Top 10 Youngest Presidents in Africa (Updated: 2024)

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.

Top 10 Youngest Presidents in Africa (Updated: 2024)

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

Ibrahim Traoré youngest president in Africa
Capitaine Ibrahim Traore, Burkina Faso’s president

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)

Top 10 Youngest Presidents in Africa 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)

Top 10 Youngest Presidents in Africa

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)

Top 10 Youngest Presidents in Africa 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)

Youngest african presidentsBassirou 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 youngest president in africa right now

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 Rajoelina is the second Youngest Presidents in Africa

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)

youngest president in southern africaÉvariste 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)

youngest presidents in africa 2021

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.

Together with his mother, Ntombi Tfwala, now Queen Mother, he rules the country as an absolute monarch. Mswati III is known for his practice of polygamy and currently has 15 wives. Although he is respected and fairly popular in Swaziland, his policies and lavish lifestyle have led to local protests and international criticism.

10. William Ruto, Kenya (Age: 57)

William ruto is the fifth youngest president in Africa

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.

11. Faure Gnassingbe, Togo (Age: 57)

youngest presidents in africa 2021Faure Gnassingbe has been the President of Togo since May 4 2005. He was appointed to the government by his father Gnassingbe Eyadema before he passed away on February 5 2005.

He then won a controversial presidential election on 24 April 2005, and was sworn in as President. Gnassingbé was re-elected for a second term in 2010.

In the April 2015 presidential election, Gnassingbé won a third term, defeating his main challenger, Jean-Pierre Fabre, by a margin of about 59% to 35%, according to official results.

12. Adama Barrow, Gambia (Age: 59)

Top 10 Youngest Presidents in Africa

Adama Barrow is a Gambian politician and real estate developer who is the third and current President of the Gambia and the 13th youngest president in Africa. He was sworn into office in 2017 after he defeated Yahya Jammeh in a free and fair election.

14. Letsie III of Lesotho (Age: 60)

Youngest Presidents in Africa

Letsie III is the current king of Lesotho. He succeeded his father, Moshoeshoe II, when the latter was forced into exile in 1990. His father was briefly restored in 1995 but soon died in a car crash in early 1996, and Letsie became king again. As a constitutional monarch, most of King Letsie’s duties as monarch of Lesotho are ceremonial.

15. Félix Tshisekedi, DR Congo (Age: 60)

Top 10 Youngest Presidents in Africa

Félix Tshisekedi is a Congolese politician who has been the President of the Democratic Republic of the Congo since 25 January 2019. He took up the position at the age of 55. He is also the leader of the Union for Democracy and Social Progress (UDPS), the oldest and largest party of the Democratic Republic of Congo, succeeding his late father Étienne Tshisekedi in that role.

We trust that this compilation of the youngest presidents in Africa has been informative. Be sure to checkout our list of Updated: Top 10 Oldest African Presidents

Extra

Top 5 oldest presidents in Africa, 2024

Here are the top 10 oldest African presidents.

1. Paul Biya

Country: Cameroon
Age: 91 Years

Paul biya, Oldest African Presidents, 2021

Paul Biya has been the President of Cameroon since November 1982. At the age of 91 and still in power, Paul Biya is the oldest president in Africa. He is also the second-longest ruling president in Africa (after Teodoro Obiang of Equatorial Guinea), and the longest-ruling non-royal leader in the world.

2. Nangolo Mbumba

Country: Namibia 
Age: 82 years

Oldest presidents in africa

 

Nangolo Mbumba is the fourth and current president of Namibia. He became president after the death of Hage Geingob, under whom he had served as the second Vice-president of Namibia from 2018 to 2024.

3. Alassane Ouattara

Country: Ivory Coast
Age: 82 years

Alassane Ouattara is the third oldest president in Africa

Alassane Dramane Ouattara has been the President of Côte d’Ivoire since 2010. At 82, Alassane Ouattara is the third oldest president in Africa and the second oldest president in west Africa.

4. Teodoro Nguema Mbasogo

Country: Equatorial Guinea
Age: 81

Oldest African presidents

Teodoro Nguema has been President of Equatorial Guinea since 1979. He ousted his uncle, Francisco Macías Nguema, in an August 1979 military coup.

He is the fourth oldest president in Africa, the longest serving president in Africa and the second longest-serving non-royal national leader in the world (after Paul Biya of Cameroon).

5. Emmerson Mnangagwa

Country: Zimbabwe
Age: 81 Years

 Top 10 Oldest African Presidents, 2022

Emmerson Mnangagwa is serving as the third and current President of Zimbabwe since November 2017.

A longtime ally of his predecessor Robert Mugabe and a senior member of the ruling ZANU–PF party, Mnangagwa served as First Vice President of Zimbabwe from 2014 until his dismissal in early-November 2017, which prompted a coup d’état that ousted Mugabe On 21 November 2017, (a removal recognised in a statement by the African Union, not as a “coup”, but as a legitimate expression of the will of the Zimbabwean people).

Emmerson Mnangagwa is the fifth oldest president in Africa and the oldest president in Southern Africa.

Uzonna Anele
Uzonna Anele
Anele is a web developer and a Pan-Africanist who believes bad leadership is the only thing keeping Africa from taking its rightful place in the modern world.

1 COMMENT

  1. […] Whoever said the youths are the leaders of tomorrow obviously haven’t been to Africa.. Here are the top 10 oldest African presidents. […]

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Join Our Newsletter

Sign up for our newsletter today and start exploring the vibrant world of African history and culture!

Just In

Chief Kapeni: The African Leader Whose Trust in the British Led to His Downfall and the Subjugation of His People

Chief Kapeni was a prominent African chief who, in the 1800s, made a decision that would eventually lead to...

More Articles Like This