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Chez Nous

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African cuisine is a diverse, flavourful trip. Go on the journey with the itinerant host of Chez Nous as she eats her way across the continent and unearths mouthwatering delicacies and lunchtime staples.

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Nigeria Commences Assessment on First Made-in-Nigeria Helicopter

NASENI through reverse engineering, is leading Nigeria’s first manufacturing of non-commercial helicopter.

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The Nigerian government through its Ministry of Environment and the National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure (NASENI) have started Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for the first ever Made-in-Nigeria helicopter.

NASENI through reverse engineering is leading Nigeria’s first manufacturing of non-commercial helicopter.  

Minister of Environment, Muhammad Abubakar said the EIA projects will be conducted to identify possible mitigation in the insulation of equipment on the project be it noise, solid and liquid pollutions.

Abubakar said this yesterday in Abuja when he received the management team from NASENI, led by the Executive Vice Chairman/Chief Executive, Mohammed Haruna.

He said, “Environment Impact Assessment (EIA) is part of every endeavour on the planet but especially when you talk of aviation, there is a lot of impact on the environment from accidents in aviation, birds strike, noise, vibration, wastes that will be created etc.

“The EIA projects entail a number of things like project registration, site verification for project categorisation and screening environmental data collection and a lot more. It will identify possible mitigation in the insulation of abetment equipment whether noise, pollution both solid and liquid pollutants are all the EIA project will look at. Let me implore you to ensure that EIA is conducted on all your projects to enhance their sustainability.”

The EVC NASENI, Haruna explained that NASENI is trying the launch the first made-in-Nigeria aircraft and there are environmental regulations that the agency must adhere to.

He said, “… we must be accessed and permitted to test any engine in the environment. We have designed, developed and fabricated jet engines that EIA is being conducted by the Ministry of Environment and we want it to be fast tracked, we also want the Ministry to collaborate with us but supporting larger and mass production of our solar products which contributes to the reduction of emission. He further expressed optimism that Nigeria should have its first made-in-Nigeria aircraft by the end of 2021.

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East Africa News

Somali Government Intercept Smuggled Weapons, Ammunitions

The ministry did not, however, identify the entities and quantity of ammunition intercepted nor did he provide any proof to back up the report either.

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The Somali government has commenced investigations into the source and origin of certain sophisticated weapons and ammunition which it intercepted while they were being smuggled into the country.

The country’s minister of information said there had been an attempt by Somali and foreign entities, to illegally import high caliber weapons and ammunition into the country without government knowledge and permission.

In a statement issued in the capita Mogadishu, the minister said “the federal government of Somali has a robust system in the supply chain of weapons and ammunition from the point of procurement to post distribution, and it is these existing frameworks that have enabled the government to respond timely and block the deliveries.”

The ministry did not, however, identify the entities and quantity of ammunition intercepted nor did he provide any proof to back up the report either.

The ministry said the Somali government takes very seriously, violations of territorial sovereignty and integrity as well as any actions that can have potential destabilizing effects.

“The government is investigating the origin and motives of the weapons and ammunition it has blocked intended for Somalia,” the report said.

Shortly after Somali plunged into civil war 25 years ago, The United Nations imposed a blanket arms embargo on the nation.

The statement followed hours of fighting in the southern town of Beled Hawo between the security forces of Jubaland and and government forces as the two sides battled to take control of the strategic town which is a key entry of the Gedo region.

The Somali government did however say its forces managed to repel the militia group, and managed to recover illegally imported arms and ammunition, also flushing out Jubaland security forces.

Bothe sides have reportedly suffered casualties, even though the local authorities have not established the number involved.

This is not the first time that The Somali government and Jubaland forces will battle over that land. In March 2020, both forces were engaged in a similar battle to take control of the town.

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Feature News

UN Lays Out Timeline for Libya’s Transitional Government

Plans for the new government has raised fears that powerful figures who stand to lose influence could attempt to sabotage the transition process.

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The United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) says nominations for leadership of a new unified transitional government must be made in a week, and voting on candidates would take place in early February.

Plans for the new unified transitional government has raised fears that powerful figures who stand to lose influence could attempt to sabotage the process.

Back in November, the UN gathered 75 Libyan participants in a political dialogue in Tunis with the purpose of laying out a road map to national elections which they set for late December.

After weeks of arguing, the dialogu members finally agreed this week, on rules for selecting a new presidential council consisting of three members, as well as a prime minister to oversee the run-up to the election.

On Thursday, the UN said from Feb 1-5, dialogue members would vote on candidates for the new government’s leadership positions in Switzerland.

At separate UN-backed talks in Geneva, Libyan envoys on Tuesday voted to pass a mechanism to choose an interim executive that will govern until the December elections, according to the UN, calling it a “significant step forward.”

In a report submitted to the UN Security Council (UNSC) earlier this week, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres welcomed the “tangible progress” recorded in recent months to tackle the Libyan crisis which has lasted for almost a decade, and reiterated that all foreign troops and mercenaries must evacuate the country by the end of the week.

Structured around the Libyan Political Dialogue Forum, the talks in Geneva have been taking place amid a heavy international push to reach a peaceful settlement to the civil war in Libya. All previous diplomatic initiatives have failed.

In the Libyan conflict, forces loyal to the UN-recognized Government of National Accord (GNA) based in the capital Tripoli, and those of its rival, Gen. Khalifa Haftar, had formally agreed on a cease-fire in October last year. After Haftar launched a failed offensive on Tripoli in April 2019, the two sides have returned to negotiations. Since then, the capital city has been kept under the control of the GNA.

The United Arab Emirates (UAE), Egypt and Russia have been the main supporters of Haftar. Media report that Russia has primarily supported Haftar’s forces by deploying mercenaries of the Wagner Group to the North African country in their fight to seize power from the GNA in Tripoli.

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