speakers

2024 speakers

The event will host over thirty (30) world-renowned global industry experts, speakers, business leaders, ministers, policy makers, and over three hundred (300) delegates from over thirty (30) countries. These will include:

H.E. Zurab Pololikashvili

H.E. Zurab
Pololikashvili


Secretary General, UN Tourism, Spain

H.E. Wamkele
Mene


Secretary General, AfCFTA Secretariat, Ghana

H.E. Elias M. Magosi


SADC Executive Secretary

Hon. Dumezweni M. Mthimkhulu


The Minister of Environment and Tourism, Botswana

Hon. Andrew Kofi Egyapa Mercer


Minister Of Tourism, Arts And Culture, Ghana

Senthil Gopinath


CEO - International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA), Netherlands

Patricia de Lille


Minister of Tourism, MP, South Africa (Invited)

Natalia Bayona


Executive Director, UN Tourism, Spain

Elcia Grandcourt

elcia grandcourt


Director, Africa Department, UN Tourism, Spain

Emily Mburu-Ndoria


Director, Trade in Services, Investment, Intellectual Property Rights and Digital Trade AFCFTA Secretariat

Beatrice Chaytor


Head of Trade in Services, AfCFTA Secretariat, Ghana

Tshifhiwa Tshivhengwa


CEO - Tourism Business Council
of South Africa

Desire Loumou


Head of Division, Intellectual Property Rights, AfCFTA Secretariat, Accra - Ghana

Professor Dimitrios Bhualis


Strategic Management and Marketing Expert – Bournemouth University Business School, UK

Aaron Munetsi


CEO, Airlines Association of Southern Africa

Kwakye Donkor


CEO, Africa Tourism Partners, South Africa

Lulu Rasebotsa


General Manager , AIR BOTSWANA, Botswana

Christelle Grohmann

Christelle Grohmann


Director, BDO, South Africa

Moseketsi Mpeta


CEO, Tourvest Accommodation, South Africa

Edward Abankwa


Founder, Pinnacle Sports & Events Management UK Limited, United Kingdom

Prof. Kamilla Swart-Arries


Associate Professor, College of Science and Engineering, Hamad Bin Khalifa University, Qatar

Robyn Williams


Senior Vice President, JLL Hotels & Hospitality Group, South Africa

Dr Aloyce Nzuki


Director, Touchwood Consulting Ltd, Tanzania

Natalia Rosa


Project Lead, SADC Business Council Tourism Alliance, South Africa

Katlego Mphahlele CA(SA)


Senior Deal Maker, Tourism & Services Unit, Industrial Development Corporation, South Africa

Miller Matola


CEO, Millvest Advisory, South Africa

Prof Michael Twum-Darko


Innovation Hub Project Lead & Acting HOD: Graduate Centre for Management lead: Centre for Business Innovation and Incubation, Cape Peninsula University of Technology, South Africa

Septi Bukula


Founder And Director, Rendzo Network, South Africa

Lee-Anne Bac


Director, BDO Advisory Services, South Africa

Mpume Mabuza


CEO, Downtown Music Hub, South Africa

Lily Rakorong


CEO, Hospitality & Tourism Association of Botswana, Botswana

Susan Ongalo


Chief Executive Officer, Kenya Tourism Federation, Kenya

Keitumetse Setlang


Acting CEO, Botswana Tourism Organisation, Botswana

Francis Doku


General Manager - 3 Group, Responsible for TV3 and 3 FM, Ghana

Lulu Rasebotsa

Appointed General Manager , AIR BOTSWANA, Botswana

Lulu Rasebotsa

Appointed General Manager , AIR BOTSWANA, Botswana

south africa –Johannesburg

Media Contact

Email: info@africatourismpartners.com

ATP Partnerships Johannesburg

Rejoice Chishamba- Projects Co-ordinator

Email: rejoice@africatourismpartners.com

RSA office address

H.E. Zurab Pololikashvili

H.E. Zurab Pololikashvili

Secretary General Of The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO)

Mr. Zurab Pololikashvili is Secretary-General of the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) since 1 January 2018 after being elected by the 22nd Session of UNWTO General Assembly. He was Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Georgia to the Kingdom of Spain, the Principality of Andorra, the People’s Democratic Republic of Algeria and the Kingdom of Morocco and Permanent Representative of Georgia to the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) up to December 2017.

Between 2009 and 2010, he was Minister of Economic Development of Georgia.As a Minister of Economic Development of Georgia, Mr Pololikashvili was responsible for overseeing the country’s long-term fiscal growth strategies, advancing foreign trade and investment policy initiatives as well as for promoting the development of the tourism, infrastructure and transportation sectors. He was instrumental in launching an innovative policy for the development of tourism in Georgia, prioritizing the sphere on both the government and private sector agendas. During Mr Pololikashvili’s tenure as Minister of Economic Development, through key policy reforms, marketing activities, improvement of infrastructure and visa liberalization initiatives, Georgia nearly doubled the number of international tourist arrivals, from 1.5 million (2009) to exceeding the 2.8 million mark by 2011. Those reforms paved the way for sustainable tourism practices in Georgia and poverty alleviation initiatives, placing Georgia among the top tourism destinations in the region. Minister Pololikashvili successfully led the economic liberalization processes, introducing supportive policies for SMEs, and incentive programmes to attract foreign investment for the development of hard and soft infrastructure.

2006 – 2009 Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Georgia to the Kingdom of Spain.

2005 – 2006 Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Georgia. In this capacity as Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Georgia, he supervised the departments for administrative, budgetary, financial and consular affairs, as well as the Department for Human Resources Management. Mr. Pololikashvili was responsible for ushering in a new phase of more liberal and secure visa regimes, facilitation of processes to ease border crossing procedures, and deepening relations with various international organizations, including UNWTO.

