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  1. Scroll down for Thursday's stories

    We'll be back on Friday

    That's all from the BBC Africa Live team for now. There will be an automated BBC News feed until Friday morning.

    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 our wise words of the day:

    Quote Message: When a chicken is picked up by a hawk, it cries not because anyone can save it but to alert the world of the cause of its demise." from An Igbo proverb sent by “Royal Prince” in Nigeria.
    An Igbo proverb sent by “Royal Prince” in Nigeria.

    Click here to send us your African proverbs.

    And we leave you with images from the Kenyan coastal town of Malindi shot by Ghanaian photographer Nana Kofi Acquah:

    View more on instagram
  2. Police fire on Eswatini protesters, activists say

    Shingai Nyoka

    BBC News

    Police in Eswatini have fired rubber bullets at scores of protesters who took to the streets of the capital, Mbabane, angered by the arrests of two MPs who had recently called for political reforms, a pro-democracy activist has told the BBC.

    At least one person was said to have been seriously injured.

    Pro-democracy legislators Bacede Mabuza and Mthandeni Dube were arrested on Sunday and are accused of inciting violent protests.

    They had asked for bail but a court, which was expected to rule on the application, had delayed its judgement, their lawyers said.

    Mr Mabuza and Mr Dube had recently called for an elected rather than appointed prime minister among other changes.

    When the authorities banned citizens delivering petitions to support this demand last month, violent protests broke out and at least 50 people were killed.

    Fifty-three-year-old King Mswati III, who came to the throne 35 years ago, rules by decree.

    His critics accuse him, and his 15 wives, of leading a lavish lifestyle and treating opponents harshly.

    He has resisted pressure to introduce a multi-party system and appointed a new prime minister shortly after the protests.

    Video content

    Video caption: Why people in Eswatini are calling for change
  3. Nigerian officer denies Hushpuppi fraud involvement

    Abba Kyari
    Image caption: Policeman Abba Kyari says his "hands are clean"

    A leading Nigerian policeman has denied any connection with the fraud and money laundering charges that Nigerian influencer Hushpuppi has pleaded guilty to in a US court.

    The policeman, Abba Kyari, was listed in a statement from the US Attorney's Office as one of those who worked with Hushpuppi, whose real name is Ramon Abbas.

    In one scheme, Hushpuppi attempted to steal more than $1.1m (£785m) from someone who wanted to fund a new children's school in Qatar, the documents said.

    In the US Attorney's Office statement, Mr Kyari is accused of agreeing to detain one of Hushpuppi's co-conspirators after they had fallen out.

    In a statement on his Facebook page, Mr Kyari said that he had responded to a distress call from Hushpuppi, who had said this family was in danger, and had briefly detained the man, but no money changed hands.

    "Our hands are clean... We are used to such types of people and false newsmakers and distributors," he concluded.

  4. Zimbabwe economy growing but benefits not yet felt

    Shingai Nyoka

    BBC News, Harare

    Zimbabwe’s economy is predicted to grow this year by 7.8%, which is slightly more than had been earlier forecast.

    Reviewing the government's budget, Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube attributed the growth to, among other things, good rainfall which led to a strong agricultural season.

    Rising global commodity prices have also been a factor.

    Year-on-year inflation has dipped, from a staggering 837.5% in July 2020 to 56% 12 months later.

    While the government appears to be winning its war against inflation, this figure remains higher than the single-digit rate President Emmerson Mnangagwa inherited when he ousted his predecessor Robert Mugabe in 2017 with the help of the military.

    Analysts say the government is moving in the right direction, but most Zimbabweans have not seen an improvement in their living standards.

    The Consumer Council of Zimbabwe says an average family needs $470 (£335) a month to survive.

    The average public school teacher earns just under $300 a month at the official exchange rate.

