The Africa Report: 8 October

EWN’s Africa correspondent Jean-Jacques Cornish reports on the day’s top African news

Africa's richest man, Aliko Dangote

AFRICA, HOME TO MORE THAN 50 BILLIONAIRES

According to an African publication, the continent is home to more than 50 billionaires, including three women.

The Nigerian financial magazine, Venture, listed 55 billionaires, dozens more than Forbes' 16 listed in their Africa's 40 Richest.

The richest man in Africa is 56-year-old Nigerian Aliko Dangote who, according to Venture, has an estimated fortune of $20.2 billion.

Three women made the list, one from Nigeria, another from Angola, and one from Kenya.

According to Forbes' list, the richest woman in Africa is Isabel dos Santos, the daughter of the Angolan president, Jose Eduardo dos Santos.

Despite dos Santos making the three richest women in Africa, the investor is not the continent's Liliane Bettencourt.

According to Venture, the richest woman in Africa, fourth on the list, is Nigerian oil tycoon and fashion designer, Folorunsho Alakija with an estimated fortune of $7.3 billion.

The third woman to make the list is the mother of Kenya's president and widow of Kenya's first president, Mama Ngina Kenyatta.

Unsurprisingly, Africa's biggest economies, South Africa, Nigeria, and Egypt, lead the billionaire pack.

Nigeria is home to 20 billionaires, South Africa at nine, and Egypt at eight.

The findings of the list will undoubtedly accentuate the already deepening divide between Africa's rich and poor.

According to the World Bank, 414 million Africans live on less than $1.25 a day (extreme poverty), which is up from the 205 million 30 years ago.

_________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

…BUT IT'S STILL NOT CLOSING THE DIGITAL DIVIDE

Despite the news that Africa reportedly houses over 50 billionaires, a United Nations (UN) study has listed 39 countries that are not making progress in terms of connectivity and most are African.

Niger and the Central African Republic have been ranked the two least connected continents in the world.

Other African countries that made the bottom half of the list included Guinea-Bissau at 150th, Ethiopia at 151st, Eritrea at 153rd, Burkino Faso at 154th, and Chad at 155th.

According to the UN's ICT Development Index, 40% of the world will be connected by the end of 2013.

South Korea ranked number one of the list for the third year in a row.

_________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

AL-SHABAAB UPS ITS PRESENCE IN BARAAWE, SOMALIA

Following the weekend raid by US commandos, Islamist fundamentalist militants al-Shabaab have increased their presence in the Somali town of Baraawe.

Al-Shabaab had been driven out of the capital city of Mogadishu and Baraawe is where they continue to maintain some strength.

US commandos attempted a raid in Baraawe but failed to capture their target, al-Shabaab leader, Abdukadir Mohamed Abdukadir.