Making Africa Work for Africans (MAWA)

Supporting the leadership growth of 15,000 public sector leaders

About MAWA

Making Africa Work for Africans (#goodgovernancechallenge) is a leadership enhancement program designed to support public sector leaders in Africa to make optimal decisions that will transform Africa into the global powerhouse of the future as defined by the Africa Agenda 2063 (“an integrated, prosperous and peaceful continent, driven by its own citizens, representing a dynamic force in the international arena”) and aligned with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals under the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Making Africa Work for Africans (“MAWA”) supports the optimal decision-making of 15,000 public sector leaders (heads of Ministries, Departments, and Agencies) through the creation of peer-learning experiences, executive coaching, multinational networking, and incentives for superior organizational performance.

The program is designed by BCA Leadership and organized in partnership with the PLO Lumumba Foundation (“PLO”). Making Africa Work for Africans is a generational program with a twenty-five-year duration. The program will start with a three-year pilot phase involving 500 leaders of MDAs, after which the program may be extended to its full scope of 15,000 leaders over 25 years. During the pilot phase, each leader will be supported with a package of leadership and governance-enhancement services costing USD 4,500 per year. The program is open to leaders of MDAs in all 54 African countries.

African business man waiting in a hotel lobby

Assumptions in MAWA Design


A significant number of leaders of MDAs in Africa do desire positive outcomes for their institutions and communities.


African leaders are willing to learn from peers in similar positions in other countries.


African leaders are just as vulnerable to peer pressure as any other leaders; therefore, creating ‘tribes’ of peers helps African leaders to benchmark themselves against peers and strive for better performance.


African leaders are just as hungry for recognition as any other leaders; creating awards and recognition for good leadership performance will inspire African leaders to make optimal decisions.


Executive coaching, which has helped private sector leaders to make optimal decisions and achieve their organizational goals, will be similarly effective with public sector leaders.


African leaders are extremely busy with various demands on their time; any intervention must be extremely time-efficient.

Objectives of MAWA

The objective of Making Africa Work for Africans #goodgovernancechallenge:
The goal of Making Africa Work for Africans is to transform Africa into a middle-income continent by 2030 and a high-income continent by 2045, in line with the Africa Agenda 2063 and the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

The project will start with a three-year pilot phase that will target/impact 500 leaders in Africa. The pilot phase was launched on 16 June 2021.

Features of MAWA

Program Launch

The program was launched with a one-hour inspirational virtual session, hosted by PLO, on the 16th of June 2021 that featured public sector leaders from all over Africa who will be invited to embark on this good governance challenge. Leaders will be given the opportunity to sign up / apply for this program online. Participation in this pilot phase will be limited to 500 leaders. Successful applicants will be notified of the cohorts (peer-learning small groups) that they have been assigned to and will be notified of their cohort meeting dates.

Facilitated Peer-Learning Small Group Meetings

Once every other month, the 500 leaders, in cohorts of around 40 public sector heads, will meet online to share lessons about leading their organizations, solving problems, challenging and inspiring each other to higher levels of performance. These two-hour meetings will be facilitated by BCA’s African leadership coaches. The cohort composition may be periodically reorganized/sorted to ensure that the MDA leaders engage with the most appropriate peer group based on their current position.


Each public sector leader participating in the program will benefit from 6 individual executive coaching sessions per year. Provided by BCA’s African leadership coaches, these coaching sessions will help leaders to achieve their goals, make better decisions by becoming more aware of external and internal factors that influence decision-making processes, and have an accountability partner to support their growth.

Needs & Leads Sessions

BCA will organize and facilitate two online Needs & Leads sessions per year to connect the business needs of these African leaders to those who have the leads. Needs & Leads sessions are a speed-networking session designed to match leaders with one or more other leaders who have a solution (ie, lead) to their problem (ie, need) or knows someone who has a solution to their need. These sessions will connect leaders from all sectors and all parts of Africa, enabling the leaders to access the resources that they need quickly and efficiently.

Annual Leadership Retreat (Made in Africa Leadership Conference)

Once a year, BCA will organize and facilitate an Annual Leadership Conference for the leaders, giving them the opportunity to network with each other and continue to learn lessons from each other. Transportation, accommodation, registration and meals will be provided through this program.

Annual Public Sector Performance Awards

Once a year, awards for various categories of excellence in leadership performance will be given out to participants in the program. The awards will be accompanied by financial rewards given to the winners.