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Aubameyang Names Rwandan Baby Gorilla “Goal”2 minutes read

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Gabon international striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang named a baby gorilla ‘Goal’ at Rwanda’s annual mountain gorilla naming ceremony Kwita Izina held Thursday virtually for the first time due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The ceremony which was held late on Thursday 24 September was conducted on the World Gorilla Day, which was first observed on September 24, 1967, when Dian Fossey an American researcher, founded the Karisoke Research Center to study endangered mountain gorillas.

Fossey was one of the foremost primatologists in the world and spent 20 years in Rwanda, where she actively supported conservation efforts, strongly opposed poaching and tourism in wildlife habitats, and made more people acknowledge sapient gorillas. Her work largely helped reduce the downward population trend in mountain gorillas, saving them from extinction. She was murdered in her cabin at a remote camp in Rwanda in December 1985.

“Conservation, tourism, and community development go hand in hand. Each reinforces the other. I commend the people living around the park for being good stewards of the natural environment and such warm hosts for our visitors,” Rwandan President Paul Kagame said during the virtual ceremony.

At Thursday’s ceremony, nine female and 15 male baby gorillas born between May 2019 and June 2020 from 12 families, were given names by national volcanoes park rangers, vets, guides and three players from Arsenal FC. In May 2018, Arsenal signed a 3-year deal worth £30 million with the Rwanda Development Board to promote tourism in the country and also sponsor the team’s shirt sleeves on matchday shirts.

One of them born during the coronavirus pandemic was named “Amabwiriza” (Guidelines), as a ranger calls for gorillas visitors and people in general, to abide by guidelines to stop the spread of the virus.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang who has scored 72 goals for Arsenal FC, who he also captains, named the baby gorilla ‘Goal’ calling for ‘collective goals to their protection’.

Defender Hector Bellerin named one ‘Iriza’ (First born), while goalkeeper Bernd Leno named another ‘Myugariro’ (Defender) saying it will be his pleasure “to meet my baby boy gorilla”.

Among other names given to baby gorillas include;

Amarembo – Gateway
Nkomezamihigo (Keep it up) – Born in June 2020
Kazeneza (Welcome) – Oldest of a new one year old family of gorillas
Umuyobozi (leader) – In honor of Rwandan authority’s efforts in conservation
Umuganga (Vet) – Given by Dr Antoine Mudakikwa a retired gorilla vet

The powerful mountain gorilla is now critically endangered with only around 880 left in the wild. They’re found in high-altitude montain and bamboo forests – sometimes at elevations of 4,000m – where they mainly eat leaves, shoots and stems.

More than 1,000 gorillas live in Virunga Mountains, a chain of volcanoes between DR Congo, Rwanda and Uganda.

Since 2005 more than 300 gorillas have been given names in efforts to monitor their life and protect them from poachers, it was said in the 16th event, the first virtually held because of coronavirus.

Aubameyang, Bellerin and Leno return to action with Arsenal on Monday 28 September when they visit Anfield to face reigning Premier league Champions Liverpool.

Central Africa News

Militants Kill 18 In DR Congo

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At least 18 people have died when Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) militants attacked Bayeti village, Mamove locality in Beni territory of the eastern Nord Kivu province in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The attack and killings is the latest incident in a region where the army and UN forces are fighting several armed groups.

The ADF victims, most of them in their homes, were killed by gunshots and knives.

The attackers also set fire to several homes, churches, and businesses at 19:00 local time on Wednesday, they said.

The head of a civil society group in Mamove, Kinos Katuho, said locals had spotted the attackers earlier in the day.

“The residents had seen the enemy [attackers] from midday. We had gone to report to the FARDC [army] elements based in Bayeti, but they were unable to prevent the attack and protect the population,” he is quoted as saying by the Actualité website.

At least 42 people have been killed by the ADF in Mamove since 3 October, Mr Katuho said.

The ADF, whose origin is Uganda, has been blamed for many attacks in eastern DR Congo in the past few years. Many other armed groups also operate in the region.

In the past year, the Islamic State group (IS) has claimed responsibility for several attacks blamed on the ADF.

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Central Africa News

Mozambique Jails Two Over Death 64 Ethiopian Migrants In Container Truck

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The Tete provincial court in western Mozambique has sentenced two individuals involved in the death of 64 Ethiopian migrants in a container truck in March to nine years in prison.

The national Radio Mozambique reported on Wednesday that the court also acquitted five others due to lack of evidence.

According to the report the two convicted individuals, both sentenced for the crime of “manslaughter,” are the driver of the truck and the guide of the group.

The report said the other five acquitted individuals include two members of the country’s police force PRM.

In March, 64 Ethiopian migrants were found dead and 14 others alive when a container truck was stopped and inspected by the police in Tete province. The cause of death was said to be asphyxiation.

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Central Africa News

Schools Reopen In DR Congo

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Schools in the Democratic Republic of Congo are reopening after resumption was postponed twice.

President Felix Tshisekedi had closed schools in the country in March to curtail the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). The schools were earlier scheduled to resume on August 3 but were postponed due to technical and administrative reasons.

Another reopening was scheduled for October 3, but that day also passed.

Today, schools in the reopened despite teachers saying that schools are not ready to reopen and want learning to resume on 26 October.

Some teachers’ unions have threatened to strike if salary arrears are not cleared. Teachers also want an audit to detect bogus teachers.

The Central African country has so far recorded 10,851 coronavirus cases, with 276 deaths and 10,242 recoveries, according to the African Centres for Disease Control and Prevention.

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