Bobby J. Moroe - Acting High Commissioner; South African High Commission

Statement by the Acting High Commissioner of the Republic of South Africa, to the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Mr Bobby J. Moroe

The recent acts of criminality that resulted in the displacement of foreign nationals in the  KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) and Limpopo Provinces are regrettable. Our government believes that no amount of frustration or anger can ever justify the attacks on foreign nationals and the looting of their shops. The Justice, Crime Prevention, and Security Cluster (JCPS) is working tirelessly on the issue of attacks on foreign nationals. To this end, three people have been arrested for the recent incidents in KZN and Limpopo and law enforcement agencies remain steadfast to bring perpetrators responsible for these crimes to book.

The government of South Africa strongly condemns the violent acts in the strongest possible terms. These attacks violate all the values that South Africa embodies, especially the respect for human life, human rights, human dignity and Ubuntu. Our country stands firmly against all intolerances such as racism, xenophobia, homophobia and sexism. We wish the injured a speedy recovery, and appeal for calm, and end to violence and restraint.

It is our view that criminal elements should not be allowed to take advantage of the concerns of citizens to sow mayhem and destruction. Any problems or issues of concern to South African citizens must be resolved peacefully and through dialogue. The police have been directed to work round the clock to protect both foreign nationals and citizens, and to also arrest looters and those committing acts of violence. The government has urged communities to assist the police by providing information on the incidents that have taken place so that the perpetrators can be brought to justice.

Our government would also like to caution that the spread of misinformation, fake pictures and videos on social media,  as well as fake websites may be fuelling tensions in the communities between South Africans and foreign nationals. Certain messages and images that appear on social media are old and unrelated to any of the reported incidents of alleged attacks on foreign nationals over the past few days. For instance, a message being circulated about foreign nationals burning South African owned trucks in Limpopo Province is not true.

Government has consistently condemned  fake news websites masquerading as authentic news websites.  We call for greater efforts of awareness in society about fake news and fake social media posts.

Government respects the right to freedom of press and freedom of expression, but fake news stories are a slanderous attempt against the brand of South Africa with no interest in respecting the Constitution of South Africa.

Accordingly,  we urge everyone to be vigilant and not spread fake information and images that may give   an impression that these are attacks on foreign nationals.

The engagement by the Minister of International Relations and Corporation, Hon. Lindiwe Sisulu, Minister of Police, Hon. Bheki Cele, Minister of Home Affairs, Hon, Siyabonga Cwele and the African Diplomatic Community in South Africa is a step in the right direction. This meeting has been convened twice already, on Monday, 01 April 2019 and Friday, 05 April 2019, to discuss the current spate of violence against foreign nations and their properties. Once a full report has been issued on the outcomes of these meetings , it will be shared accordingly.

Government calls on all community organisations to stand up and be counted among those who actively discourage attacks against foreign nationals or our citizens.

We call on organisations and individuals who have information regarding threats of violence to report to the police. South Africans and foreign nationals residing in the country are afforded the same protection under the Constitution.

The freedom Charter says there shall be peace and friendship. Our responsibility is to promote this legacy of peaceful coexistence and take it forward. To this end, the South African government reaffirms its responsibility to contribute to a better Africa.

Bobby J. Moroe
Acting High Commissioner.
South African High Commission.
Abuja, Nigeria.
Saturday, 06 April 2019.

AFRICANS HAVE THE POWER TO REHAUL AFRICA’S STORY

In a bid to boost tourism in Africa, it is time that we change our narrative from a continent that needs saving to one that is thriving. This was the key insight at Africa’s Travel Indaba Media Launch held at The Plant Venue Co., Durban on 3rd April 2019.

The media launch provided the opportunity for two of South African Tourism’s Hidden Gems, Jotham’s Place and Discover Durban Tours and Transfers, to tell their success stories. Other speakers included Acting Head of the KwaZulu-Natal Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs, Siza Sibanda and Councillor at eThekwini Municipality, Sipho Kaunda.

