Good revenue growth but the impact of revised visa regulations on SA’s hospitality and tourism industry remains to be seen – PwC ‘Hospitality Outlook 2015′

JOHANNESBURG, South-Africa, May 14, 2015/African Press Organization (APO)/ — South Africa’s hospitality industry is prepared to grow further in the next five years, with most growth in the sector expected to be generated in Cape Town, according to a report released by PwC today.

Download the report ‘Hospitality Outlook 2015′: http://www.apo-mail.org/150514pwc.pdf

Photo: http://www.photos.apo-opa.com/index.php?level=picture&id=1985 (Nikki Forster, Hospitality Industry Leader for PwC, Southern Africa)

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Nikki Forster, Hospitality Industry Leader for PwC, Southern Africa (http://www.pwc.com), says: “Although South Africa’s economy has weakened, the hotel industry in 2014 has benefited from an increase in foreign visitors and rising room rates.”

PwC’s 5th edition of the ‘Hospitality Outlook: 2015 – 2019′ projects that by the year 2019 the overall occupancy rate across all sectors in South Africa will continue to increase, rising to an estimated 58.3% from 54.4% in 2014. “The hotel occupancy rate reached its highest level in 2014 of 52.6% since 2008. The hotel occupancy rate is expected to increase to 62% by 2019 but still remain lower than the 68.4% achieved in 2008,” adds Forster. Five star hotels are expected to achieve a high of 80% occupancy in 2019.

However, one of the most significant recent developments in 2014 and 2015 in the South African tourism industry was the revision of the country’s visa regulations. “Under the revised regulations tourists to South Africa will have to apply in person for visas to visit South Africa so that biometric data can be reliably collected. In addition, parents and guardians travelling with minors must have an unabridged birth certificate that shows the names of both parents,” adds Forster.

“Although the new regulations are intended to protect South Africa they could have unforeseen consequences for the tourism and hospitality industries,” cautions Foster. “Furthermore, the regulations may be onerous for tourists to comply with. It still remains to be seen as to how they will affect the tourism and hospitality sectors.

Worldwide, governments are focusing on efforts to relax visa requirements to promote tourism. Tourism industry commentators in South Africa say the regulations have already adversely affected travel from China and India.

PwC’s report features information about hotel accommodation in Nigeria, Mauritius and Kenya. The accommodation sector in South Africa consists of hotels, guest houses and guest farms, game lodges, caravan sites, camping sites and other overnight accommodation.

“The accommodation market in South Africa enjoyed its third consecutive year of strong growth with a 9.1% advance following two years of double-digit gains. We expect total room revenue in South Africa to expand at an 8% compound annual rate overall and by 8.1% compounded annually for hotels,” says Forster.

Growth in room rates will be the main driver of revenue, with new hotels in Cape Town leading the expansion.

Hotel accommodation

In 2014 overall spending on rooms in South Africa rose 5.4% to R18.9 billion, with rising room rates being the principal driver. Hotel occupancy rates rose 7% just above inflation with five-star hotels achieving the fastest growth at 12.8%. With the market now improving, there is renewed activity in the hotel industry as major hotel chains upgrade current facilities, renovate their properties or make plans to expand and open new hotels. The report estimates that by 2019 there will be about 63 000 hotel rooms available up from 60 800 in 2014.

Elsewhere, the hotel markets in Nigeria and Kenya were both adversely affected by terrorist activity in 2014 and Nigeria was also hurt by the outbreak of the Ebola virus in West Africa. Because of its strong economy, the hotel industry in Nigeria has attracted significant investment and the number of hotel rooms in Nigeria is expected to more than double during the next five years with much of the growth taking place in Lagos. The number of available hotel rooms in Mauritius, a resort destination, is also expected to increase at a 2.8% compound annual rate.

Outlook: South Africa 2015 – 2019

Overall room availability in South Africa is expected to increase at modest rates for each category with guest houses projected to be the fastest-growing category averaging 1.0% compounded annually. Overall room availability is projected to increase at a 0.7% compound annual rate to 120,300 in 2019 from 115,900 in 2014.

The overall occupancy rate rose 54.4% in 2014 with each category increasing. Guest houses/guest farms had the highest occupancy rate at 62.9%. The overall occupancy rate is forecast to climb to 58.3% in 2019.

Total room revenue is forecast to reach R27.7 billion in 2019, an 8% compound annual increase from 2014.

