The Congolese government is seeking to exploit the recent surge in global cobalt prices by substantially raising taxes on the metal. Despite concerns over an increase in operational costs, the DRC has a virtual monopoly over global cobalt production, leaving international mining companies with little option but to concede to the sector’s new regulatory changes.
As President of Nigeria’s Senate, Bukola Saraki is the third most powerful politician in the country. Having survived several potentially destructive corruption scandals, recent developments are suggesting that Saraki is hoping to fulfil his rumoured presidential aspirations in 2019.
Belgian interests are being targeted by the DRC government in a series of apparent retaliatory attacks following Brussels’ decision to reallocate funding that was intended for the central government to humanitarian NGOs. While Kinshasa’s actions may be downplayed as political grandstanding, there are concerns that they will inevitably impact the foreign business environment.
Despite not having yet confirmed his intention to run for a second presidential term in 2019, President Muhammadu Buhari is attracting support from all corners of the ruling APC. It remains the case that many politicians recognise the benefit of Buhari serving a second term, ostensibly benefits for their own further political or economic advancement.
The relationship between politics and newspapers in Nigeria has evolved over recent years as the newspaper industry struggles to remain solvent. Ultimately, this financial instability has exposed the industry to political interference, as both newspapers and journalists are more inclined to refine their reporting to retain favour with those elites that are in a position to help them financially.
While the Catholic Church has consistently played an important role in the DRC's post-independence politics, it has become increasingly vocal in its criticism of Kabila's attempts to remain in power past the end of his mandate. Many observers now view the religious institution as an increasingly vital member of the civil society opposition movement.
Nigeria’s various illicit networks enjoy varying degrees of political access and influence. In general, illicit networks have had little sway over the government in terms of influencing the decision-making process; but individually, each network is capable of impacting the country’s political, economic and social climates.
This is Part III of a three-part series reviewing the future of Africa’s electoral landscape. Today’s contribution looks towards elections in 2019 as the political landscapes in two of Africa’s biggest countries sit on a knife edge, amid allegations of corruption and broken promises.
This is Part II of a three-part series reviewing the future of Africa’s electoral landscape. Today’s contribution assesse elections that are scheduled over the coming 12 months – outlining potential outcomes, the key political players, and the methods through which incumbents will attempt to retain power in the face of increasing competition from strengthening opposition groups.
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This is Part I of a three-part series reviewing the future of Africa’s electoral landscape. Today’s contribution reviews the upcoming elections in the DRC and South Sudan – both have been subjected to various delays as their respective leaders attempt to legitimise their extended stays in power – as well as the aftermaths of various recent elections that are still playing out.
Despite the departure of Mugabe, Zimbabwe’s government is still made up of the same set of ZANU-PF heavyweights, serving as a reminder that the right to rule Zimbabwe revolves around the military, and liberation war credentials. Under Mnangagwa, Zimbabwe’s future remains threatened by the same patronage-based system of predatory and anti-democratic government.
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Wildlife poaching and trafficking have long been a serious problem in Mugabe’s Zimbabwe. Despite his recent resignation, the ruling ZANU-PF’s strong links to these criminal activities means that a decrease in Zimbabwe’s thriving illicit wildlife trade is unlikely in the short term. In fact, the probability that the elite networks that benefit from the trade will remain in place under Mnangagwa remains high.
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