Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Minister of Agriculture and Forestry hosts annual toy distribution over the holidays

Children across the country celebrate Christmas with new toys

Equatorial Guinea’s Minister of Agriculture and Forestry, Teodoro Nguema Obiang Mangue, will donate up to 1,000,000 toys to children across the country in celebration of the Christmas season.

The distribution, which is an annual event, will begin December 23, 2011 in the capital, Malabo. Minister Nguema will then proceed to Bata, Mongomo and Luba and visit Bioko North and other cities throughout the nation until December 30. The social initiative will continue on January 5, when Minister Nguema travels to Edebellin, and January 7 when he goes to Annobon Island.

In between his visits, from December 31, 2011 to January 3, 2012, Minister Nguema will organize a concert in Malabo and Bata featuring up to 17 artists. The performances will be given by a range of well-known African, Latin American and American singers.

Minister Nguema hosts this week-long event to encourage progress and development for all ages. Last year, he distributed over 500,000 toys after participating in a three-day “Youth Congress” sponsored by the Democratic Party of Equatorial Guinea, where he was unanimously elected Chairman and President of the PDGE Youth Federation.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

New Cathedral in Equatorial Guinea is a Reminder of National Progress

President Obiang recalls government's restoration of religious freedom and commitment to a nationwide development program

The dedication of a new Catholic cathedral in the city of Mongomo, Equatorial Guinea, on December 7 served as a symbol of the nation’s economic development and the vigorous religious life of a country where the church was once violently suppressed.

President Obiang Nguema Mbasogo dedicated the new Basilica of the Immaculate
Conception in Equatorial Guinea’s easternmost city. In his remarks, he reminded his countrymen of his government’s efforts to restore religious freedom as one of its first acts upon assuming power. The previous regime had forced the "closure of churches and persecution of Christians, many of whom were forced into exile,” President Obiang said. “With our arrival, we proceeded to reopen all the churches closed by the former regime. We proceeded to release [political] prisoners, and ecclesiastical activity regained its vigor and normality."

The event was held on the eve of the feast of the Immaculate Conception in the capital of Wele Nsas province, President Obiang’s birthplace. More than 1,000 guests attended the religious ceremony, including President Francois Bozize of the Central African Republic, papal envoy Francis Cardinal Arinze, and Antoinette Nguesso, wife of the President of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

The attractive new basilica, done in a variation of neoclassical style, is named for the Blessed Virgin Mary, the patron saint of Equatorial Guinea. It can hold up to 8,000 people and took nearly six years to construct. President Obiang presented the plan for the basilica to Pope Benedict XVI during a state visit to the Holy See in 2005 and laid the cornerstone on December 9, 2006.

President Obiang expressed the hope that Pope Benedict would visit the country and recalled the critical role Pope John Paul II played in promoting national healing and renewal during his eight-hour visit to Equatorial Guinea in 1982.

“The Pope arrived at the airport in Malabo, kissed the earth and blessed our country with his hands raised,” President Obiang said. “The people turned out in such a way that he left with the idea that our country was where he was received with the greatest fervor.”

The population of Equatorial Guinea is overwhelmingly Roman Catholic.

After the inaugural Mass, which was attended by five cardinals, 45 bishops, and some 300 priests from the central African sub-region, President Obiang and the Cardinal Arinze cut the ribbon, signifying the official opening of the basilica.

The ceremony was also broadcast live on the International Channel and on Web service of Equatorial Guinea’s national television service, RTVGE.

Friday, December 16, 2011

In Visit to Washington, President Obiang Promotes African Unity and Progress

Equatorial Guinea continues to invest in promotion and protection of Human Rights programs

In a speech at the Sullivan Honors Awards, President Obiang discussed the promotion of African integration by leading Equatorial Guinea toward a better future by facing its challenges and achieving the country’s desired self-improvement and progress. President Obiang has led the efforts of the African community while promoting the continent and carrying out the development of Equatorial Guinea.

