Go Africa Award 2018 Recipient: The Office of the Consulate General of Nigeria (New York)

We are pleased to announce that The Office of the Consulate General of Nigeria (New York)  has been selected by our award committee to receive an award for its years of service to the African, African Diaspora, and African-American Communities

Please join us with your presence and spirit on 7/14/2018 at the Go Africa Harlem 2018 Street festival when the Office of the Consulate General of Nigeria (New York)receives his well deserved recognition for its years of service to the African, African Diaspora, and African-American Communities 

The Go Africa Carnival 2018 will take place on 07/14/2018

from 10am – 7pm on 116th Street btw. 7th & 8th Aves.

please self-register via Eventbrite https://goafricaharlem2018.eventbrite.com

or email Info@GoAfricaHarlem.org or phone 646-502-9778 Ext. 8001more information can be found at www.GoAfricaHarlem.org


About the Consulate General Of Nigeria (New York)

As one of the four (4) Nigeria’s diplomatic representation in the United States of America, the Consulate General of Nigeria, New York, has amongst its mandate, protection of its nationals, rendering consular services, and promoting economic relations with the United States of America. The Consulate is located at 828 second Avenue, New York, NY 10017. Since its establishment, fourteen (14) Consul Generals have served in the Mission. They are as follows:

  • Hon. Victor Taylor ……………………..1973-1975
  • Hon. R.O. Omotoye……………………..1976-1977
  • Hon. Zubair M. Kazaure………………..1978-1979
  • Hon. Dr. U.A. Angulu…………………..1980-1983
  • Hon. B.O. Awokoya……………………..1984-1987
  • Hon. Abraham Tukuru…………………1987-1989
  • Hon. Y. Usman…………………………….1989-1991
  • Hon. F.O. Nwankwo……………………..1991-1993
  • Hon. C.O. Awani(Ag.)…………………….1993-1998
  • Hon. T.O. Oseni …………………………..1998-2003
  • Hon. Mrs. M. Ekong Omogbami……..2003-2004
  • Hon. V.O. Bosah…………………………….2004-2005
  • Hon. Dr. F.R. Aderele……………………….2005-2007
  • Hon .I. Auwalu………………………………..2007-2011
  • Hon. Habib B. Habu…………………………2011 till date

The Consulate has under its jurisdiction the following states: Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Nebraska, Ohio, North Dakota, South Dakota, Rhode Island, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Vermont and Pennsylvania.


The Consulate General performs the usual consular functions including visas; passports; immigration; welfare of Nigerians; notary ; trade inquires; promotion of trade, commerce, and investment ; as well as educational , cultural, and information services.


Nigeria is located on the west coast of Africa and is the most populous black country in the world, bordering the North Atlantic Ocean, between Benin and Cameroon. Nigeria covers 356,668 sq miles (923,7770 sq kilometers). It is about the same size as California, Nevada and Utah combined. Nigeria is diverse in people and culture. The history of the country goes back to 500 BC when the Nok people were the inhabitants. It was the ending of the 15th century European explorers and traders began their lucrative slave trade with the Yoruba and Benin peoples. In 1861 Lagos was colonized by the British and 1914, the entire country became The Colony and Protectorate of Nigeria. Nigeria became independent in 1960.



  • TOTAL 923,768 SQ. KM,
  • LAND – 910,768 SQ. KM
  • WATER – 13,000 SQ. KM

Land Boundaries: 4,047KM

Coastline: 853KM




Geography Land area – approximately 923,768 square kilometers, which spans over six ecological zones, ranging from the swampy coastal rain forest of the south to the semi-arid fertile grassland of the north. The country’s land area is made up of high grounds of average heights of 1,500 metres over the eastern region, 600 metres over the northern region and 300 metres over the western region. Over the coast and southern regions are the low-lying grounds which are generally below 300 metres and are characterized by creeks and lagoons on both sides of the niger delta. The main drainage systems in nigeria are (a) the niger-benue, (b) the chad and (c) the coastal river systems


Reflecting the varied topography and climate typical of the tropics, nigeria is blessed with very rich and diverse plant and animal life. There are four broad vegetation belts: the mangrove swamp on the coast, the rain forest, the woodland savannah in the middle belt and the guinea and sudan savannah in the north.


