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10 Tips And Tricks When You’re Struggling For Cash

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2020 has not been an easy year for most of us. While mental health has taken an undeniable hit that’s going to take some time to rehabilitate, perhaps the biggest way many people are suffering is in the financial department. The economy in most countries has experienced a pretty significant downturn, so if you’re struggling for money during this difficult time, know that you’re far from alone. Here are 10 of our best tips and tricks when you’re struggling for some cash.

 

1. Take out a loan

 

There’s an old received wisdom that taking out a loan isn’t good for your financial health, but that isn’t necessarily true. If your credit rating has taken a hit recently due to job losses or other adverse economic circumstances, then looking for good-quality bad credit personal loans can actually improve your credit score if you pay them back promptly. This shouldn’t be used as a long-term solution to financial trouble; rather, it’s an excellent short-term boon while you seek a more permanent source of income.

 

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2. Count out the cash

 

Research has indicated that we spend more when we’re using cards than we would if we had to hand over actual, physical cash. With that in mind, if your budget and monthly outgoings allow you to do so, it might be a good idea to withdraw your monthly spending money in cash, then spend it as and when. The coronavirus lockdown has made this more difficult; many physical shops aren’t open, forcing you to spend online. Still, when shops reopen, many will still accept cash, so this may be a tip to bear in mind.

 

3. Cut out smoking and drinking

 

We know that this is often easier said than done; 2020 has been a year in which creature comforts are more important than they’ve ever been. However, both smoking and drinking are expensive, and in the case of the former, definitely detrimental to your long-term health. If you can, try to cut out smoking and drinking, and you’ll be amazed by the effect this simple step has on your budget. Cigarettes and alcohol are some of the most expensive daily “necessities” for many people, so cutting them out will have a huge impact.

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4. Cancel your subscriptions

 

With many businesses moving to an exclusively subscription-based economic model, we can sometimes be left with subscriptions we don’t remember starting, or things we signed up for that we no longer need. It’s a good idea to regularly comb your bank account for subscriptions that you no longer use and get rid of them. One way in which businesses can sometimes make money is to exploit the fact that you’ll often let free trials elapse without cancelling, too, so be wary of that.

 

5. Let go of brand loyalty

 

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There’s a growing contingent of analysts who agree that brand loyalty is damaging for consumers. If there’s a particular brand you believe to be superior, it may be time to let that brand go in favour of something cheaper and more economically viable. We’re not saying you have to give that brand up forever; just try to find an alternative that doesn’t break the bank if your favoured brand is expensive. You’d be amazed how similar certain brands can be when you remove marketing and public impression.

 

6. Cut back on takeout and cook more

 

Healthy, nutritious ingredients can often be bought from supermarkets for surprisingly little these days. The takeout food you order on a regular basis is likely a heavy drain on your wallet, so cut back on ordering out and try cooking your own meals at home a little more often. It’s surprising just how much of a transformative effect this can have on your life, not just in terms of your finances but also in terms of your physical and mental health.

 

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7. Cycle instead of taking public transport

 

With the coronavirus still unfortunately circulating in many countries, one of the best ways to limit your exposure to other people is by cycling as many places as you can. This is also an excellent way to save money. A bicycle does require a significant initial investment, but once you’ve paid that flat fee, the bike is yours to take where you want. Cycling will improve your physical fitness and save a huge amount of money in bus fares or train fares.

 

8. Switch off lights and heating

 

Obviously, we’re not advocating freezing to death in the dark. Instead, if it’s possible, switch off the heating in rooms you’re not using. This will have a big impact on your overall heating bill. In a similar vein, don’t keep the lights on in rooms that are currently empty. Lightbulbs use a pretty surprising amount of energy, so opt for energy-saving bulbs where possible and turn off the lights when you’re done using them. Small actions like this will have big knock-on effects when it comes to your bills.

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9. Have friends over instead of going for coffee

 

Again, this will be something to consider once the coronavirus crisis is less pressing than it currently is, but one way to save money is to invite friends over instead of going to pricey coffee shops. Often, it’s not the quality of the coffee that matters; it’s the companionship, and you’ll still have that no matter where you are. If your friends are real friends, they won’t turn down the invitation just because it’s not an expensive café at which you’re meeting.

 

10. Shop own brand

 

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Some supermarket goods are practically identical to big-brand namesakes. Some, in fact, can even be superior to their more expensive counterparts. It’s always worth shopping for smaller-brand alternatives to your big-brand shops, as own-brand supermarket goods are almost always cheaper and the difference in quality is usually negligible. If you and your family have particular favourites, try to introduce a new version of those favourites to save some money.          

