Former President John Agyekum Kufuor believes there is a competency deficit in most of Africa’s leaders, leaving them “grossly handicapped.”
Speaking over the weekend at a fundraising ceremony for the Kufuor Foundation Endowment Fund, he said many leaders on the continent are generally ill-prepared for the leadership roles they take up.But he added that “I don’t blame the leaders because, in a way, many of them were forced into leadership positions. They were not prepared… in current times, you cannot do leadership in any setting without being prepared in terms of experience and exposure,” he noted.
He, therefore, stressed the need for the investment in the development of the youth of Africa to adequately prepare them to lead Africa to prosperity.
“In times where it can be said that the entire world is just one market and in the developed world, and for the developed world, science, technology and knowledge of the world, everything is there for their business people. So everything is there for their business people. So we are grossly handicapped.”
If the country is to make any significant strides, he said Ghana needed to “focus especially on preparing our leaders, not only in politics but also in all other spheres and aspects of our lives; whether it is in engineering, education, health and commerce. We must know the forces of the market within which we have to compete and survive.”
It is in this light that he said his foundation looked to focus on tertiary students and develop them for three years during the academic stay on campus.
The Fund is targeted at eight projects, all geared towards nurturing the youth of Ghana as future leaders.
“The idea is that they [students] become imbued with a sense of duty and responsibility to become missionaries so they can use the benefits they get from exposure through improved education and wealth to help their less privileged cousins all over the place and try to add value to the otherwise disadvantaged lives they are living,” Mr. Kufuor said.