Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Next Big Thing: Joshua Siaw (Business/ Finance/Law)

Joshua Siaw

Title: Leading Global Law Firm Appoints African Rising Star Joshua Siaw As Youngest Ever Partner
Dated: 1-12-2014

Global law firm White & Case LLP (W&C) has appointed one of Africa’s rising stars, Ghanaian-national Joshua Siaw, as global Partner in its banking and finance practice with immediate effect. Formerly Director of W&C’s Africa practice in London, the promotion makes Siaw, 30, the youngest ever global Partner at the elite international law firm and, the youngest Partner amongst all of the leading international law firms in the City of London.

Chris Utting, Executive partner of White & Case, in a press statement says Siaw is an exceptional example of a new generation of lawyers who are helping to shape Africa’s future.

Siaw is one of Africa’s most influential young business leaders. In 2014, he was named a Young Business Leader of the Year by the African Union and identified by Euromoney as one of Africa’s rising stars– the publication’s list of individuals and power brokers who are transforming the financial, investment and business landscape in Africa. The Africa Report also recognized Siaw as “one of three individuals shaping Africa’s economic future”.

Siaw is well known across Africa for his extraordinary business and political connections. In his new position, he will be responsible for expanding W&C’s business in Africa, positioning it as a law firm of choice for both government and the private sector.

This will build on W&C’s solid track record of doing business in Africa. The firm has more than 40 years’ experience operating on the continent and in 1995 was the first international law firm to establish an office in South Africa post-Apartheid. The Firm has advised on some of the most groundbreaking cross-border transactions on the continent and on almost all of the sovereign bonds to be issued across Sub-Saharan Africa over the last 10 years.

Siaw’s ambition is to help drive intra-Africa trade saying this is one of the key answers to the continent’s challenges. He cites the growing strength of African financial institutions and the increase in the number of African governments setting up sovereign wealth funds to diversify their economies as examples of trends to watch.

He is excited about the future of Africa and highlights the recent discoveries of natural resources across the continent as testament to the long term potential and prospects for growth in Africa.

“When you look at sub-Saharan Africa today the discovery of natural resources such as oil and gas is changing the face of economies and presenting new opportunities for increased foreign direct investment on the continent. This is what makes the region, and indeed the whole continent, the most exciting place to be,” he says during a recent chat with this writer. Source: Forbes

Do read the rest of this incredible article via: http://www.forbes.com/sites/mfonobongnsehe/2014/12/01/leading-global-law-firm-appoints-30-year-old-african-rising-star-joshua-siaw-as-youngest-ever-partner/

Paulina says: What an inspiration!!! Braaa Joshua Siaw --Business/ Finance/Law is a triple threat!!! An impressive young man, Joshua Siaw is another name to add to the growing band of young men and women of Ghanaian origin who are moving & shaking in the competitive world of Business/finance/Law --- 

Note, La Ghana Rising Blog is watching and we are very inspired!!

Folks do make time to check out the following eye-opening interview with Joshua Siaw via BBC Africa at: https://soundcloud.com/bbcafrica/design-your-own-life-the-story-ghanas-joshua-siaw?ocid=socialflow_twitter ---Joshua Siaw we are very proud of you. Thanks x

Tuesday, 2 December 2014

Fashion: Edward Enninful is honoured at British Fashion Awards 2014...

Winner Edward Enninful with uber model, Naomi Campbell

A BIG congratulations to uber fashion stylist Edward Enninful --who was awarded the prestigious, 'Isabella Blow Award' for Fashion Creator at last nights British Fashion Awards.. 



Music: Nico and Vinz win Soul Train Music Award.....

Title: Ivorian and Ghanaian Duo Nico & Vinz Win Best New Artist at the Soul Train Music Awards
Dated: 1-12-14

The new dynamic duo Nico and Vinz yesterday took home the award for Best New Artist at the Soul Train Music Awards for their breakthrough hit “Am I Wrong.”

Nico and Vinz, who up until January 2014 went by the group name Envy, are the ones to watch in the music industry. Hailing from Norway, the group has tapped into the heart of global culture by writing and performing songs that joyfully speak of life, love and identity.

These exciting new songwriters of Ivorian and Ghanaian backgrounds respectively have come together fusing their varied eclectic influences—from pop to reggae, West African dance to hip hop, rock to soul—to create an engaging sound featuring soul-stirring messages that claim high hopes for the future.

“We are Norwegian and African,” Vinz says, “It is important for us to inspire. We sing about things we’ve been going through and about finding ourselves. To us it’s important to have a message, and the goal for us is to inspire people to find happiness.”

Paulina says: Its such wonderful news --I just had to share... Do read the rest of this article and watch their video via the Face2Face Africa website at: https://face2faceafrica.com/article/ivorian-ghanaian-nico-vinz-win-best-new-artist-soul-train-music-awards#.VH2oxGfwvIV  Thanks x

For more info about haute duo Nico and Vinz visit: http://www.nicoandvinz.com/aboutus


Thursday, 27 November 2014

Ghana’s Malaise............

Title: Ghana tarnishes ‘Africa rising’ story
Dated: August 2014

An old-fashioned crisis shows that the continent’s economic miracle needs nurturing
The world has become used to the idea of Africa being on the march. In the past decade, after two decades of stagnation, the continent’s economy has nearly doubled in size on a per-capita basis, thanks to a virtuous circle of strong economic growth – helped by high commodities prices and Chinese-funded infrastructure investments – as well as better governance.

And few countries typify the “Africa rising” story better than Ghana, the west African nation famous for its gold and cocoa, and most recently oil.
Some of the gilt came off the Ghanaian miracle last weekend. The government announced that it was seeking talks with the International Monetary Fund about an assistance programme.

Ghana’s malaise has an old-fashioned feel. The government anticipated too much revenue from its recently found oil reserves and overspent. The money was used not on infrastructure and education that would lift long-term potential growth. It was frittered away paying higher salaries to civil servants.

It is a classic example of mismanagement, and one that demonstrates that while progress has been real, strong and widespread in Africa, there remain plenty of traditional fragilities. Investors need a cautious approach to the “rising” mantra.

Public-sector pay accounted last year for nearly 65 per cent of Ghana’s total tax revenue after the public wage bill jumped roughly 75 per cent over two and a half years. Revenues have not kept pace, jacking up the fiscal deficit, which last year it hit more than 10 per cent of gross domestic product.

Interest rates have soared and the currency, the cedi, has plunged nearly 40 per cent this year, making it the world’s worst-performing currency ahead even of the Ukrainian hryvnia and the Syrian pound.

Ghana is the second country in Africa to seek talks with the IMF for emergency support. It is unlikely to be the last. After a rosy decade, the continent is having to adapt to lower Chinese growth and hence weaker commodity prices. Africa is still home to some of the fastest-growing economies in the world. For example, Ethiopia has transformed in 20 years from a famine-ravaged nation into a destination for savvy and well-known private equity groups such as KKR.

But a combination of lower commodity prices, strikes, reform fatigue and conflict in Nigeria, South Africa and Kenya, have put a brake on the expansion. The IMF forecast that sub-Saharan Africa will grow this year by 5.8 per cent is a quick rate by any standard but not the magic annual 7 per cent that guarantees doubling the size of the economy every decade.

It is not all bad news. Ghana’s response to its setback is encouraging. The country has implemented many politically difficult measures to rein in spending, including a freeze of public sector salaries and hiring, an increase in value added tax rates and subsidy cuts. A full-blown IMF bailout should not be necessary. That is a far cry from the sort of crises African countries experienced in the 1980s and 1990s.

