Five Hacks For Looking Fashionable on a Budget

You do not need to break the bank all in the name of looking good. This is because you can still spend less and still appear fashionable. The important thing here is how you wear what you have.

Correspondingly, we share ways you can look good or fashionable on a budget.

Get easy to pair clothes

The first tip to building your wardrobe is to make sure you have enough basics to serve a variety of different outfits. This means looking for clothes that are neutral, free of complicated patterns and easy to pair with other clothes. These include plain t-shirts with simple necklines in multiple colours, a pair of form-fitting blue jeans in your favourite cut, simple ballet flat shoes, a decent jacket or blazer in a dark colour and a pair of black pants.

Sell or swap with friends

Rather than giving away unwanted clothes or throwing them away, see if your friends are interested – then ask if there’s anything in their wardrobe they don’t want anymore. Swapping clothes with your friends can give new life to unloved pieces and help everyone pick out new pieces to freshen up their wardrobe.

Look for sales and clearance items

The best way to keep budgets low is to get your clothes from online clearance sales. Many fantastic pieces end up in these stores due to inability to move product, or sometimes because a store simply needs to make space for new goods, meaning you’ll find great pieces at low prices in these stores.

Browse thrift stores

Along with looking for sales and clearances, your clothes can also come from thrift stores. These places hold a unique mix of clothes donated by those who lost interest in them for a variety of reasons. Perfectly good clothing will end up here for outrageously low prices.

Get creative with combinations

The best way to keep your outfits fresh is to swap out small pieces or parts. This is why you want staples, and why you should build up a generous collection of accessories such as cardigans, scarves, belts and jewellery that can add flair and a sense of change to your outfits.

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2019 General Elections: Five Candidates Set For Presidential Debate

Nigerian Elections Debate Group (NEDG) and the Broadcasting Organisations of Nigeria (BON) have named only five political parties, to participate in 2019 vice presidential and presidential debates.

According to a statement signed by the Executive Secretary of the NEDG, Eddi Emesiri, the parties are Allied Congress Party of Nigeria (ACPN), Alliance for New Nigeria (ANN), All Progressives Congress (APC), Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Young Progressives Party (YPP).

This means the presidential candidates expected at the debate are Atiku Abubakar, Muhammadu Buhari, Oby Ezekwesili, Fela Durotoye and Kingsley Moghalu.

BON and NEDG have excluded Omoyele Sowore of the African Alliance Congress; Donald Duke of the Social Democratic Party; Tope Fasua, and a host of others.

The Vice Presidential debate will hold from 7pm at the congress hall of the Transcorp Hilton in Abuja on Friday, December 14, 2018.

The presidential debate will hold on Saturday, January 19, 2019.

The debates will be transmitted live on all BON member stations and its affiliates as well as live streaming on all social media platforms.

According to NEDG and BON, the debate will focus on the issues that matter most to working families; restoring the economy, providing electricity, creating jobs, securing health care for every Nigerian, making and achieving excellence in every Nigerian school and ensuring safety and security for Nigerians.

The Nigerian Election Debate Group sets the format and rules of the debate, handles moderation, outlines the criteria for political party participation, ensures the objectivity of audiences and steers negotiations between broadcasters and the parties.

 

Gifting With Convenience this Christmas Season

December is here and a good number of people love the last month of the year regardless of their religious beliefs. This is because there will be quite a handful of holidays, a lot of giving, gifting and sharing not only by individuals but also by corporate organisations and the ambience will be celebratory.

Interestingly, gifting has become a trend for the yuletide to show appreciation to clients, loyal customers as well as groom or nurture relationships for the upcoming year. And corporate organisations and individuals are constantly searching for affordable and convenient ways to gift without breaking the bank. eCommerce is the solution.

Convenient Christmas Gifting
eCommerce has already disrupted the way Nigerians make their purchases. Across the country, you will find not only millennials but also digital immigrants ordering items online.

Corporate gifting is not an exception here as organisations can outsource their gifting plans to an eCommerce company, who in turn, takes the responsibility of delivering the best gifts notwithstanding if it is modern or traditional, at the most affordable price. Beyond this, these companies assist you with the choice of product, discount requests, ensure availability and delivery. This will enable organisations to focus on offering sterling services to client and customers during the whole yuletide.

Alternatively, organisations can sign up to Jumia Corporate in which they will get the highest level of support/dedicated account manager, fast shipping nationwide, electronic invoicing, exclusive offers (employee incentive solutions, rewards solutions), effective return policy, access to express delivery options and largest assortment of products in Nigeria with over 2,000,000 products.
Gifts for Christmas
Christmas gifts can either be traditional or modern depending on who you are giving. However, in Nigeria, the most shared Christmas gifts include rice, oil, hampers and promotional/customised gifts. Whatever the gifts you are giving, the most important things is for you to personalise it.

Tips For Giving The Best Christmas Gifts
Choosing effective and impactful corporate gifts for your clients and customers is not as difficult as many believe. Just follow these few tips and get the best gifts.

(a) Don’t buy gifts that will end up in the trash: most companies have the basics handled. The world has gone digital, and your clients don’t need a calendar to put on the wall near their desk. Unless they are a car enthusiast and you gave them images of their favourite automobiles, it’s not likely that they’ll hang your company calendar next to their desktop.

(b) Personalise it: you should try to include your business name on your corporate gift. There are no problems with a branded gift so long as it is tactful and provides value at home or in the office.

(c) Do think of something your client will appreciate: be thoughtful. Developing a rapport with your clients is important throughout the year. Use the holidays as an opportunity to let them know you were listening.

“Concerts should be a vibe and we should feed off each other’s energy” – Adekunle Gold

 

Ahead of his three-day live music concert, which starts on Thursday December 13, through Saturday December 15, talented artiste Adekunle Gold spoke to Guardian Music on the concert and his exploits so far.

You recently released your sophomore album, About 30, which was one of the most anticipated albums of the year and received critical acclaim worldwide, what actually inspired the album?

The album loosely narrates all my experiences till date, the predominant theme being love. So, I guess you can say my love for my experiences and love itself was my inspiration.

About 30 was a very intimate album in which fans accompanied you through the last three decades of your life. Can your fans expect this type of intimacy with your three-day concert this December?

I’m really excited about how my concert is designed this year; I love how my fans will be within reach from me. I’ve never been too keen on tables before general admission, concerts should be a vibe and we should feed off each other’s energy.

Why did you decide to perform three consecutive days? And how are you preparing mentally, physically and vocally for this?

Grueling is an understatement, but when I wake up every morning, I remind God and myself that I want this, that’s half of the battle won.

The rest is preparation; I have been rehearsing, working out like crazy and getting toned and sculpted! I have worked very hard leading up to this and know for sure it is going to be one of my best performances.

What should the audience expect in those three days?

Each day is different with mashups with different acts.

I’m a huge fan of mashups and I’m excited that we get to blend thematic songs with other artists. Its going to be incredible.

There’s a big surprise I am not allowed to share, you’ll just have to wait till the shows to find out. Its even a surprise to me that this surprise chose to honour me. I can’t wait.

Last year, you thrilled fans with your performance at One Night Stand with Adekunle Gold concert with your band 79th element. What was in your opinion the highlight of your show last year? What can we expect this year?

Last year was so much fun for me, the highlight of it was performing on the secret B stage with Simi, what made me happier was everyone’s reaction, I felt I was making my fan base happy, that made me happier, to see their faces beaming with joy that we had brought another stage to the back.

Last year, there were surprise performances from Simi, Seyi Shay, Teni, Funbi and others. This year, who can guests expect on the stage with you?

Surprise Surprise Surprise! I am sworn to secrecy, but look at the album About 30 and feel free to guess.

The Balmoral convention Centre is a much bigger venue space than this year’s venue, Terra Kulture, why the change?

In practicality, Terra Kulture is almost the same capacity but just spread over three days.

There is a plethora of reasons, but I don’t want to give away all my secrets just yet. But on an important note, If I don’t challenge myself, I am not growing, I have prayers to be bigger than your known pop icons, how would I get there if I don’t challenge myself? They do it, why can’t I?

