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South Africa, Mozambique declare plans to strengthen relations, regional peace

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South African President Ramaphosa and his Mozambican counterpart, President Filipe Nyusi have had discussions on strengthening bi-lateral relations and regional security at the just concluded SA-Mozambique Bi-National Commission in Pretoria.

The southern Africa neighbours also spoke about the insurgency in Mozambique’s Cabo Delgado province, as well as cyclone Gombe which is battering the north of the country.

“…the crisis you are confronting in Cabo Delgado is no different. We will face it together, with the same determination, certain that the forces of democracy and peace will be victorious”

Ramaphoza reiterated that “Mozambique remains one of South Africa’s top trading partners in the region, and there are several opportunities for expansion”

South Africa is keen, in particular, to expand cooperation in the energy sector with Mozambique being endowed with significant volumes of natural gas.

“Energy security is vital to economic growth in our respective countries, and we look forward to significant progress towards securing and sustaining our energy needs” Ramaphosa said.

The two leaders discussed ways of strengthening political, economic and investment relations as well as the implementation of the over 70 bilateral agreements.

President Ramaphosa said they have tasked deputy ministers from their foreign departments to meet regularly to ensure the implementation of their agreements.

“One of the most outstanding aspects of our meeting today is that we are going to on a six-monthly track the progress that we are making in implementing the agreements that we have reached here today.

Our deputy ministers will fold their arm sleeves to make sure on a continuous basis, we implement the agreements that we have reached so that they do not stay on our shelves and make sure that indeed the projects and interventions that are going to form part of enriching this relationship are indeed followed and are implemented.”

For Filipe Nyusi, President of Mozambique, this was a welcome development. “We accept this support, but understand that you can’t fight terrorism in an isolated form. This fact is borne out by the results on the ground even though sporadic attacks have persisted. The reduction in terrorist attacks confirms the old truth that united we are stronger.”

Also discussed was intentions to be supportive in matters of international relations. “Our countries share similar views on the need to reform the United Nations Security Council, to make it an organ that is representative and where the African continent can have a voice”

“South Africa fully supports Mozambique’s candidature for a non-permanent seat at the UN Security Council”

“Together with South Africa’s tenure in the AU Peace and Security Council, this will provide an opportunity for our countries to further cement cooperation between the two Councils, especially in the area of financing peace support operations”

 

Politics

Court summons Tunisian opposition leader, Rached Ghannouchi, over money laundering

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Tunisian opposition party, Ennahda has revealed that its leader, Rached Ghannouchi has been summoned by a judge over money laundering allegations.

The party revealed news of his summon on Wednesday and accused the authorities of targeting him for political reasons.

The summon is said to answer questions about the allegations, which Ennahda say are untrue and a result of “distortion and fabrication”.

Recall that a court in Tunisia in May, slammed a travel ban on Ghannouchi, alongside 33 other party faithful under the suspicion of involvement in an alleged parallel security service put into place after the 2011 Tunisian revolution.

Ghannouchi has been one of the loudest critics of president Kais Saied since the president seized broad powers last year, moved to rule by decree and ousted the elected parliament in which the Ennahda leader is speaker.

President Saied sacked the government, suspended parliament, and seized a string of powers in July 2021. In December of the same year, he announced in a speech on national television a three-month “popular consultation” with the Tunisian people after which “draft constitutional and other reforms will be put forward to a referendum on July 25”.

Ghannouchi’s summon is not the first time the Judiciary since Saied came to power will take decision that is perceive by many to be targeted at the president’s rival.

In June, a Tunisian military court sentenced a prominent political opponent and rival of President Kais Saied, Seifeddine Makhlouf, to one year in prison and also banned him from practising law for five years.

President Saied’s seat-tight disposition has continued with controversial reforms despite criticisms and wild protests.

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Exiled former Burkina Faso’s president, Blaise Compaore, to return home

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Burkinabe authorities has revealed that former president of Burkina Faso, Blaise Compaore will return from exile for the first time since being ousted in a 2014 uprising.

The junta led by Colonel Damiba made the revelation on Wednesday. Compaore will return home despite his conviction earlier this year for complicity in his predecessor’s murder.

Blaise Compaore was sentenced to life imprisonment by a military tribunal in April for the murder of his predecessor and ‘best friend’, Thomas Sankara, in a 1987 coup.

The statement from the presidency said the meeting of former heads of state “does not hinder judicial prosecutions engaged against some of them”, but did not elaborate.

An association of lawyers representing the families of Sankara and others killed during the 1987 coup demanded that Compaore be arrested once in Burkina Faso.

Local media have speculated in recent days that Compaore could be granted a pardon over the Sankara murder as part of the junta’s reconciliation process.

The coup that brought the current junta into power in Burkina Faso was launched on 23 January 2022 when gunfire erupted in front of the presidential residence in the Burkinabé capital Ouagadougou and several military barracks around the city.

The military Junta of Lieutenant-Colonel Damiba ceased power afterward and Christian Kabore has been on house arrest since then. Although fighting insurgency was one of the reasons for the last coup, Burkina Faso however remains in the eye of the storm with continuous terrorist attacks.

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