Easter Quote

“What reason have atheists for saying that we cannot rise again? That what has never been, should be, or that what has been, should be again? Is it more difficult to come into being than to return to it.”

Blaise Pascal

Africa

Konga’s CEO resigns via a tweet

Shola Adekoya made the unexpected announcement via Twitter on March 28 2018, where he handed over to Nick and wished him all the best.

He has given no reason for his exit. Neither were there any traces of tension or misunderstanding in the message he sent. Shola wrote a simple message to Nick informing him of his latest promotion and appreciating both current and ex-staff of Konga for their collaboration and support during his years of service as CEO.

Before his appointment as CEO, however, Nick Imudia was the Regional Director of TCL/Alcatel responsible for Nigeria and Central African Operations. Before then, he was the Managing Director of Nokia for West and Central Africa. Nick will assume responsibility as CEO of Konga on Tuesday 03, April 2018.

She Leads Africa is Facebook’s partner to launch business training for women

She Leads Africa, an online community helping young African women achieve their professional dreams, has partnered with Facebook to launch an initiative that helps women build, grow and start their own businesses.

The #SheMeansBusiness initiative was launched by Facebook on International Women’s Day in 2016 to encourage more women start their own businesses and increase the economy of countries.

According to findings, the initiative has recorded tremendous success in India and Philippine where it operates. There could be no better choice for partnership as studies in Nigeria estimated that women-owned businesses in Nigeria hold the key to unlocking ₦19.7 billion for the economy and the opportunity of creating additional jobs in the next five years.

The Cofounder of She Leads Africa, Afua Osei, revealed that Facebook is looking forward to taking critical digital tools to entrepreneurs across Nigeria.

Egypt’s presidential elections storm comes and goes but Abdel Fattah el Sisi is unshaken

The 2018 Presidential elections in Egypt have come and gone. Egyptians now await official results from the National Elections Authority (NEA). However, local media projects a landslide victory for incumbent president Abdel Fattah el Sisi, while the candidate and head of the El Ghad Party, Moussa Moustafa Moussa concedes defeat and promises to champion a constructive opposition.

The NEA will officially announce the election results on April 2, 2018, even though the winners are already known. Many potentially strong contenders in the elections withdrew their candidatures. They cited state intimidation from the pro el Sisi camp and bias from NEA.

Many initially questioned Moussa Moustafa’s presidential ambitions. He has, however,  expressed his support for el Sisi’s leadership and policies. Moussa, had earlier launched a campaign to mobilize support for Sisi’s second term, but was later revealed in January as a surprise challenger to Sisi. This was a very suspicious declaration that made many to wonder if he truly wanted to challenge the president.

Cameroon

Nexttel joins the masters of mobile to launch its mobile money service

Since its launch in 2011, Mobile Money has had an estimated FCFA 870 billion transaction between 2014 and 2016. MTN and Orange have since fought to lead the mobile money space. As the two heavyweights battled for the lion’s share, the newborn telco Nexttel, retreated to the backyard.

However, four years after launching its services in Cameroon, the Vietnamese subsidiary, recently obtained the greenlight to launch its own mobile money service. The telco intends to call the service, Nexttel Possa.

In line with this new achievement, the mobile telco gladdens the hearts of its users, promising to offer almost all the services offered by the giants. This includes money transfers, bill payment and purchasing communication credit. In order to facilitate this new initiative, the company decided to partner with the United Bank of Africa–UBA.

Though the company’s authorities haven’t revealed the services’s launch date, users can expect Nexttel Possa anytime from now.

Absentee President receives international bashing as senatorial elections hold in his absence

Cameroon’s President Paul Biya, has recently come under heavy bashing from an international civil society organization for being an absentee president. He is accused for supposedly governing the Central African nation in a “hands-off” style. His recently held cabinet meeting inspired these criticisms.

The president according to the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP), spent an estimated 60 days out of the country last year on private visits alone.

Mr Biya’s foreign trips have been the subject of an online quarrel between the state-owned Cameroon Tribune newspaper and which calculated the amount of time the president spent abroad using reports from the daily newspaper.

The president’s party, the Cameroon Peoples Democratic Movement (CPDM), on March 25, 2018, won senatorial elections from unofficial results organized in his absence. According to state broadcaster, Crtv, Paul Biya had traveled to China for an official working visit with Chinese President Xi JinPing.

The octogenarian president has been in power for more than 35 years. Presidential elections will hold in October 2018. Cameroonians are, however, still waiting for the 85-year-old to declare his intention on whether to seek reelection or not.

World

Twitter delivers on its promise to ban cryptos

Twitter promised last week to join the crypto crackdown. On Tuesday, the ‘bluebird’ company effectively began blocking crypto ads, becoming the latest Internet giant to take action after Google and Facebook earlier this year. The clampdown seeks to avoid giving publicity to potential fraud or large investor losses.

