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New Investment Committee to Provide Solutions to Finance Africa’s Energy Resurgence
August 5, 2020 | 0 Comments
Members of the Investment Committee serve in their personal capacity and gather a wide range of expertise in finance, legal and consulting.

The African Energy Chamber is delighted to announce the nomination of its Investment Advisory Committee, the last body to serve on its Advisory Board for 2020 and 2021. Its members include:

René Awambeng, Global Head, Client Relations, Afreximbank
Rolake Akinkugbe-Filani, Managing Director, EnergyInc Advisors and Senior Africa Advisor, IFU Danish Investment Fund
Abongwa Ndumu, Former Oil Executive and Energy Consultant
Robert Erlich, Partner and Executive Director – Upstream, Cayo Energy LP
Folarin Lajumoke, Vice President – Africa, ION
Nosizwe Nokwe-Macamo, Executive Chairman & Founder, Raise Africa Investments
Rachelle Yayi, CEO, Afara Solutions

Members of the Investment Committee serve in their personal capacity and gather a wide range of expertise in finance, legal and consulting. Together, they will play a key role in supporting the African Energy Chamber’s investment outreach initiatives.

With billions of dollars required every year to upgrade its energy infrastructure and fight energy poverty, the continent needs to successfully mobilize a wide variety of capital and financing. In doing so, African energy markets should be engaging with a broader range of capital providers, from traditional lenders to global institutional investors and private equity firms to venture capitalists. The energy resurgence of the continent following the Covid-19 will require all stakeholders to come together and find new ways to structuring deals and raising capital for the benefits of local economies and jobs creation.

“Our Investment Committee is central to the African Energy Chamber’s objective of providing a bridge between investors and the continent’s energy industry. Africa has limitless investment opportunities across energy sources and across value-chains, and there is a pressing need to communicate better with financiers and investors to increase investments in the continent,” stated NJ Ayuk, Executive Chairman at the African Energy Chamber. “The African Energy Chamber has made it its mission to boost capital and technology inflow on the continent, from engaging with new capital providers interested in Africa to advising on the structuring of better and future deals,” he concluded.

Landmark gas projects across Africa have managed to attract regional and global capital in recent months and years. From Senegal to Mozambique and Equatorial Guinea, Africa has demonstrated its ability to attract funding. However, investment is still falling short of market needs. While Nigeria’s ongoing Marginal Fields Bidding Round stands to be a success, access to financing the development of such fields will remain a key challenge for the operators.  African Energy companies in Nigeria, Cameroon, Gabon, Ghana, Mozambique and South Sudan, Uganda and South Africa continue to see capital as their biggest obstacle when it comes to developing African natural resources or even competing for service contracts.

*African Energy Chamber
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Chevron’s Entry into Equatorial Guinea and Cameroon Could be a Turning Point for Central Africa’s Gas Industry
August 5, 2020 | 0 Comments
The African Energy Chamber believes that the entry of Chevron as operator for the offshore gas mega-hub could be transformational for the future of gas in Central Africa.

MALABO, Equatorial Guinea, August 5, 2020/ — The recently-announced acquisition of Noble Energy by Chevron for $13bn gives the American major an entry into Equatorial Guinea’s oil & gas sector, where Noble Energy has interests in the Alba Field (33% non-operated WI and 32% revenue interest), Block O (Alen Field 51% operated WI and 45% revenue interest) and Block I (Aseng Field, 40% operated WI and 38% revenue interest). These assets in Equatorial Guinea represent 94 million barrels of oil equivalent of proved developed reserves and 38 million barrels of oil equivalent of proved undeveloped reserves. In addition, Noble Energy was also the operator Block YoYo in Cameroon and of the deepwater Block Doujou Dak (60% WI) in Gabon, where it was in the process of evaluating recently acquired 3D seismic data.

The acquisition has raised several concerns and questions, mostly because these assets are currently subject the CEMAC region’s most ambitious gas development project. While the Alba Field has been feeding gas into Equatorial Guinea’s Punta Europa complex for decades, including the EG LNG Plant, the AMPCO methanol plant and the Alba LPG plant, its declining reserves have led to the development of the Alen and Aseng fields as alternative sources of gas. In 2019, Noble Energy was at the heart of a groundbreaking agreement to launch the Alen Monetization Project, expected to ensure continued and stable gas supply to Equatorial Guinea’s LNG and downstream revenue-generating infrastructure.

The project is still on track for delivery in 2021 and is the first step of the development of a much broader offshore gas mega-hub in the Gulf of Guinea. This regional gas hub would ultimately include the development of the Yolanda and YoYo discoveries located in Equatorial Guinea’s Block I and Cameroon’s YoYo Block, both operated by Noble.

