Friday, 20 October 2017

Evarist Chikawe's affair with colour

By +Caroline Anande Uliwa @CarolAnande-Instagram @CarolAnande-Facebook @CarolAnande-Twitter

Evarist Chikawe posing
with some of his latest work, here is where
I caught him inside JNC convention centre
in DSM

As I looked at this painting, I couldn't help but notice a tension rising within me. My mind was grappling to understand, it certainly called for a second & third look. Color was so expertly rendered shades melding into another in beautiful contrasts, yet the lines were on a confrontation. Lazy curves juxtaposed with definite right angles. 

I was looking at works by Evarist Chikawe 43, I bumped into the artist at the Julius Nyerere International Convention Centre, where Vipaji Gallery. Had a stall in the SITE tourism expo. Evarist is the Studio Manager of Vipaji Gallery

A fine artist himself, he has been in the craft since the early 90's. When he came from his home town Mtwara as an apprentice inside Nyumba ya Sanaa, he almost didn't get in save for the graces of the late Sister Jean. 

Evarist's work at the 'Tous les Arts
Festival' in Condom Gers, France in 2016
"Sister Jean kufariki kumensikitisha sana, alikuwa kama mzazi wangu kwenye sanaa. Ni mwalimu wangu kwenye mambo mengi sana ya sanaa, alikuwa mtu muhimu sana kwangu. Yeye hakuwa msanii moja kwa moja, lakini ni mtu ambaye ana ufahamu sana na fani hii haswa kuandaa na kupangilia vitu kwenye sanaa. Alikuwa zaidi ya mpenzi wa sanaa, ni mtu aliyekuwa na sanaa kwenye moyo wake alikuwa hawezi kuishi bila sanaa.." Evarist

Evarist has exhibited his works within and outside Tanzania and is renowned among his peers. Last year Vipaji Gallery in Oysterbay, Dar es Salaam. Showcased a retrospective exhibition of his works since 2000. His style has morphed over the years but always his innate knowledge of colour comes through in his artworks.

More recent works of
He recalls certain key moments that elevated his career, one was in 2006 when grudgingly he attended a workshop from a Kenyan fine artist on the use of Pastels. 

"Mimi nilifananisha pastels na crayons, kwa kweli sikutaka ata kusikia habari za 'pastels'. Sikuamini zinaweza kutoa picha nzuri, ila nilivyozitumia kwenye workshop. Kweli naendelea mpaka sasa hivi...sio vizuri kuganda kwenye aina moja ya kuchora waweza kuta unajifunga. Kabla ya hapa nilikuwa napenda sana acrylics...kwenye 'acrilic' huwezi kupata ile kitu kabisa." Evarist

In 2014 he was sponsored to participate in a summer school at the Salzburg International Summer Academy of Fine Art in Germany. In his group which was taught by creditable fine artist Norbet Bisky He attains he was lucky that all the painters were experienced fine artists.

Evarist chatting with audiennces at the
'Close Up' exhibition earlier this year in Munich 
Germany inwhich he sold over 10 paintings
The teacher urged them to continue their associating by participating in an exhibition together annually. In 2015 he got them an exhibition in Austria and they sent their works but didn't attend, in 2016 they managed to fly to a 'PopUp 2 Group Exhibition' in Munich Germany. 

This year he was fortunate to participate in another group exhibition with his former class mates. Titled 'Close Up' in Osnabruck Hanover Germany. He managed to sell over 10 paintings, he recalls not having such success since 2008 in Europe.

He ascertains that fine art is still appreciate more by foreigners that Tanzanians themselves, though he remarks there has been 15% increase in sales over the last decade of local consumers which sees as progress. You can reach Evarist through this number +255 754 814432  or through vipaji gallery offices in Dar es Salaam.

In 2014, Evarist in Salzburg Germany
participating in the Summer Academy that 

met himwith Norbet Bisky who has elevated his career 

Evarist's works in Europe in 2016, 
isn't his use of color divine
particularly in those palm trees piece...
Evarist's work presented in a hard cover book, that is amemoir of 'Nyumba ya Sanaa' before it was demolished.You can see Evarist's style has evolved over the years
this was in 1993

Talking Cities ‘Urban Narratives from Dar es Salaam & Berlin’

By +Caroline Anande Uliwa @CarolAnande-Instagram @CarolAnande-Facebook @CarolAnande-Twitter

Inside the pages of Talking Cities
The pages of this book run between two cities in an intimate fashion, alerting you to the manner in which urban built environments. Wrestle to represent our “desires, needs and resources….Most of this dense layering is not immediately legible; it has not been decoded. Rather it is part of a more intuitive, lived sense of “urbanity” that generates the contemporary individual and the collective sense of identity and belonging.”-Rachel Lee & Philipp Misselwitz.

Talking Cities ‘TC’ published this year is a child of an exchange program between students of TU Berlin Ardhi University in Dar es Salaam Procured over two summer schools in 2016, by  32 student authors with editors Diane Barbe, Richard Besha, Anne-Katrin Fenk, Rachel lee & Philipp Misselwitz. It explores heritage in urban spaces through real life anecdotes from residents of different parts of Berlin & Dar es Salaam.

“The piece of paper I am holding might soon be a huge, colourful drawing on a train, hurtling through Berlin’s districts or it could be the flash of colours in a monochrome area. It might not have the chance to exist for long…and if someone looks up precisely when the train drives by, their memory of Berlin’s skyline will contain that piece of human intervention. And it will be living and dynamic proof of the impossibility of transforming the city into an obeying system.”-Adding up to a Skyline-TC (Berlin)

This wrestle of having the city obey the system is the central theme of the book. Where the two protagonists are the resident who receives imprints of her memories, his sense of belonging from the city. Vis a vis the collective dominating forces of economy & state which moulds the cities landscape dictating usage.

“I remember the open field in which we used to play, picnic and just relax with our families…Just now, I realise how important this space was for me growing up, for my whole family…I can’t help but wonder where the kids in my neighbourhood will go play, where the mamas will chat and cook, now that the field of my childhood is gone.”—Lost Access-TC

This resident is from Sinza, Dar es Salaam who was reminiscing of the open space that embalms critical memories of his childhood. A space which due to economic forces is now housing a storey high building.

“African communities present their flags in their shops and restaurants to proudly show where their roots lie. But the purpose is also pragmatic: fellow citizens from the same former home country can join and merge the expanded communities in the city.”-Visual Guidance,-TC(Berlin)

TC in its anecdotes from Berlin, gives voice to a diverse heritage we learn of the African community & its fake beach. The Moabit area its metamorphosis, since the tearing down of the Berlin Wall its history as a refugees area. To today where it’s been ‘upgraded’ forcing rent to going up. Still the individual voice is prominent as even on sidewalks, you can spot electric boxes with local paintings.

I was warmed to know of characters in a small glade of old trees between a rail track, construction site and an apartment block. This was their home still you saw “an arm chair carefully placed below one of the trees…an altar like arrangement of colourful snail shells, stones and dry grass at the bottom of the trunk.”-Intruding into private space-TC (Berlin) That reminded me being homeless doesn’t mean, you lose your reverence for beauty, for taking care of your environment.

Inside the pages of 'Talking Cities'
TC also introduced me to Coletha, she arrived in Dar es Salaam back in 1982 among the first residents of Sinza A, which is now a populous area. Her efforts in keeping her neighbourhood clean despite others efforts to mess it “We recently formed Umoja Wafaraji, a local self organised committee responsible for garbage and parking issues in Sinza A. All our members are women.” Coletha’s Umoja Wafaraji-TC (Dar es Salaam)

These anecdotes each cover a page with an accompanying photograph, diving through lives of street vendors, apartment block owners, painters, restaurant owners. With urban stamps like the Doner, a popular street food in Berlin that speaks of the mixed heritage of Berlin particularly between Turks & Germans. As well the Kanga for the case of Dar“There was once a young chicken, a girl called Mosi…She was circling around my husband like a crazy bee…Immediately when I noticed, I put my special kanga on it said ‘hujui kitu’ [you know nothing]” 

Talking Cities next to it's sequel 'Unpacking Heritage'
 that was launched last month at DARCH, more copies
will be printed & available at this offices by end of year
TC is not a literary gem with regard to language aesthetics. In fact you may spot a few grammatical errors. However what makes it rich is it’s clever style of short prose covering diverse rich storylines making it easy & interesting to read.

I was also enamoured with the focus the book takes on the threat of heritage in our Urban settlements. Like the demolishing of public spaces that affect people’s business & their families not withstanding the building of communal values that imprint a whole cultures conviviality.

Talking Cities is sold at 4 Euros or 6,000Tshs, published by Universitatsverlag der TU Belrin, it’s available at DARCH-‘Dar es Salaam Heritage Centre’ at Boma House in city centre Dar. Also inside Ardhi University in Tanzania & TU university in Germany, the book has inspired a sequel. An in depth with expert essays called ‘Unpacking heritage’ already the dummy was launched in September at DARCH, however copies will available to the public by the end of the year.

This article was first published in 'The East African newspaper with this link'

Tuesday, 3 October 2017

The man who coined 'Swahili Blues'

Leo Mkanyia on his guitar with Swahili Blues member
in the background 'Jose' playing drums
with a curious mix of the 'makonde'
'mtonya' drum
Sio kitu rahisi kutumbua tanzu mpya ya muziki, lazima uwe na uzoefu wa kupiga ala mojawapo au kadhaa za muziki, kama gitaa au sauti. Vivyo uwe na uzoefu wa kupiga tanzu nyingine za muziki kwani ubunifu huchukua malighafi yaliyopo na kutotoa kitu kipya. Kwa mfano tanzu ya muziki wa ‘blues’ iliyotungwa na Wamerikani Weusi kwenye miaka ya 1920’s, ndo iliyo zaa tanzu za ‘rock n roll’ pamoja na ‘r&b’ ambayo kirefu chake ni ‘rhythm na blues’.

Hapa tupo na Leo Mkanyia mwanamziki tokea Tanzania, mtoto wa Henry Mkanyia mwanamziki mkongwe aliyepiga muziki kwenye bendi ya ‘Mlimani Orchestra Park’ iliyotamba miaka ya 80.

Leo miaka ya 2010, alitumbua tanzu mpya ya muziki, kwa usaidizi wa baba yake. Aliipa jina la ‘Swahili Blues’ na vivyo kuwa jina la bendi yao. Tanzu hii imechanganya vionjo vya muziki wa Tanzania kama sikinde, ‘Afro beat’ na ‘blues'.
The percussionist in 'Swahili Blues' band Kilima
working his magic with djembe, congas... 
Nilikumbana na Leo akiwa tayari kupanda jukwaani pale Serena Hotel jijini Dar es Salaam, akiwa na bendi yake swahli blues. Huwa wanapiga pale Serena Hotel jijini Dar es Salaam, kila Ijumaa kuanzia saa moja hadi saa nne usiku.

Wengine kwenye bendi hii ni pamoja na baba yake Henry akichapa gitaa la ‘base'. Kilima yeye hupiga ngoma mchanganyiko kama djembe, conga na ‘chimes’ seti yake ilinifurahisha sana. Usiku huu pia Jose anayepiga ngoma za vyuma alikuwepo kwenye bendi na yeye mchanganyiko wake wa ngoma hizi na ngoma ya Tanzania ya 'mtonya' ulinikuna moyo.

Leo Mkanyia kama muwakilishi wa bendi hii ana albamu tatu kwenye kapu lake. Ya kwanza ni albamu fupi ‘dunia hii’, aliyoizindua rasmi mwaka 2010; ya pili ni ‘dunia hii’ hii ikiwa albamu kamili iliyotoka mwaka 2011. Mwaka jana alizindua albamu yake mpya ‘Bangili’ kule Kenya. Albamu mbili za kwanza alizi rekodi kwa kujitegemea, ni albamu hii ya ‘Bangili’ alipobebwa na ‘Ketebul Music’ kampuni ya muziki toka Kenya

Leo mpaka sasa ana takribani miaka 15 kwenye muziki, 10 akiwa kikamilifu kwenye fani hii. Ameshafanikiwa kupiga mikoani Tanzania pamoja na jukwaa mbali mbali nje ya nchi. Kama Uganda, Kenya, Afrika Kusini, Uingereza, Ethiopia, kwenye matamasha kama Bayimba, Sauti za Busara na 'London African Music'. Kwenye nyimbo zake anatumia lugha ya Kiswahili, kilugha na vionjo vya Kifaransa na kiingereza.

