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Satchu's Rich Wrap-Up
Thursday 14th of January 2016

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Macro Thoughts

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10-AUG-2015 “The end is nigh’’ for crude oil and oil producers from Caracas to Luanda, from Riyadh to Abuja

Oil based economies are going to contract, currencies which have
already collapsed are going to be routed and Greek- style austerity
will be the order of the day. The melt-down is coming.

Home Thoughts

Last Year my Eldest Daughter Aysha whom I adore endured a set back in
her A Levels. It caught us all by surprise. Well she resat her Exams
and yesterday we learnt she got an A Star, an A and a B. And we are so

And I told Aysha - ''Its not about who you are when you are up. Its
how you stand up when you have fallen down''

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Biggie & Pac, The Suge Knight Killings (Documentary) 26:00 @YouTube

To judge a character of a Man - judge how he comes back from hardship

Layla also got 87% in her English S Level [which given how
mono-syllabic she can be] was another fine result.

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Obama's State of the Union Optimism at Odds With Voter Anxiety #SOTU @Potus [Thats called Leadership]
Law & Politics

In true Obama fashion, it was a call for hope over fear. He argued
against the gloom dominating Republican campaign rhetoric.

If it sounded familiar, that’s because it contained echoes of the
optimistic tone and unifying vision of the 2004 Democratic National
Convention speech that thrust Obama onto the national stage.

Still, Obama’s valedictory report on the nation provided him a chance
to brag. The auto industry “just had its best year ever," he reminded
Americans. "Gas under two bucks a gallon ain’t bad, either.”

The U.S has gone from losing jobs at a rate of 800,000 a month when he
took office after a financial crash to posting the biggest
back-to-back annual employment gains in 2014 and 2015 since the boom
years of the 1990s. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index more than doubled
and the jobless rate of 5 percent is close to what many economists
consider full employment.

“Anyone claiming that America’s economy is in decline is peddling
fiction,” he said in one of many pointed, if indirect, references to
the rhetoric of the Republican presidential campaign field.

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“If you’re not drinking coffee tomorrow reading about how this thing got resolved''
Law & Politics

“This administration is in a no-win situation with Iran. Once you
start dancing with a bear, the only problem is, you can’t let go,” he
said. “This administration has no choice but to keep on dancing.”


The Speed of the release is the Message.

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South Korea Fires Warning Shots Over Border as Tensions Rise
Law & Politics

South Korea’s military fired warning shots after spotting an
unidentified aerial vehicle approaching its heavily fortified border
with North Korea, in the latest incident fueling tensions stemming
from Pyongyang’s fourth nuclear test last week.

The device appeared around 2:10 p.m. local time, prompting the South
Korean army to broadcast a warning, the Joint Chiefs of Staff in Seoul
said in a text message. It returned northward immediately after the
shots were fired.

“North Korea may be trying to raise anxiety among South Korean troops
by deliberately letting them spot its drone,” said Kim Jin Moo, a
North Korea researcher at South Korea’s state-run Korea Institute for
Defense Analyses in Seoul. “If not, it could be part of a scouting
mission before North Korea devises a plan to target South Korean

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Refugees aboard a train at the Macedonia-Greek border on Tuesday. Photographer: Anadolu Agency/Getty Images
Law & Politics

The number of refugees entering Europe in the first 10 days of 2016 is
already three times the level in all of January 2015


This can go 10x versus 2015.

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"It’s a well-calculated target aimed at undermining Turkey’s tourism industry," said Oytun Orhan
Law & Politics

Tourism directly accounts for 4.7 percent of the economy compared with
7 percent in neighboring Greece, according to the World Travel and
Tourism Council. The government plans to boost receipts to $35.5
billion by the end of 2017 from $31.5 billion last year.

German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said eight of his
countrymen were killed and another nine severely injured. “For many
years, terror hasn’t impacted us Germans as it has today,” he said.
“We need to clarify who the assailant is swiftly, and clarify the

"Every vulnerable emerging market has its idiosyncratic weaknesses,”
Nicholas Spiro, managing director at Spiro Sovereign Strategy in
London. “Turkey’s is the dramatic escalation in geopolitical risk
which is plastered over TV screens and newspapers the world over and
has a corrosive impact on sentiment."

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If Erdogan sounds defensive, it’s because many Turks hold him personally responsible for what they see as blowback from both the PKK and Islamic State
Law & Politics

As for Islamic State, its adherents hide in plain sight among the 2
million or more Syrian refugees in Turkey. In his attempts to dislodge
President Bashar Al-Assad from power in Syria, Erdogan turned a blind
eye to extremist fighters crossing the border, including Islamic State
fighters. This allowed the group to put down roots in Turkey.

