Managing Partner’s Message, Tazame 04

When we started messaging about resilience last year, we had no idea how relevant the theme would eventually be, not only from a COVID-19 pandemic perspective but from a more general standpoint. Since we started advising business leaders to embrace resilience, Nigeria has entered its biggest recession in four decades, faced rising COVID-19 cases with high mortalities, and experienced the #EndSars citizens protest, the deadly clashes between youths and the Nigerian Police.


According to the Google Year in Search for 2020, one of the most searched questions in 2020 was “When will COVID-19 end?” This revealed the anxieties many people had about the global public health crisis and its ensuing impact on economies, communities, safety, well-being, emergency healthcare, and even personal mental health.


When you juxtapose the fear, anxiety, and uncertainty from the global pandemic with rising unemployment, inflation, poverty, the #EndSars protests, and the many other happenings in 2020, it is possible to miss the opportunities ahead of us. But Nigeria has a long-term positive outlook. The country is set to exit the recession and achieve a positive GDP growth rate above 1% in 2021, according to multiple Institutions. Nigeria joined other countries to open up its borders to regional trade with the take-off of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) last month. Nigeria's tech start-ups got a boost with the acquisition of Paystack by Stripe, and the NPHCDA is working to vaccinate 40% of Nigerians in 2021 starting with healthcare workers, the elderly, and those at risk.


From a business perspective, we added more clients to our portfolio, with the most recent being the Federal Ministry of Transportation, our first client in the Transport sector and which presents us an opportunity to contribute to the modernization of the Nigerian transportation sector and provision of safe means of moving goods and persons.


For Nigeria and Africans, there is so much to look forward to.


We have opened the book of 2021: A book with 365 pages and 12 chapters.


For optimists, these pages are blank and represent a canvas for us to paint and opportunities for us to shape. We and only we can write the contents of the pages and chapters of the 2021 book with our decisions, actions, and choices, and so we have chosen faith over fear, love over hate, hope over despair, and gratitude over anxiety.


I live with gratitude for the opportunity to be a part of the Verraki team and to work with you all on a journey to transforming Africa, for the peace that rests within my heart, the optimism that comes with being a part of this team is the voice of hope that says all things are indeed possible. And as Madiba said, it always seems impossible until it is done.


As we advance our activities in the year 2021, we all must take a cue from the charge by poet Amanda Gorman that the new dawn blooms as we free it. For there is always light; if only we are brave enough to see it. If only we are brave enough to be it.


Thank you for choosing us to be a part of your journey and for choosing to be a part of the light that will transform the continent.


Great things lie ahead!!


It is going to be a great year; enjoy the ride and stay safe!