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Summary

  1. Seven pharmaceutical executives sentenced in Benin
  2. Namibia records first case of listeriosis
  3. Arrests in post-election clash in Sierra Leone
  4. US Secretary of State fired 'during Africa tour'
  5. Burundi president is a 'visionary', say party faithful
  6. India says Gupta family has SA citizenship
  7. Ghana activists call for vote on gay rights
  8. Beyoncé inspired by classic Senegalese film
  9. Kenya named African super-rich property hotspot

Live Reporting

By Flora Drury, Natasha Booty and Dickens Olewe

All times stated are UK

  1. Scroll down for Tuesday's and Monday's stories

    We'll be back tomorrow

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

    A reminder of Tuesday's wise words:

    Quote Message: A letter from the heart can be read on the face." from A Swahili proverb sent by Stewart Omondi, Kisumu, Kenya
    A Swahili proverb sent by Stewart Omondi, Kisumu, Kenya

    Click here and scroll to the bottom to send us your African proverbs.

    And we leave you with this photo taken in Senegal's holy city of Touba:

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  2. Egypt's most successful football club - in 60 seconds

    Cairo giants Al Ahly have won their fortieth Egyptian Premier League title with six weeks to spare.

    They've won 10 of the last 11 championships, and are also the most successful team ever in the African Champions League.

    BBC Arabic's Nader Ibrahim sums up their historic achievement:

    Video content

    Video caption: Al Ahly have bagged their fortieth league title
  3. Buhari fires Delta militants amnesty chief

    A militant in the Niger Delta

    Nigeria's President Muhammadu Buhari has fired the head of an amnesty programme for former militants who attacked energy facilities in the Niger Delta oil production heartland.

    A spokesman said Brigadier-General Paul Boroh was to be replaced with Professor Charles Quaker Dokubo as the coordinator of the amnesty programme.

    The spokesman said Mr Buhari had also ordered "a full investigation into the activities of the amnesty programme from 2015 to date, especially allegations of financial impropriety".

    The amnesty programme, which was agreed upon in 2009, was mean to encourage tens of thousands of militants into giving up their arms in return for a monthly salary and the opportunity to retrain as divers, welders and boat builders at colleges overseas.

    But critics regarded the deal as little more than a "bribe for peace" which took up a huge amount of the country's resources.

  4. Seven jailed for selling 'fake medicine' in Benin

    Alex Duval Smith

    BBC Africa, Dakar

    A court in Benin has jailed seven senior staff of pharmaceutical companies on charges of selling illicit medicines.

    The case sets a precedent in the fight against fake medicines in West Africa.

    Medicines are considered fake when they lack a crucial ingredient or contain lower levels of it than claimed. They are sold in packaging which is often identical to the real thing.

    The seven men work for wholesalers importing all kinds of medicines - ranging from painkillers to anti-malarials - for sale in Benin and the region.

    They were jailed for four years and fined a total of 100 million CFA Francs ($190,000; £136,000). Two other defendants were given six-month jail sentences.

    A picture taken at the cemetery of Abobo district of Abidjan on March 10, 2017 shows fake medecine bearing Chinese character as people unload boxes of counterfeit drugs from a truck. 50 tonnes of fake medicine, for an estimated value of more than 1 million euros, were burnt in Abidjan on March 10, 2017.
    Image caption: Last year, 50 tonnes of fake medicine were burnt in nearby Ivory Coast

    Cotonou is one West Africa's biggest ports. In the past year, Benin's police have staged many raids on fake drug stores.

    The country wants to shed its image as a crossroads for counterfeit goods.

  5. Tillerson's Africa soundbites

    The US Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, who had just returned home from an official state tour of five African nations, is out of a job - as we reported earlier.

    He was fired by President Donald Trump and will be replaced by the CIA director, Mike Pompeo.

    During his state visit to Ethiopia, Djibouti, Kenya, Nigeria and Chad he met with heads of state and the African Union, and spoke on several occasions to stress America's commitment to the continent.

    Our colleagues at BBC Focus on Africa radio have compiled some of the key moments:

    Video content

    Video caption: US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson loses his job on his return from a tour of Africa
  6. Sierra Leone vote: First results expected

    Reporters gather in a room to await an annoucement

    Reporters have gathered in the Sierra Leonean capital Freetown ahead of an expected announcement by the country's electoral commission.

    It is thought the spokesman will reveal the results of the presidential vote - which is expected to end in a run-off between the top two candidates.

    However, it could be something else entirely.

