The Lagos State Commissioner for Youth and Social Development, Mr Segun Dawodu has called for the engagement of the youth population in formal political mechanisms, saying that their involvement in politics would increase the fairness of political processes.
Dawodu who spoke on Thursday at an event organised by the Ministry to mark Year 2020 International Youth Day Celebration at Ikeja Youth Centre, Lagos said that the youth has the potentials of contributing to better and more sustainable policies as well as restoring trust in public institutions.
Mr Dawodu further stated that it was in order for the young people to be empowered to contribute to global development in their own corner of the world that the United Nations Population Fund, UNFPA collaborated with the State Government to give the representatives of the youth bodies in the State a platform to dialogue on issues affecting them.
In the same vein, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Youth and Social Development, Mrs Yewande Falugba stressed that the State Government has decided to focus more on issues affecting the youth taking into cognizance the fact that this segment of the population constitutes the greatest assets of the Nation.
Falugba extolled the vibrancy, energy, dedication and resourcefulness of the youth population, stressing that if these attributes are meaningfully explored, could translate into a more prosperous society.
Acknowledging the efforts of the Lagos State Government on youthful initiatives, the Executive Director, UNFPA, Dr. Nathaniel Kanel, affirmed that the State Government has been taking the lead through its various initiatives and intervention programmes to reach out to out-of-school young people in Nigeria.
The Executive Director who was represented by Dr. Esther Shomefu, said that one of the initiatives UNPFA put in place was the setting up of Youth Participatory Platform which has served as a veritable tool for harnessing the potentials of the youth.
The UNPFA Executive Director added that the platform which has produced 36 youths who are now outstanding in their endeavors has also been used to enlighten the youth on various issues ranging from sex education to personal self development.
The Guest Lecturer, Dr Olajobi Abdul Fatai, who spoke on the theme “Youth Engagement for Global Action”, enjoined all participants at the program to imbibe the virtues of volunteerism and patriotism, create time for self development, stay focused and consistent in pursuing their dreams.