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Africa

African press review 18 August 2017

media DR

Kenya to settle Presidential election dispute in court after Raila Odinga drops plans for risky street action. And Zimbabwe's First Lady Grace Mugabe faces possible arrest in Johannesburg for assault as police order a red alert at the country's borders to prevent her from escaping.

We begin in Kenya where the papers welcome the decision by the alliance backing Raila Odinga's campaign to challenge President Uhuru Kenyatta's proclaimed victory in court.

Daily Nation says the National Super Alliance was pushed to seek redress from the Supreme Court by the international community. This, was as the coalition faced a deep rift on the isse, its leader Raila Odinga favouring street protests while his running mate Kalonzo Musyoka opposed it.

But also Standard Digital says over the past days the opposition Alliance had become more confident about the case file, after its agents reportedly found enough evidence to substantiate their case against the Electoral Commission's (IEBC) declaration of Uhuru Kenyatta as winner of the presidential election.

According to the source, quoted by the Standard, Nasa sought the services of electoral forensic and handwriting experts to plough through the thousands of forms, determine their validity and if there was foul play on the part of the IEBC.

Among the issues said to have softened Odinga’s heart was when the audit team said many results sheets posted on the IEBC portal from some counties did not bear the commission’s stamp as required by the law.

In South Africa, Zimbabwe First lady Grace Mugabe is turning into a facing arrest and possible prosecution for allegedly assaulting a young woman at a luxury hotel in Johannesburg.

The Sowetan reports that Grace Mugabe whipped model Gabriella Engels with an extension cord on Sunday after finding her in a hotel where Mugabé's two sons live. The paper says that faces charges of assault with the intent to do grievous bodily harm, according to a complaint filed at a court in Sandton.

The Johannesburg Star says that the assault on the 20-year-old Joburg model had sparked national outrage in South Africa.

Opposition lawmaker Zakhele Mbhele‚ who is also the Shadow Minister of Police reportedly said that Grace Mugabe is not entitled to diplomatic immunity and must be arrested so she can have her day in court.

According to the Star, Mbhele spoke after police waited all day on Thursday to know if South Africa's Foreign Ministry was willing to pull a diplomatic immunity card on the Zimbabwe First Lady's case.

In a related development, Mail and Guardian quotes Police Minister Fikile Mbalula as saying on Thursday that the police have put out a “red alert” at South African borders for Grace Mugabe, in case she attempted to leave the country. The publication says Mbalula however noted that Grace Mugabe had not made any attempts to leave.

Back in Harare, the state-owned Herald newspaper makes no mention of Grace Mugabe's judicial woes.

Meanwhile, The Johannesburg Star carries the photograph of a luxury mansion allegedly bought by Grace Mugabe for a whopping 2.8 million euros (R45 million) in the affluent Sandhurst suburb of Joburg.

The paper quotes sources close to the sale as having confirmed that the wife of the 93-year-old Zimbabwe leader Robert Mugabe bought the majestic property in February through a shelf company.

In Nigeria, Punch predicts a gathering storm over controversial remarks by former President Olusegun Obasanjo who branded the country's lawmakers as a “bunch of unarmed robbers.

According to the newspaper, the retired ex-army general launched the scathing attack on the MPs at a book launch in Ibadan on Thursday.

Obasanjo reportedly took on the lawmakers while denouncing the alleged squandering of ninety per cent of federal revenue to pay overheads, allowances, salaries for powerful lobby groups and syndicates.

The ex-President described Nigerian MPs as some of "the highest paid in the world despite coming from a country where, as he put it, 75 percent of the population lives in abject poverty.

Obasanjo, according to Punch, said he knew the so-called "unarmed robbers", would come after him, apparently worsing his situation when he suggested that "if they don't abuse him tomorrow, then maybe they are sleeping".

 
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