The Honourable Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Mr. Sunday Dare has reiterated government’s unflinching resolve to passionately address youth-related issues with the aim of placing them on the path of career development, entrepreneurship, skill acquisition and direct employment through various initiatives.
The Minister gave the assurance today in Abuja when he declared open the 2022 Africa/National Youth Day Celebrations with the theme “Breaking Barriers to Meaningful Participation and Inclusion in Advocacy”.
In its efforts to ensure inclusiveness at all levels, and in line with the National Youth Policy, the Minister said that the Ministry has designed and implemented the Mentoring and life enhancement programmes for vulnerable youth and Youth with Disabilities(YWDs ) in different Geo-Political Zones of the Country.
This he added, is aimed at empowering them to cater for themselves and families. *”Our DEEL Initiative which focuses on Digital Literacy and Skills Acquisition, Entrepreneurship, Employability and Leadership have continued to provide opportunities for our youth in training, digital skills, entrepreneurship, soft skills, internships and access to credit and finance among others. The DEEL programme has helped to fill the knowledge and skills gap in the Nigerian youth in the past three (3) years”*
He stated further that the Nigeria Online Youth Assembly (NOYA) was another initiative of the present administration, that is geared towards improving livelihoods and promoting the wellbeing and total inclusion of Nigerian youth with opportunities in both government and private sectors *”since inception, the programme has engaged hundreds of thousands of youth, thereby reinventing their future using knowledge and creativity to escape poverty, unemployment, immoral acts and other unhealthy plagues existing in our society”* the Minister reiterated.
He explained that in the nascent days of our nationhood, the youth have stood out and showed the rest of Nigeria and indeed Africa that, with a little push and the right environment, they can aspire to reach their full potentials.
“A case in point is the aspiration and subsequent election of Amb. John Niyi, representing Nigerian Youth for the position of Vice President, West Africa under the Pan African Youth Union. The likes of Tobi Amusan, the Nigerian sprinter who recently set a new world record in the Women’s 100 meters hurdles” he added
Mr Dare who congratulated the Nigerian youth on this year’s celebration stated further that the occasion provides us with an ample opportunity to critically look into and address issues that have continued to hinder their pursuit for a secured role in decision making, especially on issues that directly affects them, and how to leverage on the experiences garnered from the older generations.
He noted that the Ministry has spearheaded the celebration of this important event since 2007 with series of activities aimed at enhancing the capacity of our youth to contribute to the socio-political and economic development of the country.
In his address, the Honourable Minister, Federal Capital Territory Administration, Mallam Muhammad Musa Bello, represented by Hajiya Hadiza Mohammed Kabir, assured that the administration will continue to provide an enabling environment for advancement of youth programmes with a view to empowering them.
Earlier in his opening remarks, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Alhaji Ismaila Abubakar called on the Nigerian youth not to relent in giving out their modest contributions towards nation building.
He therefore called on participants to focus on the key objective of this year’s celebration, to ensure that the Day produces the action plan as well as sustainable strategies and milestone that would alleviate the incessant challenges of youth welfare and development.