Monday, 4th December 2023

Genevieve Nnaji, Lola Shoneyin, Uzoamaka Aduba, others make AWP Network Power List

This year, we are introducing Africa’s leading women by recognizing 40 African women with powerful, inspiring and influential voices. At the AWP Network, we aim to encourage more African women with powerful voices who will continue to create programs and policies that support the development and growth of African women and girls. Here’s the 2018…

Genevieve Nnaji

This year, we are introducing Africa’s leading women by recognizing 40 African women with powerful, inspiring and influential voices.

At the AWP Network, we aim to encourage more African women with powerful voices who will continue to create programs and policies that support the development and growth of African women and girls.

Here’s the 2018 AWP Network Power List

. Okwui Okpokwasili (Nigeria): Winner of the 2018 MacArthur Foundation Genius Award.

An artist, performer, choreographer, and writer, Okpokwasili’s multidisciplinary performance pieces draw viewers into the interior lives of women of colour, particularly those of African and African-American women, whose stories have long been overlooked and rendered invisible.

. Uzoamaka Aduba (Nigeria): Award-winning actor and one of only two actors to win an Emmy in both comedy and drama categories for the same role.

. Genevieve Nnaji (Nigeria): Award-winning actor, writer and director whose film, Lionheart, was acquired by Netflix, making it the first original Nigerian movie to be acquired by Netflix. She is also recognized as the first actor to win the Africa Movie Academy Award for Best Actress in a leading role.

. Simidele Adeagbo (Nigeria): Africa’s first female skeleton athlete. She was the first African woman to compete in skeleton at the 2018 Winter Games. She is also a 2018 Obama Foundation Leader.

. Bibi Bakare-Yusuf (Nigeria): is co-founder and publishing director of one of Africa’s most beloved indie presses, Cassava Republic.

Bakare-Yusuf was selected the 2018 Brittle Paper African Literary Person of the Year, the award recognizes individuals who work behind the scenes to hold up the African literary establishment.

. Margaret Mary-Wilson (Nigeria): Chief Medical Officer and Senior Vice President at UnitedHealthcare Global.

Mary-Wilson is a 2018 ‘Women Worth Watching’ award winner and she received the ‘Mark of Excellence’ award for her work in global health transformation at the 2018 Africa Diaspora Awards.

She proudly supports African LGBTQ, a nonprofit organization established to empower and educate abused and endangered LGBTQ individuals of African descent across the globe.

. Stella Williams (Nigeria): Founder of NiWard, an organization focused on transforming Nigeria’s rural agricultural sector.

NiWard provides a collaborative platform for women farmers, women scientists and women researchers to fight hunger, malnutrition, and poverty. Williams is a retired Professor of Agricultural Economics at Obafemi Awolowo University in Osun State.

. Fatima Kyari Mohammed (Nigeria): Permanent Observer for the African Union.

Prior to this role, she was a Senior Special Adviser to the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Commission, where her work focused on peace and security, regional integration and organizational development.

. Lola Shoneyin (Nigeria): Founder and convener of the Ake Arts and Book Festival – an annual literary, cultural and arts event, which takes place in Abeokuta, Ogun State. The festival provides new and established writers from across the world to promote, develop and celebrate their creativity on the African continent. Shoneyin is also a poet and author of The Secret Lives of Baba Segi’s Wives.

. Habiba Ali (Nigeria): A pioneer in the renewable energies field. She is the founder, managing director and CEO of Sosai Renewable Energies, an innovative company that brings reliable and affordable renewable energy products to those who need it most. Her sustainable energy solutions provide communities with unforeseen economic growth, increased capacity and the potential for greater business development.

. Pamela Adie (Nigeria): Executive Director of Equality Hub, an organization working to advance the rights and elevate the voices of lesbian, bisexual, and queer women in Nigeria through visual storytelling. She is also a 2018 Obama Foundation Leader.

. Emma Nyra (Nigeria): Award-winning recording artist and founder of Nyra Nation. Nyra is focused on increasing the pipeline of female artists in Nigeria’s male-dominated music industry. To date, she has collaborated with other female artists to include Cynthia Morgan and Victoria Kimani.

. Tomi Otudeko (Nigeria): Founder of Itanna, an intensive training program for tech-enabled Nigerian startups. Itanna focuses on developing and supporting Nigeria’s tech ecosystem. Otudeko is also Head of Innovation and Sustainability at the Honeywell Group.

. Odunayo Eweniyi (Nigeria): Co-founder of, a company that securely makes saving money possible by combining discipline plus
flexibility to enable customers grow and reach their savings target. Eweniyi also founded

. Lotanna Igwe Odunze (Nigeria) is an entrepreneur, talented artist and a rape survivor. Odunze was sued by her rapist in Superior Court of the District of Columbia for defamation of character. The case was dismissed with prejudice. Odunze represents a growing number of young women in Nigeria who advocate for civil rights, justice and equality.

. Juliet Kego Ume-Onyido (Nigeria): Engineer, advocate, poet and founder of Whole Woman Network. Kego supports and advocates for the rights of women and girls in Nigeria.

. Honey Ogundeyi (Nigeria): Tech Entrepreneur and founder of Fashpa Online, a global marketplace to discover Fashion, Jewellery and Art from Africa and the Diaspora.

. Mercy Makinde (Nigeria): Founder of the Amazing Amazon Women Empowerment Initiative, an organization fighting for the rights of marginalized groups and working to end domestic violence and sexual abuse in these communities.

. Oluwatoyin Alake (Nigeria): An IFC-Milken Institute Fellow and equities product manager at the Nigerian Stock Exchange. In her role, she is responsible for products traded on the exchange with a focus to improve the depth of the Nigerian Capital Markets through the creation of investment vehicles as well as the facilitation of efficient pricing, transparency and liquidity.

. Weird MC (Nigeria): Social entrepreneur and artist known for her English and Yoruba Lyrics. Weird MC has continuously spoken of how she was discriminated against by her male counterparts in Nigeria’s hip-hop industry. She continues to be a voice for women in Nigeria’s music space.

. Latifat Balogun (Nigeria): Founder of Hatlab Ice Cream, a company specializing in the production and retail of traditional Italian ice cream in Nigeria. HatLab was awarded the International Gold Star for leadership and commitment to quality and the business is expanding beyond its current position in three states with an eye on the international market.

. Francesca Onomarie Uriri (Nigeria): Social Entrepreneur and Founder of Leading Ladies Africa, an organization that supports the career growth and development of African women. She currently serves as the Head of Communications in West Africa for Uber.
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