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AU Arts Festival Planning Committee Celebrates African Leaders

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Today marks Africa Day – a day set aside by the African Union to commemorate the establishment of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU) and its successor, the African Union.

Africa Day also celebrates African Unity and what true African renaissance stands for.

The Planning Committee of the AU Arts Festival would like to salute all Africans and African Leaders on the occasion of AU Day. This year’s Africa Day is being celebrated under the theme: *”Winning the Fight against Corruption: A Sustainable Path to Africa’s Transformation”*.

As we celebrate African Unity today, we have to remember the sacrifices of our forebears and work together to find solutions to the myriad of problems confronting our continent. The vision of our forefathers was ensuring that the continent will grow to have one strong voice, politically, economically and socially but these have eluded us because of bad governance and corruption. As we are all aware, the bane of Africa’s development is corruption. As we commemorate the sacrifices of our forebears, let us be mindful of the threat of corruption to our development. We can only achieve economic freedom and improve the livelihood of our people if resources earmarked for projects are put to its use without any diversion.

We want to also commend bodies such as the ECOWAS, and the United Nations for the roles they have played in working to stall conflicts which have improved the stability rate in Africa. We say ayekoo!!.

We also want to remind us all the need to be united as one people. True African unity and sovereignty can only be gained through a united front where we allow economies of scale and free movement of people, goods and services to empower us economically and politically. These would help us to stand up to the dictates of the West and other economic powers that always wish to pursue their own interests in their interventions on the continent.

Beginning from this year, the AU Arts Foundation will use creative arts to empower our youth for accelerated development. We believe that arts and culture are appropriate mechanisms to integrate our youth in all facets of our national development.

Finally, we will like to invite all and sundry to the First AU Arts Festival which comes off from Friday June 1, to Sunday June 3, 2018 at the Golden Tulip Hotel under the theme, Leadership; Africa through arts, celebrating President John Agyekum Kufour, 2nd President of the 4th Republic. Organized by Malaika Media Network, OK Communications and the John Agyekum Kufuor Foundation, the event would be used to raise funds in support of Kufour Center for Leadership and Governance.

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Fashion Event

Africa Gears Up for Heineken Lagos Fashion Week 2018: 24th to 27th October, 2018 | Fashion Focus Africa Semi Finalists Announced

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Lagos, Nigeria: Lagos Fashion Week will return for its 8th edition this year from October 24th – 27th 2018. Serving as a hub to connect fashion stakeholders, LFW tents Oniru will open from 10am – 10pm.

Heineken Lagos Fashion Week is the leading event on the African Fashion calendar, attracting thousands of fashion experts, enthusiasts and media across the continent and beyond. This seasons event will feature over 50 designers showcasing their Spring/Summer 2019 collections as well as the Fashion Business Series, #LagosFWRetail in partnership with #SheTrades, Visual Makers Fellowship with Canon, Green Access Showcase with Fayrouz x Garment Care and Heineken Live Your Music After Party.

The Heineken Lagos Fashion Week press cocktail took place on the 11th of October 2018 to announce plans for this year’s event. The cocktail began with a short message by Obabiyi Fagade, Senior Brand Manager Heineken, reiterating Heineken’s commitment to inspiring African consumers to break boundaries through the LFW platform. He also expressed his excitement for LFW guests to experience the Heineken hospitality suite as well as Live Your Music.

Fashion Focus Alumni, and Fashion Focus x FETS Wallet Fund recipient, Emmy Kasbit was also present, sharing his experience of the incubator programme, he said, “Fashion Focus has been a great journey so far. The fund has helped propel my brand forward in such a short period of time through business mentorship and global opportunities, this has only been possible with the support of the Fashion Focus platform which continuously facilitates positioning my brand globally”.

Excited at the opportunity to continue to impact young African creatives and businesses, the 2018/19 Fashion Focus Africa Semi Finalists who will be going through to the interview stages have been selected:

Mohammed Jafaru Larry | Larry Jay | Ghana
Linda Mukangoga | Haute Baso | Rwanda
Katungulu Mwendwa | Kenya
Tayo, Tola and Tope Alakija | TAlakija | Lagos
Amali Curtis | Ili | Lagos
Moses Turahirwa | Moshions | Rwanda
Ilse-Naolila Teixeira | Naolila | Angola
Nelly Emerald Aboagye | Duaba Serwa | Ghana
Jasleen Matharu | Kenya
Eidusi Patrick Eromosele | Rick Dusi | Lagos

Interviews will be conducted during Lagos Fashion Week.

