Sunday, May 20, 2012


President Jakaya Kikwete, Prime Minister Meles Zenawi of Ethiopia,
Ghana's President John Atta Millls and President Yayi Boni of Benin,
chairman of the African Union, on Saturday went down into  history books
Saturday May 19, 2012  as the first African leaders to attend a G-8
summit at Camp David in Maryland, USA.

The event, whose host US President Barak Obama
hailed as remarkable, saw the world leaders devoting the  working lunch
to food security.

Held in the Laurel Lodge, the
session was a follow-up to the President Obama's Friday announcement of
a ten-year, $3 billion partnership plan for public-private agricultural
investments in Africa.

In addition to the G8 leaders and the four African
leaders, there were also six executives from some of the 45 US and
African corporations that have partnered for the New Alliance for Food
and Nutrition.

President Obama said he believes it is the first
time private sector representatives - who included PepsiCo chief Indra
Nooyi - have attended a session at any G8 Summit.

at a long rectangular table between Ghana's President John Atta Millls
and President Yayi Boni of Benin, Chairman of the African Union,
President Obama, in his shirtsleeves, said the group will be "looking
for a range of innovative ideas”.

President Jakaya Kikwete of Tanzania and Prime
Minister Meles Zenawi of Ethiopia sat across them. Other leaders present
were Stephen Harper, the Prime Ministerof Canada, President Fran├žois Hollande of France  and Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel.

Others were  Italy's Prime minister Mario Monti, the Prime Minister of Japan Yoshihiko Noda, Prime Minister of Russia Dmitry Medvedev and the Prime Minister United Kingdom David Cameron

"What makes this remarkable is this is probably the
first time at a G8 Summit where in addition to having the leaders
involved, we also have leaders of NGOs and business leaders involved,"
President Obama said.

"My goal is to have a very open conversation...and
my hope is that coming out of this meeting, we are then going to be able
to then each of us have assignments that we have to execute before the
next G8 Summit."

The New Alliance builds on the L'Aquila Food
Security Initiative, a $22.billion effort created in 2009 by G8 leaders,
led by President Obama.

According to the the
White House, attendees from the US private sector included Nooyi, Chair
and CEO of PepsiCo and Mr. Michael Mack, CEO of Syngenta International

From Africa: Tidjane Thiam, Cote d'Ivoire group CEO
of Prudential; Dr. Donald Kaberuka, President of African Development
Bank Group; Dr. Eleni Gabre-Madhin, Ethiopia, CEO and founder of
Ethiopia and Commodity Exchange.

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