2014 AFRICA’S MOST DISTINGUISHED AND HIGHEST PRIZE HONOUR AKWA IBOM STATE, NIGERIA

2014
MILLENNIUM EXCELLENCE
FOUNDATION
AFRICA’S MOST DISTINGUISHED AND HIGHEST PRIZE HONOUR
AKWA IBOM STATE, NIGERIA
LEADERSHIP ROLES,
GOOD GOVERNANCE,
MENTORSHIP AND
PHILANTHROPY
Established 15years ago from a humble beginning in
Ghana, the Millennium Excellence Foundation sought to
unearth, celebrate and acknowledge to all Africans and
the world, the dynamism of excellence of distinguished
Africans who have led selfless lives, toiled and sacrificed in
diverse ways to bring about a positive change to the lives
of millions of ordinary Africans who live in despair and
seek a better life on this planet. These men and women
in fairness and humility, through leadership roles, good
governance, mentorship and philanthropy have blazed the
trail where many have never trodden.
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2014LAAPPRIZE
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Madrid
2014
AFRICA’S MOST DISTINGUISHED AND HIGHEST PRIZE HONOUR
Welcome To Akwa Ibom and
Congratulations To Our Distinguished Laureates
CITY OF GREAT MONUMENTS
Joining our large network
from September 02 , 2014
www.ethiopianairlines.com
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com
06Host Patron Address
08Chairman’s Address 10President’s Address
18H.E. President Goodluck Ebele
Azikiwe Jonathan
20HRM Otumfuo Osei Tutu II,
Asantehene
22Dr. Cheick Modibo Diarra
24Prof. Calestous Juma
26Navanethem “Navi” Pillay
28Jay Naidoo
30Tony O. Elumelu
32Tidjane Thiam
34Folorunsho Alakija
36Dr. Manilal Premchand Chandaria
38Jim Ovia
40Donald Kaberuka
42Ashish J. Thakkar
44Amadou Mahtar Ba
46Haile Gebrselassie
48Didier Drogba
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HIS EXCELLENCY
HIS EXCELLENCY
DR. GOODLUCK EBELE JONATHAN GCFR
GOV. GODSWILL OBOT AKPABIO
PRESIDENT AND COMMANDER IN CHIEF OF THE ARMED FORCES
FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA
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AKWA IBOM STATE, NIGERIA
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Host Patron Address
H.E. GOVERNOR
GODSWILL AKPABIO
Akwa Ibom State—Nigeria
Good evening everyone.
On behalf of the His Excellency, Goodluck Jonathan, the President
of the Nigeria and on behalf of the people of Akwa Ibom, i’d like to
welcome you all to the city of Uyo. It’s with great pleasure that we
play host to the highly esteemed Millennium Excellence Foundation
and it’s distinguished Lifetime Africa Achievement Prize.!
I wish to congratulate the Foundation for the
wonderful work they’ve been doing in bringing
the spotlight on the heroes of this continent. Over
the past decade, they have consistently identified
individuals who have excelled in leadership in
all areas of our lives and honoured them. They
remind us that the age old saying: ‘a society that
does not honour it’s heroes is not worth dying
for’ is not true of our continent. Their work is a
testament to the fact that Africa acknowledges
the efforts of her great men and women working
tirelessly to make the continent a better place to
live in.
We, the people of Akwa Ibom State feel
very honoured to have been selected by the
Foundation to host this edition of the Life
Achievement Africa Prize. We are particularly
proud to be associated with the celebration of
the heroes of Africa in this special way. And as
Governor, I see this as a recognition of the work
we’ve done and continue to do here in Akwa
Ibom.
A few years ago when we took over the
administration of this state, we inherited a
state with visible signs of underdevelopment.
Akwa Ibom was what i call, a pedestrian state;
everything was crying for change.
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But today, the story is completely different;
we have been able to prove that the difference
between performance and non-performance is
imagination backed by strong leadership that is
determined to make the impossible, possible.
When we began, we purposed to put in place,
the principles of responsible governance. We
employed best practices in the management of
our resources towards the transformation of our
infrastructure and embarked on a collective fight
against corruption and apathy. Today, before our
very eyes, the evidence of our efforts are there for
all to see.
But our story is only an example of the many
positive stories around the continent that reflects
the new direction Africa has taken. Thank you,
Ambassador Ashim Morton and your team at the
Millennium Excellence Foundation for continuing
to celebrate the achievements of our continent
and changing the global narrative of Africa.
I believe that, collectively, we can all march
forward and take our Africa to unimaginable
heights of excellence. You are all welcome once
again to Uyo, the capital city of the great Akwa
Ibom State, Nigeria.
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Chairman’s Address
AMBASSADOR
ASHIM MORTON
Chairman—MEF
The Millennium Excellence Foundation (MEF), sets standards of
zealous principles to recognize meritorious achievement and
therefore subscribes to its belief that whosoever merits praise,
deserves honor.
