Got a TV Licence?

You need one to watch live TV on any channel or device, and BBC programmes on iPlayer. It’s the law.

Find out more
I don’t have a TV Licence.


  1. Row over portrayal of Zuma and Mandela having sex
  2. Kenya 'kills more than 50 al-Shabab militants'
  3. Seventeen children die in South Africa bus accident
  4. Nigerian fans die watching Man Utd game at viewing centre in Calabar
  5. Nigeria's president says he is 'shocked and saddened'
  6. Dutch businessman convicted over selling weapons to Charles Taylor
  7. Regional peacekeepers shot at near ex-Gambia leader's home
  8. Cameroonians celebrate return of internet

Live Reporting

By Dickens Olewe and Damian Zane

All times stated are UK

Get involved

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 in The Gambia on the continent by listening to the  Africa Today podcast  or checking the BBC News website

A reminder of today's wise words:

Truth and teeth should both be polished."

A Somali proverb sent by Aweis Ahmed Gabow, Somalia

Click here to send your African proverbs.

And we leave you with one of our top shots from across the continent this week of a Sudanese girl showing off her face tatoos at a local market 480 km from the capital, Khartoum.

Young woman

Fifa offers condolences to Nigerian fans

Tweets about the tragedy in Calabar last night where football fans died after being electrocuted while watching a match at a viewing centre have been trending all day in Nigeria.

At least seven died in the accident which is believed to have been caused by a live electric cable falling on to the metal roof of the place where the Europa League match between Manchester United and Anderlecht was being screened.

Manchester United tweeted its condolences this morning. Football's world governing body Fifa has also sent its sympathies:

View more on twitter
Still from TV showing cable on the roof
TV pictures show the electric cable that reportedly caused the accident

Fears that SA crash death toll could rise

Nomsa Maseko

BBC Africa, Johannesburg

Another horrific car crash in South Africa. 

This time, school children were killed when the minibus taxi they were traveling in collided head on with a truck. 

The taxi then burst into flames and most of the children were trapped inside.

Emergency service officials believe several others who were found at the scene were pulled out of the vehicle by members of the community. 

The crash took place in Bronkhorspruit, a town east of Pretoria. 

Officials fear the number of the dead could rise and cause of the collision is still being investigated. 

This comes hours after transport minister Joe Maswanganyi announced that Easter weekend road deaths increased by 51% this year and most fatalities were pedestrians. 

View more on twitter

Motlanthe 'uncertain' over ANC support

Former South African President Kgalema Motlanthe says he is uncertain about whether he can support the African National Congress at the next election in 2019.

Speaking to the BBC, he said his vote could not be taken "as given", and spoke of an "avalanche of wrongdoing" in the ANC under his successor, Jacob Zuma.

South Africa's legendary boxing trainer dies in accident

View more on twitter

South Africa's legendary boxing trainer Nick Durandt has been killed in a motorbike accident in Clarens town, local media report.

EWN Reporter quotes his son Damien saying his father collided with a vehicle that was turning. He was then rushed to hospital where he died. 

Sports media website SuperSport profiled Durandat last year calling him "flamboyant, colourful and even controversial at times". 

Though not a boxer himself he has trained some of the big names in the game including Pernell Whitaker, Roy Jones Jr, Oscar de la Hoya and Evander Holyfield.

"He has produced 95 South African champions in all 17 weight divisions, 38 world champions and 27 International champions through the WBC, WBA, IBF, WBO, WBF and IBO organisations." according to SuperSport. 

DR Congo violence threatens children

The UN says 1.5 million children are at risk because of what it describes as extreme violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo. 

UN children's agency Unicef says thousands of children are being forcibly recruited to fight in the Greater Kasai region and others raped and killed. 

Unicef found that 350 schools had been destroyed. 

It estimates that more than a million people have been displaced since clashes between the army and a militia erupted in August last year. 

At least 40 mass graves have been found in the area. 

“Children in Kasai are being forced to endure horrific ordeals,” said Unicef's representative in DR Congo Tajudeen Oyewale following a field visit.

Congolese soldiers
UN human rights investigators say atrocities are being committed by both sides in the clashes with local militia

What did Cameroonians do when they got the internet back?

We've been reporting about the return of the internet to Cameroon's English-speaking regions.

The authorities cut it off following anti-government demonstrations.

