Foreign news

News from elsewhere other than Cameroon, from International media houses

Nigerian teen who lived in a plastic bowl dies on Christmas day.



Rahma Haruna, 19, who spent her entire life is a plastic bowl has died. The teen passed away last Sunday, December 25, 2016, Christmas evening, following a brief illness.

“Born in Lahadin Makole village in Kano, when Rahma was six months, her arms and legs stopped developing”, LIB reports.

“From six months when she learnt how to sit that was when it began. She didn’t learn how to crawl.” her mother Fadi said.

“She started with a fever and that was it. Then stomach pains. Then her body parts like hands and legs. She cannot use any if the ache strikes.”

Rahma’s tale came to the spotlight earlier this year after freelance photojournalist Sani Maikatanga shared pics of the physically challenged teen. In the pic, she was carried in a bowl by her 10-year old brother, Fahad. Reports say Fahad would usually take Rahma into Kano each day to beg for alms.

(c) Maikatanga

(c) Maikatanga

Her story pulled sympathy from many persons on Kano, who supported in cash and kind. One of them, Ibrahim Jirgi, a journalist  offered the family a wheelchair for Rahma.

Despite her physical challenge,  Rahma was optimistic and viewed life positively. Her greatest dream was to open up a supermarket of her own, according to reports. Unfortunately, that dream was cut short following her demise on  Christmas day.rahma-haruna

May her soul rest in PEACE.


















18-year old Mangli Munda in India is marrying a stray dog. This is to ward off evil spirits, which her family believes she has, her parents say.

The confused “groom” was found by Munda’s father, and arrived as stylishly as any other groom in India would have – in a chauffeured car. According to Munda’s mother, Sheru, they have to spend money on the wedding, as it is the only way to “get rid of her bad luck and ensure the benevolence of the village”.

Such weddings are a tradition in this remote village in the eastern state of Jharkhand, India.

Luckily, Munda will not be forever united with this “husband” of hers. It is believed the tradition will ensure the longevity of a couple, when the bride eventually marries a true groom.

As a say to the union, Munda wasn’t pleased with her parents’ selection of a “groom”. “I am not happy with this marriage”, she says.






Gay rights activists in China are bent on stopping what could be termed a “homosexuality conversion therapy” advanced by some Chinese doctors. Chinese gay communities have organized a series of protests and a video footage of one demonstration showing activists holding up a protest banner reading “Being gay is not an illness”, at a Beijing medical conference.

gay flagThough the modern medical consensus in the West is that there’s no good evidence that sexual orientation can be changed, Chinese doctors argue that homosexuality can be treated. The delegates do not seem convinced. “We cannot support homosexuality,” a doctor said. “Although we try to understand it,” his colleague adds.

Dr Zhou Zhengyou of the Nanjing Urban Psychiatric Consultancy Centre claims to cure up to 70% of his gay patients, although he says it is a long and difficult process. According to Dr. Zhou, he uses counseling alone and does not treat his patients with so-called aversion-therapy offered elsewhere in China. However, to the “aversion therapy”, he says “One common method is electric shock. When the patient has a gay thought, we electrocute them or inject them with drugs that make them sick”.

After decades of refusal, China for the first time has allowed gays to challenge gay conversion therapy in the courts. According to Xiao, the man bringing the case, he went through the treatment in order to gather the evidence and now he hopes a successful court ruling will effectively ban the practice.

A Chinese court is due to hear the case, a first of its kind, brought against a clinic that reportedly offers “gay conversion therapy” by gay rights activists.





232 Small white pearly-like teeth

232 Small white pearly-like teeth

232 teeth have been extracted from the mouth of a 17-year old boy in India. Ashik Gavai had to undergo a seven- hour operation for the teeth, which looked like “small white pearls”, to be extracted.

Speaking to the BBC, Dr Sunanda Dhiware, head of Mumbai’s JJ Hospital’s dental department, said “Ashik’s malaise was diagnosed as a complex composite odontoma where a single gum forms lots of teeth.”

