Pambazuka News 398: Primary health care: the global orphan?

The Business & Human Rights Resource Centre has just launched a recruitment for a Francophone Africa Researcher & Representative, based in Senegal. The position is half-time (2.5 days per week). The closing date for applications is 28 October. Applicants must be fluent in French, have strong English language skills, and must already have the right to work in Senegal.

South African President Thabo Mbeki's resignation has raised new concerns about the fragile power-sharing deal he brokered just one week ago in neighbouring Zimbabwe, analysts said on Wednesday. Although the deal was clinched last week, tough negotiations are still under way on forming a Cabinet that will bring together Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe's ruling Zanu-PF and the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC).

Rather than encouraging enrollment, schools in Zimbabwe are asking children not to report for lessons. "We have received, with concern, continuing reports that some children [in Zimbabwe] are not going to school because there are no teachers," said Roland Monash, deputy representative of the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF). UNICEF keeps 150,000 Zimbabwean children at school by paying their fees.

At least six countries in Southern Africa could receive poor rainfall during the critical planting season starting next month, says an early forecast for the 2008/09 agricultural season. Lesotho, Swaziland, most of Namibia, parts of Angola, Madagascar and South Africa are likely to receive "normal to below-normal" rain in the first half of the season from October to December, said the forecast by the Drought Monitoring Centre of the Southern African Development Community (SADC).

After years of calling on the owners of South Africa's oil refineries in Durban to upgrade their facilities to reduce pollution, local residents of the eastern port city have decided to take their case to the courts to secure a legal remedy.