Gulu University’s Prof Ladaah crowned African Educationist of the Year

Gulu University Vice Chancellor, Prof George Openjuru Ladaah receives the African Educationist of the Year award from Kenya's Chief Justice Martha Koome on Friday, March 15, 2024. Photos/Via @GuluVarsity

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, (Agencies):– Gulu University Vice Chancellor, Prof George Openjuru Ladaah has been crowned as the African Educationist of the Year 2023, at the 12th African Leadership Magazine’s Persons of the Year Awards held last Friday, March 15, 2024, at the Ethiopian Skylight Hotel in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

The award given to Prof Ladaah recognized his charismatic leadership at Gulu University and spirited fight to keep the university more relevant to the community in post-conflict northern Uganda.

The Gulu Varsity boss emerged winner of the award after he garnered a whopping 82% of the votes in an online poll conducted in December last year.

Justice Martha K. Koome, the Chief Justice and President of the Supreme Court of Kenya conferred the award to Prof Ladaah during a March 15, 2024 ceremony in the United Kingdom (UK).

Alongside Prof Ladaah was Ghana’s Kwamena Kwansah-Aidoo the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Media, Arts and Communication, with whom he jointly won the award.

Another Ugandan to win the continental award on the night was businessman Patrick Bitature, the founder & chairman of Simba Group, Uganda.

Other winners in different categories were; Kenyan president Dr William Ruto who was crowned the African of the Year, and African Female Leader of the Year which went to Naseem Lahri, Managing Director, Lucara Botswana, among others.

Speaking at the award ceremony, Dr Gen Giami, the Chairman African Leadership Magazine Organization, said that the awards, now in their twelfth year have always been held with the aim of advocating and promoting good image of the continent to the globe amidst bullying and negative propaganda about Africa.

“Considering the theme of this event, that is Building Resilient African Economies, I recommend that today’s event extends beyond just recognizing achievements by notable Africans but also serves as an opportunity to reflect on responsibilities that come with leadership,” he remarked.

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“Poverty, food crisis, climate change, diseases, illiteracy, political crisis, and conflicts are among the challenges which still continue to confront Africa and demand our unwavering attention and concerted efforts and actions.”

Tanzania’s former Tanzanian president, Dr Jakaya Kikwete, who was the keynote speaker of the day in his remarks raised a red flag against the issue of labour flight of Africans to the Western world which he said needs urgent attention since great minds that should develop Africa end up developing other continents.

He also emphasized the need for political stability and dedicated his award to the security personnel and committed public servants working for peace in Africa.

Other notable dignitaries who attended the ceremony include; Fonati Koffa, the Speaker House of Representatives in Liberia, Anyalem Nigussie, the Ethiopian Minister of Revenue, among others

The award ceremony was co-hosted by the Ethiopian Customs Commission, under the theme: ‘Building Resilient African Economies.

Full list of winners

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African of the Year

  • E William Ruto, President of the Republic of Kenya- Winner
  • Benedict Okey Oramah, President & Chairman, African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank)- Joint-winner
    African Female Leader of the Year
  • Naseem Lahri, Managing Director, Lucara Botswana – Winner
  • Justice Martha K. Koome, Chief Justice of the Republic of Kenya – Joint-winner

African Educationist of the Year

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  • George L. Openjuru, Vice Chancellor, Gulu University, Uganda- Winner
  • Kwamena Kwansah-Aidoo, Vice-Chancellor, University of Media, Arts and Communication, Ghana – Joint-winner
    African Political Leader of the Year
  • E. George Manneh Weah, President of the Republic of Liberia- Winner
  • E. Samia Suluhu Hassan, President of the United Republic of Tanzania- Joint-winner
    African Peace & Security Leader of the Year
  • E. Dr Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete, former President of the United Republic of Tanzania- Winner
  • E. Adama Barrow, President of the Republic of The Gambia- Joint-winner
    African Industrialist of the Year
  • Patrick Bitature, Founder & Chairman, Simba Group, Uganda- Winner
  • Said Salim Awadh Bakhresa, Founder, The Bakhresa Group, Tanzania- Joint-winner
    African Philanthropist of the Year
  • Tein T. S. Jack-Rich, President and Founder, Belemaoil Producing Limited, Nigeria- Winner
  • Ibrahim Mahama, Founder, Engineers and Planners, Ghana- Joint-winner
    Young African Leader of the Year
  • Akol E. Ayii, Founder & Chairman, Trinity Group, South Sudan- Winner
  • Dr Jesca Mhoja Nkwabi, CEO, KOM Group, Tanzania- Joint-winner
    African Public Sector Leader of the Year
  • Ernest N.T. Rubondo, Executive Director, Petroleum Authority of Uganda- Winner
  • Saptieu Elizabeth Saccoh, Administrator & Registrar-General of Sierra Leone- Joint-winner
    African Public Health Leader of the Year
  • The Hon. Dr Kailesh Jagutpal, Minister of Health and Wellness, Mauritius- Winner
  • Dr Matshidiso Moeti, Regional Director for Africa, World Health Organization (WHO)- Joint-winner


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