  5. Unemployed Kenyan medics cleared to work in UK

    Mercy Juma

    BBC News, Nairobi

    Nurse talking to a patient
    Image caption: The nurses and other medics will be able to share their knowledge before returning to Kenya

    Kenya has signed a deal with the UK that will allow its unemployed nurses and other medics to work in the UK.

    Britain's Health Minister Sajid Javid and Kenya’s Labour Minister Simon Chelugi signed the agreement on the third day of President Uhuru Kenyatta’s visit to London.

    The scheme is open to Kenyan health workers who are qualified but unemployed, ensuring the process is managed for Kenya’s benefit, according to a statement from the British government.

    This arrangement was requested by Kenya and should allow health professionals and managers to benefit from a special way through the UK's immigration system, before returning to work in Kenya’s health sector.

    The exact details should be confirmed before the end of October.

    The medics' union in Kenya has in recent years raised concerns about the high rate of unemployment among doctors and nurses in the country.

    The deal with the UK could appeal to many healthcare workers here as they have time and again decried poor working conditions, poor pay and even having to work for months without pay.

    But there will be fears that it could encourage a brain drain.

    Currently there are almost 900 Kenyans working in the UK's National Health Service in various capacities, according to the British authorities.

    The two countries have also launched the Kenya-UK Health Alliance which will boost research and collaboration between the UK and Kenyan universities and teaching hospitals.

    The first partnership will help improve cancer treatment in the country.

  6. Ghana minister: No intention to change homosexuality laws

    Seren Jones

    Producer, If You Don't Know podcast

    Ghana’s information minister says politicians have “no intention” of changing its laws on sexuality, after an anti-gay bill was submitted to parliament.

    Kojo Oppong Nkrumah told BBC Radio 1Xtra’s If You Don’t Know Podcast that the country’s current laws on “matters of sexuality” were “adequate”.

    Ghana’s criminal code outlaws what it describes as "unnatural carnal knowledge" but does not explicitly mention LGBT+ people.

    Last week, the draft of an anti-gay bill was submitted to parliament. It proposed a 10-year jail sentence for people who promoted LGBT+ rights through mainstream or social media, including expressing sympathy or offering social or medical support.

    The bill, which sparked outrage and concern, especially among Ghanaians in the LGBT+ communities, is currently in review and expected to be debated next month.

    Video content

    Video caption: Members of Ghana’s LGBT community speak out about anti-gay discrimination
  7. Tunisia's president plans corruption crackdown

    Rana Jawad

    BBC North Africa correspondent, Tunis

    Supporters of Tunisia"s President Kais Saied
    Image caption: Supporters of President Kais Saied celebrated on Sunday after he dismissed the government

    Tunisian President Kais Saied has indicated plans for a looming crackdown on corruption in the country, days after he seized control of the government by sacking the prime minister and several cabinet members, and suspending the parliament.

    On Sunday, President Saied acted on an article in the constitution that gives him temporary exceptional powers in times of a crisis, but his political opponents described the move as a constitutional coup.

    The president’s plans to tackle outstanding cases of corruption were mentioned during a meeting with the head of the country’s main business union.

    He said hundreds of businesspeople had stolen nearly $5bn (£3.5bn) in state funds through fraud and unpaid taxes.

    President Saied says he will offer conditional amnesty to these business people in exchange for their investment in development projects chosen by citizen-based regional commissions.

  8. Rwandan troops kill 14 militants in Mozambique operation

    Rwandan soldiers during their deployment to Mozambique
    Image caption: Rwanda deployed 1,000 troops to help Mozambique in the fight against militants

    Rwandan forces killed 14 militants during their recent operations in Mozambique, an army spokesperson has said.

    One Rwandan soldier was injured in one of the missions but is recovering well.

    The operations were launched in different areas of the north between 24 and 28 June.

    The coastal town of Mocimboa da Praia was seized by Islamist militant fighters a year ago.

    Rwanda deployed 1,000 soldiers to Mozambique to help in the fight against militants.

    Other African countries are in the process of deploying their troops.

