NEPAD moves to involve more youth in peer review process

By Tanko Mohammed

The African Union Development Agency-New Partnership for Africa`s Development (AUDA-NEPAD) is to involve more youths in the ongoing 2nd Peer Review Mechanism.

The African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM) identifies deficiencies while reinforcing best practices and assessing capacity development needs also help the citizens to know where we are and where we want to be in terms of Governance for sustainable development.

Ms Gloria Akobundu, National Coordinator of AUDA-NEPAD, made this known at a Youth Consultative virtual meeting to create awareness on the 2nd peer review process by the agency.

The objectives of the review, Akobundu said is to assess progress made in governance and socio-economic development of member states of AUDA-NEPAD in the period since the first review, hence the need for youth involvement.

She said the reason for the youth consultative meeting was to have youths` opinions in the ongoing review of the AUDA-NEPAD , to enable the agency come up with programmes which could be  beneficial to them.

“It is important to engage the youths, to seek for their opinions and inputs towards reshaping the future.

“It is also very important looking at the agenda of President Muhammadu Buhari and his passion for the young people. He promisd to lift 100 million people out of poverty.

“And he has created a whole lot of enabling environment to be enforced by his lieutenants which are the ministers, the governors and all stakeholders that are involved in this present administration including the agency, “ she explained.

Also, contributing, Mr Sunday Dare, Minister of Youth and Sports Development applauded the AUDA-NEPAD for its initiative programmes, said the Federal Government had come up with several initiatives to engage youths in the country.

Represented by Mrs Blessing Adams, Dare advised the youths to exhibit characters that would encourage government to pay more attention to them, knowing quite well that the future of Nigeria is in their hands.

According to him, AUDA-NEPAD`s involvement of youths in its ongoing review to create more rooms for the nation`s youth would make them more employable and more useful not only themselves, but also to the society.

Similarly, Mr Ekene John-Paul , Co-Founder, Centre for Youth Advocacy and Development (CYAD), appreciated AUDA-NEPAD for its thought to include the nation`s youths in its review to seek their opinions.

John-Paul noted that youths had been neglected in the policies and processes that are involved in building the nation, adding that there is a huge gap and imbalances in decision making.

“What I think has happened over the years is that we’ve left the whole nation of young people out of the policies and processes that are involved in building the nation.

“So there is a huge imbalance in terms of including the young people in a day to day activity by the government of the country and that is why a lot of young people see themselves involving in social vices.

According to him, those youths who embrace violence and agitated are those who feel that they don’t belong to a community.