Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Kefi Gold receives lender approval for Tulu Kapi gold credit committee

Kefi Gold & Copper PLC on Wednesday said that it had made “significant” financing progress in relation to its Ethiopian high-grade gold project.

The Cyprus-based gold exploration company, focused on assets in Ethiopia and Saudi Arabia, confirmed that its lead lender had approved a conditional final credit committee. The company said that the USD320 million financial package will go towards its “shovel-ready” Tulu Kapi gold project in western Ethiopia.

The project has already received approval from “key syndicate members”, the company said, and Kefi believes that reported actions by the Ethiopian Government indicate its assent.

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Executive Chair Harry Anagnostaras-Adams said: “The Ethiopian Government and the lead syndicate members of our high-grade Tulu Kapi gold project have been working hard to support our project launch. The government has recently made strong commitments including approving country membership (a set of protections for development finance institutions) for both of our project lenders, deregulation of exchange controls and commitment to the preparation of security and our community.”

Alongside these approvals, Kefi said that it is “prepar[ing] the community” through an orchestrated social engagement program, which involves meeting with community leaders and distributing medical treatment to local victims of a recent malaria outbreak.

The project’s launch is anticipated within the first half of 2024, contingent on the necessary preparations and approvals taking place.

Kefi shares were up 2.3 percent at 0.62 pence each in London at midday on Wednesday.

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(Alliance News)

Sub-Saharan Africa most conflict-affected region globally – IISS

Sub-Saharan Africa was the most conflict-affected region globally in 2023, with over half a dozen conflict regions, according to the International Institute for Strategic Studies’ 2023 Armed Conflict Survey.

The region continued this unfortunate status with conflict concentrated in four adjacent theatres – the Sahel, the Lake Chad Basin, the Great Lakes Region and East Africa, the respected think tank reported. Other conflict areas are the Central African Republic (CAR) and Mozambique. “Most conflicts, the survey has it, “have internal, regional and international elements” contributing to “their intractability”.

What IISS terms “notable developments” last year were reported from six countries. They are Sudan, Ethiopia, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Mali and the Sahel.

These include the breakout of conflict in Sudan between the Sudan Armed Forces and the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF)  in April 2023; the end of the two-year civil war in Ethiopia with the signing of a peace agreement between the Ethiopian government and the Tigray People’s Liberation Front in November 2022 and and the announced withdrawal of the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali, amid a wider drift towards military authoritarianism across the Sahel (with Niger being the latest country experiencing a military coup).

Overall levels of violence in sub-Saharan Africa were “broadly unchanged” with jihadist violence “markedly increased, especially in Somalia and the Sahel”.

As for North Africa, the IISS found the conflict in Libya remained at a stalemate, with the country divided between competing governments, while Egypt saw a decrease in fighting.

The spike in food prices has compounded the region’s extreme climate-change vulnerability to create a major food-insecurity crisis, especially for import-dependent countries, notably in North Africa. The region’s ability to tackle these multiple crises will have important implications for regional security dynamics as well as global energy security, the IISS warned.

Globally, the IISS Armed Conflict Survey 2023 found the intensity of armed conflicts is on the rise, marked by a 28 percent rise in violent events and a 14 percent increase in related fatalities.

The influence of non-Western powers, including Russia, China, Iran, the Gulf countries and Turkey, add to an ongoing trend of democratic backsliding tied to diminishing Western clout, and drive geopolitical fragmentation in the Global South.

The increasing number of conflicts have strained international funding and resources to address the mounting humanitarian crises and development issues, the IISS reported.

(defence web)

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Ethiopia-UK ties to enter ‘new era,’ UK pledges to increase dev’t aid to EUR 200 mln

Ethiopia and United Kingdom (UK) have finalized to ink the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to scale up the diplomatic ties to strategic partnership level, said Ethiopian Ambassador to UK.

Ethiopian Ambassador to the UK Teferi Melesse said that the activities are ongoing to elevate the diplomatic ties between the two parties. The bilateral relations between the two sides are in a good position. The preparations have been finalized to sign the MoU to scaling up the diplomatic ties with UK to a strategic partnership.

“We agreed with UK government to scaling up the existing relation into strategic partnership by communicating with country’s Foreign Ministry and parliament. The two countries’ cooperation and relation have been strengthening from time to time.”

The signing of the MoU would help to further strengthen the strategic cooperation between the two countries in education, health, manufacturing, agro-processing, investment, trade, people to people ties and other sectors. Furthermore, it would contribute to further widen diplomatic ties evaluating gaps, he said.

The Ambassador mentioned that UK didn’t impose sanctions following the Northern Ethiopia conflict.

The UK government recently launched zero-tariff and tax opportunity for Ethiopia and other countries. “We hope to exploit UK’s growing market for export since Ethiopia has been working aggressively on agriculture, manufacturing and agro-processing,” he added.

