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Showing posts from May, 2013

The good, the bad.... and the unbelievable!

While at the Accra Global Shapers meeting earlier tonight, the idea of doing things everyday and now to create impact came up. I remembered the #IMGBT - "I Made Ghana Better Today" campaign. I haven't given it the push it deserves, partly because I am yet to figure out how to sustain it. Best believe, it will get the needed push soon. Better late than never. Anyway, after the meeting, I headed home thinking - "It's been a while since I gave free rides to people". So I resorted to stop somewhere on the way and pick some passengers as I was heading towards the old Shangri-La Hotel. Don't mind what is there now, that place will forever be Shangri-La to me. I have great memories of it. Tonight, another memory was born :-)

I missed stopping at Spanner junction but stopped at the Shaishie junction (the bend into East Legon). I asked a gentleman I had stopped by, "Worekɔ American House?" He was going towards American House. He took the passenger sea…

Being on the #WEFAfrica Forward Leadership panel

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It was extremely cool to be a panelist at the prestiguous World Economic Forum event on Africa this year. This was my first WEF as well and this event brings together many dignitaries and industry leaders from all the world. Below is some information about the Forward Leadership panel itself - synopsis, speakers and moderator.


Forward Leadership How are the aspirations of Africa's future leaders being integrated into business, government and civil society? Dimensions to be addressed: Understanding shifting dynamics of peer groups and value trends influencing youthOvercoming stereotypes about youthElevating young people into leadership rolesSharing experiences across national, linguistic and generational boundaries Speakers:Lawrence Kego MashaAto Ulzen AppiahAlia Mahmoud

Reviewing Nairobi Half-Life (Kenyan movie)

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Before I get into this blog post proper, let me declare that South African Airways is my favorite airline. I really looked forward to flying it earlier this month from Accra to Johannesburg because I expected to watch some great African movies. This time, I got to watch the much acclaimed Nairobi Half-Life. Relelased in 2012, Nairobi Half-Life was directed by David Tosh Gitonga and features many rather unknown actors and actresses like Joseph Wairimu, Olwenya Maina and Nancy Wanjiku Karanja. I knew I wanted to blog about and review the movie once I began to watch it and took some notes. I loved the movie and would recommend it as a collectible. It's been billed as the most successful Kenyan movie ever.

Sometimes, great movies give birth to great actors. In many places like Ghana, good actors sell good or not so good movies. The notion that you always need bankable actors and actresses to produce successful movies is not always true. This movie was the very first Kenyan submission…

Tweeting the Facing Africa's Future plenary at #WEFAfrica

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In delivering on Africa's Promise, Africa needs an aspirational and inspirational set of youth. The closing plenary for the World Economic Forum event on Africa focused on young people. There were a lot of younger attendees at the event, many of which were like me, Global Shapers. There were also the relatively older set of attendees, many of whom were Young Global Leaders. It was befitting that the closing plenary for the event featured younger panelists, 3 of which were Global Shapers. It was dubbed "Facing Africa's Future Significant challenges to Africa's resilience".

The panelists were Martyn Davies, Chief Executive Officer, Frontier Advisory, South Africa; Young Global Leader; Global Agenda Council on China Anne Githuku-Shongwe, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Afroes Transformational Games, South Africa; as well as Global Shapers Aminata Niang, Manager, Marketing and Sales, Tambaroua Business Farming, Mali; Rapelang Rabana, Founder, ReKindle Learning, …

Tweeting the Africa's Value Context session at #WEFAfrica

I am having too much fun tweetifying stories as you can see from my few past blog posts. Storify is such a good idea too I tell you. :-) Change is constant, positive change is good. When I saw Hannah Tetteh's name on one of the panels at the World Economic Forum on Africa, I saw this as an opportunity to meet her for the first time. Yes o, I had never met her. It took me coming to Cape Town to meet her. That said, I also met former president John Kufuor and current Vice-President Kwesi Amissah-Arthur for the first time. The long chat I had with Hannah and short interactions I had with J.A.K and Uncle Kwesi were interesting to say the least. I might blog about it in the future.

The session Hannah was in also featured a friend (a fellow African Global Shaper) I had made while in Cape Town. Some other African Global Shapers had told me earlier they'd met Ghana's current Minister of Foreign Affairs (and Regional Integration of Ghana) and that she was a lady. I had no idea wh…

Tweeting "Africa 2063: From Fragility to Stability" at #WEFAfrica

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After having South African president Jacob Zuma on the opening plenary on 9th May, Kenya's new president Uhuru Kenyatta joined the morning plenary on 10th May. The session discussed how African economies can transform over the next 50 years and how political and geopolitical tensions in the region will be managed. In essence -> Africa 2063: From Fragility to Stability. President Uhuru Kenyatta was joined on the panel by Bineta Diop the Chair of the Executive Board, Femmes Africa Solidarité, Switzerland, Frannie Léautier who is Executive Secretary, The African Capacity Building Foundation, Zimbabwe, Arif M. Naqvi the Founder and Group Chief Executive, The Abraaj Group, United Arab Emirates and Abdelkader Bensalah the President, Council of the Nation, Algeria. The session was chaired by Børge Brende Managing Director and Member of the Managing Board, World Economic Forum.