For African leaders, the lessons of Ghana and Zambia are clear: the miracle needs nurturing. Even after years of strong growth, Africa should be cautious about taking on debt, and careful about expenditure. African governments – and particularly Nigeria – need to broaden their tiny tax bases and improve collection rather than raising rates.

For investors, the lessons are no less striking. The African story may be strong but they need to be selective. Economies will overheat occasionally and suffer growing pains. Flare-ups are inevitable in a continent of 54 states. But just as the 1997 crisis did not derail Asia’s rise, neither Ghana’s crisis nor the one in Zambia can stop the continent’s steady advance.

Credit/Source: FT / http://www.ft.com/

Paulina says:


Wednesday, 26 November 2014

“I am the only person who can authorize a diplomatic passport. If any of my staff issue a Diplomatic passport from the passport office without my prior authorization, that essentially means that they have attempted to commit an unlawful act,” Hannah Tetteh

Ruby Adu Gyamfi aka Ruby Appiah aka Nayele Ametefe becomes 'Africa’s Narcotic Cleopatra'...

Title: London’s Heathrow Grabs Africa’s Narcotic Cleopatra
Dated: 24-11-2014

It was a fairytale life for the 32 year old. A high flying life with deep political connections across a sub-region of over 260 million people – frequent flights in not only the first class sections of some of the World’s leading airlines, but  Bombadier Private Jets reportedly belonging to one of West Africa’s richest men and the brother of the current Ghanaian President and Chairman of the Regional Political Union. Sleeping in the choicest hotels around the world came only as an aside.

But this life at 15,000ft, for someone born and bred in a country with per capita just over a $1,000, came crushing down on the Morning of November 10 when Border Security at London’s Heathrow crashed the operation of the lady who has been described and nicknamed by some within the Intelligence Community as “Africa’s drug Cleopatra”, having used her extensive political and social networks to courier an estimated $75 million of cocaine directly in just the past three years.

It all ended for the modern “cleopatra”, originally born Ruby Adu-Gyamfi when a trip planned to be like the many she has undertaken to over 28 countries in 5 continents turned out to be the opposite as a result of collaborative work between intelligence agencies in four continents but interestingly without the knowledge of any of her native Ghana or Africa’s security units due to a strong suspicion of complicity at the highest level of Ghana’s political system.

With the world’s best intelligence and security agencies behind her track, it was supposed to only be a matter of small time before this drug baroness was nailed. However, numerous aliases, dozens of passports bearing different names and pictures – including those from Austria, Canada, Brazil and Belarus and several Ghanaian and Nigerian passports – including a Ghanaian diplomatic passport, allowed her rare privileges both within the country and outside. As though this was not enough, cosmetic surgeries, aided by plastic surgeons, and the sheer brazenness of her operations plus the well documented help of officialdom in her native Ghana had succeeded in aiding her to escape arrest for over 24 months.

When security officials finally closed in on her, not even the power of the Ghanaian Presidency or the brandishing of a diplomatic passport could save her. In her possession was as much as 12 kilograms of cocaine valued conservatively at $5 million. So unbothered was her operation that unlike many others who conceal their consignment in several ingenious ways, ‘Cleopatra’ carried her full consignment in her hand luggage, having used the VVIP Presidential lounge at Ghana’s Kotoka International Airport, according to local reports and signals picked from Scotland Yard, one of the agencies that worked on her capture.

Intelligence officers indicate that Ruby managed to get her consignment safely into the first class section of the particular British Airways flight using her connections in the Ghanaian establishment, who managed to even get a security official to safely courier her consignment into the plane. Sources close to the operation that nailed her say that Ruby was spotted by other first class passengers trying to fit 2kg of her consignment into her hand bag. These passengers alerted the British Airways staff while the plane was approaching London with the staff in turn radioing Heathrow to be on alert.

On arrival at Heathrow, border security officials, who had ordered only the first class passengers to disembark, quickly asked her to step aside to be searched. This request is said to have infuriated Ruby, who questioned the security officials, pulling out her Ghanaian diplomatic passport in the process. This diplomatic passport with the name Ruby Mahama did little to convince Border Security who proceeded to carry out the search.

So excited were the global intelligence agency when she was finally captured that three top officials of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) of the United States quickly jetted off to London, within 4 hours of her arrest, to interrogate her on various matters of concern to American officials in their unending war on narcotics.

Norman Shanks, an Aviation Security expert who spoke to Airport International was puzzled that the major achievement chalked by Heathrow in capturing this long sought after Drug Empress did not make it into headlines of the mainstream British and International Press, but was also of the view that it did not make it into the major headlines because the top international agencies that worked on it wanted to keep a lid on her arrest for various reasons.

“This for me seems to be the biggest victory in many months for the global drug war. Arresting this lady was important to stop a large part of the volumes of narcotics we have seen pouring into Europe and North America in the past few years. Again, this was one of the most difficult operations in recent years because with her very close connections and helpers in the Ghana government, it was almost impossible to expect any local help to close in on her. All the work therefore was completely done by agents of foreign agencies and mostly from foreign bases and in such a situation, you can only depend on luck”, Shanks said, from his Coventry base.

Before her arrest, Ruby, who also goes by the name “Angel” had been spotted, according to intelligence sources in Nigeria, during the inauguration of a multimillion dollar Stadium in a country where over 70% of the population still to find, let alone live on a dollar a day. Her mission there, according to the reports, was to help entertain the top political elite across West Africa, including the Presidents of the three big West African Nations – Nigeria, Ghana and Cote d’ivoire,  who descended on Akwa Ibom, one of the many states in Nigeria whose Governor put up the Stadium as a legacy project.

For now, Ruby Angel or Cleopatra as she was appropriately christened will no longer be travelling with Presidents or entertaining them. She will not also enjoy the luxury of her villas in Accra’s most expensive suburbs including her main mansion at Trassaco Valley, which is the city’s Beverley Hills with multi-million mansions belonging to Ghana’s political class and business elite as well as some of Nigeria’s richest. Her properties in Cantonments and East Legon, which are also extremely expensive suburbs in Ghana’s capital with land going for as much as a million dollars, will certainly also miss her.
By Tom Allett
Airports International
Credit/Source: http://3gmediaonline.com/?p=12018

Paulina says: Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm

Monday, 24 November 2014

Hip-Life artiste Emmanuel Botchway aka Kwaw Kese is arrested for allegedly smoking cannabis....

Title: Kwaw Kese denied bail; faces up to 10 years imprisonment -Dated: 24 November 2014

The Kumasi Metropolitan Assembly (KMA) Circuit Court has remanded Hiplife artiste, Emmanuel Botchway, popularly known as Kwaw Kese, into prison custody for allegedly smoking cannabis in public.

Kwaw Kese was arrested Saturday at a wine shop close to Plus Two pub at Nhyiaseo, a suburb of Kumasi.He was denied bail upon arrest, and was remanded in police custody until he appeared in court on Monday.

However, the court, presided over by Judge William Boampong remanded him to reappear on December 8 after persecutors argued that they were still investigating the matter.

The self-styled King of the Streets was put before court and formally charged with using narcotic drug without lawful authorityA somber-looking Kwaw Kese was escorted into a police van and sent to the Kumasi Central Prison which will serve as his new home for two weeks until he returns to court.According to ASP Charles Appiah, Head of Drug Law Enforcement Unit, a police patrol team saw Kwaw smoking the cannabis on Saturday and arrested him.Kwaw Kese's lawyer, Kwasi Baoitey, argued that the substance had not been confirmed to be cannabis and there was no justification to continue holding him.

