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magazine

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The Definitive Consumer Affairs Magazine in Africa Consumer Information

Consumer Protection

ISSUE 13 - 004

Customer Services

Product & Service Reviews

Empowering African Consumers Become a savvy African consumer today

Laptop

Buyer’s Guide

Africa’s Footballers

Which Way?

Nigeria Why the Customer is

KING

Trafficking Must Stop

www.whic

hafrica.co

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CONTENT MANAGING PARTNERS

Dele Aden Calvin Rattray EDITOR

Michelle McKenzie CREATIVE DIRECTOR

Roger Moore SALES MANAGER

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Richard John Eshun 34

SALES & EDITORIAL TEAM

+233 (0)302 227540 +233 (0)202 621 350 RICHARD: +233 (0)203 611726 / +233 (0)271 352439 12 INTERNATIONAL ENQUIRIES

+44 7973 623624 +44 7956 965915 TO PARTNER WITH US OR TO SPONSOR WHICH AFRICA OR SIMPLY WANT US TO COVER YOUR EVENT OR NEWS, PLEASE SEND AN EMAIL TO: info@whichafrica.com VOLUNTEERS, FREELANCE JOURNALISTS AND PHOTOGRAPHERS SHOULD CONTACT: editor@whichghana.com ONLINE

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GHANA NIGERIA UK USA SOUTH AFRICA FRANCE GERMANY DUBAI HOLLAND MALAYSIA

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06 CONSUMER AFFAIRS EMPOWERING THE AFRICAN CONSUMER WHY THE CUSTOMER IS KING 12 COUNTRY FOCUS WHICH WAY? NIGERIA POPULAR SHOPPING MALL 18 EVENT G.O.T. LAUNCHED AT HOLLAND & GHANA ANNIVERSARY WEEK 22 PRODUCT REVIEW LAPTOP BUYER’S GUIDE

24 TECH TAKE IS YOUR COMPUTER MAKING YOU SICK 26 PROFILES WHICH AFRICA PROFILES.. EM EKONG 30 ARTS & CULTURE HOLLYWOOD BOULEVARD 34 HEALTH MATTERS GOING TO HOSPITAL HELL OF HEALING 36 SPORTS THE TRAFFICKING OF AFRICAN FOOTBALLERS MUST STOP!

© JUNE 2013 WHICH AFRICA MAGAZINE |

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PUBLISHER’S MESSAGE

A message from the publisher

First, the fact is that a lot of big businesses in Africa are taking their customers for granted and giving us bad service with little or no value for our money. As consumers, we’re a part of every transaction that occurs in Africa. We’re at the heart of many of the challenges and opportunities faced by the continent. Yet, while our money speaks, our voice is often not heard. How can we shift the needle of opinion in Africa towards something more positive? Perhaps the answer lies, at least in part, in the second reason. For all those that are committed to good customer services, I believe we need to be better at calling out and challenging irresponsible businesses that treat us, their customers, with such disregard and give us such poor service and products here in Africa! Which Africa Magazine (formerly known as Which Ghana), exists to tackle the issues that matter to all consumers. Our main objective is to ensure that consumers’ rights can no longer be ignored by businesses and public organisations throughout Africa. Our Vision is to be the voice of millions of Africa’s consumers; Our Mission is to protect and empower consumers throughout Africa by giving them valuable information and knowledge to help distinguish hype from fact and good products or services from bad ones. So I encourage you to share your views and to get involved, with the aim not only of fighting irresponsible business behaviours, but also defining, encouraging and celebrating responsible businesses and the hugely positive impact they can have for all of us. Visit our web site (www.whichafrica.com) today to register and share a personal story about a consumer issue you’ve experienced, witnessed, or instigated. Enjoy the read Dele Aden Managing Partner

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www.whichafrica.com

When I was asked to help set up a magazine totally dedicated to consumer affairs in Africa, I have to admit I was hesitant. In the end – and I would be very interested in your thoughts – I came to the decision that it is crucial for us to engage businesses and consumers for two reasons:


