The Mandela We Should All Become

Most African leaders possess a common frailty, “greed”, which has become so abysmal and unequivocally detrimental to the Pan-African concept. They have failed to understand that true leadership means selfless service, rather, their interest lies more in satisfying their unquenchable greed. “A me first” approach has become the norm in African leaders. They gladly run the affairs of the public as if it were their personal businesses. Most of them siphon money from public coffers, and even compensate people who helped them in one way or another with high-classed appointments, not minding that they lack professional and personal ability to function effectively.

One would aptly understand why “Madiba” as he is fondly called was a strong critic of the “African sit-tight syndrome” and “self aggrandizement” of our leaders. However, amidst all these negatives, there is still hope of restoration, if we should remodel ourselves.

The major deformity that most Africans have is their mindset. In Africa today, if one does the right thing, he gets an indescribable truck load of praises, because doing the right thing is rare. We dwell so much on our abnormal turned-normal way of doing things. Africans are willing to get what they want through any possible means, which ought not to be so. To correct the situation. I would personally encourage a “CTY-STO” approach. What is this “CTY-STO”? It means Catch Them Young- Seize The Opportunity. A combination of two workable solutions. It is a clear fact that, the making of a good leader sets out from birth. The family and the society both have a stake in producing the leaders that will take us out of our Egypt to our promised land. Therefore, we have to start from childhood to teach the younger generation the true essence of altruism, humility and tolerance. Encouraging professionalism and employment of sound school teachers that would teach them this, is instrumental to him learning how to operate in selflessness. Again, as youths we should always seize the slightest opportunity that we get, to encourage the youths, the children and adults to form the right attitude towards leadership and citizenship.

One thing is sure; as a youth I may not go to jail for 27years, I may not become president for just one tenure, I may not be an anti-aparthied fighter, but I sure did learn one thing from Madiba, how to become selfless. He is my inspiration. No doubt, I possess the ability to influence a life positively through selfless service, and so, does each one of us. That beggar that I bypass everyday on my way to work, that orphan that lives in a rubble next door to me, that man who walks about bare footed, and that person, who a little help rendered to, can improve his life, have all become a top priority to me. I have cultivated the spirit to offer the little help that I could to these people. In doing these little things, I stand to serve as a source of inspiration to people who come across me and they upon deciding to do same, serve as a source of inspiration to people who they come across and so will the cycle continue.

Due to the need to immortalize Mandela’s legacy, I project that An Inspiration Class/ Inspiration Family Time be introduced to the school’s curriculum and families respectively. Here, stories of not only Mandela but of other world’s selfless men will be told to our upcoming generation and also put in book formats for them to have access to it at any time. As this will inspire the younger generation to acquire the right mindset and work harder, also it will keep Mandela’s legacy from truncating.

Personally I have been inspired to write a book about him and as a school teacher, I just taught my class today, being 10th of May, the need to become as selfless as Mandela. More over, I will proceed to do this regularly whenever I have the opportunity to do so. That way I will not only be passing his legacy across, but as well be changing the trend of time that will bring us the kind of leadership we need.