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Ugandan Journalist in Police Custody After Filming Bobi Wine Documentary

A court in Kampala has charged journalist and documentary filmmaker Moses Bwayo with illegal assembly.

Journalist and documentary filmmaker Moses Bwayo is being remanded in police custody after a court in Kampala, Uganda, charged him and eight others with illegal assembly.

According to Daily Monitor, the trial magistrate declined to handle Bwayo's bail application allegedly due to time constraints and instead adjourned the matter for the following day. Bwayo is currently being held at Luzira Prison, a maximum-security prison in the capital city.


Bwayo was initially arrested on February 24th while he was filming a documentary of musician-turned-politician Bobi Wine for the UK-based company, Southern Films. He was then released two days later on police bond and set to appear before the court at a later date. Today, the Ugandan court has officially charged him with illegal assembly near police barracks and singing songs that are deemed to be "subverting or promoting subversion of the government of Uganda".

Several civil rights groups and organisations as well as members of the media have spoken out against Bwayo's arrest and demanded that he be released immediately. Part of a statement released by Foreign Correspondents' Association of Uganda (FCAU), reads as follows:

"The Foreign Correspondents' Association of Uganda (FCAU) calls for the immediate release of journalist Moses Bwayo who was sent to Luzira Prison on Wednesday...Moses' lawyer was able to present the court with all the guarantees required by the law in order to be released on bail...Moses is due to appear at Makindye Magistrates' Court at 9am Friday 6 March 2020. FCAU urges supporters of press freedom to attend the hearing to monitor developments...Independent journalism is a vital part of a free society and Ugandan authorities must not criminalise journalists reporting on opposition political groups."

The heavy crackdown on journalists, public figures and activists who express any political dissent under President Yoweri Museveni's regime continues. Journalists whose coverage relates to Bobi Wine in particular, have reportedly been under constant attack by the government.

Most recently, activist Stella Nyanzi was released from jail after spending more than a year in prison on charges of "cyber harrassment" of the president following a poem she wrote on Facebook.

Photo by: Yuri Kriventsoff

Moroccan Government Issues First Permits For Legal Cannabis Production

This marks the first time the Arab country is issuing these permits.

The Moroccan government recently gave 10 farmers permission to grow cannabis legally. This marks the first time the country will issue permits following the legalization of cannabis production last year.

According to the Institute of Security Studies, Morocco is part of a growing group of African countries who would like to position itself as a booming international legal market for cannabis. This new legal development will allow farmers in the northern mountain regions of Taounat, Al Houceima, and Chefchaouen to grow cannabis that will meet the legal market's demand. Before now, cannabis had been widely cultivated in Morocco illegally; however, the law passed by the Moroccan parliament last year does not permit the use of cannabis for recreation. The national agency, which regulates cannabis activity in Morocco, issued the permits and said that farmers would be encouraged to increase legal cannabis production to meet the demands of the market.

According to the Morocco World News, the Moroccan government is optimistic that this new development will help to improve the lifestyles of farmers, and increase their livelihoods amid a growing legal global market for the element. The global cannabis demand is growing and is projected to reach over US$ 100 billion in the next five years. If more African countries legalize legal cannabis, the industry could be worth more than $7 billion by 2023.

Because of Morocco's close proximity to Europe, it could potentially become a leading legitimate cannabis exporter. In 2020, Moroccan farmers collectively experienced a drastic income dip that fell from approximately $497 million a year in the early 2000s to less than $321 million dollars in 2020, according to an interior ministry study last year.

Before the legalization was implemented, Moroccan farmers indicated that they wanted the implementation to be sped up. In an earlier statement, Mohamed Abbout, head of the Rif Mountains Association said that the legalization would be a step in the right direction for the country

"Farmers are desperate when it comes to the drug trade,’ said Abbout. ‘That's why they're waiting for the legalization, so we can create a medicinal market."

'Skhanda Republic 3' Is Testament to K.O’s Relentless Staying Power

After 16 years, the legendary South African MC’s pen and musicianship remain sharp-as-ever on his fourth album, SR3.

Never knew, 2022, ngizobe ngisathel’ induku,” veteran South African lyricist and musician K.O raps on “THE CALLING”, from his newly released fourth studio album SR3 (Skhanda Republic 3). While it’s a simple line for an MC with revered penmanship like him, the bar is packed and provides a sneak peek into the rapper’s current state of mind. With more than 16 years in the game, the artist born Ntokozo Mdluli has been through and seen it all.

Really made it back, when these niggas thought it was over. Heart of a soldier, nobody can hold us. Asisenabangani kule game cause a lot of them bogus,” he expresses in the first verse of the song.

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Photo: Anh Trần

South African Artist Simnikiwe Buhlungu on Creating the Sound of Dreams

The internationally-acclaimed multidisciplinary artist is the youngest participant at this year's Venice Biennale, where she is showing her latest work. But, as she tells OkayAfrica, she wants her art to be viewed beyond the parameters of age.

South Africa's Simnikiwe Buhlungu is the youngest artist at this year's International Art Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia. But Buhlungu, who hails from Johannesburg, would almost rather speak about anything else — from her daily uniform (all black) to her favorite music (Gospel) and what future passions she wants to pursue (beekeeping).

The 59th International Art Exhibition features Buhlungu's project: And the Other Thing I Was Saying Was: A Conver-something, an interactive sound installation which plays recorded sounds from various sources and explores the relationship between theremins, electronic musical synthesizers, and our bodies.

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