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.

Wide interest in call to action to Heads of State on Africa Day 2021

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For Africa Day 2021, the African Leadership Institute sent an open Letter to African Heads of State, calling on them to include more young people in governance. It held a Zoom meeting with a high-level panel on the current poor representation of young people in governance that was widely attended. The Open Letter is published at Publications. You can watch the full Zoom meeting on AFLI's YouTube Channel.

Globally, Africa has the youngest population in the world, yet many are unemployed or marginalised. The average age on the continent is 19, yet in 2018, the average age of African Heads of State was 64 and a half years old. In it's letter to heads of government, AFLI challenged them to rectify this disproportional state of affairs.

The Open Letter was also picked up by news media.

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Elsie Kanza made an Ambassador for Tanzania by President Samia Suluhu Hassan

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On 22 May 2021, President Samia Suluhu Hassan appointed Elsie Kanza PhD as one of 22 ambassadors for Tanzania. Elsie is a 2008 Tutu Fellow.  

A statement issued by the director of communications at State House, Gerson Msigwa read that "The appointment of these Ambassadors commenced today, May 22, 2021 and they will be sworn in on dates to be announced later."

Elsie's most recent position was as the Special Advisor to the President of the World Economic Forum.

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Tutu Talks: Samantha Mkandhla speaks about 'The Power of Duality'

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The African Leadership Institute has partnered with the Desmond and Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation to produce a series of profiles on Tutu Fellows called Tutu Talks.  The foundation is responsible for preserving the example set by Archbishop Desmond Tutu for the future. 

The first of our 2021 Tutu Talks series features 2017 Tutu Fellow, Samantha Mkandhla, the head of philanthropy and partnerships for Médecins Sans Frontières Southern Africa. In it, she tells of the personal cost of servant leadership, and how she learned to overcome it and still work to make the world a better place. Her talk is called The Power of Duality: Success and Failure. In it, she spoke about how her failures led her to a clearer sense of what she had gained and how much more she had to give.

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Fellow selected for 100 Most Influential People in Gender Policy list for 2021

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Apolitical has published its list of 100 Most Influential People in Gender Policy, a prestigious international list that honours and celebrates people working on gender policy who are making the world more equitable. They made their selection by considering people in areas that include policymaking, public service, research, philanthropy, advocacy and activism. Drawn from more than 1,100 nominations, 2018 Tutu Fellow Wanjiru Kamau-Rutenberg was selected in the Economic Justice and Rights category. 

Apolitical is an organisation that seeks to empower public servants through education, skills training, networking and 21st century digital tools.  Wanjiru is joined in the category in which she was honoured by 13 other women.

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Nitesh Dullabh joins Environmental Resources Management

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2008 Tutu Fellow Nitesh Dullabh has been appointed as Partner, Corporate Sustainability and Climate Change (CS&CC) at Environmental Resources Management, or ERM.  He began his new position in April 2021.

ERM is a leading sustainability consultancy, and the global sustainability and climate change practice provides innovative advisory services from Board engagement to operationalizing sustainability.  Environmental sustainability has become a business-critical issue for many enterprises. Nitesh intends to building on his sustainability experience and leverage ERM’s business process transformation capability, deep subject-matter expertise, and experienced teams.  This includes assisting local and global clients to integrate environmental sustainability practices into the fabric of their organizations for continuous improvement and to unlock business value for current and future generations.

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Chad opposition leader Succès Masra offers condolences on President's death

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2016 Tutu Fellow Succès Masra PhD has offered condolences to the Deby family in a gracious message via social media on the death of Chad’s President, Idriss Deby, who was killed by rebels in the north of the country in April.  Succès thanked the former president for the thirty years he had had as leader of the country. 

Succès is a prominent opposition politician who had to seek shelter within the US embassy perimeter in N'Djamena only the month prior to Deby's death because of a security crackdown on his supporters. Protests erupted when Deby announced he was running for a sixth term, along with changes to the qualifying age of presidential candidates in a measure to disqualify the opposition. Deby was controversially re-elected to a sixth presidential term, only to be killed just hours later in circumstances in the north of the country.  His government played an important role in countering Islamic terrorism in the region and was supported by former colonial ruler, France, to that end. 

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Wanjiru Kamau-Rutenberg appointed to Rise as inaugural Executive Director

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2018 Tutu Fellow Wanjiru Kamau-Rutenberg PhD has been appointed as Rise’s inaugural Executive Director. Rise is an initiative of Schmidt Futures and the Rhodes Trust – the anchor program of a $1 billion philanthropic commitment by Eric and Wendy Schmidt. The website says Rise is a talent programme designed to increase opportunity for exceptional young people who need it to do more for others, together, throughout their lives. Wanjiru joined the organisation in April 2021.

Rise says that exceptional talent drives the pace and scale of global progress. But the identification and support of that talent is often ad hoc and fragmented across countries, educational institutions, and industries. As a result, some of the world’s most talented people go undiscovered, are inefficiently matched to development opportunities, or are limited in their opportunity to work in service of the public benefit as they enter the workforce. The initiative seeks to change that.

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Ada Osakwe appointed to the Board of Directors of Factor[e] Ventures

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2014 Tutu Fellow Ada Osakwe has been appointed as a Non-Executive Director at Factor[e] Ventures. Factor[e] Ventures supports the growth of early stage, technology-enabled companies, solving challenges in energy, agriculture, mobility, and waste in emerging markets. They favour projects with de-carbonized solutions for emerging & frontier markets.

