Much of this Newsletter has focused on the many challenges Africa faces in its education sector so it was a joy to discover this facility during my visit to Multimedia University. For all Africa’s perceived shortcomings I doubt there are many campuses in the world that can offer this:
Nor many universities either where the warthogs, the monkeys and the baboons wander freely around the campus.
The World Economic Forum on Africa:
I’m in Durban for the World Economic Forum on Africa, the so-called African Davos.
The WEF meets at a difficult time for the continent. The Chinese slowdown and the drop in commodity prices have delivered two impediments to what people used to call “Africa Rising”. Now the talk is of “inclusive growth” and how Africa can grow while reducing the gulf between its rich and those who live in abject poverty.
The WEF’s Head of Africa Elsie Kanza says: “There is a concern that the pursuit of growth has not translated to the benefits citizens are expecting. There is a lot of frustration.
“There are not enough jobs, there is a deterioration in living standards and pressure on leaders to become more responsible to their citizens”.
WEF will be discussing all these tensions over three days in Durban. Over a thousand leaders from government and business will gather to work out how Africa can benefit from the coming digital revolution while making sure inequalities are reduced in that process.
The headline in the local newspaper The Mercury states on the opening day of the WEF:
“Africa Is Alive With Potential”
We’ve heard that so many times – let’s hope that this time that promise actually comes true!
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