The National Youth Authority (NYA) has inaugurated the Bolgatanga Municipal Youth Parliament in the Upper East Region with a call on them to eschew partisan politics and work to address challenges facing young people in the area.
It became the sixth district out of the 15 Municipal and Districts in the region to have their youth parliament inaugurated, thus, Bolgatanga, Bawku and Kassena-Nankana Municipals, Bongo, Bolgatanga East and Bawku West Districts.
The inauguration was part of activities of the NYA to establish Youth Parliaments across every Municipality and District in the country to bring young people together to deliberate on issues affecting their wellbeing and development.
Madam Clare Maar, the Bolgatanga Municipal Director of the NYA stated that the young people were nominated from registered youth groups in the municipality and was done without any political party influence.
Mr Francis Takyi-Koranteng, the Regional Director of the NYA explained that the Ghanaian youth had lots of potentials that needed to be tapped for sustainable transformation and economic progression and there was the need to involve them in national discourse.
The Regional Director noted that the revised national youth policy further required the involvement of the youth in the formulation and implementation of national policies and programmes that addressed the problems facing the youth including unemployment, quality education, teenage pregnancy, security among others.
Mr Takyi-Koranteng said Youth Parliaments were critical to enable the youth to debate and churn out critical solutions to national problems that addressed the interest of youth welfare and development.
“The Youth Parliament has the same structure as the National Parliament and these platforms are meant to build the capacities, confidence and leadership skills of the youth to take up the mantle of leadership in the future.
“These platforms seek to further enable the youth advocate, undertake public education on youth centered programmes and champion the interest of youth to influence policy direction and implementation,” he said.
Mr Joseph Atura Amiyuure, the Municipal Chief Executive for the area urged the youth to eschew the influence of partisan politics and use the platform to advocate the implementation of policies that inure to the benefit of the youth.
Mr Mohammadu Assibi Azonko, the Regional Coordinating Director who spoke on behalf of Mr Stephen Yakubu, the Regional Minister said the youth parliaments would prepare the young people for the future as it would instill the spirit of leadership, nationalism and patriotism in them.
He said apart from the implementation of various programmes to address youth unemployment made up of the Nation Builders’ Corps (NaBCo), the National Entrepreneurship and Innovation Programme (NEIP) among others which engaged over 100,000 young people in various sectors of the economy, the government was committed to addressing all challenges impeding the development of young people in the country.
“Government is committed to implementing the revised National Youth Policy to put the youth in their rightful place in the scheme of things. President Akufo-Addo is working to realize an optimistic and confident youthful population to take Ghana to the next level and that is why he rolled out Free SHS so that thousands of Ghanaian youth could have the opportunity to be educated,” he said.
The leadership of the Bolgatanga Youth Parliament include; Mr Melvin Aduko, Speaker, Mr Listoell Apana, first Deputy Speaker, Mr Robert Akazire, second Deputy Speaker, Mr Sampson Akolgo, Majority Leader, Mr Michael Apoya, Deputy Majority Speaker, Ms Georgina Anyane, Majority Chief Whip, Mr Elisha Ibrahim Mamara, first Deputy Majority Chief Whip and Mr Emmanuel Ayine, second Majority Chief Whip.
The rest are Mr Samule Aboa, Minority Leader, Mr Joseph Atigeyele, Deputy Minority Leader, Mr Wahab Abdulai, Minority Chief Whip, Mr Francis Akelma, first Deputy Minority Chief Whip and Mr Awuni Akolgo, second Deputy Minority Chief Whip.