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Summary

  1. LRA commander pleads not guilty at ICC
  2. Burkinabe MPs 'to return Chinese touch-screen tablet gifts'
  3. Tanzanian puts up posters for women to apply to be his wife
  4. South Africa's right-to-die ruling for terminally ill overturned
  5. Djibouti 'to host Saudi military base'
  6. Mali prison break by 'suspected Islamist militants'
  7. Last IS area falls in Libyan city of Sirte
  8. President Mugabe praises 'peace-loving' Zimbabweans
  9. UN probe finds 41 sex abusers in CAR
  10. Ethnic clashes leave 31 dead in DR Congo
  11. Egypt arrests 'organ trafficking ring'
  12. Kenya talks to end doctors' strike collapse
  13. Malawians march against abortion and homosexuality
  14. Email stories and comments to africalive@bbc.co.uk - Tuesday 6 December 2016

Live Reporting

By Dickens Olewe, Lamine Konkobo and Lucy Fleming

All times stated are UK

Get involved

  1. Scroll down for Tuesday's stories

    We'll be back tomorrow

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

    A reminder of today's wise words:

    Quote Message: The worm that destroys a kola nut lives inside it." from Sent by Excellence Emmanuel, Harrison Arubu and Muyiwa Ojolo - all from Nigeria
    Sent by Excellence Emmanuel, Harrison Arubu and Muyiwa Ojolo - all from Nigeria

    Click here to send your African proverbs.

    And we leave you with this picture from Togo's capital, Lome, of a store owner in front of his shop with its Christmas decorations. 

    View more on instagram
  2. Nigeria Shia group to sue over banning

    Naziru Mikailu

    BBC Abuja editor

    Shia supporters in Nigeria holding posters of their leader Sheikh Ibraheem Zakzaky
    Image caption: Shia leader Sheikh Ibraheem Zakzaky has been in cutody since last December

    A Shia movement in Nigeria is threating to sue Kaduna state’s government after it released a statement defending the recent move to ban the group and put its leader on trial.

    The statement gave the recommendations of a state parliamentary committee after an investigation into last December’s clashes in which 349 Shia Muslims were killed.

    The military first blamed the unrest in the northern city of Zaria on the Shia sect, which it accused of trying to assassinate army chief - but a judicial inquiry in August said that troops should be prosecuted for the killings.

    A spokesman for the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN), Ibrahim Musa, told the BBC Hausa Service, their recommendations were “unjust” and would be challenged it in court. 

    Read more: Investigating Nigeria's Shia clashes

  3. Mozambique seizes 'largest illegal log haul'

    Jose Tembe

    BBC Africa, Maputo

    The Mozambican authorities have seized 1,300 containers of logs worth $800,000 (£631,000) in the northern port of Nacala before they could be exported illegally to China.

    The director of the national agency for environmental quality control, Olivia Amosse, said this was the largest single seizure of illegal timber in Mozambican history.

    Those caught would have to pay more than $900,000 in fines and would also be charged.

    The logs would be confiscated and sold at public auction, Ms Amosse added. 

  4. Last IS area falls in Libyan city of Sirte

    Rana Jawad

    BBC North Africa correspondent, Tunis

    Libyan forces battling so-called Islamic State in Sirte say they have now taken over the last remaining area in the city where the militants were holed up. 

    It has been a long and deadly battle, but it will be welcomed by thousands who had to flee their homes and by the international community.  

    Although this does not spell the end of the radical group's presence in the country, it does significantly weaken them. 

    It is likely that its members will increasingly resort to staging more deadly, isolated attacks; they still have cells operating under their banner in different parts of Libya.  

    Libya’s complex network of local armed groups, who have simultaneously been the root cause of IS’s rise and fall, and its continued dysfunctional politics provide ripe territory for for any extremist group with guns, and convenient alliances with others, to stage a comeback. 

    In the weeks and months ahead, Libya’s vast array of politicians and rival administrations will need to start finding tangible solutions to the on-going civil conflict, which led to Sirte’s dramatic fall into IS hands to begin with.  

    Read: What next for Islamic State in Libya after Sirte?

  5. DR Congo journalist freed after six days in custody

    Stand-off between riot police and protesters in the DRC
    Image caption: DR Congo is tense ahead of 19 December when Mr Kabila's mandate should end

    A journalist in the Democratic Republic of Congo who was arrested at an anti-government demonstration in the north-east of the country has been released without charge, her lawyer Augustin Yaongonda has told the AFP news agency. 

    Adele Uvon, who works for the private Lobiko media group, was detained on 1 December in Bunia, the main city in Ituri province. 

    The protest she went to report on was organised by the Lucha youth group, which is demanding that President Joseph Kabila step down on 19 December after two terms in office. 