Today, we are honoring unrivaled excellence in
our African Laureates in their fields of endeavor
and those who have toiled without fail, and for
that reason we celebrate them. We are here on
account of the destiny of this great continent we
call Africa. Africa is rising. It is no longer a puzzle
to contend that the search for a unique and an
appropriate African democratic governance
system continues.
In welcoming the Laureate Recipients to the
beautiful and pulsating city of Uyo, Akwa Ibom,
we all have to be captivated by the unwavering
and sustained contributions by these outstanding
individuals in their areas of engagement.
From traditional settings, through the web of
political intrigues to the obdurate steep climb
of business and finance, our distinguished
Laureates have excelled and personified the
unyielding spirit of the true African spirit.
As we play host to our distinguished
compatriots and close associates of the world,
Africa is once again on the verge of making
history on Nigerian soil. Africa is surely rising!
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As we acknowledge, recognize and extol their
exemplary achievements, this should serve as
the inspiration beaconing the light that shines
brightly for the rest of Africa to emulate and
excel in all their endeavors as our Laureates have
shown here tonight.
I want to acknowledge a man of great
vision and intellect, a man who continues to
demonstrate that Africa is worth dying for, a man
for his legacy of uncommon transformation,
and that Africa is proud of, a man I salute—Gov.
Godswill Akpabio. Thank you for your hard work
of development here in Akwa Ibom.
To all of you gathered here in this warm
and lovely city of Uyo, we say AMEYONG and
AKWAABA to you all.
We say well done to all our esteemed Laureates
for your deserving of this great African Honor.
God bless Nigeria, God Bless Africa.
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President’s Address
H.E. JAMES
VICTOR GBEHO
President—MEF
On the occasion of the holding of the important and historic 2014
Lifetime Africa Achievement Prize (LAAP PRIZE) ceremonies, I am
privileged to welcome Your Majesties, Excellencies and our other
distinguished and treasured guests to Uyo, the beautiful capital of
Akwa Ibom State in the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Your very presence at this time, speaks
volumes of your unshakeable commitment to the
achievement of excellence on our continent by
the youth in particular. I am therefore delighted
to bid you a fond African welcome on behalf of
the Management of the Millennium Excellence
Foundation and its distinguished Board of
Governors.
Let me begin by conveying the sincere thanks
and appreciation of the Foundation family to His
Excellency Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, President
of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, for his kindness
in placing this great country, especially the
beautiful and dynamic state of Akwa Ibom at
the disposal of all of us for acknowledging and
celebrating the important achievements of
Africa’s outstanding citizens.
I must also discharge a debt of gratitude
to the indefatigable Executive Governor of
Akwa Ibom State, His Excellency Godswill Obot
Akpabio not only for agreeing to help receive our
important event under his jurisdiction but also
to press his phalanx of expert administrators
and implementors to work around the clock in
preparing Uyo to host African brothers and sisters
as well as out other guests and collaborators
particularly in record time.
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Upon further reflection, no other performance
could have been expected of the iconic Governor
who, after all, is an immediate past Laureate,
precisely for his uncommon leadership in
transforming Akwa Ibom into Africa’s shining
example of infrastructural development.
To each and every participant therefore,
I extend our warmest welcome to this very
important Prize event of the Foundation. I trust
that by our collective determination to search
for, unearth, salute and celebrate the excellence
of achievers in all walks of life we will continue
to motivate in our youth especially to strive for
the highest standards and laurels in whatever
endeavor they are involved in. It is only through
this unceasing process of recognition and
renewal that Africa will attain its rightful place
internationally as an invaluable contributor to
the advancement of the knowledge and living
standard of our peoples and humanity in general.
Do accept, therefore, Your Majesties,
Excellencies, Distinguished brothers and sisters,
our profound gratitude for identifying with the
Foundation and the great people of Nigeria and
Africa on this special occasion.
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PRESIDENT
James Victor Gbeho
FOUNDER/CHAIRMAN
Amb. Ashim Morton
ADVISORY BOARD
H.E. Ademola Oluseyi
Onafowokan
Nigeria
H.E. Batho Nsue
Mengue
Equitoria Guinea
H.E. Omar Selim
Egypt
H.E. Gifti Abasiya
Ababulgu
Ethiopia
H.E. Jeanette
Ndhlovu
South Africa
H.E. Larbi Katti
Algeria
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Mr. Joshua Peprah
Director
Mr. Togbor Mensah
Director
H.E. James Aggrey-Orleans
Director
Mr. Boakye Acheampong
Director
Mr. Roland Bruce
Director
LAAP PRIZE BOARD OF GOVERNORS
Professor
Mohammed Gouda
EGYPT
Dr. Emmet Dennis
LIBERIA
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Professor
Ddumba-Ssentamu
UGANDA
Professor
Muhammadou Kah
GAMBIA
Professor Kindeyo
Gebrehiwot
ETHIOPIA
Dr. K. Darkwa
GHANA
Professor
Zoubida Charrouf
MOROCCO
Dr. Ndioro Ndiaye
SENEGAL
These men and women (Laureates) in fairness and humility, through
leadership roles, good governance, mentorship and philanthropy have
blazed the trail where many have never trodden.
