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Africa: Africa is increasingly influential, according to Time

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by: Andrea Spinelli Barrile | April 22, 2024

Among the most influential people in the world included in the list that is created and published every year by Time magazine, in 2023 many were of African origin.

The annual Time 100 list highlights people who have shaped the world in the past year: Afrobeat megastar Burna Boy, Kenyan President William Ruto and South Africa national rugby team captain Siya Kolisi lead the pack of Africans who have been recognized among the most influential people in the world.

Nigerian Burna Boy was featured in the “icon” category, which celebrates individuals who have left an indelible mark on their fields. Siya Kolisi has been recognized for his leadership of “wisdom and humility” in leading the country to a stunning Rugby World Cup victory last year. Kenyan President William Ruto was nominated for leading Africa’s climate action despite multiple challenges facing his country.

But there are also Africans less known to the general European public: the Ugandan LGBTQI+ supporter Frank Mugisha entered the list for challenging his country’s harsh anti-homosexuality law, which came into force last year. Julienne Lusenge, a human rights activist from the Democratic Republic of Congo, was also recognized for her work in addressing sexual and gender-based violence and for pushing for women’s political participation in her country. Also on Time’s list is Kenyan entrepreneur Kennedy Odede, a social entrepreneur who addresses issues such as poverty and education in Kibera, Kenya’s largest slum, in the heart of Nairobi.

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