  7. How scientists traced sickle-cell disease back to one African child

    An illustration of sickle cells
    Image caption: Sickle cells grow into crescent shapes, instead of the round red blood cells seen in people without the gene

    New research suggests that the history of sickle-cell disease goes back to a mutation in just one person, a development researchers hope will make treatment less complicated for the many people who suffer from this painful illness.

    So how have they traced it and why does it matter?

    Our colleague Nalina Eggert has been speaking to the people behind the research: Tracing sickle cell back to one child, 7,300 years ago

  8. Arrests made in Sierra Leone amid election tension

    Map of Sierra Leone

    Eighteen people have been arrested following violent clashes in eastern Sierra Leone between supporters of the ruling party and the main opposition, the BBC's Umaru Fofana reports.

    Military and police patrols have been put in place at Koquima in Kono District where local police say several people were injured, but calm has now returned.

    Eyewitnesses say trouble started yesterday when opposition Sierra Leone People's Party (SLPP) supporters began taunting their All People's Congress (APC) counterparts over the current partial results of the presidential race which gives their candidate, Julius Maada Bio, a narrow lead.

    It began as violence between two neighbors before spreading, our reporter adds.

  9. Namibia records first case of listeriosis

    A sign to inform customers is placed over the processed cold meats section of a supermarket in Cape Town, South Africa, 05 March 2018.
    Image caption: A South African supermarket with a warning sign

    A 41-year-old man is fighting for his life in a Namibian hospital after becoming the country's first listeriosis victim, the health minister said.

    Bernard Haufiku said the man became ill after eating a vienna sausage from a butchers about 300 miles (475km) north of the capital Windhoek, where he is now receiving treatment.

    The announcement came a week after Namibia announced it was banning imports from the company which was revealed as the source of the world's largest ever outbreak in neighbouring South Africa.

    So far, South Africa's outbreak has killed more than 180 people and made almost 1,000 ill.

    However, Mr Haufiku said Namibia was ready as a result.

    He told parliament: "We were already prepared as a country when we heard there was a break out in South Africa."

    The new case comes two days after a human rights lawyer invited victims in South Africa to join him in a lawsuit against Tiger Brands, the owner of the Limpopo province factory where the outbreak is believed to have begun.

  10. Campaigners call for gay rights vote in Ghana

    Favour Nunoo

    BBC Pidgin, Accra

    A flyer in support of the referendum featuring campaigner Philcollins Agbedanu Kröger
    Image caption: Flyers in support of the referendum are being circulated on social media

    Ghana's LGBTQ community is calling for a referendum on the rights of homosexuals in the country.

    The group says they can prove there are more gay Ghanaians than thought but most are hiding due to fears of persecution and discrimination.

    Homosexual acts are illegal in Ghana, and many religious groups and politicians are vehemently opposed to legalising it.

    But speaking to BBC Pidgin, activist Philcollins Agbedanu Kröger accused the parliamentary speaker, Mike Oquaye, of not being “fair” in taking a dogged stance against gay rights.

    “Gay and lesbian rights legalisation is not an individual issue, it should be debated in parliament and call for referendum so people can vote.”

    The growing pressure from LGBTQ group follows comments by US Ambassador to Ghana Robert Jackson, who revealed Ghana is likely to legalise homosexuality within in a decade.

    He said: “Statistics indicate that probably 10% of people are born gay.

    "I think there are far more gays in Ghana than Ghanaians realise but because of societal pressure, societal attitude, they keep their sexuality private."

    Campaigner Philcollins Agbedanu Kröger
    Image caption: Campaigner Philcollins Agbedanu Kröger is among those calling for a referendum
  11. Burundi president 'only a visionary'

    Burundian President Pierre Nkurunziza talks during an interview at the Westin hotel in Paris on June 4, 2014
    Image caption: Pierre Nkurunziza has not been named Eternal Supreme Guide

    Burundi's ruling party has denied it has elevated its leader, President Pierre Nkurunziza, to "Eternal Supreme Guide" - saying it had only bestowed the title "visionary" on the politician.

    The party said the confusion was down to a mis-translation of the Kirundi phrase "Imboneza yamaho".

    During a press conference on Tuesday, the party's secretary general Evariste Ndayishimiye explained that they regarded Mr Nkurunziza as a visionary after reviewing what he had achieved "against the odds", according to our BBC reporter.

    Mr Ndayishimiye also revealed the party was asking its members to devote Thursdays for God, prayer and fasting", according to the news agency AFP.

    The move, he said, was inspired by evangelical Christian Mr Nkurunziza, who already dedicates his Thursdays to such matters.