Speaking on her appointment, Ada said that she deeply believes that tech is what will transform Africa’s fortunes in a decentralized, inclusive way.  Ada was found partly as a result of the Tutu Fellow's network. Factor[e] approached 2019 Fellow Marcia Ashong, whose company TheBoardroom Africa, was able to connect them with Ada.

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Janah Ncube appointed as the Global Deputy CEO for Crisis Action

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2006 Tutu Fellow Janah Ncube has been appointed as the Global Deputy CEO for Crisis Action.  Previously, she was the Global Campaigns Director for four years. She was promoted to the new position in April 2021. 

Crisis Action works with individuals and organisations from global civil society to protect civilians from armed conflict, with offices in Addis Ababa, Beirut, Brussels, Johannesburg, London, Nairobi, New York, Paris and Washington DC.  The organisation acts as a convenor of joint action and works behind the scenes to enable coalitions to work quickly and effectively.  As a coordinating body it says it can be more effective doing so without seeking a public profile, rather it is the voice of the coalition that matters.  Crisis action says it's only agenda is the protection of civilians.

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African eCommerce startup partners with Mastercard Foundation and DHL

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2014 Tutu Fellows Isaac Kwaku Fokuo and Sam Mensah and 2012 Tutu Fellow Julie Gichuru are collaborating in a partnership between Ananse.com, Mastercard Foundation and DHL to create economic opportunities for young African creatives. Summarized, the site slogan is Beautiful things, made by Africa, delivered globally.  Ananse Africa, a startup ecommerce platform, launched in April in Johannesburg and Lagos, connecting African designers with local and international consumers.

The site says many African artisans, designers and artists face various challenges, making it difficult to transact with customers throughout the world.  Ananse Africa was set up to unlock the African creative economy, empower designers, merge tech and fashion; and most importantly, enable consumers from all over the world to shop online for beautiful pieces, from talented artisans, designers and artists throughout key African regions.

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Appointment of Nomthetho Mothejoa as AFLI Programme and Alumni Manager

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AFLI is pleased to announce the appointment of Nomthetho Mothejoa effective 1 April 2021, as Programme and Alumni Manager. Nomthi brings to AFLI a unique combination of skills.

She is a Leadership Coach with training in Ontological Coaching and runs a practice in Johannesburg on a part-time basis. Her passion is driving the self-actualisation of leaders and supporting them to make the shifts they desire towards their truest, highest selves.

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Wiebe Boer appointed to UN energy group on Finance and Investment

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2015 Tutu Fellow Wiebe Boer PhD has been appointed to serve on the the UN Technical Working Group 5: Finance and Investment, joining 27 other sector experts. This cross-cutting and multidisciplinary UN Technical Working Group addresses “how public and private finance and investment can be mobilized and leveraged to achieve the 2025 Milestones, SDG7 and carbon neutrality, taking also into consideration enabling mechanisms such as the fiscal response to COVID-19, fossil fuel subsidy reform; green investment regulation; risk management and insurance.”

The objective of Working Group 5 is is to distill the expertise and inputs from the members of the working group to identify recommendations that are “ambitious, innovative and fit-for-purpose, of high impact, and replicable at scale across geographies and themes”.

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Jacqueline Musiitwa joins the board of IDEO

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2011 Tutu Fellow Jacqueline Musiitwa has joined the board and audit committee of IDEO.  The board appointments occurred at the beginning of March 2021.

IDEO is an international non-profit design studio that designs products and services alongside organizations that are committed to creating a more just and inclusive world.  The design and consulting firm was founded in Palo Alto, California and has offices in the US, UK, Germany, Japan, and China.  IDEO uses design and a human-centred approach to its projects, services, environments, and digital experiences, and has long been at the forefront of creating change and a more just and inclusive world through design.

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Ladé Araba appointed to UN Technical Working Group on Energy Access

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2014 Tutu Fellow Ladé Araba says she is excited to serve on the United Nation’s Technical Working Group on Energy Access. It will be responsible for developing an actionable global roadmap to achieve universal clean and affordable energy access for all, by 2030, something she says "is no mean feat”. She said in announcement on LinkedIn that she was thrilled to collaborate with a “formidable team of sector experts”.  Ladé is the Managing Director for Africa at Convergence Finance. 

Lade also expressed her enthusiasm about participating in the upcoming UN High Level Dialogue on Energy. The summit will take place in September this year, in New York.

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Fellow joins board of Salzburg Global Seminar

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2010 Tutu Fellow Bright Simons has been appointed to the Board of Directors of Salzburg Global Seminar. He will play a role in helping with their programs and business practices.  His appointment began in March 2021.

Commenting on his appointment, Bright said that “few organizations in the world today are as committed to the ideals of global public diplomacy as Salzburg Global Seminar.”
Victoria Mars, the Chairperson of the organisation, expressed her approval by saying: “we are thrilled to welcome Bright Simons to our Board of Directors. He represents a new generation of African entrepreneurs supporting social good through sustainable enterprise. As a Salzburg Global Fellow, Bright personifies our mission in motion: ‘Challenge current and future leaders to shape a better world.’

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