Tag: Nigeria

African delegation takes part in the 19th World Festival of Youth and Students in Sochi

A delegation of young talents from Africa are actively participating in the World Festival of Youth and Students (WFYS) which is currently being held in Sochi, Russia. The festival started on October 14 and will run until October 22 in the resort town which recently hosted the Winter Olympic Games and Formula 1 Grand Prix in 2014. Young people aged between 18 and 35 are engaged in numerous activities, discussions and competitions, nearly 25,000 guests from 185 countries are participating in this year’s festival. 

The Russian State Atomic Energy Corporation Rosatom has also made its contribution, by inviting and hosting gifted young African professionals and students, who are interested in science and innovation. “We are happy that we were able to provide this exciting opportunity to our future African leaders, to gain knowledge and exchange experience with their peers on a global level,” said Viktor Polikarpov, Rosatom regional Vice-President of Sub-Saharan Africa.

A specialized programme includes events related to science and education, group discussions as well as cultural and sport activities. The main agenda of the discussion programme encompasses the 17 Sustainable Development Goals, adopted by the United Nations.

The festival attracts proactive young people from all over the world, most of whom are already leaders in their respective fields. Numerous young specialists from Kenya, Ghana, Nigeria, Zimbabwe and South Africa are among the attendees, most of whom are oriented towards research and the development of new technologies.

The young talents are engaged in various activities, creative workshops, brainstorming sessions and round tables to try find answers to some of the globes most burning questions. Issues of ecology, sustainable development and international cooperation are in the limelight of the scientific focused section of the Festival.

During a round-table discussion the representative from Zimbabwe, Simbarashe Mhuriro, demonstrated benefits of sustainable energy development. He leads the company Oxygen Africa, which focuses on energy, mining and agriculture. Simbarashe argues that in Africa only two percent of the population has stable access to electricity, and the use of diesel engines is both expensive and destructive for ecology. Therefore, the young businessman is championing sustainable sources of energy, which can help global population to resolve current energy problems.

Nigerian born Chukwudi Ojinnaka, who currently studies nuclear engineering at the National Research Nuclear University MEPhI in Moscow, notes that the Festival provides exciting opportunities for young professionals to meet different people with different ideas from all over the world. He highlights that these very ideas will help the future generations achieve their goals.

In collaboration with other participants of the festival, this young Nigerian talent is working tirelessly on the project of the ‘aqua-cities’ – self-sustainable cities floating cities, that will be engineered to help to solve the overpopulation problem in the future.

O.Y Releases Debut Single “KELEGBE”

Odunayo Odunayo popularly known as O.Y Productions is set to launch the countdown to his producer E.P with the release of  his debut single titled “KELEGBE”  off the yet to be named producer E.P.

O.Y who only relocated to Nigeria from the UK about 2 years ago is a versatile music producer, sound engineer and music teacher; He is currently tutoring a diverse set of people through his music school called O.Y Academy. Having worked with A-list artistes such as Olamide, Patoranking, Sudan, Ice Prince, Stonebwoy, Wande Coal and Iyanya amongst others and with a wealth of over 15 years’ experience learning and perfecting his craft; it’s time for O.Y to take his rightful place among the music greats.

“KELEGBE” is a term from a game played in the western part of Nigeria; this term is used to lay claims to whatever you want from other players whenever it’s your turn. “KELEGBE” is a prayerful song which sees O.Y laying claims to the good things of life with an influence of some backing traditional sound and intriguing strings; written and performed by the man himself KELEGBE is set to break bounds on the streets and in homes.

Listen to ‘Kelegbe’ below

SpeedUPAfrica 2017 is Official

Africa’s Most Epic Founder Bootcamp is set for 2017.
100 Founders + 20 Countries + Workshops + OfficeHours + InvestorMeetings + TurningUP ????

