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Winners emerge in 2016 Africa Youth Awards

frica Youth Awards, the continent’s most coveted awards for young people have announced the winners of its 2016 awards, which engaged over 170 shortlisted nominees, and received voting participation from over 145 countries from across the world.

Voted as the African Youths of the Year were; Albert Kusi (Ghana) founder of LEC Foundation and Ilwad Elman, Somalia’s Social Activist and Director of Programs and Development at the Elman Peace and Human Rights Center.

Albert Kusi is also the pioneer of Success Conference, West Africa’s biggest annual empowerment summit which has impacted thousands of young people and has transformed lives.

Ilwad Elman doubles as the Director of Sister Somalia, Somalia’s first program for assistance of victims of gender-based violence which provides counseling, health and housing support for women in need.

Winners of 2016 edition hail from 11 countries and were determined by public votes, which were received from over 145 countries within 21 Days.

Other notable winners are Souhila Ben Lachhab (Algeria) for Musician of the year and Teacher Mampire (Uganda) for Discovery of the Year.

Mohammed Ibrahim Jega (Nigeria) CEO of Emerge Tech Africa was also voted as 2016 Entrepreneur of the Year.

Prince Akpah, co-founder & President of Africa Youth Awards declared the third edition of the awards as a great success and a true testament of the contributions of young Africans to the development of the African Continent.

He also emphasized that the stories of these young Africans would inspire more young people as they gear up to take up various leadership positions in their individual pursuits of moving the African continent to the next level.

Source: Voice of Nigeria

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2017 will bring succour to Nigerians- Dogara

The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr. Yakubu Dogara, has urged Nigerians to be resilient in the face of the current hardship in the country, saying that 2017 will bring succour to their sufferings.In a New Year message to Nigerians, the spea…

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Chinese military considers measures to contain Taiwan

China’s military has become alarmed by what it sees as U.S. President-elect Donald Trump’s support of Taiwan and is considering strong measures to prevent the island from moving toward independence, sources with ties to senior military officers said.Th…

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China’s Port Group chairman sentenced to prison

The chairman of China’s Ying Kou Port Group was sentenced to 14 years in prison for accepting around 26.8 million yuan (3.13 million pounds) in bribes, said the official Xinhua news agency on Saturday.President Xi Jinping has waged a widespread campaig…

Human Rights

Gambia: Jammeh accuses ECOWAS of declaring war

Gambian leader Yahya Jammeh accused West African regional body ECOWAS of declaring war, after it said it was putting forces on alert in case he refused to step down at the end of his mandate this month.

Jammeh, who has vowed to stay in power despite losing a Dec. 1 election to rival Adama Barrow, also promised to defend Gambia against any outside aggression, in a New Year’s speech broadcast on state TV.

The veteran leader initially conceded defeat in the vote, and then changed his mind days later � raising fears that regional powers might have to intervene to oust him. His mandate runs out on Jan. 19.

Marcel de Souza, commission president for the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), said last week it had put standby forces on alert.

In his speech, Jammeh decried the resolution of ECOWAS on the current situation to implement the results of Dec 1, 2016 presidential election by whatever means possible, apparently acknowledging again that the poll did not go in his favor.

It is in effect a declaration of war and an insult to our constitution, he said. Let me make it very clear that we are ready to defend this country against any aggression My government will never opt for such confrontation but defending our sovereignty is a sacred duty for all patriotic Gambians.

Barrow’s surprise victory and Jammeh’s initial decision to concede after 22 years in power was initially seen as a moment of hope on continent where autocratic leaders are becoming more entrenched.

Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari has stepped in as an ECOWAS mediator to offer Jammeh an honorable exit, but Jammeh said the bloc could no longer fulfill that role.

ECOWAS has also disqualified (itself) to provide mediation services as a genuine mediator has to be neutral and impartial and win the trust and confidence of the parties to the conflict, he said.

Source: Voice of Nigeria

General

DR Congo adopts political agreement limiting Kabila’s term

Representatives of different parties have signed and adopted a comprehensive and inclusive political peace agreement for the DR Congo at a solemn ceremony in the capital Kinshasa.

Alongside the opposition party that signed the October 18 agreement, the camp of President Joseph Kabila and that of the historic opponent A�tienne Tshisekedi reached an agreement on the consensual management of the country until the next elections.

The second and last term of office of the President of the Republic which was completed on 19 December 2016 is not renewable, the head of the State will not seek a third mandate. The presidential, legislative, national and provincial elections will be held before the end of December 2017, said Marcel Utembi Representative of Episcopal.

It is the extension of this consensus that we had found in the city of the African Union that it was felt little inclusive Unfortunately, even this agreement is not as inclusive as we would have desired, because the idea for the respect of the democracy is not there, said Lambert Mende Spokesman for the Government.

Only the Movement for the Liberation of Congo (MLC) and its allies of the Constitutional Front refused to sign the agreement, denouncing a conspiracy for the nation.

Under the new political compromise, President Joseph Kabila whose second and final constitutional mandate could have ended on December 19 remains the head of the country. He will be replaced only after the election of his successor, and this will take place by the end of December 2017.

This will be four months earlier than the deadline stipulated in the first agreement signed two months ago at the OAU City under the facilitation of the Togolese Edem Kodjo.

We have [got] the main thing: we have the commitment of President Kabila not to represent himself, that of his side not to touch the Constitution, neither revising it nor going to a referendum, said Felix Tshisekedi, Rally Officer.

According to him, the opposition has also been given the opportunity to take stock of its delegates in the Independent National Electoral Commission (CENI), and if necessary to replace them.

The document also establishes a government of national unity. According to MP Delly Sesanga, who took part in the final adjustments of the agreement, the new government team will be headed by a Prime Minister proposed by the Rally

Source: Voice of Nigeria

Human Rights

Senate President expresses optimism for 2017

The President of the Senate, Dr Bukola Saraki, has said that things would get better for Nigerians in 2017.A statement by Mr Yusuf Olaniyonu, the Special Adviser on Media and Publicity to the Senate President in Abuja, urged Nigerians to remain hopeful…