I grew up in challenging circumstances, as a youngster in the impoverished Section 10 of Roan Township in the copper mining mining town of Luanshya, Zambia. Education was not a prioeitym so my older brother and I were the strange boys who went to Secondary School. The normal fare were early pregnancies, unsatisfactory pregnancy outcomes, large family sizes that available incomes could not support, the aforementioned low school completion rate and, later, high HIV prevalence, have perpetuated and fed the cycle of poverty up to now. From an early age I wanted to find a way of contributing to breaking the cycle of poverty, not just for my people, but for similarly excluded communities elsewhere. To do that, I first needed to escape the poverty trap.

I have a Medical Degree, a Master’s Degree in Public Health (MPH), a Higher National Diploma (HND) in District Health Management and I am a Chevening Scholar. I have held progressively increasing public health responsibilities at district, national and regional level in the public sector, NGO settings and the UN System for the past 18 years. However, the main passion is socio-economic development of the African continent to attain its potential so that young Africans today will be global leaders tomorrow.

I believe our main obstacle to development is that we attempt to force square pegs into round holes – all solutions to our problems are crafted in Europe, America and, lately, China. We need to look at the things that have worked and see our various cultures as strengths for our economic liberation and not primitive behaviours to be afraid of.