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Summary

  1. Guard for Ghana Black Stars makes international debut
  2. EU's Kenya election observers warn against possible violence
  3. Criticism over plans for a new Zambian State House
  4. Dubai firm buys Java coffee chain
  5. Militants on camels 'kill nine' in Niger
  6. Igbo leaders insist on united Nigeria
  7. At least 15 killed in CAR clashes
  8. Today's proverb: All seasons do not yield the same.

Live Reporting

By Clare Spencer and Paul Bakibinga

All times stated are UK

Get involved

  1. That's all from us today

    We'll be back tomorrow

    That's all from BBC Africa Live today. Keep up-to-date with what's happening across the continent by listening to the Africa Today podcast or check the BBC News website.

    A reminder of today's wise words:

    Quote Message: All seasons do not yield the same. from A Nuer proverb sent by Koang Gatluak Wuol in Gambella, Ethiopia
    A Nuer proverb sent by Koang Gatluak Wuol in Gambella, Ethiopia

    Click here to send us your African proverbs

    And we leave you with this picture from the BBC's fashion watcher, Raissa Ioussouf, at Dakar Fashion Week in Senegal:

    View more on instagram
  2. Ghanaian cop-turned-footballer 'grew up with team members'

    Samuel Sarfo, a Ghanaian policeman turned footballer
    Image caption: Samuel Sarfo ' A dream come true donning the national colours'

    Just a year ago Ghanaian policeman Samuel Sarfo was photographed guarding the country's national footballers before an international game. Incredibly, twelve months on, Sarfo has himself made his debut for the Black Stars, coming on as a substitute in Ghana's 2-1 defeat to USA in Connecticut on Saturday.

    The 26 year old is also captain of top flight Ghanaian side Liberty Professionals and combines his footballing life with his duties as a police officer.

    He told Focus on Africa's sports presenter Nishat Ladha that the secret behind his recent success was that he grew up with the players he had been assigned to guard.

    They gave him advice on how best manage himself as a policeman and a player. This is what Samuel Sarfo added:

    Quote Message: It was a dream come true. That is the dream of every young chap growing up in Ghana. To don the national colours, I happen to be one of them"
  3. Spanish airline sued over Mali deaths

    Alex Duval Smith

    BBC News

    The High Court in Paris is to hear a case of manslaughter against a Spanish airline over the deaths of 116 passengers and crew who perished in an Air Algerie crash over Mali three years ago.

    Flight AH5017 from Ouagadougou crashed close to Gossi in central Mali on 24 July 2014, a short time after taking off for Algiers.

    There were no survivors of the Air Algerie flight, operated by the Spanish company, Swiftair.

    Victims included 28 Burkinabes, six Algerians, one Nigerian, one Malian and 51 French people.

    A preliminary investigation into the crash found that the plane's protection system against icing had not been activated.

    It also revealed that Swiftair's Spanish pilot and co-pilot were short of experience and flying hours on the McDonnell Douglas M-83 they were operating.

    The case is being brought in France because of the high number of French casualties, including a couple, Bertrand and Véronique Gineste, who died with their three children.

    Relatives of the Ginestes have joined the state prosecution as ''civil parties'' - a legal move that allows victims to argue for damages in court. It is not yet known when the court case will begin.

    People take part in a silent march on August 3, 2014 in Rouans near Nantes, western France in memory of the seven members of the Ouedraogo family who were aboard the Air Algerie plane that crashed over Mali on July 24
    Image caption: Mourners of a family that perished in the Air Algerie crash marched in France in 2014
  4. Zimbabweans react to Mugabe's donation to AU

    Shingai Nyoka

    BBC Africa, Harare

    Zimbabwe's President, Robert Mugabe (C) gives a 1 million USD cheque to the African Union Foundation during the 29th African Union Summit in Addis Ababa

    Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe’s $1m (£772,000) donation to the African Union has been both praised and criticised at home.

    Last year 60% of the African Union’s budget was foreign funded and here in the capital Harare, some told me it is a unique gesture by one of the AU's founding members to wean itself off that foreign funding:

    Quote Message: If that money he is donating is put into proper use, like investing and putting it into countries destroyed by war, it is a good idea - for Africa to be self-sustaining.

    But Zimbabwe is in the middle of an economic crisis which critics blame on the 93-year-old leader's misrule.

    So some told me they weren't impressed by the gesture:

    Quote Message: How can you donate $1m when you are not self-sufficient, your health sector is dying and your economy is dying? Why can't you donate to your own economy and improve the situation of the country?

