Bow Valley College President and CEO honoured with a Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Medal

Calgary, Sept. 02, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Bow Valley College is proud to announce its President and CEO, Dr. Misheck Mwaba, has been awarded a Queen Elizabeth II Platinum Jubilee Medal. Dr. Mwaba graciously accepted the award from the Lieutenant Governor of Alberta and the Premier of Alberta at a ceremony in downtown Calgary.

“Receiving this medal in honour of Her Majesty the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee is an honour and a privilege,” says Dr. Mwaba. “I am humbled by the distinguished meaning behind it and touched that it is in recognition of my service in post-secondary education, an industry I am passionate about and that continues to inspire me.”

Dr. Mwaba is one of 7,000 Albertans who will be awarded the commemorative medal celebrating the 70th anniversary of the Queen’s accession to the Throne. It is bestowed upon dedicated individuals who have contributed significantly to the province of Alberta.

Dr. Mwaba was appointed President and Chief Executive Officer of Bow Valley College in 2020, following his time as Vice President, Academic at the College. His contributions to the post-secondary system include finding innovative ways to make higher education more accessible. He has been recognized as a leader in implementing micro-credentials, including for his critical role in creating a national committee and a pan-Canadian College framework for micro-credentials.

In addition, Dr. Mwaba skillfully navigated Bow Valley College through the pandemic and was instrumental in developing cutting-edge virtual reality technology and a laboratory at the College. He has sat on many prestigious boards and committees at the federal and provincial levels.

“The Queen’s Jubilee Medal is acknowledgement of Dr. Mwaba’s dedication to post-secondary education, his enthusiasm for uncovering contemporary learning options, and removing barriers to students,” says Shannon Bowen-Smed, Chair of the Bow Valley College Board of Governors. “He continues to support economic development in the province of Alberta, helping thousands of students realize their skills and build successful careers.”

Dr. Mwaba is the first Black college president in Alberta history. Originally from Zambia, he is an inspiration to many, including the immigrant community.

About Bow Valley College  

Calgary and region’s largest Comprehensive Community College — with 14,000 full- and part-time students, Bow Valley College helps Open Doors – Open Minds to in-demand jobs in Calgary, Alberta, and Canada. Our graduates contribute to the digital economy, TV & film production, and serve on the frontlines for healthcare and social programs. One of Canada’s top 50 research colleges, Bow Valley College invests in virtual reality (VR), Work Integrated Learning (WIL), micro-credentials, and foundational opportunities.


Shannon van Leenen
Bow Valley College

Special Envoy for the Horn of Africa Mike Hammer’s Travel to Ethiopia

Special Envoy for the Horn of Africa (SEHOA) Mike Hammer will travel to Ethiopia and the region September 4-15. He will press for an immediate cessation of hostilities and the start of peace talks.

In addition to meetings with Ethiopian government and African Union officials, Special Envoy Hammer will meet with civil society and political actors representing different regions of the country to discuss how best to promote efforts towards a lasting peace, security, and prosperity for all people in Ethiopia. The United States is committed to the unity, sovereignty, and territorial integrity of Ethiopia.


Gunmen Kill More Than 40 People in Ethiopia’s Oromia Region, Residents Say

ADDIS ABABA, ETHIOPIA — Gunmen killed at least 42 people in Ethiopia’s Oromia region, two residents who buried the bodies in mass graves said Friday, the latest killings in the country’s most populous region where escalating violence has left hundreds dead.

The latest attack by an armed group against local residents occurred Tuesday, they said, in the Amuru district, around 370 kilometers west of the capital, Addis Ababa.

They said the victims were all Oromos and described the attackers as members of a volunteer militia known as Fano, mostly composed of ethnic Amharas.

Clashes between the Oromo and Amhara, Ethiopia’s two largest ethnic groups, have been rising in recent months.

Oromia has experienced years of violence amid accusations of neglect by the federal government in Addis Ababa.

Oromos account for more than a third of Ethiopia’s total population of around 110 million.

One resident, who spoke to Reuters by telephone but asked not to be named, said that locals had buried 22 people in one place, 15 in another, and five in a third spot.

The second resident said he compiled a list of 46 dead.

Both residents said the attackers, carrying rifles and numbering between 150-200 men, were speaking Amharic and wore a mishmash of uniforms.

Neither Amhara nor Oromia’s regional administrations’ spokespeople responded to requests for comment.

