Arusha Times (Arusha)

20 July 2013

Tanzania: Oprah Winfrey Visits Serengeti

Shortly after the US President, Barack Obama's own tour here, Tanzania continues to attract outstanding personalities from the United States. The world's widely recognized, television talk show queen, Oprah Winfrey, landed in Serengeti last weekend for what has been described as a private excursion.

The woman behind the popular 'Oprah Winfrey' shows, Oprah, who is also a famous film actress and currently playing the role of Gloria Gaines in the 2013 movie 'The Butler,' was expected be in or around the Serengeti National Park for one week.

"It is going to be Oprah's private tour," said Mr Paschal Shelutete the Public Relations Manager for Tanzania National Parks (TANAPA) which manages Serengeti, the country's second largest National Park, but which is also the most known tourist destination in East Africa.

Ever since she debuted in the 1985 film, 'Color Purple' Oprah has starred in 28 other movies in addition to producing several Television Documentaries and publishing three books.

Whether we should expect her next film or TV documentary to be filmed in Serengeti is yet to be seen but the country's popular park, home to the legendary migration of over 2 million wildebeests and Zebras, the queen may be interested to capture a bit of the spectacular show.

And Oprah remained as private as her excursion was billed to be. Everything was kept personal, no media or any third party personalities were allowed to visit her at Grumeti Lodge.

Winfrey has remained the only African American to rank among America's 400 richest people nearly every year since 1995. With a net worth of US $800 million, Winfrey is believed to be the richest African American of the 20th century.

She has also won, and nominated for, various outstanding awards including the 'Academy Awards,' 'Emmy awards,' 'Golden Globe Award,' 'PGA Awards,' and got named as best talk show presenter and host several times.

She is also generous because in 2004, Winfrey became the first black person to rank among the 50 most generous Americans and she remained among the top 50 until 2010. By 2012 she had given away about US $400 million to educational causes.

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