CLASS 4 MAWIMBI (2013), SEMINAR 2 (THE ASPEN SEMINAR), LAKE KIVU, RWANDA.
The second 2nd seminar for ALI EA Class 4 cohort was held on 27th April – 3rd May 2014 in Rwanda.
The second seminar; which is also called the Aspen Seminar, was held at Serena Hotel located by the beach of Lake Kivu. The Seminar focused on fellows personal thoughts on the role of government in creating the good society in terms of socioeconomic growth and sustainability.
A total of 19 fellows participated in the seminar, names as follows with their respective countries in brackets; Eva Muraya, David Onyango, Peter Nduatti, Pamella Sittoni, Sara Menker, Celestine Nkundabemera and Teddy Warria (Kenya), David F. K. Mpanga, Dr. Okello Aliker, Patricia Muhebwa and Patricia Musoke (Uganda), Hannington Namara, Francis Mugisha, Hope Azeda and Anthony Masozera (Rwanda), Reginald Massawe, Catherinerose Baretto, Rita Kahurananga and Nankali Maksud (Tanzania).
Moderators’ team included Keith Berwick (USA), Mariam Luyombo (Canada) and the moderator in training who joined for the first time this round, Victoria Tunu Chale (Tanzania).
ALI EAF management team was also present as local support including Chairman Mr. Ali A. Mufuruki, Secretary Mrs. Zuhura Muro and Program Officer Ms. Alice Mwiru.
Seminar 2, which is sometimes called the Aspen Seminar, is all about the Great Values/Defining the Good Society. It is a 5-day seminar in which the Fellows build their vision of “a good society” by reading, discussing, debating and relating the writings of a wide range of thinkers to their present-day conditions. Thinkers include Plato, Aristotle, Rousseau, Hobbes, Lee Kwan Yew, Milton Friedman, Rachel Carson, Ibn Khaldun, Simon Bolivar and others. Fellows share their personal thoughts on the proper role of government in society as well as on the sorts of trade-offs they are willing to accept in the name of economic growth and social stability.
Some of the interesting discussions during the seminar were centered on the issues of equality, human nature, liberty which provoked further discussion on the real life situations in East Africa including the ongoing process of writing a new constitution in Tanzania, gender inequalities in the business sector in Kenya, egalitarianism versus libertarianism and many other in which the fellows are directly and/or indirectly involved. Fellows agreed that it was useful for them to have the opportunity to share insights and challenges they face in their everyday life and to challenge each other to play their significant roles in creating the good society in their communities.