Kigali to host East African countries to discuss economic recovery and investments promotion

More than 100 decision-makers and economic stakeholders will gather in Kigali this week to discuss the road to social and economic recovery and how to attract investments in East Africa. The meeting known as the 25th session of the Intergovernmental Committee of Senior Officials and Experts (ICSOE), will take place from 27 to 29 October 2021.

The ICSOE is the annual gathering of the office for Eastern Africa of the UN Economic Commission in Africa (UNECA) organised in collaboration with the Rwanda Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning. The theme of this year’s meeting is: “Strengthening resilience for a strong recovery and attracting investments to foster economic diversification and long-term growth in Eastern Africa”.

This is the time for Rwanda to discuss with other countries of the region the potentials and the ability to rise and be responsive to the socio-economic challenges

Dr Mama Keita, Director of UNECA in Eastern Africa said that the Covid-19 pandemic has weakened the economic conditions of all countries in the region. She stressed that the ICSOE meeting will provide a platform for various stakeholders from governments to have a conversation with experts and private sectors on the needed economic recovery and on how to re-ignite the engines of trade and investment.

Dr Uzziel Ndagijimana, Minister of Finance and Economic Planning said that this meeting is timely and significant. “This is the time for Rwanda to discuss with other countries of the region the potentials and the ability to rise and be responsive to the socio-economic challenges, exacerbated by the Covid-19 crisis.

According to Ms Keita, the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) is undoubtedly critical to support the recovery from the severe adverse impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic, increase the economic multiplier in the region and will help countries to build back better, grow their economies and create jobs that foster inclusive growth.

The participants at the meeting will discuss thematic issues such as deepening Regional Value Chains, environment for investment Opportunities, and Interlinkages between peace, security and development.

The subregional office for East Africa of UNECA serves 14 countries: Burundi, Comores, RD Congo, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Madagascar, Rwanda, Seychelles, Somalia, South Sudan, Tanzania and Uganda.

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It’s abnormal as no business can survive in Nigeria without generators- Akinwumi Adesina

Akinwumi Adesina, president of the African Development Bank (AfDB), says the lack of reliable power supply is affecting the growth of industries in Nigeria.

Adesina said this on Tuesday while speaking at the 49th annual general meeting of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) in Abuja. reports

Quoting a report by the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Adesina said the country loses $29 billion annually, which is about 5.8 percent of its gross domestic product (GDP) due to a lack of reliable power supply.

He also added that Nigerians spend $14 billion yearly on generators and fuel.

“Today, no business can survive in Nigeria without generators. Consequently, the abnormal has become normal,” Adesina said.

“Traveling on a road one day in Lagos, I saw an advertisement on a billboard which caught my attention. It was advertising generators, with the bold statement “we are the nation’s number one reliable power supplier!”

Adesina said the manufacturing sector in Nigeria is faced with numerous challenges; chief among them is power supply.

“To be a manufacturer in Nigeria is not an easy business. You succeed not because of the ease of doing business, but by surmounting several constraints that limit industrial manufacturing,” he said.

“Today, the major challenge facing Nigeria’s manufacturing is the very high cost and unreliability of electricity supplies. Load shedding and the inconsistent availability of electrical power have resulted in high and uncompetitive manufacturing costs.”

Noting that Nigeria focuses on the model of import substitution, he lamented that the manufacturing sector represents only three percent of total revenue from exports, but accounts for 50 percent of imports.

He advised the country to create wealth through a greater export market and value diversification.

The AfDB president further said that unless Nigeria decisively tackles its energy deficiency and reliability, its industries will always remain uncompetitive.

“There should be massive investments in variable energy mixes, including gas, hydropower resources, and large scale solar systems to ensure stable baseload power for industries, to direct power preferentially to industries, and to support industrial mini-grids to concentrate power in industrial zones,” he added.

“In addition, we should develop more efficient utilities, reducing technical and non-technical losses in power generation, transmission and distribution systems.”

Adesina explained that the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) presented a huge opportunity for Nigeria to drive an export-driven industrial manufacturing pathway.