In recent months, security forces have at last begun to sweep up
Islamic State cells in Turkey and close the border. But as the
response to last year’s suicide bombing in Ankara -- the worst in
modern Turkish history -- showed, the government remains consumed by
its focus on a war with Kurds it did much to fan.

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Currency Markets at a Glance WSJ
World Currencies

Euro 1.0890
Dollar Index 98.93
Japan Yen 117.38
Swiss Franc 1.0067
Pound 1.4398
Aussie 0.6926
India Rupee 66.963
South Korea Won 1211.79
Brazil Real 4.0191
Egypt Pound 7.8301
South Africa Rand 16.6341

Yen Gains Versus Major Peers as Traders Focus on Oil, Equities


Dollar Index 1 Year Chart INO 98.91 [110.00 Target in 2016]


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Zimbabwe declines comment on Mugabe health rumours

 Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe's spokesman declined to comment on
Wednesday on rumours that the 91-year-old leader had suffered a heart
attack, saying a response to the latest speculation about his health
was "unnecessary".

Spokesman George Charamba's response was to a text message sent by
Reuters asking for an update on Mugabe's health.

The online Zimbabwe news website Zim Eye (www.zimeye.net) published a
letter on Tuesday by an anonymous author saying Mugabe was "reported
to have collapsed after suffering a heart attack while on holiday with
his family".


President Mugabe's Mother lived to over 100. His longevity DNA is not
to be doubted

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Anxious times for Africa's oil giants as commodities boom starts to bust Guardian

As leaders of some African countries brace themselves for a rocky
financial year, they might reflect ruefully on the words of Polish
author Ryszard Kapuściński: “Oil is a resource that anaesthetises
thought, blurs vision, corrupts.”

As the wheels come off a decade-long commodities supercycle, Africa’s
oil-producing and metal-rich giants find themselves facing a dangerous
mix of lower export revenues, depreciating currencies, declining
financial flows from China, falling domestic demand and higher debt
costs following last month’s US interest rate rise.

For the continent’s oil importers, there is a different story: lower
prices mean more money for governments, and possibly cheaper goods.

For those on both sides of the oil coin, the first year of the new
global development agenda – introduced with much fanfare in September
– is a challenging start to a 15-year project to enshrine sustainable
development in national policies across the globe.

The question is: have some African countries squandered their chance
to invest in the building blocks of sustainable development, and is it
now too late?

Since September 2014, the price of Brent crude oil, the global
benchmark, has plummeted from around $100 (£70) a barrel to below $30
this week. Prices for other commodities, such as copper and zinc, have
also fallen, mainly because of slowing demand in China, once hailed as
the no-strings economic saviour for African countries tired of dealing
with former colonial powers.

More than 80% of African exports are still linked to commodities, and
particularly extractive industries.

“The commodities supercycle is dead in the water … It’s already sent
some big African sub-Saharan economies into a tailspin,” said Aly Khan
Satchu, an independent trader in Nairobi. “In Zambia, the currency has
pretty much collapsed. If you put $100 in the Zambian market at the
beginning of last year, at the end of the year, you would be taking
out 14.” But Satchu remained bullish on east Africa.

“The sharply reduced oil prices have really improved the dynamics of
the east African economies because we are still net oil importers …
you are already seeing it improve the current account deficit in
Tanzania and Kenya, and I think it’s going to provide some momentum to
our economies,” he said.

In early January, the World Bank warned that a synchronised slowdown
in the biggest emerging markets, the so-called Brics, could be
intensified by a fresh bout of economic turmoil.

In its annual Global Economic Prospects, the bank said growth in
developing countries reached a post-crisis low of 4.2% in 2015, down
from 4.9% in 2014, and warned that 2016 could be another difficult
year. In sub-Saharan Africa, growth slowed to 3.4% last year, and was
expected to rise to 4.2% this year.

According to the International Monetary Fund, Africa’s real gross
domestic product fell from 5% in 2014 to 3.7% in 2015 and is expected
to climb to 4.3% this year.

Debt will be a problem. Some oil-producing African countries have
accepted loans from China, and some of these are collateralised by oil
priced at a level that is now just a fond memory. To add to their
woes, the cost of their dollar-denominated debt is rising; the US
Federal Reserve said December’s rate hike is just the start of a
“gradual” tightening cycle.

Ibrahim Mayaki, the head of the New Partnership for Africa’s
Development, said the sustainability of African debt is in question as
repayment services – already a major portion of state budgets – look
set to increase significantly.