With its very meagre resources, the
Millennium Excellence Foundation
from its inception to date, has
done what most well endowed and
resourced international organizations
have done—and that is to place
African Laureates on the map and
2014LAAPPRIZE
showcase them to other Africans,
who but without this initiative would
have never known about them and
to share their significant contributions
the Laureates have charted in their
communities, country and the entire
region they hail from.
We dedicate the success of our high
level and world class organization of
the Events to the men and women
who share our vision, a vision to
be Nobel Prize of Africa. Africans
recognizing Africans!
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The introduction of free and compulsory education for
primary and secondary school students where his scheme
covered tuition fees, books, PTA charges, examination fees
and lots more. He has taken the advantage of the digital
revolution and built the first Digital Library in Uyo.
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Distiguished
AFRICA’S MOST DISTINGUISHED AND HIGHEST PRIZE HONOUR
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2014 LAAP LAUREATES
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LAAP PRIZE FOR
LEADERSHIP,
NATIONAL
COHESION AND
STABILITY
H.E. President Goodluck Ebele Azikiwe Jonathan
Goodluck Ebele Azikiwe Jonathan, GCFR, BNER, GCON (born 20 November
1957) is the 14th Head of State and current President of Nigeria. Prior to his role as
President, he served as Deputy Governor of Bayelsa State, Governor of Bayelsa
State and Vice-President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Jonathan is a member
of the ruling People’s Democratic Party (PDP). Jonathan was born in what is
now Bayelsa State to a family of canoe makers. Jonathan holds a B.Sc. Degree in
Zoology in which he attained Second Class Honours. He holds an M.Sc. degree
in Hydrobiology and Fisheries biology, and a PhD degree in Zoology from the
University of Port Harcourt. Before he entered politics in 1998, he worked as an
education inspector, lecturer, and environmental-protection officer.
The Prize for Leadership, National Cohesion and
Stability is awarded to an individual in recognition
of his courage, dedication and commitment to the
betterment of life through good governance, justice
and development in his country and Africa at large.
This exaltation of character, which is worthy of
emulation, has made positive impact on the lives of
his people today and will continue to influence them
for a better future. This individual’s courageous acts in
defense of and demand for peace and equity for all is
recognized and respected on the global platform and
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lend to all Africans the hope that through the values
of constructive deliberations, citizen engagement,
accountability and fairness, we can live in peace and
harmony with each other to engender communal
development and achievement of life’s fulfillment.
This individual’s fair mindedness recognizes no tribal
divisions, fan no political extremism, and religious
discrimination because he has liberated his people
from all forms of intolerance in the face of formidable
poles of contention, adversity, parochial and
entrenched interests.
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LAAP PRIZE FOR
TRADITIONAL
GOVERNANCE
IN AFRICA
HRM Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, Asantehene
Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, the Asantehene, was born on 6 May 1950. Otumfuo Osei
Tutu II has won great admiration for the unique brand of leadership he has
provided the people of Asante, in particular, and Ghana in general, since he
assumed the high office of Asantehene and the responsibilities that go with the
position. As a man of peace, one of his first tasks was to encourage his people to
seek the path of arbitration instead of litigation in numerous land and succession
disputes that had plagued Asanteman for decades. This task, he has performed
with great wisdom and tenacity of purpose, earning for himself remarkable
respect among the people. The vision of Otumfuo Osei Tutu II encompasses
education, health and economic development. He set up the Otumfuo Education
Fund to generate resources, as an effort to provide opportunities for quality
primary, secondary, tertiary and vocational education not only in his Kingdom,
but also in Ghana generally. Otumfuo Osei Tutu II ascended the Golden Stool
with a natural gift of calm and radiance making him able to inspire loyalty
and motivate people round him. He learnt the values of courtesy and tact in
dealing with both his peers and subjects; he had grown up with a conviction that
traditional leadership rests on a capacity to reconcile, mend, heal wounds and
motivate people.
A very Honourable and Distinguished Monarch by
birth to the Royalty of the legendary Asante Kingdom.
A King whose birth was long herald as a “rebirth” of
the founder of the Asante Kingdom in Ghana. A King
of unrivalled wisdom and wit whose achievements
in contemporary traditional governance have been
internationally acknowledged and recognized
as quite unique, exceptional and exemplary. A
King whose deeds in the promotion of education
amongst Ghanaians have transcended the national
boundaries. The change the King has fostered in
bringing integrity to traditional rule and governance
has been exceedingly remarkable, and has ushered in
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positive attitudes and development to his people. As
an apolitical King, he has pursued the path of peace
in Ghana by offering wise counsel to all stakeholders
in the governance system of Ghana. As a highly
revered charismatic King who in fifteen years on the
throne has exhibited a great sense of humility, he
continuously exudes an air of confidence, objectivity
and diplomacy despite being of noble birth. He is
a King who has supported worthy causes in order
that his people would be liberated from deprivations
and squalor. A King of generosity of spirit whose
leadership is worth celebrating.
