Pan-African Summit of Youth Leaders - Ayanda Dlodlo, a South African deputy minister, has challenged youth leaders to deeply reflect on the life and teachings of late global iconic leader, Nelson Mandela. She was addressing participants in the fourth Pan-African Summit of Youth Leaders of the United Nations which runs between 13-17 January in Dakar, Senegal.
'You are all aware that Mandela was passionate about the youth. Now that he is gone, we are left with an enormous task and you young people are especially challenged to reflect on this disciplined leader of our continent, to play your part in shaping our continent to be a better place for future generations to come,' Dlodlo said.
She went on to state that the summit came at an opportune moment as deliberations on the future global development framework were being finalized.
'This event will afford you, the future leaders of our continent, an opportunity to add your strong voice on the type of world you as young people want to have and wish us to leave behind for you.'
She also referred to youth unemployment which, according to her, is a global challenge with serious adverse effects to the global order and a negative impact to nations and their development.
'In its 101st session held in Geneva in 2012, the International Labour Conference declared youth employment a crisis and called for action,' Dlodlo remarked.
She further pointed out that in 2013, global youth unemployment was estimated to be at 73.4 million which was an increase of 3.5 million since 2007.
'While youth unemployment in Sub Saharan Africa is lower than in other regions, it is significantly higher than the adult unemployment rate,' she said, adding: 'The youth unemployment rate in Sub Saharan Africa is very much linked to the high levels of poverty in the region.'