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  1. ICC throws out case of Kenya's Deputy President William Ruto
  2. South Africa's president survives impeachment attempt
  3. Nigerians complain fuel scarcity making lives 'miserable'
  4. Uganda's opposition leader Kizza Besigye detained travelling into Kampala
  5. DR Congo peacekeepers on trial for alleged abuse in CAR
  6. Flash floods kill more than 20 in Ethiopia
  7. Get Involved: #BBCAfricaLive WhatsApp: +44 7341070844
  8. Email stories and comments to - Tuesday 5 April 2016

Live Reporting

By Clare Spencer and Damian Zane

All times stated are UK

Get involved

Scroll down for Tuesday's stories

We'll be back tomorrow

That's all from BBC Africa Live today. Keep up-to-date with what's happening across the continent by listening to the Africa Today podcast or check the BBC News website.  

A reminder of today's wise words:

Talking doesn't fill the basket in the farm.

It was sent in by Chimezie Bright Enwerem, Lagos, Nigeria

Click here to send us your African proverbs.

And we leave you with this photo of a chimpanzee taken in Uganda's Kibale National Park:

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Amnesty: ICC decision should not 'derail' justice for victims

The rights group Amnesty International has said that the ICC decision to throw out the case against Kenya's Deputy President William Ruto and broadcaster Joshua arap Sang should not "derail efforts to ensure justice for victims".

More than 1,000 people died in the violence that followed the 2007 presidential election.

Amnesty's deputy director for Africa Michelle Kagari said that "this is not the end of the road for the victims. In fact, victims should be able to seek justice for these crimes in the future".

African leaders will start using African passport in July

Emmanuel Igunza

BBC Africa, Nairobi

African heads of states will begin using an African passport from July this year, as the African Union (AU) pushes for continent-wide use of the travel document. 

 AU chairperson Dlamini Zuma says this will greatly improve the free movement of people and also speed up the integration of the continent. 

Dlamini Zuma
Getty Images

She says the decision follows the adoption of proposal by heads of state in January, to have all African countries allow 30-day visa free travel for Africans.

She was speaking at the close of the Africa Development Week in Ethiopia's capital, Addis Ababa.

Why did a flood come after drought in eastern Ethiopia?


In our 12:33 post we wrote that flooding caused by heavy rains in Ethiopia has killed 15 people. It was in Jijiga, a region which has been affected by the recent drought.

We wanted to know why such heavy rains would follow a drought.

BBC Weather Presenter Darren Bett explains that on this occasion the seasonal rains in Ethiopia arrived a few weeks late. 

This allowed the heat to build in the sunshine in the dry season. 

There will continue to be heavy downpours over the next seven days in the area, he adds. 

Celebrations in Ruto's home town

As soon as the decision was announced that the ICC had thrown out the case against Kenya's Deputy President William Ruto celebrations broke out in his home town of Eldoret.

Here's a video shot from a balcony:

'End of nightmare' says Kenyan president

The Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta has tweeted after the International Criminal Court (ICC) threw out the case against the Deputy President William Ruto and broadcaster Joshua arap Sang:

View more on twitter

Mr Kenyatta was also accused of crimes against humanity by the ICC.

They were both accused of being involved in the violence after Kenya's election in 2007 where 1,200 died. 

But the prosecution withdrew charges against him in 2014.

The prosecutor's office said the Kenyan government had refused to hand over evidence vital to the case.  

BreakingVote to impeach Zuma fails

South Africa's parliament has rejected an attempt to impeach President Jacob Zuma.

The opposition motion was rejected by 233 votes to 143.

ICC say Ruto case was "terminated"

We earlier reported that the International Criminal Court declared that there was a mistrial in the case against Kenyan Deputy President William Ruto.

We now have the entire 258 page ruling which makes it clearer that only one of the judges says there was a mistrial.

The wording that the ICC used was "the case has been terminated".

Specifically it says 

 "The charges against the accused are vacated and the accused discharged without prejudice to their prosecution afresh in future.  

This still means that Mr Ruto is free to go. 

