A French-backed forum to promote democracy among young people in Africa was launched this Friday in South Africa, one year after the idea was unveiled at a French-African Summit.
The Innovation Foundation for Democracy (FIDEMO) will be based at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg.
Cameroonian intellectual and man behind the idea, Achille Mbembe, is a member of the board.
"We want to create new tools that enable us to reimagine the relationship (with France, ed.) , a relationship that is free, a relationship that is enriching rather than a relationship that holds us back", said historian and political theorist Achille Mbembe.
The NGO has been given initial funding of 50 million euros over five years, a sum share by the main office in South Africa, two regional offices on the Continent and another office in Marseille, in southern France.
"The foundation is an African institution for Africa, to revitalise democracy in Africa and to promote necessary dialogue between Africa and the rest of the world. It’s not a tool for the expansion of French influence in Africa", reiterated Mbembe.
According to a statement, the Innovation Foundation for Democracy (FIDEMO) seeks to "connect the African youth from all backgrounds at a time of common challenges for democracy in both Africa and Europe".