In recent years there has been a subtle surge of politicians in their 30s and 40s winning leadership roles in Africa, one of them is Senegal’s Bassirou Diomaye Faye who at 44 is one of the youngest presidents in Africa. Here is 2024 list of young presidents

1. Ibrahim Traoré, Burkina Faso (Age: 36)

Ibrahim Traoré is a Burkinabé military officer who has been the leader of Burkina Faso since the 30 September 2022 coup d’état which ousted interim president Paul-Henri Sandaogo Damiba. At age 34, Traoré is Africa’s youngest leader and the world’s youngest currently-serving world leader.

2. Mahamat Déby (Age: 39)

Mahamat Idriss Déby, a Chadian four-star general, assumed office as the transitional president of Chad on April 20, 2021, following the death of his father, President Idriss Déby, during the Northern Chad offensive. He was nominated as the Patriotic Salvation Movement’s candidate for the 2024 Chadian presidential election on January 13, 2024, by party secretary Mahamat Zene Bada. Following the killing of his main opponent, Yaya Dillo Djérou, by government forces on February 28, three other candidates withdrew the following week in protest and fear of similar consequences.

3. Assimi Goïta (Age: 41)

Colonel Assimi Goïta is a Malian military officer who has been interim President of Mali since 28 May 2021 when he seized power from Bah Ndaw in the coup d’état. At age 41, Assimi is the third youngest president in Africa.

4. Mamady Doumbouya (Age: 44)

Mamady Doumbouya is a Guinean military officer serving as the interim president of Guinea. Doumbouya led a coup d’état on 5 September 2021 that overthrew the previous president, Alpha Condé. On 1 October 2021, Doumbouya was sworn in as interim president.

5. Bassirou Diomaye (Age: 44)

Bassirou Diomaye Faye, a former tax inspector, politician, and former general secretary of the dissolved PASTEF party, stood as a presidential candidate in the 2024 election, replacing the disqualified candidate Ousmane Sonko. He defeated the incumbent Macky Sall, who had been President of Senegal since April 2012. At age 44, Faye is the 5th youngest president in Africa.

6. Abiy Ahmed, Ethiopia (Age: 47)

Abiy Ahmed is the third youngest president in Africa. He was born on 15 August 1976 in Beshasha, and became Ethiopia’s prime minister on 2 April 2018. He is married to Zinash Tayachew & has 4 children. Abiy joined the armed struggle aged 15 & later became a military intelligence officer in the Ethiopian National Defense Force. He has a degree in Computer Engineering, MBA, MA in Leadership, Diploma in Cryptology & a PhD in Peace & Security.

7. Andry Rajoelina, Madagascar (Age: 49)

Andry Nirina Rajoelina is a Malagasy politician and businessman who has been the president of Madagascar since 2019. He was previously president of a provisional government from 2009 to 2014 following a political crisis and military-backed coup, having held the office of Mayor of Antananarivo for one year prior. Andry Rajoelina is the seventh youngest President in Africa.

8. Évariste Ndayishimiye, Burundi (Age: 55)

Évariste Ndayishimiye is the 8th youngest president in Africa. Ndayishimiye began his seven-year term on 18 June 2020 and announced his first cabinet on 28 June 2020. He shrunk the cabinet ministers from 21 to 15 and mainly nominated ex-regime hardliners to take up key positions. Ndayishimiye’s tenure has been noted to have been less isolationist than his predecessor.

9. Mswati III, Swaziland (Age: 55)

Mswati III is the King of Swaziland, a crown he inherited from his father Sobhuza II,. He is the head of the Swazi Royal Family. He was introduced as the crown prince in 1983 and was crowned on April 25 1986, at the age of 18. Mswati III is currently the 9th youngest head of state in Africa.

10. William Ruto, Kenya (Age: 57)

William Samoei Arap Ruto is the 6th and current president of Kenya and the 10th youngest president in Africa. He won Kenya’s 2022 election with 50.49% of the vote against Odinga’s 48.85%. Prior to becoming president, he served as the 11th deputy president of Kenya from 2013 to 2022.

March 26, 2024

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