He said Nigeria should respect the rule of law for illegal imports not to happen.

“The size of the free trade zone, with a collective GDP of 3.3 trillion dollars, makes it the largest free trade zone in the world by the number of countries,” he said.

“We must be ready to seize the opportunity and become a key player based on our massive potential.”


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Mali expels envoy of 15-nation West African regional bloc

Mali’s transitional government has ordered an envoy of the 15-nation West African regional bloc to leave the country within 72 hours because of actions “incompatible with his status.” Africanews reports

The Economic Community of West African States, known as ECOWAS, is pressing Mali’s transitional leader Col. Assimi Goita, who seized power in a coup in August 2020, to respect his pledge to hold presidential and legislative elections in February 2022. The group threatens sanctions against Mali if elections are not held by that date.

Goita’s government on Monday declared the ECOWAS special representative, Hamidou Boly, “persona non grata” and ordered him to leave the country, according to a statement issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The statement said that while Boly has been ordered to leave Mali, the government is still open to dialogue with ECOWAS, which has condemned the 2020 coup and is encouraging the country to return to democratic, civilian rule.

Mali’s government has not clearly explained the reasons for its decision against Boly, which comes a day after the United Nations Security Council mission visited Mali and also pressed for February 2022 elections.

In recent months, Malian Prime Minister Choguel Maiga has said before the government can plan the elections, it is necessary to hold a national conference in December in which various civil and political groups can agree on a date for elections.

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UN Martin Kimani, other delegation visit Mali to mount pressure on junta

UN Security Council delegates, led by the ambassadors from the US, France, and Niger, arrived in Bamako for two days of talks to push the military-led interim government for a return to democracy after two coups in nine months.

The delegation adds to international pressure on coup leaders to abide by a February 27 deadline set by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) for a presidential election, a deadline that the regime is openly suggesting might be missed as reported by Africanews.

Kenya’s ambassador to the UN, Martin Kimani said it would be ideal for them to have a better understanding of the situation in Mali in order to know how best to help.

We want to understand the situation in Mali, to feed our discussion in New York. As a fellow African country, the situation in Mali and the Sahel is very dear to Kenya.

Malian Minister of Foreign Affairs & International Cooperation Abdoulaye Diop welcomed the delegation adding that the meeting would help to give a progress report by the government.

“We welcome this mission with open arms. We found this an opportunity to present the reality of the situation in Mali, and also to present the progress that is being made by the transitional government. But also to present our vision of what must be done to complete this transition, through the organization of transparent and credible elections.”

In a statement released on Friday Human Rights Watch had urged the UN mission to use this as an opportunity to encourage Malian authorities to “investigate a spate of alleged summary executions, enforced disappearances, and detentions by government security forces”.


It is alleged that since September, at least 14 men last seen in the custody of security forces, had disappeared or remain in “incommunicado detention”.

The bodies of three men allegedly executed after their arrest by soldiers earlier this month were found nearby an army camp, it said.

HRW Sahel director Corine Dufka is reported to have said “Mali’s transitional government shouldn’t be standing back while its soldiers are linked to a wave of abuses, The army earlier this month said it had investigated images published online that purported to show torture and the bodies of victims, and that those involved had been sanctioned and “placed at the disposal of the gendarmerie”.

the poor and landlocked nation that is home to at least 20 ethnic groups has been racked by jihadist and intercommunal violence, as well as coups in August 2020 and May this year.

Military intervention by France and the UN has failed to quell an Islamist insurgency that has swept into central Mali and spilled over into neighboring Burkina Faso and Niger, leaving thousands dead and forcing hundreds of thousands from their homes.

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Who killed Thomas Sankara? The Trial starts in Burkina Faso By DR.Y.

