Suakoko, Bong County – The Speaker of ECOWAS Parliament, Sidie Mohamed Tunis, says the knowledge acquired during his four-year stay at Cuttington University as a student helped in shaping his life’s journey.
Tunis, a member of the Sierra Leonean Parliament representing Constituency 101, Pujehun District, has accrued unto himself a wealth of experience in legislative politics and governance since he graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry from the university in 1989.
He served as Majority Leader in the Fifth Parliament of the Republic of Sierra Leone and became a ranking member of the Sierra Leone delegation to the ECOWAS Parliament prior to his election as Speaker of the Fifth Legislature of the ECOWAS Parliament.
Serving as keynote speaker at the 14th Commencement Convocation of Cuttington University School of Graduate and Professional Studies Saturday, Tunis said apart from the academic experience attained, he also acquired knowledge in several other disciplines that were pivotal in helping him progress in life.
“It is indeed a great honor and pleasure for me to be here today in my capacity as the Speaker of ECOWAS Parliament. However, my joy stems from the fact that I am a product of this University, who actually knows what it means to achieve this milestone,” he said.
“Respect for diversity, commitment to sense of purpose, teamwork, learning to be independent, are a few of the skills I acquired at Cuttington during my stay here.”
“As a result of acquiring these priceless virtues, I proudly rose to positions of prominence, becoming the Majority Leader of the Fifth Parliament of Sierra Leone and currently Speaker of the ECOWAS Parliament,” he added.
He challenged graduates of the Class of 2019/2020 to not only be ambassadors of change, but touch bearers of the university’s enviable legacy. “Remember we are special; we are scorpions. And I’m proud to be senior scorpion,” he said.
Tunis admonished the graduates to see themselves as a realization of the call for a more integrated Africa that is focused on attaining inclusive and sustainable development.
He said the continent’s AU Agenda 2063 remains a shared aspiration for transforming the continent into a group of prosperous, equitable, and integrated nations.
“In your sundry contribution towards the collective future of the Great Republic of Liberia, your contributions are critical towards this shared continental aspiration especially in the post-COVID era,” he said.
The new Africa, Tunis said, will be led by young, innovative, and enterprising persons like members of the Class of 2020/2021.
Commenting on the impacts Covid-19 has had globally, Tunis said graduates should establish a new cause for optimism that will prevail over the worst and triumph with the best.
“We will rebuild our economies and nations again, even stronger, better, and as a cohesive nation and continent,” he said.
He added: “An African renaissance is possible with young and agile minds like yours and we therefore must celebrate you today as an addition to that critical mass that will transform the future of our continent. But it takes the right vision of ourselves, steeped in the right knowledge, to recognize the limitless possibilities for our continent.”
Cuttington confers Honorary Doctorate Degree on Tunis
To mark Tunis’ return to the university, the Board and Trustees of Cuttington conferred an Honorary Doctorate Degree on Tunis for his role played in bringing peace and stability to West Africa.
Out-going Cuttington University president Herman Browne said Tunis has not only brought proud to the university, but the entire Africa.
And in recognition of the honor, Tunis said: “I’m so happy. This will inspire me to keep working for humanity.”