Varies: equatorial/tropical, when traversing from the coast to the hinterland. Semi-arid, from the hinterland to the fringes of the Sahara desert. The climate is tropical with two main marked seasons – the dry season lasting from November to march with the dry dust-laden north-easterly winds blowing across the country. The rainy season is from April to October, during which the moisture-laden south-westerly winds blow from the coast, bringing the rains. Rainfall decreases from about 1,500mm in the south to about 500mm in the north. The temperature is generally high, except in the Jos plateau, the Mambila plateau and Obudu ranch plateau where the temperature is relatively cooler all year round.


Ranging between 20c and 40c. Temperature increases as one moves from the southern part to the northern part

Our Contact Information

Consulate General of Nigeria
828 Second Avenue, New York, NY 10017
Tel:(212) 808-0301
Fax:(212) 687-1476

Consular Service Phones

For new passport enquirie: (917) 818-7102
For visa enquiries: (917) 818-8726

Go Africa Award 2018 Recipient: Famod Konneh

We are pleased to announce that Famod Konneh has been selected by our award committee to receive an award for his years of service to the African, African-American, and Caribbean Communities 

Please join us with your presence and spirit on 7/14/2018 at the Go Africa Harlem 2018 Street festival when Mr. Konneh receives his well deserved recognition for his selfless service to our community and the great City of New York throughout the years.

The Go Africa Harlem Street Festival will take place on 07/14/2018

from 10am – 7pm on 116th Street btw. 7th & 8th Aves.  please self-register via Eventbrite https://goafricaharlem2018.eventbrite.com

or email Info@GoAfricaHarlem.org or phone 646-502-9778 Ext. 8001


About Famod Konneh

Bronx Borough Director & African Liaison, New York City Mayor’s Office Community Affairs Unit

@Famodk1 @mayorsCAU


Famod Konneh is the Bronx Borough Director & African Liaison of the New York City Mayor’s Office Community Affairs Unit (CAU). The Mayor’s Community Affairs Unit (CAU) is the fundamental connection between City Hall and New York City residents throughout the five boroughs. Before joining the Mayor’s Office, Mr. Konneh worked for the New York County District Attorney’s Office as the Senior Specialized Coordinator for over six years. Mr. Konneh is a member of the Manhattan Borough President African Task Force and the founding Chair of the Bronx Borough President’s African Advisory Council. Mr. Konneh graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Economics (BSc) from the University of Liberia and a Masters of Public Administration (MPA) from Baruch College School of Public Affairs.


Interesting details about the Cashew and its uses throughout the World.

Interesting details about the Cashew and its uses throughout the World.

We have received many questions about the cashew. Thus, we have complied some information to help better understand the Cashew:

The Cashew is comprised of the following:

  • The Cashew Tree
  • The Cashew Fruit or Cashew Apple
  • The cashew nut (resides inside of the Cashew Fruit)
  • Cashew Shell
  • Cashew Shell Oil

The cashew tree (Anacardium occidentale) is a tropical evergreen tree that produces the cashew seed and the cashew apple.[1] It can grow as high as 14 m (46 ft), but the dwarf cashew, growing up to 6 m (20 ft), has proved more profitable, with earlier maturity and higher yields.


The species is originally native to northeastern Brazil  Portuguese colonists in Brazil began exporting cashew nuts as early as the 1550s.  Major production of cashews occurs in Cote d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast), Vietnam, Nigeria, and India.


The cashew nut, often simply called a cashew, is widely consumed. It is eaten on its own, used in recipes, or processed into cashew cheese or cashew butter.

The shell of the cashew seed yields derivatives that can be used in many applications including lubricants, waterproofing, paints, and arms production, starting in World War II.

