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· March, 2021

Stories about Sub-Saharan Africa from March, 2021

‘A day without internet is a day in the dark’: The Gambia's growing digital divide

In the Gambia, frequent internet outages and overall instability have made everyday life an increasingly frustrating challenge, impeding both national development and individual growth. 

The Gambia’s missed opportunity for digital rights reform

Gambians held high hopes for digital rights reforms under President Adama Barrow. But the draft constitution fell short on its promise to adequately protect digital rights.

LIVE on April 7: The other health crisis—breaking the taboo on abortion

Unsafe abortions result in 30,000 deaths each year. Join us to hear women from Uganda, Thailand, Brazil, Pakistan and Poland talk about the reproductive rights situation in their countries.

Post-Magufuli, will Tanzania review its repressive online content regulations? 

Tanzania's content regulations are often used to undermine and clamp down on digital rights and freedom of expression. With a newly sworn-in president, will the government review these repressive laws?

In Kenya, abortion focus obscures legislation towards safe reproductive healthcare services

Tagged “the abortion bill” by its opponents, the Reproductive Healthcare bill of 2019 is, in fact, a comprehensive document that only mentions termination of pregnancy in five articles.

South African shack settlement activist wins the 2021 Per Anger Prize

“A shack without water, electricity, and sanitation is not worth calling a home. It means life-threatening circumstances that are harsh towards women, children and minority groups,” says rights activist, Zikode.

Billionaire Patrice Motsepe, the favoured FIFA candidate, becomes Africa football boss

The candidates from Senegal, Côte d'Ivoire and Mauritania give up their bids in favour of South Africa’s Motsepe, and accepted supporting roles in the Confederation of African Football (CAF) hierarchy.

Transition in Tanzania: From President Magufuli to President Hassan

To some, Magufuli is remembered as a “true African statesman'' and pan-African putting Africa first. Other remember him as a “populist” president who promoted nationalism — above all else.

Did the Ethiopian government use its COVID-19 restrictions to silence dissent?

The state of emergency restrictions were used as grounds to arrest a lawyer and a journalist last year -- both known critics of the government in Addis Ababa.

Angola's new penal code, which decriminalizes homosexual relationships, comes into force

The new legislation was approved in 2019, but only ratified in December 2020. It replaces the old penal code of 1886 of the Portuguese colonial administration.

Sierra Leone’s new cybercrime bill could turn a phone into a crime scene 

Sierra Leone’s cybercrime bill could turn a citizen’s smartphone into a crime scene at a moment’s notice. 

The difficulties journalists face covering the COVID-19 pandemic in three African countries

Journalists from Ghana, Côte d’Ivoire and Nigeria identified mis-and disinformation, and safety concerns while in the field, as some of the greatest obstacles while reporting during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Kenya police turn to Twitter PR as the arrest of a blogger goes against public opinion

“Somehow, the [Directorate of Criminal Investigations] believes that PR, and specifically ‘live-tweeting,’ will change Kenyans' perception without bringing about the much needed reforms within the force.”

How a youth movement is challenging the political old guard in Namibia

Job Amupanda, university teacher and leader of the Affirmative Repositioning movement went from advocating for land reform to being elected as mayor of Namibia's capital city, Windhoek.

Personal attacks follow Burundi human rights defender into exile in Uganda

The harassment began in September 2017 after the release of a “hugely damning” UN Commission of Inquiry report on human rights abuses in Burundi, and Chantal Mutamuriza was "singled out...

A plan to allow logging in Cameroon’s biologically rich Ebo Forest was halted, but the area remains vulnerable

“Here you have the trees, the gorillas and chimpanzees. Our parents are buried there. We have our sacred places...,” laments a local chief resisting the exploitation of Ebo forest.

After 28 years, Kenya qualifies for major African basketball tournament, led by record-breaking female coach

Liz Mills, the Australia-born coach made history as the first woman coach to lead an African team to the AfroBasket tournament

Africa adrift, and awaiting Nigeria’s leadership?

African countries need a synergy for peace and development of the continent, without external interference. The Nigeria-led intervention in The Gambia is an example of how this can be achieved.

Sudan's revised cybercrime law falls short on its promise

Political activist Owar Alsadig’s lawsuit sparked controversy over the nature of Sudan’s current information and cybercrime laws, and the potential to abuse these laws to limit freedom of expression.

African media perpetuating harmful stereotypes about the continent, report finds

The report released in February 2021 offers a deeper understanding of why poverty, war, disease and failed elections continue to dominate media coverage of Africa.

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