Speak up Africa’s second gala convenes the Director General of the World Health Organization, African heads of state and first ladies, foundation partners and business community leaders to celebrate great strides made in African maternal and child health
September 22, 2017 | 0 Comments
NEW YORK, the United States of America, September 20, 2017, -/African Media Agency (AMA)/- Monday night, Speak Up Africa hosted its second annual Gala with over 300 African Heads of State, First Ladies, world health experts, leaders from the non-profit and foundation sector, and the business community to celebrate the tremendous strides already made in terms of child and maternal health on the continent.
Headlining the meeting was the recently elected Director General of the World Health organization, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus of Ethiopia. Also attending were: His Excellency Jakaya Kikwete, former President of the United Republic of Tanzania, representatives of His Excellency Alpha Condé, President of Guinea, and of His Excellency Moussa Faki Mahamat, Chairperson of the Africa Union Commission, the First Lady of Malawi, H.E. Gertrude Maseko and Her Excellency Mrs. Toyin Saraki, CEO of the Wellbeing Foundation Africa.
The group turned its attention to the importance of mobilizing African leadership around the next set of healthcare goals for the continent – Universal Health Access, the eradication of Neglected Tropical Diseases, the use of midwifery as a means to lower infant mortality and maternal deaths, and the need to make vaccinations more available to families throughout the continent.
In talking about the power of mothers as advocates for their children, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus recalled a recent trip to Yemen where he saw mothers fighting for care for the starving children, even while ignoring the fact that these mothers were themselves starving. Dr. Tedros reiterated his signature call for Universal Health Coverage globally – in conflict areas – and in the United States.
His Excellency Dr. Jakaya Kikwete, 4th President of Tanzania and Founder of The Kikwete Foundation commends Speak Up Africa for being drivers of change and the ultimate partner for effective advocacy and communications
Dr. Jakaya Kikwete, the Former President of Tanzania, and a leader in the movement to improve healthcare on the continent, has joined forces with Speak Up Africa. His remarks on Monday night showed his continued resolve to work towards a healthier and more health-educated population, “No woman should die bringing another life into this world. It is not fair. It is not right. Pregnancy is not a disease. And women should not be dying. A child’s birthday should be a day of celebration, not mourning.”
Accepting the Speak Up Africa political leadership award on behalf of Mr. Moussa Faki Mahamat, Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Dr. Abba Kalondo, Spokesperson in the Chairperson’s office, African Union Commission, apologized for Mr. Faki’s absence as he presided over a global security meeting with UN leaders. She repeated Mr. Faki’s oft-cited link between global security and health security world wide.
Other attendees at the Gala included:
* First Lady of Malawi, H.E. Gertrude Maseko
* Mark Suzman, Chief Strategy Officer, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
* Dr. Mwele Malecela – Director of the Office of the Regional Director at AFRO, representing Dr. Moeti
* Dr. John Simon, Chairman of the Global Fund
* Dr. Mary Ann Etiebet, Merck for Mothers
* Ms.Theo Sawa African Women’s Development Fund
* Mr. Carl Manlan, Ecobank Foundation
* UNICEF Ambassador to Ethiopia
o Abelone Melesse
SUA is a 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to inciting behavioral, political and societal reforms concerning African healthcare. Through strategic advocacy, national and Pan Africa media campaigns, SUA ignites a chain reaction of information, empowerment and mobilization around the most important health issues affecting the continent. Much of its work is conducted through high-profile media campaigns with African cultural rock-stars – artists, athletes, entertainers, and political and faith leaders.
USAID ADMINISTRATOR GREEN ANNOUNCES PMI LAUNCH AND EXPANSION IN WEST AND CENTRAL AFRICA
September 22, 2017 | 0 Comments
The U.S. President’s Malaria Initiative is Expanding. New countries: Cameroon, Cote d’Ivoire, Niger, and Sierra Leone, and expanding existing program in Burkina Faso.
SYMBION AND HIGHLAND GROUP HOLDINGS LTD. SIGN $100M EQUITY INVESTMENT AGREEMENT FOR RWANDA METHANE GAS PROJECTS
September 21, 2017 | 0 Comments
NEW YORK, USA – SEPTEMBER 21, 2017 – Symbion Energy and Highland Group Holdings Ltd. (HGHL) today signed an agreement that sees HGHL co-invest $100 million towards the implementation of a $370 million, 106 megawatts of methane gas generated power on Rwanda’s Lake Kivu, it was announced today by Paul Hinks, CEO, Symbion.
