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Summary

  1. We are trying out a new format for our Africa coverage. This is a test live page.
  2. Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta says he will attend ICC hearing
  3. Briton Shrien Dewani pleads not guilty as his trial begins in Cape Town
  4. AU troops enter Somali town of Barawe captured from al-Shabab
  5. Fears over Marburg virus outbreak in Uganda after hospital worker dies

Live Reporting

By Neil Arun and Mike Hills

All times stated are UK

That's it for today's coverage - thanks for joining us. We'll be back tomorrow at 09:00 GMT to keep you up-to-date with what's happening across Africa. In the meantime, visit the

BBC Africa page for the latest news.

Missing Somali girl's father makes appeal

The father of a Somali British teenage girl who is feared to have left Britain to join Islamic State militants in Syria has appealed for her to come home.

Abdirashid Said Dirie told the BBC's Somali service that his 17-year-old daughter, Samya, disappeared last week. "My dear daughter, I love you so much, please come back," he said.

Mr Dirie said he told the police to try to stop Samya from leaving the country as soon as he realised she had taken her passport.

Police believe she may be travelling with another missing girl, Yusra Hussein, from Bristol. Mr Diire warned that intelligent children like his were being courted by extremist groups on the internet.

Fears over Ebola-like disease in Uganda

Uganda has put 97 people under "surveillance" after they had contact with a man who died of the Ebola-like Marburg virus, the health ministry has said.

Fears over the disease have risen after tests confirmed that a 30-year-old man who worked as a radiographer in a Kampala hospital died of Marburg last month.

Like Ebola, the disease causes hemorrhagic fevers and has no vaccine or cure. However,

as Quartz points out, Uganda has had lots of experience in dealing with diseases like these and successfully contained Ebola outbreaks
in the past.

Catherine Byaruhanga

BBC reporter in Uganda

tweets: Waiting for test results to show whether the #Marburg virus spread beyond the young doctor who died. Still one confirmed case.

Cameroon football looks ahead

Cameroon's striker Samuel Eto'o gestutes during their Group E first round 2010 World Cup football match - 24 June 2010
AFP

Samuel Eto'o's "big name" was holding back Cameroon's next generation of forwards, says the former Indomitable Lion, Patrick Mboma.

But

Mboma told BBC Sport he could not say Eto'o's departure was a good thing "because of the great player he was".

National captain and record scorer Eto'o, 33, quit Cameroon in August after an 18-year international career.

Kenyatta 'has chance to prove innocence'

The BBC's Wanyama Chebusiri in Nairobi says most people he has spoken to in Kenya have welcomed President Kenyatta's decision to appear at The Hague, saying it will give him a chance to prove his innocence.

Ebola patients discharged in Sierra Leone

Forty-six Ebola patients have been discharged from a treatment centre in Sierra's Leone capital, Freetown, after recovering from the deadly virus, the BBC's Umaru Fofana has told

Focus on Africa.

They included 13 children, some of whom have been orphaned by Ebola, he adds.

President Ernest Bai Koroma was at the treatment centre and said the government would do its best to look after the children.

This is the first time Ebola patients have been discharged from the Freetown treatment centre, bringing to 523 the number discharged across Sierra Leone, our correspondent says.

Boko Haram refugees at risk

Reports from Cameroon say there is a growing crisis at a camp taking in refugees who have fled from the Islamist militant group Boko Haram in northern Nigeria.

Some residents of the camp, in the town of Fotokol near the Nigerian border, said the conditions were so bad that children had died from malaria. Others said there was so little food in the camp that they had been forced to steal from local farms.

Analysts say there has been very little cooperation between Nigeria and Cameroon to tackle the crisis caused by the militants, despite pledges by their presidents at a summit in Paris in May.

Refugees at Maiduguri, 09 September 2014
Jossy Ola / AP
Thousands of civilians have fled Boko Haram's offensive - including this family sheltering at a school in Maiduguri, northern Nigeria

Charity says aid fights poverty

Hewete Haileselassie, Focus on Africa

The debate about whether rich countries should continue to give aid to developing countries is one that divides many economists. Critics say that rather than help solve problems, aid has left governments dependent on handouts - and unable to manage their own resources.

Today, the

One Campaign organisation - committed to helping reduce poverty - is calling on rich governments to increase and honour their pledges to poor countries.