EDITOR’S TAKE

Editor’s Column.. Welcome to the 1st edition of Which Africa; an exciting new addition on the landscape of African publishing. Simply put, Which Africa is dedicated to you, the customer; a place where you can find consumer news and issues represented; a place where you can share your queries, comments, recommendations and complaints. Which Africa is the voice of the African consumer; a platform for you to share your views and a medium through which businesses that operate in Africa can measure how successfully they are meeting your customer needs. So what will you find in Which Africa? You will find features that inform you of your rights as a consumer; see our lead article ‘Empowering the African Consumer’, also advising you about the existing agencies that can address and represent your complaints. We also introduce our Country Focus section where we look at consumer news from other African countries. In this issue we feature Nigeria and some of the exciting developments happening there; see our feature, ‘Which Way? Nigeria’ offering practical advice and support to our brothers and sisters in the Diaspora, planning to return home. We look at exciting projects and businesses in Africa and identify some of the burgeoning challenges for these businesses in providing customer satisfaction; see our feature on Hollywood Boulevard and don’t forget to check out our Mystery Shopping service. You will also find our sports section, where we highlight some of the current problems being faced by African athletes; and our health section, where we give you practical advice. In this issue we offer advice to hospital patients and how to protect themselves from the many administrative failures which lead to misdiagnosis: and we have Which Africa Profiles, which celebrates the uncelebrated – individuals who are making a change in Africa –and much more. All in all, Which Africa is your platform – your space – your voice. Write to us and visit us on-line at www.whichafrica.com and see our page, ‘What’s On Your Mind?’ and ‘How Can I Help Which Africa’. We look forward to hearing from you, receiving your letters and representing your fight for better services, better quality products and fairer treatment at the hands of big business – Welcome Which Africa. Michelle McKenzie Editor

‘Ghana on Time’ Movement

G.O.T.

Ghana on Time (G.O.T.) is a movement proposed by GHANECC to create awareness of the importance of time keeping! WHICH AFRICA MAGAZINE |

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CONSUMER AFFAIRS

Empowering the African Consumer BECOME A SAVVY AFRICAN CONSUMER TODAY Joyce Apoera

African consciousness about consumer issues has become more important than ever before. Why? Because African consumers are still so unprotected and are vulnerable to being taken advantage of.

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hink about the following example. The story of Ama Badou: A mother of four children who went to her local bank to apply for a loan, to pay school fees. Like your typical financial consumer, Ama did not ask what interest she would have to pay back, or what the monthly bank charges would be. She didn’t ask about her legal rights and obligations as a customer or what the penalties were if she broke her agreement. She merely skimmed through the fine print and signed on the dotted line: and a year later, she is working double time to fill in the holes the monthly deductions of the bank makes in her account. Had Ama Badou known she had the right to be fully informed by the bank of the terms of her loan, this might have been a different story for her!

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Ghana’s consumer situation, like in most African countries, has a number of obsolete consumer protection provisions that are fragmented and scattered in different statutes. The few regulatory bodies that exist underperform because they are underfunded, understaffed and have limited jurisdiction. The only country in Africa that has moved towards a consumer-protected society is South Africa. On 1 April, 2011, South Africans became among the most protected consumers in the world with the Consumer Protection Act. Change begins with an enlightened and empowered African consumer. An empowered consumer says ‘No’ to fake anti-malarial drugs and demands protection from such products; chooses carefully and withdraws their business if the deal is unfair and is unafraid to seek compensation for a wrong. Empowered consumers create better service; generate competitiveness between businesses; demand safe goods, better product standards and quality assurance: and demand that agreements and contracts are honored.


execution of government policy and in the development of products and services. The right to redress – getting fair settlement of just claims, including compensation for misrepresentation, shoddy goods or unsatisfactory services. The right to consumer education - acquiring necessary knowledge to make informed choices about goods and services; basic awareness of consumer rights and responsibilities and how to act on them. The right to a healthy environment - To live and work in an environment that is nonthreatening to one’s well-being. “With rights come responsibilities,” says Consumers International. You, as a consumer, have a responsibility to have:

SO WHAT ARE YOUR CONSUMER RIGHTS? Current market developments in Africa emphasise the need for a savvy modern consumer and for better consumer education. More effective regulations are needed to enhance consumer protection in Africa. According to Consumers International, the eight basic consumer rights include: The right to have basic needs met – in provision of food, clothing, shelter, health and public utilities. The right to safety - protection against products, production processes and services that are hazardous to health or life. The right to be informed - having the facts needed to make an informed choice and protection against misleading advertising and labelling. The right to choose - able to select from a range of products and services offered at competitive prices with an assurance of satisfactory quality. The right to be heard - having consumer interests represented in the making and

