Africa News blog

African business, politics and lifestyle

Back to Africa?

August 18, 2008

Members of Sierra Leone's U15 football team FC Johansen pose for a team photo in Freetown

Earlier this month, players in a Sierra Leonean football team were hailed as heroes when they returned from Sweden – because they all came home.

In the past, they might have been more likely to scarper and seek asylum while they had the chance.

It was a quirky tale, but one that leads to a serious question: are people starting to see more opportunities in Africa?

Nigerian entrepreneur returnee, Kayode Akindele, 28, in his Lagos office August 1, 2008.

It’s a subject Reuters correspondents have been exploring from around the continent: Nick Tattersall wrote about ambitious Nigerians heading home, Hussein Ali Nur and Guled Mohamed told the story of the university founded by returnees to Somaliland. In London, Luke Baker met Zimbabweans keen to return if there is an end to the economic catastrophe that now marks it out as an exception in the region rather than the norm.

Undoubtedly there are huge numbers of people still trying to flee Africa for better lives elsewhere – just witness the overcrowded boats struggling to Europe.

African would-be immigrants arrive on a boat in Birzebbugia in the south of Malta

But there is optimism in some quarters too. It was interesting to see “Buy into Africa” as the headline in the Investors Chronicle this week.

As growth slows in Western countries and African economies enjoy their fastest growth in years, might the balance of those leaving Africa and those returning home be starting to shift?


I was born in Kenya and worked in the City of London for many years. I returned home just over three years ago. I am a true believer in the African renaissance and believe that this moment [Late cycle one off convergence with the World and driven by Technology and access to the Internet] comes just once in your lifetime, if you are lucky. This will be an Industrial Revolution on steroids and its already started.

Many Folk just dont get it and I say to them the Future is not in the rear view mirror. Its dynamic and disjunctive. Furthermore, because Africa [to date] tends to be viewed through a non indigenious prism, there is still a ‘Bob Geldof’ type discount. This is narrowing.

I meet more and more People looking at coming back and I tell them to their skates on.

However, I think the return is a little bifurcated. We are entering a Knowledge economy and Africa is placing a premium on those with knowledge. CARPE DIEM.

Aly-Khan Satchu


A court that lacks sincerity in its acts of prosecution can never be taken seriously or given any merit. Bashir is a war criminal but even that name tag is starting to lack any credential because of the political and the quest for resources linked with the Darfur crisis. Greed and glutony is rearing its ugly head.

Posted by Nduka Tolefe | Report as abusive

It’s a known fact that Africa has been making progress for quite some time now even in the face of some of the most daunting problems (disease, famine, war and poverty), however Western Media are still only reporting one side of the story. This is costing Africa tremendous investments and further economic growth opportunities. They don’t even bother to make the distinction between the different regions, languages, cultures, economies and so on. Just drop the word “Africa” and there you have it. For instance, take a country like Bostwana which is one of the most stables not only in Africa but in the world. Yet, they aren’t able to attract FDI as a result of the stereotype. I’m starting to notice some positive reporting on the part of Reuters which is still not enough given the damage they’ve already done, however BBC, CNN and the list goes on and on are all still playing the same old dirty game against Africa.


lemmi thanks african who are now realising the imporatnce of moving from western country to join their homeland..i’m also working in one of the country abroad and i have a plan once i scope enough capital i’ll take the next flight to my country in Africa…lets join hands and reduce blain drain in Africa

Posted by davekimenju | Report as abusive

International Conference on Industry Growth, Investment and Competitiveness in Africa(IGICA)….8-10 June 2009, Visit

Africa in open for business. The investment returns in Africa is very high. The credit crunch has less impact on African industrial growth than any other continent.

For those wishing to invest into Africa and interested on the industrial growth in Africa then contributing to the International Conference on Industry Growth, Investment and Competitiveness in Africa will be neccessary. To make contribution to the major event, contributors can visit the IGICA website on


Zimbabwe is my home and I have been away for 10 years and I did not see myself being away for this long when I first left (for educational purposes). Everyday I wish for a better Zimbabwe, the Zimbabwe I knew from years gone by. Everyday I wish I could go back with my young family and live life there but at the moment it is not feasible. I would not know what to do with myself and I would not know what the future would hold for me my wife and my daughter. I wish for Zimbabwe to get back to its former glory soon so that I can return. Maybe it is us in the Diaspora who need to go back now and make that change happen?


I think we really need to improve in Nigeria, we are facing a lot of issue and our leaders are not doing anything about it. May the Lord deliver Nigeria.


I believe that it is left for Africans to look for opprtunities that abound at home, in order to make their lives better. For instance in Nigeria, the Central Bank of Nigeria is supporting Nigerians, including the youths through various micro-finance schemes. This has been further boosted by the Federal government’s acceptance of setting up a N30.0 billion Micro Credit Development Fund.It is left for Nigerians whether young or old to take advantage of such opportunity.

Posted by Kola Alamu | Report as abusive

If you only see and think about the bad side of Africa, that will be all you will see and experience, it is all about perspective.
If you you run away and stay away for long period without adequate contact with your motherland, thinking you will never go back, because the place is ‘bad’, when the good tiding comes, as it is happening now, going back will always be difficult and you may not know what to do with yourself. Always be conscious of the fact that you are a sojourner in a foreign land, no matter your status.
It is important that Africans fight the stereotype … black continent, political strife, poverty, insecurity, corruption and other such negative labelling.
While abroad, be loyal and faithful and law abiding to your host country and do same when you are back home.
As for me, I started planning for my return the very day I set my feet on European soil. I am proud to be African, to be Nigeria and to be a Yoruba man.

Posted by kola atolagbe | Report as abusive

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