The Greater Accra Regional Youth Network has called on the government to give greater attention to youth development issues particularly youth unemployment which has worsened with the outbreak of COVID-19.
The Group said the government should “prioritize and invest massively in developing the youth by instilling in them employable Information Technology (IT) skills to ease the unemployment burden they are confronted with.”
In a statement issued and signed by the Public Relations Officer, of the Greater Accra Regional Youth Network, Joseph Kobla Wemakor, to commemorate this year’s International Youth Day, they reckoned that the ripple effect of the COVID-19 has brought untold pain and hardship across the globe.
“Infection numbers continue to rise, more companies are struggling to survive, and terrifying food sources and millions of more people are going to bed hungry every night. It is no doubt we are living through very challenging times where issues of the youth all over the world have been compounded in similar magnitude.”
It was also acknowledged that “among all the issues the world is faced within this era of the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, public health and economic issues continue to dominate putting many lives at risk particularly young people who constitute half of the world’s population. This is a concern many leaders across the world are confronted with which we believe our government is equally worried about.”
However, they noted that “focusing on youth development issues at this moment of hardship, would be to help build their capacities through the provision of employable IT skills in a bid to help create employment opportunities for them.”
In the thinking of the Group, this would help to ease their unemployment burden if not wipe away the economic burden brought upon by the emergence of the coronavirus pandemic.
It is against this backdrop that they appealed to the government to urgently roll out a national ICT for Work programme with special focus on preparing the Ghanaian youth for the virtual or digital world in order to stay relevant or competitive in the global job market.
In line with the theme of this year’s International Youth Day: “Youth Engagement for Global Action,” they also appealed to the political parties in the country contesting for political power in the upcoming polls in December to exercise restraint in their dealings, eschew violence and desist from instigating the youth to perpetrate mayhem before, during and after the elections.
They encouraged political parties to find avenues to collaborate with the youth to ensure peaceful, political and sustainable process.
The Greater Accra Regional Youth Network is a web of youth groups from various Municipal, Metropolitan and District Assemblies in the Greater Accra Region. The objective of the network is to promote youth empowerment in the region through advocacy and other projects that would transform the lives of the youth.