Lake Kivu contains an estimated 55 billion cubic meters of naturally occurring methane gas. The total power generation potential of the resource has been conservatively estimated at more than 500 MW over a 40-year period. Only 25 Megawatts is produced today.
Speaking at the signing ceremony in New York City Hinks said, “We are very excited about our new partnership with HGHL, they are injecting $100 million of cash equity into the Rwanda projects of Symbion Energy. The work will begin in earnest in November 2017 and this funding means we can fast track at least 22MW of power within 18 months. Roughly 8 to 10 MW of that can be available by mid 2018 from the existing plant we acquired in 2016 which is known as KP1. It will be rehabilitated and expanded.”
Hinks continued, “Rwanda is one of the very few countries in Africa that properly plans ahead of time and they understand that substantial power capacity is necessary to attract investors to create economic growth and deliver electricity to its population. The demand for power in Rwanda is suppressed by the lack of surplus capacity and these two projects will facilitate continued growth. As far as Sub-Saharan Africa is concerned, Rwanda ranks highest in the World Bank Ease of Doing Business Index and our experience there is a complete endorsement of that. HGHL’s confidence in the country and in Symbion is evidenced by their willingness to make Rwanda their first large-scale investment in Africa.”
Lord Irvine Laidlaw, Chairman at HGHL, said “This is perhaps the most interesting and exciting project that I have undertaken, inclusive of our recent offshore wind farms in the North Sea, in Germany.” He continued, “We will be producing electricity by utilizing a unique renewable resource, methane from the bottom of Lake Kivu. Delivering this will be a challenge I look forward to.” “Even more important, we are generating power for one of the fastest growing countries in Africa, so we’ll be making a major contribution to its continued growth. As with all my colleagues I am proud to be assisting Rwanda,” said Laidlaw.
The Chief Executive Officer of the Rwanda Development Board and a Member of President Kagame’s cabinet, Honorable Clare Akamanzi said, “This partnership is a really great example of a co-investment that will fuel our country’s sustainable development and our growth agenda. We are impressed and we are committed to support the investors and the project to attain Rwanda’s full potential in the energy sector.”
USAID’s Acting Assistant Administrator for Africa Cheryl L. Anderson joined Symbion at the signing, underscoring the continued partnership between Power Africa and Symbion and the importance of American companies in accelerating energy sector investment to bring power to millions of Rwandan households and businesses.
These two power projects will reduce the risk of gases that are trapped in the deep layers of the lake escaping and rising to the surface, endangering the surrounding communities.
Symbion is working closely with the government of Rwanda and its regulatory agencies to ensure that its Lake Kivu projects deliver affordable energy in an efficient and environmentally responsible manner.
Symbion Energy is a developer and investor in Independent Power Projects on the African continent.
Highland Group Holdings Ltd. is one of the investment vehicles owned by Lord Laidlaw of Rothiemay. Highland’s total assets are predominantly invested in liquid instruments and renewable energy projects. Highland has successfully invested in and developed the Deutsche Bucht (252MW) and Veja Mate (400MW) offshore wind energy projects in Germany.
CryptoMetalExchange© will usurp the dominant fraudulent paper schemes that are currently perpetrated on COMEX and LBMA
September 21, 2017 | 0 Comments
|MetalZoom.Energy aims to disrupt this system by using open source Lynux Hyperledger Fabric blockchain to enable open bid auctions of Cryptocurrency for metal delivery|
DENVER, United States of America, September 21, 2017/ — MetalZoom.Energy (the “Company”) (www.MetalZoom.energy) advises that it has embarked upon the creation of the world’s first Crypto Metal Exchange. The founder of MetalZoom.Energy Marc Ward tells us “Our Crypto-Metal Exchange will provide a platform for miners to auction physical metal to the global consumer without any interference. The blockchain technology ensures zero corruption and results in untampered supply and demand forces to play out transparently.”
Ward, a Data Scientist who scored a perfect 800 on the quantitative GRE wrote an algorithm that correctly predicted the next move of the Nasdaq 100 futures market 88% of the time, over 4,000 times each trading day.
