12 August 2018, Algiers. The African Centre for the Study and Research on Terrorism (ACSRT) and African Union Youth Volunteers deployed in Algeria, in partnership with the Young Talented African Forum (YouTAF) successfully organised an Inter-generational Dialogue in celebration of the International Youth Day on 12 August 2018 in Algiers, Algeria.

The dialogue which was held in the conference hall of ACSRT attracted participants from 18 AU Member States countries including Algeria, Angola, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Chad, Congo Brazaville, Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Mozambique, Nigeria, Uganda, Zambia, Rwanda, and Zimbabwe.

The dialogue organised under the theme: SAFE SPACES FOR YOUTH, in line with the International Youth Day Celebration theme for 2018, sought to bring to the fore contemporary challenges confronting young people around the world particularly African youth and how the youth could be involved in decision making processes on matters that affect their development and well-being. The inter-generational dialogue set the tone for a more inclusive approach that offers a platform for young people to express themselves on matters that affect them.

Present at the event were, Mr Idriss Mounir Lallali, Deputy Director of the African Centre for the Study and Research on Terrorism (ACSRT), Mrs Charity Gbedawo, Head of Chancellery of the Republic of Ghana to the People’s Democratic Republic of Algeria, Members of the Diplomatic Community, Staff of ACSRT, Some selected International Student pursuing their academic degrees in Algeria as well as some media representatives.

In his Keynote Address, the Deputy Director of ACSRT, Mr IdrissMounirLallali indicated that ACSRT has recognized the key role young people can play in fostering peace and security in Africa. He further reiterated the Centre’s commitment to engaging young people meaningfully for preventing and countering violent extremism and terrorism in Africa. Mr Lallali revealed that young people remain the most vulnerable group and targets of insurgent groups and coupled with the peculiar challenges facing young people in Africa, they have become recruitment targets of violent extremist’s group, as the terrorists and violent extremists groups have succeeded in harnessing the potential of youth more than governments have done.

On her part, Mrs Charity Gbedawo, Head of Chancellery of the Republic of Ghana to the People’s Democratic Republic of Algeria, speaking on the topic: The Role Of Young People In The Transformative Agenda Of Africa, emphasized the valuable labor force that young people represent on the continent and the need to fully benefit from their enormous potential by creating structures that guarantee their safety and dignity.

A panel discussion comprising of Richard Apau and Rolce Marlette Nkounkou representing African Union Youth Volunteers, David Tetteh and Moustapha Mahamat Moustapha representing YouTAF and moderated by Josiane Darwatoye, an AUYV; challenged young people to look beyond the numerous problems facing the continent and fully take charge of the transformative agenda of Africa. The youth questioned why the Agenda 2063, which is the blue print of the continent’s development, is being led by older people who might properly not be alive in 50 years while young people have been relegated to the background. The young people called on the AU to ensure youth are involved in all processes leading to the implementation of the agenda 2063 and ensure that their voices are represented in all decision making processes.