Nilimuuliza nini siri ya mafanikio yake haswa ukizingatia muziki wa aina ya moja kwa moja, unasuasua nchini. 

Henry Mkanyia Leo's father a veteran musician
prominent in his time with 'Mlimani Orchestra Park'
and now with his son in 'Swahili Blues'
Alinijibu “muziki una maisha fulani ambayo unachagua, ukitaka kuishi ki ‘star’ unaweza. Ukitaka kuishi kawaida kabisa kama sisi unaweza… mwisho wa siku kufanya kazi kwa bidii na kuwa na malengo ni muhimu sana. Watu wengi wanapoteza malengo baada ya kufuata mambo ya hapa na pale, shida za hapa na pale wanapoteza dira.

Vikundi vingi vimekufa watu wanapoteza malengo, sasa hivi ukiangalia hapa Dar es Salaam tofauti na miaka mitatu iliyopita bendi nyingi zinafifia…Muziki si mazoezi tu, mazoezi ni  sehemu ya muziki. Inabidi pia uimarishe mitandao yako kwasababu leo wanamziki waliofanikiwa. Sio wote wana kipaji kikubwa, ila wana mitandao mzuri. Hifadhi ‘contacts’, fanya kazi na watu vizuri leo unawahitaji kesho watakuhitaji…” Leo Mkanyia
Ukitaka kujipatia albamu za Leo Mkanyia tembelea duka la vitabu la ‘Novel Idea’ kwenye matawi yake mbalimbali Vinginevyo waweza sikiliza nyimbo zake na kuzinunua ‘online’ kupitia tovuti yake

Well if in Dar es Salaam and your looking to hear some seasoned music that is latent with a bluesy essence mixed with traditional Tanzanian rhythms. Pop by at Serena Hotel on Friday night at their bar, Swahili Blues have been performing here for now 5 years. I captured a whiff of their tune on video here <iframe src="" width="560" height="315" style="border:none;overflow:hidden" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" allowTransparency="true" allowFullScreen="true"></iframe>

By +Caroline Anande Uliwa @CarolAnande-Instagram @CarolAnande-Facebook @CarolAnande-Twitter

Monday, 18 September 2017

Anecdotes from WAA-'Women Advancing Africa' forum debut

By +Caroline Anande Uliwa @CarolAnande-Instagram @CarolAnande-Facebook @CarolAnande-Twitter

Left Mme Graca Machel former first lady 
to South Africa & Mocambique, 
a powerful activist and key driver through 
her trust 'Graca Machel Trust'of this conference. 
Here she is sitting with another
powerful woman current 
Vice President to Tanzania
Hon Samia Suluhu at the WAA forum 1st annual
conference in Dar es Salaam last month
It wasn’t just the glamorous African fabrics glittering off  their skin in striking colours that unified these ladies. There was something else, a fire that lit their sternums urging them to share the best of their knowledge, so as to drive a movement for the betterment of the continent. 

“The products which are coming from our soil, the fruits of our own sweat they have to be transformed here… Even food, we are at a point in this continent where we’re spending billions to import food! Women have a role in changing this, they don’t have to sweat like my mother, use technology get industrialisation, to deduce small machinery to cultivate without sweating that much…”—Mme Graca Machel on the first day of the ‘Women Advancing Africa-WAA’ forum, that held it’s first annual conference inside the Hyatt Hotel in Dar es Salaam, from the 9th to the 12th last month. 

Organised by the Graca Machel Trust-GMT this new Pan African initiative WAA, looks to acknowledge and celebrate the critical role women play in shaping Africa’s future. “We’re meeting at a time where we can no longer afford, to ignore the intricate role of women in pushing for the development agenda…This platform provides us with yet another opportunity, to renew our collective efforts in identifying solutions and pitching new ideas. That will ensure everyone lives a life of dignity and isn’t left behind in the development bandwagon…” Hon Vice president  of Tanzania Samia Suluhu  speaking as guest of honour at the launch of the plenary sessions inside the WAA conference.

