Tuesday, December 20, 2011

“Our warmest thoughts and best wishes for the New Year"

Dear Friends and Supporters
“As we draw towards the end of 2011, we thank you for your wonderful support for WYSE International and wish you a very happy, peaceful and powerful new year.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Youth Statement At The intercessional

"Thank you Mr Co-Chair,
The Major Group for Children and Youth have identified the following goals and priorities for Rio+20: 

To effectively coordinate and ensure equal access to justice, member states should be mindful of the existing economic, human rights, and environmental agreements and apply an integrated and holistic approach to sustainable development. We call for sustainable development policies in the existing financial institutions. Enhanced political commitments must become visible in budgetary allocations for sustainable development. 


Happy holidays! I hope this note finds you well and enjoying the end of 2011 and anticipating what 2012 holds for you as a freelancer writer.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Happy Holidays from Prevent Child Abuse America

left logo

Dear Friend,
Thanks to your interest in Prevent Child Abuse America, this year we have been able to positively impact the healthy development of children, all children, across the nation. We have been actively engaged in the national dialogue surrounding the Penn State and Syracuse child sex abuse cases and how we can prevent such abuse from ever occurring in the first place. We initiated the National Movement for America’s Children. And we expanded both our Healthy Families America program network and Chapter network, further ensuring we have the opportunity to prevent child abuse and neglect at the local level.


Fatou B. Bensouda

Fatou B. Bensouda (born 31 January 1961) is a Gambian lawyer, former government civil servant, international criminal law prosecutor and legal adviser. She has been a Deputy Prosecutor in charge of the Prosecutions Division of the International Criminal Court (ICC) since 2004. In December 2011, she became the consensus choice to serve as the next Prosecutor of the ICC.[1]
Bensouda has previously served as Solicitor-General of Gambia, as well as Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, advising both the President and Cabinet of the Gambia.
She has held positions of Legal Adviser[2] and Trial Attorney at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR). She has considerable experience in national criminal prosecutions, diplomatic work and company management.


Dear Mamadou Edrisa,
All of us at the International Center for Journalists wish you a happy and healthy holiday season. As we look ahead to 2012, we want to extend a special thanks to friends like you. At ICFJ, we have had our best year ever, doubling the number of programs we run around the world. We are using mobile technology to reach the underserved. We are forming citizen journalism networks that are working with mainstream media to expose corruption.

Gambia's Fatou Bensouda Faces Tough Political Challenges


UN - Gambia's Fatima Bensouda will on Monday be formally elected chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court as the hunt for war criminals and genocidal masterminds becomes increasingly political.

Bensouda will be the only name put to the 120 member states in the election at the UN headquarters and the fact that an African will become the public face of the court has been hailed as an added bonus as its workload grows -- almost exclusively on the continent.

Sons Seek Justice For Murdered Gambian Journalist

Slain Gambian Journalist Deyda Hydara
Press ReleaseTwo sons of Deyda Hydara, a prominent Gambian newspaper editor who was murdered seven years ago, are taking their call for a full and proper investigation into his death to West Africa’s regional human rights court.

Hydara’s sons Deyda Hydara Jr. and Ismaila Hydara accuse the government of President Yahya Jammeh of failing to investigate their father’s killing on December 16, 2004, in a suit filed before the regional court of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS). 

Gambia's Yahya Jammeh ready for 'billion-year' rule

Gambian President Yahya Jammeh speaks to reporters as he leaves
a polling station in Banjul November 24 (AFP)

(BBC) - The Gambia's President Yahya Jammeh has told the BBC that he will rule for "one billion years", if God wills. 

He said critics who accused him of winning last month's elections through intimidation and fraud could "go to hell".

The West African regional body Ecowas said the electorate had been "cowed by repression".

African viewpoint: Jammeh, Aids and infertility

President Yahya Jammeh (L) speaks with his wife, Zeineb Souma Jammeh, on 24 November 2011 as he leaves a polling station in the capital Banjul

BBC- In our series of viewpoints from African journalists, former BBC Focus on Africa deputy editor and Ghanaian government minister Elizabeth Ohene recalls meeting The Gambia's President Yahya Jammeh, who was re-elected last week, after he seized power in a coup in 1994.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Durban climate talks ending: Polluters won, people lost (Greenpeace Africa)

DURBAN, South-Africa, On the closing of the latest round of UN climate talks in Durban Greenpeace today declared that it was clear that our Governments this past two weeks listened to the carbon-intensive polluting corporations instead of listening to the people who want an end to our dependence on fossil fuels and real and immediate action on climate change.