The cashew apple is a light reddish to yellow fruit, whose pulp can be processed into a sweet, astringent fruit drink or distilled into liquor.


The cashew apple, also called cashew fruit, is the fleshy part of the cashew fruit attached to the cashew nut. The top end of the cashew apple is attached to the stem that comes off the tree. The bottom end of the cashew apple attaches to the cashew nut, which is encased in a shell. In botanical terms, the cashew apple is an accessory fruit that grows on the cashew seed (which is the nut).

The cashew apple can be eaten fresh, cooked in curries, or fermented into vinegar, as well as an alcoholic drink. It is also used to make preserves, chutneys, and jams in some countries such as India and Brazil. In many countries, particularly in South America, the cashew apple is used to flavor drinks, both alcoholic and nonalcoholic.

Cashew nuts are more widely traded than cashew apples, because the apple, unlike the nut, is easily bruised and has very limited shelf life Cashew apple juice, however, may be used for manufacturing blended juices.

Culinary uses for cashew seeds in snacking and cooking are similar to those for all tree seeds called nuts.

Cashew nuts are commonly used in Indian cuisine, whole for garnishing sweets or curries, or ground into a paste that forms a base of sauces for curries (e.g., korma), or some sweets (e.g., kaju barfi). It is also used in powdered form in the preparation of several Indian sweets and desserts.

In Goan cuisine, both roasted and raw kernels are used whole for making curries and sweets. Cashew nuts are also used in Thai and Chinese cuisines, generally in whole form.

In the Philippines, cashew is a known product of Antipolo, and is eaten with suman. Pampanga also has a sweet dessert called turrones de casuy, which is cashew marzipan wrapped in white wafers. In Indonesia, roasted and salted cashew nut is called kacang mete or kacang mede, while the cashew apple is called jambu monyet (translates in English to monkey rose apple).

In Mozambique, bolo polana is a cake prepared using powdered cashews and mashed potatoes as the main ingredients. This dessert is popular in South Africa.

Mr. Richard Iyasere: Bio: Senior Director for African Affairs & promotions

We are proud to welcome Mr. Iyasere as Senior Director for African Affairs & promotions for Go Africa Network, Go Africa Health LLC, Go Africa LLC & African Union  Expo LLC.


about Richard Iyasere 

Mr. Iyasere is a community leader in the Greater New York metropolitan area. He is originally from Edo State, Nigeria and has lived in the States for over 24 years.


He received his Bachelors of Science in Environmental Science from City University of New York before eventually becoming a System Safety Specialist with the Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA) where he is currently employed.


As most immigrants, he came to the States to build a career and future for himself and his family. He arrived in the states in the early 1990s and by working tirelessly, he was able to own his first property in only six years later. Because he understood the struggles of immigrants moving to a new country and learning new surroundings, he decided to help new immigrants by providing them a place to stay or hosting them while they settled in this country. Due to his role in the community as a provider for those in need, he became lovingly called “Daddy Rich” by family and friends.

Iyasere has extensive work community service and civic engagement, reflected in thirteen years of consistent dedication as an organizing member of the Nigerian Independence Day Parade, the first and longest running parade in the city which has been in existence for over 20 years. Other community initiatives he is involved include: a member of the Community Board 1; District 17 Round Table member in the New York City Council; and Community liaison at African Advisory Council of the Bronx under Borough President Ruben Diaz, jr. Iyasere is also a one-time vice president of the Nigerian Unique Club of New York and the former president of African Club, Bronx Community College among many accomplishments and feats. He was also the 2014 Community Leadership Award winner by the 3G Media in NY.


Apart from his community work, Iyasere is also an entrepreneur and businessman whose deep love for music and dance inspired him to start his own company DaddyRich Productions, which brings quality concerts and events to the diverse audiences. With DaddyRich Productions, he has brought quality artists and musicians from around the world to perform in New York City to contribute to the rich cultural tapestry and inform the larger NYC community about musical acts from Africa.


Iyasere continues to remain driven and active in his own Nigerian community and more importantly, remains engaged in the larger African and New York City communities.


