The United Bank for Africa has once again taken the definitive lead in hoisting Africa’s inalienable values, rich cultures and priceless heritage to mark the fourth Africa Day. It is about changing the narrative and encouraging Africans at home and abroad to be patriotic and embrace their inherent Africanism. Rebecca Ejifoma reports
It was a potpourri of culture, costume, color, intriguing entertainment and insightful talk about the concept of African-inspired decorating to mark the 4th Africa Day at UBA House Marina in the state. from Lagos.
A troupe of dancers and actors represented some African countries – Nigeria, Ghana, Senegal, Zimbabwe, Namibia, South Africa among others. Their energetic and flexible entertainment, their exuberant music lulled the public from the entrance of the building to its doors to the hall of the Tony Elumelu amphitheater. Their overall performances sent out good vibes and earned them a six million dollar ovation.
Today, Africa is unquestionably positioned as the second largest continent in the world. It remains the only continent of the seven which has evidently been bequeathed with the most colorful and diverse culture enjoyed across the world.
From its aesthetic works of art, ethnic costumes, expressive dances, mind-boggling plethora of languages, amazing dishes, tourist attractions and wildlife, among others, Africa is considered a global powerhouse yet to be explored.
It is therefore to proudly project its cultural heritage that United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc organized the 4th Africa Day Conversations in Lagos to commemorate this year’s Africa Day. Part of his goal was for the dignitaries to craft lasting solutions to persistent challenges on the continent. The UBA Africa Conversations were created in May 2019 as a flagship initiative in a series of Africa Day celebrations.
The conversations provided a platform for African and global audiences to connect with global thought leaders in both the private and public sectors during their journey in Africa. All with the aim of changing the narrative about Africa from desolate to successful.
Under the theme “The Importance of Reflecting our African Culture in Global Achievements”, the day highlighted Africa’s tremendous shift in cultural influence – from Afrobeat to African films; Major African fashion brands and African authors; entertainment and culture. According to UBA, Africa is creating a positive impact globally.
According to UBA Deputy Managing Director, Oliver Alawuba, “It is from Africa that UBA Africa was created”, he conceded, adding that UBA has invested heavily in Africa. “We are present in 20 African countries and four countries outside Africa. Our goal has always been to drive investment in Africa, through conversations like this. »
For Alawuba, UBA aspires to expand and grow in the world. Unity is essential and very important in Africa. Our goal has always been to change the narrative. “Unity is essential and very important for the future of Africa, we must remain united to achieve our aspirations.
Taking inspiration from the MD, the Namibian High Commissioner to Nigeria, Ambassador Humphrey Desmond Geiseb, explained how globalization has been beneficial to Africa. “Of course, there are still gaps. There are still many things about Africa that are not known. And I believe that culture and the arts can help us do it right.
He added that UBA’s foray as an African bank in the United States is proof of this. This is how Geiseb envisioned that by 2063, Africa should have become a united and prosperous continent, and have the capacity to take charge of its own development.
In the cases of export and import, the ambassador and the speaker in the conversations insisted that Africa should export more and add value to its own product. In his own words, “Free trade will inculcate an environment in which Africans will trade more and benefit from intra-trade opportunities.
“We need to master the African Agenda 2063 so that by then we are all in a better place to maximize the different situations and stay united.”
He also stressed the need for the governments of each country to give a lot of consideration so that the commitment to the African agenda is commendable. Adding, he encouraged that as Africans, “we should be proud of who we are, where we come from and the days ahead.”
To further enlighten and engage attendees, UBA assembled a rich and diverse panel including legendary African musician and songwriter, Youssou Madjiguène Ndour; former Lagos State Tourism Commissioner Steve Ayorinde; African Movie Academy Award-winning Ghanaian actress Lydia Forson; talented young fashion designer, Kenneth Ize; and Geiseb.
During his presentation, Ayorinde pointed out: “As Africans, we are at the point where no one denigrates African culture anymore. Indeed, there is still a gap, but we are closing it. He, however, pointed out that the liberalization of media and digital content helps to improve the African narrative.
Forson, on the other hand, hailed UBA’s contribution to transforming African storytelling. She raved about how African culture is now more widely accepted around the world. The actress said, “It’s great to see a bank like UBA intending to promote Africa. Now the world sees us more, because we started telling our own stories.
For his part, Ize, said the continent holds great potential that Africans have yet to tap into. “Africa is our home, our culture, and we must do everything to preserve our culture,” he told the audience during the panel discussion moderated by TV presenter and journalist, Laila Salami-Johnson.
Speaking on the need for collaboration to boost the fortunes of the continent during his keynote address, Ndour insisted that young people in Africa have many questions and “We need to listen to them and see how together we can be a solution for Africa. We have to understand that there is a lot to do. Together, we can make it happen.”
Since Saturday, May 25, 1963, Africa Day has been celebrated across the continent and around the world. The day was inaugurated by the Organization of African Unity (OAU) to celebrate the unity, diversity and beauty of Africa and its people.
Therefore, as one of the leading financial services institutions in Africa, with a pan-African footprint spanning 20 African countries and globally in the US, UK, UAE and France, UBA affirms that she is fully committed to uniting Africa. He also continues to lead the narrative focused on Africa’s development, growth and unity.
Indeed, UBA Plc prides itself on being a leading pan-African financial institution, providing banking services to over 25 million customers, through 1,000 business offices and customer touch points in 20 African countries.
With a presence in New York, London, Paris and a license to operate in Dubai, UBA connects people and businesses across Africa through retail; commercial and corporate banking; innovative cross-border payments and remittances; trade finance and ancillary banking services. UBA is Africa’s global bank.
Quotation It’s great to see a bank like UBA intending to promote Africa. Now the world sees us more, because we have started to tell our own stories… the continent has great potential that Africans have yet to tap into. Africa is our home, our culture, and we must do everything to preserve our culture