South African MPs vote on Zuma impeachment

The vote is now going on in South Africa's National Assembly over whether to impeach President Jacob Zuma.

The deputy speaker initially called for MPs to shout in turn whether they agreed or disagreed with the motion, but the opposition called for a formal vote.

The ANC has a large majority in parliament so it is unlikely to agree to the motion. 

SA parliament

Kenya's president 'joyful' over ICC decision

Kenya's president Uhuru Kenyatta (R) waves to the welcoming crowd flanked by deputy-president William Ruto on October 9, 2014 in Nairobi, a day after becoming the first sitting president to appear before the International Criminal Court on crimes against humanity charges
Getty Images
The day after Uhuru Kenyatta appeared before the ICC himself in 2014 he met crowds accompanied by William Ruto

Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta says he is "delighted" by the International Criminal Court's decision to terminate the cases of Deputy President William Ruto and broadcaster Joshua arap Sang.

In a statement he adds:

This moment is long overdue but no less joyful. I join my brothers in celebrating their moment of justice."

He also criticises the ICC process which he says pursued an "ill-conceived, defective agenda at the expense of accountability for the post-election violence".

He says that the quest for justice continues:

We will continue the work of healing the nation, uniting the people, reconciling communities and ensuring that justice for the victims is achieved."

We will do everything to make it up for Kenyans where this international institution has failed them."

Future prosecution of Ruto still possible

Anna Holligan

Reporter BBC News, The Hague

This International Criminal Court decision to terminate the case against Kenya's deputy president was more a defeat for the prosecution than a victory for William Ruto. 

His defence team hadn't even started presenting their arguments in court, all they had to do was highlight the weakness of the prosecution's case - and they've essentially won. 

The judges agreed that the evidence was no longer sufficient to justify continuing with the trial, although they decided a judgement of acquittal was not the right outcome.

Instead they ruled that the charges should be "vacated" and the accused discharged. 

This decision leaves the way open for a possible future prosecution - if the prosecutor can find sufficient evidence. 

The prosecution can appeal against the termination of the trial.

Fatou Bensouda
This was a defeat for ICC prosecutor Fatou Bensouda

What Ruto's case was about

If you are just catching up on the news that the International Criminal Court has declared a mistrial in the case against Kenya's deputy president, here's a little background on what the case was about:

William Ruto was accused of being involved in post-election violence where around 1,200 people were killed.

In December 2007 Kenya held a presidential election contested by the incumbent Mwai Kibaki from the Kikuyu tribe and Raila Odinga who was from the Luo ethnic group but was also widely supported by the Kalenjin tribe who dominate the Rift Valley.

Mr Kibaki was declared the winner but Mr Odinga claimed the vote had been rigged and violence broke out between rival groups of supporters.

Along with the deaths came the displacement of thousands of others.

After negotiations to form a national unity government and a failure to set up a process in Kenya to try alleged perpetrators, cases went to the International Criminal Court.

Moreno Ocampo (c)
In 2009 Kenya's then-Prime Minister Raila Odinga (left) and then-President Mwai Kibaki (right) met ICC prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo to discuss possible prosecutions

No prosecutions at ICC over Kenyan post-election violence

The declaration of a mistrial in the cases against Kenyan Deputy President William Ruto and radio broadcaster Joshua arap Sang means that no-one will now be prosecuted at the International Criminal Court in connection with the violence that followed Kenya's 2007 election, unless the prosecutor appeals.

Six Kenyans were initially referred to the ICC including the current President Uhuru Kenyatta over the violence in which more than 1,000 people died.

'It breaks my heart' and other reaction to Ruto mistrial verdict

Tweeters are reacting to reports of cheers in parts of Kenya at the news that the International Criminal Court (ICC) has thrown out the case against Kenya's Deputy President William Ruto:

View more on twitter

Some tweeters are angry at the news:

View more on twitter

And others are speculating what this should mean for the ICC and for Kenya now:

View more on twitter

Mr Ruto denied murder, deportation and persecution charges during violence that followed the 2007 elections in which about 1,200 people were killed.  

