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Summary

  1. A row breaks out after a test on an artisanal gem finds that it is fake
  2. Ghana churches ban backpacks amid militants fears
  3. Malawi president takes lead in poll
  4. Asamoah Gyan appointed 'general captain'
  5. Major anti-protest operation in Algeria
  6. Suspected Boko Haram vulture to remain in detention
  7. Kenyan governor freed on bail
  8. Ugandan child rapper Fresh Kid switches schools
  9. Saudi crown prince meets Sudan junta's deputy chief
  10. Chimps devour tortoises in Gabon
  11. Ugandan capital bans street children donations

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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  1. Scroll down for Friday's stories

    We'll be back on Monday

    BBC Africa Live

    Dickens Olewe & Ashley Lime

    That's all from BBC Africa Live for this week. 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 Friday's wise words:

    Quote Message: When bad luck chooses you as a companion, even a ripe banana can remove your teeth." from Sent by M Mansour and D Luogon, both from Liberia; A Kamara, Sierra Leone; M Majuong, South Sudan; Z Samuel, South Africa; and E Austy, Ghana.
    Sent by M Mansour and D Luogon, both from Liberia; A Kamara, Sierra Leone; M Majuong, South Sudan; Z Samuel, South Africa; and E Austy, Ghana.

    Click here to send us your African proverbs.

    And we leave you with this image of Burkinabe film director Maimouna N'Diaye smiling for the paparazzi at the Cannes film festival. It is from our collection of the best shots from Africa this week.

    Burkinabe film director Maimouna N'Diaye smiles for the paparazzi at the Cannes film festival on Wednesday ahead of judging the competitors for the coveted Palme d'Or award.
  2. Attacks on Ebola centres increase

    Gaius Kowene

    BBC Africa, Kinshasa

    Health officials in the Democratic Republic of Congo say there have been more than 130 attacks on Ebola health facilities since the outbreak began in August last year.

    At least four people have been killed and nearly 40 injured.

    The latest attack on Thursday in the town of Butembo forced six health clinics to shut down and doctors to go into hiding.

    Health workers in the town have gone on partial strike, demanding more is done to protect them.

    Community mistrust and years of insecurity in eastern DR Congo have contributed to the challenges faced by Ebola response teams.

  3. The curious case of DR Congo's 'fake diamond'

    Louise Dewast

    Kinshasa, DR Congo

    Lambert Mende
    Image caption: Lambert Mende has filed a complaint for the way he was treated by the police

    Last Sunday former DR Congo Communication Minister Lambert Mende was about to have lunch when he was kidnapped from his home - so he claims.

    He later told reporters he was tortured by police officers and the man responsible was interim Interior Minister Basile Olongo.

    Mr Olongo acknowledged sending officers to detain Mr Mende following an investigation over a suspected diamond in his possession.

    He did, however, criticise Mr Mende's treatment and a senior police officer has since been suspended.

    Mr Olongo says the diamond was discovered by artisanal miners in the province of Sankuru - where Mr Mende is running to be governor.

    The miners, the minister says, had travelled to the capital, Kinshasa, for a meeting with government officials since they didn’t have the correct authorisation to sell the gem.

    According to Mr Olongo, they were instead lured to Mr Mende’s house.

    The former minister's aide said the miners "are from his constituency".

    The stone in question is about 90 carats - about the size of a ping-pong ball, according to the country’s precious minerals evaluation and certification centre (CEEC) which analysed it on Wednesday.

    To the surprise of many, however, they also concluded it was not a diamond.

    Georges Kapiamba, lawyer and president of the Congolese Association for Access to Justice (ACAJ), says the story doesn’t stop there.

    He believes the real diamond, potentially worth millions of dollars, has disappeared and that the certificate claiming it isn’t a diamond is bogus.

    “This analysis is a scam, we completely reject it… Members of the CEEC were appointed by the previous government, of which Mende was part. The diamond is being hidden to be sold on the black market,” Mr Kapiamba told the BBC.

    He did not provide any evidence to back up his claim but called for an investigation.

