Dalberg’s Global CEO
Jacob’s Cross Actress Abena Ayivor
Dr. L. Desire Kikomba Pioneering Pan African Medical Insurance • Travel Story – Tunisia • Inside SA Home Affairs • AUPSA Chairman Stephen Twinoburyo • Nigeria’s ‘Toye Abioye Issue 10
w w w. ex p a t ri a t e . c o. z a
THE 2nd ANNUAL EXPATRIATE WOMEN’S BREAKFAST SATURDAY 01 JUNE 2013
Ladies, join us for a morning of heart-warming interaction at our 2ND Annual Expatriate Women’s Breakfast. It promises to be even bigger and better with inspiring speakers, fruitful discussions and that fun women’s breakfast quiz. Keep an eye on our website www.expatriate.co.za for details and to register for the event in the month of May.
Email enquiries to email@example.com or contact Carol on 0822146421.
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Contents 6 Editorial 8 Inside Home Affairs 13 Expat-tivities 20 Dr. L. Desire Kikomba : CEO of Buphe Health Insurance
Today, Medical Doctors are increasingly citing stress as a major contributing factor to most illness. The Perfect Health Course offers a five-step exploration of mind-body medicine and Ayurveda. We therefore offer 5-Module Courses on Team Building Through Conscious Leadership & Healthy Lifestyles, as well as one-on-one, customized Leadership Mentoring & Coaching Services. Employer benefits include reduced absenteeism, better productivity, improved work relationships, fewer sick leave days & medical bills. Course outline:
24 James Mwangi Dalberg’s Global Managing Partner
Session One: Know Thyself: Your Chopra Centre–certified Perfect Health Instructor introduces the Foundational Principles of Ayurveda, Meditation, and Yoga. The Mind Body Type (Dosha) Quiz is used as the tool or self-discovery and self mastery;
28 Kelly Kalumba: Louis Karol Architects’ Senior Partner
Session Two: “Food as Medicine,” How to select the most nourishing foods for your mind-body type;
32 Lynnsanity: The Blank Page 34 Expat-travel: Tunisia 40 Actress Abena Ayivor 44 AUPSA Chairman Stephen Twinoburyo 46 Book Review: Dark Continent My Black Arse 48 ‘Toye Abioye: Investing in Nigeria a no-brainer 51 Chio Sakutukwa: To Serve and Protect 52 Last Word:: Intrigues of a Ghanaian Funeral
Session Three: Rejuvenation and Renewal. How to eliminate toxins that accumulate in the mind and body as well as How to introduce gentle rejuvenating practices & techniques to relieve stress, and anxiety, as well as adopting a personal daily routine for balance and health; Session Four: Learn How to Attain Emotional Freedom as the key to your physical, mental, and emotional health as well as How to practice Conscious Communication; Session Five: Discover How to Harness The Healing Power of the Five Senses: Sound, Touch, Sight, Taste, and Smell as well as How to Strengthen the Body’s Inner Pharmacy by using each of the senses to heal and balance your mind-body.
Discover & Manifest Your Destiny For Further Information & Customized Events Bookings, Kindly Contact: Scholastica Sylvan Kimaryo (Mrs) Former United Nations Ambassador to SA & Lesotho (2001-2009) Deputy President, The Ayurveda Foundation South Africa (TAFSA). Founder & CEO Maadili Conscious Leadership & Healthy Lifestyles Coaching Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.maadili.co.za Skype: sskimaryo Tel: +27 72 212 9572 Member E-Fax: 0866 15 44 11
NOTE FROM THE EDITOR
LUCKY NUMBER 13 It is our first issue of 2013. Still very much a new year and I hope all our readers will defy the notion of an unlucky number 13 and make this year memorable for the right reasons. Still on numbers, this is our tenth issue and it is only with your support that we have achieved this landmark.
he 13th hole at Leeuwkop Golf Club (where we are having our golf day this year) has always been my Achilles heel on this course. When I last played there, the sight of the water over which I was expected to drive the golf ball automatically had my fingers twitching with sheer apprehension. Needless to say I topped the poor thing and it rolled like a bowling ball through the reeds on the near side of the dam. This was inevitably met by the merciless laughter of my fellow players who stood to benefit from a round of drinks at my expense for my failing to make it past the ladies tee off point. But I cannot blame the hole and the unlucky reputation of the number after which it is named. The scene described above is not uncommon when I am on the course.
In this issue, we open with the cover profile story of Dr. L. Desire Kikomba, a Congolese born public health practitioner and pioneer of a pan African medical insurance cover. This is followed by our interview of Kenya’s James Mwangi who is the global Managing Partner of the reputable consultancy firm Dalberg. It is fitting that we cover Dalberg’s tenth anniversary in our tenth issue. It is also a privilege for us to file a report on Zambia’s Kelly Kalumba whose work you have probably encountered as the structures he has designed include well-known establishments such as the Gautrain Stations and Greenpoint Stadium. Be sure to read our one on one with Jacob’s Cross’ Abena Ayivor, AUPSA’s Chairman Stephen Twinoburyo and Nigeria’s ‘Toye Abioye alongside our regular columns of a book review, travel story, expattivities and opinion pieces from our contributors. KC Rottok, CA (SA) Creative & Fin. Journalism (Wits University) Managing Editor.
Publisher: The Expatriate Forum and Magazine (Pty) Limited Reg. Number: 2010/012428/07 P O Box 4935, Randburg, 2125 Tel: +27 11 7917484 www.expatriate.co.za Director: Carol Malonza – email@example.com Managing Editor: KC Rottok – firstname.lastname@example.org Deputy Editor and Content Advisor: Leah Maina – email@example.com Publishing Executive: Sheila Lynn Senkubuge Advertising and Event Enquiries firstname.lastname@example.org or 0822146421 Edition Writers: Keith Kundai, Wanjiru Waichigo, Chionesu Sakutukwa, Andreas Krensel, KC Rottok, Sheila Senkubuge,. Art Direction, Design and Layout: Mike Obrien email@example.com Photography: Mzu Nhlabati www.creativenation.co.za Website: Drutech Media (0781121311) To subscribe or contribute an article, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org All rights reserved. Excerpts may be used as long as this magazine is credited as the source. Longer versions of our content may only be used with the written permission of the Publisher. Neither the publisher nor the editor accept responsibility for any of the information from edition writers or contributors. Whilst we have taken care in preparing this publication, the publisher/editor does not warrant its completeness or accuracy. The editor retains the right to edit all contributions. Advertisers are responsible for their material. © Expatriate SA: ISSN 2218 – 757X
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Inside Home Affairs
My ‘Adventure’ in the Dragons Den – The Department of Home Affairs
‘Although there is a place for agents... few can afford the prohibitive cost of a reputable agent whilst the risk of encountering an incompetent one is too high.’ n 2009, amidst skepticism from family and friends, I undertook to submit my Work Permit application to the Department of Home Affairs (DHA) myself. A decision birthed by a quote of R 10, 000 (excl of costs) to submit through an agent, my then ailing bank balance, and numerous horror stories - starring agents - related by friends or ‘friends of friends’. My thinking at the time was that the inefficiencies and incompetence of the DHA were grossly exaggerated. To my delight, my gamble paid off. Having gathered the requisite documentation, I trepidatiously
proceeded to the dragons den that is the Harrison Street DHA office. Save for the broken lift and having to contend with the six flights of stairs, the experience was painless. All 7 counters were manned which expedited the process and I was done in about 2 hours. Thirty (30) days later - to the day, my permit was ready. Fast forward three years and in 2012, I found myself in need of a new permit. With my recuperating bank balance I chose to ‘splurge’ on an agent - a decision I quickly rescinded
when quoted R 15, 000 and R 20, 000 respectively by agents clearly working off a significantly different inflation rate from my employer. My previous positive experience still fresh in my mind, a helpful employer, and several accounts of an improving DHA discouraging the use of agents, I figured it could only be easier this time. Again, putting together the application was straightforward. On advice from a former DHA employee, I made my way to Pretoria where I was informed that applications for a Johannesburg based employer are not accepted in Pretoria. I requested a review of my application to ensure compliance and confirmed that other than one document (of which no mention is made in the application forms) my application was ‘perfect’. Armed with my amended ‘perfect’ application, I proceeded to the Harrison street office where I was oriented into a new system – all applicants of Temporary Residence Permits need a number to be served. I joined the long, largely unattended queue outside the DHA, got to the 6th Floor an hour later and on producing my ‘pass’ gained access to the empty submission area. This time, only one official was accepting applications at a rate that felt like an eternity per person. As I sat in the queue - geared up for a long wait - I noticed that agents seemed to have an unspoken ‘fast track’ queue. Three hours later, I was next in line when the official serving us ‘plebs’ left, promising: “My colleague will help you in 5
minutes, ne” Half an hour later the elusive colleague appeared and firmly declared my application to be incomplete. The DHA now requires both the SAQA certificate and the academic documents that were initially submitted for evaluation. She then informed me (with a straight face) that only salary benchmarks from Deloitte, KPMG, Ernst and Young or the Department of Labour are acceptable, and proceeded to produce the ‘prevailing list of requirements’ sending me on my way dumbfounded and perplexed. The following day, gathering as many of the documents on the ‘prevailing list’ as I could, I endured much of the same in getting to the 6th floor and this time by God’s grace found a different officer. Bar the academic certificates, the application I eventually submitted – complete with the benchmark from an ‘unacceptable’ auditor - was identical to what I had the day before. The ‘prevailing list’ did not re-appear. Despite my less than heartwarming experience, I do not regret my decision. Although there is a place for agents who offer a service that many need, few can afford the prohibitive cost of a reputable agent whilst the risk of encountering an incompetent one is too high. A more efficient submission process would benefit both applicants and DHA staff who at this stage of the process are seemingly overwhelmed. Leah Maina
Inside Home Affairs
New Minister - Quo Vadis – Home Affairs?
“We can only hope that the new administration will be brave enough to not only draft an open minded Immigration Act but to also create a culture of welcoming foreigners with desired qualifications. Do we give the Nigerian mathematics teacher who is currently operating as a car guard, a chance to teach our children?” ith the former Minister of Home Affairs taking up the position of the head of the African Union, far away in Ethiopia, President Zuma appointed Mrs Naledi Pandor as her successor. As Minister of Science and Technology, she was instrumental in bringing the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) Telescope to South Africa. During the lobbying process, she travelled extensively overseas and we are confident that she learned about the importance of attracting international investors to our country and to source the necessary skills to keep South Africa ahead in global competition. Mrs Naledi is already making a positive impression by being more accessible and appears intolerant of nonperformance. In a recent meeting with Alan Winde, Minister of Finance, Economic Development and Tourism in the Western Cape, he confirmed that Pandor is committed to addressing the shortfalls of her new department and actually reaches out for feedback. Most people agree that Home Affairs has improved its services for citizens. A new passport can now be delivered within a week and ID Books can be issued quickly as well, provided that the applicant is on the national database. Cleaning up this citizen database was a priority for the former Minister, and we can expect card sized smart ID’s to be rolled out soon. This will ease the administrative burden in the future.
Which leads us to the big question about foreigners in South Africa. The government still needs to answer loud and clearly whether it wants foreigners here or not. For the country’s sanity, we need to have a debate. There are various Acts in place, covering issues of asylum, refugees and “normal” immigrants. The Immigration Act of 2002 is a great document, drafted to attract both foreign investment as well as skills. However, in practice, there seems to be an underlying mistrust towards foreigners. Our government needs to ask us, its people, whether we want the free movement of people within Africa or at least Southern Africa. Do we want well-qualified academics and tradesmen from Zimbabwe to compete with South Africans? Do we give the Nigerian mathematics teacher, who is presently on a 6-months asylum seeker permit operating as a car guard, a chance to teach our children? Should Lesotho nationals be allowed to harvest grapes in the Western Cape? Or do we want to continue only looking after our own and expose them to neither global nor African competition? The National Development Plan 2030 actually answers this question in part. In Chapter 3 one of the suggested actions is to adopt a more open immigration approach in order to expand supply of high-level skills and I believe the emphasis should be on high-level skills. We can only hope that the new administration will be brave enough
to not only draft an open minded Immigration Act, but to also create a culture of welcoming foreigners with desired qualifications. To appreciate the economic power foreigners bring to this country. To support and fund an efficient administration, so that we can quickly distinguish between desired and undesired immigrants in an ethical, humane, fair but also predictable way. As a personal wish I would like to add that this culture of welcoming should start with the South African embassies and consulates abroad. Some of them do just the opposite of being welcoming; they actually hinder foreign direct investment into South Africa. Clearly, this is not in the best interest of our country. Andreas Krensel is the owner and managing director of IBN Consulting in Cape Town. He is a qualified German attorney with an LLM from UCT and has been assisting foreign investors in South Africa for the past ten years. www.ibncapetown.com
ll Danquah is the brainchild of Mr. Kwabena Danquah who fell in love with South Africa during his first visit from his country Ghana in 1999. Mr. K. Danquah ventured into all kinds of new business possibilities other than that of the steel industry he had refined to a growing success story in Accra-Ghana. His passion for architectural renovations of buildings soon became very profitable as he acquired buildings and turned them into commercial and residential units in record time to be rented out as return on his investments. As an entrepreneur, he handpicked a management staff that mirrors his business strategies.
All-Danquah very soon turned into a very competitive and successful rental and maintenance business with a considerable number of properties in Kempton Park and Johannesburg CBD. He also ventured into a steel business by acquiring a factory in Vanderbijl Park which he registered as Comet Steel (Pty) Limited. The group’s head office is situated at 45 Albatross Street in Rhodesfield, Kempton Park. All-Danquah staff compliment consisted of only three employees when it was established in 2003. In 2012, the staff compliment expanded to a total of 37 of which four are Executive Managers reporting directly to the CEO.
On 1 March 2012 the CEO and Management of All-Danquah decided to venture into new fields of hospitality due to All-Danquahs’ rapid growth and successful rental management structure. All-Danquah’s tranquil new Guest Lodge in Edleen, Kempton Park came to life in February 2012 as well as a cosy sit-down diner Restaurant with ample space for 40 people. The Conference facility can host up to 60 delegates and caters for the most discerning of clients. There is also a Quantum bus available to transport visitors. Food lovers will simply love the All-Danquah Restaurants’ continental dishes as well as African cuisine.
Contact Details: All Danquah Head Office: Tel 0119755006 Fax: 0119755008 E-mail: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org All Danquah Restaurant: Tel 011 394 4236 E-mail: email@example.com All Danquah Guesthouse: Tel 011 393 6583 Ryna Snyman (Group Consultant), Kwabena Danquah (CEO), Kofi Arthur (Project Manager) and Barbara Benhura (Finance/HR Manager)
Okavango Flats (20 Units)
Some members of staff
All-Danquah Guest House
Comet Steel premises, a member of the All-Danquah Group
Various Expat Events
01 02 03
1 & 4 - Ghanaâ€™s Obaasima Family Day at Innes Free Park, Sandton , 2 & 7 - Park Inn Sandton hosts an African evening as part of the Sub-Saharan Africa GM& DOS Regional Conference 2012, 3 - Ghanaian Actor John Dumelo visit to SA at Hush Club, Rosebank, 5 & 6 - Africa Coast to Coast Celebration at Sankayi,
More pics available at www.facebook.com/expatmag
MISS ZAMBIA SA 2013
04 05 06
1- A contestant doing a dance routine, 2- Dr. Munkombwe Muchindu, event judge, 3 - Event judge Catherine Mwamba, 4 - The contestants, 5 - Journalist Lukwesa Burak, one of the judges who questioned the girls, 6 - The contestants, 7- Musonda Chalwe responds to a question from the judges
MISS ZAMBIA SA 2013
04 05 06 1 - The contestants, 2 - The designers, Maame Micah (left) and Towani Clark (right), 3, 4 & 5 - The top 3 girls; 2nd princess Hillary Lesa Mukwasa (No. 3) 1st Princess Musonda Chalwe (No.4) and Miss Zambia South Africa Vivian Joyce Ncube (No. 7), 6 - From left Ty2 (event MC), ZASA Chairman Edwin Mununga, Sponsors DSTV Mobileâ€™s Maiyo Simapungula and Mavis Anim of May May Productions
More pics available at www.facebook.com/expatmag
MALAWI AND FRIENDS SA DINNER AND DANCE 2012
1- Joseph and Nicky Mbewe, 2- Event MC Fatima Uja, 3 - Kennedy Kaposa with wife Rachel Nhlapo, 4 - Sponsors Western Unionâ€™s representatives, 5 - Organising Committee Chairman Elvis Kamanga, 6 - MAFSA Founder Martha Banda-George.
MALAWI AND FRIENDS SA DINNER AND DANCE 2012
01 02 03
1 - Musician Gift Muthanyi , 2 - Party time, 3 - Top Malawian designer Lilly Alfonso, 4 - Malawian Rapper Lomwe, 5 Event organising committee, 6 - Trizah Titus sings for the guests
More pics available at www.facebook.com/expatmag
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DR. L. DESIRE KIKOMBA
Group Chairman and CEO OF BUPHE r L. Desire Kikomba was until
my partners and I began thinking of ways to
recently a non-executive director
Edenvale as it centrally placed between the
of the insurance giant, Resolution
The company is strategically located in
business hub of Sandton, Pretoria and the
Insurance. He is currently a
Top business speakers always say that
airport. Soon after registration, they partnered
director of Genric Insurance and is the founder
the best enterprises are built around creating
with Resolution Insurance who underwrote
and group chairman of the pan African
change and serving peoples’ needs. Dr.
their services and established a similar entity
insurance company Buphe. The Expatriate SA
Kikomba says that he noted that a number of
in DRC. This was the first country that they
magazine had the opportunity to interview Dr.
patients struggled with medical bills as they
ventured into on the way to setting up offices
Kikomba at the company’s offices in Edenvale,
had no medical insurance and had to rely
in Zambia, India, Congo, Mozambique and
on their savings which were frequently not
Mauritius. It is an international group with a
mission of extending a helping hand to the
“I moved to SA in 1990 soon after
African market as Dr Kikomba believes in the
graduating at the University of Kinshasa with
“In addition, in African culture, we are
saying that “a person who has forgotten where
a medical degree,” he recalled with a very
accustomed to taking care of members of our
he comes from, surely does not know where
distant French accent.
extended family. A good number of people
he is heading to”.
from other countries here often have to send
He continued to explain that the move
money to their home countries to assist with
was initiated by the need to pursue post-
medical bills for their family members. We
Buphe International Limited PCC, a holding
graduate studies and to find an advanced
have devised a universal medical insurance
company which is registered in Mauritius and
environment to practice medicine. On arrival,
that provides cover for a family of five for as
a licensed financial services provider with the
he got a position as a general practitioner
little as USD 1,500.00 a year.”
local Financial Services Commission. We set
at Boksburg Benoni Hospital (now O. R.
“Our organisational structure begins with
up this company following our move from
Tambo Memorial Hospital). He worked in the
Buphe was registered as a private
Resolution Insurance to Guardrisk (a wholly
obstetrics and gynaecology department and
company in South Africa in 2004 and was
owned subsidiary of Alexander Forbes) who
later served in a management position at the
subsequently listed as a financial services
are our underwriters today. Buphe in Mauritius
hospital until 2005 when he moved to the
provider with the Financial Services Board
holds a captive cell with Guardrisk International
Edenvale General Hospital. In the same year
(FSB). They invested heavily in information
PCC. Below the holding company, Buphe has
he completed an MBA from The University
technology (I.T.) establishing a platform that
what it calls management structures, which
of Luton and went on to pursue a diploma in
is unique to the company called BUMAS
are the locations where most of our members
public health at The University of Pretoria.
(Buphe Medical Administration System).
seek treatment being South Africa, Morocco
and India. The distribution of the management
“Buphe is an acronym for Business in
“We decided to set up our own customised
structure is intended to cover the three
Public Health. The idea to start the company
system rather than purchasing what is in the
African regions as follows: Morocco to cover
came from the number of people who visited
market given that the needs of our members
West Africa, India to cover East Africa and
SA from other African countries for treatment.
are very unique. For example, we needed a
South Africa to cover Central and Southern
I was seeing five to six people from the
system that could handle multiple currencies
Africa. Finally, our operational structures are
Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) each
and multiple languages. It is a support system
in Zambia, Mozambique, Republic of Congo
month. I believed the situation was similar for
that is integrated to speak to the online
and DRC where most of our members seeking
other African Countries also. That gave me the
inputs from our members such as insurance
treatment hail from.”
impression that there is a significant amount
claims. An effective I.T. system is important to
of inward traffic for medical reasons to SA and
remain competitive as it is a key cost driver.”
“I do not believe that you have to venture into politics in order to effect change. Our vision is to become an active partner in the development and growth of healthcare in Africa by benefiting the continent with best healthcare practices, appropriate healthcare investments and professional and innovative healthcare solutions.” Buphe is able to provide medical
In SA, Buphe has international medical
with meeting requirements for study permits,
insurance in partnership with a number of
cover that is essential for African expatriates
pick up from the airport on arrival in SA,
local insurance companies in the countries
that gives local day to day cover and access to
comprehensive health insurance cover in SA
where the operational structures have been
all private companies. From as little as R385,
and back home when on holidays.
In SA, Buphe is registered as
one can have medical insurance that covers a
a medical insurance company rather than
family of five both here and in your country
Buphe currently has a membership
a medical aid and the company’s products
of origin. You could also opt to add a further
of over 5000 and is looking to establish a
here are underwritten by Guardrisk Insurance
two dependent adults to the cover. Buphe
greater presence on the African continent
part in improving
“A medical aid
healthcare in Africa.
is registered under the Medical Scheme
“I do not believe
Act and as such they
that you have to
pay out claims to
venture into politics
the service provider
in order to effect
such as a doctor,
change. Our vision
is to become an
hospital. We are a
with the Financial
healthcare in Africa
Services Board and
by benefiting the
we pay out to the
stated benefit rather than the service provider.
Insurance provides additional benefits which
practices, appropriate healthcare investments
The registration presents challenges in that
include medical credit card, death cover, cover
and professional and innovative healthcare
there is a significant amount of compliance
in your home country when you travel there
required. Another challenge in other African
and repatriation of remains to one’s home
countries is that the culture of business there
- Keith Kundai
is not as formal or straight forward as it is in SA. Sometimes a “yes” is not really a “yes”.”
Another great product is medical cover
for students. The product includes assistance
Pic from shutterstock.com
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EXCELLENCE IS OUR BENCHMARK
JAMES MWANGI Celebrating 10 years of Development Consulting he number one primary school student in the entire country of Kenya in 1991 would be elected to the position of number one partner in a reputable global strategic advisory firm 19 years later. In between those two number ones, James Mwangi was admitted to one of his native country’s top high schools, Alliance, en route to the Ivy League institution of Harvard where he pursued a four year Economics degree. In his final year at Harvard, he got his first real spell as a CEO when he was secretary general of the university’s Model United Nations conference in Greece managing a budget of USD100, 000 with delegates from over 300 countries. In the same academic year he worked at Salomon Smith Barney (now part of Citigroup) as a trainee investment banker, a stint which convinced him that investment banking was not for him. “On graduating in 2000, I joined consulting giant Mckinsey in New York as an analyst,” he said when I interviewed him in Rosebank one sunny November afternoon. He struck a much calmer tone than the one I can recall him adopting as Deputy School Captain at Alliance when he once meted out harsh punishment on me and other errant form ones.
“Memorable projects at Mckinsey include advising an education start up as well as assisting a German bank in acquiring American assets. Towards the end of my second year I was introduced to Henrik Skovby who had just recently left the firm. He had been assigned some significant work at the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and was looking to hire a few consultants to assist him.” Skovby started Dalberg whose early life as an advisory firm was attending to UNDP work. James joined the start up entity in 2002; involvement in impacting lives in the developing world appealed to him more than crafting strategies for corporate entities in the Big Apple. “My plan was to work at Dalberg for a few years while waiting to join Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government for their joint graduate programme with the Business School. But when I got admitted into the programme in 2005, I decided to defer for a year as I had just been promoted to manager. The following year the prospect of a partnership position was on the table so I deferred my admission for a further year. By the end of my second deferred year, I was now a partner and in a position to hire graduates of the programme so I opted to continue learning by doing.”
The partnership has established itself as a preferred provider of development advice with a view of building an institution which pursues long term sustainability rather than a business that achieves short term profit. “A typical project would be advising a multinational pharmaceutical manufacturer to develop business models and strategies to profitably serve lower income consumers who currently lack access to its products,” James explained. He initiated the move to open an office in Africa in 2007 favouring Johannesburg as a gateway to the rest of the continent. It was a difficult beginning as the firm was still very much a start up compared to much larger and more established consulting firms. Today they are very much part of the conversation as they are doing work for a number of African Heads of State and have a track record of servicing about 40 of the Fortune 500 companies. “We are a global partnership of 15 partners in 11 locations on four continents. We recently celebrated our tenth anniversary and we have been growing in excess of 25% year on year since 2010.”
“As Dalberg concludes its tenth year in existence, we celebrate the creation of a distinctively strong brand in advisory, capital and research. We go into the next decade in the firm belief that all of the tools, ideas and discipline developed for the private sector can have application in a meaningful way to driving change for society at large.” While James is based in the Johannesburg office, he is frequently aboard a plane to the other locations including Mumbai, Copenhagen and New York for a few days at a time. He joked that he gets more sleep on a plane than he does at home given that he and his wife Sharmi had just celebrated the birth of their first son. His high school classmate Edwin Macharia is head of the Nairobi office which is the best performing location as it achieves the highest contribution to the partnership bottom line. Edwin is the director of the Africa region which includes an office in Dakar. Other partners are drawn from more than ten countries on all continents. The team’s track record includes more than 600 projects aimed at raising living standards in developing countries and addressing global challenges. The assignments affect over 90 countries in all regions of the world and they have done strategic work for nearly all of the world’s significant multinational agencies.
The Dalberg group has an impressive set of case studies indicative of their ability to identify trends in international development and develop an “inclusive growth” strategy. This is demonstrated by their work which has included, charting a course to mobilise effective integration of mobile health technology into global health systems, assisting a global health advocate with strategic direction, assisting a large donor with gender assessment, transforming the Asian energy landscape, impacting investing in education and building global suppliers for a global energy leader.
global initiatives and financiers in African agriculture now anchor their work in their agenda.
On the African continent, one case study is the assistance given to The Comprehensive African Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP). The African Union’s NEPAD engaged Dalberg in several defining initiatives in support of the CAADP at the national, regional and continental level. Their work resulted in a significant increase in country endorsements of the CAADP and key
James concluded our interview by saying: “As Dalberg concludes its tenth year in existence, we celebrate the creation of a distinctively strong brand in advisory, capital and research. We go into the next decade in the firm belief that all of the tools, ideas and discipline developed for the private sector can have application in a meaningful way to driving change for society at large.” - KC ROTTOK
Another case study worth mentioning is the advice given to a global investment group on the small and growing business sector in Africa. Dalberg acted as an advisor/ gatekeeper leading the marketing to potential funds and investors, the development of calls for proposals and the analysis and due diligence of fund managers. The due diligence led to the selection of four funds with a total investment of over USD150 million for new capital flows into Africa.
KELLY KALUMBA SENIOR PARTNER AT LOUIS KAROL A R C H I T E C T S Partner in-charge of Johannesburg Office
orn in Luanshya, Zambia in 1970, Kelly Kalumba is the partner at Louis Karol Architects charged with replicating in Gauteng the success that the 60 year old firm has achieved from its base in Cape Town. “We moved in a year ago,” he informs me as we settle down in the office boardroom on the 2nd floor of the Rosebank Mews building. “It is a challenge for me to head a new office but one that I am embracing. We are a firm of over 100 professional employees and have done a lot of work in South Africa and internationally in the UK, Israel, Dubai and other parts of Africa. We decided that we should open this office given the fact that we have missed out in the past on a couple of opportunities in Gauteng from clients who preferred competitors with a physical presence in the province.” Kalumba is one of ten partners at the reputable organisation having been appointed to the position in 2003. He had only been at the firm for five years at the time and by-passed the associate level by leaping into partnership on the strength of his work. It is the enviable consequence of a hard worker pursuing a career he was cut out for from an early age. “I was placed second in my lower secondary school class at Kabulonga Boys and the government determined that I should go to either Hillcrest in Livingstone or David Kaunda in Lusaka. These were number one and two respectively of the technical high schools in the country that
taught building drawing, a subject that offered a good introduction to architecture. I left Lusaka for Hillcrest but only spent a year there because I contracted malaria.” Kalumba’s parents insisted that he return to Lusaka and he therefore completed his studies at David Kaunda and joined Copperbelt University (CBU) in 1990 for a five year architecture degree. In his third year, he got the opportunity to travel to SA as one of four representatives of CBU at a competition in Pretoria. He fell in love with the country and therefore did not need much convincing to return. He joined Louis Karol in 1998 after a three year stint with Lisulo and Bwalya architects in Lusaka. “The construction industry in Zambia had declined at the time and I therefore decided to leave to seek greener pastures with the aim of building my exposure and experience in modern building design and detailed construction techniques. My plan was to come to SA and use it as a gateway to living and working in the west in a country like England. But through Louis Karol, I got the opportunity to travel to London and witnessed the lifestyle of my peers from Zambia based there. They lived in small houses and used the subway everyday in a congested city. I decided that Africa was definitely the place to be.” When I ask what projects he has been involved in, he gives me his business card which is designed to open like a folding door to reveal a number of high profile designs. He has
been the project architect for well known structures such as the V & A Waterfront Extension, three Gautrain Stations (Pretoria, Midrand & Centurion), the up-market residential tower block 100 Crown Street in Glasgow, Birmingham International Airport terminal extension, The Zone in Rosebank and Intercontinental Hotel at OR Tambo Airport in Johannesburg and more recently the Liberty Life headquarters and Hotel in Umhlanga.
“I was also involved in the Greenpoint Stadium project which we did with a German firm we had enlisted to assist us. I recall when I made the presentation; I was convinced that we had no chance from the hostile reception we received. It was quite a surprise when we got the call confirming that we were one of two firms appointed to work on the project.”
More recently, Kalumba has been involved in the design of the Society House Mixed Use Building in Lusaka, a 98 million dollar contract that includes a hotel, retail park, commercial offices and parkade. This adds to many other projects Louis Karol have completed in Zambia. He is also working on ECO Towers in Accra (Ghana). “If you ask around in Zambia, you will find that a significant number of buildings there were designed by South African firms. Some of these firms are quite small such that their biggest jobs are their Zambian projects. That means we have the potential to do a significant amount of work there. We are also doing work in Ghana and Nigeria. With the construction industry having dipped in SA since the World Cup, we are keen now more than ever to expand our African footprint.” Kalumba says he is inspired by Louis Karol himself, who at the age of 84, is still involved in the business as Chairman alongside his son Dr. Eitan who is the company CEO and daughter Simone who is the partner charged with marketing. After over a decade in SA, Kalumba has permanent residency status but his loyalties continue to lie in his native Zambia. He donned the black, red and green colours of his country to visit the FNB stadium recently to watch the Chipolopolo beat Bafana Bafana in the Nelson Mandela challenge. “I am a staunch supporter. I recall during the early rounds of the 2012
Building pics courtesy of Louis Karol
Africa Cup of Nations, I flew into Zambia wearing the team jersey and a South African sitting next to me thought I was a football player. A few Zambian friends asked me why I was clad in the colours of a team that keeps losing and I bet them a new shirt for every win they got in the tournament. They owe me quite a few shirts today!”
“He has been the project architect for a number of well known structures such as the V & A Waterfront Extension in Cape Town, three Gautrain Stations, upmarket residential tower block 100 Crown Street in Glasgow, Birmingham International Airport terminal extension, Liberty Life Regional headquarters in Umhlanga, the Cape Town stadium for the 2010 FIFA World Cup, The Zone Shopping Centre in Rosebank (Johannesburg) and the Intercontinental Hotel at O.R. Tambo International Airport....”