    The Rwandan forces were reported to have helped the Mozambican army retake a base from the Islamist militants earlier this week.

    The conflict, which began in 2017, has forced hundreds of thousands of Mozambicans from their homes and has caused the shut-down of a multi-billion dollar gas project.

  9. Somalia's long-delayed elections officially start

    Abdi Dahir

    BBC Monitoring

    Ilyas Badal Gabose
    Image caption: Ilyas Badal Gabose will be one of 54 senators in the federal parliament

    Somalia's Jubbaland regional state assembly has elected Ilyas Badal Gabose as the first member of Somalia's senate as the much-delayed polls in the country officially kicked off in the southern port city of Kismayo.

    The Jubbaland regional assembly is expected to vote for three more candidates today.

    Mr Gabose is a former governor of Lower Jubba Region and a close ally of Jubbaland regional state President Ahmed Mohamed Islam, also known as Ahmed Madobe.

    The seats of 54 senate members are distributed among Somalia's regional administrations - Jubbaland state has been allocated eight of those seats.

    The other regional administrations have not yet announced the date for their elections to the two houses of the federal parliament.

    The election of the first member of the Somali senate in Jubbaland officially opens the country's much-delayed parliamentary and presidential elections.

    Repeated delays in the elections had led to deadly violence in the capital Mogadishu as leaders failed to agree on the electoral process.

  10. Gunmen kill 18 in Niger near Mali border

    Will Ross

    Africa editor, BBC World Service

    Map of Niger

    Eighteen people have been killed by gunmen in Niger in an area near the border with Mali that has been the scene of frequent attacks by Islamist militants.

    A local official told the French news agency that armed men on motorbikes attacked the village of Dèye Koukou on Wednesday morning.

    A similar attack on Sunday, which was also close to Banibangou town, left 14 people dead.

    Jihadist groups linked to al-Qaeda and the Islamic State group have found it easy to evade local and international troops and cross the three borders between Niger, Mali and Burkina Faso.

    In March an attack in the same district of Niger left 66 people dead.

    Last month attacks in the neighbouring district killed 19 civilians.

  11. Adekunle Gold hates being predictable

    BBC Focus on Africa radio

    "I hate being predictable," Nigerian musician Adekunle Gold says speaking about his new track Sinner.

    It's quite a departure from what his fans have grown used to and incorporates different genres.

    "I wanted it to have some pop just to express myself in other genres and other sounds," he told BBC Focus on Africa.

    With the adoption of a new look featuring a beard and long hair, he feels its time to grow on all fronts.

    The singer who is married to songstress Simi says there is more to expect from both their careers.

    Here is his full interview with Bola Mosuro;

    Video content

    Video caption: The singer tells Bola Mosuro about the new direction he’s taking
  12. French soldiers detained in Equatorial Guinea - reports

    The authorities in Equatorial Guinea have detained six French soldiers who were travelling in a helicopter that had stopped to refuel in the port city of Bata, the AFP news agency reports.

    The detention came on the same day that the top appeals court in France upheld the conviction of Equatorial Guinea's Vice-President Teodorin Obiang for using public money to fund his lavish lifestyle.

    The helicopter was on its way from Cameroon to Gabon and was making a routine stop, according to a source quoted by AFP.

    But Equatorial State radio has reported that the helicopter landed without authorisation.

    "National authorities do not rule out that this incident could be a spy operation and provocation on the part of Paris," TVGE reported according to AFP.

    A French army spokesman has denied this, and added there had been similar incidents in the past.

    Read more:

  13. Zimbabwean asylum seeker: Gardening saved my life

    A Zimbabwean who sought asylum in the UK after fleeing his home country nearly two decades ago says gardening has helped him deal with his problems.

    Joel Chitsa said he was depressed and it was only when he got an allotment for a parcel of land to grow food that things started to change for him.

    The charity Leicester City of Sanctuary, which assists refugees and asylum seekers, helped cover the allotment costs.

