The Nigeria Federal Government has requested the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) to pass a resolution to create Commission for Global Youth Engagements within the organisation.
This information was garner in correspondence to the reports by PM News Nigeria at the 39th UNESCO General Conference in Paris, France. It is reported that the Minister of Sports and Youth Development, Mr Solomon Dalung, made the request on Thursday at the ongoing 39th Session of UNESCO General Conference in Paris, France. Dalung said the proposed commission would help to practically engage youths into activities of UNESCO and build their confidence in the international system.
The minister faulted the present UNESCO model of engaging youths, describing it as ‘‘theoretical and sermonising”. “We believe the world should move from sermonising youth issues to practical engagements. The UN has been sermonising for 72 years on youth issues and there is no single commission established in the UN to address the issues. What the youth needs today is not preaching, not conferences and lectures but guaranteed future. The only way they can do that is to engage them, give them a sense of belonging, build confidence in them and give them access to participation. Once that is achieved, the youth will begin to identify with it and mobilise themselves, believing that there is hope in the future.”
In achieving this, the minister called on the UN body to adopt the Nigeria National Youth Parliament (NYP) model of youth engagement. He said “the NYP is a platform that provides opportunities for youths to participate in governance, decision making and to acquire experience in governance.’’ Dalung said that the NYP which was established by the Nigerian Government in 2008 had helped to build political leaders for the country and beyond.
The Minister of State for Education, Prof. Tony Anwuka, also in Paris, presided over a meeting of the Commonwealth Education Ministers at the UNESCO General Session, which was chaired by Her Excellency, Mrs Mariam Katagum, the Ambassador and Permanent Delegate of Nigeria to UNESCO. At the end of the meeting, Anwuka told NAN that the meeting discussed the 20th Conference of Commonwealth Education Ministers scheduled to hold in Fiji from Feb. 19 to Feb. 23, 2018.
He said the conference would advance the attainment of inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all, across the commonwealth.
Meanwhile, the Chairperson of the UNESCO Youth Forum Nigeria, Mr Osaghae Osamudiamwen has commended the steps taken by the Federal Government and the Honourable Minister of Youth & Sports in advocating for better youth social inclusion and civic engagement. He stated that the Forum which have actively engaged in youth advocacy, capacity development, policy formulations across various spectrum among which was the recent development of budget for the North-East Intervention in January 2017, and other areas such as Preventing and Countering Violent Extremism, Media Information Literacy, Climate Change, Oceans, and Gender Mainstreaming.
Mr Osaghae while praising the move by the Federal Government to create a UNESCO Youth Commission said that it will help solve the challenges besetting the UNESCO Youth Forum Nigeria which needs more support and cooperation from the Nigeria National Commission for UNESCO and the Federal government to operate efficiently. He expressed confidence that this will be possible in the near future.