HEINEKEN lays the foundation stone of its first brewery in Mozambique
December 4, 2017 | 0 Comments
|HEINEKEN makes $100 million investment|
|AMSTERDAM, Netherlands, December 4, 2017/ — HEINEKEN (www.theHEINEKENcompany.com) today laid the foundation stone of its first brewery in Mozambique in the presence of His Excellency Mr. Max Tonela, Minister of Trade and Industry.
This new brewery, incorporating the latest technologies, represents a $100 million (€85 million) investment. Located in the province of Maputo, between the Marracuene and Manhiça districts, the brewery will have a production capacity of 0.8 million hectoliters and will brew high quality beers for the domestic market. The first bottle of beer is expected to come off the production line in the first half of 2019.
HEINEKEN Mozambique started its activities in 2016 through a sales and marketing office, importing international beers including Heineken®, Amstel, Amstel Lite and Sagres in the country to offer more choice to Mozambican consumers. The construction of HEINEKEN’s very first brewery is a major step forward for the company’s presence in the country.
With this significant investment, HEINEKEN Mozambique is expected to create 200 direct jobs and support additional indirect jobs through its entire value chain.
Aligned with the HEINEKEN ambition of sourcing 60% of its agricultural raw materials in Africa by 2020, HEINEKEN Mozambique will explore the possibility of locally sourcing the raw materials it will need to produce its beers. One of the objectives of this project will be to improve crop yields as well as the capabilities and living standards of Mozambican farmers, contributing to the economic development of the country.
Boudewijn Haarsma, HEINEKEN International’s Managing Director East & West Africa, stated: “We are delighted to enter Mozambique, where we see promising long-term economic perspectives. The project is progressing well thanks to the support of the Mozambican Government and its commitment to bring investments into the country. Investing in a new market like Mozambique supports HEINEKEN’s ambition to expand its footprint and be the number one or a strong number two in all markets in which it operates. With our extensive experience and existing business in Africa, we also aim to be a partner for growth today in Mozambique as we already are throughout the continent. I am convinced our presence will contribute to the economic and social development that is already under way in Mozambique.”
Nuno Simes, HEINEKEN Mozambique’s General Manager said: “With HEINEKEN’s passion for quality, our new brewery will deliver high quality beers to Mozambique according to the international standards of the HEINEKEN Company. We look forward to continue to provide enjoyment to Mozambican consumers with our brands.”
HEINEKEN (www.theHEINEKENcompany.com) is the world’s most international brewer. It is the leading developer and marketer of premium beer and cider brands. Led by the Heineken® brand, the Group has a portfolio of more than 250 international, regional, local and speciality beers and ciders. We are committed to innovation, long-term brand investment, disciplined sales execution and focused cost management. Through “Brewing a Better World”, sustainability is embedded in the business and delivers value for all stakeholders. HEINEKEN has a well-balanced geographic footprint with leadership positions in both developed and developing markets. We employ over 80,000 employees and operate breweries, malteries, cider plants and other production facilities in more than 70 countries. Heineken N.V. and Heineken Holding N.V. shares trade on the Euronext in Amsterdam. Prices for the ordinary shares may be accessed on Bloomberg under the symbols HEIA NA and HEIO NA and on Reuters under HEIN.AS and HEIO.AS. HEINEKEN has two sponsored level 1 American Depositary Receipt (ADR) programmes: Heineken N.V. (OTCQX: HEINY) and Heineken Holding N.V. (OTCQX: HKHHY). Most recent information is available on HEINEKEN’s website: www.theHEINEKENcompany.com
Sierra Leone Parliament Ratifies Key Bumbuna II Project Documents
December 4, 2017 | 0 Comments
|This marks another important milestone in the development of the Bumbuna II hydropower project which, when completed, will provide much-needed all-year round power to Sierra Leone|
|LONDON, United Kingdom, December 4, 2017/ — Following on from the Government of Sierra Leone’s signing of the 25-year Power Purchase and Implementation Agreements with Joule Africa (www.JouleAfrica.com) in August 2017, these important project documents have now been ratified by the Sierra Leone Parliament. This marks another important milestone in the development of the Bumbuna II hydropower project which, when completed, will provide much-needed all-year round power to Sierra Leone.