Stay unit nights rose 3.6% in 2014 with most of the growth generated by a 10% increase in caravan/camping sites and other accommodation. “We expect stay unit nights to rebound in 2015, helped by an improving global economy and pick-up in economic growth. Growth, however, may be hampered by the recent imposition in 2014 of the new requirements needed to obtain a visa and in 2015 related to travelling with minors,” adds Forster.

“Consequently we project stay unit nights to grow more slowly over the forecast period compared with increases during the 2010-13 period.”

It is also expected that the market can sustain mid-single-digit price rate increases in room rates without adversely affecting stay unit nights. The average room will cost R1 083 in 2019 from R820 in 2014.

Outlook: Nigeria, Mauritius, Kenya 2015 – 2019

The Nigerian hotel market was hit by health concerns in 2014 in the wake of the Ebola virus and concerns around terrorism. Room revenue declined by 20% and the three – and four –star hotel market took a knock as revenue fell 7.7%. For the forecast period as a whole, stay unit nights are projected to increase at a 6.6% compound annual rate to 2.2 million in 2019 from 1.6 million in 2014. Occupancy rates fell in 2014 for the first time to 49.8% and as development continues are expected to fall further to under 30% The number of tourist arrivals to Mauritius increased 4.6% in 2014, exceeding the one million level for the first time. Faced with competition from The Maldives, Sri Lanka and The Seychelles, hotels have been reluctant to raise room rates in recent years.

Kenya’s hotel market declined during each of the past three years, with total revenue falling 7.1% and by a cumulative 16% since 2011. Despite continuing concerns around terrorism a number of new hotels are scheduled to enter the market. Stay unit nights are also anticipated to decline by an additional 2.8% in 2015 with occupancies just above 50%.

Looking ahead

Forster concludes: “The South African hotel market faces a number of challenges, but we are very optimistic in its ability to compete, adapt and succeed, especially as the global economy continues to improve following the recent economic uncertainty.

“Growth in travel and tourism is also expected to boost growth in the accommodation industry across the African continent during the next five years.”

Distributed by APO (African Press Organization) on behalf of PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (PwC).

Contacts:

Nikki Forster, Hospitality Industry Leader for PwC: Southern Africa

Office: + 27 11 797 5362

Email: nikki.forster@za.pwc.com

OR

Jocelyn Newmarch: Account Manager: Edelman, South Africa

Office: + 27 11 504 4000

Mobile: + 27 84 462 1111

Email: Jocelyn.Newmarch@edelman.com

OR

Sanchia Temkin: Head of Media Relations, PwC

Office: + 27 11 797 4470

Email: sanchia.temkin@za.pwc.com

About PwC:

PwC (http://www.pwc.com) helps organisations and individuals create the value they’re looking for. We’re a network of firms in 157 countries with more than 195,000 people who are committed to delivering quality in assurance, tax and advisory services. Find out more and tell us what matters to you by visiting us at www.pwc.com

PwC refers to the PwC network and/or one or more of its member firms, each of which is a separate legal entity. Please see www.pwc.com/structure for further details.

Source:: Good revenue growth but the impact of revised visa regulations on SA’s hospitality and tourism industry remains to be seen – PwC ‘Hospitality Outlook 2015′

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Surbana Secures Mega Masterplanning Contract in Democratic Republic of the Congo

SINGAPORE May 14, 2015/African Press Organization (APO)/ — Surbana International Consultants (http://www.surbana.com) was appointed today as the master planner for Kinshasa, the capital and largest city of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Surbana will be providing a regional structure plan for Kinshasa Province (with a land area of over 9,900 km2 – approximately 14 times the size of Singapore) and a detailed master plan for Kinshasa City (2,500 km2 in size).

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Download document ‘Surbana’s Presence in Africa (Updated May 2015)': http://www.apo-mail.org/150514.pdf

This is Surbana’s largest masterplanning contract to date as well as its first in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. It is also Surbana’s ninth project in Africa, following earlier ones in Burundi, South Africa, Republic of Congo, Angola, Rwanda, Nigeria, Mauritius and Tanzania.

Surbana secured the masterplanning contract through an international public tender and in collaboration with its partner Greater Kingdom Ltd (GK). The master plan aims to address complex urban conditions of the city owing to its size, population, environmental sustainability concerns, as well as other socio economic aspects such as housing and employment. The master plan will take 14 months to complete and an additional six months to assist the Kinshasa Provincial Government in building up their institutional capacity building to plan and manage the urban development. As part of the contractual agreement, Surbana will be setting up a local project office in Kinshasa.