Keynote speaker of the day, Chief Convention Bureau Officer of South Africa National Convention Bureau (SANCB), Amanda Kotze-Nhlapo, elaborated on this year’s Africa’s Travel Indaba theme, Africa’s stories, your success, saying Africans must own their narrative so that they can embark on the journey of changing the continent’s story. “We no longer look to the world for affirmation or inspiration, the world looks to us. We are real, vibrant and driven to succeed. So, we invite the world to journey with us and tell the new story of Africa.”

Kotze-Nhlapo added that the responsibility of safeguarding Africa’s narrative is not only up to its storytellers but all Africans. “In this post-truth world, it is up to each of us to be vigilant about the way Africa is depicted. We can be the watchdogs of misrepresented stories and best of all, we have the digital tools to keep the narrative truthful.”

She said social media gives everyone the power to engage with media, influencers and other prominent individuals so that “we can change the narrative together and basically set the story straight”.

Her insights were backed up by South African storyteller, Victor Kgomoeswana, whose presentation ignited what is the new African narrative.

“The greatest story for us to tell is our own; the most effective way to tell it is the African way – because the centre of the universe, literally and figuratively, is in Africa,” he said.

For the first time in Indaba’s history, it will host the Green Stand Awards.   These awards have been successful at Meetings Africa in recent years and is now making its way to Indaba. It recognises exhibitors who go that extra “green” mile to build and design stands that are environmentally and socially sustainable.

Key numbers for Africa’s Travel Indaba 2019

  • 1,110 – Number of local, regional and international buyers already confirmed.
  • 890 – Number of exhibitors already confirmed.
  • 104 – Number of African exhibitors from 19 countries already confirmed.

“The above numbers clearly demonstrate that Indaba continues to grow and be the sought after platform for African tourism products,” concluded Kotze-Nhlapo.

 

Tourism in Africa – facts

According to 2018 reports from the United Nations World Tourism Organization and World Travel and Tourism Council:

  • The continent’s total foreign receipts in 2017 amounted to US$ 177,6 billion, contributing 8,1% of total Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
  • In 2017, Africa’s share of investment in travel and tourism was US$ 28,2 billion, or 5,7% of total investment in the continent.
  • In 2017, direct travel and tourism employment in Africa rose to 9,3 million, the equivalent of 1 in 11 jobs. This is an 11,2% increase from 2016.

 

South Africa at a glance

  • South Africa saw 10.5-million international tourist arrivals in 2018.
  • It translates to a growth of 1.8% compared to the previous year.
  • The World Travel & Tourism Council’s (WTTC) had recently announced that South Africa has the largest tourism economy in Africa having contributed 1.5 million jobs (9.2% of South Africa’s employment)
  • Tourism contributes 8.6% to the South African GDP.
  • 44% of the tourism spend came from international travellers, amounting to R128-billion.

56% of spend came from domestic travel, which translates to R163-billion.

AN EXCITING EASTER AT SHERATON HOTELS IN NIGERIA

Special offers for an Egg-citing Easter celebration

Abuja, April 1, 2019 With Easter fast approaching, The Sheraton Hotels in Lagos and Abuja will spark off with an array of Eclectic and classic Easter treats and offerings making it the ideal place for families and friends to dine together.

The Area General Manager for Marriott Hotels in Nigeria, Barry Curran says “Our aim is to create truly exciting experiences for everyone this Easter Holiday.

For those Visiting Sheraton Lagos Hotel, we have put together a compelling package on our rooms starting from N63, 600. Those who book these rates are entitled to 20% off brunch on Easter Monday. Kids under 12 will eat breakfast free (max 1 with a paying parent).

On Easter Sunday, we are offering a special brunch for just N16,500 per person, inclusive of non-alcoholic beverages and kids 12yrs and below will be entitled to eat for half the price (With paying adult).

Our Guests will enjoy an enriching experience during brunch with a live band which will create the perfect ambiance for a relaxing day. We have also put together a special Voucher for 20% off at our Italian Restaurant to be given to every family and couple that brunches with us on that day.  A set menu will also be available at the Italian Restaurant for lovers of fine dining at N16, 000 only per person.

