How to Sense Low Levels of Asbestos in Your Daily Environment. (Part II)

Most people find it difficult to believe that a tiny dust material, too small to see, can cause such havoc with the human body.

As a construction worker, I may have an advantage in identifying the materials which shed this residue, but this also tends to make me more vulnerable to it’s effects. This, in turn gives me the incentive to do what it takes to avoid it or possibly shed it myself if I should accidentally make contact with it from any number of situations.

How do I determine that I’ve accidentally contacted the residue?

To start with, what you have to understand is ” this material is light enough to stay airborne for long periods of time, it is very dry and staticy, it can leave a bitter-salty taste in your mouth, it can be irritating to the eyes and sinuses and it attaches to the hairs on your skin and head leaving a staticy-iching feeling over your entire body.( Sometimes this sensation is subtle and other times it’s pronounced, depending on the type of asbestos material it came from and the amount of dust you’ve contacted.)” Combined with the many chance encounters of this material, this presents an interesting challenge for which few are willing to embark.

If you are ready to take on this challenge, the first step in getting relief from this sensation requires removing and isolating the clothes you were wearing and showering thoroughly. After dressing, the next logical step is to backtrack and identify the items and locations that you made contact with between the time you made the contact with the residue and the point where the clothes were shed. If these were solid surface items, they can be wiped clean with disposable towels and either water or a spray cleaner such as orange cleaner. If they were cloth surfaces such as cloth car seats or furnture, the simplest method is thorough vacuuming with a vacuum cleaner which includes a hepa filter.

Next comes the choice of disposing of the clothes or trying to clean them. If you try to wash them in a clothes washer, one washing wil not do it. Also, it’s important to wash them separately from other clothes. Cotton clothes will eventually clear up, where polyester or nylon may never come clean of this residue.

Given the previous information to be true, one soon sees the logic in wearing only cotton clothes and being aware of the path you take after contacting any suspected situations.

If this routine doesn’t interest you in the least, you probably have no incentive to follow it.

If you suffer from any of the following maladies which I’ve been able to associate with an unfortunate contact with asbestos dust, you may want to try this routine just to see if the condition clears up.

Any entry of this dust to the air passages can cause irritation, such as, the sinuses, notrils, eustation tube, back of throats, broncial tubes or even down to the stomach. Consequentally, illnesses, such as, sore throats, strep throat, toncilitis, sinus infections and inner ear infections can all have their beginnings with unrelenting irritation caused by asbestos residues. Irritation to the broncial tubes can be the beginnings of broncitis and pneumonia. A sour or sore feeling in the isofigus, which may mimic heart burn, is another result of exposure.

The eyes and outer ear can also suffer from exposure causing

pink eye and blurring, as well as outer ear infections.This is another moist area where a fine dust can be desolved into body fluids. As these fluids dry out, the fine asbestos residue is left destroying the surrounding tissue causing irritation and immune system responses.

The largest surface affected is the skin. Many different effects can be seen, depending on the location. The face and shoulders commonly are affected by acne, if that individual is prone to it. Asbestos fibers become embedded in the large pores

and cause constant irritation and eventually infection by the acne bacteria which is commonly on the skin. Other areas of the face where contact with a hat, pillow or even ones hair that is embedded with some level of asbestos residue can show signs of acne. Other areas may have anything from dry, cracking skin to contact dermatitis or even yeast infection.

I’ve also found athelete’s foot to follow an accidental walk through an area recently stripped of asbestos tiles. The shoes become embeded with the substance due to the amount of asbestos dust left in the mastic adhesive and porous concrete. Wearing these shoes causes the skin of the feet and toes to become vunerable to fungus infection, such as atheletes foot. Some portion of this dust makes it’s way up to other parts of the body as well, each with their own story of immune system compromise.

This is just another day in the life of body exposed to low levels of asbestos residues encountered in any number of situations we should avoid when they are recognized.

Source by Rick Raymond

Pre-Qin Period in History of China

With a time span of over 1,800 years, the Pre-Qin Period (2,100 B.C.-221 B.C.) refers to the period preceding the Qin dynasty (221-206) in Chinese history, and it goes through 3 different historical stages, namely, the Xia dynasty (2070 B.C.-1600 B.C.), the Shang dynasty (1600 B.C.-1046 B.C.), the Zhou dynasty (1046 B.C.- 221 B.C.), during which the great ancient Chinese people created glorious civilization with their intelligence and hard working, including the inscription on oracle bones from the Xia-Shang dynasties and the bronze wares from the Shang-Zhou dynasties, and these cultural relics become the historical symbols of the ancient Chinese civilization.

The earliest hereditary dynasty in Chinese history, the Xia dynasty, was established by Qi (son of Yu the Great) in 2070 B.C, and the Site of Erlitou in Luoyang is proven to be its original capital according to the latest archeological findings, when the earliest calendar (Xia Xiao Zheng) in Chinese history appeared.

The legend goes that the last emperor of the Xia dynasty, Jie, was overthrown by Tang (the founder of the Shang dynasty) owing to his cruel rule, and Tang was elected as the ruler of a new dynasty- the Shang dynasty, when the civilization was more prosperous than that in the Xia dynasty with the bronze wares, the primitive porcelains and the inscriptions on oracle bones emerging. Although the agriculture functioned as the main industry, great progress had been made in the handicraft industry in the Shang dynasty, especially in the filed of the bronze casting and smelting technology. The last ruler of the Shang dynasty, Zhou, levied exorbitant taxes on the working people and took no notice of state affairs, meanwhile, another tribe led by Vassal Ji Chang rose gradually in the upper reaches of the Yellow River, and Ji Fa (Vassal Ji Chang’s son) rose in rebellion first and won the decisive victory over Shang ruler in the battle of Muye, resulting in the fall of the Shang dynasty and the rise of the Zhou dynasty. Ji Fa (or Emperor Wu) set up the Zhou dynasty with Haojing (present Xi’an of Shaanxi Province) as capital, whose territory was greatly expanded later, stretching from the Yangtze River in the south to the Liaoning Province in the north and from Shandong Province in the east to Gansu Province in the west, and the patriarch system and the governmental organizations were formed in the Zhou dynasty.

As a matter of fact, the Zhou dynasty is composed of the Western Zhou dynasty and the Eastern Zhou dynasty, of which the later is divided into the Spring & Autumn Period (770 B.C.-476 B.C) and the Warring State Period (475 B.C.-221 B.C.). Emperor Zhoupingwang relocated the capital from Haojing to Luoyi (present Luoyang) owing to the invasion from the northern nomadic tribe in 770. B.C., since then the Zhou dynasty started to decline, and the wheel of history rolled on to the Eastern Zhou dynasty (770 B.C.-256 B.C.).

