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  1. Scroll down for Wednesday's stories

    We'll be back on Thursday

    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 checking the BBC News website.

    A reminder of our wise words of the day:

    Quote Message: A mouth not keeping shut, and lips not keeping closed, bring trouble to the jaws." from A Yoruba proverb sent by Adejare Olushola, Lagos, Nigeria
    A Yoruba proverb sent by Adejare Olushola, Lagos, Nigeria

    Click here to send us your African proverbs.

    And we leave you with this picture of a donkey traffic on Kenya's island of Lamu, a UN World Heritage site where the use of cars is restricted.

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  2. DR Congo's PM loses historic no-confidence vote

    Wendyam Compaore

    BBC News

    Sylvestre Ilunga Ilukamba
    Image caption: Sylvestre Ilunga Ilukamba is an ally of former President Joseph Kabila

    MPs in the Democratic Republic of Congo have voted to remove Prime Minister Sylvestre Ilunga Ilukamba from power.

    Mr Ilukamba, who was not present during the no-confidence vote in parliament, has been given 24 hours to resign.

    The lawmakers accuse Mr Ilukamba, an ally of former President Joseph Kabila, and his ministers of poor performance.

    The collapse of the government paves the way for President Félix Tshisekedi to appoint loyalists as ministers.

    Last month, Mr Tshisekedi ended a coalition formed with his predecessor, whose allies dominated key ministries.

    Since then, Mr Tshisekedi has been persuading MPs to defect from Mr Kabila's alliance, which previously held the majority in parliament, stalling the president's reform programme.

    This will be the first time in DR Congo's 60-year history that a government has been forced to resign.

  3. Killings by rebels 'have doubled' in DR Congo

    Mary Harper

    Africa editor, BBC World Service

    The United Nations says killings by armed groups in the Democratic Republic of Congo more than doubled last year.

    The UN Joint Human Rights Office said nearly 2,500 civilians were killed, mainly in the east of the country.

    It said the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) carried out about a third of the killings.

    The ADF, which originated in Uganda, has increased its activity since the military launched an offensive against it.

    Dozens of armed groups operate in eastern DR Congo.

  4. Cameroon anger after teenagers killed in army raid

    Randy Joe Sa'ah

    BBC News, Cameroon

    Angry residents of Bamenda, the capital of Cameroon's North-West region, have held a protest after four teenagers were killed on Sunday during an army operation in the city.

    Some of the residents carried a casket of one of the victims during the protest on Tuesday.

    "These killings are pure terror," said an uncle of one of the victims who wanted to remain anonymous for safety reasons.

    Human rights activist Fru Awah called the killings "unconscionable".

    "The worst is that, these are not children caught in crossfire between the separatists and the military... something happens and then the army rushes in and sprays the population," he said.

    The authorities have not reacted to the latest killings, which come about two weeks after another army raid claimed 10 lives, mostly of young men, children and women.

    The government has been battling separatist fighters since 2016 in the English-speaking North-West and South-West regions.

  5. African officials to meet WHO boss over vaccine

    Rhoda Odhiambo

    BBC Africa Health, Nairobi

    World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus
    Image caption: Dr Tedros has said that the rest of the wold had to help African countries

    Health and finance ministers from Africa are to meet the head of the World Health Organization (WHO) to discuss equitable distribution of Covid-19 vaccines.

    “I will tell them that we are doing everything that we can to accelerate the roll out of vaccines in Africa. To save lives and get their economies back on track. The rest of the world must play its part," WHO boss Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told journalists ahead of Wednesday's virtual meeting.

    It comes a day after South Africa's President Cyril Ramaphosa, who is also the chairperson of the Africa Union, pleaded with rich nations to share their excess vaccines doses with poorer countries.

    Rich countries had bought nearly 800 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines, enough to vaccinate their entire populations before poorer countries were able to do so, said Dr Seth Berkley, the CEO of Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance.

    “They also have another 1.4 billion doses of different vaccine options.

    "But to ensure that poorer countries start vaccinating their populations against Covid-19 we are looking at approaching rich and asking them to donate excess vaccines to poorer countries," Dr Berkley said at the ongoing virtual conference organised by the World Economic Forum.

    "If that won’t work, we will tell them that we would be willing to buy the surplus from them," he added.

    More than 45 countries globally have begun Covid-19 vaccinations.

    In Africa, only Egypt, Morocco, Guinea, Mauritius and Seychelles have started vaccinating frontline healthcare workers and those who are vulnerable.

    These five countries are using vaccines that have been donated to them by allied richer nations.

    Despite approving the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, WHO is yet to give the greenlight for its distribution to African countries.

  6. Somalia criticises 'one-sided report' on row with Kenya

    BBC Monitoring

    The world through its media

    Somalia has criticised a fact-finding report by the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (Igad), which dismissed claims that Kenya is funding militias engaged in clashes with Somali federal troops in the border area of Beled Hawo.

