Africa 54 – October 16, 2020

You are watching Africa 54, your daily news and feature magazine-style program, from the Voice of America. Host Esther Githui-Ewart and a team of correspondents zero in on the big stories making news on the continent and around the world with context and analysis.

Top Stories:

Guinean President Alpha Conde is seeking a third term in Sunday’s election – but opponents say he’s breaking the law and the United Nations is warning of “dangerous rhetoric” in the run up to the vote.

Two leading challengers to Ivory Coast President Alassane Ouattara say they are boycotting this month’s election and are urging their supporters to block the election. Thursday’s announcement by former President Henri Konan Bedie and former premier Pascal Affi N’guessan is the latest rejection of Quattara’s bid to seek a third term in the October 31st election. Affi N’guessan and Bedie are also accused the ruling rally of the Republicans party of tampering with the electoral process. They say they agree with an ongoing protest that Quattara’s pursuit of a third term violates the constitution. But Quattara says the new 2016 constitution rebooted term limits, giving him the right to seek another term.

Friday is World Food Day and the coronavirus pandemic is increasing poverty and hunger for many in 2020, according to the united nations food and agricultural organization. In Africa, conflict and climate change may have made an already dire situation even worse.

Nigeria re-opened schools this week, six months after they were closed to curb the spread of covid-19. Students from poor families unable to afford internet for distance learning suffered the most from schools being shuttered. However, not all parents are convinced the time is right for students to return to the classroom.

Zimbabwean doctors and nurses are challenging the ministry of health’s adding hurdles to their ability to seek work abroad. The ministry in September added official signatures before medical workers could get a “certificate of good standing,” – a needed reference for getting work abroad. Zimbabwe’s Hospital Doctors Association says the added bureaucracy is an attempt to prevent a mass exodus over poor treatment during the covid-19 pandemic.

U.S. President Donald Trump’s nominee to fill the vacancy left on the supreme court by the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg last month – cleared the first hurdle to her confirmation this week. In four marathon hearing days, Barrett deflected questions on how she would rule on issues from abortion to the election to gun rights. VOA congressional correspondent Katherine Gypson reports on the next steps in the process.

U.S. President Donald Trump and Democratic challenger Joe Biden held competing town halls Thursday, reaching out to voters in separate forums at the same time. VOA’s Mike O’Sullivan has more on the televised events, only weeks before the election November 3rd.

A54 Entertainment: It’s time now to celebrate the world’s current number one most Shazamed song on the global music charts. It’s from South Africa and it has the world on their feet line-dancing – especially in these difficult times of the coronavirus pandemic. Heather maxwell, Host of Music Time in Africa, has this hot selection.

#Guinea #AlphaConde #IvoryCoast #AlassaneOuattara #WorldFoodDay #coronavirus #africa #Nigeria #Zimbabwe #Doctors #UnitedStates #DonaldTrump #JoeBiden #SouthAfrica

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