The fall of the Zhou dynasty directly led to the rising of 100 small States, among which the wars broke out frequently, and seven States stood out of the crowed, during the war, namely, Qi State, Chu State, Yan State, Han State, Zhao State, Wei State and Qin State. Shang Yang was appointed as the Chancellor to carry out reforms in the Qin State in 356 B.C., making Qin State the most powerful state then, and Ying Zheng (ruler of Qin state) defeated the other six states one after another and established the first centralized feudal country in China- the Qin dynasty, who was known to the world as Emperor Qinshihuang.

Source by Young M Qingwei

The Qualities and Traits of a Successful Entrepreneur

Entrepreneurial activities are on the rise in Nigeria. This is mainly as a result of the lack of jobs that plague many Nigerians including university graduates. A study carried out by Gallup showed that 67 percent of Nigerians are willing to start their own businesses. Furthermore, 80 percent of those interviewed believed that their businesses would be successful in Nigeria. This is a large percentage as compared to the results of other West African countries whose median for those willing to start a business was 44 percent. This trend has not gone unnoticed and the former Nigerian president, Olusegun Obasanjo even mandated that entrepreneurial skills be taught to all university students irrespective of their major.

All this is in line with the Nigerian Economic Policy for 1999-2003 whose purpose is to promote education through the use of technology. The Nigerian president also has big plans for the country one of them being to see Nigeria as one of the top 20 economies of the world by the year 2020. This, he hopes will come to pass if the policy is duly implemented. According to this policy, one other way that these ambitious goals can be achieved is by partnering up with certain agencies such as the Fate Foundation in Nigeria and the United Nations Transfer of Knowledge through Expatriate Nationals (TOTKEN) which are dedicated to encourage entrepreneurship.

Entrepreneurs in Nigeria face unique challenges that hinder their entrepreneurial spirit and encourage rampant corruption. Nigeria has been previously known as one of the most corrupt countries in the world and this discouraged free enterprise. Nigeria has also been largely dependent on the income from oil that other economic sectors have been grossly underdeveloped. During the oil boom period of between 1973 and 1980, Nigeria’s GDP rose to $1,100 in 1980 from the previous $220 in 1971. However, due to inappropriate government policies Nigeria’s economy was left vulnerable. Investment was made mostly with the oil industry in mind that other sectors such as the manufacturing and the agricultural sector was rendered noncompetitive.

The fall of oil prices all over the world during the 1980’s combined with a general increase in the capital markets real interest rates, greatly affected the domestic and international fiscal situation of Nigeria. This led to a general economic slump which was characterized by a significant fall in GDP from 1,100 in the 1980’s to $340. According to the World Development Report of 1994, Nigeria had dropped from being a middle income level country into one of the poorest countries in the world. A devaluation of this kind created very high inflation, a general spread in poverty and high unemployment rates.

Other factors that have affected entrepreneurship in Nigeria include poor infrastructure, high cost of doing business, constant political, tribal, religious and ethnic violence, gender discrimination and lack of quality education. However, measures are being taken to cub all these negative influences and to make Nigeria conducive for entrepreneurship. Despite all the challenges that have affected the Nigerian economy, business development and entrepreneurship has taken root. It is especially known that individuals from the Ibo ethnic group have great entrepreneurial skills. The number of private firms has greatly increased since the 1980’s although they are quite small when it comes to employment, revenues and capital. Nigeria currently ranks second after South Africa in terms of GDP and if proper measures are taken and appropriate policies adopted then it may as well take the top spot.

Starting any type of a business requires planning, imagination or creativity, inner drive to succeed and of course hard work. However, the main traits and characteristics of entrepreneurs that make their businesses stand out from the crowd include; the desire to achieve. Entrepreneurs are people who highly desire to achieve. An entrepreneur should not wait for things to happen but should rather make them happen. They are also highly competitive and would always try to be informed about latest entrepreneurial developments. Entrepreneurs are also self starters. This is to mean that they motivate themselves to do something. They do not need an incentive to do anything but the desire to succeed is enough to get then started. They would rather make their own mistakes and learn from them

Entrepreneurship also requires hard work. As entrepreneurs, it is important to know that success does not come in a silver platter but has to be worked for. Entrepreneurs realize that they have to put in a lot of time and effort to see there dream come true. Focus is also another very essential characteristic of an entrepreneur. Entrepreneurs know what they want and will do anything to achieve that. This is related to positive thinking in that they believe that everything will turn out well in the end no matter what. Entrepreneurs are also non conformers and almost always wanting to stand out of the crowd. A successful Nigerian entrepreneur should also avoid being pinned down to anything and instead make their own goals and objectives rather than working for someone else.

Entrepreneurs are also born leaders. Good leaders inspire trust in others and motivate them to do something. A good leader efficiently influences, guides and directs people. This trait is especially important when hiring people for the newly founded business. An entrepreneur should possess good judgmental skills and be sharp and bright capable of making wise decisions. Good communication skills are also a must for an entrepreneur. This means that a successful entrepreneur can efficiently convey a message which will be clearly understood. This trait only works well if one is also a keen listener. Entrepreneurs are risk takers. Running a business in itself is a risk because if one does not make calculated choices it could easily collapse. Successful entrepreneurs therefore, take calculated risks in order to succeed. Entrepreneurship also requires dedication. Entrepreneurs tend to stick to their ventures no matter what. They do not easily give up and when they make a mistake, they learn and move on rather than obsessing on that one failure.

Starting and running a business has its ups and down and the ability to stick by it defines a true Nigerian entrepreneur. Creativity and innovation is also another trait that characterizes a successful entrepreneur. Entrepreneurs will always look for new ways of doing things. They are not afraid to try out new ideas and are highly imaginative. Their products or services therefore usually have an edge due to this creativeness. Generally, Nigerian entrepreneurs need a strong spirit that will endure all the trials and tribulations that come with a business. Nigerian entrepreneurs therefore need to make informed choices before deciding to enter into entrepreneurship.

Source by Peter O Osalor

Five Ways to Protect Yourself When Selling Your Business

I read with interest a report of April 23, 2008, entitled “Millions involved in local business purchase scam” published in the Christian County Headliner News. As a certified public accountant that has represented buyers/sellers in business sales transactions and also as Managing Partner of Sunbelt Business Advisors – a business brokerage firm, I thought it beneficial to write about the many red-flags that were present in the article. Red flags that others should be aware of and protect themselves against as they attempt to either sell or buy a business.

