Tag Archives: Ghana

How a leader can make or break a country – TED talk

Fred Swaniker, a Ghanaian entrepreneur and development expert discusses in this TED talk the importance of leadership for development.

He takes the examples of coups in Ghana, Zambia, and the rule of Robert Mugabe in Zimbabwe to highlight how governance and strong institutions make the difference in developing economies.

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Telling the African Story

Komla Dumor is one of the most recognised faces voices at the British Broadcasting Corporation. After a successful career in journalism in this native Ghana where he was named journalist of the year in 2003 for his investigations into public sector corruption, this former medical student joined the BBC in 2006 as the anchor of Network Africa.

Between 2009 and 2012 Komla was the anchor of the groundbreaking Africa Business Report on BBC World News. This program (a first for the BBC) took Komla to close to 20 African countries covering hundreds of thousands of miles interviewing the continents top entrepreneurs, politicians and policy makers.

 

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Ghanaian elections this weekend: what is at stake?

John Mahama faces Nana Akufo-Addo in the Ghanaian elections on Friday 7th.

Video from AlJazeera:

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Saya, the Ghanaian “SMS killer”

Read the more about the story of Robert Lamptey and Badu Boahen, who launched this week their tech company, Saya.

Saya is an SMS killer bringing smart-phone-like messaging to billions of low-end devices in emerging markets.

Saya is a cross platform chat application cutting the cost of SMS by up to 1000 times. Unlike common chat applications, Saya works on low-end phones, enabling advanced functionality such as Facebook chat, group discussions, location-based chat, and exchange of multi-media.

Check out http://www.saya.im

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How to remove a dictator: guide for a successful revolution

1. Create an opposition coalition and set up a consensus agenda against the power in place. A scattered opposition will not do the job.

2. Know the enemy. Understand his alliances and strategic interests. Know the institutions the dictator controls, and the key people behind these institutions.

3. Communicate with the population, offer another source of information than state TV, press and radio. Use alternative medias such as pirate radio, Twitter, Facebook, blogs…

4. Use the dictator weaknesses. Do not focus the revolution on one place. It has to be nation-wide. Stretch the dictator military forces and weaken its resistance.

5. Use existing legal framework, and other judiciary means to guarantee the freedom of speech and press.

6. Disassemble the autocratic system and oppressive apparatus. Follow political, institutional and constitutional reforms to set up a new system allowing more freedom. Economic reforms need to happen only after these social and political changes.

 

These are, according to George Ayittey, Ghanaian economist, author and president of the Free Africa Foundation, the instruction to follow to free African countries.

The modus operandi of all dictators is essentially the same: Besides parliament, if there is one, they seize control of six key state institutions (the security forces, the media, the civil service, the judiciary, the electoral commission, and the central bank), pack them with their supporters, and debauch them to serve their interests. To succeed, a popular revolution must wrestle control of at least one or more of these institutions out of the dictator’s clutches. The game was over for Ben Ali and Hosni Mubarak when the military refused to fire on civilians. Ditto in the Philippines in 1986 and Georgia in November 2003, where the security forces were charmed with roses (hence, the “Rose Revolution.”) Ukraine’s Orange revolution of November 2004 won the Supreme Court to its side and Pakistan’s Black Revolution of March 2007 had the full support of the judiciary. From The Huffington Post

In light of the recent events in Côte d’Ivoire, Egypt, Tunisia or even Senegal, it is interesting to hear a scholar analysis of the popular revolutions occuring throughout Africa this year. Ayittey’s new book, Defeating Dictators: Fighting Tyranny in Africa and Around the World, will be out in October. I’ll tell you more about it when it comes out.

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Making better African leaders

In this very good TED video, Patrick Awuah co founder of Ashesi University addresses the issue of African leaders. Why are so many African leaders corrupt? Where have leadership ethics gone?

I found that video to be particularly inspiring. Africa needs more people like this to make a change.

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