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Zimbabwe Vows To Reclaim Africa’s Breadbasket Crown

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President Emmerson Mnangagwa has vowed to propel Zimbabwe to reclaim Africa’s Breadbasket crown through implementing a series of adjustments in the country’s Agriculture systems.

He made the remarks on Thursday while presenting at the high-level virtual meeting on feeding Africa , under the theme “Leadership to scale up successful innovations”.

This high-level dialogue was attended by Heads of States and Government.

Mnangagwa said African countries must share experiences on technology and innovations to transform agriculture.

“Once more we shall become the breadbasket of Africa. In Zimbabwe between 2020 and 2021, crop yield is expected to increase by 199% for maize harvest, 128% for the harvest of traditional grains (and) 94% for cotton harvest,” President Mnangagwa said on Twitter.

President Mnangagwa said his Government launched the National Development Strategy 1 aimed at attaining a “Prosperous and Empowered Upper Middle Income Status by 2030,” whose main thrust is to achieve food and nutrition security and accelerate value addition and beneficiation.

According to him Zimbabwe’s Agriculture and Food Systems Transformation Strategy launched last year premised on achieving a US$8,2 billion agriculture economy by 2025, is anchored on climate-smart technologies, extension services and increased innovations.

“To alleviate the challenges associated with agriculture financing, the Agricultural Finance Corporation has been established. Models of strengthening existing contract farming arrangements are constantly reviewed to increase overall agriculture productivity, profitability, and fairness, over and above the access to finance aspect.”

Mnangagwa said there was a need for bold and decisive leadership to climate-proof agriculture against the vagaries of the weather as well as pandemics such as Covid-19.

“It is imperative that we ensure the existence of a well-functioning agriculture knowledge, technology and innovation ecosystem, anchored on requisite agronomic and animal husbandry practices.

“My Government has identified an array of key programs and projects for the transformation of agriculture. These include the climate-proofing Pfumvudza/lntwasa concept; design, construction, rehabilitation and expansion of irrigation infrastructure; adoption of efficient water use technologies; promotion of the highly nutritious traditional grains; agriculture mechanisation; as well as soil conditioning and fertility management, among others,” the President said.

The virtual meeting was also attended by the president of the African Development Bank (ADB), Dr Akinwumi A Adesina, president of the International Fund for Agriculture Development (IFAD), Dr Gilbeft F Houngbo, executive chairman of the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change, Right Hon Tony Blair and chief executive officer of the Dangote Group, Mr Alhaji Aliko Dangote.

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South-Africa

SA Court Rejects Application To Disclose Ramaphosa’s Campaign Bank statements

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President Cyril Ramaphosa’s lawyers have successfully blocked a move aimed at making public his campaign bank statements.

The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) approached the court to force the disclosure of the statements in an application linked to Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane’s invalidated report on the CR17 campaign finances.

The Gauteng High Court in Pretoria has therefore dismissed with costs, the EFF’s application to have the bank statements of President Cyril Ramaphosa’s CR17 campaign made public.

During the course of that litigation, Gauteng Deputy Judge President Aubrey Ledwaba agreed to a request from Ramaphosa’s lawyers for the bank statements to be sealed on the basis that they contained confidential donor information.

The EFF later challenged that decision.

While Ishmael Semenya SC, for the EFF, was at pains to say that the party was not insinuating that there was anything “untoward” in the donations to the campaign, he argued that when information that was supposed to be public was kept confidential, there was a danger that politicians would use public office to further the agendas of benefactors.

Earlier this month, the Constitutional Court dismissed Mkhwebane’s efforts to challenge the invalidation of her report on the campaign finances.

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Mozambique At 46 Amidst Terrorism Challenge

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Security has been extremely tightened across major parts of the Mozambiquan capital Maputo as the country began celebrations for the 46th independence day.

In Mozambique, Independence Day, also known in Portuguese as Dia da Independência Nacional is celebrated every year on June 25 since the country received its independence in 1975.

However, critics argue that Mozambique government has to work hard to regain control of the country which is under threat from Islamist Jihadists.