SMALL BUSINESSES ARE NORMALLY SOLD AS AN ASSET PURCHASE AND NOT A STOCK PURCHASE. This transaction appears to have been a stock purchase and not an asset purchase. This should have been one of the first very large red flags. Small, privately held businesses are almost never sold as a stock purchase. A stock purchase means the current owners legal entity-the company, continues on instead of the new buyer creating a new company. In a stock purchase the new owners get everything the sellers business owns – bank accounts, receivables, any potential and actual liabilities. This includes contingent liabilities the new owner may not even know about. Additionally, a stock purchase does not allow a new owner to get stepped up basis of the company furniture, fixtures and equipment. The stepped up basis of the FF&E could mean thousands of dollars in tax savings to a new owner that would be very beneficial the first few years of ownership. A buyer walking in and immediately wanting to purchase the stock of business and assume all liabilities, potential future liabilities – known or unknown and leaving the additional depreciation on the table is almost unheard of. A normal asset purchase agreement (not a stock purchase) would have generally excluded cash and bank accounts of the prior company. The new owners in an asset purchase agreement, unlike a stock purchase would not have been able to transfer funds from the company accounts. They would need to open new bank accounts in their new company name.

AT CLOSING, BUYERS FUNDS SHOULD BE AVAILABLE. Apparently this deal closed without confirmation or having actual funds from the buyer. No business purchase transaction should close without having funds available and present at closing. This would be the same as selling your house to someone, closing the transaction, but the buyers not having loan approval yet. You wouldn’t do it and neither should sellers of small businesses.

ALWAYS USE A QUALIFIED CLOSING ATTORNEY. The sale of a business should be closed by a qualified closing attorney. Qualified closing attorneys will have their own space and normally not need to use others. A qualified closing attorney will make sure all legal documents are in order; make sure funds are available to pay the seller and file all required legal and IRS documents. Anyone selling or purchasing a business should insist upon having a qualified closing attorney conduct the closing. The absence of a qualified closing attorney should be a red flag.

USE A QUALIFIED BUSINESS BROKER – DON’T TRY IT ALONE. Not using a qualified, professional business broker is another red flag. Can business deals be completed without using a business broker? Certainly! One can also write their own contracts without using an attorney or prepare their own tax return without using a CPA, but it isn’t necessarily the smartest thing to do. Especially when talking about the sale of a business which is probably one of the largest if not the largest asset a person owns. Something as important as this should not be attempted alone. A qualified business broker will help educate the seller as to the process, help establish a valid market price, effectively market the business, screen buyers, and help qualify buyers, assist with negotiations, work with existing seller CPA and attorney, and work with closing attorney and overall management of the process and be there to advise the seller as to red flags!

NEVER CHANGE THE BANK ACCOUNTS UNTIL YOU HAVE YOUR MONEY. Another subtle, but yet red flag is it appears the seller changed the signature cards at the bank(s) and the names of the people allowed access. Even in a stock purchase, the current bank account holder – the seller would have to have the bank change the names and cards. Obviously, if this did in fact happen, it happened prior to the seller having funds from the buyer. The new buyer also apparently had the “keys” to the business before the seller was paid the purchase price. It is like selling your car to someone and agreeing to be paid at some future date; while you watch the “new buyers” that you just met drive off into the sunset with your car. You probably will never see your money or your car.

Most small business stories like your article remain non-public. Just like most financial frauds that occur at small businesses. People do not like to talk about the failures of small business transactions but, they are happening all the time and all across the country. It is very important that sellers and buyers understand the process of selling/buying a business, watch for red flags and use qualified professionals to help them in the process. Doing so will save them money, time and effort and make for a much better business transaction.

Source by Ted A. Smith

Dear Mr Jesus

There are times when I just can’t forget a song, especially a song with a real message. This song will move anyone to tears–I guarantee it.

It was around the Christmas holidays in 1989, that I recorded this song off the radio. This was before I discovered CDs. I did a lot of recording off the radio back then.

The song I am referring to is entitled, Dear Mr. Jesus. It was written by Richard Klender and sung by a nine year old girl, back then, named Sharon Batts.

Before I display the lyrics of this poignant song of immense emotion, I will give you the facts about the song. It is a true story about child abuse.

In New York City, on May 14, 1981, a baby girl was born by the name of Elizabeth Lisa Launders. By November of the year 1987, the entire world came to know her as “Lisa Steinberg.”

On November 1, 1987, Lisa Steinberg was beaten to death by a New York attorney, named, Joel Steinberg. This brutal, inhumane crime happened at 14 West 10th Street, in Greenwich Village. It would later be a wake-up call to child welfare authorities and the law concerning how they would handle such unimaginable crimes as this one.

First, he savagely beat his live-in lover, Hedda Nussbaum. Then he delivered several blows to Lisa’s head. Her baby brother was found in a back room, laying on the floor, tied to his crib with a short length of rope, dressed in filthy clothing.

If that wasn’t bad enough, they both waited over 12 hours to call for help. Lisa did not die that day, she died three days later from severe brain injuries.

When Hedda later found Lisa was no longer breathing, Joel still didn’t want to call for help, but eventually did. Lisa was in a coma for three days.

This low-life, child killer, deserves no name–only shame, and a ticket to hell. And his live-in lover, deserves more than what she got. He got off easy in the eyes of the law. In 1989, he was convicted of first-degree manslaughter, then released after serving only 15 years.

Many others should share the responsibility of this crime. Child welfare workers, police officers and even a teacher who had seen the evidence of abuse on Lisa’s body, failed to report this or do anything about it. So we have another case of a child who could have been saved if someone had only been willing to help her.

Hedda Nussbaum, was abused by her boyfriend, Joel Steinberg, for years and was beaten by him just before he delivered the blows that killed Lisa, therefore, she was not able to help Lisa. She was not prosecuted since she had been found unable to help Lisa and was not involved in her abuse other than not reporting it.

Following Lisa’s birth, her biological mother, paid Joel Steinberg, an attorney, $500 to find an adoptive home for her. A home was never found and although he never adopted Lisa, she lived with Joel for her entire short life.

Lisa’s biological mother, was awarded $15 million in damages in September 2003 from a civil lawsuit she originally filed against Steinberg, Nussbaum and various city agencies. The city of New York, settled without admitting any wrongdoing in 1999 and paid $985,000.

For more information on this horrendous crime, log onto Lisa Steinberg in your search. Also, by logging onto the title of the song, Dear Mr. Jesus, the song is able to be downloaded.

