2019: Niger Delta youths charged to shun violence, build peace in the region

Posted by News Express | 29 November 2018 | 1,765 times

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•Niger Delta youths

The Initiative for Noble Women and Strategic Development on Wednesday in Yenagoa urged Niger Delta youths to resist being induced to thuggery and electoral violence ahead the 2019 polls.

The Non-Governmental Organisation made the appeal at a Peace Building and Sensitization Workshop for Niger Delta youths in Yenagoa, the Bayelsa capital.

Mr Anslem Asuzu, who represented the NGO and a keynote speaker noted that peace was fundamental to every segment of the society and regretted that poverty, unemployment were inimical to peace.

Asuzu who commended the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) for supporting the workshop across Niger Delta states urged the political leaders to eschew politics with violence.

“The political leadership should be more proactive and take peace building more seriously by taking deliberate steps to nip violence in the bud.

“Youths are the major target for this peace building and sensitization workshops   as indications were that more of the victims in election violence are young people,” Asuzu said.

In his presentation, Mr Don Kester, an entrepreneur urged Niger Delta youths to invest in self development and identify opportunities to be engaged in economic activities in several skill areas.

He said that it was regrettable that the current schools’ curriculum in tertiary institutions were outdated and responsible for producing university graduates that are out of sync with the labour market.

“I recently stumbled into a statistics that 95 per cent of Nigerian graduates are not suitable for the labour market, and this is a danger signal for the youth population. So the youths should go further than their certificates.

“I have since forgotten my certificate and acquired skills in new areas in entertainment industry and today I am not in the labour market. A lot has changed in the entertainment landscape and there are opportunities for people who are ambitious, daring and creative,” Lester said.

Speaking also, Mrs Toyin Odobu who spoke from a mother’s perspective noted that youths were indispensable in the political process and challenged them to rise up and negotiate for greater roles than being used for violence during elections.

“The youths are very important because of their strength, brains, talents and the politicians know this very well so we have the opportunity to change the roles of being used for violence, our youths deserve more,” she said.

More than 1,000 youth leaders drawn from the eight local government areas participated in the workshop.

Mr Shedrack Elai, a Physically Challenged person who participated in the workshop commended the NDDC for the peace advocacy and noted that an atmosphere devoid of violence would ensure the participation of the disabled persons.

Source: News Express

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