    Information Minister Abukar Osman Dubbe said the report relied on one side and did not collect any information from Somalia.

    The minister said the entire report is citing Kenya's Defence Minister Monica Juma.

    Mr Dubbe said the report was released on 25 January, which is the day deadly fighting erupted in Beled Hawo town, near the Kenya border.

    The Djibouti-led fact-finding special committee to resolve the diplomatic standoff between Kenya and Somalia was made up of a team formed by Djibouti President Ismael Guelleh.

    The team included diplomats and military chiefs.

    A map showing Beled Hawo border area
  7. Top Egyptian dentist accused of sexual assault

    BBC World Service

    Egypt's public prosecutor has ordered a top dentist to be remanded in custody after accusations that he sexually molested male patients.

    A well-known singer and actor have lodged formal complaints against him.

    The actor, Abbas Abo el-Hassan, urged other victims to come forward.

    The dentist has dismissed the accusations as a failed attempt to blackmail him.

    Many women have complained of sexual harassment in Egypt but male victims tend to keep quiet.

    The singer - Tamim Younis - described the abuse he was allegedly subjected to in an Instagram post, but the dentist said he was hallucinating due to the anaesthetic.

  8. South Sudan calls to free abducted women and children

    Nichola Mandil


    Leaders of the Murle ethnic group in South Sudan have demanded that two neighbouring communities - the Dinka Bor and the Lou Nuer - urgently release nearly 1,000 women and children they accuse them of abducting recently.

    They made the demand during an ongoing peace conference taking place in the capital, Juba.

    “They took 442 women and 552 children... so we ask them to return those children and women,” Joseph Lilimoy, a delegate from Murle community, told the BBC.

    The three communities have been engaging in inter-communal conflict for years, often resulting in the killings and abductions.

    A three-day conference under the theme "together for peace, reconciliation and peaceful co-existence” is being hosted by the presidency to address the security situation in Jonglei state and the Greater Pibor administrative area.

    Mr Lilimoy pledged that his community would return the children who were abducted by the Murle youth from Greater Equatorial region. But he did not mention how many they were.

    Meanwhile, the Dinka Bor community recommended that perpetrators of child abductions be sentenced to death.

  9. Eritrea accuses rights watchdog of defamation

    BBC Monitoring

    The world through its media

    The Eritrean government has accused Human Rights Watch (HRW) of engaging in a “defamation campaign".

    Information Minister Yemane Gebremeskel tweeted that HRW was "in cahoots with the defunct Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) regime”.

    The minister accused the watchdog of giving false information to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).

    Mr Yemane tweeted:

    Quote Message: The rabid defamation campaign against Eritrea is on the rise again. The purveyors of incessant/recycled disinformation are usual culprits: at the forefront is Human Rights Watch,(and its ilk), that was caught with pants down in its malicious 'regime change' agenda...
    Quote Message: HRW has ever since worked in cahoots with defunct TPLF regime to submit fallacious reports to UNHRC and in other fora."

    Last month, the Eritrean government made a similar accusation against the UNHCR, accusing it of engaging in a “gratuitous and irresponsible smear campaign”.

    Despite denials from both countries, multiple reports say Eritrean forces have been fighting alongside Ethiopia's federal troops against fighters loyal to Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF), the party which used to govern the northern Tigray region.

  10. Tanzanian leader cautious over Covid vaccines

    John Magufuli
    Image caption: Last year Mr Magufuli declared Tanzania "Covid-free"

    Tanzania's President John Magufuli has warned health officials against acquiring Covid-19 vaccines saying - without giving evidence - that they could harm the population.

    "The ministry of health should be careful, they should not hurry to try these vaccines without doing research, not every vaccine is important to us, we should be careful. We should not be used as ‘guinea pigs'," Mr Magufuli said.

    “Vaccinations are dangerous. If the white man was able to come up with vaccinations, he should have found a vaccination for Aids, cancer and TB by now.”

    BBC health reporter Philippa Roxby says vaccines are rigorously tested in trials involving thousands of people before being assessed by regulators, who look at all the data on the safety and effectiveness of vaccines before approving them for use on a wider population.

    The aim of vaccines is to save lives by protecting people from deadly diseases, she says.

    President Magufuli urged Tanzanians to continue taking precautions, saying prayers and traditional medicine, including steam inhalation, were the way to deal with coronavirus.

    “Many countries have lockdown, but in Tanzania there are no plan of lockdown and we’ll never introduce lockdown because our God is alive and he will continue to protects us.”

    The president, a devout Catholic who last year declared the country free of Covid-19, did not comment on the Catholic Church's concern about the recent spike in deaths in its urban parishes.

    “After successfully containing the spread of the virus last year, Tanzania was now facing a new wave of the virus spread,” the church said in a statement on Tuesday.

    “Our country is not an island. We have every reason to take precautions and pray to God so that we can be saved from this pandemic.”