The scheme is one of the most ambitious cross-border gas venture in Africa, and Noble’s acquisition by Chevron has the industry worried about the future of the project under new operatorship. However, the African Energy Chamber believes that the entry of Chevron as operator for the offshore gas mega-hub could be transformational for the future of gas in Central Africa, especially at a time when Equatorial Guinea, Cameroon, Gabon and Congo are all multiplying efforts to monetize their domestic gas reserves.

Chevron is indeed a true gas player in the African market. In Nigeria, it has been leading natural gas commercialization efforts for decades through its Escravos projects targeting the monetization of 18Tcf of gas. These have resulted in the Escravos Gas-to-Liquids facility and the Escravos Gas Plant, both cornerstones of Nigeria’s gas development strategy. In Angola’s Block 0 and Block 14, Chevron has demonstrated a remarkable ability to invest in cutting flaring and monetizing gas. In block 0, it still operates what is the world’s largest LPG FPSO vessel, turning previously flared gas into cleaner fuels for Africans and the for the world.

“What we need now is a pragmatic commonsense approach that welcomes credible investors and see gas taking the lead in economic development and industrialization, therefore the entry of Chevron is extremely welcomed and should be accepted by all stakeholders,” said NJ Ayuk, Executive Chairman at the African Energy Chamber. “Transaction and projects approvals should not be unnecessarily delayed, ensuring a quick and efficient takeover in the region so ongoing gas projects are not affected. This acquisition gives the region a very experienced and credible gas player with tried, true and tested solutions to support our gas ambitions. The Chamber believes that fast tracking approvals and driving commonsense measures around this deal will make the industry work,” added Ayuk.

“From its Nigerian and Angolan presence, Chevron understands the issues and opportunities of developing African content. We expect its entry to be beneficial from a local content and capacity building perspective,” said Leoncio Amada NZE, President for the CEMAC region at the African Energy Chamber. “We hope that the authorities in Cameroon and Equatorial Guinea can do an efficient and fast track due diligence process, and ensure that Noble meets all its obligations to exit and create a seamless transition for Chevron. This is an opportunity for our public authorities to demonstrate their commitment to empowering investment and move away from an era of uncertainty to give confidence to future investors and stay competitive,” concluded Amada NZE.

*African Energy Chamber
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Kenya Airways resumes international passenger flights
August 5, 2020 | 0 Comments

By Wallace Mawire

Principal Secretary Transport, Solomon Kitungu and Kenya Airways Group Managing Director and CEO Allan Kilavuka at the Ceremony to Mark the Resumption of International Flights From JKIA
Principal Secretary Transport, Solomon Kitungu and Kenya Airways Group Managing Director and CEO Allan Kilavuka at the Ceremony to Mark the Resumption of International Flights From JKIA

Kenya Airways (KQ) has resumed international passenger services following the easing of movement restrictions as directed by H.E President Uhuru Kenyatta.

 It is reported that the first international flights departed 1st August to the following international destinations, London, Dubai, Addis Ababa, Kigali, and Lusaka.

 It has been added that during the month of August, there will be a gradual increase in the network with flights to Paris, Mumbai and Amsterdam. In Africa, the airline will operate flights to Accra, Dzaoudzi, Freetown, Harare, Kilimanjaro, Lagos, Monrovia, Moroni, Nampula and Zanzibar. Based on demand and other factors, resumption of services to other destinations around the globe will occur.

The Airline plans to start operations to USA, China and Thailand from October 2020. These destinations require the bulk of the network to open up so as to sustain adequate traffic on the routes.

“Since resuming domestic flights on 15th July 2020, we have been monitoring the adherence to the protocols that we have in place to ensure the health and safety of our customers and staff, and I am pleased that they are being enforced and followed strictly,” said Allan Kilavuka, Group Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Kenya Airways.

“The resumption of our international flights is an important milestone for us. Through the COVID-19 pandemic, we have continued to provide connections for our farmer’s produce to reach international markets, medical supplies to reach our people through our Cargo flights, as well as reuniting families through the repatriation flights we mounted with support from the Government of Kenya. We look forward to welcoming our guests on board from today onwards as we play our role in kick starting economies, not only for Kenya but also for those countries that we operate to,” he added.

Some of the safety measures the airline has put in place to ensure the safety of passengers include, the use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) by the flight crew and airport workers where necessary, and limited interaction between crew and passengers. The airline is also providing sanitizer stations onboard and washing of hands will be encouraged by crew on board the flights.

All the aircrafts are fitted with High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filters. The filters ensure that the quality of air on board is kept clean by constant filtration and replacement with air from outside the aircraft. They also trap particulates such as viruses and bacteria, and as the air flows primarily from the ceiling to the floor, it helps minimize particulates spreading throughout the cabin. The airline will continuously review the protocols in place and update where necessary to ensure the health and safety of all.

