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South African miners in historic strike stand firm on pay demand

South African miners are holding out for a living wage in the longest strike against mining companies in the country’s history. A deadline set for June 9 by the government was reached without progress and the talks collapsed. The two sides are far apart on the wage issue with the Association of Miners and Construction Union (AMCU) seeking $1,200 a month — double their current wage — while the companies are ...

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Nigeria bans additionaal protests over abducted girls

Police in Nigeria have issued a ban against further protests by Nigerian citizens, mostly women, who are demanding the government rescue the nearly 300 kidnapped schoolgirls whose whereabouts government claims to know. National anger and frustration has turned on the government for its failure to rescue the teenage students and many others being targeted around the country. The girls had been studying in th ...

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New president of Malawi takes power under felony cloud

In his second try for elected office, Peter Mutharika captured the winning margin of victory and edged out Malawi’s first woman president, Joyce Banda. The 74-year-old Mutharika, brother of a former president, was declared the victor last week in a disputed election. But he comes into office under a cloud, accused of attempting a constitutional coup two years ago by hiding the death of his brother, Presiden ...

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African Union to campaign against child marriages

The West African nation of Niger has one of the highest rates of child marriage. About a quarter of all girls are married by 15 and on the road to child-bearing. That rises to nearly 80 percent by the age of 18. Prominent clerics in Niger staunchly defend the practice. Sheikh Abbas Yahaya at the Koranic school in Agadez, for example, told the BBC marriage depends on the body of the girl and the man. “If the ...

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Africans share in grief over passing of Dr. Maya Angelou

Legendary poetess Dr. Maya Angelou was renowned in Africa much as she was beloved in the country of her birth. Comments on the Mail and Guardian website were already posting the morning of her death, as the news of her passing went worldwide. “Rest in peace daughter of the soil,” wrote “Hlambamanzi” on the M&G website. “You will forever live in our memories and consciousness. We thank God, our ancestors for ...

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Malawi’s first woman president faces ouster in disputed vote

President Joyce Banda’s legacy may be cut short if a court fails to uphold her annulment of last week’s poll and schedule a new election in 90 days. Banda, the second woman leader on the continent after Liberian President Ellen Sirleaf-Johnson, said the election was so deeply flawed she would not inflict its results on the Malawian people. ...

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Nigeria claims to know location of kidnapped girls

A month after more than 200 boarding school girls were kidnapped by a militia group dressed as soldiers, a top Nigerian officer claimed to know exactly where the girls were being held. But he downplayed prospects for a rescue. “We want our girls back,” insisted Air Chief Marshal Alex Badeh. “But where they are held, can we go there with force?.. We can’t kill our girls in the name of trying to get them back ...

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Disturbances mar Niger’s deal with French mining company

Students and police clashed in the capital city of the West African nation of Niger last week over essential stipends held up by a school official. Police threw tear gas bombs at the students who set up barricades and burned tires, according to news accounts. Younous Abdouramane, student union leader at Niamey University, estimated the toll of injured at 30 with over 60 detained by police. The disturbances ...

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Hip Hop Ukraine: Music, Race and African Migration

The eyes of the world have turned to Ukraine recently where protests led to the secession of some regions, and Russian troops claiming Crimea. Debate rages: Is this about ethnicity — some believe the Ukrainian nationalists are fascist white supremacists — or natural gas resources and the conflicting financial interests of Russia and the European Union? Despite these history-making events, normal life contin ...

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South African short-story writer to be reburied after long exile

A ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court may decide the final resting place for Ndazana Nathaniel Nakasa, a South African short-story writer, now buried in Ferndale Cemetery, Queens, New York. Born May 2, 1937 in Lusikisiki, Eastern Cape, he moved to Johannesburg to work as a journalist for Drum magazine. He was the first Black journalist to work at the Rand Daily Mail where he provided a Black perspective for th ...

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