 

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People & Lifestyle

KOFI NUEL EMBARKS ON A “FAITH TRIP” WITH DEBUT EP RELEASE

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Emerging Gospel artist Kofi Nuel is set to captivate audiences with the release of his highly anticipated debut EP, “Faith Trip,” on February 21, 2023. This marks Kofi’s first official project, following the success of his critically acclaimed single, “Speak to Me.”

“Faith Trip” takes listeners on a transformative journey into Kofi Nuel’s experiences and reflections as a believer in Christ. The EP delves into the multifaceted aspects of faith, exploring the struggles, fears, and triumphs that have shaped Kofi’s spiritual journey. With soul-stirring melodies and poignant lyrics, Kofi Nuel aims to inspire and uplift audiences, offering a genuine and heartfelt expression of his faith.

Having garnered praise for his previous single, “Speak to Me,” Kofi Nuel is poised to make an indelible mark with “Faith Trip.” The EP promises to be a blessing to all who tune in, as Kofi shares his personal revelations and connects with listeners on a profound level. “Faith Trip” will be available on all major streaming platforms. Kofi Nuel’s EP is a testament to his artistry and commitment to delivering music that resonates with the soul.

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Asamoah Gyan Joins Bawumia’s Manifesto committee

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Ghanaian Football legend Asamoah Gyan has been appointed to the Manifesto Committee of New Patriotic Party’s Flagbearer, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, for the 2024 Presidential elections. (more…)

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People & Lifestyle

Vote Free Season of Miss Musilimah Ghana

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Cruz House event, organizers of Miss Musilimah Ghana has announced their preparations towards the production of a third season of Miss Musilimah Ghana following a year-long break. The all-Muslim pageant which has two seasons to its credit is by far the most recognized all-Muslim beauty pageant in Ghana, Africa and beyond. This year’s competition which is scheduled to run from May through October is specially dubbed THE VOTE FREE SEASON.  It would require absolutely no voting throughout the competition, making MMG the first beauty pageant in Ghana to introduce no voting.

Speaking to the media about the new development, the CEO, Mrs Hawa Alidu Farouk, explained the rationale behind the decision as a way to make the competition even more accessible to people from diverse economic backgrounds “Most times, people who do qualify to some of these pageants do not end up auditioning because they first of all think about who and where they would be getting their voting support from. The few who make it through auditions are not typically evicted halfway into the competition due to insufficient votes, regardless of how good they may be. We want our contestants to feel that they have equal opportunities as far as voting is concerned” Beyond this bold decision, organizers are also considering raising the cash prize amount for potential winners as well as introducing other amazing corporate and entrepreneurial opportunities for participants. Another addition to this year’s edition is the introduction of the ‘Humanitarian Project pitch’. A community-based project aimed at addressing a basic humanitarian need. “This aims at preparing our contestants to become global citizens and to be aware of the responsibilities they have as individuals to maintaining a globally safe environment”, Mrs Alidu Farouk explained. She further hinted that they are open to sponsorships, partnerships, and support from corporate organisations, institutions, brands, government agencies as well as individuals who would like to be part of the MMG community. Over the years, MMG has created an enabling platform for young Muslim ladies to excel and become their best selves in a non-Muslim-dominated industry while breaking stereotypes and changing the status quo for Muslim women through beauty, intelligence and modesty. Audition for this year’s season is also free and is currently open. Interested young Muslim ladies are expected to send a short video of themselves in their modest Hijab or Turban, and introduce themselves, their aspirations, inspirations as well as their motivations for joining Miss Muslima Ghana. Complete videos must be sent to the WhatsApp number 0559181770.

The third season of MMG indeed promises to be one of the best and organizers say they took a break to think things over and are now back with a good bounce, and more than ready to put their best foot forward, and provide a top-notch production both for the Muslim community and Ghanaians at large. More details about this season will be communicated through the MMG black box with CEO on our social media platforms. For sponsorships and partnerships, contact the numbers +233573759509 / 233248495589 or email cruizhouseevents@gmail.com.

Miss Muslimah Ghana, Beauty defined from the Islamic perspective; it’s epic!!!

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Rolling Stone Announces Lineup For SXSW – Black Sherif, Peso Pluma, Teezo Touchdown, Young Miko, Flo Milli, Uncle Waffles, Faye Webster, and More

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Today, Rolling Stone announced its return to Austin with the second-annual Future of Music showcase, presented by the leading online marketplace, StockX.  Quickly established as a marquee showcase of the South by Southwest® (SXSW®) music festival, the four-night concert series will celebrate the sounds of tomorrow, spanning genres and inspired by the spirit of SXSW. Performances by Peso Pluma, Teezo Touchdown, Young Miko, Flo Milli, Uncle Waffles, Faye Webster, and more will kick off Tuesday, March 12, and run through Friday, March 15.

