From right: Prof. Isaac Olawale Albert, University of Ibadan; Sébastien F.W. Brack, Senior Advisor - Representative to the European Union, Kofi Annan Foundation; John Pokoo, Head of Conflict Management Programme, KAIPTC; Dr Margaret Monyani, Senior Researcher, Special Projects, Migration, ISS, and Prof. Kwesi Aning, KAIPTC
From right: Prof. Isaac Olawale Albert, University of Ibadan; Sébastien F.W. Brack, Senior Advisor - Representative to the European Union, Kofi Annan Foundation; John Pokoo, Head of Conflict Management Programme, KAIPTC; Dr Margaret Monyani, Senior Researcher, Special Projects, Migration, ISS, and Prof. Kwesi Aning, KAIPTC

3rd Kofi Annan Peace and Security forum: Our poor conditions of service scare away brilliant students — Lecturer

Most brilliant students do not want to teach but prefer to pursue their careers abroad because of the appalling conditions of service of university lecturers in many African countries, a Professor of African History, Peace and Conflict Studies, University of Ibadan, Nigeria, Isaac Olawale Albert, has said.

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“Our students are not encouraged by the life we, the professors, live. They know where we live and the kind of cars we drive. Some even come to our offices to advise us not to be risking our lives. 

“Because the students do not see anything in us, when they graduate with First Class, they leave,” he added. 
Prof. Albert was speaking at this year’s Kofi Annan Peace and Security Forum in Accra last Thursday on the topic “Demography and migration in a multipolar world order?”.

The two-day event was on the theme: "Migration and societal resilience in a multipolar world order: Addressing conflicts and building peace in Africa.”

It brought together more than 200 delegates from Africa and Europe, including experts in migration, security and development.

To address the issue in a manner that African countries were able to benefit from their educated elites, Prof. Albert stressed the need for the formulation of policies that would inure to the benefit of the continent. 

For instance, he said the Nigeria government had a policy that ensured trained nurses served for a period of two years before their certificates were issued to them. 

He, however, said such a measure was not sustainable since there were limited job opportunities for them in the country after school.

Global politics  

A consultant at the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Centre, Prof. Kwesi Aning, said global narratives about migration were usually skewed, and said matters of migration must not be politicised. 

“We need an African approach to human mobility,” he said, and added that there was the need to build on the history of the continent for people to have a humane understanding of migration and fashion best practices to make migrants comfortable. 

For his part, Senior Advisor and Representative to the EU and the Kofi Annan Foundation, Sébastien F.W. Brack, said migration was an age-old phenomenon, but observed that what had changed in the contemporary situation was the rise of nation states with well defined police borders and large scale of migration. 

He said the demographic explosion in the sahel had led many Africa youth to migrate to Europe for greener pastures. 

Mr Brack said an EU pact on migration and asylum had been launched as a response to migration challenges in member countries.

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