By Chinedu Adonu
Enugu State Government has reiterated its commitment to improve budgetary allocation for programmes that will enhance the growth and development of youths in the state.
State commissioner for Budget and Planning, David Ugwunta, gave the assurance on Yesterday in Enugu, during a public hearing program on enhancing youth participation for sustainable development organized by Connected Development, CODE, with support from Actionaid.
Ugwunta noted that youth empowerment and human capital development, remain top most agenda of the state governor, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, adding that the governor has approved the establishment of Enugu Technology hub.
While assuring that the 2022 budget will take care of the hub and its activities, he advised young people in the state to leverage on the opportunity in order to imbue themselves with necessary skills they need to become independent even in the midst of widespread unemployment.
“Although funding remains a major bottleneck towards the government’s efforts to achieve its goals, the Enugu State Government was committed to ensuring that youth-centered programmes in the state were given a pride of place “he said.
He called on the management of the hub to articulate their ideas and programs and forward to the ministry for inclusion in the budget which will be captured under the ministry of Science and technology.
Earlier in his address, South East lead of CODE, Dr. Daniel Ugwu, said that Connected Development, under its Strengthening Youth Focused Public Service Delivery Project, is carrying out this public hearing to engage citizens and government stakeholders to discuss government programs and enhancing youth inclusion in governance for sustainable development.
He noted that the hearing, now in its third phase, aims to empower young people to influence public expenditure towards gender-responsive public service delivery through budget monitoring and tracking.
Also speaking, Ikenna Ugwu, a CODE champion in Enugu State, said that the government must do well to make its programmes accessible and transparent to the youths to keep them busy.
“The government must also improve publicity each time such programmes are available because many people are often not aware of these programmes and they keep saying the government is not doing enough “he said.