The issue of youth embarking on the perilous journey to Europe through the sea is not only a concern to the governments in Africa but the world at large. Among various reasons, youths risk their lives to go to Europe illegally is the search for greener pastures.
Most youth believe that Europe is the only option to deal with their problems thereby creating lots of burden on their families. Youth as leaders of tomorrow should be at the forefront of the development agenda of any nation. Measures should be in place by the government and development partners to discourage young and energetic youths from embarking on such life-threatening journeys to Europe. African governments should come up with policies and programmes that will generate employment opportunities for the youth.
In The Gambia, recently we have heard stories from the media concerning migrants drowning at high sea and in most cases killed in an attempt to reach Europe. Lives lost cannot be replaced, more so compensated. This has created a heavy cost on their families, who keep mourning their loved ones. Others have made it to Europe through the ‘Back Way’ but number of lives lost at the sea is alarming.
The Standard newspaper recently reported a story of Gambians among a group of would-be immigrants rescued after their vessel got into difficulty off the southwest coast of Sicily. This story is indeed sad considering the dangers at the high sea.
It is also alarming that women who had taken back seat in the desperation toget to Europe are now in the forefront to reach Europe just like their male counterparts. Reports suggest more women and children are risking their lives to reach Europe.
Africa can only be developed by Africans. Therefore, if all our youth are risking their lives in death-defying journey through the sea, what would happen to the future development of the continent?
These mass exoduses of Youth will have socio-economic deficiencies in pursuit to develop our respective countries.
Let’s stay to develop our continent described by the West as continent of diseases, famine, poverty, you name them…
By Ebrima Jallow,
Bakau, Sama Kunda.
Climate change is everyone’s business
Allow me to share my honest opinion on climate change. Consensus is that it is a development challenge in our contemporary world. This is why it is dominating the headlines. Global climate change is affecting people and the environment in many ways. Some of these impacts, like stronger hurricanes and severe heat waves, could be life threatening. Others, like spreading weeds, will be less serious. And some effects, like longer growing seasons for crops, might even be good. However, as the Earth keeps getting warmer, the negative effects are expected to outweigh the positive ones. The more we learn about how climate change will affect people and the environment, the more we can see why people need to take action to reduce the greenhouse gas emissions that are causing climate change. We can also take steps to prepare for the changes we know are coming. Even in reports, the climate is changing. Our ability to adapt is one of our greatest strengths as a species. But in this case, the medicine could feed the disease. As we adapt to climatic changes already happening, some of our behaviour will affect the amount of greenhouse gases we put into the atmosphere, and thus affect the climate itself. Population growth, increases or decreases in air pollution, increased ability to purchase air conditioning or automobiles, and other social and economic changes are difficult to pin down decades into the future. This is why climate scientists have created a number of emissions scenarios; each one sketches a different set of possible future social, economic, and technological developments for use in projecting future changes in the climate. It is therefore apt for our governments to wake up to the reality, speak less and act more. We have to come up with solutions to it because it is threatening the survival of humanity. Climate change is real.