According to Dr. Dhiware, the medical literature on the condition he suffered, is “known to affect the upper jaw and a maximum of 37 teeth have been extracted from the tumour in the past. But in Ashik’s case, the tumour was found deep in the lower jaw and it had hundreds of teeth.” Dr. Dhiware said she had “”not seen anything like this before in my 30-year career”, but was “thrilled to get such an exciting case”.

Ashik was brought in with a swelling in his right jaw, and had suffered for 18 months before travelling from his village to the city for proper medical attention. The surgery was conducted on Monday, and Ashik now has 28 teeth left. Doctors have described his condition as “very rare” and “a world record”.




Joey, a baby kangaroo, saw the light of day from an otherwise thought “male” kangaroo in a Siberian zoo. According to the Barnaul Zoo website, the birth, which was discovered on March 22, 2014, went unnoticed by zoo staff, because birth for kangaroos is a very mysterious and long process.
Joey’s mother was identified as a male at another zoo, before she arrived in Barnaul, and named Chuck. According to the zoo director, Sergey Pisarev, “His mother probably needs to be renamed”.
Joey, being about 15cm when discovered, is said to have a “lovely face and a beautiful little tail”, according to the Barnaul Zoo website. Kangaroos are about the size of a cherry when they are born, and can then spend several months in their mother’s pouch before they start venturing out.


HIV/AIDS and Homosexuality may be turning bed fellows as days go by. The US Center for Disease Control (CDC) has published details of  a rare case of suspected female-to-female HIV infection. According to the CDC, a 46-year-old woman “likely acquired” the virus during a six-month monogamous relationship with a HIV-positive woman in Texas.

The CDC further revealed that the lady was infected with a strain that had a 98% genetic match to that of the originally 43-year old infected partner, who is said to have had a history of heterosexual relationships. Her originally infected partner is also reported to have stopped taking antiretroviral drugs in 2010.

With HIV/AIDS and talks on homosexuality no longer news in the ever growing world, experts however state that homosexuality is learned through a complex combination of shaping factors and personal choices. Suffice enough, since scientists have found no genetic proof that someone can actually be born gay.


Glad to be free

Glad to be free

Father Georges Vandenbeusch is to begin the New Year in an entirely different place from the abode he has occupied for the past seven weeks. The French priest who was kidnapped in Cameroon on November 17was released early Tuesday, December 31, 2013 according to an official statement from the French President. . He was welcomed back in France by President François Hollande, in Paris, on New Year’s Day.

The French cleric was abducted by Nigeria’s Islamist group Boko Haram near Koza in northern Cameroon, close to the border with Nigeria. According to his bishop, “around 15 gunmen burst into the compound in Nguetchewe where the priest worked”. President Hollande paid tribute to the “bravery” of the cleric, who was abducted from his parish by gunmen and moved to Nigeria.

Circumstances under which he was freed are still unclear, but the French Government insists no ransom was paid for his release, even as the French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius added that there had been “discussions”.

The 42-year-old priest revealed he lived under a tree for almost a month and a half, where he had no access to reading material or radio. This, he said, was “terrible boredom sadness and anger because I’m very fond of the parish where I worked”.

Earlier, he told reporters in Cameroon: “I am in great shape, very grateful to all those who worked to free me.” At Villacoublay air base, Mr. Hollande thanked Cameroon’s President, Paul Biya, for his help in securing the cleric’s freedom.

The Islamic Boko Haram Group, which has been designated a terrorist group by the US had earlier this year abducted seven members of a French family called Moulin-Fournier – four of them children – in northern Cameroon and held hostage for two months.


Forever in our hearts

Forever in our hearts (c/afp)

Nelson Mandela, the South African Iroko, breathed his last yesterday December 4, 2013. The 95- year world figure passed away in his home in Johannesburg after battling with an ailing health.

According to the official announcement from President Jacob Zuma, he died shortly before 21:00 local time (19:00 GMT). The resilient Freedom Icon had been receiving intensive medical care at home for a lung infection after spending three months in hospital.

His journey on earth was a rich one, as the Freedom icon was considered a born leader in his homeland. Born in 1918, Rolihlahla Dalibhunga Mandela was raised in the village of Mvezo in the Transkei in the Eastern Cape. He was one of 13 children from a family with close links to the royal house of the Thembu people.