MetalZoom.Energy aims to disrupt this system by using open source Linux Hyperledger Fabric blockchain to enable open bid auctions of Cryptocurrency for metal delivery. Ward explains that “the futures exchange settles in debt currency instead of metal delivery. We plan to disrupt this by having metal ready for delivery and enabling consumers and investors to bid for that metal delivery with Cryptocurrencies across a transparent yet private blockchain framework”.
There are other facets to MetalZoom.Energy including Crypto Metal Mining which will enable miners to initiate a mine to produce metal. Those who acquire these Metal Delivery contracts will fund the miners directly via smart contracts with Cryptocurrency payouts and expect delivery of the metal extracted by the miners via the MetalZoom delivery services.
MetalZoom.Energy is quickly gaining the support of industry leaders with endorsements from the likes of Bill Murphy, Chairman of GATA (Gold Ant-trust Action Committee), Craig Hemke (aka Turd Ferguson of TF Metals Report), Elijah Johnson of www.FinanceandLiberty.com, Cardwell Lynch of the C-Sigma Show, V of Rogue Money Radio, GManIV and SilverDoctors.
Ward is embarking on a tour to Africa where he aims to promote MetalZoom.Energy to the local crypto community and convince miners to offer their metal for auction on the Crypto Metal Exchange. Ward arrives in Johannesburg on 18 October 2017. He will be the keynote speaker at a business breakfast on Thursday 19 October 2017 being held at the Wanderers Golf Club in Sandton, hosted by Mail & Guardian, before moving onto Cape Town where he will be attending several events.
MetalZoom.Energy is the world’s first private energy firm and the first Cryptocurrency with an honor code. MetalZoom.Energy has created the private-partnership Crypto-Metal Exchange. A private platform where producers and end users can engage in trades based upon unfettered real value.
SOUTH AFRICAN AIRWAYS VACATIONS® INTRODUCES ITS 2018 COLLECTION BROCHURE
September 21, 2017 | 0 Comments
Fort Lauderdale, FL (September 20, 2017) – South African Airways Vacations® (SAA Vacations®) launches its 2018 Collection brochure, featuring an expanded portfolio of affordable air-inclusive vacation packages to a variety of destinations throughout Southern and East Africa. The new 2018 brochure features a curated collection of the most popular value-packed vacation packages along with product information on South African Airways (SAA) and South African Airways Vacations®. Once again, SAA Vacations® is offering a digital version of the Collection brochure to make it easier and more efficient for both travel agents and consumers to explore options and book an African vacation of a lifetime.
For 2018, SAA Vacations® has introduced an array of 15 new hotels and safari lodges, nearly doubling their product offering to some of the most popular destinations throughout Africa. From trendy four and five star hotels in cosmopolitan cities like Johannesburg and Cape Town to luxury safari lodges, where guests can experience the “Big Five” wildlife, the enhancement of the SAA Vacations® portfolio greatly increases travelers’ options of affordable air-inclusive luxury packages to Africa.
“SAA Vacations® offers exciting and varied itineraries to both Southern Africa and East Africa that are fully customizable to cater to both luxury and budget travelers,” said Terry von Guilleaume, president of South African Airways Vacations®. “We are excited to partner with some of Africa’s best hotels and lodges to bring spectacular packages for 2018. And with air-inclusive packages starting at just $1899, travel to Africa is more affordable than ever.”
Highlights of the SAA Vacations® 2018 Collection include exceptional value on some of their most popular air-inclusive packages:
“Captivating Cape Town” This 5-night package is designed for those travelers who want to explore the beautiful city of Cape Town. Starting at $1,899* (restrictions apply) per person and includes five-nights in Cape Town with deluxe accommodations, full day Cape Peninsula tour, half day Cape Wine lands tour with wine tasting , Hop-on-Hop off bus pass and ground transfers.
“Wine and Safari” This vacation package begins with a three-night stay in Cape Town, a full-day tour of the Cape Peninsula and the Cape of Good Hope. Then off to South Africa’s wine region with a two-night stay in the historical town of Stellenbosch and a private Winelands tour. The experience continues with a safari and accommodations at Kapama River Lodge for a three-night stay near the world-famous Kruger National Park to enjoy morning and afternoon game drives to view Africa’s Big Five. The 8-night package starts at $4,399** (restrictions apply) per person.
