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Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

  1. Scroll down for this week's stories

    We’ll be back next week

    Clare Spencer

    BBC Africa Live

    That's all from BBC Africa Live for now. 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: It is hardship that bent the crayfish. from Sent by Dotun Alatishe, Benin City, Nigeria.
    Sent by Dotun Alatishe, Benin City, Nigeria.

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

    And we leave you with this picture of African-Australian Afro-techno music group Digital Afrika. It's one of our favourite photos from the week.

    Digital Afrika performer
  2. Nations agree 'significant' plastic cuts in Nairobi meeting

    BBC World Service

    Bottle on beach
    Image caption: The meeting failed to bring about an agreement to phase out single-use plastic

    Some 170 countries gathered in Kenya's capital, Nairobi, to address the environmental impact of plastics have agreed to - as they put it - "significantly reduce" single-use plastic products over the next decade.

    The resolution, agreed after marathon talks at the UN environment assembly, was a watered-down compromise of the initial ministerial statement.

    This had proposed the phasing out of single-use plastic by 2025, but several richer nations, led by the US, had objected to such deep cuts.

    More than eight million tonnes of plastics enter the world's oceans each year.

  3. DR Congo ex-leader Kabila's coalition 'wins senate majority'

    Felix Tshisekedi receives the presidential sash from the outgoing President Joseph Kabila
    Image caption: Mr Kabila, left, handed over power to Mr Tshisekedi, right, earlier this year

    Former Democratic Republic of Congo President Joseph Kabila's coalition has won a clear majority in senate elections, officials told Reuters news agency.

    Mr Kabila's Common Front for Congo (FCC) coalition won more than 80 of 108 seats in the senate, or upper chamber, Felix Momat, a senior FCC official is quoted as saying.

    The electoral commission has not published the official result yet.

    Only the provincial assembly members are allowed to vote in this poll and the overwhelming majority of those are from the FCC.

    The vote has been clouded by allegations that parties were paying provisional assembly members to vote, as we reported earlier.

    Mr Kabila did not stand for the last election. Opposition leader Félix Tshisekedi won but observers say this result will undermine Mr Tshisekedi's ability to govern independently.

  4. Anti-riot police fire tear gas at Algerian protesters

    Mohamed Arezki Himeur

    BBC Afrique, Algiers

    Algerian anti-riot police have just fired tear gas to disperse a group of protesters who tried to reach the president's building.

    Until now, the protest has generally been peaceful and good-natured.

    Algeria protests

    The protesters, from across the whole city, have come in family groups - women, men, children and the elderly.

    All the boulevards, the streets and the staircases of the city centre are crammed full of people - It is impossible to move.


    I’ve never seen such a big protest in Algiers, even in 1991 in the time of the Islamic Salvation Front.

    It is also bigger than the one in 1992 held by the Socialist Forces Front.

  5. Somalia calls for 'unified stand' against terror

    Somalia's foreign ministry has condemned the "brutal terrorist attack" at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand.

    It called the two shootings "a heinous cowardly crime requiring a unified Islamic and international stand".

    President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo tweeted that "We stand in solidarity with the New Zealand government and the Muslim community".

    "We must unite to defeat the evil of terror in all its forms," he added.

    View more on twitter

    Police say 49 people have been killed and at least 20 seriously wounded.

    There are unconfirmed reports that some members of the Somali community in the city are among the victims.

    A gunman identifying himself as an Australian live-streamed the rampage at Al Noor mosque to Facebook. He had espoused racist, anti-immigrant views.

    Police say a man in his late 20s has been arrested and charged with murder.

  6. Cyclone Idai to move west

    BBC weather forecasters Louise Lear warns that Cyclone Idai is going to move westward across Mozambique and into Zimbabwe over the weekend.

    Watch her forecast:

    Video content

    Video caption: Cyclone Idai to bring more flooding rains

    Cyclone Idai hit the coastal Mozambican city of Beira on Thursday evening.

    Its 500,000 residents are now without electricity and communications have been severed, the National Institute of Disaster Management (INGC) says.

    Read more on the BBC News website.

  7. Kenyans debate fate of python in 'joggers' paradise'

    Peter Mwai

    BBC Africa, Nairobi

    Karura Forest in Nairobi has been a favourite for joggers and cyclists in Nairobi, but a debate has been raging online after a python was discovered on one of the tracks.

    Facebook user John Boog posted a message calling on "relevant authorities to see that it is relocated so as to ensure safety for the runners/joggers and bike riders who use the facility for daily exercises".

    The post has been shared widely, but quickly turned into a debate on who needs to be relocated.

    "That's its home. Literally, it's in the forest, where it's supposed to be. What are you people smoking," wrote Queens Kimani on Twitter.

    "Why is Karura Forest trending? Was the python supposed to rent a bungalow in Muthaiga?" Paul Kaweru asked.

    Friends of Karura Forest, a community organization that protects and maintains the forest, says there is no need for alarm.

    View more on facebook

    "There is no need for joggers or bikers to worry. Pythons are harmless to people, unless, as with most animals, they are cornered or severely provoked. They are not venomous at all," it says.

