NGYouthSDGs believes that the meaningful engagement of young people in decisions that matter to them is important towards delivering a sustainable Nigeria. The End SARS revolution made visible the possibilities that exists when youths participate in politics and governance.
As young persons, our voice and contribution are important to the future of Nigeria. We are battling with multidimensional poverty, climate change, corruption, youth unemployment, poor infrastructure, low level of education etc. You have an important role to play as an active citizen to ensure that Nigeria works, and this begins by taking action to vote in the next coming elections. It is not just about voting but ensuring that your friends and family vote. We have a responsibility to be active citizens.
Today NGYouthSDGs saw to educate youth in cross river state on the important of participating in politics which will give them the opportunity to secure their future.
The theme YOUTH VOICE COUNT ( A Social dialogue on youth democracy and values) the Overall Objectives of the seminar was aim at To conscientize young persons on pertinent issues concerning youth participation in Democracy, Politics, Decision Making and Governance.
To ensure youths in Calabar vote judiciously in the forthcoming elections.
Encourage women participation in politics, daring women and young girls to assert their places in policy making and decision-making.
Mrs Blessing Macrock said the opening prayers, which were brief and heartfelt.
The State coordinator; Odey Goodness gave the Opening remarks. Where she made Reference to the EndSARS revolution in Nigeria which changed the face of Nigeria’s political scene. She advised that participants networked effectively to get the best out of their social impact journey.
Thereafter, a socially conscious animation was aired on screen; Halima’s Voice featured a Northern Nigerian woman as the Heroine who found her voice after years of vote buying culminated in the decline of the state of Social infrastructures and health care delivery services. Halima’s community recorded a high rate of infant mortality. In this animation, the state of Nigerian women’s participation in decision making is being reflected. Women are expected and told to keep to the kitchens and barely elected into law making positions.
Rhetorical questions like ‘What can one woman do?’ ‘What can one young boy do?’ were asked.
The introductory sessions were lively as the excellent Compere; Hope Obia Jonah made room for light networking and eased the tension.
It was noted that filmmaking and artistic expressions are integral tools to getting youths to be actively participant in social issues. Art since time immemorial has been useful in stimulating the minds of young persons.
When the dialogue began proper, participants began to communicate and understand the power they possess in their thumbs when they exercise their franchise. In the words of Ogar Monday; ‘The country’s condition is a consequence of her voting’. Mrs Eddy Ebigwai of The Cross River Movement was inspiring while sharing the valuable lessons she got from Halima’s Voice. She said there was unrivalled power in forming formidable alliances, and demanding the dividends of democracy and good governance delivered to the citizenship.
The breakout sessions were conversation intensive following a Question and answer discourse about Leadership, who an ideal leader is, what can be done to ensure youth participation in electioneering processes. The answers were written by each group’s note taker and presented before all by the group speaker.
In conclusion, we are daring to dream a better Nigeria, not normalising the barest minimum and demanding the best from politicians in power. We believe in the power our votes wields and refuse to sell our future.
The brilliant youths in this discourse recommended; Provision of peace and security in electioneering processes.
Intensive voter education across the country.
Price reduction of nomination forms.
Advocacy for women representation in politics and corridors of power.
Discouraging tribalism and nepotism in all forms.
Driving advocacy for the implementation of youth friendly and inclusive policies.
Designing custom projects targeted at young women and girls with the aim of debunking misconceptions surrounding young girls in politics.