Kenya Airways Chairman of the Board Michael Joseph
Kenya Airways Chairman of the Board Michael Joseph

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a devastating impact on the tourism and aviation industries, globally. According to IATA, demand for travel is forecast to fall by 58% in 2020, while passenger revenues will decline by over $6 billion compared to the previous year. Kenya’s tourism industry meanwhile has lost 80 billion shillings ($752 million) in revenue so far due to the crisis.

It is added that while it is not expected that these sectors will immediately return to business-as-usual as travel restrictions are still a reality, the resumption of international flights is an important step for Kenya towards bringing the sectors back to life.

According to the Kenya Airways Chairman of the Board, Michael Joseph, “The global economic and geopolitical context remains uncertain and it will take another 2-3 years to gain the confidence of travellers and begin the path to recovery for air travel demand. A number of industry watchers predict that it will be a few years before air travel returns to the 2019 levels.”

“However, the resumption of international flights from Nairobi to the world is a major step towards recovery, as it will enable local businesses to connect with global markets, contributing favourably to the Kenyan economy and towards the sustainable development of the continent,” he added.

  Kenya Airways, a member of the Sky Team Alliance, is a leading African airline flying to 54 destinations worldwide, 41 of which are in Africa and transports over four million passengers annually. It continues to modernize its fleet with its 34 aircrafts being amongst the youngest in Africa. This includes its flagship B787 Dreamliner aircraft. The on-board service is renowned and the lie-flat business class seat on the wide-body aircraft is consistently voted among the world’s top 10. Kenya Airways takes pride for being in the forefront of connecting Africa to the World and the World to Africa through its hub at the new ultra-modern Terminal 1A at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi. Kenya Airways celebrated 43 years of operation in January 2020 and was named Africa Leading Airline 2019 by the World Travel Awards. For more information, please visit www.kenya-airways.com or call our 24HR Contact Center: +254 20 327 4747, Twitter: @KenyaAirways, Facebook: Kenya Airways, Instagram: OfficialKenyaAirways

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Impact of Covid-19 in Zimbabwe may be far worse than reported and anticipated due to limited testing capacity, says Doctors organization
August 5, 2020 | 0 Comments

By Wallace Mawire

A woman is screened by a healthcare worker before visiting a relative at a public hospital in Harare [Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi/AP Photo]

 The Zimbabwe Association of Doctors for Human Rights (ZADHR) worried that the impact of Covid-19 cases in Zimbabwe may be far worse than reported and anticipated due to limited testing capacity,a fragile health system currently plagued by manpower challenges,lack of accountability and persistent underfunding of the health sector, according to its 8th Covid-19 Monitoring and Advocacy Report.

ZADHR is a member of International Federation of Health and Human Rights Organisations (IFHHRO) and has Observer Status for the  African Commission for Human and Peoples’ Rights.

The organization reports that increases in Covid-19 cases in the country have seen the shifting of the epidemiological profile of the pandemic from imported cases to widespread local transmission with heath care workers and prison officials also testing positive.

   “These vulnerabilities pose an existential threat of a devastating and long-lasting pandemic further worsening the plight of vulnerable groups,” ZADHR said.

   ZADHR publishes the brief as part of its continuous audit of the Covid-19 response in Zimbabwe and to provide recommendations to the government and health officials.

 It says that in response to the rising cases of Covid-19 in Zimbabwe the government of Zimbabwe on the 22nd of July 2020 promulgated the Public Health (COVID-19 Prevention, Containment and Treatment) (national Lockdown) (Amendment) Order, 2020 (No.14) to extend the lockdown period indefinitely with more stringent conditions.

  The Order has seen the introduction of a 6am to 6pm curfew and reverts to the initial lockdown order that allows for only essential services workers to move without restrictions.

 “ We note that despite the lessons learnt in the initial response the government has proceeded to instate the same measures without paying due attention to factors that led to numerous cases of people violating the lockdown restrictions, such as the lack of a strong, efficient and responsive social safety programme for the poor,” ZADHR SAID.

 It adds that, as ZADHR they continue to reiterate that the lockdown measures should not be used for political expediency but for the furtherance of the public health agenda.

  “This can only be achieved through expansion in testing and contact tracing capacity and widespread community education on Covid- 19 preventive measures. We also note a press statement by the ZRP on 25 July 2020 on documents required at checkpoints and roadblocks. Under medical resupplies the police require citizens to provide their medical cards/prescription and contact details of their doctor. As ZADHR we reiterate that medical documents such as prescriptions and medical cards are private and confidential documents. Patients have a right to privacy of medical information and the police have no right to access these confidential documents, unless directed by a court,” they said.

  They added that they acknowledge the need to restrict unnecessary movement of citizens, but such important measures need to be done whilst upholding basic rights of citizens.

