The 2021 two-day Kusi Ideas Festival held in Accra, Ghana, held on 10th – 11th December in Accra, Ghana, provided a vital forum to discuss problems facing Africa and solutions to propel the continent’s development.
Various sessions underscored the need for cooperation among African countries to foster growth and improve the lives of their people. Having three African heads of state participate in the discussions on Day One underlined the importance of this forum. Rwandan President Paul Kagame acknowledged that though progress had been made in post-pandemic recovery, there was still a lot to do. He indicated his wish to see African countries get involved in high-level cooperation to foster growth. There was a proposal for climate-smart agriculture, as the pandemic threatened food security.
For Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni, a major source of concern was vaccine politics, with the president indicating how unfortunate it was that the Western nations were monopolising vaccines that Africa badly needs. Ghanaian President Nana Akufo-Addo advocated African cooperation in tackling issues affecting the youth.
Dr Wilfred Kiboro (Centre), Nation Media Group PLC Chairman and H.E. Barine, Kenya High Commissioner to Ghana, (R) present an appreciation plaque to H.E. Nana Akufo-Addo, President of the Republic of Ghana for co-hosting the third edition of Kusi
The Accra forum was the third edition of this “marketplace of ideas”, a brainchild of the Nation Media Group. The 2021 year’s theme, “How Africa transforms after the virus”, highlighted the need for innovation and technology to create new ideas and place the continent in a respectable position in the 21st century.
African nations must heed the appeal to boost vaccination campaigns against Covid-19. They have so far made commendable vaccination efforts, but these have been hampered by lack of access to doses. As some speakers noted, the continent must build on its own ideas without overreliance on developed economies.
Kusi and similar regular high-level forums are important to help crystallise ideas for change.