Building on the epic success of SpeedUPAfrica 2016 (see data, pics & videos), We’re excited to announce that all is set for SpeedUPAfrica 2017. No Panels, No Speeches, No Demo Day. Instead – Founder led Peer-to-Peer sessions, Intense Silicon Valley Expert led Workshops, 1:1 Investor Meetings, and Turning Up of Epic Proportions. SpeedUPAfrica 2017 will be #LIT!

Dates: July 5th – 9th, 2017
Location: Lagos Oriental Hotel, Lagos, Nigeria
Startups: Apply Now!!! (Deadline: May 1st)
Investors: Click Here to Participate

See ~ SpeedUPAfrica.com ~ for more

THE VANISHING BLACK AFRICAN WOMAN – A Compendium of the Global Skin Lightening Practice

Skin-lightening is currently one of the most common forms of potentially harmful body modification practices in the world and African women are among some of the most widely represented users of skin-lightening products.

Author Yetunde Mercy Olumide‘s new two volume book, The Vanishing Black Africa Woman: A Compendium of the Global Skin Lightening Practice provides an up-to-date evidence-based recommendations for reducing the global burden of cosmetic skin bleaching and preventing injuries related to skin bleaching in sub-Saharan Africa and Africans in diaspora. 

The book aims to do several things – firstly to offer an appraisal of all relevant literature on cosmetic bleaching practices to-date, focusing on any key developments, secondly to identify and address important medical, public health issues as well as historical, genetic, psycho-social, cultural, behavioral, socioeconomic, political, institutional and environmental determinants, thirdly provide guideline recommendations that would help attenuate the burden and possibly eliminate the injuries related to skin bleaching, and lastly discuss potential developments and future directions.

Since skin bleaching is an offshoot of slavery, racism, colorism, colonialism and neocolonialism, the historical institutions that are related to skin bleaching are well characterized. The global magnitude of the problem is well defined. Nigeria is regarded by the World Health Organization (WHO) as the country with the highest prevalence of the skin bleaching practice globally, hence the chapter on Nigeria can truly be regarded as the microcosm of the skin bleaching culture in Sub-Saharan Africa.

The skin bleaching stories on representative countries in West, Southern, East, Central and North Africa are also discussed. In a globalized world, cosmetic skin bleaching has no boundaries. Hence, some insight is given about skin bleaching in the Caribbean, India, South East Asia, Latin America, North America and the United Kingdom. Furthermore, skin bleaching is not only practiced by homeland Africans but also diasporic Africans.

The paradigms and determinants that provide social and cultural impetus towards skin bleaching are extensively characterized, since these factors must be taken into account if meaningful intervention strategies are to be created and employed to counteract the trend towards skin bleaching. The chemicals, products and methods used for skin bleaching and the adverse health effects are clearly described. Finally, guideline recommendations that would help attenuate the burden and possibly eliminate the injuries related to skin bleaching are prescribed. Potential developments and future directions are also discussed.

There are twenty three chapters in the book and it is published in two volumes. The book is already available on Amazon.com, African Books Collective, konga.com, Barnes & Noble etc.

Skin-lightening is a $10 billion industry Ghana wants nothing to do with !

Come August, Ghana will begin implementing a new ban on hydroquinone, the primary chemical in many skin-bleaching products. The ban is the latest salvo in a backlash against skin-bleaching that pits longstanding racial stereotypes against a growing beauty industry.

Ghana is one of just three African countries—along with Cote d‘Ivoire and South Africa—to regulate skin-lightening products, and its Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) says the ban is a matter of public safety. Hydroquinone is widely considered a potential carcinogen and products containing it are already banned or restricted in Japan, Australia, and the European Union (though the efficacy of those bans is up for debate)

There is abundant historical precedent for using chemical products to achieve a lighter skin tone, but the practice has in recent years seeded a booming—and controversial—industry. In 2012, India alone used 258 tons of skin-lightening cream (such creams have recently caught on with men there). In Lagos, Nigeria, one survey found that up to 77% of all residents use skin-lightening creams. Demand for such products is currently being driven by the Asia-Pacific market—led, interestingly, by Japan—but they are also popular in parts of Africa, the Middle East, the Caribbean, and Latin America. A 2009 report from Global Industry Analysts declared skin-lightening a $10 billion industry; as of last year, GIA was projecting that number would hit $23 billion by 2020.

