Published on July 28, 2014
WEST AFRICA: WEST AFRICA PowerPoint Presentation: West Africa , also called Western Africa and the West of Africa , is the westernmost subregion of the African continent . West Africa is inhabited by West Africans , and in line with the current membership of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS ) DIFFERENT COUNTRIES IN WEST AFRICA: DIFFERENT COUNTRIES IN WEST AFRICA PowerPoint Presentation: -BENIN -BURKINA FASO -ISLAND OF CAPE BERDE -GAMBIA -GHANA -GUINEA -GUINEA-BISSAU -IVORY COAST -LIBERIA -MALI -MAURITANIA(MAGHREB) -NIGERIA -NIGER -SENEGAL -ISLAND OF SAINT HELENA -SIERRA LEONE -TOGO FORMS OF GOVERNMENT: FORMS OF GOVERNMENT PowerPoint Presentation: STATE GOVERNMENT HEAD OF STATE HEAD OF GOVERNMENT BENIN presidential unitary republic president of benin president of benin CAPE VERDE presidential unitary republic President of Cape Verde Prime minister of Cape Verde IVORY COAST Presidential unitary republic President of Cote d’lvoire President of Cote d’lvoire GABON Semi-presidential unitary republic President of gabon Prime minister of Gabon GAMBIA Presidential unitary republic President of Gambia President of Gambia GHANA Presidential unitary republic President of Ghana President of Ghana GUINNEA-BISSAU Semi-presidential unitary republic President of Guinnea-bissau Prime minister of Guinnea -Bissau MALI Presidential unitary republic President of Mali NIGERIA Presidential unitary federation President of Nigeria President of Nigeria NIGER Semi-presidential unitary republic President of Niger Prime minister of Niger SIERRA LEONE Presidential unitary republic President of Sierra Leone President of Sierra Leone TOGO Presidential unitary republic President of Togo President of Togo HEAD OF STATE: HEAD OF STATE PowerPoint Presentation: STATE HEAD OF STATE BENIN President Yayi-Boonie CAPE VERDE President-Jorge Carlos Foncesca IVORY COAST President- Alassane Ouattara GABON President -Ali Bongo Ondimba GAMBIA President - Yayha Jammeh GHANA President-John Dramani Mahama GUINNEA-BISSAU President -Jose Mario Vas MALI President-Ibrahim Boubacar Keita NIGERIA President- Goodluck Jonathan NIGER SIERRA LEONE President- Mahamadou Issofou President-Ernest Bai Koroma TOGO President-Faure Gnassingbe ’ CURRENCY: CURRENCY PowerPoint Presentation: The West African CFA franc ( French : franc CFA ; Portuguese : franco CFA or simply franc , ISO 4217 code: XOF ) is the currency of eight independent states in West Africa : Benin , Burkina Faso , Côte d'Ivoire , Guinea-Bissau , Mali , Niger , Sénégal and Togo . These eight countries have a combined population of 102.5 million people (as of 2013), and a combined GDP of US$78.4 billion (as of 2012). RELIGION: RELIGION TRADITIONAL: TRADITIONAL Traditional African religions (noting the many different belief systems) are the oldest belief systems among the populations of this region, and includes Akan religion , Yoruba religion , Odinani , and Serer religion , etc. It is spiritual but also linked to the historical and cultural heritage of the people.Although traditional beliefs varies from one place to the next, there are more similarities than differences. CHRISTIANITY: CHRISTIANITY Christianity , a relative newcomer introduced from the late 19th to mid to late 20th centuries, is associated with The British and French colonisation eras. It has become the predominant religion in the central and southern part of Nigeria , and the coastal regions stretching from southern Ghana to coastal parts of Sierra Leone . Like Islam, elements of Traditional African religion are mixed with Christianity. This religion was brought to the region by European missionaries during the colonial era. ISLAM: ISLAM Islam is the predominant religion of the West African interior and the far west coast of the continent (70% of West Africans); and was introduced to the region by traders in the 9th century. Islam is the religion of the regions biggest ethnic groups by population. Islamic rules on livelihood, values, dress and practices had a profound effect on the populations and cultures in their predominant areas, so much so that the concept of tribalism is less observed by Islamized groups like the Mande , Wolof , Hausa , Fula and Songhai , than they are by non-Islamized groups. Ethnic intermarriage and shared cultural icons are established through a superseded commonality of belief or community, known as ummah .Traditional Muslim areas include Senegal , Gambia , Mali , Mauritania , Guinea , Niger ; the upper coast and inland two thirds of Sierra Leone and inland Liberia ; the western, northern and far-eastern regions of Burkina Faso ; and the northern halves of the coastal nations of Nigeria , Benin , Togo , Ghana and Ivory Coast . Voodoo altar with several fetishes inAbomey, Benin.: Voodoo altar with several fetishes in Abomey , Benin. LANGUAGE: LANGUAGE PowerPoint Presentation: There are 1,250 to 2,100  and by some counts over 3,000 languages spoken natively in Africa ,  in several major language families Niger–Congo ( Bantu and non-Bantu) covers West , Central , Southeast and Southern Africa NATURAL RESOURCES: NATURAL RESOURCES LAND: LAND The vegetation of West Africa makes agriculture the dominant preoccupation in the region, and a number of agricultural products both for local consumption and for export, come from the region.. Crops for subsistence farming include beans, yam, etc., while agricultural products include Cocoa, rubber, timber, etc. Cocoa productions are done mainly in countries like