Cape Verde AFCON 2023

AFCON 2023 Match Preview: Cape Verde Vs Mozambique

Etienne Mengnjo Mainimo

This will be the first-ever encounter between Cabo Verde and Mozambique at the CAF Africa Cup of Nations. The two teams have faced each other in the past, with Cabo Verde maintaining an unbeaten record in their last three matches against Mozambique, winning two and drawing one. All of these matches took place during qualifiers for the CAF Africa Cup of Nations.

Cabo Verde’s performance in the CAF Africa Cup of Nations has shown steady progress over the years. They recently registered their third-ever win in the tournament, with their last two victories coming in the opening match of the competition. Their 1-0 win against Ethiopia in 2022 marked a significant milestone for the team. However, despite their successful outings, Cabo Verde has never managed to secure consecutive wins at AFCON, making it a challenge they hope to overcome in this edition of the tournament.

On the other hand, Mozambique has yet to taste victory in the CAF Africa Cup of Nations. In 13 attempts, they have struggled to secure a win, registering three draws and suffering ten defeats. However, one notable highlight for Mozambique was their 2-2 draw against Egypt, where they took the lead and held a 2-1 advantage for a considerable period. It was only the second time in their AFCON history that they found themselves ahead in a match, the first being in 1996 against Tunisia, when they took a 1-0 lead before drawing 1-1.

Cabo Verde has proven to be a formidable team in the group stage of the CAF Africa Cup of Nations. Out of their ten matches, they have lost only once, showcasing their consistency and ability to compete at this level. However, their lone defeat in the group stage occurred on MD2 of the 2022 tournament, where they suffered a narrow 1-0 loss to Burkina Faso. This year, they aim to build on their previous successes and secure a strong position in the early stages of the competition.

In contrast, Mozambique has struggled to keep a clean sheet in the CAF Africa Cup of Nations. In their 13 appearances, they have conceded a total of 28 goals, and in 12 of those games, they have allowed their opponents to score at least twice. This statistic highlights the defensive challenges they have faced and the need to tighten their backline to secure positive results.

When it comes to scoring crucial goals, Cabo Verde has shown a flair for late dramatics. Two of their three winning goals in the CAF Africa Cup of Nations have been scored in the 90th minute, demonstrating their ability to maintain composure and make an impact in the dying moments of matches. Héldon and Garry Rodrigues were the heroes on these occasions, scoring against Angola in 2013 and Ghana in the present tournament, respectively. Additionally, Júlio Tavares netted the other winning goal in first-half stoppage time against Ethiopia in 2022, further highlighting Cabo Verde’s ability to capitalize on key moments.

Cabo Verde’s recent victory over Ghana on MD1 of this year’s CAF Africa Cup of Nations showcased their attacking prowess. They had 15 shots in that match, surpassing the total number of shots they had in their previous three games combined. This impressive offensive display demonstrated their intent and desire to compete at the highest level. It was their highest shot count in an AFCON game since January 2015, when they faced Congo DR, once again illustrating their ability to create opportunities and aim for victory.

Mozambique, despite its struggles, has displayed diversity in its goal-scoring capabilities. In the history of their CAF Africa Cup of Nations participation, different players scored all six of their goals. This highlights the collective effort and the team’s ability to rely on various contributors to find the back of the net. Notably, four of their six goals were scored between the 54th and 58th minutes, including both goals in their 2-2 draw against Egypt on MD1 of this year’s tournament. This pattern suggests that Mozambique tends to find its rhythm and initiate its attacking prowess during this specific period of the game.

Lastly, Garry Rodrigues has proven to be a valuable asset for Cabo Verde in the CAF Africa Cup of Nations. He has scored two goals as a substitute, showcasing his impact when coming off the bench. Surprisingly, in these two substitute appearances, Rodrigues has had more shots on target (3) than in the four AFCON games he started (1 shot). This statistic highlights his ability to make an immediate impact and contribute positively to the team’s attacking efforts.

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Conservation, Restoration May Not Revert Loss In The Congo Basin If…

Urgent measures of restoration and conservation are deemed necessary to revert biodiversity, wildlife and forest cover loss in the Congo Basin, but could only be possible if the present trend of consumption and production is halved by 2030.

The Living Earth Planet report, 2022 produced by World Wildlife Fund and Zoological Society of London indicates has depicted a dire situation of loss in the world and the Congo Basin.

Statistics from 1970 to 2018 show that there has been a 69 percent loss in the world’s wildlife population.  In less than half a century, about 32,000 population of mammals, amphibians, birds, reptiles and fish have reduced by 2/3. During the same time, the monitored population in Africa reduced by 66 percent.

The Congo Basin, the second lungs of the earth has witnessed a 50 percent reduction in the elephant population in the TRIDOM-Tri-national Dja, Minkebe-Odzala, between Cameroon, Gabon, and the Republic of Congo in the past five years.  Compared to 66 percent in 50 years in Africa it seems enormous against important reductions within a short period of time which shows the intensity of pressure on biodiversity, experts explain.

