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Other news from Africa and around the world

World Bank Opens Winter Internship Program

The Internship Program, which opens from September 1, 2006, is open to students who are nationals of the Bank's member countries. The goal of this Internship Program is to offer successful candidates an opportunity to improve their skills as well as the experience of working in an international environment. To be eligible for the Internship Program, candidates must possess an undergraduate degree and already be enrolled in a full-time graduate study program.  This Program typically seeks candidates in the following fields: economics, finance, human development (public health, education, nutrition, and population), social science (anthropology, sociology), agriculture, environment, private sector development, as well as other related fields. Fluency in English is required. Prior relevant work experience, computing skills, as well as knowledge of languages such as French, Spanish, Russian, Arabic, Portuguese, and Chinese are advantageous.  The application period for the Winter Program is September 1 to October 31and all applications must be submitted on-line.

Plans Launched to Mitigate African Brain Drain

Two initiatives have been launched to mitigate the 'brain drain' caused when scientists and others emigrate from African countries to work elsewhere.  In July, Government ministers from 58 European and African countries met in Rabat, Morocco (right) for the first Euro-African Conference on Migration and Development.  They approved an action plan that, among other things, calls for Euro-African partnerships and networks to be developed between scientists and research institutions, with a focus on training courses for young African professionals. African students should have greater access to top universities and institutes in both Africa and Europe, urges the plan. It also calls for incentives to encourage students to return home after their studies. Earlier in July the council for the African Union held a summit meeting in Gambia and backed a proposal from Mali to host an African Centre for Study and Research on Migration.  The Centre will identify how African nations can retain skilled personnel, especially scientists, and how they can take advantage of the brain drain to improve training and technology transfer.  Source: SciDev.net 

Egypt Introduces a 15 Year Education Strategy

Egypt has announced a series of initiatives intended to strengthen its scientific research and higher education sectors.  In the latest move, Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak recently approved a 15-year strategy for higher education whose aims include increasing the proportion of students who study at scientific institutions from 40 to 60%.  Source: SciDev.net

Innovation Africa Symposium to take place in Uganda

The Innovation Africa Symposium is to take place in Uganda from 20-23 November.  It will convene a group of internationally recognised experts on innovation systems to share their latest thinking with agricultural researchers and development partners. The symposium will also provide an opportunity for participants to share their achievements in enhancing innovation processes.  For information on how to participate in the symposium, contact s.kaaria@cgiar.org 

Expressions of Interest for Board Member Vacancies, AFRUCA

AFRUCA will be running a recruitment campaign for new members of our Board of Trustees in September 2006. Africans Unite Against Child Abuse is an organisation concerned about cruelty against the African Child. They are the premier organisation promoting the welfare of African children in the UK and also work in partnership with other organisations in Africa and across Europe. To receive further details, email info@afruca.org

World Bank Small Grants Program

Created in 1983, the Small Grants Program aims to strengthen the voice and influence of poor and marginalized groups in the development processes, thereby making these processes more inclusive and equitable. Thus, it supports activities of civil society organizations whose primary objective is civic engagement of the poor and marginalized populations. By involving citizens who are often excluded from the public arena, and by increasing their capacity to influence policy and program decisions, the Small Grants Program helps facilitate ownership of development initiatives by a broader sector of society.  This is one of the few global programs of the World Bank that directly funds civil society organizations and with funds from the Development Grants Facility, the program is administered through the Country Offices. NGOs and other civil society organizations who are interested in participating in the Program should contact the local World Bank Country Office.

Cameroon could lose all its doctors by 2009

The ONMC association of Cameroonian doctors has called on the government to invest more in the country’s health service.  Cameroon could lose all of its 3,000 practising doctors within three years if the government does not act quickly to stem a brain drain in the health sector, according to the ONMC association of doctors' national, if nothing is done to stop the mass exodus from hospitals.  Cameroon officially has approximately 3,000 practising clinicians for its 17 million people but with the majority to be found in towns and cities, rural areas are often left with one doctor for 40,000 inhabitants. The ONMC said the government must make health a priority by raising wages.  