While skin-lightening has some negative physical side effects—cancer aside, bleaching creams can cause rashes, itchy and flaky skin, and permanent scarring—the hydroquinone backlash has deeper roots. Skin-lightening is seen as a direct byproduct of colorism, a form of discrimination that deems lighter skin “better” than darker skin. Historically, colorism has led to disparities in everything from social treatment to employment, and has even been documented as a factor in US prison sentencing.

Perhaps the most infamous example of this is the “paper bag test,” a practice in American slavery whereby slave owners would compare slaves’ skin color to a paper bag—lighter-skinned slaves worked indoors while darker slaves were sent to the fields. More recently, 2011 documentary Dark Girls highlighted the lingering presence of colorism in the media, and its effect on black women’s sense of self-worth. Outside the US, skin tone continues to be associated with class in many regions, particularly formerly colonized spaces like India and the Philippines.

So far, the pushback against skin-lightening has been slow, in part because such products are still big business. (In the US, Unilever manufactures Fair & Lovely, a skin-bleaching cream with wide distribution in Southeast Asia). Celebrities like Cameroonian-Nigerian singer Dencia have been lambasted for pushing skin-lightening products, and even Snapchat has come under fire for using retouching filters that appear to make people whiter. But actual regulation has been slow.

This means Ghana, a country of 26 million, could be setting an important example, at least symbolically. “From August 2016, all products containing hydroquinone will not be allowed in the country,” FDA spokesman James Lartey told Starr FM last year. “From 2016, the acceptance for skin-lightening products is going to be zero.”

Article via QuartzAfrica

Your One Stop for ALL Ghanaian events!

With new media and modern technology, people are turning more and more to the internet to access information. But with the internet, unless you know where to go, you may miss the information you’re searching for.

As an Event Organizer, you want your advert to reach the maximum number of people. But with so many TV and Radio stations, websites and apps, how can you be sure your audience hear your message?

www.ghanaeventsguide.com is the only website and app dedicated solely to Ghanaian events globally. So if you’re organizing a Ghanaian fashion show in Italy, a Ghanaian music event in UK, a Ghanaian business conference in Botswana, etc., wherever, and whatever your event, as long as it’s Ghanaian, you can submit it to www.ghanaeventsguide.com

Guaranteed access to your target audience

I. People who visit www.ghanaeventsguide.com do so for one reason, they’re looking for a Ghanaian event to attend. These days, Ghanaian movies are popular and premiers are held outside Ghana. Imagine the costs the organizer of a movie that’s premiering in Ghana, Nigeria, UK and USA will save simply by advertising on www.ghanaeventsguide.com. Instead of advertising in each country, the Event Organizer will save costs by submitting all their premier dates to www.ghanaeventsguide.com. Fans from all the over world can simply visit www.ghanaeventsgudie.com and viola – all the information will be readily available. No fuss. No having to type in several searches.

II. With so many TV and radio stations, how can you guarantee the station (including time and show) you choose to place your ad is getting to your audience? There are many people who would like to attend your event but may not be listening to the station or show you choose to advertise on.

III. How many events, although well-organized were considered flops simply because of low attendance? Low attendance due to the fact that people didn’t hear about the event until after it had taken place?


Benefits to the Event Organizer

As an Event Organizer, you’ll benefit from advertising on www.ghanaeventsguide.com because:

I. You’ll be hitting a direct target of event goers who are visiting www.ghanaeventsuide.com /using the app because they want an event to attend.

II. The cost of advertising on www.ghanaevents.guide.com is competitive

III. By listing your events on www.ghanaeventsguide.com, you’ll be saving the costs involved with advertising on several radio and TV stations simultaneously.

