article via thenerveafrica.com
The Africa rising narrative has been called into question several times. It was called a myth by former deputy governor of Nigeria’s central bank, Kingsley Moghalu and Tanzanian millionaire Ali Mufuruki called it false.
Although the old clichés of Africa being a continent where war and poverty reign with pestilence have not completely changed as several parts of the continent still grapple with poverty, as well as war and terror, but the continent has one thing going for it, which makes the hopeful ‘Africa rising’ narrative bold enough to hold on to; its people.
Even if Africa is not rising as claimed by Mufuruki, Africans are rising and are impacting the continent and the world at large. Their lives inspire other Africans to follow their dreams and they are moving Africa closer to the future we all hope for, one step at a time.
When Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta appointed Patrick Njoroge as central bank governor, he was relatively unknown, so the president was criticized over his choice. But getting to know Njoroge changed everything. What struck Kenyans was not his PhD in Economics. It was also not his years of experience working for global lender International Monetary Fund (IMF). What was captivating for most Kenyans was his modest lifestyle. Who rejects the perks of public office? Patrick Njoroge said no to three official cars and a palatial apartment.
It is just six months into his reign as central bank governor but the impact of his ingenuity is already being felt. He brought inflation under control in his first month and helped stabilise the shilling. Banks in Kenya know he is not going to overlook any incontinence and flouting of the law. Two banks have been hammered already. He is not the typical African public office holder. He made Africa proud in 2015.
Adesina’s story is a story of sheer determination to succeed. Born to a farmer in southwestern Nigerian State, Ogun, he didn’t quite leave the path he knew from infancy; agriculture was everything. But he would not be the type of farmer his father was, he wanted more and Agricultural Economics seemed perfect. He stayed true to his dream and saw it through.
Adesina rose to prominence in Africa with his work as Nigeria’s Minister of Agriculture. The world told and retold the story of how he sanitized the agricultural sector and made things work. He strengthened Nigeria’s agricultural economy by pursuing bold reforms and innovative agricultural investment programs to expand opportunities for the private sector. He went about preaching the agricultural gospel — agriculture should no longer be seen as a development programme but like a business — winning souls as he did. This success would earn him a place in the annals of history as it propelled him to become the first Nigerian president of the African Development Bank (AfDB). Now as AfDB president, he wants to help Africa build its energy and agricultural infrastructure. Known to be a doer, Adesina has the world’s support.
South Africa is not always tolerant of women, according to findings by the United Nations, but the brave women of the country have found a way to become relevant despite cultural constraints impeding their growth. Today, South Africa has one of the highest proportion of female parliamentarians in the world and Dlamini-Zuma occupies the top office at the African Union, the first woman to do so.
Having rose through the ranks in the African National Congress (ANC), South Africa’s ruling party, the freedom fighter has become an inspiration to South African women and has been speaking up for women in Africa, urging empowerment by governments across the continent. She declared 2015 as the year of women empowerment. In September, she noted that few women in Africa have land rights and said it had to change.
The ex-wife of South Africa’s President Jacob Zuma has become very important politically and she is being tipped as the successor to the father of her four children.
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