“This will lead states to make tough choices, from the amputation of
certain infrastructure investments to the postponement of social
services,” Mayaki said, adding that he hoped these cuts would not
affect investments vital for development, such as infrastructure and

“African governments will therefore have to steel themselves to
diversify their financial resources and to reclaim industrial
development policies,” Mayaki said.

This gloomy economic outlook will weigh on efforts to implement the
sustainable development goals. At a financing meeting in Ethiopia last
year, there was consensus that domestic resource mobilisation, as well
as traditional aid and private finance, would be needed to turn the
paper goals into real policies – at a cost of “trillions not

But as growth slows, tax revenues are likely to fall, particularly in
oil-producing countries. For some governments, the problems have
already started.

“Those countries that were just making it now have tipped over the
edge because they are going to find it very expensive to borrow
international money. They are being squeezed, they don’t have enough
of a productive economy and also taxes will slow down very, very
dramatically,” said Satchu.

Africa’s top oil producer, Nigeria, is facing pressure to devalue the
naira, which has come under extreme pressure despite unorthodox
monetary policies aimed at restricting the supply of dollars. Satchu
says a devaluation is inevitable, and that the tough market conditions
may force necessary policy changes.

“It’s an irony that Nigeria is sending any of its oil out to be
refined only to import it back,” he said. “It’s definitely been a
wake-up call. You find policymakers tend to make changes when their
feet are held to the fire; this is the equivalent of having their feet
held to the fire.”

Amadou Sy, director and senior fellow at the Brookings Institute’s
Africa Growth Initiative, said African countries needed a two-pronged
approach to accelerate growth: they need to implement macroeconomic
policies to cope with external shocks, and stay the course in bringing
in medium- to long-term structural policies.

“As the continent takes its first steps in meeting the sustainable
development goals, it is crucial that it achieves faster and better
quality economic growth … and relies on more engines of growth, such
as agriculture and manufacturing, than exports of oil and other
commodities,” he wrote in a recent report.

For Satchu, the hardest-hit African countries will be forced to call
on the IMF for help in raising money on international markets, as
oil-producer Ghana has already been forced to do.

“It’s really unprecedented the kind of pressure that policymakers are
under and quite a lot of these guys are making a lot of idiotic and
schoolboy errors,” he said, citing as an example the Zambian
president’s call for prayer rallies for the country’s embattled

“The room for error is no longer there, and mistakes will be badly punished.”

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Hunger Stalks Southern Africa as El Nino Decimates Harvests

The price of white corn, a staple, has more than doubled since the
start of 2015, while the yellow variety that’s a base for animal feed
has advanced 63 percent on the South African Futures Exchange. Both
cereals have traded at record highs this month.

“It’s Zimbabwe,” he said. “I don’t know if it’s God or the ancestors,
but it seems to me that we’re being made to suffer disaster after
disaster after disaster. Perhaps we are being punished.”

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Tourists flock to world’s biggest lava lake, in a country rife with danger Times Jerome Starkey

There is no nanny state at the lip of a volcano. After a curt warning
from mountain rangers that the edge of the crater is unstable — so
don’t get too close — the tourists who have hiked to Mount
Nyiragongo’s summit, 3,470m (11,000ft) above sea level, are free to
gaze at the world’s biggest lava lake without so much as a hand rail
to steady them.

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Angola: The War On Social Media and the Trial of Activists

Following the president's outline of his war on social media, Judge
Januário Domingos is making history by being the first to hear a case
of a political joke on Facebook that has displeased the regime.

Yesterday, the judge of the Luanda Provincial Court questioned a
Catholic priest, Father Jacinto Pio Wakussanga, for being part of an
imaginary government, generated in a playful Facebook discussion, as
the head of the National Electoral Commission. In court, the priest
told the judge that he had heard through social media about this
imaginary government and thought it was just a joke.

Last May, a lawyer Albano Pedro set up an open online forum on his
Facebook page to entice discussants to come up with names for what
would be an ideal government of national salvation. The leader of the
millennial religious sect "The Light of the Day", José Julino
Kalupeteka, who has been in jail since last April, was chosen by the
participants as president of the Republic. On April 16, 2015, police
and military forces massacred Kalupeteka's faithful, after he resisted
arrest in the Central Highland Province of Huambo.

South Africa All Share Bloomberg -4.5% 2016


48,412.80 -16.62 -0.03%

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Egypt Pound versus The Dollar 3 Month Chart INO 7.83

Egypt EGX30 Bloomberg -11.43% 2016


6,205.23 -258.69 -4.00%

President Buhari and the Anxious Expectations of Nigerians


The passing away of 2015 did not go away quietly. At the tail end of
that year, Nigerians were entertained with a sad comedy of Abuja
profligate monoculture of graft and corruption in high places. We read
through confessions of how Nigeria’s petrol wealth was squandered to
indulge the appetite of few avaricious and greed-driven elite and
their systemic stripping of this nation’s money among themselves. The
repulsive evil of corruption was exposed and its fall out of class
collaboration and collusion astounded our sense of moral indignation
and national pride. It was the first time Nigerians will see a sitting
president who took on the fight against corruption, not as a lip
service, but as an obsessive cause worth dying for.

