The inaugural Afrobeat categories at the 2023 Billboard Music Awards, which took place on Sunday, November 19, 2023, were won by Burna Boy and Rema.
Burna Boy was named the Top Afrobeats Artiste, and Rema‘s remix of “Calm Down,” which included Selena Gomez, took home the title of “Top Afrobeats Song.”
The ‘African Giant’ singer made history by becoming the first-ever winner of the newly-created ‘Top Afrobeats Artiste’ category, defeating fierce opposition from Wizkid, Rema, Tems, and Cameroonian star, Libianca.
The awards honor outstanding contributions to the music industry, taking into account several metrics such as album and digital song sales, streaming volume, radio airplay, tour success, and social interaction.
“Big up, Billboard Music Awards,” Burna Boy said in his acceptance speech that, “Big up to everyone involved. This is dedicated to Africa and every artist coming out of Africa now, you get me. This is for you and yeah, man, the future’s bright. You guys are gonna see the vision. This is just the tip of the iceberg but you’re gonna see the whole vision soon.”
The Nigerian pop idols’ successful headline performances as a part of their individual world tours preceded their Billboard recognition. On November 14, Burna Boy made a stop at the Toyota Center in Houston, US, as part of a 16-city marathon in support of his new album “I Told Them,” while Rema became the latest Afrobeats musician to sell out the 20,000-capacity O2 Arena in London, UK.
With 11 wins, US musician Morgan Wallen was the night’s top recipient; among female artists, Taylor Swift took home the most awards with 10 wins, including the coveted “Top Artist” Award.
Get ready to witness history in the making as a Nigerian cleric, Reverend Emmanuel Sunday Olorunmagba , the president of Total Liberation Mission, sets out on a remarkable mission to shatter the Guinness World Record for the longest sermon ever delivered. This extraordinary feat promises to go beyond conventional expectations as the cleric prepares to embark on a grueling 60-hour marathon sermon.
The current holder of this title is a US pastor, Pastor Zack Zehnder from The Cross church in Mount Dora. He was able to preach for 53 hours and 18 minutes, smashing the previous record which was 48 hours and 31 minutes.
Reverend Emmanuel Sunday Olorunmagba speaking at a world press conference during the weekend, explained that he has decided to seize the advantage that would make him preach the gospel of hope, salvation, healing, deliverance, reproof, and rebuke among others to as many people as he could. He would not mind if the platform to achieve this feat is on the Guinness World Record (GWR) platform.
In his words, he called on people of like mind to support him, he said “This is my number one goal for seizing the opportunity of this Guinness World Record attempt. Hence, if those of you whose aim is also to ensure the word of God is brought to people at all costs, I invite you to partner with this move and disappoint your religious dogmatism (for those still holding to it).”
Nevertheless, he talked about his critics. He said “I envisage more attacks from religious folks who believe that preaching the word of God or reaching out with the Gospel must be in strict adherence to their hold-tight religious fundamentalism.”
He further talked about Jesus Christ’s ordeal in the hands of his enemies, the Jews, saying, “Even my Lord Jesus did not find it easy with the religious folks of His days as He was so criticized, attacked, persecuted and even brutally murdered for His system of reaching out to people, which was not in total agreement with the religious dogmatic and fundamentalists of that era”.
He added that Jesus faced trials while doing the righteous work.
He is resolute at the task despite those who are seeing his motive as fake. According to him, he said, “he (Lord Jesus) was called a glutton, a drunk and friend of tax collectors. He was seen as always going against even the religious beliefs of the Jews. Yet they claimed to be seeds of Abraham. But Jesus reminded them that if truly they are seeds of Abraham they would do the work of Abraham and not seek to kill Him”.
He said many religious folks including Pastors and other men of God who were supposed to have a better understanding, have lent themselves to the devil as an instrument of attack in an attempt to kill his vision of reaching out to a wider audience by taking advantage of the Guinness World Record (GWR).
Quoting Matthew 16:23, he used this scripture to brush his critics aside as they are not seeing the bigger picture. The event in the Bible passage showed Peter telling Jesus he would not allow anything to happen to him (Jesus), Jesus replied to Peter by saying “…Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offense unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men.”
He continued saying “In line with the Bible as quoted above, even if some Christians still continue to assume that my proposing to use the Guinness World Record (GWR) attempt as an opportunity to reach out with the word of God is from false motive, as far as it is the word of our God that I will reach out with, the reaction of a true child of God should be to rejoice and “continue to rejoice.”
He added that whether his motive is right or wrong, the important thing is that the gospel is being preached which is the work every follower of Christ must embark on.
He appreciated those who were present at his Press Conference. And to those supporting him, and will still lend a friendly hand later he said God would bless them in the mighty name of Jesus.
Let’s prepare to be captivated as we delve into this journey of Rev. Emmanuel Sunday Olorunmagba, a Nigerian cleric who is on a mission to shatter boundaries and redefine human endurance. With unwavering faith and relentless determination. This ambitious endeavor aims to push the limits and spread the divine message like never. Be a part of history in the making as we witness this remarkable feat that is set to inspire awe and admiration among all who bear witness. Brace yourself for a sermon marathon like no other poised to make an indelible mark on the sand of history.
The Oba of Benin, Oba Ewuare II recently celebrated the 7th anniversary of the throne of his forebears in Benin. This royal celebration also doubled as his birthday celebration as his birthday was coincidentally on the same day.
Every available space at the palace was filled by the friends and well-wishers of the Oba from all walks of life.
The celebration started with two days of free healthcare and ended with Thanksgiving on Saturday at the National Church in Benin.
Omo N’Oba Ewuare on Saturday rose from the inner chambers amidst drumming and praise singing by Iweguae society, waving to the seated audience who responded with a thunderous ovation.
The Friday event ended in the early hours of Saturday before the Thanksgiving service.
The royal father sat on the ancient throne of his ancestors at the Aruo- Ozolua axis of the palace where he received homages.
The traditional homages were paid for by different traditional rulers, dignitaries, palace chiefs and functionaries, native doctors of various classifications, priests, and priestesses of different deities, traditional worshipers, and a host of others.
The Inne Theatre Troupe, Efesoghoba Palace Troupe, Epko-Avbiama, Igbabonelimi from Esan land, and others from different states took turns to perform to the delight of the audience.
Oba Ewuare, who was full of praises to almighty God and ancestors, thanked everyone for celebrating with him. Traditional Chiefs, including Osaro Idah, the Obazelu of Benin Ozigbo Esere, and the Osuma Of Benin, hailed the Benin king for his achievements since ascending the throne of his ancestors.
However, the Benin ruler urged members of the Edo State House of Assembly to consider some important cultural bills that would promote and strengthen cultural norms and value systems in the land.
According to Oba Ewuare, such bills would in no small measure curtail the surging social crimes amongst youths in the country. The royal father made the call when the speaker of Edo House of Assembly Mr Blessing Agbebaku led principal officials of the house to celebrate with Oba at his palace.
He admonished Edo lawmakers to be focused on their legislative business rather than being tied to the apron string of the executive arm of government. Omo N’Oba posited that the independence of the legislature was key to robust democracy, insisting that the lawmakers must live up to the expectations of the people who voted them into power.
Oba Ewuare hailed the assembly’s leadership, just as he pledged palace support for the lawmakers.
The speaker, Agbebaku had told the monarch that they were at his palace to congratulate him on the occasion of his birthday and the 7th coronation anniversary on the throne.
Agbebaku also pledged the Edo assembly’s loyalty and promised to work with the palace for the overall development of the state.
After the long suspense, Mr. Eazi’s debut album, “The Evil Genius”, is finally out and now available under the artist’s emPawa Africa Label.
This project was painstakingly crafted across diverse locations with African locations making up a greater part of it. The locations involved include Ouidah and Cotonou in Benin, Kigali in Rwanda, Accra and Kokrobite in Ghana, Lagos in Nigeria, London, Los Angeles, and New York City.
This really interesting album features some of the artist’s most personal work, he dives deeply into subjects like love, betrayal, loneliness, and family, which he expresses through three distinctive acts.
The Evil Genius also boasts a remarkable lineup of guest features, with contributions from luminaries like Angelique Kidjo from Benin, Grammy-winning Soweto Gospel Choir from South Africa, Efya from Ghana, and Nigerian artists Tekno, Whoisakin and Joeboy. The album also had contributing producers like; Kel-P from Nigeria, Knucks from U.K, Michael Brun from Haiti, Andre Vibez from Nigeria, Yung Willis from Nigeria, and Nonso Amadi from Nigeria/Canada among others.
Recognizing a deficiency of meaningful collaboration between Africa’s rapidly growing pop music scene and the continent’s fine art creators, Mr. Eazi has selected 13 artists from eight different African countries to create a unique, physical art piece to represent each of the album’s 16 tracks, thereby adding the role of art curator and patron to his already impressive collection.
As part of the rollout, Mr Eazi has been inviting the public to experience the music alongside the art at multi-sensory exhibition listening experiences. The first two of these events were held in Accra, Ghana at Gallery 1957 and in the U.K. during the 1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair at Somerset House in London from October 12-15. For the album’s cover art, Mr Eazi collaborated with the celebrated Nigerian stylist, designer, and photographer Daniel Obasi, known for his work with luminaries such as Beyoncé and Louis Vuitton.
The winner of the 2023 Irish Life Dublin City Marathon has crossed the finish line setting a new course record, after running the 26.2-mile race in wet and rainy conditions.
Over 22,500 people entered the 2023 marathon, which is in its 42nd year. It is Ireland’s largest marathon event and the fourth largest in Europe. The race, which started at Fitzwilliam Square in the city’s center, saw participants running through Dublin, into the Phoenix Park, taking in areas including Inchicore and Terenure, and finishing at Merrion Square.
Kemal Husen from Ethiopia won this year’s marathon in two hours six minutes and 52 seconds, a new record for the Irish Life Dublin Marathon.
Second place was Geofrey Kusuro from Uganda who crossed the line after two hours, 10 minutes, and 45 seconds.
Stephen Scullion was the first Irish person across the line and came in third place. Mr. Scullion of Clonliffe Harriers AC ran 26.2 miles in two hours, 11 minutes, and 51 seconds and claimed the national title.
Some Negash from Ethiopia was the first woman across the line, with a run of two hours, 26 minutes, and 22 seconds. The second woman across the line was Joan Kipyatich of Kenya, who ran the marathon in two hours, 27 minutes, and four seconds.
Genet Habela Abdurkadir from Ethiopia was the third woman across the line with a race time of two hours, 27 minutes, and 49 seconds.
Ann Marie McGlynn of Letterkenny A.C. was the first Irish woman to finish the marathon after two hours, 34 minutes, and 13 seconds and claimed the national title.
For Kemal Husen, this was his second-ever marathon. Kemal Husen beat over one minute off his first record from earlier this year. Excitedly, he said, “I’m so happy. I did not expect to run this time”
Negash’s compatriot, Genet Habela Abdurkadir finished under two hours, 27 minutes, and 49 seconds for the third spot.
Seychelles will host the 2023 IFBB International Grand Prix for the first time with the participation of over 20 athletes vying for the top prize.
The competition, which is being done in collaboration between the International Fitness and Bodybuilding Federation (IFBB) and local body Seychelles Elite Pro Amateur Bodybuilding and Fitness Federation, will take place on Saturday, at the Berjaya Beau Vallon Beach Resort.
The chairperson of the Seychelles Elite Pro Amateur Bodybuilding and Fitness Federation, Chantal Pinchon, told SNA that “it was during the IFBB congress last year, that we met with the president, and there the idea of Seychelles hosting an IFBB event came around and was agreed upon.”
The event will start at 6 p.m. and eight participants from Seychelles, six men, and two women have already confirmed their participation. Savio Larue, Elicks Rapide, Jean-Luc Belle, Andy Anthony, and Derrick Mensah will compete among the ladies, while Shereen Azemia and Lindsay Payet will compete.
Pinchon explained that while this tournament is reserved for amateur bodybuilders, Ziad Meckdachi, who retired as a professional, will not be able to compete.
“There will be seven IFBB pro cards up for grabs, to the winners of each category. Getting an IFBB Pro Card means the bodybuilder becomes part of the elite. At this point you’ve made it, and have the opportunity to follow a genuine career as a professional bodybuilder, earning a decent income by competing and winning,” she said.
There will be six categories for men – bodybuilding, physique, classic physique, classic bodybuilding, junior classic bodybuilding, and junior men’s physique.
The ladies will compete in the bikini fitness, and bikini physique, as well as in the fit model categories.
Pinchon said that one of the advantages of Seychelles hosting the competition is that the participants will not have to deal with the expenses of going abroad.
She said she was hoping to get more local participants.
“I want the athletes to be more serious with the sport, where they have to ensure that they are ready in time for such competitions,” said Pinchon, who revealed that Seychelles will in fact hold a second international competition on June 22, 2024.
Tickets for the competition cost SCR300 ($22) while those wishing to attend the competition and the buffet dinner must pay SCR1200 ($90).
The 2023 Kenyan film, Where The River Divides was screened in Uganda during the Transform Leaders’ Gathering 2023, put together by Worship Harvest Church in Kampala on September 1st and 2nd.
The film is based on a true story from 1979 in Kenya. It premiered at the UNESCO World Heritage Site in Thimlich Ohniga, Migori County on August 11, 2023, and at Anga Cinemas Diamond Plaza 2 in Parklands in Nairobi on August 15th.
The film ‘Where The River Divides’ explores the story of the son of a clan leader who returns to his village following his baptism and must choose whether to inherit his father’s legacy or fulfill his newfound dream and risk his life.
The captivating story explores the great themes of truth, faith, fear, family, sacrifices, treachery, culture, and responsibility while being set against the majestic Thimlich Ohinga.
