Youth are central in development

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Youth participation in a growing economy is an essential key to national development. The world’s biggest power is the youth, thus meaningful efforts must be established to help empower them to contribute sufficiently and competently towards the socio-economic and sustainable development of the country.

Oxford advanced learner’s dictionary defines “youth” as the time of life when one is young. In a nutshell it’s a period when a young person has not yet become an adult. This category of the country’s population forms the highest and active portion in terms of population in many developing countries including The Gambia. As they represent the future of any country, they therefore have a vital role to play in development; a duty they must perform.

In one of today’s editions, we ran a story on President Barrow Youth for National Development (PBYND), which has commenced implementing 120 projects within six months in different communities across the country. The aims of the movement, according to its official, are to foster social cohesion, integration and national development.

Looking at the country today, there is need to put our collective efforts together so as to foster integration and achieve meaningful result. It is fact that no meaningful development can take place if there is disunity among the people in any society especially among its youth. We therefore, thank the movement for conceiving such brilliant ideas in their broader move to setting up a positive agenda for youth development in the country.

National development as we as know is the ability of a nation to improve the lives of its citizens. And the extremity of all national development is to enhance the lives of the citizens within the context of a growing economy. This cannot be achieved in isolation, thus the need for concerted efforts by all to enable the country achieve the lofty goals it has set for itself.

However, government also must include the youths in decision making processes especially the ones affecting their lives. Youth participation in a growing economy especially in decision-making gives them a sense of belonging that promotes a high sense of responsibility and citizenship.

It also increases the likelihood that the country’s programs and services will be in the interest of the youth thereby creating a serene environment for national development.

“The youth is the hope of our future.”

Jose Rizal