March 25, 2021 (Juba, South Sudan): The Nile Youth Development Actions (NYDA) signed a cooperation agreement between MS TCDC/YouLead on the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Youth Inclusion Accelerator Project (AfCFTA YIAP) and the development of manual for Pan-African Young Leaders Training Program for reinventing leadership for African Youth in Democracy. In accordance with the terms, conditions, and aspirations of the agreement, the parties shall cooperate in the planning, promotion, and implementation of the two projects for a period until December 2022. The NYDA will broadly support the projects’ continental mobilization and coordination with Regional Economic Communities (RECs) and offer support to national and local implementing collaborators with a special emphasis on the Horn and North of Africa regions.
The agreement outlined that the Pan-African Young Leaders Training Program initiative arises out of the realization that many nations in Africa have a leadership deficit, as it is in other parts of the developed world. This has become apparent especially in light of the COVID-19 pandemic where successful response and recovery were dependent on good leadership. It is time to engage our young people in leadership, give the necessary tools to transform systems more specifically democratic and governance systems that are clearly not working.
Additionally, the cardinal aim of the AfCFTA-YIAP project is to shed light on the extent to which African young people between the ages of 18 and 35 years (including often disadvantaged groups such as the differently-abled, refugees, rural youth, IDPs, young women) are currently aware of the AfCFTA, the role they perceive themselves playing in its implementation, and how they can be mobilized and their demographic power harnessed with their innovativeness and technological agility to position themselves as a key stakeholder and contributors in accelerating the implementation of the AfCFTA while safeguarding maximum relevance and benefit for young people.
The NYDA Executive Director Mr. John Youhanes signed the agreement with Mr. Ivan Atuyambe representing the MS TCDC Programs Director.
It is worth noted that MS-TCDC is a Training Center for Development Cooperation in East and Southern Africa, situated in Arusha, Tanzania. MS-TCDC has its youth wing the YouLead which is East Africa’s flagship Youth Leadership Program seeking to unlock youth leadership potential for a prosperous region.
At a policy level, MSTCDC/YouLead Secretariat is collaborating with the African Governance Architecture (AGA) Secretariat under the African Union Commission (AUC) Department of Political Affairs (DPA) and Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) Secretariat to develop a Continental Training Manual for African Emerging Leaders.