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President Abdi pledges $1million compensation as fire destroys hundreds of businesses in Somaliland market

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A fire outbreak at a market in the city of Hargeisa, the capital of Somaliland has destroyed hundreds of businesses in a crowded market area as firefighters struggled to subdue the flames which started on Friday night.

While the cause of the fire was not immediately known, reports say the fire started around 20:00 (17:00 GMT) on Friday and was not brought under control until Saturday morning.

According to the Mayor of the City, Abdikarim Ahmed Moge “The town has never witnessed such a massive calamity.”

“This place was the economic center of Hargeisa and even though the firefighters did their best to contain the fire, the market was destroyed,” Moge concluded.

One of the businessmen who suffered a loss in the unfortunate incident, Khadar Ahmed Mohamed, told journalists that “the fire engulfed our businesses unexpectedly. We were not ready. We saw the fire as we were busy working, then we fled to survive, we lost about $200,000 USD in this fire tragedy.”

Hargeisa Chamber of Commerce Chairman, Jamal Aideed said the destruction of the market was a disaster as it accounted for 40 to 50 percent of the city’s economy.

Meanwhile, Somaliland president Muse Bihi Abdi said the government would be releasing one million dollars to help with the emergency response to the disaster. The cause of the blaze is still unknown.

 

 

 

 

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Sudan recalls Ambassador from Addis Ababa after accusing Ethiopia of executing soldiers

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Sudan has recalled its ambassador to Ethiopia after accusing the Ethiopian army of executing seven Sudanese soldiers and a civilian who had been held in captivity.

The Sudanese military had said on Sunday that the Ethiopian soldiers had executed the captives and displayed their bodies in public while negotiations were ongoing for their release, promising that there would be “an appropriate response” to the execution.

“It is an act that contravenes all laws and customs of war and international humanitarian law, the Ethiopian army executed seven Sudanese soldiers and a citizen who were their captives.

“This treacherous act will not pass without a response,” the Sudanese military said.

The Ethiopian government however, denied complicity by its military in the killing of the Sudanese soldiers, blaming the Sudanese forces for crossing into its territory and provoking a clash.

The Ethiopian Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Addis Ababa, issued a statement expressing regret over the incident but said Ethiopia has been misrepresented.

“The Government of Ethiopia categorically rejects the misrepresentation of these facts by the Sudanese defense forces that unjustly put the blame on Ethiopia, while it was the Sudanese army unit that crossed (over) the Ethiopian border, provoking the incident.”

But in an announcement late Monday, Sudan said it would recall its envoy from Addis Ababa as well as summon the Ethiopian ambassador from Khartoum.

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Uganda’s Government changes position, invites striking art teachers for negotiations

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The Ugandan government has made a turn on its decision to sack all arts teachers involved in the industrial action.

The change in position comes barely days after the government threatened to dismiss the teachers. Minister Raphael Magyezi had revealed that the government had reached a final position to have Arts striking teachers sacked if they do not get back to class.

The government backed down and invited the leaders of the tutors’ union for negotiations to end the ongoing strike that has paralysed learning in public schools for two weeks now.

Art teachers across Uganda downed tools last week, threatening to throw the country’s education sector into yet another crisis, a few months after schools came out of two years of a shutdown that kept thousands of learners at home.

The general secretary of the Uganda Professional Science Teachers Union, Mr Aron Mugaiga, had advised the leadership of the Uganda National Teachers Union (Unatu) to encourage their art counterparts to return to class.

“I urge members to go back and teach because if they continue with the industrial action, the lost time will never be recovered when the government affects their pay enhancement. I believe the doors for negotiations are still open,” Mr Mugaiga said.

The ongoing strike is just five months after Uganda reopened schools following a two-year closure due to the Covid-19 pandemic, has already caused outrage as more than eight million children in public schools miss out on learning.

Over 300 percent pay increment was allocated for science teachers in Uganda’s budget for the 2022/23 financial year, which starts in July but the allocation does not include arts and humanities teachers.

It is not uncommon to see prolonged industrial actions in Africa. Elsewhere in the continent, Nigeria, University teachers have been on strike since February over salary related agreement the academic union had with the government in 2009.

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