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Disturbances Mar Election Run Up Special to the NNPA from GIN
With Ghana’s national elections only four months away, campaigning has hit a rough patch, including arson attacks on an opposition rally that took 6 lives, local sources said.
Unconfirmed reports linked the late August attacks to supporters of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) across Gushiegu town, Joy-FM said. Nineteen houses, three of them belonging to opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) regional chairman Mahama Jeboni,six cars, and an NDC office were torched.
The election pits Prof. Evans Atta Mills, candidate for the NDC against former foreign minister Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, candidate for the ruling NPP.
Akufo-Addo has pledged to eradicate illiteracy if elected. Mills says he will reduce prices of petroleum products in a bid to reduce “worsening” poverty in the population. Ghanians will cast their ballots on Dec. 7.
Italy Agrees to Reparations for Kenya Special to the NNPA from GIN
Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi has signed an agreement to pay Libya $5 billion and make “complete and moral acknowledgment of the damage inflicted on Libya by Italy during the colonial era”.
“In this historic document, Italy apologizes for its killing, destruction and repression against Libyans during the colonial rule,” Col. Muammar Gaddafi said.
Berlusconi said the deal, which sees the money being released over 25 years, ends “40 years of misunderstanding.” Libya was occupied by Italy in 1911 before becoming a colony in the 1930s.
As a goodwill gesture, Italy also returned an ancient statue of Venus, the headless “Venus of Cyrene”, which had been taken to Rome in colonial times.
Rome and Tripoli have spent years arguing over compensation for the colonial period. Libya will be the first African country to be compensated for crimes committed during colonialism.
Mbeki and Venezuela’s Chavez Shake on Oil Deal Special to the NNPA from GIN
Venezuela and South Africa signed a pact this week to strengthen cooperation between their oil and gas industries. Oil-rich Venezuela is expected to supply crude to the South African oil firm Petro SA at preferential rates.
The deal is particularly important for South Africa, which has been plagued by energy shortages.
Both Presidents Mbeki and Chavez termed the deal an example of southern nations cooperating in a new strategic alliance.
“It will be a wonderful day, the day when the first Venezuelan tanker will stop by to leave oil for South Africa,” Chavez said. He also encouraged Petro South Africa to explore oil resources in Venezuela.