Men’s Christian Association (YMCA) yesterday held a daylong seminar on African
Youth Factbook research, collecting information on where young people want to
see Africa in 2030.
This year’s theme is: “Africa we want” and participants from different African countries discussed the needs of Africa and challenges to overcome in the near future.
The seminar brought together young people from different youth organisations to discuss the findings of the research to help them and put to task the government to help empower the youth to realise their full potential.
John Charles Njie of NGST The Gambia advised the youth never to put their destiny on the hands of others as “the one who has the destiny has the power over it”.
The youth empowerment has become a social challenge the world is facing today, he said, adding that the love for money has changed the concept of the young people of today.
He said: “When you call for a workshop to instill knowledge in young people they expect money in return”, which is bad for the future generation.
Priscilla H.D. Dunn, the programme secretary of YMCA, in her inspirational statement, said the Africa they want now and the future is up to the youth to shape and create a continent where the youth would be in the driver’s seat of the African Renaissance.
“It was up to the youth to overcome current challenges and break the dependency syndrome of colonial legacy, to safeguard and uphold the rights of all people, rejuvenate cultural ideals and practices, integrate indigenous knowledge into current thinking and methodologies, spearhead technological initiatives, to achieve economic freedom and develop African solution to the Africa we want,” he said.
“There is an exciting journey ahead of us in developing ourselves by taking creative risks coupled with planning and analytic thought in the action of change,” she added.
She also said it is time for Africa to start developing itself and creating awareness to transform identity in sourcing knowledge and to be part of training that would inspire the leaders.
Mrs Dunn further said the future is uncertain but technology would pave the way for a brighter Africa.
She said young people should create a positive change in communities and process a continental forum where the thinking ability of the youth would be influenced for a better future.
She said: “The Africa we want is borne from Agenda 2063, a development strategy by the African Union that call for all segments of African society to work together to build a prosperous and united Africa based on share values and a common destiny.”
She added that the youth are under the spotlight to capitalize and maximize their potentials as youth and women to have a sustainable development, as well as an integrated continent that would politically unite the ideals of Pan-Africanism and the vision of the African Renaissance, to have a peaceful and secure Africa for good governance, democracy, respect for human rights, justice and the rule of law.
A strong and united Africa with resilience would influence the global world to leave a positive legacy for generations to come, she stated.