Africa must think big, act big, deliver big and must never show low ambitions-Adesina

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AfDB annual Meeting in Lusaka
AfDB annual Meeting in Lusaka

“Africa must think big, act big and deliver big. We must never show low ambitions for Africa,” African Development Bank Group President Akinwumi Adesina said on Tuesday, May 24, 2016 at the formal opening of the Annual Meetings of the Bank Group in Zambia on the theme “Energy and climate Change”.

Addressing a huge gathering of heads of state, ministers, business corporates, civil society and the media in Lusaka, Adesina said that the Bank has raised its level of aspiration for Africa through its High 5 development priorities.

According to Adesina, these priorities – Light up and Power Africa; Feed Africa; Industrialize Africa; Integrate Africa; and Improve the quality of life for the people of Africa – have received overwhelming support from the intuition’s stakeholders across the Board.

The New Deal on Energy and the Jobs for Africa’s Youth initiative are being launched at the meetings, on the heels of the launch on Monday of the African Leaders for Nutrition initiative, which aims to end malnutrition, chaired by former President of Ghana, John Kufuor. The initiative is partnering with the African Union/New Partnership on Development (NEPAD), Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Kofi Annan Foundation, the Big Win Philanthropy, Dangote Foundation and the World Food Program. The Bank also intends to launch a USD 3-billion fund to support women.

In the same vein, the Bank launched the Transformative Partnership on Energy for Africa, a bold co-development model which includes several partners: the African Union, the Africa Progress Panel, NEPAD, President Obama’s Power Africa initiative, the World Bank, and Sustainable Energy for All, African Energy Leaders Group, the European Union, the UK Government, China, France, Germany, Scandinavian countries, Japan, Korea, India, the private sector and others.

According to Adesina, the Bank decided to focus on lighting up and powering Africa because the continent is the only region of the world where lack of electricity has become the norm. Over 645 million people lack access to electricity while 700 million do not have access to clean energy for cooking.

“The greatest hindrance to Africa’s growth and development is lack of electricity,” he said.

“Africa is simply tired of being in the dark. Our goal is clear: universal access to energy for Africa within ten years. Expand grid power by 160 giga watts. Connect 130 million persons to grid power. Connect 75 million persons to off grid systems. And provide access to 150 million households to clean cooking energy,” he emphasized.

Adesina also shared ongoing corporate reforms in the Bank encapsulated in a new business development and delivery model, which involves restructuring and operations decentralization within the continent’s five geopolitical zones in central, east, north, west and southern Africa.

It has also established new Vice-President Complexes on Power, Energy and Green Growth; Agriculture, Human and Social Development; and Private Sector, Infrastructure and Industrialization to deliver the High 5 priorities in the various sectors.

“These landmark institutional reforms will make us faster, more efficient and effective in delivering greater developmental impacts all across Africa. We will drive a new performance contract system and culture of accountability for results all across the Bank,” he said.

Adesina also reflected on African economies, noting that they have remained resilient and are not unravelling as interpreted in some quarters. Africa must henceforth look inwards to tap resources for the development of a more inclusive continent.

Africa must develop with pride, he said, citing the case of Kevin Do, a youth from Sierra Leone who received sustained applause as well as “tears of sympathy and joy” from the audience when he was invited to the podium to share his ingenuity. At the age of 12, Kevin developed batteries and moved on to develop a generator for his village, using metal scraps. He was invited to MIT Innovations Lab and lectured students at Harvard and MIT to show off his ingenuity.

Adesina thanked the Bank’s member countries for their support despite the difficult global financial and economic headwinds and urged them to contribute generously to the 14th replenishment of the African Development Fund, the concessional arm of the Bank Group which comes up this year.

For his part, President Idriss Déby of Chad, the current President of the Africa Union, underscored the difficult challenges facing many Africa countries afflicted by climate change-induced drought, famine, and conflict, noting that African countries can overcome some of these challenges through coordinated concrete actions.

He commended the Bank’s High 5 priorities and expressed the hope that every Africa country would have a positive story to share on their benefits at the next Annual Meetings.

Host President Edgar Lungu of Zambia, who declared the Meetings open, commended the energy and climate change theme of the meetings, noting that the two issues have crystallized into a binding constraint to Africa’s growth.

