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Africa, Stand Up!

Maleele Choongo's picture


Earlier this year, the World Bank got a taste of what African youth can bring to the table. I was one of 30,000 Twitter users participating in the #iwant2work4africa campaign. For months, we voiced our passion for Africa while shoehorning our qualifications to work for the continent, all in 140 characters.

I am hoping that the #iwant2workd4africa turnout is only a fraction of what the World Bank is about to see from African youth at the upcoming World Bank Global Youth Summit taking place on October 23. Youth from all over the world are expected to gather at the Bank’s headquarters in Washington DC to discuss and debate development issues that affect us.

I am making a personal appeal to my fellow youth to attend the Summit online, represent Africa, and voice their opinions. Three out of the four cases in the Development Competition are exclusively addressing Africa. Who better to decide the solutions than Africans themselves? Let’s face it: Africa DECIDES.

It’s time to bring the issues to the table. We need to talk about unemployment. We need to talk about innovation. We need to talk about how we can move forward, but we can’t move beyond rhetoric until we have properly deliberated.

I’m sure the suggestion to “talk”, given our current situation (over 50% of youth in Africa are unemployed), will be received with raised brows. Haven’t we been “talking”, or so it seems, for half a century now? Before we completely brush this off we have to acknowledge that 50 years ago, youth did not constitute over 65% of the African population, as they do now. The conversations that were had then were only directed towards what is now about 35% of the population. We are witnessing a paradigm shift, and we have to respond accordingly.

We also need proportionality in representation –although we can easily arrive at cultural solidarity, African countries do not have a homogenous narrative. Even within countries, there are social, economic, and cultural disparities.

This is why African youth have to come in full-fledged support of their countries and communities. The Summit will be in Washington, DC, but, hey, what’s geographical inconvenience in a world of live tweeting and real time video streaming?

Whether in person or via internet, I hope to see you there, reppin’ Africa!

Comments

Submitted by Anonymous on

I'm to pleased to hear about this worthwhile opportunity where African youths will be giving the privilege to correct there present while also building a sustainable future through innovation skill and
business orientation.
I'll be very honoured to part of this great minded youths gathering which will give me the chance to speak about the hidden potential and the endowment creativity of African youths.
There are many of us who "could have been/would be" more important to "this/next" generation than some the most powerful industrialist in the continent today but we lack resources that could makes us grow: not only that, but the environments and corruption have endangered our visions which as being the main obstacles of our potentials.

Submitted by Giwa Sheu Tijani on

I'm pleased to hear about this worthwhile
opportunity, where African youths will be giving the
privilege to correct there present while also building
a sustainable future through innovation, skill, and
business orientation.
I'll be honoured to be part of this great minded
youths gathering which will give me the chance to
speak about the hidden potential and the
endowment creativity of African youths.
There are many of us who "could have been/would
be" more important to "this/next" generation than
some the most powerful industrialist in the Africa continent today but we lack resources that could makes us grow: not only that, but the environments and corruption have endangered our visions which as
being the main obstacles of our potentials.

Submitted by BAINOMUGISHA STEPHEN on

i like this

Submitted by BOITSHEPO BOLELE on

African youth bring perservarance to the table. African youth bring creativity to the table. African youth bring persistence to the table. African youth bring a hope for a new africa. If exposed to dynamic leadership models - they are our hope for governance and Institutionalising democracy. Through exchange programmes and platforms/summits of this nature - there is hope for a new africa

Submitted by Francis Dorbu on

I was born and lived Ghana for 34 years now and have seen the growth my country and the rest of the continent at large.
What surprised me most is how African themselves shoot each other at the foot. We are people who have never helped one another but expect others to help us. We as countries and continent first of all should integrate through trade and remove artificial barriers we have created. For the growth africa, we have the ability to consume and creates wealth internally when we sell food, export minerals and ideas to one another first before seeking to sell same to the western world. If we refuse to think about ourselves and expect others to think and solve problem for us then we are joking and we cannot move forward.
Also about he wars across africa or our continent, we are our own problems. Leadership full of greed who never wanted to give chance to others, and also marginalize majority of africa citizen result into conflicts. This can only be solve when we all come together as a nation and share resources evenly or by given opportunities to the poor and needy people to have education.
Education is a key and light to shine on our darkness. We develop one another by providing quality and accessible education for the continent and various countries without hitches, and also given opportunity to all and not few elite families then we are heading towards freedom our fathers profess for us. We must stop using state resources for individual gains, and moneys allocated for development must be used as such so that society may appreciate the importance of governance but if we abuse and loot as well as divert these resources to individual account and the mass suffer this creates division and class within our own rank which leads to chaos and that result into conflict within the zone.
Corruption must also be tackled as leadership and people in position must begin to tell the truths. We lie as a continent to another and have seen same to be a norm thereby creating evil among ourselves.
We must learn to tell the truth as a nation and individuals within the states. This is really relevant.

Submitted by sucre on

An adage says "when cleaning,we start from the top".we also need to discuss about our leaders who are corrupt and still hold important leadership posts even at their dying age and then pass it on to their family members who sometimes don't possess the qualities of true leadership...,its time we stand against that and other vices of our corrupt society.thanks.sam repping nigeria.

Submitted by Sarah Ameri on

The African youth need to be more aware about their communities and areas where they can intervene through innovation and creativity. so yah, would be glad to participate.

Submitted by Namate Lyenda on

In Africa, we shall never develop if we ignore to grasp the Basics of Science and Technology. This includes Locat Production of both Organic and Inorganic Fertilizer. We need Practical Experience of how to Improvise for Basic Needs of Life.

Submitted by Beatrice Mamphey on

would be glad to join the live discussion.Africa needs a change ,and we are the change...building solutions out of needs.innovation,creativity,production..its all about the mindset..
Please spread the word about this meeting.#Africaneedsus #africahasgotyou

Submitted by Eric Cliff on

great forum indeed and i will be happy to share my views with my fellow youth for growth of the african youths

Submitted by Wale Oluwole on

Wow, this is a great opportunity! I will like to be part of the remaking of Africa's history by lending my voice to issues bordering on the growth and development of our dear continent. First and foremost, economic empowerment of Africa's teeming population. This can be achieved by establisment of manufacturing industries, as well as granting loan facilities to micro, small and medium scale enterprises. Secondly, entrenchment of lasting peace and security all over Africa, particularly in troubled areas. Thirdly, improved health care delivery services, especially reduction in maternal mortality rate which is probably the highest the world over. Fourthly,provision of basic social amenities, like electricity, pipe-borne water, good roads, well equipped schools, world-class recreational facilities, among others. Lastly,embarking on largescale/mechanised agriculture, which will ultimately bring about food security and resuscitation of most of our agro-allied industries which are moribund. I believe if all these steps are taken, the fortune and future of Africa will be very bright. Long live Africa!

Submitted by Calista Ukwuoma on

Sincerity is a fundamental vector of economic growth and develoment, oh... My fellow Africans, what potentials can we exercise to unveil a sustainable resource of our mother land.
CAU

Submitted by kassu on

I'm to pleased to hear about this worthwhile opportunity where African youths will be giving the privilege to correct there present while also building a sustainable future through innovation skill and
business orientation.
I'll be very honoured to part of this great minded youths gathering which will give me the chance to speak about the hidden potential and the endowment creativity of African youths.
There are many of us who "could have been/would be" more important to "this/next" generation than some the most powerful industrialist in the continent today but we lack resources that could makes us grow: not only that, but the environments and corruption have endangered our visions which as being the main obstacles of our potentials.

Submitted by Bi on

Why is this conference on Africa.. being held outside Africa?
You know how hard it is for us (African's) to get to Washington (US) for this conference. Why not having it in an African country so its easy to get to, especially if it concerns Africans by Africans?

Submitted by Alemayehu Abate on

This is the wonderful start for Africa. I am very happy to be part of this work.

Submitted by Herodotus B w Gray on

Please add my name on the list of the African youths submit.

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