  On  quarantine facilities ZADHR says that it continues to receive reports of returnees absconding detention due to a number of factors that include but not limited to poor living conditions characterised by a sorry state of WASH facilities and access to other basic amenities leading to greater interaction between the returnees in quarantine facilities and the outside world posing an existential threat to communities.

  They add that the situation is compounded by extended turnaround times for test results and or delayed testing leading to lengthy stays in quarantine facilities.

   ZADHR also noted the petition by the Concerned Residents Waterfalls (CRW) to the Ministry of Health and Child Care, Harare City Health Department, Harare Covid-19 Taskforce and to the ZRP Waterfalls Police Station on the 23rd of July 2020 over reportedly irregular establishment of a quarantine centre at the ZAOGA FIF owned properties located at number RE 3/A Powel Road, Parktown, Waterfalls, Harare and 13B Powel Road, Parktown, Waterfalls, Harare and failure by the authorities to secure the facilities.

   The CRW notes that persons quarantined at 13B Powell Road were getting in and out of the gate freely without restrictions exposing the community to a potential health threat and that the same persons were entertaining visitors by the gate, exchanging goodies and taking selfies in clear violation of the stipulated Covid-19 guidelines.

 “We urge the government to respond to the Waterfalls residents concerns and abide by the court order of 3rd of June 2020 by the High Court compelling the government through the Ministry of Health and Child Care to improve the state of conditions i.e. conducive living conditions at the quarantine facilities and improve the turnaround times for test results,” they said.

 On  Personal Protective Equipment ZADHR said that it  laments the growing trend in health professionals who are testing positive to the corona virus, where the majority of these cases are attributable to exposure at the workplace due to lack of PPE.

  It is added that reports indicate that over 200 health workers have tested positive countrywide.

 “Of note is 25 health workers testing positive at Zvishavane District Hospital, 3 at Claybank Private Hospital in Gweru, 70 in Bulawayo and another 70 at Parirenyatwa with the rest dotted across the country. The failure to provide frontline health workers with adequate PPE flies in the face of the 14th of April 2020 High Court order which ordered the government through the Ministry of Health and Child Care to “provide all frontline health personnel at public health facilities in the country or deployed to trace contacts exposed by infected people, are provided with personal protective equipment (PPE)…” to protect them from the deadly CoronaVirus. Further, we have also noted that there is no priority in providing information in the Ministry’s daily updates on the number of health  professionals who have tested positive, recovering or deceased,” ZADHR said.

  They added that they urged the Ministry of Health and Child Care and the Health Services Board (HSB) to provide a brief on the numbers, region/province and status of all health professionals’ who have tested positive to Covid-19 to date.

 “We continue to urge the government to improve the workplace safety of health workers through timeous and adequate provision of PPE to protect healthcare workers from contracting Covid-19,” ZADHR said.

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Kenya: Panic As Nurses Threaten to Strike Over Poor Working Conditions In the midst of spiking Covid-19 cases.
August 5, 2020 | 0 Comments

By Samuel Ouma

Kenya National Union of Nurses Secretary General Seth Panyako.Photo PHOTO| SILA KIPLAGAT 

Activities in the public hospitals across the country might be disrupted on Monday after nurses threatened to boycott their duties over delayed payment of allowances.

The Kenya National Union of Nurses Secretary General Seth Panyako said the essential and frontline workers are facing heavy crisis since they have not been paid risk and responsibility allowances as directed by President Uhuru Kenyatta.

Insurance cover is another payment which is yet to be implemented.

“From Monday it will not be business as usual in this country. You can’t work when you don’t have food, you have children in the house and you can’t pay your rent,” Panyako said.

Panyako also lamented over lack of isolation facilities to cater for the infected healthcare workers even though the government had promised to establish such centres.

“WHO has said that this virus is a work injury hazard hence treatment of all frontline health workers should be free,” he added.

Addressing the press in Nairobi, Panyako ordered healthcare workers especially in Western and Nyanza regions to undergo Covid-19 test saying the areas received substandard Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).

He told the government that nurses won’t be going to work without N95 masks.

At the same time, the county workers union Secretary General Roba Duba averred that healthcare workers are yet to receive their June and July remunerations.

“There is a big crisis. We can no longer exercise any more resilience. Provision of quality PPEs is mandatory. Health care workers need physical protection because they are killed from and on their way to work,” Roba said.

By mid July, more than 400 healthcare workers in the East African nation had tested positive for the novel virus and 4 others had succumbed to the disease.

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US calls on S. Sudanese leaders to end communal violence, unify nation
August 5, 2020 | 0 Comments

By Deng Machol

President Kiir and Vice President Machar hold the keys to peace in South Sudan

Juba – The Trump’s administration has called on South Sudanese parties to end communal conflicts in the restive country.In a statement seen by Pan African Visions, the Embassy of the United States to Juba also called on the leaders to start unifying the nation and bringing well-deserved peace to the vulnerable people of the world youngest nation.

