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Live Reporting

By Clare Spencer and Damian Zane

All times stated are UK

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  1. Scroll down for Friday's stories

    We'll be back on Monday

    That's all for today from the BBC Africa Live page. Listen to the Africa Today podcast and keep up-to-date with developments across the continent on the BBC News website.  

    Today’s African proverb: "If you are accused of being a witch, avoid being seen with meat at night." A Manjago proverb sent by Edmond Mendy, Banjul, The Gambia.  

    Click here to send us your African proverbs.

    And we leave you with this image from our collection of Africa's week in pictures showing peple taking part in a rally to celebrate the fifth anniversary of the Arab Spring.

    Women at Tunisia celebration
  2. How Nigeria's coup haunts 50 years on

    It’s 50 years today since Nigeria’s first coup.

    But historian Max Siollun says the coup is still affecting the country today.

    He says the 1966 coup propelled a group of young military officers onto the national stage who still wield enormous influence in Nigerian politics.

    Gen Olusegun Obasanjo is one of these retired military king-makers. His withdrawal of support for then-President Goodluck Jonathan is thought to be one factor in his presidential election defeat last year, and the victory of current President Muhammadu Buhari. 

    13th July 1977: Nigerian head of state Lt General Olusegun Obasanjo at the summit meeting of African heads of state at Libreville in Gabon
    Image caption: Olusegun Obasanjo ruled as a military general and an elected president

    Read: How first coup still haunts Nigeria 50 years on

  3. Anglican decision welcomed by African church leaders

    The Archbishop of Canterbury has been defending the decision by the Anglican church to restrict a liberal US branch of the church for allowing same-sex marriage.

    He said it was not for Anglican leaders to "divide the church" and that union would be "painful as well as joyful".

    His comments followed an agreement between Anglican leaders on measures to curb the US Episcopal Church, including barring it from decision-making for three years.  

    African Anglican leaders were at the forefront of the debate at a meeting in Canterbury around whether the church should allow same-sex marriage.

    Kenyan Bishop Julius Kalu told the BBC's Focus on Africa radio programme that the leaders came to the right decision, but it was long overdue.

    He said the church needs to recognise that the Bible says that marriage is between a man and a woman.

    Image caption: Some African gay rights activists picketed the Canterbury meeting
  4. 'More teargas than hospitals'

    Seven of the presidential candidates for February's election in Uganda are in the middle of their first televised debate.

    The BBC's Patience Atuhaire has tweeted this quote:

    View more on twitter

    Only President Yoweri Museveni, who's running for a fifth term, is not present.

    You can watch on NTV Uganda's YouTube channel.

  5. Candidates introduced at Ugandan debate

    Screen grab

    The hosts of tonight's presidential candidate debate in Uganda - Alan Kasujja and Nancy Kacungira - have introduced the seven participants.

    Two of them - Kizza Besigye and Amama Mbabazi - got loud cheers from the audience.

    Screen grab

    They all stood for the national anthem - but President Yoweri Museveni has not turned up.

    His campaign team said their candidate "has a tight schedule" and he is campaigning elsewhere in the country.

    You can follow the debate here

  6. What is a world passport?

    We reported earlier that the American rapper and actor known as Mos Def has 14 days to leave South Africa after he was arrested for trying to leave the country using a “world passport”, according to AP News agency.

    We hadn't heard of a world passport but a quick bit of googling shows they do exist.

    Here's a picture of one from the World Government of World Citizens website:

    World Passport

    So we gave the organisation who issue them a call – The World Service Authority confirmed that anyone can apply for a World Passport.

    Their website claims the World Passport represents "the inalienable human right of freedom of travel on planet Earth". 

    They list 184 countries they say recognise the document - something we have not confirmed with these countries.

    But South Africa does not feature on the list.

  7. Uganda’s eight presidential candidates: Key facts

    Screen grab
    Image caption: Proceedings have begun with a prayer

    Uganda's first-ever presidential candidates' debate is about to start.

    You can see it on NTV's YouTube channel here 

    Here is a run down of the candidates running in next month's election, but do note that President Yoweri Museveni is not be expected to be taking part.