IV. People can schedule your event into their plans. Especially when travelling. For example booking their travel ticket to coincide with your event. Imagine for example, somebody sitting in Canada, planning on visiting Ghana. They realize you’re about to organize a conference on investment opportunities on the day they’re planning to leave Ghana. Because they want to attend your event, they change their ticket and leave a day later. If this person comes to Ghana before seeing your billboard for example, it may be too late and costly for them to change their tickets. Yet this is the person you want at your event.

V. SMS reminders sent directly to our database of clients. We have a database of visitors to the website who have opted for event reminders to be sent to their phones. Advertise on www.ghanaeventsguide.com and have access to this service.

VI. Competitive rates. Compare our rates to others and you’ll find our rates truly affordable.


Easy to use website and app

www.ghanaeventsguide.com stays true to its objective of being a solely eventslistings guide. So visitors won’t be distracted by news, gossip, videos etc. Visitors to the website can use it in two quick steps:

I. Click onto the country of their choice.

II. Click onto the date. This step is made even easier on the home page where visitors can access the events diary directly.


How to advertise on www.ghanaeventsguide.com

Event Organizers can submit their events on www.ghanaeventsguide.com directly or by sending it to events@ghanaeventsguide.com



Email: info@ghanaeventsguide.com

T: 0247205057/0264806750 E:info@ghanaeventsguide.com W: www.ghanaeventsguide.com


Mama Africa Wants Her Girls Back

Bring Back Our Girls!

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The Me Firi Ghana Blog is a wonderful space where we celebrate the uniqueness of our homeland Ghana. However, it is also a place for intelligent conversation regarding events which resound with all of us, regardless of our National allegiance. A sounding board for members of our acclaimed team to give thought to issues which resonate with us.

As a young doctor, I am especially aware & grateful that I have been afforded educational tools to make the best of this life – tools that others may never have the chance to use. As a big brother to two young ladies who excel in education, I appreciate the grace they have in terms of being able to study and try and make it in this world without clamour, without fuss. Which is why a particular story agitated me as April began to gently fade into May:

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Over 200 schoolgirls aged between 12-15 years of age were abducted from their boarding school in Nigeria by the notorious Boko Haram sect.

Initially, the social media campaign sparked because there seemed to be an indifference in the media regarding this matter. Major news outlets seemingly ignored the story altogether while the eyes of the world were focused on missing planes and sinking ships. The media loves a good old-fashioned hunt. When the daughter of two English doctors was snatched from their unsecured apartment a few years ago after being left unsupervised, the story was headline news for years. However when it came to finding these kidnapped African schoolgirls, the media were surprisingly slow to catch on (how surprisingly is arguable, but that’s another discussion for another day…).

Once the clamour reached fever pitch and the Western World’s media powerhouses began to appreciate the gravity of the situation, the true horrors of the story began to resonate. More than 50 girls had fortunately managed to escape. However, at least 17 girls had become sick. A number had passed away. Reports began to leak of the group being split up, with girls being offered at a bride-price of less than £10. £10… Sister Rosemary Nyirumbe, who runs a shelter for girls who have been abducted by Kony’s notorious group in Uganda has stated ‘this is not marriage. They are being given into sex slavery. We should call evil by its name.’ Research suggests that the girls had probably been subjected to ‘extreme sexual violence’.

Let all of that simmer in the recesses of your mind and soul for a few seconds. Appreciate the rosy-tint, which had shielded you and aimed to grant you some comfort regarding this story, begin to fade unerringly into devastating black…

My issue once these horrifying details came out was that the naked horrors of the story triviallised initial attempts at what I saw as ‘bandwagoning’ by people posting up videos saying ‘Bring Back Our Girls’ as it was the ‘in-thing’ to do, without actually DOING anything – just like those who posted up ‘no-make-up-selfies’ without making any attempt to educate about breast cancer or providing any links to support the cause.


Now thankfully, instead of frivolous attempts at attracting more ‘likes’ on facebook and Instagram, we are seeing powerful and inspirational women all over the globe utilising the VOICE which social media has rendered a powerful weapon, to move the hands of governments to action – from US First Lady Michelle Obama, to Malala Yousafzai – the young Pakistani educational activist who survived a shot to the head at point blank range by Taliban as she boarded a school ; another example of education being seen as a privilege to be denied young women, rather than a human right.

