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Elia Varela Serra

Journalist and blogger with an African interest.

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Latest posts by Elia Varela Serra

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Côte d'Ivoire: Presidential Election in Pictures

  1 November 2010

On this Sunday, October 31st, registered voters in Côte d'Ivoire cast their ballots in the first presidential election in 10 years, due to the Civil War that broke out in 2002 and the subsequent issues that arose from it. Despite some initial delays in some polling stations, voting has been reportedly peaceful and the turnout appears to have been good. Here is a selection of pictures of the voting day.

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Côte d'Ivoire: Journalists accused of document theft are freed

  26 July 2010

The three journalists of Le Nouveau Courrier d'Abidjan arrested for refusing to reveal their sources have been finally released [Fr] this evening after a two-week ordeal. The journalists were found not guilty of theft but the newspaper is fined and suspended for 15 days for publishing information under legal consideration.

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Light Up Nigeria: Enough Is Enough

  17 July 2009

Despite being a country rich in oil, Nigeria's electricity supply situation is insufficient. “In most parts of the country, darkness pervades and generators have taken over as the source of power”, says Adebayo's blog. Now Nigerians have started a massive online demonstration against this frustrating situation on social media sites, especially on Twitter with the hashtag #lightupnigeria.

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Congo Brazzaville: Disappointment at Presidential election

  13 July 2009

On Sunday July 12th, people in the Republic of the Congo voted in an election which opposition leaders boycotted over allegations it would be neither free nor fair. Denis Sassou N’Guesso, who has ruled the Congo for about 25 years as head of state, is seeking another seven year term...

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DRC: Goma's Makeover for Independence Day

  3 July 2009

June 30th marked the 49th anniversary of the Democratic Republic of Congo's independence from Belgium. This year, the official festivities took place in Goma. Bloggers react to this historic anniversary, celebrated in a city that not long ago was a war zone.

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Rwanda: The unresolved FDLR issue

  22 April 2009

Last January the conflict in North Kivu shifted once again with the arrest of CNDP rebel group leader Laurent Nkunda in Rwanda and the entry of the Rwandan national army (RDF) into the DR Congo to root out the FDLR rebel group in joint operations with the national Congolese army (FARDC). As Rebecca Feeley of the Enough Said blog explains, the Congolese Minister of Defense, Charles Mwando Nsimba, even went so far as to say that the FDLR threat had been “neutralized.”

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Rwanda: Fifteen years after the genocide

  14 April 2009

Today marks the end of a week of national mourning in Rwanda to commemorate the 15 anniversary since the genocide which killed 800,000 people. On the 7th of April ceremonies were held in the capital Kigali, and in Nyanza, where more than 5,000 people were slaughtered. At a stadium in Kigali, thousands of candles spelt out the word "hope" in three languages.

Senegal: Beach wrestling

  16 January 2009

George Esunge Fominyen writes about the popularity of traditional wrestlilng in Senegal's beaches, and posts a video shot in the touristic resort of Mbour. He writes: “wrestlers competing in the championnat de lutte avec Frappe, earn fabulous sums of money. Youngsters are dreaming of emulating their local champions”.

The beauty of Sudan in pictures

  14 January 2009

Memoirs of a Sudanese breath has been posting a series of pictures of Sudan under the title “Beauty of Sudan“: battling women, traveling by donkey or camel in rural areas, a gula water container, landscapes, public transportation vehicles, and more landscapes.

Comparing Illinois governor Blagojevic and his Nigerian counterparts

  14 January 2009

Grandiose Parlor draws a parallel between the impeachment of the Illinois State Governor (U.S) Rod Blagojevic over corruption charges, with Nigerian governors: “while the two are corrupt – well, maybe not in equal measures-, the political system in the state of Illinois is able to self-correct, promptly”. The blog also...

Guinea: Civil society is key

  13 January 2009

Black Star Journal reviews and analyses the latest developments in Guinea. He concludes: “With the former opposition political parties impotent and incoherent, an organized and assertive civil society might be the difference between a military junta that keeps its promise to cede power via democratic elections this year and one...

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DR Congo: A musical roundup

  13 January 2009

With so much bad news coming from the Democratic Republic of Congo lately, we decided to show a different perspective on the country and looking at a completely different type of blogs for a change - those highlighting Congolese music.

DR Congo: ICC trial for Bemba?

  13 January 2009

Bana Congo [Fr] and Wronging Rights report that Jean-Pierre Bemba‘s confirmation of charges hearing began at the International Criminal Court on January 12. Bemba is alleged to be criminally responsible for war crimes and crimes against humanity committed in the Central African Republic (CAR) between October 25, 2002 and March...

Ghana: Is ‘largely’ free and fair enough?

  11 January 2009

Belle of Catalyzing Change wonders why irregularities during the recent Presidential elections in Ghana have been overlooked: “Of all the media I have seen and heard though; both African and broader international, there has been little mention of any irregularities. This bothers me because it is not as if there...

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