We all know who killed Thomas Sankara… and we all know that it was an international affair with Blaise Compaoré at the center, France, Felix Houphouet-Boigny of Cote d’Ivoire and even Liberians… we all know… but with all the cover-ups, and the powerful owing the justice, will we, citizens of Burkina Faso and Africa ever get justice for Thomas Sankara and his family? Well, the trial started this past Monday in Ouagadougou, without the main actor Blaise Compaoré, the coward previous president of Burkina Faso who got Ivorian citizenship to avoid getting extradited to face his crimes against the people of Burkina Faso… really a coward… how could someone like that have ever governed people? Excerpts below are from the BBC. Enjoy!

Thirty-four years, almost to the day, since the shocking killing of Burkina Faso‘s then President, Thomas Sankara14 men are going on trial, accused of complicity in the murder of the man known as “Africa’s Che Guevara”.

The charismatic Pan-Africanist was shot dead aged 37 by soldiers during a coup on 15 October 1987, which saw his close friend, Blaise Compaoré, come to power.

Four years previously, the pair had staged the takeover which saw Sankara become president.

Mr Compaoré is among the 14 accused but he is currently in exile in neighbouring Ivory Coast, where he fled after being forced to resign during mass protests in 2014. He has repeatedly denied involvement in Sankara’s death and is boycotting the trial.

I’ve been waiting for this for a long time,” the former president’s widow Mariam Sankara told the BBC. “I want to know the truth, and who did what.”

Sankara remains something of an icon across Africa – … across the continent in South Africa, radical opposition leader Julius Malema cites him as one of his inspirations.

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INVESTIGATION: Alleged ‘Disappearances,’ Executions by Security Forces in Mali

Malian authorities should investigate a spate of alleged summary executions, enforced disappearances, and incommunicado detentions by government security forces, Human Rights Watch said today. The United Nations Security Council, visiting Mali on October 24 and 25, 2021, should press the government to make progress on justice for serious crimes by state security forces and non-state armed groups.

Since September, at least 14 men last seen in the custody of the security forces have “disappeared” or are being held incommunicado, informed sources told Human Rights Watch. The bodies of three men allegedly executed after their arrest by soldiers in early October were found near the army camp in the central Malian town of Sofara, in Mopti region.

“Mali’s transitional government shouldn’t be standing back while its soldiers are linked to a wave of abuses,” said Corinne Dufka, Sahel director at Human Rights Watch. “The UN Security Council should use their visit to reinforce the government’s obligations to respect human rights and investigate and appropriately prosecute abuses by all sides.”

Human Rights Watch spoke by telephone with 22 people with knowledge of the recent allegations including witnesses, family members of the “disappeared,” village leaders, local rights organizations, and foreign diplomats.

Most of the recent abuses occurred during counterterrorism operations in central Mali against Islamist armed groups that in 2021 have been responsible for increasing attacks that have killed scores of security force members and civilians, including a massacre on August 8 of about 50 villagers near Gao.

Other abuses appear to be related to rising political turmoil as a result of Mali’s two military coups in nine months. On August 18, 2020, military officers overthrew the government of President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita and appointed former Colonel Bah Ndaw as interim president; on May 24, 2021, Ndaw was overthrown by his vice-president, Colonel Assimi Goïta, who was sworn in as head of state in June 2021.

Since the resumption of armed conflict in 2012, Malian authorities have failed to ensure justice for dozens of large-scale atrocities implicating ethnic militias and soldiers during counterterrorism operations. There has been some progress on prosecuting grave crimes by armed Islamists.

All parties to Mali’s armed conflict are bound by Common Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions of 1949 and other treaty and customary laws of war, which provide for the humane treatment of captured combatants and civilians in custody. Individuals who commit serious violations of the laws of war with criminal intent, including summary executions and torture, may be prosecuted for war crimes.

ldquo;Mali’s authorities should either bring those arrested before a judge and charge them with a credible offense or release them,” Dufka said.  “Those held without charge should immediately be released and the families of those forcibly disappeared should be told where their relatives are.”

Arrests, Enforced Disappearances, and Executions around Sofara

Village leaders and witnesses said that from October 2 to 5, security force members arrested at least 34 men in and around the town of Sofara. Two international security analysts told Human Rights Watch the arrests were apparently in response to an uptick in attacks by Islamist armed groups in the area, and specifically, an October 1 attack on Marebougou, 30 kilometers away.