The Embassy expresses deep concern with continued communal conflict in parts of the country and calls for all parties to deescalate tensions.
The US described it as “unacceptable the forced displacement, disruption to livelihoods, diversion and looting of humanitarian aid, and the killing of aid workers in some states.”

“Fighting in different parts of South Sudan in recent weeks has reflected different causes and involved different parties but the impact is all similarly unacceptable; the people of South Sudan, your friends, your neighbors and communities are all suffering abuses against civilian populations.  Forced displacement, disruption to livelihoods,  diversion and looting of humanitarian aid, and the killing of aid workers are all unacceptable.  It is time for local and regional leaders and the government of South Sudan to put an end to these conflicts and start unifying the country and bringing well-deserved peace to the people of South Sudan,” said the US in the statement.     

The US also pointed out an uptick in clashes between the government forces (SSPDF) and the National Salvation Front, accompanied by “displacement of civilians and civilian abductions in parts of Central Equatoria state.”
It also raised the alarm over the reports of large-scale mobilization of armed groups and fighting on inter – communal basis in Jonglei region, which remained a deeply concerned.

“Now is the time for all the people who took or accepted the responsibility to lead this country, to work towards a nation of unity where everybody has a right to speak in public  without fear of repercussion,  where every has a right to education, where everybody has a right to live in their home of choice without fear of violence. The leaders of South Sudan cannot sit back and wait for things to happen; they need to make them happen,” the statement said, urging on leaders to take decisive actions to end the hostilities.

The embassy further noted with concerns tensions between SPLA-IO and SSPDF units in Western Bahr el Ghazal.There have been reports of arbitrary detention of civilians and attacks on civilian vehicles along the Wau – Tonj road.The statement urges all parties to immediately adhere to the Agreement on the Cessation of Hostilities, comply with their Rome Resolution obligations, and resume dialogue on a political solution to the conflict.

“We welcome the establishment of a delegation with leaders from both sides and urge immediate dialogue to reduce tensions, forestall further clashes, and prevent a broader threat to the peace agreement ceasefire,” said in part of the statement.This is a second such statement issued by the Embassy of the US in South Sudan within a week.

Last week, it expressed concerns over the continued delay in the implementation of some provisions in the revitalized peace agreement, pointed out the impediments in the establishment of a transitional national legislative assembly, and the continued dispute over the governorship of Upper Nile.

On the same development, Ambassador Lt. Gen. Njoroge, the Interim Chairperson of the Reconstituted Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission (RJMEC), echoed by saying that the intercommunal violence is a ‘great concern’ toward the fragile peace deal.
In the statement, Amb. Lt. Gen. Njoroge, said: “The intercommunal violence in various parts of the country over the past few months continues to be of great concern.  I hope that recent activities on the issue of responsibility sharing at the state level will help to address the power vacuum in which these intercommunal clashes take place.”

South Sudan was emerging from the country’s five year conflict which has killed nearly 400,000 people and uprooted four million people from their homes, before devestasted the country’s economy but the effort to implement the peace deal was blighted by lack of political will, mistrust, inter-communal violence and plus the COVID 19 pandemic.

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A Decade in Peerless :Excellence GTBank is Nigeria’s Best Bank for a record extending 10 Times
August 4, 2020 | 0 Comments

Guaranty Trust Bank Plc (https://www.GTBank.com/) has long been regarded by industry watchers as one of the best run financial institutions in Africa, a reputation that has been further buttressed by its recent recognition as the Best Bank in Nigeria by the renowned business and finance magazine Euromoney, for a record-extending ten times between 2010 and 2020. The foremost African financial institution was also recently awarded the Euromoney Excellence in Leadership Africa Award for its swift reaction in responding to the Covid-19 crisis and for addressing the impact of the pandemic on its customers and communities.

Euromoney’s Awards for Excellence is one of the most coveted accolades in the global financial services sector. The Magazine’s Awards for Excellence celebrates the best banks around the world by recognizing institutions that have demonstrated leadership, innovation, and momentum in the markets they operate. Key to GTBank’s dominance as the Euromoney’s Best Bank in Nigeria is the Bank’s consistency in driving new innovations in financial services, championing community development programs that uplift the most vulnerable in society, and delivering the best performance across several key financial indices. The Euromoney awards also reflects the efficacy of the Bank’s long-term strategy and the dedication of a senior management team that abhors complacency, puts a premium on excellent service quality and keeps the business in a constant state of innovation.

