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Summary

  1. Germany and Tunisia agree migrants and aid deal
  2. Guinea universities 'have 47,000 fake students'
  3. Nigeria charges oil giants with corruption
  4. Sahel jihadists announce merger
  5. New pups for Ethiopia’s endangered wolves
  6. Africa's notorious poacher, known as 'the Devil', sentenced to 12 years
  7. Zimbabwe seeks $100m after floods kill 246
  8. Rio 2016 vote 'linked to Senegal's Papa Diack'
  9. IOC to investigate former Namibian sprinter Frankie Fredericks
  10. Mozambique ex-rebel leader calls truce
  11. Zimbabwe journalists arrested over Mugabe health repor
  12. Female suicide bombers target fuel tankers in Nigeria
  13. Mitsubishi Pajeros recalled in SA over airbag problem
  14. Felix Tshisekedi to lead DR Congo opposition alliance
  15. Tanzanian president demands Indian contractor's passport
  16. DR Congo police storm home of separatist cult leader
  17. Tunisia zoo 'closing' after crocodile stoned to death
  18. Email stories and comments to africalive@bbc.co.uk - Friday 3 March 2017

Live Reporting

By Lucy Fleming

All times stated are UK

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Scroll down for Friday's stories

We'll be back on Monday

That's all from the  BBC Africa Live  page this week. Keep up to date with what's happening on the continent by listening to the  Africa Today podcast  or checking the  BBC News website

A reminder of today's wise words:

A visitor who chews bones actually swallows them whole where he comes from."

A Bemba proverb sent by Paul Chikwanda, Luangwa, Zambia

Click here to send in your African proverbs .

And we leave you with this photo by South African artist William Kentridge, who has launched the first season of his Centre for the Less Good Idea in Johannesburg, which Gallery 1957 says on its Instagram account is inspired by the Tswana proverb: “If the good doctor can’t cure you, find the less good doctor."

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 And for your weekly fix of the Resident Presidents, the satirical duo delve into the possibilities of creating some new species:  

The duo are delving into the possibilities of creating some new species

Tanzania's gay list and more topical satire

This week's satirical programme What's Up Africa looks into anti-foreigner attacks in South Africa and the internet shutdown in English-speaking regions of Cameroon. 

Ikenna Azuike also asks why a Tanzanian minister has not made a gay list public?

What's Up Africa? Xenophobia attacks, internet shutdown and a gay list

Sickle cell gene therapy: 'It gives me joy and hope'

Blood cells
SPL
Healthy red blood cells are round, but the genetic defect makes them sickle shaped

A French teenager's sickle cell disease has been reversed using a pioneering treatment to change his DNA.

The world-first procedure at Necker Children's Hospital in Paris offers hope to millions of people with the blood disorder, who are mostly in Africa.

Sia Evelyn Nyandemo, originally from Sierra Leone, runs a campaign group in the UK to support sickle cell sufferers. 

She spoke to the BBC's Newsday programme about caring for her daughter who has the disease:

Sickle Cell has taken the lives of two of our children.

We have lost two girls.

One of our daughters, the eldest, is living with it. And that has impacted us so much that we live with fear because of the outcome of having sickle cell.

We know that some people will live up to a certain age but every now and then she is in crisis and we know when the child is in crisis it affects her organs."

You can also read Ms Nyandemo's reaction to the new treatment here .

Mozambique ex-rebel leader calls truce

Jose Tembe

BBC Africa, Maputo

Afonso Dhlakama in 2013
AFP
Afonso Dhlakama has led Renamo since 1979 at the height of the civil war, which ended in 1992

Former rebel commander Afonso Dhlakama, who leads Mozambique’s main opposition party Renamo, has announced a two-month extension to a truce between his troops and the government to give more time for peace talks.

Mr Dhlakama returned to the bush to take up arms after elections in 2014 as his party wants direct rule over the six provinces where it won a majority of the vote.

The talks, which are being attended by foreign diplomats, are intended to address areas such as the decentralisation of power, reducing the powers of the president and military reform.

Renamo wants the integration of its men in the army and the police, including in leadership positions.

Mr Dhlakama told journalists in a teleconference from his Renamo bush base, somewhere in the central district of Gorongosa, that he remained in regular phone contact with President Filipe Nyusi.

He said:

I think peace is sacred. We intend to achieve true peace."

What makes Fespaco special?

Find out why Burkina Faso's capital, Ouagadougou, is the capital of African cinema:

Fespaco: Ouagadougou hosts Africa’s biggest film festival

And the BBC Africa's Lamine Konkobo has been taking a look at six things that make this year's festival special - one of which, he says, is the film The African Storm -  about an African president who nationalises businesses run by racist, cynical Western executives. 

