It is clear that we are living in exceptional and unprecedented times. The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted our ways of working and interacting and, naturally, AFLI has also been impacted. This post provides some sense of the impact of the pandemic and its implications on the Tutu Leadership Fellowship .

When the effects of the pandemic were starting to be felt in March 2020, we had just completed the process of selecting our 2020 Archbishop Tutu Leadership Associates. We carried the news of that announcement here in our News.

The rapid spread of the disease globally, which has resulted in draconian measures to limit contact between people, travel bans and quarantining of travelers when they reach their destination, made the logistics for our leadership workshops in Cape Town in April and at Oxford University and in London in September very complicated, not only for Associates, but also for faculty and speakers.  To that end, the AFLI COVID-19 Board Sub-Committee took the decision to postpone the 2020 Class to 2021.

The option of virtual workshops was explored but decided against. The Tutu Programme has gained its reputation as the foremost leadership programme on the continent for emerging leaders, partly due to its design. It is designed to be an intimate quality experience of 25 participants and the programme is predicated on the personal interactions and the deep bonds that the Fellows forge amongst themselves. A virtual programme would have reduced the leadership experiential learning to a mere leadership class.

The implication of the 2020 Class being deferred to 2021 means that AFLI will not be opening the nomination process in October 2020. Effectively, we will only be opening nominations again in October 2021 for the 2022 Class but will only know for certain as we continue to monitor the pandemic. We thank you for your support and interest in the work that we do.

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About AFLI



The African Leadership Institute (AFLI) focuses on building the capacity and capability of visionary and strategic leadership across the continent. Developing exceptional leaders representing all spheres of society, the Institute’s flagship programme is the prestigious Archbishop Tutu Leadership Fellowship. Offering a multifaceted learning experience and run in partnership with Oxford University, it is awarded annually to 20-25 carefully chosen candidates, nominated from across Africa. Alumni of the African Leadership Institute form a dynamic network of Fellows passionately committed to the continent’s transformation, bridging the divide between nations and ensuring that Africa is set centre-stage in global affairs.