"France, Canada, Australia and the Netherlands are showing declines in fulfilling their commitments and traditionally these countries have done well, so we are very concerned about this," says Nachilala Nkombo, One Campaign's Deputy Director for Africa.

"If you look at countries that were poster children for poverty such as Ethiopia and maybe Rwanda - they have lifted people out of poverty. Aid has played some supportive role in that environment."

You can read One Campaign's new report

here.

@rakidi

Rachael Akidi

Editor, BBC Focus on Africa

tweets: Does it mean Kenyatta will not be the 1st sitting head of state to appear before the ICC, because he's handed over to his deputy?

As

he said in his speech earlier, Kenya's leader is handing power to his deputy, William Ruto, while he travels to The Hague for an ICC hearing.

Islamists 'claim attack' on UN

French radio station

RFI is reporting (in French) that Islamist fighters were behind the ambush that killed nine UN peacekeepers in Mali
last week.

RFI said a member of the jihadist group Movement for Unity and Jihad in West Africa (Mujao) claimed responsibility for the attack, saying the UN troops were targeted for "working with the enemies of Islam".

Dewani trial adjourns

The trial of Shrien Dewani has adjourned till Wednesday. The court has been hearing of the gunshot injury that caused Anni Dewani's death. Earlier, it heard a statement from Mr Dewani, in which he described his relationship with Anni. He also told the court that he was bisexual.

You can read more on the story

here.

@BBCAndrewH

Andrew Harding

Africa correspondent

Witness is Dr Janette Verster, a pathologist. Important here is whether there's any evidence that this was an accidental gunshot...

@BBCAndrewH

Andrew Harding

Africa correspondent

tweets: Cause of death was gunshot wound to the neck and therefore unnatural (death), says witness. #DewaniTrial

@BBCAndrewH

Andrew Harding

Africa correspondent

tweets: One question that springs to mind after Shrien Dewani's revelation that he's bi-sexual. Did his wife know? #DewaniTrial

Kenyatta: 'My conscience is clear'

President Kenyatta told parliament that his conscience was clear and he was innocent of all accusations against him. The ICC summoned him to a pre-trial hearing to explain allegations that evidence against him had been withheld.

You can read more on this story

here.

BreakingBreaking News

Kenyan President Kenyatta has just announced that he is going to The Hague. He said he was appointing his deputy as acting president "to protect the sovereignty of the Kenyan state" while he is out of the country.

Kenyatta addresses parliament

Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta is speaking in parliament at the moment. He is expected to say whether or not he will go to the The Hague, where the International Criminal Court has asked him to attend a hearing on 8 October. Scores of his MPs say they are

prepared to travel with him.

Mr Kenyatta faces charges of organising ethnic massacres that killed 1,200 people after the 2007 elections. He denies the charges.

Somalia ambush

Somalia's military says three soldiers have been killed in an ambush by al-Shabab fighters south of Mogadishu.

Over the weekend, Somali government troops backed by African Union (AU) forces entered al-Shabab's coastal stronghold of Barawe, 220km (135 miles) south-west of Mogadishu. Earlier today, the AU said they were in full control of the town.

'What the hell is that?'

Ebola pioneer describes first image of virus

Peter Piot, the scientist who helped discover Ebola in 1976, reveals the early days of research into the virus and his fears for the future in

a gripping interview with the UK's Guardian newspaper.

Image of Ebola virus from electron microscope
CAVALLINI JAMES / BSIP

Air force chief 'convicted' in Zambia

A former air force commander has been convicted of corruption in Zambia today after being found guilty of stealing about $250,000 that was earmarked for security ahead of 2011 elections, the AFP news agency reports.

Lieutenant General Andrew Sakala could face a prison sentence of up to 15 years. Two other high-ranking military officials were found not guilty.

Inequality amid the boom

London's Financial Times newspaper has published a

new report on Africa's growing economies. It highlights how growing foreign investment has been accompanied a troubling rise in inequality.

New boss for South Africa bank

South Africa's President Jacob Zuma has appointed Lesetja Kganyago as the next head of the country's Reserve Bank.

The current governor, Gill Marcus, said last month that she will be stepping down when her five-year term expires in November.

Mr Kganyago is the former director-general of the National Treasury.

Al-Shabab changing strategy?

BBC Newsday

spoke to Somalia analyst
Abdi Aynte earlier today about al-Shabab losing the town of Barawe.

