CAG Concludes First Pan-African Senior Leadership Programme on Building Strong Nations

September 1, 2023
CAG welcomes the inaugural cohort to Singapore to attend the final segment of the Strong Nations for Africa Programme
  • 20 senior government leaders from 10 countries across Africa were in Singapore to attend the final segment of the Strong Nations for Africa Programme as the inaugural cohort
  • The Programme drew upon CIG's unique and holistic understanding of Strong Nations - which have wise governments, vibrant businesses and unified communities, and are helmed by leaders who understand and effectively steward the national story
  • The Programme combined expert-led discussions and lectures with curated learning journeys, allowing participants to observe policy in practice and to identify good practices for their respective home countries
  • This final segment rounds up and complements the earlier two segments – one held in Nairobi, Kenya, and the other done online
SINGAPORE, 1 September 2023 — The Chandler Academy of Governance (CAG) welcomed 20 government leaders from across 10 African countries to Singapore, for the concluding segment of the Strong Nations for Africa Programme, which was delivered in collaboration with the African Association for Public Administration and Management. In the course of a week, the participants went through expert-facilitated workshops, peer-led discussions and learning journeys to understand the building blocks for strong nations, and the government’s role as architects for doing so. Participants were also able to observe policy implementation and governance in practice within the Singapore context, and reflect on good practices that could potentially be adopted in their respective countries.

Held from 28 August to 1 September 2023, this final segment of the programme focused on the three pillars of a strong nation, which aligned to the three main actors in any country - wise government, vibrant businesses and unified communities.

Participants were introduced to the concept of national story, and the important role that government leaders play to steward that story in policy design and implementation. Participants drew on lessons from the Singapore story and discussed how they – as leaders – could also steward their own national stories. They were also introduced to the Singapore corruption control system, and reflected on tools and frameworks that could be adopted in their respective countries.

Mr. Kenneth Sim, Dean, CAG, sharing about the role of government leaders in stewarding the national story

Mr. Soh Kee Hean facilitating a discussion among the participants on fighting corruption in the Singapore context

The week-long programme also looked at the role of government in building a vibrant economic environment, which is the engine for prosperous nations and building a strong middle class. Following an expert lecture focused on tools and frameworks designed to help participants diagnose the health of a nation’s economy, participants were also brought on learning journeys to better understand key facets of Singapore’s policy approach towards economic development. These include visits to the Institute of Technical Education – a lynchpin for skills training and workforce development – and to Singapore’s industrial parks.

Mr. Terence Ho introducing principles and frameworks for economic development and its application in the Singapore economic growth story
Participants explored Singapore's industrial parks to understand the role of the government in developing infrastructure for attracting investments and growing economic growth clusters
Participants visited the Institute of Technical Education (ITE) to understand how skills training and continuing education is done in Singapore to support workforce development

The Programme also looked at the government’s role in building unified communities in cultures of diversity. Participants embarked on a self-led learning journey to different parts of Singapore, including its residential heartlands, to understand how various policy levers in areas such as housing, urban planning and education, work in concert to foster social interaction and to promote social mobility. Lessons from the learning journeys were also discussed through an expert-led workshop on policies and systems adopted by governments across the world to build unified communities.

Mr. Geoffrey Njuguna from Kenya sharing key insights from his group during the session on National Unity led by Dr. Aaron Maniam
Participants embarked on a self-led learning journey to Singapore’s residential heartlands to examine Singapore’s policy approaches to developing unified communities

This final segment built upon, and complemented, the previous ones. The first segment held in Nairobi had focused on helping participants to develop a shared understanding of the African context, including its challenges and goals, and their roles as government leaders from the continent. The second segment – held online – was focused on helping participants understand and build individual leadership competencies. 

"The model of building strong nations and the pillars of leadership, building a wise, prosperous, but also diverse nation, are very relevant to my country. And as part of the programme, we also learnt how to build our narrative, our story, and then how we continue from there to develop a strong nation. So I believe, by strengthening the leadership within my country, we should be able to build a wise nation and a leadership that is transformational."
Ms. Irene Pauline Bateebe
Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development, Uganda

More information about the intent and design of the programme can be found here

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About the Chandler Institute of Governance (CIG)

The Chandler Institute of Governance (CIG) is an international non-profit organisation, headquartered in Singapore. We believe in a world where citizens have a deep sense of trust in their governments and public institutions, and where nations are governed by principled, wise leaders supported by an effective civil service. Trust and effective governance serve as a strong foundation for national development and prosperity. CIG supports governments in building government talent, leadership and public service capabilities through training programmes, research initiatives and advisory work. We are not affiliated with any national government or political party, and we do not represent any partisan or commercial interests.

For more news and information, visit or follow CIG on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn @ChandlerINST

About the Chandler Academy of Governance (CAG)

The Chandler Academy of Governance (CAG) is the training arm of CIG. CAG complements and supports CIG’s work by designing and delivering training programmes that are practitioner-oriented, to equip government leaders with capabilities required to meet the realities and demands of public service work. CAG works with its panel of adjunct trainers and subject matter experts in the design and delivery of these programmes.

For more information about CAG, please visit
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For media clarifications, please contact:

Dominic GABRIEL (Mr)
Communications Manager
Chandler Institute of Governance
SIN Xin Ping (Ms)
Head, Programmes
Chandler Institute of Governance