The AU Agenda 2063 and UN Agenda 2030 recognizes youth as a vital force in shaping the future of Africa. Their active involvement in the implementation of both agendas ensures that their voices, aspirations, and needs are considered at all levels of decision making. To advance this goal, the Office of the Youth Envoy partnered with Austrian National Youth Council to establish the Africa Youth Reference Committee. The Committee comprises of twenty-five African youth representatives selected from all five African Union regions, and fifteen European youth representatives.
Following an open call for participants, we received an overwhelming response with over 2000 two thousand applications from young change-makers involved in development projects within their communities and championing issues to do with global inequalities.
from across Africa and the diaspora, after a rigorous selection process Twenty-five (25) African youth representatives were selected from all (5) five African Union regions, and fifteen (15) European youth representatives.
The selected African youth representatives are as follows: Albert Alexander Kure (Nigeria), Alice Mukashyaka (Rwanda), Amy Ochiel Ochieng (Kenya), Dambisa Siphosethu Dube (South Africa), Denise B. Dennis (Liberia), Esias Bedingar (Chad), Fitiavana Ramamisoa (Madagascar), Hameda Abdulrasul Mendy (Sudan), Hani Ahmed (Eritrea), Imane Lakbachi (Morocco), Isaac Bezabih (Ethiopia), Joshua Leshan Kereto (Kenya), Jovia Kisakye (Uganda), Karen-Andréa Bedoume Nkoume (Cameroon), Louise Kongolo Kanza (DRC Congo), Marc Adem Tilley (Algeria), Mohamed Osman (Somalia), Moliehi Rethabile Mafantiri (Lesotho), NeliakuChimdindu (Nigeria), Osvaldo Antonio Jose Joao (Angola), Sylivia Mohamed Mkomwa (Tanzania), Tinashe Simbarashe Nondo (Zimbabwe), Tom Tonken Musonda (Zambia), Yasmeen Fahmy (Egypt), Ziadath Agnike Achimi (Benin).
To welcome the successful applicants, Ms. Chido Mpemba, AU Youth Envoy, expressed her confidence in the selected candidates, stating, “The selection process was fiercely competitive, and we are thrilled to announce that the chosen candidates, representing diverse African voices, possess an extraordinary wealth of knowledge, experience, and unwavering passion. Their inclusion in the Committee will not only propel youth participation in development processes but also amplify the power of African voices in shaping a more equitable and inclusive future. We eagerly anticipate working alongside these exceptional young individuals to forge a future of shared progress, where African perspectives take center stage, and boundless opportunities are created for all.”
The Africa Youth Reference Committee is a youth-led initiative that aims to foster global youth dialogue and facilitate meaningful youth participation across various thematic areas, including civic engagement, climate change, governance, peace and security, migration, the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AFCfTA), capacity building, gender mainstreaming in digital technology, mental health and well-being, and sexual reproductive health rights.
The Youth Reference Committee’s twelve-month mandate will commence on July 5, 2023, with a Virtual session on the South-North Dialogue. Drawing on their experience and networks, the committee will contribute to thematic areas and propose activities that align with the realities of African youth on the continent and in the diaspora. Additionally, the committee will serve as an interactive mechanism and communication channel between the Office of the African Union Youth Envoy and the Austrian National Youth Council.