In an October 13 communiqué, the Malian army acknowledged some of the arrests, noting that “22 presumed terrorists” had been transferred to the gendarmerie for investigation. Family members, witnesses, and local community leaders said that at least 11 of the arrested men remain unaccounted for and three men, believed to have been among those arrested, were found dead a few kilometers from the Sofara military camp a few days after their arrest. Community leaders provided Human Rights Watch with the names of the 22 men in government custody and 11 men who are missing.

Mali’s transitional government shouldn’t be standing back while its soldiers are linked to a wave of abuses

A witness to the arrest of seven men in Sofara on October 2, the majority of whom remain missing, said, “Around 11 a.m., several military vehicles surrounded a small shop near where many families displaced by the war lived. A man working with the army was pointing out who and who to arrest. First, was the shopkeeper, then one by one, others who were drinking tea, walking by, or had come to buy something. The soldiers ripped their clothing to tie their hands and blindfold them, then threw them violently into the vehicles, in which were already 2 others, making 9 arrested in total.”

A trader described the arrests in Sofara on October 5: “It was market day, around 9 a.m. Soldiers flooded the market, some surrounding the animal market, others went into the stalls. It seemed like they were stopping all the [ethnic] Peuhl men – identified by their dress. I didn’t see them asking any questions.” A shopkeeper said, “I heard the soldiers insulting and accusing the men they’d arrested of being terrorists. They took dozens of men. They tied their hands and eyes with the men’s turbans, threw them into the army trucks, then drove off toward their base.”

Two men said they participated in the burial, on October 11, of three of the arrested men whose bodies were found about two kilometers from Sofara. One said, “After hearing about the bodies, we organized a delegation to see for ourselves. After walking for 25 minutes, we found three bodies in the bush, two side by side and the other separated by a few meters. We saw tire tracks near the bodies which were starting to decompose…. We buried them right there.” A cellphone video that circulated on social media appears to show the three bodies described by the witnesses.

Another cellphone video that circulated on social media around the time of the October arrests shows the mistreatment and interrogation (in local Bambara language) of a suspect by four uniformed men. The October 13 government communiqué pledged to investigate the apparent mistreatment, noting that soldiers involved “have been formally identified” and “disciplinary sanctions are already imposed on perpetrators who have been placed at the disposal of the National Gendarmerie for legal proceedings.”

A village elder close to the suspect in the video told Human Rights Watch that the man being mistreated in the video, Hamadoun Diallo, 37, had been arrested by soldiers on October 4 near Tandiama, a village near Sofara, and remains unaccounted for.

Earlier in 2021Human Rights Watch documented other serious allegations of abuse by the Malian security forces. On March 23, soldiers based in Boni severely beat dozens of bus passengers after finding suspicious material in the baggage compartment. The bodies of at least 13 of the passengers remain unaccounted for and are believed to be buried in a common grave near the Boni military camp. Soldiers from the same military camp executed at least seven other men in March and April, and in January, soldiers killed eight men and forcibly disappeared two others, including a child, near Mali’s border with Burkina Faso.

Enforced Disappearance of Government Officials

Witnesses, human rights investigators, and two diplomats said that at least three former high-level government officials are being held incommunicado after their detention by the security services.

Dr. Kalilou Doumbia, 35, a jurist and advisor to Mali’s top political figures, went missing while en route to a meeting on September 6 at the University of Bamako, where he lectures on legal and political studies. “When he didn’t show for a meeting at the university, we started calling people along the route he would’ve taken to work, to see if they’d seen anything,” a colleague told Human Rights Watch.

On September 10, a police commissioner based in Mali’s Kayes region, Moustapha Diakité, 38, went missing after the director-general of police summoned him to Bamako. Two people close to Diakité said he was last seen entering the headquarters of the national intelligence agency, the Directorate of State Security (DSGE). “The summons came from the DG of Police, but once there, Commissioner Diakité was told to report to the DSGE. Once at the DSGE, his phone was confiscated and from that day we have no news as to his whereabouts,” a source close to the family said.

