Association for Free Research and International Cooperation

‘’SERVICE LEADERSHIP’’, a prerequisite for good governance in Africa

Before Independence, most African nations could not understand the principles of Leadership and good governance, because they were not in control of their governments and institutions. The reason for this is very clear; most African nations were colonised andthus served under their colonial masters, having little or nothing to contribute. However, when these countries gained autonomy over their states and institutions in the 60s; there was need to acquaint themselves with the changes. The African continent has been striving over the years to grow or evolve in every aspect. Advocates of good governance have asserted that Leadership and Good governance remain at the forefront if Africa must attain development and transformation.

Leadership can be referred to as the ability of an individual to lead and guide a particular people or institution for the common good of all. In today’s society, one of Africa’s renowned Pan Africanist and a promoter of good governance Nana Osei-Bonsu Jnr. has defined leadership as ‘’a gift for service’’. Thus in the absence of virtual leadership and Good Governance, realizing economic growth or development will remain an illusion. Accountability is what guarantees a stable nation and steady growth of a nation, an organisation, and meet objectives of quality service.


As defined by the UN, Good Governance is an approach to government that is committed to creating a system founded in justice and peace that protects an individual’s human rights and civil liberties. According to the UN, Good Governance is measured by the eight factors of; Participation, Rule of Law, Transparency, Responsiveness, Consensus Oriented, Equity and Inclusiveness, Effectiveness and Efficiency, and Accountability.

In the context of Africa; with the saying that ‘Youths are the leaders of tomorrow’, Afriwic International Organization and Sertoh Leadership International, have been sensitizing and educating young Africans on the importance of ‘service Leadership and Good Governance. This process works through a platform called Impact Africa Youth Leadership Summit. These two organs bring young Africans together every year to brainstorm on aspects which are very imperative to the African continent that is en route to gaining political stability, economic growth, etc.   Ghana played host to this year’s summit, where leadership and good governance advocates likeAnas Aremeyaw Anas; an investigative journalist and others preached on ‘’service leadership’’.During the Impact Africa Youth Leadership Summit 2018 thatheld underthe theme: “Breaking the Leadership Myth”, the leaders sought to instill the principles of integrity, stewardship and service, not ‘rulership’ in the future leaders of Africa.


The world and Africa in particular need Leadership and not leaders.Underlining the fact that breaking the myth of leadership is a solution to Africa’s diverse problems, Executive Director of Afriwic and Sertoh, Nana Osei-Bonsu Jnr. said there was need to redirect the concept of ‘’Leadership in the African context, asserting that it has been misunderstood. In the same light, one of Africa’s incumbent presidents Cyril Ramaphosa, at a similar event reiterated that Africa doesn’t need leaders, they need leadership. The South African President spoke at the Discovery Leadership Summit in Sandston, Johannesburg. Remember, the world remains in crisis because of lack of quality leadership. It is therefore imperative to uphold the principles of leadership.

In the nutshell, the underlying fact remains that good leadership if practiced to the fullest in Africa, aspects like poverty, unemployment; corruption etc will be a thing of the past. ‘‘Leadership is important, leadership is needed, leadership that is visionary, leadership that is not self-seeking, leadership that is not going to seek to look after itself, we are therefore taking all these steps to restore good governance at state–owned enterprises, and strengthen critical public institutions’’-Cyril Ramaphosa.

AFRIC Editorial Article.


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