Remembered for his freedom fight, the winner of the Nobel Peace laureate in 1993 preached reconciliation despite a 27-year prison term he bore for the vision he had for the South African people.

BBC correspondents say Mr. Mandela’s body will be moved to a mortuary in the capital, Pretoria, and the funeral is likely to take place next Sunday, December 15 after official mourning that is expected to last 10 days. President Zuma mentioned that Madiba would receive a state burial, and flags flown at half-mast until after the funeral, in remembrance of the great African democrat.

Barely five months since he blew his 95th candle, life was blown out of him yesterday. The “greatest son our nation has had” as president Zuma put it, would be remembered through onward generations, as South Africa, Cameroon, Africa and the World at large bid



Elwood: reputed for the ugliest dog look

Elwood: reputed for the ugliest dog look

Elwood, the Chihuahua and Chinese Crested cross whose unusual appearance won him the 2007 title of World’s ugliest dog, has died at the age of eight. The 2.3kg (5lb) dog died on Thanksgiving morning last Thursday at his home in the US state of New Jersey.

“It was sudden,” said owner Karen Quigley, 52, who adopted Elwood in 2006. “He was in my arms.”Quigley said her vet believed he might have had some form of cancer. He had been dealing with some heath issues in recent months but appeared to be doing well.

Elwood was dark and nearly hairless, except for a tuft of white hair on his forehead, and had a long, protruding tongue. After winning the annual world’s ugliest dog contest at the Marin-Sonoma County Fair in 2007, fans from around the world sent him letters and postcards and he was often referred to as Yoda or E.T.

After adopting him, owner Karen Quigley wrote Everyone Loves Elwood, a children’s book about self-acceptance.  “Elwood had a magical power to make people smile and laugh that made him very attractive, especially to children; He would pose for photos with people at charitable events. He was the most beautiful dog I’ve ever seen. He taught children it’s OK to be different” said Quigley.

Elwood appeared at more than 200 charity events before his retirement earlier this year.


The fast and furious star was snatched by the cold hands of death on Saturday, November 30, 2013, in a car crash in California.

Rest in Peace

Rest in Peace

Paul Walker, 40, was a passenger in a Porsche sports car driven by a friend – who also died – when it crashed north of Los Angeles. The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s department said the crash happened in the community of Valencia. It said deputies found a car engulfed in flames when they responded to a report of a collision. Two people found in the car were pronounced dead at the scene.

“It is with a truly heavy heart that we must confirm that Paul Walker passed away today in a tragic car accident while attending a charity event for his organization, ‘Reach Out Worldwide’,” the statement on the actor’s Facebook page said.

Walker began acting as a young boy when his mother, a model, took him to auditions for commercials. After drifting away from acting, he got his big break when a casting director remembered him from years before, tracked him down and gave him a role in the TV series ‘Touched by an Angel’. Walker later won a recurring part in the soap ‘The Young and the Restless’ before moving on to supporting roles in teen films in the late 1990s with ‘Varsity Blues’, ‘She’s All That’ and ‘The Skulls’.

In action on 'Fast and Furious 6'

In action on ‘Fast and Furious 6’

After the success of the first Fast & Furious film, Walker became the leading man for the second installment when Vin Diesel dropped out. Walker played undercover agent Brian O’Conner in the Fast & Furious movies. The first film of the franchise was released in 2001 and the seventh which is in development began filming in September but has not been completed. It had been scheduled for release in July. Walker was one of the leading protagonists, along with Vin Diesel and Michelle Rodriguez.

Walker has also filmed Hurricane Katrina drama Hours, which is due to be released on 13 December. Another forthcoming film is Brick Mansions, a remake of the French action film District B13, for film studio Relativity. Walker also starred in the suspense drama Hours, a movie that is set for release this month.

With his buddy, co-star Diesel

With his buddy, co-star Diesel

In grief, Diesel said in a post on Instagram: “Brother I will miss you very much. I am absolutely speechless. Heaven has gained a new Angel. Rest in Peace.”


