Regional News Roundup

Singer arrested

DURBAN – Police this week arrested a man who claimed to be Zulu folklore musician, Mgqumeni Khumalo, who died in late 2009. More than 30 000 people, some from as far as Mpumalanga, Gauteng and Lesotho and Swaziland flocked to Nquthu, Kwazulu-Natal, after hearing Khumalo had returned from the dead. Police used water cannon as people shoved to get a glimpse of the man claiming to be Khumalo, who used a loudspeaker to address them from a police van, saying his captors had tried to turn him into a zombie. Fingerprints confirmed the “resurrected” man as an impostor. He has been charged with fraud.

Ensure reforms in Zim

Johannesburg – Human rights and pro-democracy groups here have reiterated calls for the regional SADC bloc to force President Robert Mugabe to respect the Global Political Agreement. Led by the Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition, the groups, including Human Rights Watch and the Methodist Refugee Centre, said Mugabe’s unchecked intransigence diminished any hopes that Zimbabwe’s next elections would be free and fair.

They called for security sector reforms, a constitution that reflects the people’s will and the removal of Zanu (PF) apologists from the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission before any election can be held.

Refugees flock to SA

The Central Methodist Church here continues to receive more than 500 Zimbabwean refugees every day, said Bishop Paul Verryn, who runs the refugee centre in central Johannesburg.

“We are trying but cannot accommodate all of them and some end up sleeping in the corridors. Many have got jobs and moved on,” said Verryn. “I find it inconceivable that an election is being planned. If we are looking at elections, we should strive for all opposition parties to voice their point of view. Otherwise, let us avoid elections and let dictatorship stay in place.” He said the ever-swelling numbers of refugees was an indication that the situation in the country was far from peaceful. – Mxolisi Ncube

US mission to Moz

MAPUTO – A business mission from the United States early this week visited Mozambique to discuss investment in energy.

They met President Armando Guebuza to discuss investment opportunities to increase Mozambique’s capacity to generate electricity.

US energy companies might invest in new power stations to meet the needs for safe and low cost electricity in Africa. The delegation will also visit Tanzania, Nigeria, Ghana and Kenya.

If African businesses could have access to power as companies in the west, they could produce products that would be more affordable for local markets and for export abroad.

Post published in: Africa News

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