Under the conditions of the agreement, local project company Seli Hydropower, jointly owned by Joule Africa and its local partner Energy Services Company (ESCO), will build an extension to the existing 50 MW hydro station, Bumbuna I, situated in the north east of the country, adding a further 143 MW of power capacity. Construction on the extension is anticipated to start in the second half of 2018 with operations forecast to start four years later. Seli Hydropower, will be responsible for building, owning and operating Bumbuna II and will also be responsible for operating Bumbuna I.
Commenting on this announcement, Patrick Beckley, Chairman of Seli Hydropower, said:
“We would like to thank the Government of Sierra Leone for their ongoing support and in maintaining their commitment to the Bumbuna II project ahead of General Elections in early 2018. I am delighted that we received approval for ratification in Parliament with no exemptions – a clear indication that there is unanimous cross-party support for this project.”
“The development of Bumbuna II has always been a key part of the country’s long-term energy strategy and we look forward to being able to deliver affordable, all-year round power for the consumers of Sierra Leone.”
Andrew Cavaghan, Joule Africa’s Chairman and a Director of Seli Hydropower, added:
“I am pleased that we have reached another important milestone in the development of the Bumbuna II project. We are making good progress on all fronts and will look to build on this momentum in the coming weeks and months as we continue to consult with interested parties, appoint a contractor and finalise the relevant financing.”
The Bumbuna II hydropower project is Sierra Leone’s largest infrastructure project and is a key part of the Government of Sierra Leone’s long term Energy Plan.
Joule Africa (www.JouleAfrica.com) is a developer owner-operator of sustainable power projects across Africa. In addition to Bumbuna II, Joule Africa is developing Kpep, a 485MW hydro project in Cameroon, while considering various options for its third project.
Gambia gets new homeland security minister after Fatty sacking
December 4, 2017 | 0 Comments
By Kebba Jeffang
The Gambian President Adama Barrow has appointed a replacement for a key coalition member Mai Ahmad Fatty as Interior Minister following his unexplained sacking in November.
The new Minister was officially disclosed on Monday, December 4th as Habib Saihou Drammeh. With no background in security as per the content of the statement from the presidency, Drammeh becomes the first replacement as a minister for Barrow’s administration that just celebrated one year last Saturday.
He is due to take oath of office on December 6th to officially commence carrying out his responsibility.
Barrow after dismissing Fatty told journalists that the decision was in the best interest of the country. However, he refused to tell why he took the decision.
Mai is the first Minister to be relieved as a cabinet member by the President. He too has been quiet about his removal.
This was one of the most criticized decisions of Mr. Barrow by the Gambians with many describing it a ‘betrayal’ towards one of the key members of the coalition government.
While serving as Interior Minister, Fatty suspended the issuance of National Identity Cards as well as the production of non-ECOWAS Passport. He is undoubtedly one of the most controversial ministers in the cabinet.
Acting Assistant Secretary Yamamoto Travel to Somalia, Kenya, Ethiopia, London, and Rwanda
December 4, 2017 | 0 Comments
On December 4, Acting Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs Donald Yamamoto attended the Somalia Security Pact Review in Mogadishu. The meeting was chaired by President Farmaajo and provided the opportunity for stakeholders invested in Somalia’s security and stability to discuss the development of Somali security institutions.
Following the Somalia Security Pact Review, the Acting Assistant Secretary will travel to Nairobi, Kenya from December 4-6, where he will meet with representatives of the Kenyan government, as well as with Kenyan civil society. The visit will encourage all sides in Kenya to participate in a national dialogue following the presidential election.
In Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, the Acting Assistant Secretary will meet with senior leaders of the Ethiopian government and of the African Union from December 7-9. In addition to continuing discussions on bilateral issues between the two countries, he will talk with both Ethiopian government and AU officials about regional concerns, including food security, peacekeeping and refugee matters.
In London, Ambassador Yamamoto will participate in the twice yearly gathering of P3 Africa Directors meeting on December 11-12 to discuss current policy issues with defense and development colleagues from France and the UK.
Ambassador Yamamoto will then travel to Kigali, Rwanda on December 13-14, where he will meet with President Kagame ahead of his term as President of the African Union.
