Dr. Kojo Asante, a Senior Research Fellow at the Ghana Center for Democratic Development (CDD-Ghana), has charged the youth to exhibit a strong sense of leadership and work towards having a progressive and all-inclusive country.
Speaking to students during a Humanities Day Forum organized by the SOS-Hermann Gmeiner International College in Tema, Dr. Asante said it is dangerous for the youth to isolate themselves and look on unconcerned about issues affecting their immediate societies and the country as a whole.
“The problem we have in Africa is that when you talk about leadership, it is all about political leadership. We need to create leaders in every facet of our society. Don’t wait for that future that is to come. Wherever you are, start being a leader and make a change,” he challenged the youth.
He asserted that it is time for Africa’s youth to contribute their quota to addressing the continent’s challenges.
“I want people to start thinking and believing that they can make a difference no matter how overwhelming the challenges of Africa are,” he said.
Dr. Asante further advised the youth to be patriotic and commit to serve others, if they want Africa to be able to overcome its numerous challenges.
“You need to care about your society; it is not an option. Unemployment is not going to disappear anytime soon. Care about how that society will be inclusive, equitable and progressive enough, so that whether you are rich or poor, you will still be taken care of by that society,” he said.
The Humanities Day Forum is organized biennially by the SOS-Hermann Gmeiner International College as a way of introducing students to varying perspectives on topical issues affecting African societies today and their impact on the development of the continent and the world. This year’s Forum, themed “Taking Ownership of Our Own Development,” was inspired by the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal 16 (Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions).
Africa is Young and Jobless
Other key speakers included Shamima Muslim Ishmael award-winning journalist and convener for Alliance of Women in Media Africa (AWMA).
On her part, Mrs Ishmael noted that the single threat to the existence and security of the African continent is youth unemployment. She, therefore, challenged the students to begin to care about the state in which the continent finds itself in and assist by putting their talents and knowledge to good use.
“You have to use your environment and create opportunities for yourself and others,” she said. “It’s either you care now or you will be made to care at a time that may be too late; your care will stand for nothing.”
Stressing that the greatest resource any country or continent can boast of is in the depths of the minds of its people, Mrs Ishmael also charged African leaders to concentrate on developing its ever-increasing human resource base.
Participants of the Humanities Day Forum were drawn from, Tema International School, Ghana Christian International High School, Tema Senior High School, Chemu Senior High School, Methodist Senior High School and the host school, SOS-Hermann Gmeiner International College.
Efua Idan Atadja, Communications Officer