Leadership and It’s Future on the African Continent

It is no secret that leadership is the difference between economic success or disaster in nations and depends sorely on how our leader’s policies and actions are implemented. The effectiveness of  leadership is, therefore, the backbone for Africa’s future development.

To delve deeper into the topic of Leadership in Africa, I interviewed 2018’s ALAMAU Chairperson, Mubarak Adetunji – who is the overall head of the organizing team of the conference- to get a glimpse of his view on leadership and how he thinks ALAMAU helps delegates to attain these leadership skills.

Mubarak

Continue reading “Leadership and It’s Future on the African Continent”

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‘Bonus Session’

By Colenso Holder, Delegate of the Executive Council

I am sitting in my hotel room in Johannesburg. There is a constant hum of cars. I just got out of the shower so the sound of water dripping is also filling the room. Today was the first day of parliamentary sessions at the ALAMAU conference. Countries from all over the continent are here. From Uganda, Nigeria and South Africa and more.

At the beginning of the ALAMAU conference we were briefed by the chairperson that the main goal of this conference is to have impact. I am proud to say that the Maru-a-Pula delegation has achieved just that.

After supper a fellow Maru-a-Pula student from Botswana told me about his committee and how homophobic arguments had ensued during their conversations. I told this delegate that if I were to be in that council I would leave because of the delegates’ ignorance and also because their comments would hit too close to home since I am a gay male.

After dinner, this same student told me that some representatives who are against gay rights had gathered in one of the conference rooms. He then asked the rest of the Maru-a-Pula delegation if they were up for joining him for a debate on LGBT rights. Our entire team was very enthusiastic about this, arriving at the debate venue to find the said delegates still having their dinner.

At first the debate was very informal since it was not actually part of the conference, but occurred spontaneously. We were privileged to have Mr. Jantsankhorol Damdinsuren, advisor for the Maru-a-Pula School delegation, as chairperson for the debate, even going on to label it as a ‘bonus session’. A moderated caucus of 5 minutes and 30 seconds was voted for.

During the few speeches given, there were passionate expressions of opinions on the topic: homosexuality goes against Christianity, homophobia also goes against Christianity, homosexuality is seen as unnatural by some African citizens. Homosexuality is natural since there are more than 2000 species that are known for sometimes having same sex partners, and lastly, the fact that being homosexual is not a choice but one is born that way. These arguments were not presented in a serious manner since this was not part of the actual conference.

After the first motion was exhausted, there was a motion to extend it by six minutes with a speaking time of one minute. I was the first to speak. I did not  know what I was going to say to the people that were sitting in front of me. All I saw was ignorance. So I started talking about myself and the experiences that I have encountered as a gay male.

During the previous caucus I was totally unemotional but as soon as I started talking about myself I started to shake and emotions started to take over. I addressed my fellow delegates from Uganda telling them about how I would have committed suicide if I did not not have an accepting family. I also spoke on the fact that it is people like them who cause innocent people like myself to commit suicide. When I was up there I started to cry, not out of the fact that I was offended but because of their lack of understanding and all the pain that they could potentially cause because of their lack of tolerance.

After I gave my speech, there was an obvious shift in the atmosphere as the hostile tone which had overcome the room just a few moments before transformed to a more welcoming one. The delegate of Uganda went on to apologize to me on realization that I had taken offense. She then started to cry as well. When she approached the delegates again I could see that there was a major change in her attitude towards the seriousness of the discrimination at hand. My fellow delegates from Uganda and another country then stated that they also believe that people should be seen as equals.

Some of the statements that followed included the fact that it is us, the youth’s responsibility to create a world that accepts all and leaves no minority group behind. Some of these points were supported by the fact that black people were called animals in some European schools and this was not the truth. Therefore vibrant young people should be open-minded towards any situation regardless of our upbringing and our parents’ beliefs. We should have the ability to create our own rational judgment towards situations, given any circumstance.

Be the Light

By Oyinkansola Kolawole, SABC correspondent

One day after being informed about the ALAMAU conference, I read about my dream committee the Press Corps and I saw an image of my chairperson and immediately concluded that he was goody-goody, dark-skinned boy with nothing to offer me.

As I arrived at the venue of the opening ceremony, it was brought to my attention after registration that my chairperson, Fred Zucule was present but as I took a glance at him a flash from my memory appeared and I was surprised by what I saw.

I was the only Press Corps present at the time and he was very nice as he tried to welcome to the conference. Just knowing him for three days now I feel like I have known him for a lifetime. He is a passionate bubble-filled character who has exhibited talent in many ways as he blew my mind with the ALApella performance. 

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Other attributes that love about him is not being afraid to embarrass his clumsy self: when he fell, he got back up and pretended like nothing happened and when he his laptop fell as he was being chased, and he doesn’t let the majority’s opinion affect him. He never ceases to make me laugh as we engage in conversations. I hope the bond of friendship between us will never be broken as I have my moments.

Unnoticed Disunity

By Rolaida Kimazi, AllAfrica correspondent

Funny how we as African countries claim to be united as one and yet in so many unnoticed situations, we leave our fellow African countries to tackle their own problems. Instead we could actively try to formulate committees that destroy this disunity and unite us.

