The African Centre for Human Advancement Social and Community Development (ACHASCOD) on Wednesday, called on President Muhammadu Buhari to practicalise the #NotTooYoungToRun bill.
It said the essence of the bill was to ensure youth Inclusion in governance in the country.
In her International Youth day speech, Ms Marcelina Opeyemi Aderinto, Executive Director, ACHASCOD, said despite constituting over half the global population, young people are underrepresented in institutional political processes.
“We appreciate the efforts of President Muhammadu Buhari in signing the ‘Not too young to run’ bill as this is a round peg in the round hole. However, we are saying that this should not just be on paper but also practicalize to ensure more youth involvements,” she said.
According to her, inequalities and lack of political and social inclusion at all levels were major problems in most countries, adding that Nigeria which also happens to be the most populous black nation in the world is not excluded.
“It is highly imperative to state unequivocally that many social vices and other menace experienced in Nigeria and the world at large, can be traced to the perceived exclusion of mostly youths who form the highest number of the world population.
“Young people in particular, regularly state that their voices are not sufficiently taken into account, their needs are insufficiently understood and met, and that their engagement and empowerment in various processes are still lacking,” she noted.
She further lamented that only around 2 per cent of national parliamentarians are under 30 years old, while the non-youths are highly over-represented within political space, thus relegating youth to the background and as well see them as tools to achieving political ambitions.
To this end, she stressed the need for government and individuals to see the importance of youths as well as their influence and positive contribution which should not be jettisoned.
On the theme of the 2020 international youth celebration, “Youth Engagement for Global Action”, she said this is an indication that youths form an integral part of any society and the world at large.
However, she called for peace and peaceful co-existence among the people not minding their status, religion, ethnicity and political affiliation.
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