The story of the Nigerian Schoolgirls resonates with me because all these girls were doing was to try and pursue an education. Something which the West sees as a human right, but unfortunately still remains a ‘privilege’ in many parts of Africa and as noted previously in other parts of the world too. Something which, even more heinously, is regarded by Boko Haram to be an abomination – a sect whose very name means ‘Western Education Is Forbidden’. How feeding our young women intellectually could ever be a crime is beyond me. Why you would steal them away and cut short their progress in their pursuit to become something in this world other than a sex object is breathtakingly inconceivable. Thankfully, the eyes of the world now rest upon the matter at hand, and governments are ready to move this to a satisfactory conclusion.

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We are all praying for a happy ending, despite the fact that in a just world, such an abduction would never have happened in the first place. Let’s continue to do our bit to get these girls home by joining protests, continue to make petitions which have already proved successful – do whatever we can, however we can. These girls need to be brought back home, ASAP. And that is something I believe the vast majority of us desire, regardless of the colour of the flag we wave.

The world has finally taken notice of the silent screams of our African sisters.

The world is now ready to help.

It’s finally Game Time: Mama Africa wants her girls back.

Jermaine Bamfo (@Dr_Jabz27)

Introducing you to…

GHRBS: Taiye Selasi




She has been widely tipped as the most exciting literary voice to have appeared in years and her debut novel “Ghana must Go” is set to take the literary world by storm!  Taiye Selasi the writer and photographer of Nigerian and Ghanaian origin raised in London and educated in the United States has produced a novel which spans the globe from Accra, Ghana, to London to New York. It’s the story of a successful African immigrant family living in Boston. They seem to be fulfilling the American dream until the father, a surgeon, inexplicably leaves. This sets into motion an unraveling family that’s repaired only by a reunion following their father’s untimely death. The narrative of the story is steeped in emotion and all kinds of love and betrayal and exposes revelations that span generations and cross national boundaries.

Taiye Selasi was born in London, and raised in Brookline, Massachusetts – she is the elder of twin daughters in a family of academics. Selasi’s mother, a pediatrician in Ghana, is widely known across Africa for her advocacy of children’s rights.Her father, a surgeon and public intellectual, has published numerous volumes of poetry, one included in the literature curriculum of Ghana. Selasi graduated with a BA in American Studies from YaleUniversity and holds an MPhil in International Relations from NuffieldCollege, Oxford. Taiye means first twin in her mother’s native Yoruba. Selasi means “God has heard” in her father’s native Ewe.

In 2005 LiP Magazine published “Bye-Bye, Babar (Or: What is an Afropolitan?)”Selasi’s seminal text on “Afropolitans” (which combines the words African and cosmopolitan to describe a contemporary generation of Africans) a phrase which has been championed ever since the text’s release.   A year later Selasi wrote a short story “The Sex Lives of African Girls”. The story, which was published by Granta magazine in 2011, appears in Best American Short Stories 2012.Earlier In 2010 Ann Godoff at Penguin Press bought Selasi’s unfinished novel. Ghana Must Go is set to be is published in 15 countries this year. In 2012 Selasi launched the multimedia project “2154”, setting out to photograph and film young people in all 54 African countries which is also set to be completed this year in a film titled “twentysomethings”

Taiye Selasi has cemented herself as an all round creative talent. Thus now with her entry into the world of novel writing, she may just become one of the world’s great authors. “Ghana must Go” is a must read for any “Afropolitan” or simply anyone with an eye for a commanding story.

To find out more about Ms Selasi you can visit her website – http://www.taiyeselasi.com/

Taiye  Selasi Me Firi Ghana salutes you!

Ghana’s performance at AFCON 2013

Black Stars!!! Really???