He currently resides in Bronx, New York with his wife Egbe and their four daughters. He may be contacted at Daddyrich793@gmail.com or 



Artist Profile: We Welcome “Masta E” to the Go Africa Harlem 2017 Street Festival on 7/15/2017

The Go Africa Harlem Street Festival will take place on 7/15/2017 from 10am – 7pm on 116th Street btw. 7th & 8th Aves.  please register at  http://goafricaharlem.org/events/general-attendee-sign-up-for-go-africa-harlem-2017-street-festival-on-july-15th-2017/

Click here to sign-up  or email Info@GoAfricaHarlem.org or phone 646-502-9778 Ext. 8001

Or register via Eventbrite: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/go-africa-harlem-street-festival-2017-tickets-32033139984

About Masta E
NMG Duo Team Members “M.O.G”. Master E & K. Breezy. Both New York City Based Nigerian artist with high energy and style which differentiates them.
NMG newest DuoTeam Members “M.O.G”. Master E & K. Breezy are both New York City Based Nigerian artists with high energy and style which differentiates them from others. They hope to deliver the best of Nigeria’s famous afro-hip hop music in their own special way. Master E. started his music career as a producer in NMG studios (NYC) while K. Breezy was known as the guy with the Rap flow. They both developed their musical career in NMG studios while continuing to make stage appearances with award winning artist Filon Jay who is also in the same Team (NMG) with them. According to the two “we both inspire each other when in the studio and we couldn’t think of anything better than to form a duo M.O.G.” “So High” is their first introductory single and they hope to release more singles while they continue to build their fan base in the U.S, Africa and worldwide.

, Nosa was surprised when he became the recipient of Top Stars Recognition award for dedicated service. Top Stars Award was held in Sacramento, California.

With all these achievements in a very short time of coming into the industry, Nosa maintain his humble attribute and always give credit to God, his family, and to the people who supports him. Nosa believe he couldn’t have made it without their encouragement and support. Nosa’s way of giving back is by helping individuals with talent in music, acting, entertainment and multimedia services. Nosa serves as a 2014-2016 Ambassador for Kor Foundation an organization that help sponsor children’s education in Africa

Nosa never stop developing his God given skills. He would learn any new skill that would help his career as a filmmaker. One of the skills he became attracted to was video editing. Nosa would spend hours on the internet tutoring himself on how to edit videos. His little knowledge, drive and passion for entertainment and multimedia production prepared him to establish his own production agency NOSA PRODUCTIONS in 2010. The brand focus on production of quality videos, music & provide multimedia production services for high standard clients. Nosa produce, direct, edit, and manage all his work. His talent in various field of multimedia and entertainment brought about his nickname “Nosa D’Producer.”

His wide discovery in Nigerian Entertainment Industry began in 2011 when he got linked with Nollywood Actress & producer Chisom Oz-Lee. With little or no experience on the field of filmmaking, Nosa was entrusted with the task to edit Chisom Oz-Lee’s movie “Unguarded” – a movie that won numerous international awards, including an award for Best Editing, – an award that rewarded Nosa as best international film editor of the year at the 2013 SEA awards which was held in Nigeria. Nosa never stop expanding his knowledge. The growing African entertainment industry started to notice his work. Nosa has helped to idealize and execute projects for notable filmmakers and entrepreneurs who trust his expertise. In 2013, Nosa partnered with Stanley Onwuakor to establish RockNaija TV – an online video blog that promote African culture through its media platform. Nosa holds a position as COO and Executive Producer at RockNaija TV.

Nosa shoot, produce and direct his team’s music videos. His recent contact with some top African Artists makes him one of Nigeria’s most sort-after Nigerian music video directors based in the U.S. He recently shot and directed “Nko” music video for Nigerian famous comedian and music artist “Maleke” featuring another notable Nigerian music artist “Harry Songs” a.k.a Mr. Songz.

