A 45-year-old Ethiopian national, Fitebo Makala Madebo, has been convicted and sentenced to six years’ direct imprisonment for offering to pay the police a bribe. Madebo was sentenced at the Mogwadi Periodical Court.
According to the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), Limpopo Regional Spokesperson, Mashudu Malabi Dzhangi, said that during the trial, the court heard that on May 12, 2022, the police officers from the Limpopo Highway Patrol Unit were patrolling around the Mogwadi area when they visited some tuck shops.
They also visited a certain shop, where they found an Ethiopian man, Shobiso Dawit Tegeni (29), and selling illicit Remington Gold cigarettes.
“They found nine cartons, which consisted of 10 x 20 packets of Remington Gold cigarettes worth R2620. The police arrested him and went to the Mogwadi Police Station to charge and detain him,” Dzhangi said.
Dzhangi says that while the police were busy completing the case docket and detaining Tegeni, his friend Madebo arrived at the police station and offered the officers R1000 to release the accused arrested for possession of illicit goods without the due process of the law taking its course and that the police must give him back the illicit cigarettes and free Tegeni.
Cost of water skyrockets by 400% since January 2021
An estimated 33.5 million people in Kenya, Ethiopia, and Somalia do not have access to enough drinking water.
The latest data by Oxfam shows that in some parts of Northern Kenya, Ethiopia, and Somalia, the cost of water has skyrocketed by 400 percent since January 2021.
Oxfam noted that failed rain is predicted to persist for a sixth consecutive season by May, making this the longest drought on record.
“The hungriest people in the region are also the thirstiest. People have depleted their last penny as they lost their crops and animals. They now have to pay vendors who continuously hike water prices,” Oxfam in Africa Director, Fati N’Zi-Hassane, said.
According to Oxfam, the drought experienced for the past two years has already killed more than 13 million livestock, dried up thousands of hectares of crops, and driven 1.75 million people from their homes in search of water and food.
Oxfam says while famine has so far been averted in countries like Somalia, mostly due to an increase in humanitarian response, only 20 percent of the response appeal for Ethiopia, Kenya, and Somalia has been funded to date.
UN agencies appeal for funding to help Somali refugees
The United Nations (UN) agencies and partner organizations appealed for USD 116 million to scale up life-saving assistance to Somali refugees seeking safety in Ethiopia’s Somali region.
Clementine Nkweta-Salami, UNHCR’s regional director for the East and Horn of Africa and the Great Lakes Region, said the UN agencies need additional funding to ramp up the delivery of aid and address the acute and growing humanitarian needs.
“The Ethiopian government and local communities have generously welcomed the refugees, extending any help they can, but with the continuing arrivals, resources are already severely overstretched,” Nkweta-Salami said in a joint statement.
Since clashes erupted between security forces and clan leaders in the city of Las Anod in northern Somalia on February 6, hundreds of thousands of people have been displaced within Somalia, and an estimated 100,000 have crossed the border into Ethiopia to escape violence, according to UN agencies.
The funds will help provide urgently needed shelter and relief items, such as blankets, mats, and mosquito nets. Food will also be provided to all families in need through monthly general food distributions, the agencies said.
Boeing lawyers argue victims of 737 MAX crash died painlessly
Boeing attorneys “cited an expert who said that the 737 MAX victims died painlessly because the airplane crashed into the ground so fast that their brains didn’t have time to process pain signals from their nervous systems,” according to a recent court filing.
“Boeing recognizes the tremendous tragedy suffered by the families,” attorneys wrote. However, the attorneys argue that Illinois laws “provide that evidence of passengers’ pre-impact pain and suffering may not be admitted to support a damages award in this case.”
The airplane company hired an expert witness who said in a court filing that “while passengers undoubtedly perceived the flight as scary, humans have a tendency to hold on to hope and not expect the worst,” WSJ reports.
Plaintiffs aren’t buying it, writing in a court filing that passengers on Flight 302 “undeniably suffered horrific emotional distress, pain and suffering, and physical injury while they endured extreme G-forces, braced for impact, knew the airplane was malfunctioning, and ultimately plummeted nose-down to the ground at terrifying speed,” the WSJ reports.
