GLOBAL LEADERSHIP INITIATIVE
The Solomon Iyoboso Edebiri Center for Change (SIECC) has added to its broad mission a Global Leadership Initiative to meet the need for an all inclusive platform to address the issues of leadership in Africa. The Initiative’s aim is to create a model that will mirror the best known leadership examples and practices the world over, past and present.
This new objective is in direct alignment with SIECC’s core mission and purpose “to bring about positive change in the behaviors of Nigerians and the priorities of the country.” As stated in SIECC mission profile “The thrust for SIECC is for the individual to recognize the need to meet his or her responsibilities as a citizen by adopting practices leading to positive leadership that will by definition become the strategic leverage for change.”
The ideological underpinnings of positive change, as essential to our country progressing and moving forward as a nation-state (and as we employ it here), is rooted in the revolutionary concept of positive African nationalism that was developed and employed by the incomparable African leader Dr. Kwame Nkrumah to liberate the then Gold Coast from British colonialism in the 1950s. This great leader was clearly ahead of all other similarly situated revolutionaries of his time and circumstance in his thinking. He understood supremely well that the ethnolinguistically-varied Ghanaian peoples had to pull together and coalesce under a unifying principle of positive African nationalism (i.e., the idea of Ghana first before the individual Ghanaian) in order to free their society, least it would have been forever a colony of Great Britain or a client state of some other external and global power at some time in the future.
From December, 1983 to August, 1985, historically, Nigeria, under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari, and ably assisted by Late Gen Tunde Idiagbon, initiated a leadership philosophy with the acronym WAI, which meant “war against indiscipline.” This administration recognized the fact that for a nation to progress economically, with a safe and secured environment, there must be an honest and sincere fight against indecent public behaviour, indiscipline, corruption, and all other acts that are inimical to the best interest of the people and the state. WAI principles required every leader to show examples in attitude and behavior so that their followers would be inspired to follow suit. Unfortunately, this process was not sustainable, as in the case of Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana as a classic example. Hence, following the exit of these great men of positive leadership, successive regimes in these respective countries reversed course and plunged these two great nations backward, which positive leadership today can put back on course.
The key to positive leadership is positive change, the idea that the individual who proposes to lead must first change him or herself for the better and thereby lead by example such that his model-behavior and practices will infect the entire society (every man, woman, and child) who, in turn, will happily and energetically follow these exemplary practices and positive leadership. The key to both these cardinal principles for we Africans (i.e., positive leadership and positive change) is positive African nationalism (the idea of nation before the individual). This position is clearly enshrined in the SIECC mission profile; namely: “The Center’s primary aim is to bring about a total and all-encompassing qualitative-change-of-improvement in the lives of Nigerian citizens by motivating and inspiring the individual Nigerian to take upon himself (once and for all) the mantle of personal responsibility for the improvement of his immediate environment and general quality of life and to help his neighbor to do the same”
Such positive change in the individual who would be ‘leader’, or who are already occupying a leadership position would be truly ideal and can be brought about by the individual looking introspectively within him or herself and adopting the principles of responsibility, integrity, transparency, and accountability (RITA), which, together, are the ideological mechanism for change within Nigeria and the continent and the unifying cornerstone of the Solomon Iyobosa Edebiri Center for Change.
Part and parcel to SIECC core mission and purpose is its new Global Leadership Initiative under which will be the implementation of the following actions:
- To inspire an ideological change (RITA) in the leaders in every walk of life in Nigeria and the rest of African Countries, including in politics, delivery of services, and public life.
- To promote positive economic cooperation and sharing of technology across the African states, starting with West Africa as a potential showcase model.
- To strive toward the development of a new generation of change-makers among our children and youth.
- To inspire in our leaders a burning desire to lead by example and purpose in the way of building a progressive state that will be the pride of all Nigerians and the potential envy of the rest of the world.
- To provide a forum and a physical facility where people can meet and share their ideas on ways of improving our country for the better.
SIECC’s Global Leadership Initiative will seek to build leaders in Africa who will promote positive change within their respective societies by helping to create and build Change Space. Such leaders will be guided by the principles of RITA and whose mandate and public charge will be the fostering of the idea of positive change of the individual citizen as the first step toward the eradication of poverty and disease in Africa and the development of a world-class quality of life throughout the continent.
Solomon Iyobosa Edebiri, Ph.D (JP, MON) President/Founder-SIECC