Critical awareness – more questioning about the provision of quality goods and services. Involvement or action – consumers asserting themselves and acting to ensure they get a fair deal. Social responsibility – awareness and sensitivity around the impact of your actions on other citizens and on prevailing economic and social realities. Ecological responsibility - heightened sensitivity of the impact of consumer decisions on the physical environment, with a focus on environmental conservation. Solidarity – using the power of numbers of citizen groups to attract attention to consumer interests. It’s time African consumers got empowered. It’s time African consumers protected their rights. Report all unsatisfactory products or services to the nearest public regulatory body or consumer protection group. Find a full list of these groups at: http://www.consumersinternational.org. Read more on consumer rights on http://www.hg.org/consume.html or http://www.consumersinternational.org

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CONSUMER INFO

Have you ever received an UNSATISFACTORY product or service delivery? Contact the following agencies:

Ghana

Which Africa Email: info@whichafrica.com The Ghana Standards Board Telephone: +233 30 2500066 / 030 2500065 Email:gsbdir@ghanastandards.org The Food and Drugs Board Email: fdb@fdbghana.gov.gh Telephone: +233-302-233200 / 235100 / 225502

South Africa

National Consumer Commission Telephone: +26 086 026 6786 Email: NNetshitomboni@thencc.co.za

Kenya

Consumer Information Network of Kenya (CIN) Telephone: +254 20 555 774 Email: admin@consumerupdate.org

Public Utilities Regulatory Commission Telephone: +233 30 2244181/ 2244183 Email: purcsec@ghana.com Consumers Association of Ghana (CAG) Telephone: +233 20 811 99 66 consumersghana@yahoo.com

Nigeria

Consumer Protection Council Telephone: +234 9 5230343 cpcnigeria@yahoo.co.uk or info@cpcnigeria.org Consumer Protection Organization of Nigeria (CPON) Telephone: +234 1 80381 99317 Customer Service Practitioners Association (CUSPA) Advocates improved customer service delivery in Nigeria . Nigerian Communication Commission (Consumer Bureau) EMAIL: consumerportal@ncc.gov.ng Tel: +234-9-4617000

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C

THIS IS WHY THE CUSTOMER IS KING

ustomer service can make or break your business. If people find your employees are rude, vague or unhelpful, they’ll take their custom elsewhere. When customer service is high, customer satisfaction is even higher and that’s perfect for any business. In developed consumer markets like the USA and Europe, customers are increasingly demanding and very critical when their expectations are not met. Yet, there was a time when these markets were like Africa now; when customers were less critical because there was a lack of choice in products and services. The power belonged to the business owner as customers had nowhere to go to express their dissatisfaction. Well, Which Africa has arrived to change the landscape for quality customer services in Ghana. Which Africa Recommends is our new quality assurance kite-mark, recognising quality customer service in business and the public

sector. This kite-mark is the badge that consumers will recognise for quality service provision. Through our new partnership with the Organisation for Customer Services Excellence, endorsed by The Office of the President, customers will begin to make buying decisions based on this recommendation. Through our specially designed Mystery Shopping Programme, we will make secret visits to your business and review how well you are delivering your services, how much you value your customer and how much attention your business gives to customer satisfaction. So prepare yourself, your staff and your business for a Mystery Shopping visit coming to your area soon. For more information about how to get your Which Africa Recommends badge, contact us on 0234 160 272/ 0236 198 662 or visit www.whichafrica.com

How many times have you heard or seen this?

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COUNTRY FOCUS - NIGERIA

Which Way?

Nigeria

Africa is attracting a great deal of attention with its exciting, projected growth rates in 2014 of over 8% in some countries, as compared to other areas in the world, which are barely expecting 2%.

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he result of this is very visible in the form of companies, entrepreneurs, individuals and members of the African Diaspora turning their attention to the opportunities rapidly opening up in Africa. A great deal of this attention has been directed at West Africa namely countries like Nigeria and Ghana. A particularly exciting country is Nigeria. Nigeria might be called a country, but with a land mass of 356,667 sq mi and a population of 152,217,341, it is nearly four times the size of Ghana! This is a place with a great deal of potential as exhibited in the growth of sectors such as entertainment, telecommunications, finance and agriculture. This, more than anything, is attracting people to move and invest. There are a number of expectations that people moving have; both negative and positive, neither of which are helpful. Base your expectations on research. Here are some guiding questions: What do I need to do to ensure I have the right citizenship status? Where do I want to live? What safety concerns, utilities and facilities exist in these areas? WHICH AFRICA MAGAZINE |