On October 4, in Bamako’s Baco Djikoroni neighborhood, several men in military uniform detained Col. Maj. Kassoum Goïta, 46, was the director of state security during President Ndaw’s administration. Said someone close to the family, “At around 2 p.m., they surrounded the house and forced him into a vehicle. Since then, he doesn’t answer his phone. We have looked everywhere.”

Informed sources said they believe the men have been held for intermittent periods within an unauthorized detention facility in Sundiata Keïta military camp, in Bamako’s Kati suburb; within a gendarme camp in Bamako; and within the DSGE. People close to their families said the authorities have refused to acknowledge the men’s presence in these detention facilities and have not allowed their lawyers access to them.

International law defines enforced disappearance as the detention of a person by state officials or their agents and a refusal to acknowledge the detention or to reveal the person’s fate or whereabouts.

Under both transitional governments in Mali, there have been several high-profile cases characterized by violations of due process, including prolonged detention of suspects without charge and denial of access to lawyers and family members.

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Sports News: Minister of Sports, Sunday Dare Pledges Support To Ridwan ‘Scorpion’ over title defense

 The minister of youth and sports, Sunday Dare has pledged to support the current World Boxing Federations (WBF) Super Featherweight Champion, Ridwan ‘Scorpion’ Oyekola in his quest to defend his title against an opponent from Georgia, Giorgi Gogatishvili.

The minister made the call while hosting the boxing champion and his crew at his Ibadan residence over the weekend where he described the feat achieved by Oyekola as a commendable one that required every encouragement from all and sundry.

Dare in his remarks pledged the total support of his office in making the WBF belt’s title defense a reality despite the limited time constraints, as the boxer was supposed to have defended the belt since the middle of this year.

“This administration placed a huge premium on youth’s capacity development and the success achieved by Scorpion has gone a long way to prove the extent our athletes can go if given necessary support and encouragement”, said the Minister.

He added that “We are going to support you to successfully defend this world boxing title. We are going to appeal to individuals and bodies on your behalf that could assist in achieving that”.

Meanwhile, the CEO of Core Afrique Boxing Promotion (COABOX), Sola Ayodele who doubles as the manager of Oyekola while responding to the Minister explained challenges faced before winning the title and challenges they are facing defending it.


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Top 50 Women in Corporate Africa Revealed after Data-Driven Research

In a major virtual summit with over 1,000 high-level attendees, revealed the names of the 50 most senior women in Corporate Africa. The Definitive List of Women CEOs is distinguished in that it is data-driven. The researchers started by working with data provided by Bloomberg and evaluating the over 1,400 companies listed on the 24 African stock exchanges.

The list yielded many more women from South Africa than any other African country, followed by Nigeria and Kenya.  The finance sector had more women CEOs than any other sector, followed closely by technology. Managing Director Laura Joseph said, “FIve companies had more than one woman on the list: Bidvest, Microsoft, Old Mutual, Sonatel, and Sanlam.”

The methodology includes three sections: 1) CEOs of African exchange-listed companies with a market cap over $150 million USD; 2) division heads of African exchange-listed companies where the division itself would be valued at over $150 million were it standalone; and 3) Africa region heads, or country heads, of globally listed companies with a market cap of over $50 billion. Chair and Executive Editor Teresa Clarke said, “The list has started a movement to give African women something larger to aspire to run a large, complex business – not just SMEs as is often the focus of women in business.”


Click here ( to watch a dynamic short video that profiles the women CEOs.


