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Africa

African press review 15 February 2016

media DR

Today's African press review takes a look at what's at stake in the upcoming Ugandan elections as well as the case of an Italian student who was murdered in Egypt. Plus, a story about South Africans deserting Zimbabwe.

Regional paper The East African takes a look at the forthcoming Ugandan Presidential elections and what they mean for the region.

According to recent polls, President Yoweri Museveni, who has been in power for the last 30 years, is in a narrow lead, "with opposition candidate Kizza Besigye taking the race down to the wirej," the paper says.

For The East African, the outcome of the elections could "fundamentally alter the geopolitics of East and Central Africa".

On one hand, a Museveni victory would mean continuity in Uganda’s foreign policy with relatively new governments in Kenya, South Sudan and Tanzania, maintain Kampala’s influence in the region" explains the daily.

The current Ugandan president has been "a key player in economic and political integration as well as military conflicts in Somalia, the Democratic Republic of Congo, South Sudan and Burundi" it adds.

A victory for Besigye however, would be "a break with the past three decades", even though the paper thinks we shouldn't expect any dramatic shifts.

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta has pledged to make school eduction free within five years according to The Daily Nation.

The Kenyan President wants to make secondary and primary schools completly free by 2021. "No parent should have to dig into their pocket to educate their child" said Kenyatta yesterday.

It might prove easier said than done, however.

According to another article of The Daily Nation, schools won't be getting books until the Kenyan government decides to pay 9000 euros to suppliers. Apparently, "the Kenya Booksellers and Stationers Association said the Ministry of Education has not released funds to schools".

This means that  despite being the middle of the first schooldterm, many students don't have any books.

The Egypt Independent is reporting on the death of an Italian student who was tortured and found dead in Cairo. The paper says the Egyptian forensics authority "handed over its final autopsy report to the prosecutor general's office on Saturday."

Giulio Regeni made international headlines earlier this month when his body was found in the Egyptian capital.

According to the paper which quotes a source from the forensics authority, Regeni had "seven broken ribs, signs of electrocution on his penis, traumatic injuries all over his body, and a brain haemorrhage".

"Rights groups say police often detain Egyptians on scant evidence and that they are beaten or coerced" explains the paper. But so far, both the "interior and foreign ministers dismissed the notion of security forces being behind Regeni's murder".

The 28 year old student was burried in his Italian hometown last Friday.

And finally, it seems South Africans are deserting Zimbabwe.

"Going to Zimbabwe on holiday has become expensive for South Africans" says the Independent Online.

The country is now so expensive that 1 million South African visitors have stayed away "since the rand lost nearly half its value".

The paper explains that the problem is that Zimbabwe uses US dollars as its currency, making it too expensive for many visitors from the South. That's probably what pushed the Zimbabwean tourism minister to question the use of the US dollar by the country.

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