We look forward to having families and friends engage with kids over an “egg-citing Easter egg hunt with exciting prices to be won.

While on Easter Monday, we will prepare a delightful barbecue where guests can arrive, sit back and listen to feel-good music while they enjoy everything on the menu for the day for just N11,000 per person.

From the 8th of April, sales of Easter cakes and Easter eggs will commence at discounted rates for all to savor with the family.

At Sheraton Abuja Hotel  our teams have created inspiring packages with a range of activities and offerings to keep the whole family connected this Easter.

Our Food & Beverage teams at our Hotel’s Papillon Restaurant will be happy to welcome you to a delicious Easter Buffet spread with family centered offerings for just N10, 000 Per Person on Easter Sunday. Kids are not left out as 0-6yr olds will eat for free while 7-12 year olds will eat for only half the price (per paying Adult).

The Hotel has additionally planned an exciting and engaging egg hunt with an Easter Bunny where two kids (per paying adult) get free Gift Bags alongside Cotton Candy treats.

If you are looking for a short break over the Easter holiday our unbeatable Easter Room Package starts at just NGN49, 999 Per Night, valid from 18th – 23rd of April 2019. The Rooms package is all inclusive of complimentary Breakfast, access to our Sheraton Fitness Facilities, Complimentary Wi-Fi, Fruit Basket and a Box of Chocolate Cupcakes for you to indulge in.

We are very eager to celebrate this Easter season with all our friends and families and we assure all our customers that our carefully thought out activities and offerings will provide an elevated experience which will linger in memories for a long time.

 

For more information on our Sheraton Lagos Hotel please visit www.sheratonlagos.com stay connected to the Sheraton Lagos on Twitter and Instagram @sheratonlagos and like our Facebook page Sheraton Lagos Hotel                                                                                   

For more information visit www.sheratonabuja.com follow or tag us on Instagram as www.instagram.com/sheratonabuja/  on twitter as https://twitter.com/SheratonAbuja and on Facebook as www.facebook.com/sheratonabuja/

SAA Voyager launches new mobile application

South African Airways (SAA) Voyager has launched its own SAA Voyager Mobile Application.  This means that the transactional experience for Voyager members is now in the palm of members’ hand with easy navigation whilst on the go.

The current SAA Mobile App only displays a customer’s status and balance of miles, whereas the first release of the SAA Voyager App includes additional transactional functions beneficial to the customers namely; update of personal details, PIN reset, award requests, claiming of missing miles, converting miles and, being able to donate miles.

The SAA Voyager App is an intervention aimed at enhancing Voyager members’ transactional experience with Voyager in the short term.  It is envisaged that once SAA relaunches its Mobile App in the latter part of this year, there will be integration between the SAA and SAA Voyager Mobile Apps, whereby customers will be able to transact seamlessly with SAA, be it for check-in, printing of boarding passes, making and/or changing reservations or transacting on their Voyager accounts.

SAA Executive for Customer Loyalty, Suretha Cruse explains that one of SAA’s key strategies is to enhance the customer experience.  “Customer insights were a key driver in the design and development of the SAA Voyager App with our Africa-based members in mind, where 80% access the internet via their mobile phones,” she says.

SAA Voyager was Africa’s first value-based airline loyalty programme, offering members miles based on the ticket price purchased, rather than the distance travelled.  The earning velocity of miles in the SAA Voyager programme remains the best in class on the African continent whereby members receive one SAA Voyager Mile per ZAR 1.60 spent, which counts towards the status of members. The programme also allows members to spend miles on any available ticket price for flights operated by SAA. With more than 67 partnerships globally, including the Star Alliance global network, the programme gives members access to more than 1 300 destinations in 190 countries.

Not a SAA Voyager member yet, but want to register? Simply download the SAA Voyager mobile app onto your phone from the Apple App store or Google Play store, alternatively, contact the SAA Voyager Call Centre on 011 978 1234.  You can also send an e-mail to voyager@flysaa.com.