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LAAP PRIZE FOR
SCIENTIFIC
RESEARCH IN
AFRICA
Dr. Cheick Modibo Diarra
Cheick Modibo Diarra (born 1952) Nioro du Sahel, Mali, is a Malian
astrophysicist, businessman, and politician who was acting Prime Minister of
Mali from April 2012 to December 2012. A scientist of international repute and
NASA manager, Cheick Modibo Diarra is also considered “the pride of Mali
and Africa”. His untiring work is guided by his philosophy that education is the
key to development. Consequently he created Foundation Pathfinder, which
provides science education as a solid base for sustainable development.
He carries out projects in many countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, organizing
workshops, where children learn about the benefits of science to humanity.
He shares his valuable experience by participating in numerous international
conferences. Mr Diarra was designated UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador in
1998. In his capacity as Goodwill Ambassador and President of the Pathfinder
Foundation, and in close cooperation with the Arab Gulf Programme
for United Nations Development Organizations (AGFUND), Mr Diarra
implements the Scientific and Technology Formation Centre in Africa/Mali
project which aims at transferring knowledge in order to equip a nucleus of
talents with the skills to invent solutions appropriate to Africa
The Prize for Scientific Development in Africa
is awarded to an individual or organization in
recognition of his genteel outlook, fortitude,
dedication and commitment to ensure that science
and technology in Africa contributes to its sustainable
development efforts for his country and Africa at
large. This exaltation of character, which is worthy of
emulation, has made positive impact on the lives of
your people today and will continue to sustain them
for a better future. Science and technology articulates
Africa’s common objectives and commitment to
collectively use as a development tool through
science and technology capacity building; knowledge
production and management; and technological
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innovation. It addresses the way forward to use
science and technology as catalysts for sustainable
development and this individual has contributed
his quota, that which is recognized and respected
on the global platform and lent to all Africans the
hope that through the dedication of imparting these
attributes there will be economic sustainability for
all is very achievable. Her dedication to preserving
African culture as a legacy for future generations is
noted. His contribution in the areas of science project
management, dissemination, partnering, intellectual
property and patents, research management and the
commercialization and exploitation of research results
have yielded economic empowerment to all Africans.
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LAAP PRIZE FOR
FOOD SECURITY,
AGRO PROCESSING
DEVELOPMENT AND
QUALITY
Prof. Calestous Juma
Calestous Juma is an internationally recognized authority in the application of
science and technology to sustainable development worldwide. He was named
one of the most influential 100 Africans in 2012 and 2013 by the New African
magazine. He is Professor of the Practice of International Development and
Faculty Chair of the Innovation for Economic Development Executive Program at
Harvard Kennedy School. Juma is Director of the School’s Science, Technology
and Globalization Project at Harvard Kennedy School as well as the Agricultural
Innovation in Africa Project funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
His latest book, The New Harvest: Agricultural Innovation in Africa; published by
Oxford University Press in 2011.
The Prize for Food Security, Agro Processing
Development is awarded to an individual or
organization in recognition of his genteel outlook,
fortitude, dedication and commitment to ensure food
security in Africa for all and generations to come.
This individual has ensured that through initiatives
and interventions, Africa has recorded significant
increase in production and productivity in agriculture,
livestock, fisheries and forestry. An individual
whose selfless values has created awareness in the
formulation, development and harmonization of
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policies that regulate the conservation, exploitation
and management of water resources within
the Continent. An individual who has tackled
environmental policy, environment protection in the
air, soil and water pollution areas. One who resists
infiltration of goods that are dumped in the Continent.
Building on the African vision and commitment for
economic and social development and planning and
budgeting developments in the agriculture sector, this
individual has participated in developing policies that
impact on food security and safety.
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LAAP PRIZE FOR
HUMANITARIANISM
AND EQUITY
Navanethem “Navi” Pillay
Navanethem “Navi” Pillay (born 23 September 1941) is the United Nations High
Commissioner for Human Rights. A South African of Indian Tamil origin, she
was the first non-white woman judge of the High Court of South Africa, and she
has also served as a judge of the International Criminal Court and President of
the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda. Pillay was born in 1941 in a poor
neighborhood of Durban, Natal Province, Union of South Africa. She is of Tamil
descent and her father was a bus driver. She married Gaby Pillay, a lawyer, in
January 1965. Supported by her local Indian community with donations, she
graduated from the University of Natal with a BA in 1963 and an LLB in 1965.
She later attended Harvard Law School, obtaining an LLM in 1982 and a Doctor
of Juridical Science degree in 1988. Pillay is the first South African to obtain a
doctorate in law from Harvard Law School. In 1967, Pillay became the first nonwhite woman to open her own law practice in Natal Province. During her 28 years
as a lawyer in South Africa, she defended anti-Apartheid activists and helped
expose the use of torture and poor conditions of political detainees. In 1973, she
won the right for political prisoners on Robben Island, including Nelson Mandela,
to have access to lawyers. She co-founded the Advice Desk for the Abused and
ran a shelter for victims of domestic violence.
