Health officials administer a polio vaccine to children at a camp for people displaced by Islamist extremists in Maiduguri, Nigeria, Aug. 28, 2016 (AP photo by Sunday Alamba).

Editor’s Note: Every Friday, Andrew Green curates the top news and analysis from and about the African continent. After a decades-long eradication campaign, health officials declared Africa free of wild poliovirus this week, even as they called for ongoing vigilance against a rare mutation of the virus that still circulates on the continent. Wild poliovirus, which is usually transmitted through contaminated water, primarily affects children under five years old, causing irreversible paralysis and even death. As recently as 1996, the virus affected 75,000 African children. That was the year health officials launched the ambitious eradication effort, coordinating continent-wide immunization campaigns […]

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KAMPALA, Uganda—When Maria Ledochowska Nnatabi wears a red beret in her village in eastern Uganda, her neighbors whisper warnings. “My daughter, you’re going to be killed,” they tell her. “Please remove that beret—your life comes first.” She keeps it on anyway. As a 25-year-old youth leader in People Power, a political movement that is shaking up Uganda’s stifled politics, she has decided to stop being afraid. “The thing we have to do as a movement is see how can we get fear out of these people,” she says. Red emerged as the color of political resistance in Uganda in 2017, […]

Colonel-Major Ismael Wague, center, spokesman for the military junta that forced Malian President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita from power, holds a press conference in Kati, Mali, Aug. 19, 2020 (AP photo).

Editor’s Note: Every Friday, Andrew Green curates the top news and analysis from and about the African continent. President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita was forced from power in a military coup Tuesday, upending the political situation in Mali and, with the country at the epicenter of a fight against a growing Islamist insurgency, raising alarms about regional security. The coup unfolded rapidly as mutinying soldiers seized weapons from a garrison outside the capital, Bamako, then descended on the city, capturing Keita and Prime Minister Boubou Cisse. Within hours, Keita appeared on state television to dissolve the government and announce his resignation. […]

The MV Wakashio, a Japanese ship that ran aground off the southeast coast of Mauritius, seen from the coast of Mahebourg, Mauritius, Aug. 12, 2020 (Photo by Kooghen Modeliar-Vyapooree for L’express Maurice via AP Images).

Editor’s Note: Every Friday, Andrew Green curates the top news and analysis from and about the African continent. An emergency cleanup operation has pumped the remaining oil from a Japanese ship that ran aground off Mauritius late last month, but the island nation is just beginning to grapple with the environmental and economic costs of the 1,000 tons of fuel that spilled off its coast. The MV Wakashio, which was en route from Singapore to Brazil, went off course and struck a coral reef about a mile southeast of Mauritius. The ship’s hull began to split open as it was […]

Children run down a street past a mural warning people about the dangers of the coronavirus, Nairobi, Kenya, June 3, 2020 (AP photo by Brian Inganga).

Editor’s Note: Every Friday, Andrew Green curates the top news and analysis from and about the African continent. Bowing to the reality that they cannot prevent the spread of COVID-19 in classrooms full of students and teachers, Kenyan officials canceled the 2020 school year in July, at its midpoint. The implications of the decision will be felt not only domestically, where a nearly year-long break in learning could widen educational disparities, but also across the continent. Kenya initially suspended classes back in mid-March, days after the country’s first COVID-19 case and early in its academic year, which begins in January. […]