Forbes Reveals 74 Most Influential Persons In The World

Forbes recently revealed the world most influential people in the world. The President of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin made no1 on the list, while Donald Trump came 2nd and Pope Francis came 5th.

Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote occupies 64th position on the list.

See full list below

1.Vladimir Putin -Russia

2 Donald Trump -United States

3 Angela Merkel
4 Xi Jinping
5 Pope Francis
6 Janet Yellen
7 Bill GatesBill & Melinda Gates
8 Larry Page
9 Narendra Modi
10 Mark Zuckerberg
11 Mario Draghi
12 Li Keqiang
13 Theresa May
14 Jeff Bezos
15 Warren Buffett
16 Salman bin Abdulaziz Al
17 Carlos Slim Helu
18 Ali Hoseini
19 Jamie Dimon
20 Benjamin Netanyahu
21 Elon Musk
22 Jeffrey Immelt
23 Francois Hollande
24 Rex Tillerson
25 Christine Lagarde
26 Lloyd Blankfein
27 Doug McMillon
28 Jack MaAlibaba
29 Akio Toyoda
30 Sergey Brin
31 Charles KochKoch
32 Tim Cook
33 Li Ka-shingCK
34 Larry Fink
35 Rupert Murdoch
36 Antonio Guterres
37 Shinzo Abe
39 Khalifa bin Zayed
40 Jay Y. Lee
41 Ding Xuedong
42 Jim Yong Kim
43 Kim Jong-un
44 Abdel el-Sisi
45 Ma Huateng
46 Michael Dell
47 Haruhiko Kuroda
48 Barack Obama
49 Khalid Al-Falih
50 John Roberts
51 Satya Nadella
52 Stephen Schwarzman
53 Masayoshi Son
54 Enrique Pena
55 Michael Bloomberg
56 Recep Erdogan
57 Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi
58 Alisher Usmanov
59 Wang Jianlin
60 Robin Li
61 Ginni Rometty
62 Mary Barra
63 Bashar al
64 Travis Kalanick
65 Carl IcahnIcahn
66 Justin Trudeau
67 Bob Iger
68 Aliko Dangote
69 Mike Pence
70 Rodrigo Duterte
71 Ayman al-Zawahiri
72 Sheldon Adelson
73 Peter Thiel
74 Chuck Schumer


Nigeria Is Blessed To Have Dangote – Ganduje

The Governor of Kano State, Dr Umar Ganduje on Monday said that Nigeria and indeed the world are blessed to have Alhaji Aliko Dangote, the president of Dangote Group in the business world.

Ganduje, who was speaking at Dangote Special Day, described the revered business as the ‘Pride of the Black Race’, adding that his investments have placed Nigeria in the global economic sphere.

Represented by state Commissioner of Commerce, Industry, Cooperatives and Tourism Ahmad Rabiu, the Governor said Dangote is synonymous with development given the giant strides recorded in the different sectors of the economy.

“Dangote Group and Dangote Foundation have touched lives in the different states in Nigeria and beyond.

“There is no household that does not use Dangote product. Every where you go there are Dangote products and services from which many are benefitting.

“Many sectors of the economy have been boosted- Infrastructure, Agriculture, the Mining sector, Health, Education etc Dangote is surely a man of the people”

Governor Ganduje expressed gratitude to the foremost Industrialist for his contribution and support to the Fairs conducted by Kano state over the years, many of which recorded immense success.

He said there is no doubt that the 38th Kano International Trade Fair will also be a success because Aliko Dangote is involved.

He called on leaders, wealthy individuals and organisations to emulate his unique qualities for a better society by making life a lot easier for the people especially at the grassroots.

Speaking earlier, President/CE, Dangote Group, Aliko Dangote said the current administration’s diversification agenda has put the Nigerian economy on the right trajectory for growth.

The Africa foremost industrialist said diversification would take the country to the next level, and away from overdependence on oil.

Represented by General Manager Stakeholder Management, Dangote Group, Bello Abdullahi Dan-Musa, Dangote the nation should continue to explore opportunities in the various sectors to grow the economy.

“We are committed to diversification as it is what Nigeria needs and indeed Africa, to add value to our basic endowments for economic growth.

“That is why we are also exploring opportunities in the different sectors, cement, flour, salt, sugar and recently, Oil and Gas as well as Agricbusiness to move the nation forward.

“Dangote businesses are meant to impact the lives of the people in different ways, that is why Dangote Group is structured to deliver basic goods and services that are essential for improving standard of living of the general populace, and have presence in 13 different countries.

Last week, Dangote commissioned its cement plant in Congo Brazaville.

Its mission in the next five to ten years is not only to be the largest brand in Africa but also be amongst the top 20 companies of the World.

Hajiya Maijidda Modibbo of the Corporate Communications, Dangote Group, spoke briefly about Dangote Rice out-grower scheme in line with President Buhari’s policy to reinvigorate the economy, saying it has gone a long way in enhancing farmers and their households.

Participants at the fair thronged Dangote Pavillion to see what Dangote has to offer. They include Dangote Cement, Dangote Sugar, Dangote Salt, Dangote Rice, Dangote Flour, DanQ, among others.


Aliko Dangote Foundation Pledges US$100 Million to Tackle Malnutrition

The Managing Director, Zouera Youssoufou, and CEO of the Aliko Dangote Foundation made the pledge at the recently concluded Global Nutrition Summit in Milan Italy, which was also attended by Aliko Dangote himself.

The Aliko Dangote Foundation will invest US$100 Million over five years to tackle malnutrition in the North East and North West, the worst-affected parts of Nigeria.

“Nigeria’s high malnutrition rate is undermining progress towards improving child health and survival and putting the brakes on economic development,” she said.

“By investing in nutrition, we aim to directly improve the lives of Nigerian families and to empower our citizens to reach their full potential.”

At a summit on 4 November, it gathered an impressive array of governments, international agencies, foundations, civil society organizations and businesses.

It was convened with the objective of taking stock of nutrition commitments made to date, celebrating progress toward global goals on nutrition, and announcing additional commitments to accelerate the global response to malnutrition in all its forms.

The Global Nutrition Summit drew a strong African contingent including world leaders Kofi Annan, former Secretary General of the United Nations and Chair of the Kofi Annan Foundation and Graca Machel, Founder of the Graca Machel Trust; high-level representatives of the governments of Tanzania, Niger, Ethiopia, Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso and Zambia and business leaders such as Aliko Dangote, Founder of the Aliko Dangote Foundation and Chairman of the Dangote Group, Africa’s largest home-grown conglomerate.

They joined international stakeholders including the U.K.’s Department for International Development (DFID), the World Health Organization, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the International Coalition on Advocacy for Nutrition.

The Global Summit highlighted the cost of malnutrition to both societies and individuals. The Global Nutrition Report 2017 launched at the Summit, showed that despite progress, 155 million children globally are stunted and the world is off track on meeting internationally agreed nutrition targets. Compounding the issue, global financing to tackle malnutrition has been alarmingly low. Donors spend only about 0.5 percent of overseas aid on nutrition, and countries allocate between one and two percent of their health budgets to the issue.

Like Dangote, African governments also announced new commitments: Ethiopia, through its National Nutrition Program, pledged to reduce the prevalence of stunted; underweight and wasted children under five. Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso and Zambia, also made commitments to expand domestic programmes to improve nutrition for mothers and children. In total, the Summit succeeded in galvanizing US3.4 billion according to the organisers.

“The global malnutrition crisis endangers the physical and mental wellbeing of present and future generations” said Kofi Annan, speaking at the summit in his capacity as Chair of the Kofi Annan Foundation. “Progress in tackling both under nutrition and obesity is possible with targeted commitments, like those made here today. We need further urgent investments so that people, communities and nations can reach their full potential.”

Nigeria boasts not only Africa’s largest population but also the continent’s highest numbers of malnourished children. Almost half of the one million children who die before the age of five in Nigeria, die of malnutrition as the underlying cause.

Without proper nutrients during the first 1,000 days of life starting from conception up to their second birthday, children are less likely to survive childhood diseases such as malaria and pneumonia, and are less likely to escape poverty as adults. They become physically and cognitively stunted, a fate that has befallen 11 million of Nigeria’s children under five.

The Aliko Dangote Foundation is on a mission to reduce the prevalence of under nutrition by 60 percent in the neediest areas of Nigeria, specifically the North East and North West, where malnutrition has affected millions of lives and crippled the local economy.