He said that lessons learned from exchanges would help the countries, including Zambia, to find solutions to the economic and environmental challenges they face.

“Africa can lead the world on climate resilience and low carbon emissions if the necessary policies are put in place now,” he said.

More 4,000 participants are attending the Annual Meetings, the AfDB’s window to the world. These include eminent persons such as Presidents Idriss Deby of Chad and Paul Kagame of Rwanda. Nigeria is represented by Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo. Former Presidents John Kufuor of Ghana, Festus Mogae of Botswana, Horst Kohler of Germany, and Mary Robinson of Ireland, are also attending along with some Prime Ministers, and ministers representing their heads of state. Also in attendance are three former Bank Presidents – Babacar Ndiaye of Senegal, Omar Kabbaj of Morocco and Kwame Donkor Fordwor of Ghana.

AfDB annual Meeting in Lusaka
AfDB annual Meeting in Lusaka
AfDB annual Meeting in Lusaka
AfDB annual Meeting in Lusaka
AfDB annual Meeting in Lusaka
AfDB annual Meeting in Lusaka
AFDB President Dr Akinwumi Adesina in Lusaka
AFDB President Dr Akinwumi Adesina in Lusaka
AFDB President Dr Akinwumi Adesina with Mrs Wina 18421848
AFDB President Dr Akinwumi Adesina with Mrs Wina
AFDB President Dr Akinwumi Adesina Greets Mr John Kufuor Lusaka
AFDB President Dr Akinwumi Adesina Greets Mr John Kufuor Lusaka
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43 COMMENTS

  1. Only action can facilitate those measures. Otherwise, Zambians are eagerly waiting to vote PF out for their all to see & witnessed failures.
    PF the short legs of fairytales are almost done with, on 11~8, its Forward to UPND & HH. Time has come for PF to eat the humble pie & leave economical & load shedding to the technocrats in fixing the PF failures.
    On 11~8 is bye bye PF & welcome UPND, forward it will go.
    The Skeleton Key
    ~206~
    Vote Wisely!

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    • UPND cadres give us a break for once. We are fed up politicking day in day out. You mean we cant debate proffessionary on such matters without mentioning PF or UPND? stupid idiooots!!!

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    • WHo cares about egoistical AFricans who spout nonsensical and dupe other AFricans.

      The best and most succesful AFricans are in Europe, who are doing well. Fors instance this person who has just posted this.

      Thanks

      BB2014

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    • HH didn’t give key note speech on that conference? Sounds like these things of thinking big are his field of specialty.

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    • Adesina is in the wrong country. In Zambia the whole govt only dreams about attacking HH to the extent that farming, electricity production, education, health and security have collapsed. The obsession of winning elections even when PF have no idea how to run a govt is the opposite of what Adesina is talking about. These PFools are the most incompetent govt in Africa. Asking them to even starting think small is asking too much.
      #ChagwaMustFall
      #PFmustGo

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    • BEAUTIFUL AMBITION. AND THIS IS VERY POSSIBLE. BUT WHERE IS THE HONESTY AND THE WILL POWER FROM PEOPLE LIKE EDGAR LUNGU AND HIS PF MINIONS? THESE MUPPET ARE ONLY FATTENING THEMSELVES WHILE THEY TELL MILLIONS OF ZAMBIANS TO TIGHTEN OUR BELTS. THESE THIEVES NEED TO URGENTLY BE KICKED OUT OF POWER BEFORE THEY WAST OUR TIME FURTHER TO DEVELOP OUR COUNTRY. ABASH LUNGU. ABASH KAMINAMINSA THIEF.

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  2. and others thought Edgar doesnt Think,really what do u want him to think of,he said he would build us a dam,to me thats a thinking brain,what he needs then is 5 I mean 10years mandate to make zed the new saube

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  3. This is jargon to Zambian political cadres who believe in pointing at what they see; not thinking big crafting the visions.

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  4. What an empty and meaningless speech! How does an African failed state think and act Big? How does a broke African govt think and act big? How does an African govt think and act big with zero foreign exchange reserves, 30% inflation, 80% unemployment, no electricity etc. Its useless rhetoric associated with African leaders who can’t even run a tuckshop profitably.

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    • Mulichipuba ba Tata inwe. Get a life and remain stupid as usual. we want progressive contributions here. No wonder Africa un developed becuase of people like you. Do you think good things come like magic?

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  5. Being unemployed, poor and a destitute is disempowering which means u can’t think and act big and neither can u be ambitious. You canot think big if u are uneducated and u have no money to empower yourself. Its misplaced ambition to be a medical doctor without going thru proper training which takes so many years. U cannot aspire to be a medical doctor, Economist,Engineer etc without a proper foundation and training. Mr Adesina should qualify his daydreams.

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  6. “Africa must think big, act big and deliver big. We must never show low ambitions for Africa,”
    And I will give you the loans to enslave your people..I will add my bank’s loans on top of the $40Billion in Eurobonds Africa owns from reckless borrowing.

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  7. How can Zambians think and dream big when their hopes and aspirations have been killed by capitalist crooks like Kaponya (HH) who sold Zambian assets and accumululated pension funds for selfish gain? Thanks to the PF for reviving the economy within 5 years Zambia can be great again

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    • As long as we have such crooks like Crooked Hichilema in our midst, their mercenary sponsors will always think of ways to enslave us

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    • We have read the UPND’s ten-point plan for Zambia. And before we start focusing on what they are saying in their ten-point plan, it may be necessary to look at one important thing they are not saying – the fight against corruption.

      \If there is one thing that the UPND leadership seems to be dodgy about, it is the issue of corruption. They are hardly talking about corruption. Why? Is it because they are corrupt themselves? Or is it because they have too many people who are corrupt in their midst?
      This is a political party of tenderpreneurs calling themselves businessmen. Most of them are people who have profited from doing business with government.

      We all know what it means to do business with government in this country. The most corrupt business in this country is the business of…

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    • Do you ever think through before submitting…or is it case of throwing a stone hoping it hits something Zambia is bigger than your PF or UPND.

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    • @Jay Jay, in politics is everything is interconnected. You should be wise enough to see how Hakainde’s corrupt asset undervaluing destroyed the economy and PF has taken strides to revive it. Kaponya (HH) wants to be above everyone and forces his minion followers to think small and within the box. The poor bankums can’t even think outside the BOX to hold a convention and elect a saleable product like Nkombo. My information is very revelant to these issues. UPNDs must be exposed for the scum they are. A bunch of crooks led by this Hap Hazard (HH) Kaponya. If we don’t fight this Kaponya now he will enslave us. Join the fight and Sontapo team to defeat this Crooked Hichilema (HH) in the August 11 elections

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    • Kaponya (HH) has even published a UPND bible with his nephew Lloyd Himambo called Zambian Witch Doctor. Crooked Hakainde has been trying to indoctrinate his minion followers using his nephew Wanzaelu (Lloyd Himambo) and it works. These UPNDs follow it like gospel truth. Ask other bloggers about it they’ll tell you. I’m not even the one who coined UPND biBLe it was another patriot

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    • @Jay Jay we keep scoring big by hosting such high level International forums and UPND is envious of our achievements. It’s PF all the way Sontapo!

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  8. The most corrupt business in this country is the business of doing business with government. The most corrupt group of people in this country is those doing business with government, the tenderpreneurs. To win government tenders, they have to bribe their way through. To get paid what is due to them, they have to pay bribes.

    Today, the UPND is dominated by elements that were running government business in the successive MMD and PF governments. There are people in the leadership of the UPND today who had appropriated the business of entire ministries to themselves and their associates.
    Given this situation, it is understandable why the UPND can hardly talk about corruption or include the fight against it in their election manifesto.

    On the issue of corruption, the UPND is not…

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    • On the issue of corruption, the UPND is not different from the MMD and the Patriotic Front.
      There is no serious conviction when it comes to the issue of fighting corruption in the UPND. Sometimes they may make statements that they actually do not mean. In 2009, Hakainde Hichilema denounced Rupiah Banda and his sons as corrupt. But later, Hakainde changed his position and started accusing the Patriotic Front of persecuting Rupiah and promised to free him from such persecution if or when UPND came to power. What had changed? Only one thing had changed. At this time, the UPND wanted the political support of Rupiah in the coming elections. And because of that, all the charges of corruption they had against him were dropped. This is something they share with the corrupt regime of Rupiah’s MMD…

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    • This is something they share with the corrupt regime of Rupiah’s MMD and Edgar Lungu’s Patriotic Front. Rupiah’s MMD freed Frederick Chiluba from going to jail for corruption and allowed him to enjoy the fruits of his corruption. Equally, the Patriotic Front of Edgar has ensured that all charges of corruption against Rupiah are ended in exchange for his political support in elections.