The Fashion Business Series will take a new turn this year, occuring on the first day to usher in #HLFW18. The aim of FBS is to create a platform for fashion stakeholders to drive conversation about the development of the fashion industry. This year’s theme, “The Importance of Platforms” will feature a panel of experts discussing how various media platforms can be utilised for the benefit of the industry. We look forward to hosting our very first “FBS Gathering”, a dinner solely for fashion stakeholders.

Also a key feature in the 2018 lineup is the Visual Makers Fellowship. 10 filmmakers and 20 photographers will attend workshops over a 7-day period facilitated by Canon, and be offered the opportunity to shoot for #HLFW2018. In addition, the Green Access showcase with Fayrouz and Garment Care, a platform set-up to promote sustainable fashion. Workshops for Green Access begun earlier on Thursday the 11th of October, and will see 5 finalists present upcycled pieces at Lagos Fashion Week.

Omoyemi Akerele – Founder #LFWNG, rounded up the press cocktail thanking the commitment of sponsors and reiterating the objective of the #HLFW18 platform and the growing need to engage the Pan-African fashion industry to promote skills acquisition and commerce that can catalyze economic growth.

LFW lineup:

Fashion Business Series: 24th October, 2018. This year’s theme is titled ‘The Importance of Platforms’ and discussions will delve into how the fashion industry can leverage platforms. A dynamic selection of industry experts will lead these discussions.

Runway Shows and #LagosFWRetail: 25th – 27th October, 2018. 10am – 10pm daily.

Tickets for the runway shows can be purchased online at Afritickets.

Heineken Lagos Fashion Week is brought to you by Style House Files and Heineken in partnership with FETS Wallet, Fayrouz, NEPC, Maybelline, Oando, and Garment Care.

Media Partners: BellaNaija, Business Day, Genevieve Magazine, George Britton, Guardian Life, Konbini, Pulse NG, Style Vitae, Ventures Africa and Zumi.

Official Logistics Partner: Taxify.

For more information on LFW, kindly visit www.lagosfashionweek.ng or follow our Instagram page @lagosfashionweekofficial

Photos from the event can be viewed here: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/u2rryo7sc8pds9m/AABB7SlyN9PfvFejcli0EWoQa?dl=0

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Accra Fashion Week Top African Fashion Events With Spectacular Showcase

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Accra Fashion Week makes history as the first ever national fashion week in Africa (outside of South Africa) to go twice a year putting Ghana on the forefront of the fashion map. The just ended fashion event, dubbed the Summer Harmattan edition took place at the CFAO with a spectacular set of talented designers.

In attendance were various celebrities such as Magaret Murray, Adina Thembe, Pascaline Edwards, Lydia Forson and more. The highlight was a surprise attendance by the French ambassador to Ghana Anne Sophie Ave who came to witness trend stetting clothes, and even took to the backstage to meet students of Imperial College of Arts.

The objective of Accra Fashion Week is to take real life African talent and turn them into social trends with the right support and mechanism of the fashion industry behind. Guests flew all the way from China, Sweden and more to enjoy the designs by major brands such as Mish Mega, Bri Wireduah, Aphia Sakyi, Madyln Mode, Afre Anko, Netseba, MXDonna, Abass, Salim Signature and more.

Clothes will soon be available to shop online at www.AccraFashionWeek.org/ShopTheRunway

 

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18 Reasons Why You’ve Got Cramps But No Period

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You’ve been seriously bloated, moody, and tired. You’ve got monster cramps, and your face is as simply as a 17-year-old boy’s. In other words, you’re suffering from all of the classic signs of your monthly flow—but your period is totally MIA.

First: Don’t freak. It turns out, there are tons of reasons you’ve got those tell-tale period symptoms, but no period.

