DRC reopens Africa’s oldest natural park
The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC)’s Virunga National Park has reopened after a deadly attack on a group of tourists forced the park to close over a year ago.
Virunga is situated in DRC’s north-eastern Kivu province, near the Ugandan border, and is an area associated with rebel groups and Ebola.
Last May, a ranger was killed during the kidnapping of two Britons and their Congolese driver – who were eventually released. Armed militias continue to control large swathes of the park and 175 have been killed protecting it. Yet Africa’s oldest national park and largest tropical rainforest reserve is also an area of great biodiversity and beauty, and is home to over half the global population of mountain gorillas.
The park reopened in February, with Director Emmanuel de Merode saying: “We have taken enough time to be sure of an improvement in security for visitors.”
“We continue to work on putting the security of our personnel and our visitors at the core of our operations.”
Mandela exhibition in London ‘Mandela: The Offi cial Exhibition’ has opened in London, prior to going on tour and being permanently mounted in Nelson Mandela’s birthplace of Mvezo.
The interactive exhibition plots a journey though Mandela’s life, including his upbringing in rural Eastern Cape as the son of a chief, his 27-year incarceration and the end of apartheid when he became President in 1994.
It offers previously unseen footage alongside more than 150 artefacts such as clothes, campaign posters and travel documents, on loan from his family, as well as museums and archives worldwide.
“During his presidential years, my grandfather wore a Patek Philippe watch, and I’ve made that available because he gave it to me, and because he was such a committed person and always on time,” said grandson Mandla Mandela.
"Even when he travelled abroad his watch remained on South African time, which we found hilarious as a family, and it is here on display."
Ethiopia’s Abiy wins gender award Since taking the helm at one of Africa’s fastest growing economies, Abiy Ahmed, Prime Minister of Ethiopia, has set in motion reform after reform.
His latest accolade, the African Excellence Award for Gender, comes on the back of Sahle-Work Zewde being appointed as Ethiopia’s first woman President last year.
Indeed, gender parity within the Ethiopia government has quickly taken centre stage, with a gender-par cabinet of 10 women and 10 men.
Abiy has also appointed the first woman chief justice and a woman to oversee the electoral body ahead of crucial elections slated for 2020.
The award is given by the AU in conjunction with the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA).