In a bid to explore intra-connectivity in Africa in areas of trade, investment and tourism, the management team of Goge Africa, a pan-African tourism company, visited some East African countries.
The East African tour to Tanzania and Burundi was led by Isaac Moses and Nneka Isaac – Moses, who are chief executive officer and managing director of Goge Africa respectively.
According to the team from multiple-award-winning culture and tourism promotion outfit in Africa, the visit was an insightful one and a learning curve for them in their new quest to identify barriers to intra-African trade and finding solutions to them.
To the team, it is only when genuine efforts are made towards removing the challenges that the question of; why don’t most African countries trade with each other, can be truly addressed otherwise Africans will continue to look up to far away Asia, Europe, America and others.
Africans, they say should invest in Africa, insisting that: ‘‘Our political and business leaders must stop moving the wealth of Africa outside the continent if they want the progress of Africa.’’
The first country visited by the team was Tanzania, where the Tanzanian Ambassador to Nigeria, Alfred Bana, facilitated a meeting between the trio of Goge Africa, Tanzania Tourist Board and Zanzibar Commission for Tourism.
The Goge team were received at the Tanzania Tourist Board office in Dar Es Salam by Gladstone Mlay, director of marketing, who after the fruitful discussion agreed that concerted efforts must be made to promote African tourism and investment opportunities, especially within the continent.
Thereafter, the team also met with Mohamed Mkurugenzi Masoko, who had to sail from Zanzibar to Tanzania, to meet with the team at Kigamboni area of Gezaulole at Bamba Beach, a privately owned resort on the peninsula. At the end of the meeting, the Goge Africa team went on a guided tour of the facility.
Relieving his experience, Isaac Moses said: ‘‘Bamba beach is a very beautiful eco-friendly resort with huge potential for investors in the tourism sector. It has a nice curvy lake amidst the green vegetation that runs slowly into the ocean.”
The next country to visit was Burundi on the invitation of the Nigerian Ambassador to Burundi, Ambassador Elijah Onyeagba. The team visited the Mayor of Bujumbura, CP. Jimmy Hatungimana, where they were warmly received and hosted to traditional African hospitality.
The team later held a meeting with the Ministry of Sports, Culture and Heritage. In attendance were; Jean Claude Kanene, assistant to the minister; Samuel Niyubahwe, director general, Sports and Culture, and Laurent Nzeyimana, director of sport.
During the weekend, the team in company of Udo Onyeagba, wife of the Nigerian Ambassador to Burundi and others, toured the border of Burundi and Congo Democratic Republic, as well as Parc National De La Rusizi. “It was a magical journey of discovery,’’ revealed Nneka Isaac- Moses.
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‘‘From the quiet waters of brown coloured Rusizi, we watched a pod of hippopotamuses, different species of birds that fluttered away as we clapped from our boat. Within minutes we were at the magical but natural divide where brown coloured Rusizi meets with blue Lake Tanganyika. Such awesome wonder”, she concluded.
The boat cruise experience was capped with a cultural feast served by Burundians as the team was treated to a sample of the internationally acclaimed drum ensemble and dance of Burundi.
According to the CEO of Goge Africa, ‘‘These and more are information you may not readily get online. Burundi is not a poor country. They have food sufficiency with one of the most fertile lands in the whole of Africa. Lake Tanganyika is a fresh water lake and home to over 200 species of fish.”
While Nneka Isaac – Moses, also gave a good impression of the country, she said: ‘‘I recommend Mukeke and Sangala fish prepared in the Burundian style to anyone visiting Burundi.
‘‘Their avocados pears are very fleshy and big as a baby’s head. Burundi is not just food sufficient but Rwanda, Congo and other neighboring countries depend on them for food. Investment here in agriculture will yield fast returns’.
Besides, Ambassador Onyeagba also engaged Nigerians and the Diaspora community on the opportunities available in Burundi, while Goge Africa team caught up with Pinnacle International Investment Club, who was also in Bujumbura on the invitation of Nigeria’s envoy to explore opportunities for investment.
The Goge Africa team was hosted at Kiriri Garden Hotel, Hotel Club Du Lac Tanganyika and Olivia Hotel owned by a Nigerian during the visit.
Meanwhile, the newly birthed Goge Africa and Partners Network plan to embark on Destination East Africa as part of their ongoing Destination West Africa Project, a project aimed at the promotion and advocacy for inter-connectivity and intra-Africa travel, trade and investment.