The Boston University (BU) African Presidential Centre has invited former Zambian president Rupiah Bwezani Banda to make a presentation at the 2013 African Presidential Roundtable to be held in Johannesburg South Africa.
The former Zambian President’s presentation is expected to touch on what Western countries can do to provide assistance in facilitating the electoral process in Africa and what the current generation of leaders need to do to further stability and democracy on the continent and, more specifically, in their own countries.
According to a statement issued by Mr Banda’s deputy administrative assistant Kennedy Limwanya, the former president has since written to current ruler Michael Sata, informing him of the South African assignment which will run from 5th to 8th June, 2013 under the theme “The Cost of Democracy”.
The 2013 African Presidential Roundtable will be centred on what needs to be achieved for Africans to gain greater involvement in the electoral process in their respective countries.
In inviting Mr Banda to the 10th African Presidential Roundtable slated for Constitution Hill in the Winnie Mandela Courtyard, BU African Presidential Centre director Charles Stith said the former Zambian head of State’s election monitoring experience would be crucial to the event.
“Given this year’s focus – The Cost of Democracy – and your experience of monitoring elections across the continent, I felt the insights you could provide would be invaluable,” wrote Ambassador Stith in the invitation letter to the retired Zambian politician.
Last year, President Banda spent nearly three months at Boston University in the United States of America as President-in-Residence, lecturing at the institution and other associate universities both within and outside the country.
Mr Banda was last Friday due to have left for Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, at the invitation of the African Union to attend the 50th Anniversary of the founding of the continental body’s forerunner, the Organisation of African Unity.
But, at the eleventh hour, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which had earlier informed this office about the invitation and asked for his passport to facilitate the purchasing of the air ticket, said it was not possible to make last-minute preparations for the trip.