The Price for Humanitarianism and Equity is awarded
to an individual in recognition of her fortitude
devotion and commitment to the betterment of life
through Humanitarianism and Development in her
country and Africa at large. One who epitomizes all
the attributes of humility and humanity; through the
extension of the hand of hope by way of Philanthropic
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deeds and profound fellow feelings in order that
equity and justice for all shall be the sina qua non
for harmonious co-existence amongst and within
diversities of identifications in Africa and the rest
of the world. One who toils so that others can feed
happily off her enterprising endeavors by sharing and
caring for the destitute in society.
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LAAP PRIZE FOR
DEMOCRATIC
GOVERNANCE AND
DEVELOPMENT
Jay Naidoo
Jay Naidoo born 20 December 1954 is Chair of the Board of Directors and Chair
of the Partnership Council of the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN)
headquartered in Geneva and launched at the 2002 UN Summit on Children
as a public private partnership to tackle malnutrition facing 2 billion people in
the world. He is the founder of the social development arm of an investment
and management company, J&J Group, which he co-founded in 2000 in South
Africa. Jay Naidoo has recently joined the Board of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation
established to promote African development through a focus on promoting
good governance. He serves in an advisory capacity for a number of international
organizations including the Broadband Commission of the International
Telecommunications Union (ITU) and United Nations Educational, Scientific
and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the Lead Committee of the UNSG on
Nutrition. He is the Patron of ‘Scatterlings of Africa’ a paleontological foundation
linking archaeological sites across Africa.
The Prize for Democratic Governance and
Development is awarded to an individual or
organization in recognition of his genteel disposition,
fortitude, devotion and commitment to the
enhancement of good Democratic Governance and
Development in his country and Africa at large. This
exaltation of character, which is worthy of emulation,
has made positive impact on the lives of your people
today and will continue to influence them for a
better future. His courageous acts in defense and
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protection of fairness to all, which is recognized and
respected on the global platform, lend to all Africans
the hope that through the values of equity and
democracy, we can live in peace and harmony with
each other to engender communal development
and life’s fulfillment. His fair mindedness recognizes
no tribal barriers, political colorations and religious
discrimination because you have liberated your
people from all forms of intolerance.
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LAAP PRIZE FOR
SUSTAINABLE
DEVELOPMENT
IN AFRICA
Tony O. Elumelu
Tony O. Elumelu (born March 22, 1963) is a Nigerian economist, banker,
investor and philanthropist. Elumelu is Chairman of Heirs Holdings, a panAfrican proprietary investment company with interests in strategic sectors
of Africa’s economy. He is also the founder of the Tony Elumelu Foundation,
an Africa-based and African-funded not-for-profit organisation (NPO) that
is dedicated to the promotion and celebration of excellence in business
leadership and entrepreneurship across Africa. Elumelu holds the Nigerian
national honour, the Commander of the Order of Nigeria (CON). New African
magazine recently listed him as one of the 100 most influential people in
Africa. Elumelu was born in Jos, Nigeria, in 1963. He has two degrees in
Economics from Nigerian schools. His Bachelor degree was from Ambrose
Alli University and he has a Master of Science degree, also in Economics,
from the University of Lagos. He is an alumnus of Harvard Business School’s
Advanced Management Programme. Tony Elumelu married Awele V.
Elumelu, a medical doctor, in 1993 and has five daughters. He has four siblings
including the Hon. Ndudi Elumelu, a member of the Nigerian Federal House of
Representatives. In his early career, Elumelu made a name for himself when
he acquired and turned Standard Trust Bank into a top-five player in Nigeria.
The Prize for Sustainable Development in Africa
is awarded to an individual in recognition of his
commitment to create an enabling environment at
the regional, sub-regional, national and local levels
in order to achieve sustained economic growth and
sustainable development and support African efforts
for peace, stability and security for his country.
To an individual who has enhanced Industrial
productivity, diversity and competitiveness through
a combination of financial and technological support
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for the development of key infrastructure, access
to technology, skills development that have proved
vital for the support of sustainable development. One
who recognizes and understands the peculiarities
and needs of his people and selflessly devotes his
energy, time and resources, just so that people will be
liberated from abject poverty and despair. One who
is committed to transforming the lives of his people
in order that they may also be beneficiaries of 21st
century enlightenment.
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LAAP PRIZE FOR
ACTION
FOR AFRICA
Tidjane Thiam
Tidjane Thiam, born in Côte d’Ivoire in 1962, is chief executive of the Londonbased international financial services group Prudential plc. He previously served
as chief financial officer of Prudential from March 25, 2008 to September 30,
2009. Mr Thiam spent the first part of his professional career with McKinsey
& Company in Paris and New York, serving insurance companies and banks.
He then spent several years in Africa where he was chief executive and later
chairman of the National Bureau for Technical Studies and Development in Côte
d’Ivoire and a cabinet member as Secretary of Planning and Development. Mr
Thiam returned to France to become a partner with McKinsey & Company and
one of the leaders of its financial institutions practice before joining the British
multinational insurance company Aviva in 2002. He worked at Aviva until 2008,
holding successively the positions of Group Strategy and Development Director,
Managing Director of Aviva International, Group Executive Director and Chief
Executive Officer, Europe.