Ghana, Nigeria and Cote d’Ivoire. Logging from timber is also done across countries in the sub-region but countries like Liberia, Cote d’Ivoire, Nigeria and other coastal countries areleading producers, while rubber is predominant in Liberia, which, indeed, is the world’s largest producer. PowerPoint Presentation: Many of these commodities are exported to Western Europe, Asia and the United States and some multinational corporations from these foreign countries are based in some of the countries to maximise opportunities created by the existence of these commodities. But apart from the resources, the land on which production is made is in itself, a resource of most profound economic, social and spiritual significance across West Africa. Indeed, as will be shown later, conflicts surrounding land are some of the most devastating in the sub-region. Guinea-Bissau “The Bijagós archipelago”: Guinea-Bissau “The Bijagós archipelago” The Bijagós archipelago are a semitropical land with abundant flora, fauna and natural resources . SOLID MINERALS: SOLID MINERALS Although there are a number of solid minerals found in many West African countries, two minerals are particularly important: gold and diamond. The quantity ofthese resources, at least in the case of gold, is not as profound as that in some otherparts of the continent. Among the countries endowed with gold are Burkina Faso,Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Mali. On its part,diamonds are found in Ghana, Guinea, Burkina Faso, Liberia and Sierra Leone. Of these countries, however, only Sierra Leone has diamonds of appreciable quantity.The main actors involved in West Africa’s solid mineral resources are mainly multinational corporations such as De Bears (in the case of diamonds), artisan actors and Lebanese businessmen. Indeed, the role of Lebanese business interest was to be crucial in appreciating the complexities of conflicts over these resources. PowerPoint Presentation: SOLID FUEL IGNEOUS ROCK MAGNETITE OIL: OIL Oil is a natural resource that is fast bringing international attention to WestAfrica and the entire Gulf of Guinea. There can be no doubt that the region has significant amount of oil reserve and recent discoveries, as in the case, for example, of Ghana, seems to be improving the significance of the region in global oil politics. The key oil producing country in the region and also the continent’s largest producer is Nigeria. On-going prospecting may yield other discoveries as there are likely to be more off-shore findings in other parts of West Africa. As in the case of solid minerals, the marketing of oil and the conflicts associated with it has brought an array of actors, including oil multinational corporations, especially Shell and Chevron, militant groups in the resource-producing communities and the state. The importance of West Africa has been further enhanced by the declared intention of the United States to derive 25 per cent of its oil needs from the Gulf of Guinea by 2015 OIL PRODUCTION: OIL PRODUCTION Water and Water Resources: Water and Water Resources West Africa is endowed with a number of very rich river basins, including Niger, Benue, Volta, Senegal, Mano , Lake Chad and several other small basins. Some of these rivers are among the longest in the world and Lake Chad holds one of the largest areas of wetlands in the Sahelian region. These rivers have served several functions, including provision of hydro-power for some of the countries, and in recent times, a number of countries have come together to form ‘unions’ around river basins, as in the cases of Mano and Volta rivers. Fishing is another economic activity that is fast gaining prominence in West Africa. Expectedly, the predominanceof this is in coastal countries. The region’s fishing and other marine resources have brought into some of the coastal countries massive international trailers, especially From Western Europe and Asia. This has provided some revenue for countries such as Senegal, Gambia and Mauritania. It has, however, brought its own complications, as local fishermen have often clashed with international trailers using sophisticated equipments. PASTORALISM: PASTORALISM The final category of natural resources is Pastoralism . For the purpose of this paper, pastoralism is taken as the trading in animal stock. This is a category of resources that is not as predominant in West Africa as in other parts of Africa, especially east and central Africa. What, however, makes this category of natural resources important in any calculation of conflict is the transhumance nature of the operation. More often than not, many of those participating in this line of business do not respect international boundaries and this has been a major issue In the linkage between this particular natural resource and conflict in West Africa. CLIMATE: CLIMATE West Africa has wet and dry seasons resulting from the interaction of two migrating air masses. The first, is the hot, dry tropical continental air mass of the northern high pressure system, which gives rise to the dry, dusty, Harmattan winds which blow from the Sahara over most of West Africa from November to February; the maximum southern extension of this air mass occurs in January between latitudes 5° and 7°N. The second, is the moisture-laden, tropical maritime or equatorial air mass which produces southwest winds. The maximum northern penetration of this wet air mass is in July between latitudes 18° and 21°N. Where these two air masses meet is a belt