11-year-old Ghanaian Andrew Adansi Bonnah who has declared his intention to raise $ 13 million for the Horn of Africa has delivered his heroic campaign message to the African Union, United Nations Reps and Donor Partners at a Pledging Conference at the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa Conference hall in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
Below is full detail of his speech.
“It is with great joy to honour an invitation the AU sent to me a week today. For such a critical call needed enough time to prepare and I have, though it was too short a period. Let me say that when your grandfather calls for you early morning, it shows how very important the call is. For me, it is the beginning of a new era of hope and future for African children, to be part of building the Africa we dream of; under the good foundation of our forefathers and you. I am proud to say that, my team is fully dedicated to this dream through the “Save Somali Children from Hunger Project”, and others in order to save the African child and women.
Your Excellency chair, at age 9 and in grade 3, I was too young to see this dream come through to help save my own kind and my mothers. So when I see horrifying pictures of women and children who are always the victims of conflict, wars and famine on the TV and internet they really touched my heart because without children and women there is no hope. I see children walk for long distance before having food to eat. Some even die in the process. Mother’s soak palm kennel in their mouth to soften it before giving it to their children. Can we imagine what will happen to Somalia if there are no children? At first I thought it was only children but now we are focusing on women too.
Your Excellency chair, at age 11 and in grade 6 I am somehow matured to undertake this generous Pan African project. Earlier on, I asked so many questions about why children are hungry in Somali and the horn of Africa and my father explained to me. My father and technical advisor introduced me to the internet for research. I then groomed myself for 2 and half years by taking part in child development activities such as Karate and Talent Hunt Shows training and competitions. These also boost me for life and to become the pilot I want to be, fly aid items and rescue missions to any part of Africa and the world, in times of wars, conflicts and natural disasters and to become the best pilot with your support.
Your Excellency chair, in three weeks I have begun fulfilling my dream, helping to build Africa and to give hope to the African child and mothers. I have spoken to 50 local and foreign media stations such as GBC, Media Houses in Ghana, BBC, E Africa Tv, Associate Press etc. Thanks to them. Today my charitable work has begun after I met with UNICEF and WFP Reps in Accra and my message touched the hearts and minds of the young and old, rich and poor because it is appealing. Now I am here to join hands with you on this cause.
In my quest to become a pilot, I have studied the world and Africa in particular and have started raising aid items for Somali children and women and the horn of Africa. I have vowed to raise $13 million to cater for food, health, clothes and education. Already, I have visited Banks, Insurance, Vehicle, Mining, medicine and mobile phone Companies, churches and Muslim groups who have pledge their support. I am yet to launch a 1 cedi campaign for Somalia when I return to Ghana for all school children and everyone through safe boxes situated everywhere in the country.
As of now I have raise $ 4,000. I am challenged to visit every country on the continent to encourage the children to do same, raise funds for future and unexpected situation, promote peace and pan African spirit. This will encourage the goals of the African Union. On this day, at this assembly, I, on behalf of African Children plead with the African leadership to unite now, pledge their good support for Somalia and the horn of Africa, make good policies that will give hope to the future of the African Union.
This will enable the AU to manage Africa well. We should also not forget that children and women are suffering in Libya. Today there is famine all over the horn of Africa. The time for us to act is now. Let us be strong in our actions.
Some of the activities I have planned for my project across the continent include “All African Musicians for Somalia”, School –To- School fundraising to encourage the spirit of African unity in the younger generation, African Essay competitions to harness talents for Africa’s future, serve as a ambassador for children, embark on street walks to inform Africans about unity, take part in media talk shows and also work with Former President Rawlings, AU ambassador for Somalia. Your Excellencies please donate 1 dollar each to my trust now and save lives. I am coming round to collect them. That will be after my speech.
Your Excellencies, in our bid to rebuild post war of Somalia as a model for others, let us keep in mind the need to do that with the aim of promoting basic education, good food, and good health that will centre on regenerative health, healthy lifestyle and nutrition in order to prolong life. We are dying so young. Sicknesses, diseases and wars are our primary enemies. This is the only way we can reduce huge costs on health, produce quality human resource and embark on healthy free research into African affairs and development. Yes we can, so we will get there. For 45 years nobody has died in the village of Peace in Dimona, Israel, as I am told by those who have been there. Ghana is first in the world to promote such a healthy lifestyle policy. I know African Union has set aside Africa’s healthy lifestyle day.
This will help since the pursuit for wealth and development without good health is zero. Let’s live a healthy life for all.
Your Excellency Chair, my team is battle ready to work strongly with the African Union and Governments of Africa and the United Nations. Already UNICEF and WFP Ghana headed by Dr. Mrs. Iyabode Olusanmi and Mr. Ismail Omer are supporting me. Today, I have brought symbolic T’ shirts of what I sell to raise money for the Somali children. One is $ 100. I have a desk outside where everybody can get one.
At this moment, I wish to thank the African Union for funding this trip and giving me the chance to speak to Africa and the world about the state and future of African children. I am glad I am here today to be part of history.
I also thank my Technical Directing Advisor, Kobla Asamani, my father Samuel Adansi - Bonnah who used his July salary for the take-off of my project and my family for their firm support. I also thank the media for supporting me.
Again I thank Mrs. Florence Akonor of Ghana’s Ministry of foreign affairs, UNICEF, WFP and UNHCR Reps in Ghana for making this trip possible. Finally to rlg communication Ghana limited for giving me a made in Ghana laptop for my speech. To God Be The Glory. God Bless the future of Africa. Long live AU, Somalia, the horn of Africa and the African Child. Thank you”.