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Watch Ndidi Nwuneli’s TED Talk On The Role Of Faith & Belief In Driving Needed Social Change In Africa

In her latest TED Talk, Ndidi Nwuneli founder of LEAP Africa, calls Africans who believe in God and those who do not to unite towards driving the needed social change in the continent.

“By claiming we have no power over past, present or future, we give too much authority to the wicked, who steal funds and ask God for forgiveness,” she said, arguing that while she believes in the divinity and omnipotence of God, she does not believe God should bear the responsibility of securing Africa’s future.

Recalling an experience with a 9-year old, Nwuneli said:

As a Sunday school teacher myself,my faith was challenged by a young nine-year-oldwho asked a series of questions.He asked,“Ms. Ndidi, does God hate Africans?”To which I quickly retorted, “Of course not.God loves all his children equally.”

Then he asked, “So why do so many young African children die?”I stumbled and mumbled as I responded.“There are many reasons why young African children die. Most of them are man-made, and we cannot blame God.”

So he asked, “Why does he let it happen?He could stop it.”And I said …“Yes he could, yes he could, but he sent us here as change agents,light of the world, salt of the earth,and we are failing.”

What needs to be done? Nwuneli says:

The first is that we need to change our mindsets. Both as people of faith and of those who are not religious, their perceptions of those of us who are people of faith. Now, for people of faith and those of us who are religious, we often say, “If God wills, I’ll do this; inshallah, I’ll do that — by God’s grace, I’ll do this.” Now there are many things, I believe, that we can control — some we cannot. I believe that God is all-powerful, but he’s not a micromanager.

Faith-based organisations have a large influence on Africans, and instead of antagonising them, Ndidi believes those who do not believe in God, should collaborate with them on issues of maternal mortality, healthcare and education to achieve incredible results.

Watch below:

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