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How will I find a job? How do I set up or expand my business? To gain answers to these and all your questions, seek professional, reliable advice so that you can act once and effectively. There will be a number of challenges, the most referred to being electricity power cuts, roads that need work and have high levels of traffic, and services and products that are not of the same standard as you might be used to. However, if you are serious about moving then adopt a solution based attitude, which the questions above will help you develop. The key thing is to get RELIABLE advice before you move to action. It will save you time, money and ensure you are making the right decision. Elvina Quaison

For further information and resources please visit www.whichafrica.com Statistical source: http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/NY.GDP.MKTP. KD.ZG


Popular Shopping Malls in Nigeria The changing face of the retail sector in Africa can only be good news for the continent’s consumers. Be sure to pay a visit for a great shopping experience the next time you are in Nigeria

Ceddi Plaza, Abuja

A modern shopping mall with at least 55 shops specialising in fashion, furnishings, gifts, health & beauty, as well as champagne lounges, events halls, movie theatres, restaurants, cafes, banking and offices.

The Palms Shopping Mall, Lekki, Lagos

With over 62 shops, the Palms represents con-

venience and a unique experience combining retail, leisure, entertainment, etc.

Ikeja City Mall, Alausa, Lagos

Accommodating up to 100 shops, including Shoprite, KFC, Mr. Price, banks, cafés, bars, restaurants, and beauty salons.

Tinapa Shopping Centre, Calabar

Currently Nigeria’s largest mall. With over 60 shops and four emporia, Tinapa is a Free Trade Zone and prices are amongst the lowest in the country.

Traditional Markets

Traditional markets include Lekki Market in Lagos, Wuse Market in Abuja and Mokola Market in Ibadan, the second largest city in Africa.

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Phone: +233 (0) 24 3221455 Email: info@ourghana.info

Authorized distributors in Ghana:

Ourghana.com Ltd.

Tel: +233 (0) 24 3221455 | +233 (0) 20 00117269 Email: info@ourghana.info | Website: www.ourghana.info


ADVERTORIAL

Integrated hospitality management software to improve Ghana’s hospitality industry The leading management software which caters for all the functional areas within the hospitality industry and ensures operational efficiency has been introduced in Ghana by the Ghanaian hospitality and tourism focused IT company, OurGhana.com.

Courtyard by Marriott, Accord, Holiday Inn, as well as Hotels in India, Ireland, Switzerland, Tanzania, Maldives, Saudi Arabia, Djibouti, Oman, Kuwait, Muscat, Bangladesh, Mauritius, Uganda, Qatar; and soon, can potentially enhance hotel management in Ghana.

The software, WINHMS, developed 12 years ago by Winsar Infosoft PVT of India, is a complete set of Hotel Management Systems designed to synchronize and standardize all essential activities of medium and large sized hotels and properties. The software, which also efficiently regulates large hotel chains, covers the needs of all key departments for better monitoring and control.

According to the developers, the leverage of WINHMS, coupled with its competitive price on the international market, makes it the first choice for hoteliers.

It also promotes operational efficiency that will lead to what the developers call “total guest gratification”, and provides management, especially hoteliers, value for money

For more information log on www.winhmsghana.com, info@winhmsghana.com Authorized Distributors in Ghana Ourghana.com Limited Telephone 233 0 243221455 /233 0 0200117269

WINHMS is designed to meet hoteliers’ need for an effective and efficient system that will ensure better revenue management; cost optimization and enhancement of profit. It integrates all operational modules and links them to accounts modules in real time, and makes visible all ongoing activities in sales at front desk, hotel’s central reservation system, spa management, golf management, back office accounts and so on. The software which has been adopted by reputable hotels across the world including; Fairmont, WHICH AFRICA MAGAZINE |

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EVENTS

G.O.T. LAUNCHED AT HOLLAND & GHANA G.O.T. Anniversary Week

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aising standards is really a national theme for the business community right now in Ghana. The Ghana Netherlands Chamber of Commerce and Culture, (GHANECC), recently celebrated its 10 year anniversary with this as a prevailing theme. Which Africa as media partner to the GHANECC 10 year celebration, and advocator for improving quality of service provision in Africa, endorses GOT’s campaign as it provides the momentum Ghana needs to address its time-keeping.

“Ghana on Time (G.O.T) is a movement proposed by GHANECC to create awareness of the importance of time keeping! From the highest officials to the house help, the notions surrounding the importance of time precision seem to be of little significance. GHANECC strongly believe that NOW IS THE TIME to initiate a new trend within corporate and official sectors that promotes punctuality and its importance to development, progress and business efficiency.”