H.E. Wamkele Mene

Secretary General, AfCFTA Secretariat, Ghana

H.E. Wamkele Mene was elected by the 33rd Ordinary Session of the Assembly of Heads of States & Government of the African Union, to the position of Secretary-General of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Secretariat. 

Prior to being elected Secretary-General of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Secretariat, he served as Chief Director: Africa Economic Relations, at the Department of Trade & Industry of South Africa. In this role, he was South Africa’s chief trade negotiator in the AfCFTA and Tripartite FTA negotiations. During his tenure as chief negotiator, South Africa ratified both the AfCFTA and Tripartite FTAs agreements. 

Prior to assuming this position, H.E. Wamkele Mene occupied the position of Director: International Trade Law & Investment Law at the Department of Trade & Industry, a role in which he was principal legal counsel on international trade law and international investment law.

From 2010 until 2015, H.E. Wamkele Mene represented South Africa at the World Trade Organisation (WTO) in Geneva, Switzerland. He was elected to the position of Chairman of the WTO’s Committee on International Trade in Financial Services.

Prior to joining the Department of Trade & Industry of South Africa, H.E. Wamkele Mene worked for Wall Street based law firms in the London and Hong Kong offices.

H.E. Wamkele Mene has written and lectured internationally on international trade law, international investment law and international business law. He holds a Bachelor of Arts (Law) degree from Rhodes University in South Africa, a Master of Arts in International Studies & Diplomacy (with specialization in International Economics) from the School of Oriental & African Studies (SOAS), University of London and a LL.M. (Master of Laws) in
Banking Law & Financial Regulation from the Law Department of the London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE).

H.E. Elias M. Magosi

SADC Executive Secretary

H.E. Elias M. Magosi is a national of the Republic of Botswana who was sworn in on 18th August, 2021 as the Seventh SADC Executive Secretary at the 41st SADC Summit of Heads of State and Government held in Lilongwe, Republic of Malawi. He assumed his
position on 1st September, 2021.

H.E. Magosi started his career in public service as Management Analyst in the Directorate of Public Service Management of Botswana in 1989 and rose through the
ranks to become Permanent Secretary in different ministries before his appointment as the Principal Secretary to the President in February 2020, effectively becoming the head of Public Service in Botswana. In this role, he coordinated and facilitated delivery linkages
for ministries and parastatals to achieve national and international obligations; and provided advisory support to the President, Vice President, Cabinet, Permanent
Secretaries, Private Sector and regional bodies.

In the private sector, H.E. Magosi has served in senior human resources portfolios, having served as Cluster Head of Human Resources-Consumer Banking, Southern
Africa at Standard Chartered Bank from 2013 to 2014. There, he managed and droveoverall human resource strategy and provided appropriate human resource solutions for the Consumer Banking businesses in the cluster comprising Botswana, Zambia and
Zimbabwe. H.E. Magosi was Head of Human Resources for Botswana Life Insurance Limited from 2007 to 2010 before assuming a group role in Botswana Insurance Holdings
Limited, of which Botswana Life Insurance is a subsidiary, and where he served as Group Head of Human Resources from 2010 to 2012.

H.E. Magosi has an in-depth understanding of the role of SADC in promoting and deepening regional integration, cooperation and development having served as Director
of Human Resources and Administration at the SADC Secretariat where in addition to the development and execution of Secretariat’s human resource strategy, he was
instrumental in engaging and coordinating with SADC Member States and other stakeholders as a member of the Secretariat Management.

With an extensive experience and a proven track record of service in the public and private sectors spanning over a period of more than 30 years, H.E. Magosi understands
that achieving SADC goals and objectives requires collective and collaborative efforts of all Member States, partners and stakeholders, and has an unwavering commitment to working closely with relevant structures in the SADC Member States, the Private Sector, International Cooperating Partners as well as regional and international bodies in the promotion and furtherance of SADC objectives. As head of the SADC Secretariat, a principal executive institution of SADC, H.E. Magosi will, among other strategic functions, oversee and coordinate the implementation of the Regional Indicative Strategic
Development Plan (RISDP) 2020-2030 and SADC Vision 2050 which envision a peaceful, inclusive, competitive, middle-to-high-income industrialised region, where all
citizens enjoy sustainable economic well-being, justice and freedom., competitive, middle- to high-income.

H.E. Magosi holds a Master’s Degree in Organisation Development from Bowling Green State University, USA, Graduate Diploma in Management Services from the University of Bolton, United Kingdom and Bachelor of Arts Economics/Statistics from the University of Botswana.

Hon. Andrew Kofi Egyapa Mercer

Minister Of Tourism, Arts And Culture, Ghana

Andrew Kofi Egyapa Mercer is the Minister for Tourism, Arts and Culture in Ghana. He is also Member of Parliament for Sekondi Constituency in the Western Region of Ghana. He previously served as Deputy Minister for Energy.

Andrew Mercer is also a lawyer with extensive corporate, commercial and finance sector practice experience. Prior to his appointment as Deputy Minister, he served as Lead Attorney and Chief Executive of Messrs. Mercer & Company, a corporate and investment law firm based in Accra. He previously served as the head of the Legal Division of First Atlantic Bank; overseeing the Legal, Company Secretarial and Corporate Affairs Departments of the Bank.

Presently, he serves on the Constitutional, Legal & Parliamentary Affairs, the Privileges and the Special Budget Committees of Ghana’s Parliament. He previously served on the Communications Committee of Parliament.

He previously served as Member of the Ministerial Advisory Board of the Ministry of Energy and has also served on several Boards of corporate entities in both the public and private sectors including that of the Ghana National Gas Company. He holds a certificate in Oil, Gas and Mining Governance from the University of Oxford’s Blavatnik School of Government.

