On the 31st of May 2018, the National Library of South Africa in collaboration with the African Union hosted an Africa Day Dialogue with colleagues from the Department of International Relations and Cooperation. The programme was aimed at revisiting AU’s 2063 Agenda looking at it from varying aspects.
The chairman made the following opening remarks whilst sitting at the panel:
“It is rather sad and unfortunate that the same AU which we are about to unpack its agenda and relevance will only have 35% of youth and 50% of women by the year 2025. Today we sit in a country whose population is 70% youth, however the government departments is 90% old. What about now? Why not clean up AU now? What’s stopping us now? Where do we expect to find fresh ideas to solve the emerging challenges can come with industry 4.0? Anyways, let us not even touch the 4th Industrial Revolution because we are 20 years behind. The first world countries are already in the 5th Industrial Revolution yet we expect old men and women to understand and catch up with the rest of world.”
Amongst the panelists were members from academia, African Renaissance Institute, Business and South African Government who were contributing towards the discussion to find amicable solutions for the challenges facing the continent. One of the challenges identified by Mr Ramoroka was that of lack of political.
“We must understand that one of the biggest problem facing the lack of youth development in our continent is lack of political will and leaders who are not innovative enough to create an enabling environment for youth to thrive with their skills, talents and qualifications. Each year we graduate more than 10 thousands, however, these young people cannot be placed anywhere. And NO, our biggest problem is not employability but lack of innovation from our leaders to create an enabling environment for jobs and functioning economies in Africa.” he emphasised.
“What we lack as African youth is collaboration. A challenge that I might be having in South Africa, there’s someone in Kenya who has found a working solution for it. With technology, we are able to tumble down the borders and collaborate on projects that can change lives and help put food on the table for millions of our people.” he added.