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Centurion Moderates Discussion on Africa’s Downstream Sector at Africa Oil & Power
October 12, 2019 | 0 Comments
Zion Adeoye
The discussion centered on ways to make energy access more reliable and affordable for Africans and how to better balance supply and demand for key commodities
CAPE TOWN, South Africa, October 12, 2019/ — Centurion Law (http://www.CenturionLG.com) animated and moderated an industry discussion on Africa’s downstream sector and the continent’s shifting trade routes at the Africa Oil & Power Conference in Cape Town today. Led by Senior Associate Zion Adeoye, the discussion centered on ways to make energy access more reliable and affordable for Africans and how to better balance supply and demand for key commodities such as oil, natural gas and petroleum products.

The conversation was joined by leading African energy executives such as Mohsin Seedat, interim CEO at iGas, Eghosa Oriaikni Mabhena, Head of Africa at Puma Energy, Muzi W. Mkhize, Regulator Member for Petroleum Pipelines at the South African National Energy Regulator, SAR Managing Director Serigne Mboup, and Igho Charles Sanomi, CEO at the Taleveras Group.

Reminding the audience that Africa’s downstream sector is marked by outdated refineries and lack of refining capacities, Zion Adeoye led the participants to provide a detailed assessment of the continent’s current supply and demand scenario. “The market reach is diversifying,” declared Mohin Seedat. “Oil & gas is becoming more accessible and the retail segment is also evolving.”

Most African oil nations are either revamping and expanding their existing refineries, or building and planning new ones. Such additional capacity will be transforming current industry dynamics, and the panel highlighted the opportunities that will be coming in terms of rebalancing fiscal deficits for big importers of petroleum products, and of further diversifying into petrochemicals and value added products. “Maintaining the balancing of demand and supply for traders is key to shifting Africa’s trade routes,” said Eghosa Oriaikhi Mabhena.

Concluding the discussion, the panelists were all in agreement that a downstream master plan for the whole of Africa is urgently needed to ensure that infrastructure efforts are not inefficiently duplicated, especially on a regional basis. 
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Sierra Leone:UNDP launches Accelerator Lab
October 12, 2019 | 0 Comments

By Ishmael Sallieu Koroma

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) has on Thursday 10th October launched the Accelerator Lab at the Golden Tulip , Hotel, Aberdeen in Freetown.

The Accelerator Lab established by the UNDP in Sierra Leone  is part of 60 Accelerator Labs serving 78 countries in Africa, Eastern Europe, Asia and the Pacific, Latin America and the Caribbean to build the largest and fastest global learning network to address the many increasingly complex and dynamic development challenges.

Speaking at the launching of the Accelerator Lab, UN  Resident Coordinator Mr. Sunil Saigal, said  the world has eleven years left to achieve the 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) adding that is what leaders have committed to. 

“At the same time, scientists tell us that it is now even more urgent than we knew before to address the changing climate if we are to prevent the effects of it from becoming irreversible. The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the accompanying SDGs represented a paradigm shift for development when they were introduced in 2015.  Building on the earlier Millennium Development Goals, the 2030 Agenda represent a greater recognition of the interconnectedness and the interdependence of the Goals, and it recognizes that the development challenges of today are fundamentally different in terms of complexity and the speed with which they emerge from what we have known earlier,’’ he said. 

He said  the world  must  respond to development differently today from how they  have done it earlier thus stating , we must not only worry about eliminating poverty in all its forms, but we must also ensure that people do not fall back into it.

‘’we must work to reduce inequalities within and between countries, to decarbonize economies, and to change the way we produce and consume; and we must work to build peaceful and inclusive societies at a time of growing polarization and alienation.  But time is running short.  We must act!,’’ Sunil Saigal stressed.

 Sunil Saigal further stressed that the world must therefore take a fresh look at development practices, at what works and what does not, sharing best practices across regions and countries, and indeed within countries and communities, to identify what truly adds value for people. 

The UN Rep went to say given these imperatives, the UN system promotes innovation in a multitude of ways across its agencies and programmes adding  that every UN entity engaged in sustainable development is looking to find new ways of becoming more effective in what it does and more efficient in how it does it.

