OUT OF AFRICA FOR CITY LEADERS AT MAYOR’S MANSION HOUSE GALA

ZULU dancers and an African gospel choir raised the roof at Mansion House last night at the Africa Gala hosted by Lord Mayor Michael Bear.

“Welcome to my humble home,” said the Mayor as he welcomed 250 guests from firms including UBS, Shell, HSBC and Laing O’Rourke to the black-tie benefit, held in aid of the Mayor’s Bear Necessities appeal.

News anchor Natasha Kaplinsky hosted the auction, while former BBC foreign correspondent Martin Bell made an “exceptional” speech, said Viewpoint Africa founder Ayo Johnson, about the impact of war.

It’s back to Mansion House this morning for a debate on how the private sector can improve its response to humanitarian disasters. Martin McCann, CEO of Redr, is the charity partner, and the panel includes Richard Hardie of UBS and Keith Howells, CEO of Mott MacDonald.

No sign of former RBS chief Fred Goodwin is expected though, currently the talk of the City after his super-injunction was shredded.

When asked if Goodwin had been invited, McCann said diplomatically: “Charities hope that the people we invite are all well respected in the community at large.”