Credits: This interview was pulled off Guardian’s website – http://www.guardian.ng/Life

Introducing Waje’s Sophomore Album ‘Red Velvet’

waje album

Waje has dropped her highly anticipated sophomore album Red Velvet and we cannot be more excited.

Aituaje Iruobe, better known by her stage name WAJE an acronym for “Words Aren’t Just Enough”  released this 10-track 5 years after her self-titled debut album, so we can guess that a lot of work went into its production.

With her incredible vocal range and outstanding songs, this new album shows off the singer’s diversity and musical prowess all centred around the theme of love.

Most thrilling about this album is even though Waje sings about love, we are treated to several genres, stories, and, most importantly, vocal dexterity. From the soulful tracks like Calm Down, which has some jazz influence, The Truth, and Udue to the pop hits such as Be Mine and Got Your Back, we explore love from varying perspectives. In addition to features by Adekunle Gold and Johnny Drille, the album also offers songs with electronic/house influences, another side of Waje we totally love.

See the tracklist below:

waje album

Five Reasons To Visit the Lekki Conservation Centre

Deciding what to do and where to go in Lagos can be a tedious task because the options seem limited and monotonous. The activities usually alternate between going to the cinema and going out to eat. Lucky for Lagosians and tourist, Lagos is evolving and the number of engaging activities and places to visit seems to be growing. One of such places is Lekki Conservation Center, it is a gem in Lagos and one of Lagos’s top tourist attractions. This post is going to highlight why the Lekki Conservation Center is a great place to visit.

Lekki Conservation Center is a 190-acre Natural resource conservation centre. It was established in 1990 by the Nigerian Conservation Foundation and built by Chevron Corporation with the aim to be a reserved sanctuary for rich flora and fauna. It is located on the Lekki Peninsula, next to the Lekki Lagoon. The nature park has the longest Canopy walkway in Africa. The Conservation Centre is a nonprofit organization but visitors are required to pay a token.

Lekki Conservation Centre is a great place to visit, it has a lot of engaging activities and attraction. If you are a nature lover this is the place for you. If you are simply looking for something new and different to do then this is an awesome place to visit. You can make it a family thing or you can go alone if you simply wish to appreciate nature alone. Here are five reasons you need to visit the centre.

1. The Lekki Conservation centre canopy walkway:

This is a major tourist attraction, it has the longest canopy walk in Africa. It is 401 meters long, it is wonderfully designed with a swinging bridge walkway. The canopy walkway takes you through the nature parks vegetation. The canopy walk gives the tourist a bird’s eye view of the nature park’s vegetation and unique wildlife. If you enjoy adrenaline pumping activities then the canopy walk is definitely for you. The canopy walk will treat you to a unique and memorable experience.

2. Wildlife and flora:

The Lekki Conservation centre boasts of some very interesting wildlife, visitors can get to see crocodiles, a 95-year-old tortoise, monkeys, snakes, beautiful peacocks and other wild animals. The nature park is filled with a rich selection of different trees and healthy flora. As you walk through the 2km bridge you will be treated to the flora and lovely wildlife. The animals roam freely, searching and trying to spot the different animals is a popular activity among visitors. The nature park also contains a variety of beautiful fish ponds.

3. Treehouse:

There’s also a huge tree house or treetop walkway, where you can climb to get a great view of the nature park.

4. Human-sized chess board:

There’s also a human-sized chess game, if you are interested in a more relaxing and calm outing, you can play a game of chess on the human-sized chess board.

5. Huts:

The nature park contains some mini huts that are made from raffia. They are a nice place to relax or have a picnic.

 

The Convergence: Not Too Young To Run Set To Host 400 Youth Candidates

The Not Too Young to Run Movement and the United Kingdom Department for International Development (UKAID) is set to host a conference for youth candidates running for office in the 2019 elections. The Conference is scheduled to hold on December 10 – 12, 2018 at Shehu Musa Yar’Adua Centre, Abuja by 9:00am daily.

The conference tagged ‘The Convergence: Power, Capacity, Politics’ is poised to be the largest gathering of youth candidates drawn from 91 registered political parties. 400 youth candidates are expected to attend this conference. Most of them are direct beneficiaries of the Not Too Young To Run legislation passed by the National Assembly.