The 2021 Definitive List of Women CEOs






Stock Exchange

Market Cap


Natascha Viljoen CEO Anglo American Platinum South Africa Johannesburg Stock Exchange

$37.6 billion USD


Mpumi Madisa CEO / Executive Director Bidvest Group South Africa Johannesburg Stock Exchange

$3.6 billion USD


Lizé Lambrechts CEO / Executive Director Santam South Africa Johannesburg Stock Exchange

$1.9 billion USD


Miriam Olusanya Managing Director Guaranty Trust Bank Ltd Nigeria Nigeria Stock Exchange

$1.4 billion USD


Jane Karuku Group Managing Director and CEO East African Breweries Ltd Kenya Nairobi Stock Exchange

$1.2 billion USD


Helena Conradie CEO Satrix 40 South Africa Johannesburg Stock Exchange

$650 million USD


Leila Fourie CEO JSE South Africa Johannesburg Stock Exchange

$640 million USD


Ruth Zaipuna CEO NMB Bank Tanzania Dar es Salaam Stock Exchange

$505 million USD


Nathalie Alquier CEO Centrale Danone Morocco Casablanca Stock Exchange

$500 million USD


Catherine Lesetedi Group Chief Executive Officer Botswana Insurance Holdings Botswana Botswana Stock Exchange

$445 million USD


Mansa Nettey Chief Executive Standard Chartered Bank Ghana Ghana Stock Exchange

$425 million USD


Anne Juuko CEO Stanbic Bank Holdings Uganda Uganda Securities Exchange

$370 million USD


Keabetswe Pheko-Moshagane Managing Director Absa Bank Botswana Ltd Botswana Botswana Stock Exchange

$346 million USD


Jackie van Niekerk CEO Attacq Ltd South Africa Johannesburg Stock Exchange

$323 million USD


Jalila Mezni CEO Société d’Articles Hygiéniques LILAS Tunisia Bourse de Tunis Stock Exchange

$304 million USD


Amelia Beattie CEO Liberty Two Degrees South Africa Johannesburg Stock Exchange

$281 million USD


Mercia Geises CEO SBN Holdings Ltd (Standard Bank) Namibia Namibian Stock Exchange

$277 million USD


Rebecca Miano Managing Director and CEO Kenya Electricity Generating Kenya Nairobi Stock Exchange

$275 million USD


Miriem Bensalah-Chaqroun VP, Managing Director Oulmes Morocco MC/Casablanca Stock Exchange

$230 million USD


Diane Karusisi CEO BK Group PLC Rwanda Rwanda Stock Exchange

$205 million USD


Nasim Devji Group CEO and Managing Director Diamond Trust Bank Kenya Nairobi Stock Exchange

$178 million USD


Nneka Onyeali-Ikpe Managing Director and CEO Fidelity Bank Nigeria Nigerian Stock Exchange

$165 million USD



Kanyisa Mkhize CEO Sanlam Corporate Sanlam South Africa Johannesburg Stock Exchange

$8.6 billion USD


Vivien McMenamin CEO South Africa Mondi South Africa South Africa Johannesburg Stock Exchange

$7.7 billion USD


Nevine Wefky President of Corporate Credit and Investment Commercial International Bank Egypt Egyptian Exchange

$5.7 Billion USD


Yolisa Phahle CEO General Entertainment and Connected Video The MultiChoice Group South Africa Johannesburg Stock Exchange

$3.8 billion USD


Kerrin Land Managing Director, Personal Finance & Wealth Management Old Mutual South Africa Johannesburg Stock Exchange

$3.7 billion USD


Prabashini Moodley Managing Director Old Mutual Corporate South Africa Johannesburg Stock Exchange

$3.7 billion USD


Hannah Sadiki Bidvest Financial Services CEO Bidvest Financial Services South Africa Johannesburg Stock Exchange

$3.6 billion USD


Ramatoulaye Diallo Shagaya Managing Director Orange Finances Mobile Services Sonatel Senegal Bourse Régionale des Valeurs Mobilières

$2.2 billion USD


Aminata Kane Ndiaye CEO Orange Sierra Leone Sonatel Senegal Bourse Régionale des Valeurs Mobilières

$2.2 billion USD


Kerry Cassel CEO Financial Services Sector Motus Holdings South Africa Johannesburg Stock Exchange

$1.1 billion USD


Anet Ahern CEO PSG Asset Management PSG Konsult South Africa Johannesburg Stock Exchange