Programme specific terms and conditions can be found on www.flysaa.com
SAA Voyager – Forever part of your journey. 

Sheraton Abuja Celebrates Women in March

Offers specials for international womens month

Abuja, March 4, 2019 – The Month of March ushers in yet more unique opportunities to celebrate women all over the world. Sheraton Abuja Hotel is proud to join the rest of the world to make this women’s month extra special.

This is the reason the Hotel teams have organized a line-up of exciting activities and unbeatable offers to make this Month in March truly special for all especially Female Patrons.

The General Manager for Sheraton Abuja Hotel , Nouman Irshad explains “We have themed our women’s month in march “Celebrating Women”, in line with Mother’s Day and International Women’s day. We will take the liberty to commemorate all mothers, friends, sisters, wives and daughters by giving them something unforgettable during the period.

To commence our Celebration of all women in the month of March, we will mark INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY on the 8th of March with our “Sheraton Paired’’ event at the Lobby Bar with music and entertainment.

From the 1st-31st of March 2019 from 6pm-8pm we will offer a complimentary glass of sparkling wine to all female diners who arrive at our Pool Bar and Restaurant as well as our Lobby Bar. *Offer valid while stock lasts* So we encourage you to stop by with your friends and loved ones to connect and unwind within our alfresco Pool area or find solace at our soothing lobby bar for a calmer evening.

At our Papillon Restaurant on MOTHERS DAY day 31st of March 2019, All Mothers will enjoy a 10% discount, a delicious box of Swiss rolls and a glass of sparkling wine.

“Our Sheraton Abuja Hotel teams are geared to ensure that March is indeed a special one for all our clients, especially women in general. We appreciate and celebrate all women in all works of life and we acknowledge them for their exemplary roles in our societies.

“At Sheraton Abuja Hotel  it is all about the Guests and it delights us to go beyond when it comes to delivering elevated and enriching customer experiences.

For more information on our International Womens month please follow us on Facebook and twitter @sheratonabuja and on Instagram @sheraton_abuja for the latest updates.

Tim Mapes named Delta Chief Marketing and Communications Officer effective May 1

Delta announced that upon John E. “Ned” Walker’s retirement on May 1, Tim Mapes will assume the role of Chief Marketing and Communications Officer, leading the company’s global marketing and communications strategy.

“Tim is a world-class communicator. His more than 30 years of brand, marketing and communications experience inside and outside of Delta make him a strong leader to continue to elevate the momentum we have today,” said Delta CEO Ed Bastian.

Mapes’ scope of responsibilities will include Delta’s internal and external corporate communications and marketing functions, including advertising, corporate brand management and community engagement. He will also continue to serve as president of the Delta Foundation.

Walker returned to Delta as Chief Communications Officer in December 2016 during a period of leadership transition. He had served Delta in the role from 2008 – 2014. He has more than 35 years of airline industry experience, and prior to that served as a news anchor.

“Since his return, Ned has led our Corporate Communications team as they’ve shaped the global narrative of Delta’s achievements, driven by our unique culture,” Bastian said. “Ned’s leadership and service to Delta have helped position us to continue building the strength of our brand, reputation and mission, while growing the effectiveness and impact of our internal and external communications.”

Mapes will report to Bastian and serve as a member of the Delta Leadership Committee.

Baby Mamas film, storms Nigerian theaters with the aim of breaking down the “baby mama” stereotypes.

On Sunday, February 24th, Filmhouse Cinemas hosted a private screening of Baby Mamas, the first ever South African film to show in Nigeria (set to premiere in Lagos on the 1st of March, 2019 at all Filmhouse Cinemas’ locations) at its Twin Waters branch in Oniru.

