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At just 31 years old, Rebeca Gyumi has a list of accomplishments anyone twice her age would be proud of. She has successfully challenged her country's legal system, winning a landmark ruling in 2016 to raise the age of child marriage for girls in Tanzania from 14 to 18; started a foundation to advocate for girls' education; won the UNICEF Global Goal Award and was named 2016 Woman of the Year by New Africa Magazine. Now, she's on her way to New York to collect the 2018 Human Rights Prize awarded by the United Nations.

"I was pretty much shocked. So shocked and caught unaware that I was even considered for such a prestigious prize," she tells CNN.

Gyumi was just a child herself when she started to see the injustice happening around her. She was 13 when some of her schoolmates were forced to drop out of school because of pregnancy and were married off. Volunteering at a youth initiative at the age of 20, she began to realize it was a national problem and not just a local one happening in her hometown of Dodoma.

"It bothered me that the age for boys to be married was 18 but for girls it was 14," she says.

It wasn't until she was in university studying law that she learned about the Law of Marriage Act of 1971 and saw the potential in trying to mount a legal challenge against it.

In 2016, with a couple of years as a lawyer under her belt, Gyumi and her colleagues decided to do just that. They started work on a legal case to petition against the Marriage Act, compiling reports to prove that child marriage for girls was an issue nationwide and why it needed to be stopped.

According to the country's national demographic and health survey of 2015/16, two out of every five girls marry before their 18th birthday with a prevalence rate of 37% nationwide, giving Tanzania one of the highest rates of child marriage in the world.

"Lots of people were not amused and thought we were disruptive, saying 'young people have tried before and failed.' But when we started attending sessions in court with a positive outcome, organizations came back and said they were willing to work together with us."

Gyumi and her colleagues persevered and in 2016, at the age of 29, she was victorious. Tanzania's High Court ruled that sections 13 and 17 of the Marriage Act were unconstitutionaland that the age for girls to legally marry should be raised to 18.

"I was so happy that day for the fact that a girl child had won. I was overwhelmed with joy," she says.

"I felt duty bound to fight for the girls I had interacted with. They didn't have enough information to know how to challenge what was happening to them."

The woman who fought to stop child marriages, and won

While her success was celebrated by many around the country, some hard-liners and traditionalists were not happy, attacking her for promoting a "Western culture."

Furthermore, the landmark ruling was subsequently thrust into legal peril when the government appealed against it last year. One of the arguments of their appeal states that child marriage can actually protect girls who get pregnant out of wedlock.

The case is currently in Tanzania's high court with a verdict due soon. Despite the challenge, Gyumi remains steadfast.

"For me I feel like we are at the moment where our country really needs to defend girls' rights. This appeal does not send a good message of our country's intention to protect girls generally. It will look really bad on the government if they win. There is no victory in winning a case that allows girls to get married younger. It's not a victory a country can be proud of."

Even if the law is upheld, Gyumi says there's still a lot of work to be done.

"The change in the law is not the only thing we're advocating for. We need to make sure the law is implemented at a ground level. We need to teach girls around the country to stand up for their rights and continue engaging with communities."

A girl gets married every 2 seconds somewhere in the world

Gyumi's success is testament to the power of education, a cause she now advocates for through her foundation, Msichana.

"The fact that I'm here today and doing what I'm doing is due to education. My family didn't have a lot but they sacrificed what they had to give me an education. Imagine what it's like for other people in my country, if they're able to get an education and explore life without limits, without boys telling them 'you're a girl, you can only go as far as this,' those kind of voices can then be challenged."

Winning the 2018 Human Rights Prize puts Gyumi on the international stage alongside other activists such as Malala Yousafzai, Denis Mukwege and Nelson Mandela, and it's not something she takes lightly.

"It's not just a personal honor but my country's honor, putting our country on the map. It's a proud moment for me and for the girls I stood up for and for the ongoing global progress that is happening around girls' and women's rights."

Asked what her message is to other young girls out there, her answer is simple.