As to him, the UK government pledged to increase its development aid from EUR 80 million to 200 million in 2024. This all are indicators of scaling up of bilateral ties of the two countries. The UK investment in Ethiopia accounts 20 percent of foreign investment when compared to other countries. UK investors are showing an interest to invest in mining, energy, pharmaceutical and manufacturing sector.

Hence, UK banks are conducting a study to join Ethiopia’s financial sectors when it opened. Moreover, experienced contractors in the sector are showing their keen interest to be part of the construction of the Ethiopian airlines planned to build a new airport, Ambassador stated.


Exam results of employees of Addis Ababa City Administration released

General results of the exam, given to employees of the Addis Ababa City Administration, were made public, sources said.

A statement made regarding the exam given to employees of the Addis Ababa City Administration indicates that over 15,000 employees have sat for the test. The examination, which has been a discussion point among the metropolitans, was reportedly set by the Addis Ababa University and Kotebe University of Education, according to sources.

The statement released by the City Administration yesterday made official that leadership members, professionals and employees at various positions numbering 15,151 have sat for the “technical and behavioral qualification test”.

The statement reveals that of the 4,213 employees who took the test from the leadership section, only 1,422 succeeded by scoring the passing grade. This means only 34 percent of the leadership has passed. The statement indicated that to stay in their respective positions, the examinee leadership members had to score over 60 percentile passing grades.

The other non-leadership employees who have taken the exam were 10,257. Out of them, only 5,095 were said to score the passing grade. This means 50 percent of the employees have reportedly succeeded, according to the released statement. They were expected to score over 50 percentile passing grade, the statement indicated.

Out of the total number of examinees who sat for the test, 681 were reportedly dismissed from the exam halls due to various misconducts and 441 failed to appear at the exam venue.


Médecins sans frontières survey sheds new light on scale, intensity of ethnic violence in Sudan

A retrospective mortality survey carried out by MSF among Sudanese refugees now sheltering in three refugee camps in Chad indicates a significant increase in mortality in Sudan from the start of the conflict in April 2023 onwards.

The survey documents the appalling scale of the wave of violence that swept through Sudan last June. Atrocities have continued in recent months in the region of El Geneina, the capital of West Darfur state, Sudan.

In all three camps, the results from people indicate a significant increase in mortality in Sudan from the start of the conflict in April 2023 onwards. However, responses from refugees housed in the Ourang camp, who come mainly from El Geneina, indicated that their families have lost the greatest number of family members.

The mortality rate increased 20-fold from April onwards, reaching 2.25 deaths per 10,000 people per day, with a peak in June; 83 percent of those killed were men. Violence, particularly with firearms, was the cause of death in 82 percent of cases.

The majority of deaths took place in El Geneina, while a quarter occurred while people were fleeing to Chad. Nearly one man in 20 aged between 15 and 44 was reported missing during this period.

“The survey results corroborate the testimonies of some 1,500 Sudanese wounded treated by our teams in collaboration with the Chadian health authorities in the surgical unit at Adré hospital since last June,” says Claire Nicolet, MSF head of emergency programs in Chad. “The largest influx of wounded we experienced in Adré, with 858 war-wounded received between 15 and 17 June, corresponds to the peak mortality rate observed in the survey. 

The accounts of refugees who have fled West Darfur over the last six months paint a picture of an unbearable spiral of violence, with looting, burning of homes, beatings, sexual violence, and massacres. Rooted in political, economic and land rivalries between the communities present on the territory, the ethnic dimension of the violence has taken a particularly extreme turn in the state’s capital El Geneina, which is now virtually empty of the Masalit community that used to live there. 

One of the most recent episodes of violence took place in November in Ardamatta, to the north-east of El Geneina. Hundreds of people have been reportedly killed, when the militias took control of the area which hosted a large camp for displaced people and a garrison of the Sudanese armed forces. 

“There were 333 wounded, mainly people coming from Ardamatta with gunshot wounds, treated in Adré by MSF and Chadian Ministry of Health medical teams during the month of November”, says Nicolet.

The largest influx of wounded in Adré, with 858 war-wounded received between 15 and 17 June, corresponds to the peak mortality rate observed in the survey.

The war in Sudan has led to a major humanitarian crisis in eastern Chad, where almost half a million people have found refuge, alongside already vulnerable local communities and thousands of other Sudanese refugees who have been in the country for two decades. 

Significant financial, logistical and human resources are still needed to step up the humanitarian response, particularly emergency food aid, in Adré and the surrounding camps. MSF teams continue to provide a wide range of medical care (including for pediatrics, maternal health, nutrition, trauma surgery, vaccinations, mental health) in Adré hospital and in various clinics and health centers, and to work to improve access to water, hygiene and sanitation services.


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