 ‘’The Acceleration Lab, which UNDP has now established in Sierra Leone, and which is one of 60 laboratories being established worldwide, inscribes itself in this framework and it is part of this drive to find new and better ways of achieving sustainable development.  Its establishment recognizes that the UN must be at the forefront of innovation in turn to help enable the Government to lead the national development process’’ 

 In his statement,  the UNDP Resident Representative  Dr. Samuel Doe said,  as part of the organisation strategic plan 2018-2021 which embraces the complexity of development, the UNDP  commits itself  to helping countries find faster, more durable solutions to achieve Agenda 2030 adding that UNDP has an exciting opportunity to transform collective approach by introducing new protocols, backed by evidence and practice, which accelerate the testing and dissemination of solutions within and across countries.

‘’This will enable the global community to collectively learn from local knowledge and ingenuity at a speed and at a scale that our societies and planet requires. To achieve this, UNDP has established a network of 60 Accelerator Labs serving 78 countries in Africa, Eastern Europe, Asia and the Pacific, Latin America and the Caribbean. These 60 labs are established to build the largest and fastest global learning network to address the many increasingly complex and dynamic development challenges. The network will surface and reinforce locally sourced solutions at scale while mobilizing a wide and dynamic partnership of actors contributing knowledge, resources and experience,’’ he said.

He said the Laboratory cycle of the network is built around five (5) protocols, Analysis of the relevance of interventions, exploration  experimentation and development or scaling up stating  this cycle is not linear but allows and offer the possibility of testing one of the protocols according to the need, opportunities, and the type of problems and challenges.

 “The need for UNDP to invest in grass root solutions through the accelerator Lab

in Sierra Leone is clear. The emerging demands from Government and partners show both the changing nature of issues they must grapple with and the need to go beyond incremental or sector-specific approaches. Examples of such demand in Sierra Leone include but not limited to poverty, technology, clean and safe drinking water, hygiene, waste management, gender, education, unemployment, recycling, agriculture, and climate change,’’ he said , adding that  these demands are still emergent and are soon to lead to a strategic relevance gap between what UNDP has traditionally delivered and the changing nature of development policy and programming needs.

 The UNDP Resident Representative  went to say they strongly believed  that in a world of increasing demand to accelerate solution, a single individual, person or organization does not possess the specialized skills to develop and commercialize a complex innovation from conception to implementation thus everyone needs to rely on other actors in their innovation to build an ecosystem-wide value of proposition that materializes when the individual contributions of different actors are combined. 

 ‘’For this reason, the UNDP Accelerator Lab in Sierra Leone will work with government, development partners and the private sector to reimagine development for the 21st century. Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen, the imagination of development for which the Accelerator Lab is launched today will be achieved by: Building on locally-sourced solutions, finding things that work and expanding on them; Rapid testing and iteration to implement what works and go beyond the obvious solutions; Combining the best understanding, ideas and expertise to generate collective knowledge; Accelerating progress by bringing expertise, creativity and collective intelligence to bear’’.

 On his part, the deputy Representative United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) Wilberforce Tengey, applaud UNDP for the bold step  of placing innovation at the centrepiece of development work and for finding innovative solutions to the evolving challenges in the development field stressing that the focus on innovation strategies to enable achievement of all the 17 SDGs.

“Distinguished guests , At UNICEF, we have seen the value of adopting innovative ways to support our work in Sierra Leone during times of emergencies and in regular programming. When Ebola struck in 2014, we used U-Report-our social messaging tool-to not only provide live saving information to people and communities but also generated important data that were useful in supporting the response,’’ he said.

He added that through the U- Report they were also able to support the Ministry of Education with relevant data on over 3,000 schools across the country on their preparedness for the re-opening of schools stating that this helped the Government and development partners in responding to emerging needs in time for the re-opening of schools.

“Distinguished guests , with the establishment of a Directorate of Science and Technology (DSTI) at State House and the unprecedented level of investment in education , UNICEF is proud to be a key partner of government in driving innovation solutions for women  and children in Sierra Leone, particularly in the education and health sectors. Today some  of our work with DSTI include Data for Decision Making and Drone for Social Good,’’ Wilberforce Tengey said.

