By JACOB ONJEWU DICKSON
Youth inclusiveness in governance will fast track sustainable economic growth and development and help in actualizing principles of Open Governance as enshrined in global developmental framework.
This was the submission of Kaduna State Contact Person of Open Government Partnership (OGP) Terrah Jeremiah in Kaduna, while highlighting key areas of concern and commitments in achieving set goals of Youth Involvement in policy and governmental affairs from community to highest level of democratic experiment.
He stressed the need for youth below the age of 35 whom he noted form 80 percent of the state’s population to take the initiative by being active and involved in budgets planing, monitoring and execution in order to ensure timely delivery of quality projects with direct impacts and benefits to the masses.
State facilitator of Youth Open Governance Initiative Seth Luke pointed out that younger generation in any contemporary society should be the driving force of any meaningful policies meant to spread dividends of democracy to the beneficiaries as this, according to him would go a long way in ensuring even development.
He disclosed that youth of 24 years downward by vantage of forming 60 percent of total population of Kaduna State should be a potent force utilized by policy makers for mass mobilization for success of developmental programmes at the grassroots.
“We decided to take the message to campuses of enlightening our youth in the academia how they can participate in governance and be involved in affairs that affect their lives and wellbeing in one way or the other.
“What we are doing here today can seldom be taught in the classroom because We are concerned about the practicability aspect of the theory drawn on governance.
“The scope must be taken beyond laboratories and classrooms and acquaint our youth with true situation on ground when they must have left school to take the bull by the horns by liaising with their representatives to deliver set goals of governance,” he said.
Mubarak AbdulGaniyu a co- facilitator of Youth Open Governance called expressed optimism in positive impacts of the youth involvement in policy initiative, predicted that in no distant time, gains and the results of accountable and transparent campaigns would be reaped.
Kaduna Commissioner for Planning and Budget, Mukhtar Ahmed, represented by the ministry’s Director Monitoring and Valuation, Bashir Ladan stated that the state, because of high premium it placed on transparency, accountability and above all citizens’ participation in governance had boldly joined OGP global community in 2018 to promote, practise and sustain open governance as a potent tool for delivering quality projects on health, education, social infrastructure among others.
“Today, we are supporting the Scale Up of OGP Youth Campus Ignite because we recognize the importance of youth inclusiveness in governance.
“Kaduna State has a very youthful population, more than 60 percent of the state’s population are youth which makes it imperative to carry along youth in Government projects, programmes and governance in general.
“The OGP Youth Innovation Hub Campus Scale Up is a platform to connect students to real world of Governance so that our youthful population will have the opportunity of shaping decisions of government on and off the campus even before graduation.
“Raising the next generation of reformers who will take over the mantle of leadership in Kaduna State is paramount to the present administration and important to the Open Government Partnership,” he stressed.