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Aga Khan University - Speech Princess Zahra Aga Khan 2023 and similar

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Aga Khan University Convocation: Speech Princess Zahra 2023

VIDEO OF SPEECH: https://ismaili.net/timeline/2023/2023- ... speech.mp4



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AKU founders day speech by H H the Aga Khan

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“ Founder’s Day refers not to one person, or even one generation. Instead, it acknowledges the collective work that moves AKU ever forward in line with its distinctive mission: to bring knowledge, leadership, and excellence to bear upon the challenges facing the world, especially in Asia and Africa, and to build bridges of understanding between countries, cultures, and faiths.”

Full Speech

AKU founders day

18 Mar 2023


Bismillah-ir-Rahman-ir-Rahim

Forty years ago, the Aga Khan University received its Charter from the Government of Pakistan as a vast crowd of well-wishers looked on. It was a truly historic occasion – the kind that comes only a few times in one's life. It filled my heart and the hearts of many others with joy and pride.

Four decades later, we have gathered to celebrate a trio of milestones. This time we have done so on three continents and before a global audience, a testament to the University’s enormous growth and transformation. And if our joy and pride were great in 1983, how much greater they should be today, given all that we have achieved together, and the promise of our graduands.

Some in the audience today were here in Karachi on the 16th of March, 1983. They will surely remember the high spirits of the day. If you ask them, they may also recall that the size of the audience far exceeded expectations and the number of seats available!

Some will recall as well the ceremony that followed two years later, at which we inaugurated the Aga Khan University Hospital and the Faculty of Health Sciences. I spoke then about the arduous journey from the project’s announcement in 1964 to the completion of its first phase in 1985. For the creation of AKU was an immense task, involving moments of exhaustion as well as moments of exultation. I remain grateful to all those who, with me, battled to bring the University into existence.

Yet, exemplary devotion to the University’s founding vision has not ceased in the decades since. AKU's donors continue to build its endowments with boundless generosity; its faculty and staff to serve as the guardians of its culture and values; its volunteers and partners to freely share their invaluable expertise. It is to celebrate such ongoing commitment and all that it has made possible that the University has established Founder’s Day as an annual tradition.

Founder’s Day refers not to one person, or even one generation. Instead, it acknowledges the collective work that moves AKU ever forward in line with its distinctive mission: to bring knowledge, leadership, and excellence to bear upon the challenges facing the world, especially in Asia and Africa, and to build bridges of understanding between countries, cultures, and faiths.


Underlying that mission are a number of fundamental convictions. As we step confidently into our fifth decade, there has never been a better time to revisit them.

These convictions include the belief that the pursuit of knowledge is not a threat to faith but its natural complement. As the philosopher Al-Kindi wrote more than a thousand years ago, “No one is diminished by the truth, rather does the truth ennoble all.” The conviction that Africa and Asia can make mighty contributions to global innovation. That high standards are not a luxury to be dispensed with in low-income settings, but the wellspring of progress. That diversity is a blessing rather than a burden, and that half the world’s talent – at least – lies in the minds of women.

To these principles can be added several important observations. Among them that the world has entered a new era, that of the knowledge society, in which intellectual achievement decisively shapes the fate of individuals and peoples. That in an age of polarisation, strong civil society institutions can reknit the torn threads of community. And, crucially, that all these insights can be united and made real in millions of lives via a uniquely powerful institution. Namely, the modern university.

While it was founded in deeply held convictions, no one should imagine that AKU’s success was inevitable. The University was conceived amid the chill of the Cold War, as the high hopes that followed decolonisation were encountering stubborn realities. It took shape in a time of crisis for higher education in the developing world. Across Asia and Africa, universities struggled to meet lofty expectations, leading to many questioning their value altogether. Abroad, experts argued that low-income countries ought to spend their scarce funds on elementary education rather than higher education. AKU’s planners were swimming against the tide.

The University’s greatest growth occurred during a period of local and global transformation, as the bipolar era thawed into one of tremendous uncertainty. I must say: our boldness in such circumstances caused us some trepidation. Questions abounded. Would the University’s vision galvanise the support of its diverse constituencies? Could it attain international benchmarks of quality while remaining accessible to the least advantaged? If it could strike that balance in an institution of limited scale, could it do so in one of growing scope?

Forty years on, these questions have been answered in the affirmative – if not for all time, then at least for the time being. The University has amply vindicated the faith of its champions. AKU’s achievements are many, varied, and increasing in number. They are a source of great happiness to me. Among the most recent is its appearance on the global rankings of leading universities. It seems that AKU is, as I hoped it would, “catching the imagination of the world”. That it has done so is thanks to the dedication of its people, the achievements of its alumni, the generosity of its donors and volunteers, and the support it has received from government and private-sector institutions at home and abroad.

But rather than list laurels, I will cite here only what seems to me the most indelible of the University’s accomplishments: that it has become a source of hope for so many. From the patients who seek relief from suffering at its hospitals, to the parents who dream of seeing their children don its graduation robes – AKU’s name conjures hope. There is no force more powerful or more needed today. When we plant hope in people’s lives, we lighten all their burdens. It is a source of energy and inspiration that is endlessly renewable.

Obstacles to AKU’s ambitions will not cease to arise in the years ahead. Change in our various contexts will be ongoing – if anything, it looks likely to accelerate. The University must keep one eye fixed on the horizon, evolving and adapting to new circumstances. At the same time, it must keep its founding vision firmly before it. A great university is not built in a few decades, or even in a lifetime.

AKU’s purpose must remain lucid and constant, transcending the generations even as it is reborn in each new generation’s passion and commitment.

Today, as in 1983, the future of the University lies in the hands of its leaders, faculty, staff, and supporters. It depends no less on the excellence of its students and graduates. I have the utmost faith that the Class of 2022 will continue to add lustre to the University's name, whether from within its own classrooms and clinics, or from institutions equally vital and renowned.

Together, all of us are the custodians of the founding vision. Our history gives us every reason to believe that so long as we remain true to that vision, AKU’s light – the light depicted in the University’s seal – will grow ever brighter, helping to illuminate the path to a better future for the people it serves.

Graduands, my wish today is that you will know the joy of planting hope in people's lives, of building bridges of understanding, of venturing into the uncharted waters where new knowledge is discovered. May your futures be rich in challenges embraced and overcome. May you be bold amid uncertainty, and see your boldness rewarded.

Aga Khan

Delivered by Princess Zahra Aga Khan
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AKU 2023 Message from Aga Khan IV, Chancellor

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Message by Chancellor His Highness The Aga Khan (Convocation today).

Bismillah-ir-Rahman-ir-Rahim

Forty years ago, the Aga Khan University received its Charter from the Government of Pakistan as a vast crowd of well-wishers looked on. It was a truly historic occasion – the kind that comes only a few times in one's life. It filled my heart and the hearts of many others with joy and pride.

Four decades later, we have gathered to celebrate a trio of milestones. This time we have done so on three continents and before a global audience, a testament to the University’s enormous growth and transformation. And if our joy and pride were great in 1983, how much greater they should be today, given all that we have achieved together, and the promise of our graduands.

Some in the audience today were here in Karachi on the 16th of March, 1983. They will surely remember the high spirits of the day. If you ask them, they may also recall that the size of the audience far exceeded expectations and the number of seats available!

Some will recall as well the ceremony that followed two years later, at which we inaugurated the Aga Khan University Hospital and the Faculty of Health Sciences. I spoke then about the arduous journey from the project’s announcement in 1964 to the completion of its first phase in 1985. For the creation of AKU was an immense task, involving moments of exhaustion as well as moments of exultation. I remain grateful to all those who, with me, battled to bring the University into existence.

Yet, exemplary devotion to the University’s founding vision has not ceased in the decades since. AKU's donors continue to build its endowments with boundless generosity; its faculty and staff to serve as the guardians of its culture and values; its volunteers and partners to freely share their invaluable expertise. It is to celebrate such ongoing commitment and all that it has made possible that the University has established Founder’s Day as an annual tradition. Founder’s Day refers not to one person, or even one generation. Instead, it acknowledges the collective work that moves AKU ever forward in line with its distinctive mission: to bring knowledge, leadership, and excellence to bear upon the challenges facing the world, especially in Asia and Africa, and to build bridges of understanding between countries, cultures, and faiths.

Underlying that mission are a number of fundamental convictions. As we step confidently into our fifth decade, there has never been a better time to revisit them.

These convictions include the belief that the pursuit of knowledge is not a threat to faith but its natural complement. As the philosopher Al-Kindi wrote more than a thousand years ago, “No one is diminished by the truth, rather does the truth ennoble all.” The conviction that Africa and Asia can make mighty contributions to global innovation. That high standards are not a luxury to be dispensed with in low-income settings, but the wellspring of progress. That diversity is a blessing rather than a burden, and that half the world’s talent – at least – lies in the minds of women.

To these principles can be added several important observations. Among them that the world has entered a new era, that of the knowledge society, in which intellectual achievement decisively shapes the fate of individuals and peoples. That in an age of polarization, strong civil society institutions can reknit the torn threads of community. And, crucially, that all these insights can be united and made real in millions of lives via a uniquely powerful institution. Namely, the modern university.

While it was founded in deeply held convictions, no one should imagine that AKU’s success was inevitable. The University was conceived amid the chill of the Cold War, as the high hopes that followed decolonization were encountering stubborn realities. It took shape in a time of crisis for higher education in the developing world. Across Asia and Africa, universities struggled to meet lofty expectations, leading to many questioning their value altogether. Abroad, experts argued that low-income countries ought to spend their scarce funds on elementary education rather than higher education. AKU’s planners were swimming against the tide.

The University’s greatest growth occurred during a period of local and global transformation, as the bipolar era thawed into one of tremendous uncertainty. I must say: our boldness in such circumstances caused us some trepidation. Questions abounded. Would the University’s vision galvanize the support of its diverse constituencies? Could it attain international benchmarks of quality while remaining accessible to the least advantaged? If it could strike that balance in an institution of limited scale, could it do so in one of growing scope?

Forty years on, these questions have been answered in the affirmative – if not for all time, then at least for the time being. The University has amply vindicated the faith of its champions. AKU’s achievements are many, varied, and increasing in number. They are a source of great happiness to me. Among the most recent is its appearance on the global rankings of leading universities. It seems that AKU is, as I hoped it would, “catching the imagination of the world.” That it has done so is thanks to the dedication of its people, the achievements of its alumni, the generosity of its donors and volunteers, and the support it has received from government and private-sector institutions at home and abroad.

But rather than list laurels, I will cite here only what seems to me the most indelible of the University’s accomplishments: that it has become a source of hope for so many. From the patients who seek relief from suffering at its hospitals, to the parents who dream of seeing their children don its graduation robes – AKU’s name conjures hope. There is no force more powerful or more needed today. When we plant hope in people’s lives, we lighten all their burdens. It is a source of energy and inspiration that is endlessly renewable.

Obstacles to AKU’s ambitions will not cease to arise in the years ahead. Change in our various contexts will be ongoing – if anything, it looks likely to accelerate. The University must keep one eye fixed on the horizon, evolving and adapting to new circumstances. At the same time, it must keep its founding vision firmly before it. A great university is not built in a few decades, or even in a lifetime.

AKU’s purpose must remain lucid and constant, transcending the generations even as it is reborn in each new generation’s passion and commitment.

Today, as in 1983, the future of the University lies in the hands of its leaders, faculty, staff, and supporters. It depends no less on the excellence of its students and graduates. I have the utmost faith that the Class of 2022 will continue to add luster to the University's name, whether from within its own classrooms and clinics, or from institutions equally vital and renowned.

Together, all of us are the custodians of the founding vision. Our history gives us every reason to believe that so long as we remain true to that vision, AKU’s light – the light depicted in the University’s seal – will grow ever brighter, helping to illuminate the path to a better future for the people it serves.

