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#Govt Demands Unconditional Repatriation of Looted Benin Art Works From Germany

The Federal Government has instructed Germany to ensure a full and unconditional return of the 1,130 Benin artefacts that were looted from the country in the 19th century and domiciled in German museums.Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, made the demand on Wednesday during meetings in Berlin with German Minister of State for Culture, Prof. Monika Grutters, and Foreign Minister, Mr. Heiko Maas.

He insisted the return should be whole rather than substantial on the heel of remarks by Grutters that the European nation was ready to make a ‘substantial return’ of the 1,130 looted artefacts.

He also said the issue of provenance, which has to do with the place of origin of the artefacts, should not be allowed to unduly delay the repatriation of the art works.


#Anger in Ghana over pay for the President and VP’s wife.

Ghanaians have expressed outrage at the decision by MPs to approve salaries for the wives of the president and vice-president for the supportive role they play.The first lady and second lady have always been given allowances over the years as part of executive privileges.But Ghanaians are unhappy because they will now receive cabinet-level salaries at a time of economic hardship.They could be receiving about $3,500 (£2,500) a month, which is expected to be back-dated to 2017.Some have also argued that there is no provision in the constitution for this arrangement. The youth wing of the largest opposition party, the National Democratic Congress, has threatened to file a lawsuit at the Supreme Court to challenge the MPs’ decision.

South Africa

#Zuma could be freed on parole in four months.

Former South African President Jacob Zuma could be freed from prison in four months, the justice minister said on Thursday, a day after the ex-leader stunned his compatriots by turning himself in to police to start a 15-month sentence.Zuma had initially indicated he saw his sentence as biased and illegitimate and his move on Wednesday was seen as a victory for the post-Apartheid state’s efforts to enforce the rule of law.Justice Minister Ronald Lamola told journalists outside Estcourt Correctional Centre, where Zuma is being held, that the former leader would be eligible for parole in four months.



#Botswana diamonds: second huge stone unearthed in just a month.

An exceptionally large and white 1,174-carat diamond stone has been unearthed in Botswana, trumping another huge precious stone that was found in the African country in June.The latest find, which fills the palm of a large hand, was also discovered in June, on the 12th. It was found by the Canadian Diamond firm Lucara and presented to the country’s cabinet in Gaborone on Wednesday being the second largest gemstone ever discovered.Last month Botswanan  diamond firm Debswana said it had recovered the ‘third largest’ stone in the world at 1,098-carats.



#China in trouble with Zimbabwean unions over ‘systematic abuse’

Chinese diplomats are embroiled in a vicious war of words with Zimbabwe’s labour unions over allegations that businesspeople from the Asian country are abusing their local employees.

Unions say the Zimbabwean government often looks the other way when they report Chinese employers for violation of labour laws.The Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU), the largest labour centre representing private sector employees, recently torched a storm when it used social media to expose what it described as “slave-like working conditions” at a Chinese owned tile manufacturing factory on the outskirts of Harare.Unionists claimed some workers had even died at the factory and their deaths were concealed by the Chinese.The Chinese embassy in Harare, however, reacted angrily to the accusations and warned they might damage relations with Zimbabwe.


#First African American wins U.S Scripps national spelling bee.

Zaila Avant-garde, a 14-year-old from New Orleans, won the 2021 Scripps National Spelling Bee on Thursday night, becoming the first African-American winner in the competition’s nearly 100-year history. Zaila Avant-garde, sealed her victory by correctly spelling the word ‘Murraya,’ a type of plant, after having to reset on another botanical word ‘Nepeta’ in a previous round.The 14-year-old girl will receive a $50,000 cash prize.



#You Can’t Lecture Us On Democracy – ED Tells West

PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa has again warned Western countries to desist from lecturing Zimbabwe on the need to uphold human rights as the same states were involved in worse abuses against their citizens.Mnangagwa was speaking Wednesday at the State House where he was bidding farewell to Zimbabwe’s ambassador to the United Nations, Albert Chimbindi, and Ambassador-designate to Mozambique Victor Matemadanda.

Mnangagwa also said Zimbabwe waged a protracted liberation struggle to bring majority rule and ensure human rights flourish.