      The Patriotic Front of Edgar benefited a lot from the financial support of people who were facing corruption and other criminal charges. Today, the UPND is also being propelled by similar corrupt elements – people who have stolen public funds through all sorts of dubious government tenders.

      Guy Scott can today talk of corruption in the Patriotic Front! When did that corruption in the Patriotic Front…

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    • When did that corruption in the Patriotic Front start? It was there even when he was vice-president of that party and the Republic. But Guy was one of the most defensive elements when it came to attacks on the Patriotic Front and exposure of the wrongdoings of its leaders and members. But today, Guy can talk about corruption in the Patriotic Front. What nonsense is this? What hypocrisy is this?
      It is important to pay a lot of attention to the characters comprising the UPND today. This is not the UPND of 2001, which comprised many decent human beings. Today, we have all sorts of crooks pushing the UPND agenda. What is driving them? It is nothing but the possibility of getting the government contracts they have lost, the possibility of having government jobs. They are guided by nothing…

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    • They are guided by nothing other than the desire to get back to the same positions of eating they had in the previous regimes that they have today lost. This is certainly not a recipe for them to govern well, if or when they get into government.

      Today, the UPND is a motley assortment of all contradictory elements brought together by the will to win power. The will to win power is the only thing binding them together. And they see a great possibility of that; they can smell power and they think they have arrived at the table. To them, the whole thing is not different from sitting at the table to eat – ‘nipambale’. This is the only thing they have in common. But we all know that with the passage of time, that will prove insubstantial glue.

      There is no clear message coming from them on…

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  9. There is no clear message coming from them on issues that really matter. Probably, the only thing that they really have to themselves is the intolerance of the Patriotic Front government on them. Edgar’s government and party are abusing the administration of the criminal justice system to harass them and reduce their capacity to mobilise and win the August elections. What is being done to them is wrong and deserves to be condemned. But beyond that, they have very little to offer that is new or different, especially on the very important issue of corruption. Even their internal party adoption processes for parliamentary candidates were marred by corruption. It is not us saying this; it is themselves saying it. What will happen when or if they win power and are in charge of our country’s…

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    • What will happen when or if they win power and are in charge of our country’s electoral processes? Are they going to be trusted? Are we going to continue having the same problems we are today having with the current arrangements at the Electoral Commission of Zambia? Or do we expect them to change when they are in government? But if one is corrupt while in opposition, it is highly unlikely that they will change and become better people when you try them in government.
      And being a party of tenderpreneurs, of so-called businessmen, the propensity for the UPND to become more corrupt in government may be higher than that of any political party we have seen. We all know that it is mainly businesses and businessmen driving corruption in this country. It is not the ordinary man and woman…

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    • . It is not the ordinary man and woman growing cassava, finger millet or some little maize here and there whose corruption is crippling the economy of this country and affecting the well-being of our people. It is these tenderpreneurs who today dominate the politics of this country. Moreover, where does an ordinary or humble worker get the K75,000 required to file nominations for president, the K10,000 required for one to stand as a member of parliament or even the K1,500 or K750 required for one to contest local government elections? A humble worker or peasant has to be sponsored by a tenderpreneur to realise even the humblest political goal of becoming a councillor of the hamlet where he or she lives. And that is if she or he has the grade 12 certificate to quality as a candidate.

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    • Our main concern is that without tackling the issue of corruption, no matter what good intentions, policies or programmes a party or candidate may promise, there is nothing of value that they will deliver. And this has been the biggest problem faced by the Patriotic Front. All that the Patriotic Front has been doing on the infrastructure development front has been motivated or riddled by corruption. A government project that should cost US$10 million ends up costing US$15 million, US$20 million, US$25 million or even US$30 million. All government works are designed and programmed to benefit the tenderpreneurs running or close to the government of the day.

