Africa's youth - a threat or opportunity?

Fri Jul 1, 2011 3:29pm GMT

* Youth makes itself heard at African meet

* Talk of economic potential but also fears of unrest

By David Lewis

MALABO, July 1 (Reuters) - It was a clash of the generations at this year's African Union summit.

Some of Africa's brightest and best young talent in business and activism fired off warning shots to their elderly leadership, many of whom then sought to defend their track record back home.

From the conference centre balcony in the capital of Equatorial Guinea, young delegates took notes on laptops, posting updates on Facebook and Twitter.

"WOW a lot of Heads of States wanting to speak on issues of the youth... are they really saying anything though?!" read one post by @anchihoye on Twitter.

Amid grappling with issues like Libya's conflict, this year's AU gathering is meant to tackle the issue of the continent's youth.

The new generation is a source of excitement for its potential and economic prospects but also of trepidation due to bulging numbers and simmering frustrations.   Continued...

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