Awards to boost investment and development in Africa

Organisers of the British Awards for African Development, to be held in London on 30th October, urge entrepreneurs and African Diaspora to transform Africa through investment.  The inaugural British Awards for African Development (BRAAD) will mark a sharp departure from the usual solicitations for donations towards Africa. Instead, the BRAAD will provide a platform for the recognition of businesses, organisations and African Diaspora members who are actively investing in the continent.

Peace International, a London-based development organisation, is launching these annual awards to celebrate and encourage African development through entrepreneurship, investment and social engagement. “We want to acknowledge those who have made an outstanding contribution to business, governance, media, sport and education in Africa and within the Diaspora,” says Jean-Bosco Kanyemesha, CEO of Peace International.

The nominees include, among many others, Oluwatoyin Sanni, CEO of United Capital Group; Frederic Nze, CEO of OAKAM; Dr Denis Mukwege, Founder of Panzi Hospital in the Democratic Republic of Congo; Akon Lighting, and Moïse Katumbi, former Governor of Katanga in the DR Congo.

Before the BRAAD ceremony, due to take place in the evening, there will be a conference consisting of a series of panel discussions throughout the day. Panellists will debate investment, partnership and development opportunities in Africa and the Diaspora in sectors including mining industry, energy and power, fashion, media and entertainment.

Among the speakers will be HE Miguel Neto, Ambassador of Angola to the UK, and the South African High Commissioner, HE Obed Mlaba. Both diplomats are set to highlight the fact that there has never been a better time to invest in Africa because of the continent’s current economic boom. They will also encourage Africans living abroad to participate in the development of their continent through investment, responsible entrepreneurship, and social engagement. Other speakers will include Runa Alam, CEO of Development Partners International; Madeline Young from Ernst and Young LLP; Bola Obiley, From Africa Fashion week; Dipo Winsala, Director of Nollywood Movies, and the MPs Pauline Latham and Jeremy Lefroy, both of whom are Vice-Chairs of the Africa All Party Parliamentary Group and Patrons of the BRAAD.

The discussions are likely to be informative, lively and illuminating. Notwithstanding the impressive economic growth of many African countries, Sylvie Aboa-Bradwell, one of the BRAAD’s Judges, stresses that the overwhelming majority of Africans have not yet benefitted from this growth. “I will encourage the panellists, the attendees as well as the BRAAD nominees and winners to enable African populations to benefit from Africa’s economic growth thanks to good governance, social commitment and responsible entrepreneurship”, Aboa-Bradwell says.

The importance of responsible entrepreneurship is also highlighted by one of the awards’ Advisory Board Members, Bandi Mbubi. Mbubi, from Congo Calling, a UK-based organisation, calls for the development of fair trade technology which uses conflict-free minerals from the Democratic Republic of the Congo. “It is now time for African citizens living abroad to play a key role in creating a more ethical management of natural resources”, he says.

The event will take place at the Crowne Plaza Battersea, London SW11 3BE, on the 30th October 2015; the panel discussions will start at 9.30 am and end at 4.40pm; the Awards ceremony will begin at 5pm.

For registration and further information about the conference and the Awards, visit: www.braadaward.com

Peace International is a UK-registered charity which has been running since 2008. It is dedicated to the promotion of peace, reconciliation and development among communities in the United Kingdom (UK) and in Central Africa. Our aims include the relief of poverty by the provisions of services which focus on poverty alleviation, sustainable development, education and employment as well as the advancement of human rights, conflict resolution in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Jean-Bosco Kanyemesha, CEO of Peace International, is available for interview on (+44) (0)745090105 and contact@peaceinternational.org.uk

 

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