He told the court that cigarettes can be mistaken for cannabis and until the substance was confirmed by a laboratory, the musician ought to be presumed to be innocent and therefore granted bail.

ASP Appiah however says "We all know cannabis and he will not deny, he hasn't denied," the policeman said.

Kwaw's lawyer further argued that there was no justification to continue to detain him because he cannot interfere with any police investigations.ASP Mohammed Tanko, Ashanti Regional Police PRO speaking on Dwaso Nsem on Adom FM earlier, said Kwaw Kese could face a minimum of 10 years' imprisonment if found guilty.

Source: www.viasat1.com.gh via: http://www.viasat1.com.gh/vone/news/entertainmentmain.php?postId=289

Paulina says: What's going on in Ghana, somebody needs to enlighten me!!! What demonic happenings are taking place in our sweet homeland Ghana???? I'm wondering....is this why the gods-that-be ...dot, dot, dot......prefer Ghana to be in darkness?

How on earth can they [the powers that be] let preaching -one touch -child molesters walk free and jail weed smokers???

Beasts-of-no-nation!!!! Priorities ooOooo!!! A failing economy, Victorian diseases (cholera anyone), bulls**t governance ---et al. They better release Hip-Life artiste, Emmanuel Botchway aka Kwaw Kese -NOW!!!!!!! We are slowly but surly becoming a joke -no? When will the bullsh*t stop?

Was Kwaw Kese set up? **All I know is that Kwaw Kese can never be found guilty!!!!! How?

Humans of Ghana better stand up and demand better than this....

I keep wondering ---are we paying some sort price!!! Are the self promoting gods-that-be eating new born babies? Have they sacrifice Ghana for maame water sika? Are we paying for some sort of curse --for something that's been done in darkness!!!!

I'm sure you'll agree with me when I say ---Brand Ghana is unrecognisable from the late President Mills era 'beacon of light' -oil rich -hope-of-Africa verve -no?????

Friday, 14 November 2014

Blast From The Past: Africa's Presidential Bank Accounts

Abdoulaye Wade, the former president of Senegal, whose son is accused of illicit enrichment.

Title: Senegal ex-president's son paid £127m into Monaco bank accounts

Monaco authorities co-operating with Senegalese prosecution of Karim Wade for alleged illicit enrichment ---Dated:Friday 13 September 2013  By: Afua Hirsch
The son of Senegal's former president deposited more than £127m at a bank in Monaco while his father was in office, it has emerged.

Authorities in Monaco said Karim Wade placed the money in accounts at the Julius Baer bank between 2002 and 2013. They are co-operating with Senegalese officials who are prosecuting Wade on charges of illicit enrichment following a months-long investigation into how he amassed a fortune of more than $1.3bn during the period when his father, Abdoulaye Wade, was president.

Funds held in at least 24 active bank accounts have been linked to 50 companies that Wade is alleged to have used to siphon off state funds. This summer Wade's accounts at the French bank Société Générale were frozen at the request of Senegal's current president, Macky Sall, who vowed to clamp down on corruption after being elected last year.

A widely despised figure during his father's presidency, Wade held powerful ministerial positions including being in charge of major infrastructure and energy projects. At one point he controlled up to a third of the national budget, leading to him being dubbed "the minister of the earth and the sky".
Wade, 44, denies the charges, and this week several dozen supporters staged a demonstration as he appeared in court. The former ruling Senegalese Democratic party (PDS) has accused Sall's regime of conducting a witch-hunt against the PDS hierarchy.

Bachirou Diawara, Wade's former chief of staff, said: "The Senegalese are witnesses that [the prosecutors] are unable to provide evidence of the guilt of our brother Karim Wade. It is stubbornness, nothing more, nothing less." He called for human rights organisations to "restore justice and the rule of law in the country".

Credit: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/sep/13/senegal-ex-president-son-monaco-accounts

Paulina says: Only westerners wonder why Africa is poor... most Africans already know!!!!

"The wicked vomit up the wealth they stole. God takes it back even out of their stomachs." Job 20:15


Friday, 7 November 2014

The Legatum Prosperity Index: How did Ghana fare?

"Ghana Ranked 98th out of 145" Prosperity Index

Paulina says: Its that time of the year again when the 'Prosperity Index' ranks all nations -and Ghana as expected did well in safety & Security, it came in at number 60 but fared poorly [as expected] in Economy -coming in at number 116...  Ghana's GDP (per capita) was $2,047.19 USD and our Average Life Satisfaction came in at: 5.1 out of 10....  There are more ranking facts and what have-you-sss about our sweet homeland Ghana via: http://www.prosperity.com/#!/country/GHA  -

More Info:
Is a nation’s prosperity defined solely by its GDP? Prosperity is more than just the accumulation of material wealth, it is also the joy of everyday life and the prospect of an even better life in the future. This is true for individuals as well as nations. The Prosperity Index is the only global measurement of prosperity based on both income and wellbeing. It is the most comprehensive tool of its kind and is the definitive measure of global progress.

The Legatum Prosperity Index™ offers a unique insight into how prosperity is forming and changing across the world. http://www.prosperity.com

Other African Nations

Botswana - 75th

Botsawa ranks 75th globally in the 2014 Prosperity Index, having fallen three places since last year.
Botsawa's best performance is in the Governance sub-index, where it ranks 28th in 2104.
Botsawa's lowest rank is in the Health sub-index, where it ranks 111th in 2014.

Nigeria - 125th

Nigeria ranks 125th globally in the 2014 Prosperity Index, having fallen two places since last year.
Nigeria's best performance is in the Economy sub-index, where it ranks 97th in 2014.
Nigeria's lowest rank is in the Safety & Security sub-index, where it ranks 137th in 2014.

Central African Republic - 142nd

Central African Republic ranks 142nd globally in the 2014 Prosperity Index, having fallen by one place since last year.
Central African Republic's best performance is in the Personal Freedom sub-index, where it ranks 94th in 2014.
Central African Republic's lowest rank is in the Entrepreneurship & Opportunity sub-index, where it ranks 142nd in 2014.

"It's better to lose the things you have/love than to lose your character and values." Dee Maat


Tuesday, 28 October 2014

Archbishop Nicholas Duncan-Williams tells Ghanaian women to stop misbehaving, to be grateful for proposals /marriages...

'Until a man proposes, you’ll rot in your beauty, intelligence' – Duncan-Williams tells women

Archbishop Nicholas Duncan-Williams has said women must see men’s love proposal and decision to marry them as a “privilege” because without that, they will “rot” away with their beauty and intelligence.

The charismatic spiritual icon has therefore admonished women to be grateful to men if they choose to marry them, rather than misbehave.

“It’s a privilege to be married. It’s a privilege in the time we live in when it’s seven [women] to one man”, he told his congregation Sunday in Accra.

“Sister when you get married, be thankful and stop misbehaving because it’s seven to one. It doesn’t matter how pretty and beautiful and intelligent you are; until a man proposes to you, you are going to stay beautiful, pretty, intelligent, nice and whatever, and rotten”.

“That’s what it is, and somebody needs to tell you because there [are] so many women out there misbehaving. You got to be told the truth. And the reason why a lot of marriages are not working is because everybody is afraid to offend women to tell them: ‘Come on girl, you got a good thing going, hold fast onto it, don’t misbehave and don’t lose it’”.

He said unlike men who can marry at virtually any age, women’s biological make up and physiology put them at a disadvantage as they grow older and, therefore, said women must appreciate it when men choose to marry them because the age pendulum tilts against them.