“We’re thrilled to return to SXSW with this incredible line-up,” said Gus Wenner, CEO of Rolling Stone. “The Future of Music showcase brings our pages to life and honors the artists shaping the music of tomorrow – in all genres, all over the world.”

“We’re leveraging SXSW’s Future of Music showcase to connect with our community offline and give artists the chance to reach our global audience,” said Jerry Gaines, StockX’s Sr. Director of Brand Marketing. “In partnership with Rolling Stone, we’ll spotlight the Future 25 and further celebrate the trailblazing artists shaping the future of music.”

The Future of Music concert series coincides with Rolling Stone’s Future of Music print issue on newsstands in April. The showcase includes talent featured in the second annual Future 25 list, highlighting the artists who have the Rolling Stone staff most excited about the future of music in 2024 and beyond.

 

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Taking place at ACL Live at The Moody Theater, Rolling Stone’s Future of Music Showcase at SXSW will spotlight the following artists:

Concert Schedule:

·      Tuesday, March 12 – Teezo Touchdown, Veeze, Lola Brooke, and Chase Shakur

·      Wednesday, March 13 – Peso Pluma, Young Miko, Kevin Kaarl, J Noa, and Pink Pablo

·      Thursday, March 14 – Flo Milli, Uncle Waffles, Black Sherif, and Flyana Boss

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·      Friday, March 15 – Faye Webster, Red Clay Strays, Scowl, Dylan Gossett, and Jackie Venson

 

Thursday, March 14, will feature an opening performance by Preacher, presented by ~POURRI, followed by special guest Pheelz. Throughout the night, guests can enjoy specialty cocktails by BACARDI®.

The inaugural Future of Music showcase, which took place last year, hosted 12,000 attendees over four consecutive nights and featured a 24-artist roster. Notable talent included Coco Jones, Chloe Bailey, Mariah the Scientist, SABA, and Cuco.

The Future of Music showcase is open to all SXSW badge holders and the public. Please note that badge holders will receive priority admission, and the general public is on a first-come, first-served basis Doors open daily at 5:30 PM. Please RSVP HERE.

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In support of mental health initiatives in the music industry, Rolling Stone and Hi How Are You will display merchandise and the iconic mural painted by Daniel Johnston.

Rolling Stone journalists will report live throughout March 12-15, bringing readers the latest news and festival updates from the festival. Visit RollingStone.com and @rollingstone on Instagram, Twitter, TikTok, and Facebook for the latest updates and announcements.

 

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Emirates to expand its South American network with launch of services to Bogotá from 3 June

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The airline’s flights on Bogotá-Miami sector to introduce premium services on popular route, including lie-flat seats in First Class and Business Class, generous baggage allowance, complimentary dining and in-flight entertainment

Accra, Ghana – 21 February 2024: Emirates today announced it will launch a new daily service from Dubai to the Colombian capital, Bogotá, starting 3 June.

As well as connecting Colombia with the United Arab Emirates, the new services will establish a historic first-ever link between the greater Middle East region and the northern part of the South American continent. Emirates’ entry into Bogotá will expand its South American network to four gateways, complementing its scheduled services to São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and Buenos Aires. The latest destination will also enhance the airline’s operations in the Americas to now serve 19 points across the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Argentina and Colombia.

The daily services will link Dubai and Bogotá via Miami, with Emirates set to become the first airline to offer a host of premium services on the popular route between south Florida and Colombia.

Commenting on the launch of the new route and destination, Sir Tim Clark, President Emirates Airline, said: “We’ve long wanted to serve Colombia, and the addition of Bogotá to our network is part of our strategy to deliver better connectivity, expand options and choice for travellers and provide unparalleled premium experiences on the ground and in the air. The launch of our daily operations to the dynamic capital of Colombia also underscores our deep commitment to South America, and is poised to foster increased business and leisure travel opportunities for customers.

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“There is a huge demand for travel to and from Bogotá and we can’t wait for customers to experience Emirates’ signature products and services on the flights between Bogotá and Dubai as well as between Bogotá and Miami. We would like to thank all the authorities involved for supporting our plans and making this new route possible. We look forward to adding value to the new communities served and building new partnerships to promote tourism and trade.”

