Rural Africa Weekly Report:  Rural KwaZulu-Natal Lights Up and Other Reports

Every week, Rural Reporters collate reports on development in rural Africa and its environs. The reports include some of our top picks from recent must-read research, interviews, reports, blogs and in-depth articles which have been carefully selected to help you keep up with global issues. Here are some of the updates you may have missed from the previous week:

Rural Natal Lights up

More than 2,000 households in rural KwaZulu-Natal are getting electricity for the first time.

The project is a month away from completion. KZN premier Senzo Mchunu checked on the progress that’s been made.

Mchunu said protesters should learn from the Makhabeleni community when it comes to demanding service delivery.

Africa Close To Eliminating Meningitis A

5 years after developing and integrating a meningitis A vaccine, the spread of the disease in sub-Saharan Africa’s “meningitis belt” has been controlled and, in some cases, effectively eliminated, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO).

Scientists have found that 90 per cent of individuals vaccinated with a meningitis A vaccine costing less than 50 cents a dose had protective antibodies in their system five years later, bringing Africa close to elimination of the “highly feared’ disease on the continent, the WHO announced yesterday (Nov 10).

Baby Nubia the last known Ebola patient in Guinea being treated by MSF

Nubia Soumah is the last known Ebola patient currently being treated by Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) at the charity’s Ebola Treatment Centre in Conarky, Guinea, west Africa.

Nubia’s mother Mamasta Soumah died from the virus 12 days previously.

#NORTHEASTDOESMATTER: The Buhari Administration Embarks On A Mission To Restore

As part of efforts to alleviate the suffering of Nigerians in the North-East whose lives have been deeply affected by the raging insurgency, the President Buhari-led Federal Government, through the Office of the Vice-President, has embarked on a mission to improve living conditions, with a special focus on implementing programmes which would be of immense benefit to Internally Displaced Persons (IDPS).

Smallholder Livestock Development Project For Zimbabwe

A new livestock development programme aiming to increase incomes and food security for 2000 beef and 3000 dairy smallholder producers has been launched in Zimbabwe under the USAID’s Feed the Future, US government’s global hunger and food security initiative. According to USAID Mission Director for Zimbabwe, Ms. Stephanie Funk, the programme which began in June 2015 will run through June 2020. It aims to improve hygiene and nutrition practices and build the capacity of local organisations to implement agricultural development activities funded by USAID.

How Think Tanks Can Use Economic Insights To Transform Agriculture In Africa

Boosting African economies might depend on an understanding of economics –precisely, income, wealth, and capital.  It is also about detailing the connection between economics and Africa and vice versa.  Think tanks can play a critical role in the transformation process of Africa by serving as catalyst for ideas and action on key policy issues and bridging the gap between knowledge and policy and governments and civil society.  The United Nations community has begun to work on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).  SDGs signaled a common global transition to economic, social and environmental progress in the next 15 years, a united and mutually collective front against complex challenges that Africa faces. Think tanks should be among the front liners in interrogating the linkages among income, wealth, and SDGs.

African Women in Agribusiness Resolve to Take Action

Women as key producers of food for African households will no longer cry, Esther Fotabong assured a conference for women in agribusiness in Durban last week. “Now is the time to take action!”

As the Director of Programs with the New Partnership for African Development, NEPAD, Fotabong opened the Durban International Conference on a high note.

Poor Rural Cellphone Reception Can Kill: Doctors

From Cape Town to Thohoyandou, more than 3 000 public health facilites span South Africa. In rural areas, the distance between health facilities can span hundreds of kilometres often covered via poor roads.

In places like these, the difference between a health care worker having cellphone reception or seeing the familiar “no service” on a cellphone screen can be a matter of life or death.

Drought continues in South Africa

After one of the driest rainy seasons on record, South Africa is in the grip of a severe drought.

This has placed a strain on water supplies across the country, affecting 2.7 million households.

The hardest hit are those living in rural areas, where residents have to collect water in buckets once a day.



Busayo Sotunde is a prolific writer with special focus on Business, Entrepreneurship, Reproductive Health and other development issues in Africa. Her articles have been published by different outlets including Investing Port and She has a penchant for reading and sustainable development. Follow Busayo on Twitter @BusayomiSotunde

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