As usual, I was tweeting away. Here are some tweets I sent in, together with some others I saved.
Arif Na…

Tweeting the #WEFAfrica Made In Africa session

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I am a big proponent of Made in Ghana and Made in Africa products. So when I saw the "Made in Africa" panel session at the World Economic Forum event on Africa, I was interested in attending it. Seeing Anant Singh on the panel had me sold. Joining Singh in the session were Xavier-Luc Duval (Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Finance and Economic Development, Mauritius), Jubril Adewale Tinubu (GCEO, Oando Plc), Rich Lesser (global CE and president, The Boston Consulting Group) and Tabitha M. Karanja (CE, Keroche Breweries Ltd). It was moderated by Robyn Curnow (CNN Africa correspondent) and the session was broadcast on CNN. I had been in a session with Wale Tinubu earlier that week where I learnt a lot. See the blog post here.

One thing I always do when I am in South Africa is look to buy the latest local movies that are great. Anant Singh has been directing and producing a bunch of them. Amongst his work include Sarafina, Cry, The Beloved Country, Yesterday, Jozi, Shooting…

Tweeting the #WEFAfrica Opening Plenary on BRICS

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The World Economic Forum event on Africa for 2013 took place at the Cape Town International Conference Centre. The theme was “Delivering on Africa’s Promise”. I attended it and joined the opening plenary which kick-started event though there had been panels and sessions earlier that day (May 9th) and the day before. I was a panelist in one session earlier that morning about Forward Leadership.

The opening plenary session was dubbed "Building with BRICS: How will collaboration with the BRICS empower Africa to deliver on its promise?". It featured WEF chair Klaus Schwab as moderator, South Africa's President Jacob Zuma, IMF first deputy managing director David Lipton, African Union chair Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, Jindal Steel and Power chair Naveen Jindal, and AfDB president Donald Kaberuka as panelists. Below are some tweets I captured ---
Elsie Kanza led us in a call & response. 'Kitendawilli' is a Swahili phrase you say before you tell a story. Response is &#…

The Day I Met Lira - arguably the best African songstress

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I don't remember who first introduced me to Lira's music. Maybe, I introduced myself to it while getting content for Museke.com. I do know that I've been a fan of her and her music from day one. I also remember my bestie Phelele used to talk about how beautiful Lira was. Real African music connoisseurs would say the same about her music. Through dealing with various artistes as part of Museke, I got to know Lira better and even interviewed her. It was a Q&A (online) one, I didn't meet her in person. Last week, I did meet her in person for the first time. How that happened is a story I wish to tell. :-)

Two of the 4 CDs I normally play in the #vimride are Lira CDs. The Return to Love album and the Celebration Concert album. My favorite Lira song used to be "Wa Mpaleha" but after a steady dose of listening to her music, it's been replaced by "Ngiyazifela". I sometimes put the song on repeat 27 times straight. (I used 27 because South Africa&#…

While watching & listening to Ilizwi, I appreciated Mzansi's musical voice(s)

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After a successful couple of days of the SHAPE Africa conference, various Global Shapers attended a jazz musical concert at the Nedbank Auditorium in Cape Town. I was hoping to see a famous South African musician perform. Yvonne Chaka Chaka was there. No, she didn't perform, she was in the audience like us. She's also a member of the World Economic Forum. We were all attending Ilizwi, a musical. South Africans are such great singers and I always said that I wanted to find myself singing in the streets of Soweto with people one day. I'd be dancing the gumboot dance in addition.

Ilizwi is a musical production by the Casterbridge Music Development Academy. It's directed by Vuyo Jack and Ingrid Wylde. Learn more about Ilizwi here. Ilizwi means "voice" in Xhosa. The musical told a great story and found a way to incorporate many popular South African classic (songs). Here are a few tweets I posted to capture what was happening At a jazz musical called Ilizwi in Ca…

WEF founder, Prof Schwab, breaks down good traits of a leader using Nelson Mandela

Earlier today, many Global Shapers in Africa had the pleasure of sitting down with Professor Klaus Martin Schwab, the founder of the World Economic Forum. He himself has really championed this Global Shapers community, a community of young people with demonstrated potential and excellence who are committed to changing and shaping the state of the world. I wanted to share a few soundbites from the session. For me, the biggest was his 'raving' about Nelson Mandela.

I asked him a question about "how he would compare the youth of today to the youth of decades past" since the World Economic Forum has been existence more than 40 years. In answering the question, he went into stories of how WEF was involved in the birth of a new South Africa. He mentioned how he invited Nelson Mandela, Thabo Mbeki and De Klerk to Geneva when Madiba was released from prison and forged conversations and relationships around trust, and reconciliation. He ended up saying that no leader has imp…