Today 1st November 2020 Arise Africa Youth was launched in Accra. AAYI is a non-governmental organization that aims to be the voice of the voiceless and proactively promote the ideals of the African Union on Youth development. (AAYI) is a proactive youth advocacy group formed to empower, educate and stimulate innovation and creation amongst African youth.
In alignment with the African Youth Charter adopted by the African Union, AAYI aims to be the voice of the voiceless African youth, spearheading proactive actions through creative interventions, digitization, skills development, mentorship programmes and resource provision, leading to a safe and Better Africa.
Speaking at the launch, Mr David Akwasi Amofah Founder and National President of the organisation stated that, “There is no better time to launch this organization than now, as the world enters into a digital age. Digitization holds the power to solve critical issues and transform lives at a faster rate in these modern times and will be fully utilized by AAYI to empower the African youth through our programmes and activities.
I will use this opportunity to commend the government of Ghana for implementing various interventions based on digitization, namely ‘the Ghana digital address system, mobile phone interpolation, drone delivery system delivering essential medicines to rural areas just to mention a few. I will also commend the Ministry of Youth and Sports and the National Youth Authority in reforming the institution and doing its bit in supporting the youth (establishment of centers of sports development, youth in agricultures etc).”
However there is still more to do in including the youth at the forefront of these technological interventions. If well resourced, the youth can become a very powerful tool in driving development and change. Africa and Ghana to be precise, with its abundance of resources is faced with very scary demographics according to World Bank statistics.
The youth occupy more than 70% of the population and almost 65% of that are uneducated and unemployed. The government alone cannot carry this huge burden. Neglect of the concerns and needs of the African Youth leads to serious pandemonium, a typical example being recent unfortunate incidents in Nigeria. Back home in Ghana, as we approach National Presidential and Parliamentary elections, we have seen various negative incidents of violence involving the youth including the brutal killing of a member of parliament, as well as incidents at Odododiodo constituency.
The time is now to support these vulnerable groups, educate and empower them for development. It has become so urgent that AAYI through is executive membership had to rise up for action, and if I may borrow the words of the President of Ghana, Nana Addo Dankwa Akuffo-Addo, ‘we do not have to be spectators but citizens’.
The Theme for the event is aligned with the theme set by the African Union based on the 4 E’s of EDUCATION, EMPLOYMENT, ENTREPRENEURSHIP and ENGAGEMENT. ‘The “One Million by 2021 Initiative” was launched in April 2019 to catalyse action for youth development in Africa. The African Union Commission does this by facilitating connections between AU Member States, corporate sponsors and development partners to inspire investment in African youth. It aims to create 1 million new opportunities for Young Africans in education, employment, entrepreneurship, and engagement across the continent and in the diaspora (African union)’.
The chosen theme for this years’s celebration by AAYI according to Mr Amofah is – Action now for a Safe and Better Future- 1Million by 2021- Count me in.
“From now till the end of the month, AAYI will be rolling out various activities to observe the African Youth Month in collaboration with the African Union and the youth institutions in Ghana.
Expect an AAYI TV online soon, where young people will take an active part in speaking about and solving social issues. It is time for the Ghanaian youth to part of the political dispensation and task our political leaders in delivering on their promises. We hereby call on all youth in Africa to Arise for action for a safe and better future”.
DAVID AKWASI AMOFAH