South Africa has ambitious plans to build and launch its own satellites in the next 4 years, Minister.

Government is fast-tracking plans to develop South African-owned satellites that will focus on connectivity and tracking, says Communications and Digital Technologies minister Khumbudzo Ntshaveni.

Addressing a technology conference on Monday (22 November), Ntshaveni said the department is considering ways to condense the satellite programme, which would typically take between eight and ten years to develop.

She said that this revised programme would hopefully be ready to launch in just three to four years. The minister said that this will be dependent on access to funding, with the government hopeful that telecommunications and mining companies will help co-fund the project.

Of course we cannot afford to deploy only one satellite and as government, we will coordinate the efforts of South Africa’s industry and other interested investors to even deploy South Africa-owned low orbit satellites,” she said.

A commission established by president Cyril Ramaphosa has previously recommended that government build and launch a geostationary telecommunications satellite, which would offer its services to the entire Southern African Development Community (SADC) region.

Alongside South Africa, the SADC includes Angola, Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho and Zimbabwe.

The commission said that the satellite would provide quality connectivity of marginalised communities in the SADC region, at no cost to them, so that they may access 4IR applications, especially for smart health, smart learning, smart ammunition, smart minerals, smart agriculture, smart contracts and smart financial services.

The (satellite) would create an enabling environment that opens opportunities for a shared economy that would empower all Africans to change their material social conditions and alleviate poverty, inequality and youth unemployment. We would create much-needed redundancy by large global enterprises,” it said.

The commission said that the geostationary satellite would also add value in setting up an African central exchange for voice, data and other communication media and enable smart contracts for the African Continental Free Trade Agreements (AfCFTA).

Nigeria: when bandit decide not to strike, Nigeria will they’ve been neutralized, Shehu Sani.

Former senator of the federal Republic of Nigeria senator Shehu Sani, has reacted to the news of bandits attack on motorists along Abuja-Kaduna expressway, saying when bandits decided not to strike for 2 weeks, the government will claim bandits have been neutralised.

Shehu Sani

The controversial former senator was reacting to the news that bandits kidnapped dozens of innocent travellers along the highly volatile Abuja-Kaduna expressway on Sunday 21 November 2021 after weeks of “safety” on the road.

Shehu Sani took to his twitter page to make this statement as he posted that whenever the bandits strategically decides not to strike for like two weeks, the authorities will claim that the bandits neutralised and that the road (Abuja-Kaduna), is cleared and secured. He tweeted,

“When the Bandits strategically decides not to Strike for two weeks,the authorities will tell you that ‘the bandits have been neutralised’ and that the road is now ‘cleared’ and ‘secured’ and that you are ‘free to move’ and that you should also ‘ignore alarmists’.”

Nigeria: Imo state government and Nigeria army contradicted each others account of clash between military and unknown gunmen.

The crisis in Awo-Omamma in the Oru East Local Government Area, Imo State, which claimed the life of a soldier and led to the destruction of shops and houses on Monday has led to more controversies as the military and Imo State Government gave contradictory accounts of what happened.

Earlier on, the Imo State GGovernment spoke through a statement issued by the state Commissioner of Information and Strategy, Declan Emelumba. The Imo State Government condemned the killing of a soldier in the state by unknown gunmen, however, the Imo State Government also condemned the military for retaliating and burning down shops and houses in the Imo State community.

However, the Nigerian military has made it clear that they never burnt down any houses in Imo State. The Nigerian military claimed that they engaged some IPOB/ESN members who were causing damages in Imo State on Monday by trying to enforce the sit-at-home order imposed on the people of the state. The Nigerian military also said that they managed to disperse the rampaging IPOB/ESN members who were burning houses and destroying shops in Imo state. In retaliation for the intervention of the military, the IPOB members attacked the soldiers and killed one of them.

The contradiction in the accounts of the sad event as told by the Nigerian military and the Imo State Government is rather confusing. The known facts is that a military man was killed by some unknown persons, while houses and shops were burnt down in Imo State. However, the Imo State Government seems to think that the Nigerian military retaliated to the killing of its member by burning houses and shops, while the Military says that the house and shops were burnt by ESN/IPOB members. Considering how sensitive this incident is, there is need for the Imo State Government and the Nigerian military to come together and investigate the incident so that they can come out with a unified account of what truly happened in Imo State.

It is true that the dead can’t be brought back to life and the hands of time can’t be turned to avert the destruction of shops and houses in Imo State, however, an in-depth investigation will bring out a clearer account of what happened in Imo State so that the military and the Imo State Government can come out with a plan to help prevent such an ugly incident from happening again. The contradictory accounts of what happened in Imo State as narrated by the military and the Imo State Government is confusing and when such confusion abounds, it will be more difficult to get to the main issue and sort things out.

