Zimbabwe: Latest News
Staff, 7:37 am
The world of giraffe conservation just got turned upside down. The identification of new giraffe species reveals how endangered some of these populations have become. There are less than 4,750 northern giraffe in the wild, and less than 8,700 reticulated giraffe, making them them some of the most endangered large mammals in the world. This requires doubling protection efforts to secure these populations, a stakeholder said. Of the four species, only two appear to be fairly healthy.
Africa is a continent where, at least outwardly, we like to celebrate our diversity—the rich variety that can be found in our many cultures, languages, fashions, flora and fauna. That’s why it’s perplexing to see such a large segment of the African population depending on a very small number of food crops, like maize, rice and wheat. And it’s more than just boring to the palate. It’s severely diminishing the quality of our diets and making our farming systems more vulnerable, especially during severe droughts like the one that hit Southern Africa this year.
Karen Elowitt, 7:47 am
Zimbabweans do love their festivals, and come September/October, the country positively explodes with music, dance, theater, poetry and crafts. Hundreds of artists descend on Zimbabwe from across Africa and abroad to show off their talents — and show revelers a good time. Here are 10 of the best festivals, with apologies to the many excellent events that did not get included!
Lara Moses, 7:00 am
If you love fly fishing, then Semonkong Lodge in Lesotho is for you. With a selection of brown and rainbow trout in the Maletsunyane River, you can easily spend a whole day on the river banks trying to catch something. There is no fishing allowed between May 1 through Aug. 31, so this is good timing. A strict catch and release policy is in place. Southern Africa has amazing fishing spots, fish species, lodges and companies doing business on two oceans, numerous rivers and lakes. Here are some of the best fishing trips in Southern Africa.
Staff, 11:41 am
Despite recent heavy rains, Ethiopia is still reeling from the worst drought to hit the country for half a century, particularly in the livestock-dependent regions of Oromia and Somali. Yet studies (pdf) suggest the country could have billions of cubic metres of untapped groundwater. The story is the same across many parts of Africa, where farmers rely on erratic rains and depleted surface water while potentially vast groundwater reserves go ignored. Africa’s subterranean water amounts to an estimated 660,000 cubic kilometres
Dana Sanchez, 9:42 pm
Joburg-based mobile provider Econet plans to install ad-blocking by default for 40M subscribers in four African countries, claiming it will save customers data charges. Users will have to opt in. Some in the ad industry aren’t concerned because Shine has few users where it’s already doing business — in the Caribbean. But this is Africa. What Shine does have is the support of carriers. Shine is limited in the U.S. due to net neutrality laws. Data plans are particularly painful for consumers in emerging markets, Shine says. Ad blocking is essential and meaningful there.
Dana Sanchez, 5:11 pm
Biometrics have been around for years. African countries have used fingerprint biometrics for voting, but they’re relatively new in the payment space. Fingerprint login already exists in mobile banking in South Africa, Kenya, Benin and Nigeria. London-based bank Standard Chartered plans this year to bring biometric tech to mobile banking in eight African countries. The bank claims this will be a first in most markets, and the largest deployment of fingerprint biometric tech by any international bank.
Kevin Mwanza, 1:49 am
Anti-government protesters in Zimbabwe demonstrating against plans by the country’s central bank to re-introduce local banknotes were on Wednesday forcibly dispersed by police in the capital, Harare. Dozens of protesters marched to the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) to demand that the financial markets regulator reversed its plans to introduce ‘bond notes’ that will be linked to the U.S. dollar in October to curb rampant shortage of cash
Becca Blond, 9:54 am
Zimbabwe fell off the tourist radar for six or so years between 2001 and 2008, when hyperinflation led to food and fuel shortages. But since then it’s seen an impressive turnaround. Today, roads are newly paved, supermarket shelves are stocked, gas stations don’t run out of fuel, and bars and restaurants are buzzing again. From the wildlife to the music to the history, here are a few things you may not have known about Zimbabwe that may just convince you to visit — NOW.
Dana Sanchez, 3:13 pm AFKI Original
Informal cross-border trade is so important for Africa that about 43 percent of Africans are involved in this form of commercial activity in the 19 countries that make up the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa. It contributes to economic growth, job creation and food security for the majority of the region’s population. The majority of informal cross border traders are women, and they’re extremely vulnerable.
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