*Courtesy of US State Department
Statement from the Archbishop Tutu Fellows to African Heads of State and the International Private Sector, Civil Society and Multilateral Organisations on the Great Stain of Slavery in Libya
November 30, 2017 | 1 Comments
|Slavery in Libya is a crime against humanity and immediate action is required by all stakeholders, including African governments|
|JOHANNESBURG, South Africa, November 30, 2017/ — Statement from the Archbishop Tutu Fellows to African Heads of State and the International Private Sector, Civil Society and Multilateral Organisations on the Great Stain of Slavery in Libya:
Your Excellencies, leaders of private sector and civil society organisations, policy makers at the United Nations and the African Union and fellow Africans,
Slavery in Libya is a crime against humanity and immediate action is required by all stakeholders, including African governments, to put an end to this outrageous practice and hold responsible parties accountable.
There are three Great Stains on humanity; War, Genocide and Slavery.
They are the Great Stains not only because they are the fertile soil for many other debasing evils; they are Great Stains because they are assaults and crimes against humanity.
The prevalence of war, genocide and slavery historically is by no means the measure by which we as humanity can accept such behavior as normative, then or now.
Slavery has spawned intergenerational social and economic disruption to the Continent of Africa and other areas; and has stolen the liberties and lives of people for the commoditization of their bodies against their will.
The slave trade is a crime against Humanity.
It is abhorrent to humanity.
It is monstrous.
It is an assault on the dignity of all.
Slavery can and must be stopped.
We, Archbishop Tutu Fellows, call upon the United Nations Security Council and its related organs to urgently declare the practice of Slavery – particularly in Libya- a threat against humanity and to work closely with civil society and member states to arrest the slave trade and create an effective punitive framework to combat against the slave trade globally.
We call upon the Africa Union to demonstrate continental leadership in aggregating national voices on ensuring slavery remains a historical footnote.
We call upon all African heads of State to take action to hold each other accountable, and to engage with other states beyond the continent who can make a contribution toward eradicating the Slave trade, and to stanch the capital flows and lack of consequence which makes this vile economy thrive.
We call upon businesses invested in countries such as Libya- which have failed to abide by the unwritten laws of humanity- to divest and support the removal of the Great Stain.
We call upon the NGO community invested in the fight against human trafficking, forced labor, involuntary migration, social justice and the betterment of the planet to support the removal of the Great Stain.
We call upon all Africans, in particular the nations of the African North, to support the removal of the Great Stain in all its forms.
We call upon the instruments of justice– national and international- to charge beneficiaries of the slave trade as Enemies of humanity.
As Archbishop Tutu Fellows and as Africans, we request the following immediate course of action:
As a network of more than 300 emerging young African leaders, we, the Archbishop Tutu Fellows, are willing and able to assist where such assistance is needed. We are deeply aware that it is pertinent upon the conscience and humanity of every member of the international community to act against the evils to which our fellow human beings are subject to in Libya. The urgency of the situation is such that we need to act now. Our ancestors fought slavery over hundreds of years and we cannot bear witness to its evils today and do nothing.
The Archbishop Tutu Fellows, of the African Leadership Institute (https://ALInstitute.org), are a diverse group of leading professionals from 42 African countries working at the forefront of positive change on the African continent and representing various sectors – civil society, government, business, the arts, education, healthcare, media and more. Tutu Fellows have undergone the Institute’s flagship programme, the Archbishop Tutu Leadership Programme, which is widely considered the premier leadership training programme on the continent. The goal of the programme is to impact the future of Africa through building and nurturing the capability of future leaders of the continent, drawing upon the globally-respected leadership values of ther Patron, Archbishop Desmond Tutu. Since the inaugural class of 2006, the network now boasts 300+ Tutu Fellows.
2018 Will Be A Banner Year for South African Tourism With Celebration of Mandela’s Centenary- Bangu Masisi
November 30, 2017 | 0 Comments
By Ajong Mbapndah L
2018 is already gearing up to be a banner year for South African Tourism as we celebrate Mandela’s Centenary – his legacy and the culture and history of the country, says Bangu Masisi, U.S. country manager for South African Tourism. With more than 345,000 in 2016,the United States was the second largest international source market for tourists to South Africa behind the United Kingdom, Bangu Masisi said, in a Q and A to discuss perspectives and her work with South African Tourism.
Can you start by introducing South African Tourism for us?
