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Good Governance: Group Tasks Youths On State Lawmakers Engagement

From Ignatius Okpara, Enugu

(AFRICAN EXAMINER) – Westminster foundation for Democracy (WFD), a United Kingdom (UK) non – departmental public body committed to the promotion of democratic institutions across the globe, has stressed the need for youths of Enugu state, South- East  Nigeria, to always engage the State House of Assembly on good governance, accountability and passage of people-oriented bills.

The Program Coordinator of the organization in Nigeria, Mrs Olusola Folayan, stated this on Wednesday in Enugu during a 3 day workshop on Inclusion of Young People in Governance and Decision Making in Nigeria.

The workshop, with the theme: “Meeting on State Youth Agenda Setting for Good Governance’’, is being organized by (WFD) in Nigeria, in collaboration with youth parliamentarian forum (YPF) with support from European union (EU) on Democratic governance in Nigeria.

According to Folayan, the workshop would equip the youths in the state with tools and knowledge to “properly engage Enugu State House of Assembly on good governance, accountability and people-oriented bills, adding that it is also aimed at enhancing good governance generally in the state.

She noted that the workshop was a fall-out of the context analysis conducted last year to know the level of youths’ engagement in governance, pointing out that the level of youths engagement in executive arm of government had been far more than the legislative arm.

The programme Coordinator, also explained that WFD works to achieve sustainable political change in emerging democracies, including Nigeria.

She added: “Youth inclusion in governance project in Nigeria is a project supported by commonwealth partnership for Democracy and Commonwealth Parliamentary Association to enhance good governance.

“The purpose is to set agendas and develop them; so that it will be used constructively to engage the house members in the next four years to enhance good governance,’’ she stated.

Declaring the workshop open, Speaker of Enugu State House of Assembly, Hon. Edward Ubosi, challenged the youths to improve their leadership quality in order to take over the governance of the country.

“Youths must get focused and organized so that the elderly ones will never look down on you people; but see the need to give responsibility especially serious responsibility as of that of leadership to you.

He said: “Youths must be able to package themselves well and be coordinated, while having a focus” pointing out that the Enugu State government had continued to engage the youths in its affairs for effective delivering of good governance.

Ubosi assured WFD of the state house of assembly’s maximum support to achieve its project plans, stressing that the assembly had in the past created office for the youths to actively participate in the activities in the house.

Also Speaking, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Youths and Sports, Enugu state, Barrister (Mrs) Ngozi Ani, applauded the leadership of Youth Parliamentarian Forum for
making Enugu State the choice for the programme and providing enabling environment for youths contribution in the governance of the state.

“Youths of the state have been benefiting from the state government skills training and entrepreneurship programmes with starter pack after their period of trainings.

The workshop which ends Friday is being attended by no fewer than 50 youths drawn from youth-based bodies, such as Youth council of Nigeria YCN, Civil society, and Community-Based Organisations, tertiary  institutions among others.


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