The 2nd NELGA-SA Partners’ Assembly was held on May 19th, 2023, to discuss the work plan and governance structure of the NELGA-SA project. The meeting brought together representatives from different institutions within the NELGA-SA network.
The meeting updated the work plan and reviewed the Terms of Reference (ToR) for the Governance Board’s structure and functions. The Governance Board’s composition, functions, and ex-officio members were agreed upon, with the coordinator tasked with calling for the inaugural meeting of NELGA-SA governance board members by the first week of June 2023.
Five non-NUST representatives were endorsed to serve on the Governance Board, ensuring diverse perspectives, effective decision-making, and sustainable land governance in Southern Africa. Establishing the Governance Board is a significant milestone towards achieving the project’s objectives, which aim to promote land governance in Southern Africa for sustainable development.
The assembly was fruitful, and crucial decisions were made regarding the project’s governance structure and responsibilities. Establishing the Governance Board, which will ensure strategic direction, efficient decision-making, and sustainable land governance in Southern Africa, has set the NELGA-SA project up for success.
It was such an exciting opportunity to be part of a culturally diverse organization while gaining experience in land governance in Africa – Lineekelomwene Johannes, Former Intern with NELGA Southern Africa Node at NUST
In February 2023, I completed all requirements towards my achieving a Bachelor of Business Management degree from the prestigious Namibia University of Science and Technology (NUST). NUST is the leading hub for the Network of Excellence on Land Governance in Africa, an African Union network managed by the African Land Policy Centre through the support of the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit GmbH (GIZ).
Part of the requirements for graduation was to embark on an internship through Work-integrated Learning (WIL). This is an integral aspect of our curriculum and must be completed by all students for graduation. Lucky for me, I met Mr. Theodor Muduva, the advisor for NELGA at NUST and I was given the opportunity to gain experience as an administrative assistant intern for the network in southern Africa.
Simply put, it altered the playing field and was a game-changing experience. I was putting theory into practice and exchanging real-world experience. It was a thrill to work with people from various walks of life and learn from their experiences and perspectives. Before I joined NELGA, I had never thought of being interested in land issues, but through NELGA, I became knowledgeable about them. Mentors at the NELGA hub at NUST, especially Mr. Muduva, were extremely rewarding; and cumulatively inspired me to do my best in all my endeavours as I contributed my bit to my country’s development, region and the continent and, of course, come out with a better-than-average grade in my WIL course.
During my internship, a highlight of my time was participating in a planning and review meeting for NELGA with delegates from across Africa speaking as one voice. It was a tremendous pleasure for me to interact with NUST faculty, NELGA partner universities, African Land Policy Centre, GIZ as the implementing partner and many others. I was learning about land governance outside of my original academic interest; however, I could see the business management intersections and alignment with land and how this impacts the continent. It was a thrilling experience.
I am incredibly grateful for the invaluable insight into the workings of the business world that I gained due to my time spent in NELGA in these early professional years. Being a part of the NELGA team was an incredible opportunity to gain significant experience and intellectual resources to guide my future career goals.