Accra will this morning play host to the fourth edition of the Youth ConneKT Africa summit, the biggest youth platform that seeks to connect the youth of the continent for the socio-economic transformation of Africa.
Dubbed: Youth ConneKT Africa Summit 2021, this year’s event which is being held outside the capital of Rwanda, Kigali for the first time is on the theme: “Africa Beyond Aid: Positioning the youth for Post-COVID Economic and Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCTFA) opportunities.”
In attendance for this year’s event are President of Ghana, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and the President of Rwanda, Paul Kegame.
Also in attendance are ministers of youth from 24 other African countries.
Addressing a news conference in Accra on Monday to brief the media on Ghana’s preparedness towards the hosting the Pan African Youth event in Ghana, the Chief Executive Officer of the National Youth Authority (NYA), Mr Pius EnamHadzide, said this year’s event was expected to host about 17,000 participants.
He said 2000 out of the 17000 participants were expected to be physically in Accra while the remaining 15,000 would join from across the world via virtual means.
He explained that, this year’s event was being organised by the government of Ghana through the Ministry of Youth and Sports and the National Youth Authority in partnership with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) as well as other partners across African continent.
He described the event as a Pan-African platform with the vision of connecting African youth for socio-economic transformation of the continent.
Mr Hadzide said the platform was to empower young people by enhancing their knowledge experiences and skills whilst investing in their ideas, innovations and initiatives.
The CEO explained that, the summit had grown to a network of 24 African countries with participation still on the rise.
He said Ghana was hosting for the first time since the inception of the summit which had been held in Rwanda since 2012.
“Ghana was selected by the steering committee of the youth connect have to host this outside of Rwanda for the first time. The first three editions of the summit were held in Rwanda and participation as we understand has grown from about 2,000 at the inaugural summit to over 12,000 participants at the previous,” he said.
Mr Hadzide said this year’s summit would t deliver on five key objectives including a high-level inter generational dialogue for Africa’s youth which would enable the youth engage opinion leaders, policy-makers and decision-makers in starting Africa’s next level of growth beyond aid and explore youth inclusive quick-win interventions that could accelerate post Covid-19 in economic recovery.
In addition, it would also showcase a tested cross-sector policy mechanisms that support emerging youth employment pathways as well as identify the structures mechanisms and investments required to accelerate youth participation in regional trade supported by the African Continental Free Trade Area AfCFTA framework and encourage multi-stakeholder collaboration to accelerate socio-economic transformation.
BY CLIFF EKUFUL