Times Magazine has released its annual list for the 100 Most Influential People in the World and where names like Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, Beyonce, Pharell Williams and more do not surprise us, it is a pleasure to see a number of Africans also on the list such as Nigeria’s Aliko Dangote, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala on the list and South Africa’s Thuli Mandosela, Kenya’s Binyavanga Wainaina, Uganda’s Sister Rosemary Nyirumbe and more.
Bill Gates wrote the piece on Aliko Dangote and he states, “Aliko is Africa’s richest man, and his business activities drive economic growth across the continent. That’s impressive, but I know him best as a leader constantly in search of ways to bridge the gap between private business and public health.”
Chimananda Adichie wrote the piece on Kenyan writer, Binyavanga Wainaina and she says, “By the time he was 10 years old, Binyavanga Wainaina knew he was gay. But he lived in Kenya, a country that demonized homosexuality. And so for years he pretended to be what he was not. In December 2012, his friend — a fellow gay man who had also spent his life mired in pretense — got sick. Even as he lay dying, he could not tell his family that he was sick. His death broke Binyavanga’s spirit. The best-known Kenyan writer of his generation, he felt an obligation to chip away at the shame that made people like his friend die in silence.”
Bono, lead singer of U2 a rock band writes about Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, he says, “I first met economist Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala when she was campaigning for Nigerian debt relief. We’d been fighting our way through capitals around the world trying to get Cold War–era debts canceled for the poorest, most heavily indebted countries. During her first term as Finance Minister of Nigeria, Ngozi arrived at her desk to find a weighty $30 billion owed. With oil prices on the rise, she stopped having to plead with her creditors and bought a massive chunk of her own debt so she could cancel it herself. As if to make a point. She became a legend in that moment”
Check out the full profiles on all 100 people on the list Here.by