Ben Ezechime, Enugu
The Daniel Ukwu Leadership Foundation, an Enugu-based NGO, has urged African leaders to provide people-oriented and positive leadership to fast track development and reduce poverty on the continent.
The Executive Director of the foundation, Mr Daniel Ukwu, made the call on Wednesday, while speaking on the importance of the Nelson Mandela International Day in an interview with newsmen in Enugu.
The UN declared the Day to be commemorated on every July 18 across the globe in recognition of the legend’s positive contributions to Africa and world peace as well as his outstanding leadership style in South Africa.
According to Ukwu, Mandela is known for several outstanding achievements.
“But, perhaps, he is best known for successfully leading his country through resistance to South Africa’s apartheid policy being incarcerated at Robben Island Prison (1964 – 1982).
He said, “Mandela served his people and country selflessly and meritoriously and did not seek a second or third term as South African President and was succeeded by President Tom Mbeki in 1999.
“After he left active politics, he maintained a strong international presence as an advocate of peace, reconciliation and social justice.
“It is understandable that Mandela served South Africa, his country, with humility and faithfulness.
“He is always remembered as the finest of African leaders, which many seeking leadership positions must understudy.”
It would be recalled that Mandela won the Nobel Prize for Peace in 1993, alongside the then South African President, F.W. De-Klerk, for having led the transition from apartheid to a multi-racial democracy.
He is also popular for being the first black South African President, who also served one tenure “against the usual two tenures or more by sit-tight African leaders.”
Mandela was born on July 18, 1918 in Mvezo South Africa.
He died on Dec. 5, 2013 in Johannesburg at 95.