Monday, 24 September 2007

Headlines - Weekly Round-Up

  • The floods in Eastern and Northern Uganda are showing no signs of abating and the forecast is for more heavy rain in those areas in the coming weeks. The President has declared a state of emergency which allows for rapid international help. Many of the people worst affected are in the Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camps that are dotted around the North after years of instability. Cruelly some of the people who had recently left the camps after hopeful peace talks have been forced back due to the rains. If you want to make a donation to the relief effort then the Red Cross website should help:

  • There have been accusations of assault, rape and even a murder against Ugandans doing business in Juba, the capital of potentially the world's next independent country, South Sudan. Ugandans are very angry at the stories as they see themselves as one of the biggest supporters of independence for their neighbours during the South's long battle for secession from Khartoum.

  • Close to 7,000 undergraduates have failed to 'register' at Makerere before the deadline. Given my experience of the endless form filling, rubber stamp collecting and document photocopying that the process entails I'm surprised anyone has managed at all.

  • According to the UN and World Bank an estimated $148 billion is stolen by African leaders each year, totalling a quarter of the gross domestic product of African states. Most of this money is being kept overseas and the aim of the announcement was to launch the Stolen Asset Recovery Initiative (SAR). This scheme will attempt to enable developing nations to claw back some of the funds misappropriated by former rulers, which is a noble aim but will be difficult to get past the Swiss bankers.

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