People have been telling us what they did as soon as it came back on:

@BBCAfrica First thing I did was advice my family back home to download apps like Firechat & invest in VPN. No guar……

@BBCAfrica @BBCAfrica I had to post all the pics I didn't post for 92days on Facebook

And on Facebook Rene Nwabueze wrote:

Last night the first thing I did was to go to my Facebook page and wrote. And people here were really happy."

Home-made musical instruments in Madagascar

The BBC's Ken Mungai is in Antananarivo, the capital of the island nation of Madagascar. 

He came across a group of boys playing homemade music instruments made of water pipes and plastic funnels in a neighborhood called Alasora.

Watch below and enjoy the sound of ingenuity:  

Survivor of Nigeria's Calabar tragedy says quick reaction saved him

A survivor of last night's tragedy in Nigeria's city of Calabar where several fans died after being electrocuted while watching a football match, says he ran out of the viewing centre after seeing sparks come out from the electric cable. 

He says other tried to run out of the building but were not so lucky:

Nigeria's Channels TV is reporting that 30 people died, the police have confirmed that seven people died.

Business as usual at France's 'small Africa'

Our colleagues at BBC Afrique are in France ahead of Sunday's presidential elections to sample views of voters. 

They have been out and about today in the capital, Paris, and visited Château Rouge, an area where a lot of Africans live. 

Many there told our team that they feel their voice isn't being heard by the political elite.

Our colleagues also snapped these pictures at an African butchers: 


Political party nominations in Kenya marred by violence

Wanyama wa Chebusiri

BBC Africa

Ahead of Kenya's general elections on 8 August political parties are conducting nominations to elect their candidates. 

President Uhuru Kenyatta’s Jubilee Party kicked off the exercise today and it has been marred by chaos and confusion so far.

In most areas across the country, the nominations were characterised by sporadic skirmishes. A lack of voting materials and massive irregularities has forced the cancellation of the exercise in most parts of the country. 

View more on twitter

Last week, a similar exercise in the opposition Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party of former Prime Minister Raila Odinga witnessed violence especially in its western Kenya stronghold. 

This year's vote will take place a decade after disputed poll results fuelled violence that left more than 1,000 dead and a half a million others displaced. 

Mr Kenyatta will be seeking a second term in office as the candidate for his Jubilee Party. The newly-formed opposition coalition, known as Nasa, hopes to name its presidential flag-bearer next week.

Nigerian pastor charged in South Africa with sexual assault

Nigerian Pastor Timothy Omotoso has been charged with human trafficking and two counts of sexual assault in South Africa's city of Port Elizabeth. 

Mr Omotoso was arrested yesterday at the city's airport. 

The case was postponed to 3 May and he will remain in custody for the next two weeks. 

The National Prosecution Authority's (NPA) Tshepo Ndwalaza said: “We can confirm as the NPA that indeed Pastor Omotoso has been remanded in custody until 3 May because he wants to apply for bail.”

Pictures of South African accident

ER24, the South African emergency team dealing with the crash in which at least 17 school children have died, has been tweeting pictures of the crash site.

View more on twitter

An earlier post, when it had confirmed 13 dead, showed the scene from a different angle:

View more on twitter

BreakingSeventeen children killed in SA bus crash

At least 17 children have been killed in a road accident in South Africa's Mpumalanga province, north of the capital, Pretoria. 

According to the Reuters news agency the minibus they were travelling in crashed into a truck and exploded into a ball of fire. 

Russel Meiring, a spokesman for emergency service ER24, told Reuters that 20 children were in the minibus when it collided with the truck. 

"The number now is at least 17 fatalities," he said.

Kenya 'destroys al-Shabab camp in Somalia'

Kenya's Ministry of Defence has said its soldiers have raided and destroyed an al-Shabab camp in Somalia.

Kenyan soldiers are part of the African Union force fighting the Somali Islamist militant group.

The brief statement said that 52 al-Shabab fighters were killed and others escaped with injuries in the attack on the camp in Somalia's Lower Juba region, which borders Kenya.

It also said that a small number of weapons were seized.

The figures cannot be independently verified.

South African artist defends controversial naked Mandela-Zuma work

South African artist Ayanda Mabulu has defended his depiction of President Jacob Zuma and Nelson Mandela having sex.

In fact, he says his controversial painting shows Mr Zuma raping the revered anti-apartheid hero, News24 reports.

"Nelson Mandela is me, Nelson Mandela is you, Nelson Mandela is your neighbour. Nelson Mandela is everyone," Mabulu is quoted as saying.  

Both the Nelson Mandela Foundation and the governing ANC have said Mabalu has the right to freedom of expression but have condemned the picture.

