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This article appears in the March 4, 2022 issue of Executive Intelligence Review.

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Africa Briefs

Africans Do Not Condemn Russia for Ukraine Invasion

The Voice of America (VOA) on Feb. 24—the day after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine—found it necessary to report that Africans do not condemn Russia for its invasion of Ukraine. The exceptions are the three governments on the “hot seat” as current members of the UN Security Council—Kenya, Ghana and Gabon—joined initially by South Africa. The South African foreign ministry, lapsing into amnesia of the past 30 years’ history—the broken promises to Russia about NATO expansion eastward, and the State Department coup in Ukraine in 2014—called on Russia “to immediately withdraw its forces from Ukraine in line with the UN Charter.”

VOA credited Africa’s silence to Russia’s power in Africa, claiming it was inconvenient for African governments to criticize Russia. But the African National Congress Youth League (ANCYL) in Gauteng province, South Africa, supplied at least some of what the VOA—and its own government—missed. The ANCYL Gauteng, in its blistering response to the condemnation of Russia by South Africa’s foreign ministry, on Feb. 24 accused the government of “appeasing the West,” stating, “The posturing on the part of the elders in government was nowhere to be seen when the USA proudly killed Gaddafi in Libya, when the children of Yemen, Iraq and Afghanistan cried to the world as the USA slaughtered them.”

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, however, announced Feb. 25 a policy of diplomacy that does not call for withdrawal of Russian troops from Ukraine.

In Nigeria, the government said Feb. 24 that it had “received with surprise reports of the invasion of Ukraine by Russia,” but that it had been able to confirm that Russian military action was confined to military installations. The statement had nothing further to say.

Egypt was following Ukraine developments “with deep concern,” and favors dialogue, according to Al-Ahram, the semi-official daily, on Feb. 24.

A Sudanese mission was in Moscow on Feb. 24. Sudan’s military government had scheduled a visit seeking cooperation and aid, since the U.S. has now promised punishing sanctions against disobedient Sudanese. Despite the Ukraine invasion, Sudan did not cancel, and Gen. Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, number 2 in the government, had talks in Moscow on Feb. 24.

In the Central African Republic on Feb. 24, the government organized a tribute to Russian military forces present in the capital, Bangui. Something similar took place in Mali.

Even the African Union—two-thirds financed by the European Union and individual European governments—declined (subtly) to condemn Russia. The Chairman of the African Union, Macky Sall, and the Chairman of the AU Commission, Moussa Faki Mahamat, in a joint statement on Feb. 24, called on Russia “and any other regional or international actor to imperatively respect international law, the territorial integrity and national sovereignty of Ukraine.” (Emphasis added.)

Ethiopia Throws the Switch for Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam

Ethiopia is now producing power from the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam. Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s statement at the launch Feb. 20 that, “From now on, there will be nothing that will stop Ethiopia,” was reported worldwide within hours. The dam now produces power from one turbine rated at 375 MW; the next will follow within weeks. There will be 13 turbines; it may be two years before the dam, now said to be 84% complete, is fully operational, with an output of 5,100 MW.

Begun in 2011, the $4.2 billion dam project—partly funded by bonds purchased even by peasants—has had to fight for every centimeter of its 145 meter height. The dam now holds back 2.3 billion cubic feet of water. Efforts to stop the dam relied on the 1929 Anglo-Egyptian Treaty, which assigned water allocation percentages to Egypt and Sudan, ignored Ethiopia’s needs, and gave Egypt effective veto-power over any upstream dam construction. The agreement was reinforced in 1959 by a bilateral agreement between Egypt and Sudan.

Egypt has condemned the “unilateral start” of electricity generation at the dam as a violation of a 2015 Declaration of Principles, signed by Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan, whose Third Principle is “not to cause significant harm” in using the Nile waters.

Six African Nations To Get mRNA Vaccine Production Technology

On the second day of the European Union-African Union summit in Brussels on Feb. 18, WHO Director General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus announced the first six countries that will receive the technology needed to produce mRNA vaccines on the African continent. Egypt, Kenya, Nigeria, Senegal, South Africa, and Tunisia all applied and have been selected. WHO and its partners will work with the six to put in place training and support to start producing vaccines as soon as possible.

