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Live Reporting

Natasha Booty, Dickens Olewe and Clare Spencer

All times stated are UK

  1. Scroll down for Tuesday's stories

    We’ll be back tomorrow

    That's all from BBC Africa Live for 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 calf doesn't laugh at a hornless cow. from Sent by Olichey Don Gabriel, Bolgatanga, Ghana.
    Sent by Olichey Don Gabriel, Bolgatanga, Ghana.

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

    And, on the day the world said goodbye to the last ever male northern white rhino, we leave you with this picture of Sudan the rhino with one of his dedicated carers.

  2. Mixed reception for French president's language mission

    Leila Slimani
    Image caption: French-Moroccan novellist Leïla Slimani will lead the campaign to internationalise French.

    France's President Emmanuel Macron has announced ambitious plans to extend the international influence of the French language, which he sees as key to boosting France's presence on the world stage.

    French is the fifth-most spoken language globally, according to the International Organisation of La Francophonie, after Mandarin, English, Spanish and either Arabic or Hindi.

    Africa is home to the world's biggest French-speaking population, with 31 of the continent's 54 nations having French as an official language - a legacy of French and Belgian colonial power.

    In today's speech marking International Francophonie Day, President Macron quoted Burundian author Gaël Faye as saying the idea of the "francophonie" wasn't relevant to many young people, to whom it represented old portraits of French and African presidents.

    President Macron appears to be on a mission to change that attitude.

    He also called international French secondary schools the "backbone" of French teaching, saying he wants to double the number of students enrolled. Currently 350,000 pupils are taught at 500 such institutions internationally.

    French-Moroccan novellist Leïla Slimani will lead the campaign to internationalise French.

    But other francophone African writers are more sceptical.

    Congolese author Alain Mabanckou, who is also a university professor in the US, reportedly turned down an invitation by Macron to be involved, saying France first needed to "prove" it had renounced colonialism.

    News site The Local also reports that Cameroonian philosopher Achille Mbembe and French-Djiboutian author and scholar Abdourahman Waberi have expressed similar concerns.

  3. Ghana 'denies allowing US military base'

    US flag

    The Ghanaian news site Joy Online says it has intercepted documents which show an agreement has been approved by cabinet to allow the US to use Ghana as a military base.

    Joy Online said documents appeared to show that negotiations with the US lasted at least eight months, and the cabinet approved the deal on 8 March.

    But both the US and Ghana deny this, says AFP news agency.

    Ghana's defence minister Dominic Nitiwul told AFP that it was "not true" Washington wanted a more permanent presence in the country.

    Similarly, the US Embassy in Accra said in a statement that Washington had "not requested, nor does it plan to establish a military base or bases in Ghana".

    It added that joint exercises were planned for this year "which require access to Ghanaian bases by US participants".

  4. Mr Eazi: 'I feel the need to represent everywhere'

    Like Davido and Wizkid before him, Mr Eazi is winning fans internationally as Afrobeats becomes mainstream in the US and UK.

    "I feel the need to represent everywhere," he tells the BBC's Hannah Ajala.

    The 26-year-old Nigerian artist moved to Ghana at the age of 15, and his Nigerian and Ghanaian fans on social media have a jokey rivalry about which country can claim him.

    "Oh, is he Nigerian? Is he Ghanaian?," Mr Eazi says he is used to people asking the question and that it is part of his brand.

    What's next for the rising star, who has already collaborated with big names like Sarkodie and performed internationally?

    "I want records in the Top 10 - in the UK, America and Europe."

    Watch the interview below:

    Video content

    Video caption: Zagadat! It's Mr Eazi.
  5. Cambridge Analytica's Kenya election role 'must be investigated'

    President Uhuru Kenyatta (L)and Raila Odinga
    Image caption: Cambridge Analytica say they played a massive role in the election of Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta (L) who beat Raila Odinga (R) last year

    A full investigation must be carried out into a UK consultancy firm which helped take Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta to victory, the main opposition coalition has told the BBC.

    National Super Alliance (Nasa) official Norman Magaya accused Cambridge Analytica and the ruling party of trying to "subvert the people's will".

    Cambridge Analytica bosses were apparently caught on camera boasting of the control they had exerted in Kenya.

    The company denies any wrongdoing.

    There was no immediate comment from Mr Kenyatta's Jubilee Party.

