As The Future Awards moves to August 26, the Symposium for Young & Emerging Leaders takes its place for January | Welcome to Linda Ikeji's Blog





Wednesday 7 December 2011

As The Future Awards moves to August 26, the Symposium for Young & Emerging Leaders takes its place for January

The Central Working Committee (CWC) for The Future Awards (TFA), which has been described as the ‘Nobel Prize for Young Africans’, has announced the date for the 2012 edition – August 26. TFA is heralded each year as the country’s first major national event, but the organizers had previously announced in February this year that the calendar for the next season will be refreshed.

“In its place in January, we are presenting a brand new, more urgent,
leadership platform, The Nigeria Symposium for Young & Emerging
Leaders,” said Adedayo Osholowu, a member of the CWC and Director of The
Future Awards Alumni Network. “The Future Awards has clearly achieved
its purpose in highlighting the fact of a new generation of positive
role model Nigerian leaders. Of course, we have a duty to sustain it,
but at the same time we can safely move on to the next level in
inspiring leadership – using the immense influence and outreach of The
Future Awards platform to more effectively inject a fresh component into
the direction of governance in Nigeria. We are excited about this
historic first-of-its-kind event.”

“Referred to by the London Metropolitan University as “Africa’s Biggest
Youth Event” and by the Office of the World Bank Vice President for
Africa as “The Nobel Prize for Young Africans”, The Future Awards has by
itself and through its many spin-offs impacted millions of young
Nigerians across all of Nigeria’s geo-political zones as well as Ghana,
South Africa and the United Kingdom.

In 2010, it launched EnoughisEnough Nigeria, which quickly rose to
become the premium voice for young people in politics and governance,
birthing the wildly popular election RSVP (Register.Select.Vote.Protect)
campaign, working closely with INEC and the police on the April General
Elections, gaining funding from the MacArthur Foundation and the Omidyar
Network and co-hosting Nigeria’s first Youth-Centred Presidential Debate
– all in a period of 12 months.

According to the CWC, this is the next stage of its involvement in
building a new generation of leaders: creating a critical mass of new
leaders who are already blazing a trail and controlling systems –
including business and political leaders, media leaders, thought
leaders, civil society and public service leaders.

“What we are doing is quite simple,” says Adebola Williams, who is the
Director of The Future Project. “We are gathering the brightest and best
of young Nigerian leaders and our mandate is simple: for Nigeria to make
leaps forward, this generation has to be different from the last. So we
want to bring these leaders together and find out: what exactly is the
problem? We want to speak honestly with people in and out of government
as to why our leadership is the way it is; we want to understand
practically the issues involves and the pitfalls to avoid; second, we
want to now chart a course for how our own leadership will be different,
purposive and truly transformative for Nigeria.”

To hold over two days, the first night will be a black-tie dinner for
past winners of The Future Awards. Day 2, which is the Symposium, will
be a charged exchange of ideas and knowledge in a TED-talks format that
will focus on leadership and governance and the challenge of involvement
and influence. Governments across all levels will be invited as
observers and outcomes include White Papers, Viral Videos, a definitive
guide to youth leaders from across sectors in Nigeria and collaboration
on three selected community projects.

Every year’s Symposium will be driven by a Leadership Question that
most concerns emerging leaders – this year that Leadership Question is:
How do we work with government - Engage or Fight?

The Keynote Speaker and headliner is Obiageli Ezekwesili; World Bank
Vice-President for Africa. She will be supported by Bishop of the Sokoto
Diocese of the Catholic Church and member of the Oputa Panel, Bishop
Matthew Kukah, while the Symposium Proper will be  driven by plenary
sessions where various sections of this leadership question will focus
on the different sectors for emerging leaders including Young
Politicians, Young Entrepreneurs, Young Technocrats in Government, Young
People in Public Service, Young Professionals, Young Entertainers, Young
Activists, Young Issue Advocates, Young Journalists and Young Social
Media Engagers.

The event is presented by The Future Project in association with
EnoughisEnough Nigeria. Partners include the International Republican
Institute, the Federal Ministry for Youth Development, Paradigm
Initiative Nigeria, Governance 500 and LEAP Africa. Official Media
Partners are Y! (, Channels TV, and

While many of the participants will be invited based on their track
record of leadership in various sectors, a percentage of the seats have
been opened for public nomination. If you believe you or someone you
know has the leadership profile to be part of this historic event, see
the below guidelines:

Choose your preferred session from the below and use that as the title
of your e-mail Emerging Leaders: Civil Servants – Is it Possible to
Stand Out in Government?
Emerging Leaders: Technocrats – Understanding the Problem: Politics or
Emerging Leaders: Politicians – The Matter of Mud
Emerging Leaders: Professionals – The Degrees of Separation
Emerging Leaders: Entertainers – When Is It More Than A Job?
Emerging Leaders: Entrepreneurs – Building an Alternative Resource-Base
to Affect Governance
Emerging Leaders: New Media Commentators – Questioning the
Effectiveness of Arm-Chairs
Emerging Leaders: Issue Advocates/Activists – How to Drive A Genuine
Agenda Emerging Leaders: Traditional Media – The Challenge of
Responsible Influence

Other Information (Discussant Information)
First Name
Last Name
Organisation and address
Project or Organization Website
Profile (150 words)
Describe your leadership roles:
What will be your contribution to this Symposium (150 words):
Please send this information to Nominations
end on 23 December 2011. Only successful nominees will be contacted.
For more information, please call +234 802 222 6712 or email

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