The daily flights to Bogotá, South America’s second largest city by population, will help cater to strong and growing demand for air travel between Colombia and the United Arab Emirates as well as between Colombia and numerous destinations on Emirates’ global network beyond Dubai which are not served directly from Bogotá. It will also provide convenient flights between Bogotá and Miami, allowing travellers to fly between the two cities in unprecedented style and comfort. Due to the high altitude of the city of Bogotá, it is not possible to operate a non-stop flight from Dubai, deeming a stopover necessary. Miami was selected due to its tourism and trade links with Bogotá.

Passengers on flights in both directions between Dubai and Bogotá should meet entry regulations for the United States and hold the required documents, due to immigration procedures in Miami. Colombian and UAE citizens can enjoy visa-free entry for up to 90 days in Dubai and Bogotá respectively, thanks to reciprocal visa arrangements in place between both countries.

Tickets to Bogotá go on sale today for flights starting 3 June and can be booked on emirates.com , the Emirates App, or via travel agents.

The flights will operate with timings as follows (all times are local):

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DatesFlightDeparture Arrival
From 3 June

Summer schedule

EK213 (DXB/MIA)02:1510:05
EK213 (MIA/BOG)12:3515:25
EK214 (BOG/MIA)17:2522:15
EK214 (MIA/DXB)00:4523:00
From 3 November

(Winter schedule)

EK213 (DXB/MIA)02:1509:50
EK213 (MIA/BOG)12:2016:10
EK214 (BOG/MIA)18:1022:05
EK214 (MIA/DXB)00:3523:50

Emirates’ Boeing-777-300ER aircraft will offer 354 seats across three cabins and will raise the bar for premium services on the Bogotá – Miami route. Lie-flat seats in First Class and Business Class, complimentary food and beverage, and a generous free baggage allowance (conditions apply) are amongst the firsts that Emirates will introduce on the direct services connecting Colombia and the U.S.

Emirates’ customers can also sit back and relax with complimentary access to more than 6,500 channels of carefully curated global entertainment content, including in Spanish, featuring movies, TV shows, music, podcasts, games, audiobooks and more with ice, Emirates’ award-winning inflight entertainment system.

The new Boeing 777-300ER services will also offer up to 20 tonnes tonnes of capacity for cargo on each flight, opening up access to more global markets for Colombian exports such as fresh flowers, fruits and vegetables and other perishable goods.  

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Celebrating the launch of Emirates’ services to Colombia, His Excellency Germán Umaña Mendoza, Colombia’s Minister of Trade, Industry and Tourism said: “The launch of the new route between Bogotá and Dubai marks a major milestone in expanding the connectivity of our country, allowing us to strengthen trade, investment and tourism. As part of the government of President Gustavo Petro, our goal is to guarantee opportunities for the development and prosperity of communities in all of our territories and, in doing so, we remain committed to providing the framework to support foreign investment.”

On the new route launch, His Excellency Sergio París Mendoza, Director General, Aerocivil Colombia said:  “In the realm of international relations, Colombia forges pathways to new realms of collaboration and understanding. Today, we rejoice in the inauguration of an air link with the vibrant city of Dubai, marking not only a connection between destinations but also symbolizing our nation’s steadfast commitment to global integration. The Arab nations bear witness to a thriving and diverse Colombia, poised to cultivate bonds of friendship and prosperity transcending geographical boundaries. At this pivotal moment, we reaffirm our dedication to collaborating closely with our Arab counterparts towards mutual development and peace. May this new air route via Emirates Airline herald the commencement of a journey abundant in opportunities and shared successes. May each journey between our nations serve as a beacon of cooperation, dialogue, and empathy. May the bond between Colombia and the Arab countries endure eternally, flourishing in prosperity.”

“Airlift expansion is crucial to increasing visitation and the economic impact tourism has on the state of Florida,” said Visit Florida President and CEO, Dana Young. “We are thrilled that Emirates will now connect its daily Dubai to Miami flight with Bogotá offering additional opportunities for us to welcome Colombian travelers to the Sunshine State.”

Bogotá’s status as a major centre for tourism, education and culture has earned it its nickname of the “Athens of South America.” It is also a thriving hub for finance, boasts a large presence of multinational companies, and has become a MICE destination due to its appeal as a central location in the Americas.

While Dubai is expected to be the final destination for the majority of travellers on the Bogotá-Dubai route, other top destinations for travellers include mainland China and Hong Kong, Bangkok, Singapore, Johannesburg, Cairo and Delhi. The Bogotá-Dubai flights are conveniently timed to provide seamless connectivity if travelling onwards from Dubai.

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Emirates’ flights will also facilitate convenient inbound connections to Bogotá through Dubai from 78 destinations in its extensive network and generate new passenger flows to Bogotá from high-growth markets such as the UAE, India, China, the wider Middle East, Far East and Australasia.

Whether traveling to or through Dubai, travellers can enjoy sun-soaked beaches, heritage activities, world class hospitality and leisure facilities, and a variety of world-class experiences.

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Data – more valuable than oil

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In the digital age, data has emerged as the new currency, surpassing the traditional commodity of oil in its significance. Just as oil fuelled the industrial revolution, data is propelling the information age forward, transforming industries and reshaping economies. Ghana, like many other nations, stands at the cusp of a data revolution, where unlocking the potential of data can drive sustainable development and economic growth.

When British mathematician Clive Humby likened data to oil in 2006, he underscored the intrinsic value embedded within raw data. Just as oil requires refining to unlock its potential, data must undergo a similar process to be transformed into actionable insights. Its value lies not in its raw state but in the refinement, processing, and utilization that follows.

In today’s business landscape, companies worldwide are leveraging data to maximize profits and gain a competitive edge. From retail giants like Amazon, which harnesses customer data for personalized recommendations, to tech titans like Google, employing data-driven algorithms for targeted advertising, the examples abound. Data-driven decision-making has become a cornerstone of success, permeating industries from healthcare to transportation, and beyond.

Within the realm of banking and finance, the importance of data cannot be overstated. Financial institutions rely on data analytics to assess risk, detect fraud, and optimize customer experiences. From algorithmic trading strategies to credit scoring models, data informs every aspect of banking operations, driving efficiency and profitability.

However, realizing the full potential of data requires a concerted effort in the refining process. In Ghana, as in many developing nations, the journey begins with data collection. Investing in robust data collection processes and storage systems lays the foundation for a data-driven future. Embracing technologies like cloud computing enables scalable and cost-effective storage solutions, facilitating seamless access to vast datasets.

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Data mining emerges as the next crucial step, extracting valuable insights from the wealth of information amassed. Leveraging advanced analytics techniques, businesses can uncover hidden patterns, trends, and correlations within their data, informing strategic decision-making.

Yet, data’s true power is unleashed when it informs business and financial decisions. By integrating data into the decision-making process, organizations gain a competitive advantage, driving innovation and growth. From identifying market opportunities to optimizing supply chains, data-driven insights pave the way for success.

To embark on this transformative journey, Ghana must focus on the three fundamental pillars, akin to those in entrepreneurship: Land, Labour, and Capital. Constructing a foundation of Data Land involves establishing a pervasive data culture, starting with raising awareness and nurturing a mindset of data literacy. Empowering individuals across all levels through targeted training sessions and educational initiatives is paramount to effectively harnessing the power of data.

In terms of labour, investing in the right talent is essential. Recruiting data professionals, including data scientists, analysts, engineers, and AI specialists, ensures the expertise needed to navigate the complexities of data-driven decision-making.

Lastly, capital investment is paramount. Committing resources to data infrastructure, technologies, and initiatives demonstrates a commitment to leveraging data as a driver of economic development.

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In conclusion, the analogy of data as the new oil holds true, particularly in the context of Ghana’s journey toward a data-driven future. By recognizing the value of data, investing in the refining process, and embracing a culture of data-driven decision-making, Ghana can unlock unprecedented opportunities for growth and prosperity in the digital age.

Allow me to introduce myself. I’m Nana Kojo Hagan, a professional with a solid educational background, holding a BSc degree in Actuarial Science from KNUST and an MSc with distinction in Business Analytics from Coventry University. Currently serving as a Business Intelligence Analyst at Dataware. My passion lies in empowering organizations across Africa to harness the full potential of data for progress. With a keen eye for analytics and a commitment to driving innovation, I am dedicated to leveraging data-driven insights to fuel growth and success in today’s dynamic business landscape.

In this regard, I want you to mark your calendars for a pivotal event in the Ghanaian financial landscape! On Tuesday, 5th March 2024, Dataware is hosting a full-day workshop at the Airport View Hotel in Accra, themed ‘Empowering Decision Makers’. Tailored for banking and finance professionals, this hands-on session promises practical insights into leveraging data effectively. Don’t miss this opportunity to enhance your skills and stay ahead in the data-driven world of finance. To know more about this training call Mabel on 0505902672 or Emmanuel on 0593802104. 

 

By Nana Kojo HAGAN

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>>>the writer is a Business Intelligence Associate at Dataware Tech. To know more call Mabel on 0505902672 or Emmanuel on 0593802104 

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