Africa beyond aid: mobilising the youth around innovative ideas, to reimagine a prosperous continent
21 October 2021
The 2021 YouthConnekt Africa Summit 2021, the fourth summit to be held, has opened in Accra, Ghana. The summit connects African youth from across the continent and beyond with policy makers and influencers, political and industry leaders in public, private and development sector by creating a platform to engage, design, and accelerate youth-led initiatives at the continental level.
Speaking at the opening ceremony, H.E Mahamudu Bawumia, Vice President of the Republic of Ghana, noted that Africa is one of the most youthful continents globally, with a population that can shape the continent's development trajectory. “Ensuring that young people assume their rightful role in Africa’s growth will require investment in the digital skills so they can respond to the evolving needs of the continent. However, we must do our intervention to harness the value of the youth aligned to human rights and gender equality. That is why our education policy must be gender sensitive. When we create a future where every youth can reach their fullest potential, only then can we say we are creating a brighter future for the continent”.
A press release issued by the organisers notes that the 2021 Summit is taking place under the auspices of the Government of Ghana, through the Ministry of Youth and Sports and the National Youth Authority (NYA), in partnership with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the Korean International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) and the Government of the Republic of Rwanda. The three-day summit promises an offer of several enriching and highly interactive sessions, ranging from high-level plenary discussions, a masterclass on advocacy and active citizenship, a made-in-Africa marketplace, a youth development stakeholders roundtable, among others.
The Assistant Secretary-General, Assistant Administrator and Director of the Regional Bureau for Africa (UNDP), Ms. Ahunna Eziakonwa, noted that the theme for this year’s summit is important, timely and empowering. “We truly believe in the transformative potential of the AfCFTA – and Africa's Money working for Africa's Development. UNDP will work steadfastly to translate the ambition and promise of the AfCFTA into opportunities for young people and strengthen preparedness by mobilising to produce Made in Africa," she added.