During the conference you would bump into amazing African women, like Andia Chakava- currently an Investment Consultant, back in 2009 she was the youngest female managing director in Kenya to run a non family owned business ‘Old Mutual Investment Group’. Where she was responsible for assets amounting to US$1 billion. Mme Getrude Mongela Tanzanian the former Secretary-General and Chair of the Beijing World Conference on Women and first President of the Pan-African Parliament. 

Among the speakers in the 'AgriBusiness track' with the CEO
of Alaska Enterprises in Tanzania Jennifer Bash
(wearing a coral blue top with an ivory necklace)
Sheila Khama from Botswana, current Practice Manager-'energy and extractive industries global practice' at the World Bank, former CEO of De-Beers Botswana. Vice Governor of the National Bank of Rwanda Dr Monique Nsanzabaganwa; former Miss Tanzania and Managing Director of Enjipai a fashion accessories brand working with rural Maasai Women since 2010 Nasreen Karim. Hon Ummy Mwalimu, Minister of Health, Gender, Community Development, Children and the Elderly inTanzania and so many more.

Seeing these women at every turn though for just a few days, made you easily envision that African World. Where the corridors of power are lined with fair inclusion of women to the ratios of our population. Oh yes the ambience would be sweet. 

Identified challenges facing women's advancement in Africa

Hon Vice President Mme Samia Suluhu, presenting
as the Guest of Honour to open the track sessions
that went on in this WAA forum
The plenary sessions were the crux of the conference lining captains of industry in various fields mostly women, who were divided into six main tracks that convened in small groups. Divided into agribusiness; energy, extractives and infrastructure; services and trade; technology; financial inclusion and media and creative industries. 

In energy extractives & infrastructure

The data is out now, that indicates how much capacity Africa has in terms of solar power. And with this technology we can work towards base load solar without necessarily worrying about storage…there aren’t that many women participating in this field, we have less than 3% women participating in the Energy space in Africa. We also have a funding issue even as you find women who are in engineering as in this room. It’s very difficult for us to be able to raise the funding to develop power projects because development is a risk…”—Elekanyani Ndlovu SA, speaking inside the energy, extractives & infrastructure track hailing as head of engineering and project management at Pele Energy Group in South Africa. 

She highlighted how concentrated solar power-CSP, poses huge opportunities for energy solutions in Africa, yet with the gender gap in the implementation of this investment. Interlinked with the fact that women are the ones to greatly benefit from bridging the gap of over 600 million Africans, in Sub-Sahara who lack electricity. A fact her fellow speaker Adele Boadzo knew personally, from the unfortunate passing of her grandmother in Ghana due to a gas stove explosion. Which inspired her to start the company ‘Hope Rises Solar’; that works to bring solar power to the rural areas. It was understood clearly that recruiting & sustaining more women in this industry was key. <iframe src="" width="560" height="315" style="border:none;overflow:hidden" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" allowTransparency="true" allowFullScreen="true"></iframe>

In financial Inclusion

Far left Andia Chakavo next to one of the MC's for
this forum Chidiogo Akunjili 
“Unfortunately new data will be out later, so I am going to use the 2013 data. Financial inclusion in Tanzania has grown from 15% in 2009 to 58% in 2013 that is huge growth…You look at the formal banking in 2009 it was 9.2% in 2013 it only grew by 2% points…the growth is coming from the non-banking sector…”—Irene Mlola operations director at Financial Sector Deepening Tanzania-FSDT. This track was one hot bed of discussion. It was noted that the majority of women entrepreneurs on the continent still fall within the small holder farmer, vendor category. That they faced the challenge of collateral, battling with land ownership due to customs and or lack of financial literacy due to levels of education growing up. 

That said it was also noted that there was a growing number of middle sized businesses that found bottlenecks in expanding their businesses, “Over 50% of 607 female entrepreneurs cited access to finance (31%) and access to markets (23%) as the two main challenges. The two biggest obstacles cited in accessing finance are collateral requirements and prohibitive interest rates.We found that out of the total 443 respondents that applied for a loan, just over a quarter (12) of them were successful”—Survey to explore growth barriers faced by female entrepreneurs in East Africa by the Graca machel Trust, Women in Finance network 2016. 

