…lists policies to support safe spaces for young people
Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has called for global support on capacity development for youths to enable them contribute to economic expansion, as the world stands to gain more from such investment considering the global youth population.
Obaseki made the call in commemoration of the International Youth Day, celebrated by the United Nations and its partners across the globe, on August 12, each year.
He noted that more needs to be done to assist young people realise their goals and aspirations in life and contribute meaningfully to the development of the society.
“The choice by the UN to mark the 2018 event with the theme, ‘Safe Spaces for Youth’ is appropriate to draw attention to the need for more action to remove barriers such as conflicts, unemployment, among others, that form stumbling blocks, limiting youths in actualising their goals,” he noted.
Obaseki said, “In Edo State, we are doing more to create more safe spaces for youths to freely express themselves and realise their future goals and contribute to the sustainable development of the state.”
He explained that “The Edo Innovation Hub was established to serve as healthy incubation ground where youths can discover their talent in the use of modern technology to solve daily problems.
“We also created the EdoJobs portal to assist youths in the state acquire skills that will give them better chances to be employed, match their skills with existing job opportunities and better prepare them to be self-employed.”
Obaseki added that, “The revamp of state-owned tertiary institutions is to make the institutions not only safe for young persons to acquire the best of education in line with global best standards, but also to prevent them from falling prey to antics of unscrupulous elements who act as agents of human traffickers.”
He said that his administration will continue to support platforms through which youths can aggregate their views and contribute to governance and assured that their opinions would be respected.
“Youths in the state can be better organised to contribute meaningfully to political developments and not as political thugs by desperate politicians.
“The ongoing renovation work at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium and the plan to construct 20 mini-stadia across the state are other initiatives that are youth-centric,” Obaseki added.
According to the United Nations, “There are currently 1.8 billion young people between the ages of 10 and 24 in the world. This is the largest youth population ever. But 1 in 10 of the world’s children lives in conflict zones and 24 million of them are out of school. Political instability, labour market challenges and limited space for political and civic participation have led to increasing isolation of youth in societies.”
The UN explained that “August 12 was first designated International Youth Day by the UN General Assembly in 1999, and serves as an annual celebration of the role of young women and men as essential partners in change, and an opportunity to raise awareness of challenges and problems facing the world’s youth.”