    Read more on the BBC News website.

  5. Mozambique police promise to protect bald men

    Jose Tembe

    BBC Africa, Maputo

    Bald head

    Police in the central Mozambican province of Zambezia say they are beefing up their operation to crack down on increased murders of bald men.

    We reported in June that five bald men had been killed in Milange. Police think witchdocters use a ruse that a bald head contains gold to get clients to take a person's head to them.

    Zambezia police spokesman Miguel Caetano said the plan was to focus on the people who are ordering the killings.

    "The main criminals are people from neighbouring countries, chiefly Malawi, Tanzania and the Great Lakes region" he said.

  6. Over 70 entries for Juba film festival

    South Sudanese filmmakers

    This year's Juba film festival has received 75 entries, Simon Bingo the festival director has announced.

    Quote Message: Our desire is to share our own local stories as South Sudanese, tell our own stories our way and build the film industry"

    Some 21 local films will compete for a variety of awards from best director to best actor and actress.

    As many as 49 films will compete in the best foreign film category and there are five student films.

    The Juba Film Festival 2017 will be held from 4 to 9 September.

  7. British PR firm accused of stoking racial tension in South Africa

    Andrew Harding

    BBC News, Johannesburg

    The British public relations company Bell Pottinger has been accused of fomenting racial divisions in South Africa, and has been reported to a professional body for the UK PR industry.

    South Africa’s main opposition Democratic Alliance (DA) made the complaint in relation to Bell Pottinger’s work for a powerful business family, the Guptas, accusing it of unethical behavior.

    For weeks now, Bell Pottinger has been under furious attack on social media by South Africans who believe the public relations company has been involved in a dirty tricks campaign.

    Bell Pottinger recently did work for a company linked to the Guptas. It’s alleged the family wields a huge and corrupting influence over the country’s president and cabinet.

    Leaked emails appear to link Bell Pottinger to a campaign in support of the Guptas and South Africa’s embattled President Jacob Zuma.

    Critics allege that the campaign sought to stoke racial tensions here by focusing on the dominant role of white-owned businesses.

    James Henderson, Bell Pottinger’s chief executive, recently said such claims were untrue. Today he told the BBC he was deeply concerned, and has commissioned an external audit of his company’s work to see if the allegations have any merit.

  8. Mugabe says Zimbabwe's gift cows 'moo soprano'

    Earlier we reported that Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe announced that Zimbabwe has auctioned cattle worth $1m (£770,000) to raise money for the African Union Foundation.

    We thought we'd share a particularly curious part of his announcement - that the cows are so good they sing:

    Quote Message: Rest assured the cattle that were sold at auction were seen by us and we admired them. We sold the cows that mooed soprano with their lesser ones... lesser ones mooing alto and tenor and the bulls naturally supplying the bass and the protection of the family."

    He also presented a massive undated cheque to the AU at its leaders' summit in Ethiopia:

    Big cheque
  9. Sudan's President Bashir invited to Russia

    Sudan's foreign ministry says President Omar al Bashir will visit Russia next month, at the invitation of President Vladimir Putin. Mr Bashir, who is wanted by the International Criminal Court on charges of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity, rarely travels outside of Africa and the Middle East.

    Russia has often voted in support of Sudan at the United Nations Security Council.

    Sudan's international relations have improved dramatically recently. Next week the United States will decide whether to lift economic sanctions.

    Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir (C) celebrates on stage with a gathering of supporters in the Green Square in the capital Khartoum on October 11, 2016 following the declaration of an extension of a cease-fire
    Image caption: Sudan's President Omar al-Bashir still wanted by the ICC
  10. Nigerian diocese defies Pope Francis

    Pope Francis leaves St. Peter's Square at the end of the Easter Mass on April 16, 2017 in Vatican City, Vatican
    Image caption: Pope Francis is still being defied by Nigeria's Ahiara Diocese

    A Catholic priest has described the rejection of a Catholic bishop appointed by Pope Francis by members of a diocese in Imo, south-eastern Nigeria as a disgrace, report the Premium Times and Guardian newspapers

    Father Philip Jamang, of the Church of Assumption in Jos central Nigeria, is reported to have told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that it was extremely wrong for some local priests in Ahiara Diocese to support church members opposed to Bishop Peter Okpalaeke whom the Pope Francis appointed.