Nigeria: Armed Bandit are burning havested farm products in Zamfara State.

According to a facebook posts by Adams Garba, farm products which consist of corn, maize millet and other grains are been burnt down some unknown gun men in zamfara state.

This sad incident usually took place at night when there is less movement or when the farmers are home resting with their families.

It was gathered that this was not the first time, even during the raining season these criminals attacked villagers while they are working on their farm land.

However, the rate of insecurity in the northwest region is increasing daily and it need a good intervention by the military and the police to end the issue of banditry.

I want to also use this medium to call the attention of the state government and federal government to kindly come to the rescue of these farmers.

Thank you for reading, and don’t hesitate to share this story with your family and friends via social media platforms, you can as well drop your advice for the people in this region.

By oneworldvisionnews.com

Nigeria: Something has happened to us, we need our humanity back, says Woke Soyinka.

Africa’s Nobel laureate in literature, Prof. Wole Soyinka, yesterday, said Nigeria has reached a stage where a series of town hall meetings should be organised to ask ourselves retrospective questions about what has happened to us.

Wole Soyinka.

 

Speaking during the presentation and discussion of his book, ‘Chronicles From the Land of The Happiest People on Earth,’ inside the British Library Knowledge Centre on Monday night, he said the country has degenerated into a situation where human dignity has been devalued by vices such as the kidnapping of the Chibok schoolgirls and the recent alleged ritual killing of Timothy Adegoke Oludare at Osogbo in Osun State.  

Fielding questions during the event tagged ‘An Evening with Professor Wole Soyinka,’ he said the failure of leadership across Africa has made “some of us sell ourselves into slavery.

He noted: “The worst part for me is that we have allowed the slave trade to continue for so long. Who could have thought we would reach the state where people will trick one another to be used for rituals? We need a series of introspective sessions to ask questions about what has happened to us as a people.

He described Britain as a shameless country for continuing to charge me for visa.

Asked by the moderator what message he has for the future, he quipped: “All l will say is let us restore the loss of humanity.

Yesterday’s reading was the second book Soyinka presented to a London audience in over a decade. In 2007, The Guardian was at the Southbank Centre when he launched and read from his autobiography, ‘You Must Set Forth at Dawn.

Writers, like most people, tend to slow down with age. Not Soyinka. After focusing for nearly 50 years on plays, poetry and activism, at 87 he has returned to fiction, which he last published in 1972.

When the pandemic imposed isolation for much of last year, Soyinka decided to write his first novel in nearly 50 years. He sequestered himself away in a seaside cottage in Senegal and then in the hills of Aburi, outside of Accra in Ghana.

The pseudo-fictionalised Nigeria that Soyinka constructs appear hyperbolic, with an influx of oil wealth allowing rampant excess and materialism to become the canvas on which critical themes play out. Tremendous wealth and abject poverty are clearly visible side by side.

Soyinka also reveals the dichotomies between north and south, desert and forest, purity and corruption, fame and infamy. What appears as exaggerated sarcasm is, to a large degree, just holding up a mirror to the Nigerian society. Rather than a satirical caricature, the work is a chronicle as the title denotes.

Nigeria: Military killing people and destroying properties in Imo state, while bandit killing and abusing people in the North, Aisha.

It was reported yesterday that the Nigerian Military clashed with the members of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, in Imo State. According to report, several houses were set on fire during the clash.

Aisha Buhari.

Based on that note, a well known human rights activist, Aisha Yesufu decided to speak. According to a tweet she made on her verified twitter handle, Aisha Yesufu made it known that President Buhari deployed military to Imo State, while bandits and terrorists are in Kaduna State killing and abducting innocent Nigerians.

It should be recalled that bandits attacked several travelers along Kaduna-Abuja Expressway. According to report, several innocent people were kidnapped, while some lost their lives during the attack.

As it stands now, I really think that the Nigerian military should try and pay more attention on what is going on in the northern part, because the north is facing more insecuriy problems now.

What is your take on this particular issue? You can drop your comments and opinions below.

Burundi: Protection of Northern Lakes already bearing fruit.

A fisherman on Lake Rweru , Pascal Nkurunziza explained how well production has increased since awareness creation begun. Before the protection of the lake, production was low. Now it is increasing. The administrator and the governor have raised awareness to protect this lake, and production is increasing.

With this increase in production, investors have created work on the lake. This provides a living for families.

Daniel Minani explained how beneficial fishing has been to his livelihood. “Fishing is our job. Our bosses give us work. That’s what makes us live. We spend days on the lake, and when we come back, they pay us money.

The administration says the increase is real and beneficial.

There is the project to protect the lakes by separating the buffer zone from the cultivable part. This has increased the production of fish because they find food, where they multiply. This increase has contributed not only to the feeding of this population but also to community development. Because this community collects a lot of taxes, about two million FBU per week in fish marketing taxes. Albert Hatungimana, Governor of Kirundo stated.