A: South African Tourism is the Destination Marketing Organization for South Africa responsible for the international promotion of South Africa as a preferred tourist destination. We are inspiring visitors from all over the world to travel to South Africa and discover its diverse offerings from the scenic beauty, magnificent outdoors and wildlife, sunny climate, cultural diversity, while delivering value for money.
How important is Tourism as a factor in the economy of South Africa?
Tourism in South Africa has created more than 700,000 jobs, representing 4.5% of South Africa’s total workforce. Tourism has been identified as a key sector with excellent potential for growth and the government aims to continue to increase tourism’s contribution. Tourism contributes 3% directly and 9% indirectly to boosting our GDP.
You head the Americas Division of South Africa Tourism, may we have an idea of numbers when it comes to American Tourists who visit South Africa?
The United States is the second largest international source market for tourists to South Africa, coming right behind the United Kingdom. In 2016, more than 345,000 Americans visited South Africa. As far as 2017, according to the latest figures from Statistics SA as of August 2017, the US continues to demonstrate positive growth throughout the year so far with arrivals from showing steady growth with an 8.4% year-to-date increase.
To those who have never been to South Africa, could you use this opportunity to make the case for your country as a tourism destination, what’s there to see, what should motivate more people to visit South Africa?
Our diverse culture of 11 official languages gives us the competitive edge of unique destination experience. South Africa offers a wide variety of experiences within close proximity, including wildlife safaris in 22 national parks, breathtaking scenery, vibrant and cosmopolitan cities boasting innovative art and culinary scenes, over 2.500 km coastline with Blue Flag beaches, inspiring heritage and cultural landmarks as well as unlimited adventure activities and holidays for any budget. South Africa’s friendly and welcoming people, combined with its diverse offerings and world-class infrastructure, allows the destination to cater for every tourism niche, from business, eco and cultural tourism through to wellness and active getaways.
For many other countries, people complain about lengthy visa procedures and even travel, how smooth is the VISA procedure?
American and Canadian passport holders do not require a visa. For passport holders from neighboring countries on the African continent, I would suggest contacting your local South African Consulate or Embassy for info on visa requirements. Here in the United States there are SA Consulates in New York, Chicago and Los Angeles, with the SA Embassy located in Washington DC.
You have worked in Australia, in the Netherlands, and how challenging is it working in the USA now compared to other parts of the world you have served?
The great thing about the three countries is that consumer behavior and marketing strategies have been very different and cannot be compared.
The United States as a region is large and vast! My biggest challenge is being able to seize all the opportunities that are available as I see them almost daily. Another challenge that I never had in the previous countries is that most Americans still don’t have a clear picture of what South Africa offers as a destination. This in itself is an opportunity to educate the consumer, together with our trade partners, with compelling and interactive information in spaces and platforms they engage with. Social media has been our biggest drive to reach the relevant consumer that is already looking for a new long-haul destination that offers value for money experiences. Media plays a big part in our quest to market the destination as they become our “unofficial” ambassadors once they had an opportunity to visit our country and come back to share their experiences with diverse audiences.
People sometimes get nervous too about the cost, how affordable is a travel package or if someone had to safe up some money, any idea on what could be reasonable to get them a great trip?
Travel to South Africa is more affordable than most people think. We have a wonderful range of tourism products that are suitable for any budget. We post travel deals from our US tour operators on our website at southafrica.net/deals and would encourage you to have a look there for several value-for-money package options.
We end with a last word to those interested in visiting South Africa to savor what it offers.
Don’t miss your chance to come and experience #WowSouthAfrica for yourself. The best way to begin is with a safari experience – don’t miss out on the chance to get up close and personal with the BIG 5! While 2017 was a breakthrough year for South Africa as an emerging art destination with the high-profile opening of The Zeitz MoCAA – a new architectural gem which houses the world’s most impressive collection of contemporary African art – combined with the rise in immersive street-art tours in the heart of our cities, 2018 is already gearing up to be a banner year for South African Tourism as we celebrate Mandela’s Centenary – his legacy and the culture and history of the country.
*Visit www.southafrica.net for more information on Tourism in South Africa
Togo Opposition Parties Vow to Keep Up Pressure on President
November 30, 2017 | 0 Comments
Togo’s opposition parties pledged Wednesday to maintain the momentum of anti-government protests, as thousands took to the streets once more ahead of promised talks with the president.
