Africans around the world have a responsibility for ensuring the prosperity of the continent. Pooling their resources and creating networks to find solutions to the most pertinent problems can help accelerate economic development in Africa.
Speaking with entrepreneurs and experts at the Lauder Africa Future Conference, the EJS Center’s Chief Operating Officer (COO) Amini Kajunju highlighted the importance of the diaspora for Africa’s future. She stressed that their contribution to boosting the business investment climate should not be underestimated.
She added that Africans must endeavor to “leave a legacy.” Her work with former President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, she noted, opened her eyes to the importance of the issue of legacy:
“We must leave things better than how we found them. And we must leave things better so our children and our children’s children can see the fruit of our labor.”
In the discussion session entitled ‘African Diaspora: Investment, Business, and Impact,’ Ms. Kajunju considered education as an “important element of economic development in Africa” with which to engage the Africans living outside the continent. She stressed that failure to provide wide access to education throughout Africa means that the continent “will not have the economies, the prosperities, and the businesses that we want.”
Harnessing the power of the diaspora, Ms. Kajunju noted, is often dependent upon creating the right public policy environment. She stressed that optimizing public-private partnerships can attract funding for businesses on the continent.
Discussing the role of the African diaspora with Ms. Kajunju were Lara Abiona, Director of Partnerships and Advancement at Baobab Consulting; Dr. Dípò Awójídé, Founder of BTDT Hub; and Tidjane Deme, General Partner at Partech.