    "Rest assured, if you stay on Karura’s designated trails (and don’t wander off-trail along the rivers), the very few snakes will sense your presence through vibrations in their bellies and get quickly out of your way."

    The snake was photographed by one of the group's scouts, John Chege, as it moved out of his way.

  8. BBC to host fake news debate in Ethiopia


    BBC Horn of Africa will host a panel discussion on the topic Fake news: Is it a threat to Ethiopia? at the University of Addis Ababa tomorrow, Saturday, as it wraps up its two-week-long roadshow to engage with people across the country.

    The panel discussion, organised in collaboration with the university's School of Journalism and Communication, will start at 10:00 local time (07:00 GMT), and will be held in Amharic, Afaan Oromoo and Tigrinya.

    The event is open to the public, with admission on a first-come first-serve-basis.

    So if you're in the area and you're free tomorrow, make your way to the university's Eshetu Chole Hall in the Faculty of Business to hear some of Ethiopia's leading media experts express their views on a topic that has dominated discussions around the world as the influence of social media grows.

    If you can't make it, then you can follow it live on Facebook in Amharic, Afaan Oromoo or Tigrinya.

  9. DR Congo MPs elect senate amid vote buying scandal

    Gaius Kowene

    BBC Africa, Kinshasa

    Congolese parliament
    Image caption: Senators wield considerable influence

    Provincial assemblies in the Democratic Republic of Congo are voting for senators today in 24 of the country’s 26 provinces.

    The election takes place amid unprecedented public allegations of corruption and vote buying.

    At least seven candidates have withdrawn from the senatorial race in protest of the alleged corruption, accusing provincial MPs of demanding payments of sums as high as $50,000 (£37,723) in exchange for their votes.

    On Saturday, Congo’s general attorney Flory Kabange Numbi wrote to the electoral commission asking it to postpone the senatorial vote so that police can investigate these allegations.

    His request was not accepted by the electoral commission.

    Its rapporteur told the BBC that even elected senators, if later found to have taken part in the alleged vote-buying saga, can still be investigated and prosecuted after the vote.

    Provisional results are expected to be made public later this evening.

    The Constitutional Court will have eight days to confirm results.

    The provinces of Maïndobe and North Kivu, where elections were delayed due to security concerns and the ongoing Ebola outbreak, will elect their senators in May or June. Former President Joseph Kabila is already the first confirmed senator.

    By law, his status as a former head of state guarantees him a lifelong seat in the Upper House of Parliament.

    Senators wield considerable influence, and according to the constitution, the Speaker of the Senate would be the first in line to take over should the president become incapacitated or vacate the executive office.

  10. Death toll at collapsed Nigerian school rises to 20

    The official number of people who have died since a building collapsed in Nigeria's commercial capital Lagos earlier this week has risen to 20.

    Lagos state health commissioner Jide Idris released the number in a statement but did not disclose how many children are among the dead.

    The four-storey building contained a school which had more than 100 pupils, a rescue official told the BBC.

    The building had been identified as "distressed" and listed for demolition, Lagos building officials said.

    On Friday morning workers started demolishing buildings near the site:

  11. Demolition starts after Lagos school collapse

    Aliyu Tanko

    BBC Africa, Lagos


    Authorities in Nigeria have started demolishing buildings near the site of the four-storey structure that collapsed on Wednesday in Lagos.

    Local reports suggest that dozens of houses have been served with a demolition notice.

    Omotayo Fakolujo, from the Lagos State Building Control Agency told the BBC that more than 100 buildings will be demolished on Lagos Island.

    He added that a minimum of three will be demolished per day.

    He also denied allegations that owners of marked buildings had paid bribes to avoid demolition.

    Building with red cross sprayed on it
    Lagos Island demolition site

    At least 11 people died and 50 were rescued alive from the rubble of the collapsed building which housed a primary school in the Ita- Faji area of Lagos.

    The search for more victims was brought to an end on Thursday.

    The government says an investigation will be carried out and that anyone found guilty of wrongdoing would be prosecuted.

  12. 'Thousands' gather for latest anti-Bouteflika protest in Algeria

    Algerian protesters during a protest against extending President Abdelaziz Bouteflika mandatin in Algiers, Algeria, 15 March 2019

    Thousands of demonstrators have gathered in the centre of the Algerian capital, Algiers, for a fourth consecutive Friday demanding that President Abdelaziz Bouteflika step down, AFP news agency report.

    The crowd at the capital's landmark Grand Poste square are calling on the 82-year-old to step down after two decades in power.

    On Monday he dropped his bid for a fifth term.

    But people continued to protest as they want him to resign immediately.


    Police have been preparing too.

  13. Islamic State 'behind Nigeria suicide attack'

    Tomi Oladipo

    BBC Africa security correspondent

    The so-called Islamic State group (IS) has said it was behind a suicide attack against the Nigerian army in the north-east of the country.

