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Saturday, July 30, 2016

Burning schools, burning education

The rising trend of “burning schools” reported in the media in the East African nation of Kenya has drawn attention to government inquiry. However, apart from the massive loss of millions of shilling worth of property lost in bonfires of books and beds there is a disturbingly loud silence of millions of parents with children in schools. Despite the fact that parents are called upon to pay for damaged property, they seem just as wretched as their children in these circumstances. Parents are bewildered as to what to do with their children. Since sending a child to school is, one if not, the most responsible and loving things a parent can do for a child, parents will pay for the rebuilding of the school. However, rebuilding school property will neither prevent them from being burned again nor inspire in a child a new desire to pursue an education. In effect it is not the school that has been set on fire, it is the desire for education that has been burned. While burning school property is an economic question, burning education is a social catastrophe. A book published by this author provides some hard-hitting insight on the relationship between education and leadership, he points out that…

Education systems remove individuals from social responsibility, isolates them in institutions, raises their ambitions and expectations to unrealistic levels, then channels them back into society 20 years later hoping that they will make a healthy social adjustment and take up leadership roles. This does not happen with satisfactory frequency. Perhaps education systems could integrate social responsibility into school programs (rather than complete isolation) to help developing leadership keep in touch with social reality and begin developing solutions (during their education) to address surrounding social needs. This approach would not only ensure that education becomes a social enterprise that continuously interacts and positively impacts the environment, but would also prepare leadership to practically address social concerns and take initiative to make a social contribution upon completion of education. Education is currently institutionalized it perhaps needs to be socialized. – THINKING LEADERSHIP IN AFRICA, 2004

Education is the seedbed of a nations’ leadership quotient. If the tree of education is burned at the roots it is only a matter of time before the fruits of leadership become embers. Schools are merely vehicles that supply leaders and facilitate the establishment of a society. However an education system that does not serve the interests of society will be as useless as an eyesore of the charred remains of a burned school.

Allan Bukusi


It is not often that you get to walk into a room full of dreams. But recently I was privileged to spend three days of my life with more than 25 AWARD consultants from 11 countries across Africa whose heart and soul breathed the fusion and life of a continent. It is hard to understand what that means if you have all you need. It comes easier when you realize that others do not have what you want. It is easy to pass it off when it does not make a difference to you, but it becomes a different reality when you want to live a life that matters. Such is the power of dreams. 
As I listened to the living dreams and the dissatisfaction with the level of success in the lives of each of those dreamers, I understood that the work to be done was far from finished. I realized that dreams bring life and visions that  light hope are fueled by faith and sustained by love. Perhaps the light of the world is not a candle but a vision of glory - a fusion of dreams. A vision so bright that poverty cannot but be put out. The flicker of success lights up the saddest hearts and puts a smile on a world of faces. Dreams do that –they create a new reality and ignite a fire within bright enough to fight on for another day.

In that room we learned, laughed, shed some tears and revised our dreams. There was good news and bad news and not a little sad news. There were setbacks and drawbacks and downright throwbacks. I think we all understood that the agenda was much bigger than ourselves. And so each of our dreams got bigger! We understood that facts and data are good things, but they must not be allowed to take the place of the hope and glory of destiny. I know life is hard and things don’t always work out, but that is not the time to visit a museum! It is time for you to walk into a room full of dreams, take a candle and go light your world.

Allan Bukusi

A definition of Courage

A close friend shared with me his current state in life....I am discouraged, I am tired and in many ways I am frustrated -by so much and so many. I have lost hope many times over. I have failed so many times I cannot recall the taste of success, but if I give up it will be because I am dead.

Allan Bukusi

Sunday, July 24, 2016

The difference between an "A" and a "C"

An “A” grade indicates an excellent mind schooled in one way of thinking. A “C” grade indicates a mind that reserves the right to investigate plenty of options.

Allan Bukusi.

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Leading & managing

Leaders must have very good managers or else they will lead by managing.

Allan Bukusi

Friday, July 15, 2016

Who made God?

By creating a god you solve the problem of who made god. If God made you then you may need to be aware of it.

Allan Bukusi

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

The folly of success...

Success is not worth it if all you do is achieve it. It must be shared, enjoyed and made meaningful to others.

Allan Bukusi

Saturday, July 2, 2016

The Sayings of Africa !

The Sayings of Africa are not just words or platitudes to make people think. The meaning of the words and the grace with which they roll off the tongue is not meant to entertain the sayer or the sayee. They are made to be easy to recall. Anyone can say them. The sayings of Africa are accumulated wisdom accrued over years of exposure in specific environments and situations. The Sayings of Africa are condensed from the library of a communities understanding and perspective of the principles of life. The sayings of Africa are African and resonate with the souls of the past, present and future generations. The sayings of Africa are rich in school and help us mine the wealth of our heritage. The sayings of Africa teach and warn. They are life to them who live them and disaster to those who ignore them. When you say the sayings you are sitting at the feet of the great who with grace without getting drunk on detail. The sayings of Africa are not just a rich legacy or merely an anthology. The secrets they hold apply to many areas of life, but particularly to the leadership of life. The Sayings of Africa speak to everyone the same. The sayings of Africa, in their apparent simplicity can beguile the most intelligent yet are obvious and explainable to a child. Wisdom does not require intelligence to communicate simple truth. What baffles is that these sayings have universal application. They are written in code. Coded messages reaching into our time with a light to life. The sayings of Africa carry in them libraries of references and depth of content accessible to Africans. From those who have gone before speaking today. So no matter we know not what they say we must treat them with respect if we are to unlock the secrets of that which they say, that which is said and that which will be said. The Sayings of Africa are scattered and I dare say fading, when you hear them, you know them. Some of them project mischief and the naughty use them thus. The Sayings of Africa project wisdom because they frame complex situations, concepts and routine detail hidden in elementary words. Their crafting is the art of a fine mind while their application establishes social norms and forms character. The Sayings of Africa are fading away…The Sayings of Africa are African. They hold the key to Africa. When you hear these saying listen carefully for you are listening to the heart of Africa. In your teaching teach the spirit of Africa. The Sayings of Africa teach survival, give life and facilitate success!
The keys to unlocking the Sayings of Africa are;
  1. Wording; examine the choice, selection and organization of the phrase. 
  2. Context; examine the meaning of the subject and the object in the specific environment.
  3. The principle; examine the principle and unlock the value of its application, and finally 
  4. Generate scenarios in which the principle is applicable in a social (leadership) process.

You will be amazed at the simplicity of wisdom.

Allan Bukusi, July 2016

From Lilongwe, Malawi.