• 0

Africa is portrayed as the continent of the future. This sounds like music to the ears, but how realistic is this statement? Whoever said the youths are the leaders of tomorrow did not take Africa into account.
One of the many astonishing things about the continent’s political landscape is the fact that more than 60% of its teeming population were born after the majority of its present rulers came into power. The heads of state have – and remain – largely the older generation overseeing the affairs of a new generation with completely new and different ideas. For a continent that is described as the world’s youngest continent, this is ironic.
The majority of African youth think that their governments are doing a bad job of addressing the needs of young people. This highlights the need for a rethink on alienating well-meaning youths from political positions and opportunities.
The dominance of the old guards is deeply rooted in discord and dissatisfaction across the continent.
Meet some of the continent’s Old Guards.
Paul Biya
Country: Cameroon
Age: 89 Years

Paul Biya is the oldest president in Africa. He has been the President of Cameroon since November 1982- and is still in power. Biya, is also the second-longest ruling president in Africa, and the longest-ruling non-royal leader in the world.
Hage Gottfried Geingob
Country: Namibia
Age: 80 years

Hage Gottfried Geingob is currently serving as the third president of Namibia since 21 March 2015. Geingob was the first Prime Minister of Namibia from 1990 to 2002, and served as prime minister again from 2012 to 2015.
Hage Gottfried Geingob is currently the oldest president in Southern Africa and the 2nd second oldest president in Africa.

Alassane Ouattara
Country: Ivory Coast
Age: 80 years

Alassane Dramane Ouattara has been the President of Côte d’Ivoire since 2010. At 80, Alassane Ouattara is the third oldest president in Africa and the second oldest president in West Africa.
Teodoro Nguema Mbasogo
Country: Equitorial Guinea
Age: 79

Teodoro Nguema has been President of Equatorial Guinea since 1979. He ousted his uncle, Francisco Macías Nguema, in an August 1979 military coup.
He is the longest serving president in Africa and the second longest-serving non-royal national leader in the world (after Paul Biya of Cameroon).
Emmerson Mnangagwa
Country: Zimbabwe
Age: 79

Emmerson Mnangagwa is serving as the third and current President of Zimbabwe since November 2017. Emmerson Mnangagwa is the fifth oldest president in Africa.
On the other hand, a new wave is sweeping across Africa. Elections on the continent are increasingly yielding younger leadership than ever before. With over a dozen African countries scheduled to hold elections in 2023, Africa’s young ones will need opportunities to participate in politics, and overall inclusion in development and they are using their large numbers to vote in younger leaders or leaders they feel will be sympathetic to their plight.
A fresh generation of persistent voices, change-makers, and action-takers are making sure that the world sees the continent for its potentials. Below are just a few of the changing face of leadership on the continent.
Abiy Ahmed

Abiy Ahmed is the youngest president in Africa. He was born on 15 August 1976 in Beshasha, and became Ethiopia’s prime minister on 2 April 2018.
Abiy joined the armed struggle aged 15 & later became a military intelligence officer in the Ethiopian National Defense Force. He has a degree in Computer Engineering, MBA, MA in Leadership, Diploma in Cryptology & a PhD in Peace & Security.
Mmusi Aloysias Maimane

Mmusi Aloysias Maimane was born in June 1980. He is a South African politician, businessman, and Leader of Build One South Africa, a political party. Maimane is also the former Leader of South Africa’s opposition Democratic Alliance (DA) political party, and the former Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly of South Africa. He is the former leader of the DA in the Johannesburg City Council and the DA National Spokesperson. In 2011, he was elected to be the DA’s Johannesburg mayoral candidate in the 2011 municipal elections.
He launched this new political party on 24 September 2022, setting ambitious targets to launch Build One SA in every province.
Amina Priscille Longoh

Born in 1991, Amina Priscille Longoh is a Chadian humanitarian organizer and politician. She has served as in the government of Chad as minister of women and the protection of early childhood since July 2020.
Longoh was appointed by President Idriss Déby as director of the Maison Nationale de la Femme (National Women’s House) in 2019. She also served as education commissioner for the Pan-African Youth Union. In July 2020, she was appointed by Déby as minister of women and the protection of early childhood. She was the youngest minister in the newly reshuffled cabinet.

Anika Jane Dorothy

Anika Jane Dorothy is the East Africa coordinator for Amplify Girls and founder of Young Women in Political Party Leadership in Kenya. She is an experienced advocate for the rights and tenets of democracy with a passion for all matters women rights and movements, democracy and governance.
She is a ONE East Africa Champion where she lobbies decision makers in effort to create changes needed for gender equality. Ms. Anika holds a Masters in Women, Leadership & Governance in Africa from the University of Nairobi.

Nelson Chamisa

“I see a Great Zimbabwe beyond this Zimbabwe ruins. The future has never been this near. We need to be problem solvers and not problem identifiers” is Nelson Chamisa’s oft-repeated refrain.
Nelson Chamisa was born in February 1978. He is a Zimbabwean politician central to the political terrain of contemporary Zimbabwe. He is the current President of the Citizens Coalition for Change.

Omoyele Sowore

Born on 16 February 1971, Omoyele “Yele” Sowore is a pro-democracy campaigner, a well-known Nigerian human rights activist and strong critic of Nigeria’s political space in general. In August 2018, he founded the African Action Congress party and ran as its presidential candidate in the 2019 Nigerian general election as a fierce critic of the status quo, though he received few votes.
Sowore is also running for president in the 2023 Nigerian general election.


Image source: unknown

Call For Nomination For ALM African Good Governance Polls 2023
Prev Post Call For Nomination For ALM African Good Governance Polls 2023
Understanding Zambia’s Free Education Programme and the way forward
Next Post Understanding Zambia’s Free Education Programme and the way forward