Africa

Ericsson signs grant agreements for 5G research

Key for success in the telecom industry is the delivery of future-proof, high-quality networks and solutions. In that light, Ericsson is announcing that it has signed agreements for credit facilities with the Nordic Investment Bank (NIB) for USD 220 million, maturing in 2023, and AB Svensk Exportkredit (SEK) for USD 150 million are maturing in 2025.  They aim at increasing their investments to secure technology leadership in 5G, IoT and digital services.

And as of now, they have 38 operators engaged in developing and preparing for 5G networks.

FarmCrowdy gets $1m seed fund to inflate into more states in Nigeria

Barely a year after it launched, from Techstars and other international investors, the Nigerian digital and crowd-funded agriculture platform, FarmCrowdy has announced raising $1m seed fund. FarmCrowdy enables working class Nigerians to crowd-sponsor farming projects with the promise of a share in the returns. Bravely, they were the first and only African startup to be shortlisted into Techstars Atlanta’s accelerator programme in August. This can only mean the rise of internet farmers (IoFs).

Africa Produces first Footballer President

Liberia has reached another milestone in its political history, by electing a former football star as President. George Weah, former AC Milan striker and lone African winner of World Best Player Award, is set to become the next President of Liberia. Weah defeated Vice President, Joseph Boakai in a Liberian presidential run-off held on December 26, 2017, in 12 of the 15 counties.

George Weah is taking over from outgoing President, 79-year-old Nobel Peace Prize winner, Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf.

Cameroon

Philisiwe Sibiya Career finally Comes to an End in Cameroon.

The South African chartered accountant Philisiwe Sibiya career officially comes to an end on January 31, 2017, as the General Manager of MTN Cameroon. Throughout her 3 years of service, the country has benefited from major investments, such as the deployment of 4G and extension of 3G networks. Also, the firm started sponsoring the national football championship and more importantly remained the number one operator despite her competitors. However, the service offered by the firm is now questionable as she is leaving.

Could Biya’s PB HEV Laptop “Gift” Be the Start of a New Odyssey?

80,000 laptops were delivered at Yaoundé airport last week which constituted the first part of an order of 500,000 laptops to be shared for free to young Cameroonian students. The PB HEV laptops are a fulfillment of Paul Biya’s promise, whose intention is to boost the development of digital economy and diffusion of knowledge in Cameroon.

This will go a long way to ease startups operational activities. Branded PB HEV, short for “Paul Biya Higher Education Vision,” The estimated budget for the project to manufacture the laptops is at CFA 75 billion.

Cameroon Expels Prize-Winning Poet for Criticizing Government

After three weeks of detention at the Yaounde maximum security prison, the Cameroon government has finally freed New York-based Cameroonian prize-winning novelist, Patrice Nganang.

Just when Patrice Nganang was about boarding a flight to Kenya, he was arrested at the Douala International Airport on December 7. He was accused of allegedly threatening the life of President Paul Biya in a Facebook post. Nganang’s supporters have however maintained that the accusations against him were politically motivated.

World

Could African governments use parental control to strengthen their grip on social media control?

What if breaching your child’s right to privacy wasn’t illegal?

A Spanish court just made sure of that by acquitting a divorced father accused of breaching his daughter’s privacy rights after reading WhatsApp messages between the nine-year-old and her mother. According to the judge, checking the well-being of children overrides invasion of privacy. Conversely, African governments could place an eye on this Spanish ruling to intensify monitoring of their citizens.

Meanwhile, market regulator Sebi has promised to sanction companies like WhatsApp that leak key financial details.

U.S President Donald Trump Advocates more Charges for AMAZON

U.S. President, Donald Trump has targeted online retailer Amazon, in a call for increased prices in the country’s postal services sector. The call is intended to raise prices of shipments in order to recoup costs.

Trump is furious over the fact that the United States Post Office is losing many billions of dollars a year while charging Amazon and others so little to deliver their packages. Hence, making Amazon richer and the Post Office dumber and poorer.

The Postal Service of the United State is a Federal government independent agency and does not receive taxes for operating expenses.

Deadly and Worst New York Fire Incident in 25 Years

Authorities in the city of New York, USA by mid-day on Friday 29,  December 2017, were still to ascertain the causes of a fire incident in an apartment at Bonx. The blaze, which Mayor Bill de Blasio called the “worst fire tragedy in this city in at least a quarter-century,” killed at least 12 people, including at least three children under the age of 10.

The fire broke out on the first floor of a five-storey building and critacally injured four persons, Thursday evening.

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