Lisa deserved to live a long and happy life. She also deserves the recognition and attention of child abuse awareness. I will leave you with the lyrics of this special song that is definitely a moving story of Lisa’s short life of gross negligence and deadly abuse.

Dear Mr. Jesus

(words and music by Richard Klender and sung by Sharon Batts)

Dear Mr. Jesus

I just had to write to you

Something really scared me

When I saw it on the news

A story about a little girl

Beaten black and blue

Jesus thought I’d take this right to you

Dear Mr. Jesus

I don’t understand

Why they took her mom and dad away

I know that they don’t mean to hit

With wild and angry hands

Tell them just how big they are I pray

Please don’t let them hurt your children

We need love and shelter from the storm

Please don’t let them hurt your children

Won’t you keep us safe and warm

Dear Mr. Jesus

They say that she may die

Oh I hope the doctors stop the pain

I know that you could save her

And take her up to the sky

So she would never have to hurt again

Please don’t let them hurt your children

We need love and shelter from the storm

Please don’t let them hurt your children

Won’t you keep us safe and warm

Dear Mr. Jesus

Please tell me what to do

And please don’t tell my daddy

But my mommy hits me, too

Please don’t let them hurt your children

We need love and shelter from the storm

Please don’t let them hurt your children

Won’t you keep us safe and warm

Please don’t let them hurt your children

They need love and shelter from the storm

Please don’t let them hurt your children

Won’t you keep us safe and warm


Source by Earl Erickson

Tote the Note – Buy Here Pay Here

Poor Credit, Bad Credit, No Credit, No Problem.

We Tote the Note.

All of these are common signs you see at some used car dealerships and flashed across your television screen. However, do you really understand what goes behind this concept?

A Tote the Note dealership is really no different from the concept used at furniture rental companies, in that you pay for the car where you purchased it without any loan company in the middle. However, there is still a huge difference between a furniture rental company and a Tote the Note car dealership – Your Credit Report.

When you are searching for a new or used car, you will probably spend more time in the office with the car salesman and his manager trying to get your loan bought from a lending company. The way this is done is, you fill out a credit application, the car salesman, takes it to his manager who then punches your information into a computer to run a report on your credit. When they receive your credit report or credit score they will then fax this information to loan companies they use to finance the cars they sale. Now, the loan company will look over your credit report and decide if they wish to buy your loan. This means that you will by paying the loan company back the money they give the car dealership for the car that you purchase. If you do have poor credit, bad credit, no credit, or a bankruptcy on your credit report, you will more than likely be turned down for the car loan or you will get the bad news that you have to add 21% percent interest onto the price of the car. The bottom line is that you will paying about the same amount of money each month for that used car that you pay for rent or purchasing your home just because your credit is not up to par.

Furniture rental companies do the same, they look at your credit report and if your credit is not what it should be then you may not be able to rent to own their furniture either.

On the other hand, Tote the Note car dealerships do not look at your credit report. They will ask you to fill out an application, but the information they need is where you work, how much money you make, nearest relative’s address and telephone number, and of course, your address. The only thing you really need to purchase a used car from a Tote the Note lot is a job.

A Tote the Note car dealership receives cars from other people that trade in their vehicle in order to purchase another one, buy them from auctions, or other individuals. In most cases, the dealership has a mechanic that will fix major problems that are found with the car; however, you will be purchasing a car without any type of warranty. This means if something goes wrong with the car the dealership will not fix it for you, you will have to pay for all repairs. This is normally called “sold as is”.

The good part about buying from a Tote the Note lot is that you will not have to pay any interest. The price on the car is what you pay. The normal time to pay for the car is usually around 12 to 18 months. You will have to pay a certain amount each month until the total price of the car is paid off minus whatever down payment you may have. Some Tote the Note lots also offer “no down payment”, but this will raise your monthly payment.

Buying from a Tote the Note car dealership will not affect your credit rating in anyway. These car dealerships do not report your payments to the credit bureaus, however, if you default on the loan that is not reported either. If you do not make your payments, the Tote the Note car lot will repossess your vehicle and put it back on their lot for sale.

If you have bad credit, no credit, or other problems that stop you from purchasing a car through a loan company, then a Tote the Note car dealership may be your best bet in getting a car. Remember, to check the car out and test drive it since you will be the one paying for any repairs once you sign the agreement and drive off the lot. You do not want to drive the car a couple of blocks and it die on you, because then you will have to pay for repairs and keep up with your monthly car payment.

Source by Dennis J James

How Did Colonial Rule Restructure the Gender Relations of Colonised People?

This article aims to evaluate the impact of colonial rule on the restructuring of gender relations with regards to Africa, paying specific attention to Ghana as a case study. It is widely agreed amongst political scholars that colonialism did significantly contribute to the reconstruction of gender relations in Africa. It is somewhat easy to make generalizations in the case of Africa, due to its vast continental size and several nation state divisions that each has its own background and religions. Moreover, Africa was not colonized by a single colonial rule but by a variety of European states that each had their own unique cultural backdrop and therefore left different impacts on distinctive regions of the continent. I wish to pursue the argument that colonialism did influence gender relations and most remarkably culminated in the demeaning and degradation of women’s status in many spectrums.

Colonial rule reinforced the portrayal of women as being substandard and subservient, and depicted images of purity and propensity for child-rearing that did not have as much prominence prior to the influx of colonizers. Such exploitative gender relations were imposed during colonial rule with unfavourable outcomes for women. Unfortunately many of the prejudices have been maintained after decolonization, resulting in the discrimination of women in nationalist movements and in modern African institutions.

This article deals with analysis on how colonizers perceived the representation of women after arrival in Africa and how they went about restructuring and reinventing ‘traditions’ of social, economic, political, and sexual relations between the two sexes. In particular, I will investigate effects of altered gender relations in Ghana as a case study, with specific focus on women’s perceptions of gender inequalities. Furthermore, I will explore the repercussions of the reconstructions in gender relations in Africa and furthermore the subsequent impacts on the status of women in post-colonial societies and the weakening of women’s political institutions, and an examination of the work of nationalist movements to ameliorate gender relations of colonized peoples.

Various approaches used to analyze African colonial politics, economies, societies, and cultures are often gender-blind, tending to ignore women’s experiences, contributions, voices, perceptions, representations, and struggles. This started to change following the rise of feminist movements, which emerged out of both localized and transnational trajectories and intellectual and political struggles. While the struggles to mainstream women and gender have been gathering pace, African women have become increasingly more noticeable in histories of colonialism, which has disrupted the chronologies that tend to frame colonialism in Africa.