With this US$100 Million commitment, the Aliko Dangote Foundation will promote scalable and cost-effective nutrition interventions such as breast feeding, healthy sanitation practices, disease prevention, food fortification and supplementation. These activities complement other long-term programs on education, empowerment, food security, water, sanitation and health care.

“We recognize nutrition as a cross-cutting issue which affects other critical development goals, that is why nutrition has become our core focus. We want to reach one million malnourished children in Nigeria by 2021 and we know that for every dollar invested in nutrition, the nation as a whole will reap huge economic dividends,” said Aliko Dangote.

The good news is that malnutrition is beatable. It is not a natural disaster that one cannot predict or a communicable disease for which there is no cure. But the fight does demand leadership – zero tolerance on malnutrition from policy makers, more integrated interventions from the public and private sectors and decisive actions backed by greater investments.

Through his Foundation, Aliko Dangote looks set to become the strongest voice for nutritional leadership nationally and on the continent of Africa.

I’m Not PDP’s Presidential Candidate – Dangote

Africa’s richest man and global business mogul, Alhaji Aliko Dangote has defused rumours claiming that he had his eyes on the presidency in 2019 through the platform of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP).

In an interview with Daily Times, Dangote said “I am an entrepreneur. My passion is to create jobs for Nigerians and not otherwise. I am not interested in politics and this is authoritative. No member of any think tank committee has contacted me. People should stop dropping my name for the 2019 presidency.

“This whole thing is an attempt by people who do not like me. They are doing all these with a view to putting me on a collision course with President Muhammadu Buhari and the ruling party. They are people who are jealous of the successes I have so far recorded in business.

“My passion is for business development, provision of jobs and wealth creation, not politics. I have never shown interest in politics. I’m not interested in politics. I am not a politician. My passion has always been business and business.

“Buhari is like a father to me. Nobody should try to set me on a collision course with President Buhari. That will not work. I have high regard and respect for the President.

“For emphasis once again, I am not a politician. I can’t and won’t confront President Buhari. They should leave me out of any high wire politics and horse trading.

“I also seize this opportunity to warn name droppers to desist from their infamous act. They should stop using my name for politics. They should not set me on collision course with President Buhari and the government in power.

“By the time the ongoing Dangote refinery in Lagos and the sugar projects come on stream fully, there will be a great positive development and thousands of jobs created that will change the narrative in the country. That is my passion.”

Dangote Group To Invest Over $1bn In Agricultural Production In Nigerian

The President of the Dangote Group, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, has said that the company is planning to invest over $1 billion in agricultural production and processing of selected commodities like sugar, rice and tomatoes across Nigeria.Speaking at the 2017 Niger State Investment Summit in Minna, the state capital on Monday, Dangote, who was represented by Alhaji Mansur Ahmed, said that the company was poised to leverage on a virile agriculture based economy.

Dangote said that the group would also continue to engage governments at the federal and state levels where there were great potential to explore investment opportunities.

He announced that the company would be investing 450 million dollars in agriculture development in Niger State in northern Nigeria over the next three years

He said that the funds would be used in establishing a large scale rice processing mill to process over 200, 000 metric tonnes of paddy rice.

According to him, a state-of-the-art fully integrated sugar refining industry would also be established.

“The Dangote Group is committed to invest around 450 million dollars over the three next years to establish a large scale rice processing mill for out growers.

“Our company is also establishing a state of the art fully integrated sugar industry involving the development of over 30,000 hectares of sugar cane plantation and the production of about 500, 000 metric tonnes of refined sugar,” he said.

He noted that these investments will kick start the mutually beneficial partnership with the government and good people of Niger State.

Niger State, he noted, has become the destination of choice for investment in the agricultural sector given its rich and vast arable land.

Source: Journal Du Cameroun

Seven Dangote Staffers Arraigned Over Alleged N451m Theft

Seven employees of Dangote Sugar Refinery Company and a businessman were on Monday hauled up before an Ikeja High Court over alleged theft of N451 million belonging to the company.

The accused are Musa Sule, Joseph Ukpah, Babatunde Ajao, Chinedu Onyekwere, Ezekiel Omoro, Rahman Alayande and Odion Abugba.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that two other staff members — Zainab Adebanjo and Manir Mohammed — now on the run, are being hunted by the Special Fraud Unit (SFU), Ikoyi, Lagos.

A businessman, Habib Mande, alongside his company — El-Habib Property Nigeria Ltd — was also arraigned with the staffers.

They are facing an eight-count charge bordering on conspiracy, stealing, forgery and uttering of false documents.

The accused, however, denied all the charges.

The prosecutor, Mr E.A. Jackson, said the defendants committed the offences between 2012 and 2016 at Dangote Sugar Refinery Company, Apapa, Lagos.

“Mande, a businessman, who has previously had dealings with the company, conspired with the other defendants and stole N451 million, property of Dangote Sugar Refinery.

“On Nov. 30, 2015, Sept. 7, 2015 and April 26, 2016, they forged and uttered false cheque requisition forms with numbers 132243, 132229 and 132279, respectively.

“Their intention was that these documents may be used or acted upon by officers of Dangote Sugar Refinery Plc as genuine to the prejudice of the company,” he said.

NAN reports that the company had in a petition to the police dated Nov. 17, 2016 narrated how the alleged theft was discovered during a routine audit of the company’s accounts.

According to the petition, the audit revealed that N67.9 million was illegally taken from the company’s account and paid into the account of El-Habib Property Nig. Ltd., a company belonging to Mande.

Internal investigations within the company had allegedly revealed that the company had no pending claims with the sugar refinery and Mande had not been engaged in any business services for the company in recent times.

According to the prosecution, the offences violated Sections 390 (9), 465, 467, 468 and 516 of the Criminal Code, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004.

The vacation judge, Justice Sedotan Ogunsanya, noted that the defendants were still on police bail granted by the SFU.

She adjourned the case until Sept. 22 for argument on their bail applications.

Source: Guardian

Dangote And The Arewa Youths By SOC Okenwa

Alhaji Aliko Dangote, Chairman of Dangote Group, is the African richest man and one of the richest in the world. The business mogul made his money through dint of harwork (or so we had thought before now). He wines and dines with Presidents, Prime Ministers, Kings and Queens around the world. His colossal investments transcend international boundaries. To the best of our knowledge he is not haughty or been involved in any scandal associated with a pre-President Donald Trump for example. In the Forbes list of billionaires Dangote occupies an enviable position to the pride and glory of Nigeria in particular and Africa in general. Making money decently is not a tea party!

As a man of money Dangote is not like the late Bashorun MKO Abiola who courted controversies and married many wives fathering countless children! Dangote is humble, patriotic and deeply religious. He is not known to be suffering from the rich-man complex or syndrome associated with many African billionaires and millionaires.

Millions of Nigerians are using Dangote products across ethnic or religious lines. Thousands earn a living through his companies’ employment opportunities. Someone once told me sometime ago that Dangote could have employed more Nigerians than the federal government and we laughed over it! Of course he is a great employer of labour.

Disciplined and munificent Dangote’s entrepreneurial ingenuity marks him out as a great man, a great Nigerian. When I was about to build a house in my village I remember going for his cement in up-town Ihiala, Anambra State, in 2005. According to those who know him better he has a great heart! But could be ruthless when it comes to business deals and interests.

Recently, however, the big man had innocuously waded into the social tension in the country arising mainly from the October 1 ultimatum given to the Igbos up north by the so-called Arewa youths to vacate the entire north for their various villages or towns in Igboland. Dangote, a man not known for megalomania or magniloquence, had dismissed the quit notice stressing that people should not engage or dignify same with any response. He had said: “Some fellows who have no relevance and values came out to issue a warning that Igbo should leave the North. I am surprised everybody started talking about this nonsense. Why are we talking about it? Obviously, in a place where there is a lot of joblessness, it is expected that this kind of jobless people would come out with all sorts of anger……We understand the reasons why they are angry, but, they cannot justify their action when they have decided not to work. They only issued the senseless warning to keep themselves relevant.”

Of course he overreached himself by calling them “jobless youths seeking relevance”. Soon after this declaration, however, the Arewa youths issued a strongly-worded statement full of invectives and allegations against the cement magnate. When I read online that incendiary statement I was shocked. Shocked because of the virulent tone employed and the accusations it bore. According to the release: “Most importantly, we are very much proud that we are only “jobless’ as claimed by Dangote, but then, none of us has the record of ever being involved in drug peddling or currency counterfeiting……All our lives, since childhood, we have never been found wanting in any money-worshipping venture to the point of criminally peddling hard drugs and, or forging hard currency.”

