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AFRICA Passengers rescued from Nigerian ship off Ghana
 
    By Nicholas Phythian
 
    ABIDJAN, June 15 (Reuter) - Several hundred passengers on a
    Nigerian ship that went adrift off Ghana have been rescued by other
    vessels which rushed to its aid, maritime officials said.
 
    Port officials in the Togolese capital Lome told Reuters by
    telephone that the ship, the Princess Olayinka, had arrived off
    Togo late on Wednesday and would be towed into dock on Thursday.
 
    They quoted the captain as saying that 94 passengers and crew were
    still on the vessel and added they would spend the night on board.
 
    Three hundred passengers were on a ship bound for the Benin capital
    Cotonou and another 200 were on a ship heading for Nigeria, one
    official said.
 
    The ship had been travelling from Nigeria to Liberia when it
    developed engine trouble on Tuesday.
 
    Guy Wonegou, operations manager of AMATO (Atlantic Maritime Agency
    of Togo), told Reuters in Ivory Coast earlier that a tug had
    started towing the stricken vessel to Togo.
 
    Port officials in Lome said later that most of those on board had
    been transferred to other vessels who had been standing by since
    hearing the ship's distress call.
 
    Maritime officials in Ghana said rescue operations had apparently
    started early on Wednesday about 10 miles off the town of Keta,
    where the Princess Olayinka had dropped anchor after drifting for
    more than two days with engine problems.
 
    Captain Christian Pupulampu of Ghana's naval command said bad
    weather had hampered efforts to begin rescue work on Tuesday
    night.
 
    Fierce storms are common at this time of year in West Africa.
 
    Port officials in Togo and Ghana and other maritime sources had
    initially put the number of people on the ship at over 700 but Lome
    port officials revised the figure to under 600.
 
    The Lome officials had no immediate details about the identity of
    the passengers.
 
    Ghanaian sources said they were refugees returning to Liberia and
    traders who shuttle along the West African coast.
 
    Nigeria provides the backbone of an African peacekeeping force in
    Liberia, which has been ravaged by five years of civil war.
 
 ^REUTER@
 
 
 
Transmitted:  95-06-14 17:23:38 PDT
AFRICA Cash-strapped OAU says threats to debtors pay off
 
    ADDIS ABABA, June 14 (Reuter) - The Organisation of African Unity
    said on Wednesday member states were settling their arrears, a week
    after it threatened to bar heads of state whose countries are in
    debt from taking the floor in an OAU summit.
 
    The 53-nation OAU said last week it had slapped sanctions on 34
    member states owing it $58.3 million in arrears.
 
    The stiffest penalty bars heads of state whose countries are in
    debt to the OAU from taking the floor at the June 26-28 summit in
    the Ethiopian capital.
 
    But OAU spokesman Ibrahim Dagash told reporters the response on
    arrears was encouraging and some 25 African heads of state had
    confirmed they would attend the annual summit.
 
    ``Apart from confirmation of attendance of a large number of
    African leaders, many states have also paid their arrears owed to
    the organisation,'' he said.
 
    ``The response is most encouraging and we hope that many more
    leaders would also confirm their attendance of the summit in which
    major issues affecting the continent would be discussed,'' he
    added.
 
    Dagash said more than $5 million had been paid by some member
    states since the sanctions were announced last Thursday. Ivory
    Coast paid two million out of the $2.5 million it owed and the
    number of countries now in arrears fell to 18 and the sum owed fell
    to $53 million.
 
    Sudan and Zaire have traditionally headed the OAU's bad debtors'
    list, owing $8.5 million between them.
 
 
 
Transmitted:  95-06-14 12:49:51 PDT
RWANDA Zambian U.N. troops nominated for Rwanda medals
 
    KIGALI, June 14 (Reuter) - Zambian U.N. troops have been nominated
    for medals for their conduct during slaughter at a Rwandan Hutu
    camp in April, a U.N. military spokesman said on Wednesday.
 
    Major-General Guy Toussignant, Canadian commander of the U.N.
    Assistance Mission in Rwanda (UNAMIR), wrote to Zambia's chief of
    staff recommending medals for 40 Zambian troops for their
    discipline and courage under fire at Kibeho camp, he added.
 
    While thousands of Hutus were shot, macheted and trampled to death,
    the Zambians helped wounded to safety, maintained their positions
    and calm under fire and helped restore order, he said.
 
    ``These countless acts of valour and devotion to duty shown by the
    Zambian platoon soldiers in the presence of automatic weapons fire
    and machete attacks is worthy of recognition by the award of the
    Zambian equivalent of the Canadian medal of military valour,''
    Toussignant said.
 
    The Zambian troops did not fire a shot during the violence.
 
 
 
Transmitted:  95-06-14 12:34:40 PDT
 
 
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