With 12 Talk Session and 6 master classes, The Convergence will be having 30 speakers which includes young lawmakers from countries in Africa, leaders with inspiring stories, development partners, academics and civil society.

The age reduction bill (also known as Not Too Young To Run) which was assented to by President Muhammadu Buhari on 31 May 2018 reduced the age qualification for the office of the President from 40 to 35; House of Representatives 30 to 25 and State House of Assembly 30 to 25. The age qualification for Governor and Senate was retained at 35 years contrary to the demands of the Nigerian people.

The signing of the Not Too Young To Run bill marked the beginning of a new era in the politics of our great nation to enhance democratic development, deepen intergenerational dialogue and learning, reduce political violence and instability, enhance competitive politics, but above all, fulfill an essential requirement of democracy which is to facilitate the implementation of the fundamental right of political participation for Nigeria’s youth, which form 65% of the population and 53% of registered voter.

As part of efforts to facilitate the implementation of the right to political participation, the Movement worked tirelessly to ensure the age reduction constitutional amendment as well as actively engaged and advocated for youth representation within political parties. This became the inspiration for the new wave of youth political participation with more young people aspiring for elective office and currently under 30 year olds emerging as party candidates to contest in the 2019 general elections.

The Convergence is designed to equip youth candidates with necessary tools for running effective political campaigns. The conference is a unique platform for youth candidates to build their competence, network, share experiences and advocate for greater representation and credible 2019 elections.

The Convergence also aims to steer youth candidates away from the prevailing failure of leadership and governance and equip them with the right attitude and values to deliver good governance and quality representation in Nigeria.

The movement retains its identity as a non-partisan and citizen-led movement of citizens dedicated to the defense of democracy and nation building. The movement will not be transiting into a political party.

The Not Too Young To Run movement is a movement of youth and civil society groups advocating for the reduction of age for running for elective offices to mainstream young men and women in electoral politics. Not Too Young To Run is Nigeria’s largest and most successful youth movement in recent times. The movement is driven by the compelling need to restructure the country’s political system to address the deeply entrenched system of political exclusion and institute inclusive politics, transformative leadership and electoral competitiveness in the electoral process.

The Opportunity Cost of Doing Business for SMEs in Africa

The African economy has gathered momentum over the years, with an estimated increase of 3.8% of the real output growth in 2017. As the largest economies gradually strengthen, the 2018/2019 performance should reach 4.1% according to the African Development Bank. This economic growth and sustainable development has largely been contributed by Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs). In Kenya for instance, SMEs contribute approximately 40% to the GDP and employ over half of the country’s workforce.

Yet, becoming a profitable SME in the continent is never a smooth sail for many. There’s the presence of stringent government regulations in several countries, though the flexibility of doing business in others is a force to be reckoned with. The World Bank has recognized Kenya as having implemented the most reforms in the region between June 2016 and June 2017. These include the reduction of the number of procedures required to register a business, as well as utilizing a single window system to reduce the time for import documentary compliance. Then there’s the implementation of iTax, an online platform that allows Kenyans to easily register their businesses, fill and pay corporate income tax among others.

Moreover, access to credit remains one of the biggest hindrances for SMEs in Africa to thrive. The major banks are mainly huddled in big cities, making it difficult for a predominant section of businesses in the rural areas to access formal financial services. Besides, there exists rigorous risk assessment requirements by financial institutions that tend to limit the number of businesses that can access credit. These requirements include but are not limited to collateral, which often proves cumbersome to acquire even when trying to access short term credit or simply, is non-existent.

According to Juan Seco, the Chief Operating Officer of JumiaPay, “Non-collateral loans are on the other hand quite expensive for most SMEs in Africa, with an Annual Percentage Rate (APR) that can go as high as 300% in Kenya and 240% in Nigeria.” The Central Bank of Nigeria records about 69 percent of SMEs who wanted to apply for loans but failed, due to fear of application rejection related to collateral requirements and other associated conditions attached to the loan approval processes such as bad scores.

