The Gambia Vice President Dr. Isatou Touray has urged African youths to be more critical minded and use non-violent means of engaging their governments in addressing their concerns, aspirations and wishes.
She made the statement Tuesday at opening of 3rd African Youth Forum Organize by United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation, UNESCO OHCHR, other United Nations agencies, CODESRIA, Trust Africa, ARTICLE 19 and the Rosa Luxembourg Foundation, in close collaboration with the Gambia Government, PAYNCOP and the African Commission on Human and People’s Right (ACHPR) at a local hotel..
“Am very happy to hearing young people saying we want development, we want to move forward, we want to alleviate poverty and I believe the only way we can achieve these is to move in a way that is non-conflict means of engagements. We need critical minds and critical consciousness, is not seating down and go out there and organized protests and start attacking because you don’t know where it will end”, said Dr. Isatou Touray.
The forum known as Banjul + 3 Forum will also focus on the roles and place of young women and men in the areas of reflection namely; democracy, human rights, guarantee of freedoms expression, governance, peace and security, heritage, creativity and social transformations.
Organizers says the forum the objective is to provide young African leaders of both sexes, of all categories and backgrounds with a platform to reflect and exchange between different segments of youth and to give them the opportunity to interact with other actors in the societal space to create the necessary synergies to bring solutions to their problems and those of society.
Dr. Touray, challenge African youths to love their continent by protecting the continent, their countries and communities in a bid to move Africa forward.
She pointed out that war and conflict will only derail the growth and progress of the continent at a time when other regions are on the move.
“Dear participants the current political and developmental discourses we are facing are competitive, the various political economies that are dominant in developmental discourses are acknowledging and recognizing’s the potentials of our continent.
Therefore, they are focusing attention on Africa which is very positive and we as Africans must be ready to take this advantage, we must also be ready to engage our leaders in a peaceful, non-violent means in our collective desire to move the continent forward”, VP Touray told young African.
She called on the African youths to work towards changing the narratives about Africa from negative to positive, noting that all what is said of Africa is about killings, tribal and ethnic problems, the unruly behaviors of the youths plus everything negative about Africa, arguing that continent’s youths can learn from the positive stories of The Gambia youths who ended 22 years of dictatorship in the country through non-violent means.
“The Gambian youths and women were leaders in changing the country from dictatorship to a democracy through the use of the social media and in a non-violent way. We mobilize, we organized ourselves, shares one common mission to change what was happening because we were all suffering and this was done through the use of the social media in a positive way.
The use of the social media is not to create problems or to create coup’d’état on the various social platforms”, Gambia’s Vice President told African youths.
Dr. Touray said the doors of The Gambian Government is widely open to engage, promote and enhance the potentials growth and development of youths, nothing that youths are the leaders of today and tomorrow and President Adama Barrow government will leave no stone unturned as far as youth matters are concern.
Source Voice Gambia