    "The whole party is obliged to follow him," Mr Ndaysihimiye said.

    The demand will do little to assuage fears Mr Nkurnziza, a former rebel leader who plunged the country into violence after refusing to step down in 2015, is forming a cult of personality around himself.

    • Read our earlier story here.
  12. Dozens killed in fresh DR Congo violence

    Map of the Democratic Republic of Congo

    At least 30 people have died in fresh clashes after heavily armed men armed attacked villages in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DR Congo).

    The men - wielding machetes, arrows and AK-47s - are reported to have started by burning people's homes in at least one of the affected villages in Ituri province, according to the United Nations-sponsored Radio Okapi.

    The radio station says it has counted as many as 41 dead, after speaking to local people. In two of the villages alone, witnesses said 10 people had been killed.

    However, news agency AFP says it has only confirmed the deaths of 30 people.

    "We have recorded 30 deaths. There are certainly other bodies out in the bush. A search is underway," a government official told the agency.

    People coming off the lake after fleeing from the DR Congo
    Image caption: Thousands of people have fled since the violence reignited in December

    The violence is believed to be the latest in series ethnic clashes which has left more than 100 people dead since December. There were 31 deaths reported at the start of this month alone.

    It has forced some 200,000 people to flee their homes, with conflict between the Hema cattle herders and Lendu farmers being blamed for the upsurge in violence.

    However. the problem gripping Ituri is just one of several conflicts in the DR Congo.

  13. Tillerson fired by Trump 'during Africa tour'

    US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta
    Image caption: US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson (centre) and Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta (right) in Nairobi on Friday

    President Trump has sacked his Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, who had just returned from an official state tour of five African nations this morning.

    He'll be replaced by the CIA director, Mike Pompeo.

    In a tweet on Tuesday, Mr Trump thanked Mr Tillerson for "his service" as he put it.

    Reporters for US media outlets, including the Washington Post and CNN, say Mr Tillerson was actually fired on Friday - the day he visited Djibouti and Kenya.

    He then cancelled some of his activities in Kenya the following day, saying he felt unwell.

    The other three countries he visited on his tour were Ethiopia, Nigeria and Chad.

    On Monday, Mr Tillerson said he agreed with Britain's assessment that Russia was likely to be responsible for the poisoning in Britain of a Russian double agent and that those involved must be punished.

    But his words weren't matched by the White House. Earlier Mr Trump and Mr Tillerson has several public disagreements, specifically over how to deal with North Korea.

    In one instance, Mr Tillerson pointedly refused to deny calling his boss a moron.

  14. Wakanda has Black Panther. Senegal has Sandale-man.

    Black Panther has shattered stereotypes and smashed global box office records, raking in $1bn (£717m) at the box office and counting.

    But while critics have praised the film for challenging Western clichés about Africa, a Senegalese filmmaker says African cinema won't benefit from its success.

    Jean Jacques Toué wants more recognition for local superheroes like his character Sandale-man, who fights crime in Senegal thanks to his powerful sandal throw.

    He says that what started out as a joke became a tool for local representation. There is plenty of talent, Toué adds, but the challenge is the lack of funding for African cinema.

    Video content

    Video caption: 'Instead of relying on Hollywood, Africa needs to create its own characters'
  15. National Geographic: 'Our coverage was racist'

    US magazine National Geographic says its past coverage of people around the world was racist.

    It ignored non-white Americans and showed different groups as exotic or savage, propagating "every type of cliché", editor Susan Goldberg said.

    The magazine's April edition is dedicated to race and it has asked a historian to look at past issues.

    It decided to re-examine its coverage to mark 50 years since civil rights leader Martin Luther King was murdered.

    "Let's confront today's shameful use of racism as a political strategy and prove we are better than this,"Ms Goldberg wrote in an editorial entitled "For Decades, Our Coverage Was Racist".

    Ms Goldberg said some of the magazine's archive material left her "speechless", including a 1916 photo of Australian Aborigines with the caption "South Australian Blackfellows: These savages rank lowest in intelligence of all human beings".

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  16. Comic Relief makes Africans 'victims to be pitied'

    Video content

    Video caption: David Lammy on the image of Africa shown by Comic Relief

    A London MP has hit out at the BBC's fundraising drive Sports Relief - saying African people are "equals to be respected, not... victims to be pitied".

    David Lammy, the MP for Tottenham, says Sports Relief and its sister show Comic Relief should do more to challenge its audience to think about things like trade, dictatorship, debt and education to understand what "sustained change really means".

    He says the format - which raises millions every year - is "tired and hugely patronising to the people of a great continent".