Ghana is a West African country deeply in love with our football. It’s our basketball or NFL to the Americans; it’s our cricket to the West Indies and rugby to New Zealand. It’s our passion, the one and only time our great nation comes together as one and most recently over the last decade one of the few things which has bestowed upon us the bragging rights over our friendly but fierce West African neighbours Nigeria.

Over the last few tournaments, namely since the AFCON in 2008 till now, Ghana has been the only country to set a benchmark as to the heights African football is capable of reaching. 3 semi-finals and a final in the AFCON last four tournaments has proved our consistency whilst it had to take the forever hated Luiz Suarez to deny us of an inevitable place in the world cup semi-final which would have been a first by any African nation.

Upon all these stats and heights we’ve supposedly reached, why is it that the last time this great foot balling nation won a tournament was in 1982? Should we conceive that we won’t win one anytime soon? Should we (the people) not expect much from the team anymore? Because it seems we always one way or the other get our hearts broken, our dreams shattered and our bragging rights blown off target. Friday was meant to be seen as stepping stone to facing our rivals Nigeria in the final, a big West African derby in football terms. A chance not only to settle the football on the pitch, but to settle the long standing argument over who makes the best jollof rice, has the best culture, has the best skin tone (I think we’ve settled that one) and many more. But yet again, our dismal performance didn’t deserve even a semi-final place even though the Tunisian referee tried his outmost best to see us through with that outrageously biased performance himself which has seen him suspended today by CAF.

Overall, a shocking display and a truly barbaric demonstration in this year’s tournament which is forcing me to retire from watching Ghana play at least for the foreseeable future because I can’t bare the torment and the heartbreak anymore and I have a degree to pursue.

Some say it’s just football, get over it. But I tell you what, when it comes to Ghana, its more than football my friend, it’s our everything! God bless our homeland Ghana!


By Eddie Kojo


Ghana’s economy – Gold

Ghana’s Gold


Although there is a serious lack of Gold medals in our Olympic history, there is no shortage of the metallic shiny element in Ghana. Our economy depends largely on exports of cocoa and gold, and the latter has been the main focus of Ghana’s mining and minerals development industry since the 1990’s. Ghana is Africa’s 2nd largest gold producer, producing on average 80.5 tones a year.

More than 90% of gold production in the early 1990s came from underground mines in western and Ashanti Region, with the remainder coming from river beds in Ashanti Region and Central Region. In 1992, Ghana’s gold production surpassed 1 million fine ounces, up from 327,000 fine ounces in 1987. In March 1994, the Ghanaian government announced that it would sell half of its 55% stake in AGC for an estimated US$250 million, which would then be spent on development projects.

In October 2005, Red Back Mining of Canada [through its subsidiary Chirano Gold Mines Limited (CGML)] commissioned a new mine in Ghana. The mine, known as the Chirano gold mine, was an open pit operation located about 21 kilometers (km) to the south of AngloGold Ashanti’s Bibiani gold mine in western Ghana. The Chirano gold mine produced 941 kilograms (kg) (reported as 30,247 troy ounces) in 2005 and was 100% owned by Red Back; the Government had the option to exercise its right to back into a 10% ownership in CGML. Chirano was scheduled to produce an average of about 3,800 kg (reported as 123,000 troy ounces) per year during a period of 8½ years.

Since then several more mines have been opened in Ghana since Chirano. The most notable being the Amoanda mining pit (during the fourth quarter of 2005) and the Rex pit (in 2007).

According to figures released earlier this year by the Ghana Chamber of Mines, revenue made from gold mined in Ghana and sold on the international market was $4.6 billion in 2011, up from $3.6 billion in 2010. Ghana’s major trading partners for exports such as gold are the European Union, United States, Nigeria, and Togo.

So my question is with all the gold revenue made by Ghana in the 90’s to the present day why do we still lack the funding for many infrastructure projects within Ghana? Is the money being mismanaged? Or is there more to it than that?

I want to know your thoughts. Leave your comments below.

Ben JK Anim-Antwi (@Kwesitheauthor)