In the film, the son of the revered clan head after receiving baptism, finds himself divided between two opposing directions. On the one hand, he will inherit his father’s prestigious legacy, a position that comes with expectations, customs, and duties.
On the other hand, he must contend with the pull of a recently discovered purpose that draws him toward a destiny that is uncertain, one that calls for enormous courage and may endanger his life.
‘Where The River Divides’ was originally filmed in Dholuo and has also been dubbed in both Kiswahili and English, ensuring that its narrative can be appreciated by global audiences. This decision is consistent with the movie’s underlying concept of interconnectedness and universal human experiences that cut through linguistic barriers.
The film’s producer, Ms. Matrid Nyagah said, “‘Where The River Divides’ is more than a film, it is an emotional journey that urges us to contemplate the choices that define our existence. It is a testament to the power of compassion and understanding, even in the face of monumental challenges.”
Currently, the film is available for streaming in 195 countries and territories of the world, exclusively via Digital Cinema Extension.
Organizers of the event “Naija to the World” confirmed today, that ‘Naija To The World’, the innovative pro-Nigeria showcase kicking off with a premiere dedicated to the Niger Delta, will tour multiple cities and venues, over 12 months, in response to feedback on the original announcement for a New York City Apollo debut.
This was confirmed in a statement today by Efe Omorogbe, CEO of BuckWyld Media. Omorogbe says the tour will span Nigeria, Europe, and the United States of America. A full list of programming is set to be released when the producers convene in New York City for a flag-off media launch on September 16, 2023.
Naija To The World was created by Buckwyld Media and BHM as a platform to provide an alternative narrative to the stories out there about Nigeria and Nigerians as part of an ongoing initiative to help the world understand and engage better with the country responsible for two of the world’s leading creative industries – music and film.
And a Niger Delta debut, organizers say, helps pay tribute to a region mostly known for crude oil, militancy, and protests with most not aware of its tremendous contribution to arts and culture, music, film, and fashion for over 100 years. At least 50 percent of the current crop of leading talents and executives in Nigeria’s creative industry are from the region; with top names including Burna Boy, Rema, and Timaya.
“We want to provide an inaugural event that not only celebrates the incredible talent emerging from the Niger Delta but also captures the essence of its unique stories and heritage,” Omorogbe adds.
Performances and exhibitions will not only showcase the rich cultural heritage and inspiring stories of the Niger Delta but will also take audiences on a transcendent journey that spotlights the region’s unique artistic brilliance.
“We are thrilled to announce that ‘Naija To The World’ will embark on a 12-month journey, crisscrossing Nigeria, Europe, and America,” says Efe Omorogbe, Chief Executive Officer, Buckwyld Media Network (BMN), organizers of the event.
“This extended tour allows us to offer a comprehensive exploration of the Niger Delta’s cultural tapestry to audiences worldwide. It is an opportunity to celebrate the incredible talent emerging from the region and share its unique stories and heritage,” Efe adds.
The flag-off event, scheduled to take place in New York City, will serve as the inaugural moment of the tour. During this event, organizers will unveil the tour’s itinerary, innovative format, and thrilling surprises. It will be a vibrant celebration of the cultural richness of the Niger Delta and its profound influence on the world stage.
Over 1,500 lucky fans will witness this historic series of events live, while an additional 10 million viewers worldwide will tune in through broadcast partners spanning North America, Europe, Asia, and Africa.
Afro Nation, an annual three-day music festival produced by Live Nation, Event Horizon, Smade Entertainment, and Memories of Tomorrow is being hosted for the first time in Nigeria and the dates have officially been locked in.
This event which was founded by Obi Asika, and Smade in association with BBC 1 Xtra in 2013 promises to be a two-day thrilling event set to take place from the 19th of December to the 20th of December 2023.
The location of the event is set to be in Lagos and it is gearing up to showcase an extraordinary lineup of top-tier artists and electrifying performances.
This event being hosted in Nigeria is very significant as it marks the homecoming of the festival to the birthplace of Afrobeats. This Nigerian edition is poised to become the standout event of 2023 which will unite the diaspora in the heart of Afrobeats.
The thrilling announcement was divulged through the festival’s official social media channels, intensifying the anticipation and enthusiasm among music enthusiasts worldwide.
Afro Nation Festival, which initially debuted four years ago in Portugal, has been on an expansive journey, including a highly successful U.S. debut in Miami this past May.
Co-founder of Afro Nation, Adesegun Adeosun Jnr, widely known as Smade, expressed his sentiments regarding the decision to bring the festival to Lagos, Nigeria. He remarked, “Nigeria is home to numerous international superstars who have propelled Afrobeats into a globally cherished genre. As someone who grew up in Lagos and later spent years promoting African music in London and beyond, this is a full-circle moment for me. Bringing the Afro Nation show back home to Lagos is a dream come true. We can’t wait to witness the grandest celebration of African music the world has ever seen!”
this event will draw many tourists and increase tourism activities in Nigeria, making an impact on the economy of the nation.
Keith Shiri, a Zimbabwean-born international film curator and programme advisor currently residing in the UK, has been reappointed by the Board of the Africa Film Academy (AFA), the organisation behind the Africa Movie Academy Awards, also known as AMAA, as President of the Jury for the 19th edition of the top and most prestigious film award in Africa.
The 12-person board of international jurors for the prizes in 2022 was presided over by Shiri, a consultant to various international film festivals.
The well-traveled and well-known film programmer is anticipated to again serve as the AMAA Jury’s leader in selecting nominations and ultimate winners in the 26 categories of the 2023 AMAAs, which are set to take place in Lagos in October.
Filmmaker John Akomfrah, filmmaker Berni Goldblat, ambassador and former minister of culture for Burkina Faso Phillipe Savadego, and international film curator and programmer for the Berlin International Film Festival Dorothee Wenner are all members of the AMAA jury. Others include Dr. Shaibu Husseini, the executive director of the Pan African Film Festival (PAFF) in Los Angeles, Charles Brunnet, an award-winning filmmaker, and Hon. Steve Ayorinde, a journalist, author, and former commissioner of culture in the state of Lagos. Asentewa Olatunji, Professor Hyginus Ekwuazi, who served as the former managing director of the Nigerian Film Corporation (NFC), and Ayoku Babu are co-founders of PAFF.
“We are very excited to welcome Keith Shiri back as President of Jury for 2023. AMAA has a tradition where Jurors have an opportunity to preside over the jury for two editions running. Recall that Hon. Steve Ayorinde was jury President for 2020 and 2021 edition. So we are sustaining that tradition by further extending the tenure of Keith Shiri who is a founding juror at the AMAA and a promoter of African art and film as the president of the AMAA 2023 Jury,” said Raymond Anyiam-Osigwe, on behalf of the Africa Film Academy.
He also said “Keith’s experience and vast knowledge of African Films which has spanned over 3 decades coupled with his expertise which has seen him serve in different international organizations made him a great fit for this position. We look forward to continuing our strong ties with the board of jurors at the academy under his leadership as President of the Jury.”
In response to the news of his reappointment, Shiri, who is currently curating the Icons of the Africa Centre Series for the illustrious London-based cultural institution, thanked the AFA board for the honour but expressed sadness that he will be presiding over a jury in the first edition without the founder and CEO Peace Anyiam-Osigwe. Said Shiri ‘ I don’t know what to say but of course it is rather sad to preside over this first edition without our CEO, founder and sister Peace Ogechi Marie Anyiam-Osigwe. But we have an award to deliver and deliver we must”.
Shiri was a member of the Berlinale World Cinema Fund from 2004 to 2007 and a trainer for Esodoc/EU (European Social Documentary), a programme for documentary filmmakers. Shiri is currently a consultant on film business development for the International Trade Centre (ITC), an agency of the United Nations that is currently implementing an initiative to promote film exports from the Caribbean to the UK and European markets. He has served on the advisory board of the Focus Features Africa First scheme in New York, which assisted budding African filmmakers through its mentorship scheme, and as an expert advisor for the EU-ACP programme for the ACP cinema.
For this year’s award, there were over 368 submissions.
However, the selection committee, led by Dr. Shaibu Husseini, recommended 102 films from various genres to the AMAA jury for nominations. According to Shaibu, the Nominations will be revealed on September 20.
The 3-day event that took place in the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of Congo brought together fans of stand-up, improv’ and farcical comedy among other genres.
The event’s organizer Joyeux Bin Kabojdo says it aims to promote and consolidate peace and social cohesion within local communities in the DRC and the Great Lakes region at large.
“The festival exists for greater social cohesion that advocates education through entertainment, in other words, we think it’s possible to educate through laughter and that’s why every year for the past 6 years, we’ve been getting together around laughter with the public here in Bukavu. Humour remains today one of the components of development itself, and above all a foundation of social cohesion.
DR Congo’s east has been for decades the battlefield of rebel groups and regional armies.
Bukavu is located near the border with Rwanda
Évelyne Mulashe, a young comedian at the school of humor, shares how her art contributes to fostering peaceful coexistence.
“Humor allows us to tackle some of life’s most pertinent subjects, to get a message across. Of course, when delivering and hearing the message we laugh at first, but still people need to stop to think about it. I believe that somewhere a show, depending on its message, really helps to raise people’s awareness on certain issues.”
Ivorian comedian Kouamé Gilles Romuald goes by the stage name Boukary. For him, making people laugh is not merely a job, it’s a mission.
“Through my work as a comedian, I promote joy. You know that joy that comes with peace. When I’m on stage, those in the public don’t ask each other where their political affiliations lie or which side they support.”
“Everyone is here, attending Bukary’s show. We laugh together, fall on each other laughing; never knowing who supports which political party. What matters to me is promoting peace,” he concluded.
The Zéro Polémik festival ended on August 27. Comedians headlining this year’s edition included Ivory Coast’s very own Michel Gohou and Clémentine Papouet.
The Lake District is believed to have enormous cultural and economic potential. The initiators of the N’Zrama Festival at the stadium in Toumodi, a town in the center of the Ivory Coast, see it as a cultural showcase more than that, it is also an economic pillar providing a solution to unemployment.
In central Ivory Coast, the town of Toumodi hosted the first edition of the Nzrama Festival, attempting to position the Ivorian Lake district as a major economic hub.
This festival which has been dubbed a cultural showcase by its creators, enabled the region’s cooperatives to display their craft, derived from local cultures aiming to source funding to industrialize their labor.
“We’re looking for and finding structures to help us process our products. Because we process our products by hand. If we have someone, a company or the state can help us with the processing,” shares Dorothée Ando, Boutique Manager
“We manufacture cassava and other food products, and we process them, not without difficulty. We lack the proper material. We need help,” added Kouamé Akissi, Cooperative President.
These requests are at the heart of the Lake District’s new policy, which aims to breathe new life into what was formerly known as the prosperous cocoa loop.
”We have a duty to bring in investors, encourage our people, and help the young, after all, it’s the year of youth, so we must help young people achieve their goals and continue to empower women,” shares Dr. Raymonde Goudou Coffie, Minister-Governor of the Lake District.
In recent years, the Ivorian government has launched an extensive regional empowerment project. With more than 60% of its land being arable, the Lake District holds an untapped economic potential.
Owing to the can-do attitude of Afrobeat artists, Afrobeats continues to reach new highs and skyrocket in popularity around the world as the artists continue to make history with so many firsts. According to the statement the organizers gave earlier this year, in 2024, the Grammy Awards will also feature a new category; Best African Music Performance, which “recognizes recordings that utilize unique local expressions from across the African continent.
A feat that has recently been attained in the history of performances by some of the biggest stars this year is Wizkid’s most recent show. This history of performances includes Burna Boy’s feat becoming the first African artist to headline a sold-out stadium show (London Stadium) in the UK in June, and then a US stadium (Citi Field in New York) in July.
Later this year, Tiwa Savage – often called the “Queen of Afrobeats” – is slated to become the first female artist from the popular genre to headline at OVO Arena Wembley in the UK, with a scheduled performance on November 26.
In another series of firsts for the musical genre, one of its biggest stars, the Nigerian artist WizKid, had a sold-out performance in London’s Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. With 45,000 fans in attendance, the Grammy winner kicked off the European leg of his “More Love, Less Ego” tour. He joins Beyoncé and The Red Hot Chili Peppers as the only other musical acts to perform at the stadium so far this year. After the show, he also became the first African artist to receive the BRIT Billion award for reaching 1 billion music streams in the UK.
The judges of America Got Talent (AGT) were thrilled with the appearance and performance of Nigerian popular comedy skit maker Josh Alfred, aka Josh2funny. Josh Alfred who is famous for his skit on YouTube “Audition” has become the first Nigerian skit maker to appear as a contestant on the AGT reality talent show.
His artistry was spotted by the talent department of NBC’s AGT and he got invited to the show on August 8. The organizers confirmed his audition performance on their official Twitter page and posted a video clip of his hilarious performance and captioned it, “Josh Alfred is not giving up! This contestant won’t give up! Josh Alfred auditions three times”.
After an interesting start in the video, he performed a funny act that the judges initially misunderstood and missed the point of. During his performance, Josh2funny made three appearances as the best rapper, best magician, and fastest reader.
The comedian’s performance at the renowned talent competition, however, continues to draw both criticism and admiration. While some praised his plan, others chastised him, claiming that he could have seized the occasion far more effectively.
One of those who admired the courage and confidence of the comedian is Mr. Macaroni, also a skit maker. In response to some people’s criticism of Josh and his antics during the talent show, he voiced his viewpoint through his Twitter, as he said;
“It is absolutely ridiculous that some people on here are attempting to rubbish the efforts of an incredibly talented young man who has set global trends time and time again and was invited by a global platform that recognizes the value of entertainment that his brand offers.
