Southern Africa

Heightened HIV risk for people with disabilities

MELBOURNE, 29 July 2014 (IRIN) - Inaccessible health services for people with disabilities (PWD), combined with social stigma and violence, contribute to high HIV risk - a gap that must be filled if the disabled are not to remain disproportionately vulnerable to HIV/AIDS, say health experts and activists. full report

New permits offer few gains for resettled Zimbabwean farmers

HARARE, 24 July 2014 (IRIN) - Newly introduced land permits for resettled smallholder farmers will bring little gain to the thousands of beneficiaries who are struggling to get loans from banks to finance their operations, say farmers’ organizations and analysts. full report

Breaking the poverty trap – the power of cash grants

NEW YORK, 10 July 2014 (IRIN) - A cash injection of as little as US$12 per month for an impoverished family could determine whether a child eats properly or goes to school or not. With cash transfer programmes around the world now having a profound impact on the lives of poor people, the debate is less about whether to implement them than how to do so. full report

New thinking needed on food aid for refugees in Africa

JOHANNESBURG, 7 July 2014 (IRIN) - The World Food Programme (WFP) and the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) have launched an urgent appeal to address a funding shortfall that has already resulted in food ration cuts for a third of all African refugees. As of mid-June, nearly 800,000 refugees in 22 African countries have seen their monthly food allocations reduced, most of them by more than half. full report

Cape Town poor tap into new food markets

CAPE TOWN, 27 June 2014 (IRIN) - It is a Saturday in Cape Town. In many parts of South Africa’s second largest metropolitan area people mill about, inspecting baby cabbages and shitake mushrooms at one of a dozen or so relatively new farmers’ markets trading in organic or “natural” and - perhaps equally important to these consumers - local produce. full report

Madagascar back in the US trade fold

ANTANANARIVO, 27 June 2014 (IRIN) - As anticipated, the US government has reinstated preferential trade status for Madagascar on its 54th independence day anniversary, providing hope for the country’s embattled economy. full report

Stemming Zimbabwe’s urban influx

HARARE, 24 June 2014 (IRIN) - A government-approved programme to give micro-loans and training to young people in rural areas is helping to stem the influx of migrants to Zimbabwe’s urban centres full report

Swaziland braces itself for AGOA exit

MBABANE, 17 June 2014 (IRIN) - The threat of Swaziland being suspended from a US preferential trade agreement for poor progress in meeting democratic norms is threatening the livelihoods of tens of thousands of worker in a country where unemployment is already above 40 percent. full report

Unusual suspects – women and gangs in South Africa*

HANOVER PARK, CAPE TOWN, 11 June 2014 (IRIN) - Gangsterism has a long tradition in South Africa’s Cape Flats. But the popular image of swaggering, macho young men is incomplete: women have always had a role, albeit overlooked, in that history. full report

Young Zimbabweans miss out on HIV testing

HARARE, 9 June 2014 (IRIN) - Young people with HIV are dying in increasing numbers in Zimbabwe at a time when HIV-related deaths are declining for all other age groups. full report