SOCIETY HOUSE, LUSAKA, ZAMBIA
CHEVRON HEADQUARTERS, CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA
I remark that I can see how he could be confused for a footballer given that he has the physique of a man in his twenties. He reveals that he jogs frequently and other than keeping fit, he also enjoys attending business networking functions. - KC ROTTOK
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The Blank Page nyone who knows me well has seen me running around for some reason or the other, usually because I’m on the verge of being late for something, or because I’m running from something (like my editor when I’ve missed deadline). Those closest to me know that one of my signature phrases is “let’s go, quickly, like NOW!” Then the race begins, running around grabbing my handbag, running to the car, then speeding on the highway. The amusing part about it all is that the running never stops and I generally either get everything done just in the nick of time, or late. I am the first to admit (with some shame) that I find it all very exciting. I enjoy the adrenalin rush of beating the clock. Maybe I just love the drama; I can’t help it, I went to an allgirls school all my life, it’s a natural predisposition. The problem is that the older I get, the more inconvenient this lifestyle becomes. Appointments have to be met, people entrust me with things to do and so forth. Thus in the quest to avoid letting people down, being labelled as unreliable or a procrastinator, I’ve had to take a good look at the source of the problem and have pinpointed “The Blank Page”.
that I need to turn a page or change the channel. The reason for this is that I’m driven by passion. When something resonates deep within my spirit and excites me, I dedicate boundless amount of energy to it. There are times when I can be done with a column in five minutes flat and others when I can easily take a month to write a paragraph. These are the blank page moments where I literally stare at a blank page (or screen). Then I need to a take time out, read a book, listen to music, visit friends, or go to a few parties to look for inspiration. When that is done, I go back to my blank page and inspiration comes out
of life. Adulthood means that for the most part, indulging in only the things one is passionate about and inspired by is a luxury. So my usual routine definitely needs a review. If for no other reason, that it’s not really possible to drag the world along on a 100m sprint through the day, then reach a sudden stop, where we all wait for yours truly to refuel on inspiration, passion and motivation. So in the spirit of being a better member of society and contributing to the greater good, I have taken my blank page and kept it in safe storage, to use for moments when I deserve a reward for meeting all daily deadlines, meetings, commitments and requirements.
“Blank page moments are essential, because in the time that is spent staring at the blank page, the seed of creativity is growing and flourishing...”
For all my running, I’m actually not an active person at all. I am quite capable of sitting dead still for hours in the same spot without moving a single muscle, a skill my mother finds horrifying. When I do move, it may be
of nowhere. The wind of motivation is upon me and I maximise on my moment of creativity. I am by nature a creative being and the creative process is not one that can be rushed or given deadlines, it moves at its own pace and experiences highs and lows. It needs to function at its own pace in order to fully bloom. That is why blank page moments are essential, because in the time that is spent staring at the blank page, the seed of creativity is growing and flourishing. That said, I crossed the line when I applied my blank page principles to every facet
That said, I need to run and quickly find a good explanation for my editor as to why my first column for the year is being submitted after deadline (blame it on the blank page)…Lynnsanity at its best! - SHEILA LYNN SENKUBUGE
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TUNISIA I left the southernmost country in Africa destined for the most northern nation on the continent. The strange thing was that the cheapest options available involved spending a few hours outside the continent in a stop-over either in Paris, Rome or Dubai. I chose to mount Emirates given the pleasant experience I had the last time I flew on this airline, the highlight being generous space in economy class which I find to be a must for a lanky individual on a longhaul journey.
ten hours later, I embarked on my onward six hour journey to Carthage airport in Tunis. When I emerged through customs, there was no one to meet me and I panicked momentarily. I was about to pull out my laptop to search for the last email I had received from my hosts when I spotted a board with a name that I recognised â€“ that of a colleague from our Lyon office who was joining me on the four day assignment. The driver, Abdel, had confused our arrival times and we had an uneasy laugh about it on the way to the car.
After a lazy waltz through the thousands of Dubai duty free shops
When I heard that I was being dispatched to Tunis, I expected a hot dusty city with burka clad women concealing their faces. Surprisingly, it was fresh air, cool temperatures and although the women were of the Arabic persuasion, they were dressed like Europeans with all the takings of modern fashion, beautiful skin and long, flowing hair. Deterred by folklore of such countries that claim that the hands of thieves are chopped off and imagining what they do to fornicators, I decided to halt my admiration of the women and instead expressed a verbal
GREAT FISH LIES BEHIND WHITE WALLS appreciation of the fascinatingly first class highways in my passable high school French. Abdel responded with a hint of a gloat that the country was as good as anything in the West of Europe. I would have agreed with the comparison had he not pounded a few shallow pot-holes and flown past a couple of beggars at a malfunctioning traffic light. We eventually arrived at the hotel located in an area known as El Menzah VII and I retired for the night as the hard work was scheduled to commence the following day. When dawn broke, I opened the curtains and took in an aerial view of the city. What struck me most was that almost all the houses and buildings were painted white. As soon as I set up my lap top at the client’s office, I decided to Google the reason for this as Abdel had mumbled something unconvincing when I enquired in the car. It turned out to be a popular search item with similar questions about other Mediterranean countries like Greece and Spain. A plethora of explanations were proposed by online ‘experts’ including keeping the houses cooler, the
use of white-wash on the buildings and the blue and white colours of the Greek flag. Our host, Salem, took us out to lunch where I was treated to the freshest and tastiest fish of my life. I noted in this and the other restaurants we were to visit, that Tunisians do not drink much alcohol but smoking and the consumption of strong shots of black tea was a pastime of the majority.
Presidents being displaced. Salem’s view was that, although their overthrown Head of State Ben Ali was a dictator, he had surrounded himself with technocrats who developed the country. Tunisia, he said, had a more enviable economy than Libya and Algeria despite not having mineral resources like these two neighbours. He concluded that things seemed worse following his departure with the economy having dipped and people not knowing what to expect from the government of the day. We left the restaurant two hours later, a routine that we were to repeat for the remainder of my stay. Long lunches seemed to be the order of the d a y
The conversation centred on the recent Arab revolution which began in Tunis and spread to a number of countries with various long-serving
â€œI expressed a verbal appreciation of the fascinatingly first class highways in my passable high school French. Abdel responded with a hint of a gloat that the country was as good as anything in the West of Europe. which the locals compensate for by working until the early evening. The restaurant we visited was in an area that resembled Fifth Avenue New York with various perfume and clothing stores and the big apple feel was compounded by the numerous yellow cabs that patrol the town. We took a drive that evening to a part of the town called La Medina and dined at a restaurant known as the Dar el Jeld. Our table was close to an
old man playing a very discrete tune on a stringed instrument known as the kanoun. No sooner had we made our orders than an array of various starters was placed on the table; it was explained to me that this was customary in most fancy restaurants. I enjoyed another sea-sourced culinary delight while admiring the ancient Arabic architecture. As we departed, I followed my hosts lead in proffering their palms to the doorman for him to sprinkle perfume
on their hands on the way out; another common theme in all the restaurants we would visit in the few days I was in the country. Three days of relentless paperwork passed with us repeating the long lunch-fancy dinner routine of the first day. Dark Africans are as common in Tunisia as Mongolians in Mangaung so I was very pleased to meet, on my last night, a fellow Kenyan to whom I had been
I would have agreed with the comparison had he not pounded a few shallow pot-holes and flown past a couple of beggars at a malfunctioning traffic light....” introduced on Facebook. We spent most of the evening looking for a nightclub but it seemed as if the only places open were smoking dens for men. We ended up at a spot built into the sea and the ambiance created by the waves slapping the walls was not enough to keep us there having been put off by the techno-like music and immature crowd of campus students. On the final morning, our hosts surprised the Frenchman and me
with a hamper each of chocolates and other treats for our “wives back home”. Then we were treated to a tour of Sidi Bou Said, a small historic town, not far from the Carthage airport, where every single building was white with blue windows. It is a popular spot for tourists with great sea views and a bustling market place for all kinds of memorabilia. A friendly man on the street insisted on taking a picture of me with a live falcon he was carrying around even
though I had run out of Dinar to pay for the brief touristic experience. As Abdel dropped me off at the airport, he warned that I hadn’t seen Tunisia if I hadn’t travelled to the popular beach destinations of Sfax and Hammamet. I vowed to return one day, but with a painfully long journey to make back home, I was not sure that was a promise I was bound to keep. KC ROTTOK
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is located in Three Rivers Vereeniging in the heart of beautiful Vaal triangle. We are near the town’s leisure, business and entertainment centres, situated 3mins drive from three rivers mall and the newly opened River walk shopping centre. The Vaal’s famous landmarks are situated 40mins drive from the guest house including Golf Courses, Technorama Museum, the Suikerbosrand nature Reserve ,the Vaal Dam, Casino and the amazing Vaal river famous for its romantic boat rides, jet skiing , fishing.
