Africa Weekly – a round up of news and features from Africa

This week on Africa Weekly, we travel to Mali where the government is trying to attract tourists to the safer regions of a country that has been plagued with violence and we meet the men and women behind Angola’s largest ever investment in offshore oil and gas exploration.FOR SUBSCRIBERS OF AFRICA WEEKLY ONLY

Son of Mali hostage Sophie Pétronin expects more from France

A week ago, Frenchman Sébastien Chadaud-Pétronin headed to the Sahel region in West Africa with the hope of obtaining his mother’s release. She was running a charity helping orphans when she was kidnapped by armed men in Gao, northern Mali, in December 2016. No group claimed responsibility for kidnapping until July 2017, when Al-Qaeda’s Mali branch released a video showing her. In a interview with AFPTV, he says the French state “isn’t doing enough.”

In fractured Mali, dance contest offers a sense of unity

Faso Don is a TV dance programme that seeks to promote traditional Malian dance forms, which are often forgotten amid the popularity of modern hip-hop styles. Eight young dancers from all over the country head to the capital of Bamako to take part in the six week long competition.

Mali: Country’s first open heart surgery conducted on 6-year-old

Open-heart surgery is performed for the first time in Mali by a Franco-Malian team, with a 6-year-old girl being the first patient.

In Mali, Cisse’s supporters protest the result

Hundreds of supporters of Malian opposition leader Soumaïla Cissé protest in the streets of Bamako against the results of the presidential election. It was announced that incumbent president Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta has been re-elected for a second mandate with 67,17% of the vote, defeating Cissé who only won 32,83%. Cissé’s party claims the poll was rigged in favor of Keïta. IMAGES

Soumaila Cisse supporters reject Malian election results

Soumaila Cisse’s supporters do not accept Ibrahim Boubacar Keita’s victory and claim their candidate as Mali’s new president.

Cisse supporters react to Mali election results

Supporters of Malian candidate Soumaïla Cissé react to the results of the second round of the presidential election, which saw Ibrahim Boubacar Keita re-elected. IMAGES

Mali: Polling stations close, vote counting begins

Polling stations closing in Bamako, Mali, after the second round of voting in an election where President Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta is favoured, in spite of accusations of fraud and a jihadist threat that five years of international military interventions have failed to eradicate. IMAGES

Polls open for second round of Mali presidential election

Polls open for the second round of the Mali presidential election. Malians are called to the ballot box for a presidential runoff likely to see Ibrahim Boubacar Keita return to office despite criticism of his handling of the country’s security crisis. The second round is a rerun of a 2013 faceoff that Keita won by a landslide over former finance minister Soumaila Cisse. IMAGES

Mali’s President Keita casts vote in presidential election

The incumbent president of Mali, President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita, 71, casts his vote in the presidential election in a crowded field of 24 candidates — just one of them a woman — bidding for the five-year presidency. More than eight million Malians go to the polls in a key electoral test for the fragile Sahel state, battling a wave of ethnic violence and jihadism. IMAGES