Divine intervention saved my life – Tanzania billionnaire Mo Dewji

6 hours 41 minutes ago

In his first personal tweet since his release from the hands of abductors, Mohammed Dewji, reputed as Africa’s youngest millionnaire, said it took divine intervention to save his life.

He, however, gave no hints about who kidnapped him, where he was taken to and whether or not a ransom had been paid to secure his release.

“Let me start by thanking the Almighty Lord for making a divine intervention & saving my life. I’d like to thank each & everyone of you for all your prayers & unwavering support.

“May God reward you for your kindness. May the blessings of the Almighty be with you today & always,” his tweet of late Monday read.

Dewji, 43, was seized on October 11 as he arrived at a hotel gym in Tanzania’s commercial capital, Dar es Salaam. Tanzania police launched an active manhunt for his abductors with a series of arrests made in the process.

Nine days later, he returned home safely. Just around that time, police reported that they had managed to identify the kidnappers’ car, thanks to surveillance cameras, showing a photo of a dark blue vehicle off-road.

His first comments upon return was a tweet via the MeTL Group’s Twitter handle. It read in part: “I thank Allah that I have returned home safely. I thank all my fellow Tanzanians, and everyone around the world for their prayers. I thank the authorities of Tanzania, including the Police Force for working for my safe return.” — Mohammed Dewji (3:15AM, Dar es Salaam)

The family had last week offered a billion Tanzanian shillings for information leading to his whereabouts.

“For every matter that you fear, God has his plans” MO#BringBackOurMO#MrudisheMoWetu#BringBackMo

We are offering a reward of 1 billion TSHS for any tip that will help us find our MO! Please email tips to findmo@metl.net
The family promises to maintain secrecy pic.twitter.com/YHiSlVXuBX— MeTL Group (@MeTL_Group) October 15, 2018

Brief about Mohammed Dewji

With wealth estimated at $1.5bn (£980m), Dewji is described by Forbes magazine as Africa’s youngest billionaire. He leads MeTL, a family empire started by his father in 1970s.

As CEO, Mo is credited with turning the company from a wholesale and retail enterprise into a multi-billion dollar pan-African conglomerate.


U.S. congratulates Cameroonians, calls for peace in Anglophone zones

6 hours 44 minutes ago

The United States has commented on the outcome of Cameroon’s just ended presidential elections giving it a pass mark of sorts despite what it said were irregularities before, during and after the October 7 polls.

A statement from the U.S. Department of State also urged respect for the rule of law and peaceful resolution of disputes through legal channels.

The statement issued by Heather Nauert, a department spokesperson, also called for focus to return to the crisis in the restive Anglophone regions where a separatist movement continues to make the regions ungovernable.

Full statement: Cameroon’s Presidential Election Results

The United States congratulates the people of Cameroon for largely peaceful elections on October 7. We urge all parties – including the government – to respect the rule of law, resolve peacefully any disputes through established legal channels, and avoid hate speech.

While we welcome the Cameroonian Election Commission’s demonstrable improvement over the 2011 elections, there were a number of irregularities prior to, during, and after the October 7 election.

These irregularities may not have affected the outcome but created an impression that the election was not credible or genuinely free and fair. We commend the African Union Election Observation Mission for its preliminary statement, notably that “the current framework needs to be strengthened in order to safeguard the democratic principles of separation of powers, fairness, and independence and impartiality.”

With the conclusion of the presidential election, the United States strongly encourages both sides involved in the conflict affecting the Northwest and Southwest Regions of Cameroon to focus on resolving differences through peaceful dialogue and to allow unhindered access to humanitarian aid workers, the statement concluded.

The country’s Constitutional Council on Monday declared incumbent Paul Biya as president-elect with over 70% of valid votes cast. Biya swept majority of votes in nine regions except for the Littoral region where opposition candidate Maurice Kamto won.

Biya, 85, is now set to start his seventh term, a seven-year mandate, that will see him extend his over three decades stay in power. Biya also won all diaspora votes.

#2018 presidential election: Biya Paul has been proclaimed winner of the October 7 election with a 71.28%. pic.twitter.com/SpIpHSbPDu— ELECTIONS CAMEROON (@Elecam2018) October 22, 2018


War Machine vs Charlie Wilson’s War – Tom Secker on Around the Empire (Part 2)

8 hours 43 minutes ago
Joanne invited me on the Around the Empire podcast to do a ‘high level compare and contrast’ of two war comedy films set in different wars in Afghanistan: Charlie Wilson’s War and War Machine. The films are similar in many respects – both comedies, both have A-list lead actors, both set in wars in Afghanistan, both based on books – but politically they are diametric opposites. While Charlie Wilson’s War glorifies the CIA’s support to the mujahideen in the 1980s, War Machine criticises and satirises the US war in Afghanistan. This in-depth discussion gets into Zbigniew Brzezinksi, the CIA, Stanley McChrystal (and David Patraeus), Michael Hastings, the ‘surge’ policy and much more.

(Read more...)


DR Congo receives shipment of controversial voting machines

11 hours 3 minutes ago

Much hope in the Democratic Republic of Congo rests on these new voting machines.

Long-delayed elections are expected in the country later on December 23 and election officials see this technology as vital to holding those polls, believing it will cut costs, and help reduce electoral fraud.

On Saturday (October 20), Congo’s deputy prime minister said that tablet-like voting machines for December’s election had been ordered and will finish arriving this month, despite suspicions by diplomats and the opposition that they may enable fraud.

The electoral commission says the machines speed up the counting of votes in the vast central African country where past elections have been marred by voting irregularities or violence.

“We are on schedule, according to our planning, we are right on schedule, do not worry. According to our planning, the last containers will be arriving before the end of the month of October,” said Corneille Nangaa, president of Congo’s Electoral Commission (CENI).

President Joseph Kabila is due to step down after 17 years in power.

The election, which was meant to happen before Kabila’s mandate expired in 2016, has been delayed for so long that many doubted it would happen.

If it goes ahead, it will be Democratic Republic of Congo’s first peaceful transition of power since independence from Belgium in 1960.

But, doubts about the voting technology have increased fears that polls will be marred by chaos. Presidential candidates recently met with officials from CENI to express their grievances over the use of the machines, but say the answers are still not satisfactory.

“The biggest debate was around the voting machine and the voter registry, which contains some ghost voters, that was the main point of the debate, as well as the security of the candidates. But there has been no solution up until today. We were scheduled to meet but we didn’t, more meetings have been scheduled, I am now apprehensive because we have 80 days to the elections, and what will these meetings accomplish? CENI keeps saying that elections will take place on December 23, but how can we hold elections on December 23 if we keep having meeting after meeting?” said presidential candidate, Marie Jose Ifoko.

Congo’s influential Catholic bishops have called for certification of the machines by international experts, and opponents reject the machines’ use.

“We are currently facing a serious problem, because electoral campaigns are set to begin from November 22, which means it will be too late. We can already say that from mid November, elections will not be good, and that we are headed towards violence and chaos, that’s what we fear. We are now in the final days and there needs to be renewed efforts to avoid all of that,” Isidore Ndaywel È Nziem, a moderator for the Committee of the Catholic Laity (CLC).

Western governments and investors regard the election as a crucial step towards ending political instability that is impeding investment in Congo, which is rich in natural resources but mired in poverty and economic and humanitarian crises.


50 minutes 15 seconds ago
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