    Major contenders: 

    • Kizza Besiyge, 59, veteran opposition leader and once personal doctor to incumbent President Museveni 
    • Amama Mbabazi, 66, former ally of President Museveni and once prime minister and also served as defence, security and justice ministers
    • Yoweri Museveni, 71, in power since 1986 – says Uganda is like a banana farm he planted that is now bearing fruit


    • Benon Biraro, retired major general
    • Venansius Baryamureeba, academic and former vice-chancellor of Makerere University
    • Abed Bwanika, vet and pastor - campaigning on an anti-homosexuality platform
    • Maureen Kyalya, only female candidate
    • Joseph Mabirizi, pastor – alleges he was kidnapped by security agents after he declared his candidacy   
  8. Former top officials among those sentenced in Burundi

    Odhiambo Joseph

    BBC Africa, Nairobi

    Four of those at the forefront of last year's attempted coup in Burundi sentenced to life imprisonment (see 16.30 entry) are:

    • former Defence Minister Cyrille Ndayirukiye 
    • army generals Zenon Ndabaneze and Juvenal Niyungeko 
    • a former police commissioner Hermenegilde Nimenya

    The coup leader Godefroid Nyombare is still on the run.

    Burundians on a tank
    Image caption: Some Burundians took to the streets to celebrate last year's attempted coup in May
  9. Burundi coup plotters 'sentenced to life'

    Four of the leaders of last year's failed coup in Burundi have been sentenced to life in prison, the AFP news agency reports.

    Nine others were jailed for 30 years for their roles in the attempt last May to overthrow President Pierre Nkurunziza.

    There has been political tension and violence in Burundi since the president announced last April that he would run for a third term - and he went on to win July's election. 

    Anti-third term campaigner
    Image caption: There were street protests in Burundi last year against the president running for a third term
  10. AU 'condemns' al-Shabab attack

    The African Union says that it "strongly condemns" this morning's attack on an AU base in Somalia.

    In a statement it says that troops from the AU mission, Amisom, "repulsed" the al-Shabab attack.

    It adds that there were casualties but details "are still being verified".

    AU troops in Somalia
    Image caption: AU soldiers have been in Somalia since 2007
  11. Children's voices to open Uganda's presidential debate

    It's not just politicians getting ready for Uganda's first-ever presidential debate. 

    Children from Watoto Church , which helps disadvantaged children will be singing the national anthem at the opening.

    Watoto choir

    The BBC's Patience Atuhaire - who snapped the picture - explains that they are probably involved because the debate is organised by the Inter-Religious Council of Uganda.

  12. Where is Museveni?

    The candidates are arriving at the venue in Uganda's capital, Kampala, for the country's first-ever presidential debate.

    One of the main opposition candidates Kizza Besigye has just walked up the red carpet:

    Kizza Besigye

    President Yoweri Museveni will not be turning up to face his seven challengers and Dr Besigye told journalists that "if the people of Uganda want him [to come] he should avail himself".

  13. The apps that keep you safe in Burundi

    When BBC reporter Prime Ndikumagenge woke up to gunfire in December his wife grabbed her phone and started browsing social networks to try and work out where it was coming from.

    He wondered who would post such an answer.

    But before long she saw a message on WhatsApp saying it was an attack at a military camp.

    There’s been a huge change in his wife’s phone habits since fighting broke out in April.

    Before then she only used the phone to make calls.

    Now she records audio, sends pictures, uses the messaging services Imo and Telegram. She won't go to bed until she's checked SOS Medias which reports on the latest clashes.

    He speaks on the BBC's Fifth Floor about the changes they've made to cope with living in a place where bodies are found on the street on a daily basis:

    Video content

    Video caption: BBC Fifth Floor
  14. Ugandan TV gearing up for debate

    The Uganda channel NTV is covering the build-up to tonight's presidential candidates' debate - the first-ever in Uganda.

    It's the official broadcaster for this debate and correspondents are live outside the venue bringing news of who has arrived.

    You Tube grab

    There are also pundits in the studio discussing the issues that could come up.

