fashola Dr. Frannie LeautierThe Future Awards Africa (TFAA) has announced the Keynote Speakers for its 2014 edition: Lagos State Governor Babatunde Raji Fashola, and Tanzania’s Dr. Frannie Leautier, who has been called ‘Africa’s queen of development’.

TFAA, which is Africa’s biggest youth event, holds on Sunday, 7 December at the Intercontinental Hotels in Lagos, Nigeria.

“We are extremely excited to announce the confirming of these exemplary African leaders,” said Mohamed Diaby, from Abidjan, who is a member of the Central Working Committee for the awards. “They typify the theme for this year’s event, a call to action for Africa’s now generation to take charge and transform the continent. We are counting the days to the continent’s exclusive evening of inspiration.”

Dr. Leautier is the Chief Executive Officer of Mkoba Private Equity, a fund created to support small and medium enterprises in Africa. She has served as Vice President of the World Bank and Head of the World Bank Institute.  She was also co-chair of the World Economic Forum in 2013. She has also had a successful career in the private sector. In 2007, she founded the Fezembat Group, a company focused on risk management and leadership development, serving as its Managing Partner until 2009. Dr. Leautier was recently listed among the 100 most influential people in Africa. She is a board member of the Nelson Mandela Institute for Science and Technology in Africa (founding member), the Africa Institute for Governing with Integrity (founding member) and of UONGOZI, a leadership institute in Tanzania.

Governor Fashola’s track record in governance is widely regarded as peerless.  Referred to by the UK Telegraph as “the man who tamed” Lagos, The Atlantic says of his leadership, “Lagos illustrates what is possible when the government enters into a social contract with its citizens”.

Having Nigeria declared Ebola-free has however been called “his biggest achievement in office.” Taking “personal charge of the operation to track down and quarantined nearly 1000 people feared to have been infected”, in a city with an estimated 17 million people, he successfully supervised “what would have been a formidably complex operation in any country,” according to the Telegraph.

“His insights on leadership and impact, which emphasise the capacity of Africans to lead and save Africa became even more important as TFAA drives the #StopEbola campaign to galvanise 1 million young Africans to fight the pandemic in Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea and Mali,” said Mohamed Diaby.”

The Governor is recipient of the 2009 Yitzhak Rabin Centre for African Development Governor of the Decade for Peace Award and the recipient of the 2010 Award of Excellence in Leadership of the Martin Luther King Jnr. Foundation.

“We need all hands on deck,” said Dr. Leautier. “This is a truly great initiative, with impressive results achieved in entrepreneurship development and getting the message of action out to young Africans. I look forward to the awards, and the next phase of impact.”

The Future Awards Africa has been called the ‘Nobel Prize for Young Africans’, and the ‘most important youth awards’ by Forbes. It is a set of prizes given annually to celebrate and accelerate innovation, creativity and enterprise amongst young Africans aged 18 – 31. It has produced over 150 winners and over 1500 nominees since its first edition in 2006.

TFAA was founded by the Chude Jideonwo and Adebola Williams, TFP is supervised by a Global Board of Advisors drawn from Africa, Europe, North America and the Middle East, including the Coordinating Minister of the Nigerian Economy, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala; Senior Economic Advisor with the Open Society Foundations, Dr. Obiageli Ezekwesili; co-founder of ONE, Jamie Drummond and the Chief of Cabinet with the Africa Development Bank, Anne Kabagambe.


For more information, visit @TFAAfrica on Twitter/Instagram or the website The official hashtags for the 2014 awards are #TheFutureAwards and #TheFutureAwards2014.


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About The Author

Osigweh Lilian Oluchi is a graduate of the University of Lagos where she obtained a B.A (Hons) in English, Masters in Public and International affairs (MPIA). Currently works with 1stnews as a Database Manager / Writer. [email protected]

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