The Development of Youth Parliamentarism in Africa


Lyubov Sadovskaya


The article is devoted to one of the forms of political representation systems development – youth parliamentarism in Africa. It guarantees a balance between power and a society where young Africans are the majority of voters.

Youth parliamentarism is a form of civil society development. It contains the idea of including young people in parliamentary activities, training new politicians and managers. The article provides a comparative analysis of youth parliamentary structures at both regional and country levels and shows the ways of improving the system of youth parliamentarism on the continent.

The relations between non-governmental organizations of youth and the state are in focus; they have their own characteristics in different countries. The article shows the problems faced by youth parliaments in the process of their work, first of all, the secondary importance of legislative bodies in the system of state power in most African countries. The African system of values and models of their reproduction are an obstacle to the development of youth parliamentarism. Gerontocratic customs, which prevent the rejuvenation of the political class, are the most powerfull.

The study argues that youth parliaments can play an important role in the formation of future African leaders in perspective, they expand the political space for young activists who become a link between the government and youth. And this allows for the politicians to reduce the degree of protest movements that spread in Africa after the “Arab spring”.


Africa, parliamentarism, youth Parliament, civil society, civil protest movements, legislative power, international parliamentary Union




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