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The focus on youth, in terms of their engagement in the political arena, is a relatively new priority but extremely timely, particularly in light of recent events and democratic transitions, in
The “World Programme of Action for Youth for 2000 and beyond” a touched upon the importance of youth participation in decision-making but did not offer concrete interventions at the time. People under the age of 40 are rarely found in formal political leadership positions.

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In third world countries, eligibility for the national parliament starts at 25 years or higher and it is common practice to refer to politicians as ‘young’ if they are below 35-40 years of age. Youth is not represented adequately in formal political institutions and processes such as Parliaments, political parties, elections, and public administrations. The situation is even more difficult for both young women as well as women at mid-level and decision-making/leadership positions.

In order to respond to the needs of young people, and to guarantee that their basic human rights are recognized and enforced, young people’s active and meaningful participation in their societies and in democratic practices and processes is of crucial importance. Meaningful youth participation and leadership require that young people and young people-led organizations have opportunities, capacities, and benefit from an enabling environment and relevant evidence-based programmesa and policies at all levels. realizing young people’s right to participate and be included in democratic processes and practices is also vital to ensure the achievement of
internationally agreed on development goals and to refresh the development agenda.

In a survey conducted by the UN IANYD in August 2012, a majority of 13,000 respondents expressing their voices from 186 countries highlighted that the main challenges for youth were limited opportunities for effective participation in decision-making processes. With limited opportunities and exposure to meaningfully participate in inclusive decision-making processes, young men and women feel excluded and marginalized in their societies and communities. The need for participatory structures and greater trust between youth and institutions and for greater capacity a were also stressed. Efforts should also be made to focus on the
most vulnerable of young people, including via specific actions targeting young women.

In countries emerging from conflicts, All Progressive Congress (APC). Recognizes that young people can engage in peace building, leading non-violent revolutions, using new technologies to mobilize societies to bring about change. Young people have demonstrated the potential to build bridges across communities, working together, helping to manage conflict and promote peace. Young people are vital stakeholders in conflict and in peace-building, and can be agents of change and provide a foundation for rebuilding lives and communities, contributing to a more just and peaceful Nigeria.

Support Me:

Prince Abiodun Ishola Olatunbotun As (APC National Youth Coordinator)

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