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At least four people hurt in the explosion in the eastern city of Beni, which has experienced attacks by armed groups.

Local police said they were looking for the suspected bomber after the blast in the eastern region where Congolese and Ugandan forces have launched a campaign against suspected armed rebels.


“We call on the population to be calm and especially vigilant,” said Beni city police spokesperson Nasson Murara.

Police tended to casualties at the market before taking them to a local police hospital, a Reuters news agency journalist on the scene said.


Frank Kasisa, the attending physician at Beni’s police hospital, said four people were in stable condition after being injured in the blast. He confirmed no one had been killed.

Stephanie Kahambu, who has a shop inside the market, said the market had been crowded before the explosion.

“We heard a bomb explode, and everyone fled in different directions,” Kahambu said. “It’s really sad because I saw four people who were seriously injured.”

The US embassy in Kinshasa said on Tuesday that it believed “terrorist attacks” were planned in Beni “in the near future”, and warned US citizens against travelling there.


Beni has experienced several bombings in recent years that authorities have blamed on the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF), a Ugandan armed group that has pledged allegiance to ISIL (ISIS).

On Christmas day, a suicide bomber attacked a restaurant in Beni, killing at least five people and himself, while at least people were wounded after three bombs rocked the east of the country in June last year.

The ADF is the deadliest of an estimated 122 armed groups that roam the mineral-rich east of the DRC, many of them a legacy of two regional wars that ran from 1996 to 2003.

In late November, the DRC and Uganda launched a joint operation against the ADF in the east of the country after Congolese troops struggled for months to quell bloody ADF attacks. SOURCE: NEWS AGENCIES/Aljazeera


Kenyans in the UK are perhaps the best example of how unity in purpose should be. Although they were previously caught up in divisive elections, this time round, they are prepared and have decided to speak with one voice.

Kenyans in the UK now have a structure that keeps them united and connected. They have community groups based on where one lives. This community groups have community leaders across UK and they have the nationwide umbrella body known as KCCC (Kenyan Communities Chairpersons Council-UK)


The Chairmen or Chairlady of the local community groups are under the Chairmanship of KCCC whose current leader is Mr Lucas Kamau. When IEBC allowed Kenyans in seven countries added to the previous list namely, UK, US, Canada, Qatar, South Sudan, UAE and German) in the Diaspora to vote, IEBC kicked off mobilisation and information sharing via the KCCC structure whose leaders have become vital in mobilising Kenyans to register as voters.

As Kenyans in the UK register to vote for the very first time, they seem to have agreed to keep petty party politics out of their common goal which is to register and vote. Before you would see a clear distinction between NASA supporters and Jubilee supporters but this time round, Kenyans have come together to speak with one voice.

The newly found unity as Kenyans has the potential to transform the politics from the Diaspora. Some Kenyans from the UK will be vying for different seats via different parties for example, Julius Kaberere vying for MP in Kandara Constituency and John Kaniaru vying for MP in Njoro Constituency.

Most Kenyans in the UK made long distant journey some 2-6 hours long just to come to Kenya High Commission and register to vote. This was a huge cost to them, in time and money.

These Kenyans say, IEBC and all stakeholders must ensure that proper legislation is in place and better logistics are implemented to ensure that they can register and vote without having to travel to London.

More photos below>>>>





Uganda's president on Friday warned people against "insulting" the country's security forces, saying that doing so would be a way of "provoking" them. 

"If you insult me, we fight. But according to other cultures, provoking and insulting is free speech. I should warn you against attacking the army," Yoweri Museveni said, speaking at the official opening of the new legal year 2022 at the High Court headquarters in the capital Kampala.

The president warned that insulting people in the name of free speech should not be tolerated.

His comments come against the backdrop of the detention and torture of award-winning novelist Kakwenza Rukirabashaija for allegedly abusing the president's son, Lt. Gen. Muhoozi Kainerugaba, who is also the commander of the land forces.

The writer was recently charged with making offensive comments on social media regarding the Ugandan president's son and is still battling a court case on the incident.

A video in which Rukirabashaija shows his bruised ribs and fractured ankle bone -- injuries he said he sustained while in detention -- recently went viral.