The ANC said the work crosses "the bounds of rationality to degradation, exploiting the craft of creative art for nefarious ends".

South Africa's President Jacob Zuma gestures during celebrations for his 75th birthday on April 12, 2017
President Zuma is coming under increased pressure over his leadership

Dutch weapons smuggler convicted for selling weapons to Liberia

A Dutch businessman has been sentenced to 19 years by a court in The Netherlands for aiding a war crime over his dealings with Liberia.

Guus Kouwenhoven was accused of selling weapons to Liberia's former President Charles Taylor during the country's civil war.

The Dutch News website said he sold the weapons in exchange for lucrative timber contracts.

The judges wrote that the "weapons were used by Taylor in an armed conflict with rebels, in which over a period of many years countless civilians were victimised", the Reuters news agency reports.

Kouwenhoven had previously been convicted of weapons smnuggling, but that verdict was overturned. The Dutch Supreme Court then ordered a retrial.

Taylor himself was convicted of war crimes by the Special Court for Sierra Leone for his role in Sierra Leone's civil war. He is currently serving his sentence in the UK. 

Former Liberian President Charles Taylor (L) waits on September 26, 2013 in the courtroom of the Special Court for Sierra Leone in The Hague before the start of his appeal judgement
Charles Taylor was sentenced to 50 years in prison in 2012

Liverpool's Mane on the mend

West Ham United midfielder Cheikhou Kouyate has shared a picture of his Senegalese international team mate Sadio Mane, who is recovering from a knee injury, and wishing him a quick recovery. 

Mane, who has been a key player for Liverpool and their top scorer with 13 goals, has been ruled out of the season. 

He was named in the season's Professional Footballers’ Association (PFA) team of the year.

View more on twitter

Egypt killing video sparks controversy

BBC World Service

A video allegedly showing Egyptian soldiers shooting dead unarmed detainees in the northern Sinai has stirred controversy. 

It apparently shows the soldiers staging the killings to look as if they happened during an armed clash. 

The video was first broadcast on a television station that supports the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood, which the government accuses of involvement in jihadist violence in the Sinai. 

A pro-government news site has said the video is a fabrication.

Read: Sinai Province: Egypt's most dangerous group

Buhari ' shocked and saddened' by Calabar tragedy

Muhammadu Buhari

Nigeria's President Muhammadu Buhari says he is shocked and saddened by the death of several football fans last night, at a viewing centre in the port city of Calabar. 

The fans were watching a Europa League match between Manchester United and Anderlecht when a live electric cable fell onto the building, electrocuting those inside. 

Police say at least seven people died and 11 injured in the incident, although witnesses say more died. 

Mr Buhari offered condolences to the victim's families and commended Cross River State authorities for setting up a commission of inquiry into the incident and for offering to help the victims and their families: 

The President offers his deepest condolences to the family and friends of the mostly young victims, whose sudden demise is a big blow not only to their families, but also to the football-loving nation.

He prays that God Almighty will grant the souls of the departed eternal rest and comfort all who mourn their irreparable loss."

'Treated mosquito nets unsafe'

Researchers in Kenya say that treated mosquito nets that are widely used in East Africa are not safe and could cause asthma and cancer in infants and young children, the Daily Nation reports. 

Its research says that the use of synthetic insecticides contains particles that don't break down easily. 

Dr Festus Tolo, head of Natural Product Research and Drug Development Programme at the Kemri institute says they are working on a natural substitute: 

We are looking for a way of coming up with natural extract from pyrethrum to make safe insecticides and even use them in making indoor residual sprays which are harmless”.

Cameroon's Anglophone region celebrates internet return

On the ground: Frederic Takang, BBC News, Bamenda, Cameroon

Excited groups gathered in the city centre to share the news with each other on Thursday night, as passing cars honked their horns in celebration.

Students, those working in the financial sector, and businesses who sell products online say they suffered hugely during the ban.

Cyber-cafes which were forced to close are now reopening.

My own work and family life were affected.

Cyber cafe

I had to make a four-hour round trip to a neighbouring region every time I wanted to send radio reports to my editors.

There are those who see this as the first step towards resolving tensions between the government and the Anglophone community.

Some are even encouraging their friends to be less outspoken on social media to avoid another shutdown.

But others are still angry and say the release of three leaders of the Anglophone protests and 30 others who are still detained should be the priority.

Free internet for users in North-West and South-West Cameroon

Cameroon's mobile providers are welcoming residents of Cameroon's north-west and south-west regions back online with free internet access.

