Connect with us

Top Story

Mauritania’s minister steps down amidst internet blackout

Neither the minister nor the government provided reasons for Ould Maham’s departure

Published

on

Mauritania's minister steps down amidst internet blackout
(File photo)

Mauritania’s government spokesman has stepped down after defending a three-day communications blackout imposed during three days of post-election unrest, sources said Friday as fixed internet in the country was restored.

Sidi Mohamed Ould Maham, also the minister of culture, handed in his resignation Thursday, ministry sources said, shortly after he gave a press conference describing the restriction as “preventive”, and promising “the internet will be restored as soon as the reasons for its disconnection disappear.”

Related: Mauritania joins Ethiopia, Sudan in Africa’s ‘internet blackout zone’

Neither the minister nor the government provided reasons for Ould Maham’s departure.

While the internet was back up Friday, the mobile phone network that was disconnected last Sunday remained down, in what the opposition has claimed was a “state of siege” imposed to cover up an electoral “holdup”.

According to official results, ruling party candidate Mohamed Ould Ghazouani won Saturday’s election with 52 per cent of the vote.

Related: Opposition party candidates cry foul over ruling party victory in Mauritania elections

Ghazouani, a former general, is a close ally of outgoing president Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz who stepped down after serving the maximum two five-year terms. 

Opposition leaders have accused the authorities of fixing the ballot, and say hundreds of people were arrested in a crackdown on protests that followed the June 22 vote. 

Police also raided opposition party headquarters, clashed with opposition supporters, and announced Tuesday they had arrested more than 100 foreigners accused of working with domestic opposition parties to destabilise the country through protests. 

Related: Mohamed Ould Ghazouani declares himself the winner in Mauritania elections

The election represented Mauritania’s first democratic transition of power since independence from France in 1960. 

Nouakchott was calm Friday ahead of an expected public address by Ghazouani, who has already received messages of congratulations from countries including France, Morocco, Algeria, and Saudi Arabia.

Copyright News Central

All rights reserved. This post and other digital content on this website may not be reproduced, published, broadcasted, rewritten or redistributed in whole or in part without prior express written permission from News Central.

New stories delivered to your phone

Click here to have news stories delivered to your phone or mail. You can also share your stories with us. Join our mailing list here.

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Top Story

Counsel to ex-Sudanese leader Omar al-Bashir asks court for bail release

In the first hearing, an investigator said that Bashir had admitted to receiving at least $90 million in cash from Saudi royals in recent years

Published

on

Counsel to ex-Sudanese leader Omar al-Bashir asks court for bail release
Sudan's ousted President Omar al-Bashir sits in a defendant's cage during his corruption trial in Khartoum on August 24, 2019. Bashir appeared in court for the second hearing of his corruption trial. Mahmoud Hjaj / AFP

Sudan’s deposed military ruler Omar al-Bashir appeared in court Saturday for the second hearing of his corruption trial, during which his defence asked for his release on bail.

Bashir, wearing a traditional white gown, sat in the same metal cage he appeared in on Monday when his trial on graft charges opened.

In the first hearing, an investigator said that Bashir had admitted to receiving at least $90 million in cash from Saudi royals in recent years.

The judge in Khartoum Saturday heard three witnesses, two of them investigators who searched Bashir’s residency after his ouster and the other a banker.

“We ask the court to release the accused on bail,” Bashir’s lawyer Hashem Abu Bakr said, to which the judge answered he would examine a written request.

After the hearing, as a massive security convoy escorted the 75-year-old Bashir back to prison, two opposing groups of demonstrators had gathered.

One group of a few dozen protesters were chanting slogans for Bashir to face justice not just over corruption but for his role in the country’s deadly conflicts.

READ: Sudanese ex-President Bashir admits receiving $90 million from Saudi royal

“Bashir is a killer” and “He has to face justice”, chanted some of the demonstrators.

Another smaller group had turned out in support of the deposed Islamist general, who was forced from power by relentless protests in April after 30 years in power.

While the sight of Bashir sitting inside a cage in a courtroom was unthinkable only months ago, many in Sudan and abroad have warned that this trial should not distract from the more serious indictments he faces.

The former Sudanese leader is wanted by the International Criminal Court in The Hague over his role in mass killings in the western region of Darfur.

Copyright News Central

All rights reserved. This post and other digital content on this website may not be reproduced, published, broadcasted, rewritten or redistributed in whole or in part without prior express written permission from News Central.

New stories delivered to your phone

Click here to have news stories delivered to your phone or mail. You can also share your stories with us. Join our mailing list here.

Continue Reading

Top Story

Senegalese opposition leader Amath Dansokho dies at 82

President Macky Sall has described Dansokho as “a great warrior for liberty, democracy and the progress of peoples”

Published

on

Senegalese opposition leader Amath Dansokho dies at 82

Veteran Senegalese opposition figure and former minister Amath Dansokho, a major presence in Senegal’s politics for more than 60 years, has died in Dakar aged 82, according to his associates.

Local media said Dansokho, a former leader of the opposition Party of Independence and Labour and an ally of President Macky Sall, died Friday following an illness.

In a statement, Sall called Dansokho “a great warrior for liberty, democracy and the progress of peoples.”

Born in Kedougou in southeast Senegal in 1937, Dansokho was a member of the African Independence Party, the first Communist outfit in French-ruled west Africa, before leaving to form the Party of Independence and Labour.

An opposition figure under Presidents Leopold Sedar Senghor, Abdou Diouf and Abdoulaye Wade, he was jailed numerous times and spent many years in exile elsewhere in Africa and in the then Eastern Bloc.

Dansokho, who served as mayor of Kedougou and was a deputy in the national assembly was made a minister under Wade, but then fired after he criticised the running of the government.

“A baobab has fallen, a man who fought every battle for democracy and fundamental liberties,” human rights activist Alioune Tine wrote on Twitter, referencing the mighty tree which is a national symbol.

Copyright News Central

All rights reserved. This post and other digital content on this website may not be reproduced, published, broadcasted, rewritten or redistributed in whole or in part without prior express written permission from News Central.

New stories delivered to your phone

Click here to have news stories delivered to your phone or mail. You can also share your stories with us. Join our mailing list here.

Continue Reading

Top Story

17 die in road accident in central Nigeria

The accident involving an 18-passenger Toyota bus and a truck transporting a container happened in Kwara state

Published

on

17 die in road accident in central Nigeria
(File photo)

Seventeen people were killed when a passenger bus collided with an oncoming truck in central Nigeria, a road safety official said Friday.

The accident involving an 18-passenger Toyota bus and a truck transporting a container happened in Kwara state on Thursday, said Udeme Eshiet of the Federal Road Safety Corps. 

“Due to excess speeding in which the two drivers were involved… they could not negotiate the sharp bend properly, and when they eventually met, it resulted in head-on collision,” he said. 

Seventeen people on the bus died, while the two occupants of the truck sustained serious injuries, he added.

Accidents are common on Nigeria’s poorly-maintained roads, caused by reckless driving, speeding and disregard for traffic rules. 

Nineteen people were killed last month when four vehicles collided on a busy road in northern Nigeria’s Kano state. 

Copyright News Central

All rights reserved. This post and other digital content on this website may not be reproduced, published, broadcasted, rewritten or redistributed in whole or in part without prior express written permission from News Central.

New stories delivered to your phone

Click here to have news stories delivered to your phone or mail. You can also share your stories with us. Join our mailing list here.

Continue Reading

Trending