“And somebody says: ‘How about the men?’ They got issues too but you see, the fact of the matter is that a man can be 100 years old and marry again if he ‘moves’. A man can be 100 years and marry if he can ‘drive’. But a woman just can’t get married at a particular age. [It] gets to a place [where] everything begins to melt and you can’t marry just because you want to marry”, the founder of the Christian Action Faith Ministries explained.

“It is what it is, and sometimes we don’t want to hear the truth. We get offended when the truth is said, but I have come to a place [where] I tell people that I have lost my reputation a long time ago, and so it doesn’t really matter whether you like me or you don’t like me, and I don’t preach to impress people anymore. I stopped doing that a long time ago. I deliver what I’m told to deliver, and whether you receive it or not is none of my business; it’s your business”, he said.
Source: Ghana/StarrFMonline.com/103.5FM

Credit: http://starrfmonline.com/1.1879845

Paulina says: My goodness, my goodness what do we have here!!!! We appear to be regressing backwards with our bush mentality, our 'Victorian' cholera, open gutters, failing economy and now------- open attack on single women by folksssss who should know better!!! What next Ghana?  Collecting sika for Ebola ---ohhh sorry, -we are already doing that...dot, dot, dot......


Moved to Share: Alliance for Accountable Governance (AFAG)'s "Aagbe Wo" Demo: Thursday 6th November 2014

"Aagbe Wo" Demo: Thursday Nov 6th
In the wake of Government's insensitivity towards the plight of Ghanaians, the Alliance for Accountable Governance (AFAG) and the good people of this country will on Thursday the 6th of November 2014, take to the streets to bare our teeth out against the enormous corruption perpetuated and supervised by the NDC government. This well organized, and despicable crime against the good people of this country, has dwindled the economic fortunes of the state and virtually every household in the Ghana.

Corruption has become more of the norm than exception. No week passes without another act of corruption under the NDC regime exposed. AFAG is talking about the high indecision, and lack of principles of transparency and accountability under this John Mahama led NDC government.

This NDC government has left a huge stock of debt without value for money or capital investments. In spite of all that has been said in the past against the NDC on corruption, our "yentie obiaa" president has endorsed another well-organized act of corruption baffling imagination.

While Tetteh Quarshie interchange cost $32M, Sofo line interchange the most intricate in Ghana costing $38M, the N1 highway with six lanes and 2 interchanges spanning from Tetteh-Quarshie to Mallam cost $110M. However, that of Kasoa a much smaller one is to be constructed by a corrupt Brazilian company at $174M. This $174M loan was part of the loans pushed on parliament for approval during their emergency sitting 3 weeks ago. We understand this company is a baby of someone at the highest level of government and is untouchable. So we ask, who is behind this company?

This Brazilian company Queiroz Galvao Construcao is the same company that just constructed the controversial Umbraer jet ($25M turned $88M) hangar at Kotoka International Airport. This same company is constructing the circle interchange at an inflated cost of 78 million euros. Other competitive companies estimated this same project at 46 million euros.

What is more intriguing is the approval of $168M loan 3 weeks ago as extension works on the already inflated circle project. What kind of extension is worth more than the N1 highway from Tetteh-Quarshie to Mallam? This company used as a corruption vehicle has also been awarded with the Tamale airport project. Is the IMF aware of this well organized crime against Ghanaians? Are there no Ghanaian constructing companies? Why are the projects well over inflated? Because of economic mismanagement and greed we have had to run to IMF begging on our knees for funds and promising to adhere to their harsh conditionality.

Fellow countrymen, for those eyeing economic fortunes after 2016(having caused the mess), this suffering is far from over. Our intelligence from Washington around the corridors of the IMF shows that, government has been advised to introduce VAT on petrol and other petroleum products. Economic chaos ahead!!! Mr. President if this is so, AFAG can assure you of the greatest non co-operation of Ghanaians.

Fellow Ghanaians, our lives are in danger by these untruthful economic scavengers. There is merciless hardship visiting every household except for the NDC and their appointees. Worst off is the fear of workers going home as paupers. Pensions are in danger. How on earth can a retiree be on GHS 200 a month? Workers life is been toyed with, they cannot locate their deductions. This is painful. Certainly government is not getting it right. It is their money give it back to them Taking them to court without releasing their funds to them is shameful and pathetic.

Fellow Ghanaians, we need to rise up and stand for our right. The economic mess is debilitating. No consistent supply of electricity and water, yet we pay ever increasing tariffs on utilities. World market price of oil is on the decline yet we are paying high prices for petrol and its related products. They say the dollar is falling against the cedi yet import duties are so high that various trading companies are folding up and the price of items soaring. Cost of living is so high. The home we have is now a hell to live in.

Mr. President, Ghanaians are maiming. The economy is "hot and killing (Aagbe Wo)".
In this regard we call on all Ghanaians, young and old, employed and jobless, home and abroad, civil societies alike, public advocates, political parties and trade unions to join AFAG on Thursday the 6th of November, as we demonstrate to show to the world, the level of economic hardship, corruption has plunged Ghanaians into.

This AFAG demo is premised on corruption & economic hardship and title in GA language "Aagbe Wo". Come demonstrate to save Ghana on Thursday 6th of November starting from Obra spot and ending at hearts park.

AFAG Leadership

Paulina says: My fatigue with regards to Ghana's failing economy is real -------------------sooooo real its taken Alliance for Accountable Governance (AFAG)'s emotive words above to bring me back..... The thing is ........we really need the heavens to start exposing all those using La Ghana government contracts to buy: art, Christian Louboutin shoes, Hublot watches or Hermes bags --now!!! If not, the Ebola money will go the same way!!!   For more info about the above demo or to find out more about Alliance for Accountable Governance (AFAG) --visit their FB fan page via: https://www.facebook.com/AFAGGH 

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

A Must Event: International Luxury Travel Market (ILTM) Africa set for 13th - 15th April 2015 at the Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC), Cape Town, South Africa..

"ILTM Africa is a specialist invitation-only event, where the very best travel agents and advisors from across the world meet Africa’s most spectacular luxury travel experiences.
Attendees are invited to choose up to 57 one-to-one appointments from a select community of buyers and suppliers. ILTM Africa provides the perfect opportunity to meet up to 57 of the most spectacular luxury experiences from the African continent. Exhibiting at ILTM Africa brings you face-to-face with the very best buyers from across the globe." ILTM Africa

Paulina says: Uber exclusive ILTM Africa 2015 -is set to take place from 13th -15th  April 2015 at the Cape Town International Convention Centre, Cape Town, South Africa.

ILTM Africa is an aspirational hub for leaders of the African luxury travel industry ---and for the international trade [only] buyers to get their portfolios out, build relationships and attract new business.

The thing is......I see events like this --and wonder if there's anyone at GTA ---elegant enough to represent Ghana!! The sad truth ----Ghana's tourist whatever(s) just doesn't get it --and its such a shame. I also get the feeling --if they don't see said events on the likes of Ghana Rising Blog et al,  ---they would never know!!!

For more info about the 'International Luxury Travel Market (ILTM) Africa 2015' visit: http://www.iltm.com/

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Black History Month: DJ Abrantee to host 'Africa on the Square' in Trafalgar Square, London on Saturday 11th October 2014 -from 12pm-6pm

Paulina says: It appears Black History Month is upon -again -even though for me personally, -its Black History Month -everyday!!!