    "Why not get Africans to talk for themselves about the continent, and the problems they know?" Mr Lammy asked.

    Hear his thoughts on the issue by watching the video above.

  17. Violent protests in Guinea disrupt mining shipments

    Protests over disputed local elections in Guinea have spread to the mining towns of Boke and Kamsar, disrupting shipments of bauxite - the aluminium ore which is critical to the West African country's economy.

    Opposition protestors have blocked roads with burning tyres and the police have responded with tear gas and clubs.

    The opposition says last month's elections were rigged and are demanding that the results be published, Reuters new agency reports. There is now growing anger with the government.

    The polls were meant to be held eight years ago, but were delayed due to cash shortages, political wrangling and the outbreak of the deadly Ebola disease.

    People demonstrate in central Conakry on March 12, 2018, in a day of protest against Guinea's President.
    Image caption: Thousands demonstrated in Conakry yesterday

    On Monday, thousands of women led demonstrations in the capital Conakry and other towns because their children had not been to school for weeks due to an unresolved teachers strike.

    "Our boats are stranded and waiting to be loaded," the head of Societe Miniere de Boke -one of Guinea's biggest mining companies, told Reuters news agency. Frederic Bouzigues added that the situation was causing losses.

  18. Gupta brothers are SA citizens, says India

    It has been the question gripping South Africans for the last week: are the Gupta brothers citizens of their country, or not?

    The South African government certainly seemed confused about the status of the wealthy Indian-born family - who have been accused of having used their relationship with former president Jacob Zuma to wield political power and help their business interests, accusations they deny.

    Eventually, after going back and forth on the issue, it settled on two out of three of the brothers holding South African citizenship, with just Ajay - currently wanted by police - not having taken up citizenship.

    Unfortunately, it doesn't appear that is quite the end of the matter.

    It has now emerged the Indian government has also looked into the issue - and has told the world in no uncertain terms that the Gupta brothers were all South African citizens.

    Ministry of External Affairs spokesman Shri Raveesh Kumar has been quoted as saying: "I think it is important to understand the background of the Guptas themselves.

    "The Guptas is a privately owned South African business. They and their family members are South African citizens, the government and the law enforcement agencies of South Africa are doing their job.

    "The law must and, I think, will take its own course, it should prevail."

    He added the government of India would not involve itself in the matters of other countries.

    It is not exaggeration to say that the revelation - brought to light by national broadcaster SABC - has been met with a fair amount of eye-rolling in South Africa.

    View more on twitter
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    None of the three brothers have been seen in South Africa since police raided their home earlier this year, and it is not entirely clear where they are currently residing.

    They had been invited to give evidence at an inquiry into so-called "state capture" today, but their lawyers said they would not be attending.

  19. Court challenge to 'restrictive' media law in Tanzania

    Sammy Awami

    BBC Africa, Dar es Salaam

    A newspaper vendor sorts the morning papers as they arrive by ferry from the mainland in historical Stone Town, on November 2, 2015
    Image caption: Tanzania's media landscape has grown hugely in recent years

    Journalists and activists will be in court in Tanzania today, fighting a new law which they say will place unfair restrictions on what they can publish and block people from working as reporters.

    The case comes amid fears for freedom of expression in the east African country - especially in light the recent decisions to suspend a number of newspapers and jail individuals jailed for criticising the government.

    The Media Council of Tanzania and rights activists say some provisions of the new media law unfairly restrict what a media outlet can publish.

    They reject the requirement that all journalists in Tanzania must be accredited, and they oppose the power given to a government body to bar an individual from working as a journalist.

    The applicants have taken the case to the East African Court of Justice, arguing these provisions contravene a treaty which requires member countries to abide by and protect all rights provided by the treaty.

    Media stakeholders in Tanzania had requested more time to review the bill and provide their input before it was signed into law.

    But their calls were dismissed, the parliament enacted the law, and the president quickly assented.

    Over the past few years the media space in Tanzania has grown exponentially, but so have the laws and regulations which give authorities the power to restrict journalists and media organizations on the grounds of national security or public interest.

  20. South Sudan general on UN blacklist fired

    A South Sudanese general accused of fuelling the country's ongoing conflict has been fired by President Salva Kiir.

    Lt Gen Marial Chanuang Yol Mangok, the assistant chief of the defence forces, is one of six generals placed on a United Nations' blacklist in 2015 for their part in the civil war.

    Mr Kiir announced he was being removed along with Finance Minister Stephen Dhieu Dau in an official decree read out on state radio.

    He gave no reason for the decision.