    You can follow it on NTV's YouTube channel.

  15. Clock ticking down to Uganda debate

    It's just 30 minutes to go before Uganda has its first-ever presidential TV debate.

    Seven candidates are challenging four-term President Yoweri Museveni for the top job in next month's poll.

    But Mr Museveni will not be turning up to the debate, his campaign team says.

    The BBC's Alan Kasujja is one of the hosts of the debate and he's been tweeting his thoughts ahead of the broadcast.

    View more on twitter

    The BBC's Patience Atuhaire is at the TV studio and has snapped this picture of the set before the candidates take to the stage.

    Debate stage
  16. Nigerian president orders investigation into 17 military chiefs

    Nigerian president Muhammadu Buhari has ordered an investigation into possible corruption by 17 military chiefs.

    The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission will look at the procurement of arms and equipment from 2007 to 2015. 

    One of those who will be investigated is Nigeria's former national security adviser, Sambo Dasuki, who had previously been arrested for allegedly stealing $2bn (£1.3bn).

    He accused of awarding phantom contracts to buy 12 helicopters, four fighter jets and ammunition. 

    He denied the allegations.

    Sambo Dasuki
    Image caption: Sambo Dasuki has previously said the allegations were politically motivated
  17. Kenya's president regrets loss of Kenyan lives in Somalia

    Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta has confirmed in a statement that Kenyan soldiers were killed in the early morning al-Shabab attack on an African Union - or Amisom - base in Somalia, where Kenyan soldiers were stationed.

    Earlier, Kenya's ministry of defence had denied that the Kenyans were the target, but Mr Kenyatta said the Amisom camp has been attacked.

    He added: "Our gallant soldiers reacted swiftly to protect their camp... Regrettably, some of our patriots in uniform paid the ultimate price. It is heart-breaking."

    He said that Kenya would not "be cowed by these cowards" who carried out the attack and "we will hunt down the criminals involved in today’s events".

    Mr Kenyatta didn't specify how many Kenyan soldiers had died.

    Al-Shabab had said earlier they had killed more than 60 people but this was dismissed as propaganda by the Kenyans.

    Uhuru Kenyatta
    Image caption: President Uhuru Kenyatta says Kenya will not be cowed by the attack
  18. US rapper Mos Def arrested in Cape Town

    South African police have arrrested American hip-hop artist and actor Mos Def in Cape Town for breaking the country's immigration laws, Eyewitness news reports.


    The news site reports that he entered the country legally, but has overstayed his visa.

    A spokesman for South Africa's interior ministry has been tweeting about the case, using Mos Def's birth name Dante Smith: 

    View more on twitter
  19. Will president attend Uganda's presidential debate?

    Move aside Donald Trump et al - in less than two hours Uganda's first televised presidential debate of this campaign is due to start.

    There is already controversy as it is thought that President Yoweri Museveni will not be turning up to face his seven challengers.

    This means that organisers will leave an empty space where the president was supposed to be.

    Mr Museveni's campaign team has said it's more important to be out on the road meeting voters than taking part in the televised debate.

    But the BBC's Patience Atuhaire says that there is speculation that the president may show up at the last minute.

    Uganda's Daily Monitor newspaper has tweeted a picture of one of the leading opposition candidates getting ready:

    View more on twitter

    And another leading opposition hopeful says he's looking forward to the event: 

    View more on twitter
  20. Widespread impact of El Nino drought

    The UN's Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has said that Ethiopia needs $50m (£35m) in emergency aid to make up for the poor harvest caused by the recent drought, the Reuters news agency reports.

    The FAO also said that livestock has been decimated in Ethiopia and 10.2 million people needed food aid.

    The lack of rain is being blamed on the El Nino weather phenomenon which has led to a drought in much of east and southern Africa.

    Today, South Africa's government - which is also trying to cope with the impact of low rainfall - says the country needs to import up to six million tonnes of maize to make up for the poor harvest there:

    View more on twitter
    View more on twitter
    Dead cattle in South Africa
    Image caption: The drought has had a severe affect in parts of South Africa