Senthil Gopinath

Chief Executive Officer – ICCA

Senthil has over 20 years’ experience in the meetings, association and leisure industry. He has held wide spectrum of positions in the meetings industry. Such as CEO of Convention Bureau of Sri Lanka, Vice President of Kuoni. He moved to Dubai in 2006 and has been working for Congress Solutions International, the Professional Congress Organizer (PCO) arm of Emirates Group, eventually holding responsibility for wide ranging business development, sales and operations functions for some of the largest international meetings held in the UAE and the Region.

A passionate strategist. Being creative and adaptable to the constantly changing environment are his key strengths. Always aims at professionalism and focuses on achieving the organizational objectives and financial goals

Academically Senthil holds a European Bachelor of Business Administration and a Master’s in Business Administration (UK). Currently reading for PHD. Senthil has been working with the global association and business tourism fraternity for more than two decades and has in depth knowledge on global association and business tourism segment development. At present Senthil is the CEO of International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA) – Global Meetings Industry Association headquartered in Netherlands. Winner of Global Business Events Strategist of the year awarded by PCMA – USA.

ICCA -the International Congress and Convention Association- is the global community and knowledge hub for the international association meetings industry.
ICCA represents the main specialists in organizing, transporting, and accommodating international meetings and events, and comprises over 1,150-member companies and organizations in over 100 countries worldwide. ICCA specializes in the international association meetings sector, offering unrivalled data, communication channels, and business development opportunities.

 
 

Patricia de Lille

Minister of Tourism, MP, South Africa

Patricia de Lille was appointed as the Minister of Tourism by President Cyril Ramaphosa in March 2023.

De Lille is a seasoned politician and public servant having has served in all three spheres of government since South Africa’s first democratic election in 1994.

De Lille has been fighting injustice for more than 45 years and was part of the team which led the constitutional negotiations and the team which drafted South Africa’s Constitution.

She is the only South African female politician to start her own political parties and win seats in all three spheres of government. De Lille achieved this feat twice, in 2003 with the Independent Democrats and in 2019 with the GOOD Movement.

De Lille served as the Mayor of Cape Town between 2011 and 2018 where accountability and clean governance were the cornerstones of her term. De Lille served as the Minister of Public Works and Infrastructure (DPWI) from June 2019 to March 2023 where she drove the implementation of the Infrastructure Investment Plan, repurposing government’s assets for greater socio-economic value, clamping down on corruption and ensuring that public land and public buildings were used for public good.

In her role as the Minister of Tourism, De Lille will focus efforts on destination marketing, increasing air access and visitor numbers to South Africa and efforts to increase the number of jobs created by the sector.

Natalia Bayona

Executive Director World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), Spain

Natalia Bayona is currently Executive Director of the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), the United Nations specialized agency for the promotion of responsible, sustainable and accessible tourism worldwide.

With a diverse background on politics, destination management and business, she became the first innovation director at UNWTO, has introduced entrepreneurship and education as key factors for tourism and development, and has positioned UNWTO as an innovation benchmark within the wider United Nations system as recognized in the UN 2020 and 2022 Mapping of Innovation, Data and Digital Capacities. Furthermore, she has joined the UN Executive Leadership Programme for Sustainable Development led by the UN System Staff College (UNSSC).

Her work has been focused on the strategy of innovation, education and investments. Specially, it consists of identifying the most disruptive startups and investment projects and matching them with Member States and leading corporations. As an advocate of youth and technology, she seeks to make entrepreneurs grow for a promising future in all regions.

Elcia Grandcourt

Elcia Grandcourt

Regional Director for Africa / UNWTO

Originally from the Seychelles, Elcia Grandcourt joined the World Tourism Organisation, a United Nations specialised Agency for Tourism in 2013 as Director, of the Regional Department for Africa. Elcia began her tourism career studying Hotel Management in Singapore at the Singapore Hotel Association and Education Centre (SHATEC). Thereafter, she occupied various positions in operations, reservations and sales mainly in hotels, including leading international brands such as Le Meridien and Hilton Worldwide Resorts. She was part of the rebranding team when Hilton Worldwide Resorts took over the management of the then Northolme hotel in Seychelles. She worked with the Seychelles national airline and destination management companies before joining the public sector to Seychelles Tourism Board as deputy CEO before being promoted to Chief Executive Officer, a position she occupied prior to joining UNWTO. Passionate about tourism, Elcia is honoured to be able to contribute towards sustainable tourism development in Africa.

Elcia also holds a Master in Dynamics of Cooperation, Conflicts and Negotiation in International Relations and Diplomacy.

Emily Mburu-Ndoria

Director, Trade in Services, Investment, Intellectual Property Rights and Digital Trade AFCFTA Secretariat

Ms. Emily Mburu-Ndoria, is the Director of Trade in Services, Investment, Intellectual Property Rights and Digital Trade at the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Secretariat, based in Accra, Ghana. She was formally the Head of Trade in Services Department at the East African Community (EAC) Secretariat. She has worked extensively as an independent consultant providing expertise in the area of trade in services in Eastern and Southern Africa through the provision of analytical and training services. She has worked in the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), East African Community (EAC) and Southern African Development Community (SADC) Secretariats and been instrumental in assisting countries in Eastern and Southern Africa in developing their negotiating strategy and position for the WTO, EPA, COMESA, EAC and SADC, particularly on issues related to trade in services.

Previously, Ms. Mburu-Ndoria was a trade policy expert at UNCTAD working with the Trade Negotiations and Commercial Diplomacy Branch in the Division on Trade in Goods and Services, and Commodities. She has a lot of working experience on assisting African countries in the negotiations at the multilateral and regional levels, and broadly on issues related to trade in services, investment and competition policy.