$819 million USD


Nanees Adel CSH Managing Director Cleopatra Hospital Egypt Egyptian Exchange

$468 million USD


Hélène Echevin CEO, CIEL Healthcare CIEL Mauritius Stock Exchange of Mauritius

$166 million USD



Teju Ajani Managing Director Nigeria Apple Nigeria NASDAQ

$2.1 trillion USD


Juliet Ehimuan Director West Africa Google Nigeria NASDAQ

$2.1 trillion USD


Kendi Ntwiga-Nderitu Country Lead Kenya Microsoft Kenya NASDAQ

$1.9 trillion USD


Lillian Barnard CEO South Africa Microsoft South Africa NASDAQ

$1.9 trillion USD


Nunu Ntshingila Regional Director, Africa Facebook South Africa NASDAQ

$836 billion USD


Aida Diarra Senior Vice President and Head of Sub-Saharan Africa VISA Inc South Africa New York Stock Exchange

$466 billion USD


Chantal Umutoni Kagame CEO MTN Rwanda Rwanda Rwanda Stock Exchange

$361 billion USD


Yvonne Ike Managing Director, Sub-Saharan Africa Bank of America Nigeria New York Stock Exchange

$332 billion USD


Cathy Smith MD Sub-Saharan Africa SAP South Africa Frankfurt Stock Exchange

$171 billion USD


Ireti Samuel-Ogbu CEO Nigeria and Ghana Citibank Nigeria New York Stock Exchange

$151 billion USD


Mariam Kane-Garcia CEO South Africa & Executive VP Southern Africa TotalEnergies South Africa Euronext

$122 billion USD


Angela Kyerematen-Jimoh Regional Head North, East. and West Africa IBM Ghana NASDAQ

$119 billion USD


Brenda Mbathi President GE East Africa General Electra Kenya New York Stock Exchange

$111 billion USD


Mpumi Zikalala Managing Director, de Beers Group Managed Operations De Beers Group South Africa De Beers

$61 billion USD


Taelo Mojapelo CEO and Vice President British Petroleum Southern Africa South Africa LSE/London Stock Exchange

$59 billion USD

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Free Movement of People a Top Priority, Say West African Nations

Free movement of people and goods, and fighting human trafficking should be top policy priorities, members of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) agreed at talks convened with the support of the International Organization for Migration (IOM), the UN Network for Migration and the African Union.

Three days of consultations in Abuja this week offered the first chance for ECOWAS members to collectively assess progress in implementing the Global Compact for Migration (GCM) objectives and to decide key recommendations to be put to next year’s International Migration Review Forum.

Integrated migration governance should be a key goal and Ambrose Dery, Minister of Interior for Ghana, the Chair of ECOWAS Authority of Heads of States and Governments, said it was essential African nations addressed trafficking in persons and its devastating consequences on migrants.

Governments must address the root causes of trafficking and ensure the free movement of people in a safe, orderly and dignified manner

“Vile stories on international media concerning migrant slavery, as well as the mistreatment of young African domestic help in some Gulf States, call for a reflection on appropriate actions to be taken with a view to finding a lasting solution to this persistent problem that leads to the loss of young Africans, without whom the continent cannot build a prosperous and peaceful future,” Dery said. “In Ghana, the contribution of migrants has played a great role in shaping our national development.”

Governments must address the root causes of trafficking and ensure the free movement of people in a safe, orderly, and dignified manner. ECOWAS representatives emphasized the need to join forces and align approaches to prevent and counter-smuggling of migrants and trafficking in persons to promote rights-based management of migration.

The meeting, which ended Thursday, also heard that policies must be effectively applied by border officials to ease free movement while combatting trafficking in persons.

Aissata Kane, IOM’s Senior Regional Adviser for Sub Saharan Africa, said the Global Compact for Migration was a landmark, multilateral document. “It aims to catalyze and boost combined support and assistance for addressing legal and humanitarian challenges of migration and foster its positive social, cultural and economic dividends within and outside the ECOWAS region.”

IOM has been working with all stakeholders at intergovernmental and national levels, as well as within the UN Network for Migration, to promote safe, orderly, and dignified free movement of people and economic exchange among the ECOWAS Member States.