Ruto supporters cheer the ICC decision

The BBC's Wanyama wa Chebusiri is reporting on Focus on Africa radio on the BBC World Service from William Ruto's home area of Eldoret, you can hear people cheering in the background as he reports. 

People are also cheering in a part of the capital, Nairobi, according to this tweet: 

View more on twitter

ICC 'terminates' case against Kenyan deputy president

The International Criminal Court has released a YouTube video saying that judges have decided by a majority to terminate the cases against Kenyan Deputy President William Ruto and radio broadcaster Joshua arap Sang.

It says that this decision does not stop a prosecution in the future and the decision is subject to an appeal.

View more on youtube

'Witness interference' blamed for ICC throwing Ruto's trial out

An international lawyer has tweeted a picture of what appears to be the International Criminal Court's ruling throwing out the case against Kenyan Deputy President William Ruto and co-accused Joshua arap Sang:

View more on twitter

BreakingICC declares Ruto case a 'mistrial', reports say

The International Criminal Court has thrown out the crimes against humanity case against Kenyan Deputy President William Ruto.

Judges ruled there was a mistrial, reports say.

Tanzanians on Twitter get organised

Kenyans on Twitter affectionately refer to themselves as #KOT - and they are not to be messed with.

The group has become a vociferous part of the Twitter landscape, often campaigning about a perceived injustice.

Now Tanzanians are hoping to emulate their success with Tanzanians on Twitter or #TOT.

But the Tanzanians are taking this one step further - they are establishing a governing body.

You can follow the electoral commission on @uchaguzi2016, which is Swahili for election.

They have voted in a president - Fredrick Boshe - who appointed a the minister for information - Michael Paul Baruti

He told the BBC's Sammy Awami that he doesn't intend any rivalry with #KOT:

"We've realised we are neighbours and both have quite a huge presence on Twitter."

And with that in mind, #TOT President Mr Boshe has tweeted the appointment of a Kenyan ambassador to Tanzania:

View more on twitter

And Tanzanian ambassador to Kenya:

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For other appointments, including the chief chemist, check the hashtag #NyadhfaNyingine which means "other positions" in Swahili.

Rows over rude language in South Africa parliament

A row has broken out while opposition EFF leader Julius Malema was speaking.

An ANC MP wanted to interrupt him and he first refused to sit down.

He was then persuaded to give way.

There have been complaints that MPs are using rude language to refer to each other.

ANC defends President Zuma

South Africa's Deputy Justice Minister John Jeffreys is now speaking in the debate on whether to impeach President Jacob Zuma.

He says that in order for a president to be impeached in South Africa it has to be shown that there was a "serous violation" of the constitution.

He argues that the Constitutional Court said that Mr Zuma may have breached the constitution but did not rule that it was a serious violation.

ANC speaker
South Africa parliament

You can follow the debate here:

View more on youtube

South Africa opposition points at corrupt governing MPs

South Africa's opposition leader Mmusi Maimane says that "nobody in the [governing] ANC is immune form the cancer of corruption".

He is criticising the ANC MPs who will vote against the motion to impeach President Jacob Zuma.

The motion has little chance of passing as the ANC has a large majority in the National Assembly.

Zuma impeachment debate begins

After some procedural delays, South Africa's National Assembly has started debating whether to impeach President Jacob Zuma.

The motion is being brought by the opposition Democratic Alliance.

Its leader Mmusi Maimane says that he has violated his oath of office after the Constitutional Court ruled last week that he breached the constitution by not sticking to the ruling of the Public Protector to repay some of the money spent on his private residence.

Mmusi Maimane
SA Parliament

The next generation of Kenyan athletes line up

Kenya's Amateur Athletics Association (KAAA) has been holding trials for the Eastern Africa Junior athletics championship at Nyayo national stadium.

The BBC's Peter Njoroge has been snapping some of the hopefuls.

Kenya athletes

Upcoming athletes, many of them still in school, from across Kenya showed up with the hope of making it to the national junior team.

And they had to show their birth certificates to prove their age:

Kenyan athletes queuing up

The trials come as a cloud hangs over Kenyan athletics over doping allegations, and the country's failure to put in place effective anti-doping measures.

