President Paul Kagame of Rwanda, Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya, Ghana’s President Nana Akufo-Addo and Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed have all been shortlisted to receive African Economic Merit Awards (AEMA) as Africa’s best Presidents of the year, in an award ceremony that will take place in 2019.
Two of Nigeria’s all time entrepreneurs: Chairman of United Bank for Africa Tony Elumelu and business mogul, Aliko Dangote are also lined up among those to receive the AEMA Hero of the Year award. Others in the category are Senegalese born music icon, Akon and Kingsley Holgate of South Africa.
The list was unveiled at the weekend at World Plaque ceremony by the organisers of the continental award. Founder of AEM, McEva Temofe said it is designed to recognise hard work, creativity and prudency. He said the platform was built on merit to pioneer growth for Africans and gives Africa an economic face-lift.
The award was also extended to the best African Philanthropist of the year, African Woman of the year, Man of the year, NGO of the year, Africa’s Brand Choice of the year, Hero of the year and African Shining Star of the year. Other categories that also recorded four shortlisted persons are: Africa’s Leading Voice, Monarch of the year, and Youth of the year, Posthumous Hero, Entrepreneur of the year and Invention of the year.
In his welcome remarks at the occasion that took place in Abuja on Friday, Temofe said his foundation is out to recognise, encourage and charge established individuals, corporate and governmental bodies on the importance of driving economic growth in Education, Agriculture, Health and Technology with the view to reaching out not only to the grassroots but also to improve the standards of living of all Africans.
Regional Procurement Coordinator, African Development Bank (AfDB), Mr. Baba Imoru Abdulai said one important aspect of China-Africa economic and trade cooperation is the improvement of infrastructure. Over the years, China has helped African countries build a large number of infrastructure projects.
Abdulai said China’s support to Africa’s development through the African Development Bank is being channelled through Africa Growing Together Fund (AGTF). He said, “With the freedom to operate in all sectors and with access to capital and better technology, the Chinese firms have gained market power and dominance in recent times.
As such, many African owned firms are forced to drop out of the market due to competition. This has force several African firms to close down.”