"Reprehensible, despicable and repugnant! Only stonehearted people can unleash this kind of barbaric torture on a fellow human being. Well survived comrade," Kampala mayor Erias Likwago tweeted.

Members of the opposition in the Ugandan parliament, including a few from the ruling party, walked out of the session on Thursday, paralyzing the sitting in protest of the alleged injustices that include killings, torture, and illegal arrest across the East African country. - Hamza Kyeyune, Anadolu Agency

FILE PHOTO/Photo Courtesy AA 

LOLIONDO, Tanzania 

Thousands of Maasai pastoralists in northern Tanzania are protesting a renewed government move to demarcate swaths of land in the Ngorongoro district and Loliondo ward for the protection of wildlife sanctuaries, saying they will no longer have area for cattle grazing.

The semi-nomadic pastoralists whose livelihoods depend on cattle rearing have repeatedly accused the government of using wildlife conservation as a pretext to evict them from their ancestral land.

The root cause of the problem, they say is that the government wants to give exclusive hunting rights in the disputed 1,500 square kilometers (579 square miles) wildlife corridor in Loliondo to foreign investors. However, the government has defended its move, saying it is looking for wider national interests that are necessary for wildlife conservation.

Village land

According to the country’s 1999 legislation that governs the land management, all land in Loliondo is classified as “village land."

For many years, the government has accused Maasai communities and their cattle herds in Loliondo and Ngorongoro of encroaching on important wildlife breeding grounds and disrupting migratory routes for wildebeests.

Local Maasai leaders in the disputed areas have called the latest move to establish a wildlife corridor on their ancestral land "absurd," claiming that it would effectively deny thousands of herders a place to live as well as access to pasture and water for their animals.

"Imagine your home being burned in front of you to clear your land for foreigners to hunt," said Julius Petei Olekitaika, a traditional Maasai Leader, adding: "Imagine not being able to graze our cows because the government wants to protect a foreign investor whose only interest is hunting the wildlife."

He accused the government of violating their rights to life and inflicting long-term damage to their cultural heritage.

"They want to take away not only our rights as a people but also the symbiosis that connects us with spirits, animals, plants, water, and land, which will be disrupted if this land is taken away,” said Olekitaika.

“Losing this land is tantamount to losing our traditional way of life. We will not accept it,” he said.

Since the country’s independence, another traditional leader Raphael Long’oi said, the Maasai have lost over 70% of their land to conservation and government-backed investments.

“We call on human rights groups worldwide, and people who value indigenous human rights, to defend our cause,” he told Anadolu Agency.

The Maasai are capable of protecting the environment and they have done so for many years, he added.

For decades, the Loliondo and Ngorongoro areas have been embroiled in land disputes. In 1992, the move to lease the Game Controlled Area in Loliondo to an investor from the UAE for trophy hunting provoked anger among native Maasai, who claimed the licensing process was opaque and they had been largely excluded.

In 2013, then-President Jakaya Kikwete called off the government's plans to evict Maasai pastoralists from a disputed area after an online campaign opposing the move garnered over 2 million signatures.

Early this year, the government began putting beacons on a disputed area in Loliondo, ostensibly to create a protected area, displacing tens of thousands of cattle herders.

According to a local resident, police are planning to forcibly evict all residents from the area.

Meanwhile, the government is also drawing plans to implement new land use and resettlement plan in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, which observers say would greatly reduce the area where Maasai are allowed to live and use for livestock grazing and crops cultivation.

Local Maasai leaders say about 80,000 residents, mostly indigenous Maasai, will be forced to relocate to other areas where their traditional livelihoods cannot be sustained.

John Mongela, the regional commissioner of Arusha, recently stated in Loliondo that the disputed land would be demarcated by hook or by crook to serve larger national interests.

"My position is a national interest ... and if it is a national interest, a disputed area will be demarcated, even if by someone else," he said.

The Maasai, a semi-nomadic ethnic group in northern Tanzania that has coexisted peacefully with wildlife for centuries while protecting the area's ecological balance, have come under increasing pressure from commercial interests that threaten their way of life.

