By Henry Umoru – Abuja
President of the Senate, Senator Ahmad Lawan, has felicitated with the Nigerian Youth on the occasion of the International Youth Day 2020.
Also, the Deputy President of the Senate, Senator Ovie Omo Agege has said that even in the face of unprecedented challenges, Nigerian youth have continued to demonstrate tremendous courage and resilience thereby giving hope for a better future.
In a message signed on Wednesday in Abuja by his Special Adviser, Media, Ola Awoniyi, Lawan noted the importance of the Day which was set aside by the United Nations to draw attention to issues concerning the youth at the community, national and global levels.
The Senate President who noted that the youth deserve special attention as a vulnerable group but also as the future of the nation said; “The education, knowledge, technical skills and character of the youth will determine the future conditions and character of the nation.
Therefore, the government must endeavor to create a system that nurtures the talents of the youth and ensures their robust development as they grow into the leadership of the society.”
Lawan who further said that the government owes the youth an environment that encourages them to unleash their potentials and realise their dreams stressed that the National Assembly passed the Not Too Young to Run Bill, which President Muhammadu Buhari signed into law in May 2018, to avail the Nigerian Youth the opportunities to fully participate and aspire to any role in politics and governance
The President of the Senate who noted that he was happy with the way the youth are responding to the opportunities and challenges arising from the new law, said that the current global health pandemic had made the Youth even more vulnerable because of its havoc on social infrastructure, business and the economy in general.
Lawan said, “It is therefore imperative for us to take extraordinary measures to assuage the effects of the pandemic on the youth, especially as these concern employment and business opportunities.
“It is our responsibility as leaders to help the youth see the windows of opportunities opening in the new world order foisted on us by the COVID-19 pandemic”
The Senate President assured the Nigerian youth that the National Assembly will always promote legislation that promotes their best interests.
On his part, Deputy President of the Senate, Senator Omo- Agege a message to mark the United Nations’ International Youth Day signed by his Special Adviser, Media and Publicity, Yomi Odunuga, urged all those elected on the populist platform of the All Progressives Congress to renew their people-centered commitment towards a better future under which Nigerian youth can, with better safety, dignity, and opportunities, contribute to societal growth and development through the exercise of their fullest potentials.
The Deputy President of the Senate said that this year’s theme, “Youth Engagement for Global Action” draws attention to the need for the youth to be more involved at the local, national and global levels in initiatives targeted towards sustainable growth and development.
He said, “As Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr once said: ‘One of the greatest liabilities of history is that all too many people fail to remain awake through great periods of social change. Every society has its protectors of the status quo and its fraternities of the indifferent who are notorious for sleeping through revolutions.
“Today, we must all identify with the Buhari administration’s reform initiatives because our very survival and development depend on our collective ability to stay awake, adjust to new ideas, remain vigilant and face the continuously evolving challenges of change ”
According to Senator Omo-Agege, his personal effort for empowerment and development must necessarily include a strong focus on the youth population in his constituency, adding that no serious society can underestimate the vibrant potentials of its young people.
Omo- Agege said, “As Margaret Mead, the late American author and cultural anthropologist once said: ‘Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed people can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.
“This profoundly resonates with me and my mission at the Senate where I have fully embraced opportunities to work with my colleagues, party members, and aides, including a large number of young people drawn from various parts of the Federation.
“Many young Nigerians have become sterling examples in sports, education, technology, and numerous other areas of human endeavours and as we observe International Youth Day, I urge all of us to renew our commitments towards empowering the younger generation and creating a better future.”