Head of the Directorate of Science Technology and Innovation (DSTI) Dr. David Sengeh on his part said the time is now for innovation and that Sierra Leone is the right place and in the right state of mind to innovate thus calling on Sierra Leoneans to be an evangelist that the country is ready to take up innovation.

‘’Innovation is essential for development, and it represent the SDG’s , you know always the President always talks about feed your mind and take care of your body  and feed your tummy very body has heard that before. what he is saying to the development partners is everybody care about food security ,and quality education, ‘’he said, adding that the president has created the Directorate of industry and infrastructure , and the             Directorate of Science Technology and innovation  within  in the office of the President thus stating that this level of vision and commitment gives hope to the country.

The DSTI boss said, the Directorate has two goals which is to support the National Development Plan to support government implement the education for development in addition to support the innovation and entrepreneurial eco-system adding that one way they are doing this is by supporting working with UNDP.

“It is tremendous pleasure, and I would like other people to join me in congratulating our UNDP Sierra Leone again ; because it is not a coincident that Sierra Leone is one of 60 countries in the world. There are not 60 countries in the world ,there are more than 190 countries in the world and Sierra Leone is one of 60. It is precisely because of the leadership UNDP Sierra Leone and the readiness of Sierra Leone ,’’ Dr. David  Sengeh said.

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Cameroon contributes FCFA 3 Billion for HIV, TB, Malaria global fund
October 12, 2019 | 0 Comments

By Amos Fofung

France’s President Emmanuel Macron shakes hands with Cameroon President Paul Biya, left, at the Lyon’s city hall, central France, Wednesday, Oct. 9, 2019, during the meeting of international lawmakers, health leaders and people affected by HIV, Tuberculosis and malaria. Lyon is hosting the two day Global Fund event aimed at raising money to help in the global fight against the epidemics.Photo Laurent Cipriani Gazettextra

Cameroon’s President Paul Biya has disclosed that the country has contributed 3Billion francs CFA to the Global Fund for the fight against HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. He made the disclosure at the 6th Replenishment Conference of the Global Fund to fight HIV, Tuberculosis and Malaria holding in France.

In an exchange with the media in Lyon, France after meeting with French counterpart Emmanuel Macron at day-two of conference Biya stated that “we have contributed to the tune of 3Billion frs CFA to the Global Fund since we also benefit from this fund in the fight against these epidemics.”

The discussions at the Lyon Replenishment Conference were aimed at raising 8,000 Billion Francs to fund the fight against HIV, Tuberculosis and Malaria epidemics in the different countries involved, Cameroon being part of it.

At the invitation of French President Emmanuel Macron, President Paul Biya and wife Chantal Biya travelled to France Tuesday October 08, 2019 to take part in this Conference attended by four other African Head of States and other delegations.

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37-year-old Cameroonian dies in US immigration custody
October 12, 2019 | 0 Comments

By Amos Fofung

Refugees and migrants wait at the El Chaparral border crossing in Tijuana, hoping to enter the US [Walker Dawson/Al Jazeera]

A Cameroonian immigrant identified by news reports as Nebane Abienwi who was en route to the United States to experience the American dream has died while in custody of the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement, ICE.

His death at an immigration facility in San Diego, California, has sparked outrage pushing a coalition of black immigration rights organizations to demand an explanation into the circumstances leading to his demise.

  The Cameroon American Council, CAC, on Monday, held a vigil to mourn Abienwi, who was seeking asylum in the U.S. after fleeing from his Cameroon.

According to Face2Face Africa, he died October 1, after being treated for a brain hemorrhage at Sharp Chula Vista Medical Center.

ICE said Abienwi had been in detention at the Otay Mesa Detention Center.

In a statement wherein they describing the death of Abienwi as “devastating”, the black immigrant rights organization condemned the use of detention centers to “imprison our people.” It also demanded more information on the circumstances which led to his death.

“We demand to know the circumstances under which Nebane lost his life. Black immigrants, in particular, report horrific experiences of anti-Blackness, abuse, and harassment while in detention,” the organization said in a statement on October 3.