As a multi talented instrumentalist, his love for music never seized. Nosa launched his music group (NMG) in 2013. NMG is a group of talented musicians who decided to team up together with the aim of producing quality and entertaining music to all music lovers. The team members include Filon Jay, Master E, K. Breezy & Stainless (STL) with other 3rd party individuals who often partner with them in support. Less than one year after launching his music group, Nosa was Nominated For “Best Producer of the year” at 2013 African Entertainment award, Canada. He later won the award for “Best Music Producer of the year” at the 2014 Universal Achievement Awards, USA, held in Columbus, Ohio. In 2014, Nigerian Canadian Association gave Nosa a recognition award for contributing, promoting and enriching Nigerian culture with his talent. In 2016, Nosa was surprised when he became the recipient of Top Stars Recognition award for dedicated service. Top Stars Award was held in Sacramento, California.

With all these achievements in a very short time of coming into the industry, Nosa maintain his humble attribute and always give credit to God, his family, and to the people who supports him. Nosa believe he couldn’t have made it without their encouragement and support. Nosa’s way of giving back is by helping individuals with talent in music, acting, entertainment and multimedia services. Nosa serves as a 2014-2016 Ambassador for Kor Foundation an organization that help sponsor children’s education in Africa.

We are trained, experienced and committed to producing films, music, videos and other multimedia productions. We deliver quality work with great value. Our producers and videographers are highly skilled with years of production/field experience. We love what we do and strive for the best-quality work.

Get to know our experienced producers & videographers. We  also have the right equipment, skills, and desire to help produce your work. See why our customers do not only come back, but recommed us.



Learn more on how you can get great deal on videography & photography.. Click the button below.

1029 East 218th Street,
Bronx, New York. 10469. USA
Tel: +1 (347) 257.1796

Email: nosaproductionsnyc@gmail.com

Artist Profile: Sekouba Bolomba, Senior Artistic Director (Africa) will be leading the artist Stage at the Go Africa Harlem 2016 Street Festival on 7/15/2017

We again welcome Mr.  Sekouba Bolomba, Senior Artistic Director (Africa), Go Africa Network Inc, as the lead performer and artist for the upcoming street festival on 7/15/2017.Visit www.GoAfricaHarlem.org for more information.

The Go Africa Harlem Street Festival will take place on 7/15/2017 from 10am – 7pm on 116th Street btw. 7th & 8th Aves.  please register at  http://goafricaharlem.org/events/general-attendee-sign-up-for-go-africa-harlem-2017-street-festival-on-july-15th-2017/

Click here to sign-up  or email Info@GoAfricaHarlem.org or phone 646-502-9778 Ext. 8001


Mr. Sekouba Bolomba is an Ivorian reggae musician. In the tradition of jamaican roots reggae from the 70s, Sekouba combines an eclectic mix of traditional West African rhythms known as Bolomba, using djembe drums and balafons. His potent lyrics, heavy ideas, and delicate voice are laced in his music in four different languages: English, French, Malinke and Bambara. He humbly has graced stages around the globe with generous performances, including Israel, Germany, Switzerland, Mali, Senegal, Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast, the United States of America and Canada.

After being enriched into the roots of the Bolomba style, the young Sekouba came alive with the West African sounds of the Mandinka. Sekouba’s desire to sing came naturally but it was never a reality without the musical influence of his brother, Ismael Isaac. Sekouba’s other musical influences include, Lucky Dube, Alpha Blondy, and Bob Marley. 243695_4250615666917_1978768217_o

Sekouba’s uplifting and heartening lyrics enliven audiences with spiritual liberation and African consciousness. His debut album “I’m So Glad” was self-produced in New York City and arranged by Oscar Ankou. Sekouba’s sophomore album in 2010 “Sejo” was co-produced by Sidney Mills, Grammy award-winning reggae artist and keyboard player for the legendary reggae band Steel Pulse. The album includes outstanding liberal tracks like “Mandela” featuring Bob Marley’s guitarist Junior Marvin from The Wailers. “Mandela” is a sharp and arousing tribute to former President of South Africa Nelson Mandela, and has been well-received by international fans.

