On Wednesday, July 19, 2023, Day 3 of the Umoja African Student Leaders Network Summit/UNILAG Mandela Week, the University of Lagos and Education Writers Association of Nigeria (EWAN) combined for the cause of producing more Nelson Mandelas in young Africans.
With the theme, “Youth Discourse on Making More Mandelas”, the event witnessed a transgenerational conversation between accomplished scholars and student leaders on the leadership legacies of Nelson Mandela and how the values he stood for can replicated continent-wide.
Chairman of the Education Writers Association of Nigeria (EWAN), Mr, Mojeed Alabi, expressed gratitude to the University of Lagos for partnering with his association on the event.
“This event aligns with the values that our association is out to promote and defend. Nelson Mandela’s life and legacies call our attention to the kind of selfless leadership that Africa is currently yearning for. As an association that believes in Education as a tool for social transformation, events like this will continue to get our full support”, he said.
An Associate Research Professor at the Institute of African and Diaspora Studies, Dr. Kayode Eesuola, gave a brief treatise on the indelible leadership example that Nelson Mandela gave, and how African youths must quickly imbibe same virtue.
His words: “Nelson Mandela lived such a life of service that ranks him among personalities that the Yoruba will call Orisa. An Orisa is an exceptional being who is venerated by fellow humans because of the impacts that his or her life have on others and the environment. That example, sadly, has not be followed by most African leaders who have come after Nelson Mandela. That is why it is now up to you as African youths to step into that gap and salvage the situation for our continent”.
A discussion panel thereafter followed on which participants expressed different views about the concept of leadership and the African reality. Members of the audience also asked questions and made robust contributions to the discourse.