Graduands, my wish today is that you will know the joy of planting hope in people's lives, of building bridges of understanding, of venturing into the uncharted waters where new knowledge is discovered. May your futures be rich in challenges embraced and overcome. May you be bold amid uncertainty, and see your boldness rewarded.

Thank you.
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Aga Khan University to open hospital in Uganda 2023-04-26

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https://www.msn.com/en-xl/health/other/ ... r-AA1anyzh

Aga Khan University to open hospital in Uganda

UGANDA | AGA KHAN | HOSPITAL | KHALANI

The Aga Khan University (AKU) is to set up a 600-bed world-class teaching hospital in Uganda where patients will have easy access to specialized healthcare services.

The state-of-the-art facility will consist of a medical education block and housing facilities and will provide advanced forms of specialist treatment and care.

Speaking to New Vision, Rashid Khalani, CEO of the Aga Khan University Hospital, said that the center is going to open an unmatched opportunity for Ugandans to access world-class medical and nursing services when they need them and where they need them.

“The new facility is going to reduce the need for Ugandans to travel abroad to seek treatment. The result of this is an economic and social benefit for patients in Uganda and across the region,” Khalani said.

Currently, Uganda spends about Sh204b (US $76m) with at least Sh5.8b (US $2.2m) spent on treatment of mostly public servants abroad. The Aga Khan Hospital in Nairobi has been receiving patients from Uganda over the last few years for the treatment of various complex diseases, especially in the areas of Cancer, Heart diseases, Brain tumors, and neurosurgeons.

The hospital will be located in Nakawa a central location offering easy access for patients.
Provided by SyndiGate Media Inc.
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agha-khan-university-starts-construction-of-its-kampala-campus

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https://cceonlinenews.com/2023/05/05/ag ... -campus-2/

Agha Khan University starts construction of its Kampala Campus

By
CCE NEWS TEAM
May 5, 2023

The Aga Khan University celebrated the start of construction of its new campus in Kampala at a ceremony attended by the First Lady of Uganda, Her Excellency Janet Museveni, and Princess Zahra Aga Khan.

AKU’s 60-acre campus is located in the Nakawa area, at New Port Bell Road and Jinja Road. It will feature in its first phase a seven-storey University Centre, a nine-storey student housing building and the Aga Khan University Hospital, Kampala. The hospital will offer care in nearly two dozen specialties, ranging from family medicine to oncology.

The project represents one of AKU’s largest investments in East Africa to date. This will enable a significant expansion of the University’s existing School of Nursing and Midwifery in Kampala and will also allow the University to begin training medical specialists in fields such as internal medicine and surgery. Construction of the University Centre and student housing is currently underway. Construction of the hospital will start early next year. A four-story ambulatory care building will offer outpatient care in a wide range of specialties in advance of the hospital’s completion.

“We know that through this facility, a new crop of exceptionally skilled and equipped nurses and midwives will be available to support the health sector all over Uganda in years to come,” said Her Excellency Janet Museveni, Minister of Education and Sports. “We look forward to witnessing this project succeed, as we experience international quality health care and a new generation of phenomenal leaders in this sector!”

“The Aga Khan Development Network’s goal in East Africa is to build a network of clinics and hospitals that bring primary care as close as possible to people’s homes, while linking them seamlessly to advanced care,” Princess Zahra Aga Khan said. “We aim for these facilities – in collaboration with partner governments and educational institutions – to be staffed by highly-trained clinicians, equipped with the latest technologies, and prepared to address the region’s changing burden of disease.”​​

The land for the campus and hospital was generously provided by the Government of Uganda, and speakers expressed their gratitude to His Excellency President Yoweri Museveni for his vision and his strong support of the project. Funding for construction was provided by His Highness the Aga Khan, generous donors and the Government of Germany’s BMZ and KfW. Valuable support was also provided by the East African Community.

Designed by the award-winning architecture firm Legorreta, AKU’s Kampala campus and hospital will form an important part of the Aga Khan Development Network’s extensive health care system in East Africa. AKU and the Aga Khan Health Services operate five hospitals and almost 100 clinics that care for more than 1.5 million patients annually in Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda.

“We look forward to seeing the University train generations of future leaders in nursing, medicine, and other disciplines on this campus and to seeing the hospital provide international-quality health care in a wide range of fields,” said Ms. Cornelia Penzel, KFW Country Director for Uganda. “We are positive that AKU will continue to grow in scope, in excellence, and in impact.”

AKU has been active in Uganda for 23 years. In Kampala, it has graduated 1,300 nurses and midwives who are working in government and private-sector institutions in urban and rural communities across the country. Several hundred Ugandan teachers and journalists have graduated from or are enrolled at AKU and more than 2,000 have completed short courses. The University also operates three medical centres in Kampala. In total, AKU has graduated more than 4,500 nurses, doctors, teachers and journalists across East Africa.

“In the years and decades to come, countless lives will be saved and enriched on this site,” said AKU President and Vice Chancellor Sulaiman Shahabuddin. “We can’t wait to open our doors and show you the new face of AKU in Uganda.”
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Aga Khan University’s Ongoing Campaign for Climate Change

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https://mmnews.tv/aga-khan-universitys- ... te-change/

NEWS: Sunday 23rd July 2023 / 5 Muharram 1445

Aga Khan University’s Ongoing Campaign for Climate Change

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Climate change has emerged as a dire threat to humanity, giving rise to floods, storms, food crises, heat-waves, and other detrimental consequences. The former US President, Barack Obama, has consistently cautioned the global community about the perils associated with climate change, emphasizing the severe impacts of escalating temperatures, such as destructive storms and severe droughts. Additionally, the prevalence of forest fires continues to escalate year after year.

Undoubtedly, climate change transcends the borders of individual nations and organizations; it is a challenge that confronts humanity as a whole. Recognizing the gravity of this issue, concerted efforts are being made by Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN) to combat the threats posed by climate change, with one notable strategy being the annual plantation of one million saplings.

