By HENRY TYOHEMBA
Experts at the just concluded inaugural edition of the ‘Transformers Arise’ 2020 e-Conference, have stressed that Africa is in dire need of effective and transformational youth leaders who are willing to be empowered, equipped, and educated enough to take the lead in tackling current challenges confronting the Continent.
The experts made the assertion during a virtual conference organised by Transformers Hub International which involved phenomenal speakers and trainers from across Africa to add their voices to the issue of leadership crisis in the Continent, with a focus on youth empowerment and inclusion as a way out.
Convener, Transformers Arise 2020 e-Summit and President/Founder, Transformers Hub International, Shirley Hills, said the e-conference is part of the Organization’s initiative for Youth Empowerment and Engagement, organized to commemorate the United Nations International Youth Day 2020, as well as add their own quota towards “Educating, Equipping, and Empowering the next generation of leaders for global action, impact and transformation.
In her opening speech, which focused on visioning for Impact, she stated that young people can develop and birth a compelling vision that will move Africa forward.
One of the Keynote Speakers, Ambassador Hassan Mfouakie from Cameroon (CEO, World Youth Summit Organization – WYS), and Minister of Youth, at State Of the African Diaspora – SOAD), who spoke on the the topic: “Not too Young to Lead”, said Africa needs more transformative leaders that the youth can learn from and be mentored.
He stressed that the older generation needs to give support to younger ones to take over leadership, adding that youths who are innovative, skillful, talented, and updated are the ones who will lead Africa out of her challenges.
On his part, Dr Olusiji Aina, co-Convener and the Country Director (Nigeria), Impact Amplifier, urged current leaders to begin to address issues confronting youths such as political marginalization and lack of economic empowerment opportunities for the youths, while stressing the need for friendly policies that can make youths change their mindsets to begin to do more meaningful things.
He noted that the only way to overcome insecurity in the Continent, especially Nigeria is by creating economic empowerment and leadership inclusion opportunities for youths. He said, “We must begin to review our policies and look at the legal framework to accommodate the youth if we want to reduce the number of violence that we are experiencing in the society.”
Aina further added that there’s need to provide psychosocial support to the youths, especially at ages between eleven and nineteen years, in order to catch them young and provide an enabling environment and the mindset to focus more on their personal development and nation-building, rather than on violence and other societal vices.
All the speakers shared the same passion and vision as the Host Organization for the conference – “Raising Effective Leaders for Advancing Africa”, and committed to contributing at the post-Summit Mentorship Program of the Transformers Hub International.