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Holding leaders accountable


2018 Tutu Fellow Alice Namuli partnered with the British Council of Uganda to collaborate on an event titled: Accountable Leadership - a tool for promoting good governance in Uganda for sustainable development.  It comprised a panel that included a Justice Kenneth Kakuru, a judge in the Appeal Court; Asan Kasingye, the Assistant Inspector General of Police; Francis Gimara, a partner in a Kampala law firm; and Perry Aritua, the Executive Director of the Women's Democracy Network.  Alice moderated the panel, which was sponsored by the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission in the UK and held in Kampala on 6 December. 

She said that the discussion was on how to learn to raise personal accountability in our work, family and communities to better hold leaders accountable.

She told AFLI that her plan was to raise a critical mass of informed citizenry about accountable leadership who can then hold our leaders accountable, which was why she had invited panelists from the judiciary, private sector , police and civil society.  Alice said that the organisations with which she was collaborating were excited about the discussion too because most discussions regarding leadership are only about how we can hold political leaders accountable and exclude ourselves, our families and friends as leaders.  

She opened the panel discussion with a summary of my written essay, which formed part of the requirements for the Tutu Leadership Programme in which she participated this year. Her essay was titled, Accountable Leadership: Moving Africa Forward

In her essay, she began by saying:

Many Sub Saharan African countries gained their independence 50 years ago. However, most of the nations on the continent are still grappling with issues like persistent dictatorship, poverty, unemployment, corruption, selfishness, exploitation, tribalism, social injustices disease, hunger and aimless armed conflicts.  Additionally, African leaders are often deemed as incapable custodians. They are accused of signing “treaties” with other economies that have either sold its natural resources or committed Africa to a perennial debt status. And despite the several ongoing sustainable development initiatives at national levels, there is not much improvement on the continent’s competitiveness in a globalized world. What is very clear is that most African citizens are highly dissatisfied with their leadership.

Alice went on to argue in the essay that only by having accountability as a key value within civil society at every level, both personally and institutionally, will Africa begin to develop exemplary leadership and have transformative societies.


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