“Equatorial Guinea, as a unified country, knows that in order to achieve self-improvement and progress, we have to face problems and challenges, with the support of friendly countries and the international community,” said President Obiang.

President Obiang received the Beacon for Africa award at the 2011 Sullivan Honors event last night, in recognition of his leadership of the African Union and his exemplary contributions to improving the lives of Africa’s most vulnerable citizens. The Sullivan Honors event is one of Washington’s greatest cultural highlights of the year.

Hope Masters, president of the Administrative Council of the Leon H. Sullivan Foundation, praised President Obiang for his exemplary leadership and contributions to rebuilding Equatorial Guinea.

“This was a great opportunity to discuss continued development in the region and ways to collectively expand our role as part of the international community,” said President Obiang. “I believe Africa has a positive future ahead of us as long as we continue to work together.”

President Obiang joined leaders from around the world to honor African individuals who are leading and serving the international community. The honorees have selflessly dedicated themselves to humanitarian efforts on the African continent. Together they showed their appreciation for the honorees at the Leon H. Sullivan Honors event at the Marriot Wardman Park Hotel.

“A commitment to ensuring that the dignity of the people they serve has been maintained is critical in determining who will be named a Sullivan Honoree. The ability to ignite that spark of hope, to provide to those less fortunate, while improving their quality of life, has been a common characteristic embodied by each of our honorees. I commend our past honorees and am confident that our new honorees will uphold their passion for championing Africans,” said Ambassador Andrew Young, former US Ambassador to the United Nations.

The Sullivan Honors has been conferred upon individuals who have demonstrated unique leadership in enhancing the lives of the underprivileged, the vulnerable, and the destitute in Africa. Previous Sullivan Honorees include former Presidents BillClinton, George W. Bush, General Colin Powell, current President Jacob Zuma of South Africa, current President Jakaya Kikwete of Tanzania, current President Paul Kagame of Rwanda, and current Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. A full list of previous Sullivan Honorees can be found on the Sullivan Foundation’s website, http://www.thesullivanfoundation.org/.

Equatorial Guinea’s government has adopted special programs for the promotion and protection of human rights with the help of the International Red Cross, which has verified the performance of state institutions by selecting and implementing programs that improve the level of social indicators.

“The positive effects of these programs have resulted in an increased school ratio, life expectancy, malaria reductions, as well as the progressive increase of technical and professional staff,” said President Obiang.

“Our country recently went through a constitutional change that strengthened the powers of the state institutions, promoted the alteration in power and regulated the strict separation of powers, as well as transparency and equity in public affairs.” This reform was approved and voted by the majority of the population.

In addition to President Obiang, numerous heads of state from Africa attended this year’s 2011 Sullivan Honors event, showing unity and cooperation among one another. They included President John A. Kufuor, former President of Ghana; President Olusegun Obasanjo, former President of Nigeria; Prime Minister Guillaume Soro of Côte D’Ivoire; and President Salva Kiir Mayardit of South Sudan.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

President Obiang to Attend Sullivan Honors' Event

Equatorial Guinea participates in one of D.C.'s biggest cultural events

President Obiang of Equatorial Guinea will attend this year’s 2011 Leon H. Sullivan Honors event in Washington, D.C. as an honored guest. The event, which is now one of D.C.’s greatest cultural highlights, pays tribute to individuals committed to improving the lives of the underprivileged and vulnerable in Africa.

“I am honored to attend this event, celebrating people who have devoted themselves to bringing peace and unity in Africa,” said President Obiang. “The Sullivan Foundation has played an essential role in promoting humanitarian development in the region, and as Chairman of the African Union, I am thrilled to share my gratitude.”

This year’s event will be attended by a number of Heads of State from Africa, in addition to President Obiang. Other honorary guests are President John A. Kufuor, former President of Ghana; President Olusegun Obasanjo, former President of Nigeria; Salva Kiir Mayardit, President of Southern Sudan.

