The National Youth Organiser of the ruling New Patriotic Party, Sammy Awuku, has expressed confidence in the ability of President Akufo-Addo to deliver on the promise to provide jobs for the youth.
But he wants the process expedited because, according to him, while the government cannot fail the youth who voted massively to return the NPP to power, “time is also not on our side.”
Sammy Awuku was speaking at a presidential youth dialogue held at the Osu Castle Gardens, Friday to herald International Youth Day which falls Saturday, August 12, to be celebrated on the theme; Youth Building Peace.
In attendance were Senior Minister Yaw Osafo Maafo, who delivered the keynote address, Youth and Sports Minister Isaac Asiamah, the Chief Executive of the National Youth Authority (NYA), Emmanuel Asigri and Madam Erika Goldson, United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) Acting Country Representative.
“Nana Addo recognizes the mandate that the youth of our country gave him and we cannot fail the masses. I’m confident the president will deliver, but Mr. Senior Minister let’s double up because time is also not on our side”, he said to spontaneous applause by a selection of youths from all 10 regions of the country to participate in the forum.
He pointed out that unemployment today presents the biggest obstacle to youth development as well as the biggest challenge to Africa’s security and should be fought on all fronts.
Sammy Awuku explained that since the devil always finds jobs for idle hands, much of the agitations over public facilities and office seizures would not occur if many of the youth were employed.
“I want the NPP government that the youth voted massively for to also move beyond just the paper talk when we are solving youth unemployment. I say this because under the previous administration, it was always a fanfare when it was International Youth Day. At least today we are in the open, so we’ve moved from the air-conditioned room at the Conference Centre as it used to be, to face the reality under the sun. Today we are faced with big challenges across in terms of our youth. You have growing anxiety, and growing uncertainty. And that is why at the least provocation the youth will either seize something or misbehave.
“Whilst we always condemn and condemn in no uncertain terms, government must also lead the way in quickening the process in helping provide jobs for our teeming youth,” he said, capping the prompting with the popular refrain, “Boys abr3 oo, boys abr3”.
He also called on the youth to end “the unnecessary agitations” that sometimes happen at the least provocation since it does not make the fight for youth employment any better.
“It doesn’t make us look good when we seize lorry parks or car parks. It weakens our front when we are seizing offices. In any case when you seize that office you cannot be the District Director, and if you sack that person who is occupying that office and you go to sit there, that does not mean your name is in the Controller and Accountant General’s book. So you are only occupying space.”
Sammy Awuku also cautioned the youth not to lend themselves to self-seekers who would engage them to fight proxy wars, saying “whilst we will not condone youth agitation, and whilst we also want to speak true to power, the older guys too should stop using the youth to fight proxy wars.”