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HE HAS FALLEN!!! Sudan’s President Omar al-Bashir has stepped down

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Sudan’s President Omar al-Bashir has stepped down and consultations are under way to set up a transitional council to run the country, government sources and a provincial minister said on Thursday.

The minister of production and economic resources in North Darfur Adel Mahjoub Hussein told the Dubai-based al-Hadath TV that “there are consultations to form a military council to take over power after President Bashir stepped down”.

A Sudanese source told Reuters Bashir was under house arrest with a number of aides at the presidential palace.

The army and security services deployed troops around the defence ministry and on major roads and bridges in Khartoum as thousands of people flocked to an anti-government protest outside the ministry, a Reuters witness said.

Tens of thousands of Sudanese marched through the centre of the capital Khartoum in jubilation, dancing and chanting anti-Bashir slogans.

Protesters outside the defence ministry chanted: “It has fallen, we won.”

State television and radio played patriotic music, reminding older Sudanese of how military takeovers unfolded during previous episodes of civil unrest.

DIVISIVE FIGURE

Bashir, a former paratrooper who seized power in a bloodless coup in 1989, has been a divisive figure who has managed his way through one internal crisis after another while withstanding attempts by the West to weaken him.

Sudan has suffered prolonged periods of isolation since 1993, when the United States added Bashir’s government to its list of terrorism sponsors for harbouring Islamist militants. Washington followed up with sanctions four years later.

Bashir has also been indicted by the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague over allegations of genocide in Sudan’s Darfur region during an insurgency that began in 2003.

The latest crisis has escalated since the weekend, when thousands of demonstrators began camping out outside the Defence Ministry compound in central Khartoum, where Bashir’s residence is located.

Clashes erupted on Tuesday between soldiers trying to protect the protesters and intelligence and security personnel trying to disperse them. At least 11 people died in the clashes, including six members of the armed forces, the information minister said citing a police report.

Since December 19, Sudan has been rocked by persistent protests sparked by the government’s attempt to raise the price of bread, and an economic crisis that has led to fuel and cash shortages

Opposition figures have called for the military to help negotiate an end to Bashir’s nearly three decades in power and a transition to democracy.

The demonstrators at the Defence Ministry had said that they wanted to submit a petition for the armed forces to take their side in their attempt to remove Bashir and his Islamist-backed administration.

Reuters

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NUDE PROTEST!!! Gugu Ncube to appear in court on Thursday

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Gugu Ncube is expected to appear in the Pretoria Magistrate Court on Thursday, after staging a nude protest at Unisa on Wednesday.

Ncube said she was protesting naked because “nudity is a sign of my dignity that l have been stripped of”.

This refers to allegations that she was “unlawfully manhandled” at Unisa for reporting her boss to the university. She alleged that her boss was asking for sexual favours in exchange for her job.

Ncube donned black underwear and a red top, holding a placard in front of her, when she was arrested.

Unisa said the matter was between her and Unisa Centre for Early Childhood Education (UCECE), an external company that was previously sponsored by Unisa.

The university further said it followed due processes regarding Ncube’s sexual harassment complaint in 2018, and suspended its staff members who were accused of the crime. The accused were board members at UCECE at the time.

(Compiled by Nica Schreuder)

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Outage hits Facebook and Instagram users worldwide

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Facebook and Instagram users lost access to the social network’s applications in parts of the world Wednesday as a result of an outage of undetermined origin.

The California giant which has more than two billion users acknowledged the outage after users noted on Twitter they could not access Facebook or had limited functionality.

“We’re aware that some people are currently having trouble accessing the Facebook family of apps. We’re working to resolve the issue as soon as possible,” a Facebook statement said on Twitter.

A short time later, Facebook indicated the outage was not related to an attack aimed at overwhelming the network.

“We’re focused on working to resolve the issue as soon as possible, but can confirm that the issue is not related to a DDoS attack,” Facebook said, referring to what is known as a distributed denial of service cyber strike.

According to the website downdetector.com, outages were heaviest in North America and Europe, but some users appeared to be affected in other regions.

Last November, a Facebook outage was attributed to a server problem and a September 2018 outage was said to be the result of “networking issues.”

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“It could have been my own child back home’!!! ‘Alex Hero’ Vincent Cosa speaks

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Vincent Cosa not only risked his life rescuing a boy stuck halfway on a pipe over the furious Jukskei River in Alexandra township in Johannesburg, but he later stood up for him when his parents wanted to give him a hiding.

Cosa believes it was an “honest mistake” by the young boy, who found himself there because he usually saw children playing in the area.

“I see children play there all the time and when I saw him there, I could not fold my hands and watch from the sidelines. I told myself if he dies I will die with him,” he said.

“He was sitting there crying in fear…I looked at him and thought of my own children…It could have been my own child.”

A video of Cosa’s heroic act went viral on social media on Saturday.

He could be seen in the video using his hands to move over a bulk pipe towards the stranded child.

When he reached him, he convinced the child to get on his back, before carrying him to safety the same way over the pipe, amid cheers and encouragement from onlookers on a nearby bridge.

Cosa not only brought the young boy safely to the riverbank, but went on to talk his parents out of punishing the child, someone he never knew previously, but risked his own life for.

Cosa said the boy’s parents “did not say much, but they wanted to punish him” and he stood against it.

“I believe his was an honest mistake… and he probably got stuck there as the flash flood came.”

When asked what pushed him to take a risk to save the boy, Cosa said he “just had to”.

His hope is that the young boy remembers “that I saved his life”, adding the child “could be a nurse or president tomorrow”.

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