Tuesday, 18 January 2011

The Kenya Summit

Kenya is vibrant. A new constitution has restored international confidence in the country's stability, and with a Government committed to pro-market reforms, Kenya looks poised to forge ahead as the region's undisputed economic motor. The country's banks, hotels and services far outperform those of neighbouring Tanzania and Uganda, big road-building projects are under way and mobile phone penetration is the highest in the region, all of which make Kenya an appealing environment for international investors.

Yet the country remains a challenging environment in which to do business. Corruption presents major problems, Nairobi remains chaotic despite improvements in infrastructure, and business productivity is still seriously constrained by a skills deficit.

Economist Conferences' Kenya Summit will bring the country's leaders face-to-face with an audience of international investors and senior business executives for one day of frank analysis of the challenges facing the country as it seeks to develop its industrial potential.

In discussions led by The Economist, the questions at the top of existing and potential investors' minds will be tackled, and the policy plans of the Government will be scrutinised. Also, answers will be sought from those responsible for delivering the comprehensive reforms programme which the country needs.

Information on The Economist Debate which took place in Nairobi, Kenya in October 2010 can be accessed here.

For more information the person to contact is Karen Levent, Marketing Manager at karenlevent@economist.com

Taken from here.

Monday, 17 January 2011

Dear John..

He was that quiet, gentle, intense guy in the corner, the one who on any day would catch my attention. It was four years ago that our paths crossed. There was something about me that arrested him too it seems, for we were drawn to each other instantly, seemingly by forces beyond our control. Smiles, words were exchanged and there and then began the most magical friendship that I have had the good fortune of experiencing in the four decades that I have been on the face of this planet.

The problem for me at the time of meeting John was that I was not free and available. I was in a different relationship, one that had been in existence for a few years, but which by that time was struggling. My experiences in the relationships that I have been in in the past had caused me to become sceptical about whether there was someone out there who was just right for me. My past relationships had not provided me with the level of emotional satisfaction that I desired, although there was also the possibility that with my attitude towards relationships, which I wrote about on this blog sometime ago (click
here), I would overreact in situations where a more considered approach would have been more appropriate. And in the process perhaps I would come across as being too highly-strung, which often would lead to tension and is probably the reason why my last relationship was struggling at the time when John and I met.

John was aware from the onset that there was someone else in my life, but he stated that he didn't mind and he refused to leave. Its not as if I wanted him to go away though.. Also, I think he must have sensed early on that all was not well with my said relationship and although he said nothing about it to me, he made it clear that he was going nowhere. Time passed and it transpired that John gradually placed himself in the position where it was to him that I turned when I needed a second opinion, when I needed to be comforted, when I wanted company.. He became such a good friend to me over a period of more than a year and I tried hard to be as deserving of his friendship as possible.

He fell for me long before I had freed myself from my last relationship and he told me about it. And looking back now I can see that he showed his feelings constantly. It was I who was too deaf to understand what John was really saying to me. A year passed before I finally came to full realisation of what John was proposing. But when I think about it now, maybe I needed that time to rebuild the faith and confidence in others that would enable me to entrust my heart to another person.

Today, I see John as an unmoving, stable, constant in my life, a one who will always be there. Finally, my heart may have arrived at its destination, the "last bus stop" as John likes to put it. But there are issues we must contend with.. We are two African men who believe that we really should be living our lives on our home continent. John is just as passionate about this as I am. I think though that going with John to live in Nigeria is a bit complicated, because aside from the obvious considerations such as relatives, etc., the fact is that I am not Nigeria's biggest fan, even if it is the country of my ancestors. I do however quite fancy living in Ghana, John's country and he appears not to be much perturbed by what his relatives might say or think.

That said, as homophobic as many of today's African societies are, most people in African societies are unable to recognise homosexuality even when it is staring them in the face. Many of them are taken by the false notion that homosexuality does not exist in their midst, hence they are not alive to it and cannot recognise it even when it is holding hands and hugging right before their very eyes. Two gay men who are lovers can easily pass off as friends..

I feel safe with John. It is the inner strength that he possesses which I find to be his most attractive quality. I on my part can be capricious, skittish, whimsical, erratic even.. But John, he's self-assured, always calm, confident, soft spoken and never raising his voice, quietly witty, providing me with a calming, soothing, steadying and stabilising influence.. I suppose by now its easy to guess how I feel about John.. Yes, I admit it, I'm crazy for him.

To declare one's love for another so publicly has been the preserve of heterosexual people. It is taken for granted that heterosexual love can be announced and celebrated publicly. The reality for John and me and for others like us is that our love will perhaps never receive recognition in the hearts of those who are dearest to us, our families. But we take strength from the knowledge that we have each other. If you've read this post up to this point, you deserve my thanks. Thank you so much. :)

Wednesday, 12 January 2011

Hiatus..

Hello everyone, there has definitely been a break or interruption in the continuity of this blog. Please bear with me. I will be back soon. Cheers..


Anengiyefa

Thursday, 6 January 2011

One per cent of Ghanaians are gay or lesbian..

More than 200,000 people or one percent of Ghana's adult population regard themselves as gay or lesbian according to a study. The data has been collected by the Ghana Household Survey (GHS).

100,000 individual respondents to the survey provided the biggest pool of Ghana social data after the national census, the statistics service said.

95 per cent of adults identify themselves as heterosexual/straight, while just one percent of adults see themselves as gay or lesbian. Another 0.5 per cent of adults said they are bisexual and a similar proportion described their sexuality as 'other'. Just under 3 per cent of adults responded "don't know" or refused to answer the question. Fewer than one per cent of respondents provided no response.

The highest proportion of adults who identified as gay, lesbian or bisexual were in Accra, Takoradi and Kumasi with the lowest found in Tamale.

Taken from here.
For more on homosexuality in Ghana click here.

Wednesday, 5 January 2011