Visiting Liberia for the first time, the African Union (AU) Youth Envoy, Ms. Aya Chebbi, said the high rate of unemployment among youth on the African continent is detrimental to this segment of continent’s population.
She made the remark at a one-day Youth Leaders’ Meeting held at the Federation of Liberian Youth (FLY) offices, Wednesday, April 3, 2019. The event brought together young people from the youth and student communities.
“Youths in Africa today are marginalized; they are out of leadership. They are out of the situation table, and they are out of the conversation table,” Chebbi said.
In spite of the marginalization of young people on the continent, the AU Youth Envoy urges young people to prepare themselves for the future.
“When you have the opportunity to sit at the table you need to do more,” she told her audience.
According to Ms. Chebbi, African governments should create an enabling environment to empower young people.
“We just don’t want jobs; we want decent jobs. You cannot be a young graduate and you cannot get a decent job,” she said.
Also, the AU Youth Envoy promised to highlight the agenda of Liberian youth at her AU office.
Adding up, the president of FLY, Mr. Amos Williams, urged students and youth organizations in the country to take advantage of the AU Youth Envoy’s visit to Liberia.
According to Williams, Ms. Chebbi’s visit should signify Liberian youth’s participation at the AU Youth Office.
An executive of FLY, Flomo Maiwo was recently elected Deputy Chairperson at the African Youth Commission. According to Williams, this is a sign of motivation for Liberian youth.
“Now that you are in Liberia, I have no doubt that those who are here from the youth and student communities will take advantage of your present to understand how Liberia’s present in your office, in your work, can be felt not by words but by the action,” FLY President Williams stated.
According to him, despite Liberia’s participation in the formulation of the Organization of African Unity (OAU), which later metamorphosed into the AU, there has not been much contribution from Liberian youths to the continental body. Williams continues: “At this moment, I see that energy and that passion from this generation to contribute immensely to the AU.”