Tuesday, 18 July 2017

Jega urges analysis of youth policy

Prof. Atthairu Jega, Former Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has called on the Federal Government to “urgently review the National Youths Policy and include programmes targeted at satisfying the needs and aspirations of the youth”.

According to Jega, Nigeria needs to adopt a positive youth development approach which recognises youth as active participants in societal growth and not merely as passive recipients of doled out goods and services.

Speaking at this year’s convocation lecture of the Nigerian Nile University, at weekend, in Abuja, on “Youth and the Future of Nigeria,” Jega said the country had failed to harness the demographic asset.
He said political leaders constructed an elitist narrative of being concerned with the affairs of the youth, “but make no substantive effort in policies or programmes to address their plight.”

“Accordingly, the National Youth Policy should be urgently reviewed, enhanced and imbued with serious programmes targeted at satisfying the needs and aspirations of the youth, with their active participation.

“Effort should be targeted at the systematic removal of all barriers to effective youth participation in the Nigerian political economy,” he said.

He noted that the nation’s youth “face tremendous challenges, of poverty, diseases such as STDs and HIV/AIDs, unemployment and marginalisation and exclusion in the political economy.”

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