Ambassador W. Stuart Symington of the United States Monday launched the Young Africa Leaders Initiative (YALI) Network, which kick-started a month-long “Transparency and Good Governance Campaign” in commemoration of the 2017 International Anti-Corruption Day.
The campaign which seeks to explore ways in which individuals can cultivate and encourage more transparent, the accountable behavior will involve a mix of online and in-person activities, including blog posts, ethical dilemma videos, Twitter chats, and an online course on responsible leadership and transparency.
In his goodwill message at the event, Ambassador W. Stuart Symington lauded the YALI Network members for dedicating their time and resources to the all-important goal of enhancing transparency and integrity in their respective communities.
According to him, the U.S. Diplomatic Mission to Nigeria stands ready to continue assisting the people and government of Nigeria in achieving its goal of greater openness and transparency. The U.S. Mission, he added, has also provided assistance to organizations working to strengthen transparency.
“By coming together to lead this transparency and good governance campaign, you have answered the question of ‘what can I do’ for my country. As you reach out to your friends and associates in the coming weeks, make sure they know it’s not them against their leaders. More importantly, in everything that you do during this campaign, be constructive,” Ambassador Symington told the audience comprising youth leaders active in community development, politics and civic issues.
Panelists including Oluseun Onigbinde, co-founder/CEO of Nigerian civic startup BudgIT, and Jude Feranmi, national youth caucus leader of KOWA Party, discussed youth participation in politics, best practices in encouraging transparency at all levels of government, as well as the role of NGOs and advocacy groups in promoting good governance.
The Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) Network, which includes over 230,000 young Africans from across the continent is a long-term effort to invest in the next generation of African leaders and strengthen partnerships between the United States and Africa.
The U.S. Department of State through its Bureau of International Information Programs provides both digital and off-line resources to these emerging leaders to help them build the skills and connections they need to become a positive force for change in their communities.