2019 Africa Open for Business Summit,
27 September, United Nations Headquarter, New York
Agenda 2063 and Agenda 2030 are the youth agendas.
We young people are committed to co-lead with you – governments, the private sector, international community and other stakeholders, the solutions that will enable us to take our continent to where she deserves to be.
We must acknowledge the positive contribution of youth, acknowledge their disruption as innovation and creativity that can take our continent’s development ahead of our time.
Our generation is the most connected, innovative and best educated. We should focus on building a world that is collaborative, diverse, inclusive and emotionally intelligent. We are a generation that doesn’t want empty promises but want progress, that doesn’t want tokenism but want action, a generation that doesn want to be online consumers but digital traders.
The African Continental Free Trade Area must deliver for young Africans especially most vulnerable youth must be at the centre of economic empowerment rather than ending up just being transactions.The challenge for our generation remains economic independence and ownership, owning our resources, owning the means of production, owning the technology we’re using, decolonizing our knowledge, and really being the owners and drivers of our destiny and our continent.
The Africa We want is where we value our youth as entrepreneurs, innovators and drivers not subjects of development. The Africa We want is where the Sahara is a bridge and a hub of Pan-Africanism. The Africa we want is borderless, transnational, multilingual, multicultural with an African passport – every young person must have an African passport- a single market, e-governance, e-commerce, open borders, and Pan-African universities, where technology is accessible and democratised and we where can finally close the digital divide.
The Africa We Want is about Intergenerational dialogue and co-leadership. Building our generational collective power, our collective culture and our collective Pan-African identity.
The future of work needs to be about dignity because young people don’t want just jobs, but jobs with dignity. The future of work needs to be about thriving in a fair ecosystem not merely surviving. The future of work is about intersectionality of our issues and solutions, we cannot talk about climate justice without gender justice or talk about ending inequality without cross-sector and cross-border partnerships
The future is digital
The future is young
The future is female
President of the United Nations General Assembly, these are our dreams this the Africa we want, and this flame of hope, inspiration, creativity, positive narrative that African youth represent will light up in every corner of our beloved continent.
Chairperson’s Special Envoy on Youth
African Union Commission