Youth engagement has been one of the key highlights of the Official visit conducted by the leadership of the Pan-African Parliament (PAP) to the People’s Democratic Republic of Algeria.
Speaking to students gathered in the Nelson Mandela Amphitheater at Brahim Soltane Chaibout, commonly called the Algiers 3 University, H.E. Chief Fortune Z. Charumbira reminded that the Pan-African Parliament was set up to ensure the full participation of African peoples in the economic development and integration of the continent.
“Launched in March 2004, the PAP is intended as a platform for African citizens, especially the youth to make contributions to decision-making on the problems and challenges facing the continent. Our role as your representatives is to ensure that your inputs and concerns are taken into account by the highest structures of our Union. We need your ingenuity, proactiveness and passion to achieve the Africa we want as envisaged by Agenda 2063,” said H.E. Chief Fortune Charumbira.
The PAP leadership has identified the African youth as a cornerstone of the long-term strategy to achieve visibility for the continental Parliament across the continent. The vision places institutions of higher learning at the centre of the PAP’s outreach activities.
“We are committed to engaging with Africans from a wide variety of backgrounds, representing a wealth of ideas and experiences. And we recognise that the youth can play a key role in creating awareness about the PAP. We look forward to working with all of you across the continent,” added the PAP President.
While in Algeria, the PAP delegation also travelled to Tlemcen, a city in northern Algeria for an encounter with students at the Pan African University Institute of Water and Energy Science (PAUWES), where H.E. Chief. Charumbira delivered a second keynote address.
Hosted by the Abou Bakr Belkaïd University of Tlemcen, the institute was created in 2014 by the African Union Commission, in the framework of the Pan African University (PAU). Since its establishment, over 250 students from 31 countries across Africa are currently enrolled.
In his address, H.E. Chief Charumbira challenged students to help Africa reach its developmental goals.
“I’m impressed by how the programs of this institute are designed to produce engineers and policy analysts, able to address Africa’s most pressing development challenges. We need to come up with solutions to our own problems. And this is what these institutions of higher learning are meant to deliver. The PAP is your ally in this process. This is the Parliament of the entire continent and we stand ready to carry your voices,” concluded the PAP President.
Selected students from various parts of the continent enrolled at PAUWES sensitised members of the PAP delegation on their different cultures while calling on the Continental Parliament to help young Africans occupy their rightful place within the AU architecture.
The visit to PAUWES concluded with a tree-planting ceremony officiated by the President of the PAP at the location of the future headquarters of PAUWES in the city of Tlemcen.