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Actress Abena Ayivor 40
Twelve year career now reclaiming her name and regaining her fame on Jacob’s Cross “To this day, people still call me Lerato!” Abena Ayivor says. It is not surprising that this is so. This is the name of the controversial character she played from 1999 to 2003 in arguably the most popular soap opera in SA – Generations. She graced multiple magazine covers and could probably stake a claim to influencing the show’s good ratings. “Lerato was a drug addicted alcoholic prostitute so she easily stuck in the minds of the millions who followed the programme. Outside of the show, many fans could not distinguish Abena from Lerato. Women would stop me in malls and question my behaviour and men in clubs would whistle at me thinking they could buy me. They all felt like they were dealing with Lerato,” she sighs. “But Generations was a great experience, we were like a family and only when I did the show did people believe that I could make a career out of acting.” Abena’s father had dismissed drama as a career option and instead dispatched his daughter for a BA degree in law at the University of Cape Town. She simply had no interest in the discipline and abandoned it in her third year to enrol at a college in the city that had a two year drama programme. “I decided as a thirteen year old that I wanted to act after my role in Oliver Twist as the rose seller. I was a teenage ‘scene stealer’, doing more of my share in the play. It felt good and to this day I love being able to be someone else, it is something I
would do for free and don’t regret for a single minute choosing this as a career.” Abena was born in 1975 in Zambia to a Ghanaian father and Zambian mother, and grew up in a big family of eight children in the Eastern Cape. She had a rebellious streak to her, to the extent of being expelled from primary school for beating up other girls. Even when she had found her passion in drama school, she would often skip class. But her first year drama lecturer Liese Bokkelman would not give up on her and insisted that she take her talent seriously. She passed away as Abena was going to her second year and to this day she believes that Liese is her “guardian angel”. On completion of the course in 1999, she auditioned for Boesman and Lena starring Angela Bassett and Danny Glover. She would stand in for Bassett during technical set up and recalls that the Hollywood actress was just as shy and reserved as she (Abena) is. It was after this stint that she joined Generations for four years, leaving in 2004 as she wanted to do something new. “Only when I left Generations did I realise that being a free-lance actor could be difficult. I had a support role in a Pieter Toerien produced play called Honour but after that I had a whole year of no work. I had just turned 30 and thought that my career as an actor was over.” This turned out to be just a dry spell. After a short period working for her friend Isaac Chokwe’s production
company, Abena was cast in the drama series Jozi H which is currently being screened for a second time on SABC 3. It is a hospital based production which is particularly memorable for the actress because the story had an interesting twist to it that touched on her own life. “When I read the script, I discovered that I was to play the mother of a son called Kwame with congenital heart disease. The shocking thing was that the script
writers knew nothing about my past...my younger brother is called Kwame and he suffered from this very disease as a boy and needed surgery from Christiaan Barnard, the doctor who is famous for having performed the world’s first heart transplant. It was quite a fascinating coincidence and quite a big story. A number of magazines at the time heard about it and featured both Kwame and I in articles about how real life imitates art.” After Jozi H, Abena had a small part in The Royal, a British series playing a woman in the Nigerian Biafran war whose daughter moves
to England. Her film career also includes a role in a short film by Jo Horn called the Mamtsotsi Bird. “I don’t think I could act in [another] film like that as the story line revolved around witchcraft. I am much more spiritual now than I was then and know it is something that would unnerve me. I was not paid for my role in that movie but at least I got to accompany Jo Horn to the Cannes Film Festival in 2007 which was awesome. I thoroughly enjoyed mixing with others in the film industry and meeting a number of international stars.” Abena subsequently joined the cast of Isidingo as the long lost daughter of Barker Haines, a nasty magnate who runs a successful business empire with his daughter Leonie. The story line revolved around Dineo (Abena) and Leonie (Ashley Callie) feuding over their fathers attention. As the plot developed, Ashley passed away in a tragic highway accident in 2008 which rattled Abena and the entire cast. “I recall that on the day she passed away, she and I had just acted a scene where Leonie was very mean to Dineo. After shooting the scene, she hugged me and apologised for being so
harsh. I found her very intelligent and talented and remember looking forward to working with her. When she passed away, I was devastated and for some reason I felt guilty being Dineo on the show as everyone was accustomed to having Leonie as Barkers only daughter.” Abena left Isidingo soon after and acted in the BBC miniseries Blood and Oil. She had another quiet year in 2009 but was cast in Machine Gun Preacher starring Gerard Butler in the following year. She enjoyed learning from the director Marc Foster who has directed well known productions
like Monsters Ball and Quantum of Solace. At the end of 2010, her agent scheduled her for two auditions on the same day, one for Jacob’s Cross and another for a British series Wild At Heart. She focused her attention on the former as it had continental appeal and she didn’t think she had a good chance of being called up for the latter. “It was the first time I forgot my lines and had to apologise and reach for the script during the audition for Wild At Heart. I was shocked that I got cast for the role. I learnt never to take any opportunity lightly.” In Jacob’s Cross, Abena plays a highly placed lawyer by the name of ... well... Abena. It is a welcome turn for a foreign born actress who has for a long time been unable to divorce her identity from the controversial character that was Lerato. Although she grew up in SA and her accent and humour are local, she still has some attachment to her roots. She recently visited Zambia where she gave drama classes to aspiring actors and she has done a couple of Ghanaian commercials shot in SA. “I sometimes get a call from the odd aunty who has spotted a billboard of me in Accra. I consider myself African and not once did I shy away from this career because
I wasn’t born here. I remember a Zimbabwean actress telling me that she decided to pursue drama when she saw me being successful here in spite of not being able to speak a local language.” Abena concludes by saying she would like to do more teaching in future and pursue a degree in English. She has linked up with a couple of partners to launch a media company christened “Big Bad Wolf Media”. Although she is single, she looks forward to getting married and having children one day. She also hopes to get over her phobia for being behind the wheel and plans to finally learn how to drive. KC Rottok
“In Jacob’s Cross, Abena plays a highly placed lawyer by the name of ... well... Abena. It is a welcome turn for a foreign born actress who has for a long time been unable to divorce her identity from the controversial character that was Lerato.” WWW.EXPATRIATE.CO.ZA
AUPSA FOUNDER AND OWNER OF SCIMATICS SOLUTIONS orn in 1970, Stephen Twinoburyo grew up in the Western part of Uganda in a town called Mbarara. After high school, he enrolled in Makerere University where he pursued a four year degree in Electrical Engineering. “My father and the headmaster insisted I should pursue medicine instead of law or journalism which I had a passion for. Engineering was the eventual compromise,” bemoaned Stephen when interviewed by this magazine in November 2012. In 1994, soon after South Africa held its first democratic elections, Stephen got the opportunity to travel to Soweto with South African veterans who were stationed in Uganda. The ten day visit made him fall in love with the country compelling him to return in 1997 and he has never looked back. “I was fortunate to have friends from Uganda living and working in Pretoria so life was not that lonely. My aim was to further my education in the capital city and pursue a career related to my studies. I initially struggled to get these plans going so to keep busy I started teaching maths and sciences and surprisingly I ended up enjoying it.” What began as a simple effort to earn an extra buck became a decade long career tutoring students in various colleges including Progressive College in Pretoria CBD, Boston House College in Cape Town and most recently, from 2008, Montessori College Pretoria. He also managed to complete a part time Bachelor of
Sciences degree in mathematical and statistical sciences in 2007 through UNISA following advice from friends that mathematical finance courses were lucrative in the job market.
Peter Mugisha. We also managed to organise a number of events including a business and investment expo in Melrose Arch in September of the same year.”
“In 2008, I completed a science honours degree in financial engineering at University of Pretoria (UP). I soon realised that, like engineering, finance was not my thing and that I will probably never pursue employment in this field. A year later, I decided to register my own maths and science tuition centre christened Scimatics Solutions (SS) but was unable to give it much attention due to the formation of the Association of Ugandan Professionals of SA (AUPSA),” Stephen remarked.
