Items filtered by date: Friday, 06 September 2019
North Carolina braced for a “long night” of strong winds and driving rain as Hurricane Dorian moved near the US state’s coast Friday after devastating the northern Bahamas, where it left at least 30 people dead and thousands homeless.
 
Authorities in the state of Florida — which was largely spared by the storm — blamed six more deaths on the hurricane, US media reported, though they occurred as the victims were preparing for the storm’s arrival or were evacuation-related.
 
“Dorian should remain a powerful hurricane as the center moves near or along the coast of North Carolina,” the Miami-based National Hurricane Center (NHC) said Friday morning, after downgrading it to a Category 1 storm.
 
It warned that although weakening, the hurricane was still packing winds of 90 miles per hour (150 kilometers per hour), with some areas of the Carolina coast forecast to see dangerous storm surges of up to seven feet (2.1 meters) and between six and 12 inches of rain.
 
The wreckage left at Marsh Harbour by Dorian in the Bahamas
 
“We know we’re in for a long night and we’ll be eager to see the sunshine in the morning,” North Carolina’s Governor Roy Cooper told News men on Thursday night.
 
The slow-moving monster storm also spawned several tornadoes but there were no immediate reports of casualties.
 
Many residents of coastal Carolina heeded evacuation orders while others battened down their homes with plywood and prepared to ride out the tempest.
 
The centre of the storm was expected to move to southeast New England Friday night and Saturday morning, and then across Nova Scotia late Saturday.
 
US President Donald Trump tweeted that he had spoken to the governors of North and South Carolina, telling them he is “ready to assist.”
 
Dorian was a Category 5 hurricane — the highest on the five-level wind scale — when it slammed into the northern Bahamas on Sunday, leaving a trail of immense destruction.
 
News press men in the town of Marsh Harbour on Great Abaco on Thursday saw scenes of catastrophic damage with homes reduced to matchsticks, overturned cars, fields of jumbled debris, widespread flooding and beached boats.
 
Teams of men in masks and white protective suits were seen loading corpses encased in green body bags onto a flatbed truck.
 
Storm-dazed residents were out on the streets dragging suitcases containing their most precious possessions.
 
The full extent of the damage in the northern Bahamas was becoming known on Thursday as rescue teams fanned out searching for survivors and bringing relief to victims.
 
Prime Minister Hubert Minnis told news that at least 30 people were killed in the storm, which caused what he called “generational devastation.”
 
The death toll is expected to rise. The United Nations said 70,000 people in the Bahamas were in immediate need of aid.
 
“It’s hell everywhere,” said Brian Harvey, a Canadian from Montreal, told news in Great Abaco.
 
“I was on my sailboat,” Harvey said. “I lost everything.”
 
“We need to get out of here,” he added. “It’s been four or five days. It’s time to move and get out of here.”
 
Steven Turnquest, who arrived in Nassau from Marsh Harbour with his four- and seven-year-old sons after weathering the storm, told news men he was grateful to be alive.
Published in World

In reaction to the Xenophobic attacks on  Nigerian citizens, The Federal Government of Nigeria has been urged by a human rights lawyer to impose economic sanctions against South African business interests in Nigeria

Mr. Paul Eshiamomoh, a human rights lawyer, told Press on Friday in Abuja that this would be more impactful as a way to compel their government to be proactive against the xenophobic attacks on Nigerians than resorting to mob actions across the country. He implored Nigerians to remain calm to avoid worsening the xenophobic attacks against Nigerians and other foreign nationals in South Africa.

“I do not believe shutting down South African businesses in Nigeria will solve the problem and I do not subscribe to violent reprisal attacks against South Africans living in Nigeria or their businesses. The Federal Government can impose sanctions against their business interests in Nigeria. I believe that every diplomatic action should be matched with a diplomatic solution. So if Nigeria’s government does not take steps to send a signal to South African authorities against this barbaric act the situation will get worse,” he said.

The rights lawyer expressed dismay over the ability of South African police authorities to prevent the attacks against Nigerians.

