Blantyre, May 25, Malawi Voice: Executive Director for Centre for Governance and Leadership (CEGOL) Chimwemwe Kaonga said economic inequalities and poverty are some of the factors affecting youths to participate fully in policy, democratic governance and socio-economic development.
He made the remarks on Wednesday during youth conference on national development in Blantyre.
The conference was aimed at updating the youths on the outcome of COMESA Youth Leaders conference Boot camp which was held 2 years ago in Tanzania.
The COMESA Youth Leaders conference brought together youth leaders and policy makers from COMESA member of states.
Kaonga observed that if young people can not have the capacity to explore avenues to improve their economic status to support their livelihood, it is very difficult to contribute effectively to the development of the country.
“Many young people are failing to participate effectively in the economic development because of high levels of unemployment and under employment in addition to lack of entrepreneurial skills.
“It is for this reason that we engaged our fellow young Malawian leaders to advance agenda of encouraging young people to participate effectively in democratic governance and social economic development.
“This, however, should start from council level forum which is an avenue for building capacity of young people so that they are active in civic engagement,” he said.
In his remarks Deputy Mayor for Blantyre City Council Councilor Funny Baraba Kanojerera stressed the need for youths to show interest and endure the process to attain higher positions.
“As a country we are not yet there in terms of having youths in decision making positions. We are trying as much as possible to take many youths on the board, but I would like to ask youths in the country to show interest of being part and parcel of development and decision making bodies ,” he said
Principal Youth Officer in the Ministry of Youth and Sports Chikondi Chasukwa encouraged youths in country to strengthen their working relationship with government for more coordination and meaningful participation of them in democratic governance and social economic development processes.
“Government is very committed in ensuring that youths in the country are taking part in decision making as one way of achieving the vision of Malawi 2063.
Young people are the drivers of development in the country, so youths in the country need to have that spirit of willingness when doing things. We want youths to be meaningfully engaged in all aspects of development in the country be it investment, political and social development,” she said