According to the firm, the ban will include cracking down on initial coin offerings (ICOs) – crowdfunding used to raise cash by creating new coins. The price of bitcoin which stood at 4% on Monday, fell further after this announcement, trading at $7.920 on the Luxembourg-based Bitstamp exchange.

The new policy will also ban ads from cryptocurrency exchanges and cryptocurrency wallet services.

The firm had said this month it was taking measures to prevent crypto-related accounts from “engaging with others in a deceptive manner”. It however, faced calls to go further after bans from Facebook Inc and Alphabet Inc’s Google. Facebook has restricted crypto-related ads, while Google announced a ban that comes into force in June.

As the cryptocurrency crackdown widens, LinkedIn has also began blocking crypto-related ads. Once restricted to small online chat rooms, cryptocurrencies have since exploded in popularity and the industry has grown rapidly.

Despite promising tech and funding, futuristic camera maker Lytro, shuts down

In 2012, Lytro released a new product — a consumer camera that lets users refocus images after shooting them. But 6 years and $216 million in funding later, Lytro is shutting down. Rumours of a $ 40 million Google acquisition surfaced last week. But the pioneering light field camera company has officially announced that it’s winding down operations.

“It has been an honor and a pleasure to contribute to the cinema and Virtual Reality communities, but starting today, we will not be taking on new productions or providing professional services as we prepare to wind down the company,” the company wrote in a blog post. And a large fraction of former Lytro employees will be joining Google as well.

Lytro has struggled for years to build a viable business with its novel camera technology. But in 2015, it laid off a significant portion of its workforce and shifted into the world of virtual reality. According to the firm, competing directly with established camera companies had been a mistake.

Lytro however discovered the hard truth that it’s extremely difficult to disrupt the existing photography market with a brand new technology. The company failed to gain traction with its originally $400 light field camera, a $1,600 “pro” one, and finally, a 360-degree light field rig that cost hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Founded in 2006, Lytro has amassed over $210 million in funding over its lifetime, the latest cash injection amounting to $60 million in 2017.

Did Pope Francis say there’s no hell?

A statement purportedly made by Pope Francis that “there is no hell” to a well-known Italian journalist has prompted a disclaimer from the Vatican. Italy’s La Repubblica daily reportedly quoted the statement in an article. In a reaction, the Vatican said “no quotations” in the article “should be considered as a faithful transcription” of the Pope’s words.

According to the Vatican, the article, however, capitalized on a private meeting. The doctrine of the Catholic Church affirms the existence of eternal hell. It is stated in Catholic Catechism that the souls of sinners descend into hell, where they suffer “eternal fire.”

Nevertheless, the most senior Catholic in England and Wales, argued that “there’s nowhere in Catholic teaching that actually says any one person is in hell.” Cardinal Vincent Nichols, told the BBC that the Pope was apparently exploring “the imagery of hell – fire and brimstone and all of that”. “That’s never been part of Catholic teaching, it’s been part of Catholic iconography, part of Christian iconography,” he noted.

The Italian Journalist Eugenio Scalfari, who is an avowed atheist had asked the Pope where “bad souls” go and where they are punished. The Pope is quoted to have responded that “Souls are not punished…those who repent obtain God’s forgiveness and go among the ranks of those who contemplate him, but those who do not repent and cannot be forgiven disappear. There is no hell – there is the disappearance of sinful souls.”

According to the Vatican, it was not an interview. It was a private meeting on the occasion of Easter, and Scalfari’s article “is the fruit of his reconstruction.”

Silicon Times

Events

  • Participate in the Cape Town-based Ed-Tech Next program and get free workshops, support, mentoring and $50.000 starting from July. Deadline is April 3, 2018.
  • Get  a chance to meet 50 most influential young cameroonians during the awards ceremony and official ranking announcements taking place on April 8, 2018 from 5 PM to 9 PM at Banquet Hall, Chariot Hotel, Buea.
  • Don’t miss out on the exclusive Cameroonian event where opportunities for Cameroonians in technology will be launched in the Cameroon Digital: Thought Leaders Luncheon on April 16, 2018 from 11 AM to 3 PM in Douala.
  • Get a platform for discussions on issues affecting the African continent and proper solutions during the Ghana Nigeria Youth Summit on April 28, 2018 from 10AM to 3PM at the Onikan Youth Center, Lagos.
  • Grab an amazing opportunity to meet Human Resources Professionals in the Workshop on Writing HR Policies and Procedures from November 12 to 16, 2018, 9 AM to 5 PM at HCA Learning Centre Ikeja, Lagos.
  • Don’t miss out on the Cameroon Customer Experience Summit 2018 coming up strong on May 12, 2018 at the St. David Hotel, Douala.
  • Be a participant in the Seminar on Intellectual Property Rights on April 13, 2018 from 2 PM, top-left floor, 1st Trust Building, Buea. Contact 654571447 for details.

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