The mantra of CHANGE which has remained the slogan for the redemption
of Nigeria acquired more force, and along its tortuous journey,
nationwide support of Nigerians for the evolving vision of President
Mohammadu Buhari. However, the overwhelming support for President
Buhari from most Western nations, to Ms Christine Lagarde, the IMF
Managing Director, to the man in the streets is not without its own
condition: get Nigeria out of trouble and calm the anxious
expectations of Nigerians with the fierce urgency it requires.

Nigerian Stock Exchange All Share Index fell 3.3 percent on Wednesday
to 25,186.34 by 1:11 p.m. in Lagos, the lowest level since September


Nigerian Stock Exchange All Share Index fell 3.3 percent on Wednesday
to 25,186.34 by 1:11 p.m. in Lagos, the lowest level since September
2012 and the most among 93 global indexes tracked by Bloomberg after
Egypt. The measure is down 12 percent since the previous peak on Dec.
31, more than the 10 percent drop that indicates a market correction.

Nigeria All Share Bloomberg -12.36% 2016


25,103.0 -931.88 -3.58%

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Explorers traverse the Okavango Delta to bring the beauty and wonder of the African wetland wilderness to the public through open-source and real-time data.

Traveling along a river in a mokoro (a shallow-water canoe propelled
using a pole while standing) through one of the numerous channels that
make up the alluvial fan that is the Okavango Delta, you will catch
glimpses of hippos, crocodiles, elephants, lions and countless other
species of birds and mammals, living in Africa’s last remaining
wetland wilderness. That is what Steve Boyes, Jer Thorp, Shah Selbe
and other National Geographic Explorers saw as they traversed this
truly wild landscape in the summer of 2015 as they journeyed Into the

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Mokoros, filled with gear and crew, are shallow-water canoes used to traverse the varying depths of the rivers and canals surrounding the Delta. Photo credit: IntoTheOkavango.org

Sail unfurled, a dhow heads out to the Bazaruto islands
(Photograph by Massimo Bassano)


“Welcome to my office,” he says. “Beats a classroom, doesn’t it?” Yes,
it does. “Mozambique—it’s the Wild West out here,” he exclaims. “But I
love it. The ocean, the people, the food …”

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US denies direct support for Kenya’s oil pipeline
Kenyan Bonds - Long Term

In a statement on Wednesday, the US said that Mr Godec did not say
that the US government would help finance the construction of the

“He expressed support for a proposal by a consortium of American
companies to participate in the Lamu Port-South
Sudan-Ethiopia-Transport (Lapsset) Corridor Project, which
conceptually includes an oil pipeline component,” said the statement.

Godec is then quoted as mentioning in a January 5 meeting with Energy
and Petroleum Cabinet Secretary Charles Keter that “a Power Africa
analysis indicates that Kenya will need $14-18 billion to finance
renewable energy power development, and not a pipeline.”

A US publication, the Wall Street Journal on January 10 raised
questions on whether US taxpayers will allow their money to be spent
in Kenya.

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Kenya is run by mafia-style cartels, says chief justice
Kenyan Economy

Speaking to a Dutch newspaper, Willy Mutunga claimed organised crime
stretched across all of Kenyan society and had “never been worse”.

“The influence of the cartels is overwhelming,” he said. “They are
doing illegal business with politicians. If we do not fight [them], we
become their slaves.”

As president of Kenya’s supreme court, Mutunga admitted the legal
system was ill-equipped to tackle the problem. “You are taking these
people into a corrupt investigating system, through a corrupt
anti-corruption system, and a corrupt judiciary,” he said.

“In Kenya, the counterfeit economy is worth $1.2bn annually according
to the Kenya Association of Manufacturers. It has got involved in
supporting politicians in a big way,” he claimed.

Citing a recent publication by Journalists for Justice exposing the
Kenyan army’s links to Islamist group al-Shabaab in the Somali port of
Kismayo, Mutunga said the government had become closely tied up in
illegal trading.

“When a racket as in Kismayo prevails, what is the role of the state?” he asked.

“The connection between cartels and politicians must be broken... The
status quo is deeply rooted, but there comes a time when the leaders
have to say ‘and now we fight it out’,” Mutunga said.

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by Aly Khan Satchu (www.rich.co.ke)
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January 2016

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