Conference in SessionIn your head as you read this, you must be wondering why I am talking about disunity despite the existence of economic groups such as COMESA, amongst others, that trade together promoting unity. Countries like Uganda sent troops to Somalia during the war to help them fight and the examples go on, but where are African countries to help Nigeria as they are going through the Boko Haram crisis. Yes, the topic to help them out has been discussed by the African Union which shows that in some cases we are all talk but no action because no African country has actually offered any assistance.

We have unintentionally or intentionally isolated Nigeria as she goes through all this trauma and loss of life. Even though we as a continent want to develop as a whole, we have to realize that leaving behind one of the fastest growing economies will hold us back.

“Team work speeds up progress.” That quote should be a guideline for all African countries as we head towards progress. As soon as Boko Haram came up, troops and resources should have been sent in and this problem would have been eradicated so much faster. I strongly encourage the AU’s Peace and Security Council to formulate some strategy to help Nigeria out because whether we like it or not we are a continent and that means that unity should be a habit and not something we claim to have.

So this isn’t to say that we aren’t united but this is to say that honestly the small cases of disunity which go unnoticed should be fought against because that could be what’s holding back our progress. I also acknowledge the countries have been there for others like Uganda sending AMISOM troops.

If you have acted in some way which doesn’t show unity amongst yourselves, remember that not only does unity start with you but it also starts with turning over a new leaf and acting like well, UNITY itself.
AllAfrica honestly believes that full and maximum unity can be achieved if we just helped one another

The ALAMAU Manifesto 

The ALAMAU Manifesto is from the Director of Media and Communications, Melanie Ligale.

In two days you will be at our opening ceremony, sitting in a crowd of over two hundred with your eyes on the stage.

In three days you will be in a committee session, perhaps standing at a podium, debating for a country that you probably aren’t from.

In six days you will be exploring Johannesburg, in a cave, or in a mall, or at an artisan stall, or even in the former house of a man who tried to save a nation.

And in a week you might already be at home and wondering how ALAMAU 2017 is already memory and not something of the present. In a week I’ll probably be doing the same. I digress.

Disclaimer: This isn’t advice on how to make a speech or write a resolution. This also has nothing to do with communism. What I am about to write isn’t necessarily what you would find in the Delegates handbook—I have teammates who worked hard to make sure that it had everything like that is in there. Read it sometime.

Continue reading “The ALAMAU Manifesto “

ENERGY SUSTAINABILITY IN AFRICA OR “NAH”?

The Press Corps journalists are flexing their writing muscles and producing some amazing work. Today we have a post from the AllAfrica correspondent, Kimanzi Rolaida. Hope you enjoy. Continue reading “ENERGY SUSTAINABILITY IN AFRICA OR “NAH”?”

UPS AND DOWNS MARKING THE ALAMAU 2016 CONFERENCE

The 2016 ALAMAU Conference may have begun with a bang for all present at the opening ceremony but unfortunately the same cannot be said for those who were not able to make it. Mr Faith Abiodun, informed the audience during his opening remarks that not all delegations had managed to make the exciting trek to Johannesburg, South Africa. A few delegates from Heritage Home School from Nigeria failed to attend not only the opening ceremony, but will also miss out on the whole conference, due to the fact that they were denied visas to fly into South Africa.

The basis for this decision was made on shaky grounds making it unjust, discriminative and plain wrong in that the delegates from Nigeria had the correct paperwork as explained by Mr Faith. This infused a sense of sadness in the audience as well as empathy for the affected delegates. However, it also acted as a source of inspiration as it is the reason as to why everyone was congregated at ALAMAU — to find solutions to such problems.

In addition to this, delegates were informed that there was a protest that took place in Zandspruit, a place not to far from the conference on the fact that a small populace of South Africa was lacking electricity. This made it relatively hard for delegates to move around and continue with their programs and work.

However, all these issues served to further inspire delegates!

 

AL JazeeraCorrespondent: Thomas Wakiaga

SPOTLIGHT: Keynote Address by Ambassador Graham Maitland

The African Leadership Academy Model African Union Conference 2016 commenced with a spectacular opening ceremony comprising of delegates from all over the world. Faculty advisors, who had accompanied delegates, were equally excited to be part of the conference. Guests as well as the ALA community were also part of the audience.

One of the most exciting parts of the ceremony however, was the keynote address made by Ambassador Graham Maitland. Mr. Maitland, who is currently the Chief Director for North and Central Africa at the Department of International Relations and Cooperation, opened his speech by referring to the delegates as “young leaders of Africa.”

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Ambassador Graham Maitland giving his speech

Speaking about the 2063 project, The Africa We Want, Mr. Maitland elaborated on the shared ideals of good governance and democracy, respect, a peaceful and secure Africa. He also stressed on the importance of having a strong cultural identity with shared benefits by all Africans in order to create the much-needed unity amongst its people. According to him, the young leaders of Africa would be at the forefront of this project.

Mr. Maitland went on todeclare that through cooperation and coexistence, Africans would navigate change in the continent and fight financial crisis, economic inequalities, unemployment and poor leadership.

The talented spoken word group, SPEAK, closed the ceremony with a performance. They presented apowerful and emotional spoken word piece on what Africa means to one. This performance earned a standing ovation, which served to build on Mr. Maitland’s keynote address.

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SPEAK group performing

Chairperson, Takunda Ushe from Zimbabwe, then officially declared the conference open. Heassured delegates that the next few days were going to be worth the long and exciting wait.

 

CNN Correspondent: Fatima Aliyu