    Mr Mende’s personal secretary, Frank Diefu denied that claim and said the stone - quartz, according to them - was in the hands of the provincial minister of mines, or with the CEEC.

    Mr Kapiamba says he will file a complaint with the prosecutor’s office by the end of the month.

    Mr Mende – who has parliamentary immunity - has also filed a complaint for the way he was treated by the police.

  4. Kenya's gay sex ruling divides opinion

    Gay activists in Kenya are planning to appeal against a High Court ruling upholding the criminalisation of gay sex.

    "We will appeal. We expect that the court of appeal will overturn this erroneous decision which in our view is very biased," Eric Gitari, one of the petitioners, told reporters.

    Some of his colleagues in court cried and others expressed their disappointment.

    The judges' ruling was, however, welcomed by religious groups.

    Some of them clapped and thanked the judges.

    The three judges said that while they respected changes to laws banning gay sex in other countries, it was the court's duty to respect prevailing Kenyan values.

    Many African countries still enforce strict laws governing homosexuality, in most cases a legacy of laws imposed by the colonial rulers.

    Our colleagues in the capital, Nairobi, snapped these pictures of the contrasting reaction of the two sides:

    Gay activists
    Gay activists
    Anti-gay activists
    Anti-gay activists
  5. BBC named among Africa's most admired media brands

    Milton Nkosi

    BBC Africa, Johannesburg

    The BBC has been ranked among the most admired media brands in Africa by the annual Brand Africa 100 survey.

    The survey was done among consumers aged 18 and over in 25 countries, which collectively account for more than 80% of the continent’s population, GDP and leading brands and businesses.

    Thebe Ikalafeng founder and CEO of Brand Africa congratulated the BBC as he handed over the award to yours truly.

    Milton receiving the award
  6. Khoisan language to be taught in university

    South Africa's University of Cape Town has started offering courses to learn the indigenous Khoisan language Khoekhoegowab, New24 reports.

    The courses will run from May to August, Mbulungeni Madiba, co-ordinator of UCT's, Multilingualism Education Project, said.

    Extra-mural studies director, Medee Rall, said the bigger plan was for Khoekhoegowab to become a fourth language at UCT.

    Mr Madiba said isiXhosa, and latterly Afrikaans, has become popular among the UCT community of staff and students.

    "We cannot celebrate things that are African without celebrating the languages. One-third of the world's 6,000 languages are spoken in Africa," Mr Madiba said.

    Wilfrid Haacke, a Khoekhoegowab language expert, said that "today there are about 167,000 speakers of Khoekhoegowab. Roughly 39% are Nama and 60% are Damara [ethnic groups]".

    Read more:Trying to save South Africa's first language

  7. BreakingKenya upholds law criminalising gay sex

    Kenya's High Court has kept a law which bans gay sex.

    Gay-rights groups argued that the state has no business regulating matters of intimacy.

    However, religious groups said such matters should be guided by the country's values.

    The penal code, which is a legacy of colonial-era rule, criminalises "carnal knowledge against the order of nature," widely understood to refer to anal intercourse between men.

  8. Asamoah Gyan appointed 'general captain'

    Thomas Naadi

    BBC Africa, Accra

    Asamoah Gyan

    Ghana's football star Asamoah Gyan has been given a new title after he was stripped of the team captain role for the national team.

    Black Stars coach, Kwasi Appiah, named Gyan "general captain", because of his seniority in the team.

    Andre Ayew was named the new permanent captain.

    Coach Appiah’s decision follows a meeting with the top management team of the Ghana Football Association Normalisation Committee.

    On Monday, Gyan announced his retirement from the national team to protest against plans to replace him as captain.

    He rescinded his decision after a telephone conversation with President Nana Akuffo-Addo.

    Before his replacement, Gyan had been the Black Stars' captain for seven years and had scored 51 goals for the team.

    The captaincy controversy has been a problem for the Ghanaian national football team for many years.

    The Black Stars will play their opening Africa Cup of Nations match against Benin on 25 June.

    They have not won the tournament since 1982.

