Tony Blair was in Conakry this week to launch a new Africa Governance Initiative project to support President Alpha Conde’s government, nearly a year after the President came to power in the country’s first ever free and fair democratic election.
Just weeks after telling a global aid Forum that supporting visionary African leadership is a key part of helping developing countries stand on their own two feet, Tony Blair stood alongside President Alpha Conde to announce plans for the development charity to extend its unique model of assistance to the Government of Guinea.
At a press conference in the Guinean capital, AGI Founder Tony Blair said:
“Guinea’s first ever free and fair election, which took place less than a year ago, followed decades of under-development and wasted potential. The election represents a significant opportunity for Guinea to reverse its fortunes and I have great admiration for the way that President Conde has been working exceptionally hard to get his country on the right track from day one of his Presidency, and for the steps he has recently taken on national reconciliation and unity".
“AGI partners with Presidents who are committed to making government work for the benefit of their people. President Conde’s agenda for national unity and prosperity for all shows a clear commitment to the people of Guinea. It is a real privilege for us to play our part. Our team will work with the President and Guinea’s first elected government to build the capacity to deliver the country's priorities - providing electricity, food security, security sector reform".
Speaking at the start of Guinea's official National Unity Week, President Alpha Conde said:
“The first thing that Tony Blair brings is his expertise; second, the experts who he has put at our disposal; third, he helps us see that it’s not enough just to define priorities, we need timetables to deliver them.”
Speaking about the need for the development community to support visionary African leaders like President Conde to take charge of their own destiny, Tony Blair added:
“In Busan a few weeks ago, I said that I was optimistic about Africa’s future, that the 21st century should be Africa’s century. I firmly believe that because I see the hard work of leaders like President Conde of Guinea, President Johnson-Sirleaf of Liberia, President Kagame of Rwanda and President Koroma of Sierra Leone. To help this continent realise its potential, we should support the visionary leadership of this generation of African leaders.”
The Tony Blair Africa Governance Initiative (AGI), founded in 2008, by the former UK prime minister Tony Blair, is pioneering a new way of working with African countries, equipping committed African leaders with the capacity to deliver the public services which their citizens have a right to expect, to tackle deep-rooted poverty, and to attract the sustainable investment to build strong economies for the future. Teams of public and private sector experts work at the heart of African governments, currently Sierra Leone, Rwanda and Liberia, to develop capacity to deliver public services and nurture a thriving private sector.