Regarding GTBank’s Excellence in Leadership Award, Euromoney said; “One of the first things Nigeria’s Guaranty Trust Bank did with the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic was to get in touch with local authorities to see how the bank could help. Recognizing that the pandemic would stretch the public healthcare system, the Bank partnered with local authorities to set up a care facility for people with Covid-19. “GTBank also granted small and medium-sized enterprises a grace period of 90 days [which has since been extended by a further 3 months] on all loan payments. It is also developing other resources to help SMEs better understand and navigate the impact of the pandemic,” the magazine added.

Commenting on the Bank’s Euromoney Awards, the Chief Executive Officer of GTBank, Segun Agbaje, said; “We feel very humbled to be awarded the Excellence in Leadership in Africa Award and immensely proud to be named Nigeria’s Best Bank for a record tenth time. These awards reflect what we are all about at GTBank—giving back to society and adding value to people’s lives. They are also testaments to our commitment to always be there for our customers and communities as a beacon of hope, an engine of progress and a platform for enriching lives.”

He further stated that; “As we continue to navigate the fallout of this pandemic, the imperative of our time as an organization remains safeguarding our lives and livelihoods. This means that we will continue to lead from the frontlines by protecting our employees, serving our customers wherever they may be, helping businesses make it through these uncertain times and supporting public authorities in combatting the pandemic.”

GTBank serves as a role model within the financial service industry due to its bias for world class corporate governance standards, excellent service quality and innovation. Renowned for its forward-thinking approach to financial services and customer engagement, the Bank was recently ranked Africa’s Most Admired Finance Brand in the 10th-anniversary rankings of Brand Africa 100: Africa’s Best Brands, the pre-eminent survey and ranking of the Top 100 admired brands in Africa.

*SOURCE GTBank

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Kenya:CAF decision to cancel 2020 AWCON annoys Starlets coach Ouma
August 4, 2020 | 0 Comments

By Samuel Ouma

Harambee Starlets Coach David Ouma
Harambee Starlets Coach David Ouma

In June, the Confederation of African Football (Caf) announced the cancellation of this year’s Africa Women’s Cup of Nations (AWCON) and approved the formation Africa Women’s Champions League.

The decision was reached during the virtual Caf Executive Committee meeting held on June 30.

Now it is more than a month since the decision was made but Harambee Starlets Coach David Ouma has not moved on. Speaking to journalists on Tuesday, August 4, Ouma slammed the decision terming it a ‘bad option’.

Ouma felt that Caf should have rescheduled the tourney noting that a number of teams had already prepared physically and psychologically.

“I was preparing my team by all means. We were fresh from taking part in the Turkish Women’s Cup where we managed to finish third and we were ready to face Tanzanian Twiga Stars in April then later meet Dr Congo or Sao Tome and Principe in the last round of the qualifying stage before Corona virus broke out,” Ouma said.

He argued that the continental body should have borrowed a leave from other sports like athletics which postponed their events to a later date. For instance, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) postponed 2020 Olympic Games to 2021. The much anticipated event was to kick off on July 24 and end On August 9 but failed to take place due to Covid-19 pandemic.

The coach added that the abolition of the biennial showpiece will deny women footballers to showcase their talents and market their skills worldwide.

The 2020 AWCON was to be staged in November in DRC. 

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Kenya:Cloud Productivity Solutions (CPS) shines at Microsoft Global Partners Award 2020
August 4, 2020 | 0 Comments

By Samuel Ouma

Kenyan IT firm, Cloud Productivity Solutions (CPS), reaped big in the recently concluded 2020 Microsoft Inspire awards.

The firm won the Global Teamwork Partner of the Year for doing phenomenon work on Microsoft Teams as well as transforming customers in security. CPS also continued building specific bundles for the Teams that increase consumption and help customers lower costs. It also opened an office in Uganda this year. The company bagged the same award during last year’s awards ceremony.

The Award recognizes Microsoft Partners who demonstrate excellence in innovation and implementation of customer solutions based on Microsoft technology.

“As a company, we have always believed in bringing technology closer to those who need it most, allowing everyone to ultimately achieve more. We’ve been able to do this through connecting our partners with customers and each other – enabling business growth and driving digital transformation,” said the General Manager at Microsoft Middle East and Africa Emerging Markets, Ibrahim Youssry.

Other winners from the continent are Salt Essential IT from Namibia and Cloudware from Ghana.

Salt was recognized for being at the forefront of driving a modern workplace story infused with their own solutions and bundles. Since the onset of Covid-19 pandemic, the firm has been assisting schools, customers and governments to transit to teams plus offering security bundle.

On the other hand, Cloudware was awarded for assisting Microsoft on several accounts with true impact, leading customer face time in the field in alignment with the Cloud strategy. The organisation delivers workshops and support on Azure consumption by customers.

Our commitment to our partners doesn’t just start and end with recognition. For success to be sustained, continuous support is required. This is why we continue to invest in the appropriate programs, training, and resources that will enable our partners to generate demand for as well as scale their solutions,” continued Youssry.

