CW 50/2022: Of gaining and losing trust
Revue de presse 9.12.2022 jusqu'à 16.12.2022

Malheureusement, ce numéro de la revue de presse n’est actuellement disponible qu’en allemand et en anglais.

Three-day US-Africa Summit in Washington

A summit to strengthen US-Africa relations was held in Washington from Tuesday to Thursday under the title US-Africa Leaders Summit. US President Joe Biden convened the meeting, which according to the US State Department, is intended to demonstrate the US’s continued commitment to Africa. This is only the second summit of its kind. It was first held in 2014 under former US President Barack Obama. Alongside Biden and other members of the US administration, heads of state and government from 50 African countries and business representatives were present to debate deeper economic and political cooperation. The core topics of the summit were economic development, food security, strengthening international relations, peace and democracy. Over the next three years, the US government plans to allocate around 55 billion US dollars for cooperation with the African continent, of which almost 20 billion US dollars will go to health care and 15 billion US dollars to trade and investment with a focus on infrastructure development, agribusiness, digital connectivity and renewable energy. Biden also spoke out in favour of the inclusion of the African Union in the G20. He is also in favour of a permanent seat for an African country on the UN Security Council and plans to appoint a Special Representative to implement the ideas discussed at the summit. Numerous agreements were signed during the summit. These included, for example, the promotion of the Young Africa Leaders Initiative (YALI), which supports the training of young people to become leaders. Biden also initiated the creation of a President’s Advisory Council on African Diaspora Engagement, whose members will come from the diaspora and be appointed by the Secretary of State. The body is to advise the US President and his administration to promote, among other things, exchanges between state officials and the diaspora as well as multifaceted relations with the African continent. In addition, US Trade Representative Katherine Tai signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the African Continental Free Trade Area to expand equitable, sustainable and inclusive trade and increase investment on the African continent. The Summit also included a meeting between the US President and the Heads of State of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Gabon, Liberia, Madagascar, Nigeria and Sierra Leone to discuss next year’s elections in these countries and the challenges they pose.


South Africa’s president avoids impeachment procedure

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa avoided an impeachment procedure last Tuesday after parliament rejected an enquiry report accusing Ramaphosa of corruption. The so-called Phala Phala report, presented on 30 November by a three-member independent commission of enquiry, accuses the president of concealing a break-in at his estate that happened as early as 2020, in which four million undeclared US dollars in cash were allegedly stolen and hidden in a sofa. Not only is it illegal in South Africa to possess such a large sum of foreign currency in cash, but the commission also expressed doubts about the legal origin of the money. Ramaphosa himself has filed a complaint against the report with the Constitutional Court. He denies the accusations and speaks of only 580,000 US dollars stolen, which is said to have come from the sale of a bull. In the roll call vote in parliament, the ANC backed its leader with a large majority: 218 MPs voted against the report and thus against the initiation of impeachment proceedings, 148 voted in favour, two MPs abstained. However, the vote was overshadowed by allegations that there had been death threats against MPs should they wish to vote in favour of the enquiry report. In order to protect those voting, the opposition had requested a secret ballot, but this was rejected by the Speaker of Parliament. Ramaphosa’s future seems uncertain after this scandal. According to some reports, he thought about resigning after the investigations were made public, but he seems to have decided against it. However, Ramaphosa is standing for election at the ANC election party congress, which begins today and will determine the presidential candidate for the 2024 elections tomorrow (Saturday), and has the best prospects within his party.



In Other News

Morocco’s national team is the biggest surprise of this year’s World Cup in Qatar. For the first time, an African team has reached the semi-finals of a World Cup. On their path to the semi-finals, the North Africans won against football powerhouses such as Spain, Portugal and Belgium. On Wednesday night, the dream of advancing to the final was shattered by a 2-0 defeat at the hands of defending champions France. But the chance of a medal is still possible, on Saturday Morocco will meet Croatia in the match for third place. The team is supported by its fans and a solid defensive performance, the Moroccans conceded only one goal until the semi-finals. Overall, this is the most successful World Cup for the African continent: for the first time, all five participating African teams each won a group match, and the participation of two African teams in the knockout rounds is also a record. Besides Morocco, Senegal had qualified from the group stage, but the West African country was already eliminated in the round of 16 against England.


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