They did not stop there as they went on to say: “We all know that Dangote and all those that appear uncomfortable with our Kaduna Declaration are those who thrive from condescending against northerners and the northern values. They represent a pack of scavengers who would readily negotiate the general interest of their people in order to cover up their dirty sources of wealth and fame…In particular, Dangote has never been and can never be among genuine northern patriots and therefore his support for, or opposition to anything that tends to serve the interest of the region and its people is inconsequential and is not expected….If anything, Dangote is no more than a moral liability to the cultured north having become the final destination where every corrupt government official dump their public treasury loot. He is therefore morally liable along with other Igbo accomplices for the economic hardship wrought on Nigeria in the past 25 years.”

But in a counter declaration a coalition under the auspices of Joint Northern Youth Forum came out in defense of Dangote asking the Arewa youths to stop insulting their champion. According to them: “It has never happened and anyone who knows Dangote would readily admit that he has been a hardworking investor for decades and not a politician. The Coalition’s bedtime story about Obasanjo asking Dangote to run for the nation’s presidency is also laughable indeed…. This can never be true, given the hundreds of thousands of Northerners earning a livelihood through his vast array of investments in the North…And for whatever it is worth, Dangote deserves respect for rebuilding the lives of many young Northerners through his chain of businesses…. If we cannot celebrate his efforts to give meaning to the lives of many northerners in particular and Nigerians in general, we should also not cast aspersions on him…When the so-called Coalition said its members are not involved with “drug peddling and currency counterfeiting” what are they insinuating? What business has the respected African entrepreneur got to do with it? It is not in the character of northerners to be involved with insulting elders, especially elders that are enterprising and economically productive.”

The statement described as sad and unfortunate the accusations made by the coalition that Dangote Group is a destination for corrupt government officials, saying there was no iota of truth in the allegation: “The insinuation that Dangote group of companies is a “financial destination for every corrupt government official” is simply ridiculous because his chain of investments have never been associated with the trial of corrupt public officials by agencies like the EFCC or ICPC for many years. Dangote would not have been recognised by credible institutions like Forbes as the richest man in Africa.”

For us Dangote made his great fortune legitimately unless a valid proof is provided on the contrary by Prof. Ango Abdulahi and Yerima Shettima and their Arewa charlatans. So the wild allegation of dealing in narcotics, money laundering or counterfeiting or liaison with politicians associated with graft cannot fly so easily. Whilst we recognise the old saying that behind every great fortune there is a crime we hold that Aliko has never been involved in any financial scam or hard-drug related offense or money laundering. He relates well with politicians but we believe the relationship is never tainted with any crime.

Yet it goes without saying that Dangote as the richest living black man ought to have done better in the area of empowering the ‘talakawas’ in the north being recruited by the Arewa youths and even Boko Haram terrorist organisation! His prosperity story is one that should, ordinarily, inspire us and make us proud as Nigerians. But majority of our people are still victims of poverty with many living dangerously on less than a Dollar a day! While billionaires and millionaires abound in our unjust society there are still compatriots out there dreaming of eating three square meals a day or getting befitting employment or even counting one thousand Naira as savings after a gruelling month’s work.

Against this background Aliko Dangote cannot possibly be too proud of his powerful status as one of the richest men in the universe simply because of his Nigeriannness and the ebbing Nigerianness of many of his compatriots. One man, one billionaire of great charity could impact positively on the lives of many Nigerians more than Dangote has done thus far. We hold nothing against him but more needs to be done to leave his marks on the sands of the time. Allah has been kind to him and Nigeria has been a blessing to him too. So he must give back to the society that made him more than he is currently doing.

The last time we checked Dangote was not a politician and he does not belong to any political party in Nigeria. So the allegation of the old wily Obasanjo convincing him to become one or strategising on how to impose him on Nigerians as President (as he did the late Yar’Adua/Goodluck Jonathan) can only be taken as an idle talk. Any possibility of an Obasanjo getting himself involved in our presidential choice, come 2019 or 2023, sounds hollow. Nigeria of today is not the same as that of 1999 and Obasanjo is no longer President so the space or power he possesses for any manoeuver towards that end is negligible. Besides, even if we take it on face value to be true it is bound to fail. We need a younger man (as the French electorates did recently by electing the 39-year old Emmanuel Macron as President) to preside over our affairs now that we know that gerontocrats are not necessarily blessed with the wisdom of Solomon!

