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Makong: Media’s role in success of AfCFTA crucial

The Africa Prosperity Network is holding a webinar on Tuesday to examine the media’s role in mobilising mass engagement and participation with the AfCFTA and the opportunities opened up by it

The chief technical advisor at the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Tsotetsi Makong has said the contribution of the media to the implementation of AfCFTA is crucial to the success of the initiative.

Makong said this will help avoid controversies and ensure the success of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).

Speaking on the Asaase Breakfast Show on Monday (18 December) ahead of a webinar on bridging the gap between media and AfCFTA, Makong advised the media to take a keen interest in AfCFTA.

“We need to educate and I think that is why this webinar is important,” he said, adding that “we need to educate to make sure our media houses across Africa understand the AfCFTA agreements so we can avoid controversies.”

Listen to Tsotetsi Makong in the attached audio clip below: 

Themed “What Do You Know About the AfCFTA – and Why Should the Media Care?”, the discussion will examine the media’s role in mobilising mass engagement and participation with the AfCFTA and the opportunities opened up by it, especially as it is of immense benefit for the growth of small and medium-sized enterprises in Africa and global Africa (the sixth region of Africa).

Tuesday’s webinar, which will take place from 14:00 hours to 15:20 hours GMT, will feature some of Africa’s media heavyweights, including Ferial Haffajee (Daily Maverick), Charles Onyango-Obbo (Nation Media Group), Andrew Mwenda (Ugandan Independent), Mariama Sy Ba and Samuel Attah-Mensah (Citi TV/Citi FM).

Focus on AfCFTA

The high-powered webinar will discuss ways of internalising and normalising the unfolding reality of free movement of people, goods and services among Africa’s 1.4 billion people. It is also to prompt both AfCFTA actors and influential media players to do more to persuade people across Africa about the formidable prosperity potential of intra-African trade.

Important questions that will emerge will be: what can the AfCFTA and AfCFTA member states do to support the media to build public education about the new, open Africa? And how seriously do African journalists themselves take the task of spreading the message?

The AfCFTA, APN’s principal partner, has been at the forefront of Africa’s new trade paradigm and brought a new lease of life to the continent’s efforts of building the world’s largest single market. But the lingering question of how to realise the single market through actionable and bankable policy positions has been brought to the fore.

In an attempt to garner the actions that will engender prosperity across the continent, APD 2024, which will be hosted next January by Nana Akufo-Addo, the President of the Republic of Ghana, proposes a theme and a set of thematic areas that speak to Africa’s transformation through the prioritisation of value-addition economies across the continent.

The media webinar is essentially to get participants to explore and strategise on information-disseminating services and how the media can engage and inform people across the African continent, as well as global audiences, to participate actively in the AfCFTA and capitalise on the opportunities that it presents.

Webinar speakers

The webinar will feature speakers with deep knowledge of Africa’s trade ecosystem as well as an appreciation of the theme for APD 2024.

The high-profile speakers’ list will also include Nana Aba AnamoahPeter SewornooPatrick Smith (The Africa Report), Kojo MensahGeorge JahraaToma ImirheEdith Dankwa and Njack Kane of APN.

Among the invited guests are Elizabeth Ohene, Audrey Gadzekpo, Chiké Frankie Edozien, Petina Gappah, Grace Khoza (AfCFTA Secretariat), Aminatta Forna, Efua Anaman, Onyekachi Wambu and Liz Gomis.


Africa Prosperity Dialogues (APD) is organised by the Africa Prosperity Network (APN) in collaboration with the Africa Continental Free Trade Area Secretariat.

Next January’s dialogues will be hosted by the president of Ghana, who has invited several of his fellow African heads of state, plus the President of the Co-operative Republic of Guyana, Irfaan Ali.

APD 2024 retreat will take place from 25-27 January 2024 at Peduase Presidential Lodge, Aburi Hills, in the Eastern Region of Ghana. There will be a presidential dinner gala and the Africa Prosperity Champions Awards ceremony on the night of 26 January at the Kempinski Gold Coast City Hotel in Accra.


Reporting by Fred Dzakpata in Accra



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