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Thriving businesses and not just government is essential in the development of Africa – Hakeem Belo-Osagie

African entrepreneur and Chairman of Metis Capital Partners, Hakeem Belo-Osagie, was a special guest at the Oxford Business Forum Africa held at the Oxford University in the UK over the weekend. In a conversation with the Dean of Saïd Business School at the University of Oxford, Peter Tufano. Osagie expressed his thoughts on the importance of flourishing business, the significance of right government, the relationship between the private and public sectors and the dependence of these ideas to the bettering of the economic stability of Africa.

He developed the thought that change has to take place at two levels simultaneously; a level of business and a level of government. Enterprise is required for a thriving business and in the political sphere. Business would not be able to flourish if the government has not established a high standard of security, infrastructure and education.

Nevertheless, without developed government there would be a danger of a nation of oligarchs with the working classes and peasant classes left out of that development. In Osagie’s view a successfully developed country is judged by the standard of living of the bottom 40 percent of the society, and not by the number of successful businesses. The more people who are intelligent, educated and committed to implementing policies in government the better for overall development.

In conclusion, Osagie believed that both enterprises in government and business are the solution to the overall development of the continent, Africa. Osagie stated that politicians had to be righteous and fair and created policies that appease African countries need. So, both the public and private sectors have to flourish in tandem. There must be equal level of successful entrepreneurs and politicians establishing change.

Written By Chinwe Agunwah

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