“Introducing Ghana” Explore Accra with this 5-night package, starting at $2,999* (restrictions apply) per person and includes deluxe accommodations in Accra, Kumasi, and Cape Coast, full day tours, private vehicle transportation and ground transfers.
The South African Airways Vacations® 2018 Collection brochure is available online, click here or below. Travelers are encouraged to contact SAA Vacations’® Africa specialists at 1-855-FLY-SAAV or their professional travel consultant. For more information about our 2018 Collection visit: www.flysaavacations.com.
All advertised air-inclusive packages are commissionable and can be customized for both groups and individuals. Tailor made itineraries are our specialty and our team of Africa Specialists are standing by to assist you in creating a vacation of a lifetime.
Aliko Dangote at UN General Assembly in New York: “Africa will become the food basket of the world” ; “Five of the twelve million jobs needed in Africa soon must be created in Nigeria”; “We should pray that oil prices remain low”
September 21, 2017 | 0 Comments
NEW YORK, United States of America, September 20, 2017/ — Nigerian business leader Aliko Dangote told investors “Agriculture, agriculture, agriculture. Africa will become the food basket of the world.”
In a packed room at the headquarters of global law firm Shearman and Sterling LLC high level business leaders and international diplomats invited by the Corporate Council for Africa to hear Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote, and Rwandan president Paul Kagame openly converse on Africa’s opportunities and challenges.
Both leaders underscored the ongoing movement to diversify African economies. In the case of Nigeria, Africa’s largest economy, Dangote stated “we should pray that oil prices remain low. This helps wean us off the dependency on revenues from petroleum. We must take oil to be the icing on the cake. We already have the cake,” he added.
In addition to agriculture Dangote cited Nigeria’s vast mineral resources and gas as well and the need to manufacture more goods locally for domestic consumption. Both he and President Kagame cited continued need for heavy investments in education and connected the need for young people to be well trained for the jobs of tomorrow.
Dangote predicted that “five of the twelve million jobs needed in Africa soon must be created in Nigeria.”
Dangote’s fortune which stems from cement, sugar, and other household commodities has expanded into fertilizer and other processed high-value goods. “Technology of course helps us a lot and our factories are state of the art with the use of robotics but we shouldn’t be overly tech oriented to create wealth,” he told investors.
Mr. Dangote who is often cited as one of the most inspiring business leaders in the world today and a model for young entrepreneurs offered advice to Americans who tend to rely on outdated news and wrong perceptions of Africa, “Don’t be lazy. Go there and find the real story for yourself. Things have changed.”
Dangote noted the Rwanda success story where he has business interests as an example of positive change, good governance and leadership, and where corruption has been cured. He cited a personal experience of offering a $100 US tip for services at the Kigali Airport to staff who refused to take money for work they were paid to do. President Kagame was praised for delivering the environment for growth he promised. “There is nothing African about corruption,” the Rwandan president added.
The session was moderated by Rosa Whitaker, former US Trade Representative and author of the AGOA (African Growth Opportunity Act), whose business consultancy is credited for helping both African governments and US companies develop commerce.
The Jim Ovia Foundation Pledges $2 Million to the Africa-America Institute to Support Higher Education
September 21, 2017 | 0 Comments
New York- 21 September, 2017- Mr. Jim Ovia, Founding Chairman of Zenith Bank, announced the establishment of a new scholarship program, The Jim Ovia Foundation Leaders Scholarship Fund, in partnership with the Africa-America Institute (AAI). The two million dollar pledge will finance four-year degree programs for high-achieving African students to attend world-class institutions around the globe. The announcement came during the 33rd Annual AAI Awards Gala.
African Women in Agriculture The Marrakech Declaration
September 21, 2017 | 0 Comments
Activists in Dakar Demand End to Colonial-era Currency
September 19, 2017 | 0 Comments
Protesters gathered in several West African capitals Saturday to demand their countries abandon the CFA franc in favor of a common African currency. Passions over the issue have been reignited since Senegal arrested and expelled an activist for burning a CFA bill at a rally last month.