Furthermore, she has participated in several studies relating to trade negotiations and trade in services as well as participated in many international, regional, national meetings, seminars and workshops on international trade and development. Ms. Mburu-Ndoria holds a Master of Commerce in Management Practice, specializing in Trade Law & Policy from the University of Cape Town, an MBA from Webster University in Geneva and a Bachelor Honours degree in Economics and Mathematics from Egerton University, Kenya.

Beatrice Chaytor

Head of Trade in Services, AfCFTA Secretariat, Ghana

Beatrice Chaytor is an international trade lawyer, called to the Bar in England and Wales as well as Sierra Leone, with around 30 years experience in providing advice and support to African governments in their engagement with regional and international trade policy processes. She is currently Head of Trade in Services in the AfCFTA Secretariat and works on the negotiations and implementation of the Agreement on establishing the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA). Ms Chaytor has previously run her own law firm, Chariot Eight in Freetown, Sierra Leone, providing legal services to local, regional, and international clients on a range of corporate law matters including trade, investment, natural resources, and environment.

She has also worked with the International Lawyers and Economists Against Poverty (ILEAP), as welle as a Senior Trade Policy Advisor in the Ministry of Trade and Industry in Sierra Leone, on assignment by the Commonwealth Secretariat. Prior to her assignment in Sierra Leone, Beatrice worked for nine years as Senior Lawyer, and then Programme Director, at the Foundation for International Environmental Law and Development (FIELD) in London.

Ms Chaytor is interested in research and analysis on a range of legal and economic policy issues affecting Africa. She also has private sector interests in horticulture, packaging, design, and well-being.

Tshifhiwa Tshivhengwa

CEO - Tourism Business Council of South Africa

Tshifhiwa Tshivhengwa is the Chief Executive Officer of the Tourism Business Council of South Africa. Tshifhiwa is a strategic, versatile and innovative marketing, tourism, communications and business executive. His experience spans 20 years, with a track record of visionary leadership, strategic project development and execution, travel and tourism events management and communications.

Tshifhiwa holds an MSc in International Business, Leadership, and Management from the University of York, Bachelor of Business Administration on Marketing Communications (Institute of Marketing Management) Diploma in Marketing (Institute of Marketing Management) and a National Diploma in Tourism Management (University of Johannesburg).

In the 20 years since his first foray into the world of work, Tshifhiwa has worked for various companies in the tourism value chain including South African Tourism, Myriad Marketing, FEDHASA, Rennies Travel, SARS and others. He has also consulted for various companies.

Tshifhiwa has also served as a member of Tourism Transformation Council, Tourism Grading Council of South Africa, and currently serves on the global Board of Advisors for “The Sigmund Project” which supports innovation and collaboration in Tourism across the globe.

Tshifhiwa has positioned himself as a thought leader and advocate for the South African tourism sector. He is an ambassador for tourism development in South Africa and Africa. He regularly writes, debates and comments on tourism development and growth in South Africa.

Desire Loumou

Head of Division, Intellectual Property Rights, AfCFTA Secretariat, Accra - Ghana

Senior International Intellectual Property, Trade and Environmental Lawyer, with high specialised knowledge of the multilateral trading system and particularly Trade in Services, Intellectual Property and Environment Law, he cumulates an extensive experience in Intellectual Property, Trade negotiations and policies developed in various capacities with international organisations (WIPO, UNECA, UNIDO, UNCTAD, WHO, WTO, OAPI), regional economic communities (ECCAS, CEMAC), national governments, and the private sector. Lawyer and Patent and Trademark Attorney, he is currently the Head of Division of Intellectual Property Rights and a Senior Trade Expert on Trade in Services at the AfCFTA Secretariat in Accra, Ghana. He is therefore a key member of the Team developing the Trade in Services continental single market, and the AfCFTA Intellectual Property continental ecosystem.

Professor Dimitrios Bhualis

Strategic Management and Marketing Expert – Bournemouth University Business School, UK

Professor Dimitrios Buhalis is a Strategic Management and Marketing expert with specialisation in Information Communication Technology applications in the Tourism, Travel, Hospitality, and Leisure industries. He is Director of the eTourism Lab and Deputy Director of the International Centre for Tourism and Hospitality Research, at Bournemouth University Business School in England. He is the Editor in Chief of the most established Journal in Tourism: Tourism Review, now and SSCI Journal in its 75th volume, and the Editor in Chief of the Encyclopedia of Tourism Management and Marketing. Professor Buhalis has written and co-edited more than 20 books and 250 scientific articles. His research is referenced widely, being the 2nd most cited for tourism and 1st most cited for hospitality 18th on strategy and 30th in Marketing on Google Scholar with more than 45000 citations and h-index 89.


Professor Buhalis is a candidate for the 2020 Highly Cited Researchers™ list from Clarivate™. The Highly Cited Researchers list identifies researchers who produced multiple papers ranking in the top 1% by citations for their chosen field or fields and year of publication, demonstrating significant influence among their peers. This top 1% of the global research community represent magnets in their respective discipline.


Dimitrios current research focus includes: Real-Time and Nowness, Smart Tourism and Smart Hospitality, Social Media Context and Mobile Marketing (SoCoMo), Augmented Reality, Technology-enhanced Experience Management and Personalisation, Reputation and Social Media Strategies, Accessibility and Special Diet (Allergens) Tourism. Professor Buhalis is a well known international speaker on trends, technology, marketing, tourism and Hospitality and works closely with the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO). Professor Buhalis is an inspirational forward thinker that undertakes cutting edge research, develops innovations and makes a major impact on global society. He works closely with the international tourism industry and is supporting tourism and hospitality organisations around the world with strategic marketing innovations using cutting edge technologies. For more information, books, articles and presentations see www.buhalis.com.

