Friday, 9 November 2012

Africa’s best converge in London

A cross-section of Africa’s best converged in London recently at the 14th Annual Gathering of Africa’s Best (GAB) Awards.

At a colourful and prestigious ceremony held at the Hilton London Paddington, Africans and Friends of Africa gathered to celebrate some of the best that Africa has to offer. Guests included Diplomats, Community Leaders, Media Executives, Business Leaders and Professionals from numerous walks of life.

Nigeria’s High Commissioner to the United Kingdom – H.E. Dr Dalhatu Sarki Tafida CFR who was represented by his Deputy – Ambassador Oluwatoyin Lawal, congratulated organisers for putting up a well organised event and taking the initiative of projecting Africa positively over the last 14 years. There were also messages of support ahead of the event from the Ethiopia Ambassador to the UK – H.E. Mr Berhanu Kebede; the Guyana High Commissioner to the UK – H.E. Mr Laleshwar Singh; and the Charge d’Affaires of the Embassy of Burundi – H.E. Mr Bernard Ntahiraja, amongst others.

GAB Awards Founder & CEO – ‘Femi Okutubo noted that, “In the midst of the negative stereotypes about Africa and Africans, you will no doubt agree that the ideals of the GAB Awards: to promote the positiveness of Africa and Africans, remains paramount.”

In commemoration of 15 years of the GAB Awards next year, Okutubo also announced a “‘Homecoming’ of the GAB Awards to the continent of Africa with plans to host the GAB Awards in a number of African countries and the UK in 2013.”

Ms Justina Mutale – the CEO of Positive Runway and African Woman of the Year encouraged all to continue to promote Africa in their endeavours.

A number of sons and daughters of Africa were honoured for their contributions to the promotion of the positive image of Africa and Africans around the world in various categories including Finance, Fashion, The Arts, Cultural Heritage, Media, Architecture and Community Development. (Full list of Recipients below)

Following a splendid transformation of the venue with a Zambian theme by Splendour Events and the cutting of the Celebratory Cake made by Wotever Cakes; guests were entertained by Egwu Oganiru – a vibrant dance group run by the Igbo Cultural and Support Network (ICSN). Aside from comedy by MC Mark, there was also a fashion show by Zambian Fashion Designer - Mwangala Phiri of House of Bren-Der who showcased her MUSISI designs modelled by UK-based Zambian models, in partnership with Positive Runway: Global Catwalk to Stop the Spread.

The GAB Awards was compered by Princess Deun Adedoyin-Solarin – a previous GAB Awards recipient, Broadcaster and Creator of the ‘Princess of Arize’ Talk Show.

The 14th GAB Awards was sponsored by Bank of Industry (BOI) - Nigeria’s oldest, largest and most successful development financing institution; Arik Air – Nigeria’s leading International airline; KATO Enterprises – Official distributors of numerous African drink brands across Europe; and The Trumpet Newspaper – Britain’s largest distributed Black newspaper. It was supported by BEN TV, Splendour Events, Dimeco Media Services and Mike Photography.

The GAB Awards which was founded in 1999 by The Trumpet Newspaper seeks to correct the erroneous negative stereotypes about Africa and Africans.

Recipients of 2012 GAB Awards:

Ms. Lydia Kemunto Cutler – Fashion

Mr. Alex Oma-Pius – Cultural Heritage

Club 87 – Philanthropy

Mr. Babatunde Loye – Finance

Mr. Sunny Lambe – Management Consultancy

Dr. Ken Smart Otukoya – The Arts

Chief. Julie Coker – Media

Ms. Maxine Nosakhare Igbinedion – The Arts

Ms. Theodore Ibekwe – Entertainment

Ms. Bekezela Nsingo – Community Development

Tinoshow – Community Development

Mr. Segun Oyebolu – Entrepreneurship

Otunba (Arc.) Mobolaji Falase – Architecture

Egbe Bobakeye (Okunrin) Akile Ijebu - Community Development

Ayan De First – Cultural Heritage

Femtej Kreations – Events Management

Sponsorship, Marketing and Partnership - 2013:

  • In 2013, the GAB Awards is planned to hold in the UK, Nigeria, The Gambia, Ghana, Zambia and an East African country. There may be more countries if the opportunities arise.
  • For Sponsorship, Marketing and Partnership opportunities relating to the 2013 GAB Awards series of events, please email: or telephone: +44 (0) 20 8522 6600 / +44 (0) 7956 385604.

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