CNN

The communication experts of the NPP,NDC,PPP and the NDP speak to Radio Topafric on HOW and IF they intend to address the challenges Ghanaians in the diaspora face with the issue of retaining Dual citizenship ,the enforcement of the ROPA LAW that is enshrined in the constitution and states that each and every Ghanaian abroad or in the diaspora MUST be allowed to vote.

The two party supporters Mr Alex Tufuor of the NPP and Mr Lingani ,former secretary of the NDC party committee in Hamburg were in the studio and sure a studio political battle as to who win the elections:

EFFIYA  AGYEIWAAH

Our beloved country Ghana, goes to the polls to elect new parliamentarians and a president. It is our desire that we have a peaceful, free and fair elections. The destiny and future of Ghana lies in the hands of her people.

There is going to be about 15.7 million voters out there to cast their votes. Out of this, practically 15 Million voters have their votes set at AUTOMATIC-VOTE. They will even vote against Jesus Christ, if he is not their candidate!!!

We wish to express our sincere gratitude to the 700.000 patriotic, objective and constructive Ghanaians who are going to vote decisively. For the 15 million Ghanaian auto-voters, please remember we have only ONE GHANA and about 10 million non-voting Ghanaians over there. Please after casting your auto-votes, go home peacefully whilst you wait for the results.
God Bless Ghana.

Gambia’s president-elect, Adama Barrow, has hinted that he will swear himself in as substantive president when the tenure of outgoing Yahya Jammeh runs out in January. The businessman who run on the ticket of an opposition coalition won the December 1 polls beating Jammeh who has been in power since 1994.

Barrow told the BBC’s reporter who covered the elections, Umaru Fofana that Jammeh’s tenure ends on January 18 and he will declare himself president if Jammeh does not step down.

“Our position is very very clear. I’m President-elect, we advise the president to cooperate. We have a team that is working on our inauguration. We are working on it; on the 18th, I’m the legal president of this country,” Barrow said

Jammeh on December 2, a day after the polls surprisingly accepted defeat and called to congratulate Barrow on his victory with the firm promise to hand over and return to his village to farm.

A week later, Jammeh announced on the public broadcaster that he was not stepping down. According to him, the elections he lost were fraught with irregularities which his team got to know of later. He subsequently called for a rerun of the polls.

He received a lot of local and international flack for his U-turn. The regional political bloc, the Economic Commission of West African States (ECOWAS), the African Union (AU) and the United Nations (UN) led in condemnation of his new position. The Gambia’s only landed neighbour Senegal also joined in the condemnation.

Back at home, the opposition parties have chided Jammeh calling for him to step down immediately. Different groups in the country have joined in, media people, health workers, teachers, lawyers and other professional groups continue to call for him to respect the will of the Gambian electorate.

Security personnel on Tuesday took over the headquarters of the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) on the same day when African Heads of State were meeting with Jammeh to get him to step down. That meeting according to Liberian president Ellen Johnson Sirleaf ended in a stalemate.

That same evening, Jammeh’s party filed documents with the Supreme Court asking for the annulment of the elections of December 1 citing among others, irregularities by the IEC and intimidation of its supporters.

For more than a decade, Jack Chako, 38, has been living happily with her two husbands, Michael Hwita and Liford Chimoto, with whom she shares one bed.´Chako is the head of the family. On how she gets maximum sexual satisfaction from her husbands, she said:

“We are a happy family, I live with my two husbands and we love one another. My two husbands are best friends and they are always together. Chimoto is the elder husband, while Hwita is the junior. I married the second Hwita because Chimoto is elderly and increasingly becoming weak in bed and was starving me sexually. In terms of conjugal rights I favour Hwita.

He gets me there. I only do it with Chimoto as a token. At times, I feel pity for Chimoto and give him token conjugal rights and he appreciates that. 
The rule is no one gets out of the room, because he is not on duty. Whoever is not on duty, just watches us at it. I am in charge and my two husbands are now used to sleeping side by side in one bed."

Speaking further, the mother of five, three children from a previous marriage and two from this polyandrous affair, said, “I use some concoction to pacify my husbands. It is not a secret that I used a concoction to cow them down. I also sell this concoction to other women to cow down their errant husbands and make them compliant. None of my two husbands wishes to leave me."