Distinctive way of life

Drought and loss of grazing land have forced the Maasai, known worldwide for their distinctive way of life, to abandon traditional rural livelihoods in favor of wildlife conservation and commercial hunting. The Maasai are one of the world's largest ethnic groups, roaming across southern Kenya and northern Tanzania.

Loliondo residents have urged the government to recognize the disputed area as legitimate village land rather than a conservation area.

Onesmo Ole Ngurumwa, the national coordinator of the Tanzania Human Rights Defenders Coalition -- a human rights umbrella organization -- urged the government to abandon its plan to take away legitimate village land.

"When people are evicted from one area to another, the laws governing land management must be followed," he explained.

Ngurumwa urged President Samia Hassan to give the people of Loliondo the benefit of the doubt and allow them to present their woes to her so that she can resolve the conflict once and for all.

“We call upon the president to give the people of Loliondo the opportunity to present their woes … so as to bring to an end this dispute that has been raging for quite too long,” he said. By Kizito Makoye , AA

Employment and Labour Relations,  court has barred parastatals and other state agencies from encroaching on the mandate of the Public Service Commission (PSC) on human resource matters.

The court also faulted State Corporations Advisory Committee (SCAC) for attempting to usurp the role and mandate of PSC. Justice Monica Mbaru made the finding in a case in which the Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) and the State Corporations Advisory Committee (SCAC) were sued for hiring two directors in charge of Frequency Spectrum Management and Competition Management.

A citizen, Antony Manyara Muchui went to court in October last year protesting the recruitment process based on structures and establishment that had not been approved by the PSC, the institution with the constitutional mandate, under Article 234 of the constitution to establish offices in the public service and approve organisation structures and human resource policies and guidelines.

In her judgment, Justice Mbaru said state corporations are part of the public service and undertake public functions using public resources. 

She further reiterated that the PSC is mandated to regulate all human resource of the state corporations. “I find that it is within the mandate of PSC to manage human resource matters in the public service and that includes state corporations,” ruled Mbaru.

The Judge, however, directed PSC to review, audit and make recommendations with regard to the Communications Authority human resource policies and practices of its officers or employees and report to the court within one year. PSC was also ordered to investigate the agency’s administration and personnel practices, and report back to the court.

Harmonised law

Mbaru said the report compiled by PSC should state measures undertaken to harmonise the law to meet the constitutional threshold pursuant to Article 234.

“The third respondent (PSC) is hereby directed to develop Human Resource Policies and guidelines for the 1st respondent (CA) in strict compliance with the Constitution and the law,” the Judge said.

The court directed the Commission and the Attorney General to ensure the enactment of  necessary amendments to legislation to align them with the provisions of Article 234 of the Constitution to prevent a situation where agencies continue to exercise statutory powers that existed prior to the promulgation of the new Constitution. 

Manyara had sued CA for changing the recruitment process by introducing possession of a Master’s degree as a condition for promotion.

Mbaru however allowed CA to restrict the recruitment of the two senior officials at the state agency to master’s degree holders arguing that they are technical positions requiring a higher level of competence.

The recruitment process of filling the two positions which had been advertised was temporarily halted last year after it was challenged in court on grounds that it was discriminatory and meant to lock out deserving Kenyans.

But the CA CEO Ezra Chiloba had opposed the petition arguing that the two positions were technical and will also form a pool from which a successor to the director general position would be sourced.

The judge has now directed CA to re-issue the internal and other public advertisements for filling of vacant positions within 14 days without disadvantage to those who had already applied and those likely to apply in the extended period.“To ensure completeness and taking into account the date the advertisements were closing the same was stopped by the court for good cause and to allow for the hearing of the petition, the first  respondent shall post and publicise a new date for receipt of all applications. This will give interested and eligible applicants a reasonable opportunity to put in their applications,” the Judge said.

Manyara filed the case arguing that the move is illegal and is meant to lock out deserving members of staff from being promoted, and also prevent qualified members of the public from applying for the jobs.

He said the advertisements were issued using new human resource policies and guidelines, prepared by the State Corporations Advisory Committee (SCAC), which requires all serving and prospective employees from the position of assistant manager and above to have a minimum academic qualification of a master’s degree. Source: People Daily

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