A peace agreement has been officially signed in the South Sudan capital, Juba, by the government of Sudan and a coalition of armed opposition under the banner of the Sudanese Revolutionary Front (RSF), among others.
The signing, held at Freedom Square in Juba, South Sudan, was witnessed by South Sudanese Chief Mediator, Presidential Adviser, Tut Gatluak; Ethiopian President, Sahle-Work Zewde; Somali President, Mohamed Abdullah Mohamed; President of Djibouti, Ismail Omar Guelph; President of Chad, Idriss Déby Itno among representatives of the African Union and the United Nations.
The latest peace agreement lauded as a milestone in Sudan’s long road to peace and stability has seen Blue Nile, Southern Kordofan and Darfur enjoy self-autonomy during the transitional period.
The comprehensive peace agreement was signed by Prime Minister of Sudan, Abdallah Hamdok, and major armed opposition groups from Darfur, Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile.
Armed factions led by Abdel Wahid Nur and the SPLM-North rebel group led by Abdel Aziz Adam al-Hillu declined being signatory to the accord.
Both rebel factions refused to be part of the signing on grounds that the Sudan Revolution for change has been compromised by the army.
These opposition groups request that some keys leaders such as Sudan deputy President, Gen. Mohamed Hamdan “Hemeti” Dagolo, be excluded from the peace agreement due to alleged human rights violations and war crimes in Darfur in the past.
The deal sets out terms to integrate rebels into the security forces, be politically represented, and have economic and land rights. A new fund will pay $750 million a year for 10 years to the southern and western regions.
A chance of return for displaced people is also guaranteed.
Aware of the challenges inherent in the implementation towards a peace roadmap, Sudanese leaders pledged to give the implementation their best shot. Prime Minister of Sudan, Abdallah Hamdok says ‘peace will open broader horizons for development, progress, and prosperity’.
Meanwhile, an official website for the South Sudan Presidency has been launched today in Juba. The site is integrated with social media platforms to foster improved communication with the public and outside world.
Somalia Arrests 10 For Trafficking Cheetahs
Somalia’s Somaliland on Tuesday said ten suspects who have been rounded up in two separate incidents of wildlife trafficking in the past three weeks have been arrested.
The police said some suspects were arrested in Hargeisa while attempting to sell three young cheetah cubs to the highest bidder while others were nabbed after being caught in possession of cheetah cubs.
Kayse Sudi Arale police spokesperson said in a statement “we successfully confiscated 10 cheetah cubs from a known gang of traffickers in the Xeedho area on the outskirts of Hargeisa.
“Two key suspects are in police custody, and they will be brought to justice as soon as possible.’’
The cubs from the two incidents were placed in the immediate care of Cheetah Conservation Fund (CCF), Ministry of Environment and Rural Development’s partner in the counter cheetah-trafficking project.
The CCF said its veterinarians and animal care staff examined the animals and found a host of health problems typically seen in cheetahs that have been in the hands of unskilled captors for more than just a few days.
Uganda Establishes First Free Zone at Entebbe Airport
The government of Uganda through the Uganda Free Zone Authority (UFZA) has finalised plans to establish the first public free zone at Entebbe International Airport. The free zone is projected to boost export-oriented investment in the country.
The project will be implemented by the National Enterprise Corporation (NEC) on a five acre piece of land acquired from the Uganda Civil Aviation Authority (UCAA) at the Entebbe International Airport premises.
Under the arrangement, the project targets sectors which include food processing, mineral processing, warehousing, storage and simple assembly, where all operators in the public free zone will process their products for onward export through Entebbe International Airport.
The development of the Public Free Zone projected to cost UGX 48billion will, on completion house seven production units and trade houses such as offices of the Uganda Free Zones Authority, Uganda Revenue Authority, and other government offices to promote enterprise. The Government of Uganda (GoU) has already awarded UGX 12.5 Billion for the first phase of the project.
Speaking at the site handover event, Hez Kimoomi Alinda, the Uganda Free Zones Authority Executive Director, said the project is expected to contribute cargo volumes, create hundreds of direct jobs and significantly improve Uganda’s exports.
“On completion, the project will support increased production quality assurance and value addition to commodities that are widely produced by the masses to improve household incomes, create employment and eliminate poverty as well as improve the value of Uganda’s exports,” he said.
Alinda was speaking while handing over the site for the construction of the Entebbe International Airport Free Zone at which he said they had acquired five acres from the Uganda Civil Aviation Authority for the development and contracted National Enterprise Corporation, the commercial arm of the UPDF for the construction.
Fire On Kilimanjaro Under Control – Official
A fire on Mount Kilimanjaro that had been raging for seven days is largely under control, the Director General of Tanzania National Parks Authority (Tanapa) said on Saturday.
“Thanks to work done by various stakeholders and rain which came in some parts of the mountain last night we have managed to contain the fire by 99 per cent,’’ Allan Kijazi said.
‘`What remains now are small patches in bushes which are still smoking and we are dealing with them as I speak,’’ he added, saying that a helicopter was being used in hard-to-reach areas.
The fire broke out on Sunday and, according to officials, has since destroyed at least 28 square kilometres of bush.
Officials have said some 500 people were working to quell the flames.
At 5,895 metres, Kilimanjaro is Africa’s highest mountain and also one of Tanzania’s landmarks.
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