The husbands, Hwita and Chimoto, on their parts, said they don’t have problems taking Chako says their joint wife. Chimoto said, “I know my failings and I appreciate the decision which was taken, we have various duties and life goes on.”

Hwita said, “I see no problem. She loves both of us and we understand our situation. “I respect Chimoto as the elder husband because I found him here.

Source: 
Kemifilani.com 

Gunfire was heard in several districts of Kinshasa as demonstrators called for President Joseph Kabila to step down. Kabila's term expired at midnight, but he appears set to stay on as ruler

Gunfire was heard in several parts of the Congolese capital, Kinshasa, early Tuesday morning as protesters took to the streets calling for the resignation of current President Joseph Kabila.

While Kabila's second term officially expired at midnight, the President has shown little sign of stepping down.

Shops were closed in the main square on Monday, and soldiers and police outnumbered passersby in the capital in anticipation of possible violence. Social media access has been blocked and protests were outlawed. The UN human rights office in Congo said 28 people were arrested in Kinshasa and 46 in the eastern cities of Goma and Bukavu.

Demonstrations took place in the districts of Kalamu, Matete and Lingwala. Students at Kinshasa University clashed with soldiers and police, blowing whistles and burning tires.

Kabila, meanwhile, doesn't appear to be willing to leave his post.

"I don't see [Kabila] caving in to pressure," said Kikaya Bin Karubi, Kabila's diplomatic adviser, earlier Monday.

Staying in charge:

Critics have accused Kabila, who has been in power for 15 years, of clinging to power by letting his term out without announcing a successor or planning an election. He is constitutionally barred from seeking a third term.

The ruling party, the People's Party for Reconstruction and Democracy (PPRD), and some opposition leaders have agreed to schedule an election in 2018 and allow Kabila to remain in office until then. But the main opposition bloc disagrees with the plan.

Kabila has been in power since 2001:

Kabila has served as president of the central African nation since his father, Laurent Kabila, was assassinated in 2001. Joseph Kabila was elected in 2006 and re-elected in 2011, but the opposition said the 2011 election was rigged.

Appeal for 'peaceful resistance'

In a video posted on YouTube Tuesday, opposition leader Etienne Tshisekedi called on the Congolese people to peacefully resist what he described as a "coup d'etat."

"I launch a solemn appeal to the Congolese people to not recognize the ... illegal and illegitimate authority of Joseph Kabila," Tshisekedi added.

Should Kabila stay in power, there is growing concern over another civil war. Conflicts in central Africa between 1996 and 2003 killed millions.

According to news agency Reuters, senior diplomats have urged Kabila to step down to stem the prospect of another civil conflict.

Kabila meanwhile has sought to smooth opposition grievances by promising to expand the government by some 20 ministerial posts to more than 65, many of which would be reserved for opposition party members.

However, the main opposition bloc led by Tshisekedi appears unlikely to be appeased by such a deal.

kbd,dm/cmk (AFP, Reuters)

under Fowler, the Executive Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), revealed the new plan at the 136th meeting of the Joint Tax Board in Abuja, the News Agency of Nigeria reported.

Any Nigerian who either wants to apply for a new passport or renew an old one will have to show evidence of being a tax payer, Mr Fowler said.

“We did take a position and I believe it would be implemented in the very near future that before you get any services from the immigration department: renewal of passports etc, you’d have to show that you are a tax payer,” Mr Fowler said. “These things are normal all over the world and it would help us to serve Nigerians and Nigeria better.”

He added: “People believe that payment of tax is a burden and I’ll repeat that you only pay tax on income and profits. So, if you reside in Nigeria and you are benefiting from being a Nigerian resident, it is only fair that you contribute to the system that makes you enjoy that standard of living.’’

Following complaints from Nigerians, the Comptroller-General of Nigeria Immigration Service, (NIS) Muhammad Babandede has revealed that the validity period of international passport will be extended to 10 years.

Source: http://www.afronews.de/

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