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Why is time keeping so important for economic growth and development you may ask? Well, imagine you had 1 extra, productive hour in a day. That’s 5 extra hours in a working week and around 250 hours in a whole year; that’s 6 extra weeks in a whole year! To a business, this could be the difference between ‘make or break’.

Nico van Staalduinen, Managing Director GHANNEC

As part of GHANECC’s GOT initiative we will see a clock placed in Tetteh Quashie Square. This will be one of the very few working public clocks in Accra. Which Africa would like to see businesses, employers, institutions, NGO’s and individuals join in the movement to get Ghana on time and to display the GOT logo, to show your commitment to being part of this important campaign. The GOT logo will now be seen on all Which Africa publications, including the magazine and on our website as a statement of our support for the GOT campaign and the importance of time keeping as Ghana strides towards economic progress and the creation of a business environment that represents good standards.


Ambassador Netherlands Gerard Duijfjes, Eric Don Arthur and Akushika Sodatonou, Della Hayes & Dzesi, The Women of Colour Band

Victor Rutgers, President GHANNEC

Ambassador Netherlands Gerard Duijfjes

Eric Don Arthur and Akushika Sodatonou

GHANECC’s 10 year anniversary also saw the launch of a great community initiative, again highlighting the importance of raising standards, this time in public health; sanitation and water. Ghana has a population of 24 million where 7 million rural people lack water, 2.5 million urban people lack water and 22 million have no sanitation services. Everyday consumers struggle with limited or no access to proper sanitation, intermittent or no water supply, high water losses and low water pressure. The drinking water supply and sanitation sector in Ghana are faced with a number of challenges, and though in recent years the sector has seen reform, many of these challenges remain and are far from resolved.

tion and public health. The struggle with water and supplying you, the customer, with regular good quality water is an important consumer protection issue for Which Africa. In forthcoming editions we will be seeking your views and challenging government parastatals to address your questions about the state of Ghana’s water supply.

Sammy Kufuor & Which Africa

GHANECC’s Football for Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH), is an example of a public-private partnership that aims to improve drinking water and sanitation facilities at 1100 schools in Kenya, Ghana and Mozambique, contributing to the effort to improve sanitaWHICH AFRICA MAGAZINE |

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PRODUCT REVIEW

Laptop Buyer’s

Guide

Just when you thought it was safe to shop for a new laptop, a fresh problem stands in the way of laptop buyers: Confusion.

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et’s think of this historically. Your old laptop cover probably opens and closes, or perhaps you have a tablet with a single, standard touch screen. With the introduction of touch screen recognition in the Windows 8 operating system, computer manufacturers have been trying to combine these two functions in inventive new ways. As such, your next laptop is probably going to be a lot more than just a laptop!

So will your next notebook flip, rip, be convertible, slide or roll? The Flip

Lenovo Yoga 11 (picture above) is an example of a flip laptop. It’s an 11-inch laptop running a full version of Windows 8, but its doublejointed hinge lets you open and flip it over into a tablet.

The Rip

From the flip, we move to the rip – the Lenovo Helix. It flips over like the Yoga, but you have the option to rip the screen out into a standalone tablet.

The Slider

The MSI Slider runs a full version of Windows 8 on an Intel processor, but it seems like it’s primarily designed to be used as a touch tablet. When you want a keyboard, you slide the screen back and up. WHICH AFRICA MAGAZINE |

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The Hybrid

ASUS Taichi is a dual screen notebook. You can use it as a notebook when open, a touch tablet when closed, or two people can use it at the same time when open; one on the notebook side and one on the tablet side. It’s so cool. Just the tool you need for a quiet life, as you can share it with your partner at home.

Which Windows 8?

If you opt for Windows and not Mac, it gets even more confusing. Windows 8 comes in three variants: Windows RT, Windows 8 Standard and Windows 8 Pro. Laptops with the latter have a handful of extra features that make it easier to connect with many corporate networks from home. So, if you need that ability, look for a laptop with the Pro version. On the other hand, Windows RT machines mostly


run the new tablet-type apps that work in the Start Screen. So, if you want to use old Windows programmes, don’t buy an RT machine.