In light of the worldwide concern surrounding climate change, the President of Aga Khan University, Sulaiman Shahabuddin, has recently devised a comprehensive policy aimed at addressing this pressing global issue. This policy not only extends to the country of Pakistan but also encompasses the six countries where Aga Khan University operates. Ongoing endeavors are being undertaken to gradually address climate change on the university campuses.

Sulaiman Shahabuddin has demonstrated an unwavering commitment to the fight against climate change. As part of a series of efforts, he presided over a workshop on July 13th, whereby numerous events were organized and practical steps were taken, including the planting of saplings within the institution’s premises, to combat climate change.

Speaking at the ceremony on this momentous occasion, Sulaiman Shahabuddin drew inspiration from former American President Barack Obama and emphatically stated that climate change poses a significant threat to the world. Quoting Obama’s famous words, he asserted, ” We are the first generation to feel the impact of climate change and the last generation that can do something about it.”

President of Aga Khan University, Sulaiman Shahabuddin, reiterated his unwavering commitment to achieving net zero carbon emissions in all Aga Khan hospitals and universities by 2030, aligning with the visionary policy set forth by Prince Rahim Aga Khan. This ambitious endeavor not only serves as a guiding light for other institutions within the country, but also contributes significantly to the attainment of Pakistan’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Furthermore, Sulaiman Shahabuddin acknowledged the crucial role played by the 95,000 employees and over 100,000 volunteers of the Aga Khan Development Network. They are esteemed ambassadors in the mission to combat climate change, not only within their respective institutions, but also within their communities. Through their concerted efforts, they will continue to make a tangible difference, incrementally addressing the climate change challenge and transforming into a formidable force that will help surmount this global predicament.

Pakistan, in recent years, has faced an array of afflictions stemming from climate change and presently ranks amongst the top ten countries most vulnerable to its adverse effects. This calamitous phenomenon has resulted in significant loss of human life and economic resources within Pakistan. The country’s precipitation patterns, including rainfall, snowfall, and temperature regimes, have been distressingly disrupted. Droughts and floods pose ongoing threats to different parts of the nation.

Regrettably, the global objective of limiting the temperature rise to a safe 1.5 degrees Celsius since the industrial revolution seems imperiled. This dire situation arises predominantly from the escalating reliance on fossil fuels, notorious for their emissions of carbon dioxide—a primary catalyst for global warming.

Sulaiman Shahabuddin’s proactive initiatives promise a brighter future, wherein Aga Khan Universities and all hospital institutions will not only achieve carbon neutrality by 2030, but also make substantial contributions to emission reduction efforts.

Last year, the climate experts of the United Nations released a report on the perils of climate change, cautioning the world about the imminent dangers it poses to both the environment and humanity. This report emphasized the significant impact of a mere 1.2-degree increase in temperature, as demonstrated by the severe repercussions experienced worldwide.

China to Europe has suffered from extensive crop damage, while a torrid heat-wave has afflicted many West African countries, leaving millions of people in dire need due to the resulting drought. In light of these distressing developments, Antonio Guterres, the Secretary General of the United Nations, sounded the alarm on the impending destruction of biodiversity, a matter of utmost importance in the present era.

In response to these urgent issues, the member states of the United Nations devised the 2030 Agenda for Development, a comprehensive plan that strives for global peace and prosperity. This agenda comprises 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that call for swift action from all nations, regardless of their level of development, in a collective effort to combat climate change.

To achieve the SDGs, it is imperative to address not only poverty and inequality but also to implement strategies that improve healthcare, education, and economic growth. The main culprits behind climate change, such as heavy reliance on fossil fuels, vehicular and industrial emissions, nuclear pollution, and widespread deforestation, must be curbed to mitigate the adverse effects of rising sea levels, erratic rainfall, reduced crop yields, floods, storms, extreme temperatures, and water scarcity.

Amidst these challenging circumstances, the Aga Khan Development Network, led by President Sulaiman Shahabuddin and Prince Rahim Aga Khan, has emerged as a formidable force in the battle against climate change. In addition to their significant contributions to rural development, their core objectives include providing education and healthcare facilities to communities worldwide.

The Aga Khan Development Network is setting an exemplary standard for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in various regions, including Pakistan. Through their relentless efforts, they have become a role model for others.

In the aftermath of the devastating floods in Pakistan last year, Prince Rahim Aga Khan extended a helping hand to the victims by generously donating 10 million dollars in aid. Additionally, as the Climate Change Leader of the Aga Khan Development Network, Prince Rahim Aga Khan is actively involved in addressing climate change challenges in different countries around the world.

Prince Rahim Aga Khan recognizes the potential severity of the effects of climate change in the coming years. The rising temperatures and sea levels serve as alarming indicators for the world. Just a few months ago, during a gathering in Dubai, Prince Rahim Aga Khan reiterated the importance of collaborative efforts to combat climate change.


It is evident that natural disasters do not strike suddenly; there are often warning signs. If we, as individuals, ignore or neglect these signs, we cannot claim to be unprepared when calamities strike.

Currently, not only Pakistan but the entire world is grappling with severe problems caused by climate change. The Aga Khan Development Network is channeling all its resources and efforts to confront these challenges, transcending boundaries, with the aim of creating a model that can be emulated by the rest of humanity.

It is imperative for every individual to contribute towards resolving this problem. Even if someone can plant just one tree, they should do so, as it is not solely the responsibility of governments or a few institutions. The storm of climate change can have an impact on the lives of every human being, and together, we can overcome this challenge. It is possible to find a solution through collective action.

