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HIGHLIGHTS OF THE JUST CONCLUDED YOUTH MENTORING SEMINAR
Dec 13th, 2010 - 16:13:12
(see attachments in A Well Earth documents folder.)
Highlights on the Just Concluded Youth Mentoring Seminar on “The Role of Youths in Sustained Democracy and Good Governance” held at Nanet Suites
on 4th December, 2010.
The 2010 edition of the Youth Mentoring Seminar was a thrilling experience as it was held in grand style with dignitaries and notable personalities like Mrs. Dayo Keshi, President/Founder AfriGrowth Foundation; Malam Nuhu Ribadu, Action Congress 2011 Presidential candidate; Prof. Attahiru Jega, INEC Chairman represented by Emmanuel Umenger; Amb. Joe Keshi, former Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs; Dr. Mourtada Deme, Country Director International Republican Institute; Mr. Tomi Akingbogun, CEO Hotel Rosebud; Mr. Linus Okorie, President, Guardian of the Nation International and Mrs. Eugenia Abu, Nigeria Television Authority (NTA) gracing the occasion.
The highlights on the papers that were presented are as follows:
1. The Role of Youths in Sustained Democracy and Good Governance
Presented by Dr. Mourtada Deme, Country Director, International Republican Institute
· Election is a key ingredient in the democratic process because it belongs to the people, it represents the will of the people and it is a fundamental human right.
· He noted that inclusiveness which is defined it as the involvement of all stakeholders in the selection of leaders is an aspect of election that can never be dispensed.
· The conditions for qualification for inclusion in the electoral process should be fair.
· The key points in the electoral process are participation of citizens, transparency and accountability.
· Transparency and accountability are defined as the right of citizens to seek, receive and impact information.
· He acknowledged the role of technology in making the electoral process transparent; however, caution must be maintained as cheating could easily come into the process if it is not properly monitored.
2. Nigerian Youths and the 2011 Elections
Presented by Mr. Emmanuel Umenger on behalf of the INEC Chairman, Professor Attahiru Jega.
· The current administration of INEC placed high premium on the youths for the success of the 2011 Elections.
· Apart from the grace of the Almighty God, according to him, the salvation of our nation lies in the hands of our youths, because no nation can afford to toy with its younger generations.
· He further pointed out that it is the neglect and disorientation of our youths that led to the plaguing of our nation with such evils as armed robbery, kidnapping, electoral violence and the like.
· It is a known fact that the youths have played an ignoble role in the electoral history of the country. In the past, the youths allowed themselves to be used as machinery for thuggery and other forms of electoral violence.
· He concluded by noting that Nigerian youths owe themselves a duty to ensure that the country has a future. Without a future for Nigeria, there is no future for Nigerian youths.
· If the 2011 elections fail, the blame would be on the youths.
3. Youths as Key Players in Nigeria’s Future.
Presented by Mr. Linus Okorie
· He started by noting that Nigeria had been reported to be one of the failed states in the world for five consecutive times.
· The future of Nigeria belongs to the youths and as such, they must be massively involved in the forth coming elections if we must see a positive change in the country.
· He proceeded to list the key ingredients of being a change agent which are as follows: Possibility mindset, Innovation, Integrity, Contribution mindset, Community mindset, Value for time and Communication.
· He concluded by challenging all the participants to action by urging them to take their future into their own hands.
Some other remarks were made by notable resource persons present in the event. They are as follows:
Mallam Nuhu Ribadu
· What mattered to Nigeria at the moment was the ability to get leaders who would make a change in Nigeria.
· The youths have the obligation to be involved in the electoral process to make our democracy a success.
· He concluded by stating that dialogue was the starting point for change.
Amb. Joe Keshi
· Many young people sit down waiting to be given a chance. Meanwhile nobody would give anybody a chance; those that want it rise up to take it.
· Young people have to take personal responsibility for their future.
· The only thing a young person is entitled to from their family and the Government is education. For the rest, they take the chance.
· Nobody can achieve much if they do not give quality time to education.
· He concluded by pointing out the need for young people to manage their expectations.
Mrs. Eugenia Abu
· A man who cannot read and a man who would not read are all the same. The man who would not read is even worse as he has the opportunity to read but would not.
· The critical areas of improvement young people should work on are knowledge, communication and integrity.
· Young people should check the kind of information, music and associations they get associated with as they determine to a great extent one’s personality.
· Above all, she urged the participants never to give up on developing and adding value to themselves.
Mr. Tomi Akingbogun
· Youths must take responsibility for their future in Nigeria if they must be relevant in the affairs of the nation.
· He pointed out the need for proper planning as time is never on our side.
· He went on to fragment active life into three phases; 0-18, 18- 35 and 35- 55. He said that from 0-18 years of age, the child is under the guidance and protection of the parents/ guardians, 18- 35 is the phase for personal development while 35- 55 is the phase for consolidation and fulfillment. He stated that the youths should never think that time is on their side.
Mr. Yinka Lawal
· The Youths not only have the strength, but also the number. For this reason, they should be massively involved in making a change.
· He enumerated the United Nations’ focus areas for Youth Development which are as follows: Education, Unemployment, Hunger and Poverty, Health, Environment, Drug Abuse, Juvenile Delinquency, Leisure Time Activity, etc.
· He rounded off by recommending My Experience with Truth by Ghandi as a book worthwhile for the youths.
The event ended on a sound note with the participants being fired up to spark up a wave of change for Nation Building. yo Keshi
President, AfriGrowth Foundation
Nigeria: 234 - 8023571670
USA: 732-322 3294
afrigrowth (at) yahoo.com