Freedom of expression and journalism education on agenda of 4th UNAOC Forum in Doha

Freedom of expression, journalism education and youth communications will be addressed by UNESCO at the 4th Global Forum of the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC) in Doha, Qatar, from 11 to 13 December 2011. Guy Berger, UNESCO’s Director of the Division for Freedom of Expression and Media Development (FEM) will attend the Forum sessions on media development, reporting and educating youth.

Parties, observers hail Africa Day event at COP17

DURBAN, South Africa, African Press Organization (APO)/ — Parties and observers today hailed the Africa Day event at the Durban climate change conference (COP17) as one of the most successful aspect of the yearly parley.

The event was held at the Africa Pavilion where two weeks of conferences and discussions culminated a high-level roundtable discussion on the development first agenda and financing for climate change.

CPJ urges South African authorities to drop secrecy bill

NEW YORK, — South African authorities should heed widespread calls to drop a “secrecy bill” that opponents say will criminalize whistle-blowing and stifle investigative journalism, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today.

Red Passport Scam


Red passport scam remains as one of the biggest corruption scandals in Nepal in 2011. After the story appeared in the media three lawmakers who were elected four years back to draft a new constitution and support in the peace process are suspended and one is still at large. Cases against three lawmakers along with half a dozen of government officials is underway in the Special Court—a court that specifically looks after corruption cases.

SPOT INTERVIEW :Jorge Abrahão on Transparency and Accountability at Rio+20

Jorge Abrahão president of Instituto Ethos
This time we talk to Jorge Abrahão president of Instituto Ethos, one of the IACC’s partners in organising the 15th IACC. Its mission is to mobilise and help companies manage their business in a socially responsible manner, making them partners in building a just and sustainable society. Instituto Ethos does this through the exchange of knowledge and experiences and the development of tools to help companies analyse their management practices and deepen their commitment to responsibility social and sustainable development. Read about what Instituto Ethos would like to see happen at Rio+20 in Brazil.

Are 13 Banks Too Many for Gambia? Bankers divided in opinion

GAMBIA NEWS ONLINE- The question of whether 13 banks in The Gambia are too many for The Gambia with about 1.8 million people (2010 estimates) is hot in the hearts and minds of many people, especially financial players and banking practitioners in the country, who have divergent views over the issue.

The influx of banks in the country over the years has made the country a highly competitive financial sector in Africa.

With a banking population of less than 25% of about 1.8 million people, it is just normal that concerns are raised on whether 13 banks is not too much for the system, which is why some senior  bank officials continue to make viable comments on the issue, with some nursing the view that “Gambia is too small for 13 banks”.

Dodou Nyang, Sales and Marketing Manager of Trust Bank
For instance, Trust Bank Sales and Marketing Manager Dodou Nyang is reported to have said that The Gambia is too small for 13 commercial banks, hence making the country the most competitive banking country in Africa.

This is partly responsible for the failure or bad performance of some banks in the last two years, says Mr Nyang, who is of the view that in the next two to three years, there would be more bank failures “because the country is too small for 13 banks”. 

FYI Questions & Answers About Norwegian Funding

Did the Bottomlining Team manage the money?

No. Since the BL Team and YOUNGO are not NGOs themselves, we cannot manage the money directly or make payments. The money was allocated by the Norwegian government to the UNFCCC Secretariat (majority of the money) and the YOUNGO/CAN organization JVE (minority of the money, about US$66000 - sixty-six thousand). JVE agreed to and was responsible for managing the money, and they also employed a travel agency to make the travel arrangements for the Global South Youth. Jean Paul sent information about this funding, including detailed budgets, to UNFCCC_youth prior to COP. The BL Team did not have any direct control of the money and did not personally make any payments, nor did it directly receive any of the money. JVE received a service fee of a couple of thousand dollars to pay for their employees and accountants who manage the money, but otherwise they did not directly benefit from the funding.

End Climate Change Dictatorship

Kofi Annan says lack of funds must not hold back the fight against climate change. Credit: Zuki Zimela/IPS
By Busani Bafana
Durban,  — The global financial crunch is not a reason to avoid climate-friendly investments that will help Africa’s agriculture grow says former UN secretary-general, Kofi Annan.

“Global leaders are struggling with continuing financial turmoil, rising unemployment and increasing social tension,” Annan said at a panel discussion on climate-smart agriculture on the sidelines of COP 17 in Durban, South Africa.

