CON­TI­NEN­TAL DRIFT

Mail & Guardian - - Africa -

Where did the teach­ers go?

The Demo­cratic Repub­lic of Congo’s (DRC) school year has be­gun but schools are well un­der half-full. Pupils are stay­ing at home be­cause their teach­ers are on strike for a liv­ing wage. Monthly salaries are just $100. It costs be­tween $200 and $300 a term to send a child to a public school. No one is sure when the strike will end, given the DRC’s al­ready weak­ened econ­omy and po­lit­i­cal in­sta­bil­ity.

Ar­chi­tect part of the de­sign

Namibian ar­chi­tect Ben Kathindi chained him­self to a fence in protest against the min­istry of works’ al­leged ex­ploita­tion of quan­tity sur­vey­ors, en­gi­neers and ar­chi­tects. His plac­ard read: “Slaves for hire/for sale.” A for­mer re­gional of­fi­cer found keys on Kathindi and un­chained him, end­ing the protest. This is the sec­ond time Kathindi has de­manded that the gov­ern­ment pays the debts owed to his firm.

What­sApp with on­line hate?

So­cial me­dia trolls are in dan­ger — the Kenyan gov­ern­ment is tak­ing up the fight against on­line hate-mon­ger­ing. Two ad­min­is­tra­tors on What­sApp chat groups were re­cently ar­rested and charged with shar­ing mes­sages that threat­ened na­tional se­cu­rity. They will also face charges of spread­ing alarm­ing pro­pa­ganda. This un­prece­dented move comes in light of the hate speech cir­cu­lated dur­ing and af­ter last month’s pres­i­den­tial elec­tions and the digital war­fare waged be­tween Uhuru Keny­atta’s Jubilee Party and Raila Odinga’s op­po­si­tion coali­tion. But there are con­cerns that the new pol­icy could also be used to si­lence crit­i­cal voices.

Another great es­cape

Al­most 100 in­mates es­caped from a prison in Côte d’Ivoire on Sun­day. The mass jail­break is the latest in a string of es­capes in the West African coun­try. A ju­di­cial source told AFP: “The in­mates went through the roof of their cells to get to other cells and took ad­van­tage of work­ers leav­ing to break the main gate and flee.” Of­fi­cials sus­pect that the ex­o­dus was an “in­side job”.

Sug­ar­cane helps school­girls

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