“South African authorities are not proactive in saving the lives and properties of Nigerians. I am therefore calling on the Nigerian government to evacuate Nigerians who are willing to come back home,” he said.

He, however, appealed to the Federal Government to continue in its efforts to provide job opportunities for Nigerians to tackle the rate of Nigerians travelling abroad in search of jobs.

News reports that the Nigerian government through its Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, asked the South African authorities to pay compensation to Nigerians whose properties were destroyed during the attack.

Published in Business
Truecaller announced has announced that the company has crossed 500 million downloads and surpassed 150 million daily active users (DAUs) globally.
 
This comes close on the heels of the company recently sharing the news of attaining over 1 million paying subscribers on their Premium services.
 
This is a significant achievement for Truecaller, which is emerging as a one-stop communication platform with a wide array of services, such as: Instant Messaging, VoIP, and Payments. The 150 million DAU’s achievement makes Truecaller the most used communication app in India, after apps like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger.
 
The key factors that have led to this rapid growth are Truecaller’s many communication features, like their smart dialer, VoIP capability, Instant Messaging, and their spam-free SMS inbox.
 
Speaking on this unique achievement, Alan Mamedi, CEO & Co-founder, Truecaller, said:“By differentiating ourselves from the standard stock dialer and solving some fundamental communication problems for our users, we have been able to capitalize and excel the competition. This is a very significant achievement. 150 million daily active users and 500 million downloads is extraordinary. These milestones underline the faith and trust our users have in our brand.”
Published in Telecoms
Zimbabwe President Emmerson Mnangagwa has announced the demise of Robert Mugabe, the founding father of of the country who also fought for Africa’s independence struggle.
 
He was aged 95.
 
Mugabe died in Singapore, where he had been receiving medical care for months as his health deteriorated.
 
“It is with the utmost sadness that I announce the passing on of Zimbabwe’s founding father and former President, Cde Robert Mugabe,” a post on Mnangagwa’s official presidential Twitter account early Friday said.
 
Mnangagwa called Mugabe “an icon of liberation, a pan-Africanist who dedicated his life to the emancipation and empowerment of his people. His contribution to the history of our nation and continent will never be forgotten. May his soul rest in eternal peace.”
 
In November, Mnangagwa said Mugabe was no longer able to walk when he had been admitted to a hospital in Singapore, without saying what treatment Mugabe had been undergoing.
 
Officials often said he was being treated for a cataract, denying frequent private media reports that he had prostate cancer.
 
Monica mutsvangwa, the minister of information, confirmed the death, saying: “Yes it is really saddening. Some of us were like his children to him. We can never write our history without mentioning him.”
 
The former president, whose long rule in Zimbabwe descended into tyranny, corruption and incompetence, was in power for close to four decades before being ousted in a military takeover in November 2017.
 
He was initially loved and regarded as an African liberation hero and champion of racial reconciliation when he came to power in a nation divided by nearly a century of white colonial rule.
Published in World

Robert Mugabe, the African revolutionary hero who liberated his country from white rule but then turned the new, independent nation of Zimbabwe into his personal fiefdom and a virtual one-party state during his 37-year reign, has died, the country's current president said on Friday. Mugabe was 95.

"It is with the utmost sadness that I announce the passing on of Zimbabwe's founding father and former President, Cde Robert Mugabe," Mugabe's successor, President Emmerson Mnangagwa, posted on his official Twitter account.

Mugabe was forced out of power by a military coup in 2017. The cause of death was not immediately confirmed, but Mugabe had long battled health issues.

Robert Gabriel Mugabe was born into poverty in 1924 in what was then Southern Rhodesia, a British colony named after the notorious colonialist Cecil John Rhodes. Like neighboring South Africa, Rhodesia was allowed self-rule, but under a brutal system run by the white minority.

Mugabe was educated in Catholic missionary schools and became a teacher in what was then known as Northern Rhodesia, now Zambia. He later lived in Ghana when that country became the first African nation granted independence from Britain in 1957. He returned to Southern Rhodesia in 1960. Five years later the country's white rulers broke away from their British overlords in order to keep power and renamed the country Rhodesia.

