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Live Reporting

By Dickens Olewe and Farouk Chothia

All times stated are UK

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  1. Scroll down for Wednesday's stories

    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: A single frog can spoil the stream." from An Acholi proverb sent by Fred Omara in Gulu, Uganda
    An Acholi proverb sent by Fred Omara in Gulu, Uganda

    Click here to send us your African proverbs.

    And we leave you with this picture of a woman selling doughnuts and fatayas at the side of the road in -Mauritania's capital, Nouakchott.

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  2. US 'condemns bid to give Congo top UN seat'

    The US has condemned African states for nominating the Democratic Republic of Congo for a seat on the UN Human Rights Council, saying it "weakened" the body and could fuel conflict, AFP news agency reports.

    US ambassador Nikki Haley said the nomination was "an inexcusable failure" on the part of African nations to promote human rights, AFP quoted her as saying at a meeting of the UN Security Council.

    She added:

    Quote Message: When the nations of the Africa Group put forward a country like the Democratic Republic of Congo to be a member of the Human Rights Council, it does more than just weaken that body - it adds to the conflict that is causing so much suffering on that continent."

    The UN General Assembly is expected to vote in October to fill seats at the 47-nation council, which monitors and investigates rights violations across the world.

    African countries have chosen DR Congo, Angola, Nigeria and Senegal to fll the four seats reserved for the continent, AFP reports.

    DR Congo was affected by deadly protests last year over President Joseph Kabila's failure to step down at the end his two terms in office.

    The country has also been hit by instablity in the central Kasai region, where UN investigators say they are not ruling out the involvement of Congolese security forces or militia groups in the suspected murder of two of their colleagues.

    Michael Sharp, a US citizen, and Zaida Catalan, a dual Swedish-Chilean national, were killed in March whilst gathering research on the security situation in the region.

  3. 'Proposal to move Afcon to China or Qatar'

    As we have just reported, delegates meeting at Confederation of African Football (Caf) conference in Morocco have made a proposal to change the calendar of the Africa Cup of Nations.

    A journalist at the meeting has tweeted a screenshot of the some of the recommendations, which includes China, the US or Qatar hosting Africa's main football tournament in 2023:

    View more on twitter

    See earlier post

  4. DR Congo's female boxers

    The Democratic Republic of Congo's capital, Kinshasa, was best known as the backdrop to the Rumble in the Jungle - the epic boxing match between George Foreman and Muhammad Ali.

    This legacy continues to inspire young boxers in the country, including a group of female athletes who are taking the sport by storm.

    Meet Marcella Sakobi, one of the up and coming new athletes:

    Video content

    Video caption: Boxer Marcella Sakobi: Boxing "gives me discipline and I know it will help me go far.”
  5. Radical changes proposed to Nations Cup

    Dramatic changes to Africa's top competition now await rubber-stamping by the executive committee of the Confederation of African Football (Caf) after recommendations made at a conference in Morocco on Wednesday.

    The showpiece Africa Cup of Nations finals is set to be expanded and its contentious timing changed, but its frequency will remain every two years.

    The tournament is likely to be moved to June and July, instead of January and February, and will increase from 16 to 24 teams.

    The two annual club competitions - the African Champions League and African Confederation Cup - are likely to run from August to May rather than inside a calendar year, as has been the case for decades.

    It will increase revenue for Caf and we can triple our income

    NFF President Amaju Pinnick on Nations Cup expansion

    Changes to refereeing structures, coaching standards and medical preparedness were also recommended.

    Read full story

    Conference location
    Image caption: The two-day symposium in Rabat has been looking at the future of football in Africa.
  6. First South African to reveal she had Aids remembered

    A South African woman, Prudence Mabele, who became the first black person in the country to declare her HIV-positive status has been remembered as "a global icon" after her death on 10 July.

    Despite the stigma she faced, Prudence revealed her status in 1992 and was determined to be brave, and to encourage others to live without shame.

    She died at the age of 46, following a battle with pneumonia. Her funeral, held just over a week later, was attended by Cyril Ramaphosa, South Africa's deputy president, and a host of other dignitaries.

    Read her full story

    Prudence Mabele
  7. Malawi ex-minister arrested over maize deal

    Malawi's former agriculture minister - who is accused of corruption over a $34.5m (£27.7m) maize import deal from neighbouring Zambia - has been arrested, a spokeswoman for the anti-corruption bureau has said.

    George Chaponda was likely to be charged with "corruptly performing public functions, misuse of public office and possession of foreign currency" in contravention of the law, Egrita Ndala added in a statement.

    An investigation had established that offences had allegedly been "committed in the procurement of maize" from Zambia last year, Ms Ndala said.

    Once a close ally of President Mutharika, Mr Chaponda was sacked in February after police allegedly found $223,000 in his house during a raid, AFP news agency reports.

    Mr Chapona has peviously denied any wrongdoing, and defended the maize deal as a vital attempt to "save Malawi from hunger".

    The poor southern African state is heavily dependent on donor aid, and regularly suffers from food shortages.

    Its population was badly affected by the drought which hit the region last year.

