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1842

Liberian George Peter Thompson, the first African to be educated in Europe by the Basel Evangelical Missionary Society of Switzerland, departs on his first overseas assignment, to the West Indies. He will return to Liberia to be a pioneering educator.

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1842

1861

The laying of the first submarine and land cable to link Africa with Europe begins in Malta. The cable will travel underwater to Tripoli and then eastward overland to Benghazi, and end in Alexandria, Egypt.

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1861

1901

South Africa’s Indian Ocean coast is linked to Mauritius when a 1,718 nautical-mile submarine cable arrives in Durban, South Africa. Another cable will connect Mauritius and Rodriguez Islands in September, 1901. (pic: Port Louis, Mauritius)

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1901

1926

Estado Novo, which will be one of the longest-surviving authoritarian regimes in European history, is installed in Portugal. This will have a profound effect on Portugal’s African colonies (the future Angola, Cabo Verde, Guinea-Bissau, Mozambique and São Tomé and Príncipe). Seeking an illusion of empire, the government, which will last until 1974, sees its African possessions not as colonies but as parts of Portugal itself, and will refuse to consider their independence long after Britain and France acknowledge the historical inevitability of Africans' self-determination. (pic: São Tomé and Príncipe)

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1926

1972

With aircraft hijackings occurring weekly and sometimes daily globally, a rare Southern African hijacking takes place when two men seize control of a South African Airways flight from Salisbury, Rhodesia (Harare, Zimbabwe) to Johannesburg, and order it flown to Blantyre, Malawi. Upon landing, Malawian security forces storm the aircraft and arrest the hijackers. All 55 passengers and crew are safe.

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1972

1975

The trade bloc the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) is founded in Lagos, Nigeria. Its goal is to promote economic growth and self-sufficiency among its 15 member states.

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1975

1991

The Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front enters Addis Ababa and takes control of Ethiopia. The group formed a shadow government in 1989 to administer areas that at the time it already controlled in Ethiopia.

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1991

1992

The Tanzania liberal political party the Civic United Front is formed. Most members come from the Zanzibar Islands Unguja and Pemba, whose interests have been overlooked compared to island of Zanzibar itself and the country’s mainland.

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1992

1993

Eritrea is admitted as a member of the United Nations. (pic: Eritrean Foreign Minister Osman Saleh Mohammed)

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1993

2008

The Institution of Justice and Reconciliation in Cape Town is awarded the UNESCO International Prize for Peace Education from the U.N. Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation for the institution’s role in shaping post-apartheid history education in South Africa.

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2008

2021

After six years of negotiations, Germany reaches an agreement with Namibia to acknowledge German forces’ culpability in genocide against the Herero and Nama people in 1904. Germany pledges US$1.3 billion in infrastructure and development aid over 30 years. Because no reparations are included, the deal will be rejected by Herero and Nama leaders, although it will still go forward.

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2021

Births

1934
William Emmanuel Abraham

Ghanaian philosopher, in Cape Coast, Gold Coast. Ghana’s first president Kwame Nkrumah made him Vice Chancellor of the University of Ghana in 1965, after he ghost- authored Nkrumah’s 1964 book Consciencism. Because he was associated with Nkrumah, he was arrested in Ghana’s 1966 coup d’état, and went into exile in the U.S. There he pursued his work of exploring the philosophical continuum of Ghanaian philosophy from the 18th century.

1938
George Sidhom

Egyptian comedian and actor, in Girga, Kingdom of Egypt. His enormous output since his first film in 1966 – appearing in 59 movies, 22 TV shows and 32 theatrical productions – showed the enduring popularity of his varied comic characters.

1983
Beverly Afaglo

Ghanaian actress, TV presenter and beautician, in Volta Region, Ghana. Named Best Actress in a Comedy 2010 by Nigeria’s Terracotta Awards, she was trained both as a journalist and as a beautician, and both combined when she used her broadcasting platform to advocate for women to adopt a natural African look.

1990
Namadingo (Patience Namadingo)

Malawian gospel singer and songwriter, in Kapalamula, Balaka District, Malawi. His self-produced 2010 album Tiri ndi Yesu became a major hit and drew the attention of the music industry. A contract with U.S. record label Universal Music in 2022 led to predictions that he would be “Malawi’s first music billionaire.”