    Cambridge Analytica first hit the headlines after helping US President Donald Trump to his shock win in 2016. However,questions are now being raised around the world over its methods- including the use of data harvested from people's Facebook pages.

    Before they helped Mr Trump, however, the company was active in Kenya, using the work it did for Mr Kenyatta's successful 2013 election as one of its case studies.

    According to the website, it conducted a "large-scale research project", sampling 47,000 people, which provided a profile including things like "key national and local political issues, levels of trust in key politicians, voting behaviours/intentions, and preferred information channels".

  6. Nigeria recalls police officers on private guarding duties

    Chris Ewokor

    BBC Africa, Abuja

    Police on patrol in the Niger delta (archive photo)
    Image caption: Police on patrol in the Niger delta (archive photo)

    Nigeria’s police chief has ordered the withdrawal of all police officers attached to private individuals and companies.

    He says this is as a result of the security challenges in the country.

    There are indications that some 150,000 Nigerian police officers of total workforce of around 400,000 are deployed to individuals and private organisations.

    This is not the first time a Nigerian police chief has recalled police officers from guarding private individuals. But to date such orders have never been implemented.

    At a meeting with senior police officers in Abuja, the Inspector General of Police Ibrahim Idris said all state commissioners of police must comply with the orders immediately.

    Nigeria, which has a population of nearly 200 million people, faces serious security challenges.

    In the north-east Boko Haram's insurgency remains dominant. Clashes between herdsmen and farmers are on the rise in central Nigeria. While in the south-east, agitation among separatists is growing, and militant activities in the oil-rich Niger delta are a concern.

    Added to this are communal clashes, kidnappings and armed robberies across major cities in the country.

    Analysts say assigning police officers to guard a few individuals while millions of Nigerians live under daily threats of crisis and criminality exposes the inability of Nigeria's police force.

  7. Why are white rhinos so rare?

    The world's last surviving male northern white rhino, called Sudan, has died after months of ill health, as we reported earlier.

    Rhinoceroses - of which there are five species - are the second-largest land mammal after elephants.

    The white rhinoceros consists of two sub-species: the southern white rhino and the much rarer and critically endangered northern white rhino.

    Sudan, who was the equivalent of 90 in human years, was the last surviving male of the rarer variety after the natural death of a second male in late 2014.

    The subspecies' population in Uganda, Central African Republic, Sudan and Chad was largely wiped out during the poaching crisis of the 1970s and 1980s.

    Poaching was fuelled by demand for rhino horn for use in traditional Chinese medicine, and for dagger handles in Yemen.

    The last few dozen wild northern white rhinos in the Democratic Republic of Congo had been killed by the early 2000s.

    By 2008, the northern white rhino was considered extinct in the wild, according to WWF, the global environment campaign.

    A graphic showing the world's different rhino species
  8. Kidnappings on the rise in Cameroon

    Chris Ewokor

    BBC Africa, Abuja

    Cameroon is witnessing an increase in kidnappings.

    Last week an armed group kidnapped two Tunisians working at a construction site in Cameroon's South-West region.

    Meanwhile a top civil servant abducted over the weekend was freed early this week.

    In February, a separatist group claimed they kidnapped a divisional officer, Namata Diteng.

    Also in February, an administrative official was snatched by armed men near Batibo, 40km (25 miles) west of the city of Bamenda.

    If these too have been carried out by English-speaking separatists, it means kidnapping has become their new line of action. They used to attack the security forces.

    The past year has seen regular unrest peaking in January when 47 separatists, including their leader Sisiku Ayuk Tabe, were extradited from Nigeria.

    Separatists from English-speaking parts of Cameroon accuse the Francophone majority of discrimination.

    A policeman in Cameroon
    Image caption: A police officer stands guards near the opposition SDF party's headquarters in Bamenda
  9. Malawi’s electronic one-man band

    Faith Mussa is an Afro-soul singer, songwriter and guitarist, combining older sounds with newer production techniques.

    Here he performs live in the BBC Focus on Africa studio and describes how he has developed as an artist, including his appearance at Glastonbury music festival last year.

    "The connections I made there have shaped the music I'm making now," he explains:

    Video content

    Video caption: Faith Mussa: Malawi’s electronic one-man band of Afro-soul
  10. Egypt 'bans Uber'


    An Egyptian court has banned ride hailing apps Uber and Careem, according to AFP news agency.

    The court has accepted a petition asking the government to stop licensing Uber and Careem activities in Egypt, AFP explains.