Sekouba and his band Bolumba Stylee have decorated the nation with groovy, soulful performances at venues and festivals such as Festival Nuits d’Afrique in Montreal, Canada; Abi Festival in Abidjan, Ivory Coast; Fête de la Musique in Mali; SummerStage in New York City, alongside Israeli artist Idan Raichel; NJPAC SummerStage; New Haven Music Festival; Brooklyn’s International African Arts Festival; S.O.B.’s; Shrine World Music Venue; and many more. Sekouba’s music is inspired by a conglomerate of modern day music, and the ancestral dialogue passed down to him as a descendant of a long line of griots. In one show, Sekouba’s listeners share in a universal experience. 12227056_10208321335974308_8777459754701423514_n

Sekouba is the youngest brother of Isaac Ismael, the lead singer in Ivory Coast’s best known musical group. He currently lives in New York City and is the Senior Artistic Director for the Go Africa Network 2016 (NYC).

Sekouba’s bio is in the May 2016 edition of L3 Magazine, North America.s #1 Urban-Caribbean online publication.

Sekouba’s next album ”Imagine” will be released in early 2017.

https://www.facebook.com/sekouba.bolomba/about 12246862_10208383185520508_6613457889384664177_n

Artist Profile: Eburnee Entertainment & DJ Birane Thiam will be mixing sounds on the artists stage during the Go Africa Harlem 2016 street Festival on 7/16/2016

Eburnee Entertainment & DJ Birane Thiam will be on the Artist Stage with Sekouba Diakite on 7/16/2016.

Visit www.GoAfricaHarlem.org for more information.  the Go Africa Harlem Street Festival will take place on 7/16/2016 from 10am – 7pm on 116th Street btw. 7th & 8th Aves. please register athttp://goafricaharlem.org/events/general-attendee-sign-up-for-go-africa-harlem-2016-street-festival-on-july-16th-2016/  or email Info@GoAfricaHarlem.org or phone 646-502-9778 Ext. 8001.

About: Eburnee Entertainment: 3dfcc0_596c137aadf9f2af272adae730cc90c0

What is Eburnee Entertainment? We are a group of promoters.

With over 10 years of experience working in the entertainment industry, we are experts when it comes to music and the fashion industry worldwide. Our clients’ entertainment needs are our top priority.

Established in 2000, the company is owned by Africans and run by Africans.

We specialize in public relations, promotion, advertising and video production.

Our main headquarters are located in New York City.

We also have members of our team working in both Paris and Abidjan.3dfcc0_98a0d2537d7c45b142f821d2964df0c6

Our mission is to promote African culture in the United States and abroad.

We target diverse group of people with different backgrounds which helps us bring awareness about African culture.

We cater to African communities around the world that have an interest in today’s music and fashion trends.

Our clients include international artists, groups and individuals requesting our services in: video shoots, promotion and event management.

We hope that you will keep visiting our website for event updates. 3dfcc0_5b3cf9f175bb3e63713f363940cab866

Join us and experience firsthand what Eburnee Entertainment is all about!




Instagram: @bblamour

(Ghana Web) Future Ghanaian Scientist Invited to White House

Simon Peter Frimpong Photo from Ghana Web

Meet Simon-Peter Frimpong, a 13-year old Ghanaian American from Aurora, Colorado. The 8th-grader is one of about 100 top science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) students from across the USA who have been invited to the 2016 White House Science Fair, scheduled for this Wednesday, April 13th.

The fair, which is President Obama’s sixth and last, is a hands-on showcase of student innovation – robots, prototypes, tools to help us fight cancer and climate change – all researched, designed and built by the next generation of America’s scientists.

Simon-Peter and two of his schoolmates from Horizon Middle School, Maya Max-Villard, 13, and Grayson Fast, 14, were inspired by a veteran at nearby Buckley Air Force Base who needed a more comfortable and functional prosthetic limb. The three young scientists designed and built a new artificial leg using computer design, and 3-D printing of prototypes, as well as interviews with the veteran and others for feedback. The team built a prosthetic leg that will allow the amputee to hike, manage uneven terrain, and even skateboard!