The leader of the National Alliance for Change (ANC), Jean-Pierre Fabre, led the crowds in the capital but similar protests were banned on security grounds in the north.
“Mobilization will continue, even during talks. We are not going to give up the fight,” Fabre told AFP.
A source in Togo’s second-largest city of Sokode — the stronghold of Tikpi Atchadam, the Panafrican National Party leader behind the demonstrations — said the streets were calm.
Many young people who had fled into the countryside fearing repercussions have not yet returned home, the source said, adding that sporadic arrests were still occurring.
Wednesday’s march was the first of three planned for this week to put pressure on Togo’s President Faure Gnassingbe to resign.
Gnassingbe has been president of the West African nation since 2005, taking over after the death of his father, General Gnassingbe Eyadema, who ruled Togo for 38 years.
Fourteen opposition parties want two-term limits for presidents which would be applied retroactively to prevent Gnassingbe from contesting the 2020 and 2025 elections.
At least 16 people have been killed in three months of protests after opposition supporters clashed with police and security forces, especially in the north.
Gnassingbe — who left for an Africa-Europe summit in Ivory Coast on Wednesday morning — said last week that preparations were being made for talks with the opposition in the coming weeks.
But demonstrators said they wanted the issue addressed at the summit.
“I would like the heads of state and France in particular to get involved personally and speak face-to-face with Faure Gnassingbe,” said Abla, a student in Lome.
No meeting has been scheduled so far between Gnassingbe and President Emmanuel Macron, from Togo’s former colonial power, France.
Franck Paris, a spokesman for Macron’s office, said last week that “Togo will be an important subject of talks on the ground.”
Macron, in an interview Wednesday with France 24 television and Radio France Internationale (RFI), said he hoped Togo’s citizens “could express themselves freely.”
“I hope there can be an electoral process … which allows either a democratic confirmation or transition of power,” Macron said.
“Keeping power for a long period of time without any electoral processes, without a framework of pluralism, is not a good thing.”
Sky captain Gyan: Soccer star to launch ‘Baby Jet’ airline
November 30, 2017 | 0 Comments
By Kieron Monks*
(CNN)Ghana’s record goalscorer has traveled the world over the course of his career.
Asamoah Gyan left his homeland as a teenager and took the scenic route around Europe playing in France, Italy, and England, before taking a detour via China and the United Arab Emirates, and then arriving at his current club Kayserispor in the Turkish Super League.
The striker says his motivation is a mix of personal and patriotic: “A desire to help my country, to create more jobs, and also to have a good life after football.”
House Arrest OK’d for Ex-Diplomat Awaiting Corruption Trial
November 29, 2017 | 0 Comments
By ADAM KLASFELD*
MANHATTAN (CN) – U.S. prosecutors lobbied unsuccessfully Monday to ensure the pretrial detention of former Senegalese diplomat awaiting a New York corruption trial.
Once deeply involved in U.S. peacekeeping and anti-terrorism efforts in Africa following the 9/11, Senegal’s former foreign minister Cheikh Gadio was arrested just over a week ago in connection to a three-year bribery scheme.
Alleging violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, prosecutors say 61-year-old Gadio helped Hong Kong-based businessman Patrick Ho funnel $2 million to Chad President Idriss Deby to help tap the nation’s vast oil reserves.
Though a federal magistrate granted Gadio a $1 million bail package, the government contended at a hearing Monday that Gadio should be considered a flight risk since America has no extradition treaty with Senegal.
“People flee, and they flee for rational reasons,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Daniel Richtenthal said this afternoon.
U.S. District Judge William Pauley III found house arrest under GPS monitoring enough to ensure Gadio’s appearance at trial.
“He’s going to be confined to his home in Maryland,” Pauley ruled.
Defense attorney Sean Hecker said Gadio’s reputation in the international community would be enough to ensure his appearance in court.
“This is a man of honor, a man of deep and well-deserved reputation,” said Hecker, from the firm Debevoise & Plimpton.
A West African nation roughly the size of South Dakota, Senegal has been a key U.S. partner in the fight against terrorism.
Former U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell heralded Gadio’s leadership on the issue the year after the 9/11 attacks.
“Senegal took a strong position against terrorism in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks against the U.S., and in October 2001 hosted a conference establishing the African Pact Against Terrorism,” a U.S. State Department noted in 2002 press briefing.
