constitution has phased you out. Why should we sympathize with you while you have never sympathized with Kenya.

You have no place in the Kenyan new constitution that you yourself fought for. You actually killed your own jobs and now you want us to recreate it.
 Kenyans, under our new constitution, there is no position of County commissioners. Why is this created now. Reject this position because if you accept it, you are simply accepting impunity and more so, you are rejecting the very constitution you voted for and amalgamated.,
By Dr. Barack Otieno Abonyo
Associate Professor of Pharmacology, College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Florida A and M University, 1415 Martin Luther King Dr., Tallahassee Fl, 32304


Posted in AA > News and News analysis | Leave a Comment »

Hundreds of Somalis complete military training: Heading home to boost the forces fighting Al Shabaab.

Posted by African Press International on May 16, 2012

Ready for action

IBANDA,  – Over 600 Somali troops completed six months of military training in southwestern Uganda on 10 May and are heading home to boost the forces fighting Al Shabab.

Col Winston Byaruhanga, head of Bihanga military training school in Ibanda District, told IRIN the 603 soldiers who trained alongside 248 Ugandans will help bring peace and stability to the country.

“These soldiers will significantly reinforce the Transitional Federal Government (TFG) and contribute to more stable conditions to deliver aid and bring the country on the way to development,” Byaruhanga told IRIN.

Mohammed Ali Hassan, who emerged as the best student, told IRIN. “We are determined to go back and pacify our country from the Al Shabab. We are now equipped and ready for the battle.”

The training included urban warfare exercises, and covered such things as mine awareness, weapons, administration, health, and political education.

The soldiers are the third batch to be trained in Uganda under the European Union military mission to contribute to the training of Somali security forces (EUTM). By the end of 2012 around 3,000 Somali soldiers and officers will have received the EUTM training.

In Pictures

“These soldiers will form the nucleus of [the] Somali army. Show them where Al Shabab are, and they are ready for the job,” said Lt-Gen Edward Katumba Wamala, commander of Uganda Land Forces. “These soldiers will make peace in Somalia. We are optimistic that will happen in Somalia soon,” he said at the passing out ceremony.

“You are the peace and hope to the people of Somalia. Don’t let your efforts go wasted but struggle to stabilize and make peace in Somalia,” said Gen Jeje Odongo, Uganda’s state minister for defence.

TFG controls mainly the capital, Mogadishu, and is now trying to expand the area under its control with the help of AMISOM troops. In February, the UN Security Council raised the pan-African peacekeeping force’s authorized troop levels from 12,000 to 17,731.

Aside from the EUTM programme, Kenya and Ethiopia have provided training and military support to militias allied to the TFG.

so/cb/am source

Posted in AA > News and News analysis | Leave a Comment »

The Office of the Prosecutor has requested two new warrants of arrest in the DRC situation.

Posted by African Press International on May 16, 2012

  • Statement ICC Prosecutor on new applications for warrants of arrest DRC situation

The first one relates to Bosco Ntaganda for the crimes committed as a top commander of Thomas Lubanga’s militia, the UPC/FPLC.  Taking into consideration the findings in the final “Lubanga Judgement” the Prosecution will request to add charges against Bosco Ntaganda for the following crimes:

(1)   crimes against humanity of murder, persecution based on ethnic grounds, and rape/sexual slavery, and

(2)   war crimes of intentional attacks against civilians, murder, rape / sexual slavery and pillaging.

These crimes were committed over a large geographical area within Ituri, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) during the period September 2002 to September 2003. The attacks followed a consistent pattern: UPC/FPLC forces encircled the towns and villages of the Lendu and other non-Hema tribes, shelled them, and then ethnically cleansed the areas by killing and raping civilians, forcing their displacement to the surrounding forests and eventually looting their property.

The evidence was presented during the Lubanga trial and based on the Lubanga judgement the Prosecution is asking the Pre Trial Chamber to expand the charges against Bosco Ntaganda. This was the policy announced in 2006 and now implemented.

Since 2006, BOSCO NTAGANDA has been wanted by the Court for recruiting and using children under 15 to participate actively in hostilities. Thomas Lubanga was arrested and found guilty of these crimes but Bosco Ntaganda is still at large and continues committing crimes.

Impunity has a high price. When impunity prevails, populations on the ground are the victims. When impunity prevails, persons like Bosco Ntaganda are encouraged to continue committing crimes. They increase their power through violence. Bosco Ntaganda has used the time offered to him since the ICC arrest warrant was issued to move from Ituri to North Kivu, to expand his power on new territories, and to maintain a power base thanks to his crimes, and the violence of persons under his control. Now more than ever is the time to arrest him. His recent desertion from the FARDC has shown once again that he cannot be trusted; it is a renewed demonstration that power through violence only leads to more violence.

The Office also filed an arrest warrant application, against a leader of one of the most active militia in the Kivu provinces, Sylvestre Mudacumura, the Supreme Commander of the FDLR-FOCA. Together with Callixte Mbarushimana and with Ignace Murwanashyaka, currently on trial in Germany, Sylvestre Mudacumura is one of the main leaders of the FDLR, who launched a campaign of attacks against the civilian populations in the Kivus.

Who are the FDLR? The FDLR is an armed group created by people allegedly involved in the Rwanda genocide in 1994 who fled Rwanda and relocated to the Democratic Republic of the Congo (“DRC”). From their base in the DRC, the FDLR’s two immediate predecessors created conditions that triggered the First and Second Congo Wars, during which millions of civilians were killed and displaced.

Sylvestre Mudacumura is charged with- 5 counts of crimes against humanity: murder, inhumane acts, rape, torture  and persecution and 9 counts of war crimes: attack against a civilian population, murder or willful killing, mutilation, cruel treatment, rape, torture, destruction of property, pillaging  and outrage upon personal dignity.

The alleged crimes were committed by the FDLR-FOCA between 20 January 2009 and 31 August 2010, in North and South Kivu Provinces.

For too long the populations of North Kivu have been surrounded by violence. They are the victims of crimes committed by different groups: in particular MUDACUMURA’S FDLR and the CNDP under the command of Bosco Ntaganda Whichever way they turn, the civilian populations in the Kivus see violence, suffering and manipulation of their situation by armed groups. It is time for them to see justice.

The Kivu provinces are not a prize to be shared between the FDLR-FOCA, the CNDP or others. It is a place where people deserve to live in peace, where crimes should be punished and impunity should be fought.

The public request of the arrest warrant can contribute to demobilize those following NTAGANDA’s and  MUDACUMURA’s orders. They can even arrest their leaders and demobilize.

Additionally, it is an opportunity for the DRC and Rwandan armies to refine their methods and transform war into an arrest operation. Open confrontations in the past have merely led to the killing of civilians.



Posted in AA > News and News analysis | Leave a Comment »

%d bloggers like this: