Dr. Asangba Tzudir

‘I am because we are’

The current ‘status’ and ‘function’ of Naga society also reflects on the kind of leadership in all aspects of societal functioning and on the level of governance. In context, while the pursuits seem to be tilted towards power, status and the dialectical power of materialism, a forwardness of vision is lacking. Sadly, this is happening at a time when Naga society is confronted by so many pressing concerns, if not dangerous. Within this strain, the aspect of leadership takes centre stage, and this calls for redefining the idea of leadership and what it means to be a leader to lead the society, so also governance.

What is now desired is to build and develop a new culture of genuine leadership and consciousness that acknowledges the present realities and also the ‘will’ to envision a model that encapsulates core concerns and way forward solutions for the communitarian good.

The core of leadership lies in having a vision which also consists in envisaging possibilities which would lead to translating the vision into action. Translating visions also requires having the right frame of mind and consciousness. To begin with, culturing genuine leadership requires leaders to develop the art of being sensitive to the concerns, issues and challenges at hand, and being intuitive and attuned enough to understand what is happening and how things have happened, with a resolve to visualise necessary steps rather than normalising and surrendering to the current situations.

Further, a leader should look at empowering the people rather than one’s own. Only when the people are ‘empowered,’ they can unleash their passion, ideas and creativity, exploit their potentiality and find their worth and meaning more so, it will allow them to become responsible agents that contribute to, and also become a part of the communitarian good.

On the various facets of human activity and development, be it on the level of society or matters relating to the government, there are issues of existence, identity discourse, sustenance, monitoring and supervision, managing resources, governance etc., which continues to exert pressure and throw various forms of challenges, and this calls for the need to evolve genuine leadership and consciousness that commits and affirms to the broader objective of engaging with the visions. Only this can also awaken a conscious people towards envisaging a collective future.

On the whole, an incentive for building leadership and also to create a form of consciousness with the larger objective of building a society for the collective good, certain insights can be drawn from the UBUNTU Culture in Africa which in their language means “I am because we are” and which raises the question, “how can one be happy when the others are sad.” This is one model to build and develop a new culture of genuine leadership and consciousness.

(Dr. Asangba Tzudir writes a weekly guest editorial for The Morung Express. Comments can be mailed to asangtz@gmail.com)