ICE says it is “firmly committed to the health and welfare of all those in its custody and is undertaking a comprehensive agency-wide review of this incident, as it does in all such cases.”

In a news release, the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency which oversees immigration-related issues particularly in the Southern borders no said Abienwi did not have “proper entry documents” when he crossed through the port of entry.

The coalition, insisting he should not have been detained in the first place.

“No one should be locked up for seeking safety and wanting a better life,” the alliance said. “Black immigrants, in particular, report horrific experiences of anti-blackness, abuse, and harassment while in detention,” the group also said.

Death toll of immigrants in ICE custody continues to make headlines raising questions as to possible detention situation in the facilities. 

The number of Cameroonians applying for asylum to the U.S. increased from about 600 in 2012 to more than 1,300 in 2016, according to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees per latest data.

Since 2016 with the escalation of civil unrest in its English-speaking regions that has claimed the lives of hundreds, the United Nations High Commission for Refugees estimates that more than 30.000 Cameroonians have fled their home.

Most of them are said to be in neighboring Nigeria. Hundreds have made the painstaking journey via the Amazon forest in an attempt to cross over to the US through Mexico.

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Senegal University wins fourth International architectural prizes
October 12, 2019 | 0 Comments

By Amos Fofung

view of the building (photo: IDOM)

A University in Senegal Bambey townhood has risen to fame after a makeover and sustainable extension of its infrastructure. 

The Alioune Diop University in Bambey, Senegal, established since 2007 has in recent years been ripping international awards and recognition after its transformation in 2012.

Established at the heart of the Sahara Desert which does not shy from blessing its inhabitants with immense radiation of the sun rising temperatures above 45°C, the 2012 works at the campus whose design is conceived as a tree is nothing short of an architectural marvel. 

The architecture 

Designed by IDOM, the new block at the University of Bambey features a double roof and a double skin that provide shelter and coolness without any energy consumption guaranteeing students with two basic assets in the desert-region; Shadow and water. 

The extension was built as a large tree to provide shelter, coolness, and comfort for students, without any energy consumption.

With a large roof and a second skin of blocks with triangular perforations, the direct radiation of the sun rays is avoided, allowing air circulation instead. The double roof and the double skin generate voids of one and three meters respectively. 

The heat is concentrated on the external facade and disperses from the roof, favored by the inclination of the latter. To further refresh the air and avoid the presence of malaria-bearing mosquitoes, citronella has been planted in the interstitial spaces. The constant flow of air reduces the temperature by 10-15°C compared to the external one – usually 40-45°C.

Regional and International awards

Impossible for such work of art to unnoticed, the Alioune Diop University has since the opening of its new extension made international headlines while bagging coveted awards the world over.

Recently it was awarded the highest honors at the “Aga KHAN” architecture award ceremony in Kazan, Russia. The prestigious architecture award given once every three years is awarded to projects that set new standards of excellence in architecture, planning practices, historic preservation, and landscape architecture.

Due to its self-sufficient infrastructure, the teaching and research department of the Senegal-based University emerged as one of the 5 Laureates of 2019 for setting new standards of excellence in architecture making it entitled to the cash prize of one million US dollars shared between the laureates.

In July of 2018, the extension project was selected out of hundreds of structures worldwide as winner at the Spanish Architecture and Urbanism Biennale prompting the architecture critic Anatxu Zabalbeascoa to commented that; “although it is true that many of the prizewinning buildings share an aesthetic based on the scarcity of means, the fashion of the povera would generate distrust if it were not so entirely sustainable and cost-effective. Drawing on, it indicates that tradition can be associated with technology both in the humblest projects and those signed off by large firms, such as IDOM, in its award-winning extension of the Alioune Diop University in Diourbel.” 

Barely three months later the University was again acknowledged as Best Regenerative Impact Building at the LEAF Awards, in Frankfurt, Germany. With the jury stating that the award was well merited “due to its exceptional contribution in terms of community impact, the sustainability in its construction and how waste was managed…with an elegant architecture rarely seen when using local materials.”

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Gambia:Barrow’s adviser on policy, governance resigns
October 11, 2019 | 0 Comments
Mai Fatty

By Adama Makasuba

Mai Ahmad Fatty presidential adviser on policy and governance has resigned his portfolio describing the decision as ‘his own principles, after feeling useless in holding the position of adviser to the president’.

