Africa Top10 News

1The First African Tech Startup to List on a Major Global Exchange

Jumia Africa

Jumia has filed for a New York initial public offering, which could value the firm at $1.6 billion or more. The pending IPO creates another milestone for Jumia. The venture became the first African startup unicorn in 2016, achieving a $1 billion valuation after a $326 funding round that included Goldman Sachs, AXA and MTN. The New York filing did not say how many shares Jumia would sell, nor at what price. Founded in Lagos in 2012 with Rocket Internet  backing, Jumia now operates multiple online verticals in 14 African countries, spanning Ghana, Kenya, Ivory Coast, Morocco and Egypt. Goods and services lines include Jumia Food (an online takeout service), Jumia Flights (for travel bookings) and Jumia Deals (for classifieds). Jumia processed more than 13 million packages in 2018, according to company data.

SOURCES: TECH CRUNCH | MONEYWEB

2Father of Ethiopian Airlines’ Pilot Lays Memorial Wreath

Yared Getachew

Yared Getachew, was en route from his adopted home, Ethiopia, to his country of birth, Kenya. Although he was the youngest captain at the airline, 29-year-old Yared had completed the route between the East African nations’ capitals many times. A veteran pilot with more than 8,000 hours of flight time and more than 10 years of experience, Yared is being remembered not only as an accomplished flyer but also a “special child.” Yared excelled in school and returned to Ethiopia for college, later becoming a pilot for the largest airline in Africa and completing additional training in the United States. The pilot told controllers he was having control problems before the Boeing 737 Max 8 jet crashed, according to an account of cockpit voice recordings from the airline’s chief executive. 

SOURCES: VOA

3The Passenger who Missed the Ethiopian Airlines Flight

Antonis Mavropoulos

A Greek man said he missed the Ethiopian Airlines flight that crashed just after taking off from Addis Ababa by mere minutes, in a Facebook post that has now been shared thousands of times. In a post called “My Lucky Day,” Antonis Mavropoulos shared an image of what appears to be his boarding pass and says he arrived at his gate just after boarding had finished on Sunday morning. “When I arrived, boarding was closed and I watched the last passengers in (the) tunnel go in. I screamed to put me in but they didn’t allow it,” he wrote. Mavropoulos says he was transferred to the next flight to Nairobi but was later told he was unable to board because security wanted to talk with him after discovering the plane had lost contact.

SOURCES: CNN

4The Role that the Museum of Women’s History Will Play in Zambia

Museum of Women’s History

It has no physical space and yet it is already changing the narrative of the role of women in Zambia. Since 2016, its founders Samba Yonga and Mulenga Kapwepwe have been collecting artefacts that will eventually form part of the permanent exhibition that will be housed on the second floor of the Lusaka National Museum. Their collection already includes a digital archive of 5,000 pieces of audio from the colonial and post-colonial period and quilts sewn in the 1940s that record the entry of Europeans into southern Zambia. The arrival of colonists not only distorted Zambia’s history, it nearly erased women’s experiences.


SOURCES: QUARTZ AFRICA

5[WATCH] How Chess is Used to Uplift Children in Lagos

Chess in Lagos

Professional chess player and coach, Babatunde Onakoya says chess saved him. Now he’s using the game to educate children in Nigerian slum communities, with some even winning scholarships to study as a result. Babatunde use the tactics of the game to break down educational subjects such as maths, but also the idea of patience, strategy and even hope, with Babatunde being hear stating that “In the game of chess a pawn can grow up to become a queen, you can grow up to be great even though you are still limited by this community.” Since the start of the initiative many of the children have been vocal about the improvements it has made to their lives.

SOURCES: BBC

6South Africa’s First Plastic Road

South Africa's Plastic road

Executive mayor of Kouga Municipality, said the local authority had entered a partnership with Scottish company MacRebur and South African civil engineering experts to build ‘the first plastic road’ in Jeffrey’s Bay. According to MacRebur, its products are made using materials derived from non-recyclable waste plastic that was destined for landfill or incineration. “By extending part of the bitumen in the mix MacRebur products reduce fossil fuel usage, leading to a reduction in carbon footprint and helping to foster a circular economy.” Non-recyclable plastic waste, which ends up in the ocean or clogging up landfill sites, is processed into pellets and used to replace a large component of the bitumen in a conventional asphalt mix. The result is a road that is stronger and more durable. Water, the main cause of potholes, does not penetrate it as easily as with traditional asphalt mixes and it is also more heat resistant.

SOURCES: BUSINESSTECH

7Safaricom Strikes a Key Deal

Aliexpress Safaricom

Kenya’s mobile operating firm Safaricom, has secured a deal with China’s largest e-commerce company. The deal will enable Kenyan shoppers to buy goods on the Aliexpress.com site, run by Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group, using Kenya’s M-Pesa mobile payment service for online shopping. The new partnership with AliExpress will not affect the telco’s e-commerce platform but seeks to address small traders needs as it continues to expand M-PESA’s capabilities. M-Pesa was launched in 2007 to offer Kenyans without bank accounts a network to transfer cash via mobile phones. It now offers a range of payment services, loans and savings to more than 21 million people in the country.

SOURCES: AFRICA NEWS

8Rescue Efforts after School Building Collapses in Nigeria

Building Collapse Nigeria

Emergency crews scrambled to rescue dozens of children Wednesday morning from the wreckage of a three-story building housing a nursery and primary school that collapsed in Lagos, Nigeria. One video on social media showed a dazed-looking, dust-covered child being carried on an orange stretcher as hundreds of onlookers cheered and patted rescuers on the back. Other videos from the scene posted on social media show piles of giant slabs of broken concrete. By early afternoon the top two collapsed floors had been removed by a bulldozer and rescuers stood atop the rubble, throwing aside children’s backpacks and other school equipment in hopes of reaching children underneath.

SOURCES: THE NEW YORK TIMES

9A Win for Guinea Bissau’s Drug Unit

Guinea Bissau's Drug Unit

Authorities in Guinea-Bissau seized a consignment of nearly 800kg of cocaine. It is the biggest drug haul in the country in over a decade. Four suspects – two Nigerians, one Senegalese and one Bissau-Guinean – were arrested following the seizure overnight on Saturday to Sunday at the capital Bissau’s northern exit. The drugs were found in a refrigerated truck registered in Senegal. Police are probing whether army officers and high-ranking officials were involved. The United Nations said last year Africa and Asia were becoming cocaine trafficking and consumption hubs. Guinea Bissau’s mix of weak law enforcement and maze of islands and unpoliced mangroves helped make it a smuggler’s haven.

SOURCES: AL JAZEERA

10Meeting South Africa’s First YouTube Star

SA’s First YouTube Star

According to Julia Anastasopoulos, the classically trained actor behind the Suzelle character, the braai pie video was her 10th SuzelleDIY video. But it was the one that made her a household name overnight. Since then, she has produced more than 100 videos that blend vaguely useful DIY advice with humor. With her ear-scalding accent and no-nonsense approach, Suzelle is as South African as they come.  While she continues to add Suzelle videos when the mood takes her, Anastasopoulos has gone on to star in her own TV show called Tali’s Wedding Diary in 2017 which follows vain, self-obsessed Tali in her quest to achieve the perfect wedding — to a hilarious but somewhat pathetic end. The show, which was the first to be commissioned by South African streaming service Showmax, saw overwhelming success — it outperformed Game of Thrones on launch day and recently took home five South African Film & Television awards.

SOURCES: OZY