Academies urged to do more for Women Scientists

Science and engineering academies across the world have been urged to provide more support for women seeking to pursue a career in research, particularly for those who aspire to positions of scientific leadership. A report, “Women for Science”, published by the InterAcademy Council recommends that each academy set up a committee to monitor and report on gender issues and oversee plans to increase women's academy membership.  Scientific academies in developing countries have been told to raise awareness of science and technology among women in their communities as part of a strategy for technological capacity building.  The council was established by 90 science academies across the world.  Within the developing world, the panel describes the engagement and empowerment of women at the grassroots level as "essential" to building technological capacity.  Source: SciDev.Net

Nigerian President launches CANI

President Olusegun Obasanjo of Nigeria has launched the Computer for All Nigerians Initiative (CANI) aimed at easing access to, and use of computers amongst all Nigerians in irrespective of class, age gender and location. The objective of the CANI scheme is to increase computer penetration in Nigeria in line with the National ICT policy, the multi-sectoral reform agenda of government and the realisation of the objectives of the Millennium Development Goals.  The Nigerian leader described the scheme is his administration's social programme designed to assist individual employee in both public and private sectors to purchase personal computers and laptops at discounted prices under an affordable and convenient repayment plan.   Source: Pambazuka News

TourismAfrica2006: "Special Days" for Women Entrepreneurs

TourismAfrica2006 which will be held in Geneva in September (10-15), is supported by leading international and Pan-African institutions such as the African Union, the World Tourism Organisation, UNCTAD, UNESCO, the World Bank and the African Development Bank. This international event aims at fostering the development of Africa's tourism industry and promoting destinations in African countries. It is the first initiative solely for African tourism that will gather qualified African and International decision-makers from the public and private sector in a congress, an exhibition and a Business Development Centre. Within the framework of the strategic forums, September 14th and 15th will be dedicated to the importance of women in Africa's tourism development. These "special days" will be placed under the patronage of the World Association of Women Entrepreneurs (FCEM) aiming at strengthening and promoting women entrepreneurs' initiatives throughout the world.

KPMG Plan to Enhance Skills of South African Professional Women

Auditing and advisory firm KPMG has launched the South African chapter of the KPMG Network of Women (Know), an initiative aimed at increasing the number of skilled professional women in key business areas in the country. Aligning itself closely with the government's drive to improve the skills of South Africans, Know will seek to increase access to professional skills development for South African women. KPMG will begin by employing 20 unemployed women graduates for 12 months in project management and information technology services "to ensure adequate exposure, knowledge, experience and skills development."

Compliance Training in South Africa

STRATE, the authorised Central Securities Depository (CSD) for the electronic settlement of all financial instruments in South Africa, is holding a series of one day seminars to provide candidates who have previously passed an examination module with an opportunity to participate in a refresher course on one or more of the individual topics and to give candidates the opportunity to gain an understanding of a specific STRATE topic.  In terms of the CSD Rules, a licensed CSD Participant is required to appoint a Compliance Officer as well as an alternate (Directive SAJ). Compliance Officers are required to write an examination as prescribed by the Controlling Body of STRATE. STRATE is committed to educating and upgrading the standing of those individuals working in the securities industry. Registration for this examination has therefore not been limited to members appointed as CSDP Compliance Officers, but is open to all candidates interested in obtaining STRATE accreditation. STRATE welcomes candidates from throughout the financial industry to register for the 2006 STRATE Compliance Examinations.  www.strate.co.za

Consensus Reached on Eastern Africa Cable System

The project structure of the Eastern Africa Submarine Cable System, known as EASSy, and the roles of the respective stakeholder groups have been agreed upon by governments, NEPAD e-Africa Commission, telecommunications operators and the Development Financial Institutions. The consensus was reached during an all-stakeholders meeting hosted by the government of Kenya in Nairobi. A joint task force with representatives from each of these key stakeholder groups was also created. EASSy is an initiative to connect over 20 coastal and land-locked countries in East and Southern Africa via a high bandwidth, undersea fiber optic cable system and terrestrial backhaul links to the rest of the world. Source: World Bank

President Clinton Launches AIDS Programme in Ethiopia

Former US president Bill Clinton launched a program to help children suffering from AIDS in Ethiopia, where close to 3 million people are estimated to be infected with the deadly virus. Under the program, the Clinton Foundation will fund the program at a cost of $250,000 and provide 23 medical experts from Yale University to work in 13 hospitals across the country for one year.  Source: Pambazuka News

NEPAD Food Summit to agree Plan of Action

A NEPAD Food Security Summit, involving the availability, accessibility and affordability of food, will be held in Abuja, Nigeria, from 8-12 September 2006. It will be hosted by the Nigerian Government, through its Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, in collaboration with NEPAD and the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO).  The summit will bring together African Heads of States and other key stakeholders from African Union (AU) member states, Regional Economic Communities, civil societies, institutions and international organisations to discuss and produce a revised food security Action Plan and appropriate strategies to be adopted by each nation in order to tackle the issue of national and continental food security.  Source: Nepad Dialogue

Uganda Government Recruits 2000 More Teachers for USE Plan

Education Minister Namirembe Bitamazire has disclosed that the Government has made available Sh30 billion and will recruit 2,000 teachers for the Universal Secondary Education (USE) programme commencing in February next year. "Plans will be finalised by December 2006 and the actual release will be done by February when schools open," she said.  Source: Allafrica.com

