Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Tony Elumelu, the founder of the Tony Elumelu Foundation and Chairman, Heirs Holdings and the United Bank for Africa, has challenged African leaders to prioritise the future of the
Giving a keynote address during the Africa Now Conference in Kampala titled ‘The Leadership Needed to Catalyse Africa’s Transformation,’ Elumelu said Africa need leaders who are driven by an ambition to better the continent.
“The leaders we need in Africa today, are leaders who genuinely care about humanity. We need leaders who are driven by an ambition to leave society better than they met it,” he said.
“We need leaders who understand and care about creating a positive legacy. We need leaders who are genuinely committed and care about the future of Africa.”
Hosted by President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, the Africa Now Conference, an initiative of the Africa Strategic Leadership Centre, gathered heads of state, public and private sector leaders to discuss and develop growth opportunities for the continent.
In his speech, President Museveni outlined key enablers required to empower the African people and transform the continent.
With independence, although a lot of time was lost with military governments engaged in primitive fascism, nevertheless, many African governments have correctly identified two crucial stimuli that can catalyse social transformation.
These are education and health for all (human resource development) and private sector-led growth,” he said.
Commending President Museveni on Uganda’s achievements, Elumelu also emphasised the need for public-private sector collaboration to drive sustainable development, encapsulate in his economic philosophy, Africapitalism.
“Leadership should not be about directing blame, leadership is not about absolving responsibility. Leadership is the catalyst for positive change. We need to take collective responsibility for our own future – as I have often said, no one is going to do it but ourselves – whether we are in the public or private sectors,” Elumelu said.
“This is the philosophy of Africapitalism, which is a call on the private sector to play its role, the leading role in securing our continent’s destiny – and achieving it by creating both social and economic wealth.”
He said African leaders have a role to play especially in investing and managing various activities so as to create jobs for the surging population.
On the concept of shared prosperity, Elumelu said the Tony Elumelu Foundation’s Entrepreneurship Programme was a robust mechanism to empower Africa’s entrepreneurs, with the goal of delivering efficiently and effectively wealth creation directly into local communities.
The Tony Elumelu foundation has funded over 300 entrepreneurs in Ugandans since inception. The entrepreneurs each received USD 5000 as seed capital for their businesses and continue to be supported by United Bank for Africa (UBA).
UBA offers banking service across Uganda though diverse channels including ATMs, point of
sale machines, Mobile banking, internet banking and agent banking.