Anywaysss -our very own DJ Abrantee is hosting, -probably the most important event in the 'Black British' annual diary --the 'Africa on the Square' --taking place in Trafalgar Square, London on Saturday 11th October 2014  -from 12pm-6pm.... It looks like its going to be a whole load of fun -and for we mothers, --child friendly, soooo I'll probably see you there.

For more info visit:

Sunday, 5 October 2014

Luxe Shopping /Lifestyle: West Hills Mall set to open 30th October 2014


"Day 26 has come and gone. Tomorrow is Monday and we continue the countdown to the opening of West Hills Mall on 30 October." West Hills Mall

"Shoes, fashion, family and food. So much on offer at West Hills Mall." West Hills Mall

Paulina says: Be honest............. there were moments when you thought this shopping mall would never happen -come on (laughter)... Thankfully the South African outfit behind this much anticipated venture -mean business!!!

About to become Accra, Ghana's premier shopping hub -West Hills Mall has already captured the imagination of Accra's most fashionable....and we can't wait.

"27,0002 of retail space. A mix of local and international restaurants and a cinema complex complete" ---West Hills Mall is huge with that all soooo important car park --and good roads to and fro!!!

Located on the Winneba Highway -not too far from the centre of town, West Hills Mall promises top brands including MAC (I know, I'm excited too) --fab restaurants and shopping experience like no other...

I've been told that the above photos don't do West Hills Mall justice and its really is fab --so we will all have to check it out on our next visit to Ghana... My goodness Accra is going to be sweet!!!

For more info visit: https://www.facebook.com/pages/West-Hills-Mall/HYPERLINK "https://www.facebook.com/pages/West-Hills-Mall/415700115181309"415700115181309

Ghana Rising Hearts: Kris Brummell



"Apart from modelling, I have a huge interest in music and I currently talent scout musicians for management companies in my spare time." Kris Brummell [Via Top Black Models]

"I've been modelling for about 9 months. I got street scouted helping a mate out on his shoot, and attend a casting for ASOS and took it from there." Kris Brummell [Via Top Black Models]


Paulina says: What can I say....it appears we have another London based model to get excited about folks!!!!Just stumble upon Kris Brummell's details on Top Black Models' FB fan page -and had to dig deeper...

 Master Brummell who is on the books of AMCK Models ---has worked for mega brands including: Topman, ASOS, New Era and Footlocker and walk in LFW S/S2015...

GR is predicting a very bright future for this handsome young man----
For more info about Kris Brummell visit: https://twitter.com/Krisbrummell
For more info about Top Black Models visit: https://www.facebook.com/TopBlackModels
For more info about AMCK visit:https://www.facebook.com/amckmodels



Beauty: MAC's first stand alone Store launches in Accra, Ghana in 26 days......

Paulina says: I am beyond excited oOooo ....Its official -MAC is coming to Accra, Ghana in 26 days !!!Set for a prime location in the much anticipated West Hills Mall, -due to open on the 30th October 2014....-MAC's foray into the Ghanaian market is long over due -but what fabulous news!!!!

No more shipping or sending money to Aba in London -and waiting months for the latest hot numbers from MAC....can you Adam & Eve it??

In terms of business this is such a fabulous vote of confidence in Ghana ---and its very important that we support this venture --and not save up for that twice yearly annual trip to Dubai before we part with our sika to buy these delectable goods. For more info visit: http://www.maccosmetics.co.uk/

For more info about West Hills Mall visit: http://www.yevuclothing.com/lookbook/#/yevu-30-september-2014/


"Decide that you want it more than you are afraid of it." -Bill Cosby


“Once the soul awakens, the search begins and you can never go back. From then on, you are inflamed with a special longing that will never again let you linger in the lowlands of complacency and partial fulfillment. The eternal makes you urgent. You are loath to let compromise or the threat of danger hold you back from striving toward the summit of fulfillment.” ~ John O’Donohue


“For a seed to achieve its greatest expression, it must come completely undone. The shell cracks, its insides come out and everything changes. To someone who doesn’t understand growth, it would look like complete destruction.” ~ Cynthia Occelli


Saturday, 27 September 2014

The Spirit: 'Metanfo' by Bisa Kdei


*Please remember to watch via: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YzU4eHpOgpQ

"No weapon formed against you shall prosper." Isaiah 54:17

"God said that He would prepare a table before you in the presence of your enemies. That means the ones that tried to push you down, played politics, left you out or cheated you. God will make sure they see you promoted, elevated, increased and in a position of honour." Joel Osteen Ministries
Paulina says: Loving this inspired tune by my Facebook friend --singer/song writer/producer, Bisa Kdei and can't wait to see him on this side of the pond. I truly feel that we have the next big talent in Bisa Kdei -and must all get behind. Good to know High-Life is not dead... For more info or to download the above tune and more visit: http://www.bisakdei.com/

P.s We must all now join hands and pray the gold-diggers of Ghana and beyond away from bro Bisa as his star light starts to shine bright (laughter). Bisa --stay prayed up OoooOoo.. May all your hearts desires come true and God's blessings ---overtake you.. xx

Saturday, 20 September 2014

Business: Broll Ghana Discuss High Cost of Retail Space in Ghana

Title: Explaining the high cost of retail space in Ghana
Dated: 9-9-2014

Broll Ghana says, one key challenge in the retail sector in Ghana, is expensive rent, which could be attributable to the high cost of building and maintaining modern Retail Facilities to international standards.

Understandably rents being charged for shopping centres are higher than what pertains in street corners but the reason is that marketing expenses and maintenance of these facilities is particularly high. Additionally, high traffic areas also attract a higher premium.

Broll Ghana markets shopping centre space to various businesses and performs due diligence on prospective retail tenants.

Mr. Moses Luri, Head of the Retail Leasing Division said in an interview that the retail sector is also facing some challenges, which include an increase in Value Added Tax, Clearing challenges at the ports authority, and the high cost of shipping goods to Ghana.

Some of the international retailers already in the market include TM Lewin, Swatch, Levis, Puma, Bata, Shoprite and Game.

Other big name retailers expected to venture into Ghana are Mango, Sunglas Hut, Lufian, Edgers, and Hugo Boss. Currently Carefour, WHSmith, Debenhams, Polo, Aldo and Guess are also actively exploring expansion into Ghana.

According to Mr. Luri, Ghana’s Retail Sector has come a long way from the previous dominance of the informal retail sector where shoppers’ only choice was to go down to the local markets for all their shopping needs.  Now, various shops are springing up in neighborhoods where one could purchase convenient items. As the growth continues, larger supermarkets that provide parking, air-conditioned shopping spaces and a wider variety of goods are becoming more prevalent.

“There are several shopping centres planned for different parts of the cities of Accra, Tema, Kumasi and Takoradi. Some of the reasons that account for the increase in shopping centre investments are: demand from shoppers looking for convenience and true variety under one roof; the seemingly growing disposable income of the sophisticated middle-income group shoppers; and the push by international retailers to bring their brands closer to emerging markets like Ghana,” he said.

Mr. Luri noted: “the concept of Property/Retail Management is relatively new in Ghana. We have been at the forefront of educating property owners on the importance of outsourcing the management and maintenance of their properties, while the various developers and/ or owners concentrate on what they do best or on their core business – developing choice properties”.

Mr. Luri said because most investors are foreigners, they are exposed to the concept of property management and so they come into the market looking to build relationships with existing providers such as Broll Ghana to help them deliver a complete product.

He stated that understanding a particular geographical area and the social and lifestyle preferences of the inhabitants involves a careful evaluation of specific shopping centre designs and making a determination about how best to strategically locate supermarkets, food courts, banks and fashion retailers in the layout and design.

