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9th African Union Gender Pre-Summit Discusses Demographic Dividend, Youth Empowerment and Leadership and Civic Participation for Young Women

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia: The African Union held its 9th Gender Pre-Summit under the theme “Harnessing the Demographic Dividend through Investments in Youth: Empowering Young People, Especially Young Women for Leadership and Civic Participation”. This event brought together over four hundred delegates from across the continent and abroad, mainly ministers in charge of gender, pan-African women’s organizations, the diplomatic Young people from across Africa on their way to present flags of the demographic dividend theme to Heads of State and Government.

Young people from who developed the theme of the year video in a pose with Commissioner and Director of AUC Human Resources, Science and Technology 5 community, representatives of the UN and other international organizations, private sector representatives, youth organizations and members of the African diaspora.

UNFPA Liaison Office to the AU and ECA Chief, Mr. Constant-Serge Bounda, spoke at the opening ceremony on behalf of the UN system. He emphasized that the empowerment of women and girls is critical to hastening the demographic transition, a pre-requisite to realizing the demographic dividend. He also called for ministers in charge of gender to take an active role in launching the theme of the year at the country level, conducting demographic dividend profiles, and integrating the demographic dividend roadmap into their country development plans. Once again, UNFPA’s leadership and contribution to Africa’s efforts towards harnessing the demographic dividend was repeatedly recognized, including by the AUC Chairperson, Dr. Nkozasana Dlamini-Zuma.