The Prize for Action for Africa is awarded to a group
or individual in recognition of your genteel outlook,
fortitude, dedication and commitment of doing good
business, generating jobs and economic opportunities,
and stability and security for your country and Africa
at large. This exaltation of character, which is worthy
of emulation, has made positive impact on the lives
of your people today and will continue to sustain
them for a better future. The world is waking up to a
new Africa. The predominant theme in the emerging
narrative is no longer war, famine and disease but
rather strong economic performance.
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2014LAAPPRIZE
Investors are realizing that Africa is good for
business. Strong economic growth, business friendly
reforms, mature financial institutions and some large
economies add up to an enticing proposition that
this individual has championed in the interest of
Investors like no other person for Africa. The Prize
for Action for Africa is awarded to an individual with
foresight and visionary political ideals intended to
contribute towards the transformation of Africa from
being dictatorship to democratic governance that
yield economic gains to propel Africa’s growth and
development
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LAAP PRIZE FOR
ACTION
FOR AFRICA
Folorunsho Alakija
Folorunsho Alakija is a businesswoman from Nigeria. She was born in 1951 to
the family of Chief L. A. Ogbara in Ikorodu, Lagos State. She is a business tycoon
involved in the fashion, oil and printing industries. She is the group managing
director of The Rose of Sharon Group which consists of The Rose of Sharon
Prints & Promotions Limited and Digital Reality Prints Limited and the executive
vice chairman of Famfa Oil Limited. At age seven, Alakija travelled to the United
Kingdom to begin a four year primary education at Dinorben School for Girls in
Hafodunos Hall in Llangernyw, Wales. After returning to Nigeria, she attended
Muslim High School Sagamu Ogun State, Nigeria. Afterwards, she returned
abroad for her secretarial studies at Pitman’s Central College, London. She also
studied fashion design at the American College, London and the Central School of
Fashion. In November 1976, she married a lawyer, Modupe Alakija. They reside in
Lagos, Nigeria with their four sons. Folorunsho Alakija started her career in 1974
as an executive secretary at Sijuade Enterprises, Lagos, Nigeria. She moved on
to the former First National Bank of Chicago, now FinBank, where she worked for
some years before establishing a tailoring company called Supreme Stitches.
The Prize for Action for Africa is awarded to a group
or individual in recognition of your genteel outlook,
fortitude, dedication and commitment of doing good
business, generating jobs and economic opportunities,
and stability and security for your country and Africa
at large. This exaltation of character, which is worthy
of emulation, has made positive impact on the lives
of your people today and will continue to sustain
them for a better future. The world is waking up to a
new Africa. The predominant theme in the emerging
narrative is no longer war, famine and disease but
rather strong economic performance.
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2014LAAPPRIZE
Investors are realizing that Africa is good for
business. Strong economic growth, business friendly
reforms, mature financial institutions and some large
economies add up to an enticing proposition that
this individual has championed in the interest of
Investors like no other person for Africa. The Prize
for Action for Africa is awarded to an individual with
foresight and visionary political ideals intended to
contribute towards the transformation of Africa from
being dictatorship to democratic governance that
yield economic gains to propel Africa’s growth and
development.
PAGE41
LAAP PRIZE FOR
ECONOMIC
DEVELOPMENT
IN AFRICA
Dr. Manilal Premchand Chandaria
Manilal Premchand Chandaria OBE EBS (Elder of the Burning Spear) is a Kenyan
businessman of Indian descent born in Nairobi on March 1, 1929. Along with
being the chairman and CEO of the Comcraft Group of Companies, a billion
dollar enterprise that has a presence in over 40 countries, he is on the boards of
several prominent East African companies. He has won several awards in East
Africa and internationally in recognition of his entrepreneurial endeavours and
is also a noted philanthropist. In 2003, Chandaria was awarded the Order of the
British Empire (OBE) by Queen Elizabeth II.In December of the same year, he was
awarded the Elder of the Burning Spear by former president Mwai Kibaki, one
of the highest civilian honours in Kenya. He has been hailed as “one of Kenya’s
leading industrialists”. Chandaria’s father, an Indian merchant from Saurashtra,
Gujarat, moved to Kenya in 1915 to start a provisions shop along Biashara Street
in Nairobi. He, Chandaria, grew up in the Ngara area of Nairobi in a house that was
home to three other families, where he assisted his father in the shop. Chandaria
attended various schools in Nairobi and Mombasa in Kenya from where he
proceeded to India for his undergraduate studies. He graduated from Jamnagar
India University, Bombay in 1949 with a Bachelor of Science from whence he
proceeded to Oklahoma in the US. He graduated in 1950 with a bachelor in
engineering and continued with his masters, which he obtained in 1951 from the
University of Oklahoma.
The Prize for Africa Economic Development is
awarded to an individual in recognition of his
commitment to the economic development of his
country and Africa at large. One who believes in a
world free from extreme poverty and hunger, and
therefore helps people to be more self-reliant as
exemplified by this individual’s business success.