    Voters in the DR Congo were due to go to the polls on 27 November to elect his replacement, but the election has been postponed until April 2018.

    The UN mission in the country has warned that the official end of Mr Kabila's term is likely to be marked by violence.

    Activities by Lucha and other pro-democracy groups have been banned in the lead up the official end of his mandate. 

    The ruling party has done a deal with one faction of the opposition to allow Mr Kabila to continue in his job until 2018 because the voters' roll is not ready.

  6. What would convince Ghanaians abroad to return hom?

    As Ghanaians vote in presidential elections on Wednesday, British-Ghanaians tell the BBC what may tempt them to return to the West African state.

    Video content

    Video caption: Ghanaians in UK: New president should 'lead by example'
  7. How Dominic Ongwen came to be on trial at the ICC

    Ledio Cakaj, an expert on the Lord's Resistance Army, tells BBC Newshour about how Dominic Ongwen, abducted by the rebels as a child, came to be on trial at the ICC for war crimes, which he denies (see earlier posts):

    Video content

    Video caption: Dominic Ongwen faces 70 counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity in Uganda.

    You can read at a full article from Ledio Cakaj here: Dominic Ongwen and the quest for justice

  8. ICC quotes: 'Ongwen was a murderer and rapist'

    The International Criminal Court (ICC) has released a statement made by prosecutor Fatou Bensouda today at the trial of LRA commander Dominic Ongwen at The Hague.

    Mr Ongwen, now in his early 40s and who was a boy when he was abducted by the notoriously ruthless Ugandan rebel cult, has pleaded not guilty to 70 counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity.

    These are a few key quotes:

    Fatou Bensouda quote
    Quote Message: He commanded attacks which destroyed innocent civilians' livelihoods. He presided over a systematic use of child soldiers and sex crimes on young girls in the units he commanded.
    Quote Message: The circumstances in which he himself was abducted and conscripted into the LRA many years before may perhaps amount to some mitigation of sentence in the event that he is convicted of these crimes. They cannot begin to amount to a defence, or a reason not to hold him to account for the choice that he made; the choice to embrace the murderous violence used by the LRA and to make it the hallmark of operations carried out by his soldiers.
    Quote Message: The victims of Mr Ongwen's brutal crimes have waited too long to see justice done. It is past time we deliver to them what they are owed."

    A link to her full statement is in the tweet below:

    View more on twitter
  9. Striking Kenyan doctors urged to show 'more love'

    A man whose brother is a patient at a Kenyan hospital has told the BBC's World Have Your Say programme that the ongoing doctors' strike is "inhumane".  

    He says his brother is in need of constant care and asked the health workers, who are protesting against the government's delay in implementing a pay package, to "show more love":

    Video content

    Video caption: Kenya strike: Patient's brother says strike is "inhumane"

    The strike, which is in its second day and has crippled operations in public hospitals across the country, was called because doctors say the government has refused to honour a 2013 pay deal.

    Sick Kenyans were turned away from hospitals and patients left stranded in their wards, the AFP news agency reports.

    David Mukabi, the superintendent in charge of Busia hospital in western Kenya, told AFP that patients had left:

    Quote Message: "We have had a lot of patients leaving our facility because we have no services offered due to the ongoing strike."

    He said a 24-year-old patient had died on Monday, the report adds. 

    Two other women are also reported to have died in western Kenya. The death of three patients in the coastal city of Mombasa on Tuesday was also attributed to the strike, AFP says.

    Health Minister Cleopa Mailu has urged the health workers to return to work: "We continue to appeal to the health workers to resume duty as we continue with the negotiations."

    But talks to end the strike collapsed earlier today (see previous report).

  10. Ghana election: 'Opposition supporter killed at rally'

    An NPP supporter at a campaign rally
    Image caption: Campaigning for the election has been largely peacefully

    A supporter of the main opposition party in Ghana, the National Patriotic Party (NPP), has been killed when violence broke out at a campaign rally in north-eastern Ghana, a police commander has told the AFP news agency. 

    Ken Yeboaf, deputy police commissioner for the northern region, said supporters of rival candidates in tomorrow's presidential election were parading in bikes in the little town of Chereponi near the border with Togo when the incident happened. 

    In addition to the reported death, 14 people were injured, he said.

    Campaigning has been largely peaceful ahead of polls when voters choose their next president from a line-up of seven candidates. 

    The two main candidates are:

    - NDC candidate: John Dramani Mahama, 58

    • Vice-president under President John Atta Mills, who died in 2012. Completed his term
    • Now seeking re-election after serving his first term of four years
    • Political pedigree: His father was first minister of state for the Northern region

    Read: Can Mr 'Power Cut' win a second term?

