Portuguese Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs and Co-operation visits the Aga Khan Academy Maputo | Aga Khan Academies

Portuguese Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs and Co-operation visits the Aga Khan Academy Maputo

08 December 2021

Staff, students and parents at the Aga Khan Academy (AKA) in Maputo, Mozambique had the opportunity to meet eminent visitors from Portugal on 23 November 2021.

Portuguese Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs and Co-operation Francisco André; Portuguese Ambassador to Mozambique António Costa Moura; Vice-President of the Board of Directors of Camões (Portuguese co-operation agency) Cristina Moniz; and Adviser to the Secretary of State Luís Castelo-Branco toured the 50-hectare site and explored the newly built facilities.

The delegation commented on the scale of the Academy’s mission and vision, the quality of its infrastructure, the excellence of its teaching and its extensive cultural diversity, with students of 23 nationalities.

The financial support offered by the Academy's Talent Identification Programme allows young Mozambican students with exceptional leadership potential to join the Academy and access education of an international standard, regardless of their families' financial means. It aims to nurture graduates who will make a positive contribution in a changing world.

In the guestbook, Mr André commented: “I would like to congratulate the management of the Academy for the excellence of its project in Maputo, for the fabulous work done so far. This project of the Aga Khan Academy is an example of the dedication of the Imamat in the African continent and particularly to Mozambique, which we admire and respect so much.”

Michael Spencer, Head of the Academy, said: “It was a pleasure hosting the Portuguese Secretary of State of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation and the Portuguese Ambassador to Mozambique, along with our other distinguished guests, who showed a deep understanding and interest in the vision, mission and work of the Academy. It was a valuable opportunity for some of our students to interact with such senior political leaders and to help guide them on a tour of the newly expanded campus.”

The campus is almost complete, with new residential buildings due to be handed by year’s end. Forty-four of AKA Maputo’s 301 students already live on site. Joudy Hossaino and Hiba Alsaleh of Grade 8 were amongst the students who met the delegation. They recalled that “they were very kind and really

took the time to personally interact with each and every one of us. This made us feel that we are cared for, and it gave us a sense of being important."

Joudy appreciates that as Academy students “we are encouraged to explore and improve our talents, and gain crucial values and experiences. I am interested in both psychiatry and the media, so I intend to combine these two fields to help raise awareness on important psychiatric issues through mass media and help as many people as I can.” 

Hiba wants to be a pediatric surgeon. “Through this, I have a lot of plans to help and serve the people in Syria. I have been thinking of how I can help small children overcome their fears of visiting doctors, and I already have ideas on how I can make my future clinic a place that children will love. I came to the Academy to change for the better and, in turn, to help people change for their better.”

The Secretary of State concluded: “My wishes for great success in the near future. I am certain that in the next visit I will find this Academy already full of students, and one of the most brilliant cases of success in education in this country and beyond its borders.”