Joining a recent roundtable discussion focused on inclusion, technology, and gender representation, Amujae Leader Tejumola Abisoye advocated for increasing parliamentary representation of young people in Nigeria. Warning that people often enter politics because they are attracted by power and financial security, rather than public service, Ms. Abisoye insisted:
“We must inspire our youths with the right examples, showing and teaching them the reality of exactly what it takes to hold public office. The onus must be on society to reframe its political priorities, and to refocus our expectations and perception of public service, to overcome prevailing and pejorative views.”
The discussion explored two key components vital to improving the social compact: technology and transparency. Both are valuable tools for government accountability. The former creates space for diverse and democratic advocacy outside the “echo chamber” of institutionalized politics, and the latter reinforces efforts to combat corruption.
The discussion was organized by Stories Africa, a partnership between the Leadership and Values Initiative of the World Economic Forum Africa Regional Strategy Group and Africa Practice. During the conversation, the panelists observed that good leaders are created when citizens are well-equipped to make informed choices, recognize the power of their own voices, and hold public leaders accountable to their promises.
The panel’s findings were compiled into a report, The Challenges of Good Governance, Ethics & Accountability in Nigerian Leadership, which calls for the promotion of good leadership, inclusive governance, and accountability:
“We need to breed a civil service ethos that demonstrates a commitment to service and empathy, zero-tolerance for corruption, and which embraces technology to bring public services closer to all Nigerians.”
Ms. Abisoye spoke alongside Executive Director of Neem Foundation, Dr. Fatima Akilu, Head of Yiaga Africa, Samson Itodo, Executive Director of Paradigm Initiative, ‘Gbenga Sesan, and Associate Director at Africa Practice, Onyebuchi Ajufo. ThisDay, New African, and the African Leadership Institute also supported the event.