In celebration of the Black History Month, WorldRemit has launched the inaugural Top Ten Most Influential Africans in the Diaspora List, to recognize the contributions of Africans in America.
The list of ten notable Africans has four Nigerians – Kehinde Wiley, Olurotimi Badero, Bennet Omalu and Afam Onyema, who are being honoured for their groundbreaking success in a vast spectrum of professions, including arts, medicine, fashion, entertainment and philanthropy.
Most of the honorees are notable individuals who have partnered with top global leaders and institutions such as the United Nations, Oprah Winfrey, Barack Obama, The Oscars, Unicef, the World Economic Forum, the Smithsonian museum and many others.
The criteria used for selection is limited to first-generation African immigrants, who had a track record of making significant impacts in their respective fields, among the US African immigrant community or their communities back home. Also, they must have broken the barriers and status quo limiting African immigrants and created opportunities for others.
Commenting on the selection, Founder and Chairman, WorldRemit, Ismail Ahmed said, “As an African immigrant, I am fully aware of the hard work, sacrifices, and resilience needed to become successful in the West. I am immensely proud of all Africans who take the opportunity to achieve great things and contribute to their communities in an impactful way. To be able to honour Africans in the diaspora is enormously special to us here at WorldRemit.”
WorldRemit had the Publisher and CEO of OkayAfrica, Abiola Oke sit on the judging panel which selected ten finalists from a shortlisted group of black Africans based in the U.S. The other judges include WorldRemit founder and Chairman, Ismail Ahmed, who is also an immigrant originally hailing from Somaliland, and Daniel Canning, Managing Director of WorldRemit’s business in the Americas.
“Our mission at OkayAfrica is to connect a global audience to African culture, and through our publication, we highlight the positive contributions made by many African across the diaspora. It is fitting that WorldRemit established this program to coincide with Black History Month,” said Abiola Oke.
About the honorees
Kehinde Wiley, a portrait painter is a Nigerian-American based in New York City. He is known for his highly naturalistic paintings of black people and was commissioned in 2017 to paint a portrait of former President Barack Obama for the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery, which has portraits of all the US presidents. He is the first black artist to paint official portraits of the president for the National Portrait Gallery.
Olurotimi John Badero is a physician, interventional cardiologist, nephrologist and cardio-nephrologist – the world’s first and only fully trained cardio-nephrologist. He obtained his medical degree from the Obafemi Awolowo University, before relocating to the United States for his medical residency and fellowships.
Bennet Ifeakandu Omalu is a physician, forensic pathologist, and neuropathologist – the first to discover and publish findings of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) in American football players while working at the Allegheny County coroner’s office in Pittsburgh. He got his medical degree from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka and worked for three years in Jos before relocating to the United States as a result of the tension following the inconclusive 1993 general elections. His career and achievements have been captured in the book and movie – Concussion.
Afam Onyema is a Non-Profit Founder & CEO of The GEANCO foundation. He graduated cum laude from Harvard University with a degree in psychology and played on the 1997 Ivy League Championship-winning football team. He worked for a couple of years before settling to run his family’s non-profit organization.
Why this matters: Black History Month started in 1976, and since then the American Government recognized February as the month for highlighting the significant contributions made by African Americans to areas including American literature, business, science, politics, philanthropy, entertainment, sports, and their communities.
[READ ALSO: Elumelu named in Ebony Power 100 List for 2020)
According to Daniel Canning Managing Director, Americas for WorldRemit; “Data continues to show that black Africans in the diaspora are contributing significantly to the U.S. economy and society as a whole, while in many cases still supporting their communities back home. At WorldRemit, we believe that it is important for us to acknowledge and highlight these positive contributions, and Black History Month seemed like the ideal time to do so”
What you should know: WorldRemit is a leading fintech provider specialised in international money transfer services. They broke new grounds in an industry previously dominated by offline legacy players by taking international money transactions online – making them more secured, faster and cost-effective. The company currently employs over 800 people globally and operates money transfers in over 150 countries in 6,500 money transfer corridors worldwide
For those receiving money, the company offers a wide range of options including bank deposit, cash collection, mobile airtime top-up and mobile money. Backed by Accel, TCV and Leapfrog – WorldRemit is headquartered in London, with a global presence n several countries the United States, Canada, South Africa, Japan, Singapore, the Philippines, Australia and New Zealand.
