African Leadership Academy Model African Union (ALAMAU)

A group of four Form III girls and six Form IV girls, Mrs Molobye and I celebrated Human Rights Day by participating in the African Leadership Academy Model African Union (ALAMAU) at the Indaba Hotel from 21 to 25 March.

Megan Beart, Jaeger Breen, Hannah Codrington, Hannah Ince, Malaika Khumalo, Helen Moore, Caryn Phipson, Anthea Poklewski-Koziell, Catherine Smith and Isabella Teixeira formed part of the St Mary’s delegation to the ALAMAU and represented nine African countries and one British publication (The Guardian). These countries included Angola, Ethiopia, Chad, Algeria, Mali, Malawi, Rwanda, Nigeria and Senegal.

The ALAMAU is an annual leadership conference for young leaders in Africa and across the world and it simulates the activities of the African Union. Delegates to the ALAMAU developed implementable solutions for African development challenges through diplomacy and international co-operation, in a format inspired by the Model United Nations and the African Union. As representatives of the above-mentioned countries, our girls studied complex African issues, understood the position of the African country they were representing and learned to negotiate successfully without compromising their countries’ national interests.

The theme for ALAMAU 2018 was “Foundations for a Sustainable Future”. The various committees explored issues around renewable energy, sectorial violence, gender, Africa’s financial independence and numerous other issues. The conference was not limited to the committee sessions but included educational tours to the Cradle of Humankind and the Apartheid Museum, and a cultural night celebrating our continent’s talent and diversity.

Our St Mary’s delegates were effective and impactful representatives in their various committees and received the following awards:

  • Jaeger Breen: Best Delegate in the African Commission on Science and Technology
  • Hannah Codrington: Best Pre-Conference submission and Best Delegate in the Press Corps
  • Hannah Ince: Honourable mention in the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa
  • Malaika Khumalo: Pan-African Award in the African Development Bank
  • Helen Moore: Best Speaker in the New Partnership for Africa’s Development Council
  • Anthea Poklewski-Koziel: Best Speaker in the African Energy Commission
  • Catherine Smith: Honourable mention in the Executive Council
  • Isabella Teixeira: Best Speaker in the Pan-African Parliament

This was a magnificent opportunity for our delegation to increase their passion for the development of our continent and to view Africa’s challenges in a constructive way. The ALAMAU also created a platform where our girls could interact with other African teenagers and be inspired by the intellect, creativity and optimism exuded by their African peers. The girls, Mrs Molobye and I returned to school feeling proud to be Africans in an authentic South African school.

Tinhiko Nkuna

Deputy Headmistress