Notably, the entry of Fintechs (Financial Technology) companies into the banking market in Africa, is gradually improving the process of accessing credit for SMEs. Jumia is one of the companies revolutionizing the sector with its Jumia Lending service, an initiative that provides working capital financing for short-term borrowers. These are vendors selling on the online ecommerce platform for at least six months, seeking to expand and grow their online business. The program aims at boosting financial inclusion in the continent, not only by providing sellers with an online visibility and a vast customer base; but also, with access to affordable working capital to boost their commerce.

Juan Seco notes that, “we understand the challenges faced by our vendors and SMEs in general, to access working capital financing. We have therefore, also partnered with some of the best institutions where we try to bridge the gap for sellers seeking long term credit facilities. With Jumia being in the middle, our lending partners have the security that the data of our sellers on Jumia, such as sales or customer ratings is accurate. In addition, we give them first lien on the sales on Jumia, so even though these are not collateralized loans, they are highly de-risked as we give them some control over the sellers’ cash flows. For our sellers, we understand they cannot afford to spend hours in
traffic and at the branch, so we digitize the onboarding process, so they can keep running their shops and not lose valuable income”.

Currently applicable in Kenya and Nigeria, and soon to be launched in other countries where Jumia has operations, the Lending Program involves a quick online registration process with feedback provided within 72 hours. Vendor applicants benefit from low interest rates of as low as 12% per annum, on the non-collateral loans with flexible repayment plans of between 1- 6 months.

“I am on the second loan and the process of paying back is quite efficient and flexible since you get to plan your installment deposits and manage it by yourself. I have managed to grow my business capital and gotten higher returns. When I lost funds and communicated the same to the lending team, they gave me a grace period to recover; a benefit that is not available on other lending facilities,” says Nauri Mwei, a vendor on Jumia.

The impression fintechs such as Jumia Lending are leaving on credit consumers and especially SMEs in Africa, is that of value add to their businesses. They are bridging a long existing gap in financial inclusion in relations to credit access, by providing a more transparent and seamless way of availing financial services to a wider range of consumers in the continent.

Credit: Josephine Wawira

Superb, Outstanding Food in Enugu, Look No Further Than Chinel’s Kitchen – @Stansbaby

Ndi Enugu always know the very best places to get local foods and try to keep it a secret.

Let’s break the code.

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If you are in Enugu,  add Chinel’s Kitchen on your list for quality food at reasonable prices.

Good news is: you order and they deliver promptly.

We had a chat with the amazing entrepreneur that heads the operations of Chinel’s Kitchen.

TELL US ABOUT CHINELS KITCHEN

Well, my name is Chinelo Igbelina. I am the CEO of Chinel’s Kitchen, a food service company based in Enugu. We pride ourselves on the ability to provide quality and tasty food as well as excellent services at pocket friendly prices.

HOW I STARTED

I have always loved to cook and eat food. While in school, I would cook for myself or friends. I would help friends with food if they had an event. You know, always on a small scale. Then, after graduation and I started work, it became a hobby until a friend encouraged me to make a business out of it.

WHERE AND HOW DID YOU START

Like I mentioned earlier, I didn’t have any form of structure when I began. I would just cook from the heart or I would research recipes and try out. Then came the advent of cooking shows and YouTube channels. However, I knew I needed more than passion for food so I enrolled in a culinary school in Lagos late 2016. This really helped me improve my requisite skills and open up my eyes to the potentials in the food business. Afterwards, I interned at a hotel in Ikeja for three months in 2017.

Chinel’s Kitchen formally kicked off in October 2018 and it has been an awesome journey.

MAJOR MILESTONES

I think my major milestone is having an ever growing client base that keeps growing by word of mouth referrals of satisfied customers. Also, since we began, we have catered two weddings successfully. We have also handled birthday parties and get-togethers. It’s early days, yet, but we aim to keep improving our services as we move along so as to better satisfy our customers.

CHALLENGES

I prefer to see challenges positively as they serve to make me think creatively about the services we provide and how to better serve our customers.

The challenges include;

  1. Competition: We find ourselves competing against well-established names in the food business in Enugu so it has been a bit challenging getting customers as a lot of people prefer those big names, even at the cost of quality.

2. Cost: This also is a challenge as getting quality food items cost a pretty penny and impacts on the price the customer may eventually pay.