Read more: Six things about Fespaco

Libyan militias fight for oil ports

BBC World Service

A new battle for major oil ports in Libya has broken out. 

A militia known as the Benghazi Defence Brigades has launched an attack on the major oil terminals of al-Sidra and Ras Lanuf.

Their offensive has been met by air strikes from forces led by the renegade military commander, Khalifa Haftar, who holds sway in eastern Libya. 

His force, known as the Eastern Libyan Army, has been in control of the ports since last September, but it has faced several attempts by its opponents to seize them.   

Ras Lanuf
AFP
Oil exports were an important part of Libya's economy before the overthrow of Col Muammar Gaddafi in 2011

Germany and Tunisia agree migrants and aid deal

Beji Caid Essebsi and Angela Merkel
AFP

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Tunisian President Beji Caid Essebsi have agreed a deal under which rejected asylum seekers will be repatriated to Tunisia much faster and Germany will provide 250m euros ($264m; £215m) in aid for job training and support for small businesses.

The agreement, announced during Mrs Merkel's visit to Tunis, has followed tensions over the case of the Tunisian identified as having carried out the Berlin Christmas market attack last year.

The attacker, Anis Amri, who was later shot dead by police, had been facing deportation from Germany for months but remained there because of a delay in receiving paperwork from Tunisia confirming his identity.

Under today's deal, Tunisia has agreed to resolve the identities of about 1,500 Tunisian asylum seekers in Germany within 30 days. Correspondents say the expectation is that they would then be deported.

The 30-day period will also apply for future asylum seekers, and papers needed for deportation would be issued by Tunisia within a week.

Mrs Merkel suggested Germany would help Tunisia upgrade its administrative systems to enable these processes.

Referring to the aid, Mrs Merkel said: 

The funds are for rural development, small and medium enterprises, but mainly for youths... who especially need job training and employment opportunities."

Zimbabwe journalists arrested over Mugabe health report

Robert Mugabe on 25 February 2017
AP
Robert Mugabe attended his lavish 93rd birthday celebrations last weekend

Two Zimbabwean journalists were arrested this morning over a newspaper report that described President Robert Mugabe as being "in bad shape" when he flew to Singapore for what the presidency said was a scheduled medical check-up.

The editor of the private NewsDay paper, Wisdom Mudzungairi, and the journalist who wrote the article, Richard Chidza, have been released from custody and must appear in court on Saturday.

Their lawyer Obey Shava said they had been charged with undermining and insulting the office of the president.

The article, entitled “ Mugabe in fresh health scare ”, quoted sources saying the president flew out of the country on a chartered flight at 02:00 local time on Wednesday morning.

Mr Mugabe turned 93 last month and has been in power since 1980.

According to the Associated Press news agency, people convicted of insulting Mr Mugabe can face jail time, though some cases have been thrown out.

DR Congo police storm home of separatist cult leader

Sammy Maina

BBC Monitoring


          Members of a religious cult look on as Red Cross members remove bodies from Ne Muanda Nsemi"s house in Ngaliema, Kinshasa 14/02/2017 Reuters Members of Bundu dia Kongo (BDK), a religious cult, look on as Red Cross members remove dead bodies from Ne Muanda Nsemi"s house in Ngaliema, Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo - 14 February 2017
Reuters
During the stand-off with police, some members of the cult died

Police in the Democratic Republic of Congo have raided the home in the capital, Kinshasa, of self-styled spiritual leader Ne Mwanda Nsemi, who is blamed for inciting violence in the Kongo Central region where his sect is popular.

Mr Mwanda Nsemi, who is also an MP, is the founder of the Bundu Dia Mayala political party, which had its origins in his banned separatist sect that wanted to revive the pre-colonial Kongo kingdom.

Police spokesman Col Pierrot Mwanamputu Empung told DR Congo news portal  Actualite.cd :

Police operations are under way at the residence of Hon Mwanda Nsemi to free men and women taken hostage in order to serve as human shields to prevent any search from being carried out."

Police have laid siege to the lawmaker's home in the Ngaliema suburb of Kinshasa since 13 February.

Hundreds of his supporters are said to be keeping vigil to prevent his arrest.

Mr Mwanda Nsemi's supporters say they do not have access to food, water or electricity because of the police blockade.

IOC to investigate former Namibian sprinter Frankie Fredericks

Frankie Fredericks
Getty Images
Frankie Fredericks has won four Olympic silver medals

BBC Africa's sport presenter has a statement from the International Olympic Committee following newspaper allegations about improper behaviour leading up to the selection of Rio de Janeiro as host of the 2016 Olympics.