Kyoto Protocol – Hopes for Tangible Results Remain Slim

By Kristin Palitza
DURBAN, South Africa, IPS – The last hours of the 17th United Nations climate change summit in Durban have begun. Since the arrival of almost 150 ministers and heads of state on Tuesday, negotiations have moved to the political level. They are expected to debate the way forward until late Friday night, or even Saturday morning.

GIABA Organises Regional Seminar on Criminal Asset Recovery

The Inter-Governmental Action Group against Money Laundering in West Africa (GIABA) is organising a Regional Seminar on Criminal Asset Recovery from 12 to14 December, 2011 at the National Assembly in Praia, Cape Verde.

The objective of the Seminar is to bring together stakeholders involved in the implementation of anti-money laundering and combating the financing of terrorism measures in GIABA member States to deliberate on the need to deprive criminals of the benefits of their criminal activities through the recovery of proceeds of crime and stolen assets.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Commonwealth Foundation Responsive Grants

Commonwealth Foundation
Problems reading this email? Try this

07 December 2011
Grants update
The Commonwealth Foundation will be undergoing a comprehensive review of its Grants Programme over the next eight months.
A new, refreshed and revitalised programme will be launched in July 2012.
To enable us to undertake the review there will be some changes to our grants activities during this period.

Youth Stand United to Save Vital Climate Treaty

Young people from across the world have today taken a stand, refusing to accept the prospect of a toothless treaty from leaders that claim to represent them. With their future under threat, young people are making their presence felt and their voices heard at the UN climate talks in Durban, South Africa.

As climate talks heat up in the second week, some nations are still uncertain about extending the Kyoto Protocol (KP), which is set to expire at the end of 2012. This treaty - the only treaty ever to commit nations to legally binding targets on greenhouse gas emissions - provides essential stability for continued action on climate change. A void in international agreements could prove fatal for people and communities across the planet. Young people are calling for a second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol to be implemented immediately to provide a bridge to a new, more comprehensive climate treaty by 2015.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

The UN Secretary-General remarks to UNFCCC COP17 high level segment , Durban, 6 December 2011


NEW YORK, December 6, 2011/African Press Organization (APO)/ — The UN Secretary-General remarks to UNFCCC COP17 high level segment , Durban, 6 December 2011

It is a great pleasure and privilege to be with you today.

President Zuma, we thank you – and the citizens of South Africa and particularly the citizens of Durban – for your gracious and stirring welcome.

The GGGI gained new grounds at COP 17

 DURBAN, South Africa, African Press Organization (APO)/ — The green growth concept today gained new grounds as one of the overarching development paradigms at the Durban climate change conference, with experts agreeing that failure by the world community to effectively manage climate change would create an environment that would be too hostile for future generations to live in.


 “The United Front therefore is designed to bring into force a transitional government that would foster greater National Unity transcending tribe, religion, gender, place of origin, birth, disability or any other status and put in place a governance programme based on the core values of good governance and democracy characterized by transparency, accountability, popular participation, respect for fundamental rights and freedoms, the upholding of the rule of law, respect for and tolerance of political diversity and the fullest commitment to conserve, enlarge and protect freedom of information and freedom of the media.” BELOW IS THE FULL TEXT OF THE RELEASE

African Ministers Meet in Durban / African Countries to Stand Firm in Climate Negotiations


DURBAN, South Africa, African Press Organization (APO)/ — Ministers from over 50 African countries met to reinforce their position, demanding an ambitious second commitment period under the Kyoto Protocol, effective action under the Bali Action Plan and scaled-up finance, ahead of the final week of the UN Climate Conference in Durban.


World Food Programme

Mamadou Edrisa Njie --

If you’re thinking about what to send your friends and family for the holidays, I recommend you skip the stores.

Why not send something that will bring a smile to those you love and hope to those who need it most. In just a few clicks... give two fantastic gifts in one!

Joint Media Advisory- WFP and AU launch The Africa Risk Capacity at COP17

Joint Media Advisory- WFP and AU launch The Africa Risk Capacity at COP17 / Presenting the African risk capacity Wednesday 7 December, 11:30-13:00 Desert room, Africa Pavilion, COP17 Durban

DURBAN, South Africa, December 5, 2011/African Press Organization (APO)/ — The African Risk Capacity (ARC) – an innovative drought insurance initiative for African governments – is being launched on Wednesday at COP17, the UN Climate Change Conference in Durban. African Union Commission Chairperson Dr. Jean Ping will announce the project.