His resignation came week after some leaders of the coalition extension of President Barrow’s mandate to 5 years amidst the controversial 3 years saga.

Gambia Moral Congress however rejected taking part in the decision made by those coalition leaders the former vice president Fatoumatta Jallow Tambajang.

The lawyer-turn politician said in a news conference on Friday at Kairaba beach hotel that: “I made the decision to resign on my own accord, and on my own terms, following thorough reflection, after having consulted my family and the relationship of my party in The Gambia and in the diaspora”

Mr Fatty who is also the leader of Gambia Moral Congress said the reason of his resignation came as a result of feeling being “useless” to continue serving the portfolio of a presidential adviser to Adama Barrow, saying “I didn’t feel useful as a presidential adviser anymore.”

He said nothing has happened between him and the president but that he feels not useful in holding the portfolio, adding that he only made the decision on his principles.

He called on Gambians to unit to archiving developmental goals for the country, saying he and his party are committed to venturing into anything that would contribute to the development of the country.

He said he will now go back to his former profession as a lawyer as well as do his political duties at his law firm to serve what he called “the interest of the people.”

Mr Fatty who was the first interior minister of the post Jammeh regime got sacked by the president Adama Barrow without any reason from the presidency after serving little above a year in office.

He was however reinstated as a presidential adviser to the president this year.

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Gambia:PRESIDENT BARROW RECEIVES THREE GIANT FIRE ENGINES, OTHER EQUIPMENT
October 11, 2019 | 0 Comments

By Bakary Ceesay

President Adama Barrow received three giant fire fighting trucks and a set of firefighting apparatus from the Avon Fire Brigade in the United Kingdom for onward delivery to The Gambia Fire and Rescue Services on 9th October 2019

The Chief Fire Officer of the Avon Brigade, Michael David Crennell said they cherished their partnership with the Gambia Fire and Rescue Services, which began in the 1990s. He expressed commitment to continue supporting and growing the relationship for the mutual benefit of both services. 

‘’We are honoured and privileged to be able to have the partnership and we will continue to support’’, CFO Crennell said describing the partnership as a two-way exchange.

‘‘What we have seen is the level of support grow, and what’s more, is that we have seen the level of the professional of the fire service in The Gambia grow during that period. Very much looking forward to the future because as time goes by it becomes more and more strong as a partnership’’.

He commended President Barrow for being ‘’very supportive to us’’ revealing that the President is quite pleased with the partnership that exists between the two fire brigades.

Lamin Sanyang, Deputy Chief Fire Officer of The Gambia Fire Rescue Service, expressed gratitude on behalf of the service for the assistance stating that it was not the first time of its kind.

‘’We GFRS do receive training manuals, practical training, and equipment. It is based on this partnership that we were able to get them a fire engine fully-equipped like this we cannot buy it.  We are very proud of them.’’ Chief Sanayng disclosed. 

He added that the donation will greatly complement their work and expand their areas of coverage: “With this donation we will operate as far as Wuli in the Upper River Region. We have never thought that we will reach that place and save lives across the country’’.

The presentation ceremony took place at the State House in Banjul in the presence of the UK High Commissioner to The Gambia, H.E. Sharon Wardle, and other senior government officials, including the Deputy Chief Fire Officer of The Gambia, Lamin Sanyang.

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African Development Bank partners with Senegal to host 2021 World Water Forum
October 11, 2019 | 0 Comments
The forum will take place in the Senegalese capital 22 – 27 March 2021, on the theme of ‘Water Security for Peace and Development’
ABIDJAN, Ivory Coast, October 11, 2019/ — A Senegalese government delegation, led by the country’s Minister of Water and Sanitation, His Excellency Serigne Mbaye Thiam, briefed the African Development Bank (www.AfDB.org) on Senegal’s preparations to host the World Water Forum (https://bit.ly/35mwCLg) in Dakar in March 2021.

Minister Thiam met with the Bank’s Vice President for Agriculture, Human, and Social Development, Jennifer Blanke, and her senior management team on 8 October to discuss the Bank’s participation in the event’s organization and delivery.