A year after its establishment, Stephen decided to step down as chairman and was replaced by Allen Mutono, the proprietor of Inkwazi Hotel. Mutono served for a year and stepped down as chairman in the subsequent election where Emmy Muzamil was elected to the position. “In those two years, I managed to focus my energies on my college. I resigned from Montessori in 2008 and took up a teaching position at UP’s Department of Mathematics and Applied Mathematics.”
The road to the formation of AUPSA began on 30th May 2009 when Stephen convened a meeting of a number of like-minded Ugandans in Sandton. Those present agreed that this was a good idea, with benefits for Ugandans in South Africa, Uganda as a country and SA the host country. It was therefore decided to spread the idea beyond the confines of friends to all other Ugandans in the professional Diaspora in SA. Stephen was asked to communicate this and through a vast network of emails, ideas flew and this association started taking shape.
Stephen is a frequent blogger on www.ugandaspeaks.wordpress.com. He had this to say in one of his posts about his experience in opening up his own institution:
“In July 2009, the association had a formal launch at Inkwazi Hotel in Kameeldrift and was subsequently registered as a nonprofit organisation with me as the chairman assisted by a hardworking committee. The website was soon established courtesy of
“I sold my car to set up my business. Even my first secretary, who unlike me had a vehicle, did not believe in me along with a number of friends who thought I would not succeed in Menlo Park as it was a ‘white area’. To some extent they had a point because although most black students would book classes for long periods, white parents would first do a trial run. One mother even insisted on sitting through one of my classes to test my ability, something I rejected insisting that if her daughter found the lesson worthwhile, she would tell her. At the end of the year, the girl was so happy with the tuition that she bought me a gift to show her appreciation.”
From a few students and one sceptical staffer, SS today has eight members of staff and teaches about 250 multi-racial students a year as well as conducting special matric classes at UP. Stephen’s vision also encompasses contributing to research in the areas of maths and science and improvement to teaching methods in these disciplines amongst disadvantaged groups. He notes in the aforementioned blog post that his success could easily be viewed as accidental given that when he began high school, he averaged 15-19% in these subjects, and furthermore, teaching was never part of his plans.
spring celebration at Zoo Lake in Johannesburg and a very well attended Uganda Independence dinner at Mokha Restaurant in Pretoria. These events addressed the association’s objectives of social cohesion, education and national heritage. At the time of this interview, well laid plans were in place to conduct a charity event in December 2012 in support of two orphanages, one in SA and another in Uganda, and to organise a business and investment expo in early 2013. KEITH KUNDAI
“With SS fairly established, I have now re-joined AUPSA as chairman. There was a feeling that the organisation was beginning to drift into inactivity. Having been instrumental in its formation, I would not like to see the association die. I am passionate about it because I am distinctly aware of what people can achieve when they come together; it is the reason why blocs such as BRICS or the European Union are formed,” explained Stephen. There has been a visible revival of the organisation with a number of events having been organised by the recently elected committee including a
Book review: t was a hot Sunday afternoon and I was busy at work in Oshakati, a semi-urban town in Northern Namibia, when my colleague whispered to me, “You spend too much time on the road, moving around. How do you manage as a woman all alone? Do you have a personal journal?” Now, at that time I was desperate for a good book by an African author which was proving to be very difficult to find in Oshakati. My colleague’s “concerns” reminded me of the book “Dark Continent my Black Arse”. Though published in 2007, I had yet to read it and so two days later whilst in Windhoek I finally picked up a copy albeit with some effort. “Dark Continent My Black Arse; by bus, boksie, matola...from Cape to Cairo” is a travel memoir written by Sihle Khumalo. It is the story of an African man who decides to travel around Africa just because he can. Born in Nqutu, rural KwaZulu Natal, South Africa, Khumalo later moves to the cities to study. He eventually lands himself a good job with Anglo American, but quickly gets bored with the routine of corporate life and decides to do something different. He describes the change as deciding to “live my own life, in my own way on my own terms”. To celebrate his 30th birthday, Khumalo quits the corporate world and embarks
on a journey from Cape Town to Cairo seeking adventure and fresh challenges. This he does in just four weeks. He uses his own money and motivation, and documents his experiences and views. It is all about embracing and living life to the fullest. The book tries to capture personal and somewhat hilarious accounts of the thrill seekers’ movements around Africa. It is one of those books that o n e
book by a black African author. Most travel books about Africa are written by white men (and white women on very rare occasions), and describe 4x4’s, campfires, roaring lions, vulnerable antelopes, half dressed Africans with spears and machetes, and endless clear landscapes. Khumalo’s book is an “unusual” travel book; he tells of rattling busses that people share with chickens, describes congested cities, smelly guesthouses, and conmen. He also writes of interesting culture, good people, new friends, good food and how it feels to be an “African foreigner in Africa”. The title of the book betrays the mood and tone of the story. It is an easy and light read, offering moments of both laughter and irritation. He makes playful resolutions depending on his experiences and discoveries, and toys with silly “revolutionary” ideas.
picks from the shelf and thinks, “A travel book by a “black” African! Well it is about time!” It is a refreshing and reasonable cause for excitement to have a travel
He writes not as a spectator but as a participant of different African cultures, illuminating p o p u l a r culture and the effect of cosmopolitanism in Africa. His subtitle, “by bus, boksie and matola”, prepares the reader for his movements which are mainly confined to the underbelly of towns and cities, hence capturing the disillusionment of many African states. On the one hand he describes corruption, poor infrastructure, and ignorance in Africa and on the other
Wanjiru Waichigo is an MA (Literature) graduate from the University of Witwatersrand. She currently works with CIET in Southern Africa as a researcher and programme manager.
Dark Continent My Black Arse the spirit of laughter, survival and pride is not lost. He further tries to merge the personal with the political; by giving the political history of each of the eight countries he visits, explaining how such histories frame his perceptions. This provides some sombre moments in the book. His narration is simple, carefree, but his thoughts are loaded with stereotypes. Perhaps this is indeed a true reflection of African popular cultures. Even so, at the end of t h e
uncomfortable or even petulant. For example, when describing the women he meets in the different countries, his obsession with the female body/ physical appearance gets a little stale after a few chapters. There are only so many ways you can say a woman has a gorgeous behind.
Paul Theroux, a famous African travel author describes the book as “very likeable and engaging”. It certainly does grow on you with each turned page. It is just what travel writing in Africa needed to spice things up. WANJIRU WAICHIGO
Nevertheless, it remains a splendid travel book that can be enjoyed if one is looking for an easy and entertaining read. The writer is politically and gender incorrect yet unapologetic about it and his interaction with people and perceptions of issues and culture is amusing.
“It is a r reas efres onab hing le exci teme and caus nt t book o ha e for ve a auth by a trav blac or el k A but with frica his t h e n little fema obse ssion stale le bo Ther a d e a fter a fe y gets a w ch re way apte o s yo nly rs. u ca s has o n sa man a g y y orge aw ous oma book, behi n nd.. one is left with ...” the feeling of being rushed through something that has the potential of being more exciting and informative. While we can appreciate and respect the author’s personal opinion, his misogynist and sometimes careless statements are bound to make a reader
TOYE ABIOYE INVESTING IN NIGERIA A COMPLETE NO-BRAINER
detoyese “‘Toye” Abioye begins our interview at a Joburg restaurant by showing me an article published in the Business Times in late 2012 titled “Vodacom sees light at the end of Africa tunnel”. The article highlights the giant of the SA cellular market’s notable failure to replicate its local success on the rest of the African continent, central to which is the company’s decision not to enter the Nigerian market where its
competitor MTN is making an absolute killing. ‘Toye is a Nigerian living in South Africa and working as a business development manager at Connemara Consulting where his responsibilities include growing the company footprint on the continent. He was a Nigeria civil society representative at the World Summit on Sustainable Development in 2002 and decided to stay in the country for further studies. He describes himself as a social entrepreneur and is engaged in additional post-graduate studies in African politics at the University of South Africa where his wife Prof. Funmi Abioye is a lecturer in the College of Law. The discussion on Vodacom’s opportunity in Nigeria makes him shake his head and offer half a wry smile. “That market is lost to them forever. They were given the first chance of all foreign cellular networks to open up shop there but shied away citing poor infrastructure and other difficulties. With these
same difficulties, MTN Nigeria now contributes over 60% of the Groups global profit after tax.” And MTN is not the only South African company that is finding a profitable footing in Nigeria. Other companies like Shoprite, Standard Bank, Multichoice and First Rand are having similar results in this market of 160 million people. It is clear that many SA companies believe that the future of their businesses lies in pursuing opportunities north of the border. A recent PWC survey of SA CEO’s found that 94% of those interviewed believed that there will be growth in their businesses on the continent within the subsequent 12 months. ‘Toye has taken up the role of facilitating investment in Nigeria by business people from both South African and from other parts of the continent. He is excited about the Lekki Free Zone - a proposed city close to the commercial capital of Lagos which comprises 16,500 hectares and according to the Zone’s website is “one of the fastest developing urban areas with an annual economic growth rate of 16.8%”.
