NDPC targets youth in long term development plan
The National Development Planning Commission (NDPC), in collaboration with the National Youth Authority has launched a comprehensive programme to actively involve the youth in the 40-year Long Term Development Plan of the country.
The plan under the theme: ‘The Youth of Ghana: The future we want to build for ourselves’, is targeted at the youth in basic, secondary and tertiary schools across the countryas well as their counterparts who are out-of-school.
The strategy is to engage the youth in a continuous fashion, and stimulate them to engage members of their families and communities in contributing ideas to the long term plan.
The youth focused consultation will start with a media launch to reach the wider population, and continue with efforts to obtain specific information on the needs and concerns of the youth and how to address them in a coherent and consistent fashion.
It is also to inform the youth about their role in the development process in general, and the expectations for their participation in the plan preparation process, through a number of activities.
The activities include the ‘Dream Ghana Week’ which would be observed from September 26 to October 2, 2016, and it seeks to raise awareness among the youth of their vital role in shaping their own future in their communities and the country.
A national essay/drawing competition and a series of national debates are other activities that would form part of the preparation process.
Speaking at the launch, DrKwesiBotchwey, Chairman of NDPC, said the youth are important stakeholders in the planning processes of the country and can play different roles as leaders, partners and beneficiaries of the nation’s development agenda.
Their active participation in producing the Long Term Development Plan, he stated, is not just for the sake of inclusivity but about harnessing their enormous abilities and enthusiasm for the benefit of their communities and the entire society.
He advised that they are the prime beneficiaries of the long term plan and therefore must educate themselves vigorously to inure its positive impacts.
Samuel OkudzetoAblakwa, Deputy Minister of Education, on his part, mentioned that the platform has been created to afford the youth an adequate role to effectively participate in the development processes and ensure that their aspirations and desires are heard, documented and used to inform the development processes of the country’s Long-Term National Development Plan.
While investment in the plan begins now, he said the benefits will last for generations and therefore it is imperative that all the different generations present have an input to ensure that the resulting plan gives not only a fair representation but also accepted and implemented by all, including the youth, who are to succeed the current generation of leaders.
He asserted that theyouth have the potential for playing a decisive role in promoting change adding that the future of our communities and our nation depends on the way we raise and support young people to handle the affairs of tomorrow.
Caption: DrBotchwey speaking at the launch
Photo: John Elliot Hagan