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The biggest challenges Kabaka, his Buganda face today 2023-08-06

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https://www.msn.com/en-xl/africa/other/ ... r-AA1eR53H

The biggest challenges Kabaka, his Buganda face today
Story by Timothy Kalyegira

2023, August 06

This week, Buganda Kingdom commemorated the pearl, or 30th anniversary, of the reign of Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi II.Mutebi’s has now become one of the longest reigns by any of the 36 kings of Buganda.It might also be one of the most successful reigns, although it doesn’t quite feel that way to most Baganda.Over the last 30 years, the main disturbances and disappointments for Buganda that one can sum up have been:1) Buganda’s failure to secure a federal status in the 1995 Uganda Constitution.2) The 1998 Land Act that Buganda felt undermined it vital interests in land.3) The incident in 1999 at the royal tombs at Kasubi where Kabaka Mutebi’s aunt, Princess Irene Ndagire, and several other Buganda royals publicly called into question Mutebi’s authority and even paternity.4) The arrest in 2008 of three senior Buganda Kingdom officials, Charles Peter Mayiga, then minister of information; Medard Lubega Ssegona, then minister of state for information, and Betty Nambooze Bakireke, then chairperson of the civic education central committee.5) The 2009 riots in Buganda after the Katikkiro JB Walusumbi was denied access to a Kayunga venue for the Kabaka’s youth event.6) The closure by the NRM government of the Buganda-owned CBS FM for a year as a result of these riots.7) The fire in 2010 that gutted part of the Kasubi tombs.8) The general feeling that Buganda is fast losing much of its precious land to foreigners and other Ugandans, who take advantage of the economic vulnerability of Baganda.Through all these incidents and disappointments, however, Mutebi, his cabinet ministers and legislative assembly (the Lukiiko), patiently soldiered on, partly by defiance, partly through negotiation, partly by making concessions, to keep the kingdom intact, and securing what redress and gains could be made – all the while, making sure to avoid the head-on confrontation with the central government that resulted in the May 1966 tragedy.Here, the Mutebi reign resembles the Daudi Chwa reign during the 1920s and 1930s.It has chosen the path of an unsatisfactory but pragmatic co-existence with the central government.The result of this pragmatic 1920s coexistence was a flourishing of the kingdom, seen in the growing influence in the 1920s in national life of the mission-founded schools of Gayaza High School, King’s College Budo, Mengo Hospital, the founding of Makerere College in 1922 (later to become Makerere University), and various other kingdom- and church-affiliated institutions.These schools and hospitals had been started with the cooperation of Buganda Kingdom and were later to educate a whole new, Western-educated elite not just for Buganda but for much of the rest of Uganda and, as a by-product, cementing Buganda’s central influence in Uganda.The 1993-2023 period has seen Buganda take similar incremental steps in the direction of entrepreneurship and social services in cooperation with the central government – a radio station, television station, a land board, university, property agency, a housing project, and numerous royal foundations and joint projects from blood donation to tree planting drives.

Last week during a conversation, a friend suggested and saw in this an interesting example: The Ismailia Muslim community with the Aga Khan as its titular head.The Ismailia do not have any geographical territory of their own. They exist as minority religious and ethnic communities within other states.And yet the Ismailia community, under the Aga Khan, have become a major force in East African history over the last 100 years through their schools, universities, mosques, hotels, media properties like the Nation Media Group, and much more.In Kenya, the Aga Khan’s presence and influence is in many instances even greater than that of the Kenya government, especially in media, healthcare, and education.The kingdoms of Buganda, Bunyoro, Tooro, and Busoga, revived in the 1990s, have several important assets that the Ismailia community lacks: geographical territory, a parliament, and a large population.Even in its current status, without the much-sought federo, the Buganda government in political and institutional terms stands just below the central Uganda government and just above the Aga Khan’s community.In other words, Buganda even today is technically in a better position to be organised, prosperous, and influential than the Ismailia community.Its shortcomings over the last 30 years, therefore, cannot be blamed entirely on the lack of that one thing it most wants, federo.The Aga Khan and the Ismailia are proof of how a homogenous community can lack political power and geographical territory, but exert significant influence on the societies within which it exists.As I’ve written before in Monitor and on social media, the Indian community in general, of which the Ismailia are a part, do not have MPs in Uganda’s Parliament, don’t have cabinet ministers, officers in the army and police, no single head of a government agency, at most one or two ambassadors and High Commissioners over the last 37 years, they don’t have district chairpersons, and all the political and governmental representation that Ugandans feel are important in economic and social progress.However, about 69 percent of the taxes collected by the Uganda Revenue Authority are from Indian-owned companies.

Seen this way, Buganda as a kingdom and collective entity has underperformed somewhat relative to its demographic and geographical size and the cultural cohesion it enjoys, and the lack of a federal status is not necessarily the reason for this.Today, for all intents and purposes, Buganda enjoys federo, if by “Federo” we mean some kind of Independence-Lite.And yet in all this, Buganda still feels short-changed and incomplete. Why so?The past 37 years of the NRM government – a government that seems immune to military coups and which shows little immediate signs of going away – have sown among the Baganda a fatalistic mood.The NRM government is seen, in a certain sense, as a pseudo-Ankole kingdom.This kingdom took control of the central government in 1986 and acts unfairly as both a player and referee in the tournament with the other kingdoms.The increasingly public role and positioning for succession of Museveni by his son Gen Muhoozi Kainerugaba lends weight to this sentiment.That’s why in his speech on Monday in pouring rain, the Kabaka emphasised that although the Buganda throne was formally restored on July 31, 1993, it was without real powers.In some minds, the longer the NRM stays in power, the more tracts of Buganda land are bought with ill-gotten money or simply grabbed, and since land is of the essence in Buganda, this is an existential crisis.This explains the anxiety many Baganda feel about the very future of their kingdom.While I sympathise with Buganda’s collective fear over land, my view is that the biggest challenge Buganda and the Mutebi reign face today and tomorrow is not necessarily the lack of federo or insufficient revenue to fund its enterprises, but the new, borderless, digital world and global culture dominated by the Euro-American West.The two CBS FM radio channels are in daily competition with 40 other Kampala radio stations, which in turn, along with our national newspapers and television stations are all in competition with Facebook, YouTube, WhatsApp, and Twitter (or Twitter-X) for Baganda’s digital screen time.We see some of this same influence and contradiction at the highest political level.President Museveni and Rwanda’s president Paul Kagame are both committed pan-Africanists, but when push comes to shove they both send their sons to the Royal Military Academy at Sandhurst in England.Buganda launches the Mutesa I Royal University, but the Kabaka’s daughter, Princess Sarah Mirembe Ssangalyambogo Nachwa, was enrolled at the University of Nottingham in England – the same university incidentally that Gen Muhoozi earlier attended.If the Kabaka’s own daughter must be enrolled in a British university, that doesn’t help the cause of Mutesa I University in its effort to establish its prestige as a university version of King’s College Budo.In addition, Buganda’s two radio channels undermine their own position in the way they give excessive time and coverage to the English Premier League when they should be using that same time to promote and analyse the Buganda county football league.In listing the achievements of the Mutebi reign last week, the Katikkiro (prime minister) Charles Peter Mayiga emphasised physical properties and business enterprises founded since 1993 by Buganda Kingdom.As I noted in last Sunday’s Monitor, the concrete, monetary, and material seem to be ingrained in us Africans as the highest and only true measure of success.As one with particular interest in photography and video, I notice that for all the prestige the Kabaka enjoys, there are very few high-quality, professional photos and videos of him in the public domain.My appeals to the Tooro, Buganda, Busoga, and Bunyoro establishments to put in an effort in producing digital content worthy of royalty, as it is with European royal families, have predictably landed on deaf and indifferent ears.The empires of the future, as the British prime minister Winston Churchill noted in 1943, would be empires of the mind.No longer so much about geographical territory, the concept of empire would be expressed in who owns the attention and loyalty of millions and billions of minds.I hope over the next few years and decades, Buganda and the rest of Uganda start to think in terms of matters of the intellect, thought, patents for invention, academic research, creative arts and industrial design as equal measures of success. Provided by SyndiGate Media Inc.
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Two AKU faculty members among world’s top scientists

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An emergency section of the Aga Khan University (AKU) can be seen in this image. — AKU website

Two faculty members from the Aga Khan University (AKU) have been ranked among the world’s top scientists for 2023 by Stanford University. A staggering 187 scientists hailing from Pakistan and representing diverse fields of specialization were also featured on the list.

AKU Professor Zulfiqar A. Bhutta has claimed the top position amongst the Pakistani scientists, solidifying his reputation as a world-class authority in his field. Joining him in this lineup is Dr Salim Virani, who secured a remarkable ninth place, alongside 17 other distinguished scientists from the AKU fraternity.

Dr Zulfiqar A. Bhutta is a distinguished university professor at the AKU and the founding director of the Institute for Global Health and Development and the Centre of Excellence in Women and Child Health at the university.

Dr Salim Virani, on the other hand, serves as the Vice-Provost (Global Research) and Nizar E. Noor Mohammed Mewawalla Endowed Professorship at the AKU, adding to the university’s ever-growing list of accomplishments. Notably, Dr Virani’s medical journey began at the AKU, where he graduated with the Best Medical Graduate Award.

Some 22 scientific domains and 174 subfields are covered by this Stanford University ranking, and scientists are arranged according to the renowned Science-Metrix classification system. The fact that 76 universities from Pakistan were represented on the list, which confirms Pakistan's expanding impact on the world stage of scientific research and discovery, makes this accomplishment all the more impressive.

These rankings reflect not only the incredible talent housed within the AKU but also the university’s steadfast dedication to fostering an environment of excellence. The AKU has consistently invested in state-of-the-art research facilities and fostered collaborations with world-leading institutions to encourage the pursuit of quality and innovation in healthcare.

https://www.thenews.com.pk/print/112657 ... scientists
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Re: Aga Khan University set to expand

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https://www.aku.edu/news/Pages/News_Det ... EWS-003199

Convocation caps a historic year for the Aga Khan University

Feb 17, 2024

More than 730 students in four countries graduated from the Aga Khan University on Saturday at ceremonies attended by Princess Zahra Aga Khan and other dignitaries, including Kenya's Cabinet Secretary for Education, the Honorable Ezekiel Machogu, who read a speech by President of Kenya, His Excellency William Ruto.

“On graduating, you return to a world that is full of daunting challenges but also of endless possibilities," Princess Zahra Aga Khan said in Nairobi, speaking on behalf of AKU's founder and Chancellor, His Highness the Aga Khan. “Continue to strive with courage and optimism to grasp opportunities to serve your communities and contribute to a more pluralistic and peaceful world."

I have great faith in this group of men and women," Cabinet Secretary for Kenya's Education Ministry Hon. Machogu said in remarks he shared on behalf of President Ruto. “The reason for my faith is simple: I know what the Aga Khan University stands for. It stands for high standards, access based on merit and service to society."

At ceremonies in Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and Pakistan, the graduates were awarded degrees in almost two dozen fields in nursing, medicine, education, journalism and the study of Muslim civilisations. Almost 70 percent of the members of the Class of 2023 are women.

The University's chief guests also included Jan Sadek, Ambassador of the European Union to Uganda; Omari Issa, Chancellor of the Nelson Mandela African Institution of Science and Technology in Tanzania; and Sabina Khatri, Founder of the Pakistan-based Kiran Foundation.

AKU celebrated its 40th anniversary on March 16, 2023. Princess Zahra detailed some of the many achievements that have made the University's 40th anniversary year one of the most consequential in its history. Four new academic programmes welcomed their first students, increasing total enrollment to more than 3,600 for the first time in the University's history. These are the Faculty of Arts and Sciences in Karachi, the Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery programme in Nairobi and the four-year Bachelor of Science in Nursing programmes in Nairobi and Dar es Salaam. Construction began on the University's new 60-acre campus in Uganda, which will feature an academic centre, student housing and a new Aga Khan University Hospital. In Nairobi, the Aga Khan University Hospital implemented East Africa's first integrated electronic health records system. In Tanzania, the University launched the Arusha Climate and Environmental Research Centre.

“We are hopeful that these new and continuing programmes and facilities will make AKU an increasingly powerful platform for the education of leaders, the creation of relevant knowledge and the delivery of world-class education and health care," said Princess Zahra, who credited the Governments of Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and Pakistan, and the East African Community, with creating an enabling environment for the University.