“We continue to look at internal ways to provide innovative products and services to our partners, helping them to not only succeed but also deliver solutions that are valuable to customer needs.”

Winners were selected based on their commitment to customers, the impact of their solutions and the exemplary use of Microsoft technologies.

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Africare Commemorates Its 50th Anniversary With Planned Sunset Of All U.S. Operations And Assisting In Standing Up A New “PanAfricare” On The Continent
August 4, 2020 | 0 Comments

-COMPLETES A STRATEGIC PIVOT TO AFRICA

The new PanAfricare will be headed by the experienced and respected former Africare country director Gorgui Diallo

Crowning an impressive fifty-year legacy of high-impact programming within Africa, the Africare Board of Directors and President & CEO Robert L. Mallett today announced both the planned cessation of Africare operations in the US and the endorsement of a newly created independent entity, “PanAfricare” based in Senegal, West Africa. The birth of PanAfricare will coincide with the planned sunset of Africare. The new PanAfricare has established its own board of directors and will operate autonomously from the existing organization. Africare will transition its entire portfolio of projects to PanAfricare.  As the legacy Africare closes its operations, a new “Friends of PanAfricare” has also been established.  Its sole, independent purpose will be to support the new PanAfricare and other organizations with similar missions in sub-Saharan Africa with fundraising from donors who support the mission of Africare.

Upon inception, PanAfricare can demonstrate extensive reach with a presence in each region of Sub-Saharan Africa  — Angola, Burkina Faso, Chad, Nigeria, Kenya, Zimbabwe and, of course, Senegal where the new PanAfricare headquarters will be based. Programs are within the core competencies of legacy Africare and the new PanAfricare, including: Agriculture, Nutrition, Health, Women’s and Youth Empowerment.

“It has been my great honor to serve as a steward of Africare’s enormous impact of transforming lives in Africa – from agricultural innovation, food security and nutrition to empowering women and youth.  Now is simply the right time to pass this baton of stewardship not only to the capable Gorgui Diallo and the talented field staff – but to the entire continent of Africa via the new PanAfricare. I have great confidence that governments and donors committed to capacity building will take note and support this bold new venture,” said President & CEO Robert Mallett. 

“It was indeed the appropriate moment to dually celebrate Africare’s wonderful legacy while also looking forward to ensure PanAfricare would be in a position to deliver services to the people of Africa,” said Board Chair Stephen D. Cashin. “We are greatly appreciative of all the global ‘Africare alumni’ who have provided their energies and idea capital towards reaching this milestone.” 

“We are also grateful to our many government, international and corporate partners, foundations, sororities, churches and individual donors over this period who have underwritten the delivery of valuable services to the people of Africa.  Africare has long enjoyed a widely diverse base of donor support,” he added.

The new PanAfricare will be headed by the experienced and respected former Africare country director Gorgui Diallo and many talented country-based project teams will join him in this new venture.  “I am humbled, honored and energized to become the inaugural CEO of the new PanAfricare. We appreciate the confidence of existing donors such as Bayer, Exxon Mobil and others who have reauthorized former Africare grants to PanAfricare.  The new PanAfricare is excited about many projects such as nurturing a highly innovative initiative converting mining waste to fertilizer in Chad.” 

Africare is inviting existing staff, dedicated Africare Alumni, donors and all our loyal supporters to adopt the hashtags “#AfricareGoldenYear2020” and “#MyAfricareMemory” on social media and share their sentiments, participation and even photos in support of the collective work in Africa. During the 1970-2020 period, Africare invested approximately $2 billion across 38 African countries.

“#AfricareGoldenYear2020 is dually a recognition of our great fifty-year legacy in Africa while highlighting the promising planned programming on the continent,” said President & CEO Robert Mallett.  “As we are on the ground every day, we increasingly see effective solutions towards uplifting people’s lives developed locally throughout our operating countries vs. imported from the US.  A new autonomous PanAfricare is dedicated to delivering programming which directly benefits people,” Mallett added.

Additional details regarding Africare, Africare House, PanAfricare and past influential leaders such as C. Payne Lucas can be found on Africare’s website at www.africare.org.

Africare was founded in 1970 as a leading non-governmental organization committed to addressing African development  and policy issues by working in partnership with African people to build sustainable, healthy and productive communities.  During its fifty years, it has invested approximately $2 billion in 38 African countries . In 2020, Africare announced a planned sunset of US operations coinciding with the formation of an autonomous new Senegal headquartered entity named PanAfricare.  PanAfricare will continue Africare’ s legacy of implementing programs with a commitment towards ‘improving lives and building futures’  on the African continent.  Africare concurrently also facilitated the formation of the “Friends of PanAfricare” non-profit entity which will support PanAfricare and other organizations with similar missions in sub-Saharan Africa.

