Leading African businessman and philanthropist Tony O. Elumelu , Akinwumi Adesina, and Graça Machel, have been slated to co-chair the 26th World Economic Forum (WEF) on Africa that will be held from 11th-13th May, 2016 for the first time ever in Kigali, Rwanda.
This year’s event themed “Connecting Africa’s Resources through Digital Transformation” will witness regional and global leaders in business, government and civil society convene in the East African country to discuss digital economy, key global and regional challenges, and agree on strategic actions to deliver shared prosperity across the continent.
Elumelu, Founder of the Tony Elumelu Foundation and the Chairman of pan-African investment conglomerates, Heirs Holdings, Transcorp Nigeria and the multinational United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc, is a longstanding stakeholder in WEF, having participated at a high level for several years at the fora in Davos, Switzerland and within Africa.
In an interview on CNBC granted by Tony Elumelu aired last Friday , he unveiled his plans for his role as chairman of WEF Africa In Kigali. Mr Elumelu said he would draw from his wealth of experience as a serial investor and renowned businessman with stakes in major sectors of Africa’s economic landscape to speak on harnessing the continent’s potential for digital transformation.
“Africa is bursting to the seams with homegrown solutions and digital resources that can power its transformation”, said Mr. Elumelu who also doubles as the Founder of the Tony Elumelu Foundation.
“We need to critically examine these solutions and galvanize support for immediate implementation. I am happy that WEF Africa provides a perfect opportunity for business leaders like myself to do this.”
At the forum, he will also explore the success stories of tech businesses that his foundation has funded through its flagship programme, the Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurship Programme(TEEP), a 10 year, $100 million initiative to give 1,000 entrepreneurs seed capital and create millions of jobs in the process.
He will be accompanied by Parminder Vir OBE, the Foundation’s Chief Executive Officer as they both meet with the Rwandan Tony Elumelu entrepreneurs. Ms. Vir willlaunch Unleashing Africa’s Agricultural Entrepreneurs, a report on the potentials of agribusinesses in transforming the continent, on the sidelines.
Ahead of the launch, Ms. Vir has said: “This report uses data from our entrepreneurs and the businesses they have built with training, mentoring, access to key networks and seed capital from TEEP, as case studies. What’s next is for African governments to create an enabling environment using our suggestions to prevent a hunger crisis and aid Africa’s self-sufficiency.”
Other co-chairs at the forum include Akinwumi Ayodeji Adesina, president of the African Development Bank; Graça Machel, former First Lady of Mozambique and South Africa and Chancellor, University of Cape Town.
Source: MASAHUDU ANKIILU Kunateh/[email protected]
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