As the field of women’s studies has expanded, African women have become more differentiated in terms of class, culture, and status, and their complex engagements, encounters, and negotiations with and against the wide range of forces described as colonial are now clearer. From the large and assorted flow of theoretical and methodological literature that has been generated in the last thirty years, vigorous debates are evident. One of the most intriguing is on the validity of the term gender itself, with writers such as Amadiume stressing the relative flexibility of sex and gender relations in pre-colonial Africa, and denying the existence of gender categories at all.

Indeed, the historiography of colonialism in Africa, many authors have tended to dichotomize the colonial experience between two monolithic groups, the colonial state and its African subjects. In so doing, they obscure the contradictions from each side, thus denying the agency of people whose status did not fit within the normative boundaries of this distinction. Perhaps the greatest injustice of this colonial historiography is its negation of the experiences of African women. By taking the generalized experience of certain African men as a normative reference point, many historians have effectively written African women out of history. Though they present themselves as universal histories of colonialism, these accounts deal exclusively with men’s experiences.

In the early twenty-first century it is well established that colonialism had a paradoxical impact on different groups of women, although the dominant tendency was to undermine the position of women as a whole. Colonialism combined European and African patriarchal ideologies to create new practices, relations, and ideologies. Earlier work on colonial gender regimes focused on women in productive and business-related activities in the rural and urban areas and the acute tensions in gender relations that were created, to which the colonial state responded by tightening already restraining customary law, leading to significant changes in family structure and new forms of patriarchal power.

The area that attracted by far the most consideration was that of women’s resistance to colonial rule. Studies ranged from those that examined specific activists and events to general analyses of women’s involvement in nationalist struggles in various countries that demonstrated conclusively women’s political engagements and contributions. More recent work has focused on issues of sexuality, constructions of gender identities, and colonial representations.

African sexuality and its authority and representations were central to ideologies of colonial supremacy. In colonial discourse, female bodies symbolized Africa as the conquered land, and the alleged sexual profligacy of African men and women made Africa an object of colonial desire and disdain, a wild space of pornographic pleasures in need of sexual regulation. Sexuality was implicated in all forms of colonial rule as an intimate encounter that could be used simultaneously to maintain and to corrode racial difference and as a process essential for reproducing human labor power for the colonial economy, both of which required close surveillance and management, especially of African female sexuality.

Feminist studies on the construction of gender identities and relations have helped initiate increasing literature on the establishment and transformation of colonial masculinities. Research on Southern Africa suggest that the colonial divisions of class and race produced different masculinities, some of which were dominant and hegemonic, and others, subordinate and subversive, although the latter received a patriarchal surplus over women of their class and race. These masculinities were produced and performed in different institutional contexts, each with its own gender regime and power relations, from the state, church, and school to the workplace and the home. Undeniably, masculinities changed over time and manifested themselves differently in rural and urban areas, where different gender systems existed and patterns of political, social, and political change took place.

Prior to colonization

Sudarkasa describes, in “The Status of Women”, how African women used to occupy advantageous positions within their communities prior to colonization. Referring to societies in West Africa, she argues that women occupied the status of ‘queen-mothers, queen-sisters, princesses, female-chiefs, and holders of other offices in most towns and villages’. Furthermore, division of labour among gender lines promoted mutual efforts whether it was in farming, trading or craft production.

When European missionaries arrived in Africa in the 19th century, they could not help themselves but look at African culture with a sense of racial superiority and a biased masculine gendered perspective. In fact, when they saw that the division of labor was equally divided between men and women they were astonished by the hard labor effectuated by African women and their endurance. They viewed the participation of women in these difficult activities as a sign of inferiority when in fact this labor gave women pride and economic independence. They also saw bride wealth and polygamy as well as other African cultural practices as barbarous and detrimental to women and it confirmed their view that the African people needed to be civilized under Western ideals.

As a result, missionaries actively started to infuse gendered stereotypes, which portrayed African women as victims in need of protection, “primitives” in need of civilization and potential deviants in need of containment. The role of women was limited to being a good mother and an exemplary housewife while men were identified as farmers and workers. It was in fact essential for colonial administrators to control women’s sexuality and reproductive capacities by keeping them tied to the household because it held them to a virtually cost-free system of subsistence agriculture in the region.

Being the primary food producers, women were made responsible for taking care of the home and feeding the male workers who could therefore work freely for the colonial economy and grow cash crops; therefore the role of colonized women had to bear the costs of subsistence and reproduction of the male labor force. This explains why so much emphasis was put on the importance of monogamy, obedience and dedicated domesticity and why rural-urban migration was excluded for women. Colonized men were soon made accomplices in the subordination of women.

National archives actually show reports of exchanges between colonial officials and native authorities on the problems of women’s sexuality and the rights of male relatives to control and have exclusive access to women’s sexual services and reproductive capacities. Punishments and legal pursuits were made official by state law against prostitutes and women committing adultery or desertion. Also, fines were distributed to prohibit the impregnation of unmarried girls and the beating of women. In South Africa on the other hand, control over colonised women was exercised by binding a woman’s legal status to her husband’s therefore the only means for women to have access to citizenship and residence rights and to housing was through marriage.

The exclusion of women from the labor force, especially agriculture, was not only directly promoted through state laws and open gender discrimination but was also indirectly advanced through the industrialization of labor and the modernisation of agriculture. Mackenzie describes how colonisers used the argument that African methods of agriculture were outdated in order to promote European technological farming methods and legitimize policies of land isolation.

Nationalist movements

Colonisers’ methods were imposed without any regard to local gender knowledge or ecological specificities and so female farmers, for whom agriculture was an area of expertise but also a source of income and subsistence, were made invisible and/or replaced by men. As a result, colonial influence on gender relations was incontestably detrimental to women as it precipitated their loss of political authority, their exclusion from agricultural and educational activities and led to the erosion of their rights and entitlements. Colonialism did not only alter gender relations during colonial times but it also affected women’s representation and participation in nationalistic movements during and after decolonization. When nationalistic discourses and ideas started flourishing among male educated elites, they stressed the need to protect and free the nation from the colonizing forces.

The imagined home or nation was linked with ideas of security, familiarity and tradition and so women became central to the construction of nationalist discourses as biological reproducers of national groups, as reproducers of the boundaries of the nation and as transmitters of the cultural narratives of the nation. Thus, authentic culture became firmly attached to ‘the body of the woman’ and so notions of boundary, purity and chastity previously instilled by colonizers became closely linked with the idea of national identity and with the appropriate behavior of the patriotic woman.