of variable width and stability called the Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ). The north and south migration of this ITCZ, which follows the apparent movement of the sun, controls the climate of the region. PowerPoint Presentation: The lowland climates of West Africa are characterized by uniformly high sunshine and high temperatures throughout the year; mean annual temperatures are usually above 18°C. Areas within 10° of the equator have a mean annual temperature of about 26°C with a range of 1.7 – 2.8°C; the diurnal range is 5.6 – 8.3°C. Between latitudes 10°N and the southern part of the Sahara mean monthly temperatures can rise to 30°C, but the annual range is 9°C and diurnal range 14° to 17°C. In the central Sahara temperatures in the shade in July may be as high as 58°C during the day and as low as 4°C at night; mean annual temperature ranges from 10° – 35°C. The skies in the higher latitudes in inland areas are usually cloudless as compared to areas close to the coast where skies are cloudier and night temperatures are higher. Temperatures are greatly modified by altitude, although this is not as pronounced as in the high plateau of East Africa. Freetown (8° .30'N) and Abidjan (5°N) have annual rainfalls of 3434mm and 1830mm respectively which start in February/March and end in November or December followed by four months of lower rainfall when precipitation is less than evapotranspiration . Inland, Ouagadougou (12°N) receives 890mm of rain in 5 months (June - September) while on the edge of the desert Agades (18°N) has only 175mm in 2-1/2 months (July - September). The general rainfall pattern is modified by ocean currents and physiographic features. A coastal savannah with about 730 mm annual rainfall extends from the middle of the Ghana coast to the extreme southwestern corner of Nigeria. PowerPoint Presentation: This is because the coastline runs parallel to the direction of the rain-bearing southeasterly winds and the cold Benguella current which impinges on the coast and reduces the rainfall in amount and duration. The cold Canary current has the same effect on coastal Senegal; Dakar has only 585mm annual rainfall. Altitude also affects rainfall with the result that highland areas have more rain than the surrounding lowlands. Dabundja , south of the Adamawa ranges in southern Cameroon, has over 10 000mm of annual rainfall. Other characteristics of the rainfall of West Africa include: ( i ) frequent heavy rainstorms of short duration which cause severe soil erosion, particularly on cleared, bare cultivated land; (ii) the occurrence of a belt of bimodal rainfall some distance inland from the coast eastwards from Sierra Leone to Nigeria, and (iii) the variability in amount, time of onset, duration and cessation which increases from the wetter areas to the drier areas. In the coastal areas the percentage annual variability ranges from 10 to 20 percent, while close to the Sahara in the Sahel it may exceed 40 percent. IMPORT AND EXPORT: IMPORT AND EXPORT PowerPoint Presentation: West Africa, with a potential market of over 270 million consumers, offers real business opportunities for those exporting companies looking for new and emerging markets. We advise international companies and corporations on the procedures and processes for the profitable export, import, sales and distribution of products and goods through the tax and duty free trade zones in Benin , Burkina Faso , Cameroon , Cape Verde , Chad , Equatorial Guinea , Gabon , Ghana , Guinea Bissau , Guinea Conakry , Ivory Coast , Liberia , Mali , Mauritania , Nigeria, Senegal , Sierra Leone , The Gambia and Tog . MAP: MAP PowerPoint Presentation: Western Africa, lying on the western most region, is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean in the south and west and Sahara desert in the north. It include 16 countries over an area of 5 million sq kms . Western Africa, lying on the western most region, is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean in the south and west and Sahara desert in the north. It include 16 countries over an area of 5 million sq kms. Western Africa, lying on the western most region, is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean in the south and west and Sahara desert in the north. It include 16 countries over an area of 5 million sq kms. Western Africa, lying on the western most region, is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean in the south and west and Sahara desert in the north. It include 16 countries over an area of 5 million sq kms. : Western Africa, lying on the western most region, is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean in the south and west and Sahara desert in the north. It include 16 countries over an area of 5 million sq kms . Western Africa, lying on the western most region, is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean in the south and west and Sahara desert in the north. It include 16 countries over an area of 5 million sq kms . Western Africa, lying on the western most region, is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean in the south and west and Sahara desert in the north. It include 16 countries over an area of 5 million sq kms . CULTURE AND TRADITIONS: CULTURE AND TRADITIONS PowerPoint Presentation: Despite the wide variety of cultures in West Africa, from Nigeria through to Senegal , there are general similarities in dress , cuisine , music and culture that are not shared extensively with groups outside the geographic