The IOC says it will investigate allegations made against former Namibian sprinter and IOC member Frankie Fredericks.

The allegations, published in French newspaper Le Monde, also named Papa Diack, the Senegalese marketing consultant and son of former sports adminstrator Lamine Diack who is banned for life from athletics for alleged corruption.

See earlier post .

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Tunisia zoo 'closing' after crocodile stoned to death

Crocodiles at Belvedere Zoo
AFP
These crocodiles were pictured bathing in the sun at the zoo the day after the stoning

A Tunisian zoo is to close temporarily after visitors stoned a crocodile to death on Wednesday, the AFP news agency quotes the environment ministry as saying.

The public has been up in arms after the municipality posted gory pictures of the reptile, which it said had died of an internal haemorrhage after being stoned by visitors at Belvedere Zoo, AFP reports.

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The zoo is closing on Monday to allow for maintenance work and to set up measures to manage visitors entering and exiting.

It had also been decided to "increase the number of guards and deploy three environmental police agents" at the zoo, the environment minister reportedly said.

According to AFP, Belvedere Zoo has been in need of maintenance for years, and social media users have been calling on the authorities to save its lions from cramped living conditions and stone-throwing visitors.

Lions at Belvedere Zoo
AFP
Visitors are reported to throw stones at the lions too

Which are Africa's favourite brands?

The latest survey of Africa's top 100 brands has just been released:

Founder of Brand Africa Thebe Ikalafeng tells us about his company's latest survey investigating the continent's most popular 100 brands.

Nigeria charges oil giants with corruption

Martin Patience

BBC News, Nigeria correspondent

A Shell employee in Nigeria
AFP
Shell declined to comment on the allegations related to purchasing an oil block

Nigeria’s anti-corruption agency has filed new charges in the case against the oil giants Royal Dutch Shell and ENI.

The corruption allegations relate to the $1.3bn (£1bn) purchase of a Nigerian oil block in 2011.

These are the latest charges in a complex investigation spanning several countries.

Nigeria’s Economic and Financial Crimes Commision (EFCC) has accused the companies of a conspiracy to commit a felony and official corruption.

Royal Dutch Shell declined to comment.

The Italian firm ENI said in a statement that it had not been informed of the latest charges but reaffirmed the “correctness of its conduct” when purchasing the oil block - considered one of Nigeria’s best energy prospects.

The main accusation is that the two companies knew when they paid money to the Nigerian government that the cash would then be funnelled to individuals essentially as bribes.

Both firms have previously denied the accusations, stating they simply made the payment to the government and were unaware of any other arrangements.

Recently, the Nigerian government seized the block - ordering a halt to operations pending the outcome of the corruption cases.

Both Royal Dutch Shell and ENI are appealing against the decision.

Guinea universities 'have 47,000 fake students'

The authorities in Guinea have said there are more than 47,000 fake students registered in the country's universities. 

The figures were published on Thursday by the Minister of Higher Education after a process of biometric registration, which weeded out non-existent students.

The Guinean authorities grant subsidies to universities based on their number of students. 

Correspondents say most public universities are full and the subsidies are intended to stimulate expansion at private institutions. 

However, some of the private universities responded by faking student registrations in order to obtain larger subsidies.

There was no immediate word on how the government would respond to the revelations.

Why is Dakar's new airport 50km away?

Senegal's new airport is 50km from the capital Dakar - why?

Tanzanian president demands Indian contractor's passport

Sammy Awami

BBC Africa, Dar es Salaam

John Magufuli
AFP
John Magufuli is a no-nonsense politician, nicknamed "the Bulldozer"

Tanzania’s President John Magufuli has ordered the confiscation of the passport of an Indian contractor who has failed to finish a water project on time.

The contractor, Rajendra Kumar of Alliance Private Limited, was supposed to complete it in March 2015.

But according to the water minister, he failed to do so because he ran out of cash.

The 11.6m euro ($12.2m, £9.9m) project is to dig 10 wells for the benefit of about 82,000 residents in the south-eastern Lindi region                       

The government is funding the wells with a loan from the European Union and German KfW Development Bank.

Mr Magufuli looked visibly upset when he saw that the project was not finished when he visited Lindi earlier today:

We cannot allow the people of Lindi to continue with water shortages.

The project has been delayed for two years because the contractor has decided to take the money to India."

He also hit out at officials from the water ministry as with 90% of the loan spent, the wells are far from completion.

