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Youth of Ghana deserves better; No more lip service under my presidency-Lawyer

Written by  Sep 03, 2018
An aspiring presidential candidate hopeful, Elikplim Agbemava, has suggested government has failed the youth by paying lip service to youth development. The private legal practitioner has promised to give critical attention to youth development. He believes the youth policy must be handed over to the Ministry of Education so the ministry would be fully in charge of youth development just like it was done under former President Kufour’s era. The aspiring presidential hopeful seeking to represent the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) in 2020, made reference to the National Youth Policy Plan 2014 which states that “Young people constitute a significant proportion of Ghana’s population. They are a major source of the nation’s human capital and key agents for socio-cultural, economic, and political development as well as technological innovation. Their imaginations, ideals, energies and vision are essential for the development of the nation”. Despite the statement above, government is failing the youth by paying lip service to youth development. Instead of allocating more of Government’s revenue to youth development Government has cut the youth budget by 30% in 2018. In 2017, the Ministry was given a budget of GHS 46.9 million for its activities. However in 2018, the Youth and Sports Ministry will receive an estimated amount of GHS 32.8 million to work with for all activities and programmes. Lawyer Agemava is of the view that ‘’the youth deserve first class jobs and not menial jobs. Those who cannot be reschooled should be trained in artisanal work with modern technology. The days of approaching Carpentry with saws in the hand are long gone. It’s all about meaningful and honest approaches to solving our problems.’’ In a detailed vision for the youth of Ghana, he added, ‘’… the adults we have is the evidence of how well we train our youth. We cannot stop corruption, ensure good governance and patriotic conduct when we do not inculcate these values in our youth before they become adults. The Eli2020? campaign is all about the youth getting the right tools to face adult life and contributing to national development. We will invest more in our universities and create more meaningful jobs for the youth. He has also underscored the need for more resources to be channelled to improving quality education at the tertiary level. ‘’More money must be invested in our existing universities to improve the quality of teaching, entrepreneurial development and research. The 586 million dollars that will be spent on NABCO every 3 years must be halved and half given to our universities. More universities must also be built in the regions especially those closer to our neighboring countries to attract foreign students and foreign exchange for investment into the educational sector. We need to be innovative in our policy planning.’’ Read Below the full piece by the lawyer: WE THE YOUTH OF GHANA DESERVE BETTER “Young people constitute a significant proportion of Ghana’s population. They are a major source of the nation’s human capital and key agents for socio-cultural, economic, and political development as well as technological innovation. Their imaginations, ideals, energies and vision are essential for the development of the nation”. (National Youth Policy Action Plan, 2014). The 2010 population census and expert estimates since then place the percentage of the youth amongst Ghana’s population above 60%. Despite the statement above, government is failing the youth by paying lip service to youth development. Instead of allocating more of Government’s revenue to youth development Government has cut the youth budget by 30% in 2018. In 2017, the Ministry was given a budget of GHS 46.9 million for its activities. However in 2018, the Youth and Sports Ministry will receive an estimated amount of GHS 32.8 million to work with for all activities and programmes. Sadly half of the budget (16 million cedis) is used to pay salaries of workers at the Ministry and its agencies. We continue to pay lip service to the youth when this segment represents the work force and future. WHAT CAN BE DONE? Eli2020 ?? campaign believes Youth policy first of all must be handed over to the Education ministry for the Education Ministry to be in full charge of issues affecting the development of the youth. This was done under President Kuffour’s government and it was a brilliant move. The youth begin to grow through Education and it is difficult to understand why youth policy is not part of our education policy management or why education policy management does not include youth policy. The current situation gives room for duplication of functions and waste of resources on acquiring more logistics and employing additional hands at the Ministries to tackle youth development when the real work on the ground is not getting done . Secondly most of our difficulties with development has to do with money. It is important that more money is pumped into youth development,qualified and competent professionals hired to tackle issues affecting the youth with constant monitoring. The scant attention given to youth development has seen mediocre Human Resource managing the youth. Cutting the youth budget by 30% and further using half of the already cut budget to pay salaries does not show any seriousness for youth development. More money must be invested in our existing universities to improve the quality of teaching, entrepreneurial development and research. The 586 million dollars that will be spent on NABCO every 3 years must be halved and half given to our universities. More universities must also be built in the regions especially those closer to our neighboring countries to attract foreign students and foreign exchange for investment into the educational sector. We need to be innovative in our policy planning. The youth deserve first class jobs and not menial jobs. Those who cannot be reschooled should be trained in artisanal work with modern technology. The days of approaching Carpentry with saws in the hand are long gone. It’s all about meaningful and honest approaches to solving our problems. To conclude, the adults we have is the evidence of how well we train our youth. We cannot stop corruption, ensure good governance and patriotic conduct when we do not inculcate these values in our youth before they become adults. The Eli2020 ?? campaign is all about the youth getting the right tools to face adult life and contributing to national development. We will invest more in our universities and create more meaningful jobs for the youth. #ItisPossible #GetInvolved #BelieveToWin
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