The part designed by Simon-Peter is what makes the prosthesis unique. As their STEM teacher, Ms. Mel Possehl put it, “…with the design [Simon Frimpong] made, the bottom comes off. So you have a walking part, then you have a part that hooks onto a longboard or a snowboard, then you have a part that hooks onto skis, and then a part that can do multiple things. It’s a multiple-use prototype.” The project was so innovative that it was selected as a finalist in the Samsung Solve for Tomorrow national competition, and then to participate in the 2016 White House Science Fair.

Simon-Peter is the son of Mr. Tony Frimpong, and Mrs. Yaa Frimpong (popularly known as Obaa Yaa), who is the secretary of NPP Colorado Chapter, and 2nd Vice Chairperson of NPP-USA Branch.
[Partly culled from the White House blog https://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2016/04/08/science-fair-2016-meet-next-generation-americas-innovators]

The article was published on Ghana Web.

(The Root) NY Valedictorian Is Celebrating Her Acceptance to All 8 Ivy League Schools

Posted: April 5 2016 9:26 AM


Augusta Uwamanzu-Nna


Augusta Uwamanzu-Nna, a high school student from Long Island, N.Y., has a big decision to make soon. The Elmont High School valedictorian has been accepted at all eight Ivy League schools!

Schools in the Ivy League are Brown University, Columbia University, Cornell University, Dartmouth College, Harvard University, Princeton University, the University of Pennsylvania and Yale University.

She also gained admission to Johns Hopkins University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, New York University and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

Augusta is the daughter of Nigerian immigrants, and she said her parents instilled in her the value of education.

“Though I was born here in America, I visited Nigeria many times,” she told WABC. “And I’ve seen that my cousins don’t have the same opportunities that I have. So definitely, whatever I do, I want to make sure that it has an impact on Nigeria.”

She also says that her own tenacity and persistence helped shape her into becoming a great student. But as with a lot of students, she did face hardships with some classes.

“I’ve struggled with numerous classes in the past,” Augusta told the station. “But I guess what allowed me to be successful, ultimately, in those classes, at the end, is my persistence and my tenacity.”

Augusta hasn’t decided which college to attend, but with a GPA of 101.6 and a recent invitation to the White House Science Fair, there’s no doubt that she’ll continue her academic excellence.

Read more at WRIC.

(National Interest) Senegal: The Linchpin of Security in West Africa

Seth J. Frantzman

Image: Wikimedia Commons/U.S. Marine Corps.

Senegalese military personnel are voting in a national referendum on March 13. The rest of Senegal votes in the same referendum on March 20. The military is voting early so that it can be alert during what is hoped will be a peaceful vote. Dakar, the capital of this country of fourteen million, is decked out in posters shouting “Oui”: vote “yes” for strengthening democracy and the rule of law. The referendum concerns reducing the term limit of the presidency and other initiatives. It is a reminder that this is a sub-Saharan African country that is a historically stable democracy, in a region that has seen coups, dictatorship and most recently, Islamist extremism.

A week in this West African state gives an idea of the security challenges it is facing. Dakar port, which is the second largest after Ivory Coast’s Abidjan, is an entree to West Africa and a gateway to Mali, where France intervened to prevent a takeover of the country by Islamist rebels and their allies in 2013. The security here is noticeable, with private security running checks on passengers, and a local police and gendarme detachment. The Senegalese navy is based here and the coast guard does regular patrols from the harbor.

Soldiers have been deployed in districts where there is nightlife in Dakar. Hotels in the capital have also upped security after the attacks on November 20 in Bamako which killed twenty, on Ouagadougou in Burkina Faso on January 15 which killed 30, and in Ivory Coast on March 13. Much of this security seems symbolic rather than necessarily reflecting deep experience or expertise. But there is no doubt that Senegal is taking it seriously and most of those we spoke with felt there was a terror threat and that leaders were cognizant of it.