The “global mRNA technology transfer hub” that guides this technology transfer process was established in Africa—in Cape Town, South Africa—on June 21, 2021 and includes Afrigen Biologics, the South African Medical Research Council, and Biovac, a South African vaccine producer. It will support manufacturers in low- and middle-income countries worldwide to produce their own vaccines, ensuring that they have all the necessary operating procedures and know-how to manufacture mRNA vaccines at scale and according to international standards.

Primarily set up to address the COVID-19 emergency, the hub has potential to expand manufacturing capacity to other products, putting countries in the driver’s seat to address their priorities.

Tedros said: “No other event like the COVID-19 pandemic has shown that reliance on a few companies to supply global public goods is limiting, and dangerous. In the mid- to long-term, the best way to address health emergencies and reach universal health coverage is to significantly increase the capacity of all regions to manufacture the health products they need.”

The initial effort is centered on mRNA technologies and biologicals, which are important for vaccine manufacturing and are of use for other products, such as insulin for diabetes and cancer medicines. Vaccines for major diseases such as malaria, tuberculosis, and HIV are contemplated. The ultimate goal is national and regional production for all possible health technologies.

Major Nigerian Drug Bust Exposes Global Trafficking Network

After a sting led by the Nigerian Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), the (suspended) chief of the Nigerian police Intelligence Response Team, Abba Kyari, was arrested Feb. 14 on drug trafficking charges. Kyari is also Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP).

An NDLEA press statement reads, “the agency believes strongly that DCP Kyari is a member of a drug cartel that operates the Brazil-Ethiopia-Nigeria illicit drug pipeline.” The arrest has implications for the entire nation—currently besieged by drug-funded terror networks.

The opportunity for the sting came Jan. 21 when Kyari contacted an NDLEA officer and, according to the press statement Feb. 14, reported that “his team had intercepted and arrested some traffickers that came into the country from Ethiopia with … 25 kg of cocaine. He proposed a drug deal whereby he and his team are to take 15 kg of the cocaine and leave 10 kg for the prosecution of the suspects arrested with the illicit drug in Enugu. In the meantime, the purloined cocaine will be replaced with a dummy worth 15 kg.”

Kyari’s case even goes beyond drug/terror financing, since the disgraced “supercop” had essentially functioned as the local bag-man and protection overseer for international internet scamster Ramon Abbas, aka “Hushpuppi.” Over a decade, Hushpuppi had amassed a multi-million dollar fortune through targeted internet scams. Arrested in the UAE in June 2020, Abbas was turned over to the FBI, pled guilty in a U.S. court in April 2021, and convicted in July. Following Abbas’ arrest, the FBI issued an indictment for Kyari. He had been suspended in Nigeria but, curiously, not turned over to the U.S.

A former police administrator urged prosecutors and judges to “get him in jail quickly.”

UK Working To Destroy Territorial Integrity and Sovereignty of Somalia

The imperial spirit—“if we do it, it’s OK”—is alive and well. And, after all, what’s at stake is control over the maritime choke-point at the entrance to the Red Sea. Tiny Djibouti, with a U.S. military base and a Chinese naval base, is right at that choke-point, and Somaliland—a former British protectorate that is part of Somalia—is Djibouti’s neighbor. Britain is supporting Somaliland’s attempt to secede from Somalia, on the excuse that Somalia is a failed state.

Former UK Defense Minister Gavin Williamson, MP, led a British delegation to Somaliland and on Feb. 18 visited the port of Berbera, now being upgraded by DP World. He told the press, “DP World and the British government are investing in Somaliland, because we see the future, we see its potential, and we recognize that it will lead the whole of East Africa.”

Somaliland, while not recognized by any government in the world, “officially” recognized the government of Taiwan in July 2020. In Dec. 2021, a Somaliland delegation visited Washington, and a U.S. delegation then visited Somaliland. On Jan. 18, 2022, Williamson convened parliamentary hearings on admitting Somaliland to the British Commonwealth!

The British promotion of Somaliland gained heightened significance when China declared the Horn of Africa as one of its diplomatic priorities on Jan. 6.

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