Directed by Stephanie Zwane, Baby Mamas takes a look at the daily lives of four young professional women, each in various phases of their own baby mama drama. Although the different themes of the film are approached comically, each message conveyed is unfeigned, candid and thought-provoking. As the four women explore the many dynamics of being baby mamas, the audience is brought into the world of their witty charms and how they tackle the strained relationships with the men in their lives. With an ensemble female cast of Salamina Mosese, Thembisa Mdoda, Dineo Ranaka, and Kay Smith, the film highlights sisterhood, female empowerment, friendship, family, pain.

Guests such as Vimbai MutinhiriYetunde WilliamsBolanle OlukanniTaymi BSasha P, and Paul Chisom were in attendance of the screening at Filmhouse Cinemas, Oniru  and could not wait to share all their thoughts and comments on the film after it was over. Before viewing commenced, the guests were addressed by Matilda Ogunleye, Marketing Executive of FilmOne Distribution and Production. She asserted that the film is very relevant to the Nigerian market as we all need to start telling and redefining “our stories.” The deep disapproval and condescension that is attached to being a baby mama, especially in the workplace, and especially in Africa, is something that needs to be tackled head-on in order to shift the narrative and start changing the warped mindsets and perceptions of society.

 

During the viewing, there were lots of reactions from the audience it was clear that film had indeed provoked quite a lot of thought which translated into a full conversation after the film ended. Guests stayed behind for the roundtable discussion hosted by Vimbai Mutinhiri. Tolu BallyAzuka OgujiubaTiti Olatunji and Abimbola Craig all chimed in, advocating for a definite upheaval of current systems in place so that sex education was more open, more talked about and beliefs of pregnancy without wedlock being shameful no longer existed.

Reactions from the audience

  • “We need to pay more attention to co-parenting and the effect it has on the children”  – Jayne Augoye
  •  “One of the biggest issues is the fact, that we need to learn to orientate our young boys and girls from the beginning on sex and results” – Abimbola Craig
  • “We have a lot of untrained men as compared to trained women in the society and we need to do better, so these men don’t shy away from their responsibilities.” – Paul Chisom

About FilmOne Distribution and Production:
FilmOne Distribution and Production Limited is the leading West African independent distributor of filmed entertainment. Based in Lagos, Nigeria, we distribute a wide range of mainstream, commercial pictures including international and indigenous titles. Since its foray into production, the company has also become one of the leading production houses releasing crowd-pleasing hits such as The Wedding Party Series, My Wife and I, New Money, Lunch Time Heroes, and Merry Men: The real Yoruba Demons. Further information on FilmOne can be found at www.filmoneng.com

2019 Africa’s Travel Indaba Date Brought Forward

The 2019 Africa’s Travel Indaba will take place from 02-04 May 2019 at the Inkosi Albert Luthuli International Convention Centre in Durban.

This means that Indaba has been brought forward by four days.

Last week, President Cyril Ramaphosa, announced in his state of the nation address that the national election will take place on 08 May 2019. This would have coincided with Indaba.

A task team was set up by the CEO of South African Tourism (SA Tourism), Sisa Ntshona, to explore all available options and it was decided that moving Indaba forward was the best possible option.

The task team comprised of representatives of the following organisations:

  • SA Tourism
  • Department of Tourism
  • Durban ICC
  • Tourism KZN
  • Tourism Business Council of South Africa (TBCSA)
  • eThekwini

The task team took into account various factors and permutations in reaching the new date.

“The national election is the cornerstone of our democracy and is a celebration of our freedom in South Africa,” says Ntshona.

“It’s an important date and occasion for all South Africans and we need to acknowledge and respect the date.”

“At the same time, I must express my heartfelt gratitude to the Tourism industry for their understanding of the situation, I have received many calls, emails and texts with advice and support. I am really impressed to experience how the tourism sector gets together. I also want to thank the Indaba Organising Committee involved with Indaba – they are Tourism KwaZulu Natal, ICC and eThekwini (Durban Tourism) – for being accommodating with regards to the change,” added Ntshona.

“From a Tourism Business Council of South Africa (TBCSA) perspective, we presented comprehensive views of the sector to the task team and ultimately the key thing for us was to get a new date as quickly as possible,” commented Tshifhiwa Tshivhengwa, CEO at TBCSA.