The Kenyan police’s response to a recent gang rape has sparked up a wave of petitions, against what is considered a shameful response. According to reports, alleged culprits of gang-rape, after being arrested by the police, were simply asked to cut grass around the police offices.

Kenyans have taken to the streets, carrying placards in protest to that decision, for justice to be served a 16 year old teenager, named Liz, for identity protection, who was attacked and repeatedly gang-raped in the village of Busia in Western Kenya, on her return from a grand-father’s funeral. After being gang-raped, she was thrown unconscious in a pit latrine where she broke her back. She now moves in a wheelchair.

About .2 million Kenyans have signed a petition to the police, asking for the immediate arrest and prosecution of the 3 alleged culprits. An online petition on her plight was made by activist Nebila Abdulmelik, calling attention to justice for Liz.


Rex, the iron human

Rex, the iron human

True to the statement that “wonders would never end”, only the end may be a wonder. Rex was recently presented to the world as the first bionic man. Though with a human face, he has artificial organs, synthetic blood, robotic limbs and he can speak and listen, too.

Robotic limbs

Robotic limbs of the “human”

Unveiled at a special exhibition at London’s Science Museum this week, the artificial human was created for a Channel 4 documentary called How to Build a Bionic Man. The project cost £640k ($1m) and showcases the latest achievements and advancements in bionic technology and prosthetic science.

According to Channel 4’s science editor Tom Clarke, “his parts aren’t designed to work together, but each one either is, or soon could be, part of a living human being.”


The African Union has cried foul, to seeming bias, demonstrated by the International Criminal Court, toward African Heads of States.

With both Kenyan and Sudanese presidents facing ICC cases, African leaders have long complained that the court unfairly targets them.

 Uhuru Kenyatta, facing charges for violence after 2007 elections

Uhuru Kenyatta, facing charges for 2007 post elections violence

Addressing the summit, Mr. Kenyatta accused the court of bias and “race-hunting”, AFP reports.”The ICC has been reduced into a painfully farcical pantomime, a travesty that adds insult to the injury of victims. It stopped being the home of justice the day it became the toy of declining imperial powers.”

“In advanced countries, sitting presidents are not hauled before courts. It’s for the courts to wait for the president to finish their terms before proceedings can be instituted,” Amina Mohamed, Kenya’s foreign minister told a news conference.

The AU leaders, meeting in Addis Ababa, agreed to back immunity for any sitting African head of state. The African Union summit in Ethiopia has demanded a deferral of The Hague trial of Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta, due to start in November.

According to Mark Kersten’s (London School of Economics researcher, who set up the Justice in Conflict blog) word to the BBC, “The Kenyatta and Ruto trials have brought tensions to a head.” “The perception that the court is neo-colonialist and anti-African has burgeoned and solidified [in the AU].”

Though the AU has amongst others agreed on a resolution stating no sitting African head of state should appear before an international court, senior figures including Kofi Annan have criticized plans to quit the ICC.

All the same, Ethiopian Prime Minister and AU chairman Hailemariam Dessalegn said the summit was not a crusade against the ICC but a call for the court to address Africa’s concerns seriously.



South African athlete Oscar Pistorius has resumed training, weeks before he is due back in court over the killing of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, scheduled for August.

A statement on his website said the “low-key routine” was not “a formal return to athletics”, but a way of helping him “process his trauma”.

Oscar Pistorius, 26, is a double amputee who won gold at the London 2012 Paralympic Games and also competed at the Olympics. He denies murdering Reeva, saying he shot her after mistaking her for an intruder.

On Friday, his family released video of him training at the High Performance Centre in the capital, Pretoria.  In the video, Mr Pistorius can be seen putting on his prostheses before lightly sprinting on a track.

The statement on his website said that his focus “remains entirely on the court case”. “Oscar is not contemplating a formal return to athletics and his training is not aimed at preparing for competition,” the statement further read.


A Californian woman convicted of severing her ex-husband’s penis and throwing it in a kitchen waste disposal has been sentenced to life imprisonment.