AKU President and Vice Chancellor Sulaiman Shahabuddin called the day a “crowning moment" for the graduates. Noting that the University has awarded nearly 20,000 diplomas, degrees and postgraduate certificates to date, he outlined AKU's plans for the future, which are contained in its new five-year strategic plan. They include launching close to a dozen new degree programmes in fields ranging from data science to teacher education; enhancing research capacity in mental health, climate change and other disciplines; expanding the AKU health system; deepening the University's partnerships with public and private institutions at home and abroad; and continuing to earn new forms of academic and health care accreditation from leading international organizations.

“That AKU has been able to achieve so much across its four decades is above all thanks to its founder, Chancellor and chief benefactor, His Highness the Aga Khan," President Shahabuddin said. “His Highness's vision continues to guide us and continually inspire us with the strength to make bold decisions that keep AKU at the forefront of innovation, quality and impact."

In total, 391 students graduated in Pakistan and 332 in East Africa, including 159 in Kenya, 106 in Uganda and 67 in Tanzania. Eleven students graduated from the London-based Institute for the Study of Muslim Civilisations. ​
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Aga Khan University 2024-02-17 Princess Zahra in Nairobi

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https://khybernews.tv/convocation-caps- ... niversity/

Convocation Caps a Historic Year for the Aga Khan University

Sajjad AliBy Sajjad Ali
February 20, 2024 Sindh



More than 730 students in four countries graduated from the Aga Khan University on Saturday at ceremonies attended by Princess Zahra Aga Khan and other dignitaries and watched in-person and online by the University’s supporters around the world.

“On graduating, you return to a world that is full of daunting challenges but also of endless possibilities,” Princess Zahra Aga Khan said in Nairobi, speaking on behalf of AKU’s founder and Chancellor, His Highness the Aga Khan. “Continue to strive with courage and optimism to grasp opportunities to serve your communities and contribute to a more pluralistic and peaceful world.”

391 students graduated in Pakistan – more than 70 percent of them women – and were awarded degrees in nursing, medicine and education. The University’s chief guest was Sabina Khatri, Founder of the Karachi-based Kiran Foundation.

“I cannot help but imagine the great things you will achieve with your immense talent and the knowledge and skills developed during your time at AKU,” Ms Khatri told the graduates. “I have no doubt that your accomplishments can surpass anything I have achieved thus far. I would like to take this opportunity to express my gratitude to His Highness the Aga Khan for helping countless young people to fulfill their potential, including the Kiran children studying at Aga Khan schools and colleges and also AKU Examination Board-affiliated schools like Habib.”

AKU commemorated its 40th anniversary on March 16, 2023. Princess Zahra detailed some of the many achievements that have made the University’s 40th year one of the most consequential in its history. Four new academic programmes welcomed their first students, increasing total enrollment to more than 3,600 for the first time in the University’s history. These are the Faculty of Arts and Sciences in Karachi, the Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery programme in Nairobi and the four-year Bachelor of Science in Nursing programmes in Nairobi and Dar es Salaam. Construction began on the University’s new 60-acre campus in Uganda, which will feature an academic centre, student housing and a new Aga Khan University Hospital, the first AKU has built since 1985. In Nairobi, the Aga Khan University Hospital implemented East Africa’s first integrated electronic health records system. In Tanzania, the University launched the Arusha Climate and Environmental Research Centre.

“We are hopeful that these new and continuing programmes and facilities will make AKU an increasingly powerful platform for the education of leaders, the creation of relevant knowledge, and the delivery of world-class education and health care,” Princess Zahra said.

AKU President Sulaiman Shahabuddin called the day a “crowning moment” for the graduates, noting that the University has awarded nearly 20,000 diplomas, degrees and postgraduate certificates since its inception. He outlined the University’s plans for the future, which are contained in its new five-year strategic plan. They include launching close to a dozen new degree programmes in fields ranging from data science to teacher education; enhancing research capacity in mental health, climate change and other disciplines; expanding the AKU health system; deepening the University’s partnerships with public and private institutions at home and abroad; and continuing to earn new forms of academic and health care accreditation from leading international organizations.

“That AKU has been able to achieve so much across its four decades is above all thanks to its founder, Chancellor, and chief benefactor, His Highness the Aga Khan,” President Shahabuddin said. “His Highness’s vision continues to guide us and continually inspire us with the strength to make bold decisions that keep AKU at the forefront of innovation, quality and impact.”

The School of Nursing and Midwifery conferred the Outstanding Graduate Award on Zehra Amanullah for earning the highest cumulative grade point average. She also received the Nursing Practice Award.

For just the 13th time in its history, the Medical College awarded its Gold Medal to a graduate of the Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery programme. Alizah Pervaiz Hashmi received the Medal for earning the top score on at least three of the four certifying examinations, including the final examination.
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Aga Khan University Convocation 2024-02-17

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https://www.msn.com/en-xl/africa/top-st ... r-BB1iysRu

Aga Khan University pioneers bold vision for East Africa’s higher education
Story by Jacob Mosenda

Dar es Salaam. Aga Khan University (AKU) is spearheading efforts to address the challenges currently confronting higher education institutions.This vision was articulated by AKU President and Vice Chancellor, Sulaiman Shahabuddin, on March 16, 2023, as he unveiled the university’s ambitious plans for the future, encapsulated in its comprehensive five-year strategic blueprint.The institution is poised to launch nearly a dozen innovative degree programmes spanning diverse fields such as data science and teacher education, while also bolstering research capabilities in critical areas like mental health and climate change.Furthermore, AKU aims to expand its healthcare network and foster deeper collaborations with both public and private entities locally and internationally, according to VC Shahabuddin.AKU also seeks to pursue additional academic and healthcare accreditations from esteemed global organisations.“That AKU has been able to achieve so much across its four decades is above all thanks to its founder, Chancellor, and chief benefactor, His Highness the Aga Khan,” President Shahabuddin said.“His Highness’s vision continues to guide us and continually inspire us with the strength to make bold decisions that keep AKU at the forefront of innovation, quality, and impact.”