“The forum is a great opportunity for the Bank to showcase and advance its water and sanitation agenda, and we commend the government of Senegal for the preparatory work they have done so far,” said Vice President Blanke.

The forum will take place in the Senegalese capital 22 – 27 March 2021, on the theme of ‘Water Security for Peace and Development’.

Minister Thiam thanked the Bank for its contributions, including its sponsorship of women and youth delegates to the forum preparation meeting in June 2019. “Our government is counting on the African Development Bank to help mobilize the enormous resources that will be needed to make this first sub-Saharan-hosted World Water Forum a great success,” he said.

At a separate briefing for the Bank’s water development and sanitation department as well as other Bank staff, the executive secretary of the forum’s organizing committee Abdoulaye Sene offered a detailed presentation of event preparations and took questions about the forum known as the “world’s largest event on water.”

“The Bank, as a leader in supporting water sector development in Africa, will play an important role in supporting delivery of the forum,” said Wambui Gichuri, director of the Bank’s water development and sanitation department.

Sene told the Bank officials that Dakar is expecting more than 20,000 participants from more than 170 countries. “Awarding the hosting of this forum to Senegal is a testament to the urgency of the water issue for Africa and to the country’s commitment to the water agenda,” he said.

The executive secretary said the forum will be “a focused, inclusive, integrated, open-ended multi-stakeholder process, interacting and synergizing with international events,” Sene also said that the ‘Dakar 2021’ forum would address the present and future global issues for man and nature, serving as a catalyst and accelerator of universal access to water and sanitation, as well as for the Sustainable Development Goals for Senegal, Africa and the world.

The theme of the forum aligns with the Bank’s ten-year strategy for 2013-2022 (https://bit.ly/2fDF5V6), which confirms the importance of water security for Africa’s quality social and economic development. The strategy states that investments in integrated water development and management are central to sustainable water, food and energy security for green and inclusive growth.
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It Is Time to Create Aggressive Market-Driven Policies That Spur Economic Growth
October 11, 2019 | 0 Comments
The African Energy Chamber insisted on the need for fair regulations that are supportive of local industries whole encouraging international investments
CAPE TOWN, South Africa, October 10, 2019/ — The African Energy Chamber (https://EnergyChamber.org/) advocated for better regulatory frameworks, local content development, women empowerment and cross-border cooperation at the grand opening of Africa Oil & Power in Cape Town this week.

Attended by hundreds of senior government officials and energy executives from across Africa and the world, the Africa Oil & Power Conference & Exhibition is seeking solutions to make energy work better for Africans and investors. It was opened by leading industry figures such as H.E. Gabriel Mbaga Obiang Lima, Minister of Mines and Hydrocarbons of Equatorial Guinea, H.E. Mouhamadou Makhtar Cissé, Minister of Petroleum and Energies of Senegal, and Nj Ayuk, Executive Chairman of the African Energy Chamber and CEO of the Centurion Law Group.

Delivering the opening remarks, African Energy Chamber Executive Chairman Nj Ayuk addressed key issues facing the industry’s future, reminding the continent that it needs and must do better to provide energy and jobs to all Africans. “We are here at AOP not only to highlight success stories but also to have an honest conversation with each other on what needs to be done for our industry, and follow a roadmap to successful implementation on core issues such as regulations and local content policies, the empowerment of women, infrastructure development, cross-border cooperation and fiscal frameworks,” declared Nj Ayuk.

On the issue of regulations and the creation of a better enabling environment for investors and businesses, the African Energy Chamber insisted on the need for fair regulations that are supportive of local industries whole encouraging international investments. “Look to Ghana,” said Nj Ayuk. “The country has built an oil and gas regulatory framework from scratch and built a reputation for transparency and regulatory certainty. Its projects are getting off the drawing board and Ghana is already a serious African producer. Regulations have to be progressive, so what matters is to implement regulations that set the ground for the development of a sustainable, local content-oriented and jobs-creating industry.”

“On local content, look to Nigeria,” he added. “It has used its oil and gas as a jumping off point for overall economic development and building up domestic capacities from the ground up while providing the right opportunities for the establishment and growth of strong local companies across the value chain.”