WikiLeaks also published a cable in which former ambassador Janice Jacobs emphasized senegal’s outsized peacekeeping role in a region rife with conflict.
“Despite high rates of poverty and illiteracy, Senegal retains a high degree of political stability and coherence thus enabling GOS to be a diplomatic player on a continent replete with conflicts,” the Nov. 8, 2006, cable said. “With U.S. training and assistance, Senegal has also become one of the world’s top ten contributors of peacekeepers.”
Gadio has not formally entered a plea, but his attorney made clear the diplomat will dispute the charges against him.
“The facts will come out,” Hecker said. “We’ll have the chance to tell our side of the story.”
Although he lived in Ohio for a decade, Gadio will await trial with his wife and children in Maryland. Hecker said that his wife works for the United Nations, where she is stationed in Equatorial Guinea.
Prosecutors say Gadio’s bribery scheme lasted from 2014 to this year, well after his tenure in Senegal from 2000 and 2009. Before his arrest earlier this month, Gadio posed for smiling photographs shaking hands both with Powell and former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
*Culled from Court House News
AfDB Launches Youth Advisory Group to Create 25 Million Jobs
November 28, 2017 | 0 Comments
|The Jobs for Youth in Africa initiative aims at creating 25 million jobs and impacting 50 million youth over the next ten years by equipping them with the right skills to get decent and meaningful jobs|
ABIDJAN, Ivory Coast, November 28, 2017/ — The President of the African Development Bank Group (AfDB) (www.AfDB.org), Akinwumi Adesina, has launched the Presidential Youth Advisory Group (PYAG) to provide insights and innovative solutions for job creation for Africa’s youth, as outlined in the Bank’s Jobs for Youth in Africa Strategy (JfYA) (http://APO.af/nRtVAs).
The Jobs for Youth in Africa initiative aims at creating 25 million jobs and impacting 50 million youth over the next ten years by equipping them with the right skills to get decent and meaningful jobs. It is currently the largest effort going on for youth employment in Africa today.
The advisory group, inaugurated on the sidelines of the 6th EU-Africa Business Forum in Abidjan on Monday, November 27, will work with the Bank to create jobs for Africa’s youth.
“This is a huge opportunity for Africa. If we fix the youth unemployment challenge, Africa will gain 10-20% annual growth. That means Africa’s GDP will grow by $500 million per year for the next thirty years. Africa’s per capita income will rise by 55% every year to the year 2050,” Akinwumi Adesina, President of the African Development Bank (AfDB) said at the inauguration of the Group.
Adesina, who identified Africa’s greatest asset as its youth, observed that out of the 13 million youths that enter the labour market each year, only 3 million (about 33% of African youth) are in wage employment, while the rest are underemployed or in vulnerable employment. The annual gap of more than 8 million jobs is going to worsen, with the number of youth expected to double to more than 800 million in the next decades.
“Africa has an unemployment crisis among its youth,” he stressed, noting that unless employment opportunities are created for them, Africa’s rapidly growing population of youths can give rise to serious social, economic, political and security challenges.
Africa’s youths, though strong and dynamic, cross the desert or the Mediterranean sea because they do not find decent jobs in Africa. Graduates are wandering in the streets, jobless. The low level of employment opportunities is also fueling violence and extremism in Africa. “40% of African youths engaged in armed violence join gangs or terrorist groups because of limited opportunities in their countries,” Adesina said.
“66 million African youths earn less than $2 a day, less than the price of a hamburger,” the AfDB President emphasized. “66 million is 8 times the size of Switzerland, 6 times the size of Belgium, the same size as UK, France or Italy, and 80% of Germany’s population,” he added.
The Presidential Youth Advisory Group (PYAG) comprises nine members under the age of 40 who have made significant contributions to the creation of employment opportunities for African youth.
The PYAG members are: Ashish Thakkar, CEO, Mara Group, Tanzania (Chair); Uzodinma Iweala, award-winning author, Nigeria; Mamadou Toure, Founder / CEO, Africa 2.0 / Ubuntu Capital, Cameroon; Vanessa Moungar, Human and Social Development Director, AfDB and member of President Macron’s Presidential Council for Africa, Chad; Francine Muyumba, President, Panafrican Youth Union, Democratic Republic of Congo; Jeremy Johnson, Co-founder, Andela, USA; Clarisse Iribagiza, CEO, Hehe, Rwanda; Ada Osakwe, CEO, Agrolay Ventures, Nigeria; and Monica Musonda, CEO of Java Foods, Zambia.
