Top Africa stories: Zim's $15bn diamond loot, DRC, Nigeria

$15bn diamond loot: Zim parliament 'sets Mugabe off the hook'

Former Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe will not appear before a Mines and Energy Parliamentary Committee investigating the looting and loss of diamond revenue amounting to $15 billion, the head of the committee, Temba Mliswa has said.

Mugabe had been expected to appear before the committee after he told state media in 2016 during an interview to mark his birthday that Zimbabwe had lost over $15 billion in gem revenues through corrupt cartels that he did not name.

According to the state-owned Herald newspaper, the nonagenarian had been given an ultimatum by the committee to attend the hearing on Monday after he twice failed to appear before the committee.

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Former Grace Mugabe cabinet ally fled Zim as 'refugee': report

Former ally of ex-first lady Grace Mugabe says he fled Zimbabwe as "a refugee" in the wake of last year’s military takeover, a newspaper reported on Tuesday.

Saviour Kasukuwere, a former local government minister, claims to have fled into "the jungles" of Mozambique out of fear for his life after his Harare home was attacked by soldiers on the night of November 14.

'No one wants to die'

He later spent six months in exile in South Africa, but returned to Harare last month. He was arrested days later on charges of breaching the immigration act for leaving the country illegally. But his lawyer, Jonathan Samkange, told the Harare Magistrates' Court his client acted out of fear for his life.

Saviour Kasukuwere

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'I won't allow my ministers to seek medical treatment outside Zim,' says MDC's Chamisa

Zimbabwean opposition leader Nelson Chamisa has reportedly said that if he wins the forthcoming elections, his ministers won't be allowed to seek medical treatment outside the country.

According to The Standard, Chamisa said this while speaking to his supporters at Muchakata business centre over the weekend.

The Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) Alliance presidential candidate said that there would be no ministers in his government who would go outside for medical attention while local hospitals were short of medicines.

Nelson Chamisa

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Acquitted DRC leader Bemba edges closer to freedom

Jean-Pierre Bemba's lawyers are set to argue on Tuesday for his immediate release after international judges acquitted him of war crimes, as the former Congolese vice president edged closer towards freedom following a decade behind bars.

Bemba was acquitted on appeal on Friday by the International Criminal Court, who said he could not be held criminally liable for crimes committed by his troops in the Central African Republic in 2002-2003.

Bemba's lawyer Peter Haynes told journalists after his acquittal that his client "should be released without delay".

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Nigeria's Buhari apologises for annulled 1993 election

Nigeria President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday offered a symbolic apology to the deceased winner of the 1993 democratic election that was annulled by the military.

The apology comes as Buhari is campaigning for a second term in office after making history in 2015 as the first opposition candidate in the country to unseat a sitting president.

Nigeria, which ended military rule in 1999, has suffered from a series of military coups since winning independence from Britain, including one led by Buhari in 1983.

Buhari ruled as military head of state until 1985, when he was toppled by General Ibrahim Babangida.


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