    The Nigerian military says troops from the multinational joint task force responded to insurgents in the town of Arege, near the border with Niger, killing 33 militants and recovering weapons and vehicles.

    The statement from IS suggests the bomber was a local militant.

    It was a rare suicide attack, considering IS mostly uses firearms or improvised explosive devices against the Nigerian military.

    Regional troops based across the Niger border in Diffa responded to the attackers.

    The Nigerian military says it has been working with ground and air forces from Cameroon and Niger to counter the insurgents.

    Claims of violent activity by IS in the Lake Chad Basin area increased towards the end of 2018.

    Last month the jihadist group carried out attacks in Borno State in north-east Nigeria, in what it said was an attempt to disrupt the country’s general elections.

  14. Kenya's regulator 'threatens to ban Always pads'

    Kenya’s quality regulator has threatened to ban Always sanitary towels if its investigations prove the products are substandard, news site Nairobi News reports.

    The site says Kenya Bureau of Standards (Kebs) has started a fresh round of inquiries on the products.

    An activist called Scheaffer Okore started the hashtag #MyAlwaysExperience, leading to women sharing their criticisms on Twitter.

    The agency says it will now do extensive market surveillance and random testing of samples.

    The statement comes after the regulator had earlier said Always complied with the set standards, reports the site.

    Nairobi News says Kebs warned that it would withdraw low quality products should any violations be detected.

    View more on twitter
    View more on twitter
    View more on twitter

    But Always maker, Proctor & Gamble, has defended itself on Twitter, saying the sanitary pads are similar to the ones in other parts of the world.

    View more on twitter

    They also said in a statement that people were not comparing like-for-like - giving the example of comparing Always Maxi Thick in Kenya and Always Soft in another country.

  15. Cyclone Idai sweeps through Mozambican city

    Cyclone Idai has swept through the Mozambican port city of Beira, with initial reports indicating that buildings have been damaged, trees have been uprooted and electricity poles and phone masts have been knocked down in the city of about 500,000 people.

    An aid worker is among those who has tweeted photos of the destruction caused by what French meteorologists had earlier described as "an extremely dangerous tropical cyclone":

    View more on twitter
    View more on twitter

    A journalist in neighbouring South Africa has tweeted that South Africans have joined rescue teams heading for Beira to help residents:

    View more on twitter

    A UN agency and a news site have tweeted that phone lines are down and electricity has been cut off in Beira:

    View more on twitter
    View more on twitter

    A Mozambican newspaper has tweeted that no deaths have so far been reported in the city:

    View more on twitter

    Read more on the BBC News website.

  16. African C-sections '50 times more deadly'

    Maternity ward
    Image caption: It is the largest study to track maternal complications across Africa

    The number of mothers who die after a Caesarean-section in Africa is as much as 50 times higher than in developed countries, according to a study in the medical journal The Lancet.

    Their sample indicated that one in 200 women dies during or soon after a C-section. By comparison, maternal mortality is about one woman per 10,000 operations in the UK. Death rates related to C-sections are roughly the same across most developed countries.

    And almost 20% of the African women experienced complications during surgery. That figure is nearly three times higher than in the US.

    Some of the reasons for preventable C-section deaths included a ruptured uterus in mothers who had pre-existing placental complications, bleeding before birth or during surgery, and problems related to anaesthesia.

    But the report's authors are not calling for fewer C-sections. Bruce Biccard, professor at the University of Cape Town, actually thinks there should be more across Africa.

    “Improving access to surgery might allow patients to present earlier and prevent complications and deaths but it is vital that this improvement occurs in parallel with programmes aimed at improving patient safety during caesarean delivery,” Mr Biccard is quoted as saying in The Telegraph newspaper.

    Almost 3,800 women were included in the study across 22 countries, making it the largest to track maternal complications in Africa.

  17. Good morning

    Welcome to BBC Africa Live where we will bring you the latest news from around the continent.

  18. Scroll down for Thursday's stories

    We’ll be back tomorrow

    That's all from BBC Africa Live for now. 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: I know which bread will fill me up while it is being baked." from Sent by Misghina Tekle in Kampala, Uganda, and Solomon Tesfaye in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
    Sent by Misghina Tekle in Kampala, Uganda, and Solomon Tesfaye in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

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

    And we leave you with this picture taken by Gabonese photographer Yannis Davy Guibinga:

    View more on instagram
  19. In numbers: Collapsed buildings in Nigeria

    The deaths of 11 people when a building collapsed in Lagos yesterday has led to questions about how often this happens.

    A report by Nigeria's housing ministry reveals that:

    • 199 people died in four Nigerian collapsed buildings between 2014 and 2016
    • 2012: 33 building collapses in Lagos and 22 in Abuja, according to housing ministry figures
    • 2013: 17 building collapses in Lagos and 20 in Abuja
    • 2014: 13 building collapse in Lagos and two in Abuja
    • More than 54 cases of collapsed buildings were recorded in 2017 across Nigeria
    • The latest collapse was the third so far in 2019.

    Rescue efforts were called off today, as we reported earlier.

    Read more: Five reasons why buildings collapse