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FOREIGN: Rwanda builds its first Gold refinery.

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The Republic of Rwanda has built its first-ever gold refinery at a cost of $5 million with the capacity to process gold from all over Africa and boost efforts to ensure that the continent adds value to its minerals before exporting them.

Rwanda, the land of a thousand hills is now also the land of two mineral refineries: Aldango and LuNa Smelter. Aldango, Rwanda’s first gold refinery, located in the Kigali Special Economic Zone started operations in March and Rwanda’s New Times publication reports that the refinery has a capacity to refine 6 tonnes of gold a month. Officials say this will be expanded with rising demand.

Rwanda’s goal is to earn at least $1.5 billion in revenues from mineral exports. The importance of beneficiation in this regard cannot be overemphasised enough. As ENSafrica director in the mining business area, Otsile Matlou told the Mail and Guardian in 2014, “The concept is not just a mining issue, but also a socio-economic one: it is no longer adequate for mine producing countries to mine and export raw materials. The trend is not to mine the mineral, concentrate it, then make mineral products with it, rather than mine it and ship it elsewhere for others to make something with it, only to then sell it back to where it originated. Beneficiation needs to happen.”

Rwanda’s Aldango was born of a joint venture between Hilly Metals Company, and Aldabra. Aldango’s Chairperson, Jean de Dieu Mutunzi, told the New Times, “We have built an advanced factory with enough capacity to process large quantities of gold from all around Africa.” He added that the refinery has the same standards as Europe and Asia.

Pointing out that Africa loses a lot of revenue by exporting raw resources, Rwanda’s Minister of Trade and Industry said, “This is also to showcase that we can add value to raw materials and investments that have been made.”

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Wizkid Joins UBA Financial Service Group As Brand Ambassador

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LAGOS STATE, NIGERIA (www.georgebritton.com) - Expanding the already existing long relationship between the two, Management of leading pan-African financial services group headquartered in Nigeria, United Bank for Africa Plc. (UBA) has finalized talks with Global afrobeats superstar, Wizkid as he joins the financial service group as Brand Ambassador.

UBA over the past years has actively supported the creative space and continues to invest in entrepreneurs so that they can stand alone because as a Pan-African Bank, it is important that our continent continues to be lifted. The creative industry has done very well. It is hard not to find Nigerian music being played in almost all parts of the world. It is for this reason that UBA will continue to open her arms to the likes of Wizkid and the Upcoming Wizkids.

The partnership between UBA and Wizkid is a lead example of how the brand is moving from just music sponsorship to partnering with artists. It creates a creative and financial collaboration that serves both artist and bank. Wizkid ranked 5th on Forbes and Channel O’s 2013 list of the Top 10 richest/Bankable African Artists began his career at the age of 11 and has since risen to become a global icon. He has received over 150 awards and nominations.

Figure 1: GMD; Kennedy Uzoka and Ayodeji ‘WIZKID’ Balogun at the #UBAMarketplace19 panel session moderated by Gbolahan Olatunde AKA BollyLomo

According to the GMD, Kennedy Uzoka the timing of this news couldn’t have come at a better time as they've reached a saturation which is compounded by what the firm see in the technology space and the only area it need to address this problem is the medium and small scale sector and that is why UBA is leading this crusade, dedicating it resources to drive this area and change the narrative.

Wizkid whose definition of success is by touching people’s lives worldwide says; it has always been his dream to make sure that he tries as much as possible to have a talent from every African region and this is why they are partnering with UBA to create global stars, adding that, UBA and Starboy is one of the biggest footsteps that can ever happen in the creative space.

L-R: Group Head Marketing Communications; Dupe Olusola, GMD; Kennedy Uzoka, Wizkid, Group Director, Corporate Communications; Bola Atta, Chairman UBA Group, Tony Elumelu, CON.

UBA is one of Africa’s leading banks with operations in 20 African countries. It also has a presence in the global financial centers; London, New York, and Paris. UBA provides banking services to more than 15 million customers globally, through diverse channels.

