Six In The Morning Monday 8 January 2024

TB Joshua: Megachurch leader raped and tortured worshippers, BBC finds

By Charlie Northcott and

Helen Spooner

BBC News, Africa Eye

Evidence of widespread abuse and torture by the founder of one of the world’s biggest Christian evangelical churches has been uncovered by the BBC.

Dozens of ex-Synagogue Church of all Nations members – five British – allege atrocities, including rape and forced abortions, by Nigeria’s late TB Joshua.

The allegations of abuse in a secretive Lagos compound span almost 20 years.

The Synagogue Church of All Nations did not respond to the allegations but said previous claims have been unfounded.

‘All feminists are under attack’: ultra-right threat in Milei’s Argentina forces writer into exile

The new president’s rightwing supporters are targeting journalists and women’s rights activists – but the fight goes on

Female journalists who write about gender issues say they are having to deal with a toxic wave of threats against them in Argentina. Some are fighting back, others are lying low and one has gone into self-imposed exile for her safety.

“We are facing a witch-hunt from the ultra-right,” said the author, journalist and activist Luciana Peker, who recently left Argentina for an undisclosed location due to the weight of threats against her.

Argentina became the largest Latin American nation legalise abortion in 2020, but its newly elected far-right libertarian president, Javier Milei, campaigned to overturn the law saying he would call a referendum on it if necessary.

Germany’s far-right exploits farmers’ protests

Farmers’ protests have a long tradition in Germany. And today again, there are deliberate attempts by right-wing extremists to instrumentalize farmers’ anger for their own ends.

Images of farmers driving their huge tractors in long convoys along highways, blocking traffic at crossroads to protest against government policies are being shared millions of times on social media in Germany these days. Communications consultant Johannes Hillje describes this as part of a “strategic battle fought by right-wing extremist media-makers.”

Far-right activists have rallied behind the farmers’ protest on platforms such as Facebook, TikTok and X. And their comments are seen to be deliberately fanning the flames.

The far-right populist Alternative for Germany party (AfD) is using the protests on its many social media channels to attack the ruling center-left coalition government of Social Democrats (SPD)Greens and neoliberal Free Democrats (FDP) and express solidarity with the farmers protesting against the cuts in subsidies for agricultural diesel.

Bangladesh’s Hasina wins three-quarters of seats in election boycotted by opposition

Bangladesh’s Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has won a fifth term in power with her party taking three-quarters of seats in parliament, election officials said Monday after polls boycotted by the opposition as a “sham”.

The Awami League has won the election,” said Moniruzzaman Talukder, a joint secretary of the Election Commission a day after a vote boycotted by the opposition, with initial reports suggesting a meagre turnout of some 40 percent.

Talukder said Hasina’s party had won 223 seats, but support of other lawmakers including from allied parties, means Hasina’s actual control over the 300 seat parliament is even higher, analysts said.

“This is a one-party parliament,” Ali Riaz of Illinois State University told AFP, adding that “only the allies of the Awami League had the opportunity to participate”.

Thousands forced from homes by quake face stress and exhaustion


Thousands of people made homeless overnight are living in weariness and uncertainty on the western coast of Japan a week after a powerful earthquake left at least 168 dead and 323 missing.

The rescue effort since the magnitude 7.6 New Year’s Day quake has drawn thousands of troops, firefighters and police who picked through collapsed buildings Monday hoping to find survivors.

Authorities warned of the danger of landslides, exacerbated by a heavy snowfall, throughout the quake’s epicenter on the Noto Peninsula in Ishikawa prefecture. The landscape blanketed in fluffy white revealed burned and crumbled houses, ashen blocks of a city, highways with gaping holes and cracks.

The ‘walking route’: How an underground industry is helping migrants flee China for the US

They come with backpacks carrying a few spare changes of clothes and whatever money and phones they weren’t robbed of by criminals or cartels along the way, arriving at the United States-Mexico border exhausted from the stress of the journey north.

Like the hundreds of thousands of people around them who have also trekked weeks to reach the US, they’re driven by a desperation to escape and make a new life, despite the uncertainty of what’s on the other side.

But these migrants are fleeing the world’s second largest economy and an emerging superpower.