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Young Women in Africa Speak Out on Political Participation

Young Women in Africa Speak Out on Political Participation


Monday 28 June 14:00 South Africa / Paris Time


Venue: Gender Links COP


As part of the Generation Equality Forum a civil society-centered, global gathering for gender equality convened by UN Women and co-hosted by the governments of Mexico and France. Gender Links and International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (International IDEA) bring a discussion on “Voices of the Feminist Youth” which is an event about youth focusing on Youth Political Female Leaders. Secondly the discussion brings a Global Conversation with an African Inter- Regional conversation covering North, West, Southern and East African experiences. The discussion is placed in the concepts of feminist movements and leadership, youth, and women’s political participation. Drawing results from the Africa Women’s Political Participation Barometer findings. The gap requiring change, less than a quarter of legislators in Africa are women.


The discussion on Young Women’s Political Participation is one that requires a working conceptual framework. In “advancing and increase meaningful participation, leadership and decision-making power of women, girls in all their diversity” GL has a framework we subscribe to. Thenjiwe Mtinto’s conceptual framework speaks to three things Access, Participation and Transformation to gain women’s effective participation in all areas. These frameworks if adopted and used can prove to be an invaluable tool of effective change and can make the game changing difference for women. Feminist movement and leadership are a key area in the Forum event and GL sits in the Action Coalition group 6 which speaks to these specific commitments. While local government is often hailed as a training ground for women in politics, women constitute a mere 21 per cent of councilors in the 19 countries for which complete data could be obtained. The WPP Africa Barometer identifies the gaps and areas for improvement in attaining 50 per cent goal achievement as set out by the different instruments.



Gender Links (GL) and International IDEA, together with their consortium partners have been implementing activities that seek to promote women’s leadership and political participation in Africa. The objective of this project is to contribute to the enhancement of Women’s Political Participation in Africa also advancing the goal of gender equality in politics and governance.


In the style of a talk show panel discussion four young women politicians from across Africa will speak to their experiences of being politicians in a male dominated sector. Moderating the panel discussion will be the Africa Barometer Editor, Colleen L Morna, who will speak to the findings of the 2021 WPP Barometer report and align it with the experiences of panelists.


The participants have been asked to bring a picture of an African female leader to showcase as part of the ice breaker for the event. Additionally, the audience will all be engaged in poll questions that will ask key gender attitudes indicator questions. The questions aim to access the public opinion and attitudes barriers to young women’s participation in political spaces.


Speakers and draft programme




Who (8min per speaker)



Introduction and project background

 Dr Pinkie Mekgwe

Opening session


Ice breaker & background to the discussion

Colleen L Morna

Sudanese experience of WPP


Opening discussion

Hon. Wala Elboushi

Tanzanian Young MP with special seat


Appointment in parliament as a person with disabilities

Hon.Khadija Shaaban Taya

Pan African perspective  


A pan African perspective of leading at local and regional levels  

Sara leigh Elago

Youngest Political participant  


From junior councillor to continued political platform

Chelsea Mujuru

Nigerian Young woman elect


Opportunities for young women

Hon. Chikas Kumle


Event Outcome

Popularize and assist the data and gender gap in the current review period of the WPP Africa Barometer. Direct participants to the WPP and GL websites for review and commentary.