The participation of women in the project of nation building has thus remained symbolic in most cases. In Algeria for example, women’s participation in anti-colonial struggles has been effectively erased from the history of Arab nationalism because it does not fit in with the prototype of the ideal Muslim woman that belongs to the private sector, the world of reproduction and motherhood. In South Africa on the other hand, women’s participation and representation in the national struggle is recognized but their role within the movement has remained subordinate and auxiliary: their role is defined by motherhood and is confined to building a nation for their husbands and children.

As a result, women in post-colonial African societies are still viewed as inferior to men. A woman’s role has remained that of a mother and a wife whose sole goal is to maintain and promote traditional values because it is central to the survival of the authentic pre-colonial culture. To reject tradition would mean to reject nationalism and the risk of this is marginalization and de-legitimisation. The gender inequality maintained by African countries thus implies that citizenship has also remained differentially constructed for men and women.

In the next part of this essay, I will focus particularly on women in Ghana and various studies that have researched the their perceptions of gender relations and inequalities in the post-colonialist era in Ghana. Then I aim to explore the repercussions of the reconstructions in gender relations in Africa and furthermore the subsequent impacts on the status of women in post-colonial societies and the legacy left on women’s political institutions.

Women’s perspectives of gender relations in post-colonial Ghana

Women in Ghana, in a post-colonialist setting, still face discrimination and inequality in the Ghanaian society. This situation is still occurring decades after the first women’s international conference and the United Nations CEDAW, as well as the Ghanaian Constitutional provisions of women’s rights and equality.

Ghanaian women, in theory, have the constitutional right to enjoy equal rights and opportunities with their male counterparts, however, in practice they lag behind in almost all public spheres of life. They have lagged behind in political participation and decision-making, and also in expressing and enjoying their sexual and reproductive rights. Gender inequality has been attributed to institutional and structural barriers, in addition to women’s multiple roles, cultural and customary barriers and negative attitudes and perception about women in general.

Since the first international women’s conference in Mexico in 1975 and other subsequent conferences related to women and gender issues, the world has experienced profound political, economic and social changes that had implications for women everywhere. Ghana has a total population of 18,800,000 million people 51 percent of which are females and 49 percent of males. Many governments, including that of Ghana have endorsed various United Nations conventions and declarations to promote gender equality and to mainstream gender perspectives in all spheres of society. Sub-section 3 of section 27 provides that women shall be guaranteed equal rights without any impediments from any person.

Despite these international conventions and constitutional changes, relatively little has changed in terms of Ghanaian women’s life experiences. They still continue to experience gender-based discrimination, hopelessness and relative poverty and social and political exclusion from active participation in the national development of their country.

In colonial times, women suffered oppression and domination by the patriarchal society in Ghana. Women were taught to accept their position through the socialisation process, including their initiation rites. They were taught to be obedient wives and to respect their elders. They were told that a man could marry more than one woman.

A number of themes emerged from a study by Marie Sossou based on women’s own views, description and understanding of their own living situations in terms of their work loads, sexual and reproductive rights, food and political decision-making in Ghana. The findings of the study revealed admission of all women in Ghana, rural and urban, educated and uneducated, the lack of gender equality in almost all aspects of their lives in Ghana.

The lack of gender equality for women in Ghana does not differ significantly in terms of education, income and social class. Most had at least post-high school and some college education and they worked as professionals and semi-professionals in their various occupations.

One of the major themes identified as a factor hindering the attainment of gender equality in Ghana is the gender role of motherhood and household duties and chores. The birth of a child is an important aspect of any marriage in Ghana because it ensures the continuity of the family lineage and proof of a woman’s fertility and the number of children she could bear.

On the whole, childbirth was seen as an essential role for women in society, either for the benefits it bestows upon the mother or for the honour it brings to her family. They stated they do all the housework in addition to taking care of the children and their husbands and they have no full control over their sexual and reproductive issues. Reproduction and work experiences of the women in Ghana are mostly taken for granted and regarded as gender roles. A consequence of the motherhood role is that the responsibility for childcare is seen primarily as a woman’s job, leaving few opportunities for the advancement of urban careers and city networking.

Another factor that women in Ghana did not fully enjoy is sexual and reproductive rights. The International Conference on population and development held in Cairo in 1994 has accelerated the importance of women’s sexual and reproductive health issues and gender-based power dynamics with regards to sexual relationships between men and women and women’s right and control over their bodies. Previous studies have indicated that within marriages in sub-Saharan Africa, men typically have more say than women in the decision to use contraception and in the number of children that the couple wants to have and most couples avoid discussing family planning issues for various reasons.

The determiners of reproductive decisions within the Ghanaian family are members of the conjugal family, the extended family, and certain persons outside the family circle and the authority structure weighs heavily in favour of the men. It is evident that gender-based power in sexual relationships is unbalanced and women usually have less power than men.

Beliefs exist that women are good as cooks, sex providers and juniors are still persistent. For example, women are given ministries that are considered useless to the economy and therefore not so demanding. This is simply to prove the point that women cannot take on heavy time-consuming jobs. As a goal, it will not be reached overnight as a process and is ongoing.

The empowerment of women is not just an issue of women, but it is also a gender issue, which necessitates a re-examination of gender relations, which ultimately, will require changes made by men as well as by women. It is also a development issue, in that women who become empowered also become active not only in economic activities, but also active in exerting pressure and influence on political, social, and legal issues concerning women.

According to the Commonwealth Secretariat, patriarchy in addition to poverty, illiteracy and unemployment are other factors that increase women’s vulnerability to gender-based violence and other related sexually transmitted diseases. It is significant that any meaningful engagement with sexual and reproductive rights should be addressed in reference to unequal gender relations between men and women.

The use of condoms by both men and women as a means for safe sex and protection has become a significant public health issue due to the HIV/AID epidemic. A number of educated urban women in Ghana regarded the issue of demanding safe sex as culturally sensitive and unacceptable to most men. Polygamy is common in many African countries including Ghana. The 1998 demographic health survey in Ghana indicates that 27.7 % of women are engaged in polygamous relationships.

The 1979 Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against women (CEDAW), have been instrumental in putting women’s socio-economic and political participation and human rights issues on the public domain. Since then, a number of African countries have experienced some high rates of increase in women’s representation and participation in political decision-making and holding of political offices on the continent. For example, Rwanda has become the one African country with the highest of 49 percent of women parliamentarians during that country’s 2003 parliamentary elections.

In Ghana, women have not been very successful in altering their political and economic locations and have not kept pace with their men in gaining much access to political decision-making and participation. In 1995, out of a total of 200 seats, women occupied only 16 seats or formed eight percent of the parliamentary seats. This number has been increased to 10.9 percent or 25 seats out of a total of 230 seats in the national election in 2004.