Speaking at the contract signing ceremony with the Kinshasa Provincial Government, Pang Yee Ean, CEO of Surbana, said, “We are delighted to secure this job with the Democratic Republic of the Congo. This is Surbana’s largest masterplanning project and ninth in Africa to-date. We are glad that Surbana is becoming recognised as the masterplanning and urbanisation consultant of choice in the African continent. Our track record of delivering quality and workable master plans which enable cities to grow economically and socially, is paying dividends as more and more African countries approach us to help them with their urbanisation plans. We are committed to delivering a master plan that meets the city’s unique social, economic and cultural aspirations in the next few decades.”

The signing ceremony was witnessed by Mr Masagos Zulkifli, Minister in Prime Minister’s Office, and Second Minister for Home Affairs and Foreign Affairs. Mr Masagos said, “Sub-Saharan Africa has been among the world’s fastest-growing region over the last decade with an average annual growth rate of more than 5%, due in part to improved governance and economic reforms. This rapid development has created many opportunities in Africa’s infrastructure and planning sector, which Singapore companies specialising in urban solutions, housing and infrastructure development should explore. We are glad that Surbana and the Kinshasa provincial government will be working closely together on the Kinshasa masterplanning project. Surbana is a good example of a Singapore company making strong inroads into Africa. Its success is a result of strong partnerships with the local African companies, as well as its growing track record for masterplanning and urbanisation projects. We hope that this will pave the way for more Singa

pore companies to explore the business opportunities in Sub-Saharan Africa.”

Kinshasa is the capital and the largest city of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). It is located on the Congo River.

Once a site of fishing villages, Kinshasa is now an urban area with a population of over 9 million. It faces the capital of the neighbouring Republic of Congo, Brazzaville, which can be seen in the distance across the wide Congo River. The city of Kinshasa is also one of the DRC’s 11 provinces. Because the administrative boundaries of the city-province cover a vast area, over 90% of the city-province’s land is rural in nature, and the urban area occupies a relatively small section in the far western end of the city-province.

Kinshasa is the third largest urban area in Africa after Cairo and Lagos. It is also the second largest “francophone” urban area in the world after Paris. If current demographic trends continue, Kinshasa should surpass Paris in population around 2020.

Distributed by APO (African Press Organization) on behalf of Surbana International Consultants.

For more information:

Lim Wee Leng (Ms)

Vice President, Corporate Communications

Surbana International Consultants Pte Ltd

Tel : (65) 6248-1124 / (65) 9663-1160

Email : limwl@surbana.com

About Surbana International Consultants

Surbana International Consultants (http://www.surbana.com) is a leading urban solutions consultancy.

A Singapore, Temasek-Linked company and award winning urban solutions consultant, our clients value and trust us to meet their development needs.

Our expertise is backed by over 50 years’ experience building more than a million homes across 26 townships and shaping the urban landscape in Singapore – one of the world’s top 10 best cities recognised for urban sustainability.

From masterplanning to engineering, architecture design, project management, land reclamation, coastal engineering, underground engineering & city management, Surbana’s expertise cuts across many sectors – real estate, aviation, healthcare, infrastructure.

Our multi-disciplinary team of experts knows what it takes to provide urban solutions in Asia, Africa and the Middle East. We have completed projects in 90 cities in 30 countries over the last 10 years.

Today, Surbana employs 2,200 employees in 14 cities across Asia, Africa and the Middle East.

Source:: Surbana Secures Mega Masterplanning Contract in Democratic Republic of the Congo

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Tigo Tanzania announces management continuity

DAR ES SALAAM, Tanzania, May 13, 2015/African Press Organization (APO)/ — Tigo Tanzania (http://www.tigo.co.tz) has announced that Diego Gutierrez resumes as General Manager of Tigo Tanzania following the completion of the tenure of Interim General Manager Ms Cecile Tiano.

Photo: http://www.photos.apo-opa.com/index.php?level=picture&id=1065 (Tigo Tanzania General Manager, Diego Gutierrez)

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According to a statement issued to the press today, Ms Tiano has been at Tigo’s helm in interim capacity since the beginning of the year. She has enjoyed considerable success with the company including the launches of Tigo Music and 4G network, making Tigo the first telecommunications company to provide the technology in the country.