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Child Marriage Kills More Than 60 Girls A Day- Report

More than an estimated 22,000 girls a year are dying from pregnancy and childbirth resulting from child marriage, a new analysis from Save the Children released on International Day of the Girl reveals.

With the highest rate of child marriage in the world, West and Central Africa account for nearly half (9,600) of all estimated child marriage-related deaths globally, or 26 deaths a day. In addition, the regional teenage maternal mortality rate is four times higher than anywhere else in the world.

South Asia sees 2,000 child marriage-related deaths every year (or six every day), followed by East Asia and the Pacific with 650 deaths (or two every day), and Latin American and the Caribbean, with 560 annual deaths (or nearly two a day).

Although nearly 80 million child marriages globally have been prevented in the last 25 years, progress had stalled even before the COVID-19 pandemic—which has only worsened inequalities that drive child marriage. With school closures, health services under strain or closed, and more families being pushed into poverty, women, and girls face an increased risk of violence during lengthy lockdowns. A further 10 million girls are now expected to marry by 2030,[1] leaving more girls at risk of dying.

President and CEO of Save the Children Janti Soeripto, said: “Child marriage is one of the worst and deadliest forms of sexual and gender-based violence against girls. Every year, millions are forced into wedlock with men who are often much older, robbing them of an opportunity to keep learning, be children, and in many cases, to survive.

“Childbirth is the number one killer of teenaged girls because their young bodies aren’t ready to bear children. The health risks of children having children cannot, and must not, be ignored. Governments must prioritize girls and ensure they’re protected from child marriage and premature childbirth-related deaths. This can only happen if girls have a say in the decisions that affect them.”

Childbirth is the number one killer of teenaged girls because their young bodies aren’t ready to bear children

Gender inequality continues to fuel child marriage, as revealed in a national report from Save the Children in Nigeria, The state of Nigerian girls: An incisive diagnosis of child, early and forced marriage in Nigeria. According to a survey carried out by the organization, the belief that children born to young mothers are healthier and smarter is widespread among many communities. There’s also a common perception that younger girls “refresh” older men with their “younger blood.”

Even in countries where child marriage is illegal, exceptions are common, and the practice is still widespread, including in Burkina Faso—which has one of the highest rates of child marriage globally.

Viviane*, now 23, was promised at birth to her husband and was forced to marry him when she was only 12. She said:

“My husband was 54 and already had four wives. I wanted to keep studying, so I decided to escape. I was caught and taken back to live with him, so I tried again. I walked for 25 miles, managed to make my way onto a bus, and eventually ended up in a center that supports child brides like me. I’m now studying mathematics and training to become a nurse while mentoring other young girls about the importance of getting an education.”

In a global report released today by Save the Children, Global Girlhood Report 2021: Girls’ rights in crisis, the organization is calling on governments to:

  1. Raise girls’ voices by supporting their right to safe and meaningful participation in all public decision-making.
  2. Address immediate and ongoing risks of gender-based violence, including child marriage, by putting girls’ rights and gender equality at the center of COVID-19 and humanitarian responses, development policy, and broader efforts to build forward better.
  3. Guarantee the rights of all girls, including those impacted by different forms of inequality and discrimination (including on the basis of gender, race, disability, economic background, etc.), by developing inclusive policies and programs. Safe and ethical data collection must also be improved to better understand and respond in real-time to COVID-19’s impact on existing economic, climate, and conflict-related crises.
  4. Ensure the safe and unrestricted participation of female humanitarian staff in all humanitarian response efforts, including needs assessments and the design, implementation, and monitoring, and evaluation of all humanitarian services at every level.
  5. Join the Generation Equality movement, working to deliver on the Global Acceleration Plan for Gender Equality, which set a target to prevent nine million child marriages in five years.

Name has been changed to protect the identity of the child marriage survivor.

[i] COVID-19: A threat to progress against child marriage – UNICEF DATA

[ii] This source was used for a minority of countries and is not age specific. The Lancet data was replaced by DHS Stat Compiler data when the latter presented a lower value than the former.

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