“Hormonal changes related to ovulation can affect some of the same pathways in your brain that might be affected by other medical conditions, causing mood swings that feel similar to your period but aren’t related to ovulation or menses,” says Chailee Moss, M.D., an ob-gyn at Johns Hopkins Medicine.

What’s more, some physical abnormalities in your uterus and ovaries can also cause cramping that feels like PMS, she adds.

While skipping a period every now and then is usually nothing to worry about, if you have a fever, significant nausea or vomiting, or pain that you can’t control with simple OTC medications or that doesn’t improve within a week, check in with your doctor right away.

Otherwise, it’s time to see your doc if you skip more than three cycles in a row, suggests Chicago-based ob-gyn Jessica Shepherd, M.D.—here’s what might be going on down there.

1. Anovulation

Every once in a while, your body goes through all of the hormonal changes associated with PMS, but if you didn’t actually release an egg that month, you won’t actually get your period. Known as anovulation, it’s more common than one might think. “Ten to 18 percent of all regular cycles are anovulatory,” Shepherd adds. In case you’re wondering, yes, that stat can make getting pregnant tricky!

2. Pregnancy

If you’ve had unprotected sex in the last month, were a bit lax about taking your pill, or rely on the pullout method for birth control, it’s worth taking a pregnancy test. Many of the symptoms of early pregnancy, including breast tenderness, mood swings, fatigue, and cramping, are the same ones that you were already experiencing month to month before and during your period.

3. Thyroid conditions

Your thyroid, a small butterfly-shaped gland in your neck, regulates many of your body’s functions, including your metabolism and menstrual cycles. If your thyroid gets out of whack, your cycles can become irregular, says Shepherd. The result: You may you go a long stretch without having your period while still experiencing period-like symptoms, says Moss.

Because your thyroid regulates your brain function, mood swings that you thought were PMS may be related to your neurologic function, she explains. And spotting or cramping may occur because the lining of your uterus has built up but hasn’t shed because you’re not ovulating.

Be sure to check in with your doctor if you’re experiencing other symptoms of a thyroid condition, including sudden unexplained weight loss or gain, shaking, heart palpitations, or significant fatigue.

4. Hormonal Birth Control

One very common side effect of hormonal IUDs is skipped periods. That’s because one of the ways the device prevents pregnancy is by thinning out the endometrial lining so there’s nothing to shed come that time of the month.

And, while they don’t typically nix your flow altogether, birth control pills can result in super-light flows or spotting. So you might feel period symptoms like breast tenderness even without a heavy, full-blown period, says Shepherd.

5. Stress

Stress is a surprisingly common reason for missing your period. “Stress increases your cortisol levels, which affects your hormone balance,” says Shepherd—including the hormones that regulate your ovaries and uterine lining.

Exams, deaths, and even breakups are all big-time stress-inducing events that can cause periods to go awry. But these life-changing biggies aren’t the only reasons you might be feeling the effects of stress.

“Some people don’t realize they’re so stressed, but once they talk about it they realize they are going through something,” says Shepherd. If you think stress is messing with your periods, talk to your doctor; therapy, exercise, yoga, and meditation can all help get your stress under control and your periods back on track.

6. Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)

Frequent skipped periods can be caused by PCOS. “PCOS is a condition in which a patient has an excess of androgens, which are chemicals in the body that affect ovary function, hair growth, weight gain, and sensitivity to insulin,” says Moss.

UP TO 20 PERCENT OF WOMEN ARE AFFECTED BY PCOS.

PCOS can result in anovulatory cycles and irregular spotting. It commonly causes cysts to grow on the ovaries, which, if they rupture or cause the ovary to twist, can cause pelvic pain that feels a lot like period cramps.

Up to 20 percent of women worldwide are affected by PCOS, and it’s more common among women who are overweight or have a mom or sister with by the condition, Moss says. If you think you might be suffering from PCOS, check in with your doctor. While there is no cure, birth control and other medications can help keep symptoms under wraps and get your periods back on track.

7. Uterine Polyps
You might associate polyps with your colon, but the same small benign tumors can grow in your uterus. “It’s an overgrowth of lining of the uterus,” says Moss. Polyps in your uterus can cause cramping and period-like discomfort, even when you’re not on your period.