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2014LAAPPRIZE
One who believes in the liberation of Africans
from extreme poverty and hunger through his
entrepreneurial interventions. One whose exhibition
of resilience and courage in the face of adversity and
overwhelming odds have been blessed with success
which he shares with all through his enterprising
acumen and generosity of spirit.
PAGE43
LAAP PRIZE FOR
ECONOMIC
DEVELOPMENT
IN AFRICA
Jim Ovia
Born November 4, 1951 at Agbor, in Ika South Local Government Area of Delta
State, Mr. Ovia attended Southern University Louisiana, where he obtained a
B.Sc in Business Administration in 1977 and North East Louisiana University,
where he obtained a masters degree in Business Administration in 1979, both
in United States of America. He is also an Alumnus of Harvard Business School
(Executive Management Program). Mr. Jim Ovia, MFR is Promoter and Founder of
Visafone Communications Limited. Mr. Ovia is the Proprietor of the University of
Information and Communication Technology, Agbor, Delta State. He serves as the
Pioneer President of Nigeria Internet group (NIG). He has over 23 years of Bank
experience. He was the Co-Founder of Zenith Bank plc and served as its Group
Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer from 1990 to July 10, 2010. He
joined IMB as a Financial Analyst in 1980 and moved to the management centre
in 1987. He headed the Corporate Finance department of Merchant Bank of Africa
from 1987 to 1990. His interest in computers was picked in 1977 when he worked
as a part-time Computer Operator at Baton Rouge & Trust Company, Louisiana.
The Prize for Africa Economic Development is
awarded to an individual in recognition of his
commitment to the economic development of his
country and Africa at large. One who believes in a
world free from extreme poverty and hunger, and
therefore helps people to be more self-reliant as
exemplified by this individual’s business success.
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2014LAAPPRIZE
One who believes in the liberation of Africans
from extreme poverty and hunger through his
entrepreneurial interventions. One whose exhibition
of resilience and courage in the face of adversity and
overwhelming odds have been blessed with success
which he shares with all through his enterprising
acumen and generosity of spirit.
PAGE45
LAAP PRIZE FOR
NATION BUILDING
AND AFRICAN
LEADERSHIP
Donald Kaberuka
Donald Kaberuka (born 5 October 1951) is a Rwandan economist and the current
president of the African Development Bank. Kaberuka was born in Byumba,
Rwanda. He studied at the University of Dar es Salaam as an undergraduate
and obtained his MPhil in Development Studies from University of East Anglia.
He received his PhD in economics from the University of Glasgow. He worked
in banking and international trade for over a decade. In October 1997 he was
appointed minister of finance and economic planning in Rwanda. Kaberuka
served in that position for eight years, and is credited with helping to stabilize the
Rwandan economy from the effects of the 1994 genocide. In July 2005, Kaberuka
was elected president of the African Development Bank (AfDB). He took office in
September 2005. and is currently serving his second five-year term as President
of the African Development Bank Group (AfDB),becoming the seventh president
of the Bank Group since its establishment in 1963.
The Prize for Nation Building and African Leadership
is awarded to an individual or organization
in recognition of his courage, dedication and
commitment to the betterment of life through good
governance, justice and development in his country
and Africa at large. This exaltation of character, which
is worthy of emulation, has made positive impact
on the lives of his people today and will continue to
influence them for a better future. His courageous
acts in defence and demand for peace and equity for
all which are recognized and respected on the global
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2014LAAPPRIZE
platform, lend to all Africans the hope that through
the values of accountability and fairness, we can live
in peace and harmony with each other to engender
communal development and life’s fulfillment. His
fair mindedness recognizes no tribal divisions, fan
no political extremism and religious discrimination
because he has liberated his people from all forms
of intolerance. His high level threshold of tolerance
which is in harmony with his generosity of spirit and
accommodating nature has made Africans more
discerning and patient.
PAGE47
LAAP PRIZE FOR
ENTREPRENEURIAL
EXCELLENCE IN
AFRICA
Ashish J. Thakkar
Ashish J. Thakkar is the Founder and Managing Director of Mara Group. He
is a serial entrepreneur who started his first company at the age of 15. Ashish
considers himself a native son of Africa with strong Indian roots, of British
nationality and a resident of the UAE. Born in the United Kingdom, Ashish and his
family moved back to Africa after surviving the historic genocide of Idi Amin and
generational exile of Asian Ugandan families. He grew up in the UK and Uganda
and now lives in Dubai. Since starting out in 1996, Ashish J. Thakkar has built a
conglomerate of IT, real estate and manufacturing companies with operations in
19 African countries and 21 countries worldwide, employing over 8,000 people
through its investments and operations. Ashish devotes much of his energy to
commercial and philanthropic initiatives in Africa. He has advises several heads of
state in sub-Saharan Africa
The Prize for Entrepreneurial Excellence in Africa is
awarded to an individual in recognition of his fortitude,
devotion and commitment to the betterment of life
through business development in his country and
Africa at large. This is a Prize unparalleled for his
Leadership qualities so exhibited in his country and
Africa at large. This individual’s contribution towards
economic empowerment combined with commitment
to ethics, quality and public service, shows the
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2014LAAPPRIZE
conviction that economic sustainability is crucial to
continuing independence. One who recognizes that
his generosity of spirit is not borne out of privilege
or making a profound statement for his gender but
his unyielding spirit and determination to make a
difference through entrepreneurial acumen and
resourcefulness. One who is driven by a passion to
succeed as an enabler to serve and to be of service to
humanity.
