Arise African Youth!

Image   About a year ago a friend of mine Dr. Naa Sunkwa Mills was asked  upon invitation by the Ghana Think Foundation (a vibrant and youthful group, she says) to speak on the theme “Making an Enterprising Environment For An Emerging Market”.

This set me thinking aloud. 

Throughout history Africa has not only been a source of raw materials but also a place to market European goods. The premise that Africa is an emerging market is skewed because we are made to think so. 

Africa as a continent produces over 60% of the world’s raw materials yet we are poor because we do not process these raw materials ourselves but then we consume them when they are turned into finished goods and then sold back to us. We are the markets. Colonialism and imperialism has had a deep impact in these deep seated feelings that we can not do it.

In order to create an enterprising environment for an emerging market, we as African youth first need to understand the power we have to determine what a market is and to take control of the market. He who controls the market stands to gain from the interactions in the market be it trade or anything whatsoever. 

To control the trade means to understand the environment in which we are trading and this understanding can only be done when we understand the market trends and what our trade partners expect. This can only be done by education.

Invariably, Africa has lagged behind in the development of the rest of the world because we haven’t had the courage to wrestle and come to terms with the power that we have on the rest of the world as the largest producers of the raw materials needed for the industries of the world.

The youth have neglected their education or policy makers have not put in education policies that benefit these skills. If these skills are taught in our educational systems at a very tender age, African youth will be well equipped to understand the vagaries and vicissitudes that come with market trends and businesses all over the world.

It is important that youth take education seriously especially comparative education where they are aware of impacting events such as slavery and colonialism on the African continent and how this has affected mentality and perceptions of Africans both home, abroad and in the Diaspora.

Africans have to delve back into African traditional modes of personal relationships which are not selfish and then we understand that our traditions mapped out a simple life with rules and regulations that guide all relationships no matter what the link, be it business or personal. 

Customer service comes to note in this. In trade, the customer is paramount because he is the client and the consumer. This consumer has his own taste and preferences and has the right to make a choice. With different options available, it becomes important to woo this consumer to your product. But what do we see in Africa. The producer acts as if he is doing the consumer a favor and customer service has been thrown to the dogs. I am sure that every reader of this piece has his/her own experience of customer dis-service and probably not just one. I have had the occasion of blacklisting a couple of Ghanaian establishments online for poor customer service and general neglect.

It is imperative therefore that African youth rise up and take the reins of our destiny for ourselves. Africa will depend on its youth for development but till the youth educate themselves to be able to bear the mantle, Africa will remain in the doldrums of obscurity and oppression not only to the rest of the world but to its own self.

Like i always say, it begins with you!

#ThinkingAloud

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One Response to “Arise African Youth!”

  1. Salomey Abraham Says:

    It begins with me……………..”big honor” SMILEY FACE

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