“Further to the successful conclusion of the specific projects that Ms Tiano was brought in to conduct as an Interim General Manager, Mr Gutierrez will provide management continuity to grow the new initiatives successfully”, the statement reads.

Mr Gutierrez’s knowledge of the business and the market allows for a seamless business transition. Prior to his time with the company’s mobile money division in Latin America, he had been Tigo Tanzania’s General Manager for three years. Mr Gutierrez has 15 years of experience in the telecommunications industry, having worked in several markets in Latin America and Africa.

“I am delighted to resume work with an enthusiastic team who collectively share the Tigo vision of providing digital lifestyle transformation to Tanzanians”, Mr Gutierrez says in the statement.

Distributed by APO (African Press Organization) on behalf of Tigo Tanzania.

For further information visit: www.tigo.co.tz or contact:

John Wanyancha – Corporate Communications Manager

Mobile: 0658 123 089

john.wanyancha@tigo.co.tz

About Tigo:

Tigo Tanzania (http://www.tigo.co.tz) is the leading innovative telecommunication company in the country, distinguished as a fully-fledged digital lifestyle brand. Offering a diverse product portfolio in voice, SMS, high-speed internet and mobile financial services, Tigo has pioneered innovations such as Facebook in Kiswahili, Tigo Pesa App for Android & iOS users, and East Africa’s first cross-border mobile money transfer with currency conversion.

The Tigo 3G network guarantees the best services to its subscribers in all regions across the country. Between 2013 and 2014 alone the company launched over 500 new network sites and plans to double its investment by 2017 in terms of coverage and additional capacity networks for deeper penetration in rural areas. With over 8.5 million registered subscribers to their network, Tigo directly and indirectly employs over 100,000 Tanzanians including an extended network of customer service representatives, mobile money merchants, sales agents and distributors.

Tigo is part of Millicom, a leading telecommunications and media company dedicated to growth markets in Africa and Latin America. Millicom sets the pace when it comes to providing innovative and customer-centric digital lifestyle services to the world’s emerging markets. The Millicom Group employs more than 16,000 people and provides mobile, cable and satellite services to over 56 million customers. Founded in 1990, Millicom International Cellular SA is listed on NASDAQ OMX Stockholm under the symbol MIC.

Source:: Tigo Tanzania announces management continuity

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South Sudan: New Reports of Fighting in Northern State of Unity

WASHINGTON, May 13, 2015/African Press Organization (APO)/ — The United States is deeply concerned by new reports of heavy fighting in northern state of Unity following a Government offensive against Opposition forces. We remind all parties that renewed fighting is in direct contravention of the Cessation of Hostilities Agreement signed in 2014.

In addition, we are deeply disturbed by credible reports of grave human rights abuses against civilians in the areas around Mayom and south of Bentiu. We call on the government to allow protection actors to inspect sites where violations are alleged to have occurred, to include Nhialdiu, Wathjak, and Nimni. Attacks on civilians and actions which deepen and prolong the suffering of ordinary South Sudanese are unacceptable. Those who threaten the peace in South Sudan or violate international humanitarian law must be held accountable.

We are also deeply concerned about reports of widespread displacement and of the denial of access for humanitarian actors and the United Nations Mission in South Sudan to reach civilian populations in the area, leaving hundreds of thousands without life-saving assistance. This fighting has caused UN agencies and other humanitarian organizations to evacuate staff from the area. The absence of UN and other humanitarian actors will greatly reduce the delivery of life-saving aid to vulnerable populations.

We renew our call for the Government and Opposition to silence the guns and to end the suffering of the people of South Sudan immediately.

Source:: South Sudan: New Reports of Fighting in Northern State of Unity

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Mining Economies of West & Central Africa Gather in Accra this May to Showcase Resilience & Strength

ACCRA, Ghana, May 13, 2015/African Press Organization (APO)/ — The largest mining event in the region, the 7th West & Central Africa (WaCA) Mining Summit & Expo (http://www.magenta-global.com.sg/wacamining2014) returns to Accra, providing the industry with the timely platform to showcase resilience, strength and unity after a turbulent year especially pockmarked by Ebola, falling mineral prices and declining global demand.

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Magenta Global (http://www.magenta-global.com.sg) will once again host this cornerstone industry event, supported by important industry stakeholders including the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources Ghana and the Ghana Minerals Commission.

Taking place on the 20th & 21st of May 2015, the event is expected to draw a huge turnout. Key highlights include presentations from industry leaders such as Johan Ferreira, Head of Africa and Regional SVP for Newmont Mining Corporation, and Alfred Baku, Executive Vice President and Head of West Africa for Gold Fields.