3. Infrastructure: Electricity can be a challenge. We have to keep these food items well preserved so we do not lose money needlessly.

All in all, they are issues we have taken in our stride and are working around so that we maintain the quality that has been come to be associated with us.

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HOW I USE SOCIAL MEDIA TO BOOST MY INITIATIVE

That’s like the cheapest advertising tool ever!!! (LOL).

Honestly, social media has helped bring Chinel’s Kitchen to people’s consciousness. For example, we got about 20 customers from advert we put up on Twitter once!!! It has also helped us forge critical partnerships with some ingredient suppliers and end users. It has been a blessing.

ADVICE FOR STARTUPS

Just a few tips really;

  1. Be patient: It’s hard, I know. Every start up wants to blow in the first year but these things take time, so, pace yourself.
  2. Be open to learning: No one really knows everything so every start up must be open to learning new ways of doing things, new ways of being efficient and cost cutting, fresh ideas to improve services rendered. It helps you innovate and be better.
  3. Your customers will ensure that you remain in business, so make them happy. Find ways to make your service stand out and you will be glad you didNo automatic alt text available.

YOU CAN CONTACT CHINEL’S KITCHEN ON:

Facebook: Chinel’s Kitchen

Instagram: chinels_kitchen

Twitter: @stansbaby

Our phone number is 07032032411.

You can also send us an email on chinelejehlina@gmail.com

Air Travel is Expensive in Africa But What Can Be Done to Make it Affordable? by Adeniyi Ogunfowoke

Image result for port harcourt international airport

 

The business of air travel in the continent of Africa is booming as commercial airlines are battling to get and cement their market share. This competition is awesome as currently, Africa’s aviation industry supports 6.8 million jobs and USD72.5 billion in economic activity. Unfortunately, this has had little or no impact on the rates of these airlines. This continues despite the presence of ‘budget airlines’ that fly to only a handful of destinations. While budget airlines have secured their foothold in other parts of the world, countries in Africa are still struggling to establish a continent-wide one.

Hence, it is unarguably true that Air travel is quite expensive and travellers within and outside the continent are left with no choice than to make these payments because they will be the ones to bear the brunt.

Even the International Air Transport Association (IATA) vice president for Africa Raphael Kuuchi recognises the fact that Air Travel in Africa has to become more affordable.

Kuuchi said that the cost of air travel in Africa is far more expensive than anywhere else in the world, and the reasons are this includes very high operating costs from the airport ends, high taxes and charges that are imposed by governments and other institutions on passengers and airlines.

Image result for Nigerian international airports

Indeed, there is the need for an urgent solution to reduce the cost of air transport in the continent despite many challenges highlighted by Kuuchi. This is key because an expensive air transport system will stifle the growth of the tourism industry as local and international tourists won’t want to visit destinations that are not affordable.

What can be done to make air transport in Africa more affordable?
Understandably, the government has a huge role to play when it comes to making air travel more affordable. The government should perhaps grant tax breaks to airlines, and create an air transport fund dedicated to the industry to reduce their overhead cost. Additionally, more airlines should collaborate so that they can deplore data and technology to cut cost which will have a ripple effect on the price of air travel.

Amidst the demand to make air travel more affordable, an online travel agency that has taken the bull by the horn to make air travel more affordable is Jumia‘s hotel and flight marketplace. The hotel and flight booking platform recently partnered with Amadeus, a leading travel technology company, to launch the first flight marketplace in Africa.

According to a statement announcing the partnership: “It is the base for a new flights marketplace on Jumia, that will be a step further towards making travel in Africa simple and affordable. The platform aims at enabling travel agents, airlines, and travel websites to bring all flight content online, to offer customers the best available prices for their flights.”

In summary, Jumia’s hotel and flight marketplace has created the first of its kind marketplace in Africa where rates are aggregated from different travel agents and airlines and this allows the air traveller to select the airline with the best available rate at that moment. And since the platform debuted in September, Jumia has seen a significant increase in booking as travellers jostle to get the best available rate.

In the near future, it is hoped that a budget airline that will cover Africa will come on board in order to make African travel less expensive. Till then, the Jumia flight marketplace is your sure bet to get the best flight rates.