In Campo Ma’an for example, the pressure from hunting increased to about 50-60 percent. In certain landscapes, statistics show a loss of 150 km2 of forest. In some sites, the Chimpanzee population has reduced by 36 percent. The Elephant population reduced in 8 years to 65 percent. Very alarming compared to 66 percent in Africa for over decades, showing that the pressure is enormous. A study in 2013, showed that in a period of ten years, in 30 sites, there was a reduction of 63 percent of the chimpanzee population.

Experts say degradation, loss of habitat, exploitation of forest, mining, introduction of invading species, pollution and climate change are responsible for the reduction.

“The Living Planet Report highlights the threats of the Congo Basin in terms of loss of forest cover, wildlife, biodiversity and attempts to attract the attention of policy makers, the public on the need to take action to reverse the curve. Globally, 10million forest cover is lost every year and it huge. In the Congo Basin, one million hectares is lost every year. Though it might seem lower than the average, it is still very important considering all the services-economic, environmental and cultural provided by the forest,” Belmond Tchoumba WWF Forest Programme Coordinator for  Central Africa said.

Belmond Tchoumba

Reversing the current situation will only produce the desired results if consumption and production is halved by 2030.

Experts agree on the need to tackle the causes of biodiversity loss and adopt sustainable practices in agriculture, food systems, fishing, forestry, energy, mining, infrastructure and construction.  

Government needs to engage with ambitious and consumption measures in the sector. With COP15 this year, the global strategy is to mobilize resources to finance for positive results for nature.

Also, increase financing towards developing and eliminate poor incitation as this is money biodiversity generates for the society and the economy.

Sustainable management of the Tri-national, Dja, Minkebe-Odzala, between Cameroon, Gabon, and the Republic of Congo; support to indigenous people is also partial solution to safeguard the Congo Basin.

Dr Peter Mbile, WWF Field Programmes Coordinator suggests a wholistic approach. “The Congo Basin usually refers to the high or massive forest of the countries that constitute the Congo Basin, but it is important to remember that within the countries, there are parts which are not typically forest-though Cameroon has defined forest to occupy the entire national territory.”

Dr Peter Mbile, WWF Field Programme Coordinator

The Congo Basin ignores the dry areas of Cameroon, DRC and they must be considered. Mbile says if citizens of the dry and degraded areas lose their livelihoods because of landscape degradation, loss of biodiversity, soil no longer fertile, they will go to the South where there is the Congo basin and probably clear for agriculture.

To protect the Congo Basin, there is need to keep indigenes in areas by investing on their land.

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Making Sexual and Reproductive Health Reporting Appealing

Sexual and reproductive health rights, SRHR reporting for some journalists may now become attractive following an initiation during a two-day hands-on training.

The impact of lockdowns on sexual and reproductive health, access to contraceptives for youths, Bornfyne as a maternal health solution, a blog on girls’ things, demystifying abortions, managing menstruation as athletes are some of the issues around SRHR appealing to the journalists.

Sexual and reproductive health rights situation of Cameroon is dire, 406 Cameroonian women die out of 100,000 live births. Unsafe abortions account for 30 percent maternal deaths; only about 18 percent of teenage girls have access to contraception and reproductive health services experts say.

Prof. Fomulu Nelson, Vice President of the Society of Gynecologists and Obstetricians of Cameroon explains the situation more.

Prof.Fomulu Nelson explains the SRHR situation in Cameroon

Before now, SRHR issues rarely made it to the front pages of some newspapers in Cameroon. Even when these issues were reported inside the papers; sexual violence took precedence followed by HIV/AIDS while family planning; contraceptives and abortion were underreported, Njodzefe Nestor, Journalist/Researcher found in a random research.  

It was against the backdrop of the engagement taken by SisterSpeak237 to contribute their quota in education, sensitization and changing the narrative around SRHR as an underreported issue that they organized the two day training for 40 journalists. The training had the financial support of the Canadian High Commission and the Society of Gynecologists and Obstetricians of Cameroon.

The training coincided with the International Safe Abortion Day on September 28 on the theme, “uncertain times call for diverse, collective action on many fronts“. Representatives of the International Federation of Gynaecologists and Obstetricians were present to provide additional resources during the training.

Comfort Mussa, CEO, SisterSpeak237 unveils rationale behind the training and the steps ahead for the project.

Comfort Mussa, CEO SisterSpeak237

On the occasion, Marcus Davies, Political Counsellor, High Commission of Canada in Cameroon stated that through the Canadian Fund for Local Initiatives, they are working with SisterSpeak237, an opportunity for journalists to work on underreported areas.

The fund promotes women’s empowerment and media freedom.

Marcus Davies Political Counsellor, High Commission of Canada in Cameroon