Between Dangote and the “talakawas”, the Arewa youths and their elders, there is no love lost. The problem lies in the fact that the international businessman was only trying to be seen as a pan-Nigeria investor who is at home in Lagos, Enugu or Kaduna; one unwilling to aid and abet the nonsense of the Arewa youths’ quit notice to the Igbos. It is not that he loved the Igbos more than his insultive brothers; it is simply a question of protecting one’s corporate interests upon sensing that those interests could be jeopardised in the event of war or any relative social explosion. Having said that we believe that Dangote deserves some respect from the Arewa youths.

The huffing and puffing must stop fortwith. Empty moral grandstanding cannot help our challenged nation move forward. We must refrain from chasing shadows and shunning substance. Everyone must purge themselves of their own ignoble attempts at distracting the public. We deserve better!

SOC Okenwa
[email protected]

Stunning Mo Abudu In GUCCI For Dangote`s 60th Birthday Party

Media mogul Mo Abudu was a vision in white for Aliko Dangotes 60th birthday party.

The talk show hostess wore a buttoned up white Gucci Dress with a landscape print, face beat by her go-to makeup artist Banksbmpro and her natural hair, packed to perfection.

Buhari Extols Dangote At 60

President Muhammadu Buhari has extolled Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote, who turns 60 tomorrow.

Buhari in a statement Sunday by his media adviser, Femi Adesina joined the business world, Dangote’s friends and family in congratulating Africa’s richest man for reaching the diamond milestone.

Buhari noted Dangote’s patriotism and kind-heartedness “in always making sacrifices to safeguard the health of the nation, most remarkably the polio and Ebola interventions”.

“The President believes the global business mogul remains a shining example of the virtues of choosing entrepreneurship from an early age, treading the path of diligence, perseverance and continuous learning to build some of the world’s largest manufacturing and distribution companies, with household names in Nigeria and beyond, “Buhari said in a statement by Mr. Femi Adesina, his media adviser.

President Buhari commended Dangote’s humility, simplicity and cosmopolitan outlook.

He especially remarked on how Dangote “defies ethnic and religious persuasions in extending support to the poor and vulnerable, providing employment opportunities without discrimination, while inspiring and mentoring young Nigerians to greatness.”

The President also acknowledged Dangote’s role in bolstering the economy through continuous engagement and counselling of governments on best practices in promoting the ease of doing business.

Dangote Cement Faces Disruptions in Ethiopia Over Jobs Plan

Ethiopian regional officials are demanding that foreign cement producers including Dangote Cement Plc hand control of some parts of their businesses to groups of unemployed youths.

The Nigerian company, controlled by Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote, and others such as Saudi billionaire Mohammed al-Amoudi’s Derba MIDROC Cement Plc, should allow the youth to run their pumice mines, according to a draft contract drawn up by Oromia state’s East Shewa Zone administration this month. Pumice is an additive used in cement manufacturing and its extraction is overseen by local bureaucrats, rather than Ethiopia’s central government.

“The youth have to get the advantage from the resource, and side-by-side the companies must get advantage from this resource,” Yohan Tesso, head of East Shewa’s urban employment creation and food security office, said by phone. “It’s a win-win.”

Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn’s administration is trying to reduce youth unemployment five months after it declared a state of emergency to deal with violent protests by Oromo communities over alleged land dispossession, political marginalization and repression by the state. Dangote Cement was among several businesses attacked during the unrest, which caused foreign investment to slump.

Oromia has 1.2 million unemployed youth, according to the Addis Ababa-based Walta Information Center news service, which cited a local youth affairs office. The state is targeting the creation of 950,000 new jobs for young people, it said.

The local administration recently halted Dangote and Derba’s operations amid discussions about the proposals, the Addis Ababa-based newspaper The Reporter said on March 11, citing Derba’s chief executive officer and chairman of the Ethiopia Cement Producers’ Association, Haile Assegidie. He said proposals to give control of pumice to youth cooperatives came without warning, according to the paper. Calls to Haile’s mobile phone on March 16 didn’t connect.