region. This long history of cultural exchange predates the colonization era of the region and can be approximately placed at the time of the Ghana Empire (proper: Wagadou Empire), Mali Empire or perhaps before such empire TRADITIONAL ARCHITECHTURE: TRADITIONAL ARCHITECHTURE The main traditional styles of building (in conjunction with modern styles) are the distinct Sudano-Sahelian style in inland areas, and the coastal forest styles more reminiscent of other sub-Saharan areas. They differ greatly in construction due to the demands made by the variety of climates in the area, from tropical humid forests to arid grasslands and desert. Despite the architectural differences, buildings perform similar functions, including the compound structure central to West African family life or strict distinction between the private and public worlds needed to maintain taboos or social etiquette. TIMBUKTU AIRPORT: TIMBUKTU AIRPORT CLOTHING: CLOTHING In contrast to other parts of Africa south of the Sahara, the concepts of hemming and embroidering clothing were historically known in West Africa, and historically included the production of various breeches , shirts , tunics and jackets , concepts unknown in clothing traditions from other parts of the continent. This had ensured a wide variety of worn clothing with underlying similarities. A typical formal attire worn in this region are the knee to ankle-length flowing Boubou robe , Dashiki and Senegalese Kaftan (also known as Agbada and Babariga ), which has its origins in the clothing of nobility of various West African empires in the 12th century. Traditional half-sleeved hip height woven smocks or tunics (known as fugu in gurunsi , riga in hausa ), worn over a pair of baggy trousers is also widely worn by people.  In the coastal regions stretching from southern Ivory Coast to Benin, a huge rectangular cloth is wrapped under one arm, draped over a shoulder, and held in a hand, and coincidentally has the appearance and symbolism similar to the togas of the Romans . The most well known of these toga like cloth garments is the Kente made by the Akan people of Ghana and Ivory Coast who wear it to show their identity as a member of their nation. AGBADA: AGBADA CUISINE: CUISINE A large number of travellers such as traders , historians , emigrants , colonialists, missionaries, etc., have travelled the world to the West African Region and have benefited from the generosity of the native populations and left with a piece of the cultural heritage of the region. Implicitly, West African cuisines have had a significant influence on the Western World for centuries. For example a large number of West African recipes are enjoyed in the West Indies , Australia, Louisiana , Italy, Haiti , and all over the world. Although some of these recipes have been altered to suit the other climates and tastes, nevertheless they still retain their West African fervours . JALLOF RICE: JALLOF RICE RECREATION AND SPORTS: RECREATION AND SPORTS The board game oware is quite popular in many parts of West Africa. The word " Oware " originates from the Akan people of Ghana. However, virtually all African peoples have a version of this board game.  The major multi-sport event of West Africa is the ECOWAS Games which commenced at the 2012 ECOWAS Games . Football is also a pastime enjoyed by many, either spectating or playing. The major national teams of West Africa, the Ghana national football team , the Ivory Coast national football team , and the Nigeria national football team regularly win the Africa Cup of Nations .  Major football teams of West Africa are Asante Kotoko SC and Accra Hearts of Oak SC of the Ghana Premier League , Enyimba International of the Nigerian Premier League and ASEC Mimosas of the Ligue 1 (Ivory Coast) . The football governing body of West Africa is the West African Football Union (WAFU) and the major tournament is the West African Club Championship and WAFU Nations Cup , along with the annual individual award of West African Footballer of the Year . SUPPORTAIREMIMOS: SUPPORTAIREMIMOS MUSIC: MUSIC Mbalax , Highlife , Fuji and Afrobeat are all modern musical genres which listeners enjoy in this region. Old traditional folk music is also well preserved in this region. Some of these are religious in nature such as the " Tassou " tradition used in Serer religion GRIOT AND PRAISE SINGING: GRIOT AND PRAISE SINGING Two important related traditions that musically make West African musical attitudes unique are the Griot tradition, and the Praise-singing tradition. In many cases, these two genres are highly similar, the difference being whether the traditions are considered the property of hereditary castes ( Griot ) or to talented individuals among a ruler's subjects (Praise-singing). In both cases the minstrel tradition and specialization in certain string and percussion instruments is observed. BIJOUTIER ET JOUEURS DE KORA: BIJOUTIER ET JOUEURS DE KORA FILM INDUSTRY: FILM INDUSTRY Nollywood of Nigeria, is the main film industry of West Africa. The Nigerian cinema industry is the second largest film industry in terms of number of annual film productions, even ahead of the American film industry in Hollywood .  Senegal and Ghana also has long traditions of producing films. The late Ousmane Sembène , the Senegalese film director, producer and writer is from the region, as is the Ghanaian Shirley Frimpong-Manso . COORDINATES OF WEST AFRICA: COORDINATES OF WEST AFRICA 12.0000° N, 3.0000° E PowerPoint Presentation: THE END!