Source: Voice of America

West and Central Africa: Weekly Regional Humanitarian Snapshot (23 – 29 August 2022)



Across 17 countries in West and Central Africa, as of 16 August, heavy rainfall and floods killed over 250 people, injured many others, destroyed some 35,000 houses, leaving 126,000 people homeless and displacing over 125,000 people. More rain expected in the region until October. Rains and floods are severely impacting the Republic of Congo, Chad, Liberia, Nigeria, Niger, Democratic Republic of Congo, Gambia, Mauritania, the Central African Republic, Guinea, Cote d’Ivoire, Senegal, Ghana, Cameroon, Mali and Burkina Faso. Additional shocks of extreme weather events have pushed vulnerable families deep into crisis. Many of the affected regions were already struggling with high levels of food insecurity, malnutrition, instability, and violence. Floods have impacted hygiene and sanitation conditions and increased the incidence of water-borne diseases. Moreover, floods increased displacement into overcrowded settlement camps, where diseases spread easily. More recent information and figures on floods and their impacts on the region will be published soon.



On 28 August, Torrential rains caused floods and landslides across parts of the capital Freetown, killed at least 6 people, displaced others, and destroyed properties. About 122 households, 55 houses and 9 public structures were affected. The National Disaster Management Agency (NDMA) provided food and non-food items to 1,011 people affected by fire and windstorm in various towns and villages in Kenema and Kailahun Districts, Eastern Region. This is the second spate of heavy rain in Freetown in the last 2 weeks. Areas of Freetown including Culvert and Kroo Bay were flooded after a heavy downpour that started on 17 August.



Since late July, heavy rainfall and floods have killed at least 14 persons across several regions of Mauritania, most of them are children, affected about 29,000 persons, destroyed 3,817 houses, and damaged many others. The most affected areas include south-central Tagat region, and Assaba and Hodh El Gharbi regions in the south. Rains and floods have also destroyed crops and killed hundreds of livestock. Food stocks were also damaged. Some roads were cut off for several days. Telecommunication and electricity services were also interrupted. Access to drinking water has become inaccessible for many families in affected areas. Heavy rain fall continued in August with several areas recording 100mm of rain within hours. Humanitarian organizations in including Red Crescent Society mobilized to provide aid to affected people.



On 15 and 16 August, heavy rains and floods in the Mayo-Danay division in the Far-North province and Logone et Chari in the extreme north province killed at least five people, injured many others, and affected about 6,000 people. Humanitarian organizations mobilized to provide immediate support.

Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs

FAO: Lower Food Prices Not Helping Consumers

GENEVA — The U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization says consumers are not yet feeling the benefits of declining food prices. The FAO says world food commodity prices dipped for the fifth consecutive month in August.

Lower world food prices generally reflect better availability at the global level. However, FAO says, this time, lower wholesale prices have not led to better food access or lower prices for consumers.

FAO Director of the Markets and Trade Division Boubaker Ben-Belhassen said availability has improved, while access to food commodities has not. This, despite declining prices five months in a row.

“This is due to several factors including the persistent high cost of processing and transportation, logistics, and the exchange rate also of currencies of countries as against the U.S. dollar,” he said. “Also, the cost-of-living crisis has affected access. So, that is why we have not seen this decline in prices at the world level translating into lower prices for consumers or at the retail level.”

Ben-Belhassen cautioned that a drop in world prices does not necessarily result in market stability. He said that is subject to the uncertainties and volatility surrounding developments in the energy market and the price of fertilizer.

He said continued high energy and gas prices reduce profitability and increase production costs for farmers. He added that will pose a serious challenge for farmers in the coming year.

He noted the U.N.-brokered Black Sea grain initiative allowing Ukraine to export its grain and other foodstuffs has improved the availability of food on the world market. Prior to the July agreement, Russia had blockaded Ukraine’s three key ports triggering a global food crisis.

Ben-Belhassen said the better availability of food on the global level has not translated into greater access at the consumer level. He said the increased shipment of goods from Ukraine has not alleviated food scarcity in sub-Saharan Africa and other developing countries. He noted that is because most grain exports go to middle-income countries.

“So, it does not really go to those countries that are most affected or are most in need for better domestic supplies,” he said. “We hope the situation will improve with time. We hope that the shipment also will go to these countries.… We are still concerned about access, about the cost-of-living crisis.”

The FAO official says families in low- and middle-income countries tend to spend 50% to 60% of their monthly income on food. He warned the implication for food security could be very serious if consumer food prices do not drop significantly.

Source: Voice of America

Ethiopia Opens Banking Industry to Foreign Investors

The Council of Ministers has passed decision to open up the banking sector to foreign investors today, the Office of the Prime Minister said.

Opening up the banking industry to foreign investors supports the sector’s services with knowledge and technology and move the country’s economy to a higher level of connection with the international market, the statement noted.

The policy will also help to increase competitiveness and efficiency of the financial sector, to have sufficient financial supply, to facilitate the supply of foreign currency, to increase job opportunities, and to ensure continuous economic growth by ensuring economic efficiency and global competitiveness, the council observed.

Therefore, the Council of Ministers has extensively discussed, enriched, and passed the draft policy to be implemented.

Source: Ethiopia News Agency