For the period January 2016- September 2019, Buhalis was the Head of Department of Tourism and Hospitality, at Bournemouth University. During this period the Department was ranked #8 (2018), #10 (2019), #10 (2020) in QS World University Rankings by Subject 2019: Hospitality and Leisure Management as well as #9 (2017), #12 (2018), #10 (2020) in the Shanghai Ranking’s Global Ranking of Academic Subjects – Hospitality and Tourism and #3 in the Guardian University guide 2019. Dimitrios is a Founding Member and past President (2010-2014) of the International Federation for Information Technologies in Travel and Tourism (IFITT). He served as the First Vice President of the International Academy for the Study of Tourism (2017-2019). He also served as an Executive Board Member of the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) Affiliate Members for the periods 2013-2015 and 2017-2019. Professor Dimitrios Buhalis is a renown international speaker and conference facilitator. He frequently delivers keynote presentations, speeches, seminars and workshops in both academic and professional conferences globally. He has close collaborations with industry, governments and international organisations ensuring his conclusions have the utmost relevance and impact on the real world whilst constantly pushing the boundaries of knowledge and academic excellence.

Aaron Munetsi

Chief Executive Officer

Aaron Munetsi currently serves as the Chief Executive Officer at AASA. Prior to joining AASA, he held several commercial management positions at South African Airways, including Regional Manager for Africa and the Middle East and as its Acting Chief Commercial Officer. For 10 years, he served on the board of Nigeria-South Africa Chamber of Business, and after leaving SAA in 2018 he joined the African Airlines Association (AFRAA) for a stint as its Director: Government, Legal and Industry Affairs. For the past year he has been working as an aeropolitical and business strategy advisor to airlines.

Aaron holds diplomas and certificates in marketing, strategic management and leadership from the University of Zimbabwe, University of Witwatersrand Graduate Business School and the Gordon Institute for Business Studies.

Kwakye Donkor

CEO / Africa Tourism Partners

Kwakye Donkor is the CEO of Africa Tourism Partners (ATP), a Pan African tourism advisory firm and a UNWTO award-winning firm. He is a renowned Pan-African strategist and expert in areas of tourism development, strategic and destination marketing, destination brand management and MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibition/Events). He is a recognised and highly respected personality in Africa tourism space, and speaks at global conferences, seminars and think tank fora. 

Kwakye has demonstrated expertise in destination master planning as well as strategy formulation and execution, business transactional advisory and leadership development worldwide across education, finance, and hotel development. His expertise and experience have earned him the privilege to regularly serve on expert panels and think tank fora facilitated by international organizations including UNWTO, AU, SADC, The World Bank Group, GIZ, BBC, CNBC Africa, Channel Africa, ENCA, SABC and others across Africa.

He is the convener of the annual Africa Tourism Leadership Forum & Awards, Africa MICE Masterclass, Africa Youth in Tourism Summit and Africa Women in Tourism Summit series.

Lulu Rasebotsa

Appointed General Manager , AIR BOTSWANA, Botswana

Lulu is no stranger to Corporate and Social Botswana.

Lulu Rasebotsa possesses a raw intelligence and savvy business acumen that embraces the values of social relevance, innovation, and velocity as key business drivers in all Organisations. Her ability to evangelise the Organisation’s corporate brand makes her the ideal corporate spokesperson.

She is a prolific recruiter who believes in bringing out the best in individuals. She is a motivator who develops a positive high-performance culture and has a knack for recognising where the Organisation’s considerable talent needs to be deployed to generate the best return.

Lulu is a strategist with an innovative visionary mindset which enables Organisations that she leads to be forward looking using strategies that insulate the business from changing market dynamics.

She lives by the quote “the only constant in life is change.”

Christelle Grohmann

Christelle Grohmann

Director - Advisory Services / BDO South Africa

Christelle has more than 23 years’ consulting experience and carries out and heads project teams for macro research, economic impact assessments, valuations, marketing and organisational strategies, market feasibility studies, financial viability assessments, business case assessments and transaction advisory assignments. 

Christelle has also facilitated numerous workshops and large meetings and is proficient in using a range of facilitation approaches and tools.

Moseketsi Mpeta

CEO, Tourvest Accommodation, South Africa

Moseketsi is Head of Tourism & Services the Industrial Development Corporation She has deep knowledge and passion for development finance and has over the many years at IDC, developed passion for the tourism industry and has facilitated funding and investments to many establishments both within and outside the South Africa.

Edward Abankwa

Founder, Pinnacle Sports & Events Management UK Limited, United Kingdom

Edward Abankwa is a seasoned events producer and director with over 20 years of experience in organizing business and governmental exhibitions, summits, conferences, social events, and networking gatherings. Throughout his career, he has successfully delivered a wide array of business events across diverse sectors, including international education, finance, telecommunications, energy, process improvement, and sports business markets.

As the Founder of Pinnacle Sports & Events Management UK Limited, an events management company based in the United Kingdom, Edward has built a reputation for excellence and innovation. He also provides consultancy services to globally renowned events companies in the EMEA region.

Edward’s portfolio of events ranges from intimate gatherings of 100 high-level cross-sector industry executives to large-scale trade shows with tens of thousands of attendees, held in various locations worldwide. Edward’s expertise lies in event ideation, project management, communication, strategic planning,
and event marketing. His ability to seamlessly integrate these skills has been pivotal in the successful
execution of numerous high-profile events. 