Senegal’s capital may be 1,200 miles from Ouagadougou, but it feels much closer. If terrorists could slip into that country and attack a hotel, couldn’t they do it here, which is equidistant from Mali or Mauritania where the extremists operate. The U.S. Army’s Flintlock exercise which began on February 8 in the village of Theis an hour east of Dakar, is symbolic of the faith Western powers and regional powers put in Senegal’s influence and its desire to be vigilant against extremism. U.S. Army Brigadier General Donald C. Bolduc said of the thirty-nation exercise that “it is more than a military exercise, we are training together to increase our interoperability and collaboration to counter today’s threats.” Senegal led this year’s exercise.

Aminata Touré, a former prime minister and currently adviser to the president says that one of the great long term threats to security can be youth unemployment. “There is a relationship between instability and youth unemployment. That is the first threat to security and social stability. Of course, we are concerned by security issues, we are surrounded by countries with troubles.” Many Senegalese emphasize that the country was able to prevent Ebola from crossing the border after the outbreak in West Africa in 2014, which points to an ability to close a porous border if necessary.

According to local security analysts the Senegalese army is of a high quality compared to its neighbors. It does not play a role in politics, an issue that has harmed armies in other countries in this region because of suspicion between the presidential guard units and other units. Senegal’s army also has experience fighting in Mali and most recently in Yemen, where it sent 2,100 troops to join the Saudi-led coalition in May of 2015. SO far, more than a dozen Senegalese have joined ISIS and related groups. In December, for example, one medical student at Senegal’s largest university posted on Facebook that he had gone to join ISIS. Four local imams were arrested in November for supporting extremism. A Pew Research Center poll released the same month showed that while 60 percent found ISIS unfavorable there were 10 percent who found it more palatable.

Many local experts say that the tradition of large Sufi brotherhoods in Senegal means extremists have difficulty taking root. Professor Ibrahim Thioub, the rector of the University Cheikh Anta Diop, says that on the fringes of these brotherhoods are figures who are marginalized and punished if they promote extremism. “The brotherhood knows how to discipline these urban youth leaders. But the problem is the Salafists who exist in Senegal since the 1950s. The radicalization in the last years, it is slightly more, but not like in Mali, or Mauritania, because there is something else. The brotherhoods are able to organize and have a strong network.” He argues that even abroad, where Senegalese might be exposed to extremism—in France, for example—these brotherhoods have local chapters and encourage moderation and a very Senegalese version of Islam. Amsatou Sow Sidibé, a former presidential candidate, agrees that the people of Senegal are the strongest asset the country has against the regional developments:

“[Terrorism] is terrible. We must have solidarity both of the people here and of the countries. It’s not good. We haven’t had any acts of terror but we don’t know. It is a possibility. We don’t have eyes to see the future. We must be vigilante, and the public must be educated to be vigilante.”

Part of that vigilance is relying on these local brotherhoods and citizens to inform on any extremists who may be operating. The concept is to rely on human intelligence and the strong social solidarity in Senegal which is different than some of the region’s states whose instability led to the rise of groups like Boko Haram, Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) and ISIS. In some cases these extremists preyed on tribal, ethnic or religious differences, or perceptions that the government was suppressing local people. Senegal, whose population is 95 percent Muslim, appears to have very strong feelings of social solidarity.

Nevertheless the fact is that Senegal has become a base for many regional embassies, due to the Ebola outbreak in neighboring states and to the country’s relative stability. That means Senegal has a strong foundation of international support but also is a target. Those foreign embassies, foreign nationals, hotels and NGOs can all present a target—like in Bamako and Ouagadougou—where Islamists seek to carry out spectacular attacks to harm the image of a country through mass murder.

So far, Senegal’s decision to send troops abroad has given its army experience, and its hosting of regional security exercises such as Flintlock are a welcome development. The key would be if the country could project its stability to neighboring states, and anchor the West African security system against the threats of extremists.

Seth J. Frantzman is a Jerusalem-based journalist who holds a PhD from The Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

The article was published in the National Interest Online.