“And you who are supposed to supervise him are not doing anything. Why didn’t you fire him all this time?"

The president said if the project was not completed in four months, the project supervisors would be punished.

The contractor has not responded to the president's comments.

Nicknamed "The Bulldozer", Mr Magufuli is seen as a no-nonsense politician, who has cracked down on corruption and mismanagement since coming to office in 2015.

Mitsubishi Pajeros recalled in SA over airbag problem

Milton Nkosi

BBC Africa, Johannesburg

Mitsubishi Pajero at auto show
AFP

Mitsubishi Motors is recalling more than 7,000 Pajero vehicles in South Africa, built between 2007 and 2016. 

The company said the move was part of a global preventative recall over driver airbags manufactured by Takata Corporation.

Mitsubishi is one of several vehicle manufacturers affected by the potentially defective airbag inflators. 

Takata Corporation last year admitted more of its air bags were defective - at least 11 deaths in the United States have been linked to airbags that split.  

Mitsubishi said airbags on South African Pajeros concerned would be replaced at no cost to vehicle owners.

"The inspection and replacement procedure will take approximately one hour," it said.

The company is currently contacting owners to arrange and co-ordinate the timing of replacements.

Pajero owners can check on this website whether their vehicles are affected.

Ford also recently announced a recall in South Africa for its Kuga range after owners complained about engines catching fire.

South Africa's National Consumer Commission (NCC) has launched a probe into the local unit of Ford over the incidents.

Rio 2016 vote 'linked to Senegal's Papa Diack'


          Papa Massata Diack pictured in February 2015 in Dakar, Senegal
AFP
Papa Massata Diack is already wanted over an accusation he blackmailed athletes who failed drug tests

French investigators think the vote to give Rio the 2016 Olympic Games may have been rigged with the help of Senegalese marketing consultant Papa Massata Diack, a paper in France is reporting.

Papa Diack is the son of former International Olympic Committee (IOC) member and president of athletics' governing body Lamine Diack, who is currently being held in France on corruption charges.

According to French newspaper Le Monde , a Brazilian businessman paid $1.5m (£1.2m) to Papa Diack days before the host city was chosen.

"The French justice suspects that this money may have been used to influence the votes," the paper says.

Rio 2016 organisers say the vote was "clean".

The Brazilian city won the right to host the Games by 66 votes to 32.

The newspaper says investigators have established that a holding company belonging to the Brazilian businessman paid the money to a company set up by Papa Diack. 

Mr Diack is banned for life from athletics for alleged corruption, and  Interpol has issued a "red notice" for his arrest.

He is accused of blackmailing athletes who failed drug tests, but has denied any wrongdoing and Senegal has refused to extradite him to France.

Read the BBC Sport story for more .

Africa's 'Devil' poacher sentenced to 12 years

One of Africa’s most notorious poachers, known as “Shetani” - which means “the Devil” in Swahili, has been sentenced to 12 years in prison in Tanzania.

Boniface Matthew Mariango, who had evaded arrest many times, was captured in October 2015.

A journalist following the case in Tanzania’s capital, Dodoma, says the notorious poacher was found with 118 tusks worth more than $860,000 (£703,000). He was the subject of a recent Neflix documentary called The Ivory Game produced by actor and conservationist Leonardo DiCaprio: 

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The PAMS Foundation in Tanzania, which helped bring the case, shared this post on its Facebook page:

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Tankers burned in Nigerian fuel depot attack

More on the suicide attack in the Nigerian city of Maiduguri: The National Emergency Management Agency (Nema) has tweeted these photos from the scene of the attack at a fuel depot.

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Female suicide bombers target fuel tankers in Maiduguri

Chris Ewokor

BBC Africa, Abuja

Aerial view of Maiduguri
AFP
Maiduguri has been at the centre of the seven-year insurgency

Three suspected suicide bombers, two of them women, have been killed after one of them detonated an explosive device in Maiduguri, in north-east Nigeria. 

Security sources say the attackers approached a petroleum depot in Samboa Road. One of the women detonated explosives strapped to her body, causing further explosions as two stationary fuel tankers caught fire. 

A spokesman for the National Emergency Management Agency in Maiduguri, Abdulkadir Ibrahim, said the fire had been put out and the bodies of the three attackers removed. There were no other casualties reported.

Maiduguri was once a stronghold of militant Islamist group Boko Haram but has become more peaceful since the Nigerian military stepped up operations against the insurgents. 

However, the Islamists still carry out random attacks in the area. 

The attack comes days before a planned visit by the UN Security Council as part of a four-nation tour of countries in the Lake Chad Basin devastated by the seven-year insurgency.   

