- The National Youth Development Commission (Establishment, ETC) Bill 2015 sponsored by Hon. Samaila Suleiman is gaining momentum
- Yiaga Africa is leading the conversation by ensuring all stakeholders are on course to ensure the bill sees the light of day
- The proposed commission, if it comes to fruition, will be saddled with the responsibility of youth welfare and development
FCT, Abuja – Foremost civil society organisation, Yiaga Africa, on Thursday, July 15 hosted key stakeholders and youth groups ahead of the National Assembly public hearing on the Youth Development Commission Bill.
The policy dialogue, think tank meeting attended by a Legit.ng reporter in Abuja was aimed at bringing all stakeholders under one roof to analyse and review the bill.
Need for young people to have a seat at the table
Speaking at the event, the chairman of the Young Parliamentarians Forum (YPF), Honourable Kabir Ibrahim Tukura urged all participants to contribute their quota to ensure that the Youth Development Commission Bill is a near-perfect document.
On his part, the secretary of the YPF, Honourable Simon Elisha Karu who spoke extensively on the bill said:
“The spirit behind this bill is to create space of influence for young people within democratic processes and also bring together the youthful voices we have to be able to make the influences required.
“People have spoken about the role young people play in democracies around the world and also, the role young people play in democracy in Nigeria. A lot of times we feel they are insignificant.”
He argued that about 80% of democratic activities with regards to elections and are conducted by young people, but lamented that they are not the principal actors when it comes to taking the lead position within governance.
“The Not To Young Too Run bill ushered a good representation in 2019, we want to see that this also creates a stronger platform for young people for now and beyond. We need the bill at this time.
“The current security situation in Nigeria can be solved when young people are properly empowered.”
Stakeholders contribute their own quota to make the bill worthy
Dr Samuel Oguche of the National Institute for Legislative and Democratic Studies, who presided over the session for the analysis and review of the bill provided insights into what should be removed and added in the document.
There was also an extensive discussion by participants on the bill and later a question and answer session.
Organisations represented at the event include Connected Development, National Youth Council of Nigeria, Action Aide, Lead Generation Initiative, Mind The Gap, Activista, Nigerian Students Accountability Network, Nigeria Youth Parliament among others.
The competitors were drawn from universities in the six geo-political zones, Federal University of Technology, Owerri; University of Lagos, University of Benin, Bayero University, Kano, University of Maiduguri, and the University of Jos.
Speaking at the event, Cynthia Mbamalu, Director of Programmes of Yiaga Africa, said the debate was designed to complement efforts by state and non-state actors in the fight against corruption by promoting zero tolerance for graft and impunity.
Recall that in 2017, a group of young Nigerians with the moniker Team LaunchPad won the final of the Bounce Corruption #Hack4Good competition in Abuja.
Team LaunchPad defeated 9 other teams at the grand finale to emerge winner of the competition which showcased the brilliant works of amazing innovators with innovations to track corruption cases, track asset declaration, and educate Nigerians on anti-corruption.
Team Launchpad won the contest with its WikiRuption App pitch which can be used to get information about corruption and how the cases are being tackled.