Other considerations include deciding on which stores should be positioned as anchors that will help attract customers to the facility.  Anchor stores are the most recognized brand retailers and are usually strategically positioned at the ends of the shopping center to attract people; they act as the pillars of the facility.

He said there is the need to profile potential retailers that would be best for the specific shopping centre being marketed. Also, it is important to consider the prospects a particular shopping centre will offer to various retailers and provide assistance to interested retailers to complete the various administrative requirements of the various developers.

Mr. Kofi Ampong, Broll Ghana’s Chief Executive Officer, said “when it comes to Retail management, Broll Ghana aims to ensure proper tenant mix so that most tenants will have some semblance of monopoly. This calls for proper market research studies to give a clear indication of which direction to take when marketing a centre.”

“Broll Ghana also helps to come up with marketing strategies which will cover Situational Analysis, SWOT Analysis, Tenant Analysis, marketing promotion plans, tenant matrix of opposition centres”.

Mr. Ampong added, “Broll Ghana’s philosophy is to maximize the value of a Shopping Centre by ensuring that it offers the best Shopping and entertainment experience thereby attracting the most purchasing power from the target market it serves.”

Mr. Luri said rentals of Retail facilities are primarily determined by the various developers or investors and Broll Ghana provides relevant market intelligence to help their decision making. “Rentals are on the ascendancy. The general trend shows rental activity escalating by an average of 5% on an annual basis”.

Broll Ghana was involved in the leasing of top-rated retail and office space in locations like Movenpick Hotel, the office component of the new Stanbic Heights. Broll was also actively involved in providing varying real estate services to some upcoming developments like West Hills Mall, Achimota Mall, The Junction Mall, Meridian Mall, The Exchange and Accra Waterfront, in and outside Accra.

In addition to Retail Brokerage and Property Management, the Company provides Valuations/Advisory Services, Residential Brokerage and Management, Facilities Management, and Corporate Real-Estate Services.

Broll Ghana’s clientele list includes but is not limited to – Atterbury/Sanlam (Accra Mall Limited, West Hills Mall Ltd), RMB Westport, Social Security and National Insurance Trust, SIC Insurance Company, Hollywood Developers, Primrose Homeowners Association, Hawkrad Construction, Polocourt Homeowners Association, Amerigan Resources, Ghana Heights, Ecobank and Check Point.

The company directly employs more than 70 people and indirectly employs several hundred through the various service providers. Broll Ghana also embarks on several social intervention programmes.

Broll Ghana for the past 4 years has been adjudged the best property/facilities management company and recently was awarded the Property Management Company at the Sixth Annual Ghana Property Awards ceremony held in November, 2013.

The annual award recognizes excellence in the property industry and is targeted at real estate companies, financial institutions, regulatory authorities, professional institutions and the public.

Broll Ghana is part of the CBRE Affiliate Network and its systems and procedures are benchmarked against the ISO9001:2008 standard – an internationally recognized and respected standard by all investors.

Source: http://brollghana.com/


Friday, 19 September 2014

Business: African Luxury

Title: Luxury heavyweights eye Africa’s newly affluent
Dated: 19-9-2014

Sub-Saharan Africa was dismissed for decades by the luxury industry, and has attracted the attention of international heavyweights only in the past two years.

Hugo Boss, Estée Lauder and Ermenegildo Zegna are among those who have established retail outlets in Nigeria’s big cities, and others are following suit with the help of local partners.

Meanwhile, South Africa and Kenya, long-established shopping hubs for wealthy western tourists, have seen a boom in retail and mall developments that is prompting investment by the world’s largest brands.

But with natural resources fuelling economic growth elsewhere in Africa, could the luxury industry have found fresh frontiers for growth beyond its traditional strongholds?

A recent study by management consultancy Bain & Co would suggest so. It estimates that the continent’s luxury market is now worth €2bn, thanks to a 35 per cent rise in overall sales in the past four years.
“Our target customers are the emerging middle class, the established middle class and the affluent African consumer who’s probably extremely well travelled and brand savvy,” Sue Fox, managing director for Estée Lauder in sub-Saharan Africa, told journalists earlier this year.

As well as opening a crop of MAC stores in Nigeria, the US beauty giant also plans to enter Botswana and Zambia next year, It also has announced a move to take its fragrance brands into Ivory Coast, and has identified property opportunities in Mozambique, Angola, Ghana, Kenya and Tanzania.

William Lauder, the group’s chairman, told the Financial Times that the rise in power of the global traveller – particularly from sub-Saharan Africa – had triggered the company’s push into new territories.
“In 2008, MAC opened a store in Paris’s Strasbourg St Denis, a neighbourhood with west African beauty supply stores frequented by immigrants and away from more traditional upscale precincts,” he says.

“Wealthy visitors soon spread the word and the brand garnered a cult status back in that region before Estée Lauder had even set foot in the francophone African market. That region is going to grow into a big business for us.”

A globetrotting moneyed elite from new African frontiers is also fuelling luxury flagship sales on the more upmarket streets of recession-mired pockets of Europe. For example, Gucci executives say privately that Angolan custom in Portugal grew 90 per cent last year – to represent just over half of sales there.

“I am hearing more and more about the Angolan appetite for luxury,” says South African retailer Hanneli Rupert, adding that there has been a noticeable rise in African frontier market spenders coming to South Africa to make premium purchases.

Industry experts also remain sceptical of a rapid rollout of retail operations in these countries in the near future.

While many western brands are combating this by holding “trunk shows” or private dinners to entice new clients, business growth will remain relatively modest until a greater on-the-ground presence can be established.

John Obayuwana, the founder and managing director of the Polo Luxury Group, says: “There are, and will continue to be, considerable challenges for western brands looking to enter the market beyond South Africa. Even in Nigeria there are big headaches, let alone elsewhere.” His company acts as local partner and intermediary for several luxury groups.

He adds: “First they have to deal with the government, with all the regulations, duty taxes, bureaucracy and even corruption that goes with establishing a business in these places. Then, you must deal with the absence of any retail infrastructure. It’s going to be really tough going for some time to come.”

Some investors think the solution to providing African consumers with access to luxury products could lie closer to home. In 2010, Actis, a private equity fund focused on emerging markets, acquired Vlisco, a Dutch company that manufactures and distributes patterned wax fashion fabrics.

Manufacturers and consumers buy them to create bespoke dresses in its exotic African prints.
The company has nearly doubled in size since it was bought, with two-thirds of its employees scattered across sub-Saharan Africa.

This unusual platform has proved extremely attractive to those looking to benefit from a large young African population and rising middle class.

Murray Grant, an Actis partner, explains: “There is a considerable consumer population emerging in Africa but it is scattered across 55 countries. What made Vlisco a sizeable business opportunity was the fact it had successful operations in so many of them.”

Ms Rupert says that she is noticing a growing trend for African luxury consumers looking to buy local brands or product.

“Beyond fashion ... there have been huge surges in demand for upmarket food and wines or home interiors with a strong African aesthetic.

“There is unquestionably a demand for Western luxury goods, but as the shopper base grows, so will a crop of homegrown contenders. It’s exciting to watch the market unfold.”

Source: http://www.ft.com

Thursday, 18 September 2014

Elkin Pianim & Kwame Acheampong Launch MoGoogi -Africa's premier online retail store...



"Shop now from international retailers and get your goods delivered to you in Ghana in 10 days. www.mogoogi.com powered by www.profpay.com" MoGoogi



Paulina says: As someone who has her Ghana Rising eyes on the hottest, most glamorous Ghanaians/Africans on the planet ---the name Elkin Pianim is like a red-rag-to-a-bull.....dot, .....dot,.......dot,.....

