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Rwanda joins Africa Soft Power to tap the potentials from the abundance of Women and youth population in Africa.

By Elie Mutangana

The Africa Soft Power Summit, the premier convening for Africa’s creative and tech industries, as wellas women’s leadership, returned to Kigali, Rwanda from May 28th-31st to  gather diverse speakers, participants from across Africa and the wider global diaspora with a focus on the future of women’sleadership, creative industries, technology, infrastructure, tourism, sustainability, finance, and more.

The 2024 edition of the Summit brought together private and public sector leaders alongside innovatorsand emerging young leaders to address the trends shaping the continent’s business landscape, andengage in game-changing conversations on the today’s  global social and economic priorities -women’s leadership to artificial intelligence, payments innovation, security, climate change and muchmore.

Beyond the panels, the Summit offered several opportunities to connect and network with speakers,moderators, and participants. Participants would also gain from diverse side events, masterclasses, city tours, and get sight of the ongoing Basketball Africa League games.

According to NKIRU Balonwu, Founder of Africa Soft Power,the summit aims to foster Africa to the global diaspora and global economy by adhering to the concept of gender equality and inclusivity.

“We have a continent which is half-women and a continent which is 70% young people, and so it’s really important that women are included in critical decision-making rooms, otherwise, as Africans we wouldn’t go anywhere and we cannot win a match if we play as a half-team” she said.

She added that Africa holds variety of beautiful things, but the gap is that Africans are not talking about them,and not exploring the story of wealth on the continent.

“So as Africans we owe responsibility to ourselves to actually tell our own story differently and better. Yes, there are challenges but also opportunities”.

Rwanda was honored to be included in Africa Soft Power, to host it and benefiting from receiving many visitors who would explore the country’s ambitions of becoming a hub of sports, tourism and creative industry.

MichaellaRugwizangoga, Chief Tourism Officer, Rwanda Development Board said that the summit provides a source of powerful platforms to showcase the achievements of Rwanda in different empowerments, like technology, art and culture, and most importantly serves as platform to learn from other fellows from Africa.

“Africa is a giant globally and I think it’s about time that we explore the power that we have, soft or others starting foremost on our people, resources and so on. And I think it starts with us, meaning African problems must be solved by African solutions. It also sits on our generation to create the tools and policies”.

She added “We talked about African single market which will empower business men and women across the continent. We talked about visa free Africa- we need to move freely across our continent. All these questions are important and it is in our mean, our power to make it happen”.

The Founder of Africa Soft Power, NKIRUBalonwu emphasizes that the core thing for the summit is to actually foster connections, enabling Africans realizingtheir power and harnessing networks to bring African core leadership into global conversations and check whether African voice is globally propelled.

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