An archive of the 50 previous news items

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The latest news from the African Leadership Institute and its Fellows.

AFLI Fellows are leaders and change-makers, so this section has a lot of news. Please use the icons below if you want to sort posts by category, such as: regular news posts, video posts, audio posts, by tag, or by blogger. Additionally, all text in all of the posts is fully searchable.

Amplifying Africa's creative potential and telling its stories

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2016 Archbishop Tutu Fellow Dorothy Ghettuba has been interviewed by CNN on how she is growing streaming viewership in Africa and bringing more African stories to the lineup.  Film and television productions worldwide have been negatively impacted by COVID-19, but the Kenyan Netflix executive has said that she is using this time to find the best stories, to make the best use of the interruption.

At the same time, for international streaming giant Netflix, lockdowns have translated into nearly 16 million new paid subscribers in the first quarter of 2020 alone, followed by another 10 million during the second quarter. 

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Fellows connect, reflect and support each other during COVID-19

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The Tutu Fellows relish the time to connect with one another beyond the obvious connections through sector-related and work orientated opportunities and collaborations. While these are powerful ways for the network to deepen our impact across the continent and sharpen our understanding and nuances of each country, it is the building of relationships that glue the Fellows together.

Friday 29th June was a powerful and much-needed time for Fellows to connect, reflect and communicate about our experiences during the Covid 19 pandemic. It was led by 2006 Tutu Fellow Judy Malan, who facilitated a session to enable us to reflect on how we have responded to lockdown, both personally and as a leader. She touched on the different emotions we might have been processing, those of fear, hope and optimism as well as natural patterns we might default too - pessimist, optimist or realist.

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Fellow delivers convocation address, becoming the first African to do so

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2014 Tutu Fellow Ada Osakwe delivered the convocation address to the Kellogg School of Management Class of 2020. She became the first African to be given this honour, and the fourth black woman. She followed in the footsteps of outstanding Black Americans Edith Cooper, the Global Head of Human Capital at Goldman Sachs in 2017; Roslyn Brock, the Chairman Emeritus of the NAACP in 2012; and media titan Oprah Winfrey, in 2011.

Ada is an award-winning food entrepreneur and Founder of The Nuli Juice Company and an alumnus of the Kellogg School.

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Fellow drafts UN policy brief for Namibia amidst the pandemic

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2008 Tutu Fellow Eunice Ajambo has drafted a United Nations policy brief titled COVID-19: An Emerging Development Challenge, but opportunity for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Namibia.  The policy brief examines economic transformation in the context of COVID-19 and analyses how Namibia is currently fairing. It provides a socio-economic impact assessment for short, medium- and long-term recommendations in addressing COVID-19. She makes the point that crises can be an opportunity to prioritize economic transformation.

Eunice is the Economic Affairs Officer with the Macroeconomics and Governance Division of the UN Economic Commission for Africa.  Her work on economic policy spans economic governance, development finance, and public sector management.

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Keeping the nation in data darkness as a deliberate strategy

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2006 Tutu Fellow Aidan Eyakuze has published a LinkedIn article about serious concerns around Tanzania’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Aidan writes that Tanzanians have been allowed to continue moving around and trading freely, with only minimal requirements being observed like being required to wear a mask in public. Thus while it appears the country has adopted the controversial 'herd immunity' approach to the pandemic, it is doing so in data darkness.

Aidan is an economist, scenario practitioner and is a board member on the Global Steering Committee of the Open Government Partnership.

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COVID-19 exposes the ways in which black lives don't matter

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2014 Tutu Fellow Sello Hatang is raising questions about the worrying intersection of the political economy in a time of COVID-19 with the continuing issue of racism and white supremacy.  He questions what will be necessary for South Africa to do to see this moment as an opportunity to fundamentally restructure.  In a Daily Maverick Op-Ed published in June 2020, Sello, who is CEO of the Nelson Mandela Foundation, reflects on the global Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement as well as numerous incidents of police brutality in South Africa during the lockdown. 

He says that he has felt keenly the extent to which 'black lives don't matter' and he poses the question of when the country will start prioritising its most vulnerable?

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Fellow sets up emergency ICU field hospital for COVID-19 patients

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Re'ayit Misr emergency ICU field hospital has been set up by Tutu Fellow Ahmed Zahran’s company, KarmSolar, to aid Egypt’s COVID-19 response. He pulled together a coalition of experts from KarmSolar and it's partners and designed a functional, modular solution for an emergency ICU field hospital. The Re'ayit Misr emergency ICU field hospital is a product of the coalition’s combined expertise in energy, architecture design and construction.

Their expertise was used to develop a modular, pre-fabricated structure, to properly serve the needs of healthcare institutions and patients combating the pandemic, by providing additional ICU capacity.

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Fellow starts directory site to help the fight against COVID-19 in Nigeria

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Adebola Williams, 2018 Tutu Fellow and Media Entrepreneur, Journalist, Political Activist and co-founder and Group CEO of Red, has launched the Beating Corona website. This comprehensive and accessible website details information on what organizations, brands, groups, corporations, and individuals are doing to assist in the fight against Covid-19 in Nigeria.

