- The deadline has set in for nationals of Lesotho, South Africa and Swaziland, who will now have to adhere to strict visa rules to enter the United Kingdom.
The UK visa list which requires nationals of of the three Southern African countries to obtain a visitor visa before entering the UK even if they had an existing entry stamp to the UK in their passport, will be effective from 1 July this year.
According to British officials, there will be no more exemptions as transitional arrangements had now come to an end.
"From 1 July 2009, all nationals of South Africa, Lesotho and Swaziland will need a visa to travel to the UK without exception as the transitional arrangements will have ended," a statement declared, further saying that from the declared date, all individuals from the three countries will instead need to queue to see an officer at passport control, regardless of whether they had previously been under the transitional arrangement before.
The British government announced a list of countries under scrutiny late last year, with a number of states such as Botswana, Mauritius and others taking a leap to make corrections and improvements in their passports and issuance.
Lesotho has been said to be one of the countries with high risks of its passports falling into the hands of undeserving foreigners and possible criminals.
afrol News - It is called "financial inclusion", and it is a key government policy in Rwanda. The goal is that, by 2020, 90 percent of the population is to have and actively use bank accounts. And in only four years, financial inclusion has doubled in Rwanda.
afrol News - The UN's humanitarian agencies now warn about a devastating famine in Sudan and especially in South Sudan, where the situation is said to be "imploding". Relief officials are appealing to donors to urgently fund life-saving activities in the two countries.
afrol News - Fear is spreading all over West Africa after the health ministry in Guinea confirmed the first Ebola outbreak in this part of Africa. According to official numbers, at least 86 are infected and 59 are dead as a result of this very contagious disease.
afrol News - It is already a crime being homosexual in Ethiopia, but parliament is now making sure the anti-gay laws will be applied in practical life. No pardoning of gays will be allowed in future, but activist fear this only is a signal of further repression being prepared.
afrol News / Africa Renewal - Ethiopia's ambitious plan to build a US$ 4.2 billion dam in the Benishangul-Gumuz region, 40 km from its border with Sudan, is expected to provide 6,000 megawatts of electricity, enough for its population plus some excess it can sell to neighbouring countries.