Touch Screen or Not

Windows 8 is a “touch first” operating system. It can be operated with a mouse or touch pad, but its newest, coolest component, the Start Screen, are best used with touch. If you buy Windows RT machines running tablet-type apps, it is best if you buy a touch screen version of Windows 8.

bulky for more than occasional use in tablet mode. If you use a tablet heavily, stick with an iPad, an Android tablet, or a Windows 8 or Windows RT machine that is actually a tablet. Bottom Line It’s an exciting time to buy a new laptop, especially for Windows lovers, but be careful to wade through the confusing options so you get what you need; nothing more or less. For comments or further advice, drop me an email at info@whichafrica.com

Tablet or Convertible

Convertibles, i.e. laptops, whose screens can flip, slide, or twist, so that they cover the keyboard and look like tablets, are good but please don’t rely on these convertibles for extended use as tablets. Most of them are too heavy and WHICH AFRICA MAGAZINE |

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TECH TAKE

Is Your Computer Making You Sick? Did you know that your computer keyboard and mouse can harbour a host of bacteria, especially in work, school and public environments?

In fact, the bacteria on the average keyboard is said to be four hundred times more than that in your washroom! So, the question is what is the best way to prevent bacteria from growing on your computers and avoid this potential threat to your health?

A new scientific study has shown that there are four hundred times more bacteria on your computer than in your washroom! Yes, you heard right. According to scientists, the bacteria on your computer is largely due to everyday human behaviours like sneezing and coughing, as well as unwashed hands and that secret pass time – nose-picking! The bacteria is then, transmitted to you mainly through eating whilst using the computer.

Tips from Which Africa Magazine:

The increased use and availability of multipleuser computers means that keyboards and mice are often handled by numerous people on a daily basis. Every day, millions of working class Africans share computers to transact their business. In education, students often rely on multiple-user computers and in addition, ‘Cyber Cafes’ have sprung up all over the country for everyone to use. As such, the opportunity for picking up bacteria is potentially great. It is rather worrying that the majority of users don’t seem to know about the risk of contracting infections from their keyboard and mouse, especially when bacteria on computers is believed to have caused anything from skin rashes, nausea, headaches and stomach upsets.

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Avoid eating when using a computer. This is the most common way of picking up bacteria. Always practice good hygiene and wash your hands thoroughly before eating. Disinfect the keyboard regularly with a damp (not wet) cloth. Tilt the keyboard on its side and spray between the keys with compressed air to remove loose particles that could inhibit proper disinfecting. Mice should be cleaned with alcohol or other disinfectant on a regular basis. Allow the disinfectant to dry. Repeat this cleaning weekly, if you are the only user. If other people use your keyboard and mouse, or if there are illnesses going around your home or workplace, you may want to disinfect daily. To comment on this story, please log on to www.whichafrica.com Get involved today!


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PROFILES

Tell us a little about who you are and what you do. My name is Em Ekong and I’m a director of Urban Inclusion, which I set up in the UK with two other women, ten years ago. I’m also a director of The African and Caribbean Business Experience. I describe myself as a businesswoman, specialising in regeneration and economic development. We deliver programmes on behalf of government and private sector around economic development issues. What motivated you to get involved in business development? When I started my Masters in Economic Development and I started to get an understanding of third world development; this is where my passion began. Understanding what it is that makes communities develop, what makes you successful in society and really, the injustice of capitalism. You know? How do we help disadvantaged communities set up businesses? How do we support women set up businesses? How do we support young people in our communities? For me, the challenge for Africa is around attitude; recognising the reasons and the motivations for what we do. For example, China has come into Africa with the specific intention to benefit their community. What is Africa‘s intent; to benefit the individual, or to benefit the community? This will be the deciding factor for Africa’s future.

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Which Africa Profiles...

Em Ekong

Businesswoman and Director of Urban Inclusion and The African and Caribbean Business Experience Why have you relocated to Ghana and what are your ambitions here? About 5 years ago, I was given the opportunity to work on a Barclays Bank project in Ghana with AFFORD. One of the businesses that inspired me was a guy who couldn’t read or write who was running a million pound plus business, with a vision to expand. He said, “There’s no one here I can trust to write me a business plan, because I can’t read. I don’t know if what they’ve produced is rubbish!” His inability to read and write was his biggest barrier. Here for me was an obvious opportunity in terms of looking at the kind of business support services available in Ghana and West Africa in general. There’s limited, affordable, quality business support, which is what I felt we could bring. Is there a message you want to share with other African businesswomen and young entrepreneurs? Businesswomen, believe in yourselves, feed your passion and face obstacles full on. Find leadership programmes you can be involved in and training. Standards need to rise, so find some training and equip yourselves for the global market place with the right skills, knowledge and networks. If anyone’s having problems with contacts I’m happy to help signpost and support people, so get in touch with us if you’re having any challenges. We’re happy to refer you to the right providers in Africa or indeed, to train you ourselves. For young people, education, education, education. They are who are going to drive