    - NPP candidate: Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, 72

    • Campaigned for a return to multi-party democracy under military rule
    • A former justice and foreign minister in the NPP government from 2001 to 2007, he is running for president for a third time
    • Political pedigree: His father was a prominent politician who served as chief justice and ceremonial president

    Read: Third time lucky for Nana Akufo-Addo?

  11. How Eritrea's football team defected in Botswana

    The New Yorker has published a feature story about the defection Eritrean footballers who went to play an international match in Botswana in 2015.

    It was not the first time the Eritrean players had defected and the article says the authorities had tried to stop any more "embarrassing" defections, picking players based on loyalty rather than skill: 

    Quote Message: After the last defection, the government disbanded the team. Then, in the fall of 2015, it came up with a solution. It would form a team mostly of Eritrean athletes who lived abroad and held dual nationality, and therefore had no incentive to defect.”

    But the article tells the story of how defender Samson Arefaine convinced his teammates to defect on his first trip out of Eritrea: “There was no closeness among the 10 of us - we were not friends. I just took the risk.”

    They made their escape at 04:00 local time from a hotel in Francistown.

    A taxi they had called did not turn up, so they set off on foot, telling the security guards they were going for a walk to relax: “When we went out, there was nothing. It was dark, dark. We didn’t know where to go."

    For more read the New Yorker article:  The soccer stars refugees of Eritrea

  12. Super Falcons 'refuse to leave hotel in bonus row'

    It looks like the African women football champions - Nigeria's Super Falcons - are facing a battle to get paid, a BBC reporter tweets:

    View more on twitter

    They won the women's Africa Cup of Nations for an eighth time on Saturday after a 1-0 win over hosts Cameroon.    

    It is not the first time the women, who get paid considerably less than their male counterparts, have had problems over bonuses: 

    Read more: Why Nigeria's women out kick the men

  13. Mugabe praises 'peace-loving' Zimbabweans

    Shingai Nyoka

    BBC Africa, Harare

    Robert Mugabe
    Image caption: Mugabe told Zimbabweans to cherish the peace and tranquility in the country

    President Robert Mugabe has praised Zimbabweans for remaining peaceful in the face of the ongoing economic hardships.

    His comments, made during a delayed annual State of the Nation address at parliament, made no reference to recent protests - the most violent in years - about the deteriorating economy.

    The 92-year-old leader, who has been in power for 36 years, has faced calls to step down over his handling of the economy. 

    In a 30-minute speech, he paid tribute to the “peace-loving people who have endured all manner of economic hardships since we embarked on the historic land reform programme”. 

    In 2000,  Zimbabwe began to expropriate land from mainly white farmers to give to the black majority. 

    The often violent takeovers led to economic sanctions, which Mr Mugabe has often blamed for the worsening economy. 

    He commended Zimbabweans for their "resilience" and urged them to "cherish the peace and tranquility that continues to be the envy of many".

    He did not mention the controversial new bond notes, released last week, nor the disgruntlement among public service workers over late salary payments that led to stayaways earlier in the year

    He said that Zimbabwe had imported 300,000 tonnes of grain to feed millions who face hunger as a result of the worst drought in decades.

  14. SA university to increase fees

    Milton Nkosi

    BBC Africa, Johannesburg

    Students at South Africa's Wits University have expressed disappointed about the institution's decision to increase tuition fees, despite nationwide protests against it. 

    The university said the increase - which was capped by the government at 8% - would take effect next year and apply to both tuition and residence fees.   

    The university’s spokeswoman, Sharona Patel, said the hike was recommended by the university’s management and approved by its Financial Committee after consultation with the Students Representative Council (SRC). 

    Wits SRC President Kefentse Mkhari said the student council was shocked to learn of the university’s decision to increase fees, after the institution had claimed to support their call for free higher education during the #FeesMustFall protests. 

    Mr Mkhari said: “The university was very opportunistic, even the timing of them releasing the statement, they obviously waited for students to leave campus for end of year break.” 

    The university says the hike in fees is necessary for the institution to avoid a massive deficit.

    People have been sharing a picture of a graduating student expressing solidarity with the #FreeMustFall campaign. 

    View more on twitter
  15. Egypt arrests 'organ trafficking ring'

    Egyptian authorities have arrested doctors, nurses and professors suspected of being involved in an international organ trafficking ring.

    The arrests of at least 25 people on Tuesday also included organ buyers and middlemen, the country's Administrative Control Authority said.

    Authorities also found "millions of dollars and gold bullion".

    It is illegal to purchase organs in Egypt, but poverty drives some to sell their body parts.

    The Administrative Control Authority, a powerful anti-corruption body, claimed the network targeted on Tuesday was "made up of Egyptians and Arabs taking advantage of some of the citizens' difficult economic conditions so that they buy their human organs and sell [them] for large sums of money".