The English-speaking areas were cut off from the internet for three months following anti-government protests.

View more on twitter

MTN's chief executive in the country has tweeted:

View more on twitter

Zambia's DJ Gesh on the business opportunities from his work

In Kitwe in northern Zambia, a lawyer-turned-radio entrepreneur Gesh Groove has set up his own academy to teach the skills needed to become a successful DJ.

He has some great advice for aspiring DJs and radio presenters - and it's not just about playing records.

The BBC's Africa Business Report went along to sample his style of teaching.

Remembering Ugo Ehiogu

Some Nigerian players are tweeting condolence messages for Ugo Ehiogu who died this morning at the age of 44 after suffering a cardiac arrest.

He was working at Tottenham's Under-23s coach at the time of his death.

Ehiogu made over 200 appearances for Aston Villa between 1991 and 2000 and then spent seven years at Middlesbrough.

He had Nigerian roots but played for England.

Nigeria and Wolves goalkeeper tweeted:

View more on twitter

And a Super Eagles player based in Belgium also tweeted his memories:

View more on twitter

Ethiopia has arrested '98 trying to cross from Eritrea' over past two months

The Ethiopian state-affiliated Fana Broadcasting Corporate (FBC) is reporting that over the past two months the authorities have arrested 98 people, described as "anti-peace elements", trying to cross over from Eritrea.

FBC says that those arrested were from the Eritrea based Ginbot 7 and Oromo Liberation Front "terrorist organisations".

It quotes a local official saying that the 15 arrested this week were planning to attack "socio-economic institution".

There is a state of emergency currently in Ethiopia as the government tries to deal with protesters, including those from the Oromia region.

Hooray, the internet's back!

Cameroonians celebrate reconnection

Internet users in Cameroon's English-speaking regions have been celebrating the fact that they've been reconnected three months after the data connection was cut following protests.

People were delighted when online access was restored in both regions on Thursday at 19:00 GMT, a BBC correspondent in Bamenda reports.

Before the ban, authorities had warned mobile phone users they faced jail for spreading false information.

Some tweeted their appreciation:

View more on twitter

But some have used the opportunity to tweet some more political messages including referring to activists who have been detained:

View more on twitter
View more on twitter
View more on twitter
Map of Cameroon
South-West and North-West Cameroon were affected by the shutdown

South Africa bids farewell to 'brave' Ontlametse Phalatse

South Africans are tweeting about the funeral of Ontlametse Phalatse who died at 18 earlier this month after her battle against the premature ageing disorder progeria. 

Doctors had said Ontlametse would not make it past the age of 14.

At the time of her death President Jacob Zuma was among those who conveyed their condolences to the family of "the special child of South Africa". 

Mr Zuma has been speaking at her funeral:

View more on twitter

People are also sharing videos of the funeral:

View more on twitter

While others are sharing Ontlametse's picture:

View more on twitter

Manchester United says 'thoughts with Nigeria football fans'

Manchester United have reacted to last night's tragedy in Nigeria's port city of Calabar where football fans who had gathered at a viewing centre to watch the Uefa Europa League match against Anderlecht, were electrocuted, with several feared dead. 

View more on twitter

The police say that seven died in last night's tragedy and 11 are being treated in local hospitals. 

However, some witnesses say that the number of the dead could be higher.   

Shots fired in Yayha Jammeh's hometown

There has been an exchange of gunfire in the Gambian town of Kanilai, the birthplace of former President Yahya Jammeh, BBC Afrique is reporting.

Soldiers from the mission of the West African regional grouping Ecowas and the Gambian military fired at each other.

The Ecowas soldiers went to Kanilai to search Mr Jammeh's house for weapons that are allegedly being hidden there.

The Ecowas mission is in The Gambia to help restore security in the country.

Sources told BBC Afrique that two pro-Jammeh fighters were injured. They are now being treated in hospital.

On 4 April, the same group of Gambian soldiers on duty at Kanilai forced a unit of their colleagues from the Yundum military camp to turn back.  

Mr Jammeh is now living in exile in Equatorial Guinea after leaving the country that he ruled for 22 years.

He was defeated in an election in December but initially refused to make way for the victor Adama Barrow.

Jammeh waving from an aeroplane
Mr Jammeh was waved away by supporters when he left the country in January

Be careful if you're a Ugandan street preacher

The authorities in Uganda's capital, Kampala, are taking action to clear the streets of preachers among others.