“The Nigerian market is lost to Vodacom forever. They were given the first opportunity of all foreign cellular networks to open up shop there but shied away citing poor infrastructure and other difficulties. With these same difficulties, MTN Nigeria now contributes over 60% of the Groups global profit after tax.”
“I got involved with the project when I was conducting business tours from South Africa to Nigeria through a company I co-own called Abby Tours and Travels (ATT),” ‘Toye states. “We began operations in 2002 and our initial focus was organising leisure tours for Nigerians to South Africa. The market became flooded and we moved towards business excursions under the banner of ATT Consult in the Business Investment Tours to South Africa (BITSA) series. To gain credibility we registered this entity with the Johannesburg Chamber of Commerce and the SA Department of Trade and Industry.”
Limited with a 60% stake with the remaining shareholding held by the Lagos State Government. There are several free zones backed by the Chinese government in Africa and according to ‘Toye, Lekki is the biggest of them all in terms of land mass, project scope and benefits. “There is strong support from both the Chinese and Nigerian governments and multiple investment opportunities in various economic sectors. The preferential policies and incentives include
a complete tax holiday from all government taxes, custom duties and levies, one-stop approvals for all operating permits, duty-free imports, 100% foreign ownership and profit repatriation as well as a waiver of expatriate quotas.” ‘Toye says that plans are underway to establish an international airport, a port and a metro rail system that feeds from Lekki into the rest of the Lagos area. - KEITH KUNDAI
ATT Consult provides consultancy services for entities looking to invest in Nigeria including business registrations and tax regulation. He explains that whilst established legal and accounting firms take three to six months to assist potential investors to set up in Nigeria, through the Lekki Free Zone they are able to get the process completed within 24 hours and provide a minimum cost saving of 30 percent in establishment costs. The majority shareholder of the Zone is China Africa Lekki Investment
Lekki pics courtesy of Mr. Abi
TO SERVE AND PROTECT
”My chilling experience of robbery and attempted rape in the hands of the ‘police’....” hen I was younger, it was drilled into our heads at school and at home that policemen are there to help you; they are there to serve and protect. Startlingly however, danger lies in the very place where we should seek safety. Soon after moving to Joburg, I was invited to a birthday party at a local cocktail bar. My then boyfriend and I stopped at an ATM on the way there and as we pulled up, I noticed a dark, unmarked Citi Golf parked close by. A chilling feeling assaulted my senses as we drove past the car and I made eye contact with the man in the driver’s seat. I turned to my boyfriend and told him something was wrong. He said he would be quick and left the car door open and engine running as he approached the ATM. The headlights of the Golf came on as he walked back. Right then, we both knew we were in trouble. He threw the money and card on my lap and we took off. The Golf gave chase. We were in a two litre engine vehicle, theirs was a 1.4L. We could get away. Then came the curve ball. A police siren began howling from the Golf. We saw blue lights. Then a loudspeaker identified our car by its license plate number, colour and make and asked us to pull over. They did not identify themselves but we were both too shocked to think clearly and decided not to disobey a direct order from the “police”.
Two angry looking men dressed in all black and wearing what looked like army issue black boots stepped out. One had an automatic weapon and ordered my boyfriend out of the car and started patting him down. The other had a handgun which he cocked and held against my head. I was torn between relief and horror when I saw the word ‘police’ embroidered on his jacket. He started verbally assaulting me and removed his name tag when he noticed I was trying to read it. Something very bad was about to happen. Just then, a marked police vehicle with two uniformed officers pulled up across the road. Our confronters waved them away and to our horror, the branded vehicle drove away. My boyfriends papers where in order but his wallet was empty and my clutch bag had nothing but make up. “Who goes to an ATM and comes back with no money?” yelled the one holding the handgun. I recalled that it had dropped to the floor when I got up but said nothing as every time I spoke I seemed to antagonise them even more. My boyfriend started talking to them calmly, negotiating; asking what exactly they wanted. I didn’t have my passport with me and instead showed them my student card which they had no interest in inspecting. What they wanted was for him to drive away and leave me with them.
My knees buckled and I sat on the sidewalk knowing that I was about to be raped having heard many news stories of women being raped by police officers. But my boyfriend would not let it happen. Again and again they ordered him to leave, pointing their guns at him, raising their voices, hurling insults and jerking him. He kept talking calmly and steadfastly refused to leave. Eventually, having given them all the money we had, they let us leave. I was shaking like a leaf and cried like I would never stop shedding tears. Looking back, we should have driven to the nearest police station at full speed with hazard lights on and I should have remembered, as a law student, that a male police officer cannot legally detain a female between 6pm and 6am. CHIONESU SAKUTUKWA
The Last Word
INTRIGUES OF A GHANAIAN FUNERAL “My grandmother’s funeral in Ghana span a number of days. I learnt a lot about my people but the Westerner in me wondered ‘Don’t this people work?” ate last year, I travelled through Europe and was intrigued by countries like the UK where they have efficient public transportation systems. It is no wonder that a little mud island managed to conquer large parts of this world. It got me thinking – is it that we Africans just can’t get things right, or perhaps are we comparing ourselves to a western way of living which is clearly not a natural way of life for us.
First, some palm kernel is chewed and used to prepare her hands and feet, the old school manicure and pedicure. Some lime is provided which is cut in half and used under the arms to eliminate odours. Thereafter they take a bucket, sponge, soap, towel, chewing stick (old school tooth brush) and lotion; she gets a good washing. She then gets dressed with some beads around her waist called Amoase and very stylish cloth before being laid on her kete (mat).
People sang, told Nana Mary’s life story, and much money was donated by those that attended to help the family with the costs of the funeral. Each donor was named together with their connection to the deceased. This is what it is all about; looking after the elderly, the young and your fellow man. We then spent plenty of time doing a traditional dance called Adowa. On Sunday, we went to church dressed in white to give thanks for the 94 years of her life.
When my father left us in Ghana in early 1982 to move to SA, we couldn’t go with him because my mother was pregnant. While he was away, my parents’ friends, neighbours and relatives were more than willing to assist. I remember many an aunt coming and bringing food over. I noted the same thing when we moved to Umtata; it is inherently African.
The following day was the burial day. We all wore dark brown and black cloth and arrived at the family home at 6.30 a.m. where we said our goodbyes. I expected something to happen, but nope, we just sat as people played drums and sang quite badly. At noon, there was a church service where after we made our way to my gran’s village where she was to be buried in the royal cemetery. We once again sat around my cousin, the Chief’s house for a few hours because members of the royal family are buried at a certain time in the evening.
All days were well attended and the Westerner in me kept on wondering “don’t these people work”. But still I say, as an Ashanti raised in Xhosaland, we Africans are rich in heritage and innately humane.
On my return from Europe, I heard that my grandmother had passed away. We attended the funeral a few weeks later. Even though it was a rather sad occasion, it was a fantastic experience because I learnt quite a bit about my people. The funeral activities began on a Wednesday when we went to the family home where we sat and talked for several hours. Later that evening my gran’s body was brought to the house. Ashanti’s hold the dearly departed in high regard, so prior to burial a body is well ‘prepared’ for passage into the afterlife. With my grandfather having passed away decades ago, my father was responsible for this process. 52
Friday was a day off and on Saturday we dressed in red attire which was to symbolize the fact that we were serious. Ghanaians are such generous people and I now understand why life insurance isn’t big in that country. My uncle and aunts spend so much time going to funerals and I now know w h y .
Yaw Peprah is a self employed entrepreneur pursuing interests in business advisory, consultancy and commodity brokering. www.asitissoitis.blogspot.com
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Published on Mar 7, 2013