We cannot stop emigration but the question is how to minimize it, says the young Liberian Ahmed Kommeh, guest of the forum Mo Ibrahim and manager of Smart, a Liberian social enterprise.
The debate on immigration in Europe and the problem of youth employment in Africa were at the center of the debates of the founding of the Anglo-Sudanese businessman Mo Ibrahim this weekend in Abidjan.
Nearly 16 million young Africans are unemployed and over 40% of young Africans consider their living conditions to be "very bad or bad," according to a report by the foundation, "African Youth; migration for lack of jobs? ".
"Young people do not want to leave: they have no alternative. They have no work and no skills. The economy does not work in such a way as to prevent them from leaving", Kommeh says.
"You cannot say bring jobs. We do not bring jobs to a country that does not have the skills. This is what politicians must focus on: give young people skills that will make them attractive in the job market, "he told to AFP.
"Companies try to minimize costs. If they know that there are skills in African youth, they will bring jobs, "he concludes. The young Ivorian Sefora Kodjo, founder of the Sephis association, for the empowerment of women, also believes that "education", especially that of women in rural areas, is a priority. "We need to bring schools together so that young women have the same opportunities. In our countries, we have wealth and we have the means to create jobs. "
The report of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation undermines certain accepted ideas. "Africa is not a continent of mass exodus and itself hosts a growing share of the world's migrant population. About 70% of sub-Saharan migrants remain on the continent.
"People leave their wealth, which is the land for a future they hope for better" in urban centers, before trying to emigrate, stresses the young Algerian Mohammed Boubekri, co-founder of the NGO Life on Land which wants to prevent the emigration by helping young people to grow ecologically.
Agriculture is a vital sector as it represents up to 60% of jobs and a third of Africa's GDP, the report reveals. "60% of the population is under 25: the workforce is there," Mohammed Boubekri said. "There is the land, the resources, but we need leaders who insist that we exploit our resources. You have to create hope, "he says...