  9. Ruling for Kenya gay sex case under way

    A three-judge bench in the Kenya High Court is currently reading the final ruling to a case challenging the law banning sex between people of the same gender.

    Gay-rights groups supported the petition seeking to quash sections 162 and 165 of the penal code.

    They argued that the state has no business regulating matters of intimacy.

    We will let you know as soon as they announce the final judgement.

    View more on twitter
  10. Major anti-protest operation in Algeria

    BBC World Service

    An Algerian woman shouts slogans as security forces stand guard during an anti-government demonstration in the capital Algiers
    Image caption: An Algerian woman shouts slogans as security forces stand guard during an anti-government demonstration in the capital

    Police in Algeria have been carrying out a major operation to try to limit the latest Friday mass protest demanding comprehensive political reform.

    Witnesses say that there have been a larger number of arrests than usual and a heavier police presence in the capital, Algiers.

    This is the fourteenth consecutive Friday that Algerians have taken to the streets calling for the country's leaders to resign.

    The protest movement forced the veteran president, Abdelaziz Bouteflika, to stand down last month - some of his closest aides are now facing trial.

    The authorities are planning to hold a presidential election on 4 July.

  11. Uganda testing two for Ebola

    BBC World Service

    The authorities in Uganda are testing blood samples from two people who have died in the west of the country.

    There is suspicion they may have contracted the Ebola virus.

    Uganda has been on high alert because of the outbreak of the haemorrhagic fever in eastern Congo, just across the border from Kagadi where the victims died.

    On Thursday the United Nations warned the risk of Ebola spreading to neighbouring countries was very high.

  12. Crowds gather for Kenya gay sex ruling

    A journalist in Kenya's capital, Nairobi, has shared a video showing a crowd of people gathered outside the High Court building ahead of an anticipated ruling decriminalising sex between people of the same gender.

    The ruling is expected to be delivered at 14:30 local time (12:30 BST).

    (See our earlier story)

    View more on twitter
  13. Suspected Boko Haram vulture to remain in detention

    Vulture

    Police in Nigeria's Adamawa state say they have so far spent $86 (£67) to feed a vulture that was detained alongside its owner six days ago, Daily Trust news site reports.

    Residents of Mahia town had suspected the woman had links with militant Islamist group Boko Haram.

    An elder alleged that the last time someone kept a vulture, the area was targeted by the militants.

    Othman Abubakar, local police spokesman, said investigations into the appearance of the bird in the area were still going on.

    He added that the cost of feeding the bird would likely rise as it remains in detention.

    According to the Punch news site, the Nigerian Conservation Foundation has called for the immediate release of the bird.

  14. Ghana's churches worried about militant attacks

    Churches in Ghana are beefing up security to guard against what faith leaders see as a growing threat from Islamist militants operating in the west African region.

    John Bonaventure Kwofie, the Archbishop of the Catholic Church in the capital, Accra, told Joy Online news site the threat was coming closer:

    “Security has become a big issue today with what happened in Sri Lanka and what’s happening in Burkina Faso. Since it's coming closer to us, we are now standing alert to face this security threat that is coming up,” he said.

    The Christ the King Church also in Accra, has already introduced several measures including banning people from carrying backpacks inside the church.

    Policemen would also be deployed during Sunday church services and other occasions, a published security directive said.

    Security directive
  15. Another body found during clean-up of Kenya river

    A childrens playground located on the banks of the Nairobi River on May 17, 2019, in Nairobi, at a micro-recreation park initiated by slum youth that is situated on a section of the bank reclaimed from river"s heavily polluted waters at Nairobi"s Korogocho shanty town where atleast 69, mostly reforming hoodlums and dilinquents, are now eching out a livelyhood cleaning up the river and it's environs.
    Image caption: Authorities in Kenya believe bodies are dumped in the river after abortions

    The body of a boy has been found in Nairobi River in Kenya' capital, Nairobi.

    This brings to 14 the number of bodies of both adults and children retrieved from the river since Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko launched the clean-up exercise.

    A statement from the governor's spokesperson said the boy had been strangled and his body dumped near the river.

    On 19 May, the bodies of two babies, believed to be twins, were found during a clean-up of the river.