100m trial

Malema says he will take SA parliament speaker to court

The leader of South Africa's Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) Julius Malema says that he will take the speaker to court over her decision to remain in her seat during the debate over the impeachment of President Jacob Zuma.

The opposition had argued she would be biased during the debate.

Julius Malema
SA Parliament

South Africa parliament resumes

Cheers go up in South Africa's parliament as the speaker Baleka Mbete returns.

There had been a suspension as she considered requests for her to withdraw from chairing the debate on whether to impeach the president.

She has reminded MPs that they need to uphold the decorum of the house and set an example to the country.

Baelka Mbete
SA Parliament

Ten-minute break turns into an hour in South Africa parliament

It was more than an hour ago that speaker of South Africa's National Assembly Baleka Mbete said she would suspend the session for 10 minutes.

She said she wanted to consult on whether she should withdraw from chairing the debate over the impeachment of President Jacob Zuma.

Some South Africans are getting a bit impatient but taking it with some humour on Twitter:

View more on twitter
View more on twitter

Kenyan university shut after violent demonstration

Sammy Maina

BBC Monitoring, Nairobi

Kenya's University of Nairobi has been closed a day after violent confrontations over disputed student election results, the Daily Nation reports.

It says that the "university's senate held a meeting... and resolved to close the university. Students were ordered to vacate the campus by 5 pm [14:00 GMT] Tuesday". 

The university students held elections last Friday, and the losers organised a protest yesterday that saw a heavy police presence around the university's main campus in Kenya's capital. 

The newspaper also reports that "a video was circulated on social media showing police brutally assaulting University of Nairobi students... The video shows police officers beating up the students as they lie down, in a line, on a pavement".

The protest continued today resulting in the closure.

Screen grab from Nation website
Daily Nation
The Daily Nation has published a picture of a university building being damaged by fire during Monday's demonstration

Uganda's Besigye charged after trying to reach centre of capital

Catherine Byaruhanga

BBC Africa Uganda correspondent

Uganda police have charged opposition leader Kizza Besigye with conducting an illegal procession.

The spokesperson for the police in the capital, Kampala, says Mr Besigye had disobeyed orders not to drive through the centre of the city after thousands mobbed his car.

Mr Besigye had been given permission to go to a prayer meeting at his party's headquarters as long as he did not disrupt business in Kampala.

He has only just been released from house arrest, and this was to be his first trip into the city.

As he was travelling to the party HQ, supporters surrounded his car and tried to follow him to the city centre.

The police then blocked his vehicle, towed it away and detained him at a police station near Kampala.

Police station
Kizza Besigye was held at a police station near Kampala

Brief suspension of South Africa's parliament turns into long break

A 10-minute suspension of South Africa's parliament has turned into 30 minutes.

The speaker Baleka Mbete said over half-an-hour ago that proceedings would be halted while she consulted on demands that she remove herself from chairing the debate on whether to impeach President Jacob Zuma.

Read more: What next for South Africa's Zuma after Nkandla ruling?

Jacob Zuma

Nigerian fuel queues go on and on

The BBC's Ishaq Khalid in Nigeria's northern Bauchi state has sent some more pictures of people queuing for fuel (see 11:42 entry):

Fuel queue in Bauchi

These motorbike riders may look like they're waiting for passengers, but this perspective shows them in front of the filling station hoping to get petrol:

Motorbike fuel queue

People have also come to get fuel for their diesel generators, which they rely on because of the poor electricity supply:

Diesel generators

Unruly scenes in the SA national assembly

Quarrels about who should speak first and an almost constant shouting is accompanying heated discussions in South Africa's National Assembly.

Many are trying to persuade the speaker Baleka Mbete not to go ahead with a vote on whether to impeach the president.

Others want her to step down from chairing today's session.

Baleka Mbete
Parliament of RSA

SA opposition tries to get speaker removed

We reported earlier that we are expecting South Africa's National Assembly to debate an opposition Democratic Alliance (DA) motion to remove Jacob Zuma as president today.