Inside Obasanjo's presidential library

Former Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo makes history with his presidential library - the first of its kind in Africa.

The former leader gave the BBC's Martin Patience a tour.

Nigeria's Olusegun Obasanjo launches presidential library

Felix Tshisekedi to lead DR Congo opposition alliance

Felix Tshisekedi
AFP
Over the past three years, Felix Tshisekedi has taken an increasingly prominent role in the opposition

The main opposition alliance in the Democratic Republic of Congo has named the son of its late leader Etienne Tshisekedi to succeed him. 

Felix Tshisekedi will be president of the nine-party grouping, which opposes President Joseph Kabila.

His appointment was announced despite the objections of at least two groups in the alliance.

The other key post decided was that of president of the bloc's political bureau, which went to former Kabila ally Pierre Lumbi.

Long-time opposition leader Etienne Tshisekedi had led the alliance in last December's negotiations over the future of the presidency.

Under the transition deal agreed, Mr Kabila will step down after elections, which must take place this year. His second term in office officially ended last December.

Mr Tshisekedi's death last month sparked clashes between his supporters and the security forces in Kinshasa and threw the opposition into turmoil.

New pups for Ethiopia’s endangered wolves

A wolf in Ethiopia
Eric Bedin
All wolf packs have successfully had pups

Rare Ethiopian wolves are beginning to recover after three tough years, with the births of 60 pups in their stronghold in the Bale Mountains, conservationists say.

They were born to wolf packs in the Web Valley, Sanetti Plateau and Morebawa in the mountains of southern Ethiopia.

According to the Born Free Foundation, the wolves are Africa’s most threatened carnivore and the world’s rarest dog family.

There are fewer than 500 Ethiopian wolves remaining in the world in a handful of mountain enclaves, of which the Bale Mountains is the largest.

They are threatened by loss of habitat, breeding with domestic dogs and the spread of lethal diseases.

Nearly all wolf packs have bred successfully recently and some have “split”, increasing the number of families and breeding pairs, the Ethiopian Wolf Conservation Programme said.

Air force versus 'armyworms' in Zambia

Southern Africa has suffered extensively from a widespread drought in recent years, but in the last few months a new threat to the region's agriculture has emerged - a plague of "armyworms".

Zambia is one of the countries most affected, with the armyworms devastating maize crops and threatening farmers' livelihoods.

Watch Kennedy Gondwe's report:

Air force versus 'armyworms' in Zambia

Read more:  Why are armyworms attacking Africa's crops?

Sahel Islamist groups announce merger

Tomi Oladipo

BBC Monitoring's Africa security correspondent

Iyad Ag Ghali leader of the Islamic group of Ansar Dine (L)
AFP
Iyad Ag Ghali (seen here in 2012) announced the merger in a video

The leader of the Mali-based jihadist group Ansar Dine has announced a merger with two other groups linked with al-Qaeda. 

Iyad Ag Ghali appeared in a video alongside four other men including leaders of al-Mourabitoun, led by Algerian Mokhtar Belmokhtar, and al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), as well as the leader of Mali's ethic Fulani Macina Brigade, Amadou Kouffa. 

The new alliance, to be known as Jam'at Nusrat al-Islam wal Muslimin (the Group for the Support of Islam and Muslims), will be led by Ag Ghali. 

The groups have been responsible for attacks mainly in Mali but also elsewhere in the Sahel and Sahara (sometimes even claiming the same attacks). 

They were already allied before now but this move, apart from consolidating their violent campaigns against the local authorities (and international partners), would also be a major propaganda tool.

Read more:

Zimbabwe seeks $100m after deadly floods

Zimbabwe has appealed for $100m (£82m) to help people affected by floods that have killed 246 and left nearly 2,000 people homeless since December.

After suffering a crippling drought last year that left more than four million in need of food aid, heavy rains began pounding parts of the south and south-west of the country in December.

Local Government Minister Saviour Kasukuwere said floods had swept through villages, destroying roads, crops and livestock.

The air force has transported some marooned villagers to safety.

The rains have also devastated infrastructure: 74 schools had been damaged and 70 dams had burst, raising concerns for communities downstream, he said.

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Five bridges on major highways have been swept away nationwide, Transport Minister Joram Gumbo said.

"Our roads have deteriorated to the extent that some sections of the national road network have become impassable,'' Zimbabwe's Daily News newspaper quoted Mr Gumbo as saying.

Last week, the cash-strapped government was criticised for spending a reported $2m to celebrate President Robert Mugabe's 93rd birthday.