Lufthansa commits to East Africa with more Nairobi flights, new GM
The Lufthansa Group is reaffirming its commitment to East Africa by relocating the commercial responsibility for its passenger service back to Kenya.
The Group has appointed a new general manager for the East African region, stationed in Nairobi, Kenya. The airline will further increase its presence in Kenya by adding more flights from Frankfurt, while Swissport will offer more services to the German flag carrier in Nairobi.
Effective March 1, Lufthansa appointed Kevin Markette as the new general manager for the East African region, which includes Kenya, Ethiopia, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, and Tanzania. With a physical presence in the region, he will be able to manage the demands of the local market directly.
Markette succeeds André Schulz, who has now been appointed head of regions Middle East, Africa, South Asia, and CIS at Lufthansa. Kevin will report to Philippe Saeys-Desmedt, senior director of sales for sub-Saharan Africa at Lufthansa Group, in his new role.
The group is pleased to have Kevin on the team in East Africa. Lufthansa is confident that he will continue strengthening the relationships developed with businesses and customers in the region.
Deadly Marburg virus spreads to Tanzania
Tanzania reported its first outbreak of the deadly Marburg virus after eight people developed symptoms, including fever, vomiting, bleeding, and kidney failure.
Testing by the east African country confirmed the presence of the highly virulent disease that causes hemorrhagic fever, the World Health Organization (WHO) said in a statement late Tuesday. Five of the eight cases in Tanzania’s northwest Kagera region have died, and another 161 contacts have been identified and are being monitored, the WHO said.
Tanzania is the second African country this year to report its first Marburg outbreak after Equatorial Guinea detected the illness in February. Eleven deaths are suspected to have been caused by the virus, which belongs to the same family as the one that causes Ebola.
A WHO risk assessment in September showed that Tanzania is at high to very high risk for infectious disease outbreaks as its borders span several countries, including the African Great Lakes region.
Marburg has a fatality rate as high as 88 percent. While there are no vaccines or antiviral treatments approved to treat the virus, survival improves with supportive care such as rehydration with oral or intravenous fluids and treatment of specific symptoms.
Air Tanzania, Air Senegal team up over Airbus A220 groundings
Air Tanzania and Air Senegal are collaborating to mitigate the challenges faced due to the grounding of their Airbus A220-300 aircraft.
Since November, several of their A220-300s have been grounded due to technical issues with the Pratt & Whitney engines. The Airbus aircraft is powered by PW1524G-3 engines, whose defects have affected all airlines operating similar models.
The two airlines grounded the planes without setting a target date for when they would return to service. This has resulted in significant losses and disruption of operations, so the flag carriers are considering joint action against the engine manufacturers.
For the past five months, both national carriers have tried to find solutions to mitigate damages and losses separately. Since this has not produced any positive results, they are considering joint efforts to find the most effective way forward.
An Air Senegal delegation was in Dar es Salaam last week for a meeting with Air Tanzania officials to find the best way to tackle the persistent engine problems. The two African airlines believe the engine manufacturer is prolonging a resolution, affecting their daily operations.
Over 10,000 students in Isiolo to benefit from KSh35 mln bursary
Over 15,000 students in Isiolo are set to benefit from bursary funds, despite education remaining a critical enabler in the fight against abject poverty in the county.
Isiolo’s Governor, Abdi Hassan Guyo, on Wednesday launched the county’s bursary and scholarship program worth KSh35 million for the targeted beneficiaries across the county.
Speaking during the launch, he said that his administration is also in the process of sourcing an additional KSh65 million for a bursary.
“I am committed to seeing no child left behind in education. I will work closely with the national government, development partners, and other elected leaders to ensure all our children stay in school,” he added.
Over the years, issues such as culture and drought have substantially contributed to a huge number of school dropouts among learners in Isiolo.
On his part, Isiolo Deputy Governor, James Lowasa, noted that both levels of government should work together to ensure children stay in school. However, he lamented that although the national government is supposed to fund secondary education, the amount disbursed cannot meet the high demand.