Also known as WaCA Mining, the regional summit will feature industry stakeholders from over 30 countries, including Congo, Senegal, Benin, Equatorial Guinea, Nigeria, South Africa, Namibia and Cameroon. High level government officials from Benin, Senegal, Congo and Mauritania will also take advantage of this event to showcase their countries’ mining potential though official high level presentations.

According to Magenta Global CEO, Maggie Tan, despite West and Central Africa boasting some of the world’s largest high-grade bauxite and iron-ore reserves, these are mostly untapped, owing to political risks, infrastructure deficiencies, inadequate transport networks and fiscal and regulatory bottlenecks. “These are some of the issues into which the Summit will delve,” she notes, adding that the Summit is a good platform to take the industry forward, as industry leaders, government officials and many other mining stakeholders will be in attendance.

Ms Tan adds: “The mining industry is facing one of the most challenging business environments with declining commodity prices, rising costs and increased complexity in mining operations. Achieving operational sustainable performance will be key to the continued survival of mining operations.”

Mr Alfred Baku of Gold Fields adds “Resilience is what every mining operation needs, especially considering the current operating environment. I look forward to sharing our resilient turnaround strategy that enabled us to turn our Damang Mine, which was at the brink of closure, to a profit making mining operation”.

Participants at the Summit can participate in roundtable discussions on critical sub-themes including: the Policy & Regulators Roundtable, on overcoming infrastructural bottlenecks and policy transparency, to be moderated by Sulemanu Kone, CEO of the Chamber of Mines of Ghana; the Mining Industry Leaders Roundtable on achieving resilience in mining operations with a focus on cost management, talent management and community engagement, to be moderated by Daniel Owiredu, COO & EVP of Golden Star Resources; and the Mining Investors Roundtable on assessing credible and alternative financing options for mining projects in the region.

There will also be 22 presentations that cover policy, strategic, commercial and operational issues.

The first day of the Summit will be chaired by Ghana Ministry of Lands & Natural Resources Adviser Benjamin Aryee, while the second day will be chaired by Golden Star Resources COO & EVP, Daniel Owiredu.

Ibrahima Lamine Wane, former Mauritania Minister of Energy & Petroleum and currently Managing Director of Wafa Mining & Petroleum Mauritania, said: “I certainly support the positive sentiment of the main theme in this Summit, which is displaying resilience in light of recent challenging times, therefore I am proud to share with the delegates my experience and some insights regarding the mining sector in Mauritania.”

Alioune Sarr, Director of Projects & Facilities, Ministry of Energy & Mines, Senegal, adds: “I am excited to come to Accra to showcase the rise of Senegal as a mining powerhouse. We have outlined six key projects with mining potential and will share best practices on how to have successful mining operations in Senegal to everyone.”

Exhibitors from Belgium, Canada, Poland, Czech Republic, South Africa, India, Germany, Nigeria, Liberia, Canada, France, UK, Australia, Russia, Ghana etc, will be showcasing solutions, technology, products and services covering all crucial aspects of mining operations and productivity. Visitors to WaCA Mining Expo 2015 will get to meet and do business with these companies who are all bullish about West & Central Africa and ready to invest in the region. The Expo will also see the strong representation of South African companies under the umbrella of Trade Investment KwaZulu Natel (TIKZN), this being its second year exhibiting at this mining show.

Other foreign companies taking a close look at the opportunities in West & Central Africa include Beak Consultants of Germany, Nitroerg of Poland, Austin Powder International from Czech Republic, and Defawes Gears from Belgium.

Visitors to the Expo will experience the wide range of technology and services on display as well as the opportunity to learn more from a host of free seminars that have been scheduled, including a free workshop by environmental project management company Veolia for mine engineers under the theme Optimising Operations for Environmental Sustainability.

Sponsors at the 7th WaCA Mining Summit & Expo include 888 Investment Group, Veolia, Newco Ghana & Gold Fields.

The 7th WaCA Mining 2015 will be held at the Accra International Conference Centre.

Distributed by APO (African Press Organization) on behalf of Magenta Global Pte Ltd.

Media Contact:

Singapore

Mr Jose Carpio

International Marketing Manager

DID: +65 6392 2535

Main: +65 6392 2552

Email: jose@magenta-global.com.sg

Ghana

Mr Carlos Jay

General Manager

Insight Advertising, exclusive affiliate of GREY

Tel: +233 20 3798189

M: +233 24 450 1057

Email: carlos@insightgreygh.org

Notes for the Editor:

About Magenta Global – Owner & Organizer

Magenta Global Pte Ltd (http://www.magenta-global.com.sg) is a premier independent business media company that provides pragmatic and relevant information to government and business executives and professionals worldwide. The organization provides the opportunity to share thought-provoking insights, exchange ideas on the latest industry trends and technological developments with thought leaders and business peers. With a strong focus in emerging economies especially in Africa, Middle East and Central Asia, Magenta Global works in partnership with both the public and private sectors. www.magenta-global.com.sg.

About the Ghana Ministry of Lands & Natural Resources – Supporting Organization

Ghana’s Ministry of Lands & Natural Resources (MLNR) is the sector Ministry entrusted with the sustainable management and utilization of Ghana’s lands, forests, wildlife and mineral resources for socio-economic growth and development. This is achieved through the efficient formulation, implementation, coordination, monitoring and evaluation of policies and programs of sector agencies; efficient and equitable land delivery; promotion of sustainable forest, wildlife and mineral resource management and utilization; promotion of effective inter-agency and cross-sectoral linkages; creation of an enabling environment for effective private sector participation; and promotion of effective community participation in multiple use of land, forest wildlife and mineral resources.

About the Ghana Minerals Commission – Supporting Organization

Ghana’s Minerals Commission is a government agency established under Article 269 of the 1992 Constitution and the Minerals Commission Act. The Minerals Commission as the main promotional and regulatory body for the minerals sector in Ghana, is responsible for “the regulation and management of the utilization of the mineral resources of Ghana and the coordination and implementation of policies relating to mining. It also ensures compliance with Ghana’s Mining and Mineral Laws and Regulation through effective monitoring.

Source:: Mining Economies of West & Central Africa Gather in Accra this May to Showcase Resilience & Strength

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DR Congo: ADF rebel group responsible for grave international humanitarian law violations, says UN report

GENEVA, Switzerland, May 13, 2015/African Press Organization (APO)/ — A UN report published Wednesday reveals that grave violations of international humanitarian law were committed by the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF), a rebel group from Uganda, in Beni territory, North Kivu province, over a three-month period at the end of 2014. These violations, which were both systematic and extremely brutal, may amount to war crimes and crimes against humanity, the report says.

Between 1 October and 31 December 2014, at least 237 civilians were killed, including 65 women and 35 children, by ADF combatants in Beni territory. Some 47 civilians were also wounded, 20 abducted and two sexually abused. In total, ADF combatants attacked 35 villages. Attackers used machetes, hammers and knives, among other weapons, to wound or execute civilians. Some had their throats slits, were shot at while trying to flee or were burned alive in their homes. Several cases of looting and destruction of property were also documented.

The report details the results of in-depth investigations conducted by the United Nations Joint Human Rights Office in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (UNJHRO)*. Human rights officers on the ground gathered more than 180 testimonies from various sources, including from victims and witnesses.

The total number of victims could be much higher, the report says, as UNJHRO human rights officers encountered many difficulties in conducting their investigations and could not access some areas for security reasons.

The report also documents violations of international humanitarian and human rights law committed in Beni territory during the same period by members of the Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (FARDC) deployed on Operation Sukola I against the ADF.

At least 300 people, including at least 33 FARDC members, have been arrested in the course of the investigations conducted by the Congolese authorities into the Beni massacres. In November 2014, two FARDC officers and four ADF leaders were convicted by the Congolese military justice authorities for the killing of the FARDC General Mamadou Ndala, and for participating in an insurrectional movement.

“I welcome these initial steps towards justice, but urge the authorities to redouble their efforts to hold to account all those implicated in the series of truly horrendous crimes that ravaged the Beni area last year,” said the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein.

According to the report, the civilian population in Beni remains extremely vulnerable to attacks. The threat has now extended to the Irumu territory, also in the east of DRC, where violations committed by ADF combatants have been reported since the beginning of 2015.

“In light of the magnitude and the persistence of the attacks by ADF combatants, I call upon the Congolese authorities to take, as soon as possible, all the necessary measures to put an end to the massacres of civilians,” said the Special Representative of the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Martin Kobler.

Source:: DR Congo: ADF rebel group responsible for grave international humanitarian law violations, says UN report

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