In services & trade

A photo with key members oppening the WAA confrence in DSM
In cream suit Ambassador Dr Gemet Zewide,
Navy blue suit mme Graca Machel,
Red hijab Hon Samia Suluhu,
sitting with kitenge outfit Mmr Jacqueline Maleko,
In blue jacket Nomsa Daniels CEO GMT
Another key challenge identified came from the services & trade track which noted how lack of intra African trade, posed a lost opportunity for women economic welfare on the continent. 

I was surprised I went to Mauritius, they had lots of sugar in their food supplies. When I asked why they have so much, they said because some European countries are no longer buying sugar from cane, that they’re buying it from beet…you see only 10% African trade is Intra-trade.” —Seun Omobo, Technical Advisor to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Nigeria 

In Technology

In the technology track, first it was noted that awareness of what technology is for the majority of the population in Africa is low. It was noted here that technology is how to use the knowledge that you know to make something. “There’s a 300 billion USD deficit from the gender gap bridge in the tech industry in the world, how do we leverage this opportunity…”—Robin Miller Partner at Dalberg Development Partners

Agenda's moving forward from WAA

Before long it was the final day of the conference, each of these tracks were given a mandate to formulate three key solutions, that they would present on the last day and oversee them going forward. The fire lit in the sternums of all participants fuelled by the passionate speeches of Mama Graca, as well as Dr Mongela and Dr Gennet Zewide (former Minister of Education in Ethiopia & Ambassador to India for Ethiopia). Was now ready to present the barbecue it had been roasting. <iframe src="" width="560" height="315" style="border:none;overflow:hidden" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" allowTransparency="true" allowFullScreen="true"></iframe>

Energy Extractives & Infrastructure 

A gender procurement based corporate policy is one of  our mainstream agenda, as a matter of fact currently at the World Bank, we have a call with a mining company to work with them in designing a gender sensitive policy…”—Sheila Khama in responding to the challenge of empowering women in extractive industries, so as to usher them from artisanal miners to small scale miners. 

In this track Elekanyi Ndlovu also highlighted the proposed solution of starting a fund by women for women, in the energy infrastructure sector. It was noted here that lobbying for an African multinational project, that will procure women in this industry from all over the continent, will  further strengthen the stakeholders in this field in pushing for women’s inclusion.

Financial Inclusion

In the financial inclusion track“We foresee leveraging influence of  the GMT to incite governors of each African country to commit to policy or strategies. That focus on women financial inclusion that aim to reduce by 50% the gender gap in access to finance by 2021. This will be championed by Dr Monique Nsanzabaganwa  and Dr Tukiya Kankasa-Mabula Dept Governor in the Bank of Zambia”—Maureen Kwilasa TZ, financial inclusion advisor-Southern Africa CARE 

Sisonke Msimang, writer and activist presenting
at the WAA on
'changing the narrative 
women in the storytelling landscape of Africa'
Maureen further added as solutions  in this track, a goal of ensuring that 30% of all grassroots savings collectives the likes of SACCOS. To use digital solutions this to be championed by Irene Mlola of FSDT, an apt candidate as her organisation is in the throws of a trial applying this method. That will formalise records of these grassroots finance collectives, without disrupting their social design. 

It was also agreed in this track as a solution to create a ‘gender sensitive Pan African corporative investment fund’ following the success of the ‘stockvel’s' model in South Africa. As well the establishment of a disruptive platform where fintech, market access, backward and forward linkages, are provided to allow women entrepreneurs to sell their products to other women entrepreneurs all over the continent. Pulling government and financial stakeholders to bring financial literacy as a service to the platform. This track foresees opening this platform by December 2017 championed by Irene Kiwia of the Portia Novelli company in Tanzania.

