Taking Vision To Transformation

Addressed by Tan Sri Lim, Limkokwing University, Lesotho
15 October 2008

May I begin by thanking each and every one of you for being with us today.

We are deeply honoured by the presence of the Honourable Prime Minister and members of His Majesty′s Government.

Ladies and Gentlemen

This is indeed a very special occasion – we are here to mark the start of a new university. Many of us will carry memories of this day as long as we live.

It is certainly true that the setting up of Limkokwing University in Lesotho marks a particularly high point in my own career. This day will stay forever as one of great significance in my life.

We are grateful to the Rt. Hon. Prime Minister and the Cabinet for the opportunity

For this, I must express my gratitude to the Right Honourable Prime Minister and the Honourable Deputy Prime Minister.

If not for their encouragement and unwavering support, this day simply would not have taken place.

I must also take this opportunity to thank the Honourable Minister of Education and Training who has done so much to assist in the setting up of this university.

There are many people in and outside of Government who have gone out of their way to help us, in particular officials of Lesotho Housing and Land Development Corporation.

Everyone here has been very receptive. No one could have been more supportive. Thank you.

Ladies and Gentlemen

The building of this campus might have taken just 3 months, but the journey to Lesotho has taken 17 years. That is how long we have been established in Kuala Lumpur.

Limkokwing University

12 campuses 7 countries 3 continents

Today we operate 12 campuses in 7 countries and have created a collegial network of 170 universities and colleges in 77 countries.

Our programmes are delivered in 30 countries.

Limkokwing students

25,000 from 144 countries 6 continents

Today on campus in Kuala Lumpur we have 9,000 students from 130 countries.

Today on campus here in Maseru we have 1,200 students who have enrolled in 54 programmes.

Today we are a global community of over 25,000 people, including faculty and staff from over 144 countries.

We are proud we are now a part of Lesotho

Ladies and Gentlemen

Lesotho is an important part of our African initiative. We are very proud that we have become a part of Lesotho and by embracing its development blueprint we have made Lesotho′s Vision a part of our global initiative.

Limkokwing: Empowering Lesotho′s next generation with 21st century technology

Our primary objective here is to assist in the social and economic transformation of Lesotho.

Lesotho′s Vision 2020 has a broad agenda to lift the nation to new levels where every Mosotho becomes an active participant in the rebuilding of Lesotho.

Limkokwing: Empowering Lesotho′s next generation with entrepreneurial creativity

The University, as a strategic partner to Lesotho, believes the nation′s solutions lie in the empowerment of its young people.

Empowering them with the skills to use the tools of this new era of digitised functions and global connectivity.

Empowering them with the ability to think creatively so they may be outcome–driven and innovative in mindset.

I am very pleased to report that this University has begun that process by creating the most hi–tech learning environment to empower students with the latest in digital technology.

Here at this university every student will use the latest in digital software as a vital part of learning.

Limkokwing: Building strategic human capital essential for transformation to knowledge–based economy

Here at this university every student will use the latest technology to create content.

Here at this university every student will have access to our electronic library to conduct research on a global level.

Limkokwing: Building essential capacity for development of enterprise and industry

Here at this university a student from even the most remote part of Lesotho will have equal access to the latest in digital technology and acquisition of worldwide knowledge via the internet.

Here at this university every student will understand the value of leading a healthy life, that a healthy lifestyle is part of being an empowered person.

Ladies and Gentlemen

Because technology plays such a defining role in the lives of individuals, in the progress of organisations and in building competitiveness of nations, the university has developed a programme to further empower and further enable our students.

Laptop Empowerment Programme

This is the university′s Laptop Ownership Programme which is part of our Study Anywhere Anytime initiative.

Promoting study and research for new knowledge, new ideas anywhere, anytime

We have worked with two of the world′s leading computer providers, Acer and Hewlett Packard, to create a flexible package that will allow our students to own their own laptops.

These are the same types of laptops used by students and professionals in the United States, Europe, Japan and other advanced countries.

By owning their own laptops students will be encouraged and empowered to search for new knowledge which they can do at the press of a button.

By owning their own laptops students will feel the global connection and truly become a part of the global community.

Ladies and Gentlemen

Limkokwing global virtual presence 60 million web visitors 190 countries.

In a few minutes the Honourable Prime Minister will be invited to launch the Limkokwing University Lesotho website – www.limkokwing.ac.ls.

