UONGOZI Institute has announced no winners for its 2020 Leadership Essay Competition today.
The 2020 Competition marked the eighth since inception (2013) and similar to previous years, it was organised as a component of the Institute’s African Leadership Forum. Young Africans between the ages of 18 and 25 years were asked to respond to the following question:
If you were an African leader, how would you promote African intra-trade to unlock agricultural potential in the Continent?
Explaining the rationale behind the Institute’s decision, the Acting Chief Executive Officer, Kadari Singo, said:
“Our Leadership Essay Competition provides a space for young Africans and the next generation of leaders in the region to contribute to important discussions on leadership as well as sustainable development. In a way, it allows them to improve their independent research and writing skills. This year, we received about 1,300 entries, a 45% decrease compared with 2,400 entries in 2019. We attributed this decrease to the changes and challenges brought about by COVID-19.”
He added that the essays were rigorously evaluated on the basis of originality, organisation, creativity, appropriateness to contest theme and the use of language. While some of them were presented in an interesting fashion, they were unable to score sufficient points to be included as finalists. According to him, the most common mistakes that held back the youngsters from scooping the top accolades include: Lack of originality, failure to stick with the theme of the contest as well as organise ideas in a clear and engaging manner, spelling and grammatical errors, and late submission.
Singo went on to commend and thank each one of the young African citizens who participated in the 2020 Competition, and encourage them to take this as an opportunity to try again, but this time in the most brilliant way. He concluded his remarks by sharing tips on winning the Institute’s essay contest with future contestants. He said:
“Contestants have more chances to win if they select powerful titles that give the judges a general understanding of what their essays are about whilst grabbing their attention. Furthermore, if they are authentic, demonstrate creativity, proofread their essays several times prior to submitting them, and submit their essays before the deadline.”