Mao says Africa tired of same faces of presidents

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Norbert Mao

Democratic Party President Norbert Mao says there is much anger among the young people in Africa because they have been denied space in which to express themselves.

“The idea of think tanks is very important,” said Mao while speaking on the sidelines of the “Africa Now Summit” ongoing at Commonwealth hotel in Munyonyo.

“Ideas outlive human life. I would encourage this. I would be the patron of think tanking. We must not have the same faces.”

Mao said he was happy to see presidents being challenged, young people demanding their space.

“I was happy to see people saying there are obstacles but more importantly, ideas cannot be put in place unless we have certain types of leaders.”

He added: “The reason why there is anger, people don’t have a safe space at which to express their ideas. Ideas cannot be put into practice unless we have certain type of leaders. Question is, what sort of leadership does Africa require?”

Speaking at the same event, Prime Minister Ruhakana Rugunda said divide and rule policy which weakened Africa is still very alive today.

“We spend time bickering instead of coming together. Africa’s voice is not felt. It is Africa to change the status quo by coming together. Unity is strength.”

He said the challenge is to make the real diagnosis of real problems of Africa and find real solutions.

“If we (Africans) were united, we would now be having a voice at the United nations Security Council.”

Rugunda said apart from slavery that took the cream of Africans, colonialism came to ‘loot’, taking resources at low value.

“You and me whether we like it or not, we are starting at a major disadvantage.”

Amb. Adonia Ayebare, Uganda’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations, said without political will, there cannot be any progress.

“Do we have Afrocrats? We must have Afrocrats who are in-sink with politicians. Without political will, we cannot make progress.”

Celestin Monga, Vice President and Chief Economist – African Development Bank (AfDB) said the general economic situation in Africa is good.

“Unfortunately, when you look at population growth, it is not enough. we need more economic growth. I like the new concept, vulnerable employment. This looks at the working poor. There are people working hard and getting very little.”

He added: “I like the new concept, vulnerable employment. This looks at the working poor. There are people working hard and getting very little.”

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