NYTimes: Kenyan Election Contender Asks That Vote Count Be Halted – Election-related tensions rose steadily on Thursday after Raila Odinga’s party, which has been trailing in the polls, said that “preliminary election results had been ‘doctored’ and the counting process needed to be stopped.” The computer equipment charged with counting the vote has broken down, spawning long delays and growing anxiety. Odinga’s running mate insists that the “national tallying process lacks integrity and has to be stopped.” Partial results, with about half the votes counted, show Kenyatta leading Odinga by 53 to 41 percent. (Jeffrey Gettleman)
Reuters: Senator urges early renewal of Africa trade bill – Senator Chris Coons, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on African Affairs called on Thursday for early renewal of the African Growth and Opportunity Act as “part of a broader strategy to counter growing Chinese involvement and influence on the continent of nearly one billion people.” Coons went on to say that “America is losing ground and ceding economic opportunities in Africa to competitors” and that China’s increasing involvement could undermine U.S. goals in the region and should serve as a “wake-up call for enhanced American trade and investment.” (Doug Palmer)
AllAfrica: Top UN Humanitarian Official Urges U.S.$10 Billion in Aid for World’s Hot Spots — The United Nations humanitarian chief has urged the international community to dig into its wallet for the $10.4 billion needed this year to help more than 57 million people around the world. UN agencies and their humanitarian partners need to fill a gap of $10.4 billion to help people in 24 of the world’s most pressing crises to cope with emergencies in 2013, and there is a need for donors to give generously and urgently. Brazil is one of the countries that have been praised for their steady contributions to international humanitarian work and support for regional disaster preparedness and partnerships.
Huffington Post: Reading: The Key to Development and Community Worldwide – Looking back at last week’s celebration of World Read Aloud Day, literacy and schooling have been praised as effective methods to advance the right to education and economic development for women and girls worldwide. In countries like Ghana, training in literacy and financial literacy are among the top priorities for Kumasi market women and food vendors in order to succeed. In Ghana, the Ministry of Education has also set as a top priority the establishment of pre-school affiliated with all primary schools. Training of early childhood educators has begun in the north of the country, which is Ghana’s poorest region. (Susan M. Blaustein)