PAGE49
LAAP PRIZE FOR
MEDIA
DEVELOPMENT
IN AFRICA
Amadou Mahtar Ba
Amadou Mahtar Ba is the Chief Executive of the African Media Initiative
(AMI) and a member of the International Advisory Board of the African Press
Organization. Ba is co-founder and chairman of All Africa Global Media, an
international multi-media content service provider, systems technology
developer and the largest distributor of African news and information
worldwide. Prior to starting All Africa, Ba served from 1996 to 2000 as
Director of Communications and Marketing for BICIS Bank, a subsidiary
of the French banking group BNP Paribas. From 1993 to 1996, he helped
lead the successful restructuring and privatization of the Pan-African
News Agency (PANA). Ba is a member of the World Economic Forum’s
Global Council for the Future of Journalism, advisory board member of the
Reporting Developing Network Africa, member of the Advisory Committee
of the Knight International Journalism Fellowship, administered by the
International Center for Journalists, as well as a member of the Africa Policy
Advisory Board of ONE. Mr. Ba was educated in Senegal, France and Spain,
and is fluent in French, English, Spanish, Fulani and Wolof. He holds a Masters
degree from the Ecole Française des Professionnels de la Communication in
Paris and Paris 7 University (Jussieu). .
The Prize for Media Development In Africa is awarded
to an individual in recognition of his commitment
to create an enabling environment at the regional,
sub-regional, national and local levels in today’s
globalizing world where media plays an important
role in providing information leading to citizen
enlightenment, protection and equity for all. One who
fosters power media in Africa as an indispensable tool
to promote economic growth and development. One
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2014LAAPPRIZE
whose ingenuity has ushered in an unprecedented
reach of localized broadcasting across borders
in Africa through training, skills acquisition and
knowledge transfer. One who has not only been to a
catalyst to broadcast innovation but also a refreshing
and brilliant advocate of home grown talents as a
means of tapping into the rich reserve of African
talents in the media industry.
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2014LAAPPRIZE
PAGE53
LAAP PRIZE FOR
BLACK STAR
OF AFRICA
Haile Gebrselassie
Haile Gebrselassie born 18 April 1973) is an Ethiopian long-distance track and
running athlete. He won two Olympic gold medals over 10,000 metres and four
World Championship titles in the event. He won the Berlin Marathon four times
consecutively and also had three straight wins at the Dubai Marathon. Further
to this, he won four world titles indoors and was the 2001 World Half Marathon
Champion. Haile had major competition wins at distances between 1500 metres
and the marathon, moving from outdoor, indoor and cross country running to
road running in the latter part of his career. He broke 61 Ethiopian national records
ranging from 800 metres to the marathon, set 27 world records, and is widely
considered one of the greatest distance runners in history.
The Black Star of Africa Prize is awarded to an
individual who has subjected himself to democratic
process to assume leadership mantle to work
assiduously for his people. To one who against the
formidable odds of desperation and destitution found
the courage and strength to engage groups with
entrenched and contending interest to coalesce and
work together in the interest of their mutual benefits.
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2014LAAPPRIZE
To one who has exemplified paragon leadership
and employed such skills to achieve unprecedented
stability in the midst of turmoil and uncertainty. To
one who has exhibited the tenacity to decisively call
for change to traditional and unproductive attitudes
and restored hope for his people to assist in their
economic empowerment.
PAGE55
LAAP PRIZE FOR
BLACK STAR
OF AFRICA
Didier Drogba
Didier Yves Drogba Tébily; born 11 March 1978) is an Ivorian footballer
who plays as a forward for Galatasaray in the Süper Lig. He is the captain
andall-time top scorer of the Côte d’Ivoire national football team. He is best
known for his career at Chelsea, for whom he scored more goals than any
other foreign player and is currently the club’s fourth highest goal scorer of
all time. In October 2012, he was voted by Chelsea supporters as the club’s
greatest ever player. His key attributes include his physical strength, ability in
the air, and his ability to retain possession of the ball. After playing in youth
teams, Drogba made his professional debut aged 18 for Ligue 2 club Le Mans.
The Black Star of Africa Prize is awarded to an
individual who has subjected himself to democratic
process to assume leadership mantle to work
assiduously for his people. To one who against the
formidable odds of desperation and destitution found
the courage and strength to engage groups with
entrenched and contending interest to coalesce and
work together in the interest of their mutual benefits.
PAGE56
To one who has exemplified paragon leadership
and employed such skills to achieve unprecedented
stability in the midst of turmoil and uncertainty. To
one who has exhibited the tenacity to decisively call
for change to traditional and unproductive attitudes
and restored hope for his people to assist in their
economic empowerment.
2014LAAPPRIZE
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2014LAAPPRIZE
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