On the rationale behind the setting up of the advisory group, President Adesina explained: “We recognize the enormous amount of energy, creative and innovative thinking, and entrepreneurial excellence that many of our youth bring to the table. For this reason, the Bank must ensure that it is well advised by cutting-edge youth representatives on its policies, actions and programmes, for the benefit of Africa’s youth.”
“The members of the Presidential Youth Advisory Group are expected to actively engage private sector partners, government leaders, civil society, donor partners, and other stakeholders; and support the significant amount of work that the Bank is already doing and promoting across the continent through its Jobs for Youth in Africa strategy,” President Adesina added.
A youth-led economic transformation agenda
PYAG is an opportunity for leading young voices in Africa to develop new and fresh perspectives and recommend innovative solutions that will shape AfDB’s support to African countries, and reduce the scourge of Youth unemployment.
The AfDB is fully committed to working with the PYAG to scale up and expedite results that deliver decent and sustainable jobs for African youth, through formal employment and successful youth entrepreneurship that allows African youth to become their own drivers of economic prosperity, social stability and environmental sustainability.
Ashish Thakkar, CEO of the Mara Group and Chair of the PYAG, said: “It is a great honour to serve our continent in this function. We know that the stakes are high, but we are committed to the task of creating flourishing youth businesses that provide tremendous value. We are also focused on facilitating the achievement of AfDB’s High 5s and Sustainable Development Goals. We have just concluded our work program for the next year and have hit the ground running.”
He described how his family lost everything they had during the genocide in Rwanda in the 1990s.
“I have borrowed $5,000 to launch my business without any form of support. Today, Mara Group has 14,000 employees around the world. I was alone, but imagine what we can do together with the support of an institution like the AfDB.”
“I have never heard of an institution as important as the AfDB setting up and advisory group only made of youth. A Chinese proverb has it that if you want 1 year of prosperity, plant a grain. If you want 10 years of prosperity, plant a tree. If you want a century of prosperity, invest on people,” said Mamadou Touré, a member of the group.
Also speaking, Ada Osakwe said: “40% of entrepreneurs in Nigeria are women, but 73% operate in consumer retail systems. We need to address that and provide youth with more lucrative jobs.”
To make agriculture more attractive to young people, the AfDB last year invested $800 million in supporting young entrepreneurs in agriculture as a business in 8 countries. It will reach 15 countries this year. The Bank expects to invest 1.5 billion per year for the next 10 years to support young agripreneurs.
The AfDB is delivering on its youth strategy
The AfDB has made great progress toward implementing its strategy through three key pillars: innovation, integration and investment. In terms of integration, the Bank entered into partnership with the International Labour Organization to strengthen the capacity of African countries to harmonize Youth Employment into national policies.
The Youth Entrepreneurship and Innovation Multi-Donor Trust Fund which will serve as a financial and operational instrument, with initial support of USD 4.4 million by Denmark and Norway.
The African Development has also developed the Enabling Youth Employment (EYE) Index to measure youth employment outcomes and enabling policies at country levels.
“With this amazing group of very diverse young individuals, we even hope to exceed the Bank’s goal to create 25 million jobs and 50 million youth equipped with the right skills,” said Thakkar enthusiastically. “It is time to change the narrative about Africa’s youth!”
Folorunso Alakija Inspires 300 Women at Prestigious 2017 Flourish Africa Conference
November 28, 2017 | 0 Comments
|The 66-year-old business magnate has persistently championed the causes of women in Nigeria from her work with widows and orphans|
|LAGOS, Nigeria, November 28, 2017/ — Folorunso Alakija, one of a handful of successful female entrepreneurs on the continent listed as one of Forbes most powerful women in the world, attended the Africa conference. The 66-year-old business magnate has persistently championed the causes of women in Nigeria from her work with widows and orphans through the Rose of Sharon Foundation which Alakija uses as a medium to empower thousands of impoverished women and their children through Flourish Africa (http://FlourishAfrica.com) which is the first platform of its kind designed to create an impact on the lives of women in Africa by providing the tools they need to fulfill their God given potential. Through a series of conferences, workshops and mentorship programs, the platform hopes to bring women from all walks of life together to share in their unique experiences and become who God has destined for them to be.