The case study from above revealed the problems Ghanaian women face daily in their lives and how these problems shaped their views and impressions about themselves. The comments, views and opinions provided and expressed by Ghanaian women have shown the extent of societal discrimination and domination that the women experienced as part of their everyday life. In order to overcome the institutionalised power relations and bring about total transformation in the system, actual processes of empowerment have to occur at several levels. The empowerment process must challenge and modify the set of ideas, attitudes, beliefs and practices in gender relations at grassroots level, in institutions and structures such as in the family, the household, the villages, the market places, the churches and in the local communities. That is to say that change must come from bottom up, targeted in particular at a local level.

Legacy of colonialism as a gendered form of rule

There are numerous post-colonial predicaments, which have left an enduring legacy on African colonized peoples and African institutions. There is a growing tendency that identifies a colonially constructed regime of customary law concerning Africa’s authentic traditions. As colonial states simultaneously attempted to exploit the productive capacity of their colonized subjects and maintain social order, the status of women and the significance of gender changed drastically throughout Africa. Various pre-colonial gender norms interacted with new forms of European colonial sexism in order to create a new highly gendered socio-political context.

However, African women were active agents in this process and often worked to maintain their economic autonomy and contest the definition of African femininity imposed by colonial authorities. Though they have often been portrayed as a homogenous group, African women were divided by a variety of factors, including class, socio-cultural background and proximity to governing powers. Lovett concludes that analyses of African gender relations must take into account the specifics of each state of affairs.

This rejection of African women’s points of view ignores the gendered nature of colonialism. Perhaps most importantly, the homogenization of African women’s experiences obscures the other factors that influence African women’s lives, such as ethnicity, nationality and class. As part of a broader denial of African diversity within colonial thought, many scholars have made gross generalizations about pre-colonial African societies, contending that all Africans encountered colonialism from similar or identical locations.

The flowing nature of African colonial societies must be emphasized, challenging the dominant colonial perception of African society as a static entity that had been thrust into contact with dynamic colonial powers. State policies aimed at economic exploitation habitually negated plans for social order by engendering adaptation, protest and resistance by those the state sought to control. The state’s attempt to accomplish these goals over many different pre-existing forms of social and economic organization led to new contexts in which gender was redefined and its significance restructured.

Colonialism is often viewed, both positively and negatively, as a one-way process in which the colonial state acted upon malleable, compliant colonial subjects in order to achieve its goals.Colonialism had a profound influence on gender relations in Africa and most remarkably culminated in the demeaning and degradation of women’s status in contemporary Africa, as demonstrated by various studies regarding Ghanaian women.

Colonial rule reinforced the portrayal of women as being inferior and subservient, and reinforced sexual domination and images of motherhood that did not have as much prominence prior to the influx of colonizers. Such exploitative gender relations were imposed during colonial rule with many unfavourable consequences for women’s status in African society.

Unfortunately many of the prejudices have been maintained and sustained after decolonization, resulting in the discrimination of women in nationalistic movements and in modern African society. Perhaps the greatest injustice can be found in certain colonial historiography that presented negation of the experiences of African women. Women’s participation and representation in nationalist struggles is recognized but their role within the movement has remained subordinate and secondary: their main role is still primarily defined by motherhood and is confined to supporting a nation ruled by their husbands and children.

Source by Lisa Gan

Does Medicaid Cover Surrogacy?

My potential surrogate mothers and their intended parents are attracted by the idea that Medicaid, or other federal programs, can assist with the costs of the surrogate mother’s pregnancy and the birth of the surrogate baby. Maternity health insurance can be quite expensive and this is a way to trim thousands of dollars away from the cost of surrogacy which can be used for other expenses, including the surrogate’s compensation.

So that begs the question: if a surrogate mother financially qualifies for government assistance, should that be used to help cover the costs of a surrogacy? The answer is absolutely NO. Under no circumstances should federal assistance be used to fund a surrogacy.

It is not the government’s responsibility to assist intended parents with the costs of their infertility treatments. Though a typical set of intended parents have put in more than their fair share of taxes over the years, and might feel entitled to receiving some benefits from all of that, it is not the remaining taxpayer’s burden to bear.

Though the surrogate mother may qualify to receive assistance, the child she carries does not. The parents of that child do not meet the income qualifications needed to be eligible for the assistance. This is the equivalent of a woman claiming her neighbor’s child is hers in order to qualify.

It is fraud. And if the government decided to, they could prosecute the surrogate mother and intended parents for fraud. This could involve hefty fines, and, if they chose to make an example of the situation may even involve jail time.

Many agencies and clinics will not work with surrogate mothers who are on public assistance. Often, they simply do not want to get involved in a situation that could become misconstrued by the federal government.

Another reason agencies choose not to work with these women is the fact that they might need the money provided by surrogacy in order to meet their basic necessities. Since so much in surrogacy is uncertain, the surrogate might go months without receiving a cent of compensation. She may also go upwards of a year and end a journey having never received any compensation whatsoever.

Add to that the fact that many see surrogacy as exploitation of the poor and agencies simply do not wish to get involved. The last thing surrogacy needs is more controversy.

Other forms of public assistance, such as WIC should also be viewed the same way. If she were not pregnant with another couple’s child, the surrogate would not qualify to be placed on WIC; therefore, she does not quality for it.

If a potential surrogate mother is in dire financial straits, surrogacy is simply not the best option for her. If a woman is currently a surrogate and finds herself in a difficult financial situation which will cause her to not be able to afford proper nutrition, the intended parents should cover these costs.

But under no circumstances should either the surrogate mother or intended parents be tempted to use the government for help. Medicaid is not a cheap way to get a surrogacy done. It’s a way to get in a lot of trouble in years to come.

Source by Rayven Perkins

Fads, Trends and Classics – What Do These Fashion Terms Mean?

Fashion can be a fickle world. Some come and go quickly. Some stay for a short visit and some become our new best friends.

When you understand how fashion works, you can learn to make wiser fashion choices.

Fads are fashions that come and go quickly, usually in a season or a year. They are styles that appeal to a small group of women. Mostly aimed at the young, they repeat in long cycles. Young women see them as something new to experiment with while older women say been there, done that and usually ignore them the second or third time round. Military styles are an example of a fashion Fad.

Trends are fashions that stay for a short visit, on average three years but may stay a few years longer like visitors who decide to extend their stay in your home. The first year will be the more extroverted and dramatic version of the fashion. It will be toned down slightly in the next few years. Its stay depends on retail sales.

