Community, Diaspora and Immigration
AFRICAN ACHIEVERS AWARDS 2012
The African Achievers Awards celebrated Europe’s biggest night for Africans and friends of Africa, African Leaders, African TV programmes & Stations, Business Entrepreneurs and more at the AAA 1st annual prestigious ceremony in London. The maiden spectacular ceremony was held at the Kings College London, Covent Garden, London 22nd February 2012 as a celebration of African leadership, businesses, developments, culture, colour, and arts, focusing on the theme, “Leadership and the Rise of Africa”.
The well organised event, which bore no hallmarks of an event in its debut year attracted very high profile guests from across the globe including the Deputy Prime Minister of Zimbabwe, Hon Thokhozani Khupe who was awarded with the Women Empowerment and Democracy award following her works in serving women and children in Zimbabwe/Africa. The DP Khupe who is a breast cancer survivor was accompanied by the Minister of Home Affairs, Theresa Makoni and the Zimbabwe High Commissioner to UK, His Excellence Gabriel Machinga and other diplomats.
Also present was one of the most powerful women in the Nigerian society, Chief Mrs Erelu Abiola Dosunmu, a business tycoon in oil & gas and the Deputy Governor of Lagos State, Mrs Orelope Akinfilure who gave a lecture on leadership and received the African Achievers Excellence in Leadership Award on behalf of the Lagos State Governor, His Excellence Babatunde Raji Fashiola (SAN), who is acclaimed both nationally and internationally, as one of the bright hopes for the future of Nigeria; one of the very progressive Governors determined to reclaim Nigeria’s past glories through competent and transparent leadership. Award for Creativity and Enteprise was also awarded to yet another powerful Nigerian woman/business tycoon, Chief (Mrs) Fifi Ekanem Ejindu who is also an architect.
Organisations making a difference in Africa were among those celebrated – Children of Songea Trust, founded by Neil Mathers based in Edinburgh, charity organisations that supplies school meals, education facilities and school wear to the Songea community in Tanzania won Charity Organisation of the Year award. The Southern Africa World Networks (SWAN) founded by Mr Phillip Chabata (based in US) was awarded with the Organisation Making A Difference in Africa award. SWAN is saving lives in Africa by supplying medicine and hospital equipment in countries like Zimbabwe, Zambia, Malawi, Mozambique and Southern Sudan. Positive Runway a Global catwalk to raise awareness against HIV founded by Justina Mutale was awarded with Service to the Community Award.
Back in the UK there were inspirational achievers like the winner of the Young Achiever Award, a talented ten year old Junior British Tennis Champion Michael Mhangami who have won medals and trophies since the age of 4. Conrad Mwanza, founder Zim Achievers Awards won Business Innovation Award. Lydia Cutler of Kemunto Fashions & Football Club based in Aberdeen, Scotland was awarded with the Recognition Award for her international business skills.
This award ceremony was special as it embraced various outstanding organisations, excellent leaders and inspiring individuals in many areas, most of these people are hardly celebrated. The mission here is to give back and inspire more African people to achieve highly. The founder, Mr Rex Tonye Idaminabo, a qualified Lawyer and graduate from Glasgow Caledonian University is an aspiring leader, former President for Nigerian Students in Scotland. He is teamed up with a young and vibrant team of many talents including Miss Yinka Alli-Balogun, Miss Lydia Heather Mudhari & Miss Simisola Smith and others. Miss Lydia Heather Mudhari of Rainbow Entertainment Productions who is a Journalist armed with facts to challenge the Western Media’s negative portrayal and stereotyping of people of black origin. “The African Achievers Awards is helping to tell a balance of stories, no more “single story”, of hunger, war and destitution, she says. Heather is currently producing a TV show (Afro Gossip) which is focusing on the positive inspiring news about Africa and its people.
Miss Simisola Smith, the Vice President Academic Affairs Kings College London and one of the ceremony coordinators presented the first African Achievers Award to Archbishop Desmond Tutu in recognition for the fight for Human Rights, Justice and Peace.