Africa has one of the fastest growing youth populations in the world yet we have old leaders in our governments. In 2017 60% of the population on the continent was under the age of 25 (Data: UN world population prospectors).
When you look at the typical voters age you realize that the youth (age 18 - 35) do not participate when it comes to elections specifically in South Africa. We allow our futures to be decided by a generation that is not facing the same issues as we are facing in the workplace, as entrepreneurs and as students.
“Free university education” was announced last year. This announcement was long overdue and it was all thanks to the students across South Africa from different backgrounds who stood together for a common purpose. This is proof of the strength of what happens when the youth mobilize.
Governments need to incorporate young people so they can make decisions that take into considering future generations. It is not acceptable that government officials are past retirement age in most African countries. As much as we talk about transformation in corporates we also need transformation in our governments to incorporate young people so they can form part of decision making. A quota should be enforced for every government ministry to have a certain number of youth.
Even though the above specifically refers to South Africa, it is a common theme in Africa and it needs to be addressed. As the youth we are the ones that need to fix it and make our vote count.
What kind of Africa do you want your children to grow up in?