Guiding Youth Innovation in Democratic Governance in Africa

Photo Credit: AGA-APSA Secretariat

The meaningful engagement of youth in democratic governance processes is of critical importance to the African Union.

The African Union Commission (AUC) through the African Governance Architecture and African Peace and Security Architecture (AGA-APSA) Secretariat held a writeshop to develop a Guideline on Youth Innovation in Democratic Governance in Africa.  The AU Office of the Youth Envoy; youth innovation focal persons of the African Governance Platform; youth innovators from innovation hubs; social entrepreneurship start-ups; incubations hubs; network organizations on youth innovation selected from the AGA Database; and AGA-APSA secretariat partners including ACCORD attended the writeshop which took place from 27 to 29 October 2022 in Kigali, Rwanda.

Despite current efforts by the AU to promote youth innovation in democratic governance by highlighting innovations by youth from across the continent, it has been evident that a lot more needs to be done to enhance youth innovation in democratic governance. Through different engagements with youth, calls were made for the development of a framework that provides guidance to AU organs, institutions, Regional Economic Communities/Regional Mechanisms (RECs/RMs) and other stakeholders on how to enhance current efforts in youth innovation in democratic governance. In response to this call, the AGA-APSA Secretariat organised the writeshop, with the overall goal for youth to co-create a draft guideline to promote youth innovation in democratic governance and human rights in Africa. The writeshop participants were introduced to the existing normative and legal frameworks as well as tools available within the AU and were then provided with time to brainstorm and develop contents of the draft guideline on youth innovation on democratic governance whilst sharing their experiences in democratic governance as youth.

Through the Training for Peace (TfP) Programme, ACCORD continues to support the AGA-APSA Secretariat’s efforts to promote youth inclusion in democratic governance. The TfP Programme has been one of the recognized key knowledge and capacity-building partners of the AUC, particularly for youth in governance and peace processes. The TfP Programme at ACCORD is an initiative funded by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Article by:

Rumbidzaishe Matambo
Rumbidzaishe Matambo
Programme Officer: Operations