Regular readers of La Ghana Rising Blog know all about the persona that is Elkin Pianim --if you don't ---google him!!!

The thing thing is....there was a time when black publications in the UK started and ended with Elkin Pianim --and it appears that the ever elusive pioneer ---now has the uber competitive world of fashion ---on his radar -dar-dar --now!!!

Elkin Pianim and another exciting name ---Kwame Acheampong have just launched MoGoogi --an online retail Hub which offers the best of British and international brands including: Austin Reed, AX Paris, DKNY, Armani, Ralph Lauren, Puma, Lipsy, Nike, Timberland, lacoste, Diesel, Adidas, Chinese Laundry and House of Fraser Homeware to fashionistas in Ghana... 

Promising convenience and variety, --you order in the comfort of your home --online in Ghana... pay via a Profpay account at www.profpay.com [ensuring "secure payments and fast delivery"]... Your goods are then dispatched in London and delivered within 10 working days to your door in Ghana... whats not to like!!!

Personally, I like MoGoogi... I like its simplicity -and choice of garb and wish its founding duo ---every success.

Note, uber media mogul Rupert Murdoch's former son-in-law, Elkin Pianim and Kwame Acheampong have big plans for MoGoogi --they are eyeing up the Nigerian market --and thereafter, the rest of Africa.... Ghana Rising is watching..

For orders or more info visit: http://www.mogoogi.com/

Kevin Heart Does the Azonto................



Paulina says: Comedian Kevin Heart doing his errmmm own version of the Azonto on the Choice Breakfast show is ---everything. The joy this clip is giving me knows no bounds (laughter)... Would love to see Mr Heart in Ghana --someday soon.

Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Yu21YQRYoA#t=15

Sunday, 7 September 2014

Ghana Rising Hearts: Chirlane McCray -The First Lady of New York City...

Did you know Ghana Rising's new favourite female warrior du jour, the uber incredible *First Lady of New York City* Chirlane McCray is of, "Bajan and St. Lucian descent, but traces her grandmother's last name to Ghana?

I'm not surprised are you??? We Ghanaian women are fierce lionesses, -and the likes of: Warrior Queen -Yaa Asantewaa, Harriet Tubman, Sojourner Truth, Princess Laura Adorkor Koffey aka 'Mother Koffey', warrior princess -Yennenga and Jamaican National Hero -Queen Nanny et al...are all blood and kin.... 

I am very exciting about this *First Lady of New York City*!!! Chirlane McCray is unapologetically herself, unafraid and inspiring all women [not just the African-American woman] --and helping to rewrite black female history...
For more info about Chirlane McCray, The First Lady of New York City visit: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chirlane_McCray

Ghana Rising Hearts Vanessa Williams......

Paulina says: Did you know...... when the ever beautiful singer/actress and First African American Miss America, Vanessa Williams took her ancestry mail order DNA test in 2013 -that she was partly of Ghanaian origin? The following is her complete ancestry result:

"For Williams, her genome revealed this mixture: 23 percent Ghana; 17 percent British Isles; 15 percent Cameroon/Congo; 13 percent Finnish/Ural/Volga; 11 percent southern European; 7 percent Togo; 6 percent Benin; 5 percent Senegal; 4 percent Spain/Portugal."

I'm now thinking................ when the Ebola spirit passes, -the government of Ghana needs to invite America's national treasure, Vanessa Williams to Ghana to visit her most prominent ancestors ...

To read more about Vanessa Williams' journey into her family's past visit:http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/02/17/vanessa-williams-ancestry-mail-order-dna-test_n_2698112.html

For more info about Vanessa Williams visit: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vanessa_L._Williams

Saturday, 6 September 2014

Architectural Digest: Sexy Airport City, Accra Ghana captured by Yaw Pare.....


Airport City, Accra Ghana captured by Yaw Pare...
Airport City, Accra. As of 31st August, 2014 taken by Yaw Pare...
Hilton and ofc blg Airport City, Accra 2014 taken by Yaw Pare...
African Sun, Amber Hotel, Airport City Accra by Yaw Pare...

Opeibea Building taken by Yaw Pare...

New Mosque under construction, Nima ---taken by Yaw Pare...

Marina Mall & KFC in Airport City, Accra Ghana --taken by Yaw Pare

New Apartment Complex, Airport Residential Area shot by Yaw Pare...

Paulina says: Sneak a peek at the above photographic gems by Ghana Rising fave, Yaw Pare!!!

Airport City, Accra Ghana is rising out of the ashes like a phoenix -no? With soooo many fab buildings under construction -including the Hilton [one of three structures I truly can't wait to see completed and opened] ---Accra will be unrecognisable in a couple of years time!!!

I am truly crazy about One Airport Square [second photo] by Mario Cucinella Architects!! I remember blogging about One Airport Square in past posts.. and it still remains probably the most innovative of all the new buildings -no? You can read more about it via: http://blog.archpaper.com/wordpress/archives/20464  ---

Also, can you believe the magnitude of the new mosque? I had no idea this building was happening n Accra -did you? Apparently its been built with Turkish money -should be very interesting when completed.

The only niggle --and its a small one, why are we still afraid to build skyscrapers in Ghana?? -I would love to see some mind-blowing tall glass structures in Accra -and I know you feel the same...

To view the rest of Yaw Pare's delectable photos of Accra's changing skyline visit: https://www.facebook.com/groups/randomghpics/

"Success is not built on success. It's built on failure. It's built on frustration. Sometimes its built on catastrophe." Sumner Redstone


Thursday, 4 September 2014

Ghana Fashion & Design Week [GFDW] 2014 postponed until 2015


#For Immediate Release.Friday, August 15, 2014

Ghana Fashion & Design Week (GFDW) 2014 Event Postponed to the year 2015.
Accra, August 15, 2014Ghana Fashion & Design Week®  (GFDW) regrets to announce that this year event scheduled for 24 – 26 October 2014 has been postponed to the year 2015, following the Ghana Government directive and ban on all international conferences and gathering in the country issued yesterday for the next 3 months to avoid recent health risks in the West Africa Region.

We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this new turn beyond our control may have caused to all involved in this year’s event.

The anticipated event will return fully in its glory in 2015, bigger and better with new additions to the platform’s activities yet to be released.

We are excited about the progress of this industry in Ghana, and across the whole of Africa. And, are positive that any challenges that the country, and Africa are currently facing will make the continent even stronger and better as it continues to develop and grow through this millennium.

2015 will be a new year, and a very special year for GFDW event. As with every challenge comes growth, so will this phase lead to even better heights for the GFDW event, and all Africans affected in one way or the other during this period.

More information on event plans for GFDW 2015 will be made available on the GFDW website and across all its social media platforms. We are already excited!

We welcome interested participants, partners and sponsors who wish to take part in GFDW 2015 to reach out to us using the below contact email information or through the GFDW website.
The future is bright for Africa, we remain positive, encouraged with great excitement!
We look forward to GFDW 2015 with new surprises and interesting developments. See you at #GFDW2015! Thank you. Source: http://ghanafashionweek.wordpress.com/2014/08/15/ghana-fashion-design-week-gfdw-2014-event-postponed-to-the-year-2015/

Jog on 2015.....................
"To all our Global Fans (:-) Fashion Weeks around the globe takes off with New York Fashion Week this week. We thank you for all your support! We are excited to tell you #GFDW will be back in 2015 with some very exciting plans! Stay tuned, and watch this space whilst we keep your alive with new creative inspirations, event updates and design ideas." GFDW


Paulina says: I've known for sometime that GFDW has been moved to 2015.....but was waiting on a reply from a message I sent them via their Facebook page ---and as you guessed it, ------they didn't reply!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Regardless, I felt its only right to alert Ghana Rising's elegant readers that due to the reason(s) stated above ---Ghana Fashion & Design Weeks 2014 has been moved to 2015...

