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Ethiopia’s PM, Abiy Ahmed says peace is most challenging as ruling party holds congress

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Ethiopia’s Prime Minister, Abiy Ahmed, has said that sovereignty and peace are the most pressing challenges of the landlocked country on the Horn of Africa, in the east of the continent.

The Prime Minister made the claim on Friday at the kick off of Ethiopia’s ruling party, Prosperity Party, first ever congress of the party he created in 2019. The Prosperity Party claims over 11 million registered and contributing members.

Also in attendance were party leaders and representatives of foreign political parties. According to local news reports, Uganda’s National Resistance movement and South Africa’s ANC were also in Addis Ababa.

“Peace is more than anything for Ethiopia because we just came out of war. Forces who think they are powerful need to work towards peace, discussion, rest, and development, Abiy said. All other options are not beneficial for Ethiopia and Ethiopians. I want to encourage all of us to stand for peace and democracy together.”

The Prosperity Party was established after Prime Minister Abiy initiated a process to replace the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front, a coalition of four major ethnic-based parties and three support parties which were crafted by Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) under the leadership of the late Meles Zenawi in 1991.

Disagreeing on the formation of a single united party, TPLF parted ways with member parties. Some analysts believed it was one of the factors that contributed to the tension with the Federal government which turned into the ongoing war in Tigray.

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Exiled Ivory Coast politician, Charles Blé Goudé, returns home to cheering crowd. Old wounds opened?

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Exiled Ivorian politician, Charles Blé Goudé who was the right-hand man of former Ivorian president, Laurent Gbagbo, is back home.

The Street General as he is fondly called is said to be allegedly involved in the violence that followed the 2011 presidential elections, returned home on Saturday after more than eight years abroad.

Thousands of supporters turned up to receive him at the airport after his arrival on a flight from Ghana’s capital, Accra, that was preceded by a heavy police presence.

Charles Blé Goudé while addressing the crowd said “in reality when I was told to come, it was frank, it was sincere. That is why I thank you here in Yopougon, the Ivorian authorities for having facilitated (my return, ed.) among you. If I see you today it is thanks to them.”

He thanked the Ivorian authorities for facilitating his return and said his “duty” was to “support the peace process”.

“I have arrived, I will gather all the information. In this same place, we will hold a political rally where I will discuss all the issues. And as the press is here, I ask them to come in a few weeks to a big press conference where we will discuss all the issues, I mean all the issues”, promised Blé Goudé.

The politician was arrested in Ghana in 2013 following the post-electoral crisis that engulfed the west African country in 2010. But the homecoming seems to be approved by the incumbent president, Alassane Ouattara, who in July pardoned his predecessor Laurent Gbagbo and Charles Blé Goudé’s principal in the push for national reconciliation.

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Congo DR electoral body, CENI, announces date of presidential election

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The electoral authorities in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Commission Electorale Nationale Independente (CENI) have announced dates for the next presidential election.

CENI on Saturday said the election will take place on December 20th next year.

The commission outlined several challenges, including the logistics of transporting ballot materials thousands of miles, health concerns about Ebola and COVID-19, and unrest that has forced hundreds of thousands to flee their homes.

The incumbent president, Felix Tshisekedi, who already expressed his intention to run again. He might be running against Martin Fayulu, who continues to claim that he won the 2018 election and was denied victory.

Terrorist activities, largely by a rebel group, M23 have drawn reactions from stakeholders in the East Africa region and global observers. The M23 is a rebel military group based in eastern areas of the DRC, mainly operating in the province of North Kivu.

According to the electoral authorities, insecurity remains the main challenge for the next elections.

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