Johannesburg, Lagos, Nairobi - 10 November 2021: Young people in North Africa are unlikely to befriend, date or marry someone from sub-Saharan Africa. This revelation was made in the ‘One Africa?’ report which unpacks narratives about Pan-Africanism and continental integration.
The research interviewed 4500 people aged 18 to 35 in Egypt, Morocco, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Nigeria, Kenya, Uganda, South Africa, and Zimbabwe to find out what they think about being African, personal, and professional relationships with other Africans, and if they would travel or relocate within the continent.
Most young Africans have a positive outlook on the continent - 68% are highly interested in travelling to or living in other African countries and 53% did not have strong opinions about Anglophone Africans versus Francophone Africans. Only 59% of North Africans consider themselves African while 80% of people in sub–Saharan Africa feel positive about being seen as African.
The report also looked at the kind of stories young Africans hear, where they come from (mostly social media) and how people respond to stories about the continent - 31% mostly heard negative stories, and 24% heard very little about other African countries while 39% heard positive stories about the rest of the continent. Just over half of East Africans (57%) heard positive stories about the continent. The most frequent positive story they hear is that other African countries are open and friendly.
They also have adventurous curiosity and are interested in knowing more about other African countries, through travel. Most people from sub-Saharan Africa (61%) say they would like to travel to other countries on the continent. Many also believe they will be welcome should they relocate within Africa - a sentiment supported by 70% of participants who think positively of Africans from other countries living in their country, including South Africa, where 62% of respondents have positive views about Africans from other countries.
The study was conducted by narrative organization Africa No Filter in partnership with Facebook.
Moky Makura, Executive Director at Africa No Filter, says: “What the world believes about Africa is what Africa believes about itself, so it was reassuring to see the results of this report showing that young people have a strong African identity, that seems unaffected by the prevailing broken, dependent continent narrative. African integration is a key driver of this continent’s economic development, but it needs Africans to come together in the spirit of a real ‘brotherhood’ and shared understanding of our history, culture, and our stories. This report shows there is hope – but also that we still have some way to go.”
For queries, contact: Lerato@africanofilter.org
About Africa No Filter
Africa No Filter is a donor collaborative working to shift stereotypical and harmful narratives within and about Africa through research, grant-making, community building and advocacy. Our objective is to build the field of narrative change-makers by supporting storytellers, investing in media platforms, and driving disruption campaigns. The donor collaborative is funded by Ford Foundation, Bloomberg, Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Luminate, Open Society Foundations, Comic Relief, the Hilton Foundation, the British Council and Hewlett Foundation.