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VOA English Newscast: 1600 UTC February 17, 2016

Policemen stand in front of an election banner of Uganda's President Yoweri Museveni in Kampala, Uganda, Feb. 15, 2016.
Policemen stand in front of an election banner of Uganda's President Yoweri Museveni in Kampala, Uganda, Feb. 15, 2016.
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From Washington, this is VOA News.

I’m Frances Alonzo reporting.

Ugandans are preparing to vote in presidential and parliamentary elections on Thursday, after candidates concluded their campaigns Tuesday.

Some voters say peace and stability are most important for them, while others want change and a new regime.

Lining the streets of Kampala, blue and yellow campaign posters compete for space on billboards, walls, and t-shirts.

Blue represents the Forum for Democratic Change party of main opposition candidate Kizza Besigye, while yellow is synonymous with the National Resistance Movement party of incumbent Yoweri Museveni.

The two men are the top contenders competing for Uganda’s presidency.

The UN's mission chief in Mali paid tribute Wednesday to seven Guinean peacekeepers killed in a jihadist attack on their base last week, including the first woman to die as part of their deployment.

The assault on the camp, belonging to the UN force, took place on Friday in the northeastern town of Kidal and was claimed by the Malian Islamist group Ansar Dine.

Seven bodies draped with the UN flag were displayed during the tribute, awaiting repatriation to Guinea Wednesday.

Niger needs millions of doses of meningitis vaccines to ward off a possible epidemic after a spike that has seen dozens of cases reported since January, according to the United Nations Wednesday.

"The (Nigerian) health authorities estimate that they need 3.2 million vaccination doses in case of a meningitis epidemic." That came from the local branch of the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.

Adding to existing reserves, the additional doses would allow officials to immunize 2.8 million people.

VOA News.

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Words in This New

concluded – v. stopped or finished

stability – n. the quality of something that is not easily changed

regime – n. a form of government

poster – n. a sign, usually hung in a public place

billboard – n. a large sign for advertisements

t-shirt – n. clothing that is worn over chest, has short sleeves and is usually made of cotton

synonymous – adj. having the same meaning

incumbent – n. someone who holds an office or position

contenders – n. a person who has a good chance of winning something

mission – n. a job that someone is given to do; a military or naval operation

pay tribute – v. to honor and praise

jihadist – adj. of or related to Muslims who actively support action against non-believers

assault – n. attack

draped – v. covered

displayed – v. shown in public

repatriation – v. returning to one’s own country

dose – n. the amount of medicine that is taken at one time

ward off – v. to avoid being hit by something

epidemic – n. an event in which a disease spreads very quickly and affects many people

spike – n. a sudden rise or jump

dozens – n. large numbers of people or things

according – v. as stated by or in

authorities – n. officials

branch – n. a local office of a company or organization

reserves – n. supplies of something that is stored

allow – v. to permit

immunize – v. to give a vaccine to prevent infection by disease