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Monthly Archives: March 2020

Africa. Illicit Financial Flows in the Mining Sector.

The European Commission recognises that mining and extractive companies in Africa are responsible for 65% of tax fraud, i.e. the money that states in Africa fail to collect due to the Illicit Financial Flows (IFF). The mechanisms that the multinationals use for tax fraud are complex, such as tax avoidance, tax evasion and transfer pricing.…

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Arms Trafficking. The Sahel Connection.

The arms trade criss-crosses the Sahel region. To the north highly organised networks of traffickers operate. On the opposite bank the local intermediaries come into play. The Niger River is over four thousand kilometres long. It is an impressive current of fresh water which, from the Loma Mountains, on the border between Sierra Leone and…

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South Africa. 2020: The year of Reckoning.

The year 2020 is going to tell us a lot about the long-term future of our country. Are we going to pull ourselves out of the mud of corruption, incompetence and ignorance, and start to glimpse the ‘better life for all’ that we have been promised since 1994, or will we instead continue dithering around,…

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The ‘Deal of the Century’ .

The latest ‘Peace’ plan, the so-called ‘Deal of the Century’ by US President Donald Trump has added more pressure on King Abdullah. Jordan plays a crucial role in President Trump’s ‘project’, which at its essence implies the retirement of the two-state solution (Israel and a Palestinian State, entirely independent, comprising of the entire West Bank,…

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Jordan at the Crossroads.

Jordan is a country marked by ‘artificial’ borders, drawn on a map in the wake of World War I and the new world order that emerged from it. These borders extend from the fertile lands of the Jordan River and the shores of the Dead Sea, to the desert of Syria, Iraq and Saudi Arabia.…

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Uganda. Father Giuseppe Ambrosoli, a Blessed for Africa.

On 22 November 2020, the Italian Comboni priest Father Giuseppe Ambrosoli will be beatified in Kalongo in the north of Uganda. A story of dedication to the poor as a doctor and missionary. It was the summer of 1949 when a young doctor asked to enter the Congregation of the Comboni Missionaries. In his letter…

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Gambling in Africa.

It is illegal in just seven countries. In the continent it is an industry with large profit margins. A market in rapid development due to the internet, smartphones and online payment systems. Is it harmless? A market worth billions of dollars. It is a transverse passion involving mostly young people but also women and the…

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Herbs & Plants. Manilkara mochisia. A vital medicine plant.

It is used to treat backache and brittle bones. The decoction from the leaves is used to deal with depression. Medicinal plants play an integral role in traditional medicines across the world and have been used for centuries in treatment and management of numerous disease conditions. In fact, numerous cultures still rely on indigenous medicinal…

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Angola. The fall of the Dos Santos Empire.

After targeting the President’s son, the Angolan justice, it has frozen the assets of his daughter, the richest woman of the continent and everyone now wonders whether the former head of state is next on the list. The wind of reform is blowing strongly in Angola since the election of the new president João Lourenço…

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The custodian of Jerusalem’s Old City.

Inevitably, the Jordanian government – and the political arrangement, which has taken decades to craft in order to achieve the present equilibrium among the Jordanian tribes, the Palestinians and the religious authorities – will lose legitimacy. The Jordanian monarch, pressed with the difficult decision of having to compromise the interests of the various political actors,…

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The Hippo and the Elephant.

Once upon a time it so happened that there was a Hippopotamus and an Elephant living in the same ancient forest, in the same ancient land which had been called home by all manner of bird and beast since a time beyond counting. Although they came from different families, the Hippo and the Elephant were…

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Philippines. On the side of the underdog.

A Benedictine theologian, activist, missionary and intellectual, Sr. Mary John Mananzan speaks of the Philippines of the past and of today. From the former dictator Ferdinando Marcos to the President now in power, Rodrigo Duterte.  The Church has always offered resistance and will continue to do so, taking the side of the poor. “The Church…

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Advocacy

From South Sudan. Adeng's letter.

Advocacy is concerned with values, awareness and knowledge of problems to promote actions, policies and changes in the issues that interest people. Advocacy does not always…

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Baobab

The Elephant and Hare.

There was once a herd of elephants who went to gather honey to take to their in-laws.  As they were walking along, they came upon Hare…

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Youth & Mission

African Youth to promote Peace and Security.

Despite challenges of unemployment, corruption, entrenched political leadership, and political violence, many African youth have found constructive avenues to promote peace, effective governance and reform. Africa remains the…

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