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PHOTO STORY: Highlights from the World Youth Forum 2019 in Egypt PHOTO STORY: Highlights from the World Youth Forum 2019 in Egypt

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PHOTO STORY: Highlights from the World Youth Forum 2019 in Egypt5 minutes read

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The third edition of the World Youth Forum (WYF) was officially inaugurated on Saturday 14 December at Egypt’s Red Sea resort town of Sharm El-Sheikh.

The forum came to an end on Tuesday, December 17.

The 2019 edition hosted 7,000 young Egyptians and non-Egyptians, as well as a number of other experts, journalists, public figures and officials from around the world.

The opening ceremony, which was inaugurated by Egyptian President, Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi also featured speeches from several influential individuals.

The forum began with a speech from Li Yong, Director-General of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization, who spoke about the importance of youth participation.

Afterwards, a number of young speakers took to the stage, including 12-year-old Egyptian, Zein Youssef, who shared his inspirational story of fighting cancer.

“I embraced a motto in my life that I repeat daily in everything that I do, called NEGU,” said Zein Youssef confidently to the thousands present at the forum.

Zein Youssef was first diagnosed with high-risk stage four neuroblastoma in February 2013 when he was just five-years-old and has defeated cancer four times.

Check out photos from our correspondent who was live at the resort for the forum.

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Kenyan ‘Softie’ to premiere in Sundance Film Festival

The subject of the film, Boniface Mwangi won the CNN Africa Journalist of the year award in 2008 .

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Boniface Mwangi’s feature documentary, Softie is set to screen at the Sundance Film Festival in New York on Saturday, January 25. 

Titled after the sociopolitical activist’s childhood nickname, the 96-minute film highlights his lesser-known struggles and accomplishments.

The 2020 Sundance Film Festival will take place from January 23 to February 2, 2020.

Softie (Capital FM)

Based in Nairobi, Sam Soko has engaged in civic literacy projects spanning across film, music and books. He is also the co-founder of LBx Africa, a Kenyan production company that service produced the 2018 Oscar-nominated short fiction film, Watu Wote.

The film ‘Softie’ is Sam Soko’s first feature documentary project. In 2018, it won the audience award for best pitch at Hot Docs Forum. 

The subject of the film, Boniface Mwangi won the CNN Africa Journalist of the year award in 2008 for his coverage of the 2007-2008 post-election violence in Kenya.

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Nigerian music industry to generate $86 million in 2021

This would be a huge leap from the $53 million revenue in 2018.

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The Nigerian Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed has projected that the Nigerian music industry is set to generate $86 million (about N3.096 billion) in revenue in 2021.

This was revealed at the Tourism Investment and Business Forum For Africa  (Investor) organised by the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) and CASA Africa in Spain, yesterday, January 24.

According to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), the forum is on the sidelines of the ongoing 2020 International Tourism Trade Fair which is held annually in Madrid. 

At one of the forum panels, Mohammed revealed that the industry’s revenue grew from $36 million in 2014 to $53 million in 2018. This however still falls significantly short of the fashion and design industry which recorded N4 trillion in earnings in the same year.  

He further revealed that digital music consumption contributed the largest portion of the revenue. This aspect of the growing market has significantly boosted the industry and provided unprecedented access for local artists.

Burna Boy is one of Nigeria’s most commercially succesful artists (Instagram/ burnaboygram).

“Although the art and craft sector largely consists of an unskilled workforce and individuals from remote and poor rural areas, it contributes to addressing some of the challenges that local communities face.

“It is also viewed as a cultural activity which represents the essence of the people’s way of life and serves as an integral part of the travel and tourism industry,” he said.

He concluded that given the impressive numbers the creative industry is being identified as a sector that could aid the diversification goal of the Federal Government

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The African youth population that won’t be denied

Why Africa’s youth population should not be taken for granted

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Youths constitute 75% of Africa's population. Photo credit: Econet Africa

Population figures of the African continent sit at approximately 1.3 billion today, a significantly huge leap from approximately 150 million in 1930, and by 2050 there could be over 2.5 billion people occupying the land mass that is Africa. More interestingly, the continent is having to come to terms with a clearly younger population, as reports show that 41% of the African population is under the age of 15. This is probably due to certain factors, such as the lack of family planning in many African countries, the growth in population which occurs on excess of 2% every year, and the life expectancy which averages the age of 52 across the continent.

The voting age in most African countries is set at 18. However, it needs to be said that many youths feel like they don’t have much of a say when it comes to who takes power and who assumes political offices: Togo recently shut down its nationwide internet services over criticism of President Faure Gnassingbe Eyadema’s  plan to rule for two more terms, even though he has been in power since 2005.

There is also the not-so-small matter of old politicians holding on to power for as long as they can, manipulating legislations to enable them stay in office for virtually a lifetime: Paul Biya has led Cameroon since 1982, and Algeria’s Abdelaziz Bouteflika had four terms at the helm of affairs.

With many youths across the continent haunted by unemployment, sub-standard education, poor health facilities and human rights violations, the solace for many is to start up conversations on social media, while those who have the means take steps to migrate to other developed nations. There are also more than a few cases of young people defying the odds, by way of establishing businesses, selflessly setting up initiatives to encourage political participation, and using the internet as a vehicle for advocacy.

Either way, something has to give and whether the old guard admits it or not, one generation will soon have to give way for another. African youths may have started on the back foot, owing to the failure of previous generations to cater to them, but they are coming, and they are taking no prisoners.

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