Nelson Mandela once said “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world”. The question now is, where will the future African leaders come from?
At Stanbic IBTC, we understand the importance of leadership and how it affects the society. To demonstrate this, we recently sponsored African Leadership Academy’s West African Indaba Dinner which took place on the 20th of July in Lagos. African Leadership Academy (ALA) selects young people between the ages of 16-19 for an intensive two year leadership program and it has over 450 young leaders from over 45 different countries in its network. It also brings them together for reunions every year so the alumni can share their stories and experiences.
Oscar Onyema, CEO of the Nigerian Stock Exchange commended the Academy saying “the choice of their theme as an academy is respectable knowing that Africa is one of the few bright spots on the gloomy economic frontier”. Other attendees included Arthur Oginga, CFO of Stanbic IBTC, Mr Gbenga Oyebode, Managing Partner of Aluko & Oyebode as well as representatives from General Electric & IBM.
It was also a night of challenges as Arthur Oginga asked the ALA students a crucial question “how do we get Africa's agricultural sector to where it should be?” Catherine Bickersteth, West African Regional Director of ALA set a challenge for all companies in attendance and beyond saying, “there are so many opportunities in Africa and so many ways of contributing to the development of Africa, we are calling on all the companies who are not contributing yet to provide internship opportunities for the students or be mentors to any of them.”
So mark these names - all Nigerians and alumni of the Academy: Akan Nelson, Oladipupo Fasawe, Sheila Chukwulozie, Ogechi Onyeka and Safiya Salau. One of them could be the future leader or your company or our country.