(FILES) A picture taken on February 6, 1 A picture taken on February 6, 1980 shows members of the black nationalist guerrillas of the Zimbabwean African Liberation Army (ZALA), led by Robert Mugabe, staging a rally in an unknown place in Zimbabwe.GETTY

Mugabe was one of the founders of a revolutionary political party in Rhodesia called the Zimbabwe African National Union, or ZANU-PF. His actions led to him being imprisoned in 1964 without trial. He served 11 years behind bars, but while in prison, he was chosen as president of ZANU-PF.

After his release, he directed guerrilla warfare efforts against Rhodesia's white government from exile in Mozambique.

Mugabe became known as a skilled negotiator during his time in exile, according to BBC News

He made a name for himself during the independence movement, and Mugabe's ZANU-PF won an overwhelming majority in the first free elections in what had been officially renamed Zimbabwe in 1980. Mugabe then became the country's first post-independence prime minister.

"The phase we are entering, the phase of independence should be regarded as a phase conferring upon all of us — the people of Zimbabwe — whether we are black or white — full sovereignty, full democratic rights," Mugabe said in 1980.

Zimbabwe seemed to have a promising future, but bitter divisions remained. Mugabe soon moved to consolidate his ZANU-PF party's hold on the country, crushing his opponents in a brutal crackdown in which thousands of people were killed. He altered the constitution in 1987 to make himself president.

Although Mugabe initially invested heavily in social programs, including education and health, Zimbabwe's fortunes turned dramatically over the next decade. Mugabe blamed the white farmers, who remained in the country after the civil war, for economic malaise, and a vote was ordered to alter the constitution so the government could confiscate white-owned farms. The referendum was defeated, but Mugabe ordered his followers to carry out the farm seizures anyway.

Between 2000 and 2001, more than 1,000 farms were seized, Steve Kroft of "60 Minutes" reported at the time. A group of Mugabe's followers called the "war veterans" drove the white farm owners off their land, wrecked homes and barns, killed livestock and then left the land fallow.

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"The white farmer is the crudest of the whites in this country," Mugabe told Kroft, "the most backwater in terms of enlightenment and education."

The wife of one white farmer who was forced to drink diesel fuel before being shot blamed Mugabe for her husband's murder.

"Why?" Mugabe asked Kroft during the interview. "I wasn't there, I didn't give instructions to anyone."

The farm seizures led to condemnation by the international community, and loans to Zimbabwe were banned. Once known as the bread basket of Africa, Zimbabwe's farming industry collapsed and the country descended into desperate poverty.

A rival group, the Movement for Democratic Change, grew in power and won a majority in the first round of elections in 2008. But its leader, Morgan Tsvangirai, pulled out of the runoff after violence that left an estimated 200 people dead, according to NPR.

But through the chaos Mugabe lost some of his grip on power. The U.S., EU and many of his fellow African leaders tried to pressure him into leaving. In a defiant speech before Parliament in 2008, Mugabe claimed the international criticism, which extended to his handling of a vicious cholera epidemic, was a "pack of lies," and vowed he would not be intimidated into leaving.

"I will never, never, never surrender," he said. "Zimbabwe is mine, I am a Zimbabwean. Zimbabwe for Zimbabweans."

In 2009 he was forced to agree to a power-sharing agreement with Tsvangirai, but he managed to keep most of the power for himself. The economy went into free-fall. Unemployment soared and diseases were rampant. The Zimbabwe dollar was being printed in denominations of billions amid astronomical inflation.

Mugabe insisted he had won a clear victory in a contested 2013 election, and ended the power-sharing agreement. But his grip on power only lasted a few more years. He was finally ousted when his longtime allies, the country's military commanders, turned against him amid concerns he was setting up his wife, Grace, as his successor.

Mugabe had battled a number of health problems in recent years, and was receiving medical treatment in Singapore when he died. He had been there since April.

Mugabe once insisted he would never retire or go into exile. "I fought for Zimbabwe, and when I die I will be buried in Zimbabwe, nowhere else," he said in 2003.

 

Credit: CBS News

Published in Economy
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