For more details about Ghana Fashion & Design Weeks 2015 visit: http://www.ghanafashiondesignweek.

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Business: The World is talking about Made-in-Ghana Kantanka Cars....

"The whites believed in themselves and got to where they are now. They are no different from us. We all stayed in our mothers' womb for nine months." Safo Jnr, Chief Operations Officer of the Kantanka Group of Companies

Title: Ghana's talented but ignored inventors

A father and his pilot son in a country with no history of manufacturing are making products that will stun the world.

Accra, Ghana - Imagine having a television set that comes on after an effortless clap or by blowing air; picture yourself in a car that is engineless and starts with a simple push of a button tucked to your dress; or a change-over-machine that speaks and tells you where exactly a fire or electrical fault is in your home.
This is not fiction. It is not magic. It is not happening in Europe or Asia and not even in the United States. These products are being manufactured in the West African nation of Ghana.

The brains behind this is Apostle Dr Kwadwo Safo, owner of the Kantanka Group of Companies. He is naturally gifted. A genius. An inventor and a philanthropist. He has no formal or sophisticated technical background. He imagines, dreams and creates at will. He lives in his own world.

It takes about 45 minutes from Accra, the capital, to reach his "city" at Gomoa Mpota in the central region of Ghana. It is set apart from the hustle and bustle of cosmopolitan Accra. His flag - blue, red, yellow and white stars embossed on the blue hue - constantly flies at a junction on the highway you reach after going past beautiful green landscapes that lead to his location.

It is a large tract of land. The buildings are huge. The ambiance is engaging. It has a natural touch and feel, complete with tortoises - the oldest is 40 years - and a porcupine, evidence of Safo's love for nature.

Engineless car
A large African map showing a picture of Apostle Safo spinning a ball imprinted with pictures, a huge star beneath it and a miniature aircraft welcome visitors.

It takes close to two-and-a-half hours to tour his complex in a car. His son, Kwadwo Safo Jnr, a commercial pilot who acquired his licence at age 19, welcomed Al Jazeera. He is the group's chief operations officer.
After driving past the tortoises, the first point of call was a workshop where a chopper was being manufactured alongside a hand-made engineless five-seater vehicle.

Safo Jnr said they will ensure there is no risk in test-flying the chopper and explained how the engineless car will work.

"The non-engine vehicle does not rely on a combustion engine to move, but an electric motor powered by rechargeable batteries," Safo Jnr told Al Jazeera.
"The batteries can be recharged with solar energy or electricity. As you drive the car on the road, it converts the energy from the sun into mechanical energy which powers the car.

"We do everything here. For the engineless car it is only the lights and the tyres that were bought. Everything else from moulding [parts], among others, was done by our local people."

A peacock bade us goodbye from that section, then three zebras smiled at us as we drove on an untarred road towards the colossal buildings on the outskirts. They are four in all, neatly painted and look abandoned when viewed from a distance.

The structures serve as the assembling plants for the yet-to-be unveiled Kantanka range of commercial vehicles - sports utility vehicles (SUVs) and pickup trucks.

Although some car parts are imported, assembling the more than 1,500 pieces for a car and spraying are done by about 20 young men between the ages of 16-25 years. Amazingly, they have no formal training in building a car.

"Most of them are junior and senior high school leavers. The people who are actually racking their brains here to make things work have never been to school before," Safo Jnr said.

Six to 10 cars can be assembled and be ready for the road in a day. Four had been completed and tested by the time Al Jazeera visited. It is hard to tell they were actually assembled in Ghana, save for the Kantanka crown and inscription at the back.

Market plans
"We are hoping to increase the number to 12 or 15 daily when we go commercial soon," Safo Jnr said.
"We have delayed ... going commercial because Africans and Ghanaians in general have the perception that once it is from Ghana, it is not good - durability is not assured, safety is not guaranteed. So we have decided to use the products ourselves and make sure they are good to go and standardised before we hit the market.

"I was in Brazil about six months ago and I was in tears. The whole of Rio de Janeiro was packed with Marcopolo buses ... and these are buses that were assembled and made in Brazil.
"They patronise it. In India they encourage made-in-India vehicles - like Mahindra - and that's my dream to one day see Kantanka cars on the streets of Accra, Kumasi and all over. I will be fulfilled," a visibly euphoric Safo Jnr pointed out in his office fitted with a locally made air-conditioner that is switched on and off by slotting in a card.

The card in the air-conditioner, explained Safo Jnr, works like one used for an ATM. It is programmed to start the air-conditioner, regulate the temperature and can tell the time when the unit should be turned off. It is multi-functional, he said.

Difficult questions
While hugely ambitious and a potential source of pride for a country that is only known for its gold, cocoa and lately oil, the Kantanka project still raises major questions. Who, for example, will buy SUVs in a country where the average income is $1,400 and where just about everyone drives a used car? Do the carmakers perform crash tests, and will they meet the high standards of cars made in Europe and Asia?

"We will be doing that in the course of our manufacturing process," said Safo Jnr, referring to crash tests.

The cars will be "affordable" and middle-income earners will be able to buy them. "We know the market and we can assure you that Africans will be able to buy our cars," he said.

In some countries projects such as this attract financial assistance from the government. But Ghanaian governments upon governments seem to have ignored the "Star of Africa", as Apostle Dr Safo is called by the people of Ghana.

Not even his self-made Limousine dubbed "Obrempong", the speaking change-over-machine, or a range of flat-screen television sets made with wood covers that respond to a simple clap to come alive, increase or reduce volumes have fascinated the government enough to support one of their own.

Determined to succeed
The Safo family is undaunted though.

"Most of the promises they have made, they say they are in the pipelines. I'm sure African pipelines are very choked so the water is not flowing. Not even the corporate world has shown concern … We are still hoping," said Safo.

"We have had several offers from Asia and Europe, but we turn them down because we just want to stay in

Africa and make sure that whatever we are doing here we'll be able to achieve our dreams.
"People tell us that we are wasting our time because we won't get anywhere. But we pay no attention to them, rather we make sure that we prove them wrong by meeting targets that we set for ourselves."

The US-trained young pilot is optimistic about the future. For him, it is a matter of trust and belief in the African.

"The whites believed in themselves and got to where they are now. They are no different from us. We all stayed in our mothers' womb for nine months ... If you cut a white and a black man you get blood. The only differences are our names and colours," he said.

"So we should believe in ourselves. We must reduce the talking and put in work."

Credit: Al Jazeera
Source: http://www.aljazeera.com/news/africa/2014/08/ghana-talented-but-ignored-inventors-2014823191921173432.html#.U_5vFAcMeVg.twitter

Paulina says: As regular readers of La Ghana Rising Blog will attest, I've been blogging about and celebrating Apostle Dr Kwadwo Safo and his Kantanka cars -forever, and its soooo good to finally see the world's media sitting up and taking notice.

Still, I'm intrigued, --now that the world is watching Apostle Dr Kwadwo Safo, owner of the Kantanka Group of Companies and his made-in-Ghana cars/inventions --- will Le Ghana's government wake up and get behind said venture?