A day with UNIDO Director General

In Uncategorized on January 22, 2011 at 4:15 pm

This Post was written a year ago, when Mr. K K Yumkella visited LIBA for a Guest Lecture.

After partying heavily last night at Rahul’s birthday bash, we did go to sleep, when clock struck 3:00 am.  Though we didn’t have classes today (probably coz I bunked one) I had a busy day, sleeping 😉  .

Morning greeted us with the news that It was compulsory to attend todays guest lecture. We had our own apprehension about the exam  starting on monday onwards. We were half dead after going through the list of  marks required to avoid ‘D‘ grade. Still students came to auditorium, cursing the organisers.

Image via aeonbox.com


Later we came to know that an eminent personality, Dr. Kandeh K. Yumkella, Director General UNIDO (United Nation Industrial Development Organization) was to address the gathering along with Mr Anders Bech , CEO of FLSmidth.

Amidst all these tension Address of Dr. Yumkella was a pleasant surprise. He belongs to Sierra Leone ( Which he described was among the poorest countries in 1990s). People there in Sierra leone still have problems of drinking water, electricity and means of procuring food.  It was inspiring when he said ” If I can be Director General despite all adversities I faced, then you people sure can achieve what you want.”   He said there are thousands of topics which is debatable when you view it witha different perspective –  the poor and the rich.

It is globalization which has helped India, China and several other developing countries to  grow at such a whooping rate. But it is the same globalisation which has affected Sierra Lones economy. Whenever there is any crisis in financial markets of US and Europe, Sierra Lone is hardly hit. Inflation has taken its tall all over the world. It’s hard to explain to the poor people, it is some outward force which has resulted into soaring food prices, which they can’t afford. A glass of rice (still a measure of rice in Sierra leone) costs more than what it was few years ago.
Bio Energy, another of topics which he discussed, has become a major focus especially when the fossil fuels are depleting rapidly and the Oil prices are skyrocketing. It has given rise to serious food crisis in several African countries. He cited an example of a debate on Bio fuel, when a gentleman said ‘My bio fuel is better than yours, I use sugarcane to produce it  and I had done it since long time and nothing happened and now when you are doing. it has led to crisis.’
Carbon Credit, again a major issue he threw light on. Some countries are following Carbon credit. Though some serious misunderstandings exist but it will be resolved soon.

Dr Yumkella impressed all of us with his pleasant personality and knowledge.
The issues he raised are quiet a concern even to date.
  1. “If I can be Director General despite all adversities I faced, then you people sure can achieve what you want”

    That’s inspiring 🙂

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