School Enrollments Rising as African Nations Reform Education Systems

After decades of setbacks in education, countries in Sub-Saharan Africa are sending more children to school and taking steps to improve education quality. But the region still needs help from wealthy nations to achieve universal education by 2015, says a global partnership of donors and developing countries, known as the Fast Track Initiative (FTI).  Enrollment rates in Sub-Saharan Africa increased from 83 percent in 2000 to 95 percent in 2002, sending an additional 17 million students to school, says FTI.  The European Commission has pledged US$76 million to the Fast Track Initiative, launched in 2002 to coordinate education donations and technical support for poor countries that develop plans to strengthen their education systems.

Small and Medium Enterprise Toolkit

The Small and Medium Enterprise Toolkit uses the latest information and communication technologies to help small and medium enterprises in emerging markets learn sustainable business management practices. The Toolkit has now been launched in eight languages online with more than 3,000 CD-ROMs distributed to date. The Toolkit sites now collectively receive more than 12,000 visitors each month from around the world. Source: World Bank 

Africa Environment Outlook 2 – Our Environment, Our Wealth

A report on Africa Environment profiles Africa’s environmental resources as an asset for the region’s development. The report highlights the opportunities presented by the natural resource base to support development and the objectives of the African Union (AU) and the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD). The report underscores the need for sustainable livelihoods, and the importance of environmental initiatives in supporting them. Emphasis is put on what should and can be done with existing (remaining) environmental assets, in the context of identified constraints (issues), rather than focusing on what has been already lost.  http://www.unep.org/DEWA/Africa/AEO2_Launch/index.asp

NEPAD e-Schools Promotion Wins International Awards

A video promotion by the NEPAD e-Africa Commission received two prestigious international awards at the 2006 New York Global Conference and Awards Show, organised by Promax & Broadcast Designers Association (BDA) World Awards and held on 21-22 June 2006.  Promax & BDA is a global non-profit association dedicated to advancing the role and effectiveness of promotion, marketing and broadcast design professionals in the electronic media.  The NEPAD e-Schools video promotion, produced in collaboration with MultiChoice Africa and running on more than 20 DSTV channels, was awarded Gold in the Cable and Satellite Systems “Special Project” category. It received Silver in the Broadcast Television Station, “Public Service Announcement (PSA)” category. Source: Nepad

Africa Forum appeals to countries to move ahead on Peer Review

An appeal to participating countries that have not yet launched the Peer Review process to respect the timetables was made by the outgoing chairman of the APR Panel, Ambassador Betheul Kiplagat, at the fifth Summit of the Committee of Heads of State and Government participating in the Africa Peer Review Mechanism (APR Forum) held in Banjul, The Gambia.  Ambassador Kiplagat also called on the Heads of State and Government to place the APRM at the top of the agenda of their countries and to follow up its implementation regularly.  The new Chairperson of the APR Panel to succeed Ambassador Kiplagat is Prof. Dorothy Njeuma, of Cameroon. The Chairperson of the APR Forum, President Obasanjo of Nigeria reiterated that the APRM is a critical instrument for advancing reforms in governance and socio-economic development and emphasized that the APRM process is not a punitive instrument but rather a mechanism for identifying the strong and weak points, sharing them and helping to rectify the weak areas in governance. The review reports of countries that have completed the review missions will be presented at the next APR Forum during the AU Summit in January 2007 in Addis Ababa.  Source: Nepad

New programme for young African leaders supported by Archbishop Tutu

The Saïd Business School has launched a new programme in South Africa based on elements of the Oxford Strategic Leadership Programme (OSLP). The new programme, which is co-directed by Marshall Young, is the first initiative of the African Leadership Development Institute, a charity founded by Oxford MPhil in Management Studies graduate and former Rhodes Scholar, Peter Wilson. The Institute aims to support a new generation of African leaders in tackling the complex and formidable challenges facing the continent.  Twenty young African leaders participated in the programme. All are holders of Archbishop Tutu Fellowships, which are being offered in association with the new Institute and funded by a range of companies including Roche, Investec and Eskom. The Fellows come from Nigeria, South Africa, Uganda, Botswana, Liberia and Tanzania, and are all prominent in their respective fields, whether business, technology, government or politics.  The launch of the African Leadership Development Institute follows hard on the heels of several other African initiatives in which Oxford management faculty have been involved. “What all these initiatives demonstrate,” says Marshall Young, “is a growing recognition of the contribution business leadership development can make in helping move Africa forward.”   The second module of the African Leadership Development programme will take place in Oxford and London in September 2006. To find out more about the programme contact Marshall Young.

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