Silencing the Guns - A Metaphor for the African Youth’s Role in Democracy and Peace Building?
This article conceptualises the slogan ‘silencing the guns in Africa’ as a metaphor for actions that promote development and peace, and which require participation by the youth in the quest to end all wars in Africa. The aim is to answer questions such as: How can the youth be part of the African democracy-building project being promoted through the African Governance Architecture (AGA) and the African Governance Platform (AGP) institutions? Secondly, how can this participation be extended to including the youth in the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) project? Secondary data was used to analyse how violent youth activism has transformed African politics, and how the youth get driven into insurgent behaviour and armed violence. The discussion on the systemic deficiencies in national and regional youth empowerment institutions contributes to the recommendations for utilising the AGA to push for silencing the guns and encouraging the pursuit of entrepreneurial activities. The peace dividend that will be delivered by silencing the guns is essential for the success of the AfCFTA.