Quoting an update we received from the registry today:
ZA Central Registry NPC (ZACR) is pleased to announce that on Wednesday, 15 February 2017 at 14:58:59 CAT the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) published the .africa geographic Top Level Domain Name (gTLD) in the root. The delegation comes after a lengthy and protracted legal challenge that saw a delay in the delegation process.
This essentially means that the Launch Phases of Sunrise, Landrush and finally, General Availability of the .africa domain is now possible. The tentative date for the Sunrise and Landrush Phases is 4 April 2017. The Sunrise Phase will see intellectual property rights holders and, the Landrush Phase will see premium name applicants applying for .Africa domains from this date. General Availability should commence on 4 July 2017, this is when the general public can apply for their .africa domain names.