Being a press statement by Mrs. Ibim Semenitari, Ag. MD/CEO, Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, on the occasion of the International Youth Day 2016 on Friday, August 12, 2016
Today is International Youth day, a day chosen by the United Nations to celebrate the vitality of youth through a strong awareness and advocacy. This occasion draws global attention to the plight, prospects and socio-economic challenges young people face.
The theme for this year’s celebration, “The Road to 2030: Eradicating Poverty and Achieving Sustainable Production and Consumption” comes handy as the search for sustainable goals and development intensifies. In this theme, the youth are reminded of a significant target.
Fighting poverty among young people has been brought again to the front burner with a 2030 target, but with the caveat that production and consumption must be carried out sustainably. This is to avoid building with one hand and destroying with the other.
I must say that education remains one of the most sustainable ways of eradicating poverty among the young population. This understanding drives our education and other pro-youth policies as a Commission. To achieve that, the NDDC has maintained a scholarship line that has continued to build manpower. In 2016, we upped that stride by striking the gender parity cord through instituting the Girls in Engineering, Mathematics and Science Competition, GEMS, Competition. This competition invites girls of the Niger Delta region to greater involvement in STEM-related courses. So, ahead of time, NDDC is working to position our youths in the competitive edge. We believe that our young people must occupy their slots in labour and economic markets through intense academic engagement. Here our module is that which accommodates healthy competition among the youths and challenges their potential creativity. The NDDC is raising a community of young people sharpened and horned to achieve greatness through education and mentorship. We are building a culture that redefines dignity among the youths through hard work.
As we particularly celebrate the youth and draw attention to their place in building a world of sufficiency and growth, I enjoin Niger Delta youths to queue in the re-orientation that abhors rent culture and embrace industry which NDDC is building; to emulate worthy patriots whose commitment to collective good of the region defined the shape and rhythm of the region’s geography and history. I task our youths to use this year’s celebration to engage in self-appraisal, to do a self-audit as to how they have participated in the current negatives pestering our region. We have always been proud stock whose progenitors were familiar with mutual respect and civility.
I consider this occasion critical to a rebirth to the approach our youths have adopted, especially lately, in seeking broader national inclusion. I challenge the youths in the region to use dialogue in their quest for development. Let us not destroy our future for sake of today’s agitation as that would amount to cutting the nose to spite the face.
Happy International Youth Day!
SA(Media & Communication) to the Ag. Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer,
Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC