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Rwanda to host 26th Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting

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For the first time in over a decade, Africa will be hosting the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM), this time in Kigali, Rwanda.

Leaders of the Commonwealth countries meet every two years at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM). Each CHOGM is held in a different member country, with the respective Prime Minister or President as Commonwealth Chair-in-Office. Since 1971, a total of 25 meetings have been held, with the most recent held in London in 2018.

It is the fifth time that Africa will be hosting the CHOGM. First in Zimbabwe in 1991, in SouthAfrica in 1999, Nigeria in 2003, and Uganda in 2007.

The 26th CHOGM will be held in Kigali between June 20 and 26, under the theme ‘Delivering a Common Future: Connecting, Innovating, Transforming.’

While announcing the new date for the meeting, Rwanda’s president, Paul Kagame, said the East African country is pleased to welcome all delegates and participants to Kigali for a safe and productive CHOGM Rwanda 2022.

“The last two years have made it clear to us that we are more connected than ever before and we must work together to achieve the tangible and sustainable results we want,” he said.

The Commonwealth is a voluntary association of 54 independent and equal sovereign states. The Commonwealth is home to 2.5 billion people and includes both advanced economies and developing countries. Thirty-two of our members are small states, many of which are island nations. Our shared values and principles are inscribed in the Commonwealth Charter.

A statement by the Commonwealth secretariat said the Prince of Wales, who has attended CHOGM on five previous occasions – Edinburgh in 1997, Uganda in 2007, Sri Lanka in 2013 (representing the Queen), Malta in 2015, and in the U.K in 2018, will attend the meeting in Kigali.

“As the world works to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic, and in this Jubilee year, it is more important than ever that the countries of the Commonwealth come together,” the prince was quoted as saying in the statement.

“As a family of some 2.6 billion people from fifty-four nations across six continents, the Commonwealth represents a rich diversity of traditions, experience, and talents that can help to build a more equal, sustainable, and prosperous future.

Politics

Tunisian labour union, UGTT threatens political disruption as elections draws near

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As the North African country, Tunisia braces up for elections, labour union, UGTT has threatened not to disrupt proceedings under the current political arrangement.

UGTT attacked president Saied political and economic agenda on Saturday, including the elections scheduled for this month. The union said that it will no longer accept what it called a threat to democracy in its clearest challenge to him yet.

UGTT’s leader Noureddine Taboubi said in a speech to thousands of supporters, the union will ” no longer accept the current path because of its ambiguity and individual rule, and the unpleasant surprises it hides for the fate of the country and democracy.”

“We will not hesitate to defend rights and freedoms whatever the cost,” he added, in his strongest criticism yet of the president.

“We will not abide by secret agreements the government has with the International Monetary Fund and the workers will stand up to it,” Taboubi said.

Taboubi said the December election would “have no colour and taste” as a result of Saied’s constitution and that the vote lacked national unanimity.

President Kais Saied hinted that the country will not accept foreign observers for the planned elections for later this year.

There have been protests for and against president Saied’s approach to governance of the Tunisian public.

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South Africa: President Ramaphosa’s party, ANC meets as impeachment heat intensifies over ‘Farmgate’

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As the heat keeps piling on the South African president Cyril Ramaphosa, leaders of his party, the African National Congress (ANC) met on Friday to take a position on the current crisis bedeviling the country’s top man.

The ANC leaders are meeting after an inquiry found evidence President Cyril Ramaphosa may have committed misconduct, but they delayed a decision over whether he should stay in his post.

The party’s Treasurer General, Paul Mashatile after the meeting said the group would reconvene before Dec. 6 to discuss the report, which will be debated in parliament on that day.

“We want to deal with it properly, we don’t want to miss any step,” Mashatile told reporters, adding that party officials needed to scrutinise the report further.

“The mood was that there is a sense of urgency, that we should resolve these issues so that we can go on with the responsibilities of running the country.”

In reaction to the panel’s report, President Ramaphosa through a statement asked for space to “carefully consider the contents of the report and the next course of action to be taken”, and the National Council of Provinces chairperson acceded to the request for a delay.

The ANC is the dominant party in the country’s parliament, with 230 seats, or nearly 60% of the total, which makes the possibility of an impeachment low as most votes would be towards votes along party lines.

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