  16. Kenya set for gay sex ruling

    Gay activists in Kenya

    A three-judge bench is expected to deliver a ruling on a petition seeking to decriminalise sections of a penal code that makes it illegal to have consensual same sex relationships in Kenya.

    Gay-rights groups supported the petition seeking to quash sections 162 and 165 of the penal code.

    They argued that the state has no business regulating matters of intimacy.

    However, religious groups argued that such matters should be guided by the country’s values.

    The ruling is expected to be delivered at 14:30 local time (12:30 BST).

    The Kenya National Human Right Commission has asked the police to provide extra security at the court premises.

  17. SA women's football team to get equal pay

    South Africa's women's football team - Banyana Banyana - will for the first time earn the same amount of bonuses as the men's team when they take part in the Fifa World Cup in June, the boss of the country's football association has announced, TimesLive reports.

    “This will go a long way towards closing the pay gap between the men and women footballers in this country and it is a happy day for South African football‚” Danny Jordaan said.

    The men's team - Bafana Bafana - will play in the African Cup of Nations (Afcon) in June in Egypt.

    The players will get $22,000 (£17,000) each if their teams are able to reach the last-16 stage of the two tournaments, the report says.

    Banyana captain Janine van Wyk welcomed the decision to give women players equal pay:

    “It is truly amazing as you know that we have been fighting for equality in sport for a long time‚” she said.

    Until now, the men's teams have always earned more in bonuses during qualifiers or at major tournaments while their Banyana counterparts have received considerably less.

    View more on twitter
  18. Sudan's junta swears in new intelligence chief

    Sudanese protesters react as they listen to Madani Abbas Madani, a leader of the opposition Coalition for Freedom and Change movement and one of the movement negociators with the army, at the site of a sit-in, near the Army Head quarters, in Khartoum, Sudan, 22 May 2019.
    Image caption: Protesters in Sudan have been calling for a civilian-led government

    Sudan's junta has appointed a new military intelligence chief, state-owned Sudan News Agency reports.

    Lt-Gen Jamal-Eddin Omer Ibrahim has replaced Lt-Gen Mustafa Mohamed Mustafa, who resigned for health reasons, the agency says.

  19. 'Nearly 300 migrants' rescued off Libya's coast

    An armed policeman standds guard after migrants disembarked from the Motor Tanker El Hiblu 1 that was hijacked by migrants in Valletta's Grand Harbour on March 28, 2019, after Maltese armed forces took control of the vessel.
    Image caption: Many migrants risk their lives to reach Europe by sea

    About 290 migrants have been rescued by Libya's coast guard off the capital, Tripoli, news agency Reuters has reported.

    The immigrants were found gripping inflatable rafts, naval forces spokesman Ayoub Qassem is quoted as saying.

    A total of 203 migrants were rescued off Zlitin, a town 160km (100 miles) east of the capital, and another 87 off Qarabuli, a town 50km (31 miles) east of Tripoli.

  20. Ugandan child rapper Fresh Kid switches schools

    Fresh Kid
    Image caption: Fresh Kid has a huge following in Uganda

    Popular Ugandan child rapper Fresh Kid has enrolled at a new school in the capital, Kampala, reports the state-owned New Vision newspaper.

    Seven-year-old Fresh Kid, whose real name is Patrick Ssenyonjo, was at the centre of controversy in March after Youth minister Florence Nakiwala told him to put down his microphone, and to concentrate on his schooling.

    The principal at his new school, Kampala Parents School, promised to ensure that he struck a balance between his music career and his studies.

    “We do not want him to come to school when he is very tired and fails to concentrate. We want him to always have time to rest and do his work,” principal Daphine Kato was quoted by New Vision as saying.

    Fresh Kid was a pupil at St Agnes Primary School, and switched to the high-end Kampala Parents School after obtaining a scholarship, the newspaper reports.

    He attended a press conference held on Thursday to announce that he had joined the school, and a tweet @Fresh Kid UG said: "Smiles as Fresh Kid UG enrols at Kampala Parents School."

    View more on twitter