Connecting Lesotho to 190 countries.

It is a specially dedicated website which is part of the University′s main website where we have a constant stream of visitors. Every month we get at least four million hits from 190 countries.

We can think of no better way to promote Lesotho and its many attractions to a global audience – www.limkokwing.ac.ls.

Bringing the world to Lesotho; Bringing Lesotho to the world

It is a website that we monitor and build and which we will continue to strengthen. The University′s Lesotho website already has over 200 pages and this will grow into a space full of information about Lesotho′s culture, economy and its people.

Ladies and Gentlemen

In establishing ourselves here, we have given ourselves a role in promoting Lesotho. Making use of the resources of our campuses across the world and the collegial network we have built, we shall work to bring the world to Lesotho and Lesotho to the world.

Limkokwing Lesotho:

Bridging the knowledge gap; Bridging the technology gap

By bringing the world′s latest in creative thinking and creative technology, we are confident we can help build the human capital that is imbued with the mindset that is essential to drive the process of transformation of Lesotho into an innovative nation.

Africans are world′s most creative and talented in many areas of human endeavours

It is an acknowledged fact that the people of Africa are among the most creative in the world. They are widely acknowledged to be the best in many areas of human endeavours.

Africans dominate in creative industries as writers, composers, performers, producers, directors, innovators

Most prominently, they dominate in the creative industries as writers, innovators, composers, performers, producers and directors. They dominate where individual talent and creativity are the pre–requisites.

Africans rule the world in track and field as much as they do in sound and music, on stage and on screen

They rule the world in track and field as much as they do in sound and music and as they do on stage and on screen

Limkokwing University

A Smart Partnership empowerment platform

Our presence in Lesotho is a Smart Partnership initiative. This empowerment platform grew out of our involvement in Malaysia′s Langkawi Dialogue. And here is where I first met the Honourable Prime Minister and appreciated his concerns for Lesotho and his aspirations to build this country.

Building on the spirit of Letsema

I recall the speech that he made during dinner when he referred to the quality of “Letsema” – a form of smart partnership in Lesotho which has a common goal where every one, including the weakest in society would benefit.

Your Excellency I have taken your words to heart and here we are, one year later, working together in the spirit of “Letsema” to benefit all young Basotho so they may empowered and able to contribute to build this country.

And I repeat Your Excellency the very words that you spoke. I quote – “ Our societies have long recognised that a human being is the centre of development and the engine of growth, that nobody is an island.”

Creating smart solutions to move Lesotho up the value chain

In this effort, Limkokwing Lesotho will work closely with the Government and other institutions to implement Smart Partnership plans that will lead to smart solutions to propel this country further up the economic value chain.

This university is ready to provide short training programmes in Malaysia to Lesotho Government officials in branding, tourism, multimedia technology, web–design, media content production, innovative thinking and other areas in which we have the expertise.

This university will also set aside an initial 20 scholarships worth 2 million Rand for our Basotho graduates to do their masters programmes at our campuses in Kuala Lumpur, Beijing and London.

Ladies and Gentlemen

To our students, let me say how pleased we are that you have come on board.

In joining us, you are now part of a globalised university. You are now part of a student community of more than a hundred countries.

You will learn new skills in the use of new technology which in turn will empower you with new knowledge.

Be empowered to become Lesotho′s most dynamic, enterprising young Basotho

You will empower yourself to be the most dynamic, enterprising young people this country has ever seen.

You will discover that you have more creative talents than you have ever imagined.

You will be the generation that will change the way people think, and bring about changes that will set the pace of progress in this country. You will become a driving force of this country′s transformation.

The future is about making the impossible possible

You will learn that the future has always been about making possible the impossible, that the future has always been driven by the power of creativity, and by people with the drive to go where no one has been and do things that no one has done.

Become the change you want to see in Lesotho

Those who choose not to do ordinary things are always the ones to achieve extraordinary success.

Become the driving force of Lesotho′s economic transformation

This is my advice to you, whenever challenged, no matter how difficult and how much it has taken out of you, stay on the track. Stay the course. Stay on till it is done. Stay on and it will be done.

The future is now in your hands

Nothing will make me happier than to see every student of this university succeed the way you want to succeed; to see you become the people other people would want to emulate.

On that note, and on behalf of the faculty and all our students, may I thank you once again for honouring us with your presence.