TrustAfrica Board of Trustees Applauds Decision Not to Award Ibrahim Prize for Achievement in African Leadership This Year

October 29th, 2009 | by addis portal |

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia, October 28 /PRNewswire/ — The TrustAfrica Board of Trustees, which met here October 24-25 for its biannual meeting, strongly endorsed last week’s announcement by the Mo Ibrahim Foundation that it would not award the Ibrahim Prize for Achievement in African Leadership this year.

Because good governance is so central to Africa’s development and democratization, the TrustAfrica Trustees applaud the Prize Committee, the Mo Ibrahim Foundation Board of Trustees, and Mo Ibrahim himself for holding up the mirror of good governance to African leaders by withholding the 2009 award.

“This should serve as a wake up call for African leaders that their people are watching and that when the time comes they will be held accountable,” said Gerry Salole, who chairs TrustAfrica’s Board of Trustees. “Indeed, not awarding this year’s prize is itself a great contribution to the African people by Mo Ibrahim and his Foundation.”

As an African institution dedicated to amplifying the voices of ordinary Africans, TrustAfrica shares the Mo Ibrahim Foundation’s position that a major challenge that the new generation of African leaders face is how to lift the millions of people out of poverty. TrustAfrica cannot agree more with the Mo Ibrahim Foundation that: “This cannot be achieved without strong democratic societies; the functioning rule of law; the provision of health and educational facilities; an empowered civil society; and a framework conducive to strong economic growth. In other words, none of this can be achieved without good governance.”

The Trustees acknowledged that some African countries have made gains this past year in consolidating democratic practices. However, they noted with deep concern the many setbacks — from repressive environments for citizens to armed conflicts — that are taking a heavy toll on the continent’s people.

TrustAfrica is a public foundation that strives to secure the conditions for democratic participation and equitable development throughout the continent. Led by Africans, it convenes dialogues, catalyzes ideas, and provides grants and technical assistance to organizations working to advance these goals.

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