    Read Full story

    Egypt's capital Cairo
    Image caption: Egyptian authorities made the arrests on Tuesday morning
  16. South Africa defends decision to leave the ICC

    A soldier before an image of the scales of justice
    Image caption: The International Criminal Court in The Hague has been part of the global justice system since 2002

    South Africa’s government is today setting out its case for why the country is withdrawing from the International Criminal Court (ICC).

    This comes a day after the opposition Democratic Alliance (DA) appeared in the Pretoria High Court, challenging the government’s decision to withdraw from the body.

    The DA wants that decision nullified, arguing that the move is unconstitutional.

    The opposition party says Mr Zuma bypassed parliament when he made the decision in October.

    At the time the government said its withdrawal was in line with its strategy of bringing peace and stability to the continent.

    Last year, South Africa was criticised following its decision not to hand-over Sudan President Omar al-Bashir to the ICC when he visited the country for an African Union (AU) summit.

    He is wanted by the ICC on charges of genocide and war crimes - allegations he denies.

    Read more: Is this the end of the ICC?

  17. Burkinabe MPs 'to return Chinese touch-screen tablet gifts'

    The Huawei MateBook
    Image caption: The law does not allow civil servants in Burkina Faso to accept expensive presents

    The speaker of the parliament in Burkina Faso says controversial touchscreen tablets given to MPs by a Chinese company will be returned.

    All 127 members of the National Assembly were each given a tablet from Huawei Technologies in November. 

    The total cost of the gadgets was estimated to be around 100,000 euros ($107,300, £84,400). 

    But this caused a row because a law adopted in the wake of the 2014 popular uprising against former President Blaise Compaore banned public servants from accepting any gifts more than $56. 

    The anti-corruption movement RenLac led the protest by arguing in a public statement that the lawmakers had broken the law. 

    The MPs had been given the tablets after Huawei Technologies was awarded a contract for the construction of a fibre optical cable from Ghana to Burkina Faso.

  18. Calls for justice for murdered South African lesbian

    Pumza Fihlani

    BBC News, Johannesburg

    South Africa's police are investigating the murder of a 22-year-old woman in Khayelitsha township in Cape Town. It is feared that Noluvo Swelindawo was targeted because of her sexuality.

    The practice of so-called “corrective rape” is rife in some South African townships where men assault and rape women known to be lesbian to “make them straight”. 

    The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community in Cape Town is reportedly on edge following the incident.

    Ms Swelindawo was found dead with a gunshot wound at the weekend.

    Many South Africans have expressed shock over her death and called for more action from the government to protect particularly black lesbians, who often bear the brunt of living openly.

    A lesbian holding up an equal marriage for all T-shirt in South Africa
    Image caption: South Africa has one of the most liberal constitutions in the world which protects gay rights

    Gay rights groups have been in discussions with the government about legislation which would classify attacks against gays and lesbian as hate crimes, which would lead to harsher sentences.  

    Read more: Lesbians fear 'corrective rape'

    The price of being gay in South Africa

  19. Why is Kenya keeping quiet on Somali military defeat?

    At least 150 Kenyan troops are thought to have been killed when an African Union base at El Adde in Somalia was overrun by al-Shabab militants in January.

    A UN report criticised the Kenyan army, calling the attack the largest military defeat in Kenyan history.

    But the Kenyan government still refuses to comment on the numbers killed - or what went wrong. Watch Alastair Leithead's report for the BBC.

    Video content

    Video caption: No answers from Kenya on deaths of 150 troops
  20. Europol to investigate Egypt mass drowning

    Muaz Ayimo and his wife and daughter
    Image caption: Muaz Ayimo (L) from Ethiopia is one of 37 survivors of the shipwreck. His wife and daughter (R) both died in the sinking

    The European policing agency Europol is planning to investigate what is believed to be the biggest loss of a migrant boat in 2016, following a Reuters-BBC Newsnight investigation.

    More than 500 people are thought to have died in the sinking on 9 April, but there has been no official inquiry.

    Newsnight has established that the boat set sail from Egypt - not Libya, as the UNHCR stated at the time.

    The head of Europol, Rob Wainwright, said the case was "uncomfortable".

    Reuters and BBC Newsnight spent months piecing together the story of what happened to the ship that sank on 9 April 2016 - speaking to survivors, to relatives of the victims, and eventually tracking down the smugglers, the brokers, and the details of the ship that sank.

    Thirty-seven people survived the shipwreck, but more than 500 are believed to have died. Those who perished came from Somalia, Ethiopia, Sudan, Syria, Egypt and a number of other countries.

    Each had paid around $2,000 (£1,600) to smugglers in the hope of reaching Italy.

    Read more: The forgotten ship wreck