Home Africa For Africa to progress, its leaders need to invest in the youth

For Africa to progress, its leaders need to invest in the youth


“Africa needs leadership that will harness the energy of youth, and create the conditions in which their rightful expectations can be met,” says Dr. Ibrahim the Founder and Chair of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation on his article published in the Financial Times.

The potential to grow Africa’s is in its young people, a generation that is entrepreneurial, adventurous and is spending a longer time gaining education compared to the older generation, further says Dr. Ibrahim.

Africa is rich with young people; six of ten Africans are below the age of 25. During the period between 2015 and 2050 the population of the African youth would have double to at least 452 million.

Unemployment and inequalities are some of the factors frustrating this group. A mismatch between the extensive education that the generation is acquiring and the contemporary job market is encouraging unemployment.

“Skepticism about elected representatives is growing. African citizens put their trust first in religious leaders, then the army and traditional leaders. Presidents comes a distant fourth,” says Dr. Ibrahim.

Coupled with the average gap of 44 year gap between political leaders and the youth, the young people have further lost their interest in politics.

Poor political environment and unemployment have contributed to the growing terrorism and African migrants headed to developed countries looking for greener pastures, after failing to access opportunities unlike their western counterparts.

African leaders need to invest in the youth as the continent’s success is pinned on their commitment to harnessing in its biggest resource, the youth.

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