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2 023 will see Nigeria, the continent’s most populous nation, hold elections alongside eSwatini, the last absolute monarchy on the continent. The two countries could not be more different, but they share something in common – a growing young population. Much has been said about Africa’s “demographic dividend” and its potential to change Africa’s trajectory. However, there has been little discussion about how that potential can be realised.

In this episode, we focus on creating change through the ballot box and how Africa’s demographics have and will continue to shape results at the polls. We talk to Jonathan Moakes, a leading expert in strategy, communications, campaign design and campaign management.

Jonathan shares his thoughts on how election campaigns in Africa have changed over the past two decades and which upcoming elections he’ll be watching closely. He analyses the impact of the demographic dividend on election campaigns, and we look at what the private sector can learn from the changing electoral landscape.

About Jonathan Moakes

Jonathan Moakes is an experienced organisational leader and leading expert in strategy, communications, campaign design and campaign management. Jonathan has lent his expertise to corporates, governments, advocacy groups, political parties and candidates in over 15 countries on four continents.

He currently serves as a Director at SABI Strategy Group, an international strategic communications firm. Jonathan joined SABI Strategy Group from American campaigning consultancy, GQR Research. Prior to GQR, Moakes was both the Chief Executive and Chief Strategist for the Democratic Alliance (DA), the official opposition in South Africa.

Jonathan specialises in transforming strategic insights and messaging recommendations from qualitative and quantitative research into actionable campaign plans focused on delivering a core message in volume and over time to the identified target market.

He has significant experience in campaign execution having mastered all key components of modern election campaigns – Fundraising; Earned (Free) Media; Paid Media; Digital Campaigning; Field Organisation; Get Out The Vote (GOTV); Voter Registration Campaigns; and Election Day and Parallel Voter Tabulation (PVT) operations.

Jonathan obtained a B.Com in Economics and an LLB from the University of Cape Town.