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MAURITIUS SET TO IMPEACH FIRST FEMALE PRESIDENT

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first female president

first female president

As Mauritius is preparing to celebrate its 50 years of independence, the government has decided to launch impeachment procedures to dismiss the President of the Republic, Ameenah Gurib-Fakim.

This decision was taken during a Cabinet meeting chaired by the Prime Minister Pravind Jugnauth in the afternoon of Thursday, March 8.

Government members reportedly agreed that the first female president of Mauritius will have to leave her position after being implicated in an expenses scandal.

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Influential media portal, L’Express last week reported that Fakim spent several hundred thousand rupees on personal purchases, using a Platinum credit card offered by a non governmental organisation, Planet Earth Institute (PEI).

PEI is owned by Álvaro Sobrinho, a controversial Angolan businessman, who initially worked with the president to offer scholarships to Mauritian students.

The president initially questioned the authenticity of the media reports, but later claimed to have reimbursed all the money spent with the credit card.

The President, who is a renowned scientist, told Radio Plus she will not resign.

“I will not resign. Let them institute their Tribunal. I will see later if I am guilty. Since 2017, I have already refunded all the money.“

The National Assembly is likely to be called next week, after independence Day celebrations on 12 March, and a motion under section 30(1) of the Constitution, will be on the agenda.

Under section 30(1), the President (or Vice President) may only be removed from office for

(a) violation of the constitution or any other serious act of misconduct or

(b) inability to perform his functions whether arising from infirmity of mind or body or from any other cause.

In order for the process to be initiated, a motion has to be made by the Prime Minister to parliament that the circumstances requiring the removal of the President or the Vice-President be investigated by a tribunal.

This motion must also particularise the ground on which the removal of the President is sought and be supported by the votes of not less than two-thirds of all the members of the Assembly.

Should the motion be successful, a tribunal consisting of a chairperson and 2 or 4 other members appointed by the Chief Justice , from amongst persons who hold or have held office as Judge, must be constituted to investigate the alleged violation or misconduct.

Should the tribunal, after its investigation, recommend the removal of the President to the Assembly, the Prime Minister, may then make a motion for the President’s removal.

Opposition MPs have also asked for the president’s resignation.

Ameenah Gurib-Fakim became the first woman to be sworn in as President of Mauritius in 2015.

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Crime

Ethiopia : 36 spy officers enter detention over corruption, rights abuses.

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After five months of investigations, Ethiopian authorities have arrested over thirty officials of the intelligence services, the attorney general Berhanu Tsegaye told reports on Monday.

According to him, the 36 officials currently being held have questions to answer over human rights abuses and alleged corruption. The officials were detained over the weekend, he added.



Local media portals quotes him as revealing grim details of rights violations on especially Ethiopians suspected and detained in connection with terrorism.

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He said investigators have uncovered 7 illegal dungeons in Addis Ababa, used purposefully to torture victims. Some of the actions of the detained officials led to death, rape and castration in some cases.

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He also gave details with regards to the case of a bombing at a pro-Abiy rally in Addis Ababa.

The third detailed corruption within the business wing of the Ethiopian National Defence Forces’ commercial wing.

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Uganda: Raging fire kills nine students in boarding School.

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Nine students died after fire engulfed a dormitory at a secondary school in southern Uganda early Monday, police said, one of the deadliest in a string of conflagrations at schools across the country in recent years.

Police spokesman Patrick Onyango said, the nine male students died when the blaze erupted at a dormitory that housed about 130 students at St. Bernard Maya secondary school in a district near the border with Tanzania.



Security personnel, Onyango said, suspect the fire was started deliberately by a group of students who had been expelled days earlier from the same school over indiscipline.

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It is suspected that they could be the ones that set the school on fire because of anger. They came back between midnight and 1 a.m. (local time Monday) and set the school ablaze,” he said.

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Our investigation is along that line because that is what we suspect happened.”

Other students were injured in the fire and had been rushed to nearby health facilities but Onyango said he was yet to establish their number.

Fire outbreaks at schools, mostly in dormitories, have become more frequent, often leaving buildings and students’ personal effects reduced to ashes.

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