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Group to assist NGOs, SMEs, others to access funding

The Africa Business Ventures and Investment Group, says it will assist civil society organisations (CSOs), non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and others access funding to address climate change and infrastructure deficit in Africa.

Some of participants at the forum

Chairman of the Board, Mr Moses Owharo, made this known at the inaugural Washington DC edition of the African Infrastructure, Climate Change and Investment Summit (AICIS) and Exhibition held via zoom, on Friday, June 21, 2024.

The Summit, with the theme “Fastening Collaboration with United States of America in Fostering Climate Resilient, Economic and Infrastructure, and Industrialisation in Africa”, was organised by the Group.

Those in collaboration with the Group include Office of Secretary to Government of the Federation (SGF), and the private sector.

Owharo, who is also a Harvard Business School Alumni, said the forum usually organised international conferences and Summit where policy makers, government and private sectors come together to look at challenging issues.

“We have had programmes in Ghana, Russia and other countries.

“This one holding is in the Washington DC, USA and due to some challenges; we are doing it in both Nigeria and U.S. via zoom.

“The objective is to set up a fund for Africa. That fund will assist organisations and even governments across Africa. This is because government cannot do it alone.

“Where there are gaps, we want to close the gaps. So we will set up those funds that practitioners, NGOs, Small and Medium-sized Enterprtise (SMEs), local governments and countries in Africa will participate.

“We will not do it alone, we will work with UN, American Government, Nigerian Government and other countries in Africa.

“This is to ensure that our deprived NGOs, CSOs SMEs and citizens of African can have resources that can be used to be actively involved in climate change actions and area of economy development,” Owharo said.

On the area of mining, he said that a lot of small scales miners in Africa did not have capital to involve in active mining.

According to him, lack of capital usually pushed them into illegal mining that leads to collapse of mining sites and death of miners.

He stressed that mining was a good venture but they needed training, capacity building and initial seed funding.

“There is need to open a portal or data base for them.

“That is one of the things that we are doing, especially with SMEs that are into commodity.

“We want to help them package and showcase their commodity to the international community which will increase their revenue.

“We also want to help them source for funding from funding agencies across the world,” he said.

Owharo further explained that the group also had partners in health infrastructure that would want to donate medical equipment to institutions that could deliver quality health care services to their community.

He also said that the group was in collaboration with Ministries of Trade and Investment, Foreign Affairs, Environment and SGF, Climate Change Council and many others.

Owharo added that the group would expand and solidify its relationships with both international and local partners.

Meanwhile, Prof. Chris Schrage from the University of Northern Iowa said that Africa needed to address the issue of mismanagement.

Schrage, who said that some African countries have unique transportation and educational system, added that climate change campaign should start from the schools.

She said that this was necessary to enable the young one get educated on dangers of climate change and how to address it.

During the Summit, Dr Brima Deen and other experts on Infrastructure, climate change and business investments from Washington DC and Abuja in Nigeria made impactful presentations.

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