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The Death Toll in Southern African Countries Hit by Cyclone Idai has Increased

At least 1000 Mozambicans and more than 150 Zimbabweans and Malawians have lost their lives.

Tropical cyclone Idai has claimed the lives of many with even more people still missing. Violent winds and powerful floods have destroyed vast areas, cut off communication and wiped out roads in many parts of the Southern African countries affected.


Mozambique and Malawi, geographically low-lying areas, are prone to deadly floods particularly after heavy rains. Speaking about the death toll on Monday, the President of Mozambique, Filipe Nyusi, said that everything pointed towards the country having to "register more than one thousand deaths". Beira, which is Mozambique's fourth largest city has been hardest hit after one of its dams burst, further complicating rescue efforts.

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa deployed the military to assist Mozambique with rescue efforts.

In Zimbabwe, Chimanimani district has been cut off from the rest of the country and at least 98 people have lost their lives with an additional 200 people feared missing. It seems Zimbabwe just can't catch a break. From a persistent drought that has wilted and destroyed crucial crops, deadly protests following crippling fuel hikes to an economy barely able to keep afloat, there seems to be no reprieve for Zimbabweans.

The Zimbabwean government is said to have released 18 million USD to rebuild roads, provide water and sanitation as well as restore communication lines and electricity.

UN Special Representative for Disaster Risk Reduction, Mami Mizutori said:

"Cyclone Idai underlines that no matter how effective early warnings are, there is still a huge demand for greater investment in resilient infrastructure in many parts of the world if we are to break the cycle of disaster-response-recovery."


Death tolls are expected to rise as more bodies are recovered.


Images courtesy of Wikimedia Commons and Sabelo Mkhabela.

Wizkid, Anatii Win Big at BET Soul Train Awards Alongside Beyoncé

The Nigerian and South African artists, respectively, won soul train awards for their contributions to 'Brown Skin Girl."

Nigeria's Wizkid and South Africa's Anatii both earned BET Soul Train Awards last night for their contributions to Beyoncé's hit song "Brown Skin Girl."

The song, which is an ode to dark-skinned women, was one of the standout tracks from Beyoncé's The Lion King: The Gift. It earned the "Ashford and Simpson Songwriter's Award" last night during the awards ceremony in Las Vegas. Wizkid is featured on the track and has a writing credit, while Anatii is credited as a composer along with Michael Uzowuru, and others.

The song was also nominated in the "Best Collaboration Performance" category.

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Photo by Seyllou/AFP via Getty Images

France Returns a 19th Century Sword Back to Senegal

The sword belonged to a Senegalese anti-colonial struggle fighter Omar Saidou Tall.

France has returned a 19th century sword back to Senegal. The sword belonged to Senegalese Islamic scholar and anti-colonial struggle fighter Omar Saidou Tall. The French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe recently handed over the sword to Senegal's President Macky Sall in a ceremony held in Dakar this past Sunday. The sword is now in the Museum of Black Civilizations of Dakar. The move comes after the Senegalese government's request for France to return more than 100 artifacts housed in French museums and France's President Emmanuel Macron subsequently commissioned a report entitled "The Restitution of African Cultural Heritage: Toward a New Relational Ethics".

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Photo by Dave Hogan/Getty Images

South Africa's Iconic Group Bongo Maffin is Set to Release a New Album

It will be the group's first album in well over a decade.

Last year, the iconic South African kwaito group Bongo Maffin, reunited after several years. They then went on to release the single "Harare" much to the delight of their numerous fans. Of course, the single was just an appetizer for everything else still to come. Thandiswa "King Tha" Mazwai, one of the members of the diverse quartet, recently confirmed that Bongo Maffin will be releasing an album on November 29th—the group's first album in well over a decade.

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