A majority of Ghanaians, including the youth, think it is more important to listen to the wisdom of the elders than to the fresh ideas of the young, the most recent Afrobarometer study shows.

The report, which was made available to the Ghana News Agency by the Ghana Centre for Democratic Development (CDD-Ghana) revealed that only about one-third of Ghanaians agree with the idea that “in order for our country to do well, we should listen more to fresh ideas from young people.”

It noted that the need to pay more attention to the youth was a minority view across key socio-demographic groups – even among the youth themselves.

The survey also shows that although the youth are no less interested in politics than their elders and are about equally likely to have participated in 2016 electoral activities, they are less likely than older citizens to contact their leaders, attend community meetings, and get together to raise issues.

The survey, which was released as part of activities marking this year’s International Youth Day findings, point to the need to intensify advocacy for youth inclusion in policy making.

Among the key findings were only about one-third (36 only) of Ghanaians agree with the idea that “in order for our country to do well, we should listen more to fresh ideas from young people.”

Instead, a majority (54 per cent) say that “we should listen more to the wisdom of our elders,” including 40 per cent who “agree very strongly” with this view.

It intimated that the need to pay more attention to the youth was a minority view across key socio-demographic groups – even among youth themselves (38 per cent).

It said men (40 per cent) and respondents with post-secondary education (40 per cent) were somewhat more likely to emphasize listening to youth than are women (32 per cent) and citizens without formal education (30 per cent).

The report said almost two-thirds (64 per cent) of youth say they “occasionally” or “frequently” discuss political matters with friends and family – about the same proportion as among older age cohorts.

It said in terms of political participation, youth were about as likely as their elders to have been engaged in 2016 electoral activities such as attending a campaign rally (31 per cent among those aged 18-35), working for a candidate or party (17 per cent), and being contacted by a political party (22 per cent).

However, they are less likely than older citizens to have attended a community meeting (43 per cent), gotten together with others to raise an issue (39 per cent), and contacted leaders during the previous 12 months.

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