Initiatives designed to give them a better standard of living
As CEO of Famfa Oil (www.Famfa.com), one of the largest indigenous oil companies in Africa, she has built schools, science labs, roads as well as providing scholarships to thousands of young students all over Nigeria. Her philanthropic work continues this year with the launch of the women empowerment platform, Flourish Africa.
The first Flourish Africa conference took place at the Renaissance Ikeja Hotel in Lagos at an exclusive invitation only event hosted by Forbes Africa Head of Digital Media and Partnerships and West Africa Correspondent, Peace Hyde, which saw applications from over 2000 women vying for the opportunity to be part of the 300 people who were selected to partake in the exchange of knowledge from powerful women like Folorunso Alakija, Ibukun Awosika, Senator Daisy Danjuma, Mrs. Fashola, Juliet Ehimuan Chiazor, Uche Pedro, Ayo Mogbepe and many more.
Flourish Africa (http://FlourishAfrica.com) is the first platform of its kind designed to create an impact on the lives of women in Africa by providing the tools they need to fulfill their God given potential. Through a series of conferences, workshops and mentorship programs, the platform hopes to bring women from all walks of life together to share in their unique experiences and become who God has destined for them to be.
African Union Commission Awards Thirteen Consortia of Institutions to Implement the Global Monitoring for Environment and Security and Africa Support Programme
November 28, 2017 | 0 Comments
|The award ceremony holds on the margins of the 5th AU-EU Summit in Abidjan, Cote d`Ivoire|
|ABIDJAN, Ivory Coast, November 28, 2017/ —
The African Union Commission (AUC) (https://AU.int) officially awards grants to thirteen successful consortia of institutions that will serve as Regional Implementing Centres for the Global Monitoring for Environment and Security and Africa (GMES and Africa) (http://GMES4Africa.blogspot.in) Support Programme. The award ceremony holds on the margins of the 5th AU-EU Summit in Abidjan, Cote d`Ivoire.
Following a Call for Proposals in May 2017, a number of African institutions operating in the areas of water, natural resources, marine and coastal areas, applied for the GMES and Africa Support Programme Grants. To evaluate the applications and select the most suitable consortia of institutions that submitted proposals, the African Union Commission instituted a committee supported by a team of assessors comprising African earth observation experts.
Thirteen consortia of institutions were finally selected and the award marks the official announcement of their selection.
1. Central Africa: Agence Gabonaise d’Etudes et d’Observations Spatiale (AGEOS) and Commission Internationale du Bassin Congo-Oubangui-Sangha (CICOS) for Water and natural resources service.
2. East Africa:
4. Southern Africa:
5. West Africa
At the award ceremony, the Commissioner for Human Resources, Science and Technology at the African Union Commission, Professor Sarah Anyang Agbor, felicitated the successful institutions on their selection, which she said was based on their experience and proven capacities. She implored them to deliver the goods, and promised the African Union Commission’s unflinching support.
GMES and Africa (http://GMES4Africa.blogspot.in) Support Programme is a 30 million Euro joint programme co-financed by the European Commission (https://EC.europa.eu) and the African Union Commission. It will use and adapt the Copernicus Programme data and services to the African context. It is designed to specifically respond to African needs with respect to services related to water, natural resources, marine and coastal areas and to address the global needs to manage the environment, mitigate climate change and ensure civil security. It is to enable the implementation of the African Space Policy and Strategy, formulated to harness the continent’s capabilities in utilizing space science and technology for economic growth and sustainable development. In the implementation agreement, the African Union Commission is the ‘delegated authority’ responsible for the management of the programme.
Indeed, GMES & Africa Programme aimed at improving African policy-makers’, planners’, scientists’, business and private sector and citizens’ capacities to design, implement, and monitor national, regional and continental policies and to promote sustainable management of natural resources through the use of Earth Observation data and derived information.
GMES & Africa introduced several key innovations: for the first time, with the inclusion of the North African countries, the Programme is pan African. It is totally managed by the African Union Commission, through the Human Resource, Science and Technology (HRST) Department. It engages the African private sector and national and regional academia.