this seems really cool

An African youth volunteer program just got launched in West Africa. The BBC reports that “The scheme would see youths spend time helping out in areas such as agriculture, health or education in a different country to their own.”

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botswana’s ian khama (and the bdp) faces his stiffest challenge yet

Ian Khama has not had the presidency he dreamed of. The son of Botswana’s founding president faces his stiffest challenge yet since assuming office. A group of lawmakers from his party, the Botswana Democratic Party (BDP), have threatened to jump ship and form their own party. If enough of them do, President Khama may be forced to resign and call fresh elections. The BDP has run Botswana since independence in 1966.

Read more here…

the south africans cometh

They are all over Tanzania. Kenya’s southern neighbor is even a member of the SADC and currently suffers a huge trade deficit with South Africa. Now the sons and daughters of the Continent from south of the Limpopo are eying even greater penetration into the EAC via Uganda. President Zuma just visited Uganda with a delegation of businesspeople. Uganda’s oil sector was on top of the agenda.

I hope Kenyan businesspeople, and the political class, are watching. Competition from the South Africans is, of course, most welcome – companies like the East African Breweries certainly benefited from South African competition. That said, Kenya should not give up its role as the economic locomotive of East Africa. In particular, the government should ensure that Kenyan companies in the light manufacturing, retail and banking sectors remain competitive in the region. Investment in infrastructure – roads, the ports in Lamu and Mombasa, pipelines, power generation – should be prioritized. Nairobi must ensure that the Ugandans, Rwandans, Burundians and Southern Sudanese find it cheapest to export and import through Kenyan ports.