By Aisha Tamba & Olimatou Coker
The Balance Open in partnership with GRTS has recently held a press conference for the upcoming national development award 2017.
The press-conference which was held at the GRTS complex highlighted the importance of the national youth award among host of other things concerning national development.
Speaking at the press conference, the Balance Open CEO Baba Ceesay said his association has already signed an agreement with NGOs for the awardees to start some projects which will give them the opportunity to upgrade themselves and also change the lives of others.
He said four nominees will be contesting for the award on various areas, ranging from irregular migration, democracy and good governance and climate change.
Mustapha Kah, one of the nominees said through debates, young people can be empowered with the knowledge on how they can contribute to the development of their societies and the country at large.
He said the need for young people to develop their ideas and knowledge on how they can seriously contribute towards the country’s national development cannot be overemphasised.
During the debate, he said they will discuss on irregular migration, climate change and youth empowerment, “because we believe if we want to change the society we should seek for better ideas to be able to do so.”
He further stressed that given his experience the showcase will help him and all others who will participate at the forum to recognise their potential at national level.
He said over the years young debaters have made great strive in their quest to meet international or to at least be at par with countries like Nigeria and Botswana who have been debating for 20years.
“Although Gambia started the debate competition in 2014, we have won four (4) awards so far, despite our little resources. I always believe that the 60% of the population of this country who are youths need to be supported if we are to create the Gambia that works for everyone,” he added.
Meanwhile, Mariama Colley who is also a nominee, said young people should not depend on others to do things for them, “we should work harder so that people will realise the impact we made in society.”