The anniversary was graced by Princess Zahra Aga Khan, who represented His Highness the Aga Khan in gracing the birthday celebration and detailed some of the many achievements that have made the anniversary year one of the most consequential in its history.In Tanzania, she said the university launched the Arusha Climate and Environmental Research Centre.In Nairobi, the Aga Khan University Hospital implemented East Africa’s first integrated electronic health records system, while in Uganda, construction has begun on the university’s new 60-acre campus, which will feature an academic centre, student housing, and a new Aga Khan University Hospital.Four new academic programmes, she said, welcomed their first students, increasing total enrollment to more than 3,600 for the first time in the university’s history.These, she mentioned, were the four-year Bachelor of Science in Nursing programmes in Dar es Salaam and Nairobi, the Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery programmes in Nairobi, and the Faculty of Arts and Sciences in Karachi.“We are hopeful that these new and continuing programmes and facilities will make AKU an increasingly powerful platform for the education of leaders, the creation of relevant knowledge, and the delivery of world-class education and health care,” she said.On Saturday, February 17, 2024, the universities in Tanzania and Kenya held their 2023 graduations. In Tanzania, 67 students graduated.The ceremony was graced by the Chancellor of the Nelson Mandela African Institution of Science and Technology, Mr Omari Issa.

In his remarks, Mr Issa said Tanzanian universities must grow the supply of skilled healthcare workers and build capacity for research and homegrown innovation to help the country meet the demands of the current burden of diseases and low education quality.While congratulating the celebrated group on earning their degree from one of the finest institutions of higher learning in East Africa, he said that the focus should also be put on public health and primary care while ensuring that advanced care is available and improves the quality of care across the country to improve livelihoods.“Changing that situation will require marching gains in access to education with advances to teacher training, classroom instruction, and school leadership while continuing to reduce the population of out-of-school children and improve competition rates,” he said.Regarding the 2023 cohort, Princess Zahra stated, “On graduating, you return to a world that is full of daunting challenges but also of endless possibilities,” she said in Nairobi, speaking on behalf of AKU’s founder and Chancellor, His Highness the Aga Khan.“Continue to strive with courage and optimism to grasp opportunities to serve your communities and contribute to a more pluralistic and peaceful world.”AKU President, Mr Shahabuddin, called the day a “crowning moment” for the graduates, noting that the university has awarded nearly 20,000 diplomas, degrees, and postgraduate certificates to date. Provided by SyndiGate Media Inc. (Syndigate.info
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Re: Aga Khan University: Generation restoration: opportunities for universities 2024-06-04

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https://www.brecorder.com/news/40306875

Generation restoration: opportunities for universities
The Aga Khan University, Karachi “Life on Land,” the focus of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development ...


Print 2024-06-05

The Aga Khan University, Karachi

“Life on Land,” the focus of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal 15, has been especially challenging in recent years. Devastating floods, years-long droughts, melting glaciers, deadly heat: the planet and its people appear locked in conflict. It would be understandable for individual citizens or institutions to feel both helpless and hopeless in the face of these global challenges. And yet, as we mark World Environment Day on June 5th, I am filled with optimism.

This year’s theme captures the cause for my confidence: “Our Land. Our Future. We are #GenerationRestoration.” It speaks to our shared responsibility and the power of partnership: we are truly stronger together. It also emphasizes the collective strength of our generation—in particular, our youth—to restore peaceful coexistence between humans and their environment.

It might come as a surprise that the Aga Khan University (or AKU), which established its reputation for its early focus on human health, is deeply engaged in issues of the environment. In fact, planetary and population health are fundamentally intertwined. Thus, while AKU continues to work on the frontlines to mobilise critical healthcare following natural disasters, environmental protection, climate action, and sustainability are integral components of our strategic plan and central to all our work.

Our academic programmes integrate a focus on environmental sciences. AKU is conducting ground-breaking research on the health effects of heat. The University has an ambitious framework to reduce operational emissions and support our partners and service providers to take similar actions.

We have established living laboratories for environmental study and experiential learning in Karachi, Pakistan and in Tanzania, at the Arusha Climate and Environment Research (ACER) Centre. Working with local communities, and regional and global partners, the ACER Centre is conducting studies on pollinators, soil and land health, with an increasing focus on water.

With this World Environment Day’s focus on restoring land, halting desertification, and building drought resilience, AKU is convening researchers and practitioners from Asia and Africa for a public webinar on “Partnerships and Innovations for Land and Climate Resilience”.

And I am especially excited for another initiative: planting microforests on our campuses and sites in Pakistan and East Africa in partnership with the Aga Khan Foundation and Aga Khan Health Services. Here in East Africa, this includes microforests at our new Nakawa campus site in Kampala; in Dar-es-Salaam; at AKU’s Arusha Climate and Environment Research Centre; and at our campus in Nairobi.

Microforests are like regular forests, but they grow more rapidly and occupy a fraction of the land. The environmental benefits of microforests are remarkable: they revitalise ecosystems and stimulate biodiversity; regenerate water and soil; reduce the temperature and purify the air in their vicinity; and absorb carbon dioxide (CO2) from the atmosphere, slowing down global warming. Moreover, microforests can enhance the health, nutrition and livelihoods of surrounding communities—an innovative, nature-based solution to improve the well-being of people and the planet.

Growing a microforest is an expression of hope. More importantly, it is an action open to all—from schoolchildren and teachers to local businesses, and community organisations. AKU’s initiative builds upon the efforts of the Aga Khan Foundation, which has helped community volunteers and students establish nearly 400 microforests in eight countries, in both urban and rural areas.

No single solution or single actor can address all the challenges to life on land, from restoring degraded soil, halting deforestation, reversing losses of biodiversity, or combatting desertification. But we all can plant the seeds of change. Together we can be #GenerationRestoration.

Dr Sulaiman Shahabuddin (President)
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