Because polyps can make it harder to get pregnant, and because there is a small risk they may develop into uterine cancer down the line, your doctor will likely want to remove them, most often with a relatively simple procedure known as a hysteroscopy. During a hysteroscopy, a doctor inserts a long tube up through the vagina and into the uterus. The doctor is able to use the scope to both see and cut out the polyps.

8. Ovarian Cysts

Every month, your ovaries make several cysts in preparation for ovulation, but only one cyst releases an egg. Although the others usually dissipate on their own by the time you get your period, sometimes one cyst or more sticks around.

Cysts can also occur if you have an anovulatory cycle (such as with PCOS). Ovarian cysts often cause no symptoms at all, although they can sometimes trigger period-like pain when you’re not on your period. So if you’re experiencing irregular cramping, talk with your doctor.

“Cysts in and of themselves aren’t usually a problem,” says Moss. “But if they get particularly large, they can cause the ovary to twist—a.k.a., an ovarian torsion—which is painful and requires an emergency procedure to save your ovary.”

9. Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID)

Cramping is a common symptom of PID, which is an infection of the uterus, fallopian tubes, or ovaries that typically occurs when sexually transmitted bacteria spread from your vagina to your reproductive organs.

“Sexually transmitted infections such as chlamydia and gonorrhea are the typical culprits of this serious pelvic infection that can lead to pelvic pain and infertility,” says Sherry A. Ross, M.D., an ob-gyn and author of She-ology. “Make sure you’re getting regular STI checks between new sexual partners to ensure you are not a carrier of damaging STIs.”

10. Urinary Tract Infections (UTI)

One common symptom of a UTI is pelvic cramping, Ross says. “Other symptoms include frequency, urgency, and pain and burning with urination, as well as bleeding with urination.” If you think your cramps might be associated with a UTI, head to your ob-gyn or primary care physician ASAP; left untreated, a UTI could turn into life-threatening kidney infection.

11. Mittelschmerz

If you’ve got PMS-like cramping, bloating, and breast tenderness but no period, one reason may be that it’s not quite time for your period yet—but it’s coming.

German for “middle pain,” mittelschmerz happens about half-way through your menstrual cycle—around day 14 when you ovulate, says Nicole Scott, M.D., an ob-gyn at IU Health. It’s a totally normal experience—affecting about 20 percent of women—and it doesn’t mean anything is wrong, she says. Since it’s just your ovaries doing their thing, there’s not much you can do to prevent it and the symptoms should go away within a day or two but if it’s extremely painful or comes with any sign of infection, call your doc, she adds.

12. Exercising Too Much

Hitting the gym on the regular is one of the best things you can do to help deal with PMS, but working out too hard or too often can actually mess up your cycle and in some cases make you miss your period all together, Scott says.

All that physical stress, especially if you lose a lot of body fat, can make your period go AWOL and cause abnormal fluctuations in your hormone levels. These fluctuations can cause moodiness, irregular spotting, acne, and other PMS-like symptoms. If you miss your period for three cycles or more in a row, talk to your doctor.

13. Certain Sex Positions

It’s ironic that something so pleasurable can also lead to pain. “Experiencing cramping or pain after sex is completely normals,” says Ross.

The culprit? “Some sexual positions are known to be anatomically harder on the vagina and female organs including the uterus and ovaries,” she says. “For example, doggie style allows deeper penetration but can cause discomfort for many women, while missionary position tends to be easier and more comfortable for women.” Experiment with your partner to figure out which positions are best for your body.

14. Interstitial Cystitis

This painful bladder syndrome, which affects women more often than men, can also cause cramping in the lower abdominal area, Ross says.

Also known as “painful bladder syndrome,” other symptoms of interstitial cystitis are similar to a urinary tract infection, including pelvic pain, pain between the vagina and anus in women, pain during intercourse, and a continual strong urge to urinate. The exact causes of this condition aren’t known, but it may be associated with a defect in the protective lining (epithelium) of the bladder, an autoimmune reaction, infection, or allergy. It may also be hereditary.