These solutions inspired contributions from the audience like when Marjorie Crauss from APCO added “I would like to find a corporate sponsor for each one of the tracks, not to come in and takeover anything because this has got to be from Africa for Africa driving Africa. But to provide a little bit of funding, maybe some assistance, the use of their labs, their know-how’s. Things that can accelerate the process…so by this time next year Mama Machel we will have at least one sponsor for each of these tracks

In Agribusiness

In the Agribusiness tracks it was noted that efforts should be made to diversify produce for sustainability of small holder farmers by moving into indigenous crops such as Cannabis, Moringa. Which have a big market and could bring big financial gains.

At a side event inside WAA-looking at what activisim 
looks like for the young generation.
The middle four from right Dr Ruth Meena (Lecturer,
Activist member of TGNP), Dr Getrude Mongela,
Mme Graca Machel &
Ambassador Dr Gemet Zewide from Ethiopia 
To which an audience member, the CEO of Bomgi Nutraceuticals in Uganda, Brian Holmes responded by highlighting a solution through his organisation. Which pays women farmers for 8 USD per kilo of Moringa Ocifera, which is almost three times the price offered by other companies. He shared that the Moringa they get from these farmers in Uganda is being used to create a nutrition supplement that will greatly assist patients living with HIV/AIDS and children with chronic malnutrition.

More concrete data will be published by the forum from the wealth of knowledge that was shared and generated at this forum. You can follow the conversation here 

This conference was erected by the GMT in partnerships with APCO Worldwide, the UPS Foundation, Johnson & Johnson Innovation, Intel’s Girls & Women Commitment, American Tower Corporation, CNBC Africa & The Nation Media Group. 

P.S. this article was first published by The East African Newspaper here

Friday, 25 August 2017

eBay partners with Mall for Africa to sell African Handmade goods

By Correspondent

Goods from Africa found on
eBay Inc www.ebayinc.coma global commerce leader and Mall for Africa Africa’s award-winning global e-commerce and m-commerce platform. Yesterday announced a strategic partnership that will further boost the sale of handmade African products into the United States.  

eBay Inc. founded in 1995 in San Jose, California is one of the world's largest and most vibrant online marketplaces. In 2016, eBay enabled $84 billion of gross merchandise volume. 

In it's partnership with Mall for Africa, which provides African consumers a platform to purchase items directly from over 200 of the best US and UK retailers in the world www.Mall for

The partnership allows Africans the ability to purchase items from or directly through the Mall for Africa app. Mall for Africa and eBay will now provide Africans starting with Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana, South Africa, and Rwanda a new platform to sell their one-of-a-kind artisan products into the U.S. 

Goods from Africa found on
The inventory will be surfaced on the Mall for Africa store on, allowing sellers to expand their businesses and increase brand awareness. To start, product categories will include fashion, art & collectibles, jewellery and clothing.  Expansion into other categories and additional African countries will occur in the upcoming months.

To ensure the most unique and highest quality products that are 100 percent African made, the Africa Made Product Standards (AMPS) was created. It provides consumers with the assurance that products meet an international standard in quality.  All artisans are meticulously handpicked and all products are crafted with the utmost care by an African artisan. 

We couldn’t be more pleased with extending our partnership with eBay as we empower, expose, and positively affect thousands of hard-working artisans while making it convenient for US shoppers to purchase African made products that would otherwise be unavailable to them...As someone who grew up in Africa, became an entrepreneur, and who currently does business in Africa, I know first-hand the importance of cross-border trade and having the opportunity to expand a business internationally.” adds Chris Folayan, CEO of Mall for Africa. 

Mall for Africa’s long-time shipping partner, DHL, will be responsible for all shipping needs.  
The seller simply packs the product, prints the label and drops the package off at DHL’s nearest drop-off location. Last February DHL published research that indicated a significant forthcoming increase in cross-border e-commerce sales. It also asserts that in 2020, 1 out of 5 e-commerce dollars will be generated cross-border and the market is anticipated to grow at 25% annually—almost twice the rate of domestic e-commerce.

eBay’s vision for commerce is one that is enabled by people, powered by technology, and open to everyone. This expanded relationship with Mall for Africa will not only bring great inventory and more selection to our marketplace, but will also create greater economic opportunity for African artisans looking to expand their reach.”said Sylvie De Wever, eBay’s General Manager of Latin America and US Exports.