    “Their action is strange; it is an insult never heard of in the Catholic Church,” Fr Jamang is reported to have said.

    The papers report that Ahiara Catholic Diocese has been without a bishop since the last bishop died.

    Bishop Okpalaeke was then appointed in 2012, however some priests and some members of the laity were opposed to him because of where he came from - the Guardian just says there were "clannish differences".

    Two months ago Pope Francis gave the Ahiara Diocese 30 days within which to accept the Bishop. He also told them to apologise for their behaviour or face "sanctions".

    The ultimatum expired in July without the Pope's directive being obeyed.

  11. Nigerians 'are the most rescued Med migrants'

    Nigerians are now the top nationality rescued after attempting to cross the Mediterranean sea, according to European coast guards.

    Ewa Moncure from Frontex, the European border and coast guard agency, told Focus on Africa that the second largest nationality that they have been seeing are Bangladeshis who fly in to Libya to make the crossing.

    Listen to the full interview:

    Video content

    Video caption: Nigerians are now the top nationality rescued after attempting to cross the Mediterranean
  12. 'Militia violence shuts gold mine' in east DR Congo

    Artisanal miners work at a cassiterite mining site near Numbi in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo
    Image caption: Eastern Congo is home to dozens of militia groups that exploit its vast mineral resources.

    Fighting between the Congolese army and a local militia in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo has forced a gold mine to suspend all operations and temporarily evacuate its staff, Banro Corp told Reuters news agency.

    Twenty-three trucks belonging to a contractor of the mine were caught in cross-fire between soldiers and a local self-defence militia - identified by the army as Mai-Mai - near the town of Lulimba, Banro said in a statement.

    The drivers of the trucks were all safe but the militiamen have not yet cleared the release of the trucks, Banro said.

  13. Angola's president returns to Spain

    Jose Eduardo dos Santos

    Angolan President Jose Eduardo dos Santos has returned to Spain today, the President's office has announced, reports news site Angola24horas.

    Although the news article just says this is a "private visit", his last visit to Spain was a medical visit and led to speculation that he was severely ill.

    The rumours even prompted his daughter Isabel to post on Instagram that he was not dead.

    Mr Dos Santos is 74 years old and has been president of Angola since 1979.

    He will not be running in the August election.

  14. Charges doubled for key suspects in Tanzania energy scandal

    Sammy Awami

    BBC Africa, Dar es Salaam

    Key suspects in a Tanzanian energy scandal called the Tegeta Escrow scandal are now facing 12 charges, up from six counts they were charged with previously.

    Among other charges, Harbinder Sethi and James Rugemalira are charged with economic sabotage, forgery and money laundering.

    The Tegeta Escrow scandal is a multi-million-dollar corruption scandal from 2014 that allegedly saw more than $180m (£139m) siphoned from the Tanzanian central bank and shared among politicians, government officials, some judges and even religious leaders, according to a parliamentary committee.

    The scandal prompted the resignation of various top government officials.

    The two have not entered a plea as the court does not have jurisdiction over the matter.

    They were remanded in custody until 14 July.

  15. Can Sierra Leone sustain a women's league?

    Sierra Leone Football Association President Isha Johansen
    Image caption: Isha Johansen is Sierra Leone's first female football president

    Sierra Leone is bidding to revitalise women's football in the country with the launch of a first ever league under the leadership of the nation's first ever female football association president, Isha Johansen,

    But there are concerns about how the league will be sustained in Sierra Leone

    The newest executive member of the Sierra Leone Football Association Foday Turay told the BBC there is one vital missing part: a calendar of matches.

    Quote Message: We need to have a well structured league system and a proper calendar. We lack the structure at the moment with no proper calendar and because of all these shortfalls we can't attract sponsors.

    Read more on the BBC Sport website.

  16. EU's Kenya election observers warn against possible violence

    Kenyan police talk to protestors during clashes between two rival groups due to the results of Kenya's disputed presidential election.
    Image caption: The 2007 Kenyan election was followed by deadly clashes

    The EU has warned of possible violence in Kenya's August elections, reports AFP news agency.

    "It is no secret that there are concerns about the possible outbreak of violence. This is not inevitable," head of the EU Election Observation Mission Marietje Schaake told AFP

    The warning came as the EU deployed observers ahead of the 8 August vote where President Uhuru Kenyatta is running against his longtime rival Raila Odinga.

    The vote is for a president as well as parliamentarians and senators, county governors and assembly members.