    Taxi drivers had complained that the drivers for both services did not need to pay the hefty fees to operate transportation vehicles.

    The news agency adds that Egyptians who complained about taxi drivers refusing to turn on their meters or their air conditioning had switched to the ride sharing apps.

  11. Kagame opens free trade talks

    Rwanda's president Paul Kagame has opened the talks in his capital around free trade, as this tweet from the African Union shows:

    View more on twitter

    One tweeter picked out a cutting remark he made:

    View more on twitter

    Nigeria has pulled out of the talks which could lead to a free trade agreement to reduce trade tariffs and import quotas between African countries.

  12. Leaders arrive for Africa free trade talks

    Matthew Davies

    Editor, BBC Africa Business Report

    African leaders are arriving in Rwanda's capital Kigali to sign a deal which could see the establishment of a free trade area on the continent.

    Zimbabwe's president tweeted pictures showing himself addressing the talks:

    View more on twitter

    Under a free trade area agreement, all 54 countries in Africa would have to agree to reduce the trade tariffs and import quotas between each other and boost intra-African trade.

    The African continental free trade area has been talked about for years, if not decades.

    Those excited about the deal say it'll boost trade and create jobs.

    But the process has already seen some glitches.

    Nigeria's President Muhammadu Buhari isn't going to Kigali - officials from Africa's largest economy said more time was needed to discuss the deal with business leaders back home.

    There are already red flags being raised by the unions - they say unfettered access by foreign workers to their labour markets would cause problems, as people gravitate towards the continent's stronger economies.

    There's also a concern that countries with comparatively weaker import regulations could be used by a country outside Africa as a springboard to move cheaper goods into the continent.

  13. Opening up about mental health in Uganda

    Mental health is not something that is talked about much in Uganda. People find it difficult to share their experiences with family or friends because of the social stigma attached to conditions like depression, bipolar disorder and dementia.

    Liz Kakooza and Sarah Tushemereirwe have decided to talk openly about their struggles with mental health issues.

    BBC Newsday's David Whitty asked them why they want to encourage a public conversation:

    Video content

    Video caption: Liz and Sarah are hoping to reduce stigma and open a conversation
  14. SA politician apologises for filmed assault

    A South African opposition politician who was filmed assaulting a journalist outside parliament today has admitted his actions were "inappropriate".

    "I accept that my impatience with the gentlemen was inappropriate," EFF Deputy Leader Floyd Shivambu says in the statement.

    He adds that he regrets the incident and will write an "official apology on the scuffle because I believe it was not supposed to happen".

    Mr Shivambu tweeted the full statement:

    View more on twitter
  15. Ethiopians refuse to return after shooting

    Emmanuel Igunza

    BBC Africa, Nairobi

    People at a camp

    The Ethiopian government says it will begin repatriating thousands of refugees who have fled into Kenya over the past week.

    More than 40,000 people left the town of Moyale after 10 people were there killed on Saturday, the Ethiopian government says. Of those who fled, 10,000 crossed the border into Kenya, the Red Cross says.

    Ethiopian authorities say the shooting was a botched security operation.

    I spoke to 21-year-old Guyo Jarso who was shot twice. One bullet grazed his side, and another passed through his arm.

    “It is the Ethiopian soldiers who shot us. They started firing at people,“ he told me.

    Guyo Jarso

    Mr Guyo eventually found his way across the border and into Kenya. I met him at the local health centre in Somare where he is receiving further treatment.

    “I will never go back there. It's my home but life is much more precious,” he said.

    Officials say civilians were killed by mistake during an operation to track down members of the Oromo Liberation Front, which is outlawed in Ethiopia.

    The Ethiopian government says soldiers involved in the operation have been arrested and are being investigated.

    The Ethiopian Ambassador to Kenya Dina Mufti told the BBC that it was "an unfortunate incident that created fear among our nationals".

    But insisted that “it's definitely time for them to go back home”.

    UN Refugee Agency’s emergency response co-ordinator Burton Wagacha told me that there is not adequate health and water available at the Kenyan camps for the people fleeing.

    Water tank

    Even so, back at the camps, people are bracing themselves for a much longer stay.

    Dima Godana and her friends are laying down fresh foundations for their future in Kenya.

    Woman with wood

    “It is not a foreign enemy that is killing us but our very own government. If that government is still in power we are not going back. But if this government is removed we will go back."