    Mr Chitsa, who is a vegan, was now able to grow plants that he found difficult to buy in the market.

    “I was concentrating on plants; I would shift my thinking from that of my problems to the love that I’m sharing with the plants,” he says.

    He was granted leave to remain in the UK last year – and his gardening has continued to flourish.

    Watch his video here:

    Video content

    Video caption: Joel Chitsa says gardening helped him deal with depression
  14. UN humanitarian chief visits Ethiopia amid crisis

    Kalkidan Yibeltal

    BBC News, Addis Ababa

    Eritrean refugees protest in front of UNHCR offices in Addis Ababa, 29 July 2021
    Image caption: Eritrean refugees have held protests seeking protection for people living in camps in Tigray

    The UN humanitarian chief, Martin Griffiths, is visiting Ethiopia amid concerns of a worsening humanitarian crisis as fighting in the northern Tigray region escalates.

    During the six-day trip, he is expected to meet government officials and travel to the Tigray region to hear from civilians affected by the war.

    Ahead of the visit, Mr Griffiths said that the humanitarian needs in the country had increased this year as a result of the armed conflicts in Tigray and other regions.

    The UN World Food Programme has said its supplies are running out as trucks can't get into the northern region because of the fighting.

    There have also been ethnic tensions and clashes across the country, which has increased the need for humanitarian assistance.

    The UN humanitarian chief's visit comes as Eritrean refugees hold protests demanding the safety of those living in camps in Tigray.

    The UN says more than 20,000 Eritrean refugees are facing intimidation and harassment by forces loyal to the TPLF in the region.

    The fighting in Tigray began in November between the regional power, the Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF), and the federal government.

    The government declared a unilateral ceasefire in the region last month but fighting has continued between the TPLF and Amhara regional militia - and other regions have been mobilising to join the fight.

  15. Kanu's family accuses UK government of not doing enough

    Nnamdi Kanu
    Image caption: Nnamdi Kanu was detained in Nigeria last month

    The family of British national Nnamdi Kanu, a leader of a Biafran separatist movement in Nigeria, has said the UK government is “not doing enough” to get him released from detention in Nigeria, the Guardian newspaper reports.

    Last month, Mr Kanu was brought to Nigeria with the help of Interpol after having fled the country in 2017 while facing terrorism charges, the Nigerain authorities said.

    His lawyer alleges that he was unlawfully extradited from Kenya, but the Kenyan government denies this.

    The UK high commission in Abuja has requested access to Mr Kanu, but his family want the British to go further than this, the Guardian says.

    “Until they have access to my husband and are able to talk to him, the FCDO [Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office] is not doing enough,” his wife Uchechi Okwu-Kanu is quoted as saying.

    “My husband was abducted in Nairobi on 18 June, he re-emerged on 29 June in Abuja – for 10 days he was disappeared. He is the victim of extraordinary rendition; he is detained in the state security services building, as far as we know, he is held incommunicado.”

  16. Kenya president urges world to invest in education

    Will Ross

    Africa editor, BBC World Service

    School pupils
    Image caption: The summit wants to support the education of 175 million children in the world's poorest countries

    At a global education summit in London hosted by British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta, governments, businesses and philanthropists are being asked to invest in the future of children by raising more than $5bn (£3.5bn).

    This comes at a time when charities have criticised the British government's decision to make significant aid cuts around the world.

    A boost to education is especially urgent given the impact of the coronavirus.

    The pandemic has caused the greatest disruption to education in a generation.

    In wealthier countries with broadband and computers available, some virtual learning has continued.

    But for many young students in rural Nigeria or Zambia for example, school closures have been far more harmful - especially for girls who are less likely to ever return to the classroom.

    Even before the pandemic more than a 130 million girls across the world were out of school.

    At this summit in London billions of dollars will be raised to help transform education in dozens of countries.

    World leaders will be asked to commit a fifth of their national budgets to education.

    Read more: