Mali / Death of Nigerien MINUSMA soldiers – Statement by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Development Spokesman (Paris, October 3, 2014)

PARIS, France, October 8, 2014/African Press Organization (APO)/ — France condemns the attack on 3 October which killed nine Nigerien soldiers from the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Mali and wounded several others.

We extend our condolences to the bereaved and to the Nigerien authorities. The perpetrators of this attack must not go unpunished.

France commends the United Nations mission and pays tribute to the Nigerien soldiers’ resolve. It remains mobilized alongside the Malian authorities and its African partners to contribute to Mali’s stabilization./.

Categories: AFRICA

Oracle Launches Capacity-Building Programme to Close IT Skills Gap in Africa

CAPE-TOWN, South-Africa, October 8, 2014/African Press Organization (APO)/ — Oracle Corporation (http://www.oracle.com) today announced an initiative designed to enrich and increase the skills capacity of IT practitioners in Africa. The four-pronged program was devised as a response to the rapid adoption of new technologies by governments and businesses in Africa, exacerbating the shortage of suitably skilled practitioners to use the systems to best advantage.

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Download infographic: http://www.photos.apo-opa.com/plog-content/images/apo/photos/141008o.png

According to Oracle, the dramatic advancement of technology over the past five years has resulted in a gap in IT competencies and skills availability. Organizations in Africa are adopting new technologies at a rate which is outstripping the availability of appropriately qualified staff.

“Today IT holds the promise to promote social inclusion, combat corruption, expand the digital economy and enable stronger links between citizens and governments, businesses and customers, NGOs and the communities they serve,” said Alfonso Di Ianni, Senior Vice President, Oracle East Central Europe, Middle East and Africa. “They can do this and at the same time dramatically reduce costs and improve efficiency. However for technology to support such transformation, organizations must have ready access to people capable of setting up and maintaining these systems.”

Consisting of four elements – employee readiness, ecosystem readiness, workforce readiness and youth readiness, Oracle is reaching out to governments, the private sector and non-profit organizations to implement a long term skills strategy that will help fulfill demand for relevant IT skills.

Supporting Quotes

• “Using the materials and manpower from Oracle University, Oracle Academy, Oracle Partner Enablement, Oracle Sales Consulting and the Public Sector Center of Excellence, Oracle will, in partnership with the organization or community, create programs addressing their skills need,” said Orfhlaith Ni Chorcora, Senior Director, Business Development at Oracle. “Two such partnerships are already underway with the Lagos State government in Nigeria and Equity Group Foundation in Kenya to jointly drive successful initiatives tailored to the local needs.

• “Building a competitive pool of IT-skilled youth in the state is a priority for Lagos State,” said Governor Babatunde Fashola(SAN). “To successfully achieve this goal, it takes multi-stakeholder support and long term collaboration with organizations such as Oracle who share our deepest commitment to building skills and creating exciting job opportunities for the youth of Lagos. We are off to a good start and look forward to increasing that impact in the coming months.”

• “In the emerging economic order, basic computer literacy means the ability not only to use software, but also to modify or create; in other words, to program,” said Dr. Helen Gichohi, Managing Director of Equity Group Foundation. “For them to compete internationally we must also raise their ICT competencies to global standards and keep them intellectually curious, creative and motivated to critically think about their surroundings.”

Supporting Resources

• Download Capacity-Building Program Infographic

• Video interview: Alphonso Di Ianni, Oracle Vice President, East Central Europe, Middle East and Africa, and Orfhlaith Ni Chorcora, Senior Director, Business Development, describe the components of the capacity-building programme and its importance for the Africa region.

• Oracle Academy: https://academy.oracle.com

• Oracle Workforce Development Program: https://workforce.oracle.com

• Oracle University: http://education.oracle.com

Distributed by APO (African Press Organization) on behalf of Oracle Corporation.

About Oracle OpenWorld

Oracle OpenWorld San Francisco is the most important business and technology conference of the year for Oracle customers, prospective customers, and partners. This educational conference is dedicated to helping businesses optimize existing systems and understand upcoming industry trends and breakthroughs driven by technology. Oracle OpenWorld offers more than 2,500 educational sessions, hundreds of demos and hands-on labs, and exhibitions from more than 400 partners and customers from around the world showcasing applications, middleware, database, server and storage systems, industries, management, cloud, and infrastructure solutions—all engineered for innovation. Oracle OpenWorld 2014 is being held September 28 through October 2 at the Moscone Center in San Francisco. For more information; to register; or to watch Oracle OpenWorld keynotes, sessions, and more, please visit www.oracle.com/openworld. Join the Oracle OpenWorld discussion on Twitter (https://twitter.com/oracleopenworld), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/OracleOpenWorld?ref=br_tf), and the Oracle OpenWorld blog (https://blogs.oracle.com/oracleopenworld).

About Oracle

Oracle engineers hardware and software to work together in the cloud and in your data center. For more information about Oracle (NYSE:ORCL), visit http://www.oracle.com.

Trademarks

Oracle and Java are registered trademarks of Oracle and/or its affiliates. Other names may be trademarks of their respective owners.

Categories: AFRICA

Nedbank deploys Gemalto’s plug-and-play solution to secure online banking for corporate clients

JOHANNESBURG, South-Africa, October 8, 2014/African Press Organization (APO)/ — Gemalto (Euronext NL 0000400653 GTO) (http://www.gemalto.com), the world leader in digital security, announces that Nedbank Ltd, a leading commercial bank in South Africa, is deploying its Ezio eBanking solution to provide their wholesale customers with unmatched online transaction security and superior convenience. Gemalto also provides Nedbank with consulting services, device fulfilment to the end users, and operates remote management of the tokens on behalf of Nedbank Ltd.

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With this fully outsourced solution, Nedbank users simply connect a USB key, which launches a “safe zone” that permits to securely review, approve and digitally sign all types of transactions in a protected online environment

The Ezio Corporate eBanking PKI solution requires no software installation, eliminating costly technical support while guaranteeing high user satisfaction. The user simply connects the USB key to their PC or Mac and the device launches a “safe zone” that permits to securely review, approve and digitally sign all types and amounts of banking transactions within a protected online environment. Ezio also ensures session integrity even if the connection platform is vulnerable. The upgradable, multi-application platform can be remotely managed, enabling the bank to update certificates and deploy new services without the need for new hardware.

“We have implemented and operated Gemalto’s PKI solutions for over ten years, with a very high level of success in providing secure electronic banking solutions,” said Fred Swanepoel, Chief Information Officer of Nedbank Ltd. “In an effort to offer best-in-class Wholesale Banking solutions to our business customers, we have deployed Gemalto’s brand new PKI solution, launched as the Plug and Transact TokenTM, to differentiate ourselves from our competitors by offering secure solutions with enhanced client usability as well improved tracking and business information.”

“There has always been high demand from Nedbank to pioneer our eBanking solutions, with each trial resulting in a full-scale deployment,” added said Håkan Nordfjell, Senior Vice President e-Banking and e-Commerce at Gemalto. “By outsourcing its entire token management system, Nedbank benefits from significant cost reduction in terms of initial investment and running expenses compared to an in-house solution.”

Nedbank’s solution is built on Gemalto’s field-proven Ezio technology, which is already implemented by over 200 financial institutions worldwide and used by over 100 million banking customers worldwide.

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

Gemalto Media Contacts:

Kristel Teyras

Middle East & Africa

+33 1 55 01 57 89

kristel.teyras@gemalto.com

Contact Gemalto’s media relations in your region: http://www.gemalto.com/press/index.html

About Gemalto

Gemalto (Euronext NL0000400653 GTO) (http://www.gemalto.com) is the world leader in digital security (http://www.gemalto.com/companyinfo/digital_security.html) with 2013 annual revenues of €2.4 billion and more than 12,000 employees operating out of 85 offices and 25 research and software development centers, located in 44 countries.

We are at the heart of the rapidly evolving digital society. Billions of people worldwide increasingly want the freedom to communicate, travel, shop, bank, entertain and work – anytime, everywhere – in ways that are enjoyable and safe. Gemalto delivers on their expanding needs for personal mobile services, payment security, authenticated cloud access, identity and privacy protection, eHealthcare and eGovernment efficiency, convenient ticketing and dependable machine-to-machine (M2M) applications. We develop secure embedded software and secure products which we design and personalize. Our platforms and services manage these products, the confidential data they contain and the trusted end-user services made possible.

Our innovations enable our clients to offer trusted and convenient digital services to billions of individuals. Gemalto thrives with the growing number of people using its solutions to interact with the digital and wireless world.

For more information visit http://www.gemalto.com, http://www.justaskgemalto.com, http://blog.gemalto.com, or follow @gemalto on Twitter.

Categories: AFRICA

Statement attributable to the Spokesman for the Secretary-General on Mali

NEW YORK, October 8, 2014/African Press Organization (APO)/ — The Secretary-General is outraged by today’s attack that took place in Mali and that killed one Senegalese peacekeeper and wounded another.

In this second attack in five days against the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA), unidentified assailants launched approximately six explosive rounds towards the Mission’s camp in Kidal. This attack brings the total number of casualties from hostile acts since 1 July 2013 to 31 peacekeepers killed and 91 peacekeepers wounded.

On the eve of the Security Council’s consideration of the situation in Mali, the Secretary-General reminds all parties of their responsibility to prevent attacks against United Nations’ peacekeepers. He underscores that a political solution is the only way to bring sustainable peace and stability to Mali.

The Secretary-General expresses his deepest condolences to the family of the fallen peacekeeper as well as to the Government and people of Senegal and wishes a speedy recovery to the wounded.

Categories: AFRICA

Security Council Press Statement on Mali

NEW YORK, October 8, 2014/African Press Organization (APO)/ — The members of the Security Council condemned in the strongest terms the targeted attack against an United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA) camp in Kidal, Mali, on 7 October 2014, in which one Senegalese peacekeeper of MINUSMA was killed.

The members of the Security Council expressed their deepest condolences to the family of the peacekeeper killed, as well as to the Government and people of Senegal, and to MINUSMA. The members of the Security Council paid tribute to the Senegalese peacekeepers for their sacrifices and continued efforts in MINUSMA.

The members of the Security Council reiterated their full support to MINUSMA and French forces that support it. The members of the Security Council called on the Government of Mali to swiftly investigate this attack and bring the perpetrators to justice and stressed that those responsible for the attack shall be held accountable.

The members of the Security Council underlined that attacks targeting peacekeepers may constitute war crimes under international law. The members of the Security Council reaffirmed the need to combat by all means, in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations, threats to international peace and security caused by terrorist acts, and that any acts of terrorism are criminal and unjustifiable, regardless of their motivation, wherever, whenever and by whomsoever committed.

The members of the Security Council reminded States that they must ensure that measures taken to combat terrorism comply with all their obligations under international law, in particular international human rights, refugee and humanitarian law.

The members of the Security Council reminded the armed groups operating in northern Mali of their commitment to cooperate with the United Nations to prevent attacks against peacekeepers in line with the declaration they signed on 16 September 2014 in Algiers.

The members of the Security Council reiterated their support for MINUSMA to assist the Malian authorities and the Malian people in their efforts to bring lasting peace and stability to their country, as mandated by the Security Council in resolution 2164 (2014).

Categories: AFRICA

Statement by an IMF Mission at the Conclusion of its Visit to Rwanda

KIGALI, Rwanda, October 8, 2014/African Press Organization (APO)/ — An International Monetary Fund (IMF) mission, led by Mr. Paulo Drummond, visited Kigali during September 22 to October 7 to conduct the 2014 Article IV Consultation and the second review of the economic program supported by the Policy Support Instrument (PSI).1 Mr. Drummond, released the following statement at the end of the mission:

“Rwanda’s recent economic performance has been favorable. Growth in the first half of 2014 rebounded to 6.8 percent. Agriculture output also recovered due to favorable climate conditions. The pick-up in growth was broad-based, including construction, real estate, and services. Consumer price inflation remained low at below 1 percent at end-August, driven by low import and food prices.

“The main objectives of the 2014/15 budget remain within reach: greater revenue mobilization, targeting an increase of 1 percentage point in the tax revenue ratio to 16 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP); containing current spending while protecting priority spending; and limiting domestic financing to avoid crowding out the private sector. Aid flows have increased, but donor disbursements are expected to be about 1 percent of GDP lower relative to the 2014/15 budget. The mission welcomes the decision by the authorities to respond and keep the overall budget in line with available resources.

“Policy performance under the IMF-supported program remains satisfactory. All quantitative indicators for end-June 2014 were met. The fiscal position through end-June 2014 was broadly in line with PSI objectives, except for slightly less than anticipated revenue collection; the monetary program was on target; and structural reforms advanced broadly as planned.

“Looking ahead, economic growth is projected at 6 percent in 2014, and end-year inflation is expected to be 3.2 percent. International reserves are targeted to remain at about 4 months of imports.

“The authorities and the mission discussed economic policies and reforms to maintain economic stability and manage a successful transition from a public sector-led, aid-dependent economy to a more private sector-led economy in the medium term. Key to sustaining high growth will be the implementation of the authorities’ strategy to further reduce the cost of doing business and remove impediments to private sector development. In this regard, the mission welcomes the government’s intention to improve project implementation, including through increased oversight, and prepare a targeted public investment plan for infrastructure projects in priority areas, such as water, energy, and transport. The mission also welcomes the authorities’ plan to explore all concessional financing options, private sector participation, including through public private partnership (PPP), before considering non-concessional resources.

“The mission met with Minister of Finance and Economic Planning Amb. Claver Gatete, Governor of the National Bank of Rwanda Hon. John Rwangombwa, as well as with other senior government officials, development partners, and representatives of the business community and civil society.

“Subject to management approval, the IMF’s Executive Board is expected to consider the second PSI review and the Article IV Consultation in December 2014.”

1 The PSI is an instrument of the IMF designed for countries that do not need balance of payments financial support. The PSI helps countries design effective economic programs that, once approved by the IMF’s Executive Board, signal to donors, multilateral development banks, and markets the Fund’s endorsement of a member’s policies (see http://www.imf.org/external/np/exr/facts/psi.htm). Details on Rwanda’s current PSI are available at www.imf.org/rwanda.

Categories: AFRICA