Hon. Ministers, Excellencies,
Acting Executive Secretary of the UNECA
I am delighted to be with you today to deliver today’s lecture in honour of the late Professor Adebayo Adedeji, one of the founding Executive Secretaries of the UN ECA. I would like to acknowledge the hard work and commitment from various stakeholders involved in the success of today’s session which aims at preserving the legacies of Prof Adedeji. I hope that through these memorial lectures, we would be able to animate his deeply pro-humanity and Pan-African ideas and provide a foundation for us to continue to interrogate the African story. Permit me to also acknowledge all the past speakers who have graced this pulpit. It is indeed an honour for me to join this list.
As you all know, we are here because of a man, who gave his all in service to our beloved continent. Let me thank the Acting Executive Secretary of ECA, Mr. Antonio Pedro and all staff of ECA, who have worked tirelessly in putting this lecture together and sustaining it since 2014. Prof. Adedeji’s legacy as a consummate public intellectual and development activist is one that should be preserved in creating role models for younger and future generations of Africans. Even though I, myself, was not a student of Prof. Adedeji, nor did I particularly work directly with him, as many of my contemporaries, he was always available to support me, especially while I was at ECOWAS on African economic, social, political and cultural issues.