While in Benin in the framework of the launching of the inclusive platform of actors in the pineapple industry in Cotonou, Ibrahim Gourouza-Magagi, regional director of GrowAfrica program, a NEPAD program, in charge of attracting private investment for the development of Agriculture in Africa – paid a visit to Songhai Center. The purpose of his visit on Wednesday, September 27, 2017, was mainly to contact the Center's authorities for future collaborations.
The inclusive platform of actors in the pineapple industry in Benin brings together all stakeholders - including Songhai Center - involved in the process of production, processing, distribution, research, financial services and bankers. It was therefore appropriate that, as part of the launching of activities of this platform, GrowAfrica's West Africa and Central Africa Region Director goes beyond the "room presentations" to get first hand experience of the reality on the field.
Thus in Songhai, although he did not have the opportunity to visit vast fields of pineapple, Ibrahim Gourouza-Magagi was however impressed by the quality of the work that is done in the Center and also by its biodiversity. He would have liked the Center to be much more widely known on a continental scale, for its development model that deserves, according to him, to be duplicated everywhere in Africa.
Finally, the exchanges with the Deputy Director of Songhaï Center, Wilnès Tilus, focused much more on the possibilities of working closely with the NGO for real agricultural development in Africa. Ibrahim Gourouza-Magagi promised to come back for a deeper working session with Songhai authorities, since this first visit is for him, a meeting to make contact.
GrowAfrica program was launched in 2011 by NEPAD, the African Union and the World Economic Forum; it intends to help countries involved to fully unlock their agricultural potential. More than half of the investment commitments made under this initiative come from African companies.