June 25th 2021, on the occasion of the graduation of the students of Don Bosco Institute of Philosophy Ibadan, the General Coordinator of Correct Connect Africa Foundation CCAF, Anthony Aleakwe Odior, delivered a lecture titled “The Relationship between Cultural Renaissance and Integral Progress in Africa.” The ceremony featured the presence of several high-profile individuals, amongst whom are rectors of different institutions of formation, lecturers, students, parents and family members and friends of the graduating students.
The lecture centred on how cultural rebirth can be a springboard to integral progress in Africa. The CCAF General Coordinator drew attention to Cheikh Anta Diop’s Cultural and Historical Unity as a factual reality and heritage of Africa. It means that Africa has a single history and culture, which reflects in the language matrix; the dominant worldview, common religious background, political organization and shared historical consciousness. According to him: “the historical consciousness or factor is the cultural cement that unifies the distinct elements of a people to make them into a whole by the particular slant of the feeling of historical continuity lived by the totality of the collective.”
Anthony Aleakwe Odior reiterates Kwame Nkrumah’s position on the need for a social revolution, propelled by an intellectual revolution. He stated that the unity of Africa and its economic unification are a sine qua non to its progress.
The speaker concluded his lecture by challenging the students to base their research and thinking in the African context. “Philosophy, as they say, is not done in a vacuum. It happens within time and space, embracing the context and culture of the people it seeks to serve. It is therefore important that the content of your thinking and research be birthed from within, so that the right answers, compatible and capable of advancing African progress is actualised. If we don’t do it, no one else will do it for us!”
High applause and appreciation followed the conclusion of the lecture. The Dean of Students, Fr. Dr Anthony Emeka Okonkwo, thanked the speaker, stating the direction of the Institute regarding rediscovering African roots, which reflects in the newly added course on Africa History, African symbols and decorations used to embellish the conference hall.
Other highlights of the event included the presentation of awards to the graduands and also refreshments.