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AfricaFocus Bulletin: Latest six bulletins
Earlier Issues: Last 50 | Full Archive
July 15, 2019 Africa/Global: New Horizon for Off-Grid Solar
With their most dramatic success in Kenya and other East African countries, off-grid solar home systems are expanding rapidly, reaching more consumers and extending beyond basic lighting and mobile-phone charging, now even offering bundles with solar-powered flat-screen televisions. Costs continue to drop precipitously, and, according to Beyond Fire, a new report released at the end of May, the next new horizon may be in the kitchen, with solar-energy-powered cooking.
July 2, 2019 Kenya/Global: Big Victory for #SaveLamu/#deCOALonize
“On Wednesday 26th June, Kenya’s National Environment Tribunal (NET) made a landmark ruling that set aside the license granted to Amu Power Company Ltd by the National Environment Management Authority (NEMA) to construct a 1050MW coal plant in Lamu. The tribunal noted that … there was no evidence that Amu Power properly informed residents of Lamu of the impacts that the coal plant project would have on their environment, livelihood or health.” - #deCOALonize press release, June 29, 2019
June 19, 2019 AfricaFocus Updates: Sudan, Ebola, Mozambique
AfricaFocus Bulletin normally contains material on one topic only, as in bulletins earlier this year on Mozambique in January and March, Sudan in March , and Ebola in April. Each provides substantive excepts from current material as well as links for ongoing coverage.
May 27, 2019 Africa/Global: World Bank Ramps Up Attack on Small Farmers
“Enabling the Business of Agriculture,” promoted by the World Bank, and now enhanced with a new sub-indicator on land policy, is presented as a way to advance agricultural development, particularly in Africa. In reality, notes a new report from the Oakland Institute, it gives an additional push to a “land rush” by mostly foreign corporate interests. This trend, notes Harvard land tenure scholar Pauline Peters, “marks the most radical shift in the distribution and tenure status of land since colonial times.”
May 13, 2019 Africa/Global: Cutting the Costs on Remittances
“Some people use their savings to start a business, while others turn to family and friends to borrow cash. But Ismail Ahmed’s case was more unusual. He launched WorldRemit, a money transfer business, with compensation cash he received after uncovering alleged corruption at the UN. … Ahmed had waited four years since he’d submitted the dossier alleging corruption to the UN. But the wait proved worthwhile when in February 2010 he received £200,000 in compensation for the way he had been treated after making allegations, the money he used to fund the launch of WorldRemit.” - Guardian, January 20, 2017
April 30, 2019 Africa/Global: Fighting Tax Evasion and Tax Avoidance
The UN Economic Commission for Africa (ECA), in its annual Economic Report on Africa, focused on financing development in Africa, highlighted the urgency to curb what it termed “revenue leaks” through tax evasion and tax avoidance, as well as through misguided government policies. Multinational corporations, corrupt officials, and financial intermediaries around the world siphon off African wealth, leaving national budgets starved for resources to invest in health, education, and sustainable economic growth.