    It is a sentiment that people keep repeating. They say though home is so near, peace and security in Ethiopia are so far.

  16. South Africa suspends tax boss

    Andrew Harding

    BBC News, Johannesburg

    Tom Moyane
    Image caption: President Ramaphosa told Tom Moyane (C) he brought SARS into 'serious disrepute'.

    The head of tax collection in South Africa has been suspended by President Cyril Ramaphosa, who accused him of failing the organisation and the country.

    The move against Tom Moyane is being seen by some as a crucial step towards restoring public confidence after years of controversy during the era of President Zuma.

    In an angry letter, President Ramaphosa said South African Revenue Service (SARS) boss Tom Moyane had failed to deal with a major corruption scandal, and had brought the institution into "serious disrepute", weakening its ability to collect taxes in an increasingly cash-strapped nation.

    Concern was raised over how Mr Moyane handled the resignation of Jonas Makwakwa - the former head of business and individual tax accused of money laundering - because he failed to immediately report it to the finance minister, the presidency said.

    Mr Moyane had earlier insisted he had done nothing wrong and would take the matter to court. President Ramaphosa said he was ready for that.

    This is a key battle for South Africa’s new leader, as he tries to exert his authority, and deal with the murky legacy of his predecessor, Jacob Zuma.

    Mr Zuma was accused of failing to handle his own tax affairs properly, and of seeking to break the independence of the revenue service – allegations he’s denied.

  17. SA politician caught on video assaulting journalist

    Video footage of a South African politician assaulting a journalist outside parliament today is being shared online.

    The two men have been identified as the Deputy Leader of the Economic Freedom Fighters party Floyd Shivambu and Adrian de Kock - a reporter for Afrikaans language website Netwerk24.

    View more on twitter

    Other journalists at the scene say the scuffle broke out when Mr de Kock tried to take a photograph of Mr Shivambu. Mr de Kock told a reporter from the Mail & Guardian that he had also asked the politician a question about the opposition. He says the politician then "grabbed" him "by the throat", saying "you don't have my permission" to take photographs.

    Mr Shivambu has not yet commented.

    But it has been condemned by a group which represents journalists which has issued a statement on Twitter saying "any journalist has the full right photograph and ask questions of any public representative".

    The Parliamentary Press Gallery Association adds that it will seek an apology from Mr Shivambu and pursue disciplinary action.

    View more on twitter
  18. Apology over assuming Kenyan will become prostitute

    A Swedish woman has apologised after she came under heavy criticism in the Kenyan press for posting on Instagram that a girl she met in Kenya would grow up to become a prostitute.

    Jossa Johansson originally wrote the comment on this picture:

    View more on instagram

    Jossa Johansson wrote this about the young girl she met in the poor area of Nairobi, Kibera:

    "One of the most happiest moments in your life was probably when you met me and my friends."

    She went on to delete the comment but the Citizen kept a screen grab of it, along with many tweeters.

    This Kenyan tweeter says it is the equivalent of slum tourism:

    View more on twitter

    She replaced her comment in English with a comment in Swedish where she apologised and called the experience a wake-up call.

    She explained: "People in the slum area told us that it is common for children to sell their bodies to make money."

    But she went on to say: "It was stupid of me to write about this girl’s life and I admit it was disrespectful."

  19. Undertakers raise money to pay Zuma's legal fees


    A group of funeral directors in South Africa are raising money for to pay for former President Jacob Zuma's legal fees as he prepares to face a corruption trial, reports Times Live.

    The National Funeral Practitioners Association of SA (Nafupa-SA) describes itself on its Facebook page as a "funeral association representing the majority of the black and previously disadvantaged funeral businesses".

    It has been criticised in the past for saying no white or Indian funeral parlours should be allowed to carry out burials in Durban's black communities.

    News site Times Live reports that the organisation recently hosting a gala dinner "to honour the former president for reviving radical economic transformation and promoting expropriation of land without compensation".

  20. Last male northern white rhino dies

    The world's last surviving male northern white rhino has died after months of ill health, his carers said.

    Sudan, 45, lived at the Ol Pejeta Conservancy in Kenya. He was put to sleep on Monday after age-related complications worsened significantly.

    The conservancy tweet their "great sadness":

    View more on twitter

    His death leaves only two females - his daughter and granddaughter - of the subspecies alive in the world.

    Hope for preserving the northern white rhino now lies in developing in vitro fertilisation (IVF) techniques.