“This is a great opportunity for African leaders to come together and show the international community our commitment to developing socially, politically and economically,” said President Obiang. “As a nation, we have made significant progress recently, and this is our chance to gain recognition for it.”

In previous years, Sullivan Honorees have included former President William J. Clinton, former President George W. Bush, General Colin Powell, current President Paul Kagame of Rwanda, and current Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, among others.

This year’s Sullivan Honors event will be held at the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel. The Sullivan Foundation empowers underprivileged people worldwide by promoting social responsibility and humanitarianism.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Equatorial Guinea Participates in Private Investment Show

Entrepreneurs aim to promote private investment in Africa

Representatives from Equatorial Guinea promoted private investment in Africa while they attended a trade show fair in Libreville, Gabon.

“The private investment show is another example of the strides Equatorial Guinea has taken to increase industry development and international investment in the region,” said President Obiang.

Up to 50 African companies were present at the event. Together, they explored various ways in which Africa can become more involved and more competitive in the international business market. They discussed current developments and challenges affecting small and medium companies in the region.

This was the first edition of the private investment trade show, and one of many events Equatorial Guinea has recently participated in to further enhance their role in the international community. Last month, Equatorial Guinea hosted the First National Industrialization Conference, which was dedicated to increase international investment in industrialization throughout the region.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Equatorial Guinea Attends 20th World Petroleum Congress

Country's Exhibit Captivated Congress' Attention

Equatorial Guinea participated in the 20th World Petroleum Congress, in Doha, Qatar, the largest and most reputable oil and gas industry gathering in the world, from 4-8 December 2011.

The triennial congress gathered over 4,000 delegates from around the world, including Equatorial Guinea’s Ministry of Mines, Industry and Energy, which showcased modern developments in the West African nation’s oil and gas industry.

“Some of the industry’s top professionals have taken an interest in our exhibit, keeping us very busy,” said Mercedes Eworo Milam, Ministerial Council of Hydrocarbons.

The delegation participated in the World Petroleum Exhibition, which featured designs from major oil and gas companies as well as international and regional service companies. They presented a modern design that captivated the attention of participants from around the world.

“The Congress gives us a chance to play a stronger role in the oil and gas sector,” said Vicente Abeso Mibuy. “We want to show the world that we are actively seeking new developments in the industry.”

The World Petroleum Congress highlighted various aspects of the industry, including technological advancements, renewable and alternative energy. It provides professionals, managers and outside stakeholders, such as governments and NGOs, a chance to share their ideas and network. The World Petroleum Council hosts an international conference every three years in one of its member countries.

The Equatorial Guinea delegation was comprised of Mercedes Eworo Milam, Ministerial Council of Hydrocarbons; Vicente Abeso Mibuy, the Director-General of Hydrocarbons and Juan Antonio Ndong Ondo, Director-General of the company SONAGAS, among others.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

International Radio and Television of Equatorial Guinea Goes Live on the Web

Broadcast system reaches Equatoguineans Around the World via Internet

Equatorial Guinea has officially launched its International Radio and Television broadcasting system online.

The online portal’s programs will cover the West African nation’s most important news and use live streaming to make it easier for Equatoguineans around the world to obtain information about events in their country.

The Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism sees this initiative as a strong contribution to the nation’s effort to reach out beyond its borders.

“There are many Guineans who live in other parts of the world,” said Minister of Information, Culture, and Tourism Jerónimo Osa Osa Ecoro. “We wanted to inform them, along with those interested in the country, about major events that are occurring at home like the African Summit.”

The government of Equatorial Guinea is making efforts to improve telecommunications in the country as a part of its overall plan to develop its infrastructure. The online streaming of its International Radio and Television will be carried out by the company GMS/UVEAUVEGE, which has the necessary technology for the live broadcast. The broadcast is transmitted to Spain via satellite and then relayed to a streaming server that distributes it online.

“We hope to continue to move forward in our efforts to increase public interest in Equatorial Guinea,” said Minister Osa Ecoro.