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U.S. says only Africans can solve continent’s problems


F. John Bray

UN decries Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade, racism
United States Consul General in Lagos, John Bray, has said that real solutions to African problems can best be developed by Africans.

Speaking at the three-day Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) TechCamp Reconnect Workshop in Lagos, the consul said the event was to accelerate the development of innovative technology solutions and digital strategies that strengthen democratic governance, transparency and citizen engagement.

He stressed the need for greater effort towards good governance, to address pressing issues facing the Nigerian government.

According to him, finding sustainable solutions to these problems have been hampered by corruption, the absence or misallocation of resources, and simple mismanagement.


“The TechCamp has brought together 46 participants from 15 countries. When former U.S. president, Barack Obama, established the Young African Leaders Initiative in 2014, he did so out of the conviction that the future of Africa is largely in the hands of its youth,” he said.

The State Department, through International Information Programs (IIP), Bray added, has assembled a team of qualified trainers and experts to bring out the best in the participants.

The envoy advised the participants to harness their skills and experiences coupled with the training to share some best practices and identify technological innovations that would help in the quest to improve governance, ensure greater transparency and accountability at all levels.

“The task is huge, but every journey must begin with that first step. Perhaps sometime in the future, someone will cite this TechCamp as one of those first steps towards finding solutions to today’s problems.

The workshop is an initiative of the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau for International Information Programs organised in partnership with the U.S. Mission in Nigeria and the Co-Creation Hub (CCHub) in Lagos.

Meanwhile, the United Nations Secretary General, Antonio Guterres, has called on the world to stand up against all forms of slavery by raising awareness on the dangers.

He made the call during this year’s International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade, commemorated by United Nations Information Centre (UNIC), in Badagry, a slave port of over 400 years.


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Barack ObamaJohn BrayYALI
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