Sierra Leone’s Minister of YOUTH Hon. Alimamy Kamara is presenting in the Senegalese capital of Dakar together with two Youth leaders Francis Foday Kamara of Youth Action Movement and Florence Mabinty Koroma of Youth Action for Justice and Development, attending the 4TH PAN – AFRICAN SUMMIT OF YOUTH LEADERS OF THE UNITED NATIONS.
Hon. A. Kamara at the summit
The week long (January 13th – 17th) Summit is being held under the Chairmanships of His Excellency Mr. Macky Sall President of Senegal and His Excellency Mr Ibrahim Boubacar Keita, President of Mali, on the Theme: Youth Unemployment in the Post- 2015 Development Agenda of the United Nations. It aims to bring together two Youth Leaders – a young man and a young woman- aged between 18 and 35 years from each of the 54 African countries, as well as young people from the Diaspora in the USA and Europe. The Dakar meeting according to Government officials will mark the beginning of a global consultation process of young leaders who will lead the 2nd UN Global Youth Leadership summit to be held in September 2015 with technical and financial partners of the summit that included the UN, UNFPA, UNAIDS, UNDP, UNICEF, ROJALNU and the Economic Commission of Africa.
Youth leaders are expected to hand over the conclusions of their deliberations to President Macky Sall and urged him to serve as their spokesperson at the General Assembly and provide a summary of the best practices from a youth perspective on the Secretary General’s initiative “1,000-day mark before the target date to achieve the millennium Development Goals”
Speaking to Minister Alimamy Kamara on the essence of such a big African Youth Summit before the start of the Summit, he said it is part of advocacy efforts under way by young people to make a contribution to the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). He added that Youth summit aim to mobilize and the energy and intelligence of young Africans around the global effort to achieve the MDGs by 2015.
It can be recalled that the Secretary General of the United Nations, Ban Ki- Moon launched “1,000-days mark before the target date to achieve the Millennium Development Goals” on April 5 2013 in Spain, in order to draw the attention to States on the urgency of achieving the MDGs.
This fourth summit in Dakar, considering its theme says an Official of UNFPA, is expected to be action – oriented and will offer an opportunity to shape Youth projects that have effectively contributed to the acceleration of the MDGs and play an important role in the post- 2015 development agenda of the UN.
The overall objective of the summit says Hon. Alimamy Kamara, is to equip Youth leaders with entrepreneurship skills, issue a consensus document that will feature youth employment in the framework of the MDGs and conceptual framework of the post-2015 agenda. He added “It will also as a matter of importance present a comprehensive overview of youth employment- friendly policies and programmes carried out in the implementation process of the MDGs”.
Delivering the keynote address and opening the summit the Prime Minister of Senegal Madam Aminata Touré on behalf of President Macky Sall said a country without an action plan and interest in her Youth is of no essence to the people. She said the importance of such a summit rest on the pillars of the efforts her President attaches to such an event and that her government will continue to strive to provide education employment and the necessary skills needed for them in order to prepare them for their task of nation building. Madam Touré called on African leaders and the world as a whole to give attention to the Youth, as they are considered future leaders.
Delivering a paper on the topic ‘Investing in the capabilities of Youths to achieve sustainable development’ at the first plenary session of the summit, Hon Minister for Youth Alimamy Kamara said the future of the African continent can only be handled if Youth issues are taken seriously and put top of national agenda. “Education, security and promotion of Youth is doubtless cardinal especially with regards the girl child” he stressed.
The Hon. Minister informed that his government under the leadership of President Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma has already ratified the AFRICAN YOUTH CHARTER, adding that it is going to be the road map for the advancement of Youths in the continent and beyond. To a standing ovation, he said “It is my firm belief and that also of my government that a practical way to look into the interest of Youth is to globally invest in them”.
The summit expected results are among others:- ownership by Youth leaders of MDGs policies and programs fostering job creation for young people catering to implement the MDGs, the fight against HIV/AIDS and youth entrepreneurship, commitment of Youth leaders to accelerate the implementation of the UNAIDS vision of “Getting to Zero”:- Zero new HIV infections, zero discrimination and zero AIDS-related deaths and the adoption by Youth leaders of actions carried out in achieving the MDGs and developing the post- 2015 development agenda of the United Nations.
The summit which included a field trip to an island and other social events end on Friday.
BY:- Ralph Ese’Donnu Sawyerr,
Embassy of Sierra Leone,
In Senegal and The Gambia.