At the core of the African Energy Chamber’s message was also a call to women empowerment across Africa’s energy industry. From creating strong educational and training programmes to implementing progressive policies in the workplace, the Chamber has advocated for better policies that provide women equal opportunities in the workplace and across the industry.  “On woman empowerment, look to South Africa, which boasts some of the strongest leaders in Africa’s oil and gas sector,” declared Nj Ayuk. “Diversity will change our industry for the best and needs to be a priority.”

The African Energy Chamber closed its opening remarks on the issues of infrastructure development and cross-border cooperation. In many cases, a lack of infrastructure is severely holding back economic and social development, including a lack of roads, pipelines, ports and airports is stopping exploration and production in its tracks; and delaying the progress of otherwise economically viable progress. Meanwhile, cross-border cooperation is the key to unlocking the potential of the continent. “On cross-border cooperation, look to Senegal and Mauritania,” said Nj Ayuk. “They both have already shown Africa that putting its differences aside and working towards co-developing projects is beneficial for African economies and their people. The GTA project is a landmark project in that regard, and one that will profoundly impact the socio-economic development in both countries. The major step to encourage future such collaboration and projects is to simply keep the dialogue open and engage more.”
*Africa Energy Chamber
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Empowering Africa to Make Energy Work
October 11, 2019 | 0 Comments

Under the second day’s theme of “Energy in Powering Growth”, panel discussions and talk sessions unpacked the challenges and opportunities in Africa’s power sector

CAPE TOWN, South Africa, October 10, 2019/ — Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy of South Africa, Gwede Mantashe, launched the Africa Energy Series: South Africa 2019 report at the Africa Oil & Power (https://AfricaOilandPower.com/) conference; Under the second day’s theme of “Energy in Powering Growth”, panel discussions and talk sessions unpacked the challenges and opportunities in Africa’s power sector; Program highlights included topics such as the energy transition, Africa’s renewable energy sector, financing the power sector and energy security.

Following the successful conclusion of the first day of the three-day African Oil &Power conference and exhibition, the second day commenced today with a focus on the future of Africa’s power sector.

The day began with a keynote address from Kholly Zono, Acting CEO of CEF Group, who introduced Hon. Gwede Mantashe, Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy of South Africa.

In his introduction, Zono outlined CEF Group’ energy s strategies and shared that the CEF group is, in line with the conference theme, motivated by the goal of making energy work and, is driven by the agenda of addressing inequality, unemployment, and poverty.

He said, at the core of its strategy, the group is built on the fundamental principles of empowering people and innovation.

“The theme of the conference #MakeEnergyWork resonates very well with the CEF Group of companies, taking into account the global challenges in terms of energy requirements,” Zono said. “Making energy work is challenging us to move beyond strategies and focus on innovative approaches.”

In his keynote address, Minister Mantashe spoke about the role the energy sector plays in driving economic growth.

“South Africa recognises the energy and mineral resources sectors as catalysts to economic growth. We have witnessed how an adverse impact of high costs and unreliable supply of energy have on the productive sectors of the economy,” Mantashe stated. He further added that the government is also promoting the Integrated Resource Plan and the Amendment to the Gas Act of 2001 to encourage investment in the energy sector and to increase energy security in the continent.

Minister Mantashe also launched the Africa Energy Series: South Africa 2019 report compiled by Africa Oil & Power and dedicated it to the late Deputy Minister, Bavelile Hlongwe.

In a renewable energy panel discussion moderated by Esther Lediga, Managing Director of Intra-Afrika Advisory, CEOs of companies operating in the sector from across the continent agreed that the clean, reliable and sustainable energy has a big role to play in lighting up Africa.

“Renewables have moved at a very fast pace. Many governments are still getting their heads around how to implement it in the best possible way. The benefits of renewable is multi-fold,” said David Masureik, CEO of New Southern Energy.

On building a sustainable renewable energy future, Maduna Ngobeni, Head of Regional Programmes at IPPO, said: “We shouldn’t compete with each other. We need to strive for a common goal – we need to understand where we want to be and how we get there. How exactly do we make the environment conducive? What kind of project do you want? The private sector needs clear framework that will show: ‘for the next five to ten years, this is how we will roll it out’.”

In tune with this, the CSIR’s Energy Centre Head, Dr Clinton Carter-Brown, in an AOP talk session addressed South Africa’s energy transition to decarbonisation based on mostly renewable energy and highlighted that the transition presents more opportunities than challenges for the country.

“South Africa is well-positioned to be among regional and global leaders transitioning the energy system. Therefore strategic investment in research and development initiatives that speak to technology innovation and industrialization are paramount.”

In a utility of the future panel discussion joined by Sustain Power, Matleng Energy Solutions, USAID/Power Africa and more, the panel agreed on a customer-focused and sustainable strategies as the way forward. Rather than seeing the difficulties facing Africa as obstacles, the panel believes that these challenges hold the potential for Africa to get ahead of trend.

“Everyone wants to get off the grid. It’s a chance to leapfrog. If there’s an opportunity to leapfrog into new technology in Africa … [we] can become a leader in this worldwide.”

In the latter part of the day, the conference saw a panel discussions on financing the power sector. Participants on the panel included DMWA Resources, Afreximbank and others.

Noble Energy delivered a presentation on the Alen Gas Monetization, followed by Sasol and South Africa’s Independent Power Producer’s Office (IPPO) which highlighted how South Africa’s transition into renewable energy needs to factor in the human reliance on the coal industry.

“Our transformation is also very much a process that needs to consider the impact on the economy and the impact on the people who are deployed in the sectors that are affected,” said Sandra Coetzee, Acting Head of the IPPO.

The Africa Oil & Power conference and exhibition will conclude on October 11. The program for the final day will be centred on the theme Driving Investment and African Trade.
*Africa Oil and Gas
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Gambia Earns Vital Away Draw At Afcon Preliminary Opener
October 11, 2019 | 0 Comments

By Bakary Ceesay

Scorpions in Djibouti

Gambia Scorpions have heralded their intent to becoming part of the Afcon 2021 Qualifiers proper when they held Djibouti to a one all draw away in Djibouti City on Wednesday 9th October in the first and opening leg of the Continental preliminary Qualifiers.

Despite Djibouti gaining much of the possession and having secured home advantage, the Scorpions held to their nerves and pushed to break a Djibouti jinx to equal the scoring one all when they resumed from their locker rooms.

But it was the hosts that took the lead through an own goal when Gambian defenders wanted to divulge a threat that was ensuing towards Goal keeper Modou Jobe.

Just when many think it was a game for the hosts, Coach Tom Saintfiet took to his heels and commanded the Scorpions’ authority through captain Pa Modou Jagne for his charges to stick and advance to their game approach.

This eventually paid off for the visitors when an ensuing cross came from the left side of the area for defender Bubacarr Sanneh to poke into the roof of the net to the delight of the home fans following the match via Social media.

The game ended one all and it is envisaged that the Gambia will do the final business at home on Sunday 13th October when the two sides return for the final leg.

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Gambia: YJAG Mourns The Death of Journalist Sise Sawaneh
October 11, 2019 | 0 Comments

By Bakary Ceesay

Late Sise

Young Journalists Association of The Gambia (YJAG) hasto learn about the demise of one of the brightest young journalists of the country, Sise Sawaneh in car accident occurred on  9th  October, 2019 in Kiang, Lower River Region of The Gambia claiming two other lives.

In a press released signed by YJAG’s secretary general Bakary Ceesay lamented that Sise’s loss is indeed depressing for her colleagues in the media especially young practitioners.

“She was a hardworking reporter who found her job very passionating and committed to it throughout. She was also a popular volunteer in youth work, defended women’s right and advocated social justice”

She left an indelible record in her relatively short span career having worked at several media outlets in the country, both the print and broadcast with her current employer being the state broadcaster, Gambia Radio and Television Services (GRTS).

Sise will also be remembered for her role as a reporter in the daily newsletter production for National Youth Conference and Festival (NaYConF) held at Jarra Soma in 2014. She performed diligently in her duty like always.

While we celebrate Sise, we pay to Allah to grant her soul in Jannah with all other departed souls. She is missed!

Rest in Peace!

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