Good morning. “Every position you take in life will offend some and appeal to others. Take a stand nonetheless, that is what character demands.”
In today’s edition:
-Super app dreams
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FIGHTING POLICE BRUTALITY AND MEDIA SILENCE
As I write this, protesters in Lagos, Nigeria will be counting the casualties after several witnesses confirmed that security forces opened fire on unarmed protesters.
Protests against police brutality entered its second week after public opinion called the government’s response to #EndSARS empty rhetoric. Desperate to get on top of the situation, two states in Nigeria- Lagos state and Edo state declared curfews.
In Lagos, a 24 hour curfew which was supposed to start at 4pm
(WAT) was announced at 12 noon. It provided the perfect opportunity for Nigeria’s armed forces to move to the Lekki Toll Gate, where thousands of protesters gathered. Several eye witness reports and videos show that security forces opened fire on the unarmed protesters.
At this time, no one is certain what the death tolls are. But early estimates suggest that Nigeria’s security forces have murdered nine people.
How is the Nigerian media covering this?
Nigeria’s traditional media houses have been at the forefront of misinformation since the protests began.
Despite several verified videos of security forces shooting at unarmed protesters, Channels TV ran this headline: Security Operatives Fire Gunshots To Disperse Protesters in Lekki.
The Daily Post of Nigeria ran this headline: Lagos: Bullets hit End SARS protesters in Lekki, many feared dead. The Nigerian newspaper, Punch, chose an even stranger headline: Heavy gunfire as soldiers clear Lekki EndSARs protesters.
If you’re in Nigeria and your TV is turned on, you may very well have no idea that protesters are being killed by the country’s security forces.
Nigeria’s broadcast regulator is keeping media houses in line
Nigeria’s National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) told broadcasters to “approach the use of materials from user generated content in order not to embarrass individuals, organisations, government….”
It also asked broadcasters to perform the role of “peace agents.” The NBC’s stance may explain in part why broadcasters in Nigeria have essentially looked the other way.
Spread the word
Play your part in helping to spread the right information about what’s happening in Nigeria. Share this newsletter as well as bold reporting of the state sponsored violence wherever you can find them.
“We didn’t come in saying we are a super app.“ – Emeka Ajene, CEO, Gozem
Gozem launched in 2018 as a ride-hailing business in Togo and Benin and in two years, it has a presence in two cities across both countries.
While the company started out focusing on transportation as a base of sorts, it had its eyes on becoming a super app.
In September, Alex wrote about Gozem’s super app ambitions and an excerpt from his article helps us understand the company’s plan.
“With its motorcycle taxis (zems), cars and tuk tuks (motorised tricycles), they have built a fleet that is now deployed in cargo delivery, and ecommerce.”
“In the seven cities where they operate, groceries, cooking gas, and electronics vendors are being onboarded.”
“They are onboarding cigar shops in Lomé, the Togolese capital popular among European expats seeking vacation in West Africa.”
“To ensure its app is a platform instead of a mere aggregator of services, Gozem has its payments wallet integrated with mobile money. With that, users remain on the app for the entire transaction process rather than being transferred to third party sites.”
Delivroum is another infinity stone for Gozem’s gauntlet
Gozem will now add Delivroum, Togo’s first food delivery platform to its existing
list of service offerings. Despite the fact that Delivroum was set up in 2019, it gained enough traction to be noticed and acquired by Gozem.
The Delivroum team will join Gozem’s delivery department, and eventually, Delivroum’s operations and brand will be integrated into a new, standalone Gozem Food vertical.
Tayo Oviosu (Paga) and Adal Flores (Kueski) have run leading fintech companies in Nigeria and Mexico respectively for over a decade each. Listen to them share their journey stories and lessons learned in a conversation with Adia Sowho.
On Friday, October 9th, 2020, TechCabal hosted a TC Live session with Isis Nyong’o Madison, the CEO of Bliss Group, an omnichannel and e-commerce platform for baby care products and parenting information birthed from two startups –
MumsVillage, Kenya and BabyBliss Nigeria.
The merger between MumsVillage, a Kenyan company, and BabyBliss Nigeria is a demonstration of how e-commerce and Femtech will spread in Africa.