    Over the weekend, Bishop Yuda Thadei Ruwaichi of Dar es Salaam said: "Covid is not finished, Covid is still here. Let's not be reckless, we need to protect ourselves, wash your hands with soap and water. We also have to go back to wearing masks.”

    The president also failed to address reports from Denmark that two of its citizens - who had visited Tanzania - had tested positive for the new Covid-19 strain from South Africa.

    He instead blamed citizens who travel out of the country for "importing a new weird corona".

    Tanzania stopped publishing official data about coronavirus in June last year.

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  11. Deal to end Mali ethnic conflict agreed

    Mary Harper

    Africa editor, BBC World Service

    A Swiss mediation body says nomadic and farming communities in central Mali have agreed to stop fighting.

    The Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue said the Fulani and Dogon people signed three peace deals after months of mediation.

    They agreed to allow the free movement of people and livestock, and to enable all communities to have access to markets in the Koro region.

    Hundreds of people have been killed in years of clashes over access to land and water.

    The conflict intensified after jihadists launched an insurgency in the region.

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  12. Nigeria intercepts pangolin shipment

    Ishaq Khalid

    BBC News, Abuja

    Cranes and containers seen at APM Terminals at the gateway port in Apapa, Lagos, Nigeria
    Image caption: The Lagos port handles many shipment containers

    Customs officials in Nigeria have seized a shipment of endangered animal parts including pangolin scales and ivory headed for Vietnam.

    It was discovered in a container declared as furniture at the Lagos port.

    The Nigerian Customs Service says the items are worth $2.5m (£1.8m).

    Upon investigation officials discovered the animal parts hidden inside logs including nearly 9,000kg of pangolin scales.

    Other items such as ivory, lion bones and animal horns were found.

    One person was arrested last Thursday in connection with the alleged trafficking.

    Pangolins are the most trafficked mammals in the world.

    Nigeria serves as a major hub for smuggling the endangered animals to south-east Asian countries such as China and Vietnam where they are used for traditional medicines.

    Earlier this month, a court in China jailed 17 people for smuggling pangolin scales worth $28m from Nigeria.

  13. Video content

    Video caption: Former Bolton and Tunisia midfielder Radhi Jaidi - now a coach - talks about his ambitions

    Former Bolton and Tunisia midfielder Radhi Jaidi - now a coach - talks about his ambitions to take on management roles in England and even, perhaps, with his national team.

  14. Catholic Church in Tanzania warns of Covid-19 surge

    Man washing hands
    Image caption: The church urged people to be vigilant

    The Catholic Church in Tanzania has warned of a surge in Covid-19 infections in the East African nation, contradicting President John Magufuli's narrative that "there was no corona."

    In a letter on Tuesday, Bishop Gervas Nyaisonga of the Tanzania Episcopal Conference (TEC) warned of a "possible new wave of coronavirus infections".

    TEC’s secretary Father Charles Kitima told BBC Swahili that the church had noticed a rise in funeral services.

    “We were used to having one or two requiem masses per week in urban parishes, but now we have daily masses. Something is definitely amiss,” he said.

    In June last year President Magufuli declared the country to be "coronavirus free", saying that prayer had helped the country beat the pandemic.

    He has also mocked people for wearing masks.

    His government stopped publishing official data about coronavirus cases and fatalities.

    Over the weekend Bishop Yuda Thadei Ruwaichi of Dar es Salaam said people had to take health measures to protect themselves.

    "Covid is not finished, Covid is still here. Let's not be reckless, we need to protect ourselves, wash your hands with soap and water. We also have to go back to wearing masks," he said.

    Reacting to the Catholic Church's warning, Deputy Minister for Health Dr Goodluck Mollel told local newspaper Mwananchi that people should remain calm and wait for directives from the government.

    “We must leave this matter to scientists. Should there be any problem, the government will explain. People should continue with their usual productive activities," said Dr Mollel.

    Over the weekend, Danish media reported that two travellers from Tanzania tested positive for the new South African variant of the virus.

    Last week the UK banned all passengers from Tanzania and Democratic Republic of Congo in a move aimed at containing the spread of the South African variant.

    “Our country is not an island. We have every reason to take precautions and pray to God so that we can be saved from this pandemic,” the Catholic Church said.

  15. Covid-19: Burial of Zimbabwe ministers under way

    Zimbabwe's Foreign Minister Sibusiso Moyo is among three top government officials being buried at the Heroes Acre in the capital, Harare, after they succumbed to Covid-19.

    The others are Transport Minister Joel Biggie Matiza and prisons chief Paradzai Willings Zimondi.

    The country has recorded a surge in Covid-19 cases since the festive season.

    The information ministry has tweeted photos of the ceremony:

    View more on twitter

    More than 32,000 Zimbabweans have been infected with the coronavirus since the outbreak began and more than 1,100 have died.