Pretoria - Young people should play a pivotal role if Africa's envisaged development is to be realised, Deputy International Relations Minister Luwellyn Landers said on Friday.
He was addressing a national youth consultative forum on the African Union's Agenda 2063 in Pretoria.
“We are fully cognisant that the young people of today are the main players and partners if we wish to move the process of the development of the continent forward.
“The vision projected in Agenda 2063 can only be achieved through the active engagement and participation of the African youth who will be delivering to the younger generations 50 years hence,” said Landers.
Agenda 2063 is a continental vision, a comprehensive blueprint for Africa's development in the next 50 years, which will be implemented by the AU.
The Pretoria summit was an input-gathering session, involving young people, national departments, the SA Local Government Association, the National Youth Development Agency, and the SA Youth Commission.
“Your input in this agenda is highly sought and appreciated. Our government fully supports the commitment taken by our African leaders and calls upon African people, on the continent and in the diaspora, to give impetus to this continental move,” said Landers.
He said Agenda 2063 would drive Africa on a developmental trajectory.
“Agenda 2063, in essence, should be about the improvement of the lives of African people. It is about an African continent that is self-reliant, self-sustaining and at peace with itself and the world around it. A true story of African rising.
“The fundamentals to achieve these goals are already in place. Africa has seen unprecedented growth over the last decade. However, for this growth to have lasting benefits, it should be anchored by accelerated economic development,” said Landers.
The youth summit on Friday would be followed by other consultations, soliciting input from academia, women, business, civil society and the cultural sector.