The PanAfrican Emergencies group called for the protest. Senegal recently expelled the movement’s founder, French-Beninese activist Kemi Seba, after he burned a 5,000 CFA note during a rally in Dakar in August.
France created the CFA in the 1940s for its African colonies. The CFA is pegged to the euro and guaranteed by national currency reserves deposited with the French treasury. Senegal is one of 14 countries in West and Central Africa’s two monetary unions still using the CFA.
At Dakar’s bustling Marche Tilene, many traders are interested in the debate, though the arguments remain more emotional than economic.
Shop owner Mariama Seydi also favors a new currency.
“I would like Senegal to have its own currency,” she said. “In the same way as we used to talk about the French franc, I would like us to say the Senegalese franc.”
Moudou Gaye, the head of Marche Tilene, agrees.
“We are Africans. We need to get organized and mobilized for a single currency,” Gaye said.
Advocates of the CFA say it has prevented inflation and instability. They point to the experiences of neighbors like Guinea and Nigeria as cautionary tales of going it alone. But critics argue the currency is too strong and stifles economic growth. Regional trade has expanded outside the eurozone to partners like China and the United States.
“When you have a currency fixed to a strong currency like the euro, it is easy to import. But when you want to export, your products cannot compete with other foreign countries,” said Ndongo Samab Sylla, an economist at Rosa Luxemburg Foundation.
Countries using the CFA are free to abandon it, but none of the 14 governments has announced any such intention. And for onlookers at this latest anti-CFA protest, this may be for the best.
“I do not blame them. Everyone has their way of thinking. But we will go nowhere if Senegal creates its own currency and leaves the CFA,” said Ahmadou Bamba Badiane, while watching the protest.
For now, the debate continues. But in the past year, the presidents of Senegal and Ivory Coast have publicly reaffirmed their support for the CFA, making it unlikely it will disappear any time soon.
Ambitious Road map in the works after Marrakech African Women in Agriculture (AWA)” Conference
September 19, 2017 | 0 Comments
African Women in Agriculture
Marrakech September 13, 2017
Radisson Blu Hotel
The Marrakech Declaration
We, the women attending the ”Believe in Africa – African Women in Agriculture (AWA)” Conference held in Marrakech on 11-13th September 2017 at the Radisson Blu Hotel.
We express our deep gratitude to His Royal Majesty, King Mohammed VI for his strong leadership in advancing the African continent’s economic development and his special attention to women.
We hereby make this declaration:
We thank Madam Mbarka Bouaida, Secrétaire d’Etat au près du Ministre de l’Agriculture Chargé de la Pêche Maritime for her leadership and commitment to women empowerment;
We thank H.E. John Dramani Mahama, Former President of The Republic of Ghana for his encouragement and unwavering support to women empowerment and specifically in the agricultural sector;
We express to the Ministry of Solidarity, Women, Family and Social Development our willingness to strengthen our collaboration;
We thank M. Abdelfateh Bjioui, WALI of Marrakech region – Safi for his hospitality and support;
We thank the leadership of Office Chérifien des phosphates Group (OCP Group) For their support to women empowerment in the agricultural sector;
We thank the Moroccan Agency for Social Development for their support to women specifically for revenues generating activities
We thank UN Women and US Africa Development Foundation for their support women particularly in Burkina Faso, Senegal and Mali;
After two days of deliberations resolved as follows:
- To establish an “Believe in Africa” Chapter in Africa;
- To create “African Women in Agriculture” initiatives (AWA).
- To institutionalize the annual “Believe in Africa African Women in Agriculture congress;
- Urge all stakeholders to:
- Create The “African Award for Media in Agriculture and Sustainable Development” to encourage media to promote African women in Agriculture image;
- Establish an “African Traditional Rulers Award” to encourage African traditional rulers to supporting women access to land;
- Establish an ”International Day of African
Women in Agriculture” with the aim of:
- Highlighting and increasing visibility of women’s role in agriculture and sustainable development
- Rebranding the image of women in agriculture;
- Launch the “One Roof = One Garden” initiative to promote food self sufficiency, to enhance youth and women job creation in urban areas and promote urban agriculture;
- Find creative ways to raise and mobilize funding to support African women in agriculture’ access to credit, finance services and business development services.
