The Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Barr Solomon Dalung gave the assurance in Makurdi, the Benue State capital at the weekend, during a Youth Dialogue engagement Programme by the Minister with youth across the length and breadth of Benue state which is part of his 2-day working visit to the state.
The Minister also buttressed his optimism with a revelation that adequate budgetary provision for organising the youth festival has been included in the 2017 annual budget; pointing out that the National Council on Sports will soon be convened to decide on a new date and venue.
The Minister, during the dialogue decried societal deep-seated neglect of youth particularly the lack of political will to involve them in governance and key sectors of the economy, calling for deliberate efforts to yield space to them, if truly they are the leaders of tomorrow.
For the umpteen time, the Minister challenged state governors to channel a quarter of their national security votes to youth and sports development as panacea for the frightening youth unemployment confronting our nation today and it’s security implication to the desired peace and wellbeing of the nation.
The Minister also urged the youth to do away with self-destructive anti-social behaviours, squabbles and petty divisions, the type that saw the National Youth Council of Nigeria NYCN being turned to a fractured body with 6 presidents and the get-rich – quick syndrome, which is making it very easy for youth to be recruited at a price by unscrupulous elites and politicians.
The youth on their part advocated the establishment of a National Youth Center in Abuja and its state chapters in all state capitals of the federation to “galvanize the collective spirit and activities of youth.” They also called for massive deployment of resources to skill acquisition schemes, entrepreneurship training and sports development.