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City of Banjul
Friday, September 18, 2020

Participation of youth in nation development should be on top of government agenda

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By Baba Sillah For any nation to achieve its development goal within a specific period of time it has to engage the youth in its development agenda. The participation of youth in national development is cardinal in any democratic country and therefore the youth should and must always be involved despite the many challenges ahead to enable them to play their roles in order to overcome those challenges. Since The Gambia has opened a new chapter in the way toward democracy and good governance under the leadership of President Adama Barrow, we challenge President Barrow and his cabinet to consider the youth in their development agendas as they did during the December 2016 Presidential election. The government should create more job opportunities for the youth to help them realize their God-given potential in order to make a decent living. Over the past years we have seen how unemployment led to the massive migration of our youth to Europe in order to search for greener pasture because they believed that there is no hope for them in the country where they can have a decent life. Participation and creation of job opportunities for the youth will enable the government to overcome or reduce crime rates among other things such as prostitution, gambling among other things and until these issues remain unaddressed by the government, these problems will still remain as an obstacle to our development. In my view as social science student, the term nation building or national development is basically used to refer to a constructive process of engaging citizens in building social cohesion, economic prosperity and political stability in a nation in an inclusive and democratic way. Going by the definition, it is seen that all citizens are to be involved in building or developing a nation. Thus, the involvement of youth in national development is a must. In fact youths play one of the most cardinal roles in national development. It is true that youth are not only the leaders of tomorrow but also the partners of today. Young people are social performers of change and progress. They are a paramount segment of a nation’s building and their contribution therefore is highly needed. Youth have always been the key to any of the activities in the world be it war, politic and construction works as well; you name it. The December 1 Presidential election in the country is a clear manifestation as how the involvement of youth can make a big change in a nation. The hunger, desire, motivation, determination and high energy of the youth can make all the difference in either destroying or building a nation. Proper guidance and direction can bring the youth in the forefront of national development. The youth have passions, dreams and hopes. They have sparkling enthusiasm which has to be regulated and utilized in the right direction. This can surely ensure rapid national development. After all, all the people can only exercise their potential when they are young and energetic. Youth hood is that period in which revolutionary thoughts spring to mind and these thoughts shape the world we live in. We have many people who are a living example the likes of Bill Gates, the founder of Microsoft. He had a revolutionary thought and he exercised thought and look how he changed the world. There are lots of revolutionary youth leaders around the world who have changed the world towards the development. Youth through organizing a specific aim and positive direction can contribute more towards the national development. The government of any country should always involve the youth in their development agenda by creating job opportunities and recreational centre which will help the youth to realize their potential and contribute their quota to nation building. The youths of The Gambia want full participation in key official positions and decision making under the leadership of President Barrow and the creation of special national youth committee that will be responsible for youth affairs. This committee if necessary should have monthly meeting with various youth organizations in the country. Whereby constraints will be outlined and discussed before it is finally forwarded to the right authorities like the ministry responsible for youth affairs. The government should build more companies and factories as we are endowed with resources such as mangoes, oranges and vegetable which can be processed into juice and preserved them for a period of time before we import them. The construction of factories will generate revenue for the state and also serve as job opportunities for many youths in order to make our beloved country, The Gambia great again and a beacon of hope for all.]]>

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