Through the website you can access information according to region, resources and organisations and centres distributing resources as well as up to date information on interventions and donations nationwide.

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Fellow analyzes impact of coronavirus on Egypt's economy

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2018 Tutu Fellow Mohammed El Dahshan, has written an analysis of the impact of COVID-19 on the Egyptian economy, sector by sector, that has been published in the latest  issue of The Africa Report. Mohammed is also an Associate Fellow with the Middle East and North Africa Programme at Chatham House, where he focuses on economic development, regional cooperation, and fragile states. In his analytical piece, he also provides recommendations to the state on balancing the short- and long-term response to the economic impact of the pandemic.

He makes the point that the ravages caused by the coronavirus have equalised the playing field across the globe and that as states learn to live with this new reality, they must also create policies to minimise the economic impact the crisis brings.

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Fellows donate PPEs to healthcare workers

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A group of Ghanaian Tutu Fellows banded together to collect and donate personal protective equipment (PPEs) to healthcare workers in Ghana in May 2020 to help them stay safe as they treat patients who may have COVID-19.  The group comprised 2019 Tutu Fellow Marcia Ashong; 2014 Tutu Fellow Isaac Fokuo; and 2015 Tutu Fellow Mawuli Dake.  Prior to this, nurses had been forced to work without protection.

The donations were made to the frontline workers at one of Ghana's premier hospitals, Korle Bu Teaching Hospital. The donation included 200 N95 face masks, 100 medical-grade gowns, and 200 gloves.

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Power couple become first to address Harvard Business graduates

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The Nwunelis - a power Tutu Leadership Programme couple - made history by becoming the first couple to deliver the keynote address to Harvard Business School graduates.  The two, Ndidi Okonkwo Nwuneli and Mezuo Nwuneli, delivered the address to the 2020 graduating class in May this year via a videolink as a result of COVID-19. Ndidi attended the Class of 2006, and Mezuo became a Tutu Fellow the following year. Both are also Harvard Business School graduates, which is where they met.  They join a storied list of keynote speakers - last year's was delivered by Michael Bloomberg, the founder of Bloomberg LP and former Mayor of New York.

In their speech to the 2020 graduates, they recognised the unprecedented challenges that the graduates were facing in the midst of a global pandemic and the health, social and economic impact it would have. 

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COVID-19 used as cover to shrink civic space

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A piece by 2016 Tutu Fellow Victoria Ibezim-Ohaeri titled COVID-19 and the shrinking civic space in Nigeria has been published in Just Security. Victoria is the founder and director of research and policy at Spaces for Change, a non-profit organization based in Nigeria that conducts research and advocacy that includes a focus on defending the civic space.

Victoria's piece examines how the coronavirus pandemic is being used as a cover to shrink civic in the name of 'national security'.  With people's attention on public health, what is being missed is the more worrying concern that state actors are exploiting the pandemic to stifle dissent, clamp down on civic freedoms, and push through restrictive measures, using COVID-19 as a pretext.

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Using COVID-19 to redesign Africa's economy

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Olugbenga Adesida, an AFLI Director and Trustee, and a 2018 Tutu Fellow, Geci Karuri-Sebina, have written a powerful post in which they call for using COVID-19 as a global opportunity to shift the global economic paradigm. The times are urgent, they say, and the needs globally mutual. The article was published in The Daily Maverick in May 2020. 

COVID-19 is a rude awakening for the world, and they write it has laid bare for the world to see the underlying problems of the current paradigm. "It highlights the unsustainability of the current systems and the need for change – from the US with the biggest economy, to the smallest most fragile economies in Africa.”

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Fellow drafts UN report on the economic impact of COVID-19

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2008 Tutu Fellow Eunice Ajambo provided a briefing overview on the main points for Namibia and Southern Africa from the United Nations World Economic Situation and Prospects (WESP) mid-2020 Report. The UN report covers the impact of the global pandemic and subsequent global economic contraction.  Eunice is the Economist and Development Coordination officer for the United Nation in Namibia.

The UN is projecting an economic contraction of 3.2 per cent this year and says it is likely to be the worst recession since the Great Depression due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Because of the scale and global nature of the economic impact, it presents unique challenges given how much the global economy has changed since the 1930s.

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Fellow's foundation helps feed the vulnerable

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2014 Tutu Fellow Sello Hatang mobilised the Nelson Mandela Foundation when it became apparent that South Africa would be facing a massive humanitarian crisis. Along with The Kolisi Foundation and the Imbumba Foundation, by the end of April his foundation had set up Each One Feed One with a start-up contribution of R500 000 from its own funds as an emergency relief vehicle, focusing on food security. It shortly thereafter began delivering food to starving people around the country. 

Sello was also joined by 2013 Tutu Fellow Catherine Constantinides, who is an ambassador to the Each One Feed One programme.

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