Please tell me you people actually do know that he was intentionally invited on that stage by the organizers to thrill the audience far and wide because of his immense talents and that all these forced takes are because you want enough engagements to get some of Elon’s money”.
Another user, @EmmyWorthYrn wrote, “He just went to embarrass himself honestly that platform people dream of being there and look at what he did with his opportunity.”
@oghenriejunior tweeted, “There’s nothing funny about what “Josh too Funny” did on that stage if we’re being honest. His videos on Instagram are even funnier than that stage performance.”
However, he also got positive responses on the now-viral video of his performance.
Ankyger @AfamDeluxo wrote, “Josh 2 funny is unbelievably daring. It takes lots of guts to be able to do what he did. If you have never climbed a stage, you won’t understand. For him to face an audience different from his usual audience and even make them laugh is incredibly audacious. S/o to Josh! ❤”
“Just watched the Video of Josh2funny at AGT and I’m like HOW! – Do you know what it means to stand in front of 1 of the biggest stage in the world.. a different audience & made them LAUGH!! Comedy MASTERPIECE! It was well-planned & Delivered! Josh is a gift we should be proud of!” @Buchi_Lanba opined.
On a podcast (Teju Babyface Deep Dive) with Nigerian comedian Teju Oyelakin popularly known as Teju Babyface, Nollywood actor, Joseph Benjamin who is known for his versatility in the media space revealed how failed movie gigs turned him into a cab driver after he moved to the U.S.
Joseph disclosed how he relocated to the U.S. in 2016 after someone had promised him movie gigs but on getting there, the individual didn’t live up to the promises. He was disappointed in the end.
As of 2016 when he relocated, Joseph was quite popular. He was known for co-hosting MTN’s Project Fame, a talent reality show, and starring in the movies Tango With Me, Mr. and Mrs., and Murder at Prime Suites. Also, at the 2012 African Film Awards, he won the African Actor of the Year. He won the Best Lead Actor at the 2012 Best of Nollywood Awards for his role in Married but Living Single.
This shows to what extent he was famous, and then taking up a cabbie job in the U.S.
In the latest episode of the podcast, The actor narrates his ordeal of how he got to America on the promises of gigs waiting for him. “So I thought I was going to have a soft landing there. I packed everything from Nigeria, bought a one-way ticket, and came to America.”
On getting there, there was an issue and the person who he was supposed to book the deal with told him the financiers pulled out. He didn’t know what to do at this point, either to go back to Nigeria or remain. According to him, he had only $1,500 at the time.
The actor had to take on several menial jobs to make ends meet including working in a cold room Publix, a delivery man in Amazon trucks, and driving Uber and Lyft cabs. While he did the cabbie work, he said he met a lot of Nigerians who even requested to take pictures with him. He said he got lots of affirmation words like ‘Boss you will make it”.
In his narration he said;
“I got to America on a promise that I had some gigs waiting for me. So I thought I was going to have a soft landing there. I packed up everything from Nigeria, bought a one-way ticket, and came to America.
“I was put in a well-furnished house and all of that. Then two days later, the person who I was supposed to book a deal with said to me, ‘Those our financiers have pulled out. They have an issue.’
“So, I said, what do I do? He was like, ‘From next month on, you will have to start paying rent in this house.’ The amount of the one-month rent was equivalent to a one-year rent in Nigeria.
“I’m like, ‘I’m not earning any money so what do I do?’ I don’t know what to do. So, shot into that life, I had to figure out what to do. I had nowhere to go. Nothing to turn to.
“My phone was buzzing, like, ‘When are you coming back to Nigeria? We have this gig for you.’ $1,500 was all I came to America with. How do I buy a ticket to go back to Nigeria?”
“I got connected to my church. And then someone gave me a car. I’m like, What do I do with the car? And they said Uber. I was driving for Uber and Lyft to pay my bills.
“I carried a lot of Nigerians, my name on the Uber App was Joseph. The moment they get in or three minutes into the journey, they know I’m the one.”
“One woman even had to call her husband, and she ended up taking pictures with me. I even had some people say to me ‘Boss you will make it.”
Popular Afropop and Banku music star, Mr. Eazi whose real name is Oluwatosin Ajibade has recently announced an eccentric art and music collaboration with 13 talented artists from across Africa for his first studio album, to be released later in the year.
Mr. Eazi is known for his chart-topping hits and electrifying performances. He takes his creativity to a new level by blending music and art in a surreal way.
In his new collaboration, there will be an accompanying work of art made by these artists who hail from different African countries, including Benin, Cameroon, Nigeria, Mozambique, Kenya, South Africa, Senegal, and Togo for each album track.
The artworks, which combine music and art to express strong emotions, will be on display at a multi-sensory exhibition in London, Lagos, and New York. Mr. Eazi and these artists have created visually amazing masterpieces that highlight the themes of love, betrayal, loneliness, and family that the singer explores in his music.
With numerous musical partners, the album is a musical scrapbook that fuses Afrobeat, Afropop, gospel, hiplife, highlife, and folklore into a new and authentic pan-African fusion.
His company, Choplife IP is the sponsor of the project. The company which he founded focuses on investing in African culture from music to film. Choplife IP noted in a statement that during the album’s two-year and multi-country recording process, the singer forged relationships with visual artists whose work he encountered.
It noted that the lack of collaboration between Africa’s exploding pop music acne and the continent’s fine art creators, Mr. Eazi joined forces with 13 artists to enhance the album experience, adding that each individual was given true creative freedom based on the music.
Mr. Eazi will be working with the 1-54 contemporary African art fair as it will host the London part of the exhibition, and this October, the collection will be a part of its special projects area. The founding Director of 1-54, El Glaoui says, “for me, it’s exciting to see an internationally acclaimed musician platforming the work of emerging African artists.”
Mr. Eazi has collaborated with international music stars including Beyonce, J Balvin, Bad Bunny, and Nicki Minaj, and he is known for his Afrobeats classics ‘Skintight’ and ‘Leg Over’.
Prior to the whole exhibition’s public opening in August, additional artworks will be revealed.
In a premiere that has been predicted to open doors for additional projects from the continent, Netflix released its first original animated series from Africa.
“Supa Team 4,” which just made its Netflix debut on the 20th of July. It tells the tale of four teenage girls who became undercover superheroes after being hired by a retired secret agent to save the world. The plot is set in a futuristic version of Lusaka, the capital of Zambia.
Netflix announced in April, that it intends to increase its presence across the continent and give “more African storytellers an amplified voice on the global stage,” according to Black Wall Street Times.
Malenga Mulendema, a writer from Zambia and the brain behind the series, said, “I’m excited that the world finally gets to see the fantastic show that the incredibly talented super team, from Africa and beyond, have put together. We hope ‘Supa Team 4’… will lead to further investments and collaborations so we can continue to grow the industry.”
Mulendema came up with the idea for the show while competing in Triggerfish’s pan-African talent competition, where she was one of the winners in 2015.
She mentioned that she chose to base the plot on her native country to “illustrate that anyone from anywhere can be a superhero” when the show was first announced in 2019.
Supa Team 4’s voice cast has a talented mix of African and foreign actors. In addition to Pamela Nomvete, the cast also includes Zowa Ngwira, John Kani, Kimani Arthur, Nancy Sekhokoane, John MacMillan, Namisa Mdlalose, Ashley Zhangazha, Yinka Awoni, and Thabe Ntebe.
Okay, Africa noted that Zambian singer and rapper, Sampa the Great, also joined the voice cast and contributed to the theme tune.
“(Animation) series shaped our childhoods and to know young Zambians get to see what they’ve never seen on TV before is Amazing!!” he posted on Instagram.
Additionally, The secret agent, Mama K, is voiced by Linda Sokhulu in the series’ isiZulu dub.
Malenga Mulendema was recently signed by David Neumann’s management organization, Newmation, which represents animators working in cinema and television, according to Deadline.
She joins Newmation after the firm signed Ziki Nelson, the creator of the upcoming African-themed animated comic book series, Iwáj, for Disney+.
At the 45th Cairo International Film Festival (CIFF), which will take place from November 15–24 at the Cairo Opera House, the acclaimed actor Ahmed Ezz will receive the Faten Hamama Award for Excellence.
At the 2023 edition, Egyptian actor Ahmed Ezz will receive the Faten Hamama Award for Excellence from the Cairo International Film Festival.
Ezz, 51, was chosen “in appreciation of what he presented throughout his artistic career that began at the end of the nineties,” according to a statement released by the CIFF on Sunday.
“We are interested in encouraging artists who have presented a lot to Egyptian cinema,” commented the CIFF President Hussein Fahmy adding, “we are so glad of this honouring ceremony to come, and we surely wish him success in what comes next.”
The CIFF Director Amir Ramses described Ezz as “an artist who ventured a lot, presenting different genres of films than those that used to top the box office, especially since comedies have been at the forefront of the box office for so many years.”
“Ezz was able to achieve great success, beginning with his cooperation with director Sandra Nashat and his work with the great director Sherif Arafa in more than one film, as well as the great director Marwan Hamed, and I truly believe that he is a distinctive artist in his choices and deserves this award for sure,” Ramses added.
The actor expressed his thanks for the honor and saw it as a timely message of inspiration for his future professional decisions because he felt he still had more to contribute to the world of art.
“Granting me this award is a message that approached me at the right time to encourage me to build a better future and career choices,” stated Ahmed Ezz, adding, “I have not presented everything I dream of yet.”
After working as a model and in the hospitality sector, Ahmed Ezz began his film career in 2001 with appearances in El-Sharaf and Night Talk before making his breakthrough in the contentious Enas El Degheidy film A Teenager’s Diary. Ezz is an arts faculty graduate of Ain Shams University.
Ahmed Ezz’s career took off after appearing in well-known movies including Day of Dignity by Ali Abdel-Khaleq, Sana Oula Nasb by Kamla Abou Zekry, and Girls in Love by Khaled Al-Hajar. With Sandra Nashat’s 2005 film Malaky Alexandria, he became a household name at the box office.
On important movies like The Hostage (2006), Transit Prisoner (2008), and Al Maslaha (2012), Ezz worked alongside Sandra Nashat. Additionally, he collaborated with filmmakers Amr Arafa on The Ghost (2007) and Dream of Aziz (2012), Ahmed Alaa El-Deeb on Badal Faked (2009) and Al-Aref (2021), and Saeed El-Marouk on 365 Days of Happiness.
Together with Tarek El-Arian, Ezz created a fruitful musical collaboration that produced successes including Awlad Rizk (2015), Awlad Rizk 2 (2017), and The Cell (2018).
Ezz cemented his fame by portraying the War of Attrition heroes in Sherif Arafa’s 2019 film The Passage. With Arafa, he continued to work together in The Crime (2022).
With multiple box office records-breaking movies, including the most recent Kira & El-Gin (2022), directed by Marwan Hamed, Ezz has irrevocably changed the Egyptian cinema industry.
The CIFF occupies a significant position as the oldest and most frequent film festival in the Arab world and Africa. Additionally, it is the only festival in the Arab and African continents that has been approved by the International Federation of Producers (FIAPF) for category A status.
The film which explores the 1981 massacre in Casablanca through interviews and interactions with the director’s family and former neighbors, using tiny models of them and a miniature set of their former street made by her father earned El Moudir Best Director when it was premiered in Un Certain Regard at Cannes.
During the official closing night of the SFF at The State Theatre, a series of prizes were presented on Sunday, 18th June with further screenings of popular films to be aired on Monday.
Also, Against The Tide, a documentary directed by Indias Sarvnik Kaur that explores two indigenous Mumbai fishermen affected by declining fish numbers despite very different approaches to their trade scooped the A$40,000 ($27,400) Sustainable Future Award, the largest environmental prize award in the world. The money was donated by five environmental activists.
Five awards were given for short films as well. The AFTRS Craft Awards for the best practitioner (a A$7,000 cash prize) was awarded to Kalu Oji, Faro Musodza, and Makwaya Masudi, screenwriters for “What’s In a Name?” Robyn Liu, lead actor in ‘The Dancing Girl and the Balloon Man’ scooped the first Event Cinemas Rising Talent Award with a cash prize of A$7,000.
The A$7,000 Dendy Live Action Short Award was awarded to “The Dancing Girl and the Balloon Man,” directed by David Ma. The A$7,000 Rouben Mamoulian Award for best director was presented to Sophie Somerville, director of “Linda 4 Eva,” while the A$5,000 Yoram Gross Animation Award was awarded to “Teacups,” directed by Alec Green and Finbar Watson.
According to Frances Wallace, CEO of Sydney Film Festival, “This year’s festival was a huge success with a great number of film fans returning to the cinemas in 2023 attending over 400 film screenings, special events and talks. This year we presented 242 incredible films from across the globe and audiences were eager to take part in the festivities with over 100 sold-out sessions.”
The event, which took place between June 7 and 18, will now travel. As part of the Traveling Film Festival, selections will be screened at seven New South Wales locales, including Newcastle, Orange, Port Macquarie, and Sawtell, through October 2023.
The Best African Music Performance category recognizes recordings that use “unique local expressions from across the African continent” including subgenres like Afrobeats, Afro-fusion, Afro-pop, Bongo Flava, Ethio jazz, Kizomba, High Life, Fuji, Ndombolo, Mapouka, Ghanaian drill, Afro-house, and South African hip-hop and will attract contestants from African countries only.
The Grammy Awards said the new Africa-specific category will highlight “regional melodic, harmonic and rhythmic musical traditions”.
The changes were voted on and passed at the academy’s Board of Trustees meeting last month. The 66th Grammys, which now has 94 categories, will air live in early 2024. The changes follow several years of Grammy category reworks. The academy attempts to quell criticism that its award picks are not inclusive and don’t reflect evolutions in the music industry.
The addition of the best African music performance category reflects how African acts such as Burna Boy, Wizkid, and Tems — along with the rise of the Afrobeats genre — have become global chart-topping stars and streaming juggernauts.
The new best alternative jazz album award will recognize “the genre-blending, envelope-pushing hybrid that mixes jazz with other genres, including R&B, hip-hop, classical, contemporary improvisation, experimental, pop, rap, electronic/dance music and/or spoken word.”
Other changes to the Grammys include moving two categories — producer of the year (non-classical) and songwriter of the year (non-classical) — to the general field, which includes album, song, and record of the year, along with the best new artist. Grammys voters are limited in the categories they can vote for, but all voters are allowed to vote in the general field, which means everyone will now be able to vote for producer of the year (non-classical) and songwriter of the year (non-classical).
The creation of the new category appears to be an effort to more fully recognize the influence of music from the African continent on global trends. “These changes reflect our commitment to actively listen and respond to the feedback from our music community, accurately represent a diverse range of relevant musical genres, and stay aligned with the ever-evolving musical landscape,” said Harvey Mason Jr, head of the Recording Academy, in a statement.
Songs and albums released between Oct. 1, 2022 – Sept. 15, 2023, will be eligible for nominations at the 2024 show and nominees will be announced in November.
On Saturday, June 3rd, Nigerian Afrobeat star Burna Boy made history at London Stadium, becoming the first ever African artist to headline a UK stadium.
Performing a sold-out show with 80,000 people in attendance, Burna Boy captivated the audience with his high-energy performance, the energy and atmosphere in the arena was electric.
The official twitter account of the London Stadium Confirmed the record by congratulating Burna Boy before the show.
The tweet said: “NOW SOLD OUT @burnaboy’s RECORD-BREAKING concert has now officially SOLD OUT!
What an incredible achievement for the first-ever African artist to solo headline a UK stadium.
For those lucky enough to make it, enjoy the show.”
The day marked a significant milestone in Burna Boy’s career, demonstrating his increasing popularity and success both in Africa and overseas. The experience was an emotional moment, showing the power of music to connect people around the world. Burna Boy’s performance was a celebration of African culture and proves that the possibilities are limitless.
Renowned Ghanaian author and playwright, Ama Ata Aidoo, known for celebrating African women and challenging Western stereotypes, has passed away at the age of 81.
Through works like The Dilemma of a Ghost, Our Sister Killjoy, and Changes, Aidoo depicted and honored the experiences of African women, she countered the perception of them as downtrodden. She rejected the notion that the African female is a victim.
In addition to her literary contributions, Aidoo served as an education minister in the early 1980s. She tried to make education free but she encountered some obstacles which made her resign from the position.
Her family released a statement expressing their grief and requesting privacy following her passing after a brief illness.
As a university professor, Ata Aidoo received numerous literary accolades, including the 1992 Commonwealth Writers Prize for her novel Changes, a poignant love story exploring a statistician’s journey through divorce and polygamy.
Her works, such as Anowa, have been widely studied in West African schools alongside the writings of other literary giants like Wole Soyinka and Chinua Achebe.
When asked in a 2014 interview if she saw herself as a writer with a mission, Aidoo responded, “In retrospect, I suppose I could describe myself as a writer with a mission. But I never was aware that I had a mission when I started to write. People sometimes question me, for instance, why are your women so strong? And I say, that is the only woman I know.”
Ama Ata Aidoo had a profound influence on the younger generation of writers, including the acclaimed Nigerian author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.
In a tribute piece published in The Africa Report in 2011, Adichie wrote, “When I first discovered Ama Ata Aidoo’s work… I was stunned by the believability of her characters, the sureness of her touch, and what I like to call the validating presence of complex femaleness.”
Nigerian Afrobeats star Burna Boy featured Aidoo’s powerful critique of colonialism and the exploitation of Africa’s resources in his song “Monsters You Made” in 2020.
Ama Ata Aidoo was born in 1942 in a small village in Ghana’s Fanti-speaking region. Her father, who had established the village’s first school, played a significant role in shaping her life.
At the age of 15, she aspired to become a writer, and within a short period, her dream was realized when she won a short story competition. Seeing her name in print affirmed her path as a writer.
After studying literature at the University of Ghana and briefly engaging in politics, Aidoo embarked on a self-imposed exile in Zimbabwe, dedicating herself to writing full-time.”
The afrobeat musician Davido through his talent and hard work has risen to fame. He has produced so many hit songs and has been nominated for awards.
As a result of this fame, he has gotten so many endorsements from huge brands running into millions and tens of millions. He has bagged several seals of approvals from companies like Hong Kong Base mega mobile manufacturer Infinix. He has ambassadorial endorsement deals in companies like PUMA, Wema Bank, Martell Blue Swift, Pepsi, Travelbeta, Close Up, Guinness Nigeria, Mtn Pulse, Pampers, and 1xbet.
It was just recently brought to everyone’s notice how much this popular Afrobeat musician charges for ambassadorial deals when Nigerian techpreneur, Billpoint CEO Williams Linus approached him to offer an ambassadorial deal. Davido’s team revealed that $5 million is the cost of getting the artist for endorsement over a calendar year.
According to a post by Billpoint CEO, Linus Williams, yesterday on Instagram, Davido’s team disclosed the cost of bringing the musician on board as an ambassador to his company.
The post titled “Re: Endorsement Deal Inquiry” reads “Hello Mr Williams, thank you for your email. Davido’s endorsement fee is $5m for a full calendar year and is subject to review at the end of the endorsement period. kindly let me know how you would like to proceed.” Williams, it was gathered had initially prepared a whopping N150 million (approximately $205,000). This failed business transaction has sparked so many reactions online.
The Anambra tech guru Linus Williams is the founder and CEO of the BillPoint app. The app was launched in April 2023 and is designed to enable users to easily purchase affordable airtime, and data, and pay bills for their electricity and cable TV. Since its launch, the app has gained significant traction.
As much as this Nigerian techpreneur is doing well in his field, this situation has highlighted how big of a celebrity the Nigerian Afrobeat musician is, and this kind of fame is not just stumbled upon; he did his bit by putting in the hard work to support the talent and that has placed him in this position.
Out of a total of 700 competing composers, Samy was the only Egyptian and African to secure a place in the top five spots.
Mina Samy is an Egyptian composer and music producer based in London who is dedicated to a life of craft and art to telling stories through music. Samy told stories as a singer and a choir leader and also worked with storytellers to create all shades of drama, comedy, and thrill. He also created stories as a musical theatre performer and arranger and finally began the journey of understanding human psychology and emotion as a film composer.
Samy’s career in the film-music industry comes with an array of remarkable achievements. In 2021 he received a scholarship at the Sawiris Arts and Culture and also won a “Silver Medal of outstanding achievement in Music Composition” at the Global Music Awards earlier in January this year.
After receiving the scholarship, he later pursued his master’s degree in Film Scoring at London’s Royal College of Music, where he succeeded and eventually became the Film Scoring Society president for its 2022/2023 session.
He worked alongside top professionals and organized master classes in collaboration with award-winning film composers and specialists to share their knowledge.
Samy has also worked at reputable institutions including the Royal College of Arts and the London Film School. He has composed for various short films that have received official praise at UK film festivals and globally, and his work features prominently in prominent advertising campaigns such as the UAE governmental Census 2023, a Coronavirus campaign by WHO and UNICEF Egypt directed by Egyptian director Tamer Ashry, and a Bosch Gulf campaign.
His upcoming projects include working collaborations with Egyptian singers Nesma Mahgoub and Hana Ghoneim, a musical short film with Egyptian director and writer Abdelaziz al-Naggar, and “The Tipping Point” by the London Film School.
The Football Association of Malawi (FAM) collaborated with NBS Bank and the Malawi Red Cross Society to distribute funds amounting to K28.7 million on Thursday. The funds were raised from this year’s FAM NBS Bank Charity Shield match, which collected K30.5 million in gate proceeds.
The objective of the distribution is to provide assistance to those affected by Cyclone Freddy-induced floods and support former Flames players.
The distribution happened in four categories. A total of K23 million has been allocated to construct five low-cost houses, four of which will be built in Ntauchira Village, T/A Likoswe in Chiradzulu. Additionally, one house will be built for the family of the late Blantyre-based Under-16 player, Mahala Mpholiwa, from Genesis Academy. Unfortunately, the floods in March washed away the Mpholiwa family’s house, resulting in their tragic loss.
Furthermore, K1 million has been provided to the family of the late former Flames and Mighty Wanderers goalkeeper, Boniface Maganga. Chitipa United’s head coach, MacDonald Nginde Mtetemera, FCB Nyasa Big Bullets Reserves coach, Enos Chatama, and Malawi national beach soccer team captain, Sandram Sadi, each received K1 million.
Former Tigers goalkeeper, Clement Mkwalula, was granted K1.5 million in support. After the distribution, FAM Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Alfred Gunda expressed his satisfaction with the partnership between FAM, NBS Bank, and the Malawi Red Cross Society. He acknowledged their invaluable assistance in making the Charity Shield a success and enabling them to reach out to the beneficiaries. Gunda also mentioned that once the low-cost housing projects are completed, the remaining funds will be used to provide starter packs for the families to help them get back on their feet.
NBS Bank’s Chief Executive Officer, Kwanele Ngwenya, emphasized the bank’s commitment to social responsibility and its eagerness to support initiatives like the Charity Shield.
He commended the success of the 2023 event and expressed their willingness to continue supporting it in the future.
Innocent Majiya, the president of the Malawi Red Cross Society, applauded FAM and NBS for their initiative in assisting those affected by Cyclone Freddy. He encouraged other well-wishers to come forward and support the people affected by the cyclone’s devastating effects.
A 12 storey building located at 84 Harrington Street in Cape Town’s has been recognized as the world’s tallest building constructed from hemp materials.
Due to the plant based material used, the walls of the building captures more carbon in the atmosphere than what is emitted during production. They also have brilliant thermal insulation properties which lowers the need for heating and cooling systems, therefore saving energy cost.
The manufacturer of the “HempConcrete” blocks used in the hotel was Afrimat Hemp. The blocks from Afrimat Hemp, which are totally manufactured with South African hemp and sold to corporate clients as well as being used to construct a number of social housing projects in South Africa and the neighboring country of Mozambique. They are made from water, lime, hemp, and a cement binder.
Cyril Ramaphosa, the president of South Africa, believes that the hemp and cannabis industries might generate 130,000 jobs in locations like Afrimat Hemp.
The company acknowledges that using hemp in construction costs 20% more than using traditional materials, but the urgency with which some businesses want to combat climate change presents them with a unique opportunity: selling carbon credits, but with buildings rather than trees.
Afrimat Hemp collaborated on the construction of the Hemp Hotel with Wolf Architects in Cape Town.
Nigerian Doctor, Anyanya emerges winner of the 10th season of The Voice Lithuania.
He is billed to perform at the MMA tournament Blade Fights.
Lietuvos balsas have recently crowned its winner of the 10th season as Anyanya Udongwo from Nigeria. Lietuvos balsas or The Voice Lithuania is a Lithuanian reality talent show that was launched on January 29th, 2012. The talent show celebrated its 10th anniversary season on April 30th with a grand finale that broke all viewership records. The event took place in the Zalgirio arena in Kaunas.
At the finale, the live show featured 10 participants who progressed to the top 4 contestants for the Super finale, and at the end of the thrilling and intense competition, Nigerian-born Anyanya Udongwo from Team Benas emerged as the winner of the 10th anniversary season, winning the grand prize of 15,000 euros and record signing contract with Universal Music Group.
Anyanya Udongwo’s journey to succeeding was a challenging one. He was born and raised in Nigeria, although acknowledges Ukraine as his home where he spent a dozen years. Singing was only a hobby for him and while he studied medicine in Ukraine, he sang in church and several music talent projects; but after graduating he realized that music was his true calling. During the war, he had to flee Ukraine but he never gave up on his dreams.
Lithuania was the first country where Anyanya dared to sing again after the war. His powerful voice and captivating performances throughout the season dazzled the hearts of the coaches and viewers. Filled with excitement and joy, Anyanya did not hide his tears on stage, “I am extremely grateful to the Lithuanians for their support and for how warmly they welcomed me. I will admit, your support moved not only me but also my family, who were hesitant about how I would be received in a foreign country”, Anyanya opened up and promised, if favorable circumstances arise, to try to win Lithuania’s Eurovision someday. “First of all, I thank God and my family. And, of course, I thank the people of Lithuania for their support – not only mine but also the whole of Ukraine. We will win”.
The Chief Producer of The Voice Lithuania, Gediminas Jaunius was thrilled with the success of the 10th anniversary season of the talent show and was honored to provide such a platform for aspiring artists to showcase their talents. He also noted they are working toward the next season of ‘The Voice Generation’.
Anyanya currently holds the record of the first African to win ‘The Voice Lithuania’. He is also set to make his first big appearance at the Klaipeda Svyturio arena on May 27th as he has been invited to perform at the prestigious MMA tournament, Blade Fights for its half-time show.
Award-winning African Afrobeats singer, Davido, has remained in the news for different reasons lately.
African News, especially the entertainment beat, is still agog with news about Davido’s Timeless Album.
While that buzz is still on, the Nigerian Musician went online to celebrate his 12th year since he started music professionally.
On the 7th of May 2023, fans, friends, and family of Nigerian Award-winning Afrobeats singer, David Adeleke, popular as Davido, celebrated his first 12 years of making music professionally. The commemoration took the world back to when his debut song, ‘Back When’, which features the rave of that era – Naeto C, was released as the prime single heralding his first album. ‘Back When’, a song from his 2012 debut album ‘Omo Baba Olowo’, was produced in London by Davido himself while popular African music video director, Clarence Peters, shot and directed the video that was first uploaded online on the 9th of May 2011. The song rose to become one of the biggest hit songs from Africa at that time, marking his full induction into the entertainment industry.
Davido and a vixen; shot from his music video. Credit: Youtube.
Through a post shared on his Twitter handle, Davido expressed his appreciation to God for the 12-year ride, he described himself as God’s child. “12 years ago, today I dropped my first single. God’s child”, he wrote, stating how happy he is that people still accepted the album Timeless, which has been breaking records since its release, even after 12 years of putting out music.
While on tour recently, to sell his new Album, a brief chat he had with someone showed up online where the singer showed how happy he is to see people the world over accepting his new work of art, according to him, when compared to the previous Albums, Timeless got a good reception. He also mentioned that he has always felt people’s indifference to his earlier albums but Timeless rose to a different level. He said: “I’m happy that people accepted Timeless and I feel they always doubted my album. It’s a different feel for me because people have never accepted my album, so this is a fresh one for me…I haven’t felt this before”. The singer, and father, who had stayed away from social media for a while, just after the loss of his son, expressed satisfaction and optimism about his music and social media comeback.
London, United Kingdom. January 27, 2019. Davido performs live on stage at The O2 Arena. Credit: Michael Tubi / Alamy Live News
He mentioned that the responses and positive reactions he has been receiving since TIMELESS dropped have been quite encouraging. Davido disclosed that he is just getting started, even though he admits that the journey has, so far, been heavy with breath-taking adventures. “This journey has been crazy, but we’re just getting started”: he says. He rose to prominence and popularity after he released ‘Dami Duro’, the second single from his debut studio album. With global prominence, an avalanche of awards, honorary mentions across different quarters, and worldwide recognition of his art, the singer has earned respect and recognition as one of the iconic names in the African music landscape.
Davido has remained a key source of entertainment news globally. He won the popular ‘next rated’ award category at The Headies In 2012. The 30-year-old father, in the last decade, has released hundreds of chart-topping songs like ‘Skelewu’, ‘Gobe’, ‘Aye’, ‘One of a Kind’, ‘Owo Ni Koko’, ‘Fall’,‘If’, ‘Fia’ ‘Assurance’ and several other African hits. In 2019 he dropped ‘A Good Time’, an Album that preceded ‘A Better Time’ which he released in 2020. ‘Timeless’, his 17-track fourth album was released on the 31st of March 2023, and it has continued to garner millions of streams across music platforms.
LOS ANGELES, CA – JUNE 24: Davido accepts The Best International Act Award onstage at the 2018 BET Awards at Microsoft Theater on June 24, 2018, in Los Angeles, California. Credit: Leon Bennett/Getty Images/AFP
Again, Kenya’s Emmanuel Naibet has won a marathon in Nigeria. His first was in Lagos, and the Abuja International Marathon is his second.
Ruth Jebet, a Bahrain runner of Kenyan ancestry, defied previous career challenges to win her first international full marathon.
Other elite runners and fun seekers from other African cities and the rest of the world converged to take part in the inaugural and historic Abuja International Marathon; they left with prizes and happiness.
On the 29th of April 2023, Kenya’s Emmanuel Naibet and Bahrain runner Ruth Jebet emerged inaugural winners of the men’s and women’s respective categories of the first international full marathon in the FCT, the historic Abuja International Marathon, backed by the Federal Capital Territory Administration, FCTA, with routes calculated and calibrated by the Association of International Marathons and Distance Races, AIMS, and approved by World Athletics, with the theme ‘Celebrating the Best of FCT’.
According to the Race Director, Olukayode Thomas, “About 50 foreign elite runners and 120 local elites registered to participate in the race’’. They were joined by thousands of Nigerian runners that registered to participate in the three categories. The race, a first of its kind in Abuja, was earlier slated for the 17th of December 2022 but was later rescheduled to hold on the 29th of April 2023, with the weather showing kindness to the notable event. The lovely city of Abuja typically experiences torrential rainfall in April but on the 29th, the city offered the ideal weather making it more convenient for Kenya’s Naibet as well as Jebet, Kenyan-born long-distance runner and steeplechase specialist who competes internationally for the Asian country Bahrain, to win the two categories respectively.
Naibet won with a time of 2:13:45, a winning time considered the best ever documented in any first edition of Marathon races in Nigeria. This is his second marathon win in Nigeria having also won the 2021 edition of the Access Bank Lagos City Marathon. “It was a great race for me though a bit challenging with some hilly parts on the routes, but overall, I am happy to win this race and add it to my achievements,” the animated titleholder said in a chat with journalists. Benard Sang finished in second position with a time of 2:13:49 while Ezekiel Koech secured his third place to seal up the win for Kenyans in the men’s category with a time of 2:13:51.
In the women’s category, though her first attempt at the full marathon after dominating in other long-distance races, Ruth Jebet from Bahrain dwarfed other runners to grab the number one spot with a time of 2.36.08, Mercy Kwambai from Kenya finished second with a time of 2:38:17, while Ethiopia’s Dida Negasa held on to the third place with a time of 2:40: 16. An excited Jebet says, “I can never forget the Abuja International Marathon, it is my first full marathon and I won it, I hope to be back next year to defend my title”.
Three different races took place in Abuja. Apart from the elite runners who took part in the full marathon that spanned about 42.195 kilometres, students from across the Abuja metropolis as well as fun contenders also keenly competed for prizes in the 5-kilometre and 10-kilometre races. Thomas, the race director, pointed out that one of the big ideas behind the racing event is the establishment of an elite athletes’ development program to groom exceptional local athletes. “What makes the race unique is that it is the first race that will give local athletes recognition not just in terms of appearance fee or bonuses, but we are trying to set up elite athletes development program because we believe that Nigerians have what it takes to do what the Kenyans and Ethiopians are doing,” he said. All finishers of the Abuja International Marathon got medals and certificates signed by the FCT Minister of State.
Also, the Managing Director of Abuja International Marathon, Mrs. Zsuzsanna Ogunmiloyo mentioned the available incentives for young participants. She said “We also want to encourage the culture of running because the youths have to be encouraged. Sports bring the community together. It is something we want embedded in the youths to know that hard work and determination count.”
Activities that led to the Saturday Marathon began on Friday with an expo at The Pavillion, beside the International Conference Centre, opposite Radio House, Abuja. According to Race Director, Olukayode Thomas, the Marathon Expo, with the theme ‘Showcasing the best of FCT,’ prepped the participants for the event. There was refreshment, entertainment from the FCT Arts and Culture Department, and prizes for participants. Visitors were also treated to a city-wide tour. “For those interested in FCT landmarks and tourist attraction centres, officials of the FCT Tourism Department will be on ground to take them around the FCT with tour guides that will answer their questions.”
Thomas highlighted the gains of the Abuja Marathon pointing out that they outweigh the few road closures and other inconveniences that came with the event. He said, just before the event, that: “We need to start telling our stories with activities like Abuja International Marathon. Abuja is a beautiful city, no doubt, but how many times have we showcased the city to the world? This is probably the first time that Abuja will be beamed to the world for four hours. This race will show the best part of Abuja and its landmarks to the world for hours so let us all work with the FCTA to make the epoch event a huge success.’’
A week-long Marathon Expo preceded the race with numerous lead-up activities, including the unveiling of the Marathon Logo, the High School that won in the production of the theme song for the Abuja International Marathon, and the presentation of race ambassadors. The event attracted stakeholders in the industry including fun runners, FCTA officials, sponsors, and elite runners abroad and at home. Abuja International Marathon seeks to be the first race in the world to win the prestigious World Athletics Label after its first edition. The majority of elite runners officially invited for the race are Gold Label Runners.
According to ZITF officials, the annual event held under the theme “Transformative Innovation, Global Competitiveness” gathered 600 exhibitors with set up stalls including foreign embassies and various universities showcasing their innovations.
The National University of Science and Technology was one of the exhibitors from the educational sector. Its Communications and Marketing Director, Thabani Mpofu said “As NUST, we are exhibiting here to market our products and also to market some innovations that have been produced by our students and academics”. The “Crop Doctor Solutions” is one of the innovations the NUST exhibited at the fair.
The innovation is a mobile application that has already been piloted that helps to diagnose diseases from crops by merely scanning the leaves of any particular crop and then disclosing the disease affecting the crop.
At the event, there were also various exhibitors from different sectors of the economy such as mining, farming, finance, and the hospitality industry. The fair started with three business forums which took place on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday before it opened up to the public on the final two days, Friday and Saturday.
Additionally, residents and business owners in the city benefited greatly from the fair’s presence in Bulawayo. Ambrose Sibindi, Bulawayo Progressive Residents Association Chairperson said ZITF brought a huge deal of business to the city as some businesses closed late during the week.
The Chairperson said “Hotels were fully booked. Transporters were kept very busy, and vendors also made brisk business, even those in the business of wood carving near City Hall. shops were closing very late trying to capitalize on the situation. Sibindi added that compared to last year, business was better, and hopes it will keep getting better in order to promote economic growth.
The hospitality industry’s stakeholders also expressed their satisfaction with achieving the desired level of traffic. Sibusisiwe Zhou, the Sales and Marketing Manager of the recently opened Sterling Hotel, reported that the initial days of operation were challenging. However, she claimed that during the final three days of the trade show, they were able to obtain their fair share.
The Minister for Culture, Arts and Sports, Pindi Chana who witnessed the signing of the agreement in Dodoma said that the agreement will help to create opportunities for film stakeholders to get professional training on how to make films quality enough to win markets in domestic and foreign countries.
While giving her remarks, Chana expressed appreciation to the President of the United Republic of Tanzania, Dr Samia Suluhu Hassan for giving priority to the film industry, noting that the agreement will give rise to the number and quality of films produced due to the use of modern technology. She said in Africa the Tanzania film industry is among the best, heralded by Nigeria, “producing four films per day”.
She established that by reason of the agreement being concluded, “the film industry is heading for a new dawn” because the films support the introduction of the country’s culture and tourism worldwide. She noted that the agreement is quite beneficial, as it will benefit all the stakeholders of the industry.
In order for the world to have a better understanding of Tanzania, Chana urged the film production companies to make sure the films reflect Tanzania’s ideals and support the Kiswahili language and culture.
According to Chi Lee, Deputy Secretary General of the Institute, the institute is prepared to assist Tanzania in the film business by providing professionals who will train Tanzania actors and producers. “The agreement is a huge success enhanced by good cooperation between Tanzania and South Korea, which has shown commitment to cooperate with Tanzania in the development of the film industry”, he said.
On the part of the Institute, he said that the agreement will be of great benefit to them as it will provide a chance to learn how to create films that have value in Tanzania.
He concluded by saying “Films can be used as initial instruction or building. During facilitation, students may need background information or interest-building activities, and adding a movie can build interest in a topic that is learned while providing a huge knowledge to the students more on what is been taught”.
Mr Eazi has established his influence in both music, tech, and business, in Africa and globally.
Oluwatosin Ajibade, famously known as Mr Eazi, has recently stirred African News media and the rest of the world, with the recent sale of Vydia, the portfolio company in partnership with his venture capital fund, Zagadat Capital, for an astonishing $1 billion. The digital video and audio distribution company was acquired by American firm, Gamma, in an unprecedented transaction regarded by many as the biggest in Afrobeats, so far.
Gamma is a music and technology firm owned by former Apple Music Executive, Larry Jackson, who believes that Gamma’s vision is in seamless harmony with Vydia’s potential and capabilities, he is enthusiastic about the acquisition. He says “Vydia epitomizes the vision of Gamma as an ideas company.” Entertainment brands that have worked with Vydia include artists like Kanye West, Akon, Mr Eazi, and Anuel.
Jackson said about the acquisition: “Gamma is built with the flexibility and aptitude that creators need to connect with fans on all formats and across all channels – with transparency and no restriction. We are a progressive media company powered by the best-in-class content distribution and analytics software by way of our Vydia acquisition.”
Beyond a rewarding career in Music, Mr Eazi’s influence in the business world has continued to grow. He set up and runs the music distribution platform emPawa, to promote Afro-music. The platform has worked with several artists including Namenj, Fave, Joeboy, Bella Alubo, and Mr. Eazi himself.
Zagadat Capital, established in 2021, has speedily built a reputation for its strategic investments in different tech companies. The companies include home services provider Eden Life, remittance-based loaning firm Paisa, African fintech company Pawapay, and, newly, the South African basketball team, CapeTown Tigers. Zagadat Capital’s portfolio shows that Mr Eazi is committed to the promotion of innovation and advancement in the African tech network. Zagadat Capital’s early investments centred on music tech companies. The companies include ticketing platform SHOOBS, Mr Eazi’s enterprise emPawa, and American music distribution service Vydia.
Remarkably, emPawa used the services of Vydia before Mr Eazi made any financial investments into the platform, indicating that, from the onset, he was quite confident in Vydia’s potential. The success of this notable deal reinforces Mr Eazi’s status as a dominant figure in music, tech, and the business world. His impact on the global entertainment scene, as a many-sided entrepreneur, is undisputed. The acquisition of Vydia by Gamma will reform the music distribution scene, giving artists quality platforms and gears to reach new markets as they enlarge their careers.
Mr Eazi and his girlfriend, Temi Otedola. Source: www.gltrends.com.ng
As the digital age continues to alter the music creation, distribution, and consumption processes, Gamma’s vision mixed finely with Vydia’s infrastructure could be a possible harbinger of a new era of innovation in music. Mr Eazi’s accomplishments with Zagadat Capital and emPawa point to the tremendous potential for growth in the African tech and entertainment sectors. As more investors look towards the continent, we are likely to see more ground-breaking collaborations, offers, and deals that will all add up to push economic growth and enhance a flourishing creative network.
Mr Eazi, who recently made history by becoming the first Nigerian artiste to win a Latin Grammy Award, is set to become an in-law to one of Africa’s leading businesspersons, Femi Otedola.
The NLO said that using a digital platform that enables the agent or scout to evaluate their objectives without being physically present, the invention would give football scouts/agents access to several categories of U-19 footballers with full options and a history of players.
According to NLO’s Media Officer, Abdulgafar Oladimeji, who gave his remark on the innovation while revealing fixtures of the 2023 season, said that the introduction of the technological scouting device was primarily intended to showcase the skills and talents of young footballers in the league to international clubs.
The NLO’s Media Officer revealed that with the invention, interested agents scouting players in the country would readily do so through the Internet. “Gone are the days when international club owners are invited to watch and pick talented players, NLO has come up with a website through which international clubs watch live matched and make their choices of talented players”, he added.
Oladimeji actively promoted media participation in the NLO season this year, as he said that the organization had gone digital and genuine sponsors had contributed sufficient funds to ensure the league’s success. “No football project can prosper without the media. The sponsors come in due to the extent of media coverage. It is now mandatory that any club participating in the NLO league must have a media department”.
According to Oladimeji, eight teams are expected to trade tackles in Kano, likewise, other states in the north, and the top teams in each state would compete against one another in an interstate competition from which four teams will be chosen to represent the north in the national championship.
He assured that the NLO is greatly committed to ensuring that only players within the age bracket stipulated are featured in the league, noting that the organization has introduced anti-forgery processes to hinder the tendencies of fraud and corruption in the licensing process.
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The London Book Fair featured a session titled “Journey of African Publishing”
Lawrence Njagi said Africans already had their audiobooks long before stories were put down on paper.
The issue of the importance of policy in the development of publishing in Africa was raised.
The London Book Fair featured a session titled “Journey of African Publishing”
During the London Book Fair that was held from the 18th to the 20th of April, one of the sessions featured “Journey of African Publishing”. This witnessed the presence of several prominent members of the International Publishers Association, there were participants from South Africa, Nigeria, and Kenya. Brian Wafawarowa, president of the South African Publishers Association and CEO of Juta and Company, moderated the session.
Brian started his moderation by highlighting how difficult the journey of African publishing has been even though publishing industry players today began working in the 1980s and 1990s on the ground that had already been prepared for them. He also pointed out how content is increasingly coming from the continent these days and how people are going through a digital transition.
Lawrence Njagi said Africans already had their audiobooks long before stories were put down on paper.
One of the speakers, Lawrence Njagi the managing director of Mountain Top Educational Publishers in Kenya talked about the importance of posing certain questions like “When did publishing in Africa begin?” Certainly not with missionaries in East Africa who came, as he put it, with a Bible and a gun. He explained how Africa already had their audiobooks long before stories were put down on paper, with the mothers and grandmothers who told and retold stories over time. That said, today, 95 percent of books produced in the region are textbooks, Njagi said, and he’d like to see more children reading, and more people reading trade publications.
Another speaker, Bibi Bakare-Yusuf, founder and publishing director of Cassava Republic Press in Nigeria and the UK said that when she founded Cassava Republic 17 years ago, she was interested in seeing books written by Black people but also published by Black people. She said taking possession of the production was important, and today it’s exciting to see more trade publishers being established.
The challenge of getting more books to readers, she said, is price. “The question is not whether people want to read but how to make books available for people. … We need more Africans owning the means of production.” It’s encouraging that Africans are coming “to know each other and not having to make a detour via Europe.”
The issue of the importance of policy in the development of publishing in Africa was raised.
Another speaker, Gbadega Adedapo, CEO and managing director of Accessible Publishers in Nigeria stressed the importance of policy in the development of publishing in Africa, which is “moving fast.” He mentioned the International Publishers Association seminar in 2018, during which he spoke about the challenges of rampant piracy in Nigeria. The Nigerian president recently signed a new bill to curb piracy, and in Lagos in February, the Nigerian Copyrights Commission signed a memorandum of understanding with the Nigerian Publishers Association and the Booksellers Association of Nigeria to curb piracy.
Mercy Kirui, senior manager for content at eKitabu in Kenya said she and her team work with more than 100 African publishers digitizing more than 5,000 titles. She said that publishers have started to use technology for processing and packaging, and an increasing number of platforms are being created to provide access to information. Technology can be used to assess cataloging, to track how information is being used, and to measure the impact of what you’re providing. But “technology is not the solution to everything,” she added.
“We fetishize technology, but it should not be a prosthetic for what we do,” said Bakare-Yusuf. “People still want to read physical books, but they need to be accessible and affordable. I’m interested in how to develop selling
rights from one country to another so publishers can publish the books locally—and how to make it cheaper for us to produce books.”
Circling back to policy, Njagi explained why there is a need for private publishers to be able to compete with government publishers, otherwise, copyright and publishers cease to exist. He said that government usually controls policy, and each time there’s an election, the new government chooses whether they want to continue a certain policy in place. He pointed out the need to influence policy at a national level in a positive way.
This event has managed to air the points of view of African Publishers, and it is really interesting.
A football talent hunt program called the ‘Davido Dream Football Show’ (DDFS) has been birthed through a partnership of Nigerian music star Davido, Abu Salami Media, and 1XBet, which is aimed at promoting youth football, mainly at the grassroots level by providing a structured curriculum to develop fundamental technical skills and tactical awareness in young players who desire to compete at the highest levels of football.
On Tuesday, at the official unveiling of the initiative which took place during a media presentation held at the Federal Palace Hotel in Victoria Island, Lagos, the CEO of Abu Salami Media and Chairman of DDFS, Mr. Abu Salami explained that the program is focused on empowering and supporting young male football talent around the age of 18 to 22 in Nigeria and across Africa.
Mr. Salami further disclosed that DDFS would be a 30-week reality TV series with one episode airing each week. A screening procedure for registered participants will be conducted first, and then there will be a series of trials to choose the greatest skills. The chosen talents will then go through camping for the grand finale where they will get more training and compete for the top award.
As the president of DDFS, David Adeleke, popularly known as Davido expressed his excitement for the program’s potential to have an impact on young football players in Nigeria and Africa. He noted that the impact is key and the show will not only engage the kids’ imagination but also give rise to significant opportunities for youth throughout Nigeria and Africa.
There would be scheduled screenings for selection across Nigeria as the selection process will be based on skill, attitude, and commitment. Also, selected talents will also get the opportunity to train and participate in trials with partner clubs in Europe as part of the program, giving them exposure to opportunities in international football.
The April 2023 Edition of the Photogenic Stride Contest by AfriSQuare commences as the first edition for the year 2023. The contest which runs every month with a cash prize of $150 to be won, is an online beauty contest that showcases the true beauty of African women across Africa
However, the photogenic Stride contest has proven to be a starting point for ladies who aspire to become models in Africa. The last edition for 2022 was held in November. The April edition 2023 is up and running, and currently, ladies from across Africa are getting ready to take the crown as the winner of the April edition, because there can be but only one winner.
Ladies who have won previous editions have either benefitted as winners, runners up or via consolatory prizes. In order for you to be among these categories (winner, 1st and 2nd runners ups), this is how you register.
Also, the Photogenic Stride contest is purely based on merit with transparency in operations. The more you share your link with your friends, the higher your chances of winning. If you are an African lady, why not hit the link below, you might be the lucky winner.
Stars headlining nominations for the highly awaited 9th Africa Magic Viewers’ Choice Awards, AMVCA, 2023 include Chidi Mokeme, Tobi Bakare, Bimbo Ademoye, and others. MultiChoice, the organizers of the awards, on the evening of Sunday, April 16, 2023, released a comprehensive list detailing the various categories and the nominees ahead of the significant event, and different African news platforms have since been stirred.
AfriSQuare gathered that digital content creators in Nollywood, and in Africa generally, have also earned recognition; this shows an expansion in the annual event’s scope, which traditionally recognizes outstanding performances in film, television, and entertainment. The nominees are spread across more than 30 award categories, some of the categories, about ten of them, are open to the public; voters from the general public can choose their preferred nominees, while some other categories are to be decided by a panel of judges set up by the organizers. The event itself is scheduled to hold from the 18th to the 20th of May 2023, in Lagos State, Nigeria, and will be broadcast live on Africa Magic channels.
The AMVCA has grown into a premium event that acknowledges outstanding accomplishments in African television and film. This year, numerous talented actors and actresses across Africa, all contending for awards in different categories, will feature. The list of nominees contains talented film makers as well as prominent actors and actresses such as Nkem Owoh, Mercy Johnson, Chinedu Ikedieze, Chidi Mokeme, Richard Mofe Damijo, and several others. A number of movies and television series have also been nominated for awards, including ‘Brotherhood’ directed by Jade Osiberu, ‘Ile Owo’ directed by Kayode Kasum, among others.
According to the organizers, talented Big Brother Naija alumnus, Bisola Aiyeola and Ghanaian actor, Adjetey Anang, will be the main hosts for this year’s award show. There are several ways to vote for nominees of different categories. Members of the public are encouraged to cast their votes for their favorites as this could make them big winners of any of the public voting categories on awards night. To vote, one must register first before they can get behind their favorite nominees for the ninth edition of the Africa Magic Viewers’ Choice Awards.
To see the full list of nominees, as well as to register and vote for your favorites, the AMVCA site AMVCA (dstv.com) will come in handy. Feel free to visit. Also, share with us, here in the comment section under this post, who you think should win what awards. Is anyone on the nominees list who should not be there? Is there someone who should have been on the list? What do you think of the nominees and the categories? What do you think about the inclusion of online content makers in the mix? Share your thoughts with us in the comment section, even as you share the post with your friends.
On Wednesday, the global streaming giant, Netflix announced its intentions to widen its operations in Africa, following the success of its local content production ventures in the continent, including the South African drama “Blood and Water”. Netflix, since 2016 has infused an amount of 160 million euros in film content production in Africa, which has created more than 12,000 jobs in Nigeria, Kenya, and South Africa.
According to a report which gave no details on the scale of its African plans, the company said that $63 million had been set aside for South Africa alone in 2022/2023. It said, “Expanding our business here is good for Netflix”.
The South African series “Blood and Water” has been lauded for its significant international achievement in 2020, ranking first in the United States and currently making South Africa Netflix’s top African contributor. This prompted the move for Netflix’s expansion in Africa.
At a press conference in Johannesburg, Netflix’s sub-Saharan Africa Policy Director, Shola Sanni said “This is the start, we plan to reach more countries on the continent”. The company noted that as they build on these accomplishments to expand the business, they will continue to invest in local create economies and provide more African storytellers with louder voices on the international stage.
Over recent years, Netflix has decided on broadening its production outside the United States. The move is expected to help Netflix establish itself as a dominant player in the African market, where there is an increased demand for local content and rising competition from other streaming platforms. It also provides an opportunity to showcase African stories to a global audience.
The company partnered with the United Nations cultural agency, UNESCO in 2021 to sponsor the launch of an innovative short film competition for young African directors, with which six short movies were selected. This enabled the discovery of new voices in African cinema.
Davido’s ‘Timeless’ album lends credence to his talent and mastery of the art.
After several losses, he has stamped his feet solidly on the path to recovery with this new body of work.
Teeming fans hope that the Album’s name will speak; they hope to see it stand the test of time.
On the 31st of March 2023, Nigerian ace afrobeats musician, Davido, stirred global and African news platforms with the release of his keenly expected fourth album, titled ‘Timeless’. In the week of release, the album achieved ground-breaking triumph; it broke several records within the continent and internationally. ‘Timeless’ recently debuted on United States’ Album chart, Billboard 200. Different reactions have since trailed the Album’s progress so far.
After early commercial profits, ‘Timeless’ got tipped for a debut in the upper part of the chart, and, in the latest episode of the Billboard Chart dated April 15, 2023, Davido’s ‘Timeless’ unveiled itself at number 37 making it the second topmost Nigerian album to ever debut on the chart next to Burna Boy’s ‘Love, Damini’ which made an entrance at number 14. ‘Timeless’, so far, has crushed multiple records, in Nigeria, Africa, and globally, across major streaming platforms. On Spotify, ‘Timeless’ set a fresh all-time record for the biggest entrance of any album in Spotify Nigeria history; the Album tallied 14.5 million streams during its release week, March 31st — April 6th, exceeding the preceding record of 4.89M streams by Burna Boy’s ‘Love, Damini’.
On Apple Music Nigeria, Davido’s ‘Timeless’ broke the previously existing record of the biggest debut week for any album on Apple Music Nigeria, and while breaking one record, it equally, set a new record for the most streams on a debut day for an African album on Apple Music globally. Davido’s ‘Timeless’, on Audiomack, had more than 12 million streams in its first 24 hours, more than any other album in Audiomack’s history. Also, its release week is the biggest release week on record for any African album in the history of Audiomack. Similarly, the album also set a new record on Boomplay Nigeria, it created the biggest debut week ever on Boomplay Nigeria, four days after release ‘Timeless’ amassed more than 22 million streams on the platform surpassing the previously existing highest record of 18.8 million streams by ‘Love, Damini’, from July 8th to July 14th, 2022.
Even on YouTube, ‘Timeless’ carved a new record; with 4.10 million streams, it created the biggest debut week for any album on YouTube Nigeria. The Album waxed powerful in its release week, reinforcing Davido’s place as one of Africa’s contemporary music greats. The album showed off an impressive performance as well as Davido’s commercial dexterity which are both evident in the way it is being received and consumed by teeming lovers of Afro Music. In addition to making a significant entry into the respected Billboard 200, ‘Timeless’ also made a resounding statement on major streaming platforms, continentally and globally.
The buzz from the Album has got people asking: ‘how can an African album make such a global impact on streaming platforms in such a short while? Clearly, the album’s US success is not accidental as it has also ranked 1st in the UK Apple music top albums chart; it has ranked 14th in Germany, 12th in Italy, 17th in France, and 24th in Switzerland. ‘Timeless’ sits comfortably on each of the mentioned country’s lists of top 200 albums.
A chat platform for Zimbabwe has been invented. This platform will offer a one-stop shop for businesses and individuals alike to connect seamlessly from any part of the world.
This platform is called Talk Chart and it was developed by Prevail International. The platform will be launched this month and will enable Zimbabweans to connect with the outside world at a faster speed.
Prevail International Group CEO, Mr Tempter Paul Tungwarara said the new app will be a one-stop shop as it connects people and will, going forward, allow users to transact as there are plans to have a payment gateway linked to banks and other financial institutions on the platform. “As we build on the mantra – Zimbabwe is open for business – we want not only Zimbabweans to connect with each other but the outside world as well. The application is available for download on Play Store,” he said. He also said, collaboration and communication are the foundation of building a successful work environment, investment, strong family bonds, and corporate ties.
On the platform, one can send and receive text messages, photos, videos, voice messages, and transact. Whether chatting one-on-one or in a group chat, the app allows one to express oneself and stay connected with other people. Talk Chart is a fast, reliable, and secure chat app that lets people stay connected. The app uses state-of-the-art encryption to keep messages safe and private, so users can confidently chat knowing that their conversations are secure.
The developer, Prevail Group Dubai, says the app’s privacy practices also include handling data in a professional manner.
Mobile apps are leading the market with improved branding, customization, and user interaction. Since their inception, they have been disrupting the entire way people have accessed internet services.
Especially, Commerce has found its thriving ground once it moved into an app-centric strategy. Over half of the internet traffic is coming from mobile devices and most of them are from mobile apps.
Tungwarara said the advantages of using mobile applications such as Talk Chart’ are that they are faster than mobile websites. ”Even a well-groomed and optimized responsive mobile website cannot match the speed of an app. Businesses are all about giving the service as fast as possible today. A slight lag can cause massive loss and that leads to customer discontent.” he said.
He also said ‘Talk Chart’ can leverage the features of native devices seamlessly. This opens a great opportunity to engage with the users’ productivity. For businesses, mobile apps are a great way to reduce costs with assured productivity. As apps can connect vendors and customers through a single direct channel, it reduces the extra marketing expenses.
During National Tree Planting Day which is usually held annually on March 21 to fight land degradation and improve the wild environment, Lesotho Prime Minister, Mr. Samuel Ntsokoane Matekane preceded the planting of 6000 indigenous trees at Thaba-Chitja in Thabana-Morena on Friday.
During the commemoration of the Nation Tree Planting Day, Mr. Matekane, addressing residents of the community said trees are essential for various activities to people thus the need to plant them in great numbers across the country.
According to him, planting trees will help address the issue of high temperatures brought on by climate change by, among other things, giving shade to the herders and children as they travel from their houses to various locations. He urged members of the community to work with the local authority in the area to protect the trees since they are the first people to benefit after three years of maturity.
Giving his remark on the occasion, the Minister in the Prime Minister’s office, Mr. Limpho Tau appreciated members of the community for taking part in planting trees, noting that they are taking up the responsibility for protecting the environment while at the same time enhancing community livelihoods.
In order for the country to serve as a source of fruits for the global market, Mr. Tau recommended that fruit trees be planted in all open spaces, especially throughout the nation. This is in contrast to the existing scenario where trees are only sporadically planted, he added. According to the minister, if the nation can plant more trees, it will be able to create a variety of goods, including paper and timber for creating furniture and wood, and cease importing unnecessary wood products.
Also speaking, Mr. Selibe Mochoboroane Health Minister for Thabana-Morena said through the production of fruit trees, unemployed community members will get jobs near homes while at the same time producing food for consumption. He stated that trees are essential for the survival of both human beings and livestock since they provide oxygen.
Olive, Beefwood, and grass trees are a few of the planted trees.
The climate action summit is scheduled from September 4th to September 6th in Nairobi. This summit intends to advance a green economic upswing and green industrial revolution and foster agreement on critical climate problems. It also seeks to encourage enhanced financial support for climate action in Africa and make the most of already established continental platforms like the African Continental Free Trade Area. This gathering will unite world leaders to discuss crucial climate change-related concerns. The decision for Kenya to host was decided during the 2023 African Union Summit held last month in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, President William Ruto made the announcement.
Currently, President Ruto is the leader of the Committee of African Heads of State and Government on Climate Change. For Kenya, hosting the summit is more than just the prestige, it offers them the unique chance to highlight the nation’s initiatives to address climate change and promote sustainable development. It will put the nation at the forefront of discussions about the financing of climate action. The country, viewed as one of the leaders in combating climate change, has accomplished a big deal in climate change response and its standing and influence globally are anticipated to grow as a result.
This will also allow Kenya to showcase its successes in putting sustainability policies and practices to the test, which the country has already achieved considerable advancements in this area. There have been programs like Climate Smart Agriculture and the ambitious National Climate Change Action Plan.
Its ability to host the summit will strengthen its position as a leader in the battle against climate change while highlighting its dedication to building a sustainable future.
The summit will provide decision-makers such as governments and the private sector with a platform to discuss important climate change-related topics like loss and damage, lowering greenhouse gas emissions, and switching to a low-carbon economy.
Kenya will play a significant role in these debates given its experience coping with the implications of climate change in areas like agriculture, water resources, and wildlife conservation. President Ruto has already mentioned the need for African countries to join the call for reforms in the inequitable and inadequate global economic and financial system. The summit may also draw new investments in green technologies and clean energy, which will lead to new jobs and promote Kenya’s sustainable development objectives.
Additionally, delegates worldwide will require accommodation, transportation, and other services during their stay. Therefore, the event is anticipated to boost the nation’s economy. Overall, the summit presents a unique opportunity for Kenya and the Global South to lead the way in climate action and forge innovative partnerships with the private sector. This can boost the country’s economy through new investments in green technologies and clean energy.
The CAF has officially confirmed the dates of the Africa Cup of Nations Cote d’Ivoire 2023, with the opening match scheduled to take place on January 13th, 2024 at the Alassane Ouattara Stadium in Ebimpe, Abidjan. On February 11th, the four-week competition between the top 24 countries in Africa will be concluded.
The competition will be in its 34th year. After taking place there for the first time in 1984, when Cameroon won for the first time, the month-long competition returns to Cote d’Ivoire. The route to Cote D’Ivoire is progressively taking shape as the world prepares for Africa’s largest football show as the Afcon qualifiers near their conclusion.
Following the spectacular qualifying round this past weekend, six nations joined the hosts, Cote d’Ivoire, in the competition. They are Senegal, the reigning African champions, South Africa, Tunisia, Burkina Faso, Algeria, Morocco, and Morocco. Also, Veron Mosengo-Omba, general secretary of the CAF, added that the bi-annual assignment’s final draw will take place in September of this year.
In due course, the time and location will be determined.
The African football governing body anticipates record global TV audiences and stadium attendances for next year’s edition of its flagship competition, which also currently holds the record as being Africa’s biggest event. This is due to the rapidly growing global interest in CAF competitions that have been recorded in the last few months.
With the introduction of cutting-edge broadcast technology and digital engagement, CAF has made significant strides in enhancing the viewing and stadium attendance experience of its competitions, as is evident in the recently concluded CAF competitions. This has led to the creation of a world-class product that is consumed in real-time across the globe.
The Confederation of African Football (CAF) is the governing authority of beach soccer, futsal, and association football in Africa. It was founded on February 8th, 1957 at Khartoum Sudan’s Grand Hotel by the national football associations of Egypt, Ethiopia, South Africa, and Sudan.
Hiphop fans from Africa as well as African followers of the renowned Steve Harvey have continued to express satisfaction after eulogies about Ghana went viral online.
Two key American entertainers were at the fore of the praise-singing.
Africans, Ghanaians especially, have received the tributes happily.
Recently, on two different occasions, the west African country of Ghana received unusual recognitions from two American entertainers – Tv personality Steve Harvey and Musician Chance the rapper; they both promoted the Gold Coast, in their own unique ways, to their large western audience. The humorous 66-year-old Tv Host, Harvey, advised his audience to visit Ghana first, then Botswana and South Africa. Harvey claimed it’s a way to gain a better understanding of African culture and the significant contributions made by Africans to the world.
Harvey who once visited Ghana in 2019 to film and broadcast a season of Family Feud, encouraged his American audience to disregard their preconceived notion of Africa and visit first. He said, “them Africans is us mhen; they are the beat; they are the rhythm; they are the song. They are hard work; we get our courage from them. When you see them, people, they look just like your family.”
In a similar development, American rapper, Chance The Rapper, in a recent freestyle, dropped a few lines in Twi language – one of Ghana’s native languages. Chance also referenced Osu and Kumasi, two Ghanaian towns, in his rap. He did not just make reference to the towns; he actually eulogized them in his rap in which he sprinkled some Twi language.
The rapper went beyond praising the African towns, he also saluted Dr Nnamdi Azikiwe of Nigeria, Dr Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana, and the revered Emperor Haile Selassie of Ethiopia in the short electrifying performance. His line went: “Akwaaba medaase, that’s the end of my speech. Tell them to spread the word from Osu to Kumasi…This for Dr Kwame, Selassie and Nnamdi.”
These separate events have since attracted reactions from Ghanaians especially, and other Africans alike. People say that these mentions and recognitions reinforce the idea that Africa, its culture, and its people have garnered massive global recognition for its contribution to the arts, world politics, and global markets.
South African comedian has clinched a globally renowned Prize for his contributions to the arts.
The young African has enjoyed stints on stage, on TV, and across other media platforms making him one of Africa’s most sought-after talents.
Noah had quit hosting a popular TV show but his impact while at it did not go unnoticed and unrewarded.
Trevor Noah, South African stand-up comedian, Television host, author of international repute, entertainment entrepreneur, and renowned media personality, has registered yet another first; by winning the Dutch Erasmus Prize, the admired European prize named after humanist scholar and philosopher Desiderius Erasmus, he has become the first black comedian to clinch the prestigious recognition.
The Praemium Erasmianum Foundation selected the former host of popular TV show, The Daily Show, for his brilliant input to the theme ‘In Praise of Folly,’ named after one of the most famous books by Erasmus, filled with social criticism, humor, and political satire. Although numerous fans across the world received the news of his exit from the daily show after seven years with immense shock, the foundation celebrated Noah for being a worthy custodian and ambassador of what they called the ‘Erasmian Spirit’.
The prize which comes with a cash sum of €150,000 ($159,000) is given yearly to a “person or institution that has made an exceptional contribution to the humanities, the social sciences or the arts, in Europe and beyond.” The foundation commended Noah for sustained efforts at gathering a youthful, diverse, and global audience and dishing out freshness to consumers of Media content, especially during unusual moments like the COVID 19 era, Donald Trump’s presidency, as well as during the Black Lives Matter movement.
A Hollywood Reporter had reported, earlier this year, that fans of the 39-year-old should stand by for his new book about forgiveness, reception and the secret to harmony.
Noah, an advocate for political and social issues, was born in Johannesburg in 1984; this means he was raised during the apartheid era. His mother’s root is traced to the Xhosa ethnic group in South Africa, while his father is of Swiss-German ancestry. His career in comedy commenced in the early 2000s, in South Africa, when he went round performing in local comedy clubs and hosting his own comic radio show. He attracted national attention with “The Trevor Noah Show,” an electrifying talk show that aired from 2010 to 2011, on a South African television.
In 2011, Noah debuted on U.S. television with “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.” Ever since, he has featured on numerous American talk shows, including “The Late Show with David Letterman” and “The Ellen DeGeneres Show.” He became the new host of “The Daily Show” on Comedy Central, In 2015, after Jon Stewart.
Noah is also the brain behind several comedy specials, including “The Daywalker” in 2009, “That’s Racist” in 2012, and “Afraid of the Dark” in 2017. He published his engaging memoir “Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood” In 2016, and it became a New York Times bestseller. He frequently speaks up against police brutality and racial profiling; he has also advocated for gender equality. In 2018, he donated a sum of $10,000 to the Chicago Public Schools Foundation to help support arts education.
In 2021, American streaming platform, Netflix and UN cultural agency UNESCO partnered to launch an innovative short film competition on ‘African Folktales Re-imagined’ across Sub-Saharan Africa. The winners of the competition were trained and mentored by industry professionals and provided with a $75,000 production budget to create short films as an “Anthology of African folktales”.
Following a selection from more than 2000 applications from 13 countries in the sub-Saharan Africa region, six filmmakers were selected. ‘Katera of the Punishment Island’, directed by Ugandan Loukman Ali is among the six short films co-sponsored on the continent by Netflix and UNESCO.
The competition was aimed to discover new voices in African cinema and to give emerging filmmakers in Sub-Saharan Africa visibility on a global scale. It was also to find the bravest, wittiest, and most surprising retellings of some of Africa’s most-loved folktales and share them with entertainment fans across 190 countries in the world.
“Katera of the Punishment Island” is a revenge thriller where a mother turns into a ruthless vigilante, tracking down and drowning a soldier who has killed her baby in an explosion of violence and jubilation.
The 32-year-old director of the short film, Loukman Ali said is a worthy representative of a new generation of African filmmakers, who grew up on a diet of mainstream cinema and “want to be seen by as many as people as possible”, scorning so-called genre films. Loukman explained that he embraced cinema as a form of escapism and a way to forget the poverty surrounding him as he was growing up.
The five other young African filmmakers who were selected by the scheme and also partook in the benefits include “Anyango and the Ogre” by Kenyan Voline Ogutu, Zabin Halima (Halima’s Choice) by Nigerian Korede Azeez, “Katope” by Tanzanian Walt Mzengi Corey, “MaMlambo” by South African Gcobica Yako, and “Enmity Dijnn” by Mauritanian Mohamed Echkouna.
“Enmity Dijnn” is about an ancient Enmity Dijnn who finds himself in an unfamiliar city confronted by a familiar foe, three generations after he was last summoned. “Katope” is about a young child with magical origins who sets out on a journey to help end the drought that is devastating the community, while “MaMlambo” is about a mystical river being that watched over the sacred waters of discarded bodies.
Each of these African filmmakers was partnered with a local production company and was under the guidance of Netflix-appointed supervising producer, Steven Markovish from Big World Cinema.
Nigerian classic films from the early nineties have been reemerging with colorful facelifts.
One Nigerian brand is at the forefront of some of these remakes.
With a list of remakes, biopics, and originals, Play-network has kept African film lovers curious.
Charles Okpaleke’s Play-network studios in Nigeria has acquired the rights to yet another Nollywood classic, Karishika, adding to its long list of Nollywood remakes and sequels. The media and hospitality entrepreneur confirmed the procurement of 1996 Nollywood classic ‘Karishika’ and went on to invite skilled horror filmmakers to get aboard the project.
On one of his social media pages Okpaleke said, “I’m putting together a team of horror film makers. Kindly recommend a Director, DOP, team of script writers etc, with relevant skills that I can work with. I acquired IP rights to Karishika and I wish to work with creatives specialized in horror films.” ‘Karashika’ is a classic Nollywood horror movie dwelling on witchcraft, temptations and its punishments. The classic hit warmed its way into people’s hearts with stars like Becky Okorie featuring in it; it was directed by Christian Onu.
In addition to the horror classic, the company had also announced that a new movie, in collaboration with Ramsey Nouah, titled ‘Igbo Landing’ will be out in coming months. Sharing the news on social media, the CEO wrote, “Play Network Studios and Ramsey Films will be embarking on another epoch-making journey down history lane”.
The history of the Igbos, from Eastern Nigeria, will be incomplete without mentioning the tragic story of the mass suicide in 1803 when about 75 Igbo people who felt they had taken too much from the slavers who took them on a torturous three-month journey from West Africa to St. Simons Island. They thought drowning themselves along with their captors in the sea, rather than living as slaves, was a better option. This singular act has made the Igbo Landing, according to many, the first major freedom march in America’s history.
With ‘Igbo Landing’ premiering in 2025, the company has commenced casting for ‘Hijack 93’. The forthcoming film is based on a true-life story about four Nigerian teenagers who hijacked a plane to protest the annulment of the 1993 presidential elections. The historic October 25, 1993, event, involved Richard Ogunderu, Kabir Adenuga, Benneth Oluwadaisi and Kenny Rasaq-Lawal taking over a Nigerian Airways plane enroute Abuja from Lagos forcing its pilots to land in Niger republic. Their audacious move was an attempt to force the government to hand over power to MKO Abiola.
In the past 3 years, Play-network studios has continued to create and successfully market some of the Nigeria’s biggest remakes; From living in Bondage, Aki and Pawpaw, Nneka the pretty serpent, to Glamour girls amongst others. Many fans are certainly looking forward to seeing more reboots especially the six titles the studios has planned between 2023/2024 including one classic remake, a sequel, two biopics and original stories – Diamond Ring (Remake), Glamour Girls (Sequel), King Jaja of Opobo, Shina Rambo, The Six, and Hijack 93.
‘Hijack 93,’ stands prominent on the list of new films from the company, followed by the company’s first original creation ‘The Six’ whispered to be a continuation of the story of Richard Williams, played by Ramsey Nouah, the weird, charismatic leader of a cult. The studio also acquired full rights to remake the 1998 classic thriller ‘Diamond Ring’, directed by Tade Ogidan, which tells the tale of a talented freshman at the university who goes on to join the wrong association and is enticed into stealing a dead woman’s diamond ring. Awful aftermaths followed shortly after the stealing. Teju Babyface debuted in a leading role and was supported by Sola Sobowale, Richard Mofe Damijo, Liz Benson, Bukky Ajayi and Bimbo Akintola.
Jaja of Opobo and Shina Rambo inspired two biopics, and they are followed by the sequel of the ‘Glamour Girls’.
The new digital platform aims to give voice to stories from Africa and the Africans in the Diaspora.
It also aims to establish itself as a reliable news source of global news that matters to African audiences.
In order to emphasize news about and from Africa to a global audience in four languages including Swahili, English, Hausa, and French, Turkey’s public broadcaster (TRT) has developed a new digital news platform called TRT Afrika. The channel launched on Friday, the second day of the First Broadcasting Summit held in Istanbul and organized by TRT and the African Union of Broadcasting. It is a three-day summit that began on March 30.
According to TRT’s objective and inclusive journalism goals of objective and inclusive journalism, TRT Afrika will offer its viewers a different perspective on Africa and feature global stories of significance to Africa with rich, timely, and balanced information. It will also give voice to tales from Africa and the Africans in the diaspora, putting the distinctive fusion of their essential beliefs at the center of global affairs.
With employees from 15 different African countries, TRT Afrika’s digital mission is to establish itself as a reliable news source with global news that matters to African audiences and create high-quality content for young people who use social media to stay connected to the world.
The new digital news platform aims to address the information demands of the global African diaspora by offering distinctive digital content, exclusive stories, investigations, and documentaries of local African topics to African and international audiences.
TRT Afrika will operate in numerous African nations, including Gambia, Morocco, Nigeria, and Cameroon. In doing so, it also strengthens Turkey’s long-standing commitment to Africa by giving African voices a stage to be heard and honored worldwide.
On Friday, introductory remarks for TRT Afrika will be made by Presidential Communications Director Fahrettin Altun, TRT General Manager Mehmet Zahid Sobaci, and African Broadcasting Union senior manager Gregoire Ndjaka.
African Broadcasting Union delegates gathered on Thursday for the summit’s opening day under the banner “Towards a Sustainable Future: Reshaping the Public Broadcasting Service.” At least 23 journalists from 16 different African nations were also given training on subjects like Tools to be used against the Western ethnocentric approach”, “Contribution of the technology to the change of journalism,” and “Change of the media during the pandemic process”.
Later on Friday, the summit will include discussions on subjects like: “Africa-Türkiye Relations in the Mirror of Public Service Media: Shared Vision and Future Challenges”, “How Can African and Turkish Public Service Media Stay Sustainable in the Digital Age?” and “The Changing Face of Global News Feeds: Common for a Fairer World”, and Panels on “African Stories with Vision” will follow.
TRT Afrika is the newest member of the TRT family, which already includes TRT World, TRT Arabic, TRT Russian, TRT Deutsch, TRT Français, and TRT Balkan. Individually and collectively, these channels all present a variety of viewpoints and voices to viewers throughout the world.
The president of Uganda went on a 3-day visit to Algiers, during which two agreements and five MoUs were signed.
Algeria had shown a willingness to buy powdered milk worth $500 million and Uganda in turn will buy animal health drugs and others.
There will be improvements in production and quality of products to match the market requirements.
The president of Uganda, Yoweri Museveni was in Algiers for a 3-day visit, and during his meeting with the delegations, it was revealed that at least 150 Algerian representatives of private and public organizations are to visit Uganda soon to explore available business opportunities. During the course of the visit, two agreements and five memoranda of understanding were signed between the two countries.
In light of partnering together and growing the resources of Africa, the two countries have decided to partner up. Museveni said “We discussed issues on growing the prosperity of Africa; agreed to work together in the areas of trade, energy, education, agriculture, and counter-terrorism where they have experience in this, just like us. We are looking at powdered milk which is already coming here, coffee, tea, and then products from Algeria of petroleum and petrochemicals.” Uganda is hoping to increase its agricultural exports to Algeria.
Algeria had also shown a willingness to buy powdered milk worth $500 million from Uganda, this was announced late last year after a meeting with the Algerian ambassador to Uganda. Frank Tumwebaze, the minister of Agriculture, Animal Industry, and Fisheries said apart from milk, the MoUs signed cover several other items, like education, animal health, oil and gas, tourism, and trade. “They will buy our powdered milk and coffee and later bananas. We shall in turn buy from them animal health drugs and others,” he said.
There will also be improvements in production and the quality of products in order to match the requirements of the market, this was confirmed by Tumwebaze. He further stated “Worry not anymore about the market for our dairy. The only condition is to perfect our value chain standards which so far have been approved!”
Two more agreements have been signed by the Beyond the Grid Fund for Africa (BGFA) programme with off-grid energy service companies to promote the expansion and scale-up of solar-powered water pumps in Uganda and high-quality solar home systems in Zambia. These agreements aim to increase the accessibility of energy in rural and peri-urban areas, promote productive use of energy, and make off-grid energy products more affordable in Uganda and Zambia.
Tulima Solar Ltd and d.light Zambia are the two service providers, with a total value of approximately EUR 3.9 million. These agreements will enable the establishment of around 105,200 new energy service connections, benefitting some 547,000 people in Uganda and Zambia.
Tulima Solar is a specialized distributor and provider of solar water pumps, primarily for smallholder agribusinesses and farmers. With the BGFA funding, Tulima Solar will accelerate sales of its solar-powered water pumps, aiming to establish up to 2,760 new energy connections and benefiting up to 14,300 people living in rural Uganda.
d.light Zambia is a solar home system distributor established in 2017 as a subsidiary of the d.light Group. With the BGFA funding, d.light Zambia plans to distribute over 102,000 new high-quality, clean, and affordable solar home systems in rural and peri-urban areas of Zambia, benefiting over 530,000 people.
These projects will generate job opportunities within the off-grid energy and productive use sector, support climate change adaptation within the agriculture sector in Uganda, enable better quality education in Zambia, and promote the increased usage of renewable energy sources.
The BGFA programme has contracted 15 projects so far, and more projects are under negotiation. A new funding round (BGFA5) is currently ongoing in Uganda, with private sector companies invited to apply for results-based funding by 4 May 2023.
Jay Jay Okocha is considered by many as the kind of player that shows up once in several decades.
His impact in the game of soccer is not easy to erase.
More and more people, especially from younger generations, will identify with his exploits after seeing the creative work put together in honor of this icon.
Former Nigerian super-star footballer, Augustine Jay Jay Okocha, after more than a decade of hanging his playing boots, will be back on screen, this time he will neither be playing soccer nor playing the role of a pundit for media houses during key matches; he will have his story retold in an animated series titled ‘Jay Jay: The Chosen One.’ Fans of the international sports star will be treated to 13 episodes of Okocha’s passion for football and his love for the animal kingdom which bestows superpowers on him in return for his fight against illegal poaching; all simulated in this enthralling animated series.
Reports say that the show is essentially a reimagining of his childhood days. This Showmax’s first attempt at creating an original animated series will spotlight an 11-year-old Okocha and his dreams of playing for his school at a significant football contest with a team composed of his rag-tag friends. The series parades a robust Nigerian cast, led by Prince Unigwe who plays Jay Jay, along-side veteran actor Chinedu Ikedieze of the hilarious ‘Aki and PawPaw’ fame, Samuel Ajibola, Eric Obinna, Pamilerin Ayodeji, and others.
The icon did not hide his excitement; he says he feels quite celebrated and even animated about the idea to create an animation that recreates his childhood. About the work, Okocha said, “I’m honored to have an animated series that reimagines my childhood. Jay Jay: The Chosen One is going to bring back good childhood memories as well as inspire young children who have dreams to be football players.”
Jay Jay featured quite prominently in three World Cups for the Nigerian national team, the Super Eagles, between 1993 and 2006, and led the same national team to Olympic victory at the games in Atlanta, in 1996. Jay Jay: The Chosen One stands out as an apt acknowledgement of Okocha’s input to football, in Nigeria and globally. It represents his lasting legacy in the global soccer scene. The talented playmaker was a member of the Super Eagles squad that lifted the prestigious Africa Cup of Nations trophy in Tunisia, in 1994; he has about 73 caps to his name.
At club level, Jay Jay had successful sessions in Turkey, for Fenerbahce. He also frequently featured flagrantly in France’s PSG fixtures, and for English Premier League side Bolton Wanderers. Okocha also played prominently in Germany and Qatar, then, finally retired in the United Kingdom in 2008 after his stint with Hull City. He is regarded as one of the most skillful offensive midfielders the game of football has ever seen; an all-time great, and he is also considered by a lot of people as the greatest footballer to ever emerge from Nigeria.
For Showmax, the series, which will be produced by Nihilent Limited alongside 5th Dimension as well as animation studio I-Realities, is the first shot at creating an animated work. They said, through a spokesperson, that the show would “give Nigerian children of all ages the opportunity to see themselves represented in animated form which is positive, humorous and educational” and “enchant and motivate kids across our continent through fantasy adventures as well as the power of sport.”
Ms. Yolisa Phahle, CEO of Showmax and Connected Video at MultiChoice says, “Not only is Jay Jay: The Chosen One another locally inspired Showmax Original, it marks the beginning of our adventures in animation. This is a show we believe will find audiences globally and shines the spotlight on yet another world-class African achiever that we hope will be enjoyed by kids and the entire family.”
Nihilent Limited’s director and Executive Vice Chairman, Mr. LC Singh, said, “I always knew that creating a sports-based animation series for kids would be challenging and rewarding at the same time. The amount of work that goes into every single frame is immense, but seeing the final product come to life makes it all worth it.”
The launch of the series has left many fans of the icon as elated as he is. Watch the trailer of the creative work here https://youtu.be/Bk840Nt-0ls .