Edward holds a master’s degree in communication policy
& management from City University, London, and is a certified PRINCE2 project manager at the practitioner level. Edward’s vision is to let his work speak for itself, providing services and products that are highly sought after due to the value they offer. He aims to inspire, innovate, and push boundaries in the markets he operates within. By consistently delivering exceptional events, Edward seeks to establish his company as a leader in the events management industry, known for its creativity, strategic approach, and unparalleled execution.

With a commitment to excellence and a passion for creating memorable experiences, Edward Abankwa continues to make significant contributions to the field of event management, setting new standards and inspiring others in the industry.

Dr Kamilla Swart

Associate Professor, College of Science and Engineering, Hamad Bin Khalifa University, Qatar

Prof. Kamilla Swart is Associate Professor and Director of the Masters in Sport and Entertainment Management (MSEM) program at Hamad Bin Khalifa University, Qatar. She also serves as Senior Research Associate, School of Tourism and Hospitality, University of Johannesburg. Previous positions include Director of the Centre for Tourism Research in Africa, Cape Peninsula University of Technology, Cape Town. Her research interests include sport, tourism, and events, focusing on mega-events, policies, strategies, monitoring and evaluation, legacy, sustainability and inclusion; in the developing context, and in the global South in particular.

Kamilla has nearly 30 years’ experience in sport, tourism and events that spans academia and the private sector and has consulted broadly in both the public and private sectors. She served as Sport and Facilities Manager at the Cape Town 2004 Olympic bid and a sponsorship consultant for Octagon SA. She headed up the Durban Events Corporation, a public-private partnership with the City of Durban to use events to attract tourism. She also led the 2010 South Africa FIFA World Cup research agenda.

Kamilla has an established track record of research excellence, having published over 50 peer-reviewed articles, 25 book chapters, and numerous conference presentations and technical reports. Kamilla co-authored the first U.S. text on sport tourism (2002) and recently co-edited the Research Handbook on Major Sporting Events (Edward Elgar, 2024). She is an Associate Editor for the Journal of Destination Marketing and Management and Frontiers in Sports and Active Living. Kamilla served as Co-Chair of the World Association of Sport Management 2023 Qatar Conference. She serves on the Advisory Board of the Qatar Olympic Academy and the Advisory Committee (research pillar) of the UNESCO Chair on Governance & Social Responsibility in Sport. Kamilla is committed to building local capacity and empowering the next generation.

Robyn Williams

Senior Vice President, JLL Hotels & Hospitality Group, South Africa

As the Senior Vice President for JLL Hotels & Hospitality Group, Robyn focuses on delivering strategic advisory services to local, regional, and global clients across Sub-Saharan Africa. She has over 17 years of experience in the hospitality real estate industry. Her broad range of experience includes hotel feasibility assignments, commercial due diligence for hospitality platforms and portfolios, hotel asset management, and real estate valuations.

Robyn joined JLL in 2019 as a Vice President with the Hotels & Hospitality team. Prior to JLL, she held roles in financial management and hospitality advisory.

As well as being a Member of the RICS, Robyn is a Chartered Accountant and Management Accountant with a strong background in hotel advisory and financial management. After training in Hotel Management at the Mount Nelson Hotel, Robyn began her hotel real estate career working in London for CBRE and then King Sturge (which later merged with JLL) before returning to South Africa some years later.

Dr Aloyce Nzuki

Director, Touchwood Consulting Ltd, Tanzania

I am a seasoned tourism analyst, backed by three degrees: (1) Bachelor of Statistics, (2) Masters in Tourism Marketing, and (3) Ph.D. in Parks, Recreation and Tourism Management. I am experienced in tourism marketing, tourism research and statistics (including tourism satellite account); planning and development, with over 30 years of experience as both academia and practitioner. I have worked in the public service, rising up the ladder to the position of Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Tourism. During my career, I aslo served as the CEO of the Tanzania Tourism Board. I am cultural competent having lived in Kenya, Uganda, The United Kingdom, The United States, and The Sultanate of Oman.

My business partner and I have a consulting company and have undertaken a number of assignments including one contracted by the World Bank, worth USD 90,000; and the Southern African Development Community (SADC)

Natalia Rosa

Project Lead, SADC Business Council Tourism Alliance, South Africa

As Project Lead for the SADC Business Council Tourism Alliance, Natalia Rosa spearheads efforts to enhance tourism across the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region. The SADC Business Council Tourism Alliance serves as a driving force for responsible travel and tourism development within SADC. This non-profit, membership-based association fosters collaboration between private and public sector stakeholders to elevate the value, quality and sustainable expansion of regional tourism.
 
Under Natalia’s leadership, the Alliance engages tourism stakeholders across SADC to raise destination visibility, address skills gaps, facilitate knowledge sharing, and advocate for improved accessibility. With extensive experience across the travel and tourism sectors in South Africa, Natalia is well-positioned to guide the Alliance’s initiatives. She holds leadership roles including Executive Chair of the Travel Lifestyle Network and board member of FEDHASA Cape.
 
Natalia also serves as CEO of Big Ambitions, a Cape Town-based communications and marketing firm specialising in travel and tourism. Her specific interests include exploring practical applications of artificial intelligence in the tourism sector. Armed with a Master’s in Publishing and a strategic business mindset, Natalia merges communication expertise with tourism industry knowledge and connections. 

Katlego Mphahlele CA (SA)

Senior Deal Maker, Tourism & Services Unit, Industrial Development Corporation, South Africa

Katlego Mphahlele CA(SA) is a senior deal maker in the Tourism and Services Unit within the IDC.
Katlego has over ten years’ experience in sourcing, structuring and leading investment proposals in
Tourism. Katlego is also a director in a clean-tech innovation company as well as a member of the
adjudication committees for the DTIC’s SPII and THRIP programmes.