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CEO of Vodafone Gh, Patricia Obo-Nai Enlisted Amongst The Top 100 Women CEOs In Africa.

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GREATER ACCRA, GHANA (www.georgebritton.com) - Patricia Obo-Nai, a Ghanaian female engineer, and the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Vodafone Ghana, has been enlisted amongst the top 100 Women CEOs In Africa for her accomplishments as a female administrative officer in charge of an organization.

The TOP 100 Women CEOs in Africa is compiled by Reset Global People and Pulse editors with support from the PR and Ranking Agency; Avance Media, who consider four criteria: the size and importance of the woman-led business in the economy, the health and direction of the business, the arc of the woman’s career (résumé and runway ahead), and social and cultural influence. Eligibility is also based on the geolocation of the business.

With the belief that recognition of excellence inspires innovation in each sector, the list is to recognize and celebrate the performance and excellence of peak women performers in the limitless business world across the vast continent of Africa.

It is an acknowledgement and appreciation of the women leaders who introduce innovation and lead the change. CEOs, GMs, MDs and personalities with executive roles in the businesses or organizations are the focus of the list.

According to Kwame A. A. Opoku, CEO of Reset Global People, the nomination of these distinguished women is in relation to their works and accomplishments as the leader of their team which continues to inspire the next generation of women CEOs in Africa and across the world in alignment with SDGs Goal 5 & 10.

Detailing the criteria used in curating the list, Prince Akpah, MD of Avance Media mentioned that the list highlights profit, impact and sustainability and the overall influence of the individual women over their sector, industry and community as a whole.

With representation from 24 countries, the list features women who are noted to have broken the glass ceiling from across diverse sectors, making a name and case for women leaders on the continent. As part of the list, Reset Global People will be hosting the annual African Women CEOs Summit scheduled for Lagos, Nigeria in 2020.

The list features some prominent names including Isabel dos Santos, Juliet Anammah, Tara Fela-Durotoye, Patricia Obo-Nai, Nasim Devji, Estelle Akofio-Sowah, Uche Eze and Linda Ikeji.

Below is the list of 2019 Top 100 Women CEOs in Africa arranged in alphabetical order.

Abimbola Alale || Nigerian Communications Satellite
Abiola Bawuah || United Bank for Africa (UBA)
Adenike Ogunlesi || Ruff 'n' Tumble
Adjoa Kusiwaa Boateng || MicroEnsure
Akua Owusu-Nartey || Ogilvy Africa Group
Albertinah Kekana || Royal Bafokeng Holdings Pty Ltd
Aminata Kane Ndiaye || Orange Sierra Leone
Amrote Abdella || 4Afrika Microsoft
Amy Jadesimi (Dr) || Lagos Deep Offshore Logistics Base
Angela Ndambuki || Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and Industry
Anta Babacar Ngom Bathily || Sedima
Baronice Hans || Bank Windhoek
Basani Maluleke || African Bank
Bénédicte Janine Kacou Diagou || Groupe NSIA
Bethlehem Tilahun Alemu || soleRebels
Betty Sayinzoga || Saham Assurance
Binta Toure Ndoye || The Orabank Group
Boitumelo Molefe || Botswana Public Officers Pension Fund
Bridget Wachira || GSK Pharmaceuticals East Africa
Carol Abade || EXP Group
Carole Kariuki || Kenya Private Sector Alliance
Catherine Lesetedi-Letegele || Botswana Insurance Holdings
Chilufya Ngoi-Nyirenda || Stanbic Insurance Brokers Zambia
Chioma Sideso || NSIA Insurance Limited Nigeria
Christine Baingana || Urwego Bank
Ciru Miring'u || Nestle East Africa
Clare Akamanzi || Rwanda Development Board
Delese Mimi Darko || Food and Drugs Authority
Devota Mdachi || Tanzania Tourism Board
Diana Mulili || Msingi East Africa
Diane Karusisi (Dr) || Bank of Kigali
Divine Ndhlukula || SECURICO
Dolly Doreen Mokgatle || Peotona
Eghosa Oriaikhi Mabhena || Puma Energy Africa
Eme Essien Lore || International Finance Corporation's (IFC) Nigeria
Esselina Macome || Financial Sector Deepening Program
Estelle Akofio-Sowah || CSquared
Esther Cobbah || Stratcomm Ghana
Fatima Beyina-Moussa || Equatorial Congo Airlines
Funke Soyibo || HNK
Funmi Omo || African Alliance Insurance Plc
Genevieve Sangudi || The Carlyle Group
Gwendoline Abunaw || Ecobank Cameroon
Hadiza Bala Usman || Nigerian Ports Authority
Isabel dos Santos || Angola Diamonds
Iza Irame || Crystal Telecom
Jackie Chimhanzi (Dr) || African Leadership Institute
Yvette Adounvo Atekpe || Internet Solutions
Joyce-Ann Wainaina || Citi East Africa
Julie Gichuru || Arimus Media
Juliet Anammah || Jumia Nigeria
Juliet Ehimuan || Google Nigeria
Juliette Weisflog || Citi Gabon
Karen Hendrickson || Rabito Clinic
Karima Rhanem || International Center for Diplomacy
Kate Fotso || Telcar Cocoa Kate Quartey-Papafio || Reroy Cables
Kofo Akinkugbe || SecureID
Lady Isioma Chukwuma || Nigeria Reinsurance Corporation
Linda Ikeji || LindaIkeji Media
Lorato Morapedi || National Development Bank M. Leelai Kpukuyou || Minimalls
Mansa Nettey || StanChart Ghana
Michaella Rugwizangoga || Volkswagen Mobility Solutions
Mimi Kalinda || Africa Communications Media Group
Mizinga Melu || Barclays Bank Zambia
Mo Abudu || Ebony Life TV
Monica Musonda || Java Foods
Monique El Grichi || Mosaïk
Mpho Moremong-Gobe || MG Properties
Nangula Uaandja || PricewaterhouseCoopers
Nasim Devji || Diamond Trust Bank Group
Natalie Jabangwe || EcoCash
Njeri Rionge || Wananchi Online
Nonkululeko Nyembezi-Heita || IchorCoal
Nunu Ntshingila || Facebook Africa
Oluwatoyin Adegbite-Moore || Africa Venture Philanthropy
Patience Akyianu || Hollard Ghana
Patience Mutesi || TradeMark East Africa
Patricia Obo-Nai || Vodafone Ghana
Phuti Mahanyele-Dabengwa || Naspers SA
Princess Lalla Hasnaa (HRH) || Mohammed VI Foundation for Environmental Protection
Priscillah Mabelane || BP Southern Africa (Pty) Ltd
Rebecca Enonchong || Apps Tech
Rebecca Miano || KenGen
Ruth Ncube || First Mutual Life Assurance Company
Salwa Idrissi Akhannouch || Aksal Group
Sarah Arapta || Citibank Uganda
Sherin Naiken || Seychelles Tourism Board
Shirley Machaba || PWC Southern Africa
Sibongile Sambo || SRS Aviation
Sola David-Borha || Standard Bank Africa
Susan M. Mulikita || Liquid Telecoms Zambia
Tara Fela-Durotoye || House of Tara
Temwani Simwaka || Standard Bank Malawi
Toyin Oluwatoyin Sanni || Emerging Africa Group
Uche Eze || BellaNaija.com
Uche Ofodile || MTN Liberia
Yvonne Ike || Bank of America Merrill Lynch SSA
Yvonne Manzi Makolo || RwandAir

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MoMo Reward 400 Agents.

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ASHANTI REGION, GHANA (www.georgebritton.com) – MTN Mobile Money Limited has handed over a brand new Nissan Almera salon car to Mr. Francis Osei of Franco Prestige ventures at Ahodwo during the MTN MoMo @ 10 agents/merchants awards dinner at Golden Tulip in Kumasi

The awards presentation was held in recognition of the hard work and loyalty of MoMo Agents and Merchants towards the growth of MTN MoMo over the past ten years when the service was first introduced onto the Ghanaian market.

Aside the grand prize of the brand new Nissan Almera salon car, three hundred and ninety-nine other awards were given to Merchants and Agents from Ashanti, Brong Ahafo, Northern, Upper East and Upper West regions.

The prizes included paid trip to Dubai – for four (4) people, agents kiosks - for twenty five (25) people, motorbikes – for thirty (30) people, Samsung TV sets (32” – 49”) – for sixty-five (65) people, handsets - for two hundred and fourteen (214) people, E-cash – Ghc. 500 each for sixty-one (61) people.

Commenting on the presentation, the General Manager of MTN Mobile Money, Mr. Eli Hini said, “10 years ago, you had faith in our brand and supported our quest to introduce this innovative service into the market. You supported our staff who created, developed, promoted, marketed and sold to our partners who in turn brought life to our dreams and aspirations.”

He added, “We are here today to reward deserving Agents and Merchants within the Northern Business District for your contributions to the growth of MoMo. We celebrate you today because through your efforts, we can boast of 14.5million registered MoMo customers, 132,000 active agents’ nationwide plus over 5,000 canvassers.”

Mr. Francis Osei, could not hide his joy when he was announced the ultimate winner of the Almera saloon car. He said, “I thank God that my hard work has paid off”. He encouraged other agents to work hard and treat customers with respect.

The MoMo Agents/Merchants Awards was organised to acknowledge their performance in the year under review. A similar event has already been executed for Agents/ merchants in Western and Central regions and would be replicated in Accra.

The MoMo @ 10 celebration was launched in June 2019 to celebrate the achievements of Mobile Money service in Ghana. Some activities for the period were Stakeholder fora which discussed the impact of MoMo on Ghana’s economy and regulation of the Mobile Money space, floats, trade fairs and many more activities. One other key activity was the consumer promo which saw 10 cars, TV sets, e-cash and devices being won by MoMo subscribers across the country.

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Should Africa Agree To Trade In The Green Market.

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Across the world, Marijuana use is widespread among young people. Authorities tagged Marijuana, popularly referred to as weed, Mary Jane or ganja as toxic and urge the public to stay away, but others believe weed is a natural herb with health benefits. In 2013, Uruguay became the first country to legalize marijuana. However, all sales must go through the federal government, which is supposed to set up a network of dispensaries and determine prices.

According to a report by the United Nations Office on Drugs & Crime (UNODC) in 2009, the highest levels of cannabis production in the world take place on the African continent. Also, a stunning discovery suggests that in the past, the only way the African natives could have learned about marijuana would have been through their contact with outsiders, and the most likely point of contact was the Arabs.

In some African countries like Malawi, cannabis is an economic engine. The “Malawi Gold” locally known as “Chamba” rated among the best and finest" marijuana strains in the world has led to a profound increase in marijuana tourism and economic profit in Malawi. A research study estimates the rate of annual cannabis usage in Africa by people aged 15-64 to be 7.5 percent, almost double the global average of 3.9 percent, and pressure to legalize marijuana is increasing in many African countries.

Lesotho and Zimbabwe have legalized cannabis for medical use and last year in September, South Africa legalized the private use of cannabis. The decision allows adults to consume cannabis in private and grow marijuana for private consumption. Recently, in Ghana, there have been calls on the government to legalize marijuana by some advocates claiming it would help improve the current economic situation in Ghana. Lately, many countries have begun to tap into the marijuana industry for profits following the global rise in its use, and there’s pressure on several African governments to venture into commercial production of the lucrative substance.(Flash Africa)

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