Northern Burundi has a total of six lakes, including Lake Rweru.

South Africa insurers count excess death costs as new Covid-19 wave expected.

South African insurers are counting the cost of higher-than-expected mortality claims amid concern a new wave of coronavirus cases is taking off.

Old Mutual’s life insurance unit reported “a worse mortality claims experience than anticipated” with excess deaths, the number of fatalities over an historical average, weighing on its profit by about R6.6 billion ($416 million) for the nine months through September, it said Tuesday in a statement.

To counter the impact on profitability, it released R4.9 billion of its coronavirus pandemic provision, leaving around R1 billion for excess mortality claims related to Covid-19, it said. The provision will be reassessed at 31 December, the assurer said.

While smaller peer Momentum Metropolitan Holdings reported varied mortality experience across its units, its Momentum Life and Momentum Metropolitan Africa divisions were most severely impacted by Covid-19 related claims.

Its South African life insurance business paid R4.6 billion in mortality claims during the three months through September, compared with a full-year pre-pandemic average of R5.6 billion, it said in a statement.

The statements come days after the National Institute for Communicable Diseases said that the incidence of Covid-19 was increasing in wastewater samples in some areas of Gauteng, South Africa’s most populous province.

Scientists working with the government have predicted that a fourth wave of coronavirus infections could begin in December.

Although they expect it to be less severe than previous resurgences because more than a third of South African adults are fully vaccinated and an estimated 60% to 70% of the population may have already been infected.

China withdraw from South China, after U.S, Philippine warning.

Chinese vessels have backed down from a Philippine-occupied atoll in the South China Sea after imposing a quasi-blockade that provoked strong warnings from Manila and Washington.

Philippine Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana told reporters on Sunday that “the Chinese will not interfere per my conversation with the Chinese ambassador.” He was referring to Beijing’s envoy in Manila, Huang Xilian, who received a formal diplomatic protest from the Philippine government last week.

Lorenzana said he and Huang had been in communication since November 16, when three white hull China Coast Guard ships prevented two wooden supply boats from delivering food and other provisions to Philippine troops stationed on Second Thomas Shoal—part of the disputed Spratly Islands archipelago. Philippine leaders said China’s ships used water cannons in the clash.

The defense chief said the boats would return at an unspecified time this week, without additional naval or coast guard escorts. “We will see if they are true to their word as our Navy will proceed with the resupply this week, Lorenzana said, according to a report by the Philippine Daily Inquirer on Monday.

A small contingent of the Philippine Marine Corps has occupied the atoll, known in the Philippines as Ayungin Shoal, since its navy deliberately grounded World War II landing vessel BRP Sierra Madre to serve as an outpost in 1999. The island is about 105 nautical miles off Palawan in the West Philippine Sea—Manila’s term for the eastern portion of the South China Sea that falls within the Philippine exclusive economic zone (EEZ).

Last Thursday, two days after the water cannon incident, Philippine Foreign Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. released a statement accusing one of the Chinese government vessels of firing a water cannon at the Philippine boats, forcing them to abort their resupply mission. The official warned Beijing by invoking the Philippines-United States Mutual Defense Treaty, under which Washington has pledged to defend Philippine vessels from attacks in the contested South China Sea.

Philippines was backed on Friday by the U.S. State Department, which released a statement calling the Chinese actions an escalation that directly threatens regional peace and stability, escalates regional tensions, infringes upon freedom of navigation in the South China Sea.”

The Biden administration also reaffirmed its defense treaty commitments in the apparently effective statement of solidarity with Manila.

They have no right to impede, prevent or harass our ships within our EEZ [exclusive economic zone],” the Inquirer quoted Lorenzana as saying, “whether we are fishing or bringing supplies to our detachment in the Sierra Madre in Ayungin Shoal,” he said.

Philippines said China had reduced its coast guard presence and also removed its maritime militia”—a paramilitary-like armed fishing fleet which China denies operating.

Queried about the latest South China Sea standoff, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian said on Monday that Beijing and Manila were in “close communication.”

“China’s territorial sovereignty and maritime rights and interests in the South China Sea are supported by a solid historical and jurisprudential basis,” said Zhao. “All attempts at challenging China’s sovereignty and interests are doomed to fail.”

China’s government asserts sovereignty over nearly the entirety of the energy-rich South China Sea via historical claims to every single island, atoll, reef and rock inside its so-called “nine-dash line.”

After Chinese vessels blockaded Philippine boats and seized control of Scarborough Shoal in 2012 with the U.S. choosing not to intervene Manila took Beijing to the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague in the case known as Philippines v. China.

The three-year legal proceedings yielded a win for the Philippines, with arbitrators determining that China’s claims had no legal basis under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. China rejected the ruling in full.