Thousands of Anambra state youths, the State Governor, Chief Dr Willie Obiano, state government functionaries, the State Chief Judge, Justice Ijem Onwuamaegbu, members of the State National Assembly, Traditional rulers from various communities in the State, members of the State Chapter of National Youth Council of Nigeria, among others, gathered at the Alex Ekwueme Square, Awka, on Tuesday, 20th August 2019, to celebrate the 2019 International Youth Day with the theme ‘Transforming Education’.
The event featured the lunching of the Triple ‘I’ (Inventor, Investors, Initiative), Smart jobs platform; the Youth TV; awards presentations to Corp Members who developed outstanding projects during their service year among others
Speaking during the event, the Anambra State Governor, Chief Willie Obiano, restated the State’s commitment to helping young people harness their skills through its support and investment in various communities. Pointing out that his administration in government had invested in qualitative education, included fifty-two percent of youths in governance through appointments in various offices, and had not failed in celebrating the positive impact of youths in their various communities.
He went further to explain that the theme of this year’s celebration, tended to give attention to the transformation of education, pointing out that his administration was very effective in that aspect while he advised young people to take such advantage for the betterment of their future, the state and Nigeria in general. Even so, he noted that the State government had strategized means to set up a film
village and upgrade sports facilities in schools, among others.
For his part, the Commissioner for Youth Entrepreneurship and Creative Economy, Mr. Afam Mbanefo, during his opening remark, based his speech on the theme of the event, “Transforming education”, highlighted the need for much efforts to make education more inclusive and accessible for all youths, including efforts by youth themselves. He explained further that education was not only formal schooling but also involves diversification in various entrepreneurial skills to ensure that youths are meaningfully engaged. He beckoned on all youth groups to align themselves with the Ministry of Youth Entrepreneurship and Creative Economy to gain fully from the One Youth, One Skill Policy made by the Governor.
Represented other youth groups in the State, the State Chairman of National Youth Council of Nigeria, Mr. Samuel Egwuatu who said that the day was carved out to draw government attention to issues surrounding youths and reminded the Governor that they have consistently aligned themselves with his programs for the State, appealed for a youth house, youth subvention, branded vehicles, to further help the youth movement.
Some young people who spoke to Fides in an interview included Ezefunnaba Ifeanyi, Sabina Ifesinachi Okonkwo and Ruth Ukamaka Oluka, in their separate speeches said that Anambra Youths are worth celebrated because they are enterprising. They individually solicited that the government should encourage youths by establishing skill and acquisition centres in various communities, where youths can develop ICT and other entrepreneurial skills.
Highlights of the event was presentations from Popular Umunze born Flavour, Awkuzu born Slow Dogg, Okija born Mr Real, twelve-year-old OCB amongst others.