#EndSARS: Army denies shooting at Lekki protesters, says Lagos asked for military
The Nigerian Army has once again denied it fired gunshots at protesters who were gathered at the Lekki toll plaza.
What you should know
Nairametrics reported last week that several social media accounts had revealed that peaceful protesters were allegedly being shot at by the military at the Lekki toll holdout. The Nigerian Army, however, denied deploying soldiers to attack #EndSARS protesters who assembled there.
The Lagos State Government ordered an investigation into the Lekki Toll Plaza shooting that was allegedly done by some men of the Nigerian Army on Tuesday evening. Babajide Sanwo-Olu had also stated that Lagos State would not burn on his watch, as he tried to calm things down after hoodlums wreaked havoc post-Lekki shootings, and announced that the Judicial panel set up by the state would include the incident.
Nairametrics earlier reported that Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu had insisted that there were only two confirmed deaths during the shooting incident that happened a week ago at the Lekki Tollgate.
COVID-19 Update in Nigeria
On the 27th of October 2020, 113 new confirmed cases and 3 deaths were recorded in Nigeria
The spread of novel Corona Virus Disease (COVID-19) in Nigeria continues to record significant increases as the latest statistics provided by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control reveal Nigeria now has 62,224 confirmed cases.
On the 27th of October 2020, 113 new confirmed cases and 3 deaths were recorded in Nigeria, having carried out a total daily test of 2,326 samples across the country.
To date, 62,224 cases have been confirmed, 57,916 cases have been discharged and 1,135 deaths have been recorded in 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory. A total of 614,480 tests have been carried out as of October 27th, 2020 compared to 612,154 tests a day earlier.
COVID-19 Case Updates- 27th October 2020,
- Total Number of Cases – 62,224
- Total Number Discharged – 57,916
- Total Deaths – 1,1135
- Total Tests Carried out – 614,480
According to the NCDC, the 113 new cases were reported from 12 states- Lagos (51), FCT (15), Plateau (11), Kaduna (8), Oyo (8), Rivers (8), Ogun (4), Edo (2), Imo (2), Kwara (2), Delta (1), Kano (1).
Meanwhile, the latest numbers bring Lagos state total confirmed cases to 20,935, followed by Abuja (6,008), Plateau (3,614), Oyo (3,433), Rivers (2,781), Edo (2,654), Kaduna (2,625), Ogun (2,014), Delta (1,813), Kano (1,743), Ondo (1,666), Enugu (1,314), Kwara (1,069), Ebonyi (1,049), Katsina (952), Osun (923), Abia (898), Gombe (883). Borno (745), and Bauchi (710).
Imo State has recorded 616 cases, Benue (486), Nasarawa (479), Bayelsa (403), Ekiti (332), Jigawa (325), Akwa Ibom (295), Anambra (277), Niger (274), Adamawa (257), Sokoto (165), Taraba (140), Kebbi (93), Cross River (87), Yobe (82), Zamfara (79), while Kogi state has recorded 5 cases only.
Lock Down and Curfew
In a move to combat the spread of the pandemic disease, President Muhammadu Buhari directed the cessation of all movements in Lagos and the FCT for an initial period of 14 days, which took effect from 11 pm on Monday, 30th March 2020.
The movement restriction, which was extended by another two-weeks period, has been partially put on hold with some businesses commencing operations from May 4. On April 27th, 2020, Nigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari declared an overnight curfew from 8 pm to 6 am across the country, as part of new measures to contain the spread of the COVID-19. This comes along with the phased and gradual easing of lockdown measures in FCT, Lagos, and Ogun States, which took effect from Saturday, 2nd May 2020, at 9 am.
On Monday, 29th June 2020 the federal government extended the second phase of the eased lockdown by 4 weeks and approved interstate movement outside curfew hours with effect from July 1, 2020. Also, on Monday 27th July 2020, the federal government extended the second phase of eased lockdown by an additional one week.
On Thursday, 6th August 2020 the federal government through the secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) and Chairman of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 announced the extension of the second phase of eased lockdown by another four (4) weeks.
Oyo sets up N500 Million fund each for youth entrepreneurs, compensation for victims of police brutality
Governor Seyi Makinde plans to disburse N500 million fund to youth entrepreneurs in Oyo state.
Oyo State Government has directed that a N500 million MSME fund be set up to fund youth entrepreneurs in the State with bright business ideas