Today in African History

Today in African History: February 8

Greetings and shalom, everyone! On this day of the Gregorian calendar, February 8, we remember the following events in global African history:


Year Territory Event
1861 USA American Civil War: Delegates from seceded states adopted a provisional Confederate Constitution in Montgomery, Ala.
1862 USA American Civil War: Union troops under Gen. Ambrose Burnside defeated a Confederate defense force at the Battle of Roanoke Island, N.C.
1865 USA American Civil War: Confederate raider William Quantrill and men attacked a group of Federal wagons at New Market, Kentucky.
1865 USA American Civil War: Delaware refused to ratify the Thirteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Slavery was outlawed in the United States, including Delaware, when the Amendment was ratified by the requisite number of states on December 6, 1865.
1865 USA American Civil War: Martin Robinson Delany became the 1st black major in US army.
1887 USA The Dawes Act authorized the President of the United States to survey Native American tribal land and divide it into individual allotments.
1915 USA D. W. Griffith’s controversial film The Birth of a Nation premiered in Los Angeles.
1968 USA George Wallace, the pro-segregation governor of Alabama, entered the US presidential race. Wallace ran as a third-party candidate. He was mainly popular in the deep south, but he was able to attract 14% of the popular vote in the November election.
1968 USA American civil rights movement: The Orangeburg massacre: An attack on black students from South Carolina State University who are protesting racial segregation at the town’s only bowling alley, leaves three or four dead in Orangeburg, South Carolina.
1979 Republic of the Congo In the Republic of the Congo Denis Sassou Nguesso (b.1943), a member of the Mbochi minority, began 13 years of rule as a Marxist dictator.
2004 USA At the Grammy Awards, rap funksters OutKast won album of the year for “Speakerboxxx-The Love Below” and Beyonce took home a record-tying five trophies.
2005 Togo In Lome, Togo, a strike called by opposition parties shut down the capital’s main market and other businesses.
2006 Kenya Kenya’s government and the UN said Kenya needs $221.5 million in aid to help feed 3.5 million people threatened by starvation due to drought and avoid a “massive humanitarian catastrophe.”
2006 Sudan; Chad In Libya, the leaders of Sudan and Chad signed a peace agreement to end increasing tension over Sudan’s Darfur region, pledging to normalize diplomatic relations and deny refuge to each other’s rebel groups. A communique issued by Sudan, Chad and Libya, as well as Burkina Faso, Congo and the Central African Republic, whose leaders attended the talks, said a committee of African countries overseen by Libya would monitor the implementation of the deal.
2007 USA The Museum for African Art unveiled plans for a new home in Manhattan, becoming the first major addition to New York’s Museum Mile in 50 years.
2007 Benin; Nigeria; Togo Benin, Nigeria, and Togo formed a new regional body aimed at fast-tracking the integration of their economies. The body, known as the Co-Prosperity Alliance Zone (COPAZ), was formally inaugurated following a mini-summit of Nigeria’s President Olusegun Obasanjo, Benin’s President Boni Yayi and Togo’s President Faure Gnassingbe.
2007 South Africa South Africa, burdened with one of the world’s major HIV/AIDS epidemics, unveiled plans for its biggest AIDS vaccine trial.
2008 Nigeria A presidential statement said Nigeria has approved a new policy requiring gas producers to direct a part of their output to the domestic market, rather than exporting it.
2008 Rwanda members of the Chamber of Deputies (Lower House) of Parliament voted in favor of a controversial new law aimed at stopping “genocide ideology,” a term for the outlook that perpetrators of genocide foster to fan divisive hate campaigns between different groups of Rwandans. Parliament adopted the law in June 2007.
2011 Ivory Coast A fire broke out at the economic ministry building in the capital destroying untold numbers of financial records as international sanctions on incumbent leader Laurent Gbagbo, who refuses to give up power, are beginning to take hold.
2013 Senegal; Chad Senegal officially launched its tribunal investigating former Chadian dictator Hissene Habre for alleged crimes against humanity, a move rights groups called a decisive turning point in the campaign to bring him to justice.
2016 Chad Zouhoura (16) was assaulted in a brutal attack that shocked many, triggering weeks of demonstrations by thousands of young people in the streets. Five alleged rapists, who include the sons of three generals, were taken into custody together with four suspected accomplices. Zouhoura soon returned to France, where she already lived with relatives from 2009 to 2015, and decided to speak out publicly in Paris to fight impunity for sex criminals in her central African nation homeland.
2017 Somalia Members of the upper and lower houses of parliament elected former PM Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo as president.
2017 Zimbabwe Zimbabwe’s Constitutional Court dismissed a case against President Robert Mugabe (92) lodged by an activist who accused the aging leader of violating the southern African country’s supreme law during protests last year.
2018 Gambia The Gambia was readmitted to the Commonwealth, welcomed back following the democratic election of President Adama Barrow, who reversed the shock pullout of 2013.

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