Women of Substance

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Ayittey Message on North Carolina Meeting


Yes, I heard about your national conference in Raleigh.

I am glad that you decided to form the National Consultative Committee (NCC) (Steering Committee) but it must be guided by some strict rules; otherwise it will become ineffective and could be hijacked.
  1. It must be made up of eminent personalities, who command respect and can reach out to all opposition leaders and civil society groups.
  2. Members of NCC, which not exceed 10, must foreswear political ambition. In other words, none of them should have any designs to become president of Gambia.
  3. NCC shall have no chairman or president; all members are equal.
  4. NCC decisions are to be taken by consensus.
  5. NCC shall not be used to advance the ambition or interests of any political or sectarian group. 
 These rules should be put together into a pact known as "The Covenant" and signed by all. Any member who breaks any of the rules should immediately be removed from the NCC. These rules are necessary to prevent the NCC from being hijacked to serve someone's personal interests or ambition.
Former government officials should be welcome because they have important "inside information." But they must be prepared to stay "behind the scenes" because their credibility is in doubt.
Hope this is useful.
George Ayittey,
Washington, DC

George Ayittey is a Ghanaian economist, author and president of the Free Africa Foundation in Washington DC. He is a professor at American University,[1] and an associate scholar at the Foreign Policy Research Institute.[2] He has championed the argument that "Africa is poor because she is not free", that the primary cause of African poverty is less a result of the oppression and mismanagement by colonial powers, but rather a result of modern oppressive native autocrats. He also goes beyond criticism to advocate for specific ways to address the abuses of the past and present; specifically he calls for democratic government, debt reexamination, modernized infrastructure, free market economics, and free trade to promote development. 

Ayittey holds a B.Sc. in Economics from the University of Ghana, Legon, an M.A. from the University of Western Ontario in Canada, and a Ph.D. from the University of Manitoba. He has taught at Wayne State College and Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania. He held a National Fellowship at the Hoover Institution in 1988-89, and then joined The Heritage Foundation as a Bradley Resident Scholar.[2] He founded The Free Africa Foundation in 1993, to serve as a catalyst for reform in Africa.[3] In 2008 Dr. Ayittey was listed by Foreign Policy as one of the "Top 100 Public Intellectuals" who "are shaping the tenor of our time".[4] He lives in Lorton, Virginia

Works
  • Indigenous African Institutions, Transnational Publishers, 1991; 2nd ed., 2004
  • The Blueprint for Ghana's Economic Recovery, Africana Publishers, 1997
  • Africa Betrayed, St. Martin’s Press,, 1992
  • Africa in Chaos, St. Martin’s Press, 1998.[6]
  • Africa Unchained: the blueprint for development, Palgrave/MacMillan, 2004
  • Defeating Dictators: Fighting Tyrants in Africa and Around the World published September 2011.