the growth of this fantastic continent. Young people need to read, question and rationalise so that they can understand the wider world, and how wider business culture works. Get yourself trained. There are some fantastic organisations around. There is Africa Corporate Training of course, where we focus on quality, practical, training programmes, but I also want to pitch The Springboard Foundation, Waves international and JCI that promote young entrepreneurs in Ghana. How can we get more information about your current work and future projects? Visit our African and Caribbean Business Experience website at www.aacbe.co.uk and subscribe to our quarterly newsletter to find out more about what we are doing globally.

“China has come into Africa with the specific objective to benefit their community. What is Africa‘s intent; to benefit the individual, or to benefit the community? This will be the deciding factor for Africa’s future.” In terms of other things we are doing in business development, you should visit us at www. urbaninclusion.co.uk; or to find out what we’re doing in Ghana, visit our ACT website at www. africacorporatetraining.com to find out more about our training programmes. www.aacbe.co.uk www.africacorporatetraining.com www.urbaninclusion.co.uk WHICH AFRICA MAGAZINE |

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ARTS & CULTURE

Hollywood Boulevard ...a place for the discerning Meet Landry Watonn Ipaud; charming Ivorian and proud owner of Hollywood Boulevard or HB as he prefers: One of the finer lounge bars and restaurants in Accra.

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ituated in A&C Square in East Legon, HB was launched in January 2012, and is the sister bar and restaurant to HB in Cote D’Ivoire; successfully launched in Abidjan in 2009. Which Africa was thrilled to meet Landry to discuss his concept for HB and plans for expansion. HB is the result of a long love affair with food that Landry inherited from his mother; combined with his love for design. It prides itself as a place where you can meet people from all over the world. With a relaxing ambience WHICH AFRICA MAGAZINE |

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twinned with sophistication and style, this is a place to come for business lunches or stop after work to unwind; where patrons come for a lovely meal or a weekend of dancing to let their hair down! Asked why he chose to open his second premises in Ghana, he proudly stated:

“Ghana is one of the countries moving and progressing. It was a natural place, and the people in Ghana are also cool.” With a clear passion for providing the best for his customers, this is a place where you can come on pay day or mid month: where quality is unquestionable and service is uncompromised and not dependent on how much you spend. This is a place where there is truly


something for everyone, but which has a clear sense of identity. There’s no confusion or lack of direction here. Asked to explain his concept, Landry is clear about where his inspirations have come from: “I decided to have a Pan-African concept, but I didn’t want to have African things like masks; and for the restaurant and music we wanted to have a fusion. For me, we had to go occidental; so the food is grilled, but with African flavours. This modernity is important to me; to have somewhere recognisably African but global and modern in appeal.” He is frank about the difficulties he has faced recruiting staff that are able to embrace his concept. “It’s difficult to let another person understand what you want exactly; and difficult to

get people who can pay attention to detail. For me, the success starts from there.” As for expansion, his ambitions go far beyond Cote D’Ivoire and Ghana, with plans to open another HB soon. He aims to create a franchise in Africa and is keen to develop a framework of professional standards that will enable him to maintain the success of HB wherever it goes. “Now I’m looking for a partner to join the adventure. I really want African investment. I think this is an African adventure.” And what of the future: Is Africa ready to embrace Landry’s Pan-African, occidental vision? “Yes! Now more than ever is a good time because we have the target audience and I think in Africa people are now open to this - Africa is after all, the next destination!” WHICH AFRICA MAGAZINE |

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HEALTH MATTERS

Going to hospital Hell of a healing Isaac Ato MENSAH

Going to hospital is sometimes hell and appearing sick alone is not enough to get attention or good patient care, but you can change that. Adwoa Mansa (not her real name), a 27-year old Accra resident, has been visiting hospitals in Ghana all her life and she’s used to the poor attitude of some health workers. This time however, she can’t take it anymore. The reason – she’s pregnant. Being pregnant is special, particularly for the first time. “You need to ask a lot of questions and you need a lot of answers,” she told Which Africa, but Adwoa gets none from the health care workers. “Ko tena se na twen.” This translated from Twi, means, “Go and sit down and wait”, the usual response she gets when she attempts to assert her right to information. Adwoa is not alone; many of us have similar and perhaps, worse stories. Patients have been telling Which Africa of their bad experiences. One said he was diagnosed as diabetic and put on a diabetic diet by the hospital. Soon after, he travelled abroad and had another test, only to realize he wasn’t diabetic at all! When he went back to the hospital, the lab technician admitted that the solution in the blood analyser machine had expired. The company that had been contracted to service the machine had not done so due to a heavy workload! Other bad experiences include missing folders, multiple folders, wrong billing, paying for WHICH AFRICA MAGAZINE |