    Donors withheld aid from the country in 2013 following a big corruption scandal, known as cashgate.

    eeds grow in a maize field in the village of Ngwelelo, which lies in one of the areas most affected by drought, on September 10, 2016 in Zomba, Malawi.
    Image caption: The El Nino weather phenomenon was said to have contributed to the drought

    Find out more about Malawi

  8. UN warns of 'ruthless' Mediterranean smugglers

    The UN refugee agency says the number of deaths on the migrant route from Libya to Italy is increasing and that traffickers are becoming ever more ruthless.

    It wants $420m (£320m) to stop people risking their lives on the Mediterranean crossing.

    Rami Ruhayem spent weeks on a rescue boat with Médecins Sans Frontières and heard the harrowing testimony of those who survived.

    Video content

    Video caption: UNHCR calls for $420m to stop people risking their lives crossing the Mediterranean
  9. Big cabinet reshuffle in Ivory Coast

    BBC World Service

    Ivory Coast's President Alassane Ouattara has made significant changes in his government, replacing the defence and interior ministers.

    One of Mr Ouattara's closest allies, Hamed Bakayoko, has been moved from the interior to the defence ministry.

    Ivory Coast has been hit by army mutinies in recent months, with former rebels demanding bonuses and back pay.

    On Friday, at least three soldiers are reported to have been shot dead during disturbances at a military camp in the north of the country.

  10. Kenya election watch podcast

    Dickens Olewe

    BBC Africa

    A study published today says that around 90% of Kenyans have seen or heard false news about the upcoming general election.

    On this week's show I interviewed researcher Odanga Madung from Odipo Dev about a three-month research he has completed on news links shared on Facebook.

    I also spoke to my BBC Monitoring colleague Juliet Njeri about hate speech on some radio stations, which has been a problem during elections in the past.

    And in the fact-check segment we look at the proposed cuts to the salaries of the incoming lawmakers.

    Listen below:

    You can catch up on previous episodes of podcast by clicking on the links below:

    1. The contenders
    2. Campaign funding
    3. Electoral register
    4. Women
    5. Manifestos
    6. Youth vote
    7. Land
  11. Kagame urges supporters to 'vote for him before sunrise'

    A Rwandan journalist has been tweeting from a political rally in the suburb of Kicukiro in the capital, Kigali, where President Paul Kagame is campaigning ahead of the 4 August election.

    He tweets that Mr Kagame, the candidate of the governing RPF party, has been urging supporters to vote early "before sunrise":

    View more on twitter

    He also shared this video of an RPF supporter with an aeroplane model emblazoned with Tora Kagame Paul which means vote for Paul Kagame.

    View more on twitter

    Two other candidates are vying for the presidency. Frank Habineza of the Democratic Green Party of Rwanda and Philippe Mpayimana, who is an independent.

    Mr Kagame, who has been president since 2000, is seeking another seven-year term.

  12. Behind the scenes of BBC Madagascar trip

    A team of BBC reporters was in Madagascar reporting about mining of sapphires and its impact on lemurs.

    The team had to walk for nine hours through the rain forest to reach the mining fields. Watch their behind the scenes report:

    Video content

    Video caption: Behind the scenes of BBC team's Madagascar rainforest trek

    Watch: Sapphire mining threatens the indri lemur species

  13. Kenneth Kaunda in hospital

    Kennedy Gondwe

    BBC World Service, Lusaka

    Nelson Mandela (L) and Zambian president Kenneth Kaunda (R) wave to the crowd as they arrive at a mass rally of ANC, at Independent Stadium, 03 March 1990 in Lusaka, seat of the exiled ANC
    Image caption: Mr Kaunda (L) welcomed the late Nelson Mandela to Zambia after his release from prison in 1990

    Zambia's founding President Kenneth Kaunda, 93, has been admitted to hospital after complaining of feeling weak.

    Health Minister Chitalu Chilufya said that Mr Kaunda's condition was not serious:

    Quote Message: He's a national asset so we thought we could do other routine medical check-ups whilst he is in our custody. Everything is fine and he will be out soon."

    Mr Kaunda, a hero of the liberation struggle, ruled Zambia from 1964 to 1991, when he lost elections to the late Frederick Chiluba.

  14. Morocco 'jails' Saharawis over killings

    A civilian court in Morocco has sentenced 23 Saharawis to jail terms ranging from two years to life over the killing of 11 security forces in the disputed territory of Western Sahara, AFP news agency reports.


    The case was referred to the civilian court following widespread condemnation of the 2013 verdict of a military court, which gave the group jail terms ranging from 20 years to life.

    Earlier this week, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch urged Morocco to ensure that the civilian court's verdict was not based on confessions or statements "obtained under torture or other ill-treatment during police interrogations".

    Morocco and the Polisario Front independence movement have accused each other of being behind the deadly clashes which took place between the security forces and Saharawi protesters at a camp for displaced people in 2010.

    Watch: Forty years in a refugee camp

  15. 'Drug traffickers' detained in Western Sahara

    The Polisario Front (PF) says it has arrested 19 drug traffickers who crossed into territory it controls with the "complicity" of Moroccan soldiers, AFP news agency reports.