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    • Some of the grievances of the key leadership of the UPND is that their businesses have suffered, their incomes have dropped to 40 per cent or lower because of being denied government contracts. Watch what happens when such people become the ones in charge of government business! Who will win the tenders? It is themselves and their associates. They have got all sorts of fronts to use and it won’t be easy for one to know that these are their companies. Look at how rich Edgar and his friends have become in such a very short period of time! What is the source of that wealth? It may be worse under a government of tenderpreneurs of the UPND if nothing is done to correct that position. The UPND needs to come out clear on the issue of corruption and the fight against it.

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  10. We need more meetings like this so we learn from others not busy beating up innocent marketeers

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  11. Africa will never develop as long as we have paid political clowns like this “KUDOS” ranting his repetitive and childish rubbish and crap on websites like this.

    LT, I know you are trying to be fair and objective, but this Kudos is just abusing your goodwill and evenhandedness.

    Limit him to one comment a day or some other form of discipline. He is really not taking us Zambians forward with his lies and hate speech!

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    • First you should Man up before ranting. What calibre of cadre names himself after a pair of Genitals?
      We are not at all surprised that your first reaction as UPND is to shut those who expose the truth about your crookedness. Your bedfellow Dull Commentator also suggested blocking the Kudo posts.
      With UPND there can be no private media in Zambia. You are tyrannical. It shows. People who can’t stomach the truth about their uselessness. Yet you are the same brainwashed, indoctrinated quacks who support and believe your Zambian Witch Doctor UPND biBLe as gospel truth. What hypocricy is this? What nonsense is this?
      You UPND are silly and irrelevant

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  12. Actually Mr Kudos, I am NOT and never have been UPND!

    And for your information Ballsup is a common word in english that denotes a huge mistake, which is exactly what PF has done to Zambia in the last 5 years!

    I hardly think your crude and disgusting rubbish you spew here can be called “exposing the truth” by any stretch of human imagination! A flight of fantasy mixed with pure bull5hit is what you write, and it is blatantly obvious that you are doing it simply to get paid for it!

    True Zambians would not lower themselves in the cesspit you come from!

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  13. What is this. Please don’t always politicize matters. I am getting fed up. Sure nefi ma politics. Awe

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  14. Doesnt kudos,work for LT bcz 90% of his misplaced comments are the first ones.what time does he sleep and even though he works at embassy.find better things to chanel your energy.there are alot of unip and mmd folks who misplaced their opportunity and they are now regretting.take advantage of the lucky you have by being broad minded.otherwise many comments of your calibre were posted here against pf and sata but the opposite happened,never rule out a party or its leader.what buffles me is what type of mindset you will take home when you are recalled.atleast let people see that baikala kubasungu by the scope of your thinking.not this one which you are exhibiting here.

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  15. I think there is nothing wrong at all with African people being ambitious, but sustainable development is driven by a strong foundation at the literal grassroots level. The powerhouse for African development is the African village, and the main player is the the independent African farmer. When these two vital factors are looked after, growth will come naturally and the politicians need not be lured by big money into high prestige projects that in the end empoverish Africa. Small is still beautiful (E.F. Schumacher).

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  16. How much is Kudos paid by PF for this nonsense? Or is he one of the foreigners hired as a social media mercenary? A typical Zambian would be much reflective, thoughtful and considerate.

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    • If that’s a typical Zambian, then Zambia should have nothing to worry about :). Sadly that’s not always what impresses people at the ballot box.

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    • The Zambian people I most admire are characterised by hard work and humility. I suggest these qualities are more important than “thinking big”. There will always be someone around to think big, especially when the individual rewards are great. However, I think we need to be very careful about weighing up the benefit to Zambia against the benefits to those outside Zambia, who are only too happy to pay off the big man whilst quietly cheating the people.

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  17. Rwanda ,Kenya ,Uganda and Ethiopia are the only AfDB members whose leaders have coherent vision,sound economic policies and their economies still have robust growth because they’re non resource economies.

    Edgar Lungu,Kabila and president Deby of Chad are just visionless time wasters.

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  18. I listened to the whole speech by Adesina and he sounded like the prof Lumumba guy. What he said about the failure by African countries was 100% about Zambia and then Changwa came around with a speech which went round and round. Sadly I never saw any confidence in him and he did not give me hope or vision for Zambia can achieve. And to be told that load shedding will continue for the next 3 yrs is just unacceptable.

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