Youth demand 10% quota representation at all levels

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September 24, 2018

By Hassan Gbassay Koroma

youth

Sierra Leone’s 2014 and 2015 Status of Youth Report has recommended ten percent quota for youth representation at all levels as indicated in the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) recommendations.

The report further recommends that special seats should be allocated or reserved for youth at both local and national levels.

Launching the report at the Miatta Conference Hall in Freetown Friday, 21st September, Minister of Youth Affairs Mohamed Orman Bangura said the day was International Day for Peace, adding that Sierra Leone joins the rest of the world to commemorate the day by reflecting on the activities of the youth in national governance.

According to him, two-third of the country’s population is under thirty five years and therefore it was prudent that government should continue to invest in young people through quality education, healthcare and better employment opportunity for a sustainable peace and stability.

Minister Bangura said that the National Youth Commission was established by an Act of Parliament which makes it mandatory for the release of an annual report on the status of youth in the country, adding that the Act was meant to help the government, youth development organisations and other relevant stakeholders properly plan in designing youth empowerment programmes with well-researched data.

“We as young people believe that there is no way we can succeed as a nation if we don’t take ownership of programmes that will help our development and empowerment,” he said, adding that the government has a critical role to play as well as donor partners , but the buck stops with the young people.

Country Director of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Samuel Gbaydee Doe, revealed that with financial support from his organization, the report was produced to inform national development policies and strategies to ensure that youth benefit from existing and emerging new opportunities in the country.

He said the report would be used to identify potential opportunities for youth development. He went on to say that the greatest challenge confronting the development of the country was youth unemployment, stressing that the report re-echoes the United Nations Secretary General’s concern about youth employment.

Doe said the UN has placed youth problems at the top of their priority agenda as shown by the Secretary General’s ‘Youth 2030’ conference slated for 24 September 2018. He revealed that during the ceremony, the Secretary General would launch the United Nations New Youth Strategy in New York.

He said: “It is my view that the 2014 and 2015 Status of Youth Report is well informed by current realities and the status of the youth in the country. The challenges raised in this report are an opportunity for Sierra Leone to reposition itself to take decisive measures to tackle youth development issues, which in my view requires the support of every Sierra Leonean as well as the international development partners.”

He averred that the UNDP, other UN agencies and the wider international community were assiduously working hand in glove to consolidate the peace and democratic good governance in the country.

He noted that the UNDP Youth Employment and Empowerment Programme (YEEP), initiated in 2011, were designed to strengthen national policy, strategy and coordination for youth employment. He said they supported the provision of basic support services to youth across the country, promoted youth entrepreneurship, including supporting youth in business development and career advice and placement services.

He said the YEEP programme also contributed to the formulation of the National Youth Service Framework and strengthening youth governance structures. He mentioned the District Youth Councils, which according to him, has laid the foundation for stable nation. He encouraged the Ministry of Youth Affairs step up addressing the socio-economic and livelihood needs of the youth, devoid of regional background or political affiliation.

He said lack of employment, low level of education, required skills with limited access to sexual and reproductive health services and limited access to land, especially for women, continue to frustrate the aspirations of many young people.

Giving an overview of the report, National Youth Commissioner Thomas Ngolo Katta noted that the principal objective of the study was to provide a comprehensive analysis of the status of youth in the country in specific areas relating to their development for the year 2014 and 2015.

He said the status report was a major recommendation of Sierra Leone’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission, set up after the country’s decade brutal war that ended in 2002. He added that the status of youth report evolved through an Act of Parliament.

He said the first report was produced in 2012 through technical and financial support from UNDP, adding that the report was meant to provide an encompassing overview of the status of youth across the country as well as to provide ad hoc investigation into specific contemporary topics.

Katta said the report was a credible document that gives an informed analysis and documents the status of youth in the country with a focus on youth and civic engagement, youth and access to health services and youth and the environment.

He promised that the youth commission would strive to fulfil demonstrable requirement for a credible entity to be responsible for the overall long term direction and control of youth development and employment programmes in the country.

He said the study would also help determine the extent of youth engagement in the political, economic and social spheres and how society is encouraging or stifling their desire, ascertain the perception of youth on certain health issues, especially the Ebola virus disease, and the role they played in ensuring observation of the standards of procedures.

The NAYCOM Commissioner added that the report would further help ascertain youth contribution towards the degradation of the environment and how it could be avoided.

National Youth Council Chairman, Ibrahim Prince Tholley, said the report was one of the two most important documents in youth development in the country apart from the National Youth policy. He said the report was a document meant to inform policy decisions as to the current state of young people in the country.

He said the areas the report targeted were very important and play critical role in the development of young people in the country. He emphasised that the sustainability of many youth programmmes would be questionable if young people were not accorded the opportunity to be part of the research and policy making process.

He asserted that the report was very important and the launch, although overdue, but timely at this critical moment. He appealed that the concerns raised in the 2012 Youth Report were treated seriously and recommendations enforced

Youth demand 10% quota representation at all levels

By Hassan Gbassay Koroma

Sierra Leone’s 2014 and 2015 Status of Youth Report has recommended ten percent quota for youth representation at all levels as indicated in the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) recommendations.

The report further recommends that special seats should be allocated or reserved for youth at both local and national levels.

Launching the report at the Miatta Conference Hall in Freetown Friday, 21st September, Minister of Youth Affairs Mohamed Orman Bangura said the day was International Day for Peace, adding that Sierra Leone joins the rest of the world to commemorate the day by reflecting on the activities of the youth in national governance.

According to him, two-third of the country’s population is under thirty five years and therefore it was prudent that government should continue to invest in young people through quality education, healthcare and better employment opportunity for a sustainable peace and stability.

Minister Bangura said that the National Youth Commission was established by an Act of Parliament which makes it mandatory for the release of an annual report on the status of youth in the country, adding that the Act was meant to help the government, youth development organisations and other relevant stakeholders properly plan in designing youth empowerment programmes with well-researched data.

“We as young people believe that there is no way we can succeed as a nation if we don’t take ownership of programmes that will help our development and empowerment,” he said, adding that the government has a critical role to play as well as donor partners , but the buck stops with the young people.

Country Director of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Samuel Gbaydee Doe, revealed that with financial support from his organization, the report was produced to inform national development policies and strategies to ensure that youth benefit from existing and emerging new opportunities in the country.

He said the report would be used to identify potential opportunities for youth development. He went on to say that the greatest challenge confronting the development of the country was youth unemployment, stressing that the report re-echoes the United Nations Secretary General’s concern about youth employment.

Doe said the UN has placed youth problems at the top of their priority agenda as shown by the Secretary General’s ‘Youth 2030’ conference slated for 24 September 2018. He revealed that during the ceremony, the Secretary General would launch the United Nations New Youth Strategy in New York.

He said: “It is my view that the 2014 and 2015 Status of Youth Report is well informed by current realities and the status of the youth in the country. The challenges raised in this report are an opportunity for Sierra Leone to reposition itself to take decisive measures to tackle youth development issues, which in my view requires the support of every Sierra Leonean as well as the international development partners.”

He averred that the UNDP, other UN agencies and the wider international community were assiduously working hand in glove to consolidate the peace and democratic good governance in the country.

He noted that the UNDP Youth Employment and Empowerment Programme (YEEP), initiated in 2011, were designed to strengthen national policy, strategy and coordination for youth employment. He said they supported the provision of basic support services to youth across the country, promoted youth entrepreneurship, including supporting youth in business development and career advice and placement services.

He said the YEEP programme also contributed to the formulation of the National Youth Service Framework and strengthening youth governance structures. He mentioned the District Youth Councils, which according to him, has laid the foundation for stable nation. He encouraged the Ministry of Youth Affairs step up addressing the socio-economic and livelihood needs of the youth, devoid of regional background or political affiliation.

He said lack of employment, low level of education, required skills with limited access to sexual and reproductive health services and limited access to land, especially for women, continue to frustrate the aspirations of many young people.

Giving an overview of the report, National Youth Commissioner Thomas Ngolo Katta noted that the principal objective of the study was to provide a comprehensive analysis of the status of youth in the country in specific areas relating to their development for the year 2014 and 2015.

He said the status report was a major recommendation of Sierra Leone’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission, set up after the country’s decade brutal war that ended in 2002. He added that the status of youth report evolved through an Act of Parliament.

He said the first report was produced in 2012 through technical and financial support from UNDP, adding that the report was meant to provide an encompassing overview of the status of youth across the country as well as to provide ad hoc investigation into specific contemporary topics.

Katta said the report was a credible document that gives an informed analysis and documents the status of youth in the country with a focus on youth and civic engagement, youth and access to health services and youth and the environment.

He promised that the youth commission would strive to fulfil demonstrable requirement for a credible entity to be responsible for the overall long term direction and control of youth development and employment programmes in the country.

He said the study would also help determine the extent of youth engagement in the political, economic and social spheres and how society is encouraging or stifling their desire, ascertain the perception of youth on certain health issues, especially the Ebola virus disease, and the role they played in ensuring observation of the standards of procedures.

The NAYCOM Commissioner added that the report would further help ascertain youth contribution towards the degradation of the environment and how it could be avoided.

National Youth Council Chairman, Ibrahim Prince Tholley, said the report was one of the two most important documents in youth development in the country apart from the National Youth policy. He said the report was a document meant to inform policy decisions as to the current state of young people in the country.

He said the areas the report targeted were very important and play critical role in the development of young people in the country. He emphasised that the sustainability of many youth programmmes would be questionable if young people were not accorded the opportunity to be part of the research and policy making process.

He asserted that the report was very important and the launch, although overdue, but timely at this critical moment. He appealed that the concerns raised in the 2012 Youth Report were treated seriously and recommendations enforced