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Insight into Ethiopia economy and Djibouti’s relevance.

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For a populous nation as Ethiopia on record as Africa’s second biggest only behind Nigeria, imports are as important to its economic growth as are the goods it also exports chief amongst them, coffee.

Ethiopia is, however, landlocked with five neighbours who have access to the sea Sudan, Kenya, Djibouti, Somalia and Eritrea.

As things stand now, Djibouti handles roughly 95 percent of all inbound trade for Ethiopia, a nation of 105 million and an economic power in East Africa.



One of the first significant steps Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed took when he assumed the premiership in April 2018 was to acquire stakes in ports in neighbouring countries.

His trips to Kenya and Sudan saw the respective government report of port deals with the Lamu and Port of Sudan respectively. Then came the peace deal with Eritrea in July 2018.

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The normalization of all relations between the two former enemies also brought to the fore the economic impact of the July 9 peace deal which gives Ethiopia access to Eritrean ports.

At the time it questioned how long Djibouti’s ports will be to Ethiopia when especially the Eritrean route becomes active. Many economic watchers said it will take some time for the dependence on Djibouti to ease.

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That reality shot to the fore earlier this week when the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa almost run out of fuel because a road connecting Ethiopia and Djibouti had been blocked – blocked by protesters.

Protesters were demonstrating against violence and a government order for local militias to pull out from disputed areas and be replaced by federal soldiers.

“The region’s leadership, local elders held discussions that resulted in a solution and the end of the blockade,” federal police spokesman Jeylan Abdi told reporters. A witness in the area confirmed the measure.

The resolution means that Addis Ababa’s fuel supply will return to normalcy as would the import and export of essential supplies via the sea route.

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Crime

Nigeria Football Federation boss Amaju Pinnick under fresh corruption probe

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Several properties belonging to top officials of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), including its president Amaju Pinnick, have been seized in a fresh corruption probe.

The latest investigation and seizures are being carried out by the country’s Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission’s (ICPC).

The ICPC has published a newspaper advertisement about the properties seized – half of which belong to Pinnick.

According to the statement published in the Nigerian papers one of Pinnick’s properties is in London.

It comes amidst wide-ranging claims over how money meant for football development allegedly disappeared.

“We can’t go into further details beyond the fact that many officials of the NFF are under investigation,” ICPC spokesperson, Rasheedat Okoduwa said.

“It’s basically because what they have is in excess of what they have earned.”

The ICPC has also taken control of properties belonging to the NFF second vice-president Shehu Dikko and the general secretary Muhamed Sanusi among others.

Source: BBC

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24 Hours Across Africa

Rwanda ban Burundi,s music star ahead of annual festival

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Burundian musician Jean Pierre Nimbona, popularly known as Kidum, has told the BBC he is confused by Rwanda’s decision to ban him from playing at the upcoming Kigali Jazz Fusion festival.

Kidum is one of Burundi’s biggest music stars and has performed in Rwanda for the past 16 years.

But a police official phoned the musician’s manager to warn that he would only be allowed to make private visits to Rwanda.

“[My manager was told] Kidum is not supposed to perform, tell him to leave. If he comes for private visits fine, but no performances,” the musician told BBC’s Focus on Africa radio programme.

The mayor of Rwanda’s capital said that in this instance permission had not been sought from the authorities for him to perform at the festival in Kigali.

Kidum was a leading peace activist during Burundi’s civil war between 1993 and 2003 and used his songs to call for reconciliation.

The 44-year-old musician said he had never had problems with Rwandan authorities until recently when three of his shows were cancelled at the last minute – including one in December 2018.

That month Burundi had banned Meddy, a musician who is half-Burundian, half-Rwandan, from performing in the main city of Bujumbura.

Kidum said he was unsure if the diplomatic tensions between Burundi and Rwanda had influenced his ban.

“I don’t know, I don’t have any evidence about that. And if there was politics, I’m not a player in politics, I’m just a freelance musician based in Nairobi,” he said.

He said he would not challenge the ban: “There’s nothing I can do, I just wait until maybe the decision is changed some day.

“It’s similar to a family house and you are denied entry… so you just have to wait maybe until the head of the family decides otherwise.”

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