15. A Miscarriage

Miscarriages are much more common than you might thing—every pregnant woman has a 25 percent chance of having a miscarriage, says Ross.

Signs of a miscarriage can include severe menstrual-like cramping. If you’re pregnant and are experiencing severe cramping, contact your doctor immediately.

16. Endometriosis

Endometriosis occurs when tissue that typically grows inside of the uterus, grows outside of it—typically in the pelvic area, which can cause significant cramping, says Ross.

Pelvic pain associated with endometriosis differs from regular PMS pain in that it often shows up days or weeks earlier than typical PMS cramping, and may last for days even after your period is done (so, basically, you have very few pain-free days throughout your cycle). Endometriosis cramping also comes without those other PMS symptoms like mood swings.

17. Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

“Lower abdominal cramping is a common complaint in women suffering from IBS,” Ross says.

The intestinal disorder is associated with recurring abdominal pain or discomfort along with altered bowel habits over a period of at least three months. These can include constipation, diarrhea, or the double whammy—both constipation and diarrhea, Ross says, which, yes, is totally possible.

18. Ovarian Cancer

Ovarian cancer is relatively rare, affecting only about 22,000 women a year in the U.S., but it’s one of the deadliest cancers for women, killing about 14,000 women a year. A big part of this is because it often shows no, or very subtle, symptoms, Scott says.

Missing your period isn’t the most common symptom of ovarian cancer—those are abdominal bloating, urinary problems, weight loss, and pain—but it is a possible symptom, according to the American Cancer Society. So if you’ve missed your period for three months or more or you have other concerning symptoms, call your doc STAT.

Source: Ghana Web

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UNIDUS ‘Viagra Condom’ Comes To Ghana

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South Korea’s number one condom brand, UNIDUS Long Love, will launch in Ghana in the coming weeks. AG Young Trade Ltd, local agents of Biogenetics Co. Ltd who are manufacturers of the product, say their foray into the Ghanaian market comes at a time when there is so much talk about sexual health and safe sex. Its Chief Executive, Solomon Agbanyo thinks it’s a good time to launch in Ghana.

“We think the time is right for us, and we are positive about contributing to all the efforts at promoting responsible life and safe sex.”

The Unidus Long Love condom has been nicknamed “Condom Viagra” in markets where the product is in use. According to Mr Agbanyo, the product’s uniqueness in providing users a rare experience of excitement and endurance might have earned it the nickname.

“Aside from the traditional uses of condoms to prevent sexually transmitted infections and pregnancy, what you have in UNIDUS Long Love condoms is prolong sexual excitement due to its benzocaine properties known to delay climax. It’s like a one-stop shop,” he informed.

Benzocaine is a special climax control cream that helps prolong sexual excitement and aid in the prevention of premature ejaculation.

In a market where many brands of condom exist, Mr Agbanyo said research conducted before deciding to introduce the product onto the Ghanaian market suggests a gap in consumers’ expectations, which few or none of the currently available condoms meet.

“Our findings show that many of the sexually active people in Ghana resort to concoctions, aphrodisiacs, dangerous herbal mixtures, tablets, sprays and many other substances for endurance and prolong sexual excitement. Sometimes, they spend a lot on these things just to satisfy themselves and their partners. UNIDUS Long Love condoms provide you all that experience without any worry of side effects,” Mr Agbanyo said.

He explains that packaging of the product is “world class making it comfortable, convenient and easy to carry around, especially the 3-in-1 pack.”

Ghana is currently faced with a tramadol epidemic which is posing a serious threat to the future of the youth. Health professionals have suggested that while some take tramadol for its anaesthetic effects, many consumers of the drug are young people who use it to enhance their sexual stamina. But according to Mr. Agbanyo, “with UNIDUS you absolutely do not need any of these.”

The product received FDA approval last month and is set to be launched soon in Ghana. UNIDUS Long Love condoms is known in 12 countries including the USA, Mexico, El Salvador, Colombia, Peru, Jordan, Pakistan and Nepal, while it remains the best-seller in South Korea. The manufacturer Biogenetics Co. Ltd (formerly UNIDUS CORPORATION) is the world’s largest condom manufacturer, which accounts for about 30% of the global condom market.

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