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Views expressed in this geopolitical news summary are those of the reporters and correspondents.

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Accessed on 12 January 2021, 1319 UTC, Post 889.

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Russ Roberts

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  1. Nigerian stars join the Stingy Men Association

    SMan, which stands for Stingy Men Association of Nigeria, is trending on Twitter in Nigeria as more and more Nigerian celebrities share mock-ups of membership cards for the group.

    A tweet by music producer Don Jazzy of his own card has been retweeted more than 11,000 times.

    London based Afrobeats star Mr Eazi also shared his membership card on Twitter:

    An "official" SMan twitter account emerged on Monday:

    Tweeters have been joking about creating an anthem, a headquarters and an oath.

    It is unclear to us how the trend started in Nigeria, but the idea has already been spreading around Africa.

    Back in December, a supplement to Uganda's Daily Monitor published an article outlining a proposed constitution for the Ugandan arm of the group.

    In that article, Ian Ortega wrote: "This constitution drafted in the year of the Pandemic will for generations to come define the meaning of austerity."

    Some parts of the his "constitution" hit out at girlfriends asking their boyfriends for money.

    "Any daughter of Eve that asks for money shall be treated as an illegal immigrant and be labelled; ‘not wife material,’" he wrote.

    He went on say that “a member must feel no shame whatsoever in rejecting any monetary request presented to him.”

    This includes requests for money for transport or airtime.

  2. Kenyans angry Naomi Campbell appointed tourism ambassador

    Model Naomi Campbell and Kenya's Tourism Minister Najib Balala
    Image caption: Naomi Campbell met with Kenya's tourism minister Najib Balala

    Kenyans on Twitter have lashed out at the tourism ministry for appointing British model Naomi Campbell, instead of a Kenyan, as the ambassador for Kenyan tourism board.

    Tourism Minister Najib Balala in a statement said the announcement was exciting news to the sector.

    Ms Campbell congratulated the government for infrastructural developments related to tourism like the upgrading of the Malindi Airport at the coast and the international accreditation of a golf course in Vipingo Ridge.

    But some felt the ambassadorial role for so-called Magical Kenya should have been given to a Kenyan making an impact internationally like actress Lupita Nyong'o or comedian Elsa Majimbo.

    Kenyans online had this to say:

    "Why did we not pick our own Lupita Nyong'o buy kenya build Kenya promoting our own," Victor Amalemba tweteed.

    "Why didn't Ajuma Nasenyana not get the position and she is Kenyan, why didn't Lupita not get the offer and she is Kenyan, why didn't Debra Sanaipei not get the position and she is Kenyan.. what was the criteria for selection? Non Kenyan?" Syombua Kibue tweeted.

    "Please stop with this Elsa instead of NaomiCampbell debate . Wealthy people may laugh at your jokes, but on buying/spending decisions, perceived influencer authenticity and inaccessibility is what keeps luxury, luxury," Kathambi Kaaris tweeted.

  3. Tanzania to auction 30 wildlife hunting blocks

    The elephant is surprised by the Lioness as she pounces away at the Selous Game Reserve in Tanzania
    Image caption: Tourism is a key part of Tanzania's economy

    The Tanzanian government has invited interested bidders as it auctions 30 “tourist hunting blocks” within game reserves and other areas.

    “The Tanzania Wildlife Management Authority (TAWA) invites applications from qualified applicants for the allocation of Tourist Hunting Blocks through electronic auctioning” the authority says on its website.

    Tawa has set out requirements for companies interested in the blocks, including being registered “within Tanzania intending to engage in hunting of animals”, as well having at least one director with five years of experience in wildlife-based business and conservation in the country.

    “Eligible hunting companies can be allocated up to five hunting blocks each, which shall be of different categories. Auctioning will commence on 8 February 2021 and will last for seven consecutive days” the authority says.

    Some of the hunting blocks are located within the Selous Game Reserve ecosystem, which is listed as a Unesco World Heritage Site. Tourism is one of the key pillars of Tanzanian economy.

    The government initially placed 26 hunting blocks on an online auctioning platform in 2019 in order to enhance transparency and curb corruption.

    Last year’s auction was reportedly shelved after the government was unable to sell many of the blocks in previous auctions.

  4. Thousands of Eritrean refugees 'abandoned' in Tigray

    Video content

    Video caption: Four refugee camps have been cut off for weeks - with people having to scavenge for food

    Four refugee camps have been cut off for weeks - with people having to scavenge for food and use untreated water from rivers

  5. 'Tough measures in Germany until Easter': Latest in Europe

    German Chancellor Angela Merkel adjusts her face mask as she arrives for the beginning of the weekly meeting of the German Federal cabinet in the conference hall of the Chancellery in Berlin, Germany, 06 January 2021

    German Chancellor Angela Merkel has warned of another 8-10 weeks of "tough measures" to defeat Covid-19, according to Bild newspaper. It says she's told officials that if the British variant of Covid-19 isn't kept at bay, there'll be a 10-fold increase in German cases by Easter. Germany has reported another 891 deaths in the past 24 hours - and another 12,800 cases.

    Portugal’s outgoing President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa has tested positive for Covid-19 and cancelled all his engagements. The 72-year-old is described as asymptomatic and he’s having a second test to confirm last night’s result. Portugal has presidential elections on 24 January and the other candidates have taken part in recent TV debates with Mr de Sousa.

    A day after Johns Hopkins University figures indicated Ireland had the world's highest number of confirmed new Covid-19 cases per million people, public broadcaster RTÉ says 13 hospitals have been listed as having no intensive care beds free. But new cases fell last night to 4,929 and Prof Philip Nolan of Ireland's virus modelling group says there are signs the country is "beginning to turn a corner".

    The EU's medicines regulator says it could decide whether to authorise the AstraZeneca/Oxford University vaccine on 29 January. The EU is trying to ramp up vaccinations after a slow start. Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades said earlier this week he had asked Israel to help supply vaccines.

    Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis reportedly wants the EU to back a pan-European vaccination certificate to enable free movement for those who’ve had the jab. Politico has seen his letter to European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen.

  6. NGO 'hopeful' food will finally reach Ethiopia's Tigray

    BBC World Service

    Tigray region
    Image caption: Aid agencies were stopped from entering Tigray in November

    The secretary general of the Norwegian Refugee Council, Jan Egeland, says he's hopeful that humanitarian aid can finally reach the troubled region of Tigray in Ethiopia.

    It has been cut off since Ethiopian government forces began an offensive in November.

    The United Nations says more than two million people are in need of aid as fighting continues in parts of Tigray.

    In a separate development, the Ethiopian authorities have paraded nine leading members of the Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF) in Addis Ababa after they were captured last week.

  7. Egypt reopens airspace to Qatari flights

    BBC Monitoring

    The world through its media

    Egyptian police at the Sharm el-Sheikh international airport on June 20, 2020
    Image caption: Egypt cut diplomatic, trade and travel ties with Qatar in 2017

    Egypt will reopen its airspace to Qatari flights following the resumption of relations after a summit in Saudi Arabia.

    Civil Aviation Authority chief Ashraf Nowair said Egypt had officially lifted the ban on Qatari flights, according to the Al-Ahram news site.

    The Gulf Cooperation Council and Egypt signed an agreement on 5 January that effectively restored ties with Qatar.

    So far, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain have announced the reopening of their airspace to Qatari flights.

    In mid-2017, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and their ally Egypt had cut diplomatic, trade and travel ties with Qatar over accusations that it sponsored terrorism, which Qatar denied.

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