OBIORA IFOH, Abuja
The of Democracy Africa Youth Parliament has elected Ghana’s John Aggrey as the Speaker of the second assembly in a keen contest held in Abuja after polling 22 votes against his closest opponent,Liberia’s Saykwayee Harmony who polled 20 votes.
The parliament consist of youths from African countries who receive trainings on parliamentary leadership, democracy, governance, peace and conflict management.
Speaking in Abuja at the opening of the inauguration of the second assembly of Democracy Africa Youth Parliament, the Director General of Save Democracy Africa, SDA, Dr. Ifedi Okwenna, explained that the reason for the inauguration was to bring together youths of the continent to build and develop skills for parliamentary leadership and governance.
“We felt that the destiny of this continent should be in the hands of the youths and since then it has been a long and tortuous journey. The experience we garnered over these years have not only been very phenomenal and intriguing but also very challenging.
“Africa as a continent has great potentials and the opportunities are limitless. However, it is a reality that the infrastructural deficiency and rate of poverty in Africa are limiting the contacts and relationship Africa have between themselves and therefore limiting her growth and development.
“This challenge is very real and the youth must take this up, if we must build an Africa of the people. Our greatest asset and resource as Africans is our youthful population.
“Therefore, we must manage and motivate this resource to lead Africa to surmount greater number of her difficulties. Youths are assets and agents for sustainable development and should be used for management of peace and development of Africa.
The Chancellor and Founder of Gregory University, Uturu in Abia State, Prof. Greg Ibe who is also the Chairman, Board of Trustees of the Save Democracy Africa challenged African Youths to fight for power in order to save the continent from bad leadership.
According to him, Africa has suffered enough from recycled leaders who have run the continent aground despite huge potentials. Ibe said, “You should take responsibility of your own development and to that of your countries and continent. Power is never given, it is always fought for.
“Not too young to run Act” which strayed in Nigeria and moving around the continent, the limiting factors are gradually been removed. We therefore expect more active participation of young people in the political space in your respective countries, not as tugs, but as real actors in the process.
“You should equally note that all the rights given to you are accompanied by responsibilities as well. The youth cannot expect governments to empower them while they do the opposite by abusing themselves in various ways such as substance abuse. To be able to get maximum benefits expected of youths, they should also develop and promote the required self-discipline.
“Africa is tired of having recycled leaders, it is time to change and join the rest of the world in having the youth contributing actively in deciding the type of future they would want to leave in but in actualising his, youths must take their destiny in their own hands and build a network that shall endure.”
For a better society