*Cision

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S. Sudan: Three siblings ‘gruesomely’ murdered, President Kiir promises swift justice
August 3, 2020 | 0 Comments

By Deng Machol

A photo of the siblings provided by the family.
A photo of the siblings provided by the family.

Juba – South Sudan President Salva Kiir has condoled with the family of murdered children while promising to hunt down the perpetrator (s) and  get swift justice.

The siblings are said to have been killed in cold blood at 4:30 PM in Rock city residential area on August 1st, 2020. They were reportedly slaughtered by an unidentified person while watching television (TV).

The mutilated bodies of the girls; aged nine, seven and four – years old were found lying in cold blood at the floor of the sitting room at the time of deaths.

The neighbors say the children were murdered in the absence of their parents.

The mother had reportedly gone to the market and left the children watching television on that fateful day.

Preliminary findings show that the children may have been butchered by a lone criminal.

This heinous act in an urban set up has angered South Sudanese world over, has sent waves of shock and disbelief at how someone could take the lives of three innocent souls:

calling for justice.

The country’s Police are investigating what has been described as the most gruesome murder of three little children in history of the country.

President Salva Kiir has just issued a statement condemning the inhumane killing of the three children.

In a statement seen by this media President Kiir said he is “shocked and saddened” by heartless murder of innocent children and is also grabbling with the magnitude of the crime.

“The pain and trauma inflicted on us by the perpetrator (s) of this crime is enormous, as a country, will prevail. We will work tirelessly to make this criminal pay dearly for this heinous crime,” said president Kiir.

The killer has not been apprehended, but police say they have identified some suspects.

The president directed law enforcement agencies to use every tool in their disposal to quickly apprehend and bring the suspect before the law for trial.

“To this effect, I’m directing all law enforcement agencies to use every tool at their disposal towards expeditious apprehension and trial of the suspect (s) in these unjustifiable murders,” President Kiir.

He further appealed to the public to support the investigations by providing information to the police to help with the resolution of the crime.

The observers said this is revenge, it is not an act of someone who wants money or wants to kill the father or mother, but there is something he/she want to probably to destroy the parents.

President Kiir concluded by offering his message of solidary with the parents of the deceased and prayed for their strength during this tragedy.

Such inhumane acts have been reportedly in South Sudan since the conflict broke out in 2013.

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German Energy Investors Have a Bright Future in a Post-Covid 19 Africa
August 3, 2020 | 0 Comments
The reshaping of the continent from 2021 onwards provides a great opportunity for German companies and technology to fight energy poverty in Africa.

On Thursday, the Germany-Africa Business Forum (GABF) is organizing an exclusive webinar to encourage new deals between German and African public and private energy stakeholders. This is an extremely timely initiative. Covid-19 has accelerated several major trends and dynamics within Africa’s energy sector which are set to significantly increase the demand for German capital and technology on the continent.

Energy has been identified by most African governments and financial institutions as a key sector able to support Africa’s economic recovery post-Covid-19. In parallel, global trends toward a cleaner energy transition are now accelerating and Africa is no stranger to the game. The reshaping of the continent from 2021 onwards provides a great opportunity for German companies and technology to fight energy poverty in Africa and support the natural gas monetization and valorization drive from Mozambique to Senegal, Nigeria, Equatorial Guinea and Tanzania.

“The African Energy Chamber is calling on Germany to work with African businesses to lower carbon emissions and support Africa’s path to a net zero future. From gas flaring to gas-to-power and cleantech, Germany has the capital and technology Africa needs to build an inclusive and sustainable energy future,” declared Nj Ayuk, Executive Chairman at the African Energy Chamber.

By engaging not only with African governments but with the continent’s entrepreneurs and private companies, German stakeholders can structure the deals who will ensure a successful future for the German-African energy cooperation. German technical know-how and technology is increasingly looked after when it comes to assessing climate change risks and opportunities in business planning, and supporting public policies embracing decarbonization.

Germany’s appetite for Africa has already translated into landmark projects and deals across the continent. In West Africa, Siemens is currently supporting Nigeria in raising its electricity capacity of 25GW under the country’s Presidential Power Initiative. Meanwhile, Voith Hydro and the Commerzbank recently joined Angola’s Caculo-Cabaça Hydropower hydroelectric project to support CGGC in completing the 2172MW power facility by 2024. An increasing number of German SMEs are also involved in landmark gas and power projects, including the Akinokien LNG receiving terminal in Equatorial Guinea.

“We need to foster a candid and constructive dialogue with a broad range of German and African stakeholders on investment, energy poverty, the creation of an enabling environment for private businesses and the implementation of free market policies that benefit the poor and emerging African middle class,” concluded Nj Ayuk.

Register for the webinar here: https://bit.ly/30oT8m9

*African Energy Chamber
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