“We will now work with all our trade partners to ensure that there is smooth transition into the new date as many would’ve had plans in place already for the previous date. We still have a key role to play in achieving Indaba’s objectives of selling South Africa and the continent to the rest of the world.”

Indaba is the African continent’s biggest travel exhibition show.

Last year over 7 000 delegates attended from 80 countries.

Registrations for buyers and exhibitors are still open. For more information, visit www.indaba-southafrica.co.za

UK Announces Winners of ‘Go Global Competition

Last Friday at the British residence in Lagos, the British Deputy High Commission today hosted the Nigerian leg of the 2019 Go Global Africa Programme. 15 start-ups, selected from an unprecedented 340 entries, presented their pitches to a combined Nigerian and British panel of tech experts at the British Deputy High Commissioner’s Residence in Ikoyi, Lagos.   The winning entries will now travel to the UK in late March for a two-week immersive programme of support.

 The businesses who pitched are all active in fields aimed to create a better future for Africa, with a specific focus on Water, Connectivity, Digital Health, Fintech and Agritech.

UK Deputy High Commissioner Laure Beaufils said:

“I am delighted to host the 15 pitches today.  The huge Nigerian interest in Go Global shows just how much huge entrepreneurial talent and potential already exists in Nigeria’s digital economy.  I’m committed to bringing together the best of the UK’s tech sector with Nigeria’s tech entrepreneurs. This is a win-win for both our economies. The Go Global programme is the first of many support programmes, particularly in the areas of tech and financial inclusion that we will be working with Nigeria on, following the commitments made last August when the Prime Minister visited Nigeria.  “

She also added that due to the volume and quality of applications received in Nigeria the number of Nigeria, two additional slots had been awarded, bringing the number of winners up to 7 from 5.

The winning Nigerian entrepreneurs are : RemindMe, an app by Innovation corner that would use USSD and text to remind new mothers of vaccination dates, Piggybank; an automates savings and investment solution, Social Lender; a money lending solution that uses social media platforms, Thriveagric; a program that lowers the entry barrier for people willing to invest in agriculture by connecting farmers to crowdsourced finance, Helium Health; a hospital management software, Helpmum; an app that provides healthcare information to combat maternal and infant mortality, and eTrash2Cash; an online platform that will help low income & marginalized women earn & save cash benefits for gathering trash for recycling.

Prominent UK tech sector leader Gary Stewart, Director of Wayra UK and a panel judge, said: “I’ve been deeply impressed by the quality of the Nigerian start-ups pitching today.  The UK’s tech sector thrives on international collaboration and I look forward to seeing more Nigerian companies look to the UK for finance and business opportunities.”

Minister for Digital Margot James said: “This is a fantastic opportunity to support Nigerian start-ups and entrepreneurs to build their businesses and develop solutions to global challenges. I congratulate those firms chosen to participate in this exciting and intensive programme in the UK. It is an integral part of the deep UK-Nigeria tech partnership announced during Prime Minister May’s visit to Africa in August and will be a real boost to those using technology to improve people’s lives.”

The UK is ideally placed to be Nigeria’s go to tech partner. The UK has produced 1 in 5 of the continent’s billion-dollar tech unicorns and is home to the big European tech investors, with 7 of Europe’s 10 leading unicorn venture capital hunter funds. More than 2.1 million people work in the UK’s digital economy.   The scheme aims to boost both countries’ economies and help the UK achieve its aim of being the best place in the world to start and grow a digital business.

Moët & Chandon’s “The Film Gala” honoring up and coming short filmmakers in the Nigerian film industry.