The terrorists are currently controlling a vast part of Cabo Delgado and continue to wrecked havoc.

From 3 to 16 June a total of 13,000 internally displaced people were on the move in Cabo Delgado district. Of these movements, 85% (11,073) originated from Palma. Other main locations of origin include Macomia, Muidumbe, Nangade and Mocimboa da Praia. The main districts of arrival are Pemba, Mueda and Montepuez.

“Everything will be done so that the coming times are one of despair and agony for the terrorist groups that attack and kill innocent people in Mozambique”, said the President of the Republic, addressing the nation on Friday from Praça dos Heróis Moçambicanos, in the capital, where he laid a wreath on the 46th anniversary of the proclamation of national independence.

President Filipe Nyusi said his country is seeking the necessary support from the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and other partners and friends, without compromising national sovereignty.

He said it is urgent to stop the outbreaks of violence that are also registered in the provinces of Sofala and Manica to allow citizens to fully enjoy independence.

On the occasion, he recalled that SADC met in an extraordinary session in Maputo city and approved the mandate of a joint force in a state of alert to support Mozambique in fighting terrorism in the province of Cabo Delgado.

He also recalled that the Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration (DDR) of armed men from Renamo is ongoing in the country, which he considered to be proceeding smoothly.

Despite this, he said, the destabilization in the central region of the country is concerned, led by the self-proclaimed Renamo Military Junta, and for that reason he appealed to its leader, Mariano Nhongo, and all his followers to reconcile with reason and adhere to this process .

Regarding the 46 years since the proclamation of national independence, Filipe Nyusi said that there are several achievements recorded during this period, highlighting areas such as Education, Health, Water and Sanitation, among others.

He referred that illiteracy, for example, rose from 93% in 1975 to 48% in 2015, and today it stands at 31%. “Because we want to eradicate illiteracy, since 2020 students up to 9th grade have been exempt from enrollment,” he added.

According to Nyusi, in 1975 higher education in the country was limited to just one institution, but currently the country has 56 establishments, 22 of which are public and 34 private.

In the area of ​​Health, Nyusi stated that the country inherited from the colonial government a very fragile health system, with only 559 health units to serve around 10 million inhabitants.

“We grew and reached 1535 health units in 2015, and today the country has 1739 health units, but because we are not satisfied we launched the initiative [One district, one district hospital] which by 2024 will allow the country to have 1779 health units” , he added.

In terms of medical personnel, in 1975 the country had only 171 physicians and currently has 2658 professionals. The number of nurses also grew, from 3070 in 1980 to 15,155 this year, which contributed to the reduction of infant mortality.

In the Water and Sanitation sector, President Nyusi recalled that in 1975 supply coverage was only six percent and in 2018 it was 55%, and the PRAVIDA1 program raised the supply capacity from 55% in 2018 to 64% in 2020.

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South-Africa

EU Military Mission To Mozambique May Be Up And Running In Months, Bloc Says

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The European Union could have a military training
mission in place in Mozambique within several months, the bloc’s foreign policy chief said on Friday, helping the southern African country tackle Islamist
insurgents.

“I think we could be able to approve this mission,” Josep Borrell told reporters ahead of an EU defence ministers meeting in Lisbon where the subject
was due to be discussed.

The problem is to find additional countries besides Portugal to supply troops, he added.

Borrell has previously said 200-300 personnel could be sent by the end of the year.

Portugal sent 60 soldiers to its former colony Mozambique this month to begin training soldiers to counter the insurgency, share intelligence and use drones to track militants’ movements.

Portuguese Defence Minister Joao Cravinho said 7-8 other countries had expressed willingness to send troops but declined to name them. Portugal would
be the “principal participant” in the mission, he said.

Cravinho expected the remaining EU troops to be dispatched within three to four months, “perhaps faster”.

Mozambique has been grappling with an insurgency in its northernmost province of Cabo Delgado since 2017 and violence has grown significantly in the past
year.

Dozens of civilians were killed in Islamic State-linked attacks in the coastal town of Palma in April, and a $20 billion liquefied natural gas project run by oil giant Total was brought to a halt by the violence.

Source: Reuters

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