The disruptions haven’t forced Dangote to stop output, CEO Onne van der Weijde said in an interview. The company’s plant in Mugher, about 90 kilometers (56 miles) north of Addis Ababa, has the capacity to produce 2.5 million metric tons a year of cement, according its latest annual report, which said Dangote plans to double the factory’s capacity.

The Nigerian company is discussing the proposal with Oromo officials and may be willing to sign a contract “as long as that doesn’t involve higher costs and lower quality and the quantity can still be delivered,” he said. “They shouldn’t force us to do it and then charge a high fee for getting something that we were doing ourselves before.”

Prices being discussed are from 20-30 birr ($0.89-$1.33) per metric ton of pumice, Van der Weijde said. The contract refers to 20 birr.

‘No Right’

Teweld Abay, a director of mineral marketing in Ethiopia’s federal mines ministry, said that while he was aware of East Shewa’s plans, the local administration hadn’t communicated them to the ministry.

“We don’t believe they have a right to ask these cement companies to sign this contract,” Teweld said by phone. “But if these companies sign this contract, then it’s their responsibility.”

The Reporter quoted Industry Minister of State Alemu Sime as saying his ministry had reached “a general consensus on the importance of the youth job-creation initiative with the cement factories.” Factories raised a “valid” concern that there could be an interruption in the supply of raw materials, he was cited as saying.

Abdisa Jaleta, planning and monitoring officer at the East Shewa urban employment creation and food security office, confirmed an English translation of the contract obtained by Bloomberg is authentic. It identified the pumice supplier as Youth Micro Enterprises Plc.



Togolese President, Ambode Commend Dangote Over Economic Investments

President of Togo Republic, Faure Gnassingbe yesterday in Lagos, lauded the investment drive of the richest man in Africa, Aliko Dangote across the African continent, describing him as a man with a mission to aggressively transform the African economy.

Speaking during the tour of the Dangote Refinery project in Lagos, Gnassingbe said Dangote is a worthy son of Africa who has chosen to buoy the economic activities of the continent with his investments. “Aliko Dangote is our pride in Africa and his aggressive investment drive towards developing the economies of the continent should be lauded,” he said.

Welcoming the president to the Dangote Refinery and Fertilizer projects, Governor Akinwumi Ambode said the projects will change the face of the state and Nigeria, once it is completed.

“I understand your interest in the progress of this project Mr President. This investment is one of the biggest in Africa today and it will have a huge impact not only on the economy of all Nigerians but also of the West African region when completed… Apart from creating jobs, this refinery will also contribute immensely to solving the fuel supply challenge in the West African region.

“We also thank Aliko Dangote himself for his confidence in the Lagos economy. This project is a strong confirmation that Lagos is a prime investment destination…this project shows that there is a positive investment climate in Lagos which has resulted in massive investors’ confidence. We believe strongly that the future prosperity of West Africa is in collaboration between the government and the private sector,”Ambode said.

Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment (MITI) Okechukwu Enelamah described Dangote as an African champion that is bent on developing not only Nigeria but Africa as a whole. He said both the projects clearly demonstrate the partnership between the government and the private sector.

“What we are seeing here is a demonstration of partnership between the government and the private sector at its best… nobody goes through this site without understanding the power of the private sector to power an economy…We can all envision about what Africans should be but we know we need champions,, I think one thing everybody accept whether you admire, respect or challenge Dangote or not, is that he is indeed an African champion, he is a Nigerian champion and he will continue to be… he has a choice to invest anywhere in the world but he has chosen to invest and reinvest and reinvest in Nigeria and Africa. So, we are very interested in what u are doing and we assure you of the support of the government,” he said.

Thanking the president for coming to see the progress of the projects, Dangote said the projects would cost $17 billion.

He said the $12 billion refinery would have a capacity of 650,000 barrels a day and assured that there will be market for the refined products because even in Africa, only three countries have effective functioning refinery with others importing from abroad.

Dangote named the countries with refinery as Egypt, South Africa and Cote d’Ivoire. “Our refinery will be ready in the first quarter of 2019. Mechanical completion will be end of 2018 but we will start producing in 2019,” he said.