    AFP adds that advocacy group Human Rights Watch said it had received reports of threats and voter intimidation in Naivasha, a flashpoint town after disputed elections in 2007 led to the deaths of over 1,100 people, while more than 600,000 more were displaced.

    The last election, in 2013, was mostly peaceful.

  17. Criticism over plans for a new Zambian State House

    Kennedy Gondwe

    BBC World Service, Lusaka

    Zambian President Edgar Lungu
    Image caption: The new State House would be for Zambian President Edgar Lungu

    Plans by the Zambian government to construct a new official residence and offices for the country’s president have been met with disapproval with people questioning their necessity.

    Parliament heard last week that Zambia will start constructing the residence next year at a cost of $20m (£15m).

    The country’s works and supply minister Matthew Nkhuwa said the current State House, which was constructed in the 1930s, had become a risk to the people living there.

    Quote Message: I think that the value of a human being, regardless, is higher than the price we can pay to build another State House."

    He added that even though it was not a priority, he asked "where was the President expected to work from?”

    But Mike Mulongoti, an opposition leader, says there are other areas where that money can be used such as the health and education sectors.

    Other Zambians have taken to social media to condemn the move.

    View more on twitter
  18. Dubai firm buys Java coffee chain

    Nancy Kacungira

    BBC Africa, Nairobi

    A coffee barista shows how to pour milk in a coffee in what is commonly known as 'latte art' or 'coffee art' at Dormans cafe in Nairobi on April 25, 2016.
    Image caption: Coffee shops have recently become popular in East Africa

    In a landmark deal in East Africa's consumer market, Dubai-based private-equity fund Abraaj Group has acquired the region's most prominent upmarket coffee chain, Java House Group.

    The competition to buy Java House reflects the international private equity firms’ growing interest in East Africa, according to analysts.

    Abraaj says it has invested $3.2bn (£2.5bn) in 80 entities across Africa in the last two decades.

    Abraaj purchased 100% of Java House Group for an undisclosed amount from the equity firm Emerging Capital Partners (ECP), and the company’s founder and chairman, Kevin Ashley.

    Java House has 60 outlets in Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda and roasts coffee for sale to other buyers. It also runs the Planet Yoghurt brand, and a pizzeria outlet called 360 Degrees.

  19. Kenyan university lecturers return to the streets

    Odeo Sirari

    BBC Africa, Nairobi

    Three months after their last strike, Kenya's university lecturers have again taken to the streets in the capital Nairobi today.

    The lecturers are protesting at the government's failure to implement an agreement for their pay review.

    In March the government entered into an agreement with the university dons after signing a collective bargaining agreement to pay them over $96m (£74m) in salary increments.

    The secretary general of the Kenya university staff union said the government had not yet honoured its promise despite the agreement that the pay rise would be effected by 30 June.

    The lecturers have vowed to continue with their strike despite Education Minister Fred Matiangi saying that the government was willing to pay.

    The lecturers are demanding to be paid in full while the government has proposed paying in installments.

    The last time round the lecturers boycotted classes for two months.

    Kenyan University lecturers protest in Nairobi
    Image caption: Kenya university lecturers are demanding payment in full
  20. Leading Kenyan supermarket chain in financial trouble

    Ferdinand Omondi

    BBC Africa, Nairobi

    Shoppers look at products in the Nakumatt supermarket in Nairobi on June 8, 2015.
    Image caption: In better days, Nakumatt's shelves were fully stocked

    Hundreds of jobs in East Africa are in danger as a leading retail chain faces the threat of liquidation.

    Kenyan supermarket chain Nakumatt is struggling to pay its creditors and is now in court to stop debt collectors from seizing its assets.

    Nakumatt has a the tag-line "You need it, we’ve got it", but, in recent months, even basic products like bread have been hard to find on its shelves.

    Disappointed customers questioned what was happening but, in spite of denials, it soon became clear that the supermarket could no longer pay its suppliers.

    And now it’s getting worse; Nakumatt, it appears, cannot afford to pay rent on some of its premises. A week after closing three stores in Uganda, auctioneers seized goods and assets at a Nairobi suburban mall over rent arrears worth nearly half a million dollars.

    The supermarket is facing a separate insolvency petition by another supplier over $700,000 (£540,000) in unpaid debts, amid claims it issued bouncing cheques.

    The Kenya government has stepped in to mediate between the chain and creditors, in a move aimed at preventing the chain from going under, particularly before August’s elections.