By Luminous Jannamike and Fortune Eromosele, Abuja
YOUTHS across the country, on Friday, said they were tired of holding junior political positions in government.
So, they called on the Federal Government and the Nigerian Governors’ Forum (NGF) to make provision for them to have equal access to all levels of political leadership as a way of mainstreaming the youth in the nation’s governance.
The President of Nigerian Youth Congress, Blessing Akinlosotu, stated this while speaking at the 2021 national youth summit with the theme: “Mainstreaming the Youth in the National Development Agenda as a Strategic Tool for Youth Empowerment” in Abuja.
He said that the summit would support any move to address the issue, adding that the youths were ready to join hands with government to move the nation forward by taking leadership responsibility even at the highest levels.
“It is important to state that a nation with a hardworking and creative youth population like ours will develop speedily, if it realizes its potentials and harness the same for the betterment of all in the present time and the future to come.
“Mainstreaming the youth in the national agenda should not be construed to mean just recruiting youths in lower cadre of leadership and government; It is about transforming young people by giving them equal access to all political and socio-economic spheres, and also making them the focal point in the formulation and implementation of government policies,” Akinlosotu said.
In the same vein, Hon. Makinde Araoye, the Ekiti Governor’s Special Adviser on Federal Matters, urged young Nigerians to be active in party politics ahead of the 2023 general election.
He argued that besides holding political offices; the energy and knowledge of the youth could also be useful in developing the nation’s economy.
In his remarks, the Chairman of NYC’s Governing Board, Dr. Yakubu Shendam, noted that the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration has done its best to mainstream youths in the nation’s governance.
However, he accused those he described as “managers of the scheme” of sabotaging the President’s effort.
“This administration has done a lot in ensuring youth participation in politics. Everyone cannot be in government, there can only be one at a time, the president has created several avenues in terms of incentives to ensure the representation of youths in government.
“However, the problem is with the managers of these schemes who have decided to frustrate the incentives the President has put in place. That’s why you see that the youths are becoming agitational and impatient,” he added.