    A sand barrier of 2,700km (1,675 mile) separates Moroccan-controlled and Polisario-held territory in the disputed region of Western Sahara.

    The PF is fighting for an end to Moroccan rule in the whole of Western Sahara, a former Spanish colony annexed by Rabat in 1975.

    Read: Toy soldiers in Western Sahara

    Soldiers from the Pro-independence Polisario Front parade during a ceremony marking the 35th anniversary of the proclamation of independence of the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic in the Western Sahara village of Tifariti on February 27, 2011
  16. Kenya closes two hotels over cholera outbreak

    Anne Soy

    BBC Africa, Nairobi

    People walk past a kiosk where a poster giving information on how to prevent Cholera is displayed in the Kibera area of Nairobi on May 20, 2015
    Image caption: Cholera is a water-borne disease that is transmitted through contaminated water and food

    Kenyan health authorities have ordered the closure of two hotels in the capital, Nairobi, following a cholera outbreak.

    Four people have died from the disease since May and more than 300 cases reported.

    The health ministry acted after dozens of people - including two cabinet ministers - were admitted to hospital after eating food prepared by the two hotels.

    Health minister Cleopa Mailu says the two hotels would remain closed until they comply with new health and safety standards set by the ministry.

    The ministry has also cancelled the medical certificates of all food handlers across the country and formed a task force to oversee the government’s response to the outbreak.

    Six treatment centres have been set up, mainly in informal settlements, as the city tries to stop the spread of the disease.

  17. Kenya men sentenced to death for stripping woman

    View more on twitter

    Three Kenyan men - who stripped, robbed and attacked a woman in a bus, in an incident that was recorded and widely shared on social media three years ago - have been sentenced to death by a magistrate in the capital, Nairobi.

    The death sentence was imposed after the three were convicted of robbery with violence. A further sentence of 25 years was given for stripping the woman, Jilo Kadida, a court reporter with Kenya's privately owned Star newspaper, told the BBC.

    The jail term was, however, suspended as they had already been handed the death penalty, she added.

    The three sentenced men are bus driver Nicholas Mwangi, conductor Meshack Mwangi and Edward Ndung’u.

    Nairobi chief magistrate Francis Andayi said the attack was a "senseless and uncouth act that they seemed to enjoy because they were cheering as they stripped the woman", the privately owned Daily Nation newspaper reported.

    The victim told the court that there were about seven men in the bus during the attack and that they wanted to rape her but she lied that she is HIV positive.

    She said the video recording shared on social media was only 59 seconds but the incident lasted longer, the Daily Nation reported.

    The video of the attack sparked protests with hundreds of women marching in Nairobi under the banner #MyDressMyChoice, following reports that the men attacked her for allegedly being "indecently dressed" in a miniskirt.

  18. Zimbabwe to toughen anti-rape law

    Zimbabwe's cabinet has resolved to impose a minimum prison sentence of 60 years for the rape of a child below the age of 12 years or a person with disabilities, the Minister of Information, Chris Mushowe, has said.

    He added that "the rest of the cases of rape or sodomy" would carry a minimum sentence of 40 years.

    Tougher sentences were needed to "protect our society against the perpetrators of this inhumane crime", the minister said.

    The cabinet's decision is subject to parliament approving legislation on the new sentences.

  19. Sapphire rush threatens Madagascar lemurs

    Video content

    Video caption: Why sapphire mining could wipe out the indri lemur

    Indris - the largest lemurs - are native to Madagascar but their existence is threatened by illegal mining.

    Since late last year more than 40,000 miners have descended on the island.

    Our team followed the miners and made the long trek into what is meant to be a protected zone.

    Filmed and edited by Tony Smith. Additional filming by Chris Parkinson.

  20. 'Fake news prevalent in Kenya'

    View more on twitter

    Around 90% of Kenyans have seen or heard false news about the upcoming general election, a nationwide study on news consumption in the East African state has found.

    The research, which sampled 2,000 Kenyans via SMS in May, also found that 87% of respondents regarded the news as being deliberately misleading – or fake.

    With less than 20 days to the general election there have been a flood of misleading stories from websites set up to deliberately misinform.

    The study also found that traditional media was most trusted with radio ranked as the most consistently accessed source of news.

    Facebook and WhatsApp are listed as the most popular social media platforms through which people get news.

    However, social media platforms repeatedly ranked lower than traditional media on trust.

    Allan Kamau, the head of Portland Nairobi, attributed this to Kenyans being able to spot fake news:

    Quote Message: While fake news is evidently now a core part of the news mix in Kenya, reassuringly, our study found that Kenyans are already well attuned to spotting false information. "

    It also says that friends, family, and community leaders are "ranked as the least likely to provide accurate information about the general election".

    The poll is due to be held on 8 August, with eight men - including President Uhuru Kenyatta and veteran opposition leader Raila Odinga - running for the presidency.

    The research was done by strategic communications consultancy Portland in collaboration with GeoPoll, a mobile surveying platform.