An example of this is the current Colour Blocking Trend which is in its second year. Short front and long back skirts are another. This Trend is in its dying stages as it goes very conservative with only a tiny variation between the front and back hem to entice older women to buy into the trend.

Classics are favourite styles that have been around for many, many years. They have become classics because their styles suit most women. These include the princess line from the armhole, the pencil skirt, draped and cowl necklines and the front-buttoned business suit. They can become boring and create an impression of a dowdy woman stuck in a time warp. To get the most value from them today, they either need to be a base over which modern tops or jackets are added or they need to be made in interesting fabrics or made with slight variations in the style.

Modern Classics start out as Trends. Sales of them soar as women of all ages, shapes and sizes embrace them. Designers for the retail market are on a winner. Crossover tops, princess lines from the middle of the shoulders and draped jackets are examples. They became Modern Classics because they can be re-invented in slightly different and flattering variations year after year. Modern classic styles are not static. They keep evolving.

Fads are usually for Extroverts. Trends start being for Extroverts and then get toned down for Introverts. Modern Classics make both Extroverts and Introverts feel and look great. Classics need modern additions to stop them from being dowdy.

Accessories like shoes and handbags also have Fads, Trends and Modern Classic variations.

Source by Margaret A Sims

How to Win the CBN/NYSC Annual Venture Prize Competition

This competition is an initiative of the CBN as part of its corporate social responsibility and in consonance with the principle of the National Economic Empowerment and Development Strategy (NEEDS). It is designed to unleash the entrepreneurial spirit of the youth corps members during their service year and to encourage them to imbibe entrepreneurial concepts and ideas. The Annual Venture Prize Competition is majorly aimed at reducing the dependence on white collar jobs which would stimulate economic growth, development of local technology and generation of employment.

It is open to only serving corps members in every batch of a given year. The Award is in two categories (State/National) and it covers all legal business concepts except commerce. Interested corpers are expected to submit a business proposal to the state level for critical examination by the state Inter-Agency Selection Committee where three winners usually emerge. The prize money for the state awards is;

– 1st Prize: N200,000.00

– 2nd Prize: N150,000.00

– 3rd Prize: N100,000.00

Ten best proposals from each Development Finance Office are sent to the Department and subjected to further examination by the National Selection Committee to select the national winners which has the following prize money tied to it.

– 1st Prize: N1,000,000.00

– 2nd Prize: N750,000.00

– 3rd Prize: N500,000.00

All winners will be given Certificates of Merit, linked to banks to sponsor their projects and invited to participate at a course at any of the Entrepreneurship Development Centers (EDCs).

Annual Venture Prize Competition draft procedure.

Identify a Need or Problem

For you to be a participant of this millionaire making award you must have a business concept or idea. There must be a need or market you are willing to satisfy. Your business idea might be innovative or an improvement on an existing concern which would add value to the life of the people.

Carryout an In-Depth Business Analysis

You must engage in a critical analysis of the business. The profitability, durability and legality of the business must be ascertained. You must have a good understanding of the proposed business.

Create a Marketable and Exceptional Business Plan/ Feasibility Report

After you have ascertained that the business idea is viable and profitable, compose a winning business plan. The plan must be written according to the statutory format. The format is as follows:

1. Business Plan and Corporate Directive ( Vision, Mission and Objectives, etc)

2. Operational Strategies ( Uniqueness of the Organization)

3. Strategic Plan and Objectives

4. Projected Outreach, Market Share and Marketing Strategy

5. Financial Projection/ Strategy

6. Sustainability Strategy

7. SWOT Analysis

8. Risk Identification and Mitigation Strategies

9. Economic and Social Justification – Business Benefits to the Society

10. Environmental/ Infrastructural Analysis (Assessment of the likely Impact of Environmental Factors of the Proposal)

11. Management Structure, etc.

Your business plan is your representative. You will not be there when it will be examined. In fact, your passport to the award process is your feasibility report. Therefore you must ensure that you business plan is outstanding.

If you don’t know how to write one, contact someone that is fully skilful in writing business plans. If you are hiring a professional to assist you in writing the plan, ensure that you are part of the preparation process. That is; be part of the preparation process. This is to enable you learn and understand everything in the report.

It is not advisable to hire a professional that is far from you. This is true because, he will just give you a finished work without educating you. You might be asked to defend the proposal before the Committee.

You can also make your business plan unique by adding pictures, PowerPoint slides and audiovisual CDs to make your business points clearer.

Submit Proposal

Ensure you submit your proposal within the stipulated time. It should be submitted to either the Head, Development Finance Office, in the branch of the CBN in the state of service or to the Director, Development Finance Department, Central Bank of Nigeria, Corporate Headquarters, Abuja. Also ensure that the proposal carry your NYSC call-up number, contact address and phone number. Make sure you follow-up the proposal by visiting the Committee office to get information. You must also listen to daily news and read current dailies to get new hints as regards to the Annual Prize Competition.

Components of a Winning Proposal

– The business starting capital must be from one hundred thousand to a million naira: Given that the lowest prize money is N 100,000.00 and the highest is N1, 000,000.00 let your business be the type that can be started with the minimum of the least prize money and the maximum of the highest prize.

– The business must be legal: There are businesses that are illegal in Nigeria. Ensure you go to Corporate Affairs Commission to get the full lists of legal business. Also there are some goods that are contraband in Nigeria.

– The business must be resident in Nigeria: The sole aim of this programme is to boast the economy of Nigeria and not foreign countries. Therefore, the business must be located in Nigeria.

– The business must have the tendency of employing Nigerian citizens: The business must have the capacity of employing you and other unemployed Nigerians

– You must prove that you will not abandon the business for a white collar job: This competition is solely for entrepreneurs. Consequently, if you have the intention of starting the business with the intention of abandoning it immediately you secure a white collar job, this programme is not for you. It is strictly for passionate entrepreneurs.

– You must prove that the business would be profitable. One of the goals of this initiative is to Stimulate economic growth. Therefore, the proposal must show that you business has the capacity of making profit.

– Your proposal will receive massive attention when it is geared towards using and develop local technology.

– This programme covers all business concepts except commerce. Commercial activities are very risky. Your business idea must not be to buy and sell of finished goods. Rather it should be able to produce better goods at a competitive price and time.

– The cost of your products must be competitive: Your goods or services must be exceptional but affordable.

– Your business idea must contain something good that your competitor are not doing or are not doing well.

– Your proposal will scale-through if your business is using locally produced raw materials

Source by Anyaehie George Kelechi