- Enhance competitiveness for African women in agriculture by guiding on ways to promote value added products, facilitating market access through proper labeling, safety, marketing and branding;
- Provide guidance to women on ways to improve safety and quality assurance measures with a view to gaining access to global markets;
- Advocate and search for an organization that will lead and support an African Certification and labeling structure, internationally recognized.
- Invest in capacity building programs for women along the entire agricultural value chain;
- Advise women on ways to have access to land ownership.
- Increase the use of mechanization and appropriate biotechnology for women in agriculture;
- Support women to access up to date information on agribusiness, technology and international best practices;
- Extend all agricultural incentives to women in Art and Handicraft.
Signed by Angelle Kwemo, Founder and President Believe in Africa
Approved by women attending African Women in Agriculture conference representing different nationalities (Cameroon, Morocco, Nigeria, Benin, Togo, Burkina Faso, Democratic Republic of Congo, Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, Congo, Kenya, Chad, Guinea Bisau, Senegal, Mali, Cape Verde)
Official launch of NEPAD’s 5% Agenda initiative for infrastructure financing in Africa
September 19, 2017 | 0 Comments
|Bridging Africa’s $68bn infrastructure finance gap|
NEW YORK, United States of America, September 18, 2017/ — The New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) (www.NEPAD.org) – African Union’s economic development programme gathered international investors and CEO-level business leaders at the NASDAQ Stock Market today, 18th September, for the launch of its 5% Agenda campaign.
The launch took place five years after a January 2012 African Union Summit adopted the Programme for Infrastructure Development in Africa (PIDA) which sets out 51 cross-border infrastructure programmes and more than 400 actionable projects in four sectors.
According to the World Bank, the continent needs to spend $93 billion annually (44% for energy; 23% for water and sanitation; 20% for transport; 10% for ICTs; and 3% for irrigation) until 2020 to bridge its infrastructure gap, which is currently removing an estimated 2% of GDP growth every year. On the other hand, Africa only managed to close 158 project finance deals with debt totalling $59 billion over the decade 2004-2013, which represents only 5 percent of infrastructure investment needs and 12 percent of the actual financial flows.
The 5% Agenda campaign highlights that only a collaborative public-private approach can efficiently tackle these issues and calls for allocations of institutional investors to African infrastructure to be increased to the declared 5% mark.
Speaking at the launch event in New York, Ibrahim Assane Mayaki, NEPAD Chief Executive Officer, commented: “Infrastructure plays a leading role in supporting growth on the continent. At the same time, it can represent an innovative and attractive asset class for institutional investors with long-term liabilities. By launching the 5% campaign in New York today, we invite investors to take advantage of the wide-ranging opportunities Africa has to offer and to move forward with what can only be a win-win partnership”.
The launch of the campaign gathered high-level international investors and business leaders, including members of the PIDA Continental Business Network (CBN) which is spearheaded by NEPAD and constitutes a CEO-level private sector infrastructure leaders dialogue platform on PIDA.
Tony O. Elumelu, one of Africa’s most prominent entrepreneurs and active participant in the CBN said: “Africa is getting stronger every day with new business opportunities and innovative ideas but what is still crucially missing is project implementation. A coherent and coordinated approach is needed to mobilize institutional investors while limiting their risk exposure. African governments need to work on creating conducive environments to attract these investments which are so vital for the continent’s growth and development.”
According to a 2016 McKinsey report, institutional investors and banks have $120 trillion in assets that could partially support infrastructure projects.
Now more than ever, Africa needs to tap into this available. As banks face additional regulatory challenges and as governments have limited fiscal space, it is becoming increasingly urgent to unlock additional flows from long-term institutional investors such as insurers, pension funds, and sovereign wealth funds.
For pension and sovereign wealth funds to be able to invest in large-scale infrastructure projects in Africa, a variety of issues need to be addressed to strategically and intentionally facilitate long-term allocations. Chief amongst these matters is the need to reform national and regional regulatory frameworks that guide institutional investment in Africa. Likewise, new capital market products need to be developed that can effectively de-risk credit and hence, allow these African asset owners to allocate finance to African infrastructure as an investable asset class to their portfolio.
All these issues are at the heart of the 5% Agenda roadmap, which is the backbone of NEPAD’s campaign and is foreseen to have the following impact: