Several hundred of Ethiopia’s soldiers entered Ethiopia Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s office grounds in the capital to demand a pay raise. Some of them carried weapons causing alarm among Ethiopians who wondered whether this amounted to a serious security breach, says BBC Amharic’s Jibat Tamirat.
The situation caused alarm, leading to road closures in the area and the internet to be shut off for hours. Abiy Ahmed was unhappy that soldiers had brought weapons and ordered them to do 10 press-ups. However, the smiles on the soldiers’ faces as they performed the press-ups suggest the prime minister succeeded in defusing the situation amicably.
Microsoft Wants To Promote Digital Transformation in Africa And Here Is How
South Africa is the home for Microsoft’s first data centers in Africa. The two data centers are located in Cape Town and Johannesburg. The new data centers are serving Azure, with Dynamics 365 and Office 365 scheduled to be added by end of 2019.
The company had, in 2017, announced that it plans to have data centers in South Africa. Overall, the multinational technology company has 54 cloud regions announced around the world.
Data Centers and Digital Transformation
The new data centers in South Africa make Microsoft the first global provider to offer cloud services from data centers in Africa. The company aims to help in promoting digital transformation in Africa.
The location of the data centers in Africa means regional users are guaranteed of resilient cloud services, enhanced security, compliance needs, and data residency. Furthermore, the new data centers will help promote global investment, improve access to the Internet and cloud services in Africa, and increase business opportunities in the region.
Projections from IDC–International Data Corporation–indicate that adoption of the cloud services will generate around 112,000 jobs in South Africa—by end of 2022. The data centers will facilitate improved environment for building digital businesses. Nedbank for instance, plans to utilize Microsoft Azure to increase its agility, customer focus, and competitiveness.
Furthermore, Azure provides companies with data privacy and security. This makes it a suitable service for banks like Nedbank. The Peace Parks Foundation and eThekwini Water have also signed up with Microsoft for computing services.
Microsoft Azure is a cloud computing service. It can be used for building, testing, managing, and deploying services and applications through Microsoft data centers. The service supports different tools, frameworks, and programming languages.
Users of Azure can enjoy instant computing resources on demand. In addition, businesses or individuals using the service do not have to build on-site data centers or have server cooling environments. Also Azure users do not endure maintenance costs, electricity costs, and use of floor space. As such, Azure brings down the costs of computing.
Microsoft’s Investment in Africa
Microsoft has a 30-year history of operations in Africa. With over 10,000 local partners on the continent, the new data centers in South Africa add to the company’s long list of investments in Africa. The expansive investments in Africa took a new direction with Microsoft’s launch of 4Africa Initiative in 2013.
The initiative seeks to facilitate the company’s engagement with startups, partners, and governments. The aim of these engagements is to help the youth develop locally relevant technology, 21st-century skills, and affordable access to the Internet.
Other global tech giants with plans to open data centers in Africa include Huawei and Amazon. Facebook announced it will set up a content review center in Nairobi, Kenya.
20 Modern African Women Leaders Who Are Opening New Trails For Women
African women leaders are working in all spheres of life. Leadership in Africa has been male-dominated for centuries. However, that does not mean there have not been transformative female leaders in the picture too. Africa is a growing continent. It is experiencing social, cultural, political and economic growth, in which iconic African women have made and continue to make a significant contribution. These women have changed the narrative of African women taking the backseat by empowering fellow women, men, and children.
Many African women today are taking active roles in the different areas of life, politics the economy, name it. All that is owed to transformational African women leaders who challenged the status quo and opened the way for others to follow.
African Women Leaders
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf – Liberia
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf is one of the great African women leaders have been democratically elected as Liberia’s 24th president. That is not all. Ellen entered history books as being the first female president of the African continent.
Her struggle for peace and democracy for her country led to her being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize Laureate in 2011. Ellen has since made many accomplishments while in government by boosting her country’s economy, security and international relations.
Ellen has been passionate about leadership and was very aggressive in fighting corruption and nepotism in the government when she was appointed the minister of finance.
One of her major accomplishments was erasing nearly $5 billion in crippling foreign debt after just three years of being in office, paving the way for foreign investment and boosting the annual government budget from $80 million to $516 million.
Joice Mujuru has done an impressive job for her country. The great African woman leader deputized Robert Mugabe by being the vice president of Zimbabwe between years 2004-2014. During her time in government, she was able to serve in different ministries including Women’s affairs where she played an active role in ensuring that the women in her country were empowered.
Joice is one of the women leaders that were able to get into the male-dominated scene at a young age of 25. One of her major accomplishments was protecting her country while in the army which saw her rise to the ranks of a member of general staff in the Zimbabwe African National Liberation Army.
Aja Fatoumata Jallow-Tambajang – Gambia
Aja Fatoumata has served as the Vice president of Gambia. This strong African woman has played an active role in the fight for human rights, more so, women’s rights. She was also in the forefront of fighting Yahya Jammeh’s dictatorial regime which saw the country’s citizens gain back their freedom of expression and association.
Sophia Abdi Noor – Kenya
Coming from a marginalized community in Kenya where women had no much power, Sophia Abdi Noor impressed many. Against all the odds, she managed to beat her male counterpart making her the first female elected Member of Parliament from the region. Since then she has tirelessly been fighting for the rights of women in marginalized communities: this has seen her win international awards related to women empowerment.
Diane Shima Rwigara – Rwanda
Diane Rigwara is one of the African women leaders who is very vocal when it comes to women’s rights. Rigwara has tirelessly fought against bad governance, oppression and many other forms of injustices despite the constant intimidation by the government. Her dreams of running for president has encountered all sorts of resistance including being accused of indecency.
Mbali Ntuli – South Africa
Mbali Ntuli is one of Africa’s youngest femaleleaders having ventured into politics at a very young age back at her University. Her political efforts saw her being elected as a ward Councillor. Like many other African women leaders, she faced a lot of violence and intimidation, but that did not stop her from making the political scene friendly for women.
Alengot Oromait – Uganda
Alengot Oromait is one of the youngest African women leaders more so, in the political scene that is very passionate about health policy, the environment, and gender issues. She has been recognized by Forbes as Top 20 Power Women in Africa. She became legislator at age 19, making her the youngest in African history. Alengot rose out of the obscurity after her father, Michael Oromait, died of hypertension on the morning of Saturday July 21, 2016. She succeeded him as MP for Usuk County. She beat eight other candidates vying for the seat, earning more than double the votes of the nearest runner-up.
Saara Kuugongelwa-Ahmadhila – Namibia
Saara Kuugongelwa-Ahmadhila is the current Prime Minister of the Republic of Namibia. She also doubles up as the only female head of government of Africa. You should not get confused because her counterpart in Ethiopia (below) is the only head of State in Africa. She entered into politics when she received an appointment as the Director General of the National Planning Commission at the age of 27 in 1995. The Right Honorable also served as a minister for finance in 2003.
Sahle-Work Zewde – Ethiopia
Sahle-Work Zewde recently entered the rank of transformational African women leaders by being the only female head of state in Africa currently. This iconic African woman looks to change the view of the political scene. She shows the world that any gender can occupy any leadership position. She also looks to empower women to set foot in the political scene. Zewde was also the first woman to receive an appointment to head the United Nations Office to the African Union.
Joyce Hilda Banda – Malawi
Joyce Banda was the president of Malawi from 2012 to 2014. She founded and led the People’s Party in 2011. Prior to becoming the fourth president of Malawi she was the immediate former vice-president of the country. For these reasons, Banda broke two important records in Malawi and Africa of serving as the first female vice-president and president. Her leadership and contributions to the development of her country and Africa is immense. this is because she also served ministerial positions, as a philanthropic and activist.
Louise Mushikiwabo – Rwanda
Louise is an African woman leader that is doing great things. One of her achievements is her role as secretary general of the International Organisation of La Francophonie (OIF). She has successfully done the job of bringing together 58 countries and regional governments hence ensuring that there is a peaceful coexistence among the people. Previously, she was the Foreign Affairs and Cooperation minister. Before that, she was the minister of information. Additionally, she also served as the Rwandan Government Spokesperson.
Ngozi Okonji-Iweala – Nigeria
Ngozi Okonjo is one of the African women leaders that is making a difference in the modern world. This transformational leader is looking to make the digital environment, especially twitter safer and healthier for the over 300 million users being in the board directors. Among her other accomplishments is holding several positions at the World Bank. Previously, she served as finance minister for two terms in Nigeria.
Fatma Samoura – Senegal
Fatma proves to the world that every job can be done by any gender. She is the highest-ranking women in the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) governing body. She is the first woman to attain the rank in FIFA as secretary-general, and is doing a great job which has, in turn, motivated even the younger women to achieve goals that previously proved impossible. She features in this list due to her immense recognition worldwide. Forbes named her as number one in the Most Powerful Women in International Sports in 2018. Additionally, the BBC recognized her as one of their 100 women.
Amina Mohammed – Nigeria
Amina has served in the top ranks in the United Nations. Her job is to ensure that the African child, both boy and girl have everything they need to make their dreams come true. Before taking up the UN job, Amina served as Minister of Environment of Nigeria. She also previously worked closely with the president of Nigeria to realize the Millennium Development Goals. Her contributions to African leadership and development is immense and spans many years.
Nkosazana Clarice Dlamini-Zuma is a South Africa politician and apartheid activist. She has served as government minister in many dockets including the current Minister in the Presidency for the National Planning Commission for Policy and Evaluation. Popularly known as NDZ, Nkosazana served as Minister of Foreign Affairs under president Mandela, Mbeki and Motlanthe. When her former husband of 16 years Zuma took over as president, he moved her to Home Affairs. She has served in the AU and harbored dreams of un-sitting Zuma as the President of the National Congress. this dream was put on hold by Cyril Ramaphosa.
Martha Karua – Kenya
Martha Karua is known as the “Iron Lady” of Kenya due to her no-nonsense approach to leadership, politics and activism. She is one of the pioneer female legislators in the East Africa leading economy. As a lawyer by profession, Karua has made immense contributions to family law in Kenya. She came to political limelight in 1992 when she was first elected as member of parliament for Gichugu constituency. During her time in politics, she served as a minister in the ministries of Justice and Constitutional Affairs as well as Water Resources Management. Her last attempts at presidency and later gubernatorial positions were unsuccessful. However, she remains a force to reckon with in Kenyan politics.
Winnie Byanyima – Uganda
Winnie Byanyima is one of the African women leaders that are relentlessly fighting for human and women’s rights. Her fight against poverty is inspirational too. As a result of her competencies, she has been serving as the executive director of Oxfam International which is a global humanitarian relief organization. Previously, the served as a member of parliament in Uganda for 11 years. Additionally, she has the capacity to professionally shift gears from diplomacy, aeronautical engineering and politics.
Phumzile Mlambo Ngcuka- South Africa
Phumzile Mlambo Ngcuka looks to use her post as the Executive Director of UN Women. One of the major achievements is serving as South Africa’s deputy president. She leads in efforts of fighting for gender parity in politics, equality and equal pay for women.
Samia Suluhu Hassan-Tamzania
Samia Suluhu Hassan is the very first and only vice-president in Tanzania. She is the second vice president in East Africa after Speciosa Wandira-Kazibwe who served between 1994 and 2003 in Uganda. She was the running mate of John Pombe Magufuli who clinched the presidency in 2015. Previously, she served as the member of parliament representing Makunduchi Constituency. In addition to this, Samia also served as a minister in various dockets in Zanzibar and Tanzania.
Hanna Tetteh – Ghana
Hanna Tetteh has served in many government positions in Ghana. The peak of her achievements was her appointment in 2013 as Minister of Foreign Affairs by President Dramani Mahama. Additionally, she has a background in law and therefore well versed in her duties. She is also perfect in showing the world the leadership material she possesses. For these reasons, she is a darling to the public in Ghana.
Africa is proud of the female leaders above; they have made an enormous difference and played a significant role in challenging stereotypes around women.
2019 Africa Owned Car Brands Manufactured In Africa
Africans are taking the plunge into the automobile industry, positioning themselves to compete against more established car brand. To succeed, they have to do a little more for their demographic and be a little better than their counterparts. Cars made in Africa, and by Africans, are changing the narrative about Africa’s ability to produce state-of-the-art machinery.
These cars produced in Africa. The end products is evidence of Africa’s automotive industry positioning itself to compete with seasoned and established foreign brands.
Africa Owned Car Brands Manufactured In Africa
Joel Jackson, a British entrepreneur, started Mobius Motors, a car factory in Kenya. Mobius motors released Mobius bus, a low cost designed for common African road terrains. Mobius bus is an eight-seater vehicle with large cargo space. The vehicle can reach a maximum speed of 160km/h on its manually transmitted gearbox.
The company later manufactured Mobius II which is an advanced version of the pioneer model—Mobius one. The new version has a better interior, higher ground clearance, power steering, and sealed side windows.
A shift in focus from agriculture to industry in Ghana has yielded great results. The Kantaka is a proudly made in Ghana car. The car is available in various models, shapes, and colors—the Kantaka pickup, the Kantaka SUV etc.
The Kantaka Group of Companies manufactures the Kantaka. Apostle Kwadwo Safo owns the company which is located in Gomoa Mpota. The Kantaka is probably one of the most promising cars made in Africa. This is a unique feature that distinguishes its style from Chinese and Japanese cars. Specifically, the Kantaka is designed for local conditions in Ghana.
The brain behind Innoson, a Nigerian car, is Chief Dr. Ifediaso Chukwuma. Dr. Chukwuma is the founder of The Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing Company.
The company manufactures luxury, trucks, and minibusses. Some of the advantages that set Innoson car apart include: its affordable price; three years warranty on gears, axle, and engine, and; the ability of the car to correspond with needs of an average car user in Nigeria. In addition, Innoson is a modern and comfortable car.
Bailey Edwards-South Africa
This is a replica sports car made in South Africa. Brothers Peter and Greg Bailey started the manufacturing company in 2003, creating the brand name of Bailey cars.
The company builds and customizes performance cars—such as the Ferrari P4 and the Porsche 917. In addition to its South African base, the company has a factory in New York. The New York factory caters for the North American market.
Birkin Cars Ltd
This is another South African car manufactured by Birkin Ltd. John Watson owns Birkin Ltd. The company specializes in making the S3 Roadster. the company has manufactured more than 8,000 S3s since 1988. The S3 bears resemblance to the original Lotus.
Wallyscar is a small but powerful car made in Tunisia. Brothers Zied Guiga and Omar Guiga founded the company in 2006. The car is designed for off-road driving with its largest market being in Africa and the Middle East. In addition, the car has a market in Europe. The manufacturer plans to make the car more colorful, sporty, and more environment-friendly.
The Kiira EV Smack—Uganda
The Kiira EV Smack is an invention by engineering students at Makerere University in Uganda. It is an electric hybrid car by Kiira Motors Corporation. Kiira EV Smack is an advancement of the original prototype by the students. The car is cost-effective. Both diesel and electricity can provide power to the car. The car is expected to become available to consumers before the end of 2022.
Several cars made in Africa show the creativity and ingenuity of the African motor industry. For example, some of these cars, when fully developed, can run on solar power. Others are electric hybrid cars.
Another car made in Ghana is the Turtle, which is designed to meet local needs. However, the Turtle is not as sophisticated as the Kantaka. the ingenuity in this car comes from the fact that it is a 100 percent recycled car.
The Wind and Solar Powered Car-Nigeria
Segun Oyeyiola produced this wind and solar powered car as a student at Obafemi Awolowo University. The car was Segun’s final year project at the institution. This car is a product of a Volkswagen Beetle and other materials.
The car was to function on both solar and wind power. During the day, the car uses solar energy. At night, the car uses a wind turbine. This car, however, is still a work in progress.
Cars that Never Survived to Mass Production
A product of Morocco, Laraki Epitome is manufactured by Laraki. Moroccan yatch designer Abdeslam Laraki owns the manufacturing company. In addition to Laraki Epitome, the company manufactured the Borac and the Fulgura—supercar and luxury car. Laraki Epitome is a perfect combination of luxury and speed.
Compared to large scale manufacturers, Laraki makes its cars based on a concept. As such, cars at Laraki are custom-made for each customer. In 2015, Laraki cars were ranked as some of the most expensive in the world—priced at over $2 million. This fete definitely makes Laraki the most expensive cars made in Africa.
The Saroukh el-Jamahiriya was originally designed for former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi. As you would expect, this is a luxury and safe car.
The car had an inbuilt electronic defense system. In addition, the interiors had airbags to increase safety of the vehicle. Furthermore, the car could run over hundreds of miles on flat tires. Definitely one of the best cars made in Africa.
Although the car competed with other luxury cars from Germany, it never went into full-time production.
The Perana Z-one is a product of the Perana Performance Group. Perana Performance Group is based in South Africa. produced as a limited edition car, the Z-One is a highly desirable sports car–there are only around 10 of them in the world.
Although African countries continue to produce cars, cars from Japan, China, Germany, and other foreign countries still dominate the African market.
A common concept is an assembling industry, where foreign companies such as Nissan, Volkswagen, and Toyota fully assemble their cars in Africa. In 2018, Volkswagen opened a car assembly plant in Kigali, Rwanda. In Kenya, Volkswagen has an assembly plant in Thika.
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