Miller Matola

CEO, Millvest Advisory, South Africa

Miller Mulamule Matola has more than 25 years of management experience within the global travel, tourism, hospitality, convention industry and investment facilitation environments.

His competencies range from executive management, business administration, project management, destination marketing, nation branding to strategic planning and execution. With demonstrated business management skills, at both operational and strategic levels,
Miller has managed several large non-profit and for – profit organisations during his management career; having been CEO of Tourism KwaZulu Natal, Durban ICC and Brand South Africa respectively. Uniquely, he possesses unprecedented knowledge and networks amongst global decision makers in the Tourism, Business Events, Trade, Investment and Development sectors, both in business and government. Miller has proven stakeholder relationship management skills, having worked at executive management level with various Business, Government and Civil society stakeholders globally.

At present, Miller is Founder and CEO of Millvest (Pty) Ltd, a South African advisory and project management company focusing on the tourism, hospitality, energy and convention industries. He is a non-executive director of the Africa Tourism Leadership Forum and a member of the Premier’s Economic Growth Advisory Council and Tourism and Agriculture Work Group of the Limpopo Province.

Prof Michael Twum-Darko, PhD (UCT), FIAP, Tssf

Innovation Hub Project Lead & Acting HOD: Graduate Centre for Management lead: Centre for Business Innovation and Incubation

Prof Michael Twum-Darko, Ghanaian-South African, obtained his PhD in Information Systems from University of Cape Town (RSA), Masters in Computer Science from American Institute for Computer Sciences in Birmingham, Alabama (USA) and Honours Degree in Computer Science from now Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi (Ghana). 

Michael spent thirty-two (32) years as a lecturer Computer Science, Business Information Systems, strategic management in Ghana, Botswana, and South Africa. He has also spent 13 years out of the 32 years as an IT Project Management and Software Development consultant and IT/Business strategist in South Africa. 

Michael is a Fellow of the Institute of Analysts and Programmers (UK) and has served on many high-profile committees in Botswana and South Africa as an academic, and IT/Business strategist 

He is currently the acting Head of the Graduate Centre for Management and the founder and Head of Centre for Business Innovation and Incubation (BIIC) in the Faculty of Business and Management Sciences at Cape Peninsula of University of Technology.

Septi Bukula

Founder And Director, Rendzo Network, South Africa

Septi M. Bukula has specialised in public policy on entrepreneurship and small business promotion since 1993. He is the founder and director of Rendzo Network, a collaborative network of travel and tourism SMEs across South Africa, dedicated to strengthening their international competitiveness and market access. Most recently, he established TourismBRaIN, a digital platform connecting Africa’s travel and tourism SMEs for cross-border business referral and collaboration. The platform also facilitates sharing by public (government departments and agencies) and private entities of information on support programmes, incentives, trainings, tools, resources, and other opportunities relevant to Africa’s travel and tourism SMEs.

Lee-Anne Bac

Director, BDO Advisory Services, South Africa

Lee-Anne Bac is a Director at BDO Advisory Services Johannesburg with more than 20 years experience consulting to clients in the tourism, hospitality, leisure and property sectors in South Africa and the rest of Africa.  Lee-Anne’s consulting experience includes strategic planning, market and financial feasibility studies, financial evaluations, business valuations, economic impact studies, socio-economic impact studies, market research and demand assessments and strategic management consulting.

Lee-Anne holds a BSc degree in Microbiology and Zoology from the University of the Witwatersrand and an MBA degree from the University of Cape Town.  She joined BDO Advisory Services in 1997 as a Senior Consultant and was appointed as a Director of BDO Advisory Services in September 1999.

Lee-Anne is regularly quoted in the printed press about issues relating to the tourism, hospitality and property industries and with regard to women in business and she regularly presents at industry functions, workshops and conferences.  

Lee-Anne is passionate about the transformative role of tourism in economies and societies.  As her commitment to enhancing sustainable tourism, Lee-Anne is a Director of Fair Trade Tourism (FTT).

Lee-Anne is a member of the national executive of the Woman’s Property Network in South Africa and was a recipient of the Women’s Property Network “Excellence in Property” award in 2013.  She is also a member of SAMRA – the South African Market Research Association.

Mpume Mabuza

CEO, Downtown Music Hub, South Africa

Mpume Mabuza is a seasoned executive with a wealth of experience in corporate governance and strategic leadership. She is currently the CEO of Downtown Music Hub, a cutting-edge Johannesburg-based recording facility for pre and post production of music & other creative products. Mpume leads a team that is transforming this iconic facility into a vibrant music precinct.

She serves as the President and Board Chairperson of the African Association of Tourism
Experiences and Attractions (AAVEA) in a voluntary role. Mpume is a globally recognised certified attractions executive (ICAE) with IAAPA, the premier trade association for visitor attractions, and serves on its Global Awards committee. She has delivered presentations to top executives at Universal Studios Theme Park, Legoland, and The National Zoo of Florida.

Mpume is also a trained independent non-executive board member and executive, having received certification from the Institute of Directors of South Africa (IoDSA). She is driven by a desire to make a meaningful impact and leave a lasting legacy, and holds a B Com degree and an MBA, with a PhD in progress. Mpume’s expertise in the tourism industry includes establishing
strategic partnerships and delivering exceptional guest experiences as an executive at uShaka Marine World, as well as chairing the tourism forum at the Durban Chamber of Commerce and Industry, for which she also served as the 2nd Vice-President. She has travelled to numerous
global attractions and participated in a Group Study Exchange program in Australia.

In 2023 Mpume was awarded the inaugural IDEA scholarship to participate in the IAAPA Institute for Attractions Executives in Florida, USA. When not leading in the boardroom or pursuing academic pursuits, she enjoys travel, sports, cooking and music. Mpume is a wife and a mother of three.

Lily Rakorong

CEO, Hospitality & Tourism Association of Botswana, Botswana

Accomplished Executive with 26 years of successful experience in providing strategic, operations and transformational leadership in challenging areas within the Hospitality and Tourism industry both locally and internationally.

Currently she is serving as the CEO of the Hospitality and Tourism Association of Botswana (HATAB). Overseeing 460 companies which makes up the entire hospitality and tourism subsector being Camps & Lodges, Hotels, Mobile Operators, Tour Operators, Airline, Air Charters and Services.

Some of the Non- Executive positions that Lily held and some she continues to hold are with the following boards and committees;
1. Served as a Chairperson of RETOSA (Regional Tourism Organisation of Southern Africa)
2. Council member of Business Botswana (The Voice of Private sector in Botswana)
3. Board member of Botswana Wildlife Training Institute
4. Member of High-Level Consultative Council Meeting, chaired by His Excellency the President of the Republic of Botswana
5. Served as a board member of Botswana Vision 2016 Council
6. Member of Tourism Development Fund Committee
7. Member of Human Resource Development Council (HRDC) Tourism Committee
8. Former Board Member of Botswana Business Coalition on Aids(BBCA)
9. Former member of the Tourism Industry Training Fund

She is passionate about leadership, diversity, equality and inclusion. Lily is also an experienced resource in policy, regulation, advocacy and communications skills that has a unique ability to motivate and inspire change.

Susan Ongalo

Chief Executive Officer, Kenya Tourism Federation, Kenya

Susan Ongalo is the Chief Executive Officer at Kenya Tourism Federation (KTF) since 2015 to date) – the umbrella body for the private sector in tourism charged with advocacy for a conducive business environment for the tourism sector. She bags a wealth of work experience, with over 12 years in tourism and hospitality.

Professional Achievement

Mrs. Ongalo is a Public Relations and business manager by training. She has over the years added to her knowledge feathers in Advocacy, Management, Customer Relations, Disaster Management, Marketing and Leadership acumens.

She was instrumental in the setting up of the Secretariat/Administrative department at the Kenya Tourism Federation, as well as oversee the operations of the Safety and Communication Centre at KTF.

She serves on a number of committees and boards in the tourism sector:

  • Tourism work permit vetting committee – 2015 – to date
  • Tourism Fund board – 2019 – to date
  • Kenya National Convention Bureau – 2019 – to date
  • East Africa Tourism Platform (EATP – 2015 – to date


Academic Qualifications

  • Bachelor in Leadership & Management – International Relations
  • Advance Diploma in Public Relations
  • Champions (Diploma) in Occupational Health – Association of British Travel Agency (ABTA).
  • Ongoing Masters in Ethics in Organizational Leadership.

Professional Engagements

Has been a participant, presenter and panelist in various forums with a focus to tourism, travel and hospitality which included:

  • Response to Covid-19 for African Tourism 3 December 2020.
  • Ad Hoc Group Expert meeting (AEGM) 23 November 2020.
  • Africa Tourism Leadership Forum 25 – 26 October 2020.

Keitumetse Setlang

Acting CEO, Botswana Tourism Organisation, Botswana

Keitumetse Setlang has been part of the tourism industry in the marketing and public relations field since 1998 when she joined the industry as a Public Relations Manager. Currently sitting in the Executive Manager- Marketing position in Botswana Tourism Organisation; she has been instrumental in the development and implementation of the Botswana Tourism Strategy focusing on Global Destination Marketing, Brand Management and Public Relations for Botswana Tourism as well as resuscitating travel and tourism following continuous COVID-19 implications through highlighting and availing linkages to the tourism industry to increase its impact on the local economy, ‘it is important to strengthen these linkages to create business opportunities across tourism value chains’. Keitumetse is also instrumental in the stimulation of the MICE or business tourism sector.

Francis Doku

General Manager of 3 Group

Francis Doku is a consummate communications professional with over two decades’ experience and currently the General Manager of 3 Group, responsible for TV3 and 3 FM, both owned and operated by Media General Limited. Before this role, he served as General Manager for MG Digital Limited and MG Radio Limited respectively.

His experience spans across the marketing communications and media value chain, including journalism, public relations, media planning, advertising, event management, digital marketing, tourism marketing with veritable know-how in each of these areas. 

Between July 2009 and July 2014, he served as General Manager of Adams Media Limited (Carat Ghana). He left Carat to take up the role of Group CEO of The Rave Group, a multi-specialized communications services holding company with interests in media planning, creative development and production, content production, marketing and syndication, events and experiential marketing as well as digital marketing. He later established Maestro Africa Group Limited, a media planning and buying, experiential marketing, public relations and digital marketing company before joining Media General in 2017.

For over two decades he has been writing the Listening and Watching with Francis Doku column in the Graphic Showbiz, a column which critically reviews and previews radio and television programmes and presenters’ performances as well as other happenings in the entertainment, tourism, arts and culture space.

He has worked with global blue-chip media and communications companies such as MediaCom (Vizeum) and Carat. The global brands that he has had the privilege of working on over the years include Coca-Cola, Fanta, Sprite, Guinness, Gulder, MTN, Tigo, Vodafone, Nokia, Ariel, Pampers, Duracell, Gillette, Vicks, Always, Vlisco, South Africa Tourism, to name a few.

Doku has been hosting Travel Pass, the tourism show on Accra-based 3FM since 2019 and has over the years been one of the most sought-after pundits on tourism, entertainment and showbiz on radio and television. Francis Doku has a bachelor’s degree in BSc Administration (banking and finance option) and an Executive MBA (marketing option) both from the University of Ghana (UGBS), Legon, Accra.

His interests include travel, watching football, reading, listening to the radio and playing scrabble.