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What next for Kenya as Odinga withdraws from re-run? [The Morning Call]

A constitutional interpretation crisis may be brewing in Kenya following the decision of main opposition party

the National Super Alliance (NASA) not to participate in a presidential election re-run ordered by the country’s Supreme Court.

The decision was announced by its leader and former Prime Minister, Raila Odinga, on Tuesday and has now set Kenya’s electoral commision

known as the IEBC into crisis talks with its lawyers to discuss the decision options available to it.

There have also been huge reactions from Kenyans on social media about Mr Odinga’s decision to withdraw.

We speak with Benji Ndolo, a political analyst in the country to weigh in on the situation and give us the implications for Kenya’s democratic process.

Vote count underway in Liberia [The Morning Call]

Liberians have voted hugely in the first election run entirely by the country’s institutions since the end of civil war in 2003.

The two elections in which Africa’s first elected female president Ellen Johnson Sirleaf was voted in power were managed partly by the UN.

This time though, election officials who had been preparing for months took their places at polling stations and attended to complaints from voters.

Observers reported long lines at many polling stations even at closing time. Many analysts do not believe any of the 20 presidential candidates will win outrightly.

There are also roughly 1,000 candidates from 26 parties fighting for 73 legislative seats.

Togo bans weekday protests as opposition vows anti-ECOWAS march

The Togolese government says opposition gatherings and protests can now only be held on weekends. The measure according to the interior minister was to avoid violence and mischief.

The announcement was made on Tuesday evening the same day that opposition parties planned the next round of protests starting next Wednesday (October 18).

The opposition said it planned to march to the offices of regional political bloc ECOWAS (Economic Community of West African States) in the capital, Lomé.

“Week days (Monday to Friday) are forbidden,” Payadowa Boukpessi, Minister of Territorial Administration told the press. “On the weekend, that is, on Saturdays and Sundays, they can protest,” he added.

According to him, during previous opposition protests there had been skirmishes the current ban is intended to cure. “There have been calls for civil disobedience, calls for economic sabotage, even calls for murders launched by demonstrators to authorities and their families and security services,” the minister said.

Fourteen opposition parties have been calling for protests since August this year among their key demands, two-term limits for presidential term, and the immediate resignation of President Faure Gnassinbgé, who has been in power since 2005.

The opposition says it wants an end to what it calls the Gnassingbe ruling dynasty that has ruled the country for five decades. Faure’s father Eyadema was president for 38 years till his death in 2005. Faure in this third term has chalked 12 years in charge.

The government at the height of the protests, planned to hold a referendum to undertake a constitutional reform, including this restriction of presidential terms, but the measure is not retroactive, allowing Mr. Gnassingbé to be a candidate in polls slated for 2020 and 2025.

“The struggle continues. To this end, we are already announcing that Wednesday, October 18, a great march to the offices of the ECOWAS (Economic Community of West African States) in Lomé to tell them we do not agree with the referendum it seems to encourage,” said Brigitte Adjamagbo-Johnson, coordinator of the main opposition coalition.

Integration Of SPLA-IO Forces Underway In Unity State

The process of integration of SPLA-IO forces under the First Vice President Taban Deng Gai in to the national army has started in Northern Liech State of former Unity the spokesperson of the SPLA IO said on Tuesday.

Togo opposition coalition rejects mediation by La Francophonie

Togo’s opposition coalition on Tuesday turned down a proposed international mediation effort in relation to a political crisis that has dogged the country since August.

A delegation from the International Organization of La Francophonie (OIF) was due in the country but is likely not to meet opposition parties. It is not known whether the delegation will proceed and hold talks with the government.

The 14-party coalition is calling for the immediate stepping down of the incumbent Faure Gnassingbe as they push for the end to what they say is a 50 year family dynasty that has ruled the West African country.

Protests which started in late August led to two deaths. The opposition has also held series of protests through September calling for Faure to leave and also for a return to two term presidential limits as contained in the 1992 constitution.

Faure’s father, Eyadema, was president for 38 years till his death in 2005. Faure – at the time a minister – stood in polls and won his first mandate. He won a second and third mandate in 2010 and 2015. His current mandate runs till 2020.

At the height of the protests, the ruling party moved to amend laws to revert to two–term presidency. The law will, however, not take retrospective effect, meaning Faure could stand for two more terms in 2020 nd 2025.

SPLM-N al-Hilu denies disagreement over number of conference delegates

October 10, 2014 (KHARTOUM) - The Sudan People's Liberation Movement-North led by Abdel Aziz al-Hilu (SPLM-N al-Hilu) denied reports that the delegates had been embroiled in a disagreement over the number of Blue Nile state representatives in the Extraordinary General Conference.
Nowadays, the rebel group is holding a an extraordinary conference to endorse its charter and constitution and to elect a new leadership after a rift last April over the right of self-determination for the Nuba (...)

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Sudan,
Sudan People's Liberation Movement/Army - North (SPLM-N/SPLA-N)

Wau state governor vows to protect foreign traders

October 10, 2017 (WAU) - The governor of South Sudan's Wau state, Angelo Taban Biajo has vowed to protect all foreign traders operating in the region.
Biajo made these remarks after meeting with the Sudanese business community who mainly hail from Sudan's western region of Darfur.
“You traders work very hard and we have a relationship with you. Our responsibility is to protect all of you, whether you are citizens from Sudan, Uganda, Ethiopia or Kenya in Wau”, said the governor.
He said it (...)

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Business & Industry,
South Sudan

Ex-S. Sudan rebel commander says optimistic on IGAD forum

October 10, 2017 (JUBA) – A former South Sudan rebel commander says he is optimistic that the peace revitalization forum, spearheaded by Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) will help end the country's conflict and bring about peace.
General Peter Gatdet made these remarks on Monday after meeting the revitalization forum team in Sudan's capital, Khartoum.
Gatdet, who broke away from the armed opposition faction led by former First Vice President Riek Machar, urged IGAD to (...)

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News

Sudan, South Sudan resume air border patrols: UNISFA

October 10, 2017 (KHARTOUM) - Sudan and South Sudan have resumed border air patrols since last September, five years after the signing of a security agreement providing to prevent cross-border attacks, said the United Nations on Monday.
Within the framework of the Cooperation Agreement of 27 September 2012, the two countries signed a security agreement with the purpose of stopping the flow of guns and supplies to the rebel groups across the border. The deal also provided to establish a (...)

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