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treatment then charged to the NHIS and staff entering consulting rooms for long, personal conversations with doctors, with patients present. To avoid some of these problems Which Africa suggests that you go to hospital with a plan to get the best care and attention.So, in four easy steps, Which Africa suggests the following guidelines: Always ask the name of the doctor or nurse that you are seeing. Always check that they have your correct patient file by checking your name, address and date of birth. Always check that the doctor’s diagnosis and your examination results have been recorded correctly in your notes. Don’t be afraid to challenge inaccurate information. If you are unhappy with the service, report it. Many hospitals have complaints or customer service desks, although that’s no guarantee that they’re customer oriented. As Emmanuel Dei-Tumi of Foundation for Future Leaders says, “Customer service is not a department, it is an attitude.” And remember, if it’s still really bad, then talk to us at Which Africa.


100% MORINGA

Produced in Ghana by Daysah Ventures P. O. Box GP 13571, Accra , Ghana Tel: + 233 (0) 302 936346 • Cell: + 233 (0) 547115676 e-mail: info@daysah.com • www.daysah.com Location: No. 4 Osofoeaman, Pokuase-Mayera, Accra West, Ghana


SPORTS

The Trafficking of African Footballers Must Stop!

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frica has produced some of the greatest players to ever play the beautiful game on the world stage, but the organisation Charity Culture Foot Solidaire (CFS), which helps young African footballers abandoned in Europe by unscrupulous agents, believes the problem of player trafficking is worse than ever.

cer players all over Africa; players that demonstrate athletic talent; possess the skills to learn quickly; and have the body type to be a soccer player. They are then encouraged to sign a contract and if the recruit continues to show promise and goes on to produce great things, the coach makes a profit.

Often invited to Europe to play for Arsenal, AC Milan or Paris St-Germain, the reality for many talented young African footballers, in some cases children not much older than nine, is that they will find themselves selling fake handbags on the streets!

Soccer players are bought, sold and traded between local coaches who ‘develop the players’ in an assortment of informal ‘soccer academies’; usually basic dirt pitches with a goal. Those with the most talent and sharpest skills are then selected and traded to another coach or agent who will take them to Europe; often to France to play in soccer’s shady underworld.

What is the problem?

Simply put, soccer players are being exploited at very young ages by fake agents and coaches for money. The typical scenario is that a nonofficial sports agent will scout for young socWHICH AFRICA MAGAZINE |

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Trading Places

Who pays the bill?

Most often these ‘agents’ will make the prospective athlete pay his fare to Europe. The


problem with this in Africa is that most families do not have the funds to buy a ticket. It’s not uncommon for a family to sell their house, business, car, younger siblings or anything of value in the hope that the promise of being signed to a big club, fed to them by the agent, will come true; that their sons will make a better life for themselves and their families.

Players Abandonment

There are enough examples of players like Didier Drogba, and African player of the year Yaya Toure, who have shown what can be achieved by young African players in Europe. However, this is rarely the case for many of the young recruits. Far too often, many of these athletes find themselves deserted in a foreign country where they find they are illegal, do not speak the language, have no money, don’t know anyone and have no home. Many are often forced to take desperate measures involving prostitu-

tion or resort to criminal activity and drug use. By way of example, Julien Ndomo Sabo was taken to Europe in 2008 by an unregistered agent who promised him fame and fortune at a top club. The former Cameroonian youth international was promptly abandoned before being discovered living on the streets by the sports charity organisation, who helped him to return to Yaounde. Solving the problem How to address the problem? Well, for a start FIFA and all the football associations need to introduce tougher regulations. But it further begs the question, what are African governments and sports governing bodies doing about this problem? For further information and advice on this issue, visit www.footsolidaire.org

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This magazine is distributed in Ghana nationwide by Digital Express Ltd. Tel +233-(0)244-387532

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