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AYC in collaboration with Restless Development and other partners organised a joint webinar which brought together young people from across the Africa Region to share their reflections on the main outcomes and agreed actions from the African Regional Forum on Sustainable Development (ARFSD) that took place in Marrakech, Morocco from 16 – 18 April.
This interactive webinar ‘A Journey of SDG Accountability from Marrakech to New York’ was held on May 16th, 2019 at 10am GMT, and the second in its kind, the regional webinar series of the ‘African Youth: Powering the SDGs’. The discussion was led by young people who participated in the preparatory process of the fifth ARFSD and attended the Forum in person.
Africa is home to over 1.2 billion people, over 60% of whom fall below the age of 25. Youth are often seen as the future. We know we are more than the future, we are the today. The achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030 will depend on us, young people, playing a respected and formal role in tracking their implementation and ensuring governments remain accountable to the commitments they have made. It is therefore in our view critical that young people continue to engage in the Africa Regional Forum on Sustainable Development (ARFSD) and the High Level Political Forum (HLPF), to ensure our governments are reporting accurately and openly on the SDGs – the achievements, but also the failures and challenges that need to be addressed. At these Forums we further need to ensure that the roles of young people as lead implementers and influencers of the Goals are fully recognised and supported.
Our Executive Secretary, Mr. Kawsu Sillah, speaking at the webinar says, ”the role of young people is not just to hold our governments accountable to the SDGs, but young people are taking action across the region to implement the Goals”. He cited the example of Africa Youth SDGs Forum. He added that, National consortiums and networks like the Africa Youth Commission has an important role to play in following up with governments on key outcomes.
Mr. Keith Andere, AYC Director of Programmes delivered a presentation on how young people can get engaged and influence decision through UN Major Group of Children and Youth (UN MGCY). ”Young people have the ability to self organise for the ARFSD, for example through officially mandated networks like the UN Major Group of Children and Youth, but we need to be given the opportunity, space and crucially the funding to fully participate and share our recommendations and insights alongside governments to ensure our voices are heard”, Mr. Andere said.
For more, listen to the webinar here: