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BY Bridget Boakye, 6:29am February 14, 2018,

Fred Swaniker’s African Leadership University honors Mandela at 100

Too many people say there is a dearth of good leaders on the African continent. Many often cite corruption, self-interest, short-sightedness, and lack of willpower and follow through as reasons why African politicians and officials are not able to serve in the best interest of their nations and the continent.

Fred Swaniker, the founder of African Leadership Group – housing an academy, university, network, and business school –  is on a mission to challenge the status quo and narrative about leaders on the African continent with a goal to develop 6000 ethical African leaders in the next 50 years. 

We recently spotlighted Swaniker and his top three reasons why young Africans in the Diaspora should move back home.

This week, he is making waves with an appeal, to help African Leadership University (ALU)  identify and nurture 100 young leaders on the continent through the Mandela Centennial Scholarship Programme.

In partnership with the Graça Machel Trust and the Mandela Institute of Development Studies (MINDS), ALU will provide 100 outstanding young Africans from disadvantaged backgrounds with full scholarships to attend the university starting this year.

In a post on Facebook, Swaniker explained what Mandela’s legacy meant to him and what he hopes to achieve with the award:

Four leadership lessons I learned from Nelson Mandela…

4. The power of education: Mandela understood that the true wealth of a nation lies in the brains of its people, not in things like mineral resources. As he famously said: “Education is the most powerful weapon you can use to change the world.” I couldn’t agree more. It’s what inspires me every day to bring innovative, world-class education to Africa through ALA & ALU.

Breaking news…. Were he still alive, Nelson Mandela would have turned 100 this July

To honor his life, legacy, and passion for education, the honorable Graca Machel approached me a few months ago with a very special wish: to celebrate her late husband’s 100th birthday, she wanted to create 100 scholarships for young Africans to study at a top African university. I was immediately sold on her vision and offered African Leadership University as the home for these 100 young ‘Mandela Scholars’. This especially resonated with me because Mama Graca serves as the Chancellor of African Leadership University.

Join me in marking Nelson Mandela’s 100 year birthday with this historic scholarship program. The selected scholars will receive a full scholarship to attend African Leadership University in Rwanda from September 2018 onwards. They will also receive a copy of Nelson Mandela’s autobiography: “Long Walk to Freedom” and will be invited for a special leadership seminar with Mama Graca and other great African leaders in Kigali before they start classes this September.

Swanika is a Ghanaian entrepreneur and development expert who attended university and business school in America and then returned to Africa to found ALGroup. He has received numerous awards and citations for his contribution to education and development in Africa, including recognition as a Top Ten Young Power Men in Africa by Forbes Magazine and ‘one of the top 15 social entrepreneurs in the world’ by Echoing Green.

ALU was recognized by Fast Company as the 3rd ‘Most Innovative Company’ in Africa and CNN called the school “the Harvard of Africa” in 2016.

The award is open to African nationals and all who are accepted to ALU. Applications close on May 15th, 2018 and announcements will be made on Mandela’s birthday month, July 2018. All scholarship details can be found here: https://mcs.alueducation.com/

Last Edited by:Ismail Akwei Updated: June 19, 2018


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