LAGOS – The inaugural edition of The Film Gala®, hosted by Osas Ighodaro-Ajibade,  2010 Miss Black USA Pageant winner and acclaimed actress, and by Toni Tones, singer, songwriter and actress, at the Wings Tower, Victoria Island, and presented by Filmhouse Cinemas, in partnership with Moët & Chandon, was held on the 26th of January, 2019. Filmhouse Cinemas, the premiere movie/film platform in Nigeria and Moët & Chandon, the official champagne of the Golden Globes, collaborated to bring to the forefront of the Nigerian film industry bodies of work that are breaking the norm in contemporary Nigerian cinema and inspiring really creative pieces of art. And as such, it was no surprise that the theme of the night was “Married To The Arts.”

 

Gracing the purple carpet of The Film Gala was the crème de la crème of the entertainment industry. The likes of Ngozi Nwosu, Chinedu Ikedieze, Shaffy Bello, Dakore Egbuson, Alex Ekubo, Kemi Adetiba, Iretiola Doyle, Oyeka Udoka, Waje, Omawumi, Abimbola Craig and Timini Egbuson were among the celebrities in attendance. Many more A-list industry stars, music luminaries and the upper echelon of Lagos society made their way to the gala in the most elegant fashion.

The Film Gala was curated to celebrate and honor the works of our game changers and groundbreaking members of our ever-blooming film industry. The gala featured the best of Nollywood and various initiatives that left strong imprints in the industry, and society as a whole. Most importantly, it was an event that reflected the continuity of support, promotion of opportunity and growth that the community has given to Nigeria’s growing film industry. In that same vein, the Film Gala awarded Michael Akinkunle Akinrogunde, an AFP Alumnus and filmmaker with Accelerate TV,  with a One Million Naira cash prize from VISA and Filmhouse Cinemas, a distribution deal on his first feature-length film, and with The Lady®, its official statuette, for his short film, “Penance.” The young filmmaker was voted ‘best short film director’ and his film voted ‘best short film’ by the audience via live visual audience votes after his film and other incredibly outstanding shorts, carefully selected and nominated, were viewed.

The Film Gala was curated to celebrate and honor the works of our game changers and groundbreaking members of our ever-blooming film industry. The gala featured the best of Nollywood and various initiatives that left strong imprints in the industry, and society as a whole. Most importantly, it was an event that reflected the continuity of support, promotion of opportunity and growth that the community has given to Nigeria’s growing film industry. In that same vein, the Film Gala awarded Michael Akinkunle Akinrogunde, an AFP Alumnus and filmmaker with Accelerate TV, with a One Million Naira cash prize from VISA and Filmhouse Cinemas, a distribution deal on his first feature-length film, and with The Lady®, its official statuette, for his short film, “Penance.” The young filmmaker was voted ‘best short film director’ and his film voted ‘best short film’ by the audience via live visual audience votes after his film and other incredibly outstanding shorts, carefully selected and nominated, were viewed.
Seyi Tinubu, CEO of Loatsad Promomedia, presented the award to Michael Akinrogunde, while the representatives of Filmhouse Cinemas, Lolu Desalu and of Moët & Chandon, Elizabeth Oputa, addressed the audience on this groundbreaking artistic partnership that will ultimately redefine award season in the industry and the film industry as a whole. Moët & Chandon has a long-standing affair with cinema and this innovative partnership with the foremost cinematic platform in the Nigerian industry, Filmhouse Cinemas, is sure to make luminous the magic in all the budding talent and art within the industry.

The team behind the gala, Filmhouse Cinemas, and Moët & Chandon, definitely brought the theme of the event to life with the decor and ambiance that depicted classical art and opulence. They also presented fine dining to their guests through the exquisite and sumptuous dishes of chef extraordinaire, Chef Eros. Guests were served a four-course meal consisting of Lobster Bisque, Duck Salad, Poached Chicken and an assortment of desserts. All the meals were paired with the finest selections of champagnes within the Moët & Chandon’s range.
The post-gala after party followed immediately after this exclusive event, which was held by the waterside of the Wings Tower, a specially extended section outside the main auditorium the gala event was held in. It began with an explosion of fireworks as guests danced and mingled, popping Moët and Chandon champagne and Hennessy bottles, revelling in the magic and grandeur of the lit night sky. And what a beautiful night it was!