According to prosecutors, Catherine Kieu attacked her former spouse with a knife in July 2011 after drugging him with sleeping pills. Prosecutors in Orange County, California further said she also tied him to the bed before committing the act.

Kieu , 50, told officers responding to the scene that her husband deserved it, and it’s clear she may seek parole after seven years. Her lawyers held she had mental health issues caused by abuse as a child and by her ex-husband. Police have revealed the couple was going through a divorce at the time of the attack


Fox News has been sued by Angela Rodriguez, mother to three children of a US man whose suicide was inadvertently broadcast live on Fox News Channel, claiming infliction of emotional distress..

Immediately following the broadcast of the death, the Fox News presenter apologised to the audience, saying the incident should have been censored using a delay. Subsequently, a Fox News executive also apologised and put the broadcast down to “severe human error”.

Despite the apology, the mother of JoDon Romero’s children aged about nine, 13 and 15, wrote in a court filing in the US state of Arizona that the children suffered severe emotional and psychological trauma.

It should be recalled that on 28 September, 2012, JoDon Romero, 33,  shot himself in the head at the end of an hour-long police chase after stealing a car at gunpoint, as a news helicopter flew overhead. Police officials said he had a long criminal history and was wanted for parole violations.

Filed earlier this month, the suit against Fox News Channel and its parent company News Corp alleges that on that day, Romero’s children heard rumours at school of a suicide on live television. They went home and searched for the footage on YouTube, only realising it was their father while watching.

Ms Rodriguez says her children “have been, and continue to be, severely traumatised” by the footage and have shown symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder, including flashbacks and sleep disturbances.She further says the elder two children have not returned to school since their father’s death. She files them for unspecified damages.



A British man has survived a fall from the 15th floor of a building in New Zealand, local media report. According to reports, Tom Stilwell fell from his neighbour’s balcony in his apartment block in Auckland at 02:00 local time on Sunday (14:00 GMT on Saturday)

Mr Stilwell was trying to lower himself onto his balcony, which was directly below his neighbour’s, when he fell, police said.His friends said that he had bone fractures and internal injuries, but was “fine” and “a very lucky man”.

Surprisingly, he was awake and laughing this Monday, but had no recollection of what happened, his friends told New Zealand newsgroup Fairfax Media.

In a statement, New Zealand police said: “It appears that the man was locked out of his 14th floor apartment. He fell while attempting to climb down the outside of the building from a 15th floor apartment directly above his, in an effort to gain access via his balcony.” There were all the same “no suspicious circumstances surrounding the fall”, the statement added.



Pope Francis today June 16, 2013, blessed some 35,000 Harley-Davidson bikers at the St Peter’s Square in Rome. The bikers, marking the 110th anniversary of Harley-Davidson, joined Catholic pilgrims for a Mass and a blessing by Pope Francis

The Pope delivered a pro-life sermon, offering prayers “for every human life, especially the most fragile, defenseless and threatened’, without speaking directly about abortion or contraception.

After the Mass, the Argentine Church leader spoke to disabled people in the square, including one on a motorcycle wearing Harley garb.

The bikers who flanked the Italian capital for the event, attended concerts at Ostia beach and took part in a parade.

Earlier in the week, the US maker of the iconic bikes gave the pontiff two white classic Harleys for the Vatican police force to use.



A Japanese man, recognised as the world’s oldest living person, and the oldest man recorded in history, has died aged 116.According to a Government statement,Jiroemon Kimura died of natural causes on Wednesday June 12, 2013 in a hospital in Kyotango, Kyoto.

In December, Guinness World Records recorded Mr Kimura as the oldest man ever verified to have lived.He reportedly had seven children, 14 grandchildren, 25 great-grandchildren, and 13 great-great-grandchildren.

Mr Kimura was born on 19 April 1897, the same year as aviator Amelia Earhart. He worked in his local post office until retiring and was said to have helped his son with his farming until he was around 90 years old.

He became the world’s oldest living person in December, when the previous title-holder died.Japanese woman Misao Okawa from Osaka, who is 115 years old, will most probably inherit the title of world’s oldest living person, reports say, as she is already considered the world’s oldest living woman