Sitting before a supportive crowd on the first day of the conference, the young career-driven solo panelist, Fon Dufe, read excerpts from her best-selling novel Yefon: The Red Necklace (YRN).
This thought-provoking piece ended with loud applause from the audience. She discussed three striking themes from the book, which were mainly explored in Chapter 17; the complex relationship between colonialism and present-day Africa; Navigating the future and leveraging collaboration to move forward; and characteristics that contribute to our quality of life:- Endurance, sisterhood, and ambition.
This was followed by an interactive 15-minute Q&A session which revealed the unacknowledged passion today’s generation has for the growth and progress of Africans in the continent and the diaspora.
The dialogue also recognized the impact of neo-colonization on the rate of economic growth and innovation in Africa.
The young communications expert passionately expressed her commitment to partnering with God toward His vision for the African continent and urged her listeners to do the same.
“If we are speaking about partnerships that concern Africa, we have to understand these coalitions come in different forms. Know the role you will play, and act consciously in directly impacting the communities around you. Above all, ensure continuity within your sector and reevaluate how you partner with the government.”
She further noted, “Intelligent, young African entrepreneurs and creatives must not ignore their governments, despite the reasonably justified institutional distrust common in our generation. To effectively partner with a government which reflects the type of economic infrastructure you want to see, get involved in politics and exercise your civic duties by voting.”
Ultimately, the author morphed YEFON (translated as “mother of the King” in Lamnso, an indigenous language from Banso, a thriving tribe in the North West of Cameroon) into an acronym, which, when expanded, meant; Y- Young| E – Empowered| F- Focused| O – Original| N- Nurturing, which, when implemented, would help young people thrive even more.
AFRICANXT, for the past 11 years, has been the premiere gathering for Africa-focused innovators. The event’s 2023 theme “Cooperate. Collaborate. Innovate. Unlocking Our Potential, Ensuring Africa’s Prosperity”, brings about a hopeful air for Africans’ ability to collaborate across industries and borders, which will determine the impact of the innovations put forward and their capacity to scale.
Ultimately, the collective efforts of Africans at this moment will unlock Africa’s fullest potential, ensuring the sustainable prosperity of communities, companies, countries, and Africa as a whole.
Other remarkable speakers at this year’s conference include Rapper and Nigerian entrepreneur Jude “M.I.” Abaga, Award-winning actor and director Daniel Etim- Effiong, A&R, Publicist and Media personnel, Excel Joab, Oyo State Commissioner for Youth and Sports, Seun Fakorede, author and political commentator, Japheth Omojuwa, and client leader, at Microsoft, Samuel Jackson, amongst others.
Yefon: The Red Necklace is available on Amazon, Kindle, Barnes & Noble & Goodreads, Apple Books (iBooks) for the global market and Okadabooks for the Nigerian market. In Cameroon, the novel is distributed by Sopecam and sold in all SOPECAM outlets.