Being Young in Naija Hosts Town Hall Meeting for Youth-Led Bodies, Govt Agencies, Policymakers

Being Young in Naija Hosts Town Hall Meeting for Youth-Led Bodies, Govt Agencies, Policymakers

  • A town hall meeting to facilitate a common platform for youth-led organisations and stakeholders to engage government officials was held recently
  • Participants discussed issues relevant to the Nigerian youth experience, highlighting the experiences, challenges, and opportunities available to them
  • At the end of the parley, the organisers say they plan to take actionable next steps for collaboration between government and other youth-oriented stakeholders

FCT, Abuja - The Oxford Committee for Famine Relief (OXFAM) - funded Work in Progress! (WiP!) Initiative on Thursday, March 31 hosted a town hall meeting themed “Youth Investment for Nation-building” in Abuja.

Tagged the #BeingYounginNaija advocacy project, the meeting was organised to facilitate a common platform for youth-led organisations and stakeholders to engage government officials on issues relevant to the Nigerian youth experience.

Being Young in Naija Hosts Town Hall Meeting
BYIN program officer, Aisha Salaudeen addressing the participants during the town hall meeting. Photo credit: @Billie_Holma
Source: Twitter

Speaking to journalists on the sidelines of the event, Peter Akinnusi, project lead, said:

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“For us, the focus is on impact in terms of reach. Most of the people we have engaged have told us their main issues. We have a representative from the federal ministry of youths and sports, who are the primary stakeholders and drivers of the implementation of the National Youth Policy.

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“This town hall has people from different NGOs, CSOs, and different communities, we are hoping that they can help us cascade the message, but more importantly, the approach is awareness. A lot of people are unaware of the National Youth Policy.
“We are trying to use the Nigerian Youth Parliament for them to help use cascade the message. We hoping to engage more stakeholders including the ministry of women affairs, finance, budget and national planning, and communications.
“We believe if we can push for the youths, there is a critical mass, and actions can take place, even for the elections.”

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On her part, Amina Salaudeen, programme officer said:

“One of the major things we are hoping to achieve is to, first of all, understand the National Youth Policy. We all have different experiences being Nigerians. We want to be able to encapsulate the experiences of every Nigerian youth no matter where they are including the people in vulnerable groups.
“To do that, youths need to know the policies that benefit them. We have also been able to create awareness about the policy. We have gone to universities, we have gone to the streets and we have simplified the policy.
“We need more youths to understand that this is a policy directed at them. We want to ensure that every young person is involved and act as a watchdog to the government.”

At the town hall meeting, there was a brief overview of the BYIN project so far, goodwill messages from OXFAM, Nigerian Youth Parliament, Dorothy Njemanze Foundation, and other youth-based organisations.

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A representative of the federal ministry of youth and sports also addressed the gathering with a pledge that the ministry would continue to partner with the organisers.

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