By Janet John, LAFIA
Nasarawa state government, Tuesday, said it has partnered ActionAid Nigeria to promote youth participation in governance as well as enhance skills acquisition for socio-economic development of the state.
Secretary to the state government, Muhammad Ubandoma Aliyu reiterated this during an advocacy round table on Nasarawa Youth Development Commission Bill (NYDCB) with key ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) and other relevant stakeholders in Nasarawa state held at Mosmera Guest Palace shendam road lafia, Nasarawa state.
He explained that the Youth Development Commission Bill which scaled through first reading at the Nasarawa state House of Assembly, if finally passed into law and the commission established, will further bridge the gap between the Youth and government, foster self reliance and strengthen the capacity of youths in Nasarawa state.
Ubandoma, a barrister, represented by the Assistant Director, Office of SSG, Hussaini Adamu, reiterated the state government’s readiness to collaborate with AAN and other well meaning NGOs to foster development, security and peace in the state.
“It is in view of that, that the Nasarawa state government in collaboration with ActionAid Nigeria inaugurated the State Conflict Management Alliance (SCOMA) on Thursday, 17th September, 2020 in lafia.
In her remark, the Country Director of AAN, Mrs Ene Obi said, having the bill passed into law will fast rack and facilitate the achievement of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Nasarawa State.
Obi asserted that Nasarawa State has an estimated youth population of 794,623, which is 31.5% of the total population of the state.
She said that according to UNESCO, 59% of youth population are illiterates, despite the state’s thriving educational ecosystem with a host of tertiary institutions and specialised education interventions, although faced with limited capacity at absorbing its pool of graduates, leading to 36.5% youth unemployment rate.
Obi, represented by Adewale Adeduntan, Manger, Social Mobilization of the Non Governmental Organization (NGO), explained that the bottom line of the Youth Development Commission is to ensure a robust engagement that will facilitate active development for young persons.
“We feel that regardless of what policy instrument, systems and structure that we may feel we have on ground, such from our assessment is narrow and this particular bill if it flys, will ensure that we have a much broader and young persons oriented policy instrument that will ensure continuity even as governments come and go”.
She commended the Nasarawa state deputy speaker, Rt Hon Nehemiah Dandaura for sponsoring the bill as she solicited for the speedy passage of the bill and more youth friendly bills.