A regional movement to promote a development approach that is based on individual transformation and responsibility, launched in Addis Ababa on 28-29 April, enters an active phase in countries across the region this week. National coordinators in Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, Togo, and Uganda are working to operationalize the action plan that will anchor the Movement in their communities.
The Africa Unbound Movement was launched at the end of a two-day inaugural symposium held at the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UN ECA) conference center in the presence of officials from major regional organizations, senior diplomats, civil society leaders, academicians and the media.
“The Movement seeks to establish peace, prosperity and freedom in Africa through awakened and enlightened individuals,” Dr. Rahel Kassahun, Founder and Executive Director of Africa Unbound, Inc., told participants at the symposium. “We will find innovative solutions to all of our problems on the continent when we start looking inward to discover our inherent talents and put them to productive use.”
In a statement to the symposium, Chairperson of the African Union Commission Dr. Jean Ping pointed out, “the focus on individual responsibility and empowerment is pertinent at this time when it is critical for Africa to harness its full human potential for the development of the continent.”
UN ECA Executive Secretary, Mr. Abdoulie Janneh underscored the point when he called on the Africa Unbound team “to help maximize the can-do attitude that is emerging across Africa today.” “It is my hope,” he said, “that your innovative and highly relevant initiative will push the levers to transform individuals who will change our continent.”
Pointing to what she said was a “journey of self-discovery and change” the Executive Secretary of the African Capacity Building Foundation (ACBF) Dr. Frannie Leautier emphasized the analytical, intellectual and practical approach of the initiative which, she noted, should contribute to producing concrete results.
“It is time now to project forward… bringing on one individual at a time,” said Mr. Gabriel Negatu, speaking on behalf of the President of the African Development Bank, Dr. Donald Kaberuka. “The case is strong and the time is right.”
Africa Unbound Inc. is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting a development approach that focuses on personal transformation by raising awareness of the responsibility and value of each person’s contribution to the development process.
The Movement received strong endorsement from the US and UK Ambassadors to the African Union, the Deputy Regional Director for Africa of the International Labour Organization (ILO) and many heads of academic, civil society and media organizations from across the region.