UN Climate Conference: very little Progress Achieved by First Week of Negotiations

BERN, Switzerland, African Press Organization (APO)/ — Little progress has been achieved by the delegates from over 190 countries during the first week of negotiations at the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Durban, South Africa. The Kyoto states, the USA, the newly industrialised countries and the developing countries have become entrenched in their positions.

The Gambia Press Union USA branch will conduct elections for a new executive

Demba Baldeh (Photo - Maafanta.com)
The Gambia Press Union USA branch will conduct elections for a new executive body on Sunday December 18, 2011, according to a media release. The GPU-USA Constitution mandates that a new executive leadership be elected every two years to lead the Union to fight for the interest of Gambian Journalists and press freedom in the Gambia and elsewhere. We are therefore inviting ALL Gambian Journalists active or otherwise, Media activists and those interested in press freedom to join us to elect a new leadership to help steer the affairs of the union in the next two years.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

UN Secretary General Message on the International Day for the Abolition of Slavery


NEW YORK, African Press Organization (APO)/ — Despite the considerable efforts of Governments, civil society and the international community, we still live in a world blighted by slavery and slavery-like practices. Millions of human beings are subjected to an existence that is almost unfathomable in its degradation and inhumanity.

Incorporating HIV and AIDS into journalism curricula in Africa

UNESCO NEWS: When citizens and government talk to each other about HIV and AIDS, what do they say and how the media can catalyse this conversation? Since 2004, Idasa-GAP has been raising awareness of journalists about the link between HIV and AIDS and good governance. Last year UNESCO, with support from Sida and Norad, commissioned an assessment tool on how HIV and AIDS are incorporated into journalism curricula. Interviews with key respondents from South African journalism schools have now been completed as part of this assessment.

Commonwealth Calls for Aid Transparency and Accountability at Busan Forum

LONDON, PRNewswire via African Press Organization (APO) — As world leaders meet in Busan, South Korea, this week, for the Fourth High Level forum on Aid Effectiveness, the Commonwealth is calling participants at the international gathering to ensure that the outcomes help drive more effective development.

“This summit represents a milestone for international development and is a defining moment in the provision and use of global aid in a manner that will revise and set standards for aid and development finance policy for the future, said Commonwealth Deputy Secretary-General Ransford Smith.

Religious voices advocate for climate justice at Durban

JOHANNESBURG, South-Africa, African Press Organization (APO)— Religious voices advocate for climate justice at Durban

“This is the only home we have,” said Archbishop Desmond Tutu referring to the crucial significance of our planet and its survival. He was speaking in an interfaith rally in Durban, urging the United Nations conference on climate change (COP17) to deliver a fair, ambitious and binding treaty to address climate change effectively.

COP17 starts today, 28 November, in Durban, South Africa.

African Youth Call for more Justice in Critical Climate Change Negotiations Kicking off in Durban

JOHANNESBURG, South-Africa, African Press Organization (APO)— Young delegates representing all of Africa’s sub regions gathered in Johannesburg, South Africa to discuss and consolidate their position called upon the leaders of the World to deliver an outcome that would ensure climate, ecological, economical and gender justice at the 17th Climate Change Conference in Durban.

ECA to lead roundtable discussions at COP17

United Nations Economic Commission for Africa

DURBAN, South Africa, African Press Organization (APO) — The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) will lead six of the 8 thematic roundtable discussions within the Africa Pavilion at COP17, according to members of the Commission’s team present in Durban.

The series of roundtables and side-events that will address a range of climate change and development issues pertinent to Africa will significantly enhance the place of ECA as a key player on climate change issues in Africa, according to Mr. Youba Sokona, Coordinator of ECA’s newly established African Climate Policy Centre (ACPC).

UN Climate Change Conference in Durban kicks off with South African President calling on governments to “save tomorrow today”

DURBAN, South-Africa,  African Press Organization (APO)

Against a background of record greenhouse gas emissions in the atmosphere, more frequent and intense extreme weather events, but also growing momentum for action to fight climate change, the UN Climate Change Conference in Durban (28 November to 9 December) kicked off today.

At the start of the conference, South African President Jacob Zuma pointed to the climate impacts in Africa as a reason for all governments to take action.
Gambian President Yahya Jammeh
CPJ: The Committee to Protect Journalists condemns Gambian President Yahya Jammeh's public remarks on Thursday, in which he vilified members of the press. The following day, Jammeh won his fourth term in office as president.