By Nicolas Revise (AFP): WASHINGTON DC— US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton set off Tuesday on a six-nation, 11-day trip to Africa due to focus on regional peace and security, as well as spurring economic growth.
The US top diplomat, whose tour will take in the world’s newest nation South Sudan and Ebola-hit Uganda, departed Tuesday from Andrews Air Force base heading first to Senegal where she will meet President Macky Sall.
Sall’s coalition won a landslide majority in legislative polls earlier this month, scooping up 119 of 150 seats in the national assembly.
Clinton will “deliver a speech applauding the resilience of Senegal’s democratic institutions and highlighting America’s approach to partnership,” State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said in a statement.
A likely highlight of the trip, which will also include stops in Kenya, Malawi and South Africa, will be a meeting with 94-year-old former South African president and democracy icon, Nelson Mandela.
Earlier this month, Clinton’s husband, former president Bill Clinton and her daughter, Chelsea, visited Mandela at his remote childhood village, Qunu, on the eve of celebrations for his 94th birthday.
Mandela’s wife Graca Machel had thanked “the family of Clinton for being with the family of Mandela because each and every birthday president Clinton has always availed himself.”
“As the Mandela family we really appreciate the bond between these two families,” said Machel.
Hillary Clinton was heading off again only two weeks after returning from a trip to Europe, Asia and the Middle East, during which she visited Laos and Mongolia, bringing her tally for nations visited as secretary of state to a record-breaking 102.
Her trip to Juba, the capital of South Sudan, will add yet another notch on her belt.
South Sudan became independent from Sudan on July 9, 2011, but no deal has ever been made to set their frontier, share the revenues from oil reserves that straddle the border, or resolve citizenship disputes.
The United States is leading international warnings to Sudan and South Sudan to step up efforts to reach a peace deal this week or face possible UN sanctions.
The UN Security Council has given the rival neighbors, who this year came close to all-out war, until Thursday to make their peace.
While in South Sudan, Clinton will meet President Salva Kiir “to reaffirm US support and to encourage progress in negotiations with Sudan to reach agreement on issues related to security, oil and citizenship,” Nuland said.
Before returning to the United States on August 10, Clinton will also stop in Uganda, undeterred by reports that the deadly Ebola virus has reached the capital Kampala.
Fourteen people have so far died since Ebola broke out in western Uganda three weeks ago.
President Yoweri Museveni, who will hold talks with Clinton, confirmed on Monday that Ebola, one of the world’s most virulent diseases, had reached Kampala for the first time.
He urged Ugandans to avoid contact to halt the spread of the virus, which can cause both internal and external bleeding, and which is passed on by direct contact with the blood or other body fluids of infected persons.
In Kenya, she will hold talks with top officials, and, “to underscore US support for completing the political transition in Somalia by August 20,” she will also meet Somali President Sharif Sheikh Ahmed, Nuland said.
After visiting Malawi, Clinton will then travel to South Africa accompanied by an American business delegation “to participate in the US-South Africa Strategic Dialogue focusing on the partnership between our two countries.”
Why Ghana’s President said ‘No’ to U.S., France and Nigeria on military intervention in Ivory Coast.
Special report by Chido Nwangwu, Publisher of Houston-based USAfrica and USAfricaonline.com
• For seasoned insights and breaking news on these issues, log on to USAfricaonline.com and USAfrica powered e-groups including Nigeria360 at yahoogroups and USAfrica at googlegroups. Follow USAfrica at Facebook.com/USAfricaChido , Facebook.com/USAfrica247 and Twitter.com/Chido247
USAfrica: As Egypt’s corrupter-in-chief Mubarak slides into history’s dustbin. By Chido Nwangwu. http://usafricaonline.com/2011/01/30/chido-nwangwu-as-egypt-corrupter-in-chief-mubarak-slides-into-historys-dustbin-egyptians-not-waiting-for-obama-and-united-nations/
Nigeria’s Federal Republic of Insecurity. By Chido Nwangwu, Publisher of USAfrica, USAfricaonline.com and the Nigeria360 e-group. http://usafricaonline.com/2011/12/17/nigeria-federal-republic-of-insecurity-by-chido-nwangwu/ : IF any of the Nigerian President’s 100 advisers has the polite courage for the extraordinary task of reminding His Excellency of his foremost, sworn, constitutional obligation to the national interest about security and safety of Nigerians and all who sojourn in Nigeria, please whisper clearly to Mr. President that I said, respectfully: Nigerians, at home and abroad, are still concerned and afraid for living in what I call Nigeria’s Federal Republic of Insecurity. FULL text of commentary at USAfricaonline.com http://usafricaonline.com/2011/12/17/nigeria-federal-republic-of-insecurity-by-chido-nwangwu/
• Nigeria’s bin-Laden cheerleaders could ignite religious war, destabilize Africa. By USAfrica’s Publisher Chido Nwangwu. http://usafricaonline.com/chido.binladennigeria.html http://www.google.com/search?client=safari&rls=en&q=USAfrica+Chido+Nwangwu+al-qaeda+terrrorism+nigeria&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8 http://usafricaonline.com/tag/al-qaeda/ 310 killed by Nigeria’s ‘talibans’ in Bauchi, Yobe n Maiduguri; crises escalate. USAfricaonline.com on July 28, 2009. www.usafricaonline.com/chido.ngrtalibans09.html http://www.groundreport.com/World/310-killed-by-Nigerias-talibans-in-Bauchi-Yobe-n-M/2904584
Related and prior reporting on the Jos crises on USAfrica, click here: http://usafricaonline.com/2011/08/16/10-killed-in-renewed-violence-near-jos/
News archives related to Jos, here http://usafricaonline.com/?s=jos 310 killed by Nigeria’s ‘talibans’ in Bauchi, Yobe n Maiduguri; crises escalate. USAfricaonline.com on July 28, 2009. www.usafricaonline.com/chido.ngrtalibans09.html http://www.groundreport.com/World/310-killed-by-Nigerias-talibans-in-Bauchi-Yobe-n-M/2904584
Trump looks foolish and crazy screaming about Obama’s birth certificates, college records and Muslim connection. By Raynard Jackson
Why Chinua Achebe, the Eagle on the Iroko, is Africa’s writer of the century. By Chido Nwangwu, Publisher of USAfrica, and first African-owned, U.S-based newspaper published on the internet USAfricaonline.com http://usafricaonline.com/chido.achebebest.html
USAfrica: Ikemba ODUMEGWU OJUKWU’s farewell in Aba, today February 28, 2012, reflected a fitting tribute, historically meaningful celebration, proper regard and deserving appreciation of the greatest Igbo, in my opinion, to have ever lived (like him or hate him).
I SALUTE Aba (aka Enyimba city), the robust and fearless town I was born, bred and raised, for giving the Ikemba, our Ochiagha, Gburugburu, Oka oburu uzo, dike na ndu ma n’onwu, mgbadike anyi, a hero’s farewell.
To the Ikemba, may your valiant soul rest in peace and dignity.
We will, and I, Chido Nwangwu, will never forget to continue to tell my generation and the next about your towering courage through tempest and thunder; through sorrow, pain, tears, blood….
•Dr. Chido Nwangwu, Founder & Publisher of USAfrica multimedia networks, first African-owned, U.S-based newspaper published on the internet USAfricaonline.com; and recipient of several journalism and public policy awards, was recently profiled by the CNN International for his pioneering works on multimedia/news/public policy projects for Africans and Americans. http://edition.cnn.com/video/#/video/international/2010/07/29/mpa.african.media.bk.a.cnn.