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Rwandan President Paul Kagame’s remarks on Zimbabwean teachers at the inaugural Rwanda Zimbabwe Trade and Investment Conference on Wednesday, have set social media on fire with some professionals showing interest in working in the tiny central African nation.

A video clip captured by the Rwanda Broadcasting Authority’s Rwanda Television, circulating on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and WhatsApp, shows Kagame telling Zimbabweans that he is interested in hiring the country’s teachers.

Zimbabwean teachers are currently demanding salary increases of up to US$580. An ordinary family of six in Zimbabwe now needs ZWL$39,924 to cover its monthly expenses, according to the Zimbabwe National Statistics Agency (ZIMSTAT).

Kagame is quoted by Rwanda TV as saying, “I heard the presentations made to us, very important things we can do together, what each country offers so on and so forth. I want to emphasize one thing. I think there is a deputy CEO of RDB (Rwanda Development Board) who mentioned in passing what Zimbabwe can offer in the area of education. He talked about equipment or something.

“Before equipment, I want people,” said Kagame amid applause from the audience, adding that “I think Zimbabwe can offer us good teachers. So please work on that as a sense of urgency … You can find whatever number you find of quality teachers. I think we can absorb.”

VOA Zimbabwe Service could not reach the Zimbabwean delegation in Kigali, led by Foreign Affairs Minister Frederick Shava, and local teachers’ unions.

ZIMSTAT reported Thursday that the Food Poverty Line (FPL) for one person in August 2021 was ZWL$4516.52. It increased to ZWL$4734.33 in September 2021 while the Total Consumption Poverty Line (TCPL) for one person stood at ZWL$6,653.65 in the same month, a 4.8% increase from the month of August, which was ZWL$6,350.25.

Zimbabwe’s education is highly rated worldwide. According to Africa Check, which identifies important public statements, interrogates the best available evidence and publishes fact-checking reports to guide public debate, ZIMSTAT’s labour force survey estimated that 97% of people over 15 were literate in 2011. “This figure is based on the percentage of people in this age group that had completed Grade 3 of schooling.”

Africa Check further notes that the country’s 2011 Demographic and Health Survey estimated that 96% of men aged 15 to 54 and 94% of women aged 15 to 49 were literate. “This figure was calculated from a nationally representative household survey but it only applied to certain age groups. Respondents were considered literate if they had attended secondary school (generally aged 15 and older) or could read a whole sentence or part of a sentence in a reading test.”

Africa Check said to evaluate Zimbabwe’s literacy rate in Africa, it consulted the most recent global literacy list produced by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, released in June 2013.

Africa Check said UNESCO’s Institute for Statistics estimated that 83.6% of Zimbabweans aged 15 and older were literate in 2011. “This estimation was based on Zimbabwe’s 2011 Demographic and Health Survey results.”

Africa quotes a senior statistician and policy analyst at UNESCO, Nicole Bella, as telling the organization that they had “made some re-estimations to include older age groups which typically have much lower literacy levels”.

According to Africa Check, the organization doesn’t consider people who can only read part of a sentence to be literate so they were excluded, unlike in the Demographic and Health Survey. - Gibbs Dube/Bathabile Masuku, Voice of America

 

The Union of Journalists of South Sudan (UJOSS) in partnership with the Community Empowerment for Progress Organization (CEPO) is set to visit the flood-affected people in parts of Unity State.

For nearly two weeks the two institutions were mobilizing journalists and well-wishers to contribute clothes and shoes to help both those affected by floods and violence in the country. They will transport nearly 10 journalists to cover the general flood situation in parts of the country.

In an interview with Radio Tamazuj, the President of the Union of Journalists of South Sudan Mr. Patrick Oyet Charles said: “As a Union of Journalists for South Sudan together with Community Empowerment for Progress Organization, we came with this initiative to make sure that journalists and any well-wishers contribute clothes, shoes, whatever they can contribute so that we take theses donations to the people affected by the floods." 

The two institutions said their partnership mission in solidarity with the victims of the floods in Bentiu begins this month followed by another visit to Tambura-Yambio.

“Our first point of contact is to take these donations to Unity State and that does not mean we are stopping there, we are also planning to go to other areas like Tambura where people are affected by violence. We believe that it is us as South Sudanese people to help one another first then we can go out and ask other people to help us,” Oyet added.

He also urged other partners to extend their help to assist the victims of floods and violence in the country.

“We also call upon all groups that can help in any way to do so because these are our people and it is our duty to help in whatever way we can help. Today it is those people who are affected by floods, and tomorrow it might be you and we also will need to lobby for help,” he said.

UJOSS President Patrick Oyet Charles said, it is time for all South Sudanese to begin thinking of helping one another in all situations in the country.

Okech Francis, a journalist working for Bloomberg is among those who will cover the flood situation and he says he would use his story for creating awareness on the risks of the environmental population due to spills of oil in the oil-rich Bentiu.

"We want to look at how the floods have aggravated the environment pollution problem, and then the story will try to create awareness on how huge this problem is, and what its effects will be on the community in the oil-producing areas and South Sudan at large," Francis said.

Both UJOSS and CEPO believe the solidarity mission is a call to all stakeholders and will help attract more responses to the humanitarian situation created by floods and violence in the country. - Radio Tamazuj

President Emmanuel Macron announced on Monday a ‘recognition and reparation’ bill for hundreds of thousands of Algerians who fought for France in Algeria’s war of independence, as Paris seeks to rectify its colonial past.

The legislation, announced during a speech by the French leader on Monday, will seek to ensure that the country engages in “recognition and reparation” of “neglected” Harkis. Harkis are Muslim Algerians who served in the French Army during the Algerian War of Independence from 1954 to 1962. The conflict resulted in hundreds of thousands of Algerian casualties and displaced more than two million citizens.

To the fighters, I want to express our recognition; we will not forget. I ask forgiveness, we will not forget.

The details of the legislation were not immediately outlined but Macron’s office confirmed ahead of the speech that it will serve as a “new step necessary in terms of recognizing the failures toward the Harkis.” Officials also stated that it will seek to recognize “the failure of the French republic to live up to its own standards.”

Former leader Francois Hollande previously accepted “the responsibilities of French governments in the abandonment of the Harkis” but no concrete legislation was announced by the then-president to address the country’s colonial history.

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Around 300 individuals attended Macron’s speech, mainly Harkis and their families who survived the conflict, with the announcement coming days before National Harkis Day, which commemorates those who served alongside the French Army.

Harki organizations have called on the French president to ensure that legislation recognizing their treatment is enshrined by the end of the year, hoping that it will “end 60 years of a certain hypocrisy by which the abandoning of the Harkis is recognized in speeches, but not in the law.” RT

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