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Cape Verdeans lament high cost of living amid soaring inflation

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Citizens of Cape Verde island are feeling the effect of the Russian-Ukraine war as they lament the high cost of living with its attendant inflation that has continued to skyrocket.

According to statistic reports in the country, prices of goods increased by 0.7 percent in March and accumulated a rise of 7.1 percent compared to the same month of 2021, indicating the latest data from the Cape Verdean Instituto Nacional de Estatisticas (INE), an economic research institute run by the government.

“From corn to olive oil, rice, as well as fuel, bread, sugar, flour, and meat, are some of the products whose price rises Cape Verdeans consider exaggerated and call for intervention from the government and regulatory authorities,” the INE said on Tuesday.

“Many people are now hoping that the government will step in to stem the ever-increasing prices of food, petrol and other services in the country.

“Fuel prices rose by 5 percent in April, the maximum limit stipulated by the government, but have accumulated an average rise of 42.6 percent in the last year, as well as a rise of 7 percent since last January,” it added.

Some businessmen are calling on the state to control the prices of commodities entering the country to curb traders taking advantage of the situation.

“The rise in prices is worrying at all levels, especially for food products. We are aware of the international situation, but not everything is due to the international situation,” Lenine Mendes, a Cape Verdean businessman said.

“Often, producers and traders take advantage of crises to raise prices. We don’t have a law that limits prices, there is no supervision and control,” Mendes added.

While inflation is on the rise, Prime Minister Ulisses Correia e Silva, has ruled out the possibility of an increase in the national minimum wage due to the economic crisis.

“In a crisis situation, increasing the minimum wage would be transferring increased problems to the private sector, which may even affect existing jobs,” Correia e Silva said during a debate in the National Assembly, ahead of the escalating food and fuel prices caused by the war in Ukraine.

Currently, Cape Verde’s national minimum wage stands at 13,000 escudos (117 euros) in the private sector and 15,000 escudos (135 euros) in the civil service.

Metro

Somali forces, local vigilantes, recapture strategic town from Al-Shabaab terrorists

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The Somali National Army (SNA), alongside local vigilantes popularly called Mo’awisley, on Monday, recaptured the strategic city of Adan Yabaal from the al-Shabaab terrorist group, the military said in a bulletin on Tuesday.

According to the statement, the town located near the border between Hiran and Middle Shabelle regions that comprise Hirshabelle State, which is about 220 kilometres north of the capital Mogadishu, is one of the five federal member states of the Federal Government of Somalia, and had been a strategic location held by the al-Qaeda-sponsored extremist group.

The SNA said in the bulletin that it met no resistance from the al-Shabaab fighters who left the town without posing resistance on getting information about the approach of the federal troops.

Al-Shabaab have lost most of the towns and settlements in Hirshabelle State, both Hiran and Middle Shabelle regions, after the SNA and Mo’awisley vigilantes waged offensive wars.

“Mo’awisley vigilantes, who are mainly composed of nomadic herders, took up arms and rebelled against the jihadists’ confiscation of their livestock and illegal tax collection known as zakawaat.

“Over the last couple of weeks, the government forces and the vigilantes have been gradually inching towards the town which they seized on Monday. The town had been under the full control of al-Shabaab for over a decade,” the bulletin said.

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Tanzania President, Samia Hassan, cancels country’s Independence Day celebrations: Here’s why

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Tanzania’s President, Samia Suluhu Hassan, has cancelled the country’s Independence Day celebrations which was scheduled for Friday, December 9, and has rather directed that the funds that would have been sunk into the celebration should be used to build dormitories for children with special needs.

The organisers of Tanzania’s 61st Independence Day celebrations had presented a budget of $445,000 to the government but the President vehemently opposed the budget and ordered that the money should be used to build dormitories in primary schools around the country.

However, Tanzania’s Minister of State, George Simbachawene, said the money had been disbursed, alluding that the East African country will celebrate Independence Day by having public dialogues on development marked with pomp and state banquets.

This is not the first time Tanzania has cancelled the celebrations.

In 2015, late President John Magufuli cancelled the celebrations and diverted funds towards the building of a road in the commercial capital, Dar es Salaam.

In 2020, he also cancelled the celebrations and directed that the budget earmarked for it should be used to buy medical facilities.

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