In a notice released on Thursday the council says that the police will "start to arrest and prosecute" street preachers and unlicensed traders.

Notice from the council

Preachers are a common site in many cities across the continent.

To capture a flavour of what they're like here's a YouTube video we found:

View more on youtube

'Seven Nigerian football fans died'

A police statement from Nigeria's port city of Calabar now confirms an incident last night where several football fans died after being electrocuted. 

They were watching a Uefa Europa League match between Manchester United and Anderlecht. 

Police say seven died in the incident, and that 10 victims have been admitted to hospital and one remains in intensive care: 

Around 10pm we were called that an incident that has happened so immediately our men went there.

Until this morning we have about 7 persons dead, we have 10 that have been admitted to hospital and another one in intensive care.

According to the information we gathered the high tension [electric] cable that was very close to the viewing centre fell on the building."

Nigeria football fans electrocuted: 'I saw the bodies'

We have been reporting about an incident last night in Nigeria's southern port city of Calabar where several football fans watching the Uefa Europa match between Manchester United and Anderlecht, were electrocuted. 

A witness, Anthony Sunday, has told the BBC that several people were killed: 

It was just after 8pm. It was a transformer and the cable dropped on the rooftop of the football viewing spot, there were many people inside.

I don’t know how many. High voltage from the transformer caused it to spark and fall. I was very close, sitting in a nearby beer parlour. I arrived on the scene four to five minutes after the incident.

I only saw people lying on the floor dead and people were taking them to the mortuary. Police and ambulance were there."

Nigeria football fans 'electrocuted' while watching TV

Football fans, who had gathered to watch last night's Uefa Europa match between Manchester United and Anderlecht at a viewing centre in the southern port city of Calabar, have been electrocuted after an electric fault.

There are reports that some of them were killed but there are no confirmed figures.

A local journalist has told the BBC that the incident happened when a high tension cable fell on the building.

Other reports say that there were 80 people in the building at the time but some managed to get away before safely.

Local authorities have however not confirmed what happened and the police are said to be in a meeting with emergency service officials.

A local journalist says the scene has been cordoned off and the electricity supply in the area has been switched off.

We will keep you informed as we get more details. 

Manchester United playing Anderlecht
The fans were watching the match between Anderlecht and Manchester United

Egyptian-American charged with human trafficking freed and flown to US

BBC World Service

An Egyptian-American charity worker detained in Cairo for three years on charges of human trafficking has been flown home to the United States. 

Aya Hijazi landed in Washington aboard a US military plane accompanied by senior White House official Dina Powell. 

President Donald Trump reportedly asked his Egyptian counterpart to help resolve her case, when President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi visited Washington earlier this month. 

Ms Hijazi founded a non-governmental organisation working to improve the lives of street children.

South Africa's ex-president casts doubt on Zuma

Karen Allen

BBC southern Africa correspondent, Johannesburg

South Africa's former President Kgalema Motlanthe has told the BBC that his vote for the ANC cannot be taken as a given come elections in 2019. 

Mr Motlanthe, who briefly served as president and was once President Jacob Zuma's deputy, revealed that he tried to persuade the leader to stand down more than a year ago.

He also derided what he said was the "cavalier" attitude of some ministers towards the economy.

Mr Motlanthe is one of the most senior figures to cast doubt on the future of the ANC with Mr Zuma, who was once a close ally, at the helm. 

The embattled president faces a vote of no confidence in parliament next month and opposition to him appears to be hardening, although he still enjoys strong support in the rural areas.

South Africa's President and African National Congress (ANC) leader Jacob Zuma (R) jokes with former ANC Deputy President Kgale Motlanthe during a event commemorating the 101st birthday of the ANC party in Durban on January 12, 2013.
Kgalema Motlanthe (left) served as president and deputy president

You can listen to part of the interview here:

Anger over painting portraying Mandela and Zuma having sex

South African artist Ayanda Mabulu is trending on Twitter as people there react to his latest controversial art work showing President Jacob Zuma having sex with Nelson Mandela.

Angry comments like these are typical:

View more on twitter
View more on twitter

The Nelson Mandela Foundation has issued a statement saying that though it respects the right to freedom of expression it finds the "painting distasteful".

The governing ANC says it finds the work "grotesque, inflammatory and of bad taste - but the party also defends the right for the artist to express himself.

Mabulu has in the past drawn a number of pictures showing the president in sexually explicit positions.

Good morning

Welcome to the BBC Africa Live page where we'll be keeping you up-to-date with news stories on the continent.