Ahead of this, the opposition is trying to get the speaker of the house removed right now.

You can watch it live on YouTube:

View more on youtube

'Six al-Shabab commanders killed'

The African Union mission in Somalia (Amisom) has released a statement saying their troops, along with the Somali National army, have killed six al-Shabab commanders.

This is in addition to another commander they say was killed this week.

The six include a Yemeni bomb expert and a Kenyan who they say was the chief trainer.

Al-Shabab has not yet commented

Ethiopia flooding after drought causes more than 20 deaths

BBC Monitoring

In Ethiopia, flooding caused by heavy rains in the city of Jijiga has killed 15 people, including seven children, Fana broadcasting is reporting.

It says that 50 others have also gone missing after Sunday's floods. 

In one tragic incident, Fana reports that a father lost six of his children and died himself the next day. 

Jijiga is in a region which has been affected by the recent drought, which has left millions needing food aid.

The AP news agency is quoting the Ethiopian Broadcasting Corporation as saying that five people were killed in flooding in Afar, another drought-stricken part of the country.

Zuma impeachment: The maths behind the vote

The maths is not looking too helpful if South Africa's main opposition Democratic Alliance (DA) in their attempt to get President Jacob Zuma impeached when the National Assembly meets later today.

Here's the breakdown:

  • ANC: 249
  • DA: 89
  • EFF: 25
  • Others: 37
  • Opposition total: 151
  • Needed for impeachment: 267

So assuming all the opposition votes with the DA they are still more than 100 votes short.

South Africa parliament
EFF MPs have vowed to prevent Mr Zuma from addressing parliament if he attends

Nigeria fuel scarcity: Complaints from motorists in Bauchi

Ishaq Khalid

BBC Africa, Bauchi

People here in Nigeria's northern state of Bauchi are saying that the current fuel scarcity is making their lives miserable.

It's resulted in people spending hours, and sometimes the night, queuing for fuel for their cars and diesel-powered generators.

They are blaming the fuel marketers - those who are responsible for selling petrol to the filling stations - and the government for not doing enough to solve the problem.

Fuel queue

Last week, the country's junior oil minister apologised and said the problems would be over soon.

The state-owned oil company the Nigerian National Petroleum Company says the current scarcity can be partly put down to vandals who are damaging the oil infrastructure and those it calls "saboteurs in the system".

Others are saying that the current shortage of foreign exchange in the country is making it more difficult to import refined fuel.

What's William Ruto's mother saying about her son's ICC case?

We reported in our 9:18 post  that Kenyan Deputy President William Ruto is due to find out whether a crimes against humanity case against him will be thrown out by judges at the International Criminal Court (ICC).  

The Kenyan news site the Standard has a rare interview with his mother, Sarah Cheruiyot Samoei, who insists he is innocent:

Standard news site

In the interview she says that every time her son travels to the ICC she ties her stomach with the traditional Kalenjin leather belt known as leketiet.

Right now, my leketiet is intact, I am involved in prayer and fasting because I am a believer and as a mother, I want the best for my son. Each time my son goes to The Hague for his case, I have to put on the belt and go down on my knees in prayer and fast because we all know he did not commit such crimes."

The Standard explains that the leketiet is worn by women "so that they can derive strength during trying moments".

Tanzanian UN peacekeepers in DR Congo face sex abuse allegations

The United Nations says it has received allegations of sexual abuse by Tanzanian peacekeepers in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo. 

It said 11 of them are facing paternity claims, and there is initial evidence that some had sex with minors.

The UN has sent a team to the area to investigate the allegations, the AP news agency reports.

Uganda opposition leader 'held at police station'

The BBC's Patience Atuhaire who's been following the attempts by Ugandan opposition leader Kizza Besigye to get into the centre of the country's capital, Kampala, says it's believed that he's being held at a police station in the city's Mukono district.

She says that the police are blocking the entrance to the station and will not let the press in.

Uganda police

Mr Besigye - who had been under house arrest up until the end of last week - was given permission to travel to his party's headquarters to attend a prayer meeting on condition that he did not disrupt business in Kampala (see 09:08 entry).