He said it is significant that the Islamist militants have lost control of the last major city they held in Somalia. The decision not to defend the town is part of a broader al-Shabab strategy, he adds, to morph into a guerrilla force because they've found that they cannot sustain conventional warfare.

So is the fall of Barawe a sign that al-Shabab are losing strength or just changing tactics? Tweet us know your thoughts by using #africatoday.

Dewani trial: Focus on private life

Karen Allen

Southern Africa correspondent, BBC News

Shrien Dewani, dressed in a dark suit, appeared composed and spoke clearly when he formally denied charges of murder... In a case which is likely to focus on the testimony of three alleged co-conspirators already jailed for their part in the crime, Mr Dewani said in a statement that he was bisexual. The trial is likely to dwell extensively on the nature of the couple's relationship, but Mr Dewni said that he was "instantly attracted" to Anni when they first met.

South Sudan famine warning

Displaced people queue for water at a makeshift camp in the UN Mission in South Sudan in the town of Bentiu - 22 September 2014
AP

A group of leading aid agencies

has warned that parts of South Sudan could fall into famine next year, with the conflict there expected to escalate.

More than two million people are already facing food insecurity in the region, the agencies say,

with famine only narrowly averted in 2014.

The likely resumption of fighting after the end of the rainy season could make the crisis a lot worse, the agencies add. They estimate another one million people could face dangerous levels of hunger early next year unless there is an international effort to broker an end to the conflict and deliver aid.

Ebola victim arrives in US

US news network NBC are reporting that a freelance cameraman who was diagnosed with Ebola in Liberia last week

has arrived in the US on a specially-equipped aircraft.

The plane carrying Ashoka Mukpo, who was working for NBC in West Africa, made a short stop in the state of Maine early on Monday. He is due to arrive at a Nebraska hospital later today to receive treatment.

Rhino horns stolen from Pistorius

There's news from South Africa this morning concerning the Pistorius family, but it is Oscar's uncle Arnold making the headlines rather than the athlete. The Johannesburg-based Times Live news site

reports that five rhino horns have been stolen from business premises belonging to Arnold Pistorius in Pretoria.

Dewani trial updates

If you would like to follow minute-by-minute updates from Shrien Dewani's trial in Cape Town today, we have three reporters tweeting updates from inside court:

@BBCAndrewH,
@BBCKarenAllen and
@DivyaTalwar1.

Moses to miss Nigeria games

In sport, Nigerian footballer Victor Moses will miss his country's upcoming Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers against Sudan after

suffering an injury while playing for Stoke on Saturday. Coach Stephen Keshi has called up Dolphins striker Emem Uduak as a replacement.

US welcomes fall of Barawe

The US State Department has welcomed

the capture of Barawe by Somalia government forces backed up by African Union troops. It said the victory will allow residents in the key southern port town to enjoy freedoms that other liberated Somalis were already enjoying.

The two forces surrounded the town over the weekend, with many al-Shabab militants fleeing on Friday.

African Union soldiers overlook the town of Barawe, 220 kilometers (135 miles) southwest of Mogadishu - 5 October 2014
AP

Dewani speaks in court

Shrien Dewani has been describing his relationship with Anni, his wife, and his discussions with the South African taxi driver, Zola Tongo.

In statement read by his lawyer, Mr Dewani acknowledged he had often argued with his wife - but insisted that he loved her and had not conspired to kill her.

Shrien Dewani in court in Cape Town - 6 October 2014
AP

'Police officer aided Lamu attack'

In Kenya this morning, a police watchdog said a top anti-terror police officer helped smuggle weapons from Somalia that were used to mount attacks in Mpeketoni, Lamu, on the Kenyan coast this summer.

The style and scale of June's attacks, in which dozens of people died, left many unanswered questions about who was behind them. The BBC's Dennis Okari runs through the theories

here.

Andrew Harding

Africa correspondent

tweets: A more genteel, sedate atmosphere here at Cape Town's High Court compared with the crowds and scrums at the Pistorius trial in Pretoria.

Andrew Harding

Africa correspondent

tweets: Good morning from sunny Cape Town, where Shrien Dewani's murder trial is about to begin, almost 4 years after his wife Anni's